now officially going a touch BATTY

OK, so the baby's great. I am sleep deprived, but not hideously so. I am hormonal and mood-swingy, but only start snivelling a few times a day. I am getting shitty headaches. But mainly, I am going star-frickn' stir crazy, maaaan. (and this is not helping with the mood-swingy, on precipice of PPD thing at all). A month ago I was only dreaming about sitting on my bottom and watching t.v. all day. Now if I see one more re-run of Top Chef, I am going to go postal.

Yes, yes, yes. I need to get out. But how??? Here's one of the shitty things about the C. No driving, and not lifting of heavy things. (hubs is at work all day). No taking off to the mall or Target Alternative. (yes, I am still on that band wagon, but as Christmas season approaches, I might switch to boycotting the pharamacy only). I can't even take a walk with the baby because it's cold and pissing down with rain. And I can't lift the stroller down the stairs and out of the house (I am sure I *could* but I am afraid I would pop open). Waaaaahhhh!

Oh, and once again, the wireless thing is confounding me. We've got the router installed. I;ve got the laptop. Laptop refuses to see wireless. It no likey. (appears that it's a networking thing from my workplace, so I've had my husband take laptop to my work and instructed him to stand drumming his fingers while the Sys Admin fixes it immediately!!!!). I am now so obsessed with wireless and how it will transform my world, that it's not healthy. But every time I get on this machine (in basement) Chunky decides to wake up (of course!)

I am quite convinced I can blog while nursing, if only I had wireless...

I am not used to this being at home thing. At all.

To cap it all, I stink. Personal hygiene. It's the first thing to go...


Notes from the Baby Vortex

I'm baaa-aaack! Yes, I sit here typing trussed up like a *Thanksgiving Turducken to say a huge thanks for all the well wishes that came our way this last week (*this literary metaphor brought to you courtesy of watching way too many Food Network Thanksgiving Specials--this kid must think Paula Deen is Grammy).

Hubs ain't half bad is he? Of course, he still overtly states that blogging is largely for geek-nutjobs (including me) but this is from the man who took me and and precious cargo home from the hospital sporting a Dad Gone Mad t-shirt, so I am not in the least offended.

Hands up who winced at the 10lbs 1oz news? I know *I* fricking did! I am just utterly relieved that they didn't let me go 2 weeks past my due date. That notion makes my eyes water.

So, how are we doing? Pretty F. Good Actually. Though I did not voice it before, I was actually harboring some serious anxiety over how we would cope with two kids--especially one who is an infant. As I've said before, our first son--though now a pure and golden delight--was quite, uh, spirited straight out of the womb. I don't think any of us slept for about 5 months, and waking hours were spent in fraught 'screaming management' mode. (and anyone reading this who is dealing with a colicky infant, Hubs and I are here to testify that it will end, and you will end up with the child of your dreams. Honest.)

This baby (and let me not curse myself here) does miraculous things like take long naps, sit and stare from his baby seat, and wake up only a few times a night. He even produces delicate burps on demand when we pat his back. It's early days for sure, but I've really enjoyed this last week in the baby vortex. Beats working for a living (ha! yes, because becoming a walking Milk Machine is not "work";-))

The C-Section. I have unattractively revelled in the flow of praise I have received about being so brave about that part of things. Let me tell you, courage had nothing to do with it. After about 9 pushes where he shifted not an inch and memories of 3 plus hours pushing last one out, I was all, like, "go ahead and cut me open lady!" I did encounter a few moments of sheer terror in the operating room, which was all so "E.R.-like," and well, clinical (I've never had surgery before). And also panicked when they kept pricking me and saying "can you feel this? this? this?"-- "YES! YES! YES!" But that only lasted about 10 minutes. And the alternative would have been pretty dangerous as it turns out, so... (can't think about that one).

Also, being someone who can compare the healing process of the two procedures--yes, C hurts like a mother the first few days, but compared to healing with the mother of all episiotimies, it ain't half bad. And (faint of heart skip forward here) at least the "wound area" is not in the vicinity of other functional areas. I could, for instance, go #2 without gripping the toilet bowl and fearing that I would be split once more in twain. Small blessings, but I'll take 'em thanks... And then, of course, there's the lovely lovely Vicodin. Adminttedly, some things are a bit of a bitch--stairs for instance. They do hurt a bit. I don't have wireless (remember) and so venturing downstairs to the basement to check email, and blog, etc., was a bit of a challenge. (yes, yes. Must get me some wireless. STAT.) But I am not one to look an excuse to sit on her arse and watch copious amounts of television in the mouth.

Anyway, I promise to be less remiss on the blogging front, and I am looking forward to catching up with everyone else. Thanks all again for the warmness--we really appreciate it:)


"Hail most dear ... Cesarean!"

First, allow myself to introduce myself – I am the ginga’s gauche, somewhat Slavic-looking, intertextual husband (who loves his Dad Gone Mad T-shirt, BTW) here to tell you all, I must tell you all, that a new prince is born yea unto us all, on this Thursday past, 16 November 2006 at 10:47pm, by emergency C-section. We went into the hospital (which is now called a Health System, you know) to be induced at 2:00pm, and after Pitocin, a successful epidural (with Baby#1, Joy had two and neither worked!) breaking water, multiple episodes of Bringing Home Baby and Top Chef and some good pushes, the monitor showed consistent decelerations of the baby’s heart beat, which meant that the umbilical cord was probably pinched.

Let the wild rumpus start! In technicolor:

So the doctor came in (stinking of gin ... dadadada Rocky Raccoon) the room to say very serenely, “the baby doesn’t like it. It’s time we took you up.”

Joy: “OK.”

Next, a nurse came in and said very serenely, “We need to turn you over onto your back.”

Joy: “OK”

Then another nurse came in and said very serenely, “I am here to shave you.”

Joy: “Can I have a Brazilian?”

(bedum ching! I thank you) .

After taming Joy's unruly mane, they then whisked momma down the hall in her bed to the O.R. while I was trying to put paper scrubs over my clothes; they entered some doors that I was not allowed to go through for prep. When I was allowed in, I was walked over to Joy, who was angled ever so slightly so that blood was rushing to her face. Her body was veiled from the neck down, much like a magician’s assistant who is about to be sliced in two; all the while faceless doctors and nurses were making noise and moving about on the other side. A chair was provided for me, and the anaesthetist insisted that I sit, but I preferred to stand, to which she replied that I had better not faint(!). She then started prodding Joy’s belly with what looked like tweezers, asking “Can you feel this? How about here?” (All very high tech you see at this health system) To each, Joy responded with yes, somewhat anxiously. Meanwhile, they were doing something new on the other side of the curtain, and Joy began saying a little more vehemently, “I CAN FEEL THAT!!” It was the only time I saw her actually a bit afraid. The anaesthetist then asked, “Is it worse than the contractions?” and that’s when Joy said she realized she would feel some things but not to worry.

Yada yada yada – twenty minutes later, I was asked if I wanted to see the baby being born; apparently, no one was worried I might faint any longer. I felt a doctor give Joy’s belly a bit of a shove, I heard another doctor say “I’ve got him!”, I looked over at my wife’s belly, which resembled something more akin to a dissected specimen from a highschool lab, and watched as the doctor pulled out one of the biggest purple babies I have ever seen: 10.08 pounds. 21+ inches long, and an equally massive head that was shaped like a pear. His umbilical cord was in fact completely wrapped around both legs. Joy’s doctor said it was actually lucky that his heart rate had begun to decelerate because had it not, we would have progressed with a normal vaginal birth, but because of his size and the cord position, there would have been many serious complications later (he was also face up, which means the birth would have been even more prolonged and complicated).

After all his vitals were checked and the amniotic fluid was sufficiently pounded out of his little lungs, they inked up his little feet and pressed them on my shirt – one impression makes it look like he has six toes on one foot, something I may use to embarrass him later. I then walked him over to Joy, who was still partially veiled, and she kissed his little head. When she spoke, he would turn toward her too. (squish squish) To this lovely scene of familial bliss, I add only that Joy commented that her brand new baby boy resembled Pruitt Taylor Vince, and sadly, he does ... for now ... we hope. (see image above)

Big brother announced his not-so-wee sibling is “so cute!” and brought him a Lightning McQueen balloon the other day (“actually, I will show the baby the balloon but he’s too little to play with it, so I will take it home”).

Momma and baby are doing very well, and although Joy has a new scar for show and tell, she says she feels better than she did with Baby#1: not nearly as exhausted and much calmer (I think it may be the vykoden). They return home tomorrow, Sunday, when the task of screwing him up really begins.


Apparently, Third Time is Not Always a Charm....

Yes. You thought that after so many days absent, surely this means she is dwelling in the baby vortex. Well I hate to be so utterly tedious and say not yet....

(Yawn...I am boring myself silly, so sorry to suck you into the ennui. I would really like to post about something else. Truly I would)

That said, it does not mean I did not spend most of Monday with some pretty serious contractions going on. Tuesday night up and down, up and down (oooh. this is it, this is it, this is IT!) and then by yesterday lunchtime back at the hospital for the third time, pretty sure this time it was it, only to be told....

Put on this robe.
Pee in this cup.
Open Wiiiiide!
OK. Take a walk.
Jump up and down.
Open Wiiiiiide!
Uhm. Go Home.

And so here I am, although the end is in sight. The docs have taken pity with comments along the line of "maybe it's time to put you out of your misery.. there's only so long a person can go on having contractions 1-3 minutes and not really progress. And this here baby looks like a big 'un. Howzabout a bit of pitocin?"

So I am "pencilled in" for an induction tomorrow afternoon. (cripes!) I am really not at all sure how I feel about it all right now. I am excited, but also shitscared about the whole induction thing. Not that I've not sampled from the fake hormonal plate before--pitocin is what eventually brought my son into this world (along with forceps, vaccuum, and a whole lot of endless ineffectual pushing on my part). I think I was really hoping that with *this* one, the passageways would be cleared, so to speak, and after a few flutters of pain, a big fat epidural (that actually works thankyouverymuch-not-like-last-time-when-I-had-two-and-could-still-very-much-use-and-feel-my-legs-and-more-to-the-point-my-stomach-back-and-crotchal-region) then, say, a couple of delicate pushes, he would slither out smiling beatifically all ready to latch on and sleep through the night.

Actually (even though this should be the least of my worries) the thing I hate about the pitocin thing is the big ole IV needle shoved in the (wince) back of your hand. Although I guess you need that with an epidural too, so....poke me up.

OK. I am off to submit to so-far controlled urge to nest, clean, do laundry, and be general all-round freak for the next 24 hours or so.

Please send me "let your labor and delivery be filmed in soft-focus and accompanied by Enya" vibes;-)



Ha! Gotcha. Maybe.

Announcing that I am still very much rotund (not that I need to be pregnant for that). Still very much a plugless slut, but that's about all that's passed these here regions (cough...)

My due date is actually not til next Friday, and at this rate I think I might even end up running late. Of course, that does not mean I am not fanaticizing about my OB trip tomorrow and being informed "MY GOD! You're 8 cm and he's Crowning, are you SURE you don't feel any pain????" Ha! Right.

In the meantime, I am getting very used to this being a complete slob business. I have so far:

1. Knitted one baby hat (yes, I am *that* talented).

2. Made several Origami Christmas Ornaments (and that should be Orna-Gami, according to my instructions).

3. Made good headway into Christmas shopping (I am beginning to feel waves of resentment--don't be hatin' ! Remember, I am not going to want to brave the crowds with boob-demanding infant--especially as our delightful mall recently made a big fuss about women breastfeeding in public....)

4. Taken long hot soaks in the bath uninterrupted. With copious amounts of Burts Bees Oil (to try and stem the side of stretch marks that are beginning to spider out from my poor abused tummy button) and Spiderman Bubblebath for, well, bubbles.

5. Gorged upon unhealthy quantities of Cheez-its, Cadbury's Truffles, Jelly Belly beans (Juicy Pear). With an apple or banana thrown in, you know, for health.

6. Gorged upon unhealthy quantities of TLC, especially Top Chef and (god help me) Bringing Home Baby (which is much more sanitized and fluffy than the terror-inducing Birth Day).

7. Been reading this book, The Baby Whisperer, which is written in such an outrageously British "love-a-duck" accent (liberal references to the reader as "luv" and how "a nice cuppa can boost the spirits when baby is extra-demanding...") it makes me all warm.

Seriously, there is something very reassuring about Tracey Hogg's style. For now. If I were to read this book in another less hormonal state I would probably gag. But right now she's the next best thing to having my Mummy here... Hmmm. yes. Must be hormonal because typing that just made me well up. Best add to the list--
Welled up and often dissolved into cascades of tears over:

  • Books that refer to me as "Mum" and "Luv."
  • Oprah Winfrey's Dream Come True episode (aired Tuesday)
  • Not being able to follow the fucking origami instructions!
  • Sorting through teensy weensy baby clothes from when our son was a newborn
  • Walking to into our bedroom and seeing cradle next to my side of the bed
  • Christmas commercials of pretty much any variety.

8. Oh, and lest I turn into a complete blithering moron, I have also been reading this book, David Rakoff's Don't Get Too Comfortable.

Don't worry. I won't.



I had a great post all planned for Saturday where I cleverly entitled it "Ze Plug! Ze Plug!"* (you know... Fantasy Island... you know).

And then I was reminded of that line from Diego in Ice Age (the saber toothed tiger/lion?) where he says to the sloth-thing:

"do we need to get a newsflash every time your body does something?"*

And so now it's looking like my whole "it's STARTED! it's STARTED! thing was a tad, uhm, premature. And I feel a little sheepish about it, I must admit. But then there is also a bit of relief. Did I mention that I have taken the entirely selfish pleasure of two weeks maternity leave prior to my son being born? Just for me? (and yes, son #1 is in fulltime daycare still--I am hideous unfit monster-of-a-mother, I realize). I might not get my two weeks in, but lord do I need a rest. But methinks I need to ration myself in terms of unlimited access to daytime television--especially Discovery Health Channel and back-to-back episodes of Birth Day...

I am a sucker for those shows, and do not normally get to watch them being chained to a desk and all that. But YIKES no more Birth Day for me.

I switched on for 5 minutes on Friday and scared the shit out of myself: "After a relatively complication-free deliviery, the nurses on duty immediately discern the tell-tale signs of respitory distress, and whisk baby Juan to the ICU..." and "After laboring for over 32 hours, Luisa is showing signs of a fever and the baby's vital signs are showing distress. Surgeons prep her for an emergency C-Section..."

So tell me, how is The View now that Star is gone?

* yes. ze plug. it is gone. but that does not necessarily mean anything. except that you are mildy grossed out (once more) by what your body can excrete.

**And to any people who have lives and are not parents of Ice-Age obsessed preschoolers, I sincerely apologize. I, for one, can pretty much recite the whole of that fricking film verbatim.


it's going to be one of those stories...

3-4 cms; 50% effaced; frequent, relatively painless contractions. FOREVAH!

Yup. I'm still where I was 48 hours ago. Knickers in a twist over nought, it seems.
Looks like I'm in for the long haul (i.e. "Weeeeell, it could be tomorrow and it could be in a several weeks, HAHAHAHA") And that's OK. Battlestar Galactica's on tonight and I'm now officially on maternity leave.

Now off to recline, eat bon-bons, and shamelessly exploit the "but I'm having contractions" aspect of this thing. I may never have to get my own damn water again!


and there's me thinking i needed some prune juice...

So, one minute you're sitting out on the front porch handing out sweeties to all and sundry on Halloween, because you are finding walking uncomfortable with this nasty bout of "trapped wind" and "being a little bit backed up..." If I could just, you know, go to the bathroom....

November 1, at work. "Motherfucker. This "trapped wind" is giving me some grief..." "Nope, no. This is not labor. The pains are not in the right place. Books says so. And it's too early. And I'm not contracting. Am I? Hang on a minute...."

November 1, 4:45pm. (OB triage at hospital) "My doctor said I needed to stop by to check everything's OK, just to be safe. but frankly, I think I just need to (cough) have a good BM...."

"Oh, those are contractions, you say? Every 1-3 minutes you say? And I am 3 cm, and 50 % effaced (I am still not quite sure what that is, but if you say so...)?" Uhm. I'm hungry.

4 hours later. "Oh, those are contractions, you say? Every 1-3 minutes you say? And I am 3 to 4 cm, and 50 % effaced you say (I am still not quite sure what that is, but if you say so...)?" Uhm. I'm really hungry now. I can go home? How about after Lost is finished? Oh, OK. I'll go now. If you refuse to feed me, I think I have no choice.

3 hours later At Home. "Oweeee Oweeeee Oweeee. Two minutes apart! Call the neighbors and get a sitter, we're headin' on out. Oweee Oweee Oweee. Oh the pain. The agony. The Gore....

5 hours later At Hospital. "Oh, those are contractions, you say?Every 1-3 minutes you say? And I am 3 to 4 cm, and 50 % effaced you say (I am still not quite sure what that is, but if you say so...)?"

Oh, OK. I'll go now. If you refuse to feed me or give me fluids, I think I have no choice. No. I can walk. Thanks much... Tyelenol 3 with Codeine? Won't say no. Thanksverymuch.


Present: Sitting at home blogging. A contraction here and there. Feeling like a big ole faker at 38 weeks. Stay tuned for updates, which are likely to come all too frequently if I am as much not in labor as I feel right now.


An Open Letter to Crayola, the Makers of the Color Wonder Fingerpaints

The following is an open letter from our own Motherhood Uncensored's Kristen, mastermind of the Monthly Blog Exchange.

(the woman is onto something, people. hands up of you think those fingerpaints are, indeed, for shit...)

Dear Haters of Mothers:

Please excuse the smudges on this letter, as well as the dropped words and barely legible handwriting. That's what happens after you touch a child that has played with your Color Wonder Fingerpaints. That and you can't open a bottle for 3 days.

Let's be frank. These are not paints, but a propaganda tool in your coup against all mothers. Is it really necessary for my child to end up looking shinier than a 14-year-old boy's palm after attempting to "fingerpaint?" And while I love bathing my child on a nightly basis, I'd prefer not to have to wrastle her like slippery hog and then soak her in Tide Free detergent for at least 30 minutes in order to cut through the grease that you try to sell as "paint."

I find the delay of color visiblity annoying, especially because my child feels the need to get more paints because her first attempt did not work. Sure. I can wait for the color to show up. But I'm 30. And I'm assuming that I'm probably not your target marketing audience.

You might try repackaging the paints as hair gel, door grease, or even chapstick. Heck. It might make a great night-time moisturizer and you could probably give KY Jelly a run for it's money.

But let me say this. I'd rather do 14 loads of laundry and wash paint off every single wall in my house before I'd buy your paints again. And I know why you called them "wonder fingerpaints." Because lord knows I wonder why anyone in her right mind would buy them. Except if she didn't have kids. Or happened to be my mother-in-law. Or satan.

So from now on, I'll just stick to regular old crayons.

And vaseline.


The Mom Trap

Bio: Kristen is mom of Quinlan and one on the way, and spends most of her free time eating and on the internet blogging at The Mom Trap and Motherhood Uncensored (where Joy is today!)

Get more info on the blog exchange as well as links to the other participants here