Sometime in the last two weeks, you either started to build muscle mass or dexterity or something that is allowing you to basically beat the living crap out of me from the inside. All things considered, this is awesome; it means you're strong, developing the way you should, and must be getting everything you need from me (even though I'm still really worried about eating and especially drinking enough). At the end of the day, however, I'm caught gritting my teeth and muttering "yay, he's so strong and active..." while wishing you would just friggin' roll around gently for a while rather than stomping, punching, flailing, somersaulting, and otherwise doing your best to pummel my insides. This has gotten me thinking about those little things in the future that I'll be simultaneously excited about and made relatively miserable by.
Poo. I know that poo is going to be a big one. Your Dad is pretty much just not ready to deal with poo (which I understand), but he is going to have a rude awakening and I can only hope he handles it with the same grace he has shown in every other step towards you being here. Once he realizes that poo will influence something like one fifth of our interactions with you (if not more), I'm pretty sure he's going to suck it up and learn to deal pretty damn fast, but I worry a little about myself. I'm walking into this situation with pretty much indiscriminate comfort with poo; part of me is even kind of creepily excited for you to start pooing, because that will mean that your little body is doing exactly what it should. I fully expect to be grossed out and horrified every now and then, but I may just be one of those moms who simultaneously brags to anyone who will listen about the quantity and quality of your poo. I mean, if you're pooping, that means you're eating, which is going to be crucial.
Food. Food has always been a major source of comfort and catharsis for me, whether I be researching, purchasing, preparing, sharing, eating, or even just observing it. I just adore food, especially interesting or unusual food...or uncomplicated comfort food...okay, any food. We are going to spend a lot of time at the hospital with you for the first few weeks of your life, so I know that good food is going to become a somewhat precious and rare thing. Thankfully, knowing how much of a soothing influence food can be, I think this is going to be kind of a good thing. Something as generally unremarkable as a decent sandwich is going to become a precious source of comfort. Having your Dad show up at the hospital after school with a Pyrex thingy of something that didn't come from the hospital cafeteria will be a major treat. Take-out from any of the excellent restaurants within half a mile of the hospital...be still my heart! On the other hand, getting food into YOU is going to pretty much be the focal point of the start of your life. Eating regularly - and enough to put on weight - is your ticket out of the hospital, so most of my life is going to be centered around your eating schedule and needs. This will doubtlessly become a source of stress, whether you take to breastfeeding right away or not.
Temperature. As you'll learn, Batman, I react really, really poorly to being too warm. I'll happily freeze half to death rather than be even slightly overheated. Look at your Dad and my first apartment; we only learned after we moved out that there was literally no insulation in the walls, so even paying out the nose to keep the heat set in the mid-sixties did virtually nothing to heat the place. We spent that winter in double-layers of socks, thermal underwear under double-layers of fleeces and sweatshirts, scarves and hats worn inside, and honestly? I furiously resented that I only had the options to either freeze half to death or sweat through my clothes. I still let myself get cold at night because I couldn't bear to be too warm. Now, we keep the heat turned down pretty low, not just because it's financially easier to manage, but because I just can't bear getting too warm. I can always put a layer on; when you get down to skin, there's nothing left to take off! All this makes me worry about your comfort (and health), and I really, really hope we can find a compromise to keep you toasty. (I may be sauntering around the apartment in a bikini as soon as we get you home...)
Space. I'm fussy about where things go, knowing where things are, not having too much clutter, having enough clutter, having things clean, not needing to do too much cleaning...yeah, I know I sound like a high-maintenance pile of crazy, but I promise it's not really THAT bad. Having all of your stuff - a third person living in our space - was prepared for when we moved in, so at least we have some ideas for how to accommodate all the accoutrements of a baby, but it will be an exciting juggling act at first. I think we're really smart not to have promised crash space to more than a single person at a time after you're born, so we're not going to be cramming your things among our things and vistors' things, but this will be another fun puzzle to figure out.
As I write this, you are jabbing me in the lung with a foot and basically head-butting me in the...actually, I have no damn clue what you're smashing your head against, but it isn't my bladder, so that's cool. So far, all vital systems on my end are holding steady. Eating a full meal is a challenge, and breathing can be a little adventurous if you stretch out too much, but I think my body is otherwise holding up pretty damn well. Here's hoping we can keep it together long enough for me to be able to comfortably shift all my focus to your physical systems and not worry about mine falling apart, out, or otherwise!