Thursday, October 28, 2004

Time to Think

Expecting your first baby makes you consider the future in ways you've really never done before. Suddenly, you can see the future more clearly than before (or one part of it, at least) and start thinking and making plans on all sorts of different timescales.

The shortest of those timescales is that of the pregnancy itself. Mapping out the significant moments in the next five months is quite easy with the scans and ante-natal classes etc but it is all complicated by the way that time seems to stretch when you're focusing on it quite a lot. Given that we're currently thinking about time in terms of weeks, rather than months, it is passing much more slowly than normal. The three months that we've actually been aware that this is happening have passed unbelievably slowly and I dread to think how long the next five will seem.

Then we jump to next summer, once we are actually parents. What on earth is that going to be like? What changes will having a baby make on our lives? I just don't know. We're already making plans for people to babysit while we are at a couple of weddings over the summer and I suppose that will be the way of it from now on; planning well in advance as much as possible.

And it carries on like that, in leaps of two or three years at a time, from extending the family, starting school, moving house all the way up to them leaving home and being left on our own again. That's probably 25 years away, at least.

That's a real long-term view, one that I can barely comprehend at the moment but I know it will come around, in some shape or other eventually and I can't help wondering about it now.

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