We spent most of the day moving, yesterday. We’d started on sunny Saturday, ended up having a long lunch, and then stopping early to watch the UT / UK game, so we started early and got a lot done on Sunday. Even though it was kind of raining, so gray, so drab. The excitement of nice new digs—even if we can’t be completely moved in till next weekend—is illuminating.

I don’t usually handle long transitions very well, so the thought of living in a half-empty apartment for five days is depressing, when I think about it, but it’s easy enough to turn toward brighter things, this morning. For instance, thinking about the new house, and what a revelation it will be to have a full-sized kitchen again, and a dishwasher, to have room to entertain, to have a laundry room, to live in a house that is completely free of linoleum.

Our Eleanor apartment feels a little like it did when we first moved in: no pictures on the walls, a few U-Haul boxes stacked in front of an empty bookshelf, so much open space and a few random things set down in places they don’t belong. Like an antique chocolate set on (another) empty bookshelf, Scrabble leaning against the fireplace, headrests from Marshall’s car lying in the couch. Also, an alien from outer space colonizing my body, making it huge, draining my physical resources, and moving around in there every hour or two like it’s trying to feel its way out (keeps failing).

I’ve started—I think—having these Braxton-Hicks contractions, which is another step on the stair toward transformation. I think I didn’t notice them for a long time, but while we were moving, and I spent lots of energy carrying things up and down the never-ending staircase that goes from ground level to our second-storey apartment, I decided it would be in everyone’s best interest if I paid attention to how my body was handling this kind of exertion. And I noticed that I would feel really tight in the midsection at times. That’s pretty much the only way I’ve heard Braxton-Hicks reliably described, so that’s why I think I’ve been having them. I know I shouldn’t have this baby yet, but I feel pretty ready (WHICH I DO REALIZE isn’t the same thing as actually being ready). I wish I could have it in about two weeks, instead of six. You know what, never mind. Probably six weeks will be good.

What else should happen today, besides yoga and writing a blog? Not going to the farm today, and can’t work on Christmas presents (as everything involved is in the new house and I’m not going to get it all together until I’m moved in). Probably will work on building up inventory for the shop, since I’ll lose all motivation for doing that kind of thing in a couple weeks. Will probably also finish mixing up this postpartum herbal bath I’m making for myself. Having e-bought calendula and yarrow flowers, I have a dizzying amount of those, but I ran out of enough sage, rosemary, lavender flowers, and comfrey to make a half-gallon of it. It’s odd to think that this jar of dry leaves and twigs and petals has magical properties. But, according to the herbalists, it does. Making a nipple salve/lotion from coconut oil, shea butter, and cocoa butter is next on my list, and after that something that’s even weirder-sounding, which I will leave completely to your imagination. Ok fine, they’re called “padsicles.”

I want to be so ready, for everything, ever, that I possibly can. I’ve learned so much from my friends Megan and Elizabeth about birth and some postpartum things, but I still feel like I have so few material things together—understandable, as I’m in the process of moving, six months from my due date—but I still feel pretty isolated, pretty lonely, like I’m just waiting for the tornado to come. Just hoping the roof is nailed down well enough. Megan told me once that pregnancy (and new motherhood) was one of the loneliest times of her life, and I feel the isolation that seems necessarily wrapped up in this new experience—a few people I thought I’d be able to get closer to via being able to swap pregnancy stories, etc., aren’t; feel ill and tired (and being poor, early on) has kept us from hanging out at bars with our hip single friends; and my social awkwardness continues (surprise!!! not) to be a problem for me.

The requirements for having, making, and keeping friends is different in each stage of life, and leaving behind the days when I was around people all the time & occasionally glommed to a new friend, hanging out constantly and sharing secrets, is long gone. Such a lot of distance covered since then—the terrain is totally different. But instead of describing the new terrain like it’s “The Wasteland,” or reminiscing about the old terrain like it was super-awesome (which, really, it wasn’t), I should instead get back to my work. Being lonely and anxious about the coming deluge accomplishes 0% of my (good) daily work, and putting on real clothes and making a cup of tea and listening to (Christmas?) music while I move forward into the land of my imagination, making things out of leather, pushes me into it. Also, the roof may never be nailed down enough for the coming [whichever natural disaster], but making a postpartum herbal bath = probably about five more nails than existed previously. And that’s something.