Thursday, June 30, 2011

What's in Your Purse?

So I saw this series of posts, and loved it!  I think it appeals to the voyeur in us all.  And I think it is an interesting argument: do the contents of your purse say anything about who you are as a person?

So, without further ado, my purse:

Obtained at Kemo's going away Diva party from a 50 earringed hippy chick with an awesome amber necklace.  Still smells faintly of sunscreen.  "Battled" my buddy Liz to win the purse, primary weapon was my specialty, guilt.  I love this purse for the ginormous size (I used to carry small bags pre-baby.  Finding that larger is better post baby, since I can toss diapers and wipes in the purse and go.), and its bright colors.  It goes with anything just because of the sheer forwardness of it.  And its personality goes well as an accent to my normally otherwise subdued dress.  This is the perfect summer purse for me right now.

And the contents:

Bottle of water, a must for the breastfeeding mama.
Book, because I'm reading again!! (The first book in this series actually rode to the hospital in my bag when I had Z.  It moved over to my purse and rode around for 8 months before I finally got to it.  Now I can't put the series down.)
$20 that Preston gave me the other day and I was too lazy to put in my wallet.
Wallet that Chris French gave me in junior high.  It rode around in my back pocket for years (like a boy), and still does take a ride there occasionally, where it fits perfectly.
iPhone, don't leave home without it!
Roll of tape that I used to tape my toll-tag onto my mom's windshield when I borrowed her car 2 weeks ago.
Brush, for the long crazy hair.
Cover-up, in case I want to appear not like a zitty teenager if I get called into a meeting with The Big Boss.
Chapstick, my favorite flavor.
Business card holder purchased at the National Ornamental Metal Museum on our Chicago 2008 road trip.
Sunscreen purchased on our London 2009 trip - never know when its going to come in handy!
Benadryl cream because I'm allergic to mosquito bites beyond what is normal.  They swell up to huge insanely itchy welts.
Hand sanitizer because I have a Kid now.
Work badge, because the only way I won't forget it is to always have it.
Contact drops.
Compact, even though I hardly ever use it and am thinking about ditching it.
Mirror purchased in London.
Tiny tape measure, which comes in handy more than you would think.
Swiss army knife, every self-sufficient gal needs one.
Cloth wipe, good for runny noses and excessive drool.
Prescription sunglasses in case.  (Non-prescription shades live in my car.)
Coupons and current Babies R Us circular, because I've been caught without it too many times.
Gift cards I'm still carrying around from Christmas, again because I've been caught without them too many times.
Keys and back-up keys. (Really ought to not keep them together...)
Small jewelry box so I don't lose anything when I go to the Y or otherwise need to remove my jewelry.
Fancy pen given to me by Preston's sweet grandparents.
Bottle of acetaminophen, which I started carrying around when I was preggo and it was the only thing I was allowed to take, and have continued carrying around since I'm breastfeeding and it is among the very few things I'm allowed to take.  Hardly ever need it, but like having it around.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

*Frustrated* with Daycare

Last week I sent a little bag of puffs to be given to Z for "snack time".   Monday they gave them to her.  Tuesday they forgot.  After that, every day I've put a note on her paper asking them to offer her the puffs, even though she won't eat them.  Wednesday they remembered.  And every day since then they've forgotten.

Do they even READ the note I send?

This morning I mentioned it to the early morning caregiver.  She said, "Well, you know I'm not here in the afternoon."  And I said, "Well, you're the person I get to see, so perhaps you could pass it along?"  She backpedaled, and then I backpedaled because I don't want a bad relationship with the people who are caring for the Z.  I said, "It isn't a big deal - I mean, she isn't actually eating them, and I don't expect her to, so it isn't like she isn't getting some crucial nutrition, I just want her to get a feel for them."  And then she said, "I understand what you're trying to do, I'll talk to Miss Susan."

The thing is, it *is* a big deal to me.  Not because of the nutrition.  But because I'm explicitly asking (every day) for something to happen each day regarding my child, and it isn't happening.  At all.  Ever.  (And I rarely ask for anything for her.  And this isn't unreasonable - all of the kids EXCEPT Z have a snack every day as a "community".  They're actually leaving her out.)  And that really worries me.  I know the Z is an easy baby.  Super easy.  Does this mean she's being (benignly) neglected?  How do I broach this with the staff?  Do I broach this with the staff?  Or do I just start looking for another daycare?

Monday, June 27, 2011

On a Considering a Second

And a weird mind-space.  (Note: this post has been under construction for several days.  Mostly because it is a hormone-fueled stream-of-consciousness mind-dump.  But I'm posting it anyways, because it is real.  So consider yourself warned.)

I think there may be something biological, something hormonal, that causes a woman to want another baby at a certain point postpartum.  I expect that not everyone experiences it, and that it can be overridden by the memory of a particularly traumatic pregnancy or delivery, or possibly by just a very strong mind (though I'd argue that even those women probably feel it, but fight it).  It is a powerful sensation, a second ticking of a loud and incessant biological clock.  Or at least mine is.

What *is* that, by the way?  I mean, I was never sure I wanted kids.  At a certain point, I felt my biological clock start to tick, and I wanted kids physically, but I still wasn't sure I wanted them intellectually.  It took a (now happy) accident to get my mind over that edge and in sync with my body.

So I'm 8, almost 9 months postpartum.  I'm almost back to my prepregnancy weight (132.6 this morning!).  Close enough to call it even, really, in the larger scheme of things.  I'm not back to my prepregnancy core strength, that's for sure.  But all my old clothes fit.  I'm not back to my old fitness level, but that could take a serious long while.  And there is a part of me that wonders if it is worth it to get it all back to only lose it again, if we were to have another.

I'm still breastfeeding and obviously as a result my hormones are still totally out of whack. But this scenario would make sense to me: around this time the baby is slowly taking less milk and more solids, meaning that sometime in the near(ish) future, mama will return to fertility.  Is the sudden fascination with a second kiddo an indication of the beginning of this process?  You know, a mindset to perpetuate the species?

And then how crazy is it to try to remove all the hormone-fueled lack-of-logic to try to really examine if you want another kid?  Do I want another kid?  I wish I knew!  I wish I knew what was a real feeling and what is a body-screwing-with-mind hormone feeling.

I almost want to do a pro vs. con, but it seems so ridiculous.

Here's the thing that keeps bringing me around to wanting another (other than hormones).  I'm an only child for all practical purposes.  I always wanted a little brother.  I asked Santa for him every year.  (Ha!)  I know that if I had had a sibling, I wouldn't have always liked him/her.  But I know I'd have loved him/her.  And I know that I would have gone through life with someone who was tied to me by blood.  And I think I'd have been better for it.

Ok, fine, my mind demands pro v con.  (Some of these will be silly.)

Cons: Attention divided from Zoë, more diapers, more money, more energy, more time, less sleep, more hectic.  This Kid is practically perfect (in every way) - could a second ever live up to the hype?  There'd be 2; P and I would be evenly matched instead of 1-up. 

Pros:  There'd be 2 - more love all around.  Playmate/fightmate/mischeifmate for Zoë.  We already have all the gear.  We already don't sleep enough, so what's the big deal?  If it is a boy, we already have a name.  I'm already out of shape, let's get it over with.  If the 2nd is nearly as awesome as the Z, we'd be doing the world (and ourselves) a favor. ;-)

If we did have another, when?  This article says that the ideal interval between births for a woman's body is 18 months-5 years, and for the new baby, a shorter window of 2-3 years seems best.  Of course it also cites a psychological study that says that under 1 year or over 4 years is the best time for the first child.  Not very helpful, Interwebs!

This weird mind-space has involved a fascination with the archives of my own blog, looking back to pregnancy and these first months of the Z's life.  (Weird.)  And a fascination with others who are preggo or have little ones.  Or even better, have multiple little ones.  But I'm not finding any answers.  I guess I recognize this as "data gathering", but I wish there was an easy answer.  Or that this damned *longing* would let up!  But even as I long I waver.  Z'll do something amazing and wonderful and sweet and I think that it could never be topped - I need to stop while I'm ahead, you know?  And then I'll roller-coaster the other direction.

I have no ending for this post, because there is no ending, at least not yet.  This is just what my mind is doing, has been doing for a few weeks now.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Baby Board Book Reviews

The Z has three more new favorite books:

(I apologize for the orientation - blogger for some reason thinks this is a vertical pic)

There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly (version published by Child's Play): This book has holes in it, and Z loves it!  She reaches for the holes and uses them to help her turn the pages.  It is also brightly colored and very rhythmic to read.  Highly recommended!

The Greedy Python by Eric Carle: This is my favorite of his books so far!  The text by Richard Buckley is rhyming and easy to read aloud, and contains concepts like animal names, counting, and left/right, all while telling a fun story with Carle's famous style illustrations.  Love it!

Flip Flap Fly! by Phillis Root: Also very highly recommended.  I stumbled on this at the library, checked it out, and after having it at home for the maximum allowable time decided that we needed our own copy.  This one is rhythmic and fun to read out loud.  It introduces baby animals and their locomotion methods, and the Z loves it, pointing at the baby animals, and squealing for the "kiss like this" part where I plant smooches on her chubby cheeks while reading it to her.

All of these are board books.  I've seen a lot of boring baby board books, with only a few words on each page, or ones that just aren't fun to read out loud.  But since the kiddo can't read yet, I think it is best to grab her attention with great pictures, but also to have a decent amount of words in there so she gets exposed.  And the books that are rhyming or just more lyrical are more fun for her and for us.  Love these books!

And for an adult book review: I'm reading Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson.  If you liked Robert Jordan, you'll like him.  I'm totally absorbed and counting the minutes til Z nurses so I can get a chapter in!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

First Booboo

Z fell at daycare.

On her nose.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday Funny

Yesterday I sent the Z to daycare with a little bag of baby puffs and instructions to her caregivers that I'd like her to be offered 4 or 5 puffs along with a cup of water each day at snack time.  In the instructions I noted that Z  probably would not actually eat the puffs, but that I was just getting her used to them and just want her to have the opportunity to play with them (or eat them if she wants).

She came home with a note: Zoë loved her cup of water, but she picked up each of her puffs and threw them on the floor one by one.

Lol!  For some reason, the "one by one" is just hilarious to me.  It implies such a deliberate rejection of the food.  (Really what she is doing is discovering gravity and object permanence.  She loves to throw things on the floor, and then lean out of her chair and look for them.  And then get us to pick them up and repeat the whole process.  Of course, at daycare, once the food went to the floor it was dead to them, so her little modus operandi didn't work quite so well there.)

I sent a note today asking them to continue offering her the puffs anyways.  She'll get this finger food thing eventually.

Oh, and p.s. this morning when I woke her up, she clapped!

Monday, June 20, 2011

More Sicky Sickerson

This is getting ridiculous!

On Thursday I woke up with a sore throat and bad headache and bagged my workout.  Boo.  I never ran a fever, but my throat got progressively more and more sore through Saturday.  I tried to be good all weekend, napping every day and staying close to home.  Yesterday I saw slight improvement, and today a bit more.  In the throat area, that is.  I aslo have a nagging, hacking, dry cough that came along with the throat, and that seems to be sticking around.  I bagged my run this morning in favor of an indoor stationary bike ride, thinking that that might tax the respiratory system a little less, and once again, ease me back into things.

I wonder at what point it'll stop being "back into things" and just become "into things"?

Screw it all, but I'm going for a run tomorrow morning!

(Oh, the good thing this morning?  I biked in a pair of my old running shorts, AND THEY FIT!!!  I think they were the last holdouts, yay!)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!

Eating the first ever card that she gave/signed.

And her signature. :-)

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, June 16, 2011


I think my parents are going to put earnest money down on a house this morning!!

In H-town!!!!!

Less than a mile from my house!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Explanation/Supporting statements (not all necessarily related to each other, but all related to my excitement):
I love my parents, and living far far away from them sucks.  They have/understand boundaries, so I'm not scared of them living close to me and being all inappropriate and up in our shit.  We lived about 20-30 minutes away from my grandparents when I was a shrimpie, and that was too far, in my opinion; we made the effort to go over there once a week, but what a pain in the ass.  Mom is soooooo helpful with the Z; and the Z loves her 3rd most in the world (after me and P).  They're willing to take the Z once a week so that she isn't full time daycare, annnnnd they're willing to take the Z to daycare every morning, so I can go back to working 10 hour days and having Friday off, yaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!!  Did I mention free babysitting less than a mile away from my house?  A mile is easy running distance; I can pop the Z into the BOB and just run her over = BRILLIANT!  The potential house is also walking distance from the Z's future elementary school (and hopefully future daycare that doesn't take the kiddos until they are 18mo.).

And, this house is perfect for them, really.  It is a 3/2/2, a bit smaller than their current house, not much yard to mow and some really nice hardscaping, big giant air-conditioned workshop for all Dad's man toys, insanely awesome closet for Mom's girliness, giant 2nd bedroom that has a Murphy bed so it can double as an office, neat-o built-ins and little upgrades all over.  It is really a great house, and it has everything they want except for land.  And while I know they wanted a little land, I actually think it is better that they don't get it, because as they get older the upkeep would have been progressively more difficult for them.  This is literally a house that would be appropriate to be the last house they ever have to buy.  It is perfect.  (They might want to do a few upgrades - wood instead of carpet in a few rooms, maybe a granite countertop at some point, but really the place is good-to-go right now.  Brilliant!)

Brilliant, yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyy!!!!!!!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

She waves!

My precious baby now waves to say hello and goodbye!  You have to work her for it, but she's doing it pretty consistently with prompting.  It is the cutest thing EVAR.  I've been trying to get pics/video, but no luck yet.

(Note to self/P: We really need to start implementing the basic signs for more, milk, eat, sleep!)

In other news, a hurricane is about to descend on our house.  Not the Ike variety, but the MIL variety.  Goodness help me!  I keep reminding myself that I *think* I'm only going to have to be around her for a few hours this evening, since she is basically just using us for an overnight stay before leaving for a cruise tomorrow.  I can do anything for a few hours.  Really.  Also, my parentals are coming in today.  (They had planned to come in for quite some time.  MIL just INFORMED us that she's coming in last week.)  They're going to look at houses in H-town, and retrieve Preston's Camaro (sigh) that Dad is buying from him.  Excited about one less car.  Sad (very very sad) to be selling the car that brought us together.  Anyways, I think having my parents there will make handling MIL easier, since she'll have 4 targets to distract her instead of just 2.  Will be interesting to see how the Z reacts, but she really flirts with everyone, so it will probably be positively.

Made it through last evening's 2 nursing sessions without getting clamp-pulled or supplementing with a bottle, hooray!!  Fed the Z from a bottle this morning, just to keep things simple/easy/quick.  Still wasn't willing to risk a bad morning feeding.

Did 30 minutes on the recumbent this morning.  Honestly, feeling a little cruddy again - sinuses, dizzy, sore throat.  Coincidence, or can my body just not handle 30 minutes of exercise a day on an average of 6 hours per night of sleep?  (Now I'm wondering if Z was clamp-pulling because she had a sore throat and eating was hurting??)  I suppose only time will tell.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Another Breastfeeding Bump in the Road

So The Kid (easier to depersonalize her when she is hurting me) has started to do this new thing where she clamps down and then pulls back while clamped down instead of just opening her mouth and letting go of the boob.  NOT COOL.  Actually very painful.  As painful as biting, PLUS pulling.  Excellent.

She's been doing this since Friday afternoon.

I have a number of theories:
  • I'm not producing enough, and the slow flow is ticking her off.
  • Growth spurt, and the slow flow is ticking her off.
  • That's kinda what happens when you pull a bottle out of her mouth, maybe she is just transferring.
  • Teething.
  • Finished nursing, clamp-pulling is fun!

There is (different) supporting evidence for each theory, except for teething, because you never know when it is teething.  So without a real cause, it is really difficult to try to intelligently break the habit.

Here's what I tried:
  • Saying (ok, occasionally yelling) "No" very firmly and removing her from the boob.  Full on toddler hissy fit tantrum ensues, including red faced crying/screaming, back arching, etc.  Awesome.
  • Putting up with it.  I tried this when I was trying to get her to sleep, because let's face it, she isn't sleeping if I'm scolding her.  Result: pain.  And she still didn't sleep.  Total failure.
  • Pushing her into the boob when I feel her trying to pull back.  This interrupts her breathing, forcing her to open her mouth to release.  (Sounds worse than it is!)  I've had mild success with this one.  But it is difficult and requires serious vigilance on my part to catch the clamp-pull *before* the clamp.  Or at least before the pull.
  • Switching sides after first clamp-pull, ending session after second clamp-pull.  Also resulted in total tantrum.  And eventually me giving her a bottle.  And she took 5 oz, so I really believe she was still hungry, at least that time.  Even though she had nursed for almost 20 minutes already.
  • Breaking her suction and frantically withdrawing boob every time I think it is about to happen.  Also difficult on me.  Usually results in my holding boob in one hand, and her head in the other, cramps running up both arms, neck bent 90 degrees staring at her, scared to blink, cramping in my shoulders, stomach hurting from the fear... Yeah, not my favorite method.
  • I'm also playing around with my pumping times so as to never feed her when "empty".  Even though breasts actually produce milk on demand, and are therefore never empty, production takes time and slows the flow, so I'm just generally trying to go into feedings having pumped no less than 2 hours previously.

When I got to work yesterday morning I was shaking from the adrenaline.  I felt like I had been in a battle with the baby!  I was disturbed to the extent that this morning I just offered a bottle.  And it was so.much.better.  Wow.

Last night we had one good session (the last when she fell asleep), and one bad (2 clamp-pulls, ended in bottle).  So I was pleased with the last session and am hoping that means she's over it. *fingers crossed*  (I have found in the past when she has gone through biting phases, twice, that after about a week it seems to work itself out.)  I mean, I really really hope she's over it.  Because when nursing ain't going right, ain't nothing going right for mama.

Well, one thing is going right.  This morning I did the 30 Day Shred for my 30 minutes of exercise today, day 2, oh yeah!

Monday, June 13, 2011

I Ran!

And it was glorious.

Just a 30 minute session, run one song, walk the next.  No reason to tax the immune system by doing anything "difficult".  Just easing back into things after a (too) long layoff.  Goal for this week is simply 30 minutes a day, Monday-Friday.  One day down!

I think what (finally) got me better (not my best, but better enough to run) is that I took Friday off, took Z to daycare, and took 2 naps for a total of 3 hours.  It was brilliant.  And when I was awake, I did nothing.  And it was everything I thought it could be.  Then Saturday and Sunday I skipped my 3:30am pumping session at the risk of my supply to sleep in.  And I slept 9 hours and 8 hours.  And it was brilliant.

I may have only gotten 5 hours last night due to a sleep-fighting baby and a 3:30am pumping session followed by a run, but I ran!!!

Thursday, June 9, 2011


Redheads are famous for some things... short fuses and stubbornness come to mind.  I know that there are always exceptions to stereotypes, but I certainly fit this one, and at times have taken a certain level of pride in the stubbornness part, at least.  The short fuse has been an Achilles' heel for me, and I have worked and worked on managing my emotions and coping strategies and over the years I've lengthened that fuse (but goodness help anyone who is around when I reach the end!).

My mother-in-law is an exception.  I don't know why, but the woman just rubs me the wrong way.  All the time.  EVERY time.  I think about her and the fuse gets shorter.  I hear her name and it gets shorter.  I see her picture and shorter.  It is practically nonexistent when I have to breathe the same air as she does, and that is before she even opens her mouth.  Once that happens, wowza, it is an exercise in masking my emotions and playing nice like no other!  As long as she treats my husband and my child with the respect and love and truth they deserve, I manage.

An example (which triggered this blog): Preston turned out as a journeyman electrician on May 13th.  We went to a little ceremony where there was dinner and an open bar and they all walked across a stage and got a certificate.  Quite nice, really.  It wasn't your standard high school or college graduation in an arena where the whole family comes, it was a small by invitation journeyman+one little shindig.  We "checked in" to the hotel where it was happening on Facebook, and I posted pics of Journeyman Preston and we all had a nice time.

This morning, THIS MORNING, almost a month later, this comment shows up on the check-in on Facebook: "Where was your Mother?? No invitation??"

It took ALL I HAVE, it is taking ALL I HAVE not to reply to that comment.  In my mind this is a direct attack on P's character.  She's trying to make him look like an asshole for not inviting his mother.  And there are plenty of people who will see that post who won't know that he couldn't invite her - it wasn't that type of party.  WHY would you do that to your SON who you're supposed to LOVE?  I don't understand her mentality.  Even if you think your kid is an asshole who doesn't pay proper attention to you, do you really want to nag like that in a public forum?  And I resent the whole situation because I can't react to protect my husband without coming across like an asshole myself.  I want to say something about how WIVES get to be the plus ones.  About how only people get invited to events like this who supported the graduate, not people who call twice a year (on Mother's day and their birthday) to bitch about never getting phone calls and who visit once a year to see the Spurs play the Rockets and force their son and family to come downtown to meet them.  Inappropriate, I know.  But I even think a completely true, "Sorry, J, but this was an invitee+date party only," would come across assholish.

In a perfect world, I need to figure out what button it is that she pushes and find some way to protect it, mask it, disable it.  In the real world it is an exercise in controlling the emotions, because the fuse was lit as soon as I saw her name, and it had reached the end before I finished reading the comment.  Control the emotions.  Do not respond.  I am the bigger person here.  Responding only brings me to her level. 

Goodness, I hope for Z's sake that she doesn't conform to the stereotype!  But I hope for the peace and wisdom to teach her to deal with it if she does.  This is all just practice for the future.  This is all making me a stronger, better person.

Maybe Preston can remove her post, though, so I don't have to see it...

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Weekend in Words

Friday I worked my half day, then rushed home to start cleaning/laundry, knowing that we were going to be gone all weekend.

I called P and told him I'd love to go with him to pick up the Z, so he got me first, we got her (and she *waved* at us when we got there, for the first time, SO COOL), and went to Jax for some burgers.  The burgers were my first real "non-safe" food since the hospital.  And it was gooooood.  Then we headed over to the carwash where Z flirted at the gumball machine and waved(!) at the guy who worked there.  Then home.

Saturday morning we woke up and got Z up, packed up, and headed to the in-laws' at 9am.  Got there, greeted everyone, had one of the marathon nursing sessions that have become common since the week nursing lay-off required by my hospitalization, and then headed over to the center over an hour early to get seats and watch my SIL graduate. (P and I both have non-traditional families: I have a half-brother and half-sister about 20 years older than me by my Dad's first marriage, and P has a half-brother and half-sister about 10 years younger than him by his Dad's second marriage.  So while my bro has a grandbaby that is barely older than my daughter,  P's sis is just graduating high school!)

Anyways, that went well.  Because we had P's step-grandmother there, we got to sit in a handicap accessible area, which was great for the Z and the two toddlers to run and crawl around.  By the end of graduation Z had skipped her morning nap and she actually sacked out as her head was hitting her carseat.

After all the picture taking, we all went out for mexican food (we were starving!), then back to their house.  I had to take a nap, I really wasn't feeling well.  Here is where nursing can become frustrating: I actually had to nurse in the restaurant, which is difficult and uncomfortable... then I only got a 40 minute nap because the baby was hungry again.  It is times like those when I wish I could just bust out a bottle.  *Sigh*  But nursing is worth it, I know that.  I just need to keep reminding myself!

Anyways, when I woke up, we all went for a swim.  Zoë loved it!  Hopefully some peeps will send me some pics of all the water fun.  But she splashed around and hung out in a little float ring thingy and giggled and generally had a great time.  Then we had a bath and went to bed.

Next morning was all about helping them get ready for the afternoon graduation party.  Zoë gifted us with an *unprecedented* 3 hour (3 hour!!!) nap from 11-2.  Very helpful for the preparation of food and running of errands!  I think she was just worn out from the day before.

My favorite thing about parties at the in-laws is the food.  These people really know how to put on a grazing  buffet.  They always have summer sausage with crackers and cheese.  And the best spinach dip.  And this time we added a really yummy fruit dip that I could NOT get enough of.  Good stuff!  Z got to go for another swim and loved it again.

All in all a very good weekend, but tough being away from our house basically all day Saturday and all day Sunday... I feel like we're going to be behind on the cleaning and cooking and everything basically all week.  I'm still feeling really run down.  I wouldn't have chosen the weekend after hospitalization to be away from my house and unable to rest much... hopefully this coming weekend I can really try to get some good rest in and get better.  I'm sick of being sick!!  I'm ready to run again. :-)

Monday, June 6, 2011

Weekend in iPhone Pics

(Pics from real camera to follow.)

Gumball machine at the car wash.

I know this is blurry, but it is such a classic thing that she does, leaning around something to check out something else.  Of course, it is usually me she is leaning around and a kitty she is checking out...

This is another new thing: putting her nose on something that interests her.

She loves lemons. 


Big girl.

Another classic thing she was doing: leaning back on someone and looking sideways at them.  This is with her step-great-grandmother, Grandma Tean.

And a sideways examination of Daddy's ear.  (Sorry about the back lighting.)

Playing on all fours - crawling can't be far now!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Saturday, June 4, 2011


I didn't say this in my post about the Epic Memorial Day Weekend, but I'm convinced that if I lived somewhere else, or somewhen else, I'd have died last weekend.  I'm not exaggerating or overreacting or looking for sympathy; I truly believe that I'd have died.  My death certificate would have said something about "dehydration as a complication of diahrrea/vomiting".  Or as my great-uncle's said: "dysentery".  He died when he was only a baby.

I've never had an experience like this before.  Until last weekend I had only been hospitalized once, and that was to have a baby.  And I had been to the ER once, for a broken wrist.  I consider myself to be strong, healthy, an athlete.  I hadn't missed a single day of work since I had Bell's Palsy in 2007, and before that, since I had the flu.  So I'm not exaggerating when I say this is the sickest I've *ever* been.

The entire experience has me re-evaluating everything.  Everything.  I wrote this in an email to J, and thought, I really need to blog it... so here are exerpts:

I keep thinking, "I just had a baby, and I could have died. That would be it. My baby would grow up without me." Usually followed by, "At least I'd leave something behind." Followed by, "Holy shit, I should be dead." I totally feel like I'm living on borrowed time now. Hope I didn't tick Death off by escaping, you know?

The other weird thing is that I always thought I was the strong one. I haven't been sick in years. I work out. I eat well, you know, all that shit. And here comes a nasty killing bug and it tried to kill ME. Not my baby, not my mom, not my wimpy big scary husband, but ME. That's some fucked up shit.

[And then re a situation at work:] Like I can't believe I'm having to waste energy on this shit, I should be dead! I know it is just circumstances, but it seems like *nothing* is going right for me right now, and the [thing] is just one more comedy of errors to fuck my shit up. And all I want to do is be home with Zoë. Soooo badly. This made me want to stay home sooooo badly. I mean, what if I had died? What if I had worked up to my deathday? And spent my last day here with this bullshit and NOT my baby? What kind of fucked up world do we live in where that is ok? It isn't ok. That's the answer. So really "almost" dying just made me want to quit again. I'm sitting here but I can't get a handle on my desire to NOT be here. Can't not feel like this is a waste of time. Arg!!"

I don't know if I'll quit my job.  I don't know if anything will change at all.  I do know that when I go home at night I hug my baby like I don't ever want to let go.  And tears spring up in my (still hormonally challenged) eyes when I think that I could have died on her.  Every moment is precious and wonderful and needs to be fully experienced.  (Not that it makes me hand her back to Preston any slower when she starts yowling about something!)

When I found out I was pregnant, I wasn't sure I wanted a baby.  Even as I carried her, I wasn't sure.  But I remember when she became alive, human, to me in that 19th week ultrasound.  And every day since I had her I just love her more.  She is everything to me.  It hurts my heart every morning when I leave her for work.  I ache to see her all day long.  I am so proud of her and so much better with her in my life.  I want to be there for her.  I want to be better for her.  And I want her to have the best life possible.  The question is: can I provide that life for her with me working (more money) or with me not-working (more attention)?  My mom suggested to me last night that quality trumps quantity, and perhaps that is true if the quantity is of poor quality.  But if the quantity is high-quality, then more is always better.  So what do I do?  Will I use my near-death experience to make a real change in my life?  Or will the reevaluation show that I need to stay my course?  I don't know the answer.  But sometimes it helps to blog the process.

And now back to your regularly scheduled, and hopefully happier (!!) programming.

Friday, June 3, 2011


May Goal Review

1.  Work out every day.  No excuses.  (Focus on running and core.  But ANYTHING will do.  Just EVERY day.)  Well, I started out really well, but I think hospitalization is actually a valid excuse.  Will try again as soon as I get back on my feet.

2.  Do #1. For serious.  Ok, ok, soon!

Informal goals: get Preston to finish the upstairs floor (fail, but progress!), run another 5K (near the end of the month) with another post-preggo PR (fail, because I was in the hospital at the end of the month when my 5K was planned), don't get laid off (yay, success), have a lovely birthday (done), eat less ice cream/shakes/cookies/candy (ckeck), and keep gathering calorie counts for when I do start back counting (yep!).

Weight on 5/3 was 138.0.  Weight this morning: 135.0.  Official weight loss this month 3 lbs.  And I never went over 140!  In reality, I don't think the loss would have been that much without the sickness.  I think I was working on maybe 1lb down, tops, but in all the sickness I got as low as 132.8.  I expect that there is some potential for it to come back since it wasn't a healthy loss, and I'm ok with that.  Right now I need to focus on getting energy back up, milk supply back up, eating back up, and then working out back up.  So I'm ok with whatever happens this month.

June Goals

1.  Get back to feeling 100%.  Whatever it takes.

2.  Once I get back on my feet: Work out 5 days out of 7.  No excuses.  (Focus on running and core.  Try to start going back to the Y to swim on Fridays.  But ANYTHING will do.)

Informal goals: get Preston to finish the upstairs floor, run another 5K... that's pretty much it.  Trying to go a little easier on myself this time around. 

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Wordless Thursday

At Jax looking all redheaded.

New favorite standing prop: the giant bottle I bought from my ex-boss's garage sale that I intend to use as a change collector.

Look Ma, one hand!

Omg, that flash is the funniest thing I've ever seen!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Epic Memorial Day Weekend

But not in a good way, unfortunately!  I could also title this "The Curse of the Daycare Germs Continues".

Here are the nitty, gritty, DIRTY details (saddle up, this one's gonna be a doozy):

Thursday morning when I woke up to pump I felt... funny.  I hooked myself up and got everything going, and then about halfway through had to stop to RUN to the bathroom.  Thought maybe I had a stomach bug, so decided to skip my morning workout and nap for a bit longer before work.

When Preston's alarm went off, I felt really funny.  Kind of dizzy, fuzzy headed, and definitely like I was going to puke.  Which I did.  And as is common, I almost immediately felt better.  I called in to work (I have a cancer patient who works in my department who I wouldn't want to expose to anything) and told them I'd work some from home.

Very soon after that I started feeling bad.  Then I puked again.  And again.  And went to the bathroom.  And puked.  And bathroomed.  You get the idea.  It was bad.  Really, really bad.

I tried to sleep it off.  No dice.  I tried a sip of Gatorade.  No dice.  I tried EVERYTHING.  When the doctor opened I called and she called in a Phinergan (anti-nausea) prescription in for me.  Preston went to fill it while I puked my guts out.  He got back, I swallowed the pill, puked 5 minutes later, and twice more in the hour.  I called the doc back and they told me to go to the ER.

So I went to the ER, got all my paperwork filled out and got triaged, and then helped myself to a bench to sleep on until they called me.  Preston said it was only about an hour.  They called me back (I dry heaved all the way from the bench to my spot) and put me into a curtain bay with one of those uncomfortable hospital chairs that reclines.  I went back to sleep.  Eventually the doc came to see me and they started IV saline to rehydrate me and gave me Zofran for the nausea.  Zofran works, y'all.  Very soon after that I was sure I could hold liquids and I started asking for Gatorade.  Which of course took forever because the doc had to order it.  But eventually it came and I held it down.  So they decided to load me up with one more liter of saline and send me home to sort out my bathroom problems on my own.  (I should note here that while we were in the ER we called my mom to come down and help with Z.  Daycare called and said she had diahrrea and we needed to get her.  And Preston threw up also.)

In the ER. It was freezing!

And I thought the worst was over.

I continued having bathroom issues all night and the next morning, but I continued to hold my Gatorade down.  I didn't feel like I could eat anything solid, so I just kept pounding the Gatorade.  At some point mid-morning I took a nap, and when I woke up I felt AWFUL.  I was shivering violently.  I had to actually call for help and mom and Preston bundled me up, but I kept shivering for a long time.  I drifted in and out of sleep.  When I woke up again, I had stopped shivering, but I felt even worse.  I took my temperature and it was 104.4!  104.4!!!  I called the doc and asked if I needed to go to the ER again.  They said yes, take Tylenol and head over.

Once again I got there, got my paperwork filled out, got triaged, and found a bench for my waiting nap(s).  I was obviously even sicker than the day before, so I assumed the wait wouldn't be that bad.  Boy was I wrong!  I eventually saw a doctor in a little cubby in the waiting room.  He ordered a ton of tests (x-rays, blood, urine, stool), and they actually started my IV to rehydrate me IN the waiting room.  They wouldn't give me a blanket because of my fever, but they had also given me motrin, so I shivered and groaned my way through a massive fever-break in the waiting room.  Awesome.  Those other people must have throught I had the plague, because you have to also picture that I was running to the bathroom every 10-15 minutes whenever I was awake.  After I had been there about 6 hours, the x-ray tech that took me back for my abdominal x-ray told me that there were over 20 people waiting, they were closed to trauma because they were so full but ambulances came anyways, and I was probably looking at at least a few more hours.  I thanked him for his honesty.  About 7 hours into the thing I decided I had to pump.  I asked the triage nurse where I could go, and he told me the bathroom.  The single bathroom with a locking door that was serving the 50 sick people in the waiting room.  I told him I'd tie it up for probably 30 minutes and he just shrugged (asshole).  So I took my pump and went in there and was trying to figure out how to make it work (remember that I can barely stand.  And there is no lid on the toilet to sit on.) and the bathroom was just so dirty and filthy and I just broke.  I started crying and came back out and there was a nurse calling my name for another test.  When that was over I told Preston I was going to the car to pump.  So I went out, IV port (bag was already in me) and all, and got set up in the car.  Right as I started the suction, Preston knocks on the window and tells me they've called me and they're admitting me.  UGH! 

So I disconnect and go back in and Nurse Twitchy takes me back into what looks like an office where they've parked a hospital bed.  I ask him what's wrong with me and he says he doesn't know, he thinks I'm the patient with gallstones, but I'm being admitted.  I'll just be held here until a room is ready.  And they're going to start antibiotics through my IV.  He tosses a gown on my legs and leaves.  Ok... odd.  So I go find a restroom and then come back and he's like, "Oh, you aren't ready, I'll come back."  And I tell him I'm not sure what I need to do to get ready?  And he tells me to put on the gown, and oh-by-the-way-you-don't-have-gallstones, you have diarrhea-presumed-infectious.  Nice.  Quality care, there.

Anyways, they finally get my IV started.  Then the ER doc and my PC doc's rep come by on rounds and tell me what they're doing to me, which is basically pumping me full of broad spectrum antibiotics to kill off anything and everything bacterial that ever thought of living inside of me, in hopes that a bacteria was causing my distress and not a virus.  Brilliant.  Then I got a new nurse, who we'll call Nurse Tattoo.  I tell him that I'm gonna pump, and I finally get that process started.  He manages to forget and walk in and freak out a few times (not that I care - the guy is supposed to be a trained healthcare professional, and I'm performing a necessarily bodily function).  The holding of the pump up causes my IV to get ticked off and beep very loudly and obnoxiously.  I call for someone multiple times.  30 minutes later, the thing is still beeping, and I have to go to the bathroom again.  Remember that I'm still in someone's office, or something.  So I go down the hall with my beeping machine and the bathroom is in use.  So I stop outside and just close my eyes and try to rest while I stand there and wait.  With my beeping machine.  Right by the nurses' station.  Where there are 3 nurses talking to each other.  Eventually, apparently, my beeping became so annoying TO THEM that one came over and made it stop.  Then the bathroom opened up, and by the time I got back to my "room", Nurse Tattoo was there to take me to my real room.

Which was quite nice, actually.  It was a single with a nice big bench thing for Preston to sleep on.  We got settled in around midnight and crashed for the rest of the night.

The next morning when they hung my second bag of Cipro, I started having an allergic reaction to... something.  So that was fun.  Add Benadryl to my list of awesome drugs.  And the doc switched me from Cipro to Bactrim.
My "spots".

My diet was defined as "Clears", so a tray containing chicken broth, cranberry juice, apple juice, and NOT-red jello appeared for breakfast.

For lunch I was given the culinary delight of beef broth, cranberry juice, apple juice, and NO, STILL NOT-red jello.

When my doc made his rounds I told him I thought maybe I could try something soft but solid, like mashed potatoes.  He said that if I could hold that down, they'd let me go.  Eventually a menu worked its way to my room, but I couldn't order "Room Service" because I had no phone.  My nurse ordered for me: biscuits, chicken noodle soup, mashed potatoes, apple sauce, jello (nope, still not red).  I ate a little of everything, so they let me go at 10pm, but not without one more bit of insanity: I'm all signed out, packed, and ready to go, so the nurse goes to call for a wheelchair.  I seriously think that that is the dumbest hospital policy ever - I'm well enough for you to let me go, but I'm not *allowed* to walk out under my own power?  What is that?  Anyways, I wait and wait and wait and Preston is waiting in the car outside with the baby because she isn't allowed inside.... for 45 minutes!!  I finally call and say, SERIOUSLY???  And someone comes and tells me that they can't FIND a wheelchair.  A HOSPITAL.  Can't FIND a WHEELCHAIR.  Ugh!!  So they let me walk out.

My Quarantine sign.

The rest of the weekend was rest and recovery and helping my sick baby, husband, and mom as much as I could.  The (Epic) End. :-)