Friday, April 28, 2006

Seen and heard

Things seen in my house this morning:

one (1) Avent bottle, filled with formula, uneaten;
one (1) Evenflo bottle, filled with freshly squeezed breastmilk, uneaten;
one (1) Playtex bottle with big brown rubber nipple, filled with purified water, uneaten;

one very disdainful Mouse, contentedly eating away at the only decent restaurant in town - me.*

Also seen:

me, at the Bear's school, blithely chatting with the teachers, wearing no makeup, hair and teeth unbrushed, oblivious to the fact that my fly is open, in a milk-stained sweatshirt that they have already seen me in twice this week.

Things heard in my house this morning:

Q: Why did she spit up so much?
A: I think she gagged on my nipple.**

Husband: Have a nice day with the kids.
Me: Have you ever *spent* an entire day with your kids?
Husband: No...
Me: You should try it sometime, you know, if you're in the mood for something to make you rip your eyes out and throw them at people.

Husband: I love you. You're so hot.*** (yes, he said this. yes, I did kick him in the shins.)
Me: Shut up. Bring me a Big Mac. Now.

These hormones are killing me...

*This kid will *not* take a bottle. Any kind of bottle. Filled with anything. From anyone. I go back to work on Monday.
**Kid has the. most. sensitive. gag. reflex. Ever.
***Said while looking *directly at me* in the aforementioned unkempt state. The men, they are not picky.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006


No good excuses for where I've been, although I did run away from home for a week. But I'm back now! And still not updating. I will confess to having some belated baby blues. Alternately, it could be nursing hormones. Or, god forbid, the reemergence of my Freaking Period. At 9 weeks postpartum. While exclusively breastfeeding. I could be wrong, but if I am, then what the heck was that spotting?!

Anyway, in an attempt to get back in the saddle, having been randomly tagged by the internet and those people who themselves tagged the whole internet, here are 6 Random Things About Me! (in no particular order)

1. I used to manage a Greek diner in the city, a job for which I was massively unqualified. In fact, I was only hired because my boss (a lovely woman) thought I was hot and wanted to hook up with me. Ahem. Still, that was a fun job - it had its perks! (Probably not the ones you're thinking about! Geez! What kind of girl do you think I am?)

2. I once had an egg thrown at me from the window of a passing car at three in the morning as I was walking back to my apartment. The drunken frat boys inside thought I was a drag queen (seen from behind). What gave that impression, I'll never know. Must be my muscular calves!

3. My breasts get stage fright. You know how some people can't pee if they think others are listening? Well, I can't pump if someone is watching. It inhibits the letdown, somehow. Very embarrassing. They don't want people watching them work! In fact, in order to get past the stage fright, I have to read a book while I pump. I can't even look myself. I'm currently stockpiling for my imminent return to work for the last three weeks of school, wherein nobody ever learns anything. My fridge looks like I'm preparing to feed an army of starving orphans.

4. I have been racially profiled by the police of a major US city. I am white.

5. I have a Master's degree, but I will freely confess that I did not learn a single blessed thing during my entire grad school career. The only helpful thing I gained from the experience (besides a job and a raise) was this: an old nun once told me, in regard to my chosen profession, "If at first you don't succeed, get a bigger hammer!" Gotta love her.

6. I have arthritis in the finger that I had broken by an incredibly well-dressed mugger less than three blocks from my apartment. Also, that nail has a split in it that refuses to go away, five years later.

Well, that about wraps it up for me. Coming soon - Why am I so moody? Do I have to go back to work? Can I lose these last 10 pounds? What is the meaning of the universe?

Thursday, April 06, 2006


Doesn't it always seem to be the case that anticipation of an unpleasant event creates a greater amount of fear? What I mean is this - when I get blood drawn, I always tell the tech not to warn me before poking me. If I don't know the stick is coming, I won't freak out. If they tell me before they stick me, I'll tense up and freak out. I'd much rather not know that any unpleasantness is coming my way until it's already there.

I live in tornado alley. I have all my life, with the exception of college and grad school, spent in Chicago (oh, how I miss it). I am very used to bad weather. I like the bad weather. It excites me. When the sirens go off, I go outside to look at the sky.

However, for the last three days the forecasters have been predicting a huge outbreak of extremely severe weather for tonight. Normally, you don't know it's coming until it's here. But now, today, I've had all day to think about tonight, and the very real possibility that my house and family will incur some sort of damage.* Husband works evenings, and so I will be here, home alone with both girls, all night long. How can I carry both of them down our very narrow cellar stairs? Where will I put them (we have the world's creepiest basement *ever*. I may post pictures sometime.)? What if Something Bad happens?

Normally I do not worry about any of this. Husband is the worrier about weather. I like the storms. But one of my recurrent nightmares, the one that pops up whenever I feel like things in my life are spinning out of control, is that I'm caught in a tornado and I'm trying to hold on to one or both of the girls and they get sucked out of my arms. I've had this dream at least six times in the last two years. What if it was an omen?

Now that I know it's coming, I'm nervous. If it came up suddenly out of nowhere, I wouldn't bat an eye. But I am definitely freaked, mostly because I've had too much time to think about what could go wrong, and also because I've seen firsthand what can go wrong in situations like these. Stupid imagination. It is running away with me. Help! Come back!

On an entirely unrelated note, God bless She has helped me to diagnose what is going on in my right boob - remember? She of the plugged milk duct? I traced the problem to its source (ha! get it?) which is actually a milk blister. I thought I had it cleared up last time, but the blister is back. It blocks enough area that the milk ducts on the entire top half aren't able to drain, resulting in some very localized and lopsided engorgement. Ouch!

She also enabled me to figure out the cause of the blister - oversupply - and how to treat it so that it will heal and not get infected, I hope. Yay for the internets! This is the second time in two weeks that I've had this problem, and it's icky. I don't want to see a third time, that's for sure!

Anyway, if we're all still alive tomorrow I will post an "after" picture of my saucepan - the one with the melted silicone - for comparison. It shines like the top of the Chrysler building!

*We've already had several deadly tornadoes within a 9-block - 30 mile radius of my house, and it's only early April. The weather this year, it is crazy! People we know have lost everything, while we have not even had a broken window from the hail.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

The high cost of marital discord

Oh, the chain of events that resulted in this morning's carnage was long and complex. It all started last night...

when Husband, who works until midnight, decided to stay up until 4 am on the Internet, which

caused him to stay in bed this morning when I was up and wrangling both girls and myself into clothes, breakfast, medicines, teeth-brushing, shoes, etc., which

caused me to yell at him for being such a self-centered jackass, which

caused him to yell back (without opening his eyes), which

led into a knock-down, drag-out fight in which blunt objects were thrown, people's mothers insulted, divorce threatened, and much crying and slamming of doors, which

caused me to clean the kitchen in a frenzy of anger, including the dishes, including putting my breast pump parts on to boil, which

gave me enough time to think about our fight and realize that we should talk over our areas of concern like the rational adults we are, which

led me to make a pot of coffee as a gesture of conciliation and an invitation to mature dialogue, which

forced me to go upstairs to wake up Husband to tell him about the coffee and invite him to discuss our concerns over a cup, which

enticed Husband to invite me back into the bed for hugs, cuddles, and apologies, which meant that

we had our talk there, heedlessly disregarding the coffee downstairs, which

enabled me to nap for a bit while Husband baby-wrangled for a change, which

led to the discovery, by Husband, of my long-boiled-dry breast pump parts melted to the bottom of my favorite All-Clad saucepan, which in turn

almost burned the house down.

This, I contend, is all Husband's fault for not going to bed on time last night, and had he burned to a crisp in said bed, it would have been poetic justice well served.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Warning! Warning!

If you are a breastfeeding mom with a hankering for Son!c (only a Midwestern thing, I think) -

do not, under any circumstances, even if someone is holding a gun or a fish to your head, succumb to the urge to sample their new peach iced tea.

Yourr previously cherubic infant willl react as though you had fed her poisoned yak blood, and will be comforted only by hours of jiggling, swaying, and devout prayer. And, perversely, by frequent nursing, which, hello? only makes her feel worse!

May the curse of all infants be upon you, Son!c. I hope someone projectile vomis into your cherry limeade selling face.


10 minutes later, and I have broken my cardinal rule of parenting. In a fit of raw desperation, I dug out a pacifier someone had given us as a baby gift for the Bear. I popped it in her mouth, and lo! Contented sucking! No flailing of limbs, writhing, wailing, or other assorted such nonsense. I hate pacifiers - we never gave one to the Bear. She sucks on her middle three fingers when she's sleepy. I think pacifiers look like little baby muzzles. And yet here is Mouse, chomping contentedly on a big blue hunk of silicone.

Maybe they're ok for emergency use only...