In preparing for the arrival of baby Sam, I made a list, as I tend to do. I marked what could be done before the birth, and what could be done after. I marked what needed research, and where I could purchase everything. The list was thorough, a culmination of googling baby necessities and talking to friends.
The nursery was a thing, so I designated a room – or rather – the room designated itself – the only one without a bed in it that didn’t sometimes get used as a guest room. I wasn’t one of those people keen to paint it or buy a whole lot of new, purpose-built furniture. We had an old desk, which could double as a change table. The chest of drawers could be cleaned out to house baby clothes. And the wardrobe could just stay there because… well how much stuff do babies really need anyway?
Curtains, I told hubby. We need curtains. The room already had a net curtain, and the railing, so all we needed to do was choose fabric and put in an order. I became obsessed with the curtains, and a little resentful every week that passed where we didn’t go shopping for curtains. I’d made my list, and I was ready to cross things off and here was something I could cross off any time.
I felt much better when the curtains were installed. We bought a waterproof pad for the desk (change table). I cleaned out the drawers. I washed and folded all the baby clothes. I was ready.
And then I realised… the nursery wasn’t actually going to get used. Since the recommendation is to keep the baby in the same room as the mother for the first 6 months (and I realise that doesn’t always happen, but I was going to try), then technically he wouldn’t need a nursery for 6 months. Instead of preparing the nursery, I should have been preparing my own room! I didn’t want to have to carry him next door to change him in the middle of the night. Luckily there was plenty of space, so my standing desk became the change table, and I decked out the small shelves that had previously held my laptop and office equipment with nappies and wipes. I cleared some space in the linen cupboard to store some baby clothes (for midnight changes) and his daily requirements.
The nursery waits for him; the curtains are hanging patiently. We currently use the room as a secondary changing area (for those special times when I get to have a nap without baby), we dry washing in there, and store odds and ends, but I’m looking forward to the day I can move the cot in, and sleep on my own again. And I guess the good thing about having the nursery ready before the baby is born, is that it doesn’t have to be done after!