Setting Fly Traps

I really wish the title of this post was some type of deep, meaningful metaphor that you all had to ponder and interpret for days. However, I’m not that profound. No folks. I am literally setting fly traps.

Our backyard backs up to the woods and river. As beautiful as a setting as it is, it also brings unwelcomed guests. So far, we’ve had an overabundance of lady bugs, ants, box elders, spiders and now…fruit flies. I’ve chalked it up to there being tradeoffs in life that you have to live with. For example, when I married Ryan I got a husband that takes care of me and makes me laugh, but in exchange for all of that I have to live with him farting in his sleep. Tradeoffs, people.

I generally handle bugs okay. I mean, I’m a girl so I’d much rather paint my nails and shoe shop than stare an insect in the eyes, but I can muster up enough courage to kill the occasional bug. However, when there’s more than one of them? That’s a problem.

One bug is okay.

Two is alarming.

Three is an infestation.

More than four? Set the damn house on fire.

Sadly, Ryan hides all flammable items from me so I had to resort to a less dramatic extermination process. The internet told me to set traps which sounded very appealing. These little assholes needed to learn a lesson and what’s more satisfying than watching a bug the size of a grain of rice and its whole family suffer? Ryan thinks I find an unnatural and disturbing happiness in the mass killing of bugs, but what am I supposed to do? Allow these obnoxious creatures to incubate in my house and live among me and my children? No. Furthermore, they’re probably working for the Russians and spying on me. I’m no fool! SO without being said, I set traps in various rooms with a combination of apple cider vinegar (to attract them) and dish soap (to KILL THEM!). So far I’ve killed approximately 39092 fruit flies and it’s very satisfying. Their lifespan is only like eight days so it’s not like I’m robbing them of bright futures. They basically are born to annoy the shit out of us and then die; I’m just expediting the process for all of mankind. You are all very welcome.

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Also, this is what my maternity leave is compromised of. I have a masters degree and I’m using it to construct fly traps. I also helped Caroline make a spider at the library yesterday. You might be thinking “what has your life come to?” But before you judge…notice how the spider has 3D eyes and legs. I don’t see any of you making a construction paper spider of this high caliber.

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I Had Good Intentions, Really

This is a rare moment for me. Both of my children are sleeping. That only happens about two hours a day and usually I’m sleeping along with them. The fact that they are both sleeping during the day allows me to pee uninterrupted and possibly post in my wildly neglected blog.

 

I’d like to jump right into this and announce that I started working out and running last week. I was on a roll! I ran twice and did embarrassing, yet effective, workout DVDs while Caroline napped and Oliver stared at me with a “are you serious with that three pound weight, Mom?” expression. I can also sadly report that I haven’t lost a single pound. Like, yes I know it takes nine months to put the weight on…blah, blah…so I need to have patience in losing it…blah, blah…but c’mon! I ran 2.5 miles and did a 30 second plank. Why the hell do I still have love handles? That shit isn’t right. Science, you suck.

 

Now naturally, just as I was starting to get into a groove/routine of incorporating exercise back into my life, what happens? I get sick AND break one of my toes. Yup, yup. My recent travels to Liberia seem to have caught up with me: I’ve come down with a low grade fever. It’s probably no big deal, but I don’t think exercise is part of my recovery.**

 

** is it too soon to make a joke about Ebola? I mean, we’re all going to catch it eventually, right? That’s what CNN tells me.

 

No, but seriously I have a damn cold and just when I thought my day couldn’t get worse yesterday, I literally walked into the bathroom door and broke my toe. That’s not even a story worth telling. I walked into a door like a blind drunk. How am I allowed to raise children when I can’t even walk around my own house without breaking body parts? How do I know I broke my toe? Because I’m a medical doctor, THAT’S why.

 

Now I have to wait until all of my body parts feel better to get back to working out. In the mean time, yoga pants are still my friend and if you see me complaining about the baby weight and eating a fun-size Snickers then remind yourself that there is no calories in Halloween candy so don’t be so quick to judge.

 

 

Oliver’s Birth Story: Part III

In an attempt to document the experience for myself, I’ve begun the process of writing my birth story for my second child, Oliver. I can’t promise it will be short, funny, enlightening or engaging, but it is something that I want to remember with as much detail as I possibly can.
Okay, here we go!
Check out Part I and Part II 
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Around 6:30 or so, I was still in full-blown hysterics. Like, imagine the worst temper tantrum you’ve ever seen by a toddler in the mall and then add in the most hormonal, estrogen-charged woman and then multiply it by someone with a mental illness that’s entirely unmedicated and then…you have my reaction to having to get a c-section.

Normal.

Everything was out of my control now. I just felt like my body had started and nearly completed this amazing process all by itself and now it would have to end with a major surgery that I could have elected to have a week before.

Surgery is always scary and c-sections, despite society’s immunity to them, is still a major surgery. Like, they take out all of your inner parts, put them on metal slab, take out your baby and throw that shit back in and stitch you up. I took high school biology so I’m 98% that’s how they teach c-sections in medical school. At any rate, they suck. They just do.

Because my body had stopped being my friend, I figured the last check by the doctor was going to be entirely fruitless. I was probably still stuck at 7.

The gruff doctor came back in to check me and gave me the news no one at that point expected.

I was 9.5 centimeters.

Michelle gave me a look like “we are doing this no matter what” and enthusiastically told the doctor that she was going to set up the baby’s delivery station. She didn’t wait for him to confirm that I was going to push or that we weren’t doing a c-section, she was getting the room ready for a VBAC!

Everything from there moved so quickly. One minute I was crying over having to get a c-section and the next minute, the doctors and nurses were explaining to me how to push.

A team of doctors came in and within minutes, I was at 10 centimeters and it was going to happen (hopefully!) the way I envisioned! They explained to Ryan how to hold my numb legs (thanks epidural! You were delicious) and it was then that I got pretty scared. All I wanted was a VBAC, but you know what I never read or asked about? Pushing.

They kept telling me to push like I was taking a bowel movement. That was all the advice they had, but like who has bowel movements the size of a small human? How is that comparable?

Anyway…

I didn’t have much time to properly freak out because before I knew it, I was getting a contraction and it was time to push. Pushing is surprisingly hard and intense. It’s nothing like pooping so those doctors need to go back to school.

I squeezed my eyes shut while pushing to try and focus on getting this done as fast possible. Furthermore, I didn’t want to see everything they were doing down there. Visions of my lady bits imploding wasn’t something I wanted to remember.

After about 12 or so minutes and 3 or so contractions, they enthusiastically told me that the head was out. Suddenly, with one more small push, he was out.

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They asked me if I wanted him on my chest and I wanted to smack them. That was all I wanted this entire time.

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They put him on chest and I immediately fell in love. He was seconds old and I was already holding him. I didn’t have to wait to be stitched up or put in the recovery room. We were already bonding and looking at one another and no time had gone by. I just kept looking at him wondering how he had literally just been in my stomach and here he was, out in the world. Childbirth is kind of amazing like that. It’s something that I’ll never forget.

The build-up to the actual delivery was intense, crazy, fast, but truly amazing at the same time. I know that sounds hokey and sentimental, but I still can’t believe that my body was able to do that. Like, I grew a human being and then pushed it into the world. That’s some shit right there.

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I still get asked by people why I’d choose a VBAC over the much more convenient, pre-planned c-section and the answer is for that moment when my little guy laid on my chest, new to the world and I was the first person he saw. That’s why.

So that’s how we became a family of four. A process, day and moment I’ll never forget.

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Now for some LOL’s…here is my “favorite” nurse of the experience. Well, technically she was a “student” nurse and no offense, but one of the flightiest people I’ve ever met. I’m happy that she was still learning and only allowed to take my blood pressure and rinse soap off of my baby and not responsible for actual medical decisions because do you know what the FIRST question she asked me was?

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Not how I’m feeling, what the baby’s name was, how the delivery went, not if I needed more medicine…

Nope, none of those questions…

Her first question to me was: “Soooo, do you live around here?”

I’m going to let you ponder that one for a second.

Nah girl, I was just touring the beautiful city of Rochester as every nine month pregnant woman does and was all like ‘I should check out their local hospital by delivering this baby!’ Who actually delivers their baby at a hospital in the town they live in?! No one. That’s why she asked, I assume.

Homegirl is headed for greatness, I think.

Oliver’s Birth Story: Part II

In an attempt to document the experience for myself, I’ve begun the process of writing my birth story for my second child, Oliver. I can’t promise it will be short, funny, enlightening or engaging, but it is something that I want to remember with as much detail as I possibly can.
Okay, here we go!
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(Check out Part I of Oliver’s Birth Story here )
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PART II

Ryan came to bed fairly early with the correct assumption that he would need rest. He asked if I thought tonight would be “the” night and for once in this whole process, I was pretty confident that we were close. I stayed up trying to distract myself with episodes of “House Hunters” and whatever other HGTV shows were on while tracking my contractions on my phone. They were getting to be pretty intense and there were several that took my breath away. Naturally, Ryan happily snoozed through most of them despite me tearing into his hand for support. By midnight, I knew that we had to take some type of action. I woke up Ryan and told him that I was going to take a shower because…well…I didn’t want to be all dirty and grimy in pictures if this was “the” time. Plus, I needed to shave my legs. Priorities.

The shower was incredibly soothing- I can see why people choose to have a water birth. By the time I got out of the shower, the contractions seemed a little more tolerable, but their closeness and length still told me a visit to the hospital was necessary. Ryan got up to get dressed while I called my mom and told her to get a ride over to watch Caroline.

Even though I knew these contractions were the real deal, something told me that the picky medical staff in triage was going to turn me away. By the time my mom arrived, the contractions had seemed to lessen in intensity, but I thought I should still go and get checked anyway.

We arrived at the hospital around 2am and checked into triage to be examined. They hooked me up to a monitor and checked whether my water had broken (it hadn’t). My contractions were far less intense and irregular in the hospital than they were at home so they advised me to walk around the hospital for a hour and they would recheck me.

Ryan and I walked the halls of the hospital and the activity definitely picked up the contractions again. However, when they rechecked me there hadn’t been any progress and I was asked if I wanted to stay there and wait or be sent home with a painkiller to labor at home. I figured that this was going to be a long process and I wasn’t certain that I’d progress as soon as I wanted so I decided to go home.

This was probably a big mistake.

The walk to the car was horrible. One contraction literally brought me to my knees in the hallway and I cried to Ryan that I didn’t think I could do this. I think it took us about 100 years to walk to the car because I kept stopping to contract. However, I figured this was my body just messing with me and I’d be fine once I got home.

Wrong. So wrong.

By the time we got home, the pain was bad. My mom was sleeping in our bed, unaware that we had been sent home so Ryan and I camped out in the living room. I don’t know how to describe the pain other than freaking mind-blowing bad. It felt like my entire body was going to explode or pop open. I had to remind myself to breath because they were making me lightheaded and nauseous. Around 5am, I went to the bathroom and had a nasty round of puke filled fun. Ryan came to the bathroom to find me cleaning the toilet in between contractions. I mean, I can’t vomit in filth so I figured I’d use the 3 minutes between the pain to clean. Don’t ever say that I can’t multitask.

Ryan and I cuddled together on the chair and I gripped his hand every few minutes. The problem with Ryan is that he can sleep through anything which apparently includes his laboring wife. I kept crying that he “needed to be present” which in retrospect makes me laugh because it’s such a weird thing to say in that moment. Ryan turned it up and comforted me through the pain.

I was counting down the hours until the pharmacy opened to get my prescription filled. They didn’t open until 8:30am which seemed forever away.

My mom came down around 8am, surprised to see that I was home. I was in full-blown crying hysteria at that time so I’m sure I wasn’t the ideal image you want to see first thing in the morning. Ryan snuck off to get my medicine and my mom sat with me. The pain was unbearable. Like, no words unbearable. I may have broken every bone in my mom’s hand when I squeezed it, but I was so happy she was there.

Caroline woke up just before 9am and came downstairs in her usual bubbly demeanor. Sadly, the minute she saw me on the chair, her attitude changed. She hopped down from my mom’s arms and came to sit by my side. She kept asking me in her soft, empathetic little voice, “why your body ache, mama?” In between contractions, it was exactly what I needed to hear. She was so sweet and so concerned that I felt bad that she had to witness me like that. She seemed scared, but she never left my side until Ryan got back with my medicine. She just kept patting and rubbing my arm and saying “it’s okay”…I will never forget how big and precious her heart was in that moment.

When Ryan got back, I immediately took one of the pills and started to wait for some type of euphoric relief. Sadly, the medicine didn’t remotely touch the pain. By now, the contractions were a steady six minutes apart and I didn’t know how much more I could realistically take at home. I didn’t want to head back to the hospital only for them to send me home again so I called my doctor’s office looking for some advice. They told me to come in to be checked and the thought of even driving there made me want to cry. I can see why people just pop out their babies at home, who wants to be in a bumpy, uncomfortable car seat when their lady parts are exploding? I mean, really.

I said goodbye to my mom and Caroline fairly confident that the next time I’d be home was with a baby. Saying goodbye to Liney was extremely hard, but she already seemed so thrown off and concerned about me being in pain that I didn’t want to further confuse/upset her so I just told her that mommy was going to the doctor’s.

Sitting in the waiting room at the doctor’s was both painful and embarrassing. All around me were pregnant women with their cute little maternity outfits and bubbly personalities, all ready to have their check-up. And then there was me. In some mismatched sweat pants, literally crying through contractions and gripping my husband’s arm with one hand and the chair with another. I probably put fear into every woman in that waiting room. Sorry about that.

They called me back after a few minutes and my doctor popped in to check me. I remember crossing my fingers in hopes that she’d say something promising. Within ten seconds of the exam, she said what I never, ever thought I’d hear…

“Whoa. You’re 4.5 centimeters dilated, 90% effaced and the head is right there. Head on over to the hospital, I’ll meet you there!”

HIGH-freaking-FIVE. So these contractions weren’t all in my head and the pain was actually producing results. I was floored and a little scared. We headed on over to the hospital for the second time in just a few hours and this time we weren’t going home without a baby.

We bypassed triage this time and went straight into a delivery room. Right away, my nurse came in (her name was Michelle and I will love her forever) and hooked me up to the monitors, gave me the flattering gown to change into took down all of my information. I told her that I was hoping to have a VBAC (vaginal birth after c-section) and she was extremely supportive. I wouldn’t know how supportive until later that day, but Michelle became one of my biggest advocates to deliver the way I had hoped.

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About a half hour later, my doctor came in to approve my epidural and within ten minutes, the anesthesiologists came in to set me up for the magical spinal cocktail of contraction-reducing medicine. Unlike with Caroline, Ryan was able to sit through them putting in the epidural and it was one of the most seamless things ever. I joked with the doctors, we talked about me being a teacher and before I knew it, the epidural was in and the pain was subsiding. Now it was just a waiting game. A painless waiting game which is kind of the best kind…

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The next few hours were literally spent doing nothing. Ryan went and got some coffee and a stale ass scone, I surfed on my phone, we fielded texts/calls from friends and family and watched whatever was on TV. My doctor broke my water and shortly after, I was dilated to six centimeters. Things were progressing beautifully and I was on track to have the delivery I had planned for.

But then the baby had a different plan.

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You know it’s a bad sign when your team of doctors and nurses come in all at once. Around 2pm or so, they informed me that they were watching the baby’s heart rate and it was dipping dramatically whenever I had a contraction. The normal beats per minute is around 110-160 and during a contraction, the baby’s was falling to around 60 bpm. It would immediately recover when the contraction was over, but the doctor’s were obviously nervous about fetal distress nonetheless.

They came up with a few things to try and help out the baby: Michelle had me moving and changing positions every 15-30 minutes, they attached a monitor to the baby’s head for more accurate results (yes, the baby was that freaking close to coming out) and they actually started pumping water back in after breaking my water. Once again, it was a waiting game.

The doctors and nurses kept coming in and I knew it wasn’t good. Michelle (bless her) kept coming up with new positions for me to lay in with the hope that the baby would come down a bit. But every time, they flooded into my room I knew that my chances of having a c-section were increasing. My doctor wasn’t giving up hope, but she also told me to be realistic and that these dips were not great for the baby. Furthermore, I had stopped progressing. I was at seven centimeters for what felt like forever. They had wanted to start Pitocin that helps bring on stronger contractions in an effort to get me to 10 centimeters, but I couldn’t start that medicine until the baby’s heart rate was fixed. I was stuck.

I knew that I had to do what was best for the baby, but that didn’t mean I was ready to admit defeat and neither were my doctors. We all wanted a healthy baby and a c-section seemed like the only way to get him out safely.

Around 5pm, the teams of doctors that I had spent all day with were leaving and in came the night team of doctors. My doctor introduced me to the attending doctor who was an older man with a heavy accent and minimal bedside manner. Regardless of whether I had a VBAC or c-section, he was going to be delivering my baby. He hadn’t had the experience of being my doctor the past nine months so he didn’t know how important a VBAC was to me or how bad the day team was advocating for me. Thankfully, Michelle was still my nurse until 7pm.

Around 5:45, he checked me and I had barely budged from seven centimeters. He told me in no uncertain terms and with zero empathy that I would need a c-section. He said he’d check me again in a half hour or so and if I wasn’t fully dilated, it was “game over.”

I lost it. Not because I felt like I failed, but because I was going to again lose out on the moment of holding my baby right after. All I wanted was to hold him on my chest in the moments right after delivering, not have him whisked away while they sewed and stitched me up in the OR. Furthermore, I kept thinking of Caroline. How I wouldn’t be able to chase her or actively play with her for weeks because I’d be recovering from surgery. It was déjà vu from when I delivered Caroline. I was so upset that I had to wear an oxygen mask. I was doing so well, was so close and bam…it wasn’t going to happen. I kept thinking of having my baby in my arms, healthy and safe, no matter by what means…but I was too upset. Emotions just got the best of me.

The next check he did would determine whether or not my hopes for a VBAC were done and it was only a few minutes away…

Oliver’s Birth Story: Part I

 I should start this birth story with my goals. Well, my goal other than to get a baby at the end. With Caroline, I had a horrendous induction gone wrong that resulted in a healthy baby girl and a miserable c-section. I hated everything about the c-section: the recovery time, the inability to hold the baby right afterwards, the unnaturalness of it all and the pain (and consequent pain killers) for weeks. It all sucked. Since my induction was one fumbling mess after another, I felt confident that this time would be different. I changed doctors, made my desires for a vaginal delivery known and literally focused these past few weeks on patience and encouraging my body to do what it was supposed to do.

Now, it wouldn’t be much of a “story” if I gave up the ending right here, right now, but those were my goals: a healthy baby delivered the “old-fashioned” way (with the “new-fashion” way of epidurals—I’m not that freaking crazy).

So here goes my birth story of bringing little Oliver into this world…

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OB, the little man

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PART I

As I approached the finish line in my pregnancy with Caroline, every visit was met with the doctor uttering “no change” meaning that my body was giving the idea of labor the middle finger. As much as I wanted things to occur naturally this time, there was a big part of me that wondered if my body would ever get the “memo” to start the labor process. In the back of mind (as much as I didn’t want to believe it), I figured that I would have to be induced and it would go terribly wrong again and I’d end up in the OR. Always the optimist, I am.

However, once I made it to 37 weeks and started going to the doctor’s weekly, I was met with positive news! My body was slowly dilating by itself, the baby’s head was down and even if it was small progress…it was still progress.

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One of my last pregnancy selfies!

The last few weeks, I made a valiant attempt at preparing my body for childbirth. I took Evening Primrose Oil to do some type of magical trickery to my cervix, drank four cups of raspberry leaf tea that is supposed to make contractions more efficient and began taking our dog on lengthy walks after I put Caroline to bed. Even though none of these are proven methods of inducing or helping with labor, I wanted to know that I was doing everything I could to avoid being induced.

I was due on Monday, September 15th and had a check-up on the Friday before. My doctor decided to “sweep my membranes” (what that means, I really have no idea…it’s science though) which apparently does something to activate the party “in there.” Sometimes it works she said and sometimes it doesn’t, but I had the whole weekend to find out before coming in again on my due date to be re-checked. The exam was “intense” as she called it, but manageable. I went home and waited…and waited…

I had some cramping, but nothing that indicated that labor was on its way. I figured this was another noble effort, but an unsuccessful one. By Sunday night, I was pretty discouraged that I wasn’t in the hospital ready to have this baby. I’m one of those “instant gratification” people so if something doesn’t work immediately, it’s an automatic failure in my eyes.

After dinner on Sunday, I had some cramps, but nothing alarming. Ryan told me that I needed to start listening to my body because I have a very high tolerance to pain and I tend to “ignore” aches and pains that others take notice of. With that advice, I laid in bed and didn’t watch TV, look at my phone, text people…I just kind of tried to be in-tune with my body. After a few minutes, I realized that what I thought were meaningless cramps were actually contractions. Nothing painful, they weren’t regular, but they were contractions. I got three in a row before I allowed myself to be excited at the notion that labor was on the horizon. For the first time, I was excited to go to the doctor’s the next morning. Progress was fully anticipated!

My doctor set me up to have the “due date appointment cocktail” of an non-stress test, ultrasound and cervical exam on Monday. Once you hit 40 weeks, they want to check the baby’s position and behavior in there to ensure that everything is okay. The NST was flawless and the ultrasound showed that the baby was around seven pounds and it’s head was down and engaged. Check and check!

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Non-Stress Tests are entirely relaxing

I marched into the cervical exam expecting tons of positive news, but she did a quick check and said that my cervix was still far back and I was maybe, maybe a few centimeters dilated. Essentially, no true change since Friday. I was disappointed, but made an appointment for the end of the week and headed home.

On my way home, I got another wave of contractions. As I was pulling into our neighborhood, I had one that was so strong I had to grip my hands around the steering wheel and talk myself through it. Ryan was home with Caroline and I begrudgingly sent him off to work. The contractions were coming, but at an un-alarming rate and they were irregularly spaced out. My mom called to see how my appointment went and I just started balling on the phone with her. I looked at Caroline and just got overwhelmed. Things were happening and if this was “it”, there was no turning back. She was concerned that I couldn’t hang out with C if I was having contractions so she insisted that she and my aunt come over just to “hang out.” I insisted that I was fine, but in retrospect, their presence was needed more than I knew then.

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Liney, the goof ball

They came over and we had coffee, played with Caroline and chatted about God only knows what. The contractions were coming here and there, but they were manageable. They spent all day with me and by the time Ryan was headed home from work, the contractions were getting closer together and lasting longer. I walked around the house trying not to get myself too excited, but I knew this was the potential start to something. When Ryan got home, my mom and an aunt felt comfortable leaving me. Ryan and C snuck off to pick up a quick dinner and when they returned, I pushed for a family walk around the block. Even though it was sprinkling, I figured any extra “push” to make these contractions more formidable was necessary. We walked around the block holding umbrellas with Caroline in her wagon and on a few separate occasions, I had to stop and breathe through a contraction.

We did our nightly routine with Caroline and I came downstairs to monitor the contractions and distract myself. Around 9pm, things started to intensify significantly. They were about 12 minutes apart and it wasn’t a question of “ooh was that a contraction?” anymore, it was a question of how much longer I had before they were five minutes apart and I needed to head to the hospital.

The answer was: not long at all.

Minor Life Update

Well, it’s been an awkwardly long absence around here, hasn’t it? Ordinarily I’d say that I’ve just been too lazy or unmotivated to post BUT for once in my life, I have a formidable excuse!

Not only have I been insanely busy taking care of (er, more like “chasing”) a toddler, but I decided to add to the level of craziness in my house by having a new one of these:

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Yup, folks…Baby M. #2 is a dashing (do people still use that word?) little man with his dad’s blue eyes, dark hair and the most kissable newborn face I’ve ever encountered.

Oliver Benjamin was born on September 16th at 7:03pm weighing 6 lbs. 13 oz. and was 20 inches long. He’s freaking cute, that’s the most elegant way I can describe him so far.

Now, just like I did with Caroline , I plan to follow up this post with my birth story and just like hers, this one will be long, sappy and detailed. If you don’t want to read how your future president came into the world, that’s fine. Skip it! But I want to put it down on paper (or screen?) for myself and Oliver.

But don’t worry little readers, I am home for a while with Caroline and Oliver and in between toddler temper tantrums, newborn spit-up, playdates, sleepless nights and imaginary tea parties, I really want to return to blogging on some type of regular basis. I know I keep saying that, but for real! I do. I have so many things to complain about that I’d hate to neglect you all. Furthermore, I am anxiously counting down the days until I can run again (it’s been almost a year since I’ve laced up my sneakers…WHAT!) and I’d really like to record my journey to lose some of this baby weight (Oliver weighed 3 more ounces than Caroline did so in my head, that justifies the extra TWENTY or so pounds I put on with him…yikes…but more on that another day).

SO there ya go…I had a baby, he’s really cute, Liney is great, I still haven’t run and my fingers weren’t all amputated so there’s no excuse why I can’t blog.

I’ll be back shortly with Part I (yes, it comes in parts…giving birth is a long process) of my birth story. Peace out, homies!

A Week Long Recovery

I’ve been so tired that it’s taken me a week to write this freaking post. Last weekend, our darling offspring was the flower girl in my good friend Ashley’s wedding, which was situated on the beautiful Cayuga Lake.  The wedding itself was truly stunning. You can’t ask for a better backdrop in pictures, but you could ask for a better dinner guest than a toddler with a bladder infection and explosive diarrhea, right?

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I think Ryan and I burned a month’s worth of calories chasing Caroline around and trying to save her life. Aside from the obvious threat of drowning in the lake, there were certainly a lot of other potential dangers. Waiters with hot dinners! Stairs! Drunk dancers! Cake that is on display! Furthermore, on top of her little illness (I took her to the doctor’s the day before to learn she had an infection and was given medicine that made her bowels burst), she took a four-minute nap that day. Four. A nap that’s shorter than a damn Lady Gaga song does not make a happy child (or parents).

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However, I have to say that she was a champ. She put on a show, did her flower girl “thing” and hung out in an oversized dress in 85-degree weather. She’s a rock star. It just proves my point that she’s destined for stardom.

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Between the rehearsal dinner, the wedding, the commute (about 1.5 hours away) and being pregnant—I was done by Sunday night. I woke up Monday morning like I had partied with frat boys. My make-up was still smudged on my face, my legs were sore and my head was pounding. It was as if I had been drunk, but alas…I was not. To me, that’s the real crime…a wedding where one cannot partake in open bar. They should send people to Guantanamo Bay for that.

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The rest of the week was spent recovering. My “to do” list for the summer is about 300 pages long and I can tell you that so far I found lip gloss that I like, organized my make-up drawer and read two chapters of a Nicholas Sparks book (don’t judge. I’m an AP European History teacher; the stuff I read from September to June would make your mind cry). Overall, I’d have to give my productivity a big fat thumbs down. However, I have been keeping this toddler busy and that’s no easy task. You try coming up with a different activity every single day for a small person with an attention span of zero. It’s not easy.

For example, today we went to the zoo. There are animals from ALL OVER THE WORLD there and you know what my daughter cared about?

Grass.

Stairs.

Benches.

Sparrows.

Shrubs.

Gates.

Fences.

I could take her to Disney World and she’d be more consumed by the sharp edges of her admission ticket than the “Holy shit, all of my favorite movie characters have come to life” element of the experience. You can’t win them all, but it tuckered her out enough to take a nap and at this point in my life, that’s what my day is ALL ABOUT.

Okay, I must go and tend to my bladder’s needs. In an effort to save time and toilet paper, I just sit on the toilet the entire duration of C-Rock’s nap. No point in walking away from something that I’ll have to do again in .5 seconds anyway, right?

Have a good weekend!

Let’s Reunite, Shall We?

Let’s not pretend that this isn’t awkward.

The last time I wrote in this, I was still splitting cells of my barely-existent fetus. Now I’m like 400 months pregnant and like 200 pounds heavier. Not really, but a walk to the mailbox literally leaves me breathless and I have to calculate and pre-plan my trips up the stairs every day. I cannot be expected to go up and down stairs like a regular human being. The fact that I can still bend down to (kind of) shave my legs is an impressive enough task at this point.

So that’s really all I’ve got going on these days. Just creating life and being exhausted in the process. With that being said, I have not been very active this pregnancy unlike my last go-around. When people say chasing a toddler is a workout, they aren’t kidding. She has these tiny, fast little cheetah legs and I’m like an accessorized elephant attempting to catch her. Just like an elephant, I’d much rather sit in a mud bath than perform grueling physical activity.

However, it IS summer which means no work for me! I’ve been off for two weeks or so and it’s a little bizarre not to have an alarm clock or an agenda for the day. I kind of just roam around to different stores, parks and whatever other “exerting” activity Caroline and I can find.

Oh speaking of that tiny, already-born child! Caroline is doing well. She speaks more and knows more words than any other kid I’ve ever seen at this age. Ryan and I have become those parents that judgingly watch other children only to be like “that kid sucks” when we compare them to Caroline. She’s just that awesome. I could annoyingly talk about her for hours, but then I really wouldn’t have any readers left.

Now just because I’m bragging about her doesn’t mean that she is perfect, remember that she’s quickly approaching her 2nd birthday which means she is in her prime “I WILL SCREAM OVER ANYTHING” stage. It’s a lot of fun, really. Here is an example of some of our conversations:

Me: “How are you doing today Caroline?”
C: “AHHHHHHH NOOOOOOOOOOOO!”

Most of the time, she’s perfectly sane, but if you tell her she should sit down or that she can’t have a cookie—you better WATCH. THE. EFF. OUT because she will kill you or at least embarrass you in a crowded, public place and at this point, my death looks much better.

Alright, well my iced coffee is almost done (yes, I still drink coffee and am pregnant. Don’t call Child Protective Services just yet) and my Tiny Princess Terror is about to wake up from nap.

If you’re reading this and somewhat enjoyed it, send me a text or an email or a comment and go: “Hey, lazy ass…write in that thing more often” otherwise I’ll forget my log-in password again. Later tramps!

** I know bloggers put pictures in these posts, but that would mean I’d have to go upstairs, get my cord thingy, plug in my phone and download pictures. I ALREADY WENT UPSTAIRS ONCE TODAY so sorry folks. Better luck next time.

Motivation, Where are You?

I have to be honest here, folks. I’m only writing because Maggie (the cat) is sleeping next to me and I’d hate to disturb her. What I really want to be doing is preparing my bowl of peanut butter cup ice cream, but I’m not about to risk a limb waking up a damn tiger just for some Eddy’s Slow Churned.

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Speaking of eating like a death row inmate at their last meal, can someone loan me their motivation to do a squat or jog to the mailbox? I said in my last post that I was anxious to go for a run outdoors with the nice weather, but you know what happened the day after that post? The temperature dropped 30 degrees and it snowed so um, back to that whole running outside thing…

How’s a sister supposed to get fired up to run outside when I can’t even leash up the dog on the porch without uttering 15 different curse words aimed at insulting Rochester weather? I actually like running in the colder temperatures, but that’s only when I’ve established a routine. Ain’t NOBODY going to looks outside with 30 mph winds and freezing rain and say, “yes! Today I will start running again!”

Furthermore, where does this magical time to exercise come from? Heaven? Hell? Trolls in the forest? Little fairies that freeze time? I don’t get how I’m supposed to brush my teeth two times a day, go to work, raise a child, eat Sour Patch Kids AND workout. I guess I need to put things in perspective though…

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This is my new life’s motto. If the woman that created the choreography to “Single Ladies” can run an empire with 24 hours in her day then so can I, right? I mean, Beyonce and I are basically one of the same. I have a little less money and ass, but a lot of other things match up just perfectly…

I have no idea where I’m really going with this post other than to say that I really need to kick my butt into gear and do something. Anything, really. Anything that involves putting the remote and Cool Ranch Doritos down…

A Sprung Spring?

I can’t even begin to fathom what I’m doing right now. I am outside, on the deck, wearing flip flops and typing this inevitably brilliant post. Furthermore, I’m kind of sweating in my leggings and t-shirt. Apparently, the raging bitch that is Mother Nature got the memo that it’s spring and bestowed a sunny day upon us where snow isn’t covering the ground. Her and I will never get along, but for right now…she cool, she cool.

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Another reason for my unusually “chipper” disposition today is that I am on spring break! I have the whole week off which means I can eat Sour Patch Kids in bed at 10pm while watching “Full House” instead of eating Sour Patch kids in bed while watching “Full House” at 8pm. See how scandalous I am? I’m only two days into break, but so far it’s been a blissful two days for the following reasons:

1.)  I painted Caroline’s toes. As a nail polish fanatic, this is a huge milestone in both of our lives. To my surprise, she sat there patiently as I painted two coats of pink “Piggy Paint” on them. I’m trying to instill in her early on that appearances really do matter. No doctor or corporate attorney is going to want to marry a woman with busted feet. She needs to start preparing for her future now.

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2.)  With a house and neighborhood that we actually like and respect, it has been fun plotting all of our outdoor projects this summer. I even took a trip to Lowe’s with Ryan and didn’t curse with my arms crossed the entire time. I actually discussed things like flower beds, bird feeders and wrote a company to get started on a fence for our backyard. Our diabetic dog needs a space bigger than our front lawn to empty his sugary pee-filled bladder and since our backyard graciously opens up to the Genesee River, it’s kind of a good thing with a toddler to you know, block that off. I figure if we put a fence in, I can just let Caroline and Winston loose back there while I take a nap or make a strawberry daiquiri or something. In my mind, I see no reason why a fence can’t act as a suitable babysitter.

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Ryan caught one of the escapees!

3.)  I went to a baby shower yesterday and was reminded that I’m having a baby too. Like I said in my last post, I legitimately forget about it sometimes. As I was watching my friend open her gifts, it made me pretty happy (and a bit panicked) that I’m about to do this all over again. The great thing about pregnancy is that there’s no turning back, no “off” switch. But I can’t wait to find out what I’m having, snuggle it, be off from work, etc. The good always outweighs the scary/bad/negative.

4.)  I bought Caroline these shoes:

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Wait, no THESE ones:

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5.) Just the simple prospect of going out for a run where my uterus and kidneys won’t freeze is really appealing to me. We’re having pasta for dinner so I’m not sure how successful a post-dinner run would be, but if I’m slow and it sucks…I’ll just blame it on the fetus. Bam.

Alright, I need to go enjoy the rest of this day before the little rascal wakes up and demands that we take her somewhere, feed her, change her, bathe her. Kids…they’re so demanding.