The other night I was sitting in the bathroom.
(when pregnant, I’ve found it’s just best to stay there)
I had just peed for the 499308508th time that day and figured I might as well linger a little longer this time just in case. In case I needed to go as soon as I stood up again (I swear, it happens).
I was having one of those days where I didn’t feel great. The third trimester is like the first trimester revisited. You get tired, irritable, bloated, emotional, full of headache. I was also feeling a little stressed. I’ve been working like crazy to get ahead. Sometimes I get so distracted by work that I forget I’m having a baby, that in less than 10 weeks I’ll be working even harder to take care of a little person, a little person who will need me and nothing but me.
And other times, it hits me. At the most unpredictable moment, like when I’m sitting on the toilet.
There’s a little person in me, I said to Chris.
I started to picture a little person in my stomach, the person who is kicking all day long, who has some body part that scrapes by my belly button throughout the day. A living thing. A human. Breathing in me. Moving. Oh my god. The more I picture it, the more I start to freak out.
There’s a little thing living inside of me, I say again, a little more anxiety in my voice.
Chris doesn’t say anything.
THERE IS A LITTLE ALIEN IN MY BELLY.
I finally got his attention. Chris pops his head into the door:
Think of it like that alien is a little version of me.
That isn’t helping.
Finally I get up. About 5 minutes later I have to pee again but at this point we are on our way to BuyBuyBaby. I convinced Chris that if he didn’t go with me to choose an infant car seat and stroller I would….probably just bug him about it for the next few weeks. I’m getting a little antsy about the car seat. In case you couldn’t tell, I’m getting a little antsy about…oh, EVERYTHING. But the car seat right now has priority. See, you can get by without all of the other stuff. But you cannot even get out of the hospital with the baby without a car seat installed.
Now here’s where it gets tricky. Actually I don’t even know where to begin. But let me put it this way – buying a stroller is like buying a bike. They all have wheels but they are not all the same.
How is that possible?
You need only take a walk into BuyBuyBaby to see what I am talking about. There has to be roughly 100 different types of strollers, car seats, infant seats, umbrella strollers, jogging strollers, double strollers. I went there one night by myself and after a few glances my head was spinning like a stroller wheel. When I asked a clerk for help, she showed me a few strollers. The kicker was when she couldn’t figure out how to close the Graco. It was a sign – if she, who works here, can’t figure out it, how the heck will I do it?
Turns out no one that worked there actually knew anything about strollers.
I decided to never go about that alone again so this trip to the store, I took Chris. Actually, I’m more worried about what he thinks of the stroller than what I’ll think. I know I’ll be doing most of the pushing but even if it’s a piece of highly unmaneuverable crap, I’ll get by. I just spent 10 months in a highly unmaneuverable body. Chris on the other hand has the world’s shortest fuse when it comes to things that don’t work the way they should. Given enough frustration, he very well could send the stroller airborne across a parking lot.
In 10 years, I’ve seen a lot of things take flight.
On this night, I almost watched the Graco get thrown across the store. It’s not that he couldn’t fold it up, it’s that he couldn’t get past the whole idea of why you would need or want to positions for the handle. He puts the handle forward then moves it back. Forward and back. And then he didn’t like how the infant seat didn’t snap in right away. To express this, he demonstrated how it wouldn’t snap about 10 times just to be sure I got the point. I told him he could move on to a different stroller. To make his point he showed me again how it DID NOT work.
NOTED. Now please – move – on.
We spent some time playing around with a Chicco stroller and both really liked it. It was easy to use, easy to fold and intuitively it’s design made sense. I was test strolling it up and down the aisles, making quick stops and sharp turns when I noticed Chris by a much more expensive stroller, the UppaBaby.
I FIGURED OUT HOW TO DUMP THE BABY OUT, he shouts.
Oh dear. I wheel myself and the stroller over to Chris and find him in a tussle with the Uppa Baby bassinet. He’s trying to figure out how to detach it from the stroller itself, pulling at it, clearly getting frustrated when he finally stood up and said:
We are not getting this.
That’s ok, I didn’t think we needed to spend 800 dollars on a stroller anyways.
AND WHAT IS WITH THE STUPID FOOT REST?
At this point, the clerk checked in on us to see if we were doing ok. We’re fine, just testing these things out. She hovered close and I couldn’t blame her. We were touching everything and bound to break something. I just hope we break something cheaper than the Uppa Baby.
We settle on the Chicco. Next up was finding the infant car seat base. You thought buying a bike was expensive? Just wait until you piece out a stroller. There’s the stroller itself which may or may not turn into something you can use beyond when the child is 32 pounds. Then there’s the infant seat which you need for when they are below 32 pounds. Sometimes it comes with the stroller, sometimes not. Then, there’s the base you need to go into the car. When all is said and done, you can expect to pay upwards of 400 dollars.
And that is for an inexpensive one!
Getting the infant seat into the base was easy. Getting it out – was a mystery. We pressed every orange button and pulled at every latch until finally Chris took the entire system over to the clerk who simply pulled at a handle and released it.
We found the one clerk this time who actually knew something.
Before we made our final decision, we had one very important thing left to consider.
Is the basket below the stroller big enough for Boss?
Driving home, Boss jumps into Chris’ lap. Yes, we drive around with our dog in the car. He loves it. Anyways, I tell Chris to please keep Boss in his lap that way we even out the distribution of living things. He’s got one in his lap and so do I. At this point, Max is kicking my belly button again. It doesn’t hurt, it just feels awkward. Imagine someone scraping the inside of your stomach.
And then it hits me…..
I think we should duct tape Boss to your stomach for a day so you can see what pregnancy feels like.
Boss, who absolutely adores Chris, looks at me with oh boy can we, can we, huh, can we I really like Chris and really want to be as close to Chris as possible please oh please tape me to Chris! While Chris looks at me like…
Speaking of Boss, to prepare him for life with Max we took him out for a stroll the other night. A friend gave us an Ironman jogging stroller and we got the infant adaptor for it. We went out to Herrick Lane, brought the stroller and put Boss in the basket below it. Yes, we wheeled an empty stroller with a dog in the bottom of it around the lake. I ran a few steps to see how it rolled and I really liked it. Boss hung out in the bottom literally hanging his head out and looking at everything pass by.
I think we’re ready. Or getting closer to ready which is good because I’m one week closer to giving birth to this little alien…9 more weeks go to!