We have less than four weeks to meet our new little addition. I am prepared. I have freezer meals made. I have bedding and new clothes laundered. I washed the car seat, washed and reassembled the bassinet and the swing . Sorted through my breast pump apparatus and bought new tubing, shields, membranes and milk storage bottles. I have nursing pads and milk storage bags. All of our bottles, pacifiers and nipples have been washed and sterilized. I have a cleaning service scheduled to do a whole house cleaning the Friday before and I have my pre-op testing scheduled as well. I have the Baby Girl's bag packed and a list of what I need to put in mine.
You would think I'd be feeling pretty confident and relaxed at this point. Not so much. Suddenly I find myself overwhelmed with obligations. I have meetings to attend for the preschool fundraising, school board meetings, regular work responsibilities that have started to bleed into other areas of my calendar because of staff meetings and unexpected projects. The tot has preschool twice weekly but those two free hours two days weekly are already taken up with OB appointments, bible study, and other obligations.
I have been trying to get to this store in town that specializes in slings for baby wearing and even helps you try to figure out what type you like and how to put them on. I congratulated myself for calling the lady yesterday and setting up a consultation during evening hours so that the hubs could watch the kiddo while I am gone. No sooner had I done that than I find two separate emails in my inbox, one trying to schedule a meeting for next Tuesday morning and one for a meeting next Tuesday afternoon. Of course, I already have something scheduled on Tuesday morning and can't possibly meet on a Tuesday afternoon unless I pay a sitter. I felt like crying.
Admittedly, some of it is self inflicted. I have attended a Mom's Bible Study for the last couple of years but only recently did we decide to also join a group bible study at our church. It truly has been a great experience as all of the other couples' also have kids around our kid's age and they get to play together while we have dinner, share fellowship and talk about the study. However, trying to find time to both keep up with the study I am already in as well as read the chapters for this new study feels next to impossible. In addition, I have recently made plans with a new friend for tea and invited a neighbor and her girls over for dinner. Of course, I don't have a free night this week or next week to make them dinner but, for some reason, this was not part of my consideration when I extended the invitation.
I am finding more and more that I am looking forward to the birth of this baby. For the obvious reasons (Yay! A baby! Tiny baby toes and fingers! Lots of pink! My back will stop hurting! My nerve will stop hurting! My heartburn will disappear!) but also because it will force me to slow down. Physically, I will not be able to do very much for a few weeks and will not be able to make plans, attend meetings, agree to obligations that I can't handle. I am hopeful that this breather might help me to reset the clock. Knowing how hard it was with a newborn those first few weeks, I am guessing it will be even harder managing a small baby and a toddler. The positive side to this is that I will only be able to do what absolutely needs to be done and nothing more. I realize much of this time will be spent nursing, sleeping, or reassuring my toddler that he is still my favorite two year old. But, I am also anticipating some clarity from dropping away from the hustle and bustle for awhile. I hope to be able to get some perspective on what things are priorities and what things are just hollow obligations. God always gives you what you need just when you need it - I think this may be one of those times.