I have finished work. A very odd feeling, especially as my last day was the Royal Wedding, and as a journalist it was one of the busiest days EVER. And most of my colleagues were out of the office reporting from location, so when I finally left there wasn't really anyone to say goodbye to (other than the two people I'm very good friends with at work, and I was seeing the following day anyway!).
My actual maternity leave doesn't start until May16th - the first two weeks are annual leave - so perhaps that's why it doesn't really feel like I've left. I thought I'd feel a bit more emotional after 10 years at the same place, and not having a clue when I'll be going back, but it really doesn't feel like anything at all. I have wondered whether I've taken time off too early, but with the long, anti-social hours that I work, I decided I could just do without the stress and enjoy as much relaxation time as possible.
All my friends with kids say that's definitely the right thing to do. One of them has even sent me some books that I was planning to buy - and told me put my feet up and relax as much as possible. It really blew me away that she was so thoughtful - and I intend to do lots of reading and DVD watching in the 6-weeks or so until the Little Monkey puts in their appearance.
There is a sign that I am ready to finish work - a few pregnancy niggles are starting to creep in. Had quite painful and irritating piles in the last week (nice - but had them years ago quite severely so doesn't concern me too much). And more frequent disturbed nights sleeps from not being able to get comfortable, or the Little Monkey giving me a right hammering as he/she decides to do an Irish jig in the middle of the night. But seeing as I'm so near the end I'm not surprised, and I'm also very grateful the little niggles have taken this long to appear. I know how lucky I am that they're so minor and not been throughout my pregnancy.
We've ordered and paid for the pram (Bugaboo Bee) finally. And we're still buying odds and sods - bottle stuff (although planning to exclusively breastfeed at the start), a few sleepsuits and baby-gros. Also picked up the car seat and base that we're borrowing from my best friend - so the car is now baby-ready! That also meant another brief visit to my parents - and they'd had another mooch around Mothercare, and bought some hooded baby towels and bath stuff... stuff that I really wanted to buy myself, but of course I was grateful to them. Mum's done a great job of knitting a couple of cardigans too - a particularly lovely arun one (shame it will be the height of summer).