“We must have a pie. Stress cannot exist in the presence of a pie.”
― David Mamet
1. House hunting in Oslo
It all started with an innocuous little idea of wanting more space when the baby comes. Much as I did not enjoy the idea of having to, once again, in little over a year, shove all my belongings into boxes and move them one by one to another place, which will be my baby’s first home, this should’ve been easy and simple, right? Turns out not so much, not when you live in Oslo.
The rental market in Oslo is awful, and I’m sure I’m putting it mildly. C’mon Oslo, I was willing to put you on the top of my list of favourite places. I was willing to dethrone North Wales for you. Okay, we both know the probability of that happening is rather slim. But still, you can’t give me a home without putting me through the wringer? You are beautiful and lovely, but when it comes to renting flats, you have a lot to learn from London.
And for god’s sake, when you have so much space, trust me you do, put a second bathroom in your flats and houses already. Don’t look at me as though I’m fussy. I’m not. Oh yes, everything is expensive here. But I want value for my money, and good quality doesn’t have to cost a limb and a leg. And give me a break, will you? I’m trying to have a baby here.
2. Having people tell you how worried they are for you
If you begin to hear people even hint at this, cover your ears and start singing loudly, preferably off-key, so they would go away. I wrote a post sometime back about being diagnosed with Graves’ Disease, an auto-immune condition that affects my thyroid. I wrote it because I heard about pregnancies where it was never diagnosed, which resulted in miscarriages. I hoped that perhaps writing about it might help other women facing a similar situation. What I did not expect was people telling me how worried they are for me. Honestly, I do not understand the point when people tell me they are worried for me. They either expect me to say I’m worried too and want me to worry more, or they want me to say, “There, there, how can I make you feel better?” Both are about them. It doesn’t help me. I don’t have the energy to be stressed about other people’s worries about me. I have my own and I’m dealing with them. I’d rather people are encouraging and positive. And if they came to me with their worries about their own life, I will listen and be positive for them.
Avoid this, at all costs. The only drama I like is the ones I put into my writing, into stories and poems that I put down on paper. Drama of any other kind has no place in my life, especially now, when I never seem to have a dull moment with my pregnancy. It drains too much energy and all my creativity. It’s like a plague, spreading its tentacles, begetting more drama. I realised I don’t have to put up with people who want to bring it into my life. I can walk away from them. It also makes me wonder, if more people wrote, would that make all our lives more drama-free? Imagine the wonderful stories we would get to read!
4. Worrying about what people think of you
Expectations, oh they do pile up, don’t they! Everyone has them, and, everyone thinks that what they expect of you should somehow count for more than what you want from life or who you are. When you are a woman and a mother, they drag you down no matter what you do. I’ve started reading these articles about parenting and parents in general, and I can’t wrap my head around why we give each other such a hard time. What’s right for me, may not be right for you, What works for my child, may not work for yours. Is that so difficult to accept? Does it have to be, “My way is the only right way”? As I see it, when it comes to my child, only two people should get to weigh in on the decisions, its mother and father. Between the feeding and the diaper changes, I doubt we will have any energy left to worry about other people’s judgement of our parenting skills. We will probably read or hear their first sentence and fall asleep from exhaustion.
5. Losing your sense of humour
That’s the worst thing you can do when you are pregnant. You need your sense of humour when you live in a country where you don’t speak the local language and every letter that comes from the hospital is in that said language and you thank god for Google Translate every day. You need your sense of humour when you go in for a blood test and the nurse sitting in front of you looks at the list of tests and jokes she is going to take all your blood. You will continue to need it through labour, through raising a child, and for the rest of your life as a parent. Your sense of humour is what will keep you sane when you find out you might be living next to a mental hospital.
What other stressful things would you rather avoid in your life? Share in the Comments.