One Month

Baby Girl Smith is due in a month. Now I know that could mean she doesn’t show up for another week or two after that – or before – but generally speaking, we’re really in the home stretch.

The shower on Saturday was wonderful. Amazing. The kindness and love we were shown by our friends and family was amazing. Honestly. I stood around the nursery, after Scott brought everything in and upstairs, and I was blown away. Within hours, these generous, loving, supportive people made it so our daughter wouldn’t be coming home to only a stroller and a handful of onesies. And seriously? My daughter now has more clothes than the two of us put together.

I didn’t do a good enough of  a job stopping to take it all in, but it was exactly the shower I’d wanted – everything was just incredible and I’ll post pictures soon. Ali, Lynette, Devyn and especially my sister, Kate, did the most amazing job.

Did I mention “amazing?” Because it was.

This week is a busy one. I’m performing at the Chicago Independent Radio Project’s regular reading series, “First Time,” on Wednesday at Schubas. CHIRP celebrates its first anniversary this month, and I was asked to take part, which baffles me beyond all belief because this is the bill:

Robbie Fulks

Josh Caterer (Smoking Popes)

Susan Messing (Annoyance Theatre)

Erin Shea

James Van Osdol

Matt Spiegel

Jim DeRogatis

It is hard not to look at that line-up and think, “One of these things is not like the other…” My fellow writer/performer, James Van Osdol, shares my sentiment, though he’s nuts for doing so. He does, however, include links to all of these amazing people. I’m reading a piece I wrote (and am still polishing up) centered on the theme of the night, which is “First Car,” and I’m really trying not to be intimidated by the company I’m keeping on this stage. I’m also really praying my daughter doesn’t decide to show up early and make her debut at Schubas along with me.

When Jocelyn asked me to do this a couple of months ago, I immediately said yes. I always immediately say yes to these things and then think about it and work myself into a scared lather. I am petrified of getting up in front of people, though I always seem to do it because my vanity and ego are bigger, it seems, than my fears. This time, though, I haven’t been nearly as scared, or as insecure. I knew in some way this would be a final bow to the person I am before having a daughter. Not to say I won’t keep writing, or performing if asked, just that it’s unlikely that anything I do from here on out won’t be influenced by being a mother. This all seemed like an opportunity to pay homage to that, and perhaps to my unborn kid.

I’ll post the piece after Wednesday.

My girlfriend at work commented today that my daughter is still riding too high, as it were, for me to be too concerned about her making an appearance any time soon, which God I hope is true. I know I keep harping on this, but I just want a couple of weeks to lie around and not stress as to whether or not a crib is here finally (it is, but there isn’t a mattress or bedding, and I’m not even bothering with either for a while since she’ll be in a co-sleeper with us for a good spell) or if all of the boxes have been unpacked and shelves and bookcases been assembled.

I’m sure I’ll find something else to stress about, no doubt, but at least I won’t also be staring at myriad cardboard boxes littering my house.

So question time, and really, anyone can answer: If you were coming home from a life-changing event, in this case, having a baby, what would be the things you’d want waiting for you? Of course feel free to share what you did want, and perhaps got, if you brought a baby/puppy/whatever home.

Here is what I want:

1) A clean – CLEAN – house. Though I will call someone during contractions to insure this happens, you mark my words.

2) Fresh flowers.

3) Healthy casseroles I can pop in the oven. I also would like to have plenty of the oatmeal/brown rice/flaxseed thing I make in the crockpot for breakfasts. And lots of fruit. And, well, ice cream, even though I’m quitting that habit cold turkey once this kid gets here.

4) A Tivo/DVR with L&O, Housewives, Modern Family and The Daily Show.

5) Clean bedding.

6) A Manhattan/good bottle of Malbec

Your turn.