Shifting Gears

The times they are a-changin' - at least they are for me.

About nine months ago everything changed for my husband and I. We found out we were going to have our first child. From excitement to fear to anxiety to pure panic, we've gone through every emotion you could possibly associate with having your first child. And now we are days away from welcoming our first-born son into the world (I promise this blog will turn car-related soon).

Besides bedroom furniture, onesies, diapers, stuffed animals, and all that other important stuff, one of the biggest (and hardest) purchases for us turned out to be the stroller/car seat.

2004 Subaru WRX left side view

Photo: Miranda Lightstone/Auto123.com

You see, both my husband and I are avid car-nuts, and so buying this stroller/car seat turned into something akin to buying a first car. It required ridiculous amounts of research, test driving, more research, more test driving (read: evasive manoeuvres down the aisles in Babies R Us) until we finally settled on a make and model we felt best suited our needs as new parents, would meet our boy's needs in the future, and would make a worthy addition to our '04 Subaru WRX.

It's amazing how quickly you learn certain things when you're preparing for a baby: like how a seemingly perfect family car is suddenly useless as soon as you try and put the baby seat in. We were convinced the WRX was an ideal ride for our newborn and us (safe, sturdy, still fun to drive), but boy were we wrong. With smaller-than-normal rear door openings and a back seat that's actually quite tiny as well, we soon learned that while we have a rear-facing baby seat in the back, I will be relegated to riding in the back with our boy as the front seat has to be pushed so far forward to accommodate the baby seat that my knees touch the glovebox and that's just not safe.

Prepping the Subaru for a baby also proved interesting. It's amazing how things that could have waited before (and did wait) suddenly became infinitely important. Decked out with new brake pads, callipers, fresh fluids, a new belt, and winter tires: the Subaru has seen more love and attention than I have over the past few months (and that's got nothing to do with my mood swings, I swear).

Child seat

Photo: Miranda Lightstone/Auto123.com

Bringing a baby into the world is no small feat, and I'm constantly reminded of the saying: "It takes one to birth a child, but a village to raise him." And I couldn't agree more.

And so, dear readers, this will be my final blog posting for quite some time. I'll be leaving the world of fast cars, silly parking games and world travel for sleepless nights, diaper changes and lots and lots of laundry. It doesn't sound very glamourous (and shockingly like not much is changing, actually), but I'm rather looking forward to the change of pace. And when I return next summer, I can guarantee my new little back-seat driver will have plenty of input on the cars he gets taxied around in.

Kid doesn't know what's in store for him. Future rally driver? One can only hope.

Family