Today marks the start of my third trimester and I'm officially getting nervous. I guess I just feel so unprepared.
There are the little things like not having a name picked out and not having any nursery furniture yet. Then there are the big things like not having any clue what to expect trying to get this baby out of me. Looming questions seem to have become more pronounced in my subconscious like: Can I even do this? Am I trying hard enough? Will I be a good mother?
The online pregnancy forum that I've been frequenting is only adding to my worries. All of the women with similar due dates seem to have everything together: names, pictures posted of their completed baby room and they're even swapping advice on diapers. Diapers! I can honestly say that diapers are the absolute last thing on my mind right now.
One of our very kind and thoughtful neighbors unknowingly solidified that worry by stopping by this week to drop off an information pamphlet, including coupons, for diapers that she got in the mail. She pointed out that they expire soon, but figured we would want to save money wherever possible.
When she left, I turned to Jerry and nearly had a breakdown. Should we be buying diapers? Am I already completely inept at this parenting thing? Is the whole "maternal instinct" term everybody keeps talking about a complete load of crap? Or is mine just not functioning properly? Because, if it was, I would apparently have enough diapers stashed away in my linen closet to open a retail store.
Then there was the scary realization that I still think newborns look gross. I guess I just assumed that at this stage in pregnancy, I would automatically change my opinion on the subject. Like my "maternal instinct" would kick in and make me feel all melty at the sight of the bloody, goopy, purple, wrinkly, alien-looking things they show moments after birth on "A Baby Story."
A few days ago, I watched an episode for the first time in months and still found myself recoiling in horror. In fact, I think I actually said, "Ugh, nasty" aloud, scrunched up my face and crossed my legs for good measure.
When I confided my feelings to Jerry later that night, asking if that makes me a freak among pregnant woman, he just laughed and reassured me that newborns are gross looking. But we'll feel differently when its our own. Then I think he compared it to poop -- nobody wants to see anybody else's feces, but you instinctually take a peek at your own every time you go.
Crazy analogy, sure, but it made sense somehow.
In the meantime, I've been trying not to let my fears and worries and feelings of inadequacy run rampant. I just take a deep breath and try to concentrate on one day at a time. Or even one minute at a time. My baby shower is next weekend. We're furniture shopping the day after that. The next weekend we'll be attending an intense two-day crash course at the hospital on labor and delivery.
So who cares if we haven't bought diapers yet?
We DID buy the perfect piggy bank this week ... and piggy banks in the perfect shade of pink without a creepy painted-on face are much harder to come by.