Thursday, April 24, 2008

Random bits

Mac had his birthday party today and it was a blast. We had it at a children's party centre in town that resembled a disco and invited his entire class and they entertained the kids and served pizza and pop and ice cream cake, and lordy I had nothing to do and it was great for that reason alone. I've done parties at my house before, but this year, I couldn't face it. Requires too much energy. So I outsourced it.

I am surrounded by wrapping paper. It looks like a toy store threw up in my living room.

I almost cancelled the party by the way. Turns out Mac lost his temper today at school and punched another kid square in the face after being teased. He got sent to the principal's office. We decided that he got punished enough at school, and we're just going to practice some more on how to control our anger. Sigh...


Oh, on the last post, what I meant by live blogging labour was that I could update with my blackberry by using the mail to blogger address function. (Under settings for those of you who use Blogger.) It works from cellphones as well, but I've never been able to use the tiny keypads very well, so I thank God I've got the qwerty keyboard.

Why? Mostly because I tend to get easily distracted and am unable to focus on contractions or my loving husband's face or whatever all the granola people say you should do. I can't take ADD meds during labour due to the interactions with various meds they might have to put me on, and possibly my blood pressure going up, so basically I need something to do while I'm lying there painfree from the epidural and yet---so bored. (Note: I can't focus much before the epidural either. I just get panicked from the adrenaline.)

Yoga is out. So is sex, and getting drunk. All the staff and my husband all seem endlessly quiet and shushing or they want me to try to do things I am neurologically incapable of, like focus on my body or the stupid monitor. Meanwhile, every passing noise, every passing visual has me thinking up new ideas I want to talk about, but no one to talk to. So maybe it will work, maybe it won't. Who the hell knows? I just want to try to talk with people who get it.


I have found some stuff on various blogs/websites that I thought I'd mention.

True Mom Confessions - hilarious. Me written a hundred times over.

NYTimes article on preemie survival rates - very nicely explained.

Dr.Joanne Cacciatore's personal blog - founder of the MISS foundation - amazing what she has accomplished. I admire her so much.

Yes, you are - a great post about how simple it is to be a feminist, even for imperfect, leg-shaving, makeup wearing SAHM breeders like me. I count to, yes I do. And to anyone who says I don't--well fuck you and the halo you rode in on.

A great list of stuff you need after you have a live baby - Alexa asked and the blogosphere answered, 200+ comments later, probably the most comprehensive list ever. I thought my comment to her might interest you, so I'm reprinting it here on my blog, and yeah it's bizarre, but so am I, so I figure it fits, and thought you might want to read it and get a laugh.

"Hmm, everyone has mentioned some great things, and I haven’t read every comment, but things I needed the most were not baby stuff.

I needed many many frozen meals in my freezer, snacks, bottles of water and juice boxes, and protein bars. Remote controls on everything, a DVR or Tivo, a wireless headset for the tv/stereo so I could watch something at 3 am while nursing but not disturb the baby, and a wireless headset/earpiece for the phone plus a beltclip for it.

Batteries-rechargeable, a zillion of every size and shape.

Extremely comfortable shoes and clothes that layer so you don’t have to change constantly when you have no time to.

Extra underwear when you have no time to wash clean stuff.

A nice leg wax and mani/pedi before she leaves the NICU and comes home so that you can feel okay wearing shorts in the summer when you go for walks. (I'm getting a mani-pedi and wax before labour provided I don't get an early surprise. I know that I'll never ever get to shave my legs after Dinkypie is here.)

Secret Platinum Soft solid antiperspirant white, not clear, so that you can skip showers for a few days and never ever smell. (I swear to God, I’ve gone three days in the woods with no BO when there were no showers available.)

Sign up for online banking, and get all your bills delivered electronically. Sign up for as many online services as possible so that if you can’t go out on a certain day, you don’t have to. Start stocking up on basics like paper towels, toilet paper, and toothpaste.

Earplugs, only to be used when you can see the baby, to prevent insanity.

Yes, unconventional, but what I needed.

Final assvice: Remember, when the plane is going down, the pilot puts their own oxygen mask on first, then helps everyone else. If the pilot doesn’t take care of themselves, the plane crashes."

I forgot to mention actually that all new parents should stock up on vodka, wine, and scotch, plus cleaning ladies and/or nannies, plus a carload of valium. Take the nannies liberally and the chemicals sparsely, whether you are breastfeeding or not, because baby needs a relaxed mom, but not a drunk one. A little bit of Mother's little helper never hurt. Use in moderation.

Assume that your husband has died or moved to Taiwan. That way, if he helps as much as you want you will be grateful to God for the miracle of true participatory fatherhood, and if he (more likely) hides at work all day and night and never helps at all, you will not be hurt, surprised, or full of resentment, because after all, he is either dead or has moved to Taiwan.

Toss all your pride overboard, learn to ask for help, and accept that you will fuck-up in ways you never ever imagined possible. You will drop the kid on their head, they will get horrendous diaper rash, you will forget doses of medicine, and you will forget to strap in the carseat properly one day. The lower your expectations are from the start, the better you will feel when you don't actually kill your own baby. If you start out trying to be The Perfect Mother, then you are only giving yourself a higher height to fall from and you will break your legs along the way.

Only God is perfect, moms are human.

That said, I will forget all this soon, and need generous reminders as I tear myself to pieces for all my fuck-ups-to-be. In a few months, when I start to beat myself up, do remind me.....


  1. Nice list! I look forward to the labour liveblogging.


  2. Nice list! Ok, I'll let you live blog.

  3. I love the idea of live-blogging your labor/delivery!

    I beat my husband at gin rummy while in labor - he hasn't played with me since then!

  4. This is really helpful, somehow, and comforting. And funny. How often do I laugh my ass off at baby advice?

    I hope I get to apply it someday...

  5. I have mobile blogged before, it's fun. You can even send a camera phone pic too. But holy crap, maybe I shouldn't have told *you* that. Who knows what we will be forced to look at! :)

  6. A post full of truisms!

    Live-blogging is a fantastic idea and I hope you're able to do it. Had I had the facilities I totally would have done it, being as I was completely alone in the corner of some room labouring for hours on end. What else would there be to do but blog?

  7. thanks for the list. if baby has a boob and a blanket, he'll be fine. i will definitely need those other things you listed.

    i look forward to the live blogging!

  8. Great list. Stuff most people wouldn't think of. I likey.

  9. SO wise, I should just stop writing now . . .

  10. Hahaha. I have the accio spell for my TiVo remote (now the universal remote for the whole shabang). It's most useful.
    No liveblogging for me, I am sure-- my contractions seem to always go at most 5 minutes apart. But I will be sure to read yours if you manage to accomplish this excellent feat.

  11. Funny, my addition to that post was diapers and then a whole bunch of stuff for mom -- massages, bubble bath, netflix subscription. We're cut from the same cloth you know.

    (Is it me, or have these word verification things suddenly become much harder to read? Jamming bold and not bold letters together? I'm dead sober and I'm wondering if this post will even go through.)

  12. Thanks for sharing that NY Times article. That was well done. The topic still sticks a knife in my heart, but I knew I could count on you to only link to a well balanced piece.

    I had to laugh at your husband advice!

    You are getting close!!

  13. Gosh, you're awesome :-) I loved the toy store & the husband lines!!! Seriously made me LOL, despite being in the office with Ohad who's actually working (and cannot concentrate with any noise around).

    You're very realistic :-) I was expecting a really difficult baby, no time for anything, etc. Amazingly enough, Yirmi is the opposite of that - when he wakes up, he smiles at the world and I can go take a leisurely shower before I come back to feed him. I guess you really never know what to expect.

    I still find it funny that any time I see Ohad pick Yirmi up, I wonder why he's holding MY baby. It's not that I'm terribly possessive, it's just that for the longest time, it seemed like he was only mine... Weird.

    The live blogging sounds great. My labor was so fast (not to mention on the Sabbath) that it would have been a no-go. I wasn't really smart enough to figure out I needed to go to the hospital until about 90 minutes before Yirmi was born (and that's with a 25 minute drive in the middle...)

  14. Where do the Orthodox in your community shop for stuff?

    Because where ever it is, that shop will deliver and setup the day or day after you call and say that my baby is HERE. You order it in advance, make a deposit and they HOLD it. Seriously, your OB should have the shop name and number for you to call.

  15. I will pass the list on to ready-to-be new moms! Another godsend is one of those cordless, battery operated lights that are meant to be hung up in a closet or dark nook. Mine was a large circular affair that turned on by pushing on its face and it emitted a very soft light. I just set it on the bed so everytime baby woke up during the night to feed, I didn't need to turn on any evil harsh lights. For a first time mom, I needed the light so I could make sure boob and babe latched. But by baby #2 I could do it all in the dark, eyes closed.