The Planner (Counting Chickens)

I’m nothing if not a planner. This is no surprise to anyone who knows me personally (or anyone who’s followed along here from the beginning).

I always have a game plan for one thing or another. (Or several things, as the case may be.) Getting to University. Scheduling my University classes (I had all 4 years planned out before I graduated high school.). Getting an agent for acting. It was all done meticulously and with no shortage of planning. Most of the time, what I planned for happened. When it didn’t, or didn’t exactly to plan, that was still okay, because proper planning means you take alternate situations into account. That way a small thing goes wrong and you deal; the whole thing doesn’t implode.

For a few years my planning mechanism went faulty. (Let’s be honest here, a lot of things went faulty.) I look back on it as a time of learning about the darkness of life. I was more adrift then I’ve ever been (and hope to ever be). I was caught in this half-being. Not happy where I was, but also unsure about where to go or what to do to fix it.

I started planning again. Lo and behold, I set myself on a course that landed me in with new, positive friends, a change in career, and finding My Future Husband. I also found myself. I found my voice again. I remembered my own power to do and feel good. The darkness lifted.

It’s not that everything was perfect. I had several false starts and what have you, but days changed from mostly dark to mostly light. Just like I’d planned. 😛

Planning for Spawn worked out perfectly. Better than it should have, probably. I wish everyone who wanted a child had as easy of a road of it as I did making it happen. It doesn’t work that way, but I wish it did.

My pregnancy has been super easy as well. I’ve passed everything with flying colours. Until now.

My glucose screen came back high, so I had to go back and take the actual three-hour test. Because I’d planned for it, I wasn’t shocked. Doesn’t discount the fact that I was very disappointed.

I’m a bit resigned now that I will probably be diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes. There are a wide range of possibilities if I am. Depending on the severity, I may only need to stop eating sugar/carbs. Not ideal this time of year, but completely and totally do-able. Of course, the other side involves a lot of intervention, medication, and the possibility of actually losing my midwives.

And while I completely understand that transferring me to an OB/GYN will only be done because the risks of birth to myself and my child will have drastically increased, logic cannot overcome the fact that I really don’t want to give up the women who have gotten me through this pregnancy thus far. All the planning in the world hasn’t prepared me for that sense of loss. I will have to man through it as/if it comes.

But on to a much brighter topic…

Until I started all my pre-pregnancy planning, I’d never heard of having a baby shower after the baby was born. I’d been to a slew of baby showers, starting at a fairly young age. None of them had a baby present, just a big-tummied lady.

The first time I realized you could have a shower after the baby, was reading a blog of a Jewish mom. Now, I’m well aware that it doesn’t have to be a religious thing. Having said that, there is (apparently) a very strong feeling in the Jewish community that purchasing items of celebration before confirming there is an actual living baby to celebrate is major bad luck. There is literally the idea of not counting your chickens before they hatch…

Now that I’ve been pregnant for awhile, I’ve heard more and more stories of showers after birth. Besides the good luck/bad luck thing, I’ve also heard people express that showers are just so much better when there’s a baby to pass around and cuddle.

Sure that’s adorable…but it also really skeeves me out. Passing a one-month old around the room of 20 so-odd people who are eating and drinking? While I somehow try to divert my attention away from Spawn long enough to open presents and remember to show how grateful I am for them? Nightmares. Literally, everyone go wash your hands right now, please.

And here’s the other thing. Having a shower after a wedding makes more sense to me. For one, you’re sure the two are actually going through with the thing. For another, no couple is going to come home after the wedding and really miss the place setting they might have gotten before. [aside: I am VERY grateful for everything MFH and I received both at my showers and for the wedding itself. I need to be extremely clear on that point. However, I don’t think waiting until after the wedding for those generous gifts would have made a real difference in our lives.)

If you wait to buy baby things until after the baby, you could literally have to go and buy a mattress (or bassinet or something) just after birth so that the baby can actually be put down on occasion. Or blankets. Diapers. Does this not terrify anyone else?

Having a shower before means I can see what we still have to get before we have a Spawn to juggle. (Figuratively, of course. No juggling babies in my house.) I promise you, I am OCD enough that I will find a way to purchase all “useful” items long before February 23rd. My child may not have a single stitch of clothing that I have purchased at birth, but there will be sheets, swaddlers, and diapers at the ready. 😀

Maybe if I wasn’t such a planner, that would all be okay. There wouldn’t be this mad desire to ORGANIZE ALL THE THINGS.

Yup, that's me. [Art by one of my faves, Alli Brosh. Seriously, if you haven't read Hyperbole and a Half, now's the time.]

                                                         Yup, that’s me.                                                  [Art by one of my faves, Alli Brosh. Seriously, if you haven’t read Hyperbole and a Half, now’s the time.]

As it is, I’ve had to willfully restrain myself from putting together nursery furniture before our huge Christmas party tomorrow. (Seriously, the day after? All that furniture will be together and in place. MFH is a saint to stay with me sometimes, guys.)

I’ve got a few other things in the works for the nursery, so don’t be surprised if you see more photos in the next week or so.

In the mean time, I hope your days are bright and your well-laid plans come to fruition.

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8 thoughts on “The Planner (Counting Chickens)

  1. Great post MIT! Thank you for sharing.

    I especially liked where you said,

    “I started planning again. Lo and behold, I set myself on a course that landed me in with new, positive friends, a change in career, and finding My Future Husband. I also found myself. I found my voice again. I remembered my own power to do and feel good. The darkness lifted.

    It’s not that everything was perfect. I had several false starts and what have you, but days changed from mostly dark to mostly light. Just like I’d planned.”

    …because I found it very hopeful, insightful, inspiring and positive. Sunny words on a gray day! TY

    All the best on the birth of the ‘spawn’ 🙂

  2. Several people have tried to convince me to have the shower after the Little Man is born, too. I can’t do it. I want to be able to enjoy it, not be exhausted from my in laws visiting, twinkle getting settled, etc. I also don’t think I would want to pass him around to so many people at once. I see myself being super over protective at first.

    • I’m right there with you. I honestly can’t see be being able to focus on opening things while people are passing my newborn around. Maybe later on, but who wants to go to a shower with a six-month-old kid?

  3. I’ve never heard of a shower after the baby was born. I just went to my friend’s shower last month, she was 8months pregnant and both she and her husband are Jewish, maybe it is more conservative than they are, who knows. My mom apparently was very superstitious. She told me she didn’t believe in buying anything before my brother was born. She had ordered the crib, but didn’t have it delivered until he was born and made my dad set it up the day they got home. She said if it hadn’t worked out she would have been fine with him sleeping in a drawer. Oh mother lol. I don’t think it really matters, getting things set up before the baby seems ideal because who will have the energy once the baby arrives?

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