I started shopping as early as I could when I got pregnant with my first born. I could not help myself. I sometimes woke up in the middle of the night to write down something I thought would be really important. By the fifth month, I had the bag I would go to the hospital with already packed.
I went to Toi market every Friday and bought everything that looked like it was designed for a toddler. I wanted my son to be cool straight from the moment he landed in this world. He was donned in jeans short, some checked shirt and a cap after he had been cleaned. Looking back, I now understand why the nurses looked so amused when I handed them the clothes.
I also started going for my ante natal clinics when I was six weeks pregnant and I attended every session from then on faithfully. On my first visit, one of the nurses commented on how early I had started my sessions but I did not care.
Baby came and I never got to use the Moses basket I bought with the hope that I would be placing him there, watch him sleep, read a book to him and just marvel at how cool we looked. Kyle was not about that life. He wanted attention from day one.
The colic, house girl drama and sleepless nights made me forget that I owned that thing. I think it was used as a laundry basket for a while before being disposed. More than half of the clothes I bought for him were also never worn. I realized that you will rarely leave the house with your newborn and if healthy, they gain weight so fast and outgrow those tiny things so fast. He weighed 3.1 kgs at birth and when we went for the first check up at 6 weeks, he was 6.5 kgs.
I painfully held on to those clothes for a while before giving them away. I thanked God for my mother and some of my friends who brought me clothes I initially thought were oversize as gifts. I also learned that babies’ skins are too sensitive and the range of baby soaps, shower gels and baby perfumes I had bought could not be used as my son had terrible skin break outs and I had to use basic bar soap, Vaseline and baby powder during shower time.
This is probably the reason why I am in a dangerously no hurry mode to shop. I already know the basic things that I want. I do understand the importance of covering the young one from the cold than looking cool and so I’m looking for rompers and every warm thing I can get my hands. When I will finally get the energy to go shopping, I will buy the oversize one. Something the baby can wear for a long time.
I am currently spending my time praying that colic will not be our portion, that we would love our sleep and that there will be no house girl drama. I have friends whose newborns sleep peacefully and look at me strangely when I talk about colic so I know it is not an impossible prayer. I also hate clinic visits probably because I know the routine and also because I am being asked why I am not adding any weight yet I already feel like the mother of all elephants. This is also the time I openly lie about taking my supplements faithfully. I honestly cannot stand those things. I would rather eat foods rich in the nutrients than swallowing the pills.
I guess all the shopping frenzy and rushing to the hospital, at the slightest sign that something could be wrong, is all part of the anxiety and excitement that comes when expecting a first child. The second time comes with calmness. You should see me chewing cucumbers and calmly inserting suppositories when constipation gets the better of me.
Somehow deep inside, I know that things will be well and that I can handle anything that comes my way. The time I used to imagine about how my kid would look, is now used to enjoy my much needed sleep and to pray. I know my attitude can make me shop on my way to the labor ward but again, that would be an interesting experience.
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