If you are pregnant with your first child or trying to get pregnant with your first child – I have a little gift for you. Think of it as the best baby gift you will ever receive, disguised as a 1000-word advice manifesto. Read it carefully and commit it to memory – you’ll thank me later. There is one theme, and one theme only – selfishness.
Practice it. Master it. Revel in it. Yes, I said SELFISHness, not SELFLESSness. That will come later – on a repeat loop for the rest of your life. Right now, it’s all about you.
Repeat after me: Me, me, me, me, me, mine, me. Yup – that’s a good start.
Do you have any idea the selflessness it takes to put another little person’s needs before your own – 24 hours a day, every day? Theoretically you do – you have probably been fantasizing about motherhood and all of the ways it will change your life. Don’t get me wrong, I am not here to turn you off of the idea. Motherhood is the most amazing gift I have ever been given. But that unique brand of selflessness that is expected of a mother takes training. It takes planning. The only way that you can plan for that level of giving is by overdosing on selfish. Yes, I said it. I wish someone would have told me that. I would have spent my first pregnancy entirely differently.
My first pregnancy wasn’t a bad one. I felt great, I wasn’t too uncomfortable, and I was able to work through almost the entire thing. I kept the house clean. I cooked constantly. I obsessively charted my registry. I read breastfeeding books, baby-food making books, natural birth books, and nursery feng-shui books. I studied for motherhood the way you cram for a final exam. I moved through the pregnancy as if I wasn’t pregnant at all – refusing help from friends and so proud of the way I had mastered the whole gestation thing.
Jesus, was I an idiot. What I didn’t realize, what nobody really told me – was that the nine-month period was the last time in my life I would be totally independent and able to think of myself. Myself, first. Me. My needs. Motherhood is wonderful. But ladies, if you are pregnant right now – instead of cramming for motherhood the way I did – be selfish, and lazy, and have some fun. I didn’t implement anything I learned in those books. My time would’ve been much better spent doing other things.
Remember the mantra? Me, me, me, me, me, mine, me. Repeat it now. Repeat it upon waking, and several times a day.