Thursday, August 30, 2007

The Hormonal Madness Begins

I did not have bangs this morning when I
woke up. I did not visit a salon between
getting up and now. Yes, it's true. I have
once again started hacking off my own hair.
Come October it will be one year since my
last professional haircut. I avoid going
because it doesn't look horrible, and I have
no idea what I want done with it. Oh, and
I'm cheap.
Recently I took some time to flip through a few of those hairstyle magazines. I found nothing, nothing, nothing, that I liked. I didn't even swoon over any of the styles that would be impossible for me to pull off. Because really, if you can't fall madly in love with a hairstyle that requires genetic engineering to change the thickness and texture of your hair, what can you fall in love with?
I'd been toying with the idea of bangs for at least a few weeks. Then last night I had a dream that I'd already cut them. And, hey! If that isn't a hormonally induced incentive to get snippin' then I don't know what is.
Monkey Man is going to roll his eyes so hard you'll probably be able to hear it in China.
Btw, Quake, having slept with us last night, rolled over this morning and asked, "Can I go to school today?"

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The Preschool Blues

Here's a quick rundown of how our first week of preschool went:

Monday, Day One.
Q begins crying before we leave the house. I carry him to the car and hold him down so I can get his seatbelt on. He cries for most of the 35 min drive. He refuses to get out of the car. I carry him to his classroom door. I hug and kiss him, tell him I love him. He asks if I'll be back later to pick him up. I promise to pick him up, give him one last kiss and hand him off to his teacher. He is still sobbing. A number of mothers offer their support and sympathy as we all walk to our cars. After I turn on my air conditioning I call Monkey Man and cry too. When I pick him up, Q says he had fun.

Tuesday, Day Two.
As I'm getting stuff together to leave, Q begins to cry. He throws himself on my bed and says he needs to take a nap first. I carry him to the car. He tells me he didn't have fun at school yesterday. I tell him I'm sorry and hope that he'll have a better day today. He calms down and tells me he will have a better day. As I take the last turn toward school he starts crying again. He stops crying by the time we park. I take him into his classroom so he can show me where he puts his sun hat. We repeat the hugs, kisses, I-love-yous, and promises to be back later. He seems ok, and I leave the classroom secretly thinking, "Victory!" Just before I get to the school yard gate, Q throws open the door to his classroom, screaming and sobbing. His teacher leads him back inside, and I spend the next few hours feeling like some sort of evil person. When I pick him up, he says he had fun.

Wednesday, Day Three.
Q keeps repeating all morning, "I don't want to go to school." I try to talk about other things. I point out all the older kids walking to schools we pass during our drive. I walk him into his classroom, help him change his shoes. As I go for my hugs and kisses, he turns around and starts toward one of the little girls to see what she's doing. I grab him anyway. There is a tiny look of anxiety on his sweet face as I wave from the door. I practically run for the gate in case his repeats the screaming from the door trick. When I pick him up, he smiles and seems pleased, but he doesn't fling himself at me like the last two days. Then he asks if we can stay for a little longer so he can play in the sandbox for a bit. He says he had fun.

It was worse and better than I imagined. Which pretty much sums up most of my parenting experiences.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Tummy Tuesday - 29 Weeks

11 weeks to go!
Weight gain: 15 pounds
Tummy girth: 43 inches (right at belly button)

It seems weird to have lost an inch in my belly, doesn't it? I'll blame it on inconsistent measuring. Or perhaps the baby weight is slowly migrating to my ass?

I'm feeling much better psychologically. Pain management can really do wonders. And of course Q starting preschool has made me quite busy - always a good antidote to depression.

Eleven weeks until my due date. I've been trying to read lots of good stories about good birthing experiences so I can feel more confident about my ability to do this the way I'd like to. I just finished reading this book. I knew there were lots of things broken in our maternity care in the US, but I don't think I realized how crazy things had gotten. The one thing that really made me angry was learning about all the risks associated with multiple c-sections. When I mentioned that I was thinking about a VBAC, a number of professionals were quick to point out the risk of uterine rupture. But not one person, not one, has ever mentioned to me that there were risks with multiple c-sections or what those risks might be. It's appalling that in this age of unprecedented equality so many doctors still feel justified in treating women, especially pregnant women, like ignorant children. The medical system in general just makes me so mad!

Friday, August 24, 2007

The Magic Is Back!

Dr. Magic is back in the house! His wife finally had her baby (a 4.5 hour homebirth - she's my hero) so he's back to adjusting...well, backs. The pain is once again tolerable, and I'm seriously considering the idea that Dr. Magic may be the Devil. In which case I'll be ready to sign over my soul any day now.

I also finally let my Monkey Man know that despite the apparent shiny-happy gleam I've been managing to convey, that I am really only keeping up the appearance of keeping my shit together.

This seems like it should be such a no-brainer - you start falling off the deep end, you tell your devoted and loving spouse that you need help. Yeah, right. Then how could I warm my aching soul with my burning rage? And how could I justify being all bitchy and snide and feeling superior because I'm obviously the only person making real sacrifices for this family? And what kind of a husband is he if he can't read my mind already? Jeez.

I think maybe I might need to read this book. Not that I actually "need" help, but you know I am always trying to expand my knowledge base. Learning is good.

Amazing what a good cry in the arms of a loved one and a couple of great chiropractic adjustments can do for your mood. Doesn't hurt that it's Friday (I can sleep in tomorrow - you know, at least after I get up to pee) or that I had a cleaning lady come today (so we're no longer slogging through drifts of animal hair to get from room to room).

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Call Me Mr. Ed

If I were a horse, someone would shoot me.

The pain in my hips flared to a solid 9 yesterday. I'll be heading back to the chiropractor tomorrow morning. If that doesn't help, I may have to take to my bed for the duration. At least it's raining again this afternoon.

On a happy note, Quake started preschool yesterday!

Some of the other parents had been chatting at the open house on Tuesday about how hard it was going to be watching their babies start school. I decided I must be some sort of evil mom because I was delighted! Well it turned out to be more emotional than I'd thought it would be. I skipped, well waddled slowly while grinding my teeth, to the car and then realized that I had no idea what to do with myself for the next 2.5 hours.

According to the teacher, Quake cried a little at the beginning (I'm assuming he started as soon as he turned around and realized I was gone) but once that was over, had a great time. He told me he liked it and wants to go back. I guess we'll see on Monday. How heartbroken will I be if he decides to pitch a fit on Monday when I leave? This parenting thing gets more complicated all the time.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Tummy Tuesday - 28 Weeks

12 weeks to go!
Weight gain: 14 pounds
Tummy girth: 44 inches (right at belly button)

Definitely coming into the home stretch. I have my glucose tolerance test on Thursday - not looking forward to it, but I suppose it has to be done. Still fighting some pain in my hips with the help of another chiropractor. Can you believe Dr. Magic has abandoned me so he can be home with his family while they welcome their newest member? Jeez, the nerve.

The cold made me utterly miserable all weekend, but I'm feeling much better now. Just mostly dead, not totally dead.

I still think I may be spiralling downward in a psychological sense. The only two emotions I seem able to feel at the moment are 1) a bizarrely disconnected sense of hopelessness, and 2) rage. Now of course is exactly when the more cautious mother would be weaning off her antidepressants in order to avoid any withdrawal symptoms in the baby. And I get to contemplate the pros and cons of upping my dose! While in an already compromised mental state!

I'm going to wait until my next midwife appointment (next Monday) to make any decisions. My cold should be over by then so hopefully just not being utterly drained physically will help me feel better emotionally. And if not...well what is motherhood without a few extra doses of guilt?

Saturday, August 18, 2007

I Love My Chiropractor

So this week started out really awful.

As I mentioned in Tuesday's post, the pain in my hips had continued to escalate. I'm pretty grumpy anyway, and pregnancy doesn't do much for my mood. Add chronic and intense pain, and even I don't want to spend time with me.

Then I went to the chiropractor again.

I would offer him my undying love if he weren't already married to a beautiful and amazing woman who is currently about to have her own child. Seriously, she's 42 weeks today. The series of adjustments he did on Wednesday made it possible for me to walk without grinding my teeth! It also made me so tired that I went to bed at 7:30. After my 2 hour nap. And only because I was embarrassed to go to bed earlier.

I went back on Thursday because I couldn't get enough of Dr. Magic. Although when he used this little hammer thingy to make an adjustment on my pubic bone, he became not-my-new-best-friend for a few moments. Pain...almost gone. I was supposed to go again yesterday, but I had tons of errands to run and somehow the time just got away from me. After all the walking I did Thursday and yesterday, the pain is flaring again, but it's still at a 4 compared to Wednesday's 8 (on a scale of 1 to 10). Woo-hoo!

At the moment we are all eagerly awaiting the arrival of Q's preschool teacher. She likes to do a home visit with every student before school starts so the children meet her on their turf and can tell her all about their favorite things. I think that's so great. It makes me feel really confident in my choice of preschool.

And yet...I can't help feeling like she's going to be looking through our cabinets and fridge and books and well, everything, and then telling us what awful parents we are and what we should be doing differently. I know it's irrational. Can I blame it on pregnancy hormones? Could the fact that she's a preschool teacher and has a much better education than me (hello, masters from Harvard?) have anything to do with it?

Oh yeah. And I managed to pick up a cold. Because the vague discomforts (and some not so vague) of pregnancy apparently aren't making me miserable enough. Bah.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Tummy Tuesday - 27 Weeks

13 weeks to go!
Weight gain: 13 pounds
Tummy girth: 43 inches (right at belly button)

I have to admit to being terrified of getting on the scale this morning. By all physical indications I had yet again managed to pile on a few extra pounds. My hip pain has become unbearable at times, my maternity shirts are starting to get snug, and I managed to eat almost an entire cherry pie by myself this weekend.

I've lost 2 pounds.

Perhaps that has something to do with the ever decreasing abdominal space left over for my stomach? At this rate, in the next few weeks I'll only be able to eat a few bites at a time. It might also be reflective of my mood; chronic pain is not a happy place to be. But it does make me more likely to continue sitting on the couch rather than get up to get (yet another) piece of pie.

My mind is also starting to fill with all sorts of doubts about my ability to birth this baby naturally. I didn't have many doubts last time; I really believed in my body's ability to do the job. That didn't work out so well. So now I'm wondering if I'm not completely insane for even attempting this. It would be so much easier to just schedule a c-section.

Fear and chronic pain are nibbling away at my ability to think rationally. I think I'll go bake a loaf of bread (cooking seems to be my favorite nesting activity, which will seem truly bizarre to most of you). I'm sure I'll fee better after eating slices of warm, fresh bread covered in butter.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Hello? Monsoon?

What the hell happened to my monsoon?
10% chance of rain today? We haven't had
rain in days. It's actually gotten over 100
the last few days. What's happening?!
I know most of you, who don't live in
the Tucson desert, probably find it ironic
that I'm complaining about the heat in
August, but this is usually our coolest
summer month. Last year, while the rest
of you were suffering through record
temps, we barely broke 95 all through
the month of August.
I want my rain back!

Friday, August 10, 2007

Things I Loved This Week

Groovy wallpaper at
Don't think I could ever commit to wallpaper, but I'm thinking some of these might be perfect for creating some one-of-a-kind art for the walls. I could glue it to a large canvas for a mural or use it as background for a series of shadowboxes.

West Nile vs Chicken Pox vs A Parent's Sanity
It's so nice to know that I am not alone in my parent frustration

Missing Pregnancy
A good reminder to keep enjoying the benefits while I can. And to ask for more back rubs.

All Modern Wal-Mart?
It looks like modern design has truly become mainstream. Those of us who love the look but can't afford it, suddenly have some new resources!

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

The Room

This is your room. It's a comfortable room. It's the room where you spend most of your life, and it is filled with all that is you.

Some days the light dims a little. Your room feels a little dark. But you don't worry about it because you know that some days are just darker than others. Tomorrow there will be more light again.

Sometimes the light continues to dim by just a little tiny bit every day. Sometimes it happens so slowly you don't even realize it's getting darker. It's harder to do some things, but you make adjustments. And you know this is only temporary. Tomorrow or the next day or maybe the next, there will be light again.

One day your spouse or a friend or a coworker points out that your room seems dark, seems like it's been dark for quite awhile now. This might suprise you. Perhaps you didn't notice how dark it was. Perhaps you didn't know that others might notice. You tell this person not to worry. You know all sorts of tricks to get the light brighter. You're working on it. It will be better soon.

Then one day you wake up and there is no light. You admonish yourself not to panic. You feel your way around the walls for the window, for the door. After the first lap around your room, you take a few more, slowing down each time, convinced you have just missed the way out, convinced you are not trapped.

But the dark eats at your confidence. Soon the panic and fear have their way with you, and you are trapped. Perhaps more surely trapped by these feelings than by the dark room. None of the tricks you have learned over the years will bring back the light. You suddenly know, know to your core, that there will never be light in this room again. You are lost.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Tummy Tuesday - 26 Weeks

14 weeks to go!
Weight gain: 15 pounds
Tummy girth: 43 inches (right at belly button)

So it seems that I can watch my diet carefully and put on obscene amounts of weight (another 4 pounds in 1 week!) or I can eat whatever the hell I want and put on obscene amounts of weight. Hmmmm, that's a tough one.

Sleeping well is becoming some sort of distantly remembered thing. I know I used to do it, but I can't quite remember what it felt like.

The worst part is that I'm watching myself become one of those hollow-eyed moms. I know you've seen them at the mall or the grocery store or maybe even the park. Their kid is running around, full of energy, chattering away, but instead of interacting, this mom stares off into the middle distance, looking as if she's fantasizing about getting her teeth cleaned. Because that would be worlds better than being anywhere near the child.

When I start making noises about wanting a third child, someone, anyone, please point me back to these pages...

Monday, August 6, 2007

Free To Do What I Want

What a crazy weather day. It's supposed to get to 82, but since it's already after 3 I don't think we'll break the current 77. It's August. In Tucson. It's been raining all day. After the boy and I got home from errands this morning, I made hot chocolate. It has been a blissful break from the heat.

This weekend I got a different kind of break. I went to Phoenix Friday evening. Alone. A whole different kind of bliss. Not only did I get away from the toddler for 24 hours, I got to spend those hours in the company of funny, creative, intelligent people.

You forget what it's like to have conversations that aren't interrupted by, "Mom!" every few minutes. I ate without the need to share. I sat down for incredibly long stretches of time. I used foul language with abandon. I stayed up way past my bed time. I never once worried about anyone else's bathroom breaks.

And when my 24 hours was over, I realized why I'm so damn tired all the time. My toddler is the Tazmanian Devil. Only 2 weeks and 2 days until preschool. Only 2 weeks and 2 days...

Thursday, August 2, 2007

A Well Balanced Diet...

...apparently includes corn syrup Monster shapes
in shades of blue, red, green, purple, yellow,
and pink. Because that's what the toddler and
I ate for a snack this afternoon.

Oh no, not just a packet. Not just a packet each.
Oh no, we ate the whole box. The. Whole. Box.

Wait, wait, let me, no, nope. Not on the
gestational diabetes diet food list. But tasty.