Until Sunday, the sight of the nursery was enough to start me hyperventilating. For some reason it is still quite abstract, this huge change that is coming just two weeks from Thursday. And the messy nursery was stressing. me. out. I had no idea what to do with it. The crib was full of baby-strangling plastic bags full of fliers and free samples from the hospital. The closet was bursting with shower gifts, my wedding dress, and two bridesmaid dresses that will NEVER be used again. There were THREE strollers blocking entry to the room except by highly technical Mission Impossible style climbing moves. And none of the new clothes, blankets, or sheets had been washed (oh my gosh I am going to break the baby by exposing him to evil store germs). And the only thing anyone can think of to say to me lately is "Well you must be getting excited, are you ready?" To which I want to reply "NO, I am not f$%#ing ready! I have finally regained the ability to work on my research, the nursery is a wreck, and just HOW DO YOU PREPARE YOURSELF TO WELCOME A NEW HUMAN BEING INTO YOUR HOME ANYWAY???" but instead I just smile politely and say "I hope so! Heh heh heh" while displaying my double crossed fingers.
But that was all before Sunday. On Sunday afternoon my friend A came over to help me organize the nursery. I'm not sure how the arrangement was made, but I think she saw my thousand-yard stare when she asked about the nursery and when I was unable to respond she just said "Why don't I come over on Sunday to help?" and when I continued to hyperventilate she said "I'll call you after church OK?" She arrived at my house and sprang into action. "First let's take all the tags of the new clothes and start a load of laundry." I obeyed, grateful to have someone tell me what to do. "Are these books staying in here?" she asked, referring to the wire shelf containing all the books we don't need to keep but haven't taken to Goodwill yet because we might need them someday/it was a gift from someone I never liked/lost touch with five years ago. Ryan brought boxes and the books were gone. We worked this way for about two hours and the nursery was transformed into the room I had always hoped it could be. The clothes and blankets have all been washed, dried, folded, and put away. The crib has a freshly washed store-germ-free sheet on it, and the strollers have been folded and put away. You just might be able to fit a baby in there now. The whole time we were working, Ryan was cleaning up the kitchen and family room and now I can enter my house without the aid of prescription anti-anxiety drugs.
We have started packing for the hospital. It's hard to pack for the hospital because everything on the list is something you need every day. For example your toothbrush, shampoo, and moisturizer. They also say to bring a comfy pair of pants to wear home, which is hilarious because I only have one pair of comfy pants and I wear them every day. The baby is packed. He has four diapers, a diaper cover, a t-shirt, a pair of socks, a hat, and a blanket. We have four Dr. Peppers, a bag of Kit Kat bars, three clean shirts for Ryan (including one flannel shirt my mom once referred to as "his Papa shirt"), and a Chapstick. So at least we'll have enough junk food and well moisturized lips when we're coming home and I'm wearing a hospital gown and hospital issued mesh underpants (and maybe Ryan's "papa shirt" if I'm lucky. You know, to keep my back warm where the hospital gown gaps). I plan on addressing the hospital bag issue this weekend, but if something happens before then, I will be calling one of you in-town friends for help.