Posh PJs and a new perspective

You might be surprised to know that today I’m sporting some very foxy jimjams.

Oh yes, indeed: white bottoms with a slinky purple design, and a purple vest top which unclips in all the right places. (Not for seduction of the opposite sex, silly – for giving Bubba his breakfast).

Yup, I’m now the proud possessor of the ultimate pair of maternity PJs, and guess what? They were a very generous gift from one of my longest-standing mates.

In a life full of fairly pleasant things, this is one of the nicest things that’s happened to me for ages: in fact, I was so pleased and surprised when the parcel arrived that I couldn’t withhold a little sniffle. I think I may even have quavered slightly as I left a thank you on her answer machine. (Yes, I know. I know! I’m pregnant, remember?)

Anyway, I was extremely grateful, and it was very nice to be pampered by my pal – especially since Cupid done me wrong yet again this year.

Yes, as usual, the 14th of February whizzed past with not so much as a text message from the opposite sex, never mind flowers and choccies … or indeed any other token of love, lust or affection. Not unless you count an affectionate heel in the ribs from Bub, that is.

Actually, it’s lucky that I’m so completely enamoured with my little pud, because there’s absolutely nothing cooking on the man front otherwise: the Darkly Intriguing has disappeared off the face of the earth, and The Semi-suitable Man is loved up with a new lady … and whilst I’m naturally very happy for him, it does mean there’s one less name on my list of hopeless crushes.

(Actually, there were never very many names on the list in the first place. I think he may have been the only one. Hmmf.)

I did get a call from The Divine One, telling me how he’s brought me some aphrodisiac sweeties from his travels … though I wasn’t quite sure how to take that. But otherwise, my male interaction level is skimming the ground like a low-flying stone.

I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised that a woman who looks more like a watermelon isn’t being flooded with romantic offers, but who doesn’t like a bit of love and affection now and again? Ah well, I can dream!

Anyway, in other news, relations with the Baby Daddy remain cordial. This is something of a blessing given our turbulent history, and something I should strive to maintain at all costs. But it isn’t always easy.

Take ‘the holiday debacle’, for instance.

I mean, I know I’m biased, but for me the biggest event on my calendar is Bub’s arrival. Anything and everything I’m doing is leading up to that. I’d go as far as to say that my schedule is pretty much divided into pre-Bub and post-Bub activities, with a big and excitable star scrawled next to April 9th.

So of course I found it hard to believe that the Baby Daddy is planning his Easter holidays … with his return pencilled in just three days before Bub’s due date.

At first I was outraged. How could he be so careless about our little one’s entry to the world? Isn’t it THE most exciting thing to happen in the world EVER?

And then I finally realised that he’s just not that excited by Bub’s arrival. And as soon as I realised that, I cancelled my appointment to go and talk with him, because I realised there really was nothing to say.

And I immediately felt better.

Of course, with the little one growing in my belly day by day, I can’t wait for the magical moment that I get to meet him. I really can’t wait to see my little bundle, in all his pink and wrinkly newborn glory.

And naturally, since the Baby Daddy doesn’t have the luxury of that experience, he doesn’t share my enthusiasm. He hasn’t had the chance to feel Bub kick and roll and get the hiccups three times a day … especially since he’s not seen us since October.

But hey. Bub will come when he’s ready, whoever’s there to welcome him, and other people’s lack of enthusiasm doesn’t have to dampen my own; I’m determined to keep a positive perspective, no matter what.

Besides, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, megghiu sula ca malaccumpagnata: better alone than in bad company.

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Cupid hangs his head

And so here we are again. It’s almost Valentine’s Day.

Looking back to this time last year, I see that my situation has changed radically in many ways … but my romantic situation remains resolutely static.

Of course, I’ve had one Bub-producing fling, for which I’m naturally grateful, but as far as being loved and adored goes, I can only give Cupid a pitiful D minus and send him to sit in the corner, wearing the dunce’s hat.

Yep, our arrow-slinging comrade has registered another year of romantic failure, but still, my optimism burns bright.

Who knows? Perhaps there’s someone out there who’s thinking of making my day by sending me a small but perfectly formed token of their devotion, wrapped in gaudily-coloured paper and delivered to my door?

Well, I can dream…

To be honest, most of the time I’m not remotely bothered whether I’m single or not. Of course, I’m a fan of kisses and cuddles and all of the rest, but I like myself enough to be happy in my own company. And at the ripe old age that I am, I’m finally brave enough to do (most of) the things I’d like to do, whether I’m accompanied or not. Even the thought of bringing up Bub alone doesn’t really feel like a tragedy … although I will confess to a very small wobbly moment in Mothercare just the other day.

I’d been spooked by the number of ‘Hello mummy’ emails from various hawkers of nipper-related merchandise, all of them jauntily informing me that, “it’s never too soon to prepare your hospital bag!”

Panicked by the idea that Bub might put in an appearance before I’d even had time to pack a toothbrush, I dutifully studied the list of must-haves … and very quickly realised that I’d need to invest in, “a post-birth nightdress, suitable for breastfeeding”.

Of course, I’d procured some nightwear to cover my modesty while delivering my child, but the concept of breastfeeding had completely passed me by. Somehow, the fact that my wardrobe would have to accommodate a whole new set of necklines hadn’t even entered my head.

Just one look at the list, however, convinced me that wearing my nightshirt round my ears whilst giving Bub his breakfast is not a look I’d be keen to attempt – particularly whilst endowed with the gigantaboobs of pregnancy. So off I trotted to Mothercare to check out the hot lingerie for breastfeeding mammas.

Now, it turns out that one doesn’t need to look appealing whilst breastfeeding – not even to oneself. Or at least that’s the conclusion I came to upon encountering the maternity nightdress section. I suppose that in a breastfeeding situation practicality is key, but I had been hoping for something slightly jaunty and uplifting, to keep my spirits aloft when it’s 4am and I’m holding my eyelids open with matchsticks.

So, unimpressed with the relatively dowdy selection, I was thumbing various pieces of fabric when a couple came along, equally intent on choosing appropriate night attire for the impending birth of their little one.

Naturally, I wasn’t really paying them much attention, but out of the corner of my eye I saw the guy hold up a couple of options, then lean over and gently stroke the woman’s bump and smile.

It was such a tender moment of complicit joy that it brought tears to my eyes. And then it crossed my mind that no one would ever stroke my bump like that and I had to leave the shop.

Now, I put this dramatic reaction down to pregnancy hormones, because I refuse to believe that I’m such a soppy old stick. And even if I am, is it really possible to get so emotional over someone else having their bump stroked? I mean – really! Where’s the logic in that?

Anyway, the upshot of all this soppiness is that I still have no bedroom garments suited to breastfeeding, so we’ll be having no surprise appearances from you just yet, Bub, thank you.

And as far as romance is concerned, I know we preggy ladies aren’t the easiest sell, but I’ll be expecting everybody’s favourite cherub to try much harder once Bub is on the scene and I’ve assumed my usual dimensions again. Because the simple fact that I don’t mind being on my own doesn’t mean I’d complain if I weren’t. Everybody likes to be adored … at least a bit every now and then.

So you may be off the hook this year, Cupid, but mark my words: if I don’t see an improvement in your behaviour soon, young man, you’re going to be in serious trouble.

Chopchop-busybusy-workwork-bangbang…

Crikey, where does the time go? January has flown by in a haze of baby planning, parties and new job integration. I feel as if I’ve barely had a moment to myself and already it’s February.

Now, I know that the move from the flexible, freelance lifestyle to being firmly anchored in an office for most of the daylight hours has had an impact – a fairly sizeable, week-filling sort of an impact – but, if I’m honest, what’s making life completely and utterly hectic is the fact that I’m apparently unable to surrender any of my other activities.

From work I zoom to the gym, or to dance classes, or to dinner with a friend, finally arriving home at eleven o’clock and ready to crash into bed. At the weekend, I cram in the social engagements as if my life depended on it, arranging two or three coffee dates then one or more evening engagements, just in case boredom or solitude should set in.

In the whole of January, there were only three blank days in my diary.

Now, whilst this is all lovely, and I truly appreciate the chance to spend time with my friends, it’s also pretty exhausting. It would surely be exhausting even if I weren’t suffering from the kind of insomnia that sees me get no more than five hours’ kip, three nights a week. As it is, I’m starting to resemble a damp dishcloth.

So why on earth can’t I slow down?

Well, it’s partly because I’m only too aware that once Bub arrives, my social life’s going to be a whole lot leaner than at present. So I’m cramming it in while I can.

And it’s also because spending time alone at home allows me to start fretting about all the Bub-things I’ve yet to do/may forget to do/may never get round to doing.

And lastly, it’s because being home alone occasionally leaves me prey to feeling just a little bit sad and blue.

Whether it’s down to tiredness or hormones or whatever, the beatific bliss that has characterised most of pregnancy occasionally chooses to abandon me – just now and again – reminding me that Bub and I will be facing the world all on our ownsome.

And that’s when I think that if I were happily coupled up with some dashing young gentleman, we’d be moving in to a cosy family home any minute now, instead of contemplating babyhood in an (admittedly very pleasant) shared house. And that if we two were three, there’d be someone to turn to when I’m changing my 97th nappy and Bub is wailing the house down.

(Not that Bub is likely to do anything so uncouth as crying. He’s clearly not going to be that sort of baby…)

Still, when I feel like that, I just have to remind myself that I’m VERY lucky to have Bub, and that we’ll make a great team. And that, 99% of the time, things will be just fine. And that I have my family and friends around me, and that Bub already has a fanclub, even though he’s not even born.

Besides, things with the Baby Daddy are getting better: we managed to talk for almost a whole hour the other day without a cross word. On top of that, I’ve been enjoying some very pleasant coffee time with The Divine One, and Skype contact has been re-established with The Semi-suitable Man, who should be meeting up with us in summer, if all things go according to plan. So things could be far worse.

But best of all, it’s only nine weeks til I meet my little pud. And with the weeks passing like hours, that means he’ll be here in no time at all … and that really is a truly delicious thought.

Although I’ll miss his little head butting into my ribs, and his 4am wriggling and my inside-out belly button, I just can’t wait to welcome my little Bub to the world. Because even though it sometimes isn’t the way I’d want it, it’s still a bloody brilliant world and I can’t wait to show Bub all the fabulous things it has to offer.

So the time can fly, for all I care, and the negative thoughts can just sling their hook: whatever life throws at us, Team Bub is in the building and we’re going to take the world by storm!