Category Archives: Uncategorized

Resistance

Baby boy got his second set of shots yesterday. We’re giving him all of his vaccines, just spreading them out some. The Dr. Sears alterative schedule. My doctor was all, “Hey, we have combo shots, so it’s less shots over time.” But it’s still a lot of medicine at once in that tiny little body.

My train of thought on this is twofold: Obviously he needs his vaccines. I’m a pretty strong believer in modern medicine and I don’t think vaccines are part of a grand conspiracy to give all the kids autism or secretly inject them with nanytes to create the next super soldiers. I also really trust his doctor (she’s the one who found my aneurysm).

BUT, I’m still scared. I’m scared I’m wrong about the autism thing and I’m scared that all those injections will overload his little system and do something wonky. Doing it on the alt. schedule, it’s more visits and more days with shots, but it’s less all at once. I hate how much pain he’s in when he gets the shots and I hate seeing him get feverish and achy when its over. So part of me wants to do it like everyone else and have less days with pain. Even though it’s more medicine. But the part of me that’s scared is stronger. That makes me feel selfish, that I’m hurting the baby more this way. The mother guilt? It’s stronger than any guilt ever.

It’s not the same as when you and I got jabbed. Not at all. Back in the 80s, we received eight doses of three vaccines, no more than 2 on the same day. Now, it’s more than FIFTY of 12 vaccines, with 5 or 6 in a day* Is it crazy to think that this might be too much?

I know so many children, most children actually, are just fine on the regular schedule. And it’s ridiculous to think I know better than my amazing doctor because I read a book. The last doctor’s visit, she convinced me to do the combo shots, and against every bone in my worrying body, I relented. She came back five minutes later to say they had run out of the combo shot. Probably coincidence, but in my head I thought it might have been some kind of divine intervention telling me I was doing the right thing by spreading them out.

Anyway, he came home and fussed and cried for two solid hours. I tried every soothing technique I knew. I finally gave him some Tylenol (sigh.) and he fell asleep for a long, long nap. Poor baby. Some people say Tylenol is bad because he’s supposed to get a little feverish, since fever is the body’s way of building resistance. I don’t know. It’s all so heavy, you know?

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*Taken almost verbatim from The Vaccine Book: Making the Right Decision for Your Child (Sears Parenting Library) If you want to read more about the alt. vaccination schedule without buying the book, check out this link.

Wangs.

TRIVIA: Did you know that Wang Chung means Yellow Bell in Chinese?

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Update:

I went out at night for the first time last weekend. Chicago’s 3033 was headlining Coldtowne and I brought my one beer (go crazy!) with me for the late-night show. Ethan was asleep before I left, woke up once and was back in snoozeland before you could say, “yes, and.”

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Okay, so I’m a little rusty. I’ve been out socially away from the baby before, but not at night. My first adventure was to see Magic Mike with a roomful of mostly female improvisors. The second, was to see Magic Mike with my sisters. That’s right, future baby reading this blog, I left you to see a lot of wang. Such proud maternal moments.

Sooooooo, I’m home now all the time. Not just in the, “Oh, I don’t go out much” (obv., except when wang is involved) kinda way, but in the, “I quit my job to be at home full-time with my son.” kinda way. Yeah. That totally happened. I didn’t think it would, honestly. I thought for sure I was heading back to work. Ethan had a daycare lined up and I was actively working on building up my white gold stash in the freezer. (“White Gold” is what lactation fanatics call breastmilk) The closer we got to the end of my leave, the more stressed out about it I got. Like, waaaaaaaaaaaaay stressed out. So stressed out I wasn’t enjoying what time I had left with the baby, stressed out. Now, Daniel was 100% behind me staying with the baby. He Without Raging Hormones was being the logical one. If I had the opportunity to, why wouldn’t I? Baby E was so small and wasn’t on any kind of routine. (Did I say, “was” like I’m not talking about two weeks ago?)

But the guilt, man. I felt so guilty about not going back to work. I’ve worked since I was 14, give or take some super short unemployed stints. That’s 22 years. I don’t know how to not work.

Actually, that’s a lie. This “not working” is flying by in a whirlwind of constant feedings, laundry, diaper changes and games of, “If I throw this on the floor, will you pick it up?” It’s not the imagined world of a peaceful, sleeping baby leaving me loads of time to write and bake lovely desserts and catch up on my correspondence. Nope. It’s crazy. I can’t imagine trying to do all of this and work 40+ hours at the same time. I marvel at all my friends who do it every day. You bitches are rock stars!

So this is where we are now. I’m going to try and make this blog more of an active voice and less of a neglected sad face. I’m always talking to you in my head. (By you, I mean the blog. Not you. It’s be weird if I was always talking to you in my head.) Here’s to trying to get those words out on the page.

And here’s a picture of Ethan wondering who shrunk his father.

YOU SHRUNK MY DADDY!

YOU SHRUNK MY DADDY!

Who, what, when.

If you’ve missed the past few months of sparse blogging, here’s a quick recap.

I was like this:

 

And then I was all:

BABY! BABY! OMG BABY!

With just a smidge of PPD:

 

Now I’m going to start a whole new blog to mommy all over so this one can retain some sort of debauchery and ennui. Nah. I’m going to mommy the waters here instead. Essentially, this:

 

 

Seat of your pants stuff, kids. I know, I know.

 

 

Mama-se, Mama-sa, Mama-ku-sa

I’m still alive.

Every time I’ve wanted to stop and write about this crazy, amazing life change, I’ve been overwhelmed by the sheer breadth of what I have to say.

It’s been the hardest, most gut-wrenching experience. I’ve scared myself with very dark thoughts and second-guesses, especially in the early days. I didn’t want to share them because I didn’t want to make them real.

It’s also been incredibly magical. Every single cliche about parenting has been 100% right. As nauseating as that is, it’s totally true. I’m in a love stronger than I’ve ever imagined. I’m constantly in awe.

Because both of those viewpoints swung back and forth so fiercely with my hormones, I’ve been hard pressed to jump back into writing about it. But I think I’m back now. I feel better. Stronger. Less likely to drive away in the middle of the night. (Kidding. But now I get why they make new moms wait six weeks to drive anywhere. It’s for the fear you won’t come back!)

Six weeks, tomorrow. Phew.

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(Bed) Rest for the weary…

I’ve spent the last week on bed rest/home rest/hospital rest. I’m fine, the baby is fine, but my normally awesome blood pressure decided to turn not awesome at my last checkup and when it does that in pregnant women, the bells and whistles go off and people start to get really concerned about you.

Which is great. I know I’m really lucky to have health insurance and a team of doctors who are on top of things. The baby is safe and that’s what counts.

But all the worry and the resting and the constant contact with my two new BFFs — Systolic and Diastolic — equals a right pain in the ass.

It is literally exhausting staying in bed all day. I know that sounds ridiculous, but it’s true. Your muscles and bones need to move to feel right. Sluggishness exponentiates upon itself. Things ache. Which is unfortunate because when your BP is high, it doesn’t feel like anything. It’s not like the flu where you feel like you’re sick. Your body is hiding its sick on the inside.

Then there’s this — you feel like you’re not doing enough around the house. It adds to the load Daniel is already carrying. As much as he says not to worry and as much as he does to make things right and good, I still hate feeling like I’m not contributing. I mean I get that I’m not supposed to be doing chores, but I can’t unload the dishwasher? I FEEL FINE, DAMMIT. Let me do something. (Cue the Doctor: “NO.”)

Yesterday I went into my checkup hoping they’d relax some of my restrictions, but then admitted me into the hospital for closer monitoring instead. That was an exercise in fear and patience. Also, I learned that no matter how hungry you are, never ever let yourself think that the hospital-grade tuna fish sandwich is a good option for lunch.

Never again.

So I’m home now. I’ll be here making sure my BP is low and not doing very much of anything. Except playing Scramble. A lot.

On the bright side, this will all clear up once I give birth to the little guy and that’s only 27 days away.

25 minutes off the record books

I miss improv. I really, really do.

It’s depressing, not being in classes, not practicing for shows, not having the energy to go out and SEE shows. After more than a year of immersion, I feel like I’ve got my club pass revoked. (I just removed “… and feel like I’m on the outside looking in” because the ridiculousness emo of that made me laugh out loud.) I MISS IT, DAMMIT.

My friends are putting deposits down on the summer intensive at IO and I’m so massively jealous it hurts. I can’t believe it’s almost been a year since the heaviness of last summer’s heat. There’s still so much restlessness shaking about in the crevasses of my brain directly tied to it.

Hot asphalt. That’s a troupe name if I ever heard one.

Rarr. I know it’s temporary. I also know I have other things I need to be thinking about and preparing for right now (although if one more person gets on me about why I haven’t packed my hospital bag yet, they’re getting punched in the throat).

Today is Tom’s One Day Without Shoes at work and I’m grossed out about it. Bare feet and company bathrooms and kitchens do not mix, y’all. No, no, no.

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Three Years

Today is a lucky day for me. Three years ago, in a state of acceptance and fear, I was rolled into an OR at Brackenridge to have my head cut open, my brains moved apart and a wide-necked, ornery, deadly, little bilobed aneurysm clipped.

I woke up from the surgery with all my faculties in place. Well, for the most part. I had some aphasia to work through, (literally) head-splitting headaches and some specific memory loss. But I could see. The aneurysm was nestled against my opthalmic artery, so I was particularly nervous about that. I could talk. I could walk. I would heal quickly and without complication. The recovery would be hard, it’s still ongoing, but the worst of it was better than manageable.

It was the perfect outcome for an impossibly lucky find to what could have been a horribly awful, devastating situation.

That was three years ago today. Every single day since, I’ve been grateful for another opportunity to count my blessings.

Timely

Between that last “I sad.” post and today so much has happened.

“Oh really, Terry? Soooo much that you couldn’t find the words or the time to post? Really?”

Um… yeah. I always say that I really need to get better at that, but I never seem to. I need to set a blogging alarm.

Things that happened:

1) I graduated from Coldtowne! I’m bonafide now. It’s kind of surreal. It’s a feeling reminiscent of graduating from college where I’m all, “What now?” Pairing the timing up with taking a break from for maternity leave means I’ll have a longer than usual break, but hopefully I’ll be able to jump back in before I forget everything I’ve learned from the past 15 months. Daniel is really supportive of me getting back into it as soon as I’m healed and the brand! new! baby! craziness has settled into a nice routine.

The last show with Sixty Second to Sweatpants was awesome. For those of you who haven’t seen us (pretty much everyone), it’s Morgan and I, Brad and Alex. Morgan and I are both pregnant. So part of the hilarity (in my mind) is the stage picture of two pregnant women and two guys on stage. For the last show the guys came out with pillows under their shirts. Our Ouija conjured up person was Marilyn Monroe, portrayed by Brad. Hilarity.

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It’s a tradition at CT that one of your instructors says something about you before you get your diploma. Mine was from Ratliff and instead of being funny and taking the piss, it was really sincere and genuine. That really meant a lot. I don’t know that I would have stuck with the program if it wasn’t for him and the inspiration he imbued.

This pic is from the official Coldtowne Flickr page.

CTGrad Ratliff

2. SXSWi. Holy shit that was EXHAUSTING. For real. I’ve taken part in SXSW for almost as long as I’ve been living in Austin and this was the first year I felt unprepared physically to handle it. I really took for granted the toll that being seven months pregnant would have on the experience. All the walking, standing, walking, standing was way too much for me. Sad face, man. Sad face.

But I performed in this and it was awesome:

3. RADIOHEAD! We were maybe 15 people back from the stage. It was glorious and amazing and exhausting. The baby kicked enough for me to know he was into it, too.

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I’m 30 weeks along now. When I told my doctor that I exchanged my first-trimester worry that I’d lose the baby with my third-trimester worry that I’m going to go into labor early, she said I only have four more weeks to worry about that. After 34 weeks they don’t stop pre-term labor b/c the risks of the medicine outweigh the risks of the labor that that point. So, yay only four more weeks of worry?

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After SXSWi, I have bigger plans for this blog. You know, like I have every year? But this year I’m going to make the changes I’m always talking about. You’ll see.

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I’m having good days and bad days, more bad than good lately. (And by lately, I mostly mean this week.) In my head mentally, more than physically, which is weird and not something I’m accustomed to.

I’m accustomed to physical pain and discomfort. The brain surgery and the recovery made me and physical pain close, close friends. I know how to handle pain. The headaches are worse, but I expected them to be. Being pregnant makes it more difficult to manage without pain pills, but I’m managing it.

I’m slower now. Moving around is more deliberate in all the usual ways pregnancy makes moving deliberate, and in some bonus ways I didn’t expect. Pregnancy carpel tunnel in my wrists and ridiculous foot/leg pain makes typing and walking difficult sometimes.

So that’s that, body-wise. Mentally, I don’t know what’s going on. I’ve always been, what’s the word… plucky? Happy is my default. Seriously. It sounds ridiculous, but it’s true. I’ve had things come up (as we all do in life) to make me sad, but I’ve rarely been in so deep that my toes couldn’t touch the bottom. Lately I’m finding myself crying for no reason, staying in bed under a cloud of funk I can’t see through and pretending to be happy when I’m very clearly not. It’s not 24/7. Which is good. It’s not something I don’t think I can handle. It’s just very present right now. Today.

It’s probably hormones. It’s probably one of those things I haven’t gotten to in all the pregnancy books I still need to read. But it sucks.