Saturday, November 29, 2008

notes from the polar express

Wolves are natural comedians. It's true. They'll be here all week. Tip your waitress.

We let Finn stay up and watch The Polar Express on tv tonight. He has the book, was once wicked into it, is all ready for Christmas and Santa and all that sweet sweet action to begin.

Some notes:

*We thought the appearance of the wolves might scare him. In fact, he finds packs of wolves to be ultra-hilarious. Super totally completely so, to the point where I feel like I might need to reconsider wolves.

*Also popular: the Hot Chocolate Guys! "Hot Chocolate Guys!!"

*Massively compelling: the enormous pack of caribou. I mean, mooses. Caribou. Mooses. What? WHO ARE THOSE GUYS? Ten minutes after the caribou leave the movie, when the Polar Express is about to crash through the ice and all hell is breaking loose, a question.

"Where are the caribou?"

Dave suggests that they've gone home for dinner. Finn determines that they're having pasta. On plates.

*Before the elves appear onscreen, there's a faint jingling of sleighbells. Finn understands this instinctively and breathes out, "ELVES...." with maximum wonder.

*After the movie ends, we spot Finn standing over by a window looking at his reflection, lifting his arms up in the air and going on tippy-toe. He informs us in an excited whisper, "An elf is lifting me!" The elf lifts him on to the couch, escorts him to a diaper change, and basically does our bidding for the rest of the night. An elf can make him do anything. NOTED.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

ripple effect

It's great that the news turned good, but that shook a woman up something fierce, Monday's scare. I feel like it's going to be better for me and young Seabiscuit here (a new fetal nickname has adhered) if I shake off some of what shook me.

To it.

Seabiscuit and I have a complicated relationship, due to the fact that I have attached myself to a theory that this is the same person who came in the spring and then left. I'm thrilled that this person made it through Baby Crisis '08 2.0, but I'm wary of this person at the same time. Who is this person and what is this person's agenda? And will this drama persist throughout this person's lifetime? (Spoiler alert, Mom. Yes. Duh. No life is without drama. You missed this? How was jail, again? Thought so.) All children are here to teach their parents a lesson, but this one seems so gung-ho about it. Jesus, Sensei. Calm down. Grow an arm, first.

Monday, God damn it. Monday was brutal. Unforgettable. Worse than this spring's actual miscarriage, until the reverse news arrived. How often does a person truly scream in her lifetime? I remember doing The Seagull many years ago, playing Masha, and in our production Masha goes offstage and discovers Konstantin's body and...makes the sound that she would make. She when she's me. Which was a gutteral scream. So I've made the sound I made on Monday, but I was Acting. Genius! Thank You. Monday was my first real-life scream like that. Only. Only, I declare. I prefer not to repeat it.

Somebody died on Monday and it didn't matter then that they didn't actually die. They died until reports varied. I'm always going to be in that orange bathroom in that red nightgown yelling for Dave and then the yell turning into something else and then Finn crying downstairs because I was making those sounds and then pulling it together for Finn when he came to see me, "Oh, Mommy's just upset because something happened that she didn't want to happen. I'm okay, see? Mommy cries sometimes, it's all right.* Something just happened that I didn't like, but it's all right."

*"And she yells, too," Finn added. "When I run away from her and she puts me in a time out." Right. Yes. Thank you. Great. That's Mommy. Cries and yells. You don't have any other fond memories tucked away in there yet? Just the crying and yelling. All right. Super. Carry on.

You only have a handful of days like that in your life, that are just burned into you like that. I'm not over it, yet. There's this person growing inside me (who, if you go by the latest ultrasound, is getting adorable. Nice head! And those shadows around your face fall in such a way that you look like a g.d. Kewpie doll already. Fast work, sailor!) and this person feels incredibly complicated, beyond the built-in complications of a developing human. I attribute great strength to this person, cramming a little forceful foot in the scarcely-open door we left for his/her conception, and then hanging on in there through the deluge. And I attribute also great fragility to this person, heading down here once and exiting at 5 weeks, and then coming back and having a tiny funeral practically mapped out before hitting daylight.

This pregnancy also feels sort of unhearty. This is not the sort of pregnancy where the young healthy peasant is out working in the field at full term, and lo and behold the child drops on to the soil while the mama finishes the harvest. This is more like the fainting lady in the mansion who's like condition. I cannot, due to my condition. (Everybody please whisper. The lady. Her condition.) I'm going to be listening to a lot of positive hypnobirthing cd's over the course of the next few months. (As opposed to the negative ones. This contraction, it is beating you. You're cowering, you're crumpling. The pain is too much this time. Get the nurse. You will require intervention.) The next few months feel long, and I'm not, like, running slo-mo through a field of daisies to embrace the actual birth, who's running towards me with sunlit hair streaming Fabio-like behind him. June 20th, 2009 feels right now more like the day I storm the beach at Normandy.

Thank you for listening.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

or not! not again!

People. You will not believe a word I say ever again. But I have been to the doctor and the baby is FINE. I AM STILL PREGNANT. The baby is moving around in there and the right size and having a total heartbeat and blowing our minds.

I...I...wha?? Wha????

I am sure to be extremely happy as soon as I peel myself off the floor, which may be never.

We gave that little whippersnapper a time out on the spot, right there during the ultrasound. It's a second per week of gestation, right? Right. So we were like, "NINE SECONDS, buddy. You stop moving around for nine seconds right now. This is a time out. You're in this time out because mommy was bleeding as though she'd been shot. Hey. Stop moving. Nine seconds starts over. Hey! Okay, look, the nine seconds is going to start again. All right. Look. You are in time out because we were about to bury you and plant a tree and place a Buddha statue on the spot. Do you understand? You're - hey! Nine more seconds! Oh, fuck it."

I'll go in next week for a fancier ultrasound to explain what caused all the bleeding. In the meanwhile, I'm resting and not lifting things and explaining my damn self to all you good people.

We're exhausted, and just maybe...feeling really good. Definitely feeling run over by a truck. But it's like a fucking ice cream truck. Driven by clowns.

All of you, all of your sweet messages, your sweet offers....I don't even know what to say. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Massive posse of angels out there. You crazy beauties and all your love worked a goddamn miracle.

Or I made a gigantic, embarrassing public mistake. That could also be it.


Either way, permanent real estate for all of you right here. (Chest thump.)


Monday, November 17, 2008


About an hour ago. Miscarriage. This will be abbreviated, because it lacks the, what would you call it, the freshness, the newness of the miscarriage from earlier this year. The wonder is gone.

Doctor's appointment is tomorrow, but there is precious little doubt about what happened. I have what you might call the corpse.

This time I'm totally unapologetic about talking about it.

After the initial animal shock/screaming/crying, a grim black humor has descended. A sarcastic numbness is in place. I'm too angry to feel tender and sentimental.

I can feel something like painless contractions continuing as I type.

I had to listen to goddamn Pachelbel again on the hold music for the doctor's office. It's farcical, really. I used to like that piece of music. I used to love it, actually. Thanks, Seattle Ob/Gyn Group. Maybe when I come for my appointment tomorrow you can fix my favorite meal and have my favorite scents wafting through your waiting room.

The contractions are getting a touch more painful. Well. That seems realistic.

More later. I appreciate all your congratulations, truly, and I'm sorry to give you whiplash again.

Baby, I will feel more for your absence as soon as I am able. I promise.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

yes we did and also yes we are

photo lifted from the delightful site yes we can hold babies

First, AAAAAAAAAA! The joy of that moment, when the tv said Barack Obama Elected President...I've never felt/witnessed/shared in anything like it. Jumping up and down and sobbing and laughing and feeling like the sky broke open revealing some new better impossible beautiful sky. A giant world joy all at once, the whole world popping like champagne, like the Christmasiest Christmas Eve Christmas morning holy holy all over the Earth shared glory. Merry Christmas! You, boy! Run and fetch the fattest goose out of that shop! There's ten thousand dollars for you!

Yes. Afterglow. Fantastic. Marred by Prop 8 archaic bastards. God forbid evolution happen too fast in this country. Somebody has to do the job to hold us back. We loved our protruding foreheads! Standing erect is overrated. We were warmer when we had our own fur.

So. So I'm breaking my weird old long blog silence to tell you also* that I'm pregnant. Just 'bout 8 weeks. Yes! Yes, we did. Yes, we are. And I've had my hcg levels checked, and they're nice and high, and I had an ultrasound and that little baby was just the right size with just the right heartbeat. Poom poom poom, you could see it going there, right on the screen. Bap bap bap. Someone's in there, and someone's got it going on.

*Sarah Palin killed also. She shot it from a helicopter.

I was like, let's wait this time, Tina. Let's wait until 12 weeks to tell. But 12 weeks, schmelve schmeeks, I can't do it. I'm a VAULT that I held out this long. My old policy of glasnost or perestroika, whichever one is openness, that has to be reinstated. If things go well, I tell. If things go ill, I tell. I'm a teller! I'm a bank teller and you guys can have all the money out of the vault and you didn't even try and rob me. I'm that kind of teller. I'm a totally gung-ho pro-active co-operator.

Also: a drooler. And a gagger. A heaver. An up-chucker. A bloodhound who will need you to turn on the fan if you're planning on slicing that apple. A tired-unto-dying-of-Saltines-er. An I-got-a-craving-for-banana-cream-pie-five-minutes-later-who-the-fuck-had-the-stupid-idea-to-buy-a-pie-er. Because it can't have been me.

We are very excited and hopeful and nervous. We had barely barely made the decision to try again when some baby barreled in through a two-inch crack in the door. Ding dong, I wonder who's at the door, is it an encyclopedia salesman, let's see OH MY GOD THEY'RE* IN THE HOUSE AND THEY'RE DRAWING A BATH AND ORDERING A PIZZA HOW THE HELL DID THEY DO THAT SO FAST?! Hey mom. Pass me that rubber duck. Thanks. And shut the door. Also I will need to borrow 20 bucks for the pizza.

*It isn't twins. But he or she is too unwieldy, and I'm not jinxing anything.

So, whoo! Baby born in an Obama/Biden world, phew. Now let's get our asses to the second trimester post haste. This trimester blows. It also blows a trumpet, because we're on our way to a Rowley quorum. (6/20/09, give or take a whatever.) But morning sickness just purely blows.

However, screw that. I end on a positive note. C major, mofos!