Saturday, December 22, 2007
What if it's a boy and he has 3 balls?
Thursday, December 20, 2007
Our goal as parents is to, of course, spoil our child(ren) at Christmas, but also to instill a sense of what the season truly is about. I look forward to teaching the Jesus-is-the-reason-for-the-season stuff, to carrying on traditions and creating our own that will, hopefully, be carried on some day, and to performing some kind of holiday good deed every year. Of course, I am beside myself with excitement at the thought of playing Santa this year. Nat doesn't quite fully get Santa yet, but he's learning. I don't see the point in spending hundreds and hundreds of dollars on Christmas gifts - the true meaning tends to get lost - but each Christmas will be special. I look forward to finding new ways to make memories...for just Nat this year, and for Gumdrop as well.
Speaking of Gumdrop - we (hope to) find out the sex tomorrow at the gender ultraound. The plan, however, is to have the tech write the sex on a piece of paper and stash it in an envelope to be opened on Christmas day. A bit of a Christmas surprise.
We'll be spending Christmas Eve and day with my family. Memories of Christmases past have flooded me the last few days. Early years with the entire Italian side of my family crammed into my grandmother's small, small home on Christmas Eve...followed by the Irish side gathering at a great aunt's house later that evening. Home to bed, and up early to see if Santa had, indeed, stopped by.
So much has changed in the years separating then and now. Family dynamics and relationships, traditions - I suppose such is true for many, if not most, families out there. Still, though, it makes me sad that things have changed so much - my children won't grow up surrounded by and knowing their extended family the way my sisters and I did - but it also makes me extra thankful for memories that I have and what still remains.
Merry Christmas to all of you - may your holidays be merry and bright, and filled with much laughter and love.
Friday, December 14, 2007
I guess he won. No one slept last night. It was like one big party.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
My child wasn't thrilled about seeing Santa. I think Santa was equally un-thrilled about seeing my child. Even *before* the baby started creeping out about being on a strange old man's lap, Santa made a comment about how he'd probably cry and then rolled his eyes. He didn't even "ho ho ho" for the baby. Lame. We were, as you can see, suckers enough to buy the photo commemorating the event. He was too new last year to be taken to a busy mall, so this is our first picture with the baby sitting on
Baby #2 checkup yesterday. I love waiting 45 minutes to an hour in a waiting room, only to pee in a cup, listen for a heartbeat that I couldn't even hear, asked if I have any questions, then sent on my merry way. I will, however, have an ultrasound next week to hopefully find out the sex of this child. Then I can stop calling it "it" and "the fetus" and by his or her chosen name. I do know, however, that this child is already huge, and that it has an attitude problem, as it kept kicking or punching or head-butting the doppler as if to say, "Get that damn thing off the roof of my house!"
I realized that I never posted a 13-month update on the baby. Still no walking - seriously, any day now. How long have I been saying that? He "talks" more and more every day - he can say
Friday, December 07, 2007
The story of how and why I chose to pursue singing is so incredibly long. I'm not sure if you want the entire back story - if you do, let me know and I'll be happy to write it. It'll just take forever. For now, I'll just give you some cut and dry answers.
My singing ambitions didn't come about until just a few years ago, the result of a medical incident, a book, a Broadway recording, and a Broadway actress. I had always had secret ambitions of acting...or something in the entertainment field. I had a lot of people tell me that I was funny, that I had incredible timing, and that I could be a true comedienne. But singing? Nah. Never really entered my mind.
Once I had ambitions, I immediately decided that I wanted to be the best. I tracked down a well-known voice teacher in NYC and arranged to meet her. I lived in Albany at the time. Fast forward a few weeks - she decided that she wanted to work with me, and we set a day and time that I would go into the city to meet her, show her my raw talent and we'd figure out where to go from there. After meeting for her and singing for her, she told me that she loved my voice and that I had potential to make something big out of it. But what direction did I want to go? In the beginning I decided that I wanted to work to pursue musical theater...or, more specific, I wanted to be on Broadway, damn it. I asked her to be honest - did I have it in me? It would take some work, she said, but I had a unique sound that would be perfect for the stage...but she did encourage me not to close my mind to other genres. It would be later that I learned I had a voice for jazz - a bit raspy, sultry...once I found it I loved it. This woman has worked with countless Broadway actors/actresses, Celine Dion, Christina Aguilera...and now me! Wow! Could I really make something of myself? I felt that she believed in me, I knew that Will believed in me, and for a small time, I believed in myself. After a while, though, I began to doubt what I could do. I held back. I talked myself down a lot. And then I got pregnant. I "pursued" this dream - a dream that was once so fierce and seemed so possible - for close to 2 years.
What was I in? Nothing. :) And I don't regret a single thing. I took a chance on something that, at one time, was so big to me, and, in retrospect, was probably near impossible. I wrote a letter to my voice teacher shortly after I had my first baby. I wanted her to see the amazing thing I accomplished. She called me after a few weeks and we chatted. She let me know that, had I stuck with what I was doing, she believed with all her heart that I would've been able to accomplish other amazing things. And she urged me not to give up.
My favorite musical? I have a special place in my heart for Wicked. Wicked when it first opened on Broadway, not the traveling show, not the crazy-fan-girl show that it has become. I read the book long before seeing the musical, and it touched me in a way that a book never has. Sounds crazy, huh? Especially since it's a book about the Wicked Witch of the West. Ha - I can name one person who would surely not be surprised - he/she doesn't know that *I* know he/she reads my blog. Boo! I also love Rent, although I never saw it with the original cast...and I'm pretty sure I would have loved it even more if I had been lucky enough to see it early on. Amazing story, amazing music.
Favorite musical actress? Idina Menzel...kind of goes along with how the whole story started. I find her voice amazing. It was *her* voice teacher I found, her voice teacher who actually felt me worthy enough to work with. I had the wonderful experience of meeting her one night after a show. Not just a quick pass-by on the street. I was able to spend a bit of time with her at the Gershwin, talking like normal people...she's simply amazing to me.
I could honestly go on and on in this post. All of that was another lifetime ago, though. I'm a mom now. Gone is the skinny(ish) girl with sexy hair extensions who walked around the streets of NYC, going to auditions, forever carrying around a bag filled with sheet music and a demo cd, just in case. No regrets. I miss that life sometimes, even though we were flat broke living in NYC...but had I pursued it further, I wouldn't have the amazing little
Monday, December 03, 2007
So to you, dear readers, I make this request. Whether I know you or not, give me something to write about. I don't imagine I'll receive a flood of comments, but if I do I'll address everything over a few posts. The topic request can be anything. A question. It can be serious or funny. It can challenge something I've written about before. If you don't want me to know who you are then just comment anonymously. As long as it's not incriminating, I'll write about it. Bring it! :)
Friday, November 30, 2007
End of my PSA for the day. Ugh. Off to find a new COMPETENT endo so that my thyroid levels can be accurately monitored, ensuring that I don't lose this baby. Good grief.
*disclaimer - all information in this post about dr. karen giardino is based strictly on my own experience with her and/or her practice. i have no facts that will prove this is an ongoing issue, so if you're looking to sue me, don't bother - i got nothin'.
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
People amuse me. I suppose that it's partly due to my educational background (holla for a currently useless Master's in counseling psychology), but also partly because I consider myself incredibly socially awkward and introverted, and there's something cathartic about observing others' idiosyncrasies and neuroses.
There are two specific types of people who really tickle my funny bone. The first is people who are passive-aggressive. What's the point? We've all done it, but there are some people out there who turn such behavior into a real art form. It really is funny, though, to watch someone try to intentionally piss someone off, or hurt someone, or push someone's buttons, all because it makes them feel better about their pathetic state of being. Humorous. Why do you think Marie on Everybody Loves Raymond got some of the biggest laughs?
My favorite people are the habitually schizophrenic. I say habitually because
Side note - If you haven't had the experience of watching Sybil, I highly recommend it. You'll never look at your mother or enema bags the same again.
I also enjoy the people who are abusive to their children in public. Disclaimer - I don't enjoy seeing the children being treated the way they're being treated. "Enjoy" was completely facetious. End disclaimer. In any case, I can't narrow it down to a specific demographic, but there seems to be some kind of trend in the different types of people I see doing this. The best place to see these people? The malls or the grocery stores, but in other places, too. You'll know them. Usually moms, acting in ways that vary from the "benign" (smacking your child across the mouth or on the hand) to grabbing the child by the hair or around the arm in such a way that you just know will leave a red mark (if not a bruise), and usually saying something like "I'm going to punch your face in if you don't knock it off" or "Shut the &$*@ up - I'm on the phone." It all turns my stomach, really, and in my gut I know that these children will grow up only to perpetuate the cycle, have their own 6 or 7 children, and treat them the same way.
Four pieces of toast later, this post has gone in a direction completely different than I had intended. I guess we're all a little bit schizo sometimes.
I guess we're all a little bit schizo sometimes. Wait...didn't I just say that?
Monday, November 26, 2007
Take, for instance, morning sickness. For the majority of this pregnancy, I haven't been able to look at a crumb of dry toast without running to the toilet to throw up things my grandmother ate. However, there have been days, like today, where I can't seem to get enough to eat. There I was, sitting on the couch while the baby slept, innocently watching LMN, and before the movie was over, I had eaten an entire ball of port wine cheddar with almonds (God bless those holiday cheese balls) and a pomegranate. I feel like Grover running back and forth in an empty room saying "near.....far....," except for me it's "eat.....puke...." and I'm running from the fridge to the toilet.
Another blessing? You leak when you're pregnant. From every oriface imagineable. Except when you're not dripping/juicy/overly lubricated, you're dry. As a bone. In the desert those Kid Nation kids call home. Extremes. Diarrhea. Constipation. Runny nose. Dry nose. Leaking God knows what from God knows where, only to be faced with the oppostie dilemma the very next day.
Weepy. Homicidal. Insomnia. Exhaustion. Get me that Duggar woman on the phone. I need to know why she did this...what, 17 times? It's a wonder she's not holed up in the nut hatch somewhere.
I'm not selling anything (Are you kidding? My idea of being crafty is making coffee filter "stained glass" things with vinegar and food coloring. Thank you, Mr. Wizard.), but I see a few things I'll likely purchase. If you stress out over buying gifts like I do, this site might be a godsend. Unique gifts, free of lead and other toxins...unless you find that one seller who thought it would be funny to put arsenic inside their sock monkey.
So yesterday was my birthday. Another year older and another year wiser, right? On some things, at least. Being a mom has definitely made me wiser in areas I never imagined. Of course, there's that mommy-brain thing - you know, the thing that makes you unable to recall your own name at times, makes you call your child by the cat's name at times. Mommy-brain. Makes even the most intelligent person feel (and sound) rather dumb sometimes. I've become a bit wiser when it comes to finances. I've become quite economical (read: cheap) in the last year. I've come to appreciate things that are truly important and have begun to place less importance on the cosmetic, the trivial, and the things that do nothing for me or my family.
But surely I can't be 31. Impossible. Didn't I just get married? Didn't I just graduate from grad school? Or better yet, college? 31 is 9 years away from 40. 31 implies grown-up. While I've definitely grown up (and out, ugh) in the last year, I certainly don't feel like a grown-up. Like an adult. I still laugh at inappropriate times, I still find those Helen Keller jokes impossibly funny, I still burp like that guy on The Simpsons, I'm still messy, I still like to be loud and make noise...those aren't the characteristics of someone who is grown up. A kid at heart, I guess, is what I'll always be. Not so bad, is it?
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
Thanks, whomever, for making us move to Buffalo. I appreciate the promotion you gave my husband, but why couldn't you have offices in a better city? One of the nurses at the OB's office saw that I moved here from NYC. "What brought you to Buffalo?!" she asked. My reply? "Satan." She nodded in empathic agreement.
Thanks, China, for trying to kill my kid.
Thank you, housing market, for going to pot when we really need our own house. Shape up after the first of the year, would you? There's a house in Amherst that has my name on it. I'm over apartment living, and I refuse to bring a newborn home to this place. Annoying dogs and gangster music do not a happy baby make.
Thank you, maternity clothes designers of the world, for making this winter's clothing line the most hideous I've ever seen.
Thank you, Writer's Guild, for screwing up my evenings. My favorite shows are all into reruns. Now what am I supposed to do? Greedy bastards.
Thank you, BBQ pork roast that I made last night, for smelling like an autopsy. Add that to the list of foods I'll never eat again.
Oh - this was supposed to be about giving, too.
Thank you, whomever, for giving me morning sickness again. Vomiting at least once a day for the last 13 or 14 weeks has been a real treat, let me tell you. Oh, and the crippling nausea that goes along with it? Score one for you. Really. You haven't lived until you've thrown up rice.
I jest. I kid. Mostly. Sure, these are all things that I'm bitter about but I like to look at the humorous side of them. In reality, I have so much to be thankful for this year. First and foremost, the sweet baby boy sleeping in the next room is the biggest blessing I've ever received. I think I was too tired from newborn Nat last Thanksgiving to really take the chance to reflect on what I was thankful for, and so I'll make up for it this year. I'm sure this time next year I'll also be giving thanks for Gumdrop (who has a name, I just need to find out the sex before I can start calling him/her by its chosen name).
We're spending the holiday with my parents and younger sister. This will be the first time in a few years that we'll be there for Thanksgiving and I'm excited. Thanksgiving was always big in our house. We weren't able to go last year because I was still on "travel restriction" from my c-section, and Nat was only 3 weeks old, so we stayed put in Brooklyn. My father will inevitably have come Christmas tunes blaring when we get there. Hopefully we'll get there in time for Nat to see some of the parade. We'll definitely look for Santa at the end. There'll be good food and the feeling of being home again. Since the birth of Nat, I've definitely gained a new appreciation for family...things seem to mean more to me, certain things are more important now than they used to be. The notion of carrying on/starting new holiday traditions with my own family excites me.
Rent the movie Home for the Holidays. If yours is one of those families who puts the fun in dysfunctional (and let's face it, everyone's family is like that to some extent...and if yours isn't, well, then,
Happy Thanksgiving, blog world. Travel safely, enjoy your friends or families, and may you have plenty to be thankful for. :)
Monday, November 12, 2007
Tuesday, November 06, 2007
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
525,000 moments so dear
525,600 minutes - how do you measure, measure a year?
In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights, in cups of coffee.
In inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife.
In 525,600 minutes - how do you measure a year in the life?
How about love?
One year ago. One year ago today my life changed, changed in a way I'd never expected. Oy. Here come the tears already.
I've never been so tired, so frustrated, and felt so incapable as I have in these last 12 months.
And never - never in my life - did I imagine that I would love one creature - that my life would revolve around someone so tiny - as much as I do and as much as it does. Nathanael is my world, my every joy, and my heart swells with so much love for him that it's scary. The love a mother feels for her child, I have learned, is unlike any other. It's completely indestructable, completely unconditional, and it's something that I feel so blessed, so privileged, to be able to know.
So. One year old. I have to admit that we're not exactly where I thought we'd be at this point in time. Still not walking, and not talking beyond a few words - mama, dada, baba, go (I *think*), and caca. Caca. That's my boy.
Boy, he loves life, though. He finds good in everything. He's fascinated by the world and I stand in awe at his wonder over the slightest things that I've long felt were mundane. I vow to make sure that he retains this love and this fascination for as long as possible.
This very second? One year ago? I was making the "dead man walking" walk from my labor room to the operating room. I can remember it as if it were yesterday. I was terrified. I was excited. I was in disbelief that I was about to become a mother, become responsible for someone else's life other than my own. Nat's official birth time is 11:47 a.m. Oh sweet Jesus - someone get me some Kleenex brand facial tissues, would you?
I wish I could create a machine that would slow time down, just a little. I'm not sure that I'm ready for toddlerhood and the tantrums, the independence, and the inevitability that my baby boy is, indeed, growing up.
Happy, happy birthday to my baby boy. You have given me the most amazing 12 months of my life. I love you, I love you, I love you, and I am so happy to be your mama.
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Any time I've glanced at the clock today I've been thinking back to one year ago, wondering what I was doing. At this point, all I knew was that I was going in for a scheduled induction on the night of the 30th. It wouldn't be until later that evening that we all learned the little stinker had flipped around, prompting the docs to perform a c-section the following day.
I can't believe that it has been a year. I still remember what I wore...hell, even what I ate...on the day before he was born. I wonder if any of his first memories will be anything from his first year. I hope so...because if there's anything he should be able to know and remember from the last 12 months it should be how loved and adored he is.
Now - off to rescue him from whatever seems to be attempting to kill him in his crib.
Tone: nostalgic and happy :)
Monday, October 29, 2007
Now. Off to do some party damage control.
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Saw the OB on Tuesday for a checkup. Baby's still in there. It has verifiable legs and arms now. Looks like the arms are coming out of its mouth. Great. Bad news is that the pregnancy is in the left horn of my uterus. Back up for a minute. What, you say? You have a horn in your uterus? Yes, dear bloggers, I have a two-pronged uterus. A bicornuate uterus. It has two horns, kind of like the devil. Apropos, no? In any case, I'm pregnant on the left side, which is where the pregnancy was the last time around. At a prior visit the doctor had told me that if the pregnancy was in the right horn then we would attempt a vaginal birth rather than another c-section. So of course, because I'm convinced that God hates me, it's not in the right side. Which means an automatic c-section. Too much risk of uterine rupture. Fabulous thought, eh?
So. Last time I didn't know I was having a c-section until I got to the hospital. Now I have months and months to anticipate major surgery. So what's the big deal? Well, I'm uber-lucky enough to have a rare blood clotting disorder...so rare that I was graced with a pulmonary embolism in 2003...and, well, major surgery + clotting disorder = a bit of anticipatory anxiety. So while the average Jill runs the risk of dying during or after major surgery, my risk is just a little bit higher.
So excuse me if I can't rejoice over the little bundle soon to come. Excuse me if I'm less than thrilled about being pregnant at the moment. I'm being a little bit selfish right now in worrying that I'm going to kick the bucket, leaving my baby who is already here and already a huge part of my heart without a mother and without the memories of me, as he's really too young to remember me and all the love I've given him in this last year. Happy thoughts, aren't they?
Friday, October 19, 2007
1. I hate Buffalo. I hate living here. I hate where we live. I hate only having one car. The city itself has a scent to it that I'd rather not know and that I'd rather not be associated with. I wish we were back in NYC. I'm not happy here. I don't know if I'll ever be happy here. Perhaps once we're in our own home in a better area things will perk up. Perhaps.
2. I miss my family. I miss the way things used to be. I cry about it. A lot.
3. It drives me nuts when someone calls my son Nate. That's not his name. It's Nathanael. Or Nat. Rhymes with hat. The ONLY person who is allowed to get away with it is my mom, and that's only because she asked if she could call him Nate the Great. So if you read this and you've ever called/ever wanted to call my son Nate - don't. Unless you're my mom.
4. I swear way too much. I swear way too much in front of the baby. I won't be surprised if his first honest-to-goodness word is "shitbag."
5. Sometimes I pretend I don't hear Nathanael when he cries in the middle of the night, just so that I don't have to be the one to tend to him. Hey, I'm pregnant - I need my sleep! And I bet there's not a single mom out there who hasn't done the same thing!
6. Cleaning the toilet makes me dry heave.
7. I worry that getting pregnant again was a huge mistake, for so many reasons.
Wednesday, October 03, 2007
Friday, September 21, 2007
This blog and my world will continue to revolve around my Nat. I'll throw in the occasional comment about cravings, hemmorhoids, stretch marks, and whatever else I feel so inclined to share with you, my wonderful readers. For now I must depart to rescue my son who is giving off the impression that dark and evil forces are trying to torture him in his crib.
Two under two. What the hell was I thinking? :)
Friday, August 31, 2007
Tuesday, July 31, 2007
Thursday, May 31, 2007
Where in the world does the time go?
7 months ago right now I was probably just getting cleaned up after my c-section. The hands of 3 nurses washing the blood off of my lower half, and me feeling mortified and a little dosconcerted that I couldn't feel them doing it because I was overly numb from my spinal. Taking my gown off to change me into a fresh one - whipping it off in one swift movement, leaving me lying on the cold steel table, naked, bloody, and high on drugs. Yikes.
Nathanael is in such a great stage right now. Still only has the 2 teeth. Still not crazy about solid foods but will eat a little bit at a time. He constantly babbles, speaking to books, stuffed animals, hairs...you name it. I wish I had a baby babble decoder. He sits up on his own like a pro. Still no crawling, but he's getting there, and it won't be quick enough for him. He tries so hard and gets so frustrated. It's awfully cute. His combination Irish and Italian temper is definitely starting to show itself. He gets angry when I try to feed him when he's had enough - he'll bang on the tray of the high chair and yell. When he's on his mat and is bored, he'll throw his hands up in the air and bring them down in a very dramatic swoop, banging on the floor at the very end. Ah, my little dramatist.
He had/has his first ear infection, and thus an introduction to the dreaded pink stuff - the "bubble gum flavor" liquid amoxicillin. Administering it to him brought back horrid flashbacks from my childhood, and smelling it made me gag. I had an inkling that that's what his issue was, took him to the doctor, and voila, I was right. He also has a bad cold, but it seems to be on its way out.
With the weather (finally) turning warm in Buffalo, we've been spending a lot of time outside. He loves grass. He can't get enough of pulling itout of the ground and rubbing his feet in it. We're going to attempt his baby pool for the first time this afternoon after his nap.
He's just growing up way too fast. I feel sad in thinking that I didn't pay enough attention to the minor details of just being when he was a new new baby. I suppose every first time mom has that feeling, though. We're too tired and too stressed. I just hope he doesn't outgrow his mommy any time soon. I love that I'm the only one who can provide comfort when he needs it. That he can still fall asleep on my chest or in my arms. That he still loves to be rocked, and looks at me with adoring eyes as I sing to him.
Stay a baby a little while longer, Nat. I'm not ready for you to grow up yet!
Tuesday, May 08, 2007
The baby has cut his first tooth - finally! It popped up this past Friday after a looooong, painful few weeks of whining, biting, chewing, drooling, etc. I had a happy babe on my hands for a few days, but I think the second bottom middle tooth is getting ready to sprout because his evil side has started to show itself again. He can sit unsupported. He's crawling. He's still wanting so badly to speak but isn't quite there. He did say "pimp" the other day, though. Hmm.
We're busy with playgroups, swimming, and yoga. We've got a date for the zoo and the playground later this week. We're turning into social butterflies! Everyone at the trendy Central Perk-ish coffee shop here in the neighborhood thinks that he's such a cute baby boy, and of course I have to agree. He'll blow spit bubbles and raspberries at someone if they bend down to say hello to him and then follow up with a huge smile. He loves to be outside on the grass - a "luxury" he didn't know until we moved here. He loves the sound of the birds, he loves to look right up at the sun, likes to look at the trees...not so thrilled with bugs (like his mama), but hey, who can blame him? He's starting to show his temper - definitely asserting the Irish side of his heritage. He'll get mad if you take something away, if he drops something and wants it back, if I don't feed him quickly enough, etc. He loves to sit in his little portable high chair in restaurants when we go out - he loves to show off what a big boy he is. He isn't crazy about riding in his car seat for long periods of time. This was to be expected, though, because he didn't really start riding in a car seat at all until a couple of weeks ago when we bought our car. He'll get used to it. We have our well baby check at the end of the week, so I'll be anxious to see how much he weighs and how he reacts to a male doctor giving him his next round of shots. Mama likes the new pediatrician! *wink wink*
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
Thursday, April 12, 2007
Tuesday, April 03, 2007
We're making a HUGE move in about 2 1/2 weeks. Finally settling down. Not in a house yet, but hopefully next year. We'll be a lot closer to my family, and I love that the baby will get to know his Gran and Grandpa and Auntie A.
The babe turned 5 months old 3 days ago. I can't believe it. He's huge, and incredibly brilliant, of course. SO much fun. He looks at you while you're talking to him like he's trying hard to understand what you're saying, but becomes very upset when he realizes that I can't understand him. He's so impatient, just like his mama. His laugh is infectious. His smile warms your heart. He has an incredibly mischievious air about him, and I have a feeling he's going to give me a run for my money as he grows older. He's just now starting to sleep through the night. He eats solid foods once or twice a day and there isn't anything he won't eat. He tries so hard to walk when we stand him up, but shows no desire to crawl. He wants to sit up on his own, and is beginning to learn what's involved, but hasn't quite mastered it yet. He has me wrapped around his little finger and he knows it. And I wouldn't have it any other way.