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Compartment 14B

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Counting down, "in the pink", and book recommendations.

2005-10-14 - 11:45 a.m.

So with just over 16 ½ weeks to go at mid-October, I’ve been going around thinking that hey, I’ve got almost 4 ½ months left because everyone knows that 4 weeks = 1 month.

Right?

Ha!

I did the math last night and was startled to realize that, in fact, I have just over 3 ½ months before the big event.

Let me say that again, since it’s still sinking in: 3 ½ months! That ain’t nothin’! Maybe this realization will kick start that “nesting instinct” I hear so much about but have yet to feel compel me to stir myself into super-cleaning mode.

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Why was I doing this sort of math, you ask? (Besides the fact that my brain is incapable of going a long period of time without thinking about pregnancy, that is.) Because I was out shopping for maternity clothes with a gift certificate that had kindly been provided by a friend for my birthday and was asked how far away my due date was.

Despite the gift certificate, I came away with a big fat goose egg in that department. All the cute sweaters in rich fall colours that I’d seen a couple of months ago have been replaced with “the new black.” That’s right, there was pink all over the frickin’ store. Now, if the Grom’s a girl I know we’ll end up being given pink stuff because I’m told it’s unavoidable. The thing is, I hate pink (though if it’s a gift I’ll be using it anyway) and I certainly have no wish to wear it myself. Ironically, I know that I look good in it – it flatters my skin tone – yet I cannot bring myself to buy it in a store. The couple of pink items I own, I bought at yard sales for less than 3 bucks and in the mindset that I needed office work clothes which are already kind of “not me” anyway.

If the Grom’s a boy, of course, the issue of being given pink baby stuff will be moot. Sadly, this does not render moot the fact that all the stuff for mom-to-be right now seems to be pink. There was one sweater there that wasn’t a bad shade – more of a plum or maroon really and it goes with everything – but it was too casual looking for the office.

Despite my lack of success in the maternity-clothes department, I did manage to reverse my fortune at Chapters (Indigo). I’d been given a book for my birthday by my stepmother… and you’d think that someone who likes to write and likes to read would love receiving books. You’d be wrong. Or at least partly wrong. What I love to receive are reference books – particularly design and architecture books. What I HATE receiving are fiction books, especially books that I didn’t pick out. To me it’s a waste of money to get me what amounts to a space-occupying paper weight (literally) after the two days or so it takes me to read it. That’s what libraries are for.

Last time my stepmom got me a book she raved about how much she’d loved it and her sister and mother had loved it. I thanked her but didn’t tell her that, not only had I read it, I could not stand it. It was depressing and I read fiction for the escapism and lifting of my spirits as much as anything.

Anyway, this time, knowing what her taste in books resulted in last time, and still not wanting to have an extra fiction book hanging around, I went into Chapters to see if I could exchange it for a store credit. Turns out they had 4 of these books on order so they were happy to do so and I was thrilled to put the credit, and the $30 gift certificate I’d gotten, towards Inside the Not So Big House (whose predecessor Creating the Not So Big House had inspired me to build my own home a few years ago), and Your Perfectly Pampered Pregnancy, the only pregnancy book I’ve read that I thought was useful enough to actually own.

You might find that statement surprising, given the dozens of good pregnancy books out there. And I hadn’t expected much when I signed it out of the library – it looked like it would be kind of fluffy, and this suspicion was further deepened when a quick glance revealed the cutesy “V-Zone” as a nickname for… well I’m sure you can figure it out. But the fact is that a ton of books have basically the same sort of information, much of which you can find on the internet, yet this book quotes up-to-the-minute research and has stuff I hadn’t seen anywhere else including recipes for making your own aromatherapy oils and methods of tinting your hair and your nails that are alternatives to the chemical-laden ones we pregnant ladies are supposed to avoid. It has instructions for perineal massage, whereas I’d only seen “your caregiver can tell you how” in most other places. It doesn’t assume a falsely intimate tone as if you’re buddy-buddy with the author, but does name specific makeup and products, and talks about the ingredients that make them effective, and give the website URLs where you can find them (not the same website over and over again either, and the author usually tells you how to make it yourself first so you don’t get the feeling that she has corporate sponsors paying her to send you their way).

I renewed my loan at the library, and when that ran out too I just up and bought the thing outright. If you are pregnant or have a pregnant friend I recommend this book more than any of the others, especially once you’ve had your fill of week-by-week development books.

I’m out of town from tomorrow until next Tuesday so feel free to check out the archives while I’m gone. There’s a retrospective entry on the 7th of October with links to a lot of older stuff if you’re looking for a place to start.

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