Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The Month

So I’ve turned the calendar into July now. A month I thought was so far off. I remember back in January when I put this calendar up and my husband and I perused all the months. Each month has a cat and a dog or rabbit and dog, etc. which have nearly identical coloring and are snuggling together. July has a sandy/gray tabby kitty and a calico type rabbit. And lots of appointments at the hospital marked in, for birthing classes, nursing classes, plus the arrival of mom and sis on the 25th. Husband’s birthday the 24th (ooh, mustn’t forget to buy him Season 3 of The A-Team). And not marked but certainly anticipated: baby’s arrival for the 30th. Of course, that’s a guesstimate. She doesn’t have a calendar in the womb to consult, so she’ll come when she wants. Maybe even August.

Now I’m on maternity leave and feel that I have a million things to do and I’m not sure where to start. Organizing stuff, not necessarily baby stuff, but paperwork, old clothes. Cleaning out the old stuff I’ve been hanging onto for too long. Reapplying for my carte de séjour (basically my visa which I must still renew even though I’m married to a Français). Packing the famous maternity suitcase. Making sure my apartment is decent for visitors (cause pregnancy isn’t an excuse to let everything go to pot).

And in between all that I’ll read on in my pregnancy and baby books. I have four total. Three in English, one in French that is for the husband but which I’ve read more than him. Last night he started reading it more seriously. He wanted to start from the beginning, but I told him to skip to the part about the delivery, considering the date. From time to time he would say, “Eh, bah, ça va être gai!” Translation: well, that’s gonna be pretty. I’ve been trying to drop him subtle hints for months now that delivery is not in fact always pretty. He started musing about how they clean up the room afterwards. A high-pressure hose? A metal grill on the floor to let everything drain out? That’s my husband, so romantically practical.

But no matter how many books I read or classes I take, I know nothing will completely prepare me for the pain and even the good stuff that comes afterwards. For the moment I am still rather anxious about the pain part. This hasn’t been helped by the fact that I found out there isn’t always an anesthesiologist there exactly when you need him or her. If you’re so lucky as to deliver at night, on the weekends or a holiday (July 14th, Bastille Day, is coming up!), the anesthesiologist is shared between maternity and surgery. And apparently epidurals are not as urgent as putting someone to sleep for heart surgery. I beg to differ, but hey, that’s their policy.

At any rate, I think it will be an eventful month…

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