To maternity and beyond
Today is my last day of work.
And by "work" I mean "my day job where I get to go to an office". Because this blog technically counts as work too, and let's not forget the bit where I have responsibility for the care and feeding of a small human, which I've been given to understand can be quite taxing (if not resulting in taxable income).
Because there's no getting away from the fact now that I really am going to be having a baby. When I first set down the date of 8 November for my last day at work it seemed like a reeeealllly long time away, so no worries. Plenty of time to get my head around this and finish up a few things at work and wouldn't it be nice if the house was fixed by then (ha!). But here we are, roughly 6 weeks out from my due date and it's taken imminent parental leave for me to suddenly go "oh riiiight... I'm having a baby". I really hope that doesn't sound as psychotic as I think it does.
And I'm not sure exactly what to do with myself for the next 6 weeks (give or take, depending on when the Squishy decides to turn up). Other than a couple of thankfully brief periods of unemployment (though, just quietly, a few months can seem like years when you've got no money coming in) and the occasional longish period of annual leave I have been going to work for nearly 20 years.
20 years of bus timetables and meetings and videoconferencing and commuting and logging in and morning teas and Word documents and customers and feedback and colleagues. I can only imagine that it's going to take a bit of time to adjust to not doing all that stuff.
What I should be doing from next week onwards is relaxing, resting and nesting. However I have a history of not being very good with those things, or at least, taking a while before I can manage them.
Usually when I have time off work my method of relaxation follows this trajectory -
- Feel guilty about All The Housework
- Do All The Housework
- Fall into a crumpled heap of exhaustion
- Refuse to take a nap because naps are for wussies
- Think of all the other quasi-housework tasks that could happen
- Run out of time to do any of them
- If next day is also a day off work, repeat most of the above
- Eventually give up and watch 6 episodes back to back of Elementary/Boardwalk Empire/Hell on Wheels
- Feel guilty
- Do more stuff to make myself feel less guilty
Obviously this is not ideal but I have improved a bit. Being pregnant has made me a lot more inclined towards napping and I find I can now do it easily. Even in the middle of the day. Even without *gasp* pulling the curtains. But I wouldn't put it past me to just keep binge-watching Boardwalk Empire. Because sometimes when a show is good it's really, really hard to stop.
So, I think pregnancy and heavy-set slowness will probably force me into the resting and relaxation part. The nesting is however, problematic in that most of my "nest" doesn't have any walls at the moment. And is on the other side of town. Our temporary accommodation does have a very nice garden area out the back and lots of birdlife but I'm not sure if squatting in a stand of flax and gathering straw and feathers about my person is something I should actually be doing.
But I've come up with a shortish list of things I think I could do in the "baby and workfree interregnum"
Things to do
- Watch the Star Wars movies in Machete order
- Take lots of naps
- Do all my Christmas shopping online because, sweet baby Jesus, I went to the mall last night and it was hideous and I kept not being able to fit my bump through narrow aisles of crap, sorry "Christmas merchandise".
- Take walks and explore the neighbourhood
- Think of some names for the baby that I don't hate
Things not to do
- Wear shoes (my feet stay coolest when I'm not wearing any and this cuts down on the itchiness)
- Get stressed out about the house
- More housework than is strictly necessary
So those are my not especially grand plans. But if anyone else has thoughts on how best I might fill the next 6 weeks, I'm open to suggestions.