So my due date is nearing, which is exciting but also a little scary. We've got plenty of clothes and anything left to do really won't take all that long. And we've both agreed we're definitely more mentally prepared for what to expect this time around, though it's been long enough since Gareth's infant days that how much I hate some of the early stuff will likely be a shock to remember, despite what I feel are very clear memories of how awful the newborn stage is. Probably the biggest thing left on my mental "to-do" list is to get our taxes done. (I will be thrilled next year to only have federal taxes to do; hooray for not state income taxes in WA!) Of course, I'm also probably forgetting a million things that we could be doing to prepare, but I'm pretty certain we've got most of the big things covered. Except for a name.
Now, we struggled with Gareth's name. It's a lot of pressure to come up with what your kid will be called for the rest of their life (unless they really hate it and opt to change it when they turn 18). Gareth is his name because in the end it's really the only thing we came up with that we both liked just fine, and we just sort of settled into it. We had absolutely no other names on the list. Okay, that's not entirely true, but none of them were serious considerations last time around. And they all got erased off of the list this time around for various reasons, usually because they're far too popular. We looked at the top 500 boys names the other day and it was discouraging to realize that there are really only 50 or so boys names and people just change the spelling (Jonathon, Johnathan, Johnathan, etc.) or use just the nickname (Tony rather than Anthony) or a version in a different language (Matteo rather than Matthew). The other problem we've run into is that Ryan works in a currently male-dominated field. Half the names I'd pulled out are names of managers at old jobs, or names of people on his team at his current job, or even names of tools they use at his current job. I told him he needs to switch to a female-dominated profession. And don't even mention a middle name. Last time around we just unthinkingly followed some family tradition and didn't have to come up with a middle name on our own that way. I'm still hoping that a middle name will come somewhat easily once we decide on a first name. But I'm starting to think this baby will be lucky if it has a name at all.