What I Didn’t Expect

Welcome, Erin!

Welcome, Erin!

I’m excited to welcome a new guest blogger!  Erin Conery is a big fan of kids (of all ages) and expecting her first sometime this month.

I like data. Information. It makes me calm. Not because I have illusions about knowing everything or having “the answer.” Rather, it gives me a sense of peace to know that when things derail, I will have some ideas as to how to course-correct and proceed. Knowing that makes me worry less – which is something every mama-to-be needs in whatever way she can get it.

Throughout my pregnancy, I emailed moms I trust asking for advice, I read tons of books and blogs and studies, took classes, and read endless Amazon.com product reviews (overhauling my registry at least 20 times). Despite all that information, there were things that simply shocked me while pregnant.

Canadian Moms on YouTube

Canada has awesome maternity leave laws. Awesome. Via YouTube, it appears these mamas put that leave to good use making videos about everything.

Get a used diaper bag on Craigslist, find it is no longer made, and not sure what all the features of your bag are? Never fear! A Canadian mom has made a video all about your out-of-date bag.

Interested in cloth diapering but find the websites just don’t really explain how it all works? Canadian moms have made videos for every pocket, all-in-one, prefold, and cover combination you can imagine!

Find that the websites about cloth diapering are so cautious of scaring people away that they won’t actually talk about how to get rid of mushy poop? Canadian moms to the rescue with endless (I mean endless) videos of how to manage. With real poop.

While I am so very grateful for these videos, I am not sure I understand the urge these mothers feel to make such videos. I’ll just focus on the gratitude!

{One such video here.  Poop video is at the end of the post, to spare your eyes.  Tread carefully, readers.}

Endless Plastic

There. Is. So. Much. Plastic. My first attempt at creating a registry ended up with two items on it. I was so overwhelmed by the plastic. While I’m a little crunchy, I do not envision myself a one-woman planet-saving goddess. I don’t intend to allow only wooden toys in our home or need to have organic, recycled, upcylced, hemp-based, coconut oil everything for my son. But the plastic is overwhelming. I was not prepared.

Boy versus Girl

The Internet is full of stories about the increase of gender specific marketing, but I did not fully appreciate the scope and magnitude of this issue until immersed in it. It truly disturbs me. To my core.

When I thought I was having a girl, I was hyper-cautious of the pink and princess. I had plans to get her interested in math and science early on, was already researching STEM schools in my area, wanted to foster her sense of adventure and danger, and make sure she knew she could like pink and princesses but that she wasn’t obligated to simply because of the parts she was born with.

When I found my baby had boy parts, much of that faded. I wasn’t as fearful for his future. I still want all those same things for my boy – a strong curiosity in the world and that sense of adventure and danger – it just seemed like it would be less of an uphill battle for a boy. Which makes me sad.

Compliments

I have always loved seeing pregnant women. They make me smile. I had never complimented a pregnant stranger though. Perhaps out of fear that she wasn’t really pregnant. That certainly doesn’t seem to be stopping anyone else! In the airport, at the credit union, at the grocery store. As a pregnant woman, I say keep ’em coming! This was a very pleasant surprise.

“Are You Ready?”

This seems a trick question – I really don’t think the answer can ever be “yes.” If moms and books and the Internet are to be trusted, becoming a mother is something you cannot prepare for. It changes you in ways that you cannot fathom until it happens. If you cannot fathom it, how can you be prepared? I have stuff (crib, co-sleeper, diapers), but I’m sure I’m not ready. And I’m shocked how many people are asking me if I am.

The Belly Touching Phenomenon

The Internet kept telling me that strangers were going to grope my tummy. They didn’t. With four weeks to go, not one stranger has touched my belly. Even my closest friends very politely ask if they may touch. At the risk of sounding ungrateful for my undisturbed personal bubble, I must admit I’m beginning to get a bit of a complex about it. Is my tummy not as irresistible as other mama tummies? Or is the Internet not be trusted?

If the Internet cannot be trusted, what’s a new mama to do?

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2 Responses to What I Didn’t Expect

  1. Audrey says:

    Only one person tried to touch my belly when I was pregnant the first time. The second pregnancy I had at least two people really grope me in a weird too much rubbing kind of way. I’ll touch your belly if you want 🙂

  2. Sydney says:

    Loved this! So informative and helpful for a woman who’s ready to start trying, but also a little terrified about being pregnant in general. Great resources. Congratulations and best of luck to you, Erin! I would definitely ask for a belly touch- that tummy is adorable!

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