Sunday, December 11, 2011

Nurseries and being the a-hole

So yesterday I got sick of waiting around and decided to move the furniture around myself in order to facilitate starting the nursery.  Mainly I had to move a huge 7 foot tall bookcase, which I didn’t think I’d be able to do.  But I cleared all the books off because I knew eventually somebody would be moving it, and lo and behold, it was very easy to slide forward ten feet while empty.  So this spurred an all day long furniture and tchotchke adjusting session.  This will also result in today’s Great Book Cull.  I don’t think I’ve ever disposed of a book in my life, but this has to begin now.  It’s not that I don’t have room for the books – this bookcase, plus several others around the house – have plenty of shelves for all the books I have.  Mainly it’s about just keeping the things in my house that I really like.  Antique books with awesome worn covers – keep.  Car repair manual from 1990 – discard.  Favorite books from junior high school that I like to read again and again (1984, Grapes of Wrath, etc, all with “John Paul George Ringo” written along the spine in my 12-year-old handwriting) – keep.  “The Rules” – discard.  You get the idea.  I see another trip to the Out of the Closet thrift store in my future.

So now I have a disappointingly dark room in which lives my 1950’s crib, a small shelf thing for diaper changes, a small wardrobe, and, incongruously, a 1930’s green leather club sofa, because there’s nowhere else to put it right now, and I figure my sister can make a nice cheery slipcover for it so it at least matches.  I do miss being able to sit on the toilet and look through to the whole house (the bookcase blocks this view now).  But I figure my days of using the bathroom with the door open *may* be kind of numbered now anyway (at least once my son gets old enough that he shouldn’t see mommy on the potty anymore).

I will reserve painting for when my friend comes over next Sunday to help.  Should be a fun and easy project.  I’m doing grey and blue with an elephant stencil along the line where they meet.  It should all come together quite nicely, especially once I’ve repurposed the blue metal kitchen table that’s been folded up next to my washer/dryer for years into a changing table.  And repurposed the milk box I used to use as a real milk box for when I had a milk man, into a diaper pail.  Still kind of on the fence about this, as it’s lined with Styrofoam which means I’ll have to make sure to always have some kind of wet bag in there in case I ever want to use it as an actual milk box again.  Well, we’ll see if anyone buys me a diaper pail for the shower and I’ll take it from there.

Went to a Christmas party at my FWUMMFLMLIS’s house last night (this is the Friend Who Unintentionally Makes Me Feel Like My Life is Shit) and had a swell time.  There was more than one pregnant woman there, and as again I hadn’t seen a lot of these people in a while – well, since my friend’s wedding back in March – there was a lot of discussion about my pregnancy, since it was news to nearly everyone.  And again I found myself deflecting a lot, and feeling kind of weird and like “so, now I’m the asshole.”  Where does this come from???  I’ve analyzed it a lot over the last few months, and the only thing I can come up with is the fact of having spent so much of my adult life seething with jealousy over people getting married and having babies (more than a decade, really), and having this one issue be the major heartbreak and frustration in my life, that, well, it’s hard to just drop all of that with no lingering aftereffects.  It’s hard to join The Enemy and not feel, just a little bit, like an asshole.  There also is a big part of me that’s afraid of being marginalized – that suddenly all of my identity disappears and I become just another generic mom.  I want to scream from the rooftops, “Yes, this is an amazing blessing that’s happening to me, and I can’t wait to meet my son and be his mom and be all into mom stuff, but I had a full adult life before him and I know about art and music and great films and books and I’m really pretty interesting and smart and I have a lot to talk about!!!”  Not that anybody’s made me feel marginalized, but I sort of anticipate this happening once the baby’s here.  I kind of want to make it clear that this is my son, and I’m me, and we have our relationship, but he’s his own person and I’m my own person.  I think this attitude comes, again, of having had a super all-consuming mother who refused to let us have our own identities and recognize our opinions, thoughts, as valid.  I’m so hyper vigilant about this; it’s a huge issue for me. 

So far I’ve made it 2/3 through this pregnancy without feeling like I’m losing my identity or turning into someone I don’t recognize.  Hopefully this will continue.  I still have a sense of humor, I still like raunchy things and don’t offend easily, I still have an intellectual curiosity (a real hunger, actually, that hopefully my upcoming “early push present” for myself of a Kindle will help to ignite).  And yet I have this little child in my belly currently doing summersaults because I just had a glass of grapefruit juice.  How these two things will be able to continue on side by side, has yet to be seen.


  1. I did a huge book cull when I was pregnant, too! Must be a pregnancy thing. :) Be careful with moving furniture - all of a sudden you're going to turn around and discover you just can't do it anymore. That's a weird feeling when it happens.

  2. Hey there. Popping over after seeing you visited my blog. Or someone from your blog visited my blog. In any case, glad to have found you. I remember those days. The panic that really sets in when you finally feel comfortable allowing yourself to believe this is really going to happen. Holy cow. I'm really going to be a mom and what is that going to mean about who I am and what's important to me. As someone who went through it all I'd say, don't stress it. Yes, you will lose some things and it will be okay. Those things will come back. You're going to be exhausted and require simplification for a while. But anything you disconnect from or discard for 6 months will still be there when you get back to it. Just harder to find time for it because you'll be so madly in love with your child. Congrats on your little man. My first is a little man who turns 4 this week and it seems like just yesterday I was where you were.