Saturday, April 25, 2009

40 1/2 weeks...and counting

Things are getting...uncomfortable...

Friday, April 10, 2009


You reach a certain point in your pregnancy when you would love to don a tshirt that states, "Frankly, my dear, I don't give damn." This week, I reached that point. Have a pointless question? Need to test my boundaries? Would like to rethink the baby's name? Well I have lost my capacity for bullshit. I defer to the shirt. This may make me look short of patience, obstinate and, at times, grouchy with those who cross me. But I prefer the word "firm". I am busy perfecting "firm" and am putting the finishing touches on "the look". Because sometimes that's all I have energy for anymore...a look. So it'd better be good.

Those of you who have not the child-producing capacity (ahem, men, ahem) don't get this and can be pretty insensitive to it. I'm sure they're thinking something along the lines of "oh suck it up". Trust me. I'd love to suck it up. I'd love to plow through the housework, meal preparation and freezing, endless loads of laundry and toddler tantrums with a serene pregnancy glow. Barefoot, too. However, when climbing the stairs has me resting at the top for 30 seconds lest I pass out; when bending over sends me into contractions; when I'm battling my 4th sinus "thing" since February; when a ligament in my groin spasms and sends me to my knees throughout dinner prep; and when a healthy sneeze or belly laugh forces me to cross my legs or reap the's a little hard to "suck it up". Basically, I defer to the shirt. Think what you will, I don't give a damn.

**Ari sings "Shimmy Shake" along with the Wiggles while I type this. He doesn't care if I don't give a damn.**

All of this isn't to say that I am ready to have this child. Sometimes the thought of a second child terrifies me and sometimes I am overwhelmed with curiosity and a desire to meet her. Ah, the dichotomies of parenthood. They begin even in utero. And, really, there are only three things that frighten me in respect to this blessed event: a) parenting two children - when I previously believed Ari took everything I had; b) the possibility of another hemorrhage; and c) postpartum depression. People frequently say that you fear the unknown. However, I don't. I fear the known. I know what it feels like to give your all to a child and know that it's still not enough. I know the fear of hemorrhaging after birth. And I know the darkness of postpartum depression. I'm taking steps to prevent and/or deal with each of these things but how much can you prepare? Will nature even let you? Sometimes you just have to trust and take the leap.

I think of people I know and love who are taking leap after leap after leap. My grandma, who is giving up her home, her things of 70 years, and moving to a retirement home. For good. A friend who just moved to Chicago to begin a new job and a new life. A strong woman who will follow her husband to a new state and start all over. Someone who is beginning his life again with someone new. An amazing woman still healing from the sting of loss. Leap after leap after leap. Life.

Another dear friend of mine wrote in her blog about a man who predicts that in 35 years we, as a human race, will have merged with our technology and may be able to overcome death. He did not state that this is a positive thing. And even so...even if this is true someday...can it detract, make less of, the Life we follow here? Our Path? Can our knowing that death or struggle is not inevitable make these leaps of faith less significant? Maybe. Our Lives are about lessons learned and choices made. Consequences. And what if, someday, there aren't that many consequences left? That may be a scary day for our children and I'm not sure I want that.

This has become more of a monologue on the virtues of technology v. the sacredness of Life than a rant on the weariness of pregnancy. And that's okay. I guess, when it comes to the former, time will tell. Hmmm, looks like a give a damn after all. Rats.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The screwdriver goes in the drawer, Ari.

I was making rice crispy treats today...with brand new coco crispies and 6-months-past-the-best-by date marshmallows (pretty typical in our house)...while Ari tried my patience from the living room, then the kitchen, then the living room, then hanging on my leg and standing on my foot. I was slowly losing my cool after a day of "I want, I want" without the please, whining and general American-bred entitlement that only a two-year-old can display with such vulgarity at times. Finally, he opened the junk drawer next to the stove, peaked in, pulled out a screwdriver and looked at me with the devil in his eyes. My first thought: My goodness, he's getting tall. My second thought: Why that little shit...

Ari: Mommy, I pay wif shooshiver?

Me (giving him my best regal-queen-of-the-Amazon-I-take-no-crap look): Ari, do we play with screwdrivers in this house?

Ari (actually looking abashed): No.

Me: What do we do with it then?

Ari: Put back in dwawer.

Me: That's right. Thank you very much.

Ari (slight chuckle, shaking head and smiling as if suprised by his former silliness): Okay.

I was shocked that the above exchange went so smoothly and so according to what I wanted. Could not believe that he actually looked embarrassed when I called him on the screwdriver thing. My God, my kid is growing a conscience!! And then...he pulled the same stunt again with a second screwdriver. It played out exactly the same way again but I knew he was testing a) his boundaries, b) how tired I was and how much I was going to give, and c) my benevolence in not yelling. Mission accomplished, lesson learned, I announced that I was done with my krispy treats and that we could go into the living room for two more songs before naptime.

Aside: One of his favorite activites is rocking out to adult music and seeing his parents dance along with him. See below post.

So I played the "Animal Song" and the "Move Song" (renaming compliments of Ari) and danced with him, pulling out some fomer clubbing moves and shaking my pregnant belly for all I was worth. Consequently sending me into another contraction. However, the Ar-man bellowed out, "Go, Mom, go!" so I knew I was doing just fine and the contraction was worth it.