Archive for December, 2008

This Year’s Love

And an early happy new year to you! This year, as every year — at least in the past few years — I’m thieving Linda‘s New Year Meme, and it’s a good one. Now is as good a time as any to mention that I NEVER do memes, or anything I need to be tagged for… so should you tag me, please don’t be offended if I don’t do it — it’s not you, it’s me.

But this, I always do. And you should, too. And then go tell Linda (and me!) that you did it so we can live vicariously through you.

And last, but certainly not least, happy new year to you! It was a pleasure knowing all of you, and I mean that from the bottom of my weepy, pregnancy-ravaged heart.

1. What did you do in 2008 that you’d never done before?
Got, and most importantly stayed, pregnant. Never thought that would happen, I swear. Also, I’m going to go with Jennie here and say that the near-constant projectile vomiting on myself — in the car, no less — was a less-than-thrilling first.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I don’t think I made any! I rarely do, however. But I have a list of private mini-resolutions I make all the time, none of which are particularly exciting. They usually involve having more patience, more faith, and chilling the hell out.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No one in my “real” life, but I cannot believe the amount of my favorite Internet friends who did. Sundry! Amalah!
Emily! Zoot! Jenifer! Jenny! Leah! And with the latter three, a new generation of parenting bloggers was born. I’m happy to know them, and happy for them.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
No, and thank God.

5. What countries did you visit?
Canada! We spent a lovely week in Quebec earlier this year.

6. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008?
A stronger stomach. The ability to bend over without grunting. Feet that did not hurt constantly. But then again, these things are bringing me a baby, so who’s to complain?

7. What dates from 2008 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
October 20. The day we found out our baby was a girl. It was, in some ways, almost bigger than finding out we were pregnant. With that one ultrasound, we learned that she was strong and healthy and, of course, a she.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I can’t say that getting pregnant was an achievement. That sounds … dirty and wrong. But, and this is lame-sounding, but I’m really, really proud of my marriage. I always tend to see this space as a work-achievement space, but I forget that what’s most important is something we’ve excelled at, and will continue to work at in ’09. Being married to this particular person has really and truly been the best thing I’ve ever done. < end schmaltz >

9. What was your biggest failure?
God, I whined a lot. I also worried a lot, and by a lot, I mean I participated in some seriously epic anxiety episodes that nearly brought our family to its knees.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
I got sicker than I’d been in DECADES while pregnant, and that’s well beyond the five months of “morning” sickness. It was memorable and incredibly miserable. But! I survived, and the baby was healthy throughout it.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Gap maternity jeans. Dude, these things RULE.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Adam’s, as every year. And the dog, who grew into the best dog ever this past year (something about turning three …). And really, most people’s. I was very impressed with a large portion of humanity this year.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
My previous tenant, who up and left on her lease, whining and being a total beast all the way. And a lot of people on behalf of my good friend with the red hair.

14. Where did most of your money go?
Savings. Medical/baby-related expenses. The drain of a house in Florida that we still, by Jesus, own.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
BABY. OMG BABY BABY BABY.

16. What song will always remind you of 2008?
“Sam’s Town” by The Killers

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder? Happier! Oh yes.
b) thinner or fatter? HAHAHAHAHA.
c) richer or poorer? Uh, both. I know, but it’s complicated.

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Laughed, per usual. Relaxed and had more faith.

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Worried.

20. How did you spend Christmas?
With my giant family in a special land known as Crazytown.

21. Did you fall in love in 2008?
Oh, with that baby. Yes. Who knew you could love something you can’t even see?

22. What was your favorite TV program?
Oh hell. I don’t know. I discovered Dexter in ’08, however, and continued a deep love for Big Love. HUGE LOVE.

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
Uh … no.

24. What was the best book you read?
I barely read in 2008, I’m embarrassed to say. Too busy puking, I suppose.

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
Again, um … I did a lot of things this year, but MAN, reading and music-ing wasn’t one of them.

26. What did you want and get?
A baby! Or at least, a healthy pregnancy.

27. What did you want and not get?
More patience. I ask every year, and yet I FAIL. Every. Year.

28. What was your favorite film of this year?
I loved — LOVED — Wall-E. I know, lame and rather childish, but I adored it more than I ever thought possible.

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I hung out with my parents, sister, nephews, husband and dog and it was awesome. I ate Boston-style Chinese food and played Trivial Pursuit with my family. In other words, I RAGED.

30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
If I hadn’t puked so goddamn much.

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008?
Elastic waistbands.

32. What kept you sane?
My family. Friends. Husband. All good things.

33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
I still have a huge crush on Michelle Obama.

34. What political issue stirred you the most?
All of it. The election, mostly. I rediscovered my position on things like immigration (I’m pro-amnesty, if you were wondering) and economic policy. I surprised myself by becoming more politically aware than I had been before, and that’s saying a lot.

35. Who did you miss?
My family. Adam’s Grandma. I hate that she’s not here as we prepare to have this baby.

36. Who was the best new person you met?
The many, many citizens of the state of Vermont. Really.

37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2008.
Oh God, that I just need to RELAX. Because guess what? Every year — EVERY YEAR — I bitch that I was too uptight the year prior. So for God’s sake, I need to make this one stick.

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
No.

Happy early new year!

*David Gray

23 comments December 30th, 2008

Only Us

Ho ho ho! We’re back in VT, awaiting the next onslaught of family members on Thursday, leaving us with a grand total of three days of relative peace and solitude.

We had a wonderful holiday, as I hope you did, and despite my family being very … TOGETHER in nature (as in, 24 hours a day of Together Time. It’s very sweet, but can be stifling at times), there was only one incident of Bloody Beef, when during a conversation with a longtime family friend, I realized that I kind of only have two months and change left in this pregnancy before another PERSON shows up and I … I had a panic attack. I really did. There was heaving sobbing and heavy breathing and everything (I’d locked myself in the bathroom for Maximum Effect). This was followed by an entire Christmas Eve AND Christmas Day of Braxton Hicks and weird pains that convinced me that I didn’t even have two MONTHS, but in fact only had TWO HOURS.

Contributing to the irrational hysteria was the fact that another family friend recently got a new dog and they named her … our daughter’s name. And these are people I will see OFTEN. I’m not changing it, however, so for the rest of her life, my daughter will be able to pose with her namesake, a toy poodle.

Clearly, I did not give birth over the holiday, nor did I do so on my birthday which, speaking of, was fabulous, and Adam gave me a delightful gift of a video camera that records in high-def. Which, uh, yeah. There are, thus far, several videos that will never, ever see the light of day, as I am of the lumbering triple-chinned sort captured in EXTREME DETAIL, and I don’t yet know how to work it, but we are ready for baby! Or at least ready to record baby. And her pores and hair follicles all up close and personal-like.

I was over my Bloody Beef by mid-Christmas Day — it turns out that what was stressing me out was that we did not have the STROLLER finalized, because we cannot bring a baby into this world without a STROLLER OH MY GOD WE ARE NOT READY WHERE IS THE STROLLER THAT THE KID WON’T EVEN USE UNTIL SHE’S A LITTLE OLDER? Hormones are weird, man. When in doubt, buy baby gear.

Anyhoo, I was even able to enjoy opening many baby-related gifts, including this little gem that made me cry, because could you DIE? My mother, Ms. Crafty McCraftpants, made these for my sister a few years ago, and this year, we got our own, because we are finally going to be three:

Family
She should open her own Etsy shop, yes?

And finally, my daughter is already amassing quite a wardrobe, which is to be expected, as everyone is VERY EXCITED about pink things, and we’re so completely and utterly screwed if it turns out to be a boy. S C R E W E D.

Girl
And yet, we still need basic newborn things. Oh, and please note bear-footed pajamas. O.M.G.

Happy Monday! I hope you’re all still relaxing and egg-nogging.

*Peter Gabriel

19 comments December 28th, 2008

Same

You know what they say about Vermont! If you don’t like the weather, wait five minutes!

I don’t know actually know if they say that about Vermont, but what I DO know is that they say it about the weather EVERYFREAKINGWHERE, and my did you know that? Did you know that saying is not just about where you live, and that, as it turns out, the weather is UNPREDICTABLE ALL ACROSS THE COUNTRY?

Hmph. That sure does sound like I’m crabby, which I’m really not. It’s that I just read that statement about the Midwest/Pac Northwest/somewhere and I just about died, because I have lived many, many places up and down the eastern seaboard, and they say it about EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM.

Incidentally, it’s hard not to know what they say about Vermont, because it is likely along the lines of this: it’s cold. Like, colder than you’ve ever been. See also: snowy. Like, every day.

I know, too, that most of you throughout the country have been enduring similar weather, and while I hate to laugh, it has been a LITTLE funny watching everyone screech how they’re SO SICK OF SNOW, when we’ve been dealing with this since October and will likely be entrenched in it until May. So please, do not talk to me about being sick of snow, for while I am not yet sick of it (it’s pretty! and kind of quaint!), I know I will have endured much, much more than most of you by the time the winter — nay, SPRING — is out.

However, I will concede that Vermont, like Syracuse, is all over that shit when it comes to plowing, and despite getting the crap kicked out of us yesterday, by morning we were totally free and clear. There’s something to be said for being prepared, unlike, say, Seattle, where buses were driving off of highways because no one knew what to do, OMG PANIC SNOW WOOP WOOP WOOP.

So yeah. We have plows and salt trucks and EVERYONE has a four-wheel drive vehicle and/or snow tires and you guys who aren’t used to snow don’t. I get that. Whine away! But if you live in a snowy part of the country and are surprised? I … what? I AM MYSTIFIED BY YOU.

By the way, in light of all the snow we’re all getting, I am once again compelled to plug the world’s greatest boots: the Ugg Bandon which, while ugly, is the most functional, warm, comfortably waterproof boot I have ever worn in my life. It’s been FREEZING here, and we’ve had many, many feet of snow, and not once have my feets been anything but snuggled and dry. And while I hate to recommend anything overwhelmingly expensive (which these are, I know, especially for something hideous), they are worth it. But sadly, it appears to be … oh my God, in looking for a link for you, I discovered that the Bandon has been DISCONTINUED. WOE. So, uh, maybe the Summit?

WOE.

Speaking of Vermont, we attended a party on Saturday night wherein the hosts — clearly of the, uh, well-off sort — commissioned a few clydesdales to take guests on sleigh ride tours of their expansive twinkly-lit property, not unlike the White Witch in the Chronicles of Narnia. Yes, CLYDESDALES.

Vermont continues to amaze and befuddle me with its delightfully incongruous juxtaposition of simple living and glaring excess.

We’re in the final preparations for the holidays, which will be spent with my sister and parents, as we never have to juggle Adam’s family and mine which is, as I’ve mentioned, one of the many benefits of a mixed-faith marriage. I always get Christmas, even if it coincides with Hanukkah, as his family celebrates the holiday at Thanksgiving. Which is odd, I know, but … it’s their tradition.

My other parents are coming to visit us the weekend of New Year’s, and although Adam loves my family, you can bet by Sunday, Jan. 4, he will have reached Maximum In Law Capacity and will have made a significant dent in our now-meager alcohol cabinet. And he doesn’t drink, like, ever.

And with that, I hope you have a happy holiday. My Larry Bird birthday is on Thursday I mean SATURDAY, and it promises to be a good one, if only because it will be my last, if all goes well, before I have a wee sprout to help celebrate it with me. Hooray! And also, HOLY SHIT.

Merry Christmas! Happy Hanukkah!

PS, if you’re still interested in getting free offsets for the holidays, I did get several more after my first batch ran out — there’s a little doohicky on my sidebar for the One Day campaign. Just click on it and huzzah! Free offsets for you!

*Snow Patrol. Again, killing myself over here with the pathetic, pathetic puns. Or whatever they are. Too tired and pregnant to think.

27 comments December 22nd, 2008

Nuttin’ but love

When I was initially shopping for an ob/gyn-type person, I never considered a midwife, mostly because while I have very few things I’m seeking in a birth plan, access to drugs is number one on the list, and many, if not most, of the local midwife practices are all home-birthy and stuff, or at least discourage epidurals. (At the risk of stereotyping, this IS Vermont, you know. I could probably walk outside and throw a rock and it would land on the home of someone who homebirthed, which is way cool, but SO NOT FOR ME. AM TOO TERRIFIED.)

And, well, I wanted access to a doctor that knew me, and could see me before AND after, like a regular old gynecologist and stuff. But! I also wanted some of the touchy-feely midwifery stuff, and as luck would have it, my PCP was able to refer me to a mixed practice with two midwives and four doctors. And I … I strongly prefer the midwives. Go figure.

They’re just so relaxing! And soothing! And, perhaps most importantly, they seem to take the same approach to weight that I do in life, which is to say if the person/mother and baby are healthy and happy, then there is no problem. I was so cheesed off by the hypnotherapy recommendation from the last doctor (who I did not like! NO LIKE!) that I neglected to mention that she snidely commented on my ten-pound weight gain in one month, without even CONSIDERING the fact that I’d spent the majority of the pregnancy puking and losing weight, and for the first time, I was actually EATING SOMETHING.

As in, when I said I was finally no longer nauseated, she sniffed and said, rather snarkily, “Well that explains the ten pounds. You might not want to keep that up.”

And then I shot her. Except not really, of course, but I did notice that she was Giada-thin, caked in makeup and wearing a see-through gold sweater, and thought, huh. Perhaps we don’t share the same body image-slash-beauty ideals. Plus, you know, my GOD, it’s not like I was on some kind of WEIGHT GAINING SPREE until that point, and besides, as a healthy person with a reasonably healthy weight who’s been told that she’s both too thin AND too heavy during pregnancy — SOMETIMES DURING THE SAME DAY — I felt that her comments were a bit out of line, doctor or no.

Not that it matters, but I’ve changed precisely nothing about my eating habits between my last two check-ups, and gained precisely two pounds this time. So, to the lollipop-headed doctor — and anyone else who wants to give a pregnant woman shit about her weight — I say suck it, and while you’re at it, choke on it. Bodies do what they are meant to do, period, and unless you hear rumors that the woman is sitting in front of her television with a jar of Hellman’s, you might want to keep your trap shut.

Pregnancy is not the time to give a shit about your weight. Hell, as long as you’re taking care of yourself and are healthy and happy, LIFE is not the time to give too much of a shit about your weight. I’m not opposed to controlling your weight and exercising — hell, I am a HUGE FAN of Weight Watchers — but like I said, one must be reasonable, and do it for the right reasons. And those reasons do not include a slim pregnancy for the hell of it, is what I’m saying.

I’ve mentioned this before, but my complaint in feeling huge has little to do with what I look like, and more to do with what I can and can’t do. That does not, however, mean that I didn’t die a little inside when I asked Adam how much he weighed and realized that before this pregnancy is out, I WILL ECLIPSE HIM. Uh, ha ha?

This is all a long way of saying that my midwife was perplexed, then started laughing when I mentioned the last doctor flagged my weight, and announced that she didn’t care if I gained sixty pounds, as long as we were all healthy. And then I made out with her right then and there. But not enough to forgo an epidural or anything.

Oy.
Whatever. There’s a WHOLE OTHER PERSON in there. (Clicking brings you to Flickr. I just didn’t feel like futzing with the size this time.)

In other news, I don’t have gestational diabetes, and I did eventually throw up after sucking down the Glucola, but NOT IN THE CAR. Victory!

Happy Friday! Who’s ready to drive an hour and forty to GO TO THE MALL? (SHOOT ME.)

*Heavy D & The Boyz. Oh, I kill me.

28 comments December 18th, 2008

Sunday Bloody Sunday

A random list of things that have nothing to do with one another, really, but I have to get them off my chest. If I knew how to do bullets (which I don’t, as I am a dolt), I would. Instead, you get wee dashes! Hurrah!

– When I told my mother about the terrorists-in-Vermont incident the other night, she was completely unfazed and replied that she would have had a similar reaction. Which leads me to entirely understand PRECISELY why I am like this. My sister, however, simply announced that I was merely going all “bloody beef” on everyone again.

This brings me to …

– A few Christmases ago, I had severe PMS, and when my sister and dad got the Christmas roast out of the oven, I immediately declared it too rare for human consumption and started screeching, “It’s raw! It’s BLOODY! It’s raw! IT IS TOO BLOODY!” and almost threw my body in front of the roast, lest anyone eat it and die of toxoplasmosis or salmonella or whatever. I was almost in TEARS, such was my protective nature of our precious digestive systems from this standing rib roast.

It has hence been known as the Bloody Beef Incident, and is now a euphemism for anytime I completely lose my shit without real cause. Whenever I get upset about anything, my family will not hesitate to calmly ask, “Is this something real, or are you going Bloody Beef?” More than once, I’ve sheepishly admitted Bloody Beef.

I think it’s safe to say I went Bloody Beef the other night.

– I believe I have my second glucose tolerance test tomorrow, but the thing is, I’m not sure. The date is smudged on the card, and I’ll be damned if I’m going to drink that vomitous Glucola without cause, which means I have to rise at the ass-crack of dawn to check. I am, however, slightly hopeful that this test will be better than the last GTT, when I was in my first trimester, and required deep breathing exercises and a Herculean effort not to puke it right back up on the nurse. Then again, AIR made me puke around that time, so I am bullish.

HOWEVER, this next test involves me having to chug it WHILE DRIVING, as they have me drink it BEFORE I arrive, and the damn doctor is an hour away. I don’t think this is wise, and I’m afraid I’m going to get into an accident and die while puking on myself. I have already puked on myself while driving to and from this particular office, so I suppose it’s nothing new. But this time, it will be SNOWING.

Then again, this may be a Bloody Beef fear.

– So far, the only lotion recommendation I’ve tried is Blogless Kathryn’s suggestion of Neutrogena’s light sesame oil which, if you can believe it, is awesome for some body parts (bellies), not so awesome for others (arms, particularly if they’re hairy). Also, it suggests putting a few drops in the bath and I can’t help but think that this would be EXTREMELY DANGEROUS as it is OIL and therefore SLIPPERY.

– This weekend, Adam and I cleared out some boxes that we’re putting into storage, and inside my sorority scrapbook, he discovered letters from my most vomitous ex-boyfriend, wherein the boyfriend actually wrote that he can’t wait to (please hold me, but not too tightly) SPOON with me. SPOON. I’m sorry, but … GROSS. GROSS. GROSS. Since, Adam’s been teasing me repeatedly with the question, “Hey, do you want to spoon tonight?” And then I throw up on his shoes and run away.

I so married the right person, and thank God. No disrespect to those who feel differently, but I couldn’t be married to a person who wrote me LETTERS saying without irony how he couldn’t wait to spoon with me. HORK.

Happy Wednesday!

*U2!

25 comments December 16th, 2008

The Luckiest

For the most part, I think Adam and I are pretty well matched. He’s an incredible husband and I, for the most part, am a decent wife and generally think we deserve each other. Yay, us!

Unless, of course, you’re talking about this pregnancy, in which case I downright PITY HIM, because my God, the amount of pain and misery he’s endured is at times equal to that of refugees in war-ravaged countries. Crazymaking in the form of endless circular arguments! Unchecked anxiety about things that are entirely unrealistic and, at times, COMPLETELY IMPOSSIBLE! Excessive toilet paper usage! Non-stop complaining! Moodiness! THE LIST GOES ON AND ON.

And then there’s last night, in which I woke him from a dead medicated sleep to let him know that our condo was surrounded by gunmen and we were UNDER ATTACK. LIKE MUMBAI. Yeah, I’m not even kidding or exaggerating there, as he (or any of his coworkers who spent the day laughing about it) will tell you.

I had JUST fallen asleep, when I awoke to the sounds of … well, gunmen, I’m sorry, it sounded like GUNMEN. And they were EVERYWHERE. Banging on the back door! Rappelling down the building like a SWAT team! I swear, I even heard them at the front door, which is INSIDE the building, and in my mind, meant they had infiltrated beyond the locked entryway. I made the executive decision not to leave the bedroom, where at least the shades were drawn, because if I went out into the rest of the house, they would see me. AND KILL ME.

I … I got down on the floor and did that military crawl thing for a second, which is no small feat while sporting a large bump. This did not last long, however, but I was seriously SO UPSET and also, it would seem, half asleep and pregnant and uh, not rational. But whatever!

I’d like to interject here to say that once again, I am not exaggerating. I waffled on whether to call 911 or wake Adam and in that moment, I remember thinking quite distinctly, “Now is the time to call 911,” but for some reason, I opted to wake Adam first. Which, um, THANK GOD.

Waking him, however, was no easy task, mind you, as he was heavily medicated from pain meds as he awaits oral surgery, and I had to grab both of his knees and bang them together like those knocker ball thingies. When he finally awoke, I said something like, “PEOPLE OUTSIDE. EVERYWHERE,” followed by, “GET THE KNIFE,” which was in reference to this giant military-grade Man Knife I got him for his birthday last year, at the recommendation of Sundry‘s husband, JB. I … I didn’t mention other weapons, including the axe I mysteriously got him at the same time, and I don’t know why. Also, let us remember that if there is an entire terrorist MILITIA outside, not even the manliest of man knives can hold a candle to, say, an AK-47. It was suicide no matter what.

I believe it was somewhere in the range of FIVE SECONDS after becoming coherent that Adam realized that the sound of militants was actually a) high winds, which the helpful newspeople warned us about; and b) the sound of large swaths of ice sliding off the roof as temperatures climbed into the 40s. Of course, he barely realized this over the sound of me whisper-screaming to get his PANTS ON FASTER AND FOR THE LOVE OF GOD GRAB THE KNIFE, PEOPLE ARE HERE. He did both, at my screeching behest, but again, all in vain.

This makes a lot more sense than a group of terrorists taking over a tiny building in one of America’s tiniest towns IN RURAL VERMONT where the ROI would be … I don’t know, a random dude, a pregnant lady and a pug. Not exactly large-scale collateral damage.

And with that, my gratitude for the day is that I did not, indeed, call 911 before waking my husband, as I was THISCLOSE to doing, because again, I REALLY BELIEVED WE WERE UNDER SIEGE. Actually, today in general was one of gratitude, mostly for things that seem small, but were actually HUGE GIGUNDO STRESSORS, and frankly, with all the general ankle-grabbing going on in the world, I am taking happy news wherever I can find it. Which, in this case, turns out to be the following:

– I do not owe a cent in mileage overages when I turn in my vehicle, because Honda failed to take into account TWO WHOLE YEARS of my lease, meaning I have MILES TO SPARE. (See also: NEVER LEASING A CAR AGAIN, DO NOT GET ME STARTED.) (It was an unavoidable situation oh those many years ago, however. Long story.) Savings: $4000. No SERIOUSLY.

– The “dripping sound” my tenants were hearing in the pipes when they take a shower appears to be the noise of the PVC pipes expanding and contracting as hot water rushes through them. In other words, that’s how the plumbing WORKS. I may need a whole new shower, but I do not need to rip out the ceiling of the entire house! Hallelujah! Savings: THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS.

– The whiny neighbor who complained about my tenants’ dog(s) let me know that while yes, one of them is quite large and menacing-looking, it turns out that she is a) geriatric, which we knew, ergo we allowed her in our home in the first place (she’s ELEVEN, and her SKIN IS FALLING OFF OF HER); and b) extremely well-behaved, which we also knew, and wow, does she love our tenants! Such nice people! Hooray! Savings: MANY MONTHS OF EMOTIONAL TURMOIL.

– And finally, there was no terrorist regime taking my building hostage last night. Savings: OUR LIVES. Or at the very least, OUR LIMBS, as Adam didn’t have to cut anything off waving that thing around before he realized NO ONE WAS THERE. BECAUSE HE IS SMARTER THAN ME AT NIGHT.

You may think I’m kidding, but dude, this was one of the best days I’ve had in months. I am very, very grateful for these things. Seriously.

Happy Tuesday!

*Ben Folds. Seriously, this is how happy I am, that I am willing to use the sappiest of the sappy songs. It borders on TWEE, for God’s sake. TWEE.

32 comments December 15th, 2008

Freak of the Week

One of the hidden costs of pregnancy, as it turns out, is the added toilet paper usage, which, if you’re toilet paper snobs like us (Cottonelle with Aloe & E), is not insignificant. I’m certainly not eating it or anything, but with the added trips to the bathroom to pee, there is a serious uptick in TP consumption that is no doubt impacting the bottom (HA!) line. Adam, who never notices anything, noticed we seem to be whipping through toilet paper at an alarming rate and it’s ALL MY FAULT.

Seriously, NO ONE SHOULD HAVE TO PEE THIS MUCH. No one. Yes, I drink a lot of water, but it’s almost like I’m made of one long tube where it goes in one end, winds around unimpeded for a few moments, until making its grand exit on the other side. Third trimester peeing totally trumps first trimester peeing, is what I’m saying.

Which reminds me: OMFG I’m in the third trimester. Jenny had her baby already, and Leah is on her way and by the time you read this, may already HAVE HIM HERE. (Congratulations so far to Jenny for little Clark Herbert!) These are women I saw as my pregnant brethren, and for some reason, I kept thinking we’d all be pregnant FOREVER, together in swollen solidarity. It seems that is not the case, and babies do arrive at some time or another. Huh.

Another exciting side effect of the third trimester: the near-constant low-grade nausea is back, but without any of the coping mechanisms I had before (eat protein at every meal, keep stomach full, etc.). No, no. See also: inability to eat junk food. I couldn’t even finish a COOKIE the other night. A COOKIE. I can, however, enjoy Pillsbury Toaster Strudels without incident, which are very nearly junk food-like and just as addictive. And also DELICIOUS. DELICIOUS.

In other news, the holiday party season is upon us, and I attended my first on Saturday night (Hi R! And other attendees and friends!) wherein I discovered that I am much more allergic to cats than previously realized. Near the end of the evening, I noticed my eyes and nose becoming a little irritated, which is not unusual after a few hours with certain cats, however, it quickly became clear that things were worse than expected, so I had to leave ENTIRELY ABRUPTLY. It’s a good thing, too, because by the time I got home (an approximately four second walk), my eyes were almost swollen shut to the point of needing an ice pack. It appears that I will not be getting another cat anytime soon. Or, you know, ever. (Ours had to be rehomed last year, and while it was very sad, it was better for him, as he can’t be around a) other pets; or b) CHILDREN OH MY GOD NO CHILDREN OR HE WILL EAT THEM.)

Would you like me to come to YOUR holiday party and blow up like Sherman Klump? I’m booked next Saturday at a catless party, but other arrangements can be made if needed.

Incidentally, this coming weekend’s holiday party outfit requires maternity tights, which can only be purchased in-person more than an hour and a half away. And because I am the master of poor planning, I likely won’t make it out there this week to pick some up, so ah, does anyone know if I have any other options? Like, can I just buy some L’Eggs or No Nonsense or whatever brand my local drugstore has in their biggest size (Queen? Plus-size? LARGE? Do they even MAKE tights? Because I’m not wearing pantyhose or, as some of you call them, nylons. No can do. Nothing SHEER is going on these tree trunks, my friends) and be done with it, or is that a laughable option? I’ve gained some weight in my bum/thigh region, but I don’t know if it’s enough to push me into gigundo hosiery territory the way my belly has (I believe we have moved into the “Seriously, what is that thing?” territory there.) Oy. I’m sensing a lot of hiking up in my Saturday evening future.

I also meant to add that among the myriad of strange men I find attractive (my husband is quite conventionally handsome and not at all weird-looking, for the record), Philip Seymour Hoffman tops the list, and he might be the strangest of all. He’s SLOVENLY! And a little dumpy! And unkempt! And … and kind of GROSS. And yet: so attractive. So smart. So weirdly attractive, even while playing Truman Capote and I know how vomitously weird that sounds, but I’m sorry, it’s the truth. I almost licked the screen the other night when he was on the Daily Show.

Update: Some of you pointed me to Emily and her solution of thigh highs, which is so funny, because I KNEW I’d seen L’eggs referenced somewhere recently, but my brain is no longer functioning. And … do they make thigh high TIGHTS? Because see: no no to the sheer. No no. Also, if this doesn’t point out that as pregnant women, we are all pretty much the same with the same annoying problems, I don’t know what does. Also, I’ve worn thigh highs and man, that rubber stuff seems like it would make me want to scratch my legs off in itchy rebellion. I believe the last time I attempted it was my senior prom, and they had SEAMS down the back of them for some really ill-advised retro effect.

Hey, happy Monday!

*The Chemical Brothers

27 comments December 14th, 2008

Live and Let Die

I’m not sure if it’s winter or pregnancy, but I am suddenly plagued by incredibly dry skin that manifests itself in a super-attractive urge to scratch my entire body off in an apelike fashion. Every time I take ANYTHING off, even if it’s just to pee, I start scratching like an orangutan, sometimes hard enough to leave big ugly welted skin in my wake. I’m sure Adam thinks it’s particularly fetching when I scratch long and hard from my armpits down the sides of my torso, pausing only to have a satisfying go at the inside of my legs.

AY GOD, I am so itchy, and yet I am pitifully devoid of a decent body lotion, despite owning no fewer than 40. They either leave me too dry or lubed up like a wet seal, and you know what else? I AM STILL ITCHY. Cetaphil! Aquaphor! Nivea! Pricey department store stuff! Bath & Body Works! Body Shop! Knock-offs of both! My body rejects them all, and I am doomed to a life of sticky, red-striped, welty thighs and monkey scratching.

I meant to add the other day that my mother-in-law got a new dog — a Mi-Ki, which I’m pretty sure is one of those breeds that isn’t really a breed and is merely a … well, I won’t even go into it, but suffice it to say I’m not a huge fan of designer dogs, much less designer TOY dogs, and while I realize this kind of dog does it for her, I am MYSTIFIED and more than a little fascinated. Dude, it weighs a POUND AND A HALF. It’s cute, yes, but it’s essentially a ferret, right? I mean, she can HIDE IT IN HER PURSE, not unlike a tampon. But worse, perhaps, is that it snarls at you from her perch in her special fleece-lined doggie pouch, and if there were ever better a demonstration of impotent fury, I’ve yet to see it.

In other, hypochondriachal news, I unexpectedly spent this afternoon AND part of yesterday afternoon at various area dentists’ offices as Adam is referred to specialist after specialist for some extractions and a root canal, and we play the game of “Will he or won’t he get an extraction on the spot, rendering him too out of it to drive?” So off I go at the last minute (he’s in some pain, ergo the short notice/willingness to run out), and AGAIN today, I neglected to bring my own reading material, leaving me to read Health. Have you ever read Health magazine? It is, essentially, a series of articles that outline, in very clear, explicit detail, How You Will Die Because of Some Unknown Illness/Misdiagnosis/Doctor’s Office Clerical Error/Failure to Eat The Right Superfood.

No kidding, by the time Adam came out, still sans extraction, I was a MESS. I not only had breast cancer because ultrasound technology can be unreliable and I HAVE A LUMP OMG AND MY DOCTOR MISDIAGNOSED IT, but I also have a dry patch of skin behind my ear! Which could be malignant! And did you know that high blood pressure is the silent killer and most people don’t even know they have it, and MOST NURSES DO NOT NOTICE SLIGHTLY ELEVATED PRESSURE? AND THAT THIS MEANS YOU COULD DIE? DIE? DIIIIIEEEEEEEEE.

I’m not kidding, there was an ENTIRE ARTICLE titled, “Dry skin? Or cancer? What you don’t know could kill you.” And they had a three-part series on doctors’ errors! And an entire pull-out section on prescription drugs and how most people are the victim of wrong prescriptions at least once in their life! AND THIS MEANS THAT MANY PEOPLE DIE.

I’m sorry to use such harsh language, but seriously, I’d be really happy if the entire staff of Health magazine would go fuck themselves, because that magazine is an instrument of misery-inducing PARANOIA. It took me the rest of the afternoon to get over the trauma, but not before running out to the grocery store for blueberries, honey and carrots, because those are the three foods I apparently “can’t afford NOT to eat!” Or, you know, I WILL DIE.

I’m definitely bringing my own damn reading material when he finally goes in for general anesthesia on the 29th. My God.

Hey, happy Friday!

*Paul McCartney. And uh, Wings.

53 comments December 11th, 2008

Bust A Move

We went to Virginia this weekend for a belated Thanksgiving/early Hanukah celebration with Adam’s family, and let say that if you were anywhere in the range of Chesapeake during the hours of 6 and 10 p.m. Saturday night and you felt the earth move, it was me. More specifically, it was me, at 27 weeks’ pregnant doing Dance Dance Revolution on the Wii, which is not something I’ll ever do again. The thumping was unbearably loud, and I’m pretty sure I cracked the foundation, but more importantly? That shit is HARD, yo. I have a whole new respect and admiration for those who not only do it without dying, but use it as regular EXERCISE.

Perhaps the greatest pregnancy injustice, besides the inability to smell alcohol without barfing and the ongoing barfiness in general, is that I can’t eat junk food without getting sick. What IS that? Cookies! Cake! Ice cream! Anything lacking in nutritional value leaves me queasy and distressed, and I’ve taken to eating OATMEAL WITH MILK for my sweet fix. If that’s not the saddest culinary tragedy you’ve ever read, I don’t know what is. OATMEAL AS DESSERT. And not even this oatmeal. I’m talking QUAKER INSTANT.

I just need to interject with the news that it is, quite literally FOUR DEGREES outside right now. FOUR. It feels like NEGATIVE SIX, according to weather.com, which means that to normal people, it feels like NEGATIVE SIXTY. The dog wouldn’t even pee, for God’s sake, probably too afraid it would freeze outside of her wee little legs. Ah, Vermont. Your winters suck.

I’d also like to add that my baby kicks more than I ever imagined, and though there is the oft-discussed frequent kick to the cervix, there is a new kind of kick to the, uh, BUM AREA, which no one warned me about. It’s … well, it’s not pleasant, and we’ll leave it at that. But why does no one warn you of this? Why does no one mention the random BEHIND-Y VIBRATIONS? And how is it that a baby’s foot can hit … THAT AREA?

As Sundry said to me earlier today: baby kicks are magical at first, then quickly move into the realm of slightly creepy, painful and in some cases, a little gross (FOOT IN THE BUM. FOOT IN THE BUM. ALERT. ALERT. THERE IS A FOOT OR A FIST IN MY BUM.)

And finally, three things that are, as usual, in no way related:

1) Apparently I am married to an elementary schooler, as I spent the entire evening making a last-minute potato salad and chocolate chip cookies for a holiday potluck he’d forgotten about. And after standing on my feet on the ceramic tiled kitchen in the amount of time it took to prepare both, I was shocked — SHOCKED — at how tired I was. Oh, and how much my feet hurt. And my back, too. And once again, I was reminded of the poor pregnant Subway Sandwich Artist who spent the entire day serving people gross smelling sandwiches and being forced to smile at them.

2) We had a layover in DC sans plane change on Friday, but because of weird airline bureaucracy, we were forced to de-plane, take a bus back to the terminal, get off the bus, turn on our heels to GET BACK ON THE SAME BUS AND BACK ON THE SAME PLANE. IN THE SAME SEATS BOTH TIMES. OMFG.

3) Have I ever mentioned that I have a thing for John Malkovich? Even though he is so … totally creepy? And kind of gross? And super right-wing, which is only relevant because politically, we are opposites and I never wanted to be James Carville to anyone’s Mary Matalin. AND YET HE IS SO STRANGELY SEXY, EVEN WHILE PLAYING TOTALLY FOUL CHARACTERS ON SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE. See also: Gary Sinise. And Gary Oldman. And a variety of creepy, yet strangely appealing dudes.

And with that, I’m off to put my feet up, which are sore from what, two hours making POTATO SALAD? God.

Happy Tuesday!

*Young MC. And on beginner mode, was the only song I could rock on Dance Dance Revolution, if by “rock” you mean quite literally rocking the entire house.

31 comments December 8th, 2008

Everything’s Gone Green

Well! Since we’re running around like mad this weekend, and I finally found the camera downloader thingy (totally its technical name!), this post will be brief, but informative! Yes!

First off, I am the size of a horse, or at least that’s what it feels like. I’m not even going to pretend to deny that it is in part because two people called me “huge” this week, and I have 13 weeks left and OH I AM TERRIFIED OF WHAT IS TO COME. You know how some people say that the only time in their life they didn’t have body issues was when they were pregnant? I AM THE OPPOSITE. I always sort of liked my body, but one of the things I liked most was that I could do things with it, like, say, move faster than a tortoise. And now I can’t even shave my legs without some serious effort that involves sitting in a bathtub. And my hair stands up goofily on end. And … man, this is not a glamorous gig, you know? For crying out loud, my EYES are getting SQUINCHY. Thank God I’m going to be rewarded with an awesomely smooshy little baby, because otherwise I’d be demanding my money back. You know, for the chins and all.

Bear in mind I have no patience for formatting, so sorry for the extra white wall of giantness and mini-me in the mirror.

27 weeks with awful haircut
Artfully resting with my hand on my hip so you can’t see the arm that looks like Popeye after he let himself go soft. BEEFY. SMOOSHY. OH MY GOD.

And finally, the hair. It’s still standing up, despite a full fifteen minutes of post-blowdry construction involving waxes and a variety of cosmetics.
Haircut in focus, equally bad.

Anyway! Now that we’ve discovered that I have turned into a emotionally petite little flower with an extra dose of irritating, let us go on to brighter things! Or, you know, BRIGHTER PLANETS. (Am subtle!) My husband’s company, Brighter Planet, started a new campaign and I’ve got some invites to hand out. Basically, the gist is this: Brighter Planet will offset a free day’s worth of carbon emissions in your name — all they ask is that you make an effort to conserve energy this holiday season. I actually think it’s pretty nifty, and if you’re interested, all you have to do is click here.

One Day from Brighter Planet

I hope you all have a delightful weekend! Have a happy Friday and beyond!

*New Order

35 comments December 4th, 2008

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