= One Hot Mess of a Mama! Last week and the week before were by far the hardest weeks of my pregnancy. It had nothing to do with the mild discomfort I've been feeling physically, either. In fact, I think this pregnancy has been even easier than the first, and I breezed through the first one! Those two weeks were incredibly hard emotionally, and I know it's because my hormones really got the better of me. On top of that was the stress of State Testing, which was all this week at my school, so I became one giant ball of a crying mess almost every night. I started to write about it twice, listing all the crazy things I was worrying about, trying to put into words how deeply heavy I felt all the time, even though I knew that I was blessed beyond words every day. I was having a very hard time being happy, yet also having a very hard time trying to pinpoint why I was so sad.
The upcoming birth has me all in a tizzy, mostly because I just want everything to go as well as it did with Sylvia. I'm also in a tizzy over how Sylvia will handle all of this madness at the end of June. All in all, it occured to me that I'm much less settled and at peace with my pregnancy at this point than I was last time. Last time I had the baby room done. Last time we had taken all of the Bradley classes and read all of the books. Last time I felt so ready and so excited, and this time I'm just praying that we get everything done in time. Don't get me wrong - if this baby shows up tomorrow, we'll be ready! She has a place to sleep, she has clothes to wear, and she has plenty of arms in which to be snuggled, so I know in my rational mind that everything will be FINE. But I'm just not as organized or prepared as I was the first time around, and it's driving me CRAZY! Until now...
Here's a sneak peek at the baby's room. That's my hubs, drilling holes in the dresser to fit the fixtures I bought over the weekend. You can see the painter's tape on the chair rail because I painted it last night and finished up the second coat tonight. All that's left is to arrange the furniture, hang some pictures, and fill the drawers and shelves with our cute baby stuff! Phew! I feel so much better tonight than I have in a looong time. Things are getting much less heavy.
We've also made a couple of executive decisions about the birth and the babying that are very different from last time, and very different from most people, I suppose. These decisions weighed so heavily on my mind because I (like every other mother in the world) don't want to be seen as a nut case. I figured out, though, after long talks with Sylvain, that the harshest and scariest judgements about me as a mother come only from myself. No one else really cares what I do or how I do it because everyone else is doing the same thing - just trying to make the right choices for their family. So here you have it - our two, big, please-don't-call-us-hippies decisions:
1. We're hiring a doula! A doula is a birth attendant who meets with you at home twice before you give birth, stays with you the entire time while you labor and deliver, helps you establish nursing, and visits you once at home after the baby arrives. I repeat: she'll visit us once at home after the baby arrives. I understand that in most countries, this service is provided by the government. If I was having this baby in France, someone would be coming to my home to check on us and see how we're doing. Isn't that nice? I know I won't be completely alone or without help or anything. I have a huge, wonderful, loving family who will support us unconditionally after we get home. But the fact that someone who knows a lot about new babies will drop by to check on us is very reassuring to me and well worth looking like a hippie. I've spoken to a quite a few families who used a doula and they all raved about the one they used, claiming it was the best thing they could have done to have a happy birth. We spoke with a couple and settled on a really wonderful lady, who happens to be French and has a two year old at home! I can hardly wait for our first prenatal visit.
2. We're switching to cloth diapers! I think. I'm 95% on board with this idea, but we have yet to pull the trigger because there are SO MANY ways to do this. I think I found the right brand for us. I think I know what kind of accessories we'll need. I'm having a hard time shelling out the cash to pay for them, even though I know we'll be saving TONS of money in the long run. It's been really fun experimenting on Sylvia because she's old enough to tell us exactly what she thinks of them. I've been using one cloth diaper a day, putting it on her when she gets home from school, and we've explored three different brands of diapers, which has helped narrow down the choices. She's getting to the point where she expects it and if I forget, she asks for it! Do you know a kid who asks for a particular diaper? After an hour, I always ask her, "How's your diaper feel?" and she always smiles up at me and says, "Soooooft." If that's not enough to convince me, I don't know what is! I'm getting more and more comfortable cleaning them and managing them - we've even been out of the house a few times in them and we've had no major issues. Maybe tonight I'll get online and actually place our order.
So that's it! Posting it on the bloggy blog makes me feel so much better already! I was talking to a friend the other day and I came to a great conclusion, which will likely be my mantra for the rest of this pregnancy (I think I've posted this exact sentiment on the blog before):
I have absolutely no idea what I'm doing, but neither does anybody else.
It feels good to repeat that to myself once in a while. So bring it, baby! We're as ready as we're going to be.