Thursday, April 30, 2009

Half birthday

So yeah, this should have been written on Tuesday, but I got busy that night, then I was out of town...so it's here now.

My little man is official half-a-year old. This first six months has been ROUGH. I mean, really, really rough. I can't believe we've all survived it, to be honest with you. I hate to say anything for fear of jinxing it, but thing have finally started to get better. I've been feeling good, and the baby has started to get really fun (check out the video for proof of that).

At Michelle's suggestion, I'll now go back and review the list of mom things I said I would never do. Let's see how I did.

  • Cry when my kid gets shots (unless they threaten me with the needle). Haven't done.
  • Get upset about leaving the kid with a babysitter for the first time. Nope.
  • Freak out about leaving the kid overnight for the first time. I was mildly uncomfortable with it (because of who he was left with), but I was really just excited for the sleep.
  • Refuse to let anyone other than family/close friends watch the kid. Not an option at all.
  • Play "guess baby's stats" with my friends before every doctor's appointment. Hells no.
  • Constantly worry about the kid getting raped/murdered/kidnapped. Nope, despite my frequent interactions with rapists, kidnappers, and (far less frequently) murderers.
  • Get upset when baby goes from sleeping in our room to sleeping in its own room. I was a little upset about it, but I think that was more because it made the midnight feedings less convenient.
  • Quit my job to be a stay at home mom. Absolutely have not, and I wouldn't even consider it now that I'm at a job I love.
  • Be comfortable staying home with the baby before it can interact with me. I got over this one pretty quickly...I didn't really have any other choice, and I even sort of enjoy it sometimes.
  • Worry about SIDS or other random things killing my baby. Nope, though on those rare occasions that he sleeps through the night I do kinda wonder if he quit breathing.
I stuck to my guns pretty well, I think. I'm such a laid back mommy, which makes absolutely no sense. I'm not a laid back kind of person at all in every other area of my life. In fact, I'm pretty uptight. This relaxed approach to parenting seems to be working out so far. Hopefully it stays that way.

In honor of his half birthday (actually because he needed some onesies, since he's too long for the six month ones now), my mom and I went shopping for him at the secondhand shop near here. They had this Fisher Price singing mirror thing that the babysitter has, and the kid loves. The Easter Bunny was going to bring the baby one, but the Easter Bunny couldn't find one when he was shopping on Good Friday. The Easter Bunny later found out that it costs $50, so the Easter Bunny decided to drop the idea. When I found a used one for $12, I figured it was worth the investment. I was right. The video will show you why it was the best 12 bucks I've ever spent.

video

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Fake it 'til you make it, I guess

The wee man and I make a trek to the laundromat today to wash the down comforter (that someone spit up on in the 24-hour period between the last washing (coincidentally, also because of spit up) and me getting the duvet cover on). There were only a few other people there, and one of them was a college guy. Pretty much the whole time we were doing our laundry thing, the guy was on his laptop and listening to music, not really paying attention to anything that was going on (evidenced by the fact that his laundry sat in the dryers for a good 15 minutes after they stopped). That's why I was surprised when he came up to me as I was packing the baby and his crap up to go home and said, "you know, you look like you really enjoy being a mom. You can just tell from the way you're acting with him." I was so shocked I could only stammer out a "thank you" - which I'm not entirely sure is the appropriate response to someone telling you you look like you enjoy being a mom. Despite the fact that it's slightly creepy to think he was apparently watching me the whole time I was there, it was one of those moments that makes me think that, even though I haven't made it all the way to mommy awesomeness yet, I must be doing something right. I like that. A lot.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Germaphobe in the making

I am not a germ person. I'm the kind of girl who plops right down on a public toilet seat (assuming there's no standing water). I shamelessly pick food up off the floor and eat it (as long as it's not sticky food). In a pinch, I'm pretty sure I'd be ok with using someone else's toothbrush (no, I've never done it, and I don't intend to. I'm just saying...). Suffice it to say that I don't worry about germs. Ever.

Generally, my carefree attitude has worked for me. I haven't been really sick in a long time, and tend to get one, maybe two, colds a year. Now, however, I think I've caught a touch of germaphobia.

Let me explain. We now have a nasty, germy little kid in the house. His nasty, germy little kid germs are BRUTAL. B and I have both been fighting colds for about a month and a half now. These colds originated with the wee one. No matter what preventative and remedial measures we've taken, we haven't managed to kick these or prevent the from recurring. To make things worse, he's got another one now. Which means B and I will probably get another cold (on top of the current one). I'm just thankful he hasn't picked up something more lethal, like a nasty stomach bug or the plague. I think that's because there are only two other kids at his baby sitter's, and the other kids are related to the sitter. That means we've only got one pool of potential illnesses to worry about instead of multiple ones. This is a small comfort to me.

As a result of the germs floating around my house, I've picked up some germaphobe tendencies, like hand sanitizer and actively preventing the baby from grabbing my lips and tongue with his slobber-covered hands. I haven't quite hit the OCD hand washing stage yet, but it can't be far away...

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Martha Stewart I'm not

But I do make a mean sweet potato puree, if I do say so myself.

Tonight was my first foray into baby food making, and I think it went decently well. If you ignore the fact that I broke the blender and my mini chopper/food processor thingy isn't nearly big enough for two and a half sweet potatoes. And the fact that I'm pretty sure all of my cubes are going to be frozen together because I got sweet potato all over the ice cube trays. And the fact that I'm pretty sure our ice cube trays make too-small cubes (I noticed for the first time tonight that they each hold 16 cubes instead of 12).

But none of that really matters as long as the baby will eat whatever it is that I make. We'll see how that works out in a couple of weeks.

Monday, April 13, 2009

I've said all along that he's trying to kill me

And this article I read today confirms it.

To briefly sum it up*, a Chilean study found that women who had high blood pressure while pregnant are at higher risk for heart disease. I always knew that kid was devious. He's not actually going to kill me while he's an infant...he's saving it up until I get old. Awesome.

You're looking at the face of evil, people. Don't let the cute facade fool you.

*No destroying my interpretation, Jen.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Oops, I did it again

Yeah, I took the baby to a bar again tonight. Totally on accident. My mom rating for the week has seriously nosedived.

This one wasn't really my fault, though.

I was meeting up with a friend who's at her parents on the opposite side of the state from me. She needs my maternity clothes, and she lives super far away, so we decided to meet up while she's at her parents' and sorta closer to me. The city where I used to work is sort of a good halfway point, and since my friend had been there before, she suggested meeting there. There's a place in town that has great pizza. I had never eaten at the restaurant, but we'd had the pizza delivered to work a few times. My friend was in the mood for pizza, so I suggested we meet at this place. I get there and walk in, and it immediately becomes painfully obvious that this place is a bar. Like a dingy dive bar. We stayed anyway (the pizza is so worth it).

At the time we got there, there was a family there with a kid who looked about eight, which made me feel slightly better. However, there was also a bachelorette party going on. That made me feel worse. As did the conversation I had with two guys at the bar while I was waiting to pay for our pizza. They were giving me shit for having my baby in a bar (which they only found out when I corrected one of them who said something about the baby shower going on...he thought the bachelorette party was a baby shower because I had my kid back there).

In the past week, my son has spent more time in bars than I did in at least the past year and a half. I'm so winning the mother of the year award this week.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Trashy? Why, yes...

So I totally took the baby to the bar with me tonight.

Right after I picked him up from the sitter's, I get a text from a lawyer friend that says, "We're at Bdubs, you should come." I didn't know who "we" was, but I'm always up for getting out of the house. I told him I had the baby, but he told me to come anyway. So, I did.

When I got there, I found out that the "we" wasn't the Friday sushi lunch group of a few lawyers and other random people I don't have to worry about impressing professionally, as I thought it would be. No, it was actually an impromptu get together of a decent number of local bar members. And I showed up with my baby. Awesome.

Luckily for me, everyone was thoroughly charmed by the little guy. Two of my friends were even trying to share their beers with him. Wasn't that sweet?

Despite that, I still couldn't help feeling just a little bit trashy as I waded my way through a sea of staring college kids on my way out the door. Gotta love adventures in mommyhood.

Monday, April 6, 2009

The truth about motherhood

I'm told (though I didn't actually see the episode) that Oprah today was all about moms talking about motherhood and the things no one tells you before you have kids. I did some digging on Oprah's website (I really wish there were somewhere you could watch Oprah reruns), and here are a couple of passages that really struck me:

"One major motherhood realization that Melinda says she had with her first child was that she could no longer control everything in her life. 'You can no longer choose your activities, your down time, when you get to sleep...No matter what you do or where you go, you're always tethered to this other human being...'

"Most mothers are prepared for sacrifice when they get pregnant, but...don't always realize how much that sacrifice includes...mothers need to accept that they cannot reclaim the person they were before they had kids..."

These two paragraphs almost perfectly sum up what I find so difficult about motherhood. I'm a bit of a control freak, and I like to have control over my daily life. I enjoy being able to dictate how I spend my own time, and I want nothing more than to be able to clean and organize the pigsty my house has become...which I still haven't figured out how to do one-handed and with a wiggly five-month-old on my arm. It's almost like I want to be a mom when it's convenient for me, and to give him back when I have other things to do. Because if I don't do the other things - whether it's laundry, vacuuming, grocery shopping, or pretty much anything else around the house - they won't get done. I can't tolerate that. Stuff needs to get done, dammit! Now, don't get me wrong, B tries to help, but his timeline and mine don't always mesh when it comes to this kind of stuff, and, quite honestly, most of the time I'd rather do the cleaning than have to entertain the baby.

As far as the second paragraph goes, I can't accept that I will never be the person I was before I had a kid. I want that Emily back so, so badly. Rarely a day goes by when I don't find myself thinking "I wish you knew me before..." The people I'm surrounded by on a daily basis now are not the same people who surrounded me before I was pregnant, and I hate that the only Emily these people know is Mommy Emily. Because she sucks. A lot. She's depressed, flabby(er), perpetually exhausted, and constantly trying to figure out how she can return her child without a receipt. Oh, and remarkably stoopid. Pre-pregnancy Emily wasn't the most awesome person in the world, but I liked her a lot better.

The questions "Is it really that bad?" and "Knowing what you know now, would you do it again?" get thrown around occasionally. My answers to those are a definitive "Yes." and "No fucking way in hell." I know not everyone gets those warm, fuzzy motherly feelings right away, but I'm beginning to wonder if I'll ever get mine. There are moments when I feel overwhelming love and fuzzies for the baby, but those are few and far between. Generally, it's just frustration and disappointment...in myself, in my progeny, and in my life. See what I mean about Mommy Emily sucking?

Saturday, April 4, 2009

*Sigh*

It's 1:00 A.M., and I've spent the past hour listening to my son cry, scream, fuss, and whimper in the next room. I met a good friend for dinner tonight, and she convinced me that now was a good time to try a modified version of crying it out (don't judge me...I haven't slept in over a month...something has to give). B's out of town for the weekend, and the guy who lived in the other half of our house was recently evicted, so no one is around to be bothered by some excessive crying. I figured I'd give it a shot.

It started out pretty well. We went through our bedtime routine like normal. He screamed when I put him down, but he fell asleep after about 40 minutes (between checks three and four). Then he woke up a bit before midnight. I'm getting ready to go in to do check number six. This doesn't seem to be working. And I have no idea how long to let him go before I do something more than just comforting him. He keeps getting close to settling down, then he'll start screaming again. *Sigh* This is getting frustrating.

During the first round of our scream-a-thon, I was pleasantly surprised to find that the baby's sad little cries were actually getting to me. I'm generally pretty good at being able to tune out the screaming when I need to (like when we're in the car). It just doesn't usually bother me on the deep level that other mother talk about. I find it obnoxious, but not heartrending. Tonight, though, I felt major pangs of guilt with every wail. I take that as a sign that somewhere deep down inside of me there's a little seed of something maternal. Maybe there's hope for me yet.

Update: about halfway between checks six and seven, he finally settled down, and went to sleep (I think...I'm not about to go in there and risk setting him off again if he's faking me out).

Update again: by the time I got done typing the previous sentence, he started screaming again. *Sigh* Time to come up with plan B, I guess.