Thursday, May 28, 2009

Lost and Found on U Street

I've talked a little bit about my volunteer work on here. I've spoken a fair amount about my latest habits of pregnancy (getting sick) and having a new house to close on soon and another to list (getting committed.) Well, I've failed to talk about the most important theme going on of all: pregnancy confusion.

I had an end-of-year party last night in downtown D.C. for my outgoing committee in my major service organization that I often reference. It was a fun way to close out a great year, I've made good friends on this Committee that I won't get to see as often next year, so I made the effort to get my butt down to the U Street corridor and make myself seen. Via the scene.

And what a scene! Going out in D.C. is much fun; it's a shame bars aren't more kid-friendly.

So, I caught up and I munched on the leftover mushroom ragout/toast points while everyone else ignored them. I drank cranberry and club soda so nobody would guess I was non-alcoholic, but then they just pointed at my belly and called me out on it anyway.

But then it was time to leave. I had to go, as difficult as it was to check back into motherhood, out of the D.C. singles', doubles' and really cool rooftop bar scene. So, I went.

I walked down U Street for a pleasant 10 minutes. Wandering through the cool early-summer air, I was struck by how good it felt to walk. And after my initial stroll pace, I decided I was ready to be feet-up again and upgraded to a full-fledged charge. When it seemed like I had walked for an hour and many blocks, I looked up and the bars and clubs were thinning out.. I was nearly to 10th street. Where the hell was my car? I did have a car, right?

I hadn't parked this far.. had I?!

I must have. I did the only thing I could think of to do without seeming totally lost to the lines of folks waiting to get into Hot Club A and Hot Club B: I called my husband.

"So.... you can't find the car. And you're calling.. me?"
This is actually what he said.
We re-traced my steps. I literally. He listened empathetically, from the couch and PTI. I turned around and walked back from whence I'd come. I think I walked exactly halfway back to my starting point, every block frustrating me more. What in the world was wrong with my brain?

Oh, right. I'm thinking for two here.

I did find it. I did get in. And it started. And I drove home, giving myself a little tour of the Nation's Capital by night as I drove.

Tell me this doesn't get worse.


Tuesday, May 26, 2009

RTT: Rushed, and Terribly Tardy

I meant to post my RTT post last night, but my Bachelorette addiction got in the way of that. So I'm late but I'm here. Let's party.

I think God is mad at me, or if not at me, then someone who lives in the Washington, DC Metro area, because it is raining YET AGAIN. It doesn't seem meteorologically possible that we could get more rain in 2009. But here we are. Flash flooding an' all.

A few updates. The nasty horrible nauseous feeling that everyone has had from a few too many the night before? Yeah, that's me all the time right now, only I'm not allowed to just crack a beer in the morning to chase the Spring Break-esque hangover away. This pregnancy couldn't be more different, which is ironic.. because upon finding out, I was immediately pure bravado about it, "eh, this is old hat. I've done this before. NO big deal." News flash: they aren't all the same.

A few updates, in random order:
- still congested, can't hear out of either ear, and still refusing to take anything for it.
- we got the house. Not "new" by any stretch. New to us. Our offer was accepted last week, and we're set up for closing and everything.
- that means we'll be putting our own house on the market after the first one closes. That means you can commit me now.
- simple math will tell you that, yes, we have a lot of stuff to do around here. And the new (old) house that we don't own yet, but soon will. It's enough to make me throw up. Wait, I've already done that today.

I've been really beating myself up lately about my lack of blogging forte. I miss the community; the camaraderie, and mostly I miss laughing at the foibles that are oft discussed, celebrated, and taken back .

But I wanted you all to know, I am here. I am surviving, some days just barely. I am reading, when I can. And I am making attempts to reconcile this game called "life" with this game called "blogging."


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

RTT: Ruminations Titillating and Tumultuous

I've decided to go pamper myself today. It was our last day of "mom's morning out" preschool today for the summer, so I took FULL advantage of the 2.5 hours of free time. Mostly turned the radio up full blast, rolled down every window, and sang at the top of my lungs, among a top notch pedicure other things.

Just DON'T tell my husband about the pampering. His Midwestern values don't jive well there.

("CDB, he reads your blog, stupid.")

That's right, well.. let's change the subject. And don't call me stupid. 'Baby', fine, not 'stupid'.

How is swine flu back in the news?! Have we all learned more about the spread of infectious diseases than we all wanted to know? Don't the WHO participants want to get out and be tourists while in Geneva? It's really a beautiful city, gorgeous waterfront, great restaurants..

My black lab is posted outside the kitchen cabinet where we keep the trash. Motionless. Just staring at the closed doors. He thinks he hears a mouse (he did once, about a year and a half ago. We.. ahem. Caught it.)

Oh, all my Facebook friends that live in maintenance-free condos and townhouses just got grossed out by that last admission. JUST WAIT.

I think this recovery will take some time, in terms of general economic activity, because I think it will be a while before it's "cool" to spend money again. Sure, ladies will still shop, but we're also clipping coupons now with abandon, and those habits will stick around for a while. My theory is housing will turn around much faster, as those of us living in teeny tiny dwellings JUST can't take it anymore and begin to churn the market with housing sales and purchases. (Note: our region is already turning around, but it was predicted to be one of the first. BOO YAH.)

Grab the button, do some random churning of your own, and tell Keely she looks AMAZING without those last three pounds. (Just kidding. Don't say that.)


Monday, May 18, 2009

The Baby Grows Up

Let's continue with the "baby of the family" theme.. and then quickly leave it. Youngest kids always have the worst A.D.D.

What was that noise?

Oh yes. As the 3rd of three kids, I was always surrounded by people.. and activity.. and people. So as I grew up, I grew into a strong preference to have people around. To need them around. In my adult years, those of you familiar with Myers-Briggs personality test will know what it means that I was "off the chart" E--for Extrovert. Strong preference for people.

I've found that being a Stay-at-Home-Mom, unlike a lot of other occupations, can often be very isolating. This is something I didn't expect, and the one thing I'm having the most trouble with.

That, and the fact that I can't hear myself think over the Vivaldi. And can't control my A.D.D.

This morning, we had our big "preschool is ending"/graduation/last week of the session/wasn't it great/won't we miss our sporadic 3-hours of freedom two days per week- picnic party at a park.

People and Picnic Party at a Park.
PEOPLE=makes me very happy to be around friends. Those with whom I can chat with endlessly. About endless topics.
PICNIC=food. Makes me very happy. Very, very happy. See pregnant post.
PARTY=see "People"
PARK=makes toddler very, very happy. He has sand in the sandbox. Equipment to climb. Slides to slide down. Running around to do. Arms to wave in the air.

So, there we are, in our Utopian park village, among people. We were doing well, eating, chatting, climbing, and being happy. It was chilly 55 degrees, but the sun was out. Then the coughing started. He was getting over a cough from this weekend, and I'd thought he'd kicked it. He had what I can only summarize as a very uncomfortable (for him and for me) coughing fit, and for a 2.5 minute period, the poor guy could barely catch his breath.

I knew we had to leave. I gathered our stuff, and, clutching my Tupperware, said some quick goodbyes, and we walked out toward the car. The coughing stopped. He complained about leaving. Sometimes Irony walks up and socks you in the jaw. And then runs away, really fast.

As I walked, tears began to well up in my eyes, knowing we were going home to an empty.. isolating.. lacking of people.. house. (That seems really silly now, in hindsight. But it happened.)

Even when I worked in an interior cube in a big Bank, surrounded by introverts as an Analyst, I would still pop out to visit other Bank friends, or pop downstairs for a coffee or smoothie.. or chat with my therapist-dry cleaner. I could satisfy the need to see people if I needed.

Now, it's not always an option. Nothing has really prepared me for that.


Thursday, May 14, 2009

Why I'm Such a Baby

I'm the third of three children. I'm the extreme third. That's not like three cubed, but the inverse, squared. Got it ?

My sister is ten years older than I am. My brother is seven years my senior. So I am, what was and is, frequently referred to as, the baby. (With emphasis)

As such, I've always been close to my parents. I remember having a mostly happy childhood, with very big people around. My older sister and brother, I found out recently (last night), would try to push me along in my development as a baby, hold me up to help me walk early, to beat the other impending-toddler that lived down the street. I remember my brother holding me up on the bike, telling me I didn't really need training wheels.. I could do it!

But, eventually, they got older, and went off to college. I was still at home for a longgggg time after that, putting me squarely in middle and high school as a practically only child.

I didn't have to share a bathroom with any other kid, in those formative years (a fact that haunts my husband, as I kick him out of the bathroom at night). It was nobody else but me on the upstairs floor of our house. I had no other kids to contend with, for my adoring parents' attention. Truly the baby.

When I left to study abroad in London the summer of '96, my parents sat with me at the bagel shop in the airport, shared a bagel, and listened to my concerns about the flight. The curriculum. My plan to stay there and find a job, a flat. I was scared, and they could tell. When they hugged me goodbye, I sobbed, and I didn't think I would stop. I cursed myself for being a little girl, as the flight attendant pressed her lips together, bowed her head and smiled, knowingly.

My parents just came through town last night and today, for a quick visit on their way from North Carolina to Pennsylvania, where they will be attending my Dad's 50th college reunion in Bethlehem. We're about halfway. I got over my resentment about the cause of the visit not being JUST to stop and SEE ME, but because we're halfway, and really enjoyed their quick trip.

My son loves my father, and it floors my mother, who works so hard f0r each giggle and grin. I loved watching them interact, I love that my Dad asks my son a question and makes him figure out the answer.. not giving it away until it's right. I watch him instilling the same curiosity he did in us, and I know that will last a lifetime.

I even got a kick out of cooking them all a gourmet breakfast this morning, while I had Grandma watching the toddler.

When they pulled away today (the first time), I started to get a little weepy. Misty. I was holding my son, who was saying, "buh bye, Gammaw, buh bye, Gammpa," and I looked at him, wondering if he could sense the transformation back to "little girl" that I feel when my parents leave and I'm not ready for them to yet.

We got a call 15 minutes later. They couldn't find my Dad's wallet.
"Where was Dad's sweatshirt.. is his wallet inside?"
"Yep, got it here."
"Oh, geez, we need to turn around. Okay, be there in 15 minutes."


Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Come Out, Come Out

I know, it's high time.

Some of my friends in real life know. Some of my bloggy-friends know. Some of my relatives know because I told them, some know because I didn't tell them.

But when I dropped my nearly-2 year old son off at his Mom's morning out preschool program this morning, it was all I could do to stoop over and put sunscreen on his little baby face. I nearly passed out. Then, as the often jovial, always cordial Moms chatted away, I had to make a break for it. I raced to the car through the brilliant luster of sun-filled morning, felt the cool morning breeze on my face as I admired the no-rain status of the day. Made it to the car. Whew, now everything would be okay, right?

Wrong. Unwrapped the Chewy Granola Bar. Took a bite. Turn up that NPR report, get your mind on other things. The world was spinning a bit, I rolled down the windows. Then it happened. I thought I had the urge to sneeze but... alas.

Let's review.

I'm parked in the preschool parking lot. Happy, lark-like Moms and Dads are all around me, dropping off Joe and Suzy and (let's be more trendy) Madison and Allister.

I race around to the front of the car, bend down next to the front bumper and... YIKES. You guessed it. Got rid of every single item in my stomach including the acid, and my body wasn't quite done. I heaved until I was begging for mercy; it's not like I was in the comfort of my own bathroom here.

A parking lot puking. And you all know what I was thinking, as I clutched onto that front bumper for support.

"Gonna have to blog about this."

There ya have it. Pregnant with a capital P. Heaving with a capital H. And eating like there's no tomorrow.

I'm sorry for my absence as late, but I think this explains a bit more fully where I've "been".


Thursday, May 7, 2009

Writer's Workshop: Overachieving and Believing

I feel, in my job as a blogger, that I must entertain every once in a while. So this week, I'll put on my circus-poodle hat and answer MOST of MamaKat's prompts. Which are:
2.) Do you want a baby?
3.) Who got in big trouble this week?
4.) Write a poem for your mother.

2) I do want another baby. I should, right? (: Considering my eating habits as late? Though our little tri-family equilibrium is nicely in balance, I must say. It would make sense, after all, and that makes for a nice explanation as I polish off my third helping of esoteric pasta/ground beef mixture, washed down with my second helping of pomegranate tea (yes, that's right. Today, I purchased, on two separate occasions, tea with pomegranate juice.) But why I was craving it? Let's add it to the list.

3) I got in big trouble this week. Because of my short (and ill) temper. Let's Blame It On the Rain (that keeps fallin', fallin'.) Everything my toddler and husband did was just over the edge for me, and I communicated that effectively. Especially when Toddler bolted out of the kid's room in the Library this morning during toddler story time. The ingrate.

4) Ode To Me Mum

It's not fair, how we glare, what would we think
In twenty years' hence
Looking back at ourselves, our emotions and elves
Knowing we wouldn't trade for a sixpence?

The glint in the eye, from the kiddo with ire
As he zooms from the room with gloom
N'er the defeated, I give chase, uncleated
And continue my glare with more Vroom.

Fast forward through time, I see how, I see why
The unrelenting love of a mother
It's not possible to understand, nor be warned, nor canned,
What I do can't be done by another.

So on this Mother's Day, my dear Mom, my hero
Understand that it took me three zeros
And as many decades to get it once and for blind:
There is no greater love,
There is no greater love,
There is no greater love than our kind.

(Yes. I'm sending this to her now.)


Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Tuesday Thoughts of Randomness

I'm late! I'm late! For a very important post! Let the games begin!

You all know by now to strap in and hold on, because my brain on RTT is like an acid trip roller coaster; but not a new, cool roller coaster. One of those crotchety old wooden ones that you think you'll get stuck on forever. But trust me, we won't be going upside down.

I've been eating myself out of house and home this week. And last week. And 10 weeks prior to that. I can't eat enough. I just polished off an egg/cheese/bacon on a bagel that someone else prepared for me. It was delicious and my first thought upon last bite was, "I should could eat another one of those." (Addendum: someone next to me just had pancakes and sausage put in front of him, and I'm about to reach over and take a taste. Dare me?)

For those that know me in real life, it's fun knowing why I keep referencing these random things, isn't it?

I really hate white potatoes. But sweet potatoes are totally my thing. And my son's. He can eat the heck outta some sweet pots. Our white potatoes consistently go bad.

I taught my son a new concept, and I was super proud of him for getting it. At first, he took the empty bottle of Aveeno soap and stuck it, open top side down, straight into the water. It did not fill up. I then showed him how to hold it under the water but at an angle, so it filled up with water. It took him one try, and he filled it up. Then he dumped it on me.

It's funny to me that media has started calling it the N1-H1 flu virus, seemingly due to the fact that every one of us can't stand the word "swine".

One of my favorite past times is to people judge watch. I love to make up little narratives about their story. Why she is yelling at the person on the phone. Or why he is yelling loud enough for everyone in the restaurant to hear him chewing out the line cook. Or why the manager always has a smile on his face, no matter how tough things seem to be. Or what the young blonde chick's texts are all about, or why she has her text-message sound setting on her phone set to DEAFENING. These three mystery guys with the pancakes, reading the newspapers. Are they just carpooling, and don't really know each other that well? Are they in a fight? A bitter family estate battle? (Oh. I looked. They're just watching CNN.)

I really need to go on a trip somewhere, soon. I don't care where (and the upcoming wedding my husband is in does not count.) (Be honest, here, CDB.) Okay, the wedding does count I guess. But I want another one.

Speaking of trips, head on over to the Un-Mom, and enjoy her brand of random!


Sunday, May 3, 2009

Parenting Traps

Every weekend, I teach a kid yoga class at a nearby community center. It's fun, it's high-energy, and a packed morning of 3-5 year olds doing yoga with Mom (or Dad!) Every week, I learn of new parenting styles I wasn't previously aware of. And it's FASCINATING.

The Helicopter Mom
Hovering over her charge, the Helicopter Mom pulls, pushes, prods, pokes, holds up and scolds her youngster into each and every pose. When doing introductions, the kid barely has time to get out a syllable before the question is repeated: WHAT IS YOUR NAME, ______?

The AH-64 Apache Mom
AH-64 Apache is the Army's primary attack helicopter. It is a quick-reacting, airborne weapon system that can fight close and deep to destroy, disrupt, or delay enemy forces. 'Nuff said.

"Hold the Whistle" Mom
These Moms have overactive preschoolers who don't want to sit. Or lay down. Or do the pose. Or listen. But they really want to work on this "autonomy" thing, so they sit back.. for a time.. and let the kids do what they will. Before stepping in to call foul.

The "Really Want to Hold the Whistle but JUST CAN'T" Mom
These Moms are beside themselves, trying to sit back for a time.. but they JUST CAN'T. They might let 'em try to get into said pose themselves, but more often than not, they're going to reach over and yank the back up, or the legs down. These tend to be the "constant chatter" moms, who are telling their kids what is is they should be doing differently.

The Sweet Lovin' Mom
These Moms are all love, all the time. Granted, they tend to have the sweetheart kids who do exactly what they are supposed to be doing, most (if not all) of the time. I would like to order one of these children for my next child. Please.

The "Let 'Em Ride" Mom
I once had a Mom who would leave her child in the room for quite a few minutes while she went to the bathroom (and, I assume, make a few phone calls and perhaps, run a few errands.) The child seemed used to this casual abandonment, so I assumed this was their mother-daughter M.O.

The Creator of Doubt Mom
Sometimes, we go around with cards or animals and the children can choose which pose they want to learn together. The child selects a card and..
"Do you really want to choose that yoga card to do? Wait! Don't you want this one? Do you really want to choose that animal pose? But you like froggies!"

We all do it. Some of the time. Well, maybe that's just me. What kind of style are you?
(P.S. My son loves to show off his yoga poses. I might share one of these days.)




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