Ten things I've learned this week, too much of which I didn't really want to know:
1. There comes a point where even the largest maternity jeans won't fit any more. My most recent purchase, size 14s from Hennes (I started out a size 8), with a huge elasticated waist panel, feel like a vice when I sit down. I know, gutting isn't it? No jeans. No jeans!!
2. No matter how many times your partner tells you he still finds you attractive, you'll struggle to believe him. It won't help when he rushes from the kitchen to the lounge for Cheryl Cole's bits on The X-Factor.
3. When you say that no, you don't know what you'll be doing for Christmas, because the baby could be born as late as December 14, nobody will believe you. They will think you're deliberately trying to thwart their turkey ordering plans and will ask you almost daily for an update, hoping for a different answer. You won't have one.
4. There is no such thing as a stylish Moses basket. What is it about Broderie Anglaise? It's not a regular feature in the rest of our homes, it's not made an appearance in our wardrobes since the Seventies, so why on earth would we bedeck our baby's first nest with it?5. If sitting with your legs up the wall and doing figure of eight wiggles while on your hands and knees sounds fun when the midwife suggests it, it won't feel like fun when you're doing it. Apparently, it's a walk in the park compared to external cephalic version (ECV) though. Nice.
6. I've found the man of my dreams and he's not the baby's daddy. Or George Clooney, as hard as it is to believe that. Before anyone panics, there's an innocent explanation.
I missed my train from London to Manchester yesterday by three minutes, because I can't run, believe it or not, and the traffic had been frustratingly bad. In a rare and near-regrettable feat of forward-planning I'd bought a non-refundable ticket weeks in advance. Facing a £65 bill for a new ticket, I approached a Virgin Rail customer services chap, with what must have been a hopelessly distraught "I'm pregnant and can't really deal with this" look in my eyes. You'll never guess what he did for me. He only transferred me onto the next train for free. Yes, you did read that correctly. If we were having one, I'd opt for him as baby's godfather. I thought helpful male customer services staff only appeared in dreams. Seems not!
7. It's not possible to be loaned too many baby slings. We now have a Lifft, a Wilkinet, a Baby Bjorn and...erm...a stripy one. They're all completely different concepts. One will be better indoors, one is lighter, one's more "manly" and so on. A baby sling wardrobe is a good thing.
8. If you're lucky enough to still have your parents, you'll need them. I'm writing this from my mum and dad's home. I'm 37, and there is still nothing like being picked up from a station platform, hugged, taken home, fed, watered and put to bed.
9. Caesarean isn't like undoing a zip and popping a baby out. It's fairly major surgery, with several layers of incision and several layers of stitching up. I'm not as enthusiastic any more about the prospect. Thanks Google.
10. Maternity pads are bigger than the average three-seater sofa.
More:Is It Just Me?
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