Monday, August 27, 2007

Superbad... or Super inappropriate yet hilarious?

For the first time since... I don't know, a long time... Gabe and I went out on a date. All last week I was doing trial runs of leaving Liam home with Kay while I ran quick errands (and I mean quick- I said that it was so Liam could get used to being home with someone else before I went back to work but it was more of an exercise for myself to get used to it) and decided that maybe I- ahem- I mean, Liam was ready to be at home with Kay for a couple hours without me. Since Gabe and I hadn't been out for our anniversary earlier in the month we decided to see a movie together on Saturday. We chose Superbad because we laughed at the previews we saw on TV and as a fan of Arrested Development reruns on G4 on Sundays I wanted to see Michael Cera in something else because he makes me laugh too.

Now, when I was in high school, I had a couple guy friends, but not many. I was too shy to talk to most boys even if I didn't have a crush on them. But I am pretty sure that most of the boys I was friends with didn't actually talk the way the high school boys in this movie talked. As I type this I am aware I am just saying that because I hope they didn't. I have a little brother and I can't imagine him having ever said those words. Perhaps this is why the movie made me laugh- if I knew people who talked only about sex in the most graphic and inappropriate ways, it would have just been an hour and a half of real life. Instead I got these impossibly adorable potty-mouthed kids who I probably would've been friends with in high school (as long as they didn't say d*ck and p**sy all the time in front of me), or wanted to be friends with them but was too shy to approach them, even the awkward, sweet, puppy-dog eyed Evan (Michael Cera).

So if you don't want to think too hard and you want to laugh at kids you wish had been your friends in high school, go ahead and spend $5-12 on this movie (depending on where you live and how expensive your local theaters are).

To clarify a few things:

- The man I refer to as my "little brother" is actually now twenty-three years old, has a pretty intense beard, and is undeniably taller than me.
- The more I think about it, I kind of remember the last time Gabe and I went out alone. It was before I had Liam and we had dinner at Chili's. Maybe sometime in May?
- I know for sure the time before that was in February when we went to Cafe Brazil for our other anniversary that marks how long we've been together.
- I have no idea why the movie is called Superbad.
- As the mother of a very new, very pure and innocent son I also like to tell myself kids don't really talk like that because I can't imagine those thoughts even passing Liam's future teenage mind, let alone those words ever passing his future teenage lips.

Friday, August 24, 2007


Last week I went to the North Park Mall with my mother-in-law, Kay, and sister-in-law, Jules. Of course, Liam came along as well. I was shopping for a dress to wear in my sister's wedding next month. I found a nice simple black one at XXI and we made a few more window-shopping stops at other stores.

My favorite part of the day was finding these beautiful flash cards for Liam at Anthropologie, of all places. I had planned on eventually ordering them on Amazon but I found a little corner of the store that had some kids' items, including Shel Silverstein poetry and Eric Carle board books. I would like to eventually own the whole Wee Gallery art card collection but that day I just picked up the Farm Collection. When I go back to work and have something of a normal income again I am excited about getting the Garden and Sea Collections most of all.

Even if I didn't have a baby I might still get these cards because they are so beautiful. Luckily I can enjoy them with Liam.

Speaking of which I go back to work a week from tomorrow. Three days a week at first for September, then full time in October. I try not to think about it. Gabe and I are fortunate enough that Kay will be coming over to watch Liam during the time of day that our schedules overlap, but I have had three months at home with my sweet baby. I have loved every minute of it- even when I get frustrated that I can't get him to stop crying sometimes, I love being able to be there at least, and hold him. We shared the same body for eight and a half months, so Liam and I have been attached at the hip (so to speak) for almost a year now. I live close enough to my job that I can come home for my lunch break but still. I just want my baby. (But I also need a paycheck. Groan.)

He's been smiling so much lately. I am obviously the funniest, wittiest, most lovable and entertaining woman there ever was; my nearly three-month-old son smiles and laughs at me when I am not even trying.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Count me in.

What it comes down to is, I love the band matt pond PA. Love. LOVE.

I have only seen them once, when they came to Dallas in March of 2006. I was really excited and yeah, I choked up when they were playing. I think it was during "Last Song," which they played first. Then it happened again during "Measure 3" because that's the first matt pond PA song I ever heard.

They played in Dallas again last November. I was two months pregnant so instead of going to the show and enduring too much time on my feet, second-hand smoke and, well, annoying kids who might elbow me in the stomach so they can get closer to the stage and gaze up at Matthew Pond or Dana Feder (boy or girl, the gazer will almost always gaze at the singer or the one girl in the band) and make sure Matt or Dana see them singing along and tapping their hand over their heart in beat to the music, I went to my sister-in-law's performance of The Nutcracker. I love my sister-in-law, I enjoyed the Nutcracker, I hate second-hand smoke and annoying kids at shows but I was pretty bummed to be missing mpPA.

When I found out they're releasing a new album this fall I was excited because that would mean another tour! When I found out my sister's wedding was in late September I thought that because sometimes things are funny that way, they'd be playing in Dallas when I was in Maine for the nuptials.

matt pond PA posted a MySpace bulletin a couple days ago titled "tour + dates." My heartbeat quickened. My stomach tightened. I was almost afraid to click on it. I just felt like I'd open it and I'd find that our paths would indeed not cross again. That would be a real punch in the gut. I read a couple other bulletins first while I held my breath. Finally, my face red, I clicked it. The first date posted was for Boston on September 27. I smiled. If they were in Boston that week, they would not be in Texas already by the weekend of the wedding in Maine. I scrolled down wildly, looking for and hoping desperately for a Dallas date. There it was. October 22, almost a month after my sister's wedding. My head exploded from the happiness. I would get to see them again.

I don't go to as many shows as I used. I go to maybe 1% of the number that I used to. (I don't know the exact figure but that sounds about right.) The band has to be really special for me if I'm going to go. Especially now that I have a baby. matt pond PA is special enough. I'm going.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Hey Napoleon, gimme some of your tots!

I’ve been a little restless. I want desperately to put Liam in his stroller and take a nice long walk around our apartment complex but it's about one hundred million degrees outside. OK, not really. According to it's 101 and feels like 103. For a Mainer like me, that may as well be one hundred million degrees because where I used to live, it's 74 outside right now. That's some nice strolling weather.

I haven't gotten much exercise since I gave birth. OK, it's been longer than that. I haven't gotten much exercise since I started getting morning sickness. I'm lying again! It's been since my wedding, OK? We came back from our honeymoon and my second semester of school started a week later. I was working full time too so I wasn't exercising, and I don't count walking around campus because that's not optional like exercise is. I was driving to work, working, driving home from work, going to class, doing homework or sleeping. That's pretty much all I was doing. (Well that and the act which got me pregnant. Whatever, I was a newlywed.) In the time between my wedding and my first doctor's appointment after my positive home pregnancy test, I had gained three pounds. Now, I know that three pounds is nothing. Sometimes it's just a matter of taking a dump. But this was three consistent pounds that were there every morning, when your weight is most accurate. I hadn't been eating well because of a lack of time and energy. I knew those three pounds were there but my favorite jeans still fit and I didn't have to worry about a form-fitting wedding dress anymore. I was 128 pounds and I'm 5'7" so that's within the healthy range.

When I found out I was pregnant I stopped going to school because I was worn so thin already and I wanted to save my energy for work and my baby. I had these wonderful plans of having a healthy pregnancy complete with belly-friendly exercise and baby-friendly foods.

Then morning sickness happened less than a week after those two pink lines showed up. And let me tell you what a gross understatement the term “morning sickness” is- I had All Day Sickness. I’m not kidding. I was weak, dizzy and nauseous during nearly every waking minute for the first trimester and a half. Good thing my workplace is generous with sick time and that I had a good little bundle of it stored up. With All Day Sickness there was no exercising going on and as far as eating well, that went out the window too. A salad is the last thing you want to eat, even though I am usually wild for vegetables. While greasy foods are on the list of things not to eat in order to avoid morning sickness, tater tots from Sonic were sometimes all I could stomach. Oh and saltines. I ate so many saltines. Tater tots, saltines, toast, rice and pasta. Food smells would trigger All Day Sickness if I didn’t already have it, so the blander, the better.

Even though my diet wasn’t the healthiest, I also wasn’t eating a lot during the day so at first my weight gain was very slow. Up until I was put on bed rest for seven days when I was twenty-eight weeks along, I was only up to about 140 or 145 pounds, if I remember correctly. There was no exercise up to that point but I was on my feet at work and drinking tons of water. After bed rest, I was put on restricted duty at work so I was sitting all day (including most of my time at home) and eating more. All Day Sickness had mostly calmed by this point, replaced by body aches and intense fatigue. This is when I started gaining weight like a pregnant lady. It never got out of control but it was definitely happening at a faster rate than in the beginning. My appetite was pretty normal and I wasn’t able to do much in the way of activity so on the day I gave birth to Liam I weighed 168- a total gain of forty pounds. I’d used an online calculator when I first became pregnant to determine how much weight I “should” gain for my starting height and weight. They (I don’t know who “they” are- some phantom internet obstetricians?) recommended I gain twenty-five to forty pounds. I’d been hoping to keep it down in the range of thirty, but that’s what bed rest and restricted duty will do to you. And tater tots.

Within a few weeks of delivery I lost thirty pounds. I know there was a ton of water weight, as my legs and feet had fallen victim to the sausage effect of water retention. (I am pleased to say that my legs look normal and you can see daylight between my toes again.) I am also breastfeeding and that is said to help women lose the pregnancy weight.

Right now I am at 134 or 135, so these last ten pounds on the road back to 128 have been stubborn. They would probably be long-gone if I would have exercised. But you get home from the hospital, you’re exhausted, you’re not allowed to exercise right away, you just want to cuddle your baby or sleep. Now I’m healed up (fourth-degree tearing, yowza!) and allowed to resume normal activity but our tiny apartment is newly furnished with baby stuff, like a changing table/ bassinet/ play yard combo in the dining room (um yeah, the table that used to be in there is in storage closet on our porch) and the cradle swing and bouncy seat in the living room and it leaves little room for me to resume what I used to do as indoor exercise- something adult and sophisticated like yoga, and something I’ve done in private my whole life, wholly unsophisticated- dancing and flailing around like a madwoman, pulling moves that should never be pulled in public or in cramped areas.

And walking or running outside? When it feels like 104? No, thank you. There’s a swimming pool here at our apartment but with those last extra pounds clinging to my thighs, hips and belly I no longer deem myself bathing suit worthy. And I’m not buying a suit that fits because it won’t by next summer (one would hope).

So I’ll wait until September or October, whenever Texas catches up with the actual seasons, and I’ll walk a lot. I want to start running as well but one time Gabe laughed at me when I broke into a jog when we were taking a walk and now I’m very self conscious of how I look when I run. Do I run like a girl? A chicken? An elephant? Did he laugh because my butt jiggles? But he says he likes my butt! Just let a girl jog in peace!

Monday, August 13, 2007

My baby and an anniversary.

I have been a mom for two months and seven days. Or, if you want to include my pregnancy, that's an additional eight and a half months. Or, if you want to include my dreams, that's my whole entire life.

I am 25 years old.

I am pretty sure I have given birth to the most beautiful baby there has ever been on Earth. Every other mother will disagree with me, because their baby or babies are the most beautiful babies on Earth. None of us are wrong.

I wanted to write a blog about my pregnancy and then motherhood but I know some people, particularly ones who don’t have kids, think pregnancy and motherhood talk are boring. Sometimes that can be right but I have found that once you become pregnant and give birth, your baby is all you think about so of course your baby is all you talk about. Even when you’re not trying- there’s the infamous Pregnancy Brain and I’ve come to realize that it doesn’t really go away. Well, it hasn’t for me yet. There’re also all of the people who only want to ask you questions about your pregnancy, your plans for parenthood, your life as a parent, so naturally you end up still only talking about those things. That’s ok. I just would like to talk about more, mostly as a personal exercise to be sure that I am still capable of that.

I’ll get to it later.

Liam is an amazing baby. When I think about how he was curled up all cozy in my body for so long and then one day, suddenly, he was in my arms. Well it wasn’t actually very suddenly. I was in labor for seventeen hours, I pushed for an hour, and a vacuum extraction happened in the end because his cord was wrapped twice around his neck so he really needed to come out. I couldn’t push anymore, anyway. But that whole process- the sperm and the egg, the joining, the growing, the birth, more growing, watching him change- it’s amazing. He’s amazing.

He’s just started smiling at us and giggling. He smiles more than he giggles; it’ll come. He is warm and cuddly and he makes funny faces. This kid has no idea the affect he has on us, especially when one of us is holding him and he keeps an arm around our neck in a tiny hug, or when he runs his fingertips over our skin when he is sleepy. He is soft. I get peed on and spit up on and sometimes even poop-juiced on, and I don’t care. I think it’s funny, actually. He is brave and strong. I think you have to be, to be a baby. You have to face each day in this big, weird world when really you probably just want to curl back up in your mom’s uterus where no one can bother you. All of that close talking has got to get old. He is curious and observant and obviously a genius. It sounds cliché, but loving your baby is a love above any other love, more than I ever imagined before. And believe me, I’ve done a lot of imagining.

Gabe is my husband and Liam’s dad. Today is actually our anniversary. Our wedding was on a beautiful, sunny, seventy-five degree day in central Maine last year. We’ve spent our first anniversary sleeping in, taking Liam for his two-month check up, grocery shopping, and getting some internet time in while Liam sleeps. It’s too hot out (we live in Texas, not Maine, unfortunately, but hopefully not for much longer) and we don’t have the extra money to do much else. We’ve been together for four and a half years. We met online. (Don’t hate; we were far too young and hopeful for a dating service so it wasn't like that.) I got pregnant just over a month after our wedding. We didn’t plan it but we didn’t not plan it. We both teared up when the two pink lines showed up on that little plastic tester. We sit here a year later with a beautiful son snoozing peacefully in his bouncy seat (his favorite napping place aside from our arms) and some nice quiet time. I hope Gabe and I get to make out at some point. You know, to celebrate.

So yeah, I talk about my son a lot and I talk about my husband. It's what happens. Maybe sometimes I'll talk about something else.