Then, a good friend of mine, an amazing mom with three kids and the most laid back attitude I've come across, gave me a piece of advice that still sticks with me ten months into first-time motherhood: "The baby only needs what you tell the baby to need."
Bam! The registry was no longer a dejected puppy staring at me with sad eyes, begging me to take it home and think about it every living moment. It suddenly became very clear - she's a baby! A tiny, sweet baby who will need me to change her and love her and feed her and rock her and cuddle her and entertain her and challenge her. As far as I could see, I could do most of that with hugs.
I know, I know. What a mush, what a delusional hippie I am. But really, what do babies need? Let's think about this logically:
- Diaper Cream
- Food (Formula or Breast Milk to start)
- Blankets, Sheets
- Place to sleep (crib, co sleeper, your bed, bassinet, etc...)
- Medical Supplies (Tylenol, nail clippers, saline drops and bulb, thermometer)
- Something to cuddle besides Mama and Daddy
As they get older, this list gets longer. A playpen was helpful, a swing. But really, if you have limited space, you can make things work. At ten months, my baby is crawling and getting into everything, but a good, old fashioned pillow fort still works to keep her sort of contained and safe. People will buy your kid so many toys, clothes and books you won't know what to do with them. You can let go of the list that scares you even though you're the one who made it.
Seriously, step away from the list.
Now, make a new one. Think of what you really need. Stick some stuff you want in there because you're pregnant, your hips hurt and you deserve random cuteness. And go put your feet up. nap contentedly. Spend your time on stuff that makes you happy and NOT STRESSED AT ALL. All that's over soon, Mama! ;-)