Sunday, April 29, 2007

Post-Surgical Report

Random, unorganized thoughts on being awake and largely unsedated during knee surgery: NOT PLEASANT. Made worse by the surgeon enthusiastically urging you to WATCH the procedure on the monitor via the microscopic cameras being threaded through your leg, and then calling you a "wuss" when you decline. Also made worse when the first anesthesiologist fails to "swirl" your spinal block properly, whatever that means, resulting in your lying there for twenty minutes feeling only tingly but distinctly NOT numb, being repeatedly stabbed up and down your body with a pin and asked, "Can you still feel this? And this? And this?"
And then finally a second anesthesiologist must come in, and your entire body, which is by now too numb for you to move it but by far too not numb to be operated on, must be rolled to its side by nurses and held in position as a second spinal is administered. You are by now shivering uncontrollably, a result of the frigid temperatures of the operating room, the spinal medication, and possibly your horror that some idiot who didn't know what he was doing was jabbing you in the spine with a long needle!
But at last the surgery is underway. The anesthesiologist gives you a "whiff" of Fentanyl through the IV, which lasts all of five minutes, during which time you seem to float, and then the rest of the time you are fully cognizant of the various and sundry people working briskly on your body behind the drape sheet. Such a strange sensation, to be vaguely aware of your leg being poked and sometimes even pulled on and moved around forcefully, yet to feel it only as though it is some sort of phantom limb. Also strange was the fact that even though I was numb from my rib cage down, I could feel the baby moving throughout the procedure. It was very reassuring to me, that movement, but surreal, too.
Then came the worst part. I was all bandaged up and my numb, useless self was hoisted from the operating table to a rolling bed. Off I went to recovery, still shaking pretty hard from my TWO doses of spinal block. They checked the baby's heart rate to make sure he had come out okay, which he had, and then reattached me to all the heart and blood pressure monitors. I was fine for a minute, but then I began to feel really dizzy, and I was shaking violently. I started to feel like I was blacking out, and I was aware of a bunch of people all around me suddenly, moving me pretty abruptly onto my left side, with my head down and feet up.
It seemed my blood pressure had taken a dip into the eighties, which is very low for me. They kept giving me drugs through my IV to bring it back up, but for about ten minutes it stayed really low and I remember thinking maybe I wasn't going to get better. I was really out of it and felt worse than I can ever remember feeling. I was cold and hot all at once, shaking, and so dizzy. My heart was racing from the drugs and I was struggling to breathe. All I could think was that something bad was happening to the baby as well. I kept asking for Jim, but they wouldn't let him come back until I was stabilized. They also told me later it was because there were other patients back there in post-op, and it would violate their privacy or something.
A lady from labor and delivery came down to check the baby, and throughout the blood pressure episode he was fine. He kicked wildly, in fact, a result of the ephedrine they were giving me. They said it probably felt like a huge adrenaline surge to him.
Anyways, after what felt like forever I finally stabilized. Gradually, the shaking wore off, and I was completely exhausted, but kept being afraid to nod off for fear of dying. I was still a little terrified from the whole thing. It definitely turned me off even more to the idea of an epidural. I hated the whole process, and I definitely did not enjoy the low blood pressure, which they told me was a side effect from the spinal. Probably because I had to have TWO, not that I am bitter!
Finally, after an hour in post-op to make sure I was stable, they wheeled me to a recovery room. They had called Jim and told him what was taking so long, so he had gone to get something to eat once he knew I was okay. There were flowers waiting for me when I got to the recovery room, though.
A nurse came periodically to check me and the baby, and also to help me put on the oh so comfortable (and sexy!) compression hose things to prevent blood clots. They are white opaque thigh highs, which actually come right to the top of my leg, not mid thigh, and which I must constantly readjust, as they have to be kept wrinkle free or they will in fact cause blood clots rather than prevent them. I have to wear them for the next week. Oh joy.
Jim finally got back, bearing yummy food for me, which I couldn't finish even after nibbling for an hour. My stomach must have shrunk a little, plus being numb had made it feel very weird. My mom also brought me an array of tropical flavored Skittles, which I sampled slowly while I waited to get feeling back in my legs. It took about two hours, but little by little the spinal finally wore off, except in my butt. The nurse told me the buttocks are the last area to regain feeling. What a fascinating tidbit. So, I was painstakingly helped to stand up and make my way to the restroom. And let me tell you, also fascinating is the feeling of trying to sit on the toilet and being a, mentally aware that your butt is on the seat but physically numb to it, and b, trying very hard to pee even though your bladder and PCG muscles are numb and you cannot feel the urge despite your bladder being very full.
This whole process is made much more glamorous by your husband standing in the bathroom with you, ostensibly to help but actually sneaking in pictures and even video footage of you waddling around in your hospital gown supported by a walker! (He also checked the baby's heart rate for me with a Doppler which one of the L and D nurses had left in my room, and was very proud that he found the heartbeat sooner than they had been able to. So proud, in fact, that I had to talk him out of stealing the Doppler, but that's a whole 'nother story...)
So, anyhoo, two days later here I am at home, still in my support hose, on crutches, but feeling much better. I can actually feel my tushy, for instance, so that helps. I took Vicodin the first night and also yesterday, but haven't needed it so far today. I can't bear weight on the knee yet, but I am getting around okay on my own and can make my way unassisted from the bedroom to the bathroom- real progress. I can't shower yet, which sucks, but is also kind of a lazy pleasure. I brush my teeth, wash my face with a washcloth, maybe roll on some deodorant, and voila! I'm ready for the day.
Sleeping is a bit of a challenge, since I have to keep my knee elevated but also cannot lie on my back, so I either have to lie on my left side and keep two pillows between my legs to lift my right knee, or lie flat but with pillows wedged both behind me and under my leg. Which is why I may just resort to a pain pill tonight to help sleep come.
People have been incredibly nice, though, the last few days. My mom helped me clean the whole house the day before surgery, Jim has been keeping up on all the dishes and toys, and various people from our church have been bringing a steady stream of meals. Lovely. Also has been the wonderful gift of having relatives around to watch Adelay whenever needed. And tomorrow and Tuesday, my mom and MIL are taking turns staying with Addy and me during the day while Jim's at work. It's almost like a little vacation, now that my knee isn't throbbing so painfully. I lie on the couch, reading a magazine, and other people bring me food and carry Addy to me for cuddles every now and then. A girl could almost get used to this...
Except for the support hose and the not showering and the CONSTANT FRICKIN' PEEING! Did I mention that? The hose, coupled with the baby on my bladder, are squeezing every last ounce of excess moisture from my body. Which is bad timing, when getting up to pee is a ten minute ordeal.
So, let's see, I think I've got you up to speed on everything. Two spinals, low blood pressure, numb butt, support hose, lots of peeing, feeling much better today... Yes, that's about everything. Oh, yeah, the doc also gave me pictures of the inside of my knee during the operation, did I mention that? I have a lovely shot of the nasty piece of white, broken off kneecap being removed from my leg with some sort of tongs. Yech. They actually asked me if I wanted to keep the piece of bone! Do I look like a collector of my own body parts? Do I look like a person who saved my placenta after childbirth, for instance? I do not.
So yeah, I think that's it. And now I must pee again.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Blah, Blah, Blah

Not a lot to say lately, I'm afraid. It's just been a blah kind of week or two, with nothing much getting done except the bare minimum in regards to both housework and personal grooming. Even the toddler bed didn't get set up, because the good people at the company sent it in BLACK instead of oak, and when called and informed of their error, they said that they were so very sorry, but they were out of oak. Even though their ebay add had been for an OAK bed! So the bed was repackaged and sent back, the company was given a very bad customer review, and a new bed (from a new company) has been chosen.
I'm trying to figure out right now if I should take advantage of Adelay's nap to do some dusting and stuff around here before I'm off my feet for a week, or if I should take advantage of my mom's offer to come over tomorrow night and do it FOR me, thereby freeing up right now to take a nap myself. I don't feel especially tired, but my knee is really stiff today, so I don't feel like trying to clean and then hurting myself, either.
Well, I suppose I could always watch Friends!... I found the seventh season today- I had somehow misplaced it. Misplaced it ON THE DVD SHELF. See, I had been keeping my Friends collection on a separate, higher shelf, out of Addy's reach, but I must have missed that particular season. And I brilliantly never even looked for it on the original shelf.
Wow, this is the world's most boring post. I thought I had maybe achieved that a few months back, but I think today's is the clear winner. Sorry, guys. I'm sure I'll have some good stuff to write about after the surgery, when I get my drugs! Bear with me until then.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Thoughts Over Breakfast

As the surgery draws nearer, I am more and more content with the decision to undergo it. Every time I am on my feet for more than an hour, something bad happens (popping, locking up) and then I have to go rest it. So our house is pretty dirty right now. Tidy, mostly, but not clean. And Mama is a cranky, snarly person most of the time. I do not deal with ongoing inconvenience very gracefully, that much has become clear. I obviously need to work on this area of my character.
But all that was to simply say: I am actually feeling excited about going in for surgery on Friday. Not so much for the spinal and the sedatives and the being vaguely aware that people are threading tiny little scopes into my leg and all that, but for the end result, of walking around and feeling normal and not appearing like a bloated eighty-five year old with gout.
Here's the only thing I am truly dreading: Not eating prior to the surgery. I know, I know, how shallow am I? But this is a big deal for a pregnant lady, and if the surgery is in the afternoon, which it still might be, I could be sitting around in a hospital johnny watching horrible daytime TV and starving for half a day! This is a more gruesome prospect than any blood drawing or IV insertion.
I am in an unusually good mood this morning. The sun is shining, and I have the back door open to let in the sound of the breeze and the birds and our neighbor's wind chime. I am eating eggs and toast and juice, and I am also blissfully alone. For once, the other members of my family are sleeping in and I was the one who woke up ready to start the day. Jim is enjoying the rare novelty of sleeping in on a Monday, I'm sure.
He is home because we have a funeral to go to later this morning- my grandmother's, which is sad for me in a wistful, "now this era of my life is over" kind of way, but not in the heartbroken way that my grandpa's death hit me. I am glad they are together again, for one thing. And I am glad she's not in pain anymore and will have her mind restored to her. I am glad she will not be lying, incoherent, in a nursing home bed for years and years to come. Her passing almost feels peaceful, like closure. But I am sorry to not have grandparents anymore. She was my last one, and I feel oddly adrift, even though she and I were not especially close. I feel like my childhood is completely ended now (I know, I know- I think that door was shut a while ago, like when I had my own child!)
I remember I was pregnant when Jim's grandma died, too. It feels comforting to me to be bringing a new life into the world as I say goodbye to an old one. This morning, I laid in bed for a few minutes to enjoy the baby's movements. A few of them I could swear I felt from the outside, so I grabbed Jim's hand and pressed it against the bump. "I think that's a hand!" I whispered. "Can you feel it?" Now, we have done this routine several times over the last couple of weeks, but this morning it actually happened, and Jim got to feel his son for the first time. It's such a magical thing. I got big time de ja vu remembering the first time he felt Adelay, also in bed in the morning. I wonder how many more times we will get to experience this particular first of a child's life?
I think I must go wake everyone up now, but I'm really enjoying the solitude. Maybe I'll have to start trying to get up before everyone else on the weekends or something to soak up a little sun and alone time more often.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

It Could Always Be Worse

Hilarious Story Involving Poop and Household Disasters
Thank you to Chrissy for this story, which reminded me that so far I have not yet experienced the very worst that toddlerhood has to offer.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Moaning and Groaning

Bleck. Bleck bleck bleck. I am sick of being pregnant. That is mean, but I am. I want this child out, I want to hold him and cuddle him and dress him and nurse him and even change his tiny little poop diapers. Anything but LUG HIM AROUND ON MY BLADDER for another four months!
Maybe I am just feeling eager because I finally bought boy bedding, and I want to set up his nursery and then bring him home and show it to him. Preferably in the next week. Instead, I have to wait until all the room switcheroo-ing is done, which will involve much painting and rearranging and bed assembling. And, oh yeah, I have to wait until after I get done having my knee cut up and then put through rehab.
Oh well. I am bored with feeling sorry for myself, although it is certainly comforting at times. Really, what is there to say? I am fat and uncomfortable and get heartburn every time I eat and my knee hurts and my toddler yells and throws food and sometimes the days are lonely. None of these are tragedies. It's just the dailiness. If only life were not so daily...
Oh, but guess what? I found that little frog outfit! The one from Old Navy that Devan's new baby was pictured in! (Sorry, too sleepy to link right now.) And it was on sale! This made me actually exclaim out loud in the middle of the store, I was so excited. The only fly in the ointment was that I found the matching hat, but only in an eighteen month size. It was worse than not finding the hat at all. But still... The outfit cheered me up. And now I'm going to bed. With a plate of cheese and crackers.
P.S. My surgery will be next Friday. It was then or a MONTH from now. I was like, "What? You tell me it's urgent and then casually suggest walking around in pain for a month? If I'm doing it, let's DO it already!" Also, why is my surgeon's assistant so freaking hard to get a hold of? It is her job to answer the phone. Why do I need to call three times before I get called back?
Oh, whoops. I'm bored with self pity, I forgot.

Thursday, April 19, 2007


Well, back from the ultrasound and surgery consultation. The baby is fine, measuring right on schedule, and, as I suspected, has his feet buried under my pubic bone and is firmly kicking my bladder every time he moves. "A classic footling breech!" the sonographer said, as though this was somehow exciting news. But she said not to worry that he'll stay there; at least half of babies are still in breech position at this point in pregnancy. Phew.
He still has the requisite male genitalia, though it was a little hard to get a shot this time, what with his butt wedged in my pelvic cavity and all. But we got him to give us a nice moon shot, finally. "See that dangling?" asked the sonographer. "Yes!" Jim confirmed with much relief. I was glad he got to see it, since at the last ultrasound he was neither present, nor could he really discern what was going on in the picture I brought home. It was good to get a second opinion. I'll feel a little better about going out and getting boy bedding and clothes.
In other news, my OB was pretty firmly in the surgery now camp, saying that the heavier I get in my pregnancy, the more stress will be on my knee and the more danger I will be in of falling on my belly. He thinks it will be safer to have the surgery now and get recovered before the baby comes. He also said if I have a spinal, the baby will get hardly any of it, and that the effects of just a couple of days of pain killers or an hour of sedatives will be very minimal. Apparently if one has to have a surgical procedure while pregnant, the middle three months are the best time, because the baby is big enough that its organ systems are all done developing and won't be affected by the drugs, but it's also small enough that the chance of triggering premature labor is very small.
So I guess we're going with surgery... I am by no means thrilled about it, but I feel resigned after talking to the OB. He said all things considered, he thought it was safer for the baby, for Adelay, and for me to do it now.
So the surgery will be scheduled for some time next week, probably. Let's get those freezable brownie and casserole recipes pouring in!
P.S. Please forgive my completely arbitrary use of the words "effect" and "affect"- I have literally no idea which is appropriate for any given context, so I just guessed because I didn't feel like digging out my grammar handbook.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

You're Invited To My Pity Party

I had an appointment with an orthopedist today to double-check that my knee was okay, just healing slowly, and guess what? It's not okay! Apparently when I fell I broke off a piece of bone or cartilage or something, which the doctor said was clearly palpable. It is the reason I am still feeling discomfort and is also the cause of the locking up/clicking sensations in my knee. Also the reason why it hurt so freaking bad when it actually happened.
So, the cure for this is surgery. Only surgery. And the doctor said it's kind of pointless to try to do rehab on the weak ligaments until this floating piece of whatever is removed.
One option is to wait until I deliver and then have it done, and in the meantime wear a brace all the time and limit my activity and pick up Addy as little as possible and most especially do nothing that would make me likely to fall again- so, basically, TRY NOT TO MOVE for the next four months.
The other option is to have the surgery now! I didn't even know this was possible. Basically the doctor came in, felt my knee, announced that I needed surgery, and left the room to call my OB to ask if I could go under the knife during this stage of pregnancy. And the OB said yes, as long as I had a spinal rather than general anesthesia.
This freaks me out so much. (Also, frankly, makes me feel very sorry for myself.) I keep thinking thoughts along the lines of, "Why does something weird always happen to me when I'm pregnant?" The other thought is, "I am never getting pregnant again; this sucks and I have yet to have a smooth, uncomplicated pregnancy. Clearly I am not good at this or someone out there does not like me."
I really, really do not like the idea of having surgery while pregnant. Although I did feel much better when he told me I would not be under general anesthesia, and that the spinal was unlikely to even affect the baby. There's all these pros and cons to weigh, though; it's so confusing. If I don't have the surgery now, I risk falling again, and possibly dropping Adelay or landing on my belly or something horrible. Plus there's the annoyance of having to be all careful and cautious about every step I take for a long period of time. My OB also said that there's a risk of my getting a blood clot if I'm on any kind of bedrest for a long period of time. Hooray!
But the risks and fears associated with the surgery are also scary and valid. I have an increased risk of a blood clot there, too, because that is always a risk with surgery, and I can't take the aspirin they usually prescribe to prevent it because, oh, I'm pregnant! And what if the sedatives they'll give me hurt the baby? Or the pain meds for post-op? And what if I still end up falling again and re-injuring my knee and the surgery was for nothing?
What would you do if it were you? Help!

Monday, April 16, 2007

The Art of Seduction

I will give you fair warning: If you don't want to hear references to sex, then probably skip this post. If you're like me, however, and find that TMI makes a good story all the better, read on.
If you are currently or ever have been pregnant, you know that, save for random hormonal fluxes, you're generally not feeling your most sexy. I know that there are some women for whom the complete opposite is true, though- they feel like sexy goddesses throughout their entire pregnancy. I am not this woman. I do enjoy the round tummy, which is finally getting big enough to feel firm and balloon like and cute, and I do enjoy bigger boobs, 'cause Lord knows I'm not overly endowed in that area to begin with. But I do not enjoy heartburn and constant hunger and fatigue and backache and hip aches and gas and waddling. I do not enjoy the way I seem to be mysteriously harboring half my baby weight in my thighs. Anyways, let's suffice it to say that when pregnant, I am not exactly wandering around the house in skimpy lingerie with a come-hither look in my eye.
But there are occasions when I actually "feel like it" and am the initiator- only about once or twice a trimester, but still. And last night, I decided, would be one of those nights. I had actually done my hair and worn makeup, and I did some bathing and perfuming and then managed to dig up a negligee that would actually fit over my stomach- it was a pink floral print, hardly one of my favorites and I'm not actually sure where or when I acquired it, but there it was and it fit, so I wiggled myself into it, huffing and puffing and hopping on my good leg, and voila! Sexy. Or at least as sexy as it gets right now.
Of course, standing for an extended period of time to shave my legs, balancing first on the bad knee leg and then on the sore hip leg, had left me shaky and fatigued. Then, walking as gracefully as I could to the den to reveal my frisky self, I realized that I was also starving. I had forgotten about dinner due to the weird eating habits the weekend always seems to bring about in our house. So I was getting a little clammy with cold sweat from a low blood sugar level as well.
I passed through the laundry room, determined to power through the hunger, and observed about a trillion ants swarming all over and around the dog's food dish, where someone had scraped a few of Addy's leftovers that the dog hadn't discovered yet. There were ants EVERYWHERE. I grit my teeth and found the Windex and paper towels. But oh, the Windex had not yet been opened, and the little red cap was stuck in the off position and I could not get it open to spray and kill all the little ants, and I was standing there, simultaneously freezing and sweating in my thin nightie, growling and huffing and trying to open the Windex, when Jim finally heard me.
He got the Windex open, we killed the ants and cleaned them up, put the mat under the dog dish in the washer, and Jim cleaned out both the dog bowls so as to not poison the dog with Windex. It was not exactly my idea of foreplay. Also, after all the bending and wiping of the floor, my knee was swollen and throbbing.
When we were finally finished with the ant crisis, Jim noted my attire, coupled with my distinctly unseductive mood. "So yeah... Maybe not tonight," I shrugged apologetically, piling a plate with cheese and crackers and removing the ice pack from the freezer. "The mood has passed."
It had been replaced by the mood to lay in bed with a protein-filled snack, an ice pack around my knee, and a Benadryl working its magic on my stuffy, achy head. After one episode of Friends and about a dozen Triscuits, my shaky body, now dressed in flannel, was much, much happier. Now that is my kind of satisfaction.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Sorry, Shauna!

Hey, I just realized that I was tagged for this meme like a week ago and haven't done it yet! Sorry, Shauna- here goes:

Three Things That Scare Me:
1. Myself or my family being the victims of random crime (terrorism, child snatching, being run down in a McDonalds parking lot by a crazy person off their meds, etc.)
2. My bad dreams
3. The idea of drowning

Three People Who Make Me Laugh:
1. Jim and Adelay
2. Dwight Schrute
3. Tina Fey

Three Things I Love:
1. Babies (sorry to steal your answer, Swistle, but I cannot tell a lie.)
2. Vacations
3. Cleanliness. My dream would be to have Monica Gellar as my maid for the rest of my life.

Three Things I Hate:
1. How much of a perfectionist I am, but only about weird, stupid stuff (for example, I have been sitting here agonizing over whether or not to put periods at the end of EVERY answer for continuity's sake, or to only put periods at the end of ACTUAL sentences. Also, as a child I used to cry when someone sat on my bed and wrinkled it after I had made it.)
2. When I unload the dishwasher and realize that I didn't rinse the pans well enough and now there are hardened specks of food all over the clean glasses. In part, I hate it simply because Jim is always scrupulously scrubbing everything before he loads the dishwasher, and I am just going for speed, usually, even though I know his way is better. When I see the specks, I remember that he is right, and it makes me cranky.
3. Murderers, rapists, kidnappers, anyone who abuses children or animals, terrorists... Bad guys in general.

Three Things I Don't Understand:
1. Refer to answer number three from the previous question.
2. Any mathematical concepts higher than algebra.
3. Why people have children and then treat them terribly.

Three Things On My Desk:
1. Cup of decaf coffee.
2. Remote controls (desk is in the main TV room, and is positioned so that one can simultaneously watch Scrubs AND keep updated on Pistons scores. We're big multitaskers around here!)
3. A lamp with a burnt out bulb I haven't replaced yet.

Three Things I'm Doing Right Now:
1. Being disgusted by my combination of morning and coffee breath.
2. Listening to Adelay not napping on the monitor.
3. Thinking about how I really need to get myself cleaned up for the baby shower, since it will take a good long while to scrub off the grime from this weekend!

Three Things I Want To Do Before I Die:
1. Travel a LOT more, like say, outside of the country (and I don't mean Canada or a small tropical island owned by a resort chain.)
2. See my children happy and content in their adult lives.
3. Move somewhere with mild, temperate weather, instead of this fun combination of raging humidity and freak snowstorms.

Three Things I Can Do:
1. Appear a lot more self-assured than I actually am.
2. Other people's makeup (I'm truly much better at this than most people, so I had to include it. I never, for instance, rest the edge of my hand on your cheekbone while I'm doing your eyeliner, thereby smudging your already applied blush. I never try to do the mascara for you- people are always better at that themselves. Nor would I apply foundation and then begin to put on eyeshadow without first dusting your foundation with loose powder. I mean, the eyeshadow flecks stick in the wet foundation, people! You have to powder FIRST!)
3. Clean very thoroughly.

Three Things I Can't Do:
1. Make pie crust from scratch (I have never actually tried, but I have no desire to whatsoever, so I'm going to assume I will never pick up this skill.)
2. Shave without nicking myself.
3. Spend more than thirty bucks on a pair of shoes. It just kills me, for some reason, even though a good pair of shoes is hardly a wholly frivolous purchase. And trust me, I have made some wholly frivolous purchases without a twinge of regret.

Three Things I Think You Should Listen To:
1. Your mom.
2. Your kids, if they're trying to tell you something- don't assume you always know what happened, or what their intentions were, or what they were thinking.
3. Your own instincts. Provided you have good instincts. And if you don't, work on honing them and tuning out the outside voices which have previously muddled them.

Three Things You Should Never Listen To:
1. Criticism from people whose opinions you don't care about or respect anyways.
2. The ongoing drama of Anna Nicole Smith- get a life, people! She was one step above a crack whore, and this country pays more attention to her death than we did to Mother Theresa's.
3. Dr. Phil's banal, so-called advise. I could offer more insight in my sleep. I think most people could.

Three Things I'd Like To Learn:
1. To speak Spanish.
2. To relax and be in the moment.
3. To ride horseback gracefully. (I still have this secret wish to be one of the members of The Saddle Club.)

Three Favorite Foods:
1. anything Mexican
2. peaches and watermelon (I know, I shamelessly cheated and squeezed in two.)
3. cheese and crackers

Three Shows I Watched As A Kid:
1. Growing Pains
2. Mr. Roger's Neighborhood
3. Little House On The Prairie

Three Things I Regret:
1. Allowing a certain relationship to affect my self-esteem so much.
2. Having such crappy eating habits in high school, because I can't get away with them anymore- I need to set a good example.
3. Not taking a trip with my friends the summer after our senior year.

Three People I'm Tagging:
I actually think most people have done this one already, so I'm just going to say, if you haven't yet, and you're at a loss for a post topic, feel free to consider yourself tagged!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Mental Vacation

I am going to pretend that it is not snowing outside like a friggin' winter wonderland. I am going to pretend that Adelay does not have roto virus and that our house does not currently smell like a poorly cleaned nursing home thanks to the frequent diaper changes. I am going to pretend that I HAVE showered and brushed my hair today, and that there is lipstick and blush on my face. I am going to pretend that Jim and I are doing something more exciting than sitting around in sweatpants watching Kingpin for the zillionth time and eating our usual weekend gourmet- two pizzas. I am going to also pretend that I did something fun last night, rather than what I actually did, which was to sit by myself in the den crying over a Holocaust documentary and thinking morose thoughts about whose attic I could hide my children in, if white middle class Protestants were to become victims of mass genocide. Cheerful, lighthearted weekend thoughts.
So... Instead, I am mentally checked out of the Midwest. I am wearing a bathing suit- heck, let's make it a bikini. I am boldly baring my round midriff, getting tan and sipping a virgin daiquiri with a paper umbrella in it. I am lying on the deck of a pool, and the sun is glistening off the water. I have to wear sunglasses just to see the pages of my novel. I can feel myself getting really nice color after just an hour or so. My skin feels warm and toasty to the touch.
Later, after I'm too hot to sit by the pool anymore, I will return to the hotel suite and leisurely prepare for dinner. I will wear my cute sundress (with the empire waistline) and white sandals, and then I will meet Jim downstairs in the hotel restaurant, where we will sip wine (okay, maybe not me) and watch the sunset from the window of our private dining room. We'll eat lobster and Caesar salad and something decadent for dessert... Something with lemon and cream.
Adelay will be safely at home with a relative, and without roto virus. So Jim and I will stay out as late as we want. Maybe we'll stroll hand in hand down the beach after dinner, admiring the stars on the water.
Or maybe we'll finish watching Kingpin and pour Addy another cup of Pedialyte.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Addy's Big Girl Bed

Toddler Bed
So this is Adelay's new bed, except that hers has a flat headboard instead of slatted, and is now on its way here in a lovely oak. I'm pretty excited about it, but it seems like it's one of those things... One of those things that's a big, cool step, but might actually be opening a whole new can of worms. Like potty training. End result, good. Process to achieving end result, not so fun.
We won't actually be introducing the bed for another month at least, I'm thinking. But our doctor said we should get her moved into her big girl bed in her new room at least a month before the baby comes so she doesn't feel displaced by the baby and hold it against him. So probably around June or July we'll make the transition.
If you have a toddler or have had a toddler, when did you move them to a toddler bed? Or when do you plan to?

In Lieu Of Hallmark, I Offer This

As I am not a fan of the generic, obligatory thank-you note, but am however a person who does occasionally snap out of my pity party to be aware of my blessings for a moment, I am using this entry to give some random thank-you's to people who have in some way or another made me happy lately despite my generally bad mood.

Dear Jess: Thank you for insisting that I allow you to bring me lunch even though I was still in sweatpants and there were dishes everywhere and I was embarrassed to let you see. I often need to be reminded that people do not want to see me in order to admire my clean kitchen.

Dear Adelay: Thank you for hardly ever crying immediately upon waking up from your nap, but for playing happily in your crib for about a half an hour so that I can stretch my own nap out a little and wake up slowly. These things make all the difference. Also, thank you for your new habit of snuggling your head in on my shoulder just like you used to do as a newborn. (Maybe you somehow know that your days of being the baby are numbered?)

Dear Kelly: Thank you for randomly dropping by to fill me in on drama and gossip, and to discuss your A.P. English books with me. Also, for forcing me to cook actual meals for lunch instead of eating cheese and crackers every single day. Thank you for not being horrified with me even though more often than not I am still in my pajamas when you arrive.

Dear Parents and Parents-In-Law: Thank you for babysitting so often and so willingly (and so cheaply!) Also thank you for feeding all of us on such a regular basis (especially Mom, with the frequently bringing me lunch in the day!)

Dear Jenn, Kevin, Erin, John, Matt, and Heather: Thank you for being there on Tuesdays. I don't think any of you read this other than Jenn, but I have been enjoying our new series and I think we're actually getting somewhere with it, so I'm excited.

Dear Shane, Julie, Josh, Adam, Megan, Kevin, Other Adam, and Jess: Thank you for being there every Sunday. I know sometimes it may seem like we're not accomplishing much, but if nothing else we're having adult conversation, so please know that I live for it!

Dear Baby: Thank you for kicking and squirming a lot so I don't have to wonder if you're ok in there!

Dear Jim: Thank you for going out at almost ten o'clock the other night to bring me won tons, crab rangoon, and egg rolls. And not even complaining. It made me happier than a pile of fried food should reasonably make a person, but there you have it. In that moment, you were a hero. Those egg rolls may as well have been life preservers.

Dear Commenters: Thank you for reassuring me that I'm not talking to myself here.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

A Rambling Post Tied Together Numerically

1. I had horrible mommy guilt today because while I was busy (reading blogs!) Addy decided to jump up and down on the couch and she fell backwards onto her head before I could catch her. I did give my bad knee a nice wrench jumping up to try to catch her, though. And then I felt awful and was watching her all night for signs of concussion and decided never again to be on the computer while she is awake in the den with me. Clearly I cannot supervise properly AND catch up on blogs.
2. Prior to the mommy guilt episode, I had massive mommy frustration going on because Adelay seemed intent today on playing with/doing everything she isn't supposed to play with and or do (i.e., pulling heavy coasters out of the drawer and banging them on the coffee table, running around crazily with sharp pencils, clickety-clacking all over the computer keyboard, trying to do high dives off of the changing table, etc.) So I spent all day saying no and taking things away and trying to comfort tantrums and I felt like a big mean ogre.
3. It rained all day today. The depressed mood draped me like a familiar blanket. I did do some actual housework today, though, without too much fuss from the knee, so that made me happy for awhile. Then Adelay woke up from her nap, flung toys and Tupperware all over the freshly tidied house, and then fell off the couch headfirst. And then it was time to make dinner, and the stupid clothes in the dryer wouldn't get dry, and I realized that the skin on my face will not stop being dry and flaky no matter how much I moisturize it, and my hair is greasy again, and I have pores on my nose the size of craters, and POOF! Fleeting good mood is dissolved.
4. Silver lining: After dinner, I told Jim I needed some alone time. He stayed and cleaned up dinner and put Addy to bed and I went to the coffeehouse and got a chai latte, then went to Toys 'R' Us to pick up a baby shower gift for this weekend (does anyone else feel like gift buying is never-ending?) But it was nice to be in the quiet by myself for awhile, and to stroll around and look at all the cute boy baby stuff at my leisure. I even found a cute wall hanging on a really good clearance for the boy's (Beckett's?) nursery soon to be created. So that was all very nice. Thanks, hon.
5. Also, yesterday Addy randomly climbed up on the bed next to me while I was resting my knee, took my face carefully between her hands, and kissed me, smiled, kissed me again, smiled, kissed me AGAIN, then laughed hysterically and patted my face. And it made me very, very happy. Because, a, clearly she loves me in her own little way, and b, I must be modeling some affectionate behavior for her to know how to do that, right? I must be doing okay.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Spring Cleaning (Mentally, Anyways)

All this lying around resting my leg has left me feeling desperate to clean, which is exactly what happened when I was put on bedrest during my last pregnancy. Only then it was for a whole month, which meant people were coming in to help, and also we had no children at that point, which meant no one was running around emptying the bathroom drawers, or scattering raisins and dry cereal throughout the house. So it didn't make me as crazy, even though it was a longer period of time.
Today I have felt somewhat normal, although my knee is still weak and wobbly and my nose is running. But I have put away some laundry, which has been folded and waiting for a week, and I slowly and carefully pushed the vacuum cleaner around a bit to try to make a dent in the thick layer of dust and dog hair and crumbs which seems to have settled throughout our house even as the unseasonal snow was settling outside of it.
The settling of these things, snow and otherwise, has conspired to put me in a very bad mood the last few days. More and more I am realizing what a control freak I actually am, though I would generally deny it. When things don't go how I think they ought to, or happen when I wish they would, it's hard for me to shake the pouty, gloomy mood which takes hold. Which is a nice way of saying, when the dishes are piling up and I can write my name in the dust on top of the microwave, yet I am forbidden to clean and no one else in the house is quite as, shall we say, motivated to do it as I am, I turn into a bit of a bee-otch.
I feel less depressed today, which I am pretty sure is directly related to the sun, which is finally shining again, and the weather, which has finally broken forty degrees after taking a dip into the twenties the last week. It's still cold, but it's like, "Oh, this is a little chilly for April," and not so much like, "Why does God hate the Midwest and play these horrible little games with our heads?"
Anyways... Not sure where I was going with this. Just making the general point that I need to be more flexible, I guess, and more realistic about cleaning expectations (and expectations in general.) I mean, our house isn't even that atrocious. It's probably how most people's houses are all the time, and it doesn't bother them at all. It's not exactly unsanitary or about to be condemned. It's just not perfectly tidy and hasn't been dusted in almost two weeks, plus dear God there were dishes sitting around for days!
I don't know why I can't just let it be, and know that someone will get to it eventually. I don't know why I can't enjoy this time of resting and having a reason to be lazy. This is a perfect day to eat my Easter candy and watch TV. Instead, I sit and stew and glare at the mess and make lists of all the deep cleaning tasks which I plan to do in each room just as soon as my knee heals.
The other day I got all tearful talking to Jim about how afraid I am of the whole adjustment period when the baby comes. For the first time, I will be outnumbered during the day, and things like housekeeping and showering are definitely going to be lower on the priority list than they have been. The fact is, I may not have daily time to myself in the afternoon for many many years once this baby joins us, and I am beginning to feel terrified about that. Just going from two naps to one with Addy was a big adjustment for me- I used to shower and do my hair during the morning nap, and then clean the house in the afternoon, or nap myself. And of course blog. Now, I almost always use her nap to squeeze in a nap myself. Cleaning has already shifted on the priority list.
Jim reminded me that I could always- gasp!- get up before the kids and shower and get ready early. Or plan some cleaning time in the morning, bright and early before breakfast! But I remember newborn days, and the way for months I had no schedule whatsoever and my days and nights blurred- things still got done, even sleeping, but all on Adelay's timetable, and I just revolved around it. Now there will be two different timetables I must work around, Addy's and the baby's, and I am feeling, selfishly and childishly, resentful of the squeezing out of my own personal timetable.
Last night I got out the photo albums from Adelay's first months, and remembered her sweet smell, her impossibly tiny little hands, and the way she would fall asleep on our shoulders and nap on our chests like a contented kitten. That helped a lot, remembering all the tender things about newborns instead of dwelling on the exhausting and overwhelming things.
But seriously, if anyone has any advice at all, even little things, about ways to adjust to a toddler and a baby without losing all order and sanity, feel free to pass it on.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Bad Day, Part Two

'Kay, well, almost immediately after posting my most recent complaint, fate decided to show me that things can always get worse. As I was turning from tying off a full bag of garbage to carry it to the garage, I must have forgotten to turn my leg with my hip, because my right kneecap slid off my knee to the side, pain shot through my leg, and I went crashing down to the floor on my side.
Now, this actually is not a new experience for me: I've had weak knees all my life. The ligaments around my kneecaps are too floppy and don't hold them in place well if I turn too suddenly or sharply. I've been in physical therapy for it, and was actually advised to have surgery back in high school, but was too wussy for that. Also, it was a good excuse not to play sports. But this knee thing hasn't happened for almost three years, so I kind of thought I had finally outgrown this problem or something. However, as we all know, pregnancy causes ALL your joints to loosen, not just your hips and pelvis, so even if I had outgrown the knee problem, I guess maybe the pregnancy aggravated it again.
Anyways, as I said, it hasn't happened for awhile. This time, it hurt a lot more than I remembered- in the past I used to shake it off and would be back on my feet in an hour. Today it is over twenty-four hours since I fell, and I still cannot bend my leg much or put full weight on it. Yesterday I couldn't do either at all. I had to be helped to the bathroom, and then pee standing up. (Every time I think I've lost the last shred of my dignity, I find out there are further layers to be stripped away.)
I called the hospital last night, when I realized the knee was much more swollen than it used to get, and also when I remembered that having a fall when pregnant is kind of a big deal. They told me to come in to the hospital, and to call my OB. So I called the doctor, and he told me to come in the morning for an ultrasound, but not to bother going to the hospital, because they'd just tell me to ice it and keep it elevated, which I was doing anyways. He advised that I make an appointment with my orthopedist instead.
So we went to the office this morning, after a completely awful night in which I had to sleep on the couch, but couldn't sleep on my side as usual because of the knee. Nor could I sleep flat on my back because- pregnant! No sleeping on your back after sixteen weeks! So I slept in a semi-reclining position with the help of pillows, and woke up almost every hour, longing for the morning.
Everything was fine in the old uterus, as I figured it was. I could feel lots of kicks during the night, so I assumed he was fine, but was happy to be reassured of it. I was not so happy to be reminded again that I should really see an orthopedist about the knee. Yay, I'm so sure physical therapy would really fit into my schedule of watching a toddler. But, one of our friends is a physical therapist, so I'm thinking of just asking him for the rehab exercises he would recommend for this type of injury. Maybe I can just do them at home.
So anyways. Luckily my mom was off work today, so after the appointment Addy and I camped out at my parent's house all day. I ate, slept (thanks to some Benadryl for the continuing sinus congestion,) and watched- what else?- Friends reruns and also some of the second season of Rome. Not too bad of a day, but I was very sick of being stuck on the couch with a stiff leg and a stuffy nose.
Oh, and did I mention that when I fell yesterday, we were in the process of leaving for my brother-in-law's birthday party? And that after the party, I was supposed to go to a play with Jim's mom and sister? And I had to miss both those things?
It was a BAD day, yesterday.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

10 Quick, Easy Ways To A Pounding Migraine!

1. Wake up to see snow on the ground when it was a sunny 80 degrees two days ago.
2. Realize that you are not getting better, as you had thought, but that your throat hurts again and your sinuses are totally clogged. Enjoy the pain through your abdomen every time you cough thanks to a separated stomach muscle (ah, pregnancy!)
3. Decide to take your child to the mall to do some birthday shopping for a party tonight. Realize halfway there that the stroller is still in your garage, but decide to keep going and hope for the best.
4. Allow the fact that you should SO have gone back for the stroller to penetrate your stuffy, congested head about five minutes into the mall.
5. Enjoy the "lesser of two evils" decision you must make about every five minutes: let Addy walk, and thereby accomplish nothing at all but to chase her around, or carry her, and endure the sore tummy and sheen of cold sweat which you will get for your troubles. This option, too, leaves you accomplishing very little.
6. Stop at Subway to eat because you're getting shaky, but foolishly assume that your child will be happy with her sippy cup, and fail to order her her own drink WITH A STRAW. Eat your lunch quickly and miserably as your kid screams every five seconds for a drink FROM THE STRAW and throws your chips everywhere.
7. Enjoy the looks from strangers as your kid pulls things off their shelves and runs away from you, yelling, "Nooo, Mommmy, nooo!" Wonder if perhaps your parenting skills leave something to be desired.
8. Wonder for the hundredth time why you didn't take some pregnancy-approved Sudafed before you left for this ill-conceived errand.
9. Briefly ponder purchasing an umbrella stroller- surely it is worth the fifteen bucks at this point. Put Addy in one for a test run, but she screams her head off and violently pounds her head against it. You realize it is too late for a stroller. It is time to go home.
10. Get home, feed the kid lunch, and put her to bed. Prepare lunch for husband, who is home SICK, and then prepare to leave for the grocery store, blessedly alone. Hear Addy on the monitor, NOT sleeping. Wish fervently for a brick wall to pound your head against.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Another Poll

Names again. I really am itching to get this whole name thing nailed down, for some reason. Now that we know the sex, it seems there's no excuse not to be calling this child by his name.
So here's the new addition to the list: Beckham. Or possibly Beckett. Anyone like it? Anyone hate it? And yes, we'd probably call him Beck for short.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Further Complaints About Naps

Blech, I think I'm getting sick. Addy was a little sickly the last few days with a cold, and now my throat hurts and I feel like I have the chills even though it's very warm and pretty outside today. I fought it for awhile today and tried to pretend I wasn't feeling bad- we went to the park and played outside. Had to take advantage of the weather since it's supposed to SNOW later this week!! Then we got home and Adelay actually ate most of her lunch, and tried some new fruits, so that made me really happy.
Then I tucked her in for a nap, thinking, She'll be so tired after all that outdoor time, and tucked myself down for a nap in the next room. But she never slept at all! Just played with her Baby Leapfrog toy for awhile, then started jumping and yelling. After a half hour of kind of sleeping, kind of listening to her, I was getting that crazed, hallucinating sensation, so I eventually gave up and put her in the play yard with a movie and some snacks, then sneaked back to bed. Thank goodness for Baby Einstein! She played for about an hour in there with nary a peep, so I think I did get some sleep after all. And now I must go because my nose is running. Grrr.
Okay, and I'm back. Has anyone noticed that my posts are getting shorter and more scatterbrained lately? And that they have mostly to do with food or napping? I feel like that pregnant brain thing is hitting me. I have this theory that being pregnant makes you act like an infant yourself for awhile. You suddenly care only about eating and sleeping, require both these things far more frequently than you ordinarily would, and become very angry indeed when these needs are not met.
I don't know if any of you try to envision your invisible blogger friends, but for the next four to five months, you can just imagine me lurching toward either the bedroom or the kitchen pretty much every two hours on the hour, looking grim and purposeful.