I seem to be experiencing a strange period of non-stressful stress. I can't say I'm stressed because I have very little to do right now - just a couple of ongoing projects and the seemingly never-ending house project - but nonetheless a sort of nervous tension is setting in.
Why? Because every time the phone rings, my stomach tightens up a little. Is it Children's Social Care? Do they have a child for me? Will I have to quickly stop what I'm doing and run around getting the house prepared for a new arrival?
When the boy arrived, it was quite a rush. I was in the middle of decorating the house and when the phone rang I had literally just finished sweeping rubble off the stairs carpet. They asked me if I could come and pick him up in 20 minutes. I took a look at my filthy clothes and dust-infested hair and suggested that it might be better for all concerned if I took a shower first!
Within 90 minutes, I had him back at the house. I had absolutely no equipment for a baby and in the little bag he came with were two very dirty bottles, some formula, a couple of nappies and a few clothes which later turned out mostly to be too small. I had to sterilise the bottle for his first feed in a pan of boiling water on the stove.
A few hours later, a van turned up with a delivery of equipment arranged by Children's Social Care - cot (self-build!), pram, steriliser, bottles, car seat, etc. A friend of mine came round with a few clothes and some nappies and wipes, and in this way we managed to get through our first night. After that, things settled down considerably and we got along pretty well.
I don't know how it will be next time. Will it be the same sort of rush or will I get some warning? In the meantime all I can do is twitch nervously every time the phone rings, and make all my plans and arrangements in pencil!