Wednesday, December 2, 2009

18 Weeks

Besides posting the link to the actual news, I realize that I have not written about this pregnancy at all. And I suppose that's normal, because aren't you supposed to document less and less of each child's life? Like, while I took pictures and ran to the blog as soon as Norah cooed for the first time, this baby will probably not even get its picture taken until its a full 18 years old? Or something like that.

I mean, its not that I love this baby any less, its just that things are different this time. Most noticeably, I have a toddler on my hands while also having a person in my uterus. (Sidenote: Why is saying "in my uterus" so amusing?). When I was pregnant with Norah I took long, leisurely naps and could sit for an hour at a time just waiting for her to move again. With this baby, I can only sit until Norah decides to climb onto something or she starts to color on the wall or runs to me for the 14th time in 10 minutes asking for food. So, little baby, I'm sorry that you won't be born into a house that is calm and quiet and the most peaceful environment a baby ever saw. But rest assured, Norah didn't either, and you are going to have a very entertaining older sister to get you into all kinds of mischief. Its going to be a blast for the two of you.

I am currently at 18 weeks. I have seen the little baby a few times, and am the proud mother of a two-armed, two-legged, one-headed little creature. I am mostly over all the misery of the first trimester. I don't remember when it happened, but I woke up one day and it was all gone. So far gone that I reverted back to my previous position of I Don't Understand Why Pregnant Women are So Whiney! This is a Breeze! That, of course, was before the lower back pain, the increasingly frequent peeing, and the embarassing consumption of pickles. And olives. And Bagel Bites. I am all about the super nutritious food when I am pregnant.

And! Because I am much more aware of what is going on in the belly this time around, I noticed a few weeks ago that the moving around in there was not gas, but A Baby! Hooray!

Here is a picture for Grandma:

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Jasmine tagged me in a meme. I still do not know how to say the word "meme". I'm suppose to be totally honest and write 10 things about myself, I'm guessing 10 things that most people would not know. I think...Anyway, here I go.

1. Today Jasmine called me a "well-organized hermit" and honestly, I do not think that anyone has ever better packed me into one phrase. Here's the thing, I'm not a total hermit. I like to get out and see people and talk to people in real life situations. In fact, I can be quite charming and humorous. But (and this is one big 'but') if I do not get my own time to sit around the house and talk to no one but myself and the cobwebs, I get mean. Like, I-will-claw-your-eyeballs-out-and-feel-no-remorse-mean. And I have gotten very good at recognizing the signs that tell me I need to stay at home for a day and can plan accordingly. Thus, The Well Organized Hermit.

2. Sometimes I get shy at drive-thrus because I am afraid the people behind me in line will hear what I am ordering and think that I am some kind of sicko for ordering three beef and potato burritos. Usually I feel this way at Taco Bueno, where the latent competitive eater in me comes out most obnoxiously. But seriously! The beef and potato burritos are made of magic! This shyness, however, does not stop me from ordering what I would ordinarily order and enjoying it completely.

3. Speaking of being shy, I have a shy voice box. When we were in childbirth classes before Norah was born, the teacher was explaining that if you are not comfortable in your birth setting, that your cervix will actually start to close up and labor will slow down. Its similar to having a shy bladder I suppose. Later in the class she was making us practice deep breathing and moaning as well as making horse sounds while we exhaled. (Its hard to explain.) I simply could not do the moaning and the horse lips. Just couldn't. I chalk it up to having a shy voice box. My bladder, however, is a raging loudmouth.

4. I have anxiety. It is no fun at all. But I am working on it.

5. In addition to having anxiety, I have a very vivid imagination. This can make nighttime noises in my house incredibly stress-inducing.

6. Somedays, when Norah has worn her pajamas all day long, and the TV has not been turned off at all, and I fall asleep while she sits in my lap and watches Sesame Street...I feel like a terrible mother.

7. I have large joints; elbows, ankles, and knees. I used to be very self-conscious about my knees, but after three years of Rusty telling me how cute my legs are, I have moved on to disliking my ankles. I call them "Skankles" (Skeleton Ankles).

8. I call myself a good writer, but I don't know that one can be called a good writer if one does not actually write anything good any longer. Did ya get that last one?

9. I have a very nice singing voice.

10. I love to read. Give me a good book and I will devour it in no time. I may even read it again. And when I get really attached to a story or a set of characters, I will get very sad when the book comes to an end, because it marks the end of a relationship in some weird way. I love Somerset Maugham, and if I had my way, would name my next baby after him. Many, many times I have thought that a particular book was put in my way for a reason, for the purpose of revealing and explaining things in my own life that could never have been explained in any other way. Kate Chopin's The Awakening did this for me in high school, and though I tried to re-capture the clarity I got from that story when I re-read it last summer, I just could not find it there again.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

18 Months

Dear Norah,

You are 18 months old. I have not sat down to try and mash out all the things I think and feel about you in over 6 months. Its not that I haven't thought about it all, I just have not actually done the writing part. I don't really know why. Maybe its because we are now going through the months for the second time, and waking up on the 7th of every month does not stand out to me as much anymore. That sounds weird, but for your first year of life, the 7th of every month marked an anniversary for us. 1 month past your birth, 2 months, 3 months, and so on until we got to April 7th again. 12 months past your birth...and suddenly it is October and we are coming up on your second Halloween, your second costume, and for the second time I am wondering if its ok for me to take you Trick-or-Treating even though we all know that I am going to be the one eating all the candy.

Alot has happened these last 6 months, not the least of which is your ability to walk. You can walk now. You can walk and run. You can walk on your toes, you can walk backward, you can walk sideways, and you spend lots of your time walking in direct opposition to where I've told you to walk. You eat with a fork and a spoon and most of the time you make it to your mouth. You can do a somersault. You give kisses and backward hugs and think it is hilarious when I pretend I am chewing on your face like a zombie.

You love to play with Legos, building towers and putting your favorite Lego person (who you named "A-Pssst!") on the top, only to laugh hysterically when he falls off. You love books too. Some days it seems like the entire day is spent with you running to get a book and then running back to me, waving it wildly and insisting "Book! Book! Up!" I have many books memorized, like Baby's First Alphabet, The Very Quiet Cricket, and Goodnight Moon. This past weekend you discovered a new favorite: Everyone Poops. Your favorite page is the one with all the animal butts.

Your love for your blankies has only deepened in the past 6 months. You would not believe how excited you get when you see your blankies. You run to them with your arms open wide, yell "GANKIE!", collect them to your little body and then let out a big content sigh. And then you climb into a chair and pile them on top of yourself until all I can see is your little hands, cradling them and rubbing the soft fabric between your fingers. And I know you are under there with as much blankie stuffed into your mouth as you can possibly fit, sucking on the corner until it is soaking wet. Your love for your blankies is something I can only liken with my love for chocolate chip cookies and trashy television.

Your verbal abilities have increased amazingly. You can say lots of words and you are starting to put two words together more and more. It seems like you learn a new word every time I turn around. I love that you can talk, even though I still can't understand much of what you say. The other day you were sitting in the backseat of the car and you repeated "Fie! Fie! Fie!" for something like 5 whole minutes. I still don't know what you were saying, but it must have been something important. Sorry...

Despite your communication skills, you still understand alot more than you can actually verbalize and this makes you very frustrated. You can throw some really impressive temper tantrums when you get frustrated. Your Great-Grandpa Al confirmed that you get the talent from me, for apparently I was known to throw a fit or two when I was your age. Its amazing; one minute you are totally fine, waiting patiently for me to finish getting our popsicle out of the freezer and the next you are a whirling tornado of blonde hair, screaming "Mine!" and pulling the empty box of popsicles out of the trash and collapsing onto it like it is your most precious possession and I just used it as toilet paper. I'm still not really sure what you were trying to tell me that day, but it was a very dramatic (and loud) 10 minutes.

Sometimes when I think back to the days when you were a newborn I breathe a big sigh of relief. Things were so much harder then, when you were so dependent and I never knew if you were going to sleep or not. And its true, those days were harder and these days are easier. But in some ways, these days are harder. I don't take 2 minute showers anymore, spending those entire 2 minutes a mess of anxiety, worried that you were going to wake up screaming and starving anymore. I take 10 minute showers now and I really am glad those days are over. At the same time, I never worried when you were 2 months old that you were going to fall and break your face open while running across the kitchen tile. So really, its a trade off.

Motherhood continues to be the hardest and most beautiful thing I have ever done.

My little lovey, you bring me such joy. You make me laugh and act like an idiot as I entertain you in public places. You make me angry and you make me cry. You make me feel like I am losing my mind. You bewilder me and make me stop what I am doing to watch you and your thinking face. You fill my heart with such happiness it hurts and I have never worried about anything as much as I worry about you. Your life has brought so many things perspective, has simultaneously cleared and clouded my vision. You are wonderful.

I love you.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Click It or Ticket

Folks, we have some news.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Nom Nom Nom

A few weeks ago I was looking at The Baby Book by Dr Sears. A woman from our church bought this for us right after Norah was born and it is awesome. It's full of useful information about things like breastfeeding, helping baby sleep, what babies can eat at what age, and what to do when your precious sweet baby starts throwing tantrums and biting her toys with rage in her eyes. That last part has been particularly useful the past few weeks as Norah lacks the ability to verbalize her frustrations, so she bites her toys instead. At least she isn't biting me.

The Baby Book also has a handy development chart that goes from birth to age 2. When Norah was younger, every few months on the 7th I would lug the book into the living room and look at where she was on the chart. I read about her past skills, her current skills and her future skills as well as cognitive abilities and favorite activities. But as she's gotten a little older I've stopped pulling it out on the 7th of every third month.

So when I got it out a few weeks ago I had some catching up to do. I happened to look back a few chapters at a section about teething and noticed the handy age diagrams for typical baby teeth. Norah was about 16 months at the time and sporting 4 pearly whites, which placed her solidly in the 6-9 month range.

Then I looked at the diagram for babies in their 16th month and holy smokes! They are supposed to have their 1 year molars at that point. Not to mention all the other little chompers that have sprouted before the molars.

Dudes. How does Dr. Sears expect Norah to have all those teeth?I can't even imagine that. And why does she even need them, because honestly, she seems to do pretty well for herself with her 4 little friends. I don't really see the need for canines or pre-molars or molars. Incisors will do fine for us, thank you.

It was probably just then, just as I was scoffing at Dr Sears and his "tooth knowledge" that three more teeth erupted out of Norah's gums. Two on the top and one on the bottom. And just yesterday I (stupidly) stuck my finger in her mouth and right before Norah chomped down on it with her perfectly good incisors I felt an enormous lump somewhere near the pre-molar section of her top gum. Ouchies.

Perhaps that is why Norah has taken to biting her toys.