You Need to Read – October 4

Yep, I’m doing the list this week.  But I do want to put out the warning that there might be weeks here and there where I don’t do the list.  The last couple of days, for instance, it’s been difficult keeping up with my reader.  It’s always like that when we have company or anything remotely interesting going on.  (Which isn’t that often because we redefine what it means to be hermits.)  Anyhow, without further ado… I present to you this week’s fabulous list…

First, you’ve gotta check out Advice from Mom, Part I from Mighty Girl.  The advice in this list was SPOT ON.  I may print it out, laminate it, and give it to Evie when she turns 18.  Hey.  That’s not a half bad idea.

After last week’s sob-fest, it’s nice to see something GOOD from Loralee.  “And now for something COMPLETELY different…” from loraleeslooneytunes.com was a breath of fresh air and I found myself pumping my fist for her.  I will be cheering her on through this, you can count on that.  She is very deserving of a happy ending (or beginning?), don’t you think?

I Am Perfect, You Are Not – A Failure Of The Green… from The Good Human is a perfect example of how environmentalists can turn regular people off of going green.  And I’d say it goes for other facets of our lives as well.  I’m thinking, in particular, of politics.  I think a lot of Democrats turn off people who feel that they’re being talked down to, made fun of, whatever.  And when it comes to saving the planet, it doesn’t matter if you don’t do EVERYTHING, just as long as you do SOMETHING.  Wouldn’t you agree?

I think the “Best Post of the Week” award (shut up, it just made it up) should go to Maybe This Isn’t My Place to Say… from karensugarpants.com.  This post had me from start to finish, brought tears to my eyes and a lump to my throat.  I’m a gulible sort, and I didn’t see where she was going with this until the end of the post, which I felt made it that much more powerful.  This post was nothing short of amazing.  READ IT.

Oh Molly, I know (sorta) how you feel.  In How to fall apart with all (some) of the world watching from LOST A SOCK,  she talks about the quagmire she’s sunk into since her baby daughter was born several weeks ago.  It’s not easy.  And I want to club anyone who would dare even make it look like it is.  It’s a day to day struggle.  I want to send her supportive thoughts.  You’re not alone.

Also, if you’re in the mood for some giggles and blogging introspection, read Stats and Man Ponytails from The Bean.  I know what she means when she agonizes over strange and unexplainable differences in stats.  In feeling sometimes tied to the blog because of those stats.  Stats will ruin blogging, I’m positively sure of it.  I hate trying to decifer those maddening dips!

Maybe I’m obsessed with my iPhone, but My Top Ten iPhone Apps from Greeblemonkey is the sort of post I just GOBBLE up these days.  I feel so new to the technology and there are so many “apps” to choose from that I never know which one is going to be the BEST one.  So having a “cheat sheet” to refer to helps like you wouldn’t believe.  And if you don’t have an iPhone, reading this list will make you want to cut off your arm to get one! (Okay, maybe not.  But it sure sounded good, didn’t it?)

And that’s it for this week’s installment.  I hope everyone has fine and productive weekends.  I will be back at some point with pictures and stories from yesterday’s day trip.  Despite appearances, it did NOT involve alcohol (too bad!).  Has anyone guessed where we went?  (I didn’t really make it a secret, for the record.)

Am I supposed to be doing something else today?

If I am, then too bad because Zoot is having her baby today! At 12 noon CST, to be precise. Which I think equates to 10 am out here in the sticks. I am completely and totally stalking her updates… watching for news on Twitter (I’m actually sending her updates directly to my cell phone! Stalker!) and pictures on Flickr. I’m so excited, partially because I remember so well the last time she had a baby, and how I refreshed her page all day long looking for updates. It’s like we’ve come full circle or something.

Plus, I shared a room with her at BlogHer last year. And I saw how sad she was in the aftermath of her miscarriage. Having suffered my own kind of loss, I guess it’s natural to want to spare a friend from that.

She’s going from two to three, just like me! I’m so excited to see how it goes for her. I have a box of boy clothes coming her way (it has sat in Kile’s van, waiting for him to remember to take it to the post office) that I’m hoping will come in handy for their new bundle of blue.

So tell me this: am I nuts for being so excited about this baby? Because I am. Excited that is. Not nuts. At least, I hope I’m not nuts. Anyhow, go wish them luck and good wishes, if you have a moment. Congrats, Zoot family!

Embracing March

Long-time readers of this site are well aware that I have a “thing” with this whole month.  March, it has not been a friend of mine.  Growing up, I was never very fond of of it.  It was no December, let’s be honest.  I lumped November in with March since I found nothing redeeming about it either.  Both seemed to have questionable weather and a gnarly habit of fostering evil events.  I never cared much for Thanksgiving and forgot to wear green a few too many times and ended up pinched within an inch of my life on St. Patrick’s Day.  Do I need to mention the Ides of March?  I mean, historically we’re talking about a bad month all around, right?  Now, November got a reprieve when Harry was born on November 10th.  Suddenly, it was off the “shit list”, so to speak.  I made peace with Thanksgiving too, when I discovered the delight that is a fine turkey sandwich.  But March was still on the platter.

I knew a lot of people who died in March, for one thing.  Grandparents.  My good friend’s mother.  And now that I was living in Reno, the poor weather started taking on a whole new meaning.  March became the “tease” month.  Springish weather one day, snowstorm the next.  Wind and rain and sleet and ice and snow and BLEH.  Who needs it?  And then?  2004 rolled around.  And I was about to find out just how awful a month March could be.  I was pregnant at last after long years of infertility.  I had a c-section scheduled for March 29th.  Then?  It all went horribly wrong.   It was unreal, the awfulness I felt.  I still have a hard time entirely processing just how it all happened and how we made it through.  My baby was buried on March 31st.  Talk about unreal.

From then on, it was war.  I had no trust left for March (we won’t even go into how I felt and still feel about 2004).  Even when March has been civil, I have held it at arms length.  I’ve considered this a month that I need to endure.  Just hold my breath and make it through the 31st in once piece.  If nothing bad happened, count my blessings and move on.  And I will admit, that perhaps (just maybe), I didn’t give March a fair shake.

I know, I bet you thought you’d never hear me utter the words.

See, I have good reason to believe that this March will redeem itself beyond my wildest dreams.  It will, like November, have new status as a “reformed month” and will (for the first time ever) actually become precious in my eyes.   Evie is due to be born on March 20th.  Noon.  Should we actually be able to pull this off (and believe me, I will always doubt first and ask questions later), I will actually have something to celebrate in March.

What a concept, right?

So I just wanted to say: Welcome, March.  Come on in.  Make yourself at home.  I’m making an effort here, and I hope you do as well.  Let’s put the past behind us, shall we?

See, I wasn't 100% crazy

Remember when it was DeLurking Week last week and on DeLurking Day itself I boycotted because I was sure we’d just had DeLurking Day three months ago?  I pretty much had resigned myself to the fact that this pregnancy has completely eaten my brain and I was spacing on how much time had in fact gone by.  Well, imagine my delight when I stumbled across this post from, oh, THREE MONTHS AGO.

HA!  So there WAS a DeLurking Day three months ago!  I wasn’t totally imagining it!  My brain isn’t completely eaten (yet).

I know I shouldn’t be this happy about it.  But I am.

Pregnant Whine

Complaining and pregnancy go hand in hand. Virtually every woman, at one time or another, complains while she is pregnant. Some women aren’t shy about their whining. They’ll post about it freely on their blogs, or tell the person standing next to them in line at the grocery store. Others, particularly those that had difficulty conceiving, might feel that they shouldn’t complain. That maybe, if they complain, it will appear that they are not eternally grateful to be pregnant in the first place. Now, come on. We all know that almost all women, the infertile as well as the fertile, are grateful to be having a child. Just because someone complains about the aches and pains and annoyances of pregnancy, doesn’t mean they don’t thank their lucky stars that they’ve been blessed with a little bundle of joy. So lets just get that out of the way up front, shall we? ALL PREGNANT WOMEN DESERVE TO BITCH. It’s a uniquely difficult (in the physical sense, though it’s no cake-walk in the emotional sense either) experience and anyone who can make it the whole nine months without even THINKING a negative thought is a robot.

That said, I want to get into my latest pregnancy whine.  It’s my face, ya’ll.  OMG.  I haven’t seen a face like this… well, EVER.  Even at 15 years old, I didn’t break out this bad.  It’s on my cheeks, my chin, around my mouth, on my nose, on my forehead… good grief!  And it won’t go away.  Now, I will admit, I don’t take the best care of my skin.  I know, Amy would recoil in horror knowing just how little I do for my skin.   I don’t wash it as much as I should, I never use moisturizer or anything else like eye creams or anything.  I’m pretty low-maintenance.  But in the past, it’s never been a problem.  I just put my acne cream on whatever trouble spot I’m having (and it’s never EVER plural) and the problem is solved.  This time, not so much.  The cream isn’t cutting it.  I mean, I guess it keeps things under moderate control but the breakouts (especially the ones on my cheeks) will NOT go away.  They just get worse.  And worse.

I’ve never had this before.  Not with any pregnancy.  I was getting to the point here that I didn’t think there was anything new under the sun, you know?  I’ve been pregnant now a total of five times.  True, one of those times fizzled a 1/3 of the way through, but still.  I never had skin like this.  If you buy in to that sort of thing, the “Old Wives” would have you believe that a different pregnancy means a different gender.  Plus “they say” that acne means you’re having a girl.  All I can say is, if this child isn’t a girl, then this boy is totally grounded.  I’ll put up with some spots (okay, a LOT of spots) for a shot at a girl, but a boy is gonna have a heck of a time getting away with that from me.

So much for relaxing

I seem to be utterly incapable of having a “normal” pregnancy.  But really, what is a normal pregnancy?  Does anyone have one of those anymore?  I would classify normal as being the sort of pregnancy where you have an uneventful (if green-gilled) first trimester, a glowing and adorable second trimester filled with an ultrasound where you discover the gender of your child and other boring but heartbeat-filled appointments followed by a voluptuous third trimester where your belly defies all logic, you’re filled with various aches and pains and you anxiously anticipate the date of delivery, whenever that will be.  My pregnancies always seem to be as different from that normal as you could possibly get.

First of all, pregnancy turns me into a slug.  Sleep becomes a precious commodity and even that doesn’t ever seem to help the situation.  If I don’t eat every second of every day then I become extremely green-gilled.  Even then, I’m wracked with worry until safely out of that trimester with a heartbeat intact.  The second trimester is when the worry ramps up, instead of ramping down.  There’s always SOMETHING to worry about.  And the baby NEVER cooperates on the ultrasound so I virtually never find out the gender at 20 weeks like everyone else.  In the third trimester, I’m a mess, counting down the weeks to the end, going to non-stress tests twice a week and generally falling apart physically.

This time looks to be no different.   I don’t need any antibodies livening up the party.

Why do I feel so hideous?

Okay, explain this to me. I’m 13 weeks pregnant today. Just a drop in the pan, in the grand scheme of pregnancy. In fact, if anything, I should start to feel pretty marvelous here soon, right? Everyone always says that the second trimester is when you feel your best.

So why do I feel so freakin’ awful right now? If I stand up too long (and “too long” is anything over about five minutes anymore), I start to feel faint and dizzy. The other day I literally had to put my head between my legs to keep from passing out. I have aches and pains in places I forgot could have aches and pains. Sleeping is getting near impossible at night as there is no position that is even remotely comfortable and half the time I have some appendage that is falling asleep, no matter what I do with it. Half the time I’m starving to death and the other half the time I’m repulsed by the very notion of food. My head throbs at various times of the day, mostly when I’m trying to use it. I’m distracted and sleepy and I’m never as happy as I am when I’m asleep. Waking up feels like ripping off my toenails one by one. Standing up after waking up feels even worse.

What the HECK? I’m not supposed to feel this way yet am I? I mean, the belly is barely a pooch right now. I can hardly notice it, much less anyone else. These are third trimester “The baby is due any minute now” type complaints. What I want to know is this: If I feel this way now, how am I going to feel in MARCH?

I’m scared, ya’ll.

Worthy

There is no doubt in my mind. This pregnancy isn’t a result of luck or just mere chance. I do believe this is a gift from God, for whatever reason, and that it’s a miracle. I know not everyone shares my beliefs and that’s fine with me. Doesn’t change what I believe though. But it does make me wonder, why me? It’s hard not to question these things, even when you know you shouldn’t. It’s not for me to know why this has happened, but rather to accept it and do as best I can with the gift I’ve been given. This baby is a gift, a miracle. And ever since I found out I was pregnant, I’ve been trying to reconcile my feelings about it all.

I know so many women who deserve to be pregnant right now. There are ones who would like another. There are ones who would like to be able to stay pregnant (for pete’s sake). There are ones who would be happy with just one, that’s all they ask. There are ones who have been battered by loss and are scared of the journey. Suffice it to say, each of these women (and more) deserve to be in the position I am in right now. Maybe they deserve it more than I do.

We’ve been through quite a bit and for a while, I thought I actually might have belonged to the world of the infertile. I know, it sounds laughable now, doesn’t it? But for so many years after we had Harry, I simply could not get pregnant without Clomid. And believe me when I say, WE TRIED. I was so desperate that I avoided the RE’s office for a year on two separate occasions in the hopes that I could get pregnant on my own. I charted my temperature, I took vitamins, I did everything they say you should do. And in all of that I NEVER once got a positive pregnancy test. Ever. And the RE told me that I wasn’t ovulating on my own. That my thyroid was to blame. I’ve been on thyroid medication, but when we tried for a year after Jackson died I still didn’t get pregnant on my own. So yeah, maybe you can see why I thought maybe I was infertile.

But now I feel a little silly for even thinking that I was infertile. Because, obviously, I’m not. Sure, I doubted it before because you aren’t totally infertile when you can get pregnant on Clomid fairly easily, right? But here, getting pregnant completely out of the blue with pretty much zero effort on our part… No charting, no timing, no thought towards getting pregnant in the least. Does this mean I’m officially kicked out of “the club”?

I think I will always identify more with the people who have had difficulty getting pregnant than the ones who get knocked up at the drop of a hat. It goes without saying that I’ll identify with people who have suffered loss as well. I may not be in the club anymore, but I’ll never forget what that agony was like.

And I’ll always wonder if I’m worthy of this great miracle that has dropped in my lap.

Different day, Same old shit

Turns out I had reason to be nervous, to be worried… because this is me we’re talking about here, right? And why else would I expect anything different than to go in for a 15week appointment and find out my baby had died one day past my last appointment, four weeks ago? That’s right, no heartbeat. No growth. Nothing.Nothing except an appointment tomorrow to go over financial arrangements with the dr’s office and get some sort of SOMETHING inserted into me. And an appointment early Friday to “take care of it.”

So fucking unfair.