Saturday, January 09, 2010

Dearest Lulu, an apology.

You are 1 year old, and I am clearly doing something very right. You are happy, healthy, and charming-as-hell.
I have to admit, I don't remember a lot of the details of the past year. Most weeks went by without the celebration that each and every one of your accomplishments deserved. In fact, a lot of the time I felt relieved when you went to sleep. It turns out that even having the best kid ever is exhausting. I had no idea that I could devote that much of my brain to worrying, yet still function (fairly) normally. I literally worried most of the time, and in ways that completely contradicted each other. I worried that you ate too much, not enough, the wrong stuff, that I was too anal about what you ate. I worried that I was doing it all wrong, that your Dad was doing it right, that I as too controlling, that I wasn't consistent. Somehow through all my worrying and second-guessing, you managed to flourish. Because of us/ despite us? I am still a work-in-progress, probably will always be. I'm sure I'm going to make at least 1 or 2 more mistakes between now and your 18th birthday. Thanks for being so cool about it, that really means a lot. I'll do better next year, be more organized, write in your baby book, wash AND fold AND put away your clothes on a regular basis. Somehow I'll get you to sleep through the night, feed and bathe yourself and recite "The Raven" in it's entirety. So, there's that to look forward to. Anyway, sorry about everything.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


I have this reputation. It's funny to me that I am seen as such a "hippie".
Yes, I'm a vegetarian and I wear my cloth-diapered baby and I make her baby food.
Yes, I recycle and I use cloth napkins.
I very rarely buy Styrofoam or bottled-water.
No, I don't have a microwave in my kitchen.
I compost my kitchen scraps and I mostly clean with vinegar and water.
I have a newly installed cork floor in my family room, and a vegetable garden in the back yard.

But I also drink Diet Coke and watch a lot of TV. We have both a gas- powered lawn mower AND snow blower. My daughter has plastic toy and WAY more clothes than an infant needs. I have a lot of purses and we use our central air conditioning.

I guess it's all perspective. I see myself as young and "alternative", but then I catch a glimpse of the me that others see. Walking my black lab in my Badger's Tshirt. Very much normal.. not at all punk rock. I don't really remember the vision I had of myself 10 years ago. I don't know how far off I am from the person I thought I would become, but I'm fairly sure that now, like then, I'm just not as cool as I think I am. But now I'm much more ok with that.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Required Activities

For New Parents:

1. Learn how to do everything quickly and one-handed
2. Remember that hardly anyone else cares as much about your child's poop as you do
3. Accept that no matter how much you read, research, and plan... you'll question everything and still make mistakes
4. Worry. Worry in an intense way, in a chronic way, over the big and the small, all the time.
5. Do anything and everything to make that baby grin and then laugh.
6. Wake up one day and feel like a veteran/expert because you made it through the first 6 months.
7. Wake up the next day and feel like you don't know what the hell you are doing, and worry some more.
8. Enjoy the look of pureed broccoli being spit out in a spray
9. Stop washing off the pacifier every time it hits the floor.
10.Bathe your child in the kitchen sink and take a picture.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


I've been thinking a lot about what I want to write about. I'm a new mom, and there is a ton of material right there. My little one is almost 12 weeks old, I have to go back to work next week, I'm really struggling with my post-baby body, I obsess about food and cooking. These are all blog-fodder.
Do I want to become a Mommy-blogger?
Should I talk about food, recipes, etc.?

Let's talk about nipples.

I have to admit, prior to breastfeeding I didn't give my nipples much thought. Well, sometime in my early twenties, I had one of them pierced. I thought a lot about that one for a while... ouch.
Other than that, not a lot of attention was paid to this part of my anatomy. At least not by me.
Now they have taken center stage! My nipples finally revolted, screaming for the attention that they have obviously been denied for too long.

My nipples are now infected.

Who knew? I sure didn't. I've been breastfeeding my little one since about 10 minutes after she was born. I have never considered not breastfeeding, even during the most painful of circumstances. My right nipple cracked pretty early on, and I've had pain during and between nursing sessions pretty much this whole time. I've seen nurses, lactation consultants, and a midwife. I was told it would get better, that I had a rare condition called Reynaud's, that my baby wasn't latching correctly. Nope. I had an infection. Possibly a kind of staph infection.

Thankfully, this doesn't hurt the baby at all. I am being treated with antibiotics that I may need to be on for 6 weeks or more. The idea that my breasts and nipples may stop hurting has brightened my mood and outlook considerably.... but I'm still pissed. I feel robbed. I really wanted to love breastfeeding, bonding with my infant, providing her with everything she needs...and I do love most of it. There are times when she looks up at me while eating that the look on her face breaks my heart in the best possible way. It's great being the "boob lady" as my husband calls me, because the boobs always work for my baby. I have the exclusive full-proof solution. But our first few months together have been flavored, tainted, by my pain. By this added struggle. And I'm pissed.

I'm going to blame everything on this stupid infection. My failure to lose any weight, my mood swings, my inability to stop eating, mood swings, memory loss, this bum knee, my messy house.

Completely and totally worth it.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Friday, January 02, 2009

The Way-ya-ting is the Hardest Part (Tom Petty)

I was so cocky. I told everyone that I was going to work right up until I went into labor. My big fear about that was that my water would break in my office. My carpeted office that I share with about 10 other people. People told me that I wouldn't want to, that I'd be too tired or uncomfortable. HA! I live with discomfort, I can do this. At least I thought I could.

Then, almost 2 weeks ago, I was resting on the sofa at the recommendation of my chiropractor who has been amazingly keeping me fairly mobile and active. I got up to go to the kitchen, and WHAM! My entire lower back seized, spasmed, sputtered and died. Breath-taking pain. I couldn't take any good meds, I couldn't even take ibuprofen. I could barely move.

So, my medical providers agreed with each other... I shouldn't go back to work. The late stage of pregnancy is aggravating my pre-existing condition... a genetic connective tissue disorder (another post, another time). It won't get better and activity will only make it worse.

Now, I'm a first-time parent. My goal/plan is to have a natural and unmedicated birth. I'm very committed to this, and I feel confident and resolved. BUT... the idea of going into labor ALREADY in pain scares the crap out of me. I feel like I am as prepared as I can be to use a variety of techniques to manage the normal, purposeful pain of childbirth. But the pain of injury is a very different thing, and the two together is daunting.

Two weeks later, I'm lying on the sofa. I haven't been to work, and I'm just waiting to go into labor. I'm cursing my fragile body while trying to take the best care of it that I can. It has a task to do.
An incredible, amazing, awesome task.
Sooner than later would be nice.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

My Wedding Day

I worked at my part-time job as a video store clerk during the day. I came home and took a nap on the couch.
I got up about an hour before the baby party was supposed to start and jumped in the shower. I threw on my black second-hand maternity dress and the nifty maternity footless tights (red) that I got on clearance. I put on my new jewelery, newly acquired from the Caribbean from a trip that I couldn't go on because I was too pregnant.
We were running late, so out the door we went. My girlfriends were throwing the party, and it was NOT a baby shower. There were no decorations, no games, no cutesy cake. Dave went to work setting up the bar, and I helped with food prep.
By 7:30 or so, we figured most people that were coming were there so it was time for the toast.
We gathered everyone together, I gave my sister my camera with the instruction "you might want to get this".... and then:

It was perfect.