Thursday, October 23, 2008

Baby Countdown: 4 1/2 Months to Go

My husband and I have been unusually social in the past couple months. Every Monday, his coworkers come over for poker. Every Tuesday, my coworker/friend comes over, we watch Biggest Loser (usually while eating ice cream and cookies), and she stays over in our guest room. She lives in the city, so not having a 2 hour commute 5 days in a row is nice for her. Plus, it's just nice to have girl time. You know, catch up on work gossip and husband/boyfriend analysis.

From what I've seen, most people with young children (under age 1 or 2) don't do this kind of regular weekly hosting. I definitely feel like we're trying to work this whole childless thing while we can. (Oh, if I could drink.) I can't drink, so instead, I'm visiting friends a lot, and, rather than sitting on my couch, I'm getting out a little more.

I don't mind that this cuts into my TV time. From what I can tell, people with kids watch a lot of TV because they're stuck at home in the evening, at least if they want to be with their spouse. I'll have time in the future to watch TV.
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Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Dumb Question

Student to me: Can I call you by your first name?
Me: Excuse me? (giving him a chance to say "just kidding")
Student: Can I call you by your first name?
Me: That is a dumb question.
Student: What, why?
Other students piping up: I thought there was no such thing as a dumb question!
Me: That's true for most questions. But that is a dumb question.
This student had been slacking in the past few weeks, so the chance to legitimately insult him was satisfying. Plus, his question wasn't serious.

I called his parents later that week and kept him for detention because I was tired of him wasting my time, and can I tell you, this week, he has been a work machine. I'm calling another parent today, and I hope that works out just as smoothly.
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Monday, October 20, 2008

Monday: So Far, So Good! Maternity Jeans Rock

"Oh my god I'm so happy I don't know why it's because I'm pregnant!!!" - me to self while making my allotted 1.5 cups of coffee. I'm allowed two, but you know, I'm so good at moderation.

"Oh my god this has made my day. Yes, yes, YEEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSS!" - me out loud sort of to self but also to husband after I found out Colin Powell endorsed Obama.

I'm already in a great mood and it's only 6:51 am. I hope this lasts. Also, I bought two more pairs of $ 120 maternity jeans. I'm wearing a pair today, and am really excited because I am going to look so good. We got a clean bill of health at the 5 month ultrasound so I am going to tell the rest of my co-workers today if my 15 pound weight gain has not made them suspicious. Baby is 11 oz. and like 10-11 inches tall.

If that sounds like a lot for jeans, YOU just try wearing pants that don't fit you. And sitting down in them. I tried on the $30 pairs, and I just cannot appear in public like that. I also tried on the $ 80 pairs. No luck. All I ever wear is jeans, so this investment makes sense. I was wearing my one pair of maternity jeans every other day, and one time, two days in a row, and that's just silly. After you've been wearing too tight pants, and you put on a pair that look good and don't squeeze your stomach... ain't no feeling like it. You just can't put a price on that.
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Saturday, October 18, 2008

Choosing Baby Names

Me, last week: I found some great baby names.
C: Oh yeah, do you have any good ones?
Me: Yeah, but I’m not willing to share them yet and have my hopes dashed. I want to cling to my names a little longer.

I held onto the name I really liked for maybe 20 more minutes, then I said it, and it basically got dashed. After that little exchange, we spent an hour looking at baby name sites, and we now have a short list. C has a name that he likes a lot. We were discussing that name a couple days ago.

Me: That name is pretentious!
C: I'm a pretentious person! I think it fits! We've got to get away from all those Southern sounding names that you like.
Me: The South is pretentious in its own way. You're just not nuanced enough to appreciate it.

Rejected Names:
Baby X

Other rejected names:
King Arthur
Raiden (Japanese God of Thunder)

C, just now, because I sent him another baby name site: "Evo. No, that's bad.
Cosmo. What's wrong with Cosmo?
Cosimo. Lucius. That sounds good.
Siris. Romulus. Now that's a name everyone likes.
Tiberius. Tiberius needs to be in the kid's name somewhere, just so you know. I like Tiberius. Tiberius, the name of an important Roman emperor. OK, so Tiberius it is.
Primus. Oh, there we go, Primus. Are you writing that down?

...You know, Cabbage Patch Kids come with a name, how come this one doesn't?"
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Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Fiiiiiiiiive Months Today!

Zippedee doo dah! Yeah! Five sounds like a lot! It's closer to 9 than 4!

We get the 20 week ultrasound tomorrow. I can't wait to see what somersaults and kickbox moves the baby has in store. The dude is a kicker for sure. It's fun to be teaching, or watching TV, and feel kicks, even though he is only ten inches tall. But today at work I felt a kick in a weird place.

I sat down for lunch, then all of a sudden, I felt a thump on my cervix, from the inside. OK, that was weird, just ignore it, maybe you just imagined it, because that was disturbing. Then it happened again.  "Whoa! Um, guys, can a baby kick you in the cervix?"
"Oh yeah," a few of my coworkers assured me. "It's only going to get worse."

Corey tells me he was hyper kid. Great.

Oh, and also, all of a sudden, yesterday, I started looking pregnant. I'm too lazy to take my picture though.
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Feel Me Up in the Right Spot

So, a couple friends have put their hands on my tummy. That's fine (I have it worked out in my head, though, that if a stranger tries, probably in a couple of months when I actually look pregnant, that I'll slap their hand- do you dare me? Do you so dare me?), but people keep putting their hand in the wrong place. They put it on my belly button, but the top of the uterus is not quite there yet (actually, today it is, but I wrote this last week). So, their hand is on my, like, intestines.
It's a little awkward that their hand is on my pretty much flat stomach (ok my stomach got a little less flat in the past few days), so I make it even more awkward- yet anatomically accurate- by moving their hand below my belly button, where the baby actually is. I can tell that makes them a little nervous, because they're not sure how far I'm pulling their hand down, but too bad. Then, I hold their hand there and make conversation about my favorite topic: me and my pregnancy.
Isn't that sort of funny, and sick of me?

Being pregnant is literally all I think about. I guess when I'm teaching I think about the kids, but I'm mostly thinking, I'm pregnant, and there's a boy in here, and you guys don't know it yet, and I am so ditching you in March.
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Saturday, October 11, 2008

Ouch, Pregnancy, Ouch.

So, there's this thing called "round ligament pain" that pregnant people might get around 18-22 weeks. A ligament attached to your uterus stretches and irritates a nerve. Here's what books/websites say about it: As a result, you may notice some achiness in your lower abdomen or even an occasional brief, stabbing pain on one or both sides — especially when you shift position or at the end of an active day. The ligaments that support your uterus are stretching to accommodate its increasing weight. This is nothing to be alarmed about, but call your practitioner if the pain continues even when you're resting or becomes severe.
Well, what the websites and books don't say is that it can double you over in gasping pain that lasts a lot longer than a few seconds. This happened to me last Saturday night while in the NYC subway and last Sunday on and off through dinner. After dinner we called my doc because what I was feeling didn't match the descriptions of RLP. The pain lasted even when I was still and struck out of nowhere when I was sitting. I was worried it was contractions or that the placenta had separated. The doc said it was probably fine, but to come to the hospital to get checked out.

Everything looked good at the emergency room, and we even got to find out the baby's gender. It wasn't hard to miss on the ultrasound.

The doctors at the ER said it was probably round ligament pain. Fine, but why was it so bad? I told myself it hurt worse and longer because my stomach is tight so the uterus had to work really hard to stretch. Even though I feel dumb for going to the emergency room for something normal, I'm glad I did, because I also read that "The sharp, jabbing type of round ligament pain shouldn't last longer than the few seconds in which you're changing position or getting up. Don't hesitate to call your caregiver any time abdominal aches or pains continue after a short rest or are accompanied by:
• Severe pain or cramping, or more than four contractions in an hour (even if they don't hurt)"
I was sitting in the car on the way to the emergency room writhing in pain, so I think it's ok that I went.

I went to work Monday and had no problems. Moved around all day, no pain. Tuesday I stayed home because my voice was tired. I sat around all day, then out of nowhere, as I was sitting innocently on the couch, I felt my stomach start to cramp. "Oh no," I thought. Then the pain struck. "Ow, OW!" I shrieked, trying the "raise knees to make pain stop" technique I read about online. The pain came again. "Ow ow ow!" I moved to the floor and curled up (that helps normal stomach cramps) but it kept hurting. The pain was so bad I felt like I was going to throw up. Then, 20 seconds later, it stopped.

I gingerly got ready to leave for a meeting, got in the car and started driving... then the pain struck again! What the HELL? I was driving through spasms, panting and squirming in my seat. A few minutes later, it stopped. I felt one little twinge during my meeting, then nothing for the rest of the day. I called the doctor and made an appointment for the next day. At the appointment, she checked me out and assured me that, "Oh yes, the pain can be so bad that it can drop you to your knees."
Me: "Well then why don't the books tell you that?"

Since then, my stomach has felt a little crampy occasionally, and I felt a sharp pain or two that quickly went away. Nothing of note, except after the doctor I went to Target and it happened there. I scared the crap out of another shopper. I'm hoping that my body has gotten used to the pain and senses it less. Also, I think the ligament got a good stretch because my stomach finally grew a little bit this week. I still don't really look pregnant, which is A-OK with me.
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Thursday, October 9, 2008

I Sorta Hate Broadway But Mostly Like Idina

This is kind of random, but it lets me announce that I generally hate Broadway shows, so I'll go for it.

I just saw that Idina Menzel is performing at a local theatre company to promote her new CD. Idina played Elphaba, future Wicked Witch of the West, in the original Broadway cast of Wicked. I saw the show by chance and am very glad I did. A coworker had to sell her ticket, and it was my b-day week, so I justified the $120 purchase. This was just after the show opened on Broadway. I'm not the sort of organized go-getter who manages to get tickets like that, which is maybe why I hate Broadway shows. I see all the bad ones you're able to get tickets to (Victor Victoria, Miss Saigon, Gypsy, Phantom of the Opera).

Wicked is the one Broadway show (besides Les Mis) I have ever enjoyed. The story line was interesting (the origins of The Wizard of Oz's witches, Tin Man, Lion, etc.) and the two main actresses, Idina and Kristen Chenowith, were absolutely incredible. If you've heard the Wicked CD, that's them singing. Idina Menzel's voice was so powerful. This is why I am so disappointed by the clips I heard of her new CD (I Stand) on iTunes.

The songs are cheesy ("Better To Have Loved," "Don't Let Me Down," "My Own Worst Enemy"), and her voice is just too big to be contained on a dinky CD. It sounds constrained and out of place amidst the controlled, fake pop background. Anyone can sing pop, so why waste her voice? OK, if that CD were her vision and what she believed in, fine, but it seems like she went for the easy, harmless sell. Why not showcase her voice, like that amazing Josh Groban does? That guy is good, and it's all about his voice. His voice is made for soaring arias, and so is Idina's, even if her arias are more the Broadway solo type.

On Idina's official youtube channel, there's a nice acoustic version of one song, "I Stand" (see clip below), but as far as I can tell, it's the only acceptable song. Since it's acoustic, it sounds more musical-y than poppy.

The woman is made for live singing, and if you're going to put her on a CD, it just needs to be better than the one she's putting forth.

I also found a clip of Idina singing a song from the Beowulf movie, and that is also musical-y. Really pretty, actually: A Hero Comes Home. Here's a clip:

About hating Broadway: the slow songs are always terrible, and I always fall asleep in them. Broadway humor is hokey. I always get the bad seats. Most of the music stinks. Half of the shows are 20 years old and outdated. I do hear that Avenue Q is good. (Hint, hint, husband.)
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Saturday, October 4, 2008

I'm Gonna Find Out the Gender, So Get Over It

I hear I'm supposed to get used to people saying annoying things to pregnant people.

Whenever I say I'm pregnant, people say, "Ooh, are you going to find out what it is?"
I say, "Yeah."
Then, 75% of the time, the person says, "Oh, but it's so much fun to wait!"

Dudes, I know it can be fun to wait. I was there when my sister's 3 kids were born, and each time the gender was a surprise. It was exciting when the 3rd one was a girl. I screamed at the top of my lungs.

I am therefore quite familiar with the concept, and the reality, of surprise gender, so people informing me it's a surprise is not news to me. I've taken that idea into consideration and have decided that it's more exciting for me to find out now.

I am sure people have good intentions and just want to let me know how exciting it was for them to be surprised, but it sounds like they're suggesting to me that I should wait.

I am the oldest sibling. I do not like being bossed around. Being a teacher for 10 years has also increased my resistance to being bossed around.

However, now, when people ask me if I'm going to find out the gender, I find myself saying, "Yeah, probably," even though I definitely am, because people seem so disappointed when I say yes.  I just don't feel like hearing another person say, "Oh, but it's so much fun to be surprised!"
I'm trying not to find people's comments too annoying, because I'm sure I am an extremely annoying person a lot of the time.

Sometimes when I say "Yes, I'm going to find out," people say, "Yeah, some people are like that, they need to know, you know, to get things organized."

That's not why I'm going to find out. I don't need to know. I'm not organized enough to do anything like paint a nursery or buy a bunch a stuff in pink or blue.  I just want to know. I don't have to know.  It's just that if I can know, I want to know.  I want to know what is inside me.  I don't feel the need to keep myself in the dark for the reason of future excitement.  I want excitement now, and I'm sure I'll be equally and even more excited to actaully have a living baby in my hands when the time comes.

If people don't want to know what my baby is, I won't tell them. Actually, a lady at work, after she said, "Ooh, are you going to find out what it is?" and I said, "Yeah," she said, "Don't tell me!"

I'm totally cool with that. If she wants to be surprised, I will be happy to keep the surprise for her. I like that she acknowledged that it was more about her wanting to be surprised. I personally don't give a crap about being surprised, and that's why I am gonna find out the baby's gender on October 16, if, in fact, there really is a living baby inside me, which I still find pretty unbelievable.
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Sonogram From Last Month

Here's little baby's 2nd sonogram from 5 weeks ago. We get to see him or her again in two weeks at the 20 week ultrasound. I'm pretty excited to see how he/she has changed.

If you've had a sonogram, you know that this picture is crap compared to the clarity of the video image screen. The tech lady was moving the sensor thingy really  hard against my stomach, and it was pissing the baby off.  It was punching her like it was kickboxing.  It was really cool.

It was shocking to see arms, legs, hands, feet, a nose, and a perfect profile, after only seeing a gummi-bear-like blob just a month earlier.   It's unreal to know it's moving around that much but that I can't feel it. (I attribute that to my rock-hard abs. No for real, I have pretty good abs.)

As far as gender, I'm thinking boy.  I don't know why.  Probably because my sister's first two were boys and I'm used to the idea. Maybe because I've had no sickness or moodiness, and those are two things I associate with girls, or at least the kind of girl I am! Whatever.  I am totally okay with boy or girl.
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Friday, October 3, 2008

I Don't Have Actual Plans to Kill Anyone, FYI

I was reading this depressing magazine I regret subscribing to (The Sun) and there was an article written by a guy whose dad was sexually abused. I stared off into space for a few minutes and decided I could definitely shoot someone dead who I knew was a threat to children.

Is that bad? That I'm fairly certain I could kill someone and feel OK about doing it?

Juuuuuuust a thought.

Actually, I had a dream that made me realize I could probably kill someone.

Several months ago, I saw a movie in which a character suddenly raises their arm and shoots someone dead. A couple nights later, I dreamt there was a man who was going to hurt my husband. The person was an acquaintance, but once I realized he might want to hurt C, I knew what had to be done. The man walked into the room, and without even looking, I raised my arm and shot him dead. Then, I walked calmly into the next room. I plopped onto the couch beside my husband, who didn't know about any of these problems, and started a chit chatty conversation, feeling a little bad that I had this secret I couldn't share-- I knew C wouldn't approve of murder--, but knowing I had to do it.

It was a pretty vivid dream.
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