Today I am exactly 18 weeks pregnant, and almost exactly 5 months away from my due date. That is starting to sound like I am seriously pregnant, huh? In just over two weeks we have the big ultrasound, and after that, when we (hopefully) know the baby's sex and (please please please) have seen that it is developing healthily and on schedule, it will feel really... real. Like it's really going to happen. Though it's starting to feel that way, a little bit, now. I still have twinges and flutters that I am pretty sure are baby movements, but they're so faint and fast that it's hard to know for sure.
In the meantime, we still haven't bought anything to prepare for the baby other than a few prints to hang in the nursery and now, as of yesterday, a rug. It is gorgeous, and much more affordable than most rugs, and fits perfectly with the color scheme of the room, and it was the last one in stock. So, I pulled the trigger and now we'll see a) if it was really in stock and actually shows up, and b) if it's as nice as it looks in the picture.
But still, we haven't bought anything that is definitively BABY, like, you know, a crib. And we won't start doing all that until after the 20-week ultrasound. However, we have made some definite progress. And by "definite progress," I mean we braved Babies R Us (why oh why do we not have a Buy Buy Baby in Denver yet?) and a local baby store to check out in person some of the baby items we've been researching online.
And it was productive, really. Babies R Us surprised me with the staff's helpfulness and knowledge. We had a detailed conversation about strollers with one employee, and a very helpful discussion about baby carriers with another. I know, it sounds beyond fascinating to the rest of you, but it really was so useful.
We didn't buy anything, but we came away with a clear idea of what we do and do not want. We want the slightly more expensive Baby Bjorn that comes with the extra waist strap for lumbar support. We do not want an expensive crib, lovely as they are, because the point of investing in expensive furniture is that it lasts a lifetime, and this crib will not be used for more than two kids, so we would prefer a cheaper crib that still gets top ratings for safety. We do not want to spend the extra money on a super lightweight urban stroller, because we don't have to worry about carrying it on buses or subways or stairs. We do love the stroller we've picked out, in part because it has an adjustable handle that works for the 8-inch height spread between Torsten and me (and also because it has the nice manly features of excellent steering and suspension, apparently). And so on.
When we got home we fleshed out our registry considerably. The registry, while obviously a useful thing for anyone who wants to buy us a baby gift, is really more of a shopping list for ourselves, since we have almost nothing of what we need, baby-wise, and expect to purchase most of it ourselves (though we will look into getting some of it used). Almost nothing on the registry is still rated "nice to have" (code for "still needs research")--the only exceptions being cloth diapers, bookcases, and winter outfits. Everything else is a decision--we definitely want this. Crib, changing table, swing, bouncy seat, stroller, car seat, baby carrier and sling, pack n play, monitor, even a diaper bag.
I feel very accomplished about this. And also very pregnant (even though I know I am only going to get much bigger and waddle-ier) because the exertion of visiting two baby stores in one day was enough to wear me right out. When we got home from Babies R Us I had to spend a full hour collapsed on the couch with a glass of water to recover.
And it's not just shopping. On Sunday we took the dog to the state park for a walk. We went not that far, and while it was sunny it wasn't that hot, and the walk was in no way strenuous, and yet by the end I was red-faced and panting, and again, required an hour on the couch to recover. I think it's about the time spent? Because I can do my usual half hour of cardio at the gym with no problem. OK, maybe the sun was a factor too.
Anyway! Isn't it funny how it's all a mental game? We haven't actually DONE anything, or acquired anything that we need, but the fact that we've made decisions and have a shopping list, otherwise known as a plan of action, is enough to make me feel like we are moving forward and starting to get ready for an actual baby.
The other thing that makes me feel like we're getting ready for an actual baby? Is looking at all this stuff designed for an actual baby, and realizing that soon there will BE an actual baby IN all this stuff. This especially hit home when the Babies R Us employee was showing us how to fit the Baby Bjorn appropriately for Torsten's height. He was standing there wearing an empty baby carrier while we envisioned where the baby's head would be on his body, and it was like, whoa. In just a few months he's going to be wearing a carrier just like this, but there will be an actual baby in there, with an actual baby head, close enough to Torsten's own head for him to smell.
How awesome is that?
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