This past weekend I stood in the baby section of Toys R Us with a legitimate purpose: to take a closer look at baby monitors and find other items to add to our slowly growing registry. We really want one with a headphone jack, but many descriptions online fail to list if this is an option or not.
So I stood under a giant banner in the aisle in front of the baby section. It was a triptych of a baby. His toothless grin beamed down on the entire store, and I felt so small. What a strange journey it’s been, and yet there’s so much more to go.
When I’ve gone to Toys R Us before my TTC days, I only came to see if there were video games on clearance. And maybe to have a sword fight in the aisles until we got thrown out. When we started trying to conceive, my husband tried to continue the sword fights and the sales, but for me it was nothing but sadness at Toys R Us. Everything from the expectant mother parking to seeing the babies in strollers with harried, exasperated parents and the older kids also having sword fights made my heart ache. Honestly, there weren’t many visits to Toys R Us in the TTC days.
So I’m not even sure how to act now that I have a real reason to be there.
Standing in the aisles looking at all the baby gear, I was just overwhelmed. Nursing pads, breast pumps, nipple cream, cribs, co-sleepers, pack-n-plays, bouncers, swings, strollers, car seats, car seats that fit into strollers, high chairs, etc. etc. etc.
The worst part is that, as I’ve been the driving force behind getting pregnant for years, my husband thinks I’m an expert on baby gear. What we need, what we could do without, what we won’t need until the baby is older. And that adds another level of pressure. I’m trying to sign us up for baby wearing and cloth diapering classes just to get us a bit more sorted.
I know all of this should be part of the preparation for baby. That I should be full of maternal bliss at just about 15 weeks as I create this registry with my baby’s future life in mind. But I can’t lie, I’m feeling a little panicky. And despite seeing the baby moving and kicking and looking roughly like a baby on the ultrasound at 12 weeks, this all still feels unreal- like it won’t actually happen.
So going to Toys R Us now is kind of terrifying.