Sunday, July 30, 2006

The Pool

If music be the food of love...

4 weeks left and it’s time to start focusing on all the important things – such as what music to play the baby in the womb so that we can calm him down with it later and, more importantly, so that he comes out with the right history of contemporary music embedded in his subconscious. In fact, I’d like him to come out of the womb humming something from the Velvet Underground (perhaps ‘Stephanie Says’ which would get him going in the right direction from day one).

I’ve been selecting a few choice albums for him to become accustomed to now, among them the new Nina Simone collection, Bob Dylan (‘Blood on the Tracks’) and behind D’s back, John Martyn’s ‘Solid Air’ (D hates John Martyn). Next I think will have to be something from Leonard Cohen, some Doors, some Kate Bush or The Clash (here’s a party trick: putting one’s baby to sleep to the strains of ‘Guns of Brixton’.)

Here’s the problem though – where does it end? The Velvets, Nick Cave, Hendrix, Blondie, Nick Drake, Syd Barrett, Billy Holiday, Chet Baker, Massive Attack, Radiohead, Janis Joplin, Nirvana, Johnny Cash, Bird, Bowie, Tom Waits, Townes van Zandt, Patsy Cline… the list is too long, how can you leave any of them out?

And, what about Mozart? Vivaldi? Elgar? Rodrigo? Beethoven? What about Allegri’s Miserere? How can I face my brother if he’s not a Steely Dan fan by the time he’s 4? How can I face my father if he can’t whistle the Goldberg variations?

Worst of all is knowing that the music he's REALLY going to be most familiar with is the opening theme tunes to 'CSI' and 'House' and besides which, by the time he's two all he'll want to listen to is 'The Wheels on the Bus' and 'The Cat Came Back' 100 times a day and that all this careful planning will be for nought.

Still, while it's not on a par with attaching speakers to my belly and playing him taped readings of Plato's Republic, somehow it seems important...

Suggestions on the back of an envelope please.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

volte face...

There has been a gap in this blog. A gap filled with heat, humidity, cravings and regrets. A gap one might almost call a crevasse. Posting while lodged in the cracks of this crevasse would probably have had the men in white suits coming around for me and a note permanently incised on my file that my child may be at risk due to maternal madness.

Having scrambled out of this gap I feel somewhat numbly ready for what is about to happen. The birth part I feel fairly ready for in that I don't think anyone can really be ready. The after-birth part I am slowly coming to grips with.

We have been buying The Stuff and are reasonably ready for most events. Baldrick has turned butt-forward and head-down and seems to be reasonably content where he is, so long as he can put a foot into my stomach a few times a day and make me feel sick.

All in all, we're pretty much facing the right way.

The weather, however, even though it has broken and rain has come is still sticky and humid and awful and wit-stompingly hot. I have 3 more weeks of work left until I can relax and 5 and a half more weeks to go before Blob is officially 'due'. This may be enough time to finish my taxes. That would be a good thing.

We have bought the cot part of the buggy and stared mutely at it in fear of the unknown occupant. The cot-bed is standing in the cellar in it's box, the moses basket is sat on it's rocker and stuffed with bedding and my bag is packed in the event of an early hospital visit.

All we do now is wait. Anyone have any recommendations for good, non-baby books I can read to take my mind off it all?

Sunday, July 09, 2006

ickle winky binky tinky fuck off

Something strange is definitely going on in my little pregnant brain. In the spirit of ‘We Really Ought To Have At Least One Day’s Worth of Outfits In Case We Really Have This Baby Next Month (as well as the spirit of ‘Would You Look At How CHEAP Everything Is Over Here!’) we have been purchasing baby clothes in France and this is doing something very screwy to my head.

While shopping for shoes (Oh come on. My feet have grown.) I found these little itsy bitsy baby socks. Light-weight white cotton socks with little bears on them. Tiny little cotton socks for tiny little wrinkly baby feet.

You can see where this is heading. What Is Happening To Me?? Little wrinkly baby feet which are currently Actually Growing Inside Me. I mean, I can practically grab them and count their toes. Little tiny kicking baby feet with little itsy baby toe-nails…

Argh! Get it off me!! Get it off, this, this, this Sentiment! This terrible, terrible oozing maternal feeling. It’s like there’s an octopus of lurve in my brain sneaking it’s grabby little tendrils into every thought that I have.

Baby socks. Baby fucking socks. And baby shirts and all-in-ones and they’re SO TINY!!! And he has hiccups all the time and it’s SO CUTE I could just throw teddy out the fucking window.

Argh!! And we went out today with one of D’s friends and his lovely wife and their two perfect boys who were all cute on their new bicycles zooming around and doing tricks and pretending D was a bear and he was actually GROWLING at them and pretending to EAT THEIR FINGERS which means, which means, god I can’t believe I’m going to type this – it’s happening to him too!! Oh god what’s happening to us?


make it stop.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

arse backwards

Into the last two months and preparations are sneaking slowly. Very slowly. Almost, in fact, un-recognisable as preparations. Seeing that the blob is now a viable baby and that lifting bags of cement when 7 1/2 months pregnant is one way to bring on early labour, you'd think that we'd at least have a few basics on hand 'just in case' but no. Why do things the right way around when you could have the baby first?

We have, however, cemented the cellar which is now sweating into itself without actually curing. The contents of said cellar are in the room which will eventually be the nursery leaving no room for fripperies such as cots and nappies.

To be fair, the cellar is much nicer. The walls are white, the floor is solid (if a few inches higher) and it will be dry one day. We've found a nasty leak at the back though so there's some drain work to be done but once we're back from France we should be able to lay the flooring and start carting things back downstairs. Which means... we can start buying stuff. The cot, the car-seat, the birth pool, the baby-grows the nappies, the stuff. You know. Stuff. All that stuff.

Our planning isn't the only thing heading arse-first into the last two months - the mid-wife tells me that blobbsie baby is back to front. Head down, which is good, but back to front, which isn't so hot. So, I get to spend the last two months on my hands and knees trying to convince him that he'd be much more comfortable if he turned around.

So, a challenge. Refit the cellar, buy The Stuff and turn the blob around. 8 1/2 weeks and counting.