Saturday, May 14, 2011

This Is What A Relationship Looks Like: Listen Harder Edition

YG: [unintelligible mumbling] beauty sleep
JM: What? What are you talking about?
YG: Can you listen for Zygote in the morning so I can sleep in? I got up with her.
JM: I always listen for her.
YG: ....
JM: It's not my fault that you get up with her.
YG: Just listen harder.
JM: How about you listen to my fist up your butt?
YG: [Shakes head, walks away].

Seriously, it's MY issue if he gets up with her? Be a bad parent and pretend you don't hear. That's the way it works.

Friday, May 13, 2011

36.5 Weeks

And much like last time, I am still here, kind of hanging out with nothing going on. I have another big kid and another "tight as a drum" cervix. I have heard that expression used three times this week, and while I never really imagined what kinds of adjectives and terms one might use to describe a cervix, that one just sounds wrong. I had a brief moment of imagining that things might be happening last night when I had a series of contractions -- something that never happened unassisted with Zygote -- but they petered out.

So we wait. And collect information. We are getting three different opinions regarding the feasibility of a VBAC. Two of the three are gently nudging me toward scheduling a C based on the size of the baby and the size of my "petite pelvis." (HUZZAH! Something about me is petite). I meet with the third on Monday, and then on Friday afternoon, I have an ultrasound to check for the size of the baby.

In anticipation of a possible VBAC, I attended a class this week for parents contemplating going the natural or at least, vaginal (hee! VAGINA!) route post C-section. It was basically a lot of stuff that I had already learned, but the best thing that came out of it was meeting other people who were still rather ambivalent about the choice this far into their pregnancies.

Because ambivalent is pretty much where I am right now. I would like the opportunity to have a "regular" birth because there's a better chance for a quicker recovery and it would make life with a toddler and a newborn much easier, but I don't have a strong conviction that pushing is an experience that I HAVE TO HAVE. I experienced labor, more than 30 'joyful' hours of it, some of that without drugs. I just didn't get a chance to push. And I was never pressured to make any decisions during the whole process.

I feel like there is this pressure for me to feel like I HAVE to push or to feel like I was somehow gypped by my last operation or worse, to make a strong case that I am not one of those women who schedule a C-section because it's more convenient in between their tennis lessons and Botox appointments. I don't really feel any of those things. I just feel....undecided.

I was reading this story on Slate the other day about the Baltimore midwife midwife who pleaded guilty to two felonies for her role in a Virginia home birth where the breech baby died. From the article, "Depending on your point of view, Carr is either a compassionate professional who believes in a pregnant woman's autonomy or an ideologue who acted as if she was above the law." And then if you read the 400+ comments after, you will see that there are plenty of people with passionate points of view about it. And again, I am there in the middle -- ambivalent, undecided.

I'm happy that we have the time to collect all this information and contemplate these decisions, and I'm sure I'll be okay no matter what happens. I had to have a non stress today at the doctor's office (because of these stupid fucking hives, arghhhhh) and I let myself sort of nap, listening to the heartbeat speed up and slow down and then speed up again. I realized that I just want to meet this kid, and that while I did a good job of being pretty laid back about the process last time, I'm even more relaxed about it this time. I can write the best friggin' birth plan in the world, but what's going to happen is going to happen. Maybe I am confusing relaxation with ambivalence? Hmmm....

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Five Books That Changed Me

A friend in Oz told me about this blog post, The Books That Changed Me. I don't know who this woman is other than what her descriptor says -- "named one of Oz's top 20 public intellectuals and Humanist of the Year 2011" -- but I liked her books, and I was inspired.

1. Anne of Green Gables - Lucy Maud Montgomery: This book kind of started it all -- this lifelong love affair with reading. I remember reading through it and dying to beat down Gilbert and have a bosom friend like Diana, and I sobbed about poor Matthew. And then I was hooked. I would be practically breathless wanting to get the next book in the series at Happy Booker in the Morris County Mall, and blabbering to my dad all about it. I reread it a few years ago when we bought it for the MG, and it stands the test of time. It also affirms my belief that most Canadians tend to be pretty cool, although in elementary school, I probably had no idea that Nova Scotia was actually in Canada.

2. The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger: So, whatever, I KNOW. It's a cliche, but nobody knows that the FIRST time they read it. My dad gave me his copy of this to read. It had a maroon cover and yellowed pages, and I read it in a few days in the hot upstairs room in Long Island. I WAS Holden Caulfield. Again, I had no idea that everyone else thought they were Holden Caulfield too. This made me want to be a writer.

3. The Great Gatsby -- F. Scott Fitzgerald: I swear that I have read more books than those on my junior year AP reading list, but put aside prejudices about this book being one of those 'forced to read' ones. To me, it's nearly perfect. I have read it multiple times, and there's always something new and beautiful. The language just. . . moves.

4. The Seven Storey Mountain - Thomas Merton: I wouldn't think that I had a lot in common with a monk, and to be honest, this sat on my shelf collecting dust for a while (having been gifted to me by someone that felt I needed a "spiritual awakening") until I saw some hipster dude on the NYC subway reading it. Merton gave up his life as a writer/intellectual to become a monk, and the self-deprecating, normal writing style made it attractive to me. So many "conversion" stories are written in that crazy ass 'can I get a witness' evangelical style, and I can't relate to it at all. This was a good book about a religious journey during the right time in mine.

5. Sexus: The Rosy Crucifixion 1 - Henry Miller: It's unfair to pick only one of the books in this trilogy since I read them all in one summer during college. Also, I know I'm supposed to hate Henry Miller because "ooooh, he's a misogynist...oooooh, he treats women like shit.....oooooh, bad feminist," but I don't care. The trilogy left such an imprint, much more so than either of his Tropics books. It reads like a narrative, and while most people focus on the crazy sex and his insane marriage, the struggle to be a writer is what I always remember and how it took him years of wading through shit to get to write. I wouldn't want his life (not now, anyway, it was different in 1995), but it's a fabulous life to read through.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Random Mother's Day Pics While I Think of Something To Write About

Because there's not anything very succinct you can say about being someone's mother. Or daughter, for that matter.