Jetlag and Thoughts on Motherhood

I got the best of both worlds -- mommy by day, rock star by night!

I returned safely from my whirlwind tour of Japan and Indonesia last night to a husband, two kids, and a dog who all were very happy to see me.  There is, truly, nothing like home.  I’ve been up since 4am, though.  It’s always harder to adjust to eastward travel, but it’s as good time as any to catch up on my blogging!

When I first became pregnant with Josh almost 15 years ago, I thought that my life was over.  I was facing 18 years to life, and I knew that I would always have to look after this helpless offspring who, at the time, could do nothing — not even eat and poop — without my assistance.  I had enjoyed a busy career in music, traveling the world and meeting all sorts of interesting people.  Yet, I knew that it was time to kiss my life as I knew it good bye and kiss the cheeks of my newborn baby.

I mourned that death of me at the time, pretty much going into labor kicking and screaming, not wanting to let go of my wonderful life.  I mean, I thought I had it pretty good, and I enjoyed my freedom more than anything.  I did not want to be tied down to domestic life.

For a while after we became parents, I still tried to fight it.  I wasn’t willing to give up my life as I knew it, and I tried hiring nannies and sitters to try to prolong the freedom I had had.  Eventually, though, it became obvious that I was not yielding myself to this new role in life called motherhood.  That’s when I let go.  And then it became wonderful.

In fact, life got even better, much more fulfilling and richer than ever before.  How did I even think that my previous life was so worth holding onto?  Once I dove into motherhood with everything I had, my life became much more…what shall I say? — centered.  To be sure, others may be very well-centered even without having children, but for me, motherhood brought everything into light and my life finally made sense.  Yeah.  Much more centered.

Fast forward 14 years, and I’m finally crawling out of the mommy fog and reentering life again.  Things don’t look exactly the same, and I’m no longer chasing unrealistic dreams and expectations nor running away from demons on my shoulders.  Yes, I had my issues back then.  Anyway, in the past year, it has felt like I’m slowly getting my life back, and it feels good.  In so many ways, my music ministry and career look so much better than ever before.  Ironically, though, I don’t care as much about it; I can honestly take it or leave it.  Boy, is that ever freeing!

As I sang at and taught workshops at this children’s ministries conference in Jakarta with other speakers from Australia, Malaysia, Singapore, and other parts of the US, I noticed that many of us have children about the same ages as mine — preteen to young teens — which made me think that perhaps my parenting journey is not all that unique.  For a while — maybe 10, 12 years — we (especially moms) need to let go of our own selves and focus on raising our kids at home.  Ten years used to sound like a very long time for me back then, but now, in perspective, it is just a blink of an eye.  Then, just at the right time according to God’s infinite wisdom, we get back out there and continue with our lives and leave a lasting mark on humanity, both by raising children who are, hopefully, well-adjusted and contributors to society themselves, and also by doing whatever God made us to do here on earth.

So, if you are stuck in the mires of life that is raising young children and you feel like you will never wear dry clean-only clothes and/or high heels again, fear not!  You will get out there again, in due time.  And then you will realize how much more fulfilling life is and that you wouldn’t trade all the sleepless nights and poopy diapers for anything.

No, I wouldn’t trade my life as a mommy for anything.  Would you?

Singing at New Hope Yokohama. Some of the young parents there told me they heard me long time ago when they were kids. Oh boy, I've been at this a long time!

Second Life for a Diaper Bag

Today, I have a short post to tell you about something fun I saw at the gym yesterday.  Do you know what this is?

20120612-213259.jpg

Yup, it’s a diaper bag…and a very cute one at that.  But what makes this so fun is that the owner of this bag now uses it as her gym bag!

It totally makes sense!  After all, a diaper bag

  1. Is waterproof
  2. Has baby bottle pockets to use for your water bottles
  3. Has a matching changing pad which you can use for your floor mat when you do abs
  4. Is roomy

This mom was even using her burp clothe as a workout towel.  It’s really absorbent and soft, so why not?

I wouldn’t dare reuse any of my own diaper bags, however, because they were mostly those freebie bags with tacky designs you get when you leave the hospital, courtesy of baby formula or diaper companies.  Also, by the time my kids grew out of diapers, my bags were filled with Cheerio bits and emitting a strange odor which, I’m certainly, ate through the ozone layer.  I think roaches lived inside my bags near the end.

But hey, if I had a diaper bag as cute as the one pictured above, then I’d use it as my purse on a dinner date!

Any other clever ideas for old baby things?  You tell me!

Going from One to Two

Last night, we celebrated Meg’s 6th grade graduation at church.  I know everyone says this, but I still do wonder: where did the time go?

What is this little creature next to me?

While digging up baby photos for the slide show, I became nostalgic about the early days of having not only one but two babies.  In case you’ve got either zero or one child right now and are contemplating adding another one to the mix, let me share with you a few thoughts on the subject:

1.  Going from one to two is much easier of a transition than zero to one.

There is nothing like going from the twosome as husband and wife to parents with one small critter who turns our world upside down.  Just as the dust was settling, we were blessed with a second child.  Sure, there is no denying we knew better what to expect the second time around, but as a bonus gift with purchase, God gave us a second baby who was extremely easy.  She kept on sleeping and sleeping and rarely cried.  It just might have something to do with me being more relaxed as a mom myself, but I seriously doubt it.

2.  A second baby won’t cause that much more damage to your body; the first one pretty much ruined it for you already.

My first baby gave me stretch marks which are unsightly but are useful for future pregnancies.  My body was like a balloon that had already been inflated and deflated; it’s so much easier to blow air into it once it’s already been stretched, made all supple and, truth be told, flabby.  While my first fetus worked hard every minute to expand while in utero, my second one immediately got comfy in a womb of her own.  No wonder she was such a relaxed baby.

Same with the birth canal.  My first labor and delivery took an eternity, and I pushed and pushed for 3 hours before Josh finally came out.  Meanwhile, I coughed and Meg fell out. Parenting truly stretches us — thankfully, in more ways than one.

3.  Initially, I felt like I betrayed my first born.

In the days leading up to the birth of our second child, I felt guilty about no longer being able to be there 100% for my son.  When I came home from the hospital, Josh wanted me to put him down “in his big boy bed” at night, but I had to bring the nursing infant in with me.  “I don’t want her here,” he demanded.  Being postpartum and hormonal, I cried and begged him for forgiveness.  “I’m sorry, Joshy.  I’m sorry I can’t be with you all the time anymore. I’m sorry you have to share mommy with baby Meg.”  He cried as he drifted off to sleep. It was indeed a lot for a two-year old to handle, what with getting evicted from the crib to no longer having mommy all to himself.  We eventually adjusted, though.  Within a couple of days I was saying, “Get over it, son.”

4.  ‘Tis so sweet when the two children begin interacting with each other.

The first person ever to make Meg laugh was Josh.  He can still make her crack up like no one else can.  At first, Josh wasn’t quite sure what to make of this new baby, but he eventually warmed up to her and actually became somewhat helpful.  “Go get the diaper for Meg, please.”  “Okay, mommy!” He won’t admit it out loud right now as a teenager, but the bond between the siblings is strong.

* * * *

We’ve all been stretched together as a family, and the two children have had to learn to share a lot more than just mommy.  I can no longer recall what life was like before we had both of them, and I am grateful everyday for this gift of family.

There's nothing like a family...at Chuck E. Cheese!

How did you feel when you added a second (or third or fourth) child to the mix?  Was it a hard or easy transition?  Share your experience with us!

 

Metamorphosis of a Minivan Mom

The change was so insidious.  It didn’t happen overnight.  Before kids, I had always zipped around town in cool, two-door sedans like my Acura Integra.  Then I had a baby and before I knew it, I had become a minivan mom wearing mommy jeans.  I thought I should explain how this all came down.

My cool Acura Integra looked like this except it was silver

You see, when David and I came home from the maternity ward, we found that the little baby car seat carrier fit snugly into the middle back seat of our sedan, and it was just fine.  Of course, we always wanted to keep an eye on the little guy, so one of us would drive and the other would sit in the back with Josh.  This was all fine until we started going places with our new baby.  Besides the diaper bag, we needed to throw the stroller in the trunk, which quickly filled up with other baby things — portable crib, baby saucer, baby swing, balls, stuffed animals, and an inflatable pool.  You know, just in case.

Last stop before a minivan -- Toyota 4Runner SUV

When our car began to resemble a trunk show for Toys ‘R Us, we decided we really needed to move up, so we got a Toyota 4Runner.  It’s an SUV.  It’s still cool…enough.  Hey, my husband was still okay being seen in it.  As our baby got bigger and heavier, it was easier on our backs to step up to buckle in the car seat.  Also, when Josh was big enough to face forward during our drives, he got a better view from his seat and fussed a little less. We loved that little SUV, even if it did drive like a pickup truck.

David sold the car he had to a friend and drove my Integra around until I bashed into it with my 4Runner (see my other post about sleep deprivation).  Actually, we got it fixed after that, but the final straw was when David was pulled over by an officer whom we suspect thought that David was an Asian gangster.  The officer stated that the Integra’s windows were tinted too dark, but after realizing that he was talking to a straight-laced physician, the officer gave him a fix-it ticket to remove the tinting and let him go.

When our second baby arrived, it was getting increasing crowded in our Toyota SUV.  Double the car seats, double the baby junk in the trunk.  So that’s when it finally happened: our first minivan.  David decided to sell the Integra and got me a Mazda MPV so he could drive the 4Runner.

And then it happened...a Mazda MPV minivan.

I had to admit — I loved that minivan!  Our kids could actually stand up and play baseball inside that thing.  I could haul two strollers plus all the other baby accoutrements and not feel crowded.  We could even give our babysitter rides home.  No, it’s not exactly sexy but can we agree that no car is more practical for young families than a minivan?

My current mom-mobile: Honda Odyssey

We’ve since moved onward and upward to the Honda Odyssey, probably the best minivans around, even better than any swagger wagons.  Strollers, bikes, furniture, pools — we can throw them all in there!  It’s ideal for carpooling, because you can seat about 100 people.  You almost need a Class B license to drive it.  And the stereo!  I could out-thump any sub-woofers around town.  And I do.

Now, our kids are getting to the ages when some parents consider moving back down towards a sedan or an SUV.  But I love my minivan so much that I think I’ll keep driving it until the day it dies or I die, whichever comes first.

So, are you a minivan parent?  How did you get here and do you intend to stay?  Let me know!

My Former and New Flexible Self

These people are more flexible than I am! (iStock photo)

I used to be so flexible.  I used to be able to do the splits when I was in high school.  I also used to stretch before and after running and could bend sideways, forwards, and backwards farther than any of my cohorts.  Later when I was pregnant, my ligaments became even more loose in preparation for the Big Day when my hips would open sesame to expel a human from within.  Sideways splits were easy as pie in those days.

I thought I would always be limber, but then something happened a few weeks after giving birth.  My ligaments hardened up like concrete! And no, they didn’t go back to the way they were before pregnancy but in whatever position I happened to be sometime between noon and 1pm, 30 days postpartum.  I know this, because I was standing in the kitchen with my feet slightly apart, washing the dishes.  I now walk like a duck.  I can barely touch my toes today, and the floor remains far, far away if I attempt the splits.  When I try to bend sideways, my brain thinks that I’m at 90 degrees while my body stubbornly remains stuck at around 170 degrees.

While waddling around in my ever-stiffening body one day, I realized that becoming a parent has ironically made me more flexible in my heart.  I used to have such rigid expectations about myself, but now I’ve had to let go of them for the sake of our kids.  I also used to have every minute of the day scheduled with my to-do list, but a sick child would completely throw off all of my carefully-laid plans…and I wouldn’t resent it one bit.  I’ve let go of a perfectly organized house for a more realistic, fun home.  I’ve also stopped beating myself up when my kids didn’t meet some milestones, because some things are beyond my control.  Actually, not much in life was ever under my control; it just took motherhood for me to recognize this.

I don’t think I would ever go back to my former, inflexible self.  Back then, things always HAD to be a certain way.  Who wants a perfectly clean home when the kids are all stressed about it?  What child wants every minute of their days planned with activities?  Who cares about doing the splits when there is a sick child who needs you?

I’m writing this today, because Josh missed his baptism this morning due to yet another illness.  He really did have a high fever and looked rather contagious.  In my past life, I would have thrown him in the ice tub, made him get dressed, and fed him Tylenol for breakfast so he could be lucid enough for the 10 minutes at church.  After all, his name was already printed in the bulletin!  Instead, we let him go back to bed and sleep in.  Thankfully, Pastor Tim assured us that there will be another opportunity after he gets well.

Yeah, it would be nice if I could regain some of my physical flexibility from my glory days, but I wouldn’t trade the flexibility I’ve gained as a mother for anything.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go do some stretches on the floor next to the bed where my sick child is sleeping upstairs.

Tell me — are you more or less flexible after becoming a parent, physically or emotionally?  What are some big lessons you’ve learned as a result of having a child?

Song for My Baby

Eternal Treasure CD by Junko available on iTunes.

For my post today, I would like to share with you a song I wrote for our firstborn while I was about 8 months pregnant with him.  As I wrote this song, I was looking at the wonderful baby shower gifts we had received from so many friend overflowing our little apartment.  Then the thought came to me that our most important gift for our child — and subsequently, children — would be the gift of prayer, as it says in Ephesians 3:16 & 17:

I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith.

By the time I finished this song, I was weeping…rather uncontrollably.  No, not because I was moved by my own song but with the thought that someday my baby will grow up and spread his wings and fly away.  Today, I’m looking at a young man who is 13 years old who just surpassed me in height.  It won’t be long before he truly is a grown up and leaves us.  However, that won’t ever stop us from continuing to pray for him everyday.

Please click on the title below to start the music player:

 

(verse 1)
The thank-you cards are in the mail
For the shower yesterday
Tiny clothes are folded up
And neatly put away
The stroller waits so eagerly
For the little one to arrive
Soon a full time job begins
That’ll last past nine to five

(chorus)
When you join our family
We promise from the start
To pray each day while on our knees
That Christ dwells in your heart
That Christ dwells in your heart

(verse 2)
I fear I won’t be good enough
To be called a mom by you
But I will love the best I can
Even in your terrible two’s
And when I’m up more sleepless nights
Than I ever thought I would
Still I’ll always thank the Lord
That you changed our lives for good

(chorus)

(bridge)
They say time goes by too fast
And soon you’ll be full grown
We’ll know we have done our task
When our faith has become your own

(chorus)
When you leave our family
No matter where you are
We’ll still pray for you each day
That Christ dwells in your heart
That Christ dwells in your heart

From Junko’s CD “Eternal Treasure,” words and music by Junko Nishiguchi Cheng, copyright 1999 Everyday Hero Music (ASCAP).  Arranged and produced by John Andrew Schreiner, sax by Greg Vail, guitar by Bob Somma.  Printed with permission, all rights reserved.

Baby Names and How to Pick Them (or Not)

I love this photo of my friend Emily who is expecting any day now (Photo courtesy of Naomi Salazar)

As soon as we found out the gender of our baby, we began that one quest which all parents must go through sooner or later — picking out a name. It was not an easy task, but we wanted to make sure that we didn’t have to put down “Baby Cheng, name TBD” on his birth certificate.

At first, we thought about a name that would work in all three of our combined cultures: American, Japanese, and Chinese.  There are a few names which could work in my own home country (Japan) and the States — Ken, for example — or in both Hong Kong and here, such as Winsome, Samson and other two-syllable names, but it quickly proved too difficult to span all three cultures.  We decided to simply settle for a name which could be pronounceable by most of our Asian relatives.

Here are some Anglo names that Asians would mangle:

  • Harold (R’s and L’s are way too difficult)
  • Theodore (TH’s are impossible for most Asians to pronounce)
  • Jeffrey (F’s are hard, and add R to the mix — nope)
  • David (Yeah, my relatives can’t pronounce my own husband’s name correctly.  V’s automatically turn into B’s)

Here are some Japanese names that wouldn’t work too well in this country:

  • Taro (R’s are always pronounced like L’s, so the proper Japanese pronunciation would be more like Talo; however, in Japan for some reason they always write it with an R.  Go figure)
  • Ryo (No, it’s not “rye-oh.”  It’s more like the “kyo” of Tokyo but with an L-ish sound in front)
  • Tatsuya (That’s my cousin’s name, and we’ve found that most Americans have a hard time with the “ts” sound)

And on it goes.  Of course, we wanted to give our son a name with a great meaning — Scriptural, symbolic, and life-giving.  I think that a name has the potential of making or breaking a person.  I also realize that people have the freedom to legally change their names at some point in their lives, so they’re not stuck with them forever.  However, I wanted to give our child the best possible start in his life, so we finally settled on this one:

Joshua.

According to one website about baby names, Joshua means “God saves” and is the Hebrew form of the name for Jesus.  How cool is that? Joshua was also Moses’ right-hand man who actually got to go into the Promise Land with his buddy Caleb, unlike his boss Moses. And look — there are no L’s, R’s, Th’s, V’s, nor any other problematic syllables and vowels.

Here's your typical newborn's face

It wasn’t official until we actually got a glimpse of our baby’s face at birth (although I’m not sure what purpose this serves, because if we all named our babies based upon our first sightings, they would all be named Yoda), we proudly put down “Joshua” on the birth certificate.  We love that name, and at least so far, he’s satisfied with it too.

What we didn’t expect was that a million other parents also loved that name for their own son in the US that same year.  It was one of the top names for boys that year and for about five years to follow.  Everywhere I go, I still hear mothers calling, “Joshua!  You get back here right now!”  Just in my son’s small kindergarten class, there were “Joshua C,” “Tall Joshua,” and “Joshua L.” And here we thought we were so original…

How did you come to select your child’s name?  Is it a one-of-a-kind unique name or so popular that you hear it everywhere like we do?  Please share in the comments below!

 

To Have or Not To Have

Many parents love to swap stories about parenthood –  the gorier the better.  Like a good fish tale, it grows bigger each time.  This is all good and fun, unless the listener is a non-parent, in which case we end up with the unintended consequence of making them swear off parenthood, possibly forever.  Such was the case for me and David.

As newlyweds, we were blissfully enjoying our new life together.  We were grownups, at last!  No longer under the yoke of our parents’ rules, we found much joy in establishing our own home.  The thin-walled, overpriced apartment on Sunset Blvd in Hollywood was all we could afford at the time, but it was our little castle.  We were soon involved in the young marrieds group at Hollywood Presbyterian Church and enjoying the company of other like-minded folk.

Hollywood Presbyterian Church, photo courtesy of Mark Roberts, who led our young marrieds group. We met some great friends there.

Then, one by one, the couples began having babies.  Soon, their tall tales followed.

“Man, our baby girl kept us up all night long!  We haven’t slept a wink in days, maybe weeks.”

“Our boy showered me with pee while changing his diaper and ruined my dry clean-only outfit!”

“We just don’t have a life anymore!”

“Well, you think that’s bad.  My baby did…” and the stories went on.  All the while, they were giddy with parental bliss and were actually enjoying being tortured by their little offspring.  We didn’t get it.

We have a perfectly good life and a great marriage.  Why would we want to ruin it by having children?

We didn’t intend to swear off ever having children; we just wanted to hold it off for as long as possible.  After all, I didn’t exactly grow up dreaming of becoming a mom someday like many of my friends did.  We both had careers to pursue, and nothing was going to stop us.

After several years into our marriage, friends and family began to hint.  They weren’t as covert as some in-laws who give you a baby outfit for your first Christmas gift, but they did start asking very subtly…

“So, when are you going to start a family?” they pried.

“When we feel good and ready,” I protested.  I wanted a child to feel wanted and welcomed at our home.  I wanted us to feel ready to become parents.  Perfectly ready.  The trouble was, we never could quite gauge what “ready” felt like, so we instead kept procrastinating and enjoying our extended honeymoon period.

“It came down to obedience and submission to God,” explained my friend Lisa one day as she rubbed her belly which had grown large with her second child.  She also had had an exciting career and a good marriage to Mike, a school teacher.  Going down to one teacher’s income was a tough decision.  The scars from her own childhood also weighed heavily on her heart.  They were married even longer than we had been before they finally made the decision to start a family — and it was a very conscious choice.  Today, they are the parents of three beautiful children, and they have no regrets.

Although she never challenged me directly, Lisa’s act of obedience made a big impact on me.  Besides, even David was starting to feel the biological clock ticking.  Ready or not, here we go!

Now we are blessed with two great kids, and I can’t imagine life without them.  Our lives are more fulfilled than ever, but it dawned on me that we’re doing exactly what everyone else was doing to us at one time: talking about the woes of parenthood to anyone within earshot.  I’m even devoting a whole blog about the subject!

If you’re being scared silly about parenting because of my stories, please forgive me.  And trust me on this: there’s probably nothing better on earth than the blessings of becoming parents.  You’ll love being a mom or dad someday as much as we do!

Were you afraid of having kids?  Or were you always looking forward to becoming a mom or dad?  Do you find yourself complaining about parenting? Please comment below!

 

 

Boy, Girl, or Zoo Animals

A girl’s life is all I had ever known. I have two sisters and zero brothers. When we were growing up in Japan, our dad was never around. He was usually overseas, either in South Africa or the US, working hard and preparing to immigrate the rest of his family here.

Growing up, on the rare occasion when I daydreamed about becoming a mom, I could only picture myself with a baby girl. After all, most dolls are female — not that I played with them very often either, because I was quite a tomboy — except for Ken, whom my sisters and I stripped down one day to discover that he was exactly the same, anatomically speaking, to Barbie and to us girls. We had heard rumors that boys were supposed to be somewhat different than girls, but how were we to know? We had no point of reference.

When I was a teenager, my parents sat me down for their one and only Birds and Bees lecture.

“Boys are different,” they intoned, very seriously. They then cleared their throats.

“They are like animals.”

This imaginative 15-year old’s mind went wild. All sorts of zoo animals began popping up in my head: giraffes, lion, bears, elephants…

Animals? What does that mean?

As I matured into adulthood and became acquainted with bachelors, I somewhat began to understand what my parents were referring to. I noticed that most single guys are like bears with furniture, but that didn’t stop me from marrying one. Taming a wild beast is one of the main duties of a new bride. (For the record, David was actually quite tame — more like a panda than a wild boar!).

For the first couple of months after finding out that I was expecting, I continued to imagine myself holding a baby girl. I think I even began referring to the baby as a “she” while it was still a zygote. This was an automatic response.

One day at the ultrasound, the technician found an extra part between the baby’s legs and declared the shocking truth: it’s a boy! My mind spun around 180 degrees. A boy? What will we do with a boy? For a moment, it was devastating news. You would have thought that I was just told that there is a tiger living inside my womb. It was totally unexpected. I looked over helplessly at David.

He had a happy look on his face. “I’m already thinking about playing tennis and golf together,” he beamed. And then I realized that it was all going to be okay.

Indeed, we had a little tiger born into our family, a boy born during the Year of the Tiger according to the Chinese zodiac. He is everything I could never have imagined, but that’s only because my intellectual capacity was so narrow. Being a parent to a boy has opened up a whole new world to me, my sisters, my parents, and to David’s family as well.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. (Ephesians 3:20-21)

Amen, indeed!

Once we got used to life with a baby boy, we had to go through the same shock again when we found out that our second child was going to be girl, but that’s another blog on another day.

Were you surprised with your baby’s gender? Did you ever wish you had the opposite? Tell me about it here in the comments below!

Nesting Behavior

During the home stretch of my pregnancy — and I’m not just referring to the stretch marks on my belly here — I, like all creatures such as flying squirrels, dogs, and sea turtles, exhibited some bizarre nesting behaviors.  Mine were basically limited to two things: a clean driveway and new maternity clothes.

I had this uncontrollable urge to wash down our driveway — and I mean squeaky clean.  Ignoring the pleas from the authorities in California to conserve water, I spent well over an hour hosing down every single square inch of the concrete.  I got into the cracks with a cleaning brush and scrubbed off dirt, asphalt, oil, and road kill from our driveway between the street and our garage door.  I must have been quite a sight to behold — nine months pregnant, down on my knees with a hose in one hand and a brush in the other.  Good thing Google Earth didn’t catch me in the act, permanently exhibiting my water usage violation.  I just had this incredible need to make sure it was so clean that we could eat off of our driveway.  What this has to do with maternal instinct or human evolution, I do not know.

I also had this unreasonable urge to have a whole new wardrobe.  Of course, I had to get everything at A Pea in the Pod, the most stylish and expensive store for maternity wear.  Never mind that I would only be wearing these items for another week or two, tops.  I was so sick of wearing the last three outfits which still fit that I just HAD to go shopping. I promptly dropped several hundred dollars on my short-lived wardrobe — couple of casual day wear and a nice pantsuit for an evening out.  As if David was going to take me out anywhere in my state of maternity madness (“Honey, pleeeze hose down your tires before you drive up my clean driveway!”).  I could have saved that money for our kids’ college tuition.  I also hate to admit it, but by that point in my pregnancy, nothing really looked good on me.  It was akin to putting a tutu on a pig or fancying up a balloon.  I don’t know what I was thinking.

I’ve heard of other very pregnant ladies organizing closets or cleaning out their refrigerators.  Those make sense.  Clean driveway?  Not so much.  Please leave me a comment here if your nesting behavior story can top mine.  Thanks.

(By the way, I donated a lot of nice, almost-new maternity wear to Goodwill.  And I haven’t even swept my driveway since.)