The early weeks of pregnancy are fragile—and confusing. Here, the answers to your questions.
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1. From the very moment she announces her pregnancy, she’ll be the center of attention — not you. Get used to it.
2. When the baby comes, they’ll both be the center of attention — not you. Aren’t you glad you had nine months to practice going unnoticed?
3. Your house is too small, it was always too small, and to suggest otherwise simply proves that your brain is too small.
4. Are you about to make your mom and dad grandparents for the first time? Get ready for some ambivalence. There’s no such thing as a young grandparent; give them some time to deal with the shock.
5. She will want to use a birthing center. She will want a midwife. She will want a doctor. She will not want an epidural. She will scream for an epidural. Cesareans will sound great; they will sound awful. You will agree with her always.
6. Lamaze is to childbirth what yoga is to football. Do it anyway.
7. Her sense of smell will be so acute, you’ll be tempted to airlift her to join a search-and-rescue team.
8. You’re not really the coach. They’ll tell you that you are, but there will come a time when it’s time to shut your mouth and let her finish out the last two minutes of the game. Then you’ll step in and cut the net.
9. You will be short on cash. You will not buy clothes for yourself for a year. You will consider canceling cable. You will never own a flat-screen TV. But there will always be money for a crib, three car seats, two strollers and more plastic things in Day-Glo colors than you can throw a rattle at.
10. Buy new tires now.
11. During the first week home from the hospital, you will learn to love lasagna.
12. Yes, you’re holding the baby wrong. Do it her way.
13. By the time you change your third diaper, it will seem like the most normal thing in the world.
14. You won’t faint. No one does.
15. Be careful about the word we. For instance, never say, “We didn’t mind amniocentesis at all.”