My biggest little brother's going to be a dad soon... in a few more weeks or perhaps a few more days. I've been reminiscing about that zone, that time between being almost full-term and the birth, between the end of work and the beginning of the hardest work I've ever done, between the last days of being a child-less couple (although the elephant was in the room, so to speak) and being responsible for the welfare of a human being full time, between nights out and weeks in.
I had a whole passle of time to just hang out before Dear Boy was born. My full-time contract finished in mid-November and, even with a few Honours theses to mark and special consideration requests and deferred exams to approve, there were a lot of long, slow, bone-melting days spent waddling through the shopping centre, squatting in front of the library shelves, curling up on the couch devouring books, wallowing in the local pool or the blow-up pool in our back yard.
I nested as much as I could, waiting for the baby's crib to be driven down from NSW, a lovely, dark wood hand-me-down from Dear Boy's cousin. I went a little nuts at the last minute on a bassinette and change table from Toys R Us because I felt the lure of the 'should-haves' and 'must-haves', all those things kids don't need but everyone seems to have.
I paid a strange Ukranian couple to come and blitz-clean the house although I didn't know they were strange (or Ukranian) when I booked them. They didn't vacuum behind or under any of the furniture but I was too embarrassed after a half day of polite conversation to ask them to finish the job.
I washed all of the baby clothes.
I worried about my waters breaking at the shopping centre but not enough to stop going there and soaking up the air-conditioning.
I dreamt of sleeping on my belly.
I took a lot of vitamins.
I wondered what Braxton Hicks would feel like - like nothing apparently because I never noticed them.
I peed a lot.
I slept badly.
I tried hard to feel Christmas-y but we had a completely awful time.
I read a lot of Pam England's Birthing From Within (although der, where else are you going to birth from).
I thought of this picture and used it like a mantra, a meditation for the upcoming labour.
Now I making making a baby quilt, a little patch of love for my new nephew. And we've started a pool on just how big this little boy will be. For the record, I'm guessing 3.2kg, which is a good half a kilo lower than the next nearest guess.
How did you or your nearest and dearest 'nest'? I missed the whole scrubbing floors urge entirely.