Saturday, January 29, 2011

well, that's sort of embarrassing.

so i got up, drank a bunch of water, and ate something chocolate.

then i laid down on the couch, under cuddly blankets, in the one position that seems to allow me to sleep comfortably.  then i went to sleep (not especially deeply, but i'll take what i can get at this point) and, ta-da...headache on the run.

i think it was the water, to be honest with you, though after i ate grilled cheese it faded even more (of course, i drank copious amounts of water with it, so who knows). 

so, uhm, basically...i'm an idiot.  should have pounded the water last night, apparently.  who knew i might have been dehydrated? sometimes it's the simplest solutions.  i really do drink a lot of water, but apparently i need more. 

right on, body. got it. why you need this much water, i don't know, but maybe Baby Girl is thirsty?

i love you, google, but...

...please don't tell me that i have preeclampsia because i have a headache.

i think i probably have some sort of sinus thing happening, or i ate something funky (since i got one yesterday too, and it went away quickly) and i don't have any tylenol, and i can't sleep well enough to really throw it.  so, yes, i still have it 9 hours later, but if i had one tylenol in this house, it would probably be gone.

and it's bad enough to be annoying but not bad enough to go to the drugstore at 610 am when it's cold. 

so, i love you google, but you suck too.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

i do NOT understand.

if someone could explain to me why it is that people are both infuriatingly dense and impossibly illiterate while taking an online class, that would be fantastic. for example, why do students:
  • despite having received a confirmation email that said that their paper was received/formatted incorrectly/not received not follow directions for submission despite being DIRECTED TO DO SO BY SAID EMAIL?
  • never, ever read said submission instructions, despite them being laid out in painful detail and BEING REMINDED OF SAID INSTRUCTIONS in multiple emails/announcements?
  • think that i am going to proofread their papers when those papers are LATE?
  • find it remarkable that the assignment dropbox that they were supposed to submit their work to on the due date is now closed, and yet behave as if somehow it is my fault that they are having such trouble submitting their work LATE BUT ACCEPTED BECAUSE I AM A NICE PERSON?
  • have no capacity to take a simple technical document (i.e. a transition guide from one edition to the newer) and read it, using critical thinking skills and a little bit of creativity, to find out where the information is in THEIR book that i am referencing from my newer edition? why don't they get that i could have been a real pain and said that they had to buy the brand new edition, but instead provided this transition guide with the hopes that they could make do with the less-expensive, more readily available, used version?
  • read the directions? seriously. it says you have to answer one of the four questions. so if one of the questions is from something you haven't read yet (yes, my mistake, but i don't care), doesn't it stand to reason that IT DOESN'T MATTER because you have THREE OTHER QUESTIONS to choose from? 
  • stop and take a minute and think "am i being monumentally stupid right now?" before hitting send.
it sounds callous, but it's the 3rd/4th week of class. i don't really care what your personal situation is.  that's not entirely true, but if you are emailing me multiple times in a week to tell me a sad story about how your baby is teething and you only had 1.5 hours to do something and you have an algebra exam tomorrow and you're exhausted so can you please have an extension, i'm going to give it to you simply because the likelihood of me grading that thing before you post it is slim to none.  however, i'm also going to think you're a special case, and in week 4, you don't want that reputation.  i'm also going to be annoyed that you asked me to proofread your paper. stop being needy.

that's reality, folks. 

if you, however, email me and tell me some serious stuff (your kid was in the hospital? your whole family has been uprooted and is now living somewhere else?) and ask for a favor, i am going to give it to you and not think a thing about it.

it's how i roll.

but seriously, if you can't figure out the basics of READING A SYLLABUS that i work pretty hard to make clear, i have no hope for you.  and on days like this one, i want to just pull out my hair because OHMYGOSH.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

week 29.5.

the dreams have started. i read about them.  but i figured that they would be like monsters or demons or some fiery creatures from hell.

nope, they're worse. they're me, doing things i would never do but so realistically that i wake up wondering if i'm really that person.  did i really break up with my husband? did i really do something i would never do? did i really not feel badly about it?

worse, possibly, at least in terms of the waking up wondering if it is real, is the fact that at the end of each of them, i am completely aware that something is wrong and something in my brain enters the dream and forces me to either wake up (i can do that with nightmares, eventually) or to say something that seems completely like me. 

that's less disturbing, i'll admit, because i'm turning it around, but because the last few moments of the dream are so LIKE me, it makes me have to wonder if it was a dream at all.  if i would do those things.

all of this makes me not want to sleep. the dreams are worse in the morning, when i'm trying to make up the sleep i'm not getting at night.  i'm wondering if i should just throw in the towel--just get what i can get at night and then move on.  maybe afternoons will be better. i'm not sure.


musicboy has so much to do.  i can't help, which is frustrating, other than doing things like making lunches and dinners and doing housework and trying to keep the burden off of him. i also try to sit by him, late as it gets, until he gets his papers/assignments/frustrating long and ridiculous work done.  by that time, though, my brain is fried. i could be working myself, but i don't know that i would really be able to. maybe i will try next time, but last night, all i could really do was sit and watch tv on mute, with the caption on. 

(often, things are almost better just with the caption on.)

i wish there was more that i could do.


apparently, i'm a bit behind the curve, but i can't lay flat on my back anymore. it literally hurts, which i think is fairly fabulous at the same time as being terribly sad. but at least it's motivating.


as i was laying in bed last night, tired but not particularly able to fall asleep, i think i had an epiphany: my mental outlook is directly connected to the time that i spend taking care of myself. i don't mean that in a frivolous pedicure way, but in a "did i take a shower today? did i put something on that makes me feel like i'm wearing real clothes? did i blowdry my hair or is it still wet and plastered to my head" kind of way. 

i hope i remember that in two months.  i think it will be important.


i am large.  i'm pretty sure i grew over the past few days.  sometimes i don't understand how there could be more growth to come, and yet...i know there is.  i find the human body an incalculably amazing thing.  for all of the times that i have really railed against my body for not being or doing what i want it to do, i can be nothing except completely in awe of it now.

it's like it is doing what it was always meant to do. i don't say that from an anti-feminist place--i'm not saying every woman should have children or that's the sum total of her existence--but there's something so remarkable about watching the body work to do something so amazing and knowing that i have very little, if anything, to do with that process. i am but the host.  i try to fuel my body with decent things, but other than that? it's doing it's thing without me.  to me, that is extraordinary.


37 weeks and full term seems so far away, but i know that it's not.  i can't believe we're in the last full week of january.  then there's 4 weeks of february and 5 weeks of march and then it's babytime.  it's not really that long.  but it just seems long right now.  i don't try to understand how that works, but somehow it does. 

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

i can be random too!

issue number one: i just want to apologize, on behalf of my engaged, newly married, happily married, newly pregnant, and now heavily pregnant self, if i have overshared too much on facebook.  while i am happy for people, i am sort of tired about hearing about the hot boyfriend and how awesome he is.  of course, i think i would rather hear about that than the whining and complaining about exes, but there you go.

and yes, i do feel a little bit badly about being a jerk about it even in my own brain.  because i know i'm often venturing into overshare territory too. and people are probably REALLY sick of hearing about how i'm pregnant.  that can get old because it goes on for like FOREVER.  but yeah.

also, that whole first section? just got flagged as a fragment. that brings me joy for some reason.

issue number two: if you put a recipe on the internet, and you laud it as the best thing ever, and it's a muffin recipe, would it be possible for you to please say, somehow, that it WON'T WORK AS A BREAD? because every. single. other. muffin. recipe. i. have. ever. made. works equally well as a bread.  especially in small loaf pans. it's not that big, it's not that much more dense, and, you know, it should work.

too bad i just wasted two hours on the healthy pumpkin bread that didn't.  that's annoying.  i feel somehow like it's false advertising, though mainly i think i'm just annoyed that i just wasted pumpkin, honey, and a whole heap of flour.


BUT. other people are totally reputable, and the whole wheat bread that i got (also from the internet) is AMAZING.  i may not buy bread again, if i can keep it up.

issue number three: i keep forgetting to go sign my contract at one of my jobs.  which is going to be problematic when, say, i want to get paid. also, i'm afraid that i'm getting a reputation as a flake. i wish i could just be like SEVEN MONTHS PREGNANT DON'T HAVE CLOTHES DON'T LIKE RAIN BECAUSE I'M SLOW. but maybe i can just go tomorrow and pretend like five days later actually was my "earliest convenience."

issue number four: how on earth am i sore where i am sore from just walking? i mean, i was walking on uneven ground for much of the time, but for heavens sake. give me a break.

issue number five: the lightbulb in my dining room just went out. for a minute, i was all "ack! the power went out." but the TV is still on.  and so is the light in the laundry room.

and that, kids, is the logic of a phd.  our children are in really good hands, y'all.

sheesh. i get it. i get it.

for the past few days, i have been literally surrounded by yoda.

you know what i'm talking about. the classic, the ever-motivational, the occasionally want-to-slam-your-head-into-a-wall mantra: "do or do not. there is no try."

after the third or fourth time of it popping up, you just have to ask yourself: okay. what's this have to do with me?

i get it. i got it before, but i really get it now. 

do work, teachergirl. get stuff done.  take the bull by the horns (or the dishes by the...handle? the laundry by the...load? the valance by the...seam? the quizzes by the...question?) and get 'er done.

yeesh.  who knew yoda was so pushy? jedimaster my right eye. homeboy could be an excellent personal trainer.  he's just that annoying, and yet you feel no real capacity to beat him up.

Monday, January 24, 2011

55 minutes of zen.

i went for a walk today, because despite the fact that it was 29 something degrees outside this morning (and 58 in our house...), it warmed up beautifully.

the sun is out.  it's temperate. and i had to take part in it.

getting out the door was the hardest part. i found my hat, my shoes, some pants that weren't pajamas, and i was off.  i tried to get my ipod, but it was as dead as dead can be. so i went out sans noise for a walk around the neighborhood.  i decided to try a different route, to possibly make it less monotonous. 

so i turned right at the turnabout and headed out. in my head kept coming little snippets of songs that i couldn't quite finish, possibly ones that i've heard on commercials or have been brought to mind by other things.  they weren't disturbing. in fact, they were like background static. mainly, i was not thinking at all.

how very lovely to not think at all.

i mean, i was thinking, after a while, about how i had a stitch in my side and if it was a braxton-hicks contraction. and then i thought who cares? and i was thinking about the arches of my feet, as i walked by the side of a road without a sidewalk, and how they hurt more than they normally did.  and then i was thinking about how differently i was walking, being 7.25 months pregnant. 

but mainly i was wondering what people were thinking, seeing this visibly pregnant woman walking down the road.  i was thinking what i would be thinking. i was surprised by the nice man who said hello, and i was wondering about why it is that people seem friendlier toward pregnant people.  i enjoyed watching the family play outside with the dog, teaching it out how to fetch, and i marveled at the sheer number of rental units that i passed.  then i started to think that i had to pee.

of course.

but mainly i just thought about how splendid and easy it was to walk today, and how even though i had no idea how far i had gone, or how long i'd been out, the fatigue in my hips and legs told me that i had done good work.

and i was pleased with myself.

there's something so lovely about a day like today, when i just seem to be plodding along, getting things done. but there's something even better about a long walk that challenges but also has the cathartic ability to take all of everything else away.

i still have no idea what to make for dinner, and the dishes still aren't done. 

but for 55 minutes, that just didn't really much matter. 

i wish every day was like today.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

just going to go ahead and do it.

i need to get a few things off of my chest.
  • i hate the phone. i HATE it. i hate calling people who i kind of know but am not sure if i know if they know me. it's so AWKWARD. so maybe what i hate is awkward situations. what i really hate is when my hatred of the phone gets in the way of other situations, making those awkward.  it just makes me feel stupid. and about 9 years old. so that's fun.
  • i really dislike when people tell me what i will and won't do based on their own experience. i know this sounds weird, but i like it when people SHARE their experiences (when asked, of course), but don't assume that because they, say, registered for 900 things that didn't matter for their baby that of course i naturally did that as well.  i mean, is it possible that we won't use half of the stuff that we registered for? i suppose it's POSSIBLE, but considering the fact that there's very little frivolity and a whole lot of practicality on there (other than the pants--i really did register for a lot of pants because BABY GIRL HAS NO PANTS--and i know that they usually only wear onesies and that they're going to poop on stuff but SHE HAS NO PANTS and that bothers me).  are you telling me that i'm not going to use receiving blankets? i'm not going to use carseat strap covers? i'm not going to use a case of wipes? i somehow doubt it.  but who knows. maybe that diaper pail and the scented refills won't come in handy at all.  maybe i'm entirely wrong.
  • i somehow have to convince myself that i have the capacity to begin Baby Girl's nursery sewing projects. do i have the skills to sew a straight line for a valance? yes. yes i do.  do i have some sort of mental block against it? yes. yes i do. but, as moms are wont to do, mine has put me under a week deadline. this week, i am charged with finishing and hanging the valance. next week, i am charged with the diaper stacker (though i may plead for more than a week, because i think it will take longer than that for me to figure out the freaking pattern).  the next week, her stuffed initial hanging.  mama's point is that it's really nice to get things done. that's true.  but then...things will be DONE.  and  i don't know. i think i'm just a freak.
you're welcome for all of this.  i couldn't really post it on facebook, so you get it.  again, you're welcome. happy sunday night/monday to you. :) 

Friday, January 21, 2011

triumphant, perhaps unjustly so.

i passed my glucose screening.

no, i'm sorry. that doesn't adequately express it.


because hi, my name is teachergirl, and i have a two generation history of diabetes in the women in my family, including a mom who was borderline diabetic when she was pregnant with me, and hi, i was overweight when i got pregnant and hi, i have a lot of indicators that i should be THE PRIME TARGET for gestational diabetes.

except that i eat really well. and i exercise some. and i've been doing that for YEARS. as in, i've been trying to live my way out of my family history for a while now. 

but pregnancy, you know. who knows? who can ever tell?

i figured i was okay. i will admit--though i had intellectual worry (see above re: all of the textbook reasons i should have been a candidate), i never had heart worry. 

they told me that they would call me when the results came in if they were not good. i forgot to ask, though, how long that would be. so here comes friday and i'm all "hey. don't really want to wait anymore. have a feeling all is well, but i don't want to be sandbagged by a call later or worry all weekend."

so i called.

my blood sugar was 82. you have to be within 70 to 140.

i wasn't even close to being borderline.


i feel like i just won the lottery. or ran a marathon. or did something else extraordinary.

i feel like maybe, just maybe, what i'm doing is good.

i felt like that was the last hurdle, really. yeah yeah yeah preeclampsia and all that, but really? i'm not worried.  aware, certainly, but not worried.

this one. this was the one i was worried about.  now we just have to keep cooking for another 8 or so weeks (EIGHT WEEKS. holy dang.) and then we're good to go.

full term. that's all i'm wishing for now.  full term.

go us, Baby Girl. go us!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

a place in this world.

Baby Girl has a name.

don't get excited, because i'm not going to tell you what it is. i will explain why a bit later, but the short version is because i am neurotic and prideful.

but the story behind Baby Girl's name is, i think, something cool.

before the Big Ultrasound where Baby Girl decided to be all shy and it took 15 minutes of stealthy teching in order to determine that she was a modest GIRL, we had a short list of girl names that we really liked.  in fact, one of those names we had talked about before we even got married, on one of those glorious car rides during a trip where you end up talking about hopes, dreams, likes, dislikes, and the state of the country's economy.

(i don't think we've ever talked about that last one. maybe we have, but i don't think we did that day anyway.)

after we knew she was a girl, though, which you would think would make our naming options easier since, you know, we had three or four that we really liked, we both just sort of...fizzled on all of them. they just didn't sing to us the way they had. 

clue number one.

so we hit the online baby name websites, going through each letter and trying to find names we liked. we made a list (which i kept) and we wrote down things but i remember thinking, as we did, that i just really didn't like these names very much. i couldn't understand why. they were all lovely and, in normal circumstances, i would be over the moon for all of them.  not this time.  musicboy, i think, was basically feeling the same thing.

clue number two.

we'd already talked about middle names and had decided on options that we felt good about, and those never changed. but we'd never really talked about those options being THE NAME.

one night, i woke up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, and this name was just in my head.  i mean, i wasn't fully conscious, but there it was, clear as day.  first name and middle name.  BAM.  like i was reading it in my mind.

but i questioned it, thinking that maybe it was just my desperation at not having found a name we loved yet, or thinking that musicboy wouldn't like it, or thinking that it was unfairly skewed my way in some manner.

so i went back to bed and didn't say anything the next morning.  we went about our day as usual.

a few hours later, while musicboy was at work, he texted me. 

with the same name. 

he asked me what i thought, and i told him what had happened the night before, and that was that.  Baby Girl chose her name.

if you think that's crazy and just a coincidence, that's fine. but first you have to understand a few things. the name we have chosen is nothing that we ever talked about as a first name.  it wasn't even on our radar as a first name. 

we mulled it over for a few days, wanting to be sure it was right before we started referring to her as that name because, as musicboy put it, once we did that it was hers.  and much as we were both a little gunshy, there wasn't really any question that it was the right name.  it's the kind of name that grows with you, the kind of name that allows flexibility and freedom, the kind of name that's classic but not too obscure but not so popular that there will be 15 children with the same name in her 1st grade class. 

so there it was. and so she has been, though i still refer to her as Baby Girl more often than not, i think because that's her fetus name. and i love it.  and i will probably call her that for too long, until she looks at me and tells me she's not a baby anymore. 

(that will be a day, let me tell you.)

but if you needed more evidence that she chose her own name--i went back to that list we made the other day and fell in love with nearly every name on it.  there was absolutely nothing wrong with those names--they just weren't HERS.  and i love that. i LOVE that. 

i love that her name has a story, has a history, has meaning. i love that it's not some name i heard on some tv show somewhere and decided that i liked. i love that i can tell her, when she's older, about how she chose her name and how mommy and daddy both came up with it without even talking to each other.  i love how it can give her such a strong sense of heritage and purpose without stifling her.  i love how it says that she's the future and has the wide expanse of forever in front of her.

i was worried about how our families would react.  my mom was surprised, but has come to really like it, i think.  she refers to Baby Girl by her name exclusively now, and she's the only one who does.  i think that's kind of awesome. 

so why haven't we told anyone?

because i am a freak. before we got pregnant, and before we knew the gender, i was up on my high horse about how i don't like it when people name their children six months before they are born, declare the name, and then never really consider that they've never met this child.  what if the name doesn't suit them?


you see the irony? i do too. but i also feel mightily prideful, in that i don't want to be one of those people even if i am already one of those people. i still feel like it's a dicey prospect, naming your child before you meet him/her.  i don't know that this will happen again, this whole "we know exactly what your name is, Baby Girl, because you led us to it"--in fact, i would venture to guess that it won't.

i'm totally fine with that.

but right now, it's like i can't quite let go of it. musicboy thinks i'm silly.  he's allowed. he thinks, since we've already told our family and we already know who she is, that it doesn't matter. i'm coming around. i think, once the nursery is done and we get a little bit closer, we will tell. perhaps it will coincide with baby showers. i don't know. i know it's my own stupid pride,'s mine. it's my thing.  it's another thing that pregnancy has taught me--it's great to have ideas, but be prepared to be flexible because every situation is different.

i think there's a little part of me, too, that likes the idea that only we know.  i think, oddly, i feel like it's this little secret i'm not so sure i want to share with the world just yet. right now, she's just ours.  i guess i might be a little jealous of that.

or, maybe, there's a part of me that's not quite ready for it to be THAT real yet.  i'm getting so anxious to see her, to meet her, to know whose eyes she has and whose nose she has and what characteristics she has that are mine and his and wondering if i'll even be able to recognize them in this brand new person.  will i know if she looks like me? will i even see it? what will she be like? will she be a content baby? will she be a happy baby? will she be a mover and a laugher and a squealer?

somehow, maybe i think that by letting her name out there, those mysteries will somehow be solved.  i know that doesn't make any sense at all, but that's where i'm at with it.  it's still silly. i know this.  but it's very strange. there's no doubt in my mind that she is who she is, that her name is her name.  my hesitation isn't born of that.

i think the hesitation is how real that makes her.  this is an ironic comment, since she's currently kicking the heck out of my belly, but a name is an identity, a place in this world.  her own place, a place that exists solely for her.  she'll be ours, and we'll be her parents, but she'll be HER and that's powerful stuff right there.

maybe that's what i'm not quite ready for.  maybe that's what i'm fighting.  maybe that's why the fabric i've bought for the nursery has stayed in its bag and the registering hasn't been completely finished and i'm very "lah lah lah" about the fact that we really only have a couple of months left. 

i think i'm really very happy to have her here with me.  i'll get over it, of course, and be more excited to have her out in the world, where she can be adored and loved and find her way, but for right here and now, i think i might be really happy to have her here. 

i think i will miss it.  i think i didn't expect that.  i think that's rather magical. 

it figures, though. i've just figured out how to be a pregnant person.  now we have to figure out how to be parents. 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Monday, January 17, 2011

love letter.

when my musicboy walks around the world, he sees treasure everywhere he goes.  if he sees a coin on the street, in a parking lot, or anywhere where its been abandoned, he picks it up.  he's excited by it.  he doesn't care if it's heads side up or any other superstitious nonsense. he simply sees it as treasure, and claims it.

i sometimes think that's why he saw me when no one else really did.


yesterday, after church, he kept looking at me sort of strangely. i'd been having a rough weekend, not feeling well or myself and fretting (per usual) about how to fix it all, but he'd been pretty zen about it all.  not unsympathetic, you understand, but just not freaked out.  it's what he does. it helps me stay centered, most of the time.

but when it was time to cook dinner, he just kept looking at me in this way that i didn't understand.  like he was worried, though at that very moment i felt quite cheerful and much more back to my old second trimester self than i had been in several days.  i kept asking him "what?"

and he finally just wrapped me up in a giant hug and told me how much he loved me and that he never wanted me to be sad.  i nearly cried, it was so sweet and unexpected. 

and then he helped me cook. 


we're beginning to really prepare for the whole birth thing now. i went to the library and stocked up on books, after an initial perusal of birthing class options in gainesville led me to be less than excited to pay one quarter of a month's pay on a birthing class that sounded like not exactly what we wanted anyway. 

i've picked the collective brains of friends who did it the way we want to do it (thank you, friends! even if i haven't told you yet, your words have planted seeds that have sprouted into incredible determination and focus), and we watched "the business of being born" the other night. i read the bradley method book, which i like in lots of ways but feel like i'll be moving more than they want me to (which is okay--i'm all about adaptation) and musicboy has read his coaching bits. 

we're going to start practicing guided breathing and relaxation exercises tonight. 

i think we're both in this strange place where we don't want to let the other one down. i know that i want to be strong, not just on the day that Baby Girl comes into the world but on all the days before and after, and the kind of wife that he deserves and the kind of mom he wants for his Baby Girl.  i think he wants to make sure that he can do all that i need him to do on that day, when i'll be (genuinely) entirely in his hands as a coach.

he doesn't seem to understand that it's not just that day, but the sum total of the days before that make such an arrangement possible. the every days when i trust him and tell him things and share life and chicken pasta and days full of sickness and stress and magical moments of silly laughter with him.

i don't think he realizes that he already coaches me every day. 

he'll be so great at it. he has no idea.


we're nearing the end of our days as just us, which is strange and otherworldly to imagine. i'm not sad, really.  people say, perhaps, that i should be, though i don't understand how an event so prayed for and so wanted could possibly bring anything but joy, except in the sense that it brings change.

change isn't bad.  change is just change.

what's hard for me to imagine is how i could love him even more. i know i will, though. i know that the moment he holds that little girl, my heart will explode. 

that will be something to behold.  i can't imagine it. not even a little bit.

but Baby Girl will bring magic. that's only the littlest part of it, but i am so grateful that there will be someone else in the world who looks at him with eyes of wonder and impossible love. 

she'll be wrapped around his little finger.

she won't be the only one.

Saturday, January 15, 2011


i have laid like one for two days, really. thursday, i got like negligible amounts of sleep. so other than the most basic sorts of things, my day was spent laying on the couch and watching documentaries on netflix.  this was interesting and made me feel like less of a moron than if i had watched, say, real housewives all day.

(no offense to those of you who do. i'm not judging. i find camille both repulsive and fascinating. i tune in for brief stints at a time.)

then, yesterday came The Day of Yuck.  nausea and assorted other issues left me just wanting to beg for mercy. so, i ate toast and drank apple juice and then, by divine intervention i'm sure, had the brilliant idea of bean burritos from taco bell. i'm pretty sure they saved me.  i could only eat just a bit at a time, but it worked to keep me off the brink of starvation.

lest you think i'm kidding, i am down something like 7 pounds since yesterday morning.

SEVEN POUNDS. with clothes on.  yeah.  there's the silver lining right there, but frightening too (though i sincerely doubt my fat stores would not feed Baby Girl for about 3 months if necessary). i'm trying to stay hydrated. that's my main plan.  other than that, who knows? i tend to be one of those people who wakes up, feels better, and then goes OH BOY LET'S EAT NORMAL FOOD! and then rues the day.

i'm trying not to rue the day.

but beyond that, i think i'm having trouble not, like, staying in my pajamas all day and not doing anything substantive. i'm having trouble realizing that, hey, this is my life now--i don't go anywhere. that, however, doesn't mean that there aren't things to be done. even when i come up with lists and things, i am rarely motivated to do much of it.  that will change, hopefully, once actually assignments start coming in to be graded (which is next week). 

i feel badly for my husband, who gets the short end of the stick in that scenario. nothing hotter than a woman who's been wearing the same shirt for two days because it's too cold to change.  don't get me started. 

today, i'm going to try to putter around and clean some stuff.  baby steps. baby steps.


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

the big bad ugly bogeyman.

i don't consider myself a particularly fearful person. other than a particular childhood episode of being afraid of a sesame street poster (big bird was fine, but that oscar looked SERIOUSLY menacing) and forcing mama to put it in my closet (where i had to brace myself to face it every time i opened my closet), i didn't have a lot of phobias.  except for the vacuum. 

but anyway. you get my meaning. no giant fears of monsters under the bed, or the dark, or the creepy tooth fairy (which, if you think about it, is a terribly frightening idea).  nope. 

(of course, i could just have a rosy remembrance of days-gone-by.  that could be true.)

my particular adult brand of freaky fear is when those i love travel. occasionally, when they are on a plane or on a trip, i get a bit freaked out wondering what i will do without them.  i tend to get over it pretty fast, and it's been disappearing quickly over the past few years. 

but let me tell you.  third trimester brings it all out.

it's been a long while since i've felt genuine fear. not worry. not anxiety.  FEAR. the kind of fear that feels too powerful to deal with, the kind that seems to overtake you like a wave and drag you under for a moment, leaving you to sputter and spit as you come up, gasping for air.

(okay, maybe it's not quite that bad, but the metaphor was too good to not complete.)

at first, it was fear about money.  the reality of the situation has made manifest to me that we are okay, we are fine, we are doing well.  but there for a little bit, it was scary.  i've had some fear about other things, things that wouldn't normally bother me as much or perhaps at all.  but now? now it's like i have to consciously remind myself that the crazytown train has lassoed me aboard its hormonal track and that's why i'm afraid. or crying for no good reason. or feeling a bit like i'm at a loss.

i'm assuming this is normal, as i've read that the hormones are just SURGING right now.  other pregnant ladies--are you feeling this way too? it's a strange symptom. i think trying to keep myself more busy, with concrete goals and focusing on doing some things for myself as well will help.

but mainly i'm just trying not to be too needy, trying to remind myself that all is well (and find outside proof that such is the case, which is actually all around me), and pray more. in fact, that last one i'm grateful for especially. i'd been trying to find ways to encourage an increase in my reliance on the Lord--seems like i have one of my answers. 

i am really blessed. don't get me wrong. but i think sometimes people talk about swollen feet and aching hips and their crazy cravings, but they don't talk about the fear and anxiety.

i wish they would.  it would make the rest of us feel a lot better. 

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

this is why i should read more.

dear "16 and pregnant" girl who had twins with the guy who she'd been dating for one month:

maybe it's the hormones coursing through me, but forgive me if i don't weep and wail with you at the injustice of the fact that you don't have the most solid relationship with the father of your children.  forgive me if i think you're being a bit of a heinous witch by not letting him take them home with him overnight (unless you're breastfeeding, at which point it would logistically not make much sense for him to try to do that), especially since you're all fired up about how you need to "live it up" during your senior year. 


excuse me if i roll my eyes and totally yell at you from across the room when you get MAD at him for, after you dumped him in a dramatic ride home when you called in INSANE, taking two other girls to mcdonald's on valentine's day. i just...i have no sympathy for you.

am i supposed to?


dear crazy NYC rich parents who got into a school that wasn't your first choice and then complained about that school's lobby:

seriously? SERIOUSLY? could you perhaps take your snobby, insane heads out of your perfectly toned butts and realize that you are in, perhaps, the 0.01% of the population, who can (and will) pay upwards of $20,000 for a preschool? can you realize that your kids are getting, and have gotten, from the very beginning, the best of everything--and that many kids, because their families just don't have the resources? could you not turn your nose up at the school that took you, just because you didn't get into the school that kate winslet can't get her kids into, even though you DID deign to donate something to their stupid silent auction?

i mean, seriously. and then you left the city, after all of that, taking some other kid's chance at getting into the school they actually wanted to get into with you.

i loathe you. i get that that might have been the point of the documentary, but i really loathe you. and your stupid strapless baby bump dress.


dear twitterverse:

do you really think that celebrities read your tweets? i don't mean to be unkind, but who are YOU that conan o'brien is going to give a rat's behind that you caught his show and thought it was funny? you and thirty million of his other closest fans.

come on.  it's the height of arrogance, isn't it?

or is all social media that in general? (says the gal who can't keep herself from new status updates regularly on facebook)


sometimes i should really just grab a book, you know?

Monday, January 10, 2011

eating my words.

so i told you, didn't it?

as soon as i posted about being grateful and not complaining, the Third Trimester descended upon me with the weight of a thousand bowling balls. or self-pity. i'm really not sure which one is heavier.

i couldn't have been more than 2 days into it (or 2 days away from it, depending on whose calendar you're going by) when i started feeling...big.  and nauseous.  and heartburn-y.

i am a textbook over here, did you know?  because i googled it, after wondering for two days why i felt sick, and it turns out...TA DA! welcome to the third trimester, where Baby Girl takes over every part of your internal organs and pushes on your stomach so that, after you eat, you feel sick.

hey, wait...didn't we do that already?

(never mind.)

but lest you think i'm complaining about all of this, then there was the opening of the power bill to discover that all of those cold snaps doubled our bill because, hey, i'm cold all of the time. 

at this point, i'm beginning to just think it's funny. 

(no, really. at this point, right now, it's funny.)

so, to keep on keepin' on with my mantra of "Baby Good. Complaining Bad.", here are some reasons why the Third Trimester, with all of its assorted good natured stabs in the proverbial back, is awesome:
  • keeping the thermostat lower than ever = i have never been more acquainted with the relative weight, fluffiness, efficacy, or thread count of the blankets in our house.  we have a lot, and they are often neglected, so now they are feeling loved.
  • cold = more rest on the couch. Baby Girl needs rest to grow, so there you go.
  • scary power bill due to coldness = more time planning out grocery store trips and coupon clipping. since this was already a goal of mine for this semester, i am pleased at how it's going. i am being INFINITELY more deliberate about how much money we spend on things, and though i'm still freaked out (books for music majors = at least double what i spent per semester on English major books, which boggles the mind) about money, i know will be well. 'tis the season to be freaked out about money.
  • more mindfulness about money = making more use of the gym membership we pay for every month, which leads to better, happier me.
  • more mindfulness about money = craigslist trolling, which leads to finding the very same changing table we were considering registering for, basically brand new, for $40 instead of $100.  and we used free money that landed in our lap for it.  holla.
  • back pain early in the morning = i get up early.  lunches are always made and i get to spend some time reading and chilling before musicboy wakes up.  since lunches are always made, there's no need to go out.  thus, we save money. (dang, this stuff works!)
  • nausea after eating = encouragement to eat smaller meals = less overload on (even good) calories = less weight gain!
  • the potential for nausea after eating = not wanting to eat.  this was a promise i was given by someone early in the second trimester. since i've wanted to eat the world for approximately 3 months, i was beginning to think this would never happen.  it has happened! huzzah! (don't worry. i'm still eating. but i'm quite pleased that i don't want to eat the world anymore.)
  • heartburn = fond remembrances of First Trimester past, when i discovered berry Tums. they are lovely and not horrible and make things easier.
  • feeling big = people actually walking up to me and saying "when are you due?" instead of wondering if i've just indulged a little too much over the holidays.  hallelujah, Baby Girl. you look more like a soccer ball fetus than a big fat roll, and for this i am appreciative. i am also appreciative of the one random shirt i have in my closet that was pre-pregnancy that makes the baby bump look adorable every time i wear it. i wore it yesterday. i felt pretty.  that was good.
so we're gestating away over here, feeling a bit less perky but more determined than ever to PUSH THROUGH.  we've got stuff to do up in here, not the least of which is four or so sewing projects for a nursery that just keeps on developing, for a Girl who keeps on developing (apparently exactly on track, hallelujah!). 

sometimes, i'll admit, i get a little down. but then, when i stop to look at it (like i have here--thanks for indulging me), i realize that, my goodness, there really are huge silver linings wrapped up in every cloud. in fact, i might say that most of my clouds are inherently silver by nature, not grey or gloomy.

i am blessed.  for sure.  even with heartburn.

next stop on the pregnancy train: gestational diabetes screening next week. i'm trying not to freak out.  diabetes runs in my family.  i really don't want to deal with that.  i really, really don't. 

Friday, January 7, 2011

i don't like doing math in my head.

well, the two of you who have responded thus far seem totally willing to hear my pregnancy stories, so here we go.

first, i have a bit of a rant.  well, not a rant. mainly just a fond remembrance from facebook days-gone-by when i turned to musicboy one day, after reading someone's status, and said "i really hope that i never become one of those people who complains constantly about their pregnancy. i hope that i am just grateful."

now this, among many other things i thought i wisely said before i was pregnant and knew what on earth i was talking about, i will likely have to revisit, as i eat my words.

(that seems fairly common in my life right now.)

but lately, i've been thinking that maybe i actually am just grateful.  because of the scare at 6 weeks, because i was so worried about everything and anything, because i count every day that Baby Girl stays inside and kicks me to say she's there and active and healthy as a blessing, because i count every (relatively) normal blood pressure reading and urine sample from the doctor's office as a monumental success, i am grateful.  i take note of the little things, and i am grateful for them.

that doesn't, however, mean that there aren't things to be Annoyed about.

i am one of the lucky women who feels her pregnancy in her back. thus far, knock on wood and all wood products, i've had very little trouble with swollen anything. in fact, my rings seem smaller than they were pre-pregnancy.  my feet are holding up quite well, especially after an upgrade from $2 old navy flipflops to $25 reefs (with arch support! even though i don't have any arches to speak of! huzzah!).  i get the occasional heartburn, but nothing that a single tums can't rectify quickly, and though i have to pee all of the time (seriously. i think it eased up for, maybe, three or four weeks there at the beginning of the second trimester--and you're welcome), i consider the hike up the stairs to the bathroom just additional opportunities for exercise.

but one of the things that this back/hip issue causes is a problem with sleep.  never been a side sleeper, folks--always on my back. and not just on my back, but on my back in a particular way--one leg bent and the foot of that leg against the other leg, head turned to one side--this was the way i slept.  well, according to the Pregnancy Powers That Be, that's a no go now. something about blood vessels and blah blah blah.  it's guilt-inducing is my point, whenever i end up on my back. HOWEVER sleeping on my sides is just super-uncomfortable. it doesn't matter what i do--some days, it just doesn't work out well. i wake up and my hips ache.  i mean ACHE.  so i flip.  and then the other hip aches. and i flip.  but at this point, i'm out of non-aching hips.  and this side manuever requires pillows a-go-go, so every time i flip it requires readjustment. and then when i have to pee, it's like getting out of and into the freakin' space shuttle.

i need a pit crew, i think, is what i'm saying.

but i pretty much just accepted my fate. in some ways, i'm rather glad for it. it has eased me, the person who DOES NOT LIKE mornings as a general rule, into the idea of getting up every three hours, precisely the schedule i'll need to be on when Baby Girl gets here. she'll need to eat, and i don't think it will be quite as awful to do as everyone says--since i'm already up anyway (and, increasingly, up for stretches at a time, since it's difficult to go back to sleep).  i am grateful for that.

once i started gaining weight at a COPIOUS rate, i started thinking. you know, other than the whole "you should really stop eating that much processed junk" stuff, my lack of sleep really might have something to do with this gain.  so i decided, once the holidays were over and i had the chance to establish a schedule of my own, that i needed to start making up sleep during the day. 

so every morning, now, i try to calculate how much sleep i've actually gotten (today: probably about 6.5 hours, though i was in bed for longer) and how much i want to try to make up (good goal for today: 2 hours) so that i can get to my personal threshold of happy sleep.  i know this is a luxury. i'm FULLY aware of this fact.

however, i'm also rounding the bend into my third trimester, and it's time to start practicing our labor coaching and time to get serious about finding nursery furniture (craigslist--if you wait long enough, it will come--we're in line to see a brand new changing table that will PERFECTLY match the crib we registered for for half the price it was in the store. i'm stoked.) and starting projects for the nursery and training my body for the hardest work it's going to do.

it seems to me that sleep has to be a part of that equation somehow.

but to get back to what i was saying before--i don't complain about this. even to my darling husband, who looked at me with concern before he left this morning and asked if i was okay, i said "yeah. i didn't sleep very well, but that's nothing new." and i wasn't being a martyr or a pill. i was just telling the truth. so i didn't sleep well. big dang deal.  i'm pregnant.  color me especially shocked.

as i was laying in bed at 5 am, rubbing my belly because Baby Girl was kicking (she does that now when i'm awake. i'm not sure if she does it all night and i just don't feel it, or if we really are on the same schedule--can i just tell you how freakin' sweet that would be if we could keep it up?), i thought to myself (and to her, though i know that seems crazy) that she's worth it.  she's worth the loss of sleep and the hips and the weight anxiety and the unnecessary worry. 

she's worth it.

so i guess my point is this about pregnancy, a small life lesson that i hope i carry into parenthood as well: yeah, sometimes it's hard and sometimes it genuinely sucks. sometimes my lot is harder than yours and other times, yours is.  but seeing the dark and gloomy side of it doesn't do anything to chase the clouds away.  even when you're miserable, i'm not sure it's necessary to really bring other people with you.  it's more fun, it's a party, when there's more than one person in the misery room. but i'm pretty sure there's heaps of people in the relatively content room, where you can mention your aching hips in the same breath as your wonderful holiday excursion and you'll fit right in.

so maybe i am doing okay at that thing that i wanted to do.  i never once want my Baby Girl to think that she caused me to dread or dislike anything related to her.  yeah, it'll hurt to bring her into the world. so what?

she's worth it. 

and making my life sunnier and happier and more focused on the gratitude of the situation is better than stewing and dwelling in sadness and misery. i'm worth more than that.

and so it goes. 

(but like i said--give me five weeks. i might be eating my words.)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

home alone.

once upon a time, i didn't have a job, after we moved far across the country, and though i made somewhat hearted attempts to get one (and had one at a card store for three days before deciding that retail wasn't for me at that time), i really didn't do much except hang around the house.  eventually, my frustrated mother decided that if i was going to stay home then i would be in charge of housework and cooking, which i think ended up being okay, if i remember correctly.

since then, though, i think i have gone the opposite direction, having multiple things to do at any one given time (usually related to school + work) so that my time at home was almost always consumed by homework or projects or just trying to catch up on things.  there wasn't a lot of leisure, if it was during the semester, and the breaks seemed consumed by forced leisure, that sort of stuffing-into-two-weeks all of the tv, movies, frolic, and sleep that you missed out on.

oh, and i usually got sick on breaks, so that was always fun.

cue this semester.

i'm at home. i have classes going on, but my schedule is entirely online, so my daily schedule is entirely mine.  these first few days of getting musicboy all figured out and sent off have been a bit more hectic, and it's also holiday recovery period, so i haven't been as productive as i'd like to be (my christmas tree is staring at me, pathetically, begging to be put out of its misery--that's tonight or tomorrow's task), but i'm finding the change...lovely.

this sort of worries me. 

i don't want to begrudge going back to "normal" life, where i am teaching on a physical campus rather than just from my home, after Baby Girl comes. of course, two days does not four months make, and i may be stark raving out of my mind by the time this whole experiment in gestationally determined online scheduling ends, but i have found myself getting up early, making lunches, eating breakfast, going to the gym, catching up on the sleep i've been missing regularly at night because of various aches, pains, and hip annoyances, keeping up with the dishes, planning meals, doing things for my husband, running errands, and a whole host of things that are just nice to be able to do without feeling like i am running the gauntlet.

i haven't quite got it sussed completely, but i REALLY REALLY LIKE IT.  i think i would really like to be a stay-at-home working mom. i think i could do it (see: i taught eight classes, thus i can do anything) and i think it would marry two worlds that i want to stay a part of very nicely.

but, just like most things i hope for and wish, i recognize that what ends up being will likely be entirely different than what i envision, but will nonetheless be right for us.  that's okay.  i think i'm just sort of surprised--i feel GOOD about this whole deal and excited about all the potential.

of course, my house should really be neater if i'm going to do this at home thing. 

i'll get there.  someday, i'll get there.  in the meantime, i ought to do some more work on the jobs that pay me something. 

a question for you who even still read here: i've hesitated talking about pregnancy related things because i don't really want to become that girl who turns into the fetus-talker all the time, but do you want me to update you? what do you want to know?

also, a feather in my cap: 2.5 miles on the treadmill today, longest i've gone since i've gotten pregnant. i am proud of myself.  quite proud, in fact. 

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

new years and all that.

because i stalk her and chortle in glee when she posts, i am stealing perpetua's year-in-review. mainly because she made me laugh with her answers and i'm sure to not even come close to measuring up (which is bracing and humbling, and a testament to her writing skills) but i'm sure to think about some stuff and write about it, and since this is sort of my journal/procrastinatory mechanism/way of entertaining the masses, i can go ahead and do that.


with no further adieu.

1.  What did you do in 2010 that you’ve often done, more times than you’d like to admit?

sat on the couch and watched hours of inane tv that helped me not one little bit to achieve any goals whatsoever, unless said goals are to become an obnoxious cake baker/reality cooking show contestant or to evaluate my birth plan with a new eye (oh wait...).

2. Why didn’t you keep your new year’s resolutions?

i refused to make them.  but i sure didn't reach my weight loss goal before i went and tacked on a couple dozen more pounds of fetus.  i did, however, learn to love exercise in a way that was almost unhealthy. i love body combat. i want to reunite with it as soon as humanly possible.  but i don't think that was really a resolution.

so, short story long: you have to make them to break them.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth to something other than a baby?

i find this question weird. my husband writes songs, so yes. but i think babies are smashing, and they are everywhere, so take that, weird question.

4. Did anyone close to you kill someone?

uh, no. not that i'm aware of, and i'm not sure i'd want to be aware of it if they did. i did, however, witness a totally cliched and horrifying act of vehicle vandalism by a sizable (and i say that with respect as a mutual member of the Big Hips and Butt club) lady who was, i believe, drunk and angry at her ex-boyfriend. that's a story for another day (although it's not really that interesting, or it would lose something in translation) but it did make me sure that Other People do not respect the law and other people's stuff the way i think they do and should.

5. What states of disgrace did you visit?

facebook addiction (FA), pizza consumption (PA), self-flagellation (SF), and, of course, procrastination (PR)

6. What would you like to have in 2011 that you also had in 2010?

my husband. my family. my assorted jobs (even though i complain about them copiously).  my house. my firmness in my faith. my health.

7. Etch-a-sketch your memories, or put them in a Trapper-Keeper?

i cannot, for the life of me, do anything other than draw a box on an etch-a-sketch, and hello with the non-permanence, so let's do trapper-keeper, but only if it's a cheesy one with a gorilla on the outside that says something inane like "i'm ape for you."

8. Fashion sense. Do you have one yet?

no.  i don't. pregnancy isn't helping.  i have three pairs of pants that fit.  the rest of them are just dreams.  some times i look almost cute, and then it disappears as quickly as it came. of course, i don't really think that is any different than any other day. i think my fashion sense is "sale casual" wherein i'd like to look really put together but i prefer to spend money on things like cheerios and the light bill.

also, did i mention i'm pregnant? yeah, i get to pick out clothes for some other person now. that's kind of an awesome gig.  i'm excited, but am totally aware that just about the time i figure out a fashion sense for Baby Girl, she'll start wearing rainboots and tutus together. i actually think that might be slammin', but whatever.  my point is, i'm not married to the activity.

9. It’s New Year’s Eve. A duck and a hippo walk into a bar. Discuss.

they're one of 10,000 people. does anyone really notice? 

8. If you measured your year by achievements and failures, would you weigh more or less?

more.  dissertated. defended. moved. graduated. gestated. taught.  it was a heavy year, in lots of ways.

9. Biggest fear last year?

losing the baby. after a scare at six weeks, i was a wreck for the first trimester.  i think before that, ironically, it was that we wouldn't be able to have one.  that was shattered by the "it only took me six weeks off the pill to get pregnant"ness of Baby Girl. i know how annoying that is to those who suffer with infertility, so i don't talk about it, but i was very afraid we would be one of those many.

10. Did you buy a lot of stuff?

i feel like we spent a lot of money, but for things like health insurance.  not exactly your WOOT sort of purchase. other than that, and food, i don't buy that much. i think i've bought more clothes/shoes in the last two months than i had purchased for myself in the previous two years (wedding paraphenalia notwithstanding).

11.  Squirrels and mice really can crawl through your pipes and into the toilet. It’s not an urban legend. What do you do? WHAT DO YOU DO?

oh my. scream very loudly, hire an excellent exterminator, and make my husband do a toilet check every single time.

or pee in a bucket. i'm not sure.

12.  Did you play the lotto? Did you win?

no way. don't gamble at all. never will.

13. You’re forced at gunpoint to dance a jig. What song is playing?

if it's at gunpoint, probably something really annoying but catchy. like ke$ha or pink.

14. Happier, thinner, richer, or Sadder, fatter, poorer?

happier, bigger, and maybe richer though i would say monetarily we're doing fine in the same way we did fine last year at this time, and that's just fine by me.  bigger is purposeful (though sometimes hard, i'll admit, to my self-image as a person who has lost a lot of weight previously, but the big belly and the more frequent kicks are totally beginning to wipe that away).  happier is inevitable with the life i've been blessed with.

15. If you could give up television, would you give up television?

yes, though my bad pregnancy habits of hours of insipid tv have made me mourn the fact that we're downgrading our cable to The Basic Plan (which consists of the basic channels, 4 shopping networks, and too much CSPAN).  netflix will save me, i am sure. i am consoled by the four seasons of psych that await me in my watch instantly queue.

which probably means...yes but no?

16.  See any good movies lately?

i saw FOUR MOVIES OVER BREAK. in, like, the theatres.  and more on DVD.  i'm sorry, but that's insanely exciting to someone who probably saw that many in the past year, maybe, in theatres.  sometimes, i just don't have the time. sometimes, i don't want to spend the short amount of time i do have with my husband in a movie theatre.  most of the time, i don't want to spend insane prices to see a movie i'm not sure will change my life.

but true grit was better than i thought it would be, as was red. you should see them, if only on netflix or via redbox. 

17. If you had to open either an elephant store or a cupcake store in 2011, which would you choose?

the answer is always cupcakes, says the gal who's sort of hoping to watch cupcake wars tonight, even though she knows her husband doesn't love it the way she does.  maybe a lasagna bribe will help?

18. Are you living in the future or the past?

so much in the future that it's a bit difficult to keep up with the present, if that makes any sense.

(actually, that makes deep philosophical sense and blows my mind. go me. you're welcome.)