Newtown

It’s now Sunday evening Monday morning, and I’m still having a hard time grasping what happened in Connecticut on Friday.  I saw some headlines via Facebook on Friday morning shortly before we headed into our lunchtime holiday party, and remained fairly glued to my phone throughout, hoping that the initially reported numbers of dead children would be some kind of mathematical fuckup, a false accounting, anything that would make that final number go down, not up by one or two more in the end.  I tried to not think about it and participate in the silly reindeer games during the party, but laughing and enjoying myself felt so horribly wrong.  I desperately wanted to just get up, walk out to the parking lot, and drive to my mom’s house and hold Ike. When I got there a few hours later, she hadn’t even heard the news yet.  I didn’t want to tell her.

I have tried to avoid the news, at least televised – I definitely do not want to see small children trying to explain what they had seen.  I don’t have anything brilliantly insightful to say about it.  It’s horrifying. No explanation could possibly be satisfying.  I don’t know that there is anything we can do to truly prevent all recurrences, but I also don’t think that we should live in fear of something you can never see coming anyway.  I am just trying to enjoy my child, every second that I have the opportunity.  I don’t know what else I can do, other than hold on tight, and still know that I’ll have to let go at times as well.  I am thankful that Ike is still way too young to need an explanation from us.  How can you explain the incomprehensible?

I have seen references a hundred times this weekend – look for the helpers.  There are bad people that do bad things, but most people are helpers.  Thanks, Mister Rogers, for helping us remember that.

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Now that we can all breathe again….

Managed to not lose the sticker included with my absentee ballot. WINNING.

I used to write a fair amount about politics, back in the day.  Then, for a long time, I really did not care much.  I was way too preoccupied with anxiety and depression over not knowing whether we’d ever get to bring home a baby, and trying not to acknowledge even to myself that I WANTED to bring home a baby someday.  So it waxes and wanes, my political fervor, I suppose.  But I wanted to quickly touch on one aspect that ties into this blog – the title.  My blogger blog went through several different names, but nothing ever really seemed to click and feel just right.  So for a long while, it was titled simply ‘Undecided,’ and it stayed that way for what felt like an eternity, as I sunk deeper and deeper into apathy, not really caring about much other than making it back to my couch at the end of the day to stare at the TV and try to not think about the subject that was all I could ever really think about.  Then came the 2008 election season, and along with it, Ms. Sarah Palin.  I am about as liberal/libertarian as they come, I think, but I must circle back around and offer sincere gratitude to John McCain for choosing her as his running mate, because it PISSED ME OFF how pandering and condescending and frankly just ignorant the whole thing was.  It made me realize, OH!  I CAN HAZ FEELINGS!  ABOUT STUFF! IN THE WORLD!  And I began to care again, to be less stuck in my head, in the never-ending internal dialogue that I rarely dared to even voice aloud.  Granted, this was all after my very first miscarriage, and I had varying reactions after each subsequent one, but during that campaign I decided that ‘Undecided’ was the very last thing that my blog should be named.  Still lacking any creativity or willingness to commit to tying any one specific word or phrase to my own life’s chronicles (what can I say, I hate to be defined.  Too constricting.), I simply changed it to ‘Not Undecided.’  It stayed that way long enough that I eventually started seeing the phrase turn up in my keywords/search terms, so I figured it had better stay that way, so that anyone looking for it without a bookmark could find it again. And so here we are.

(I never did change the url to reflect the title, though.  I have often thought that it should be ‘hard to MAKE a human,’ rather than ‘hard to be human,’ but again, I kind of like the built-in history reflection, even if I’m the only one who can recognize it.)

So, while I am not Obama’s biggest fan (looooooong way to go on civil liberties, civil rights, drug policy, the whole not killing innocent people thing, etc., etc.), I am deeply, deeply relieved to not be entering a Mittens presidency, for I firmly believe that it would be a far scarier thing than what we have now, which I will continue to critique (though not always here, I’m sure).  Shudder.  I think that’s all I need to say about that.

(Except also, YAY for the huge advances made in the Senate and House races, as well as ballot initiatives for marriage equality and legalization.  YAAAAAAAAAAAY!!!)

If we must…

I called yesterday afternoon and [politely] harassed the pediatricians’ office for Ike’s bilirubin and liver function results.  They eventually called back and said that both are a bit elevated.  Boo.  But I guess I knew that, given that he was still looking a little yellowish.  I didn’t get exact numbers, but they said to give him formula for 48 hours, and to have the labs redrawn on Thursday morning.  Not exactly cool with me, to say the least, but at least I kept the free formula samples that showed up in the mail, and at least I’d been pumping a little already so it wasn’t a huge thing to figure out, and at least the levels were only a little elevated and not alarming enough to require any more drastic measures, and at least he’s already had bottles of pumped milk so it’s not too strange for him, at least it’s forcing me to get a good stash of frozen milk stored up before I go back to work, and at least….  At least I can try to see the bright side here.  I am trying, because pumping exclusively for two and a half days, having to mess with formula and bottles nonstop, taking my baby for yet another heel stick and then going directly into work afterward is definitely NOT how I imagined concluding my maternity leave.

Yeah, that.  My boss texted me yesterday morning asking when I planned to come back in, and I said probably next week, half days to start.  He asked if I could do half days this Thursday and Friday, and I thought it would be good to ease back in with a really short week and Mike was able to take some time so he can be with Ike, and…I said yes.  Not sure yet if I am regretting it, but the thought of tomorrow being my last full day of true maternity leave does make me feel a bit nauseous and panicked.  It will be fine, I know.  It still just sucks.  I still wish to be Canadian or European or anything else but a screwed-over United Statesian for these purposes.  Blah.

Anyone dealt with prolonged jaundice?  At nine weeks, it looks most like a case of breastmilk jaundice (we do have Rh factor incompatibility – I am B negative and he is B positive), but if things have not improved by Thursday, the pediatrician will refer us for GI consult (eek!).  I think things are improving already, but I am doubting everything right now.  Should I have given him formula, even if it’s only for a couple of days?  I have been all over Google of course but am still not certain what they’ll instruct me to do if it has improved. I get to go back to breastfeeding, right?  Could the jaundice be related to his slimy, mucusy poop issue as well?  Is it making my dairy elimination null and void to give him milk based formula?  So confusing.  Gah.  I just want to be sure everything is going to be okay, but I suppose that’s part of parenting – you never get to be 100% sure about everything.

I hate today.

For more than the obvious reasons.  Yes, what happened in NYC nine years ago was awful and tragic and certainly worth remembering, to a certain extent.  I can’t even give that whole Koran burning thing the time of day, it’s just so moronic.  I almost wish I had a more “patriotic” bent (I guess nationalistic would be a better word) so I could somehow focus on that instead of my own selfish flashback to four years ago.  I didn’t even start this blog until November of 2006, but what I experienced on 9/11/06 was the real impetus.  So here’s a repost from December 2006, when I finally got brave enough to say outside my own home what was breaking my heart.

I don’t want to ride this rollercoaster again in June, so fuck it. How to lose two months and seven pounds without even trying: 9/9: Get really excited about having real sushi and sake for the first time, even if it is with the people that get on your nerves with their ‘we have so much more money than you so we must be so much better than you’ attitude. Think, ‘hmmm….maybe I should take a pregnancy test, just in case, before I go eating raw fish and pounding sake.’ Do so. Do not believe your eyes. Feel like you’re 14. Sit down, start shaking. Realize that last weekend you sat around a fire drinking four beers and smoking cigarettes. Feel sick. Get dressed, go to dinner. Try not to give yourself away by sticking your pinky finger in PM’s sake and ordering only cooked items. Fail miserably. Be informed that you’re fooling nobody by not smoking, not drinking, and oh, we’re being ‘too nice’ to each other. That one’s my favorite. Sleep fitfully. Freak out about work. Try not to think that this just isn’t going to work out well. Try to have faith. Try not to get too excited. Try way too fucking hard to function. 9/11: Wake up bleeding. Take another test. Be really confused. Call off, call the doctor, try to put up your feet and relax, but realize there’s nothing on TV but 9/11 tributes, so cry all day. 9/12: Go to the doctor, give blood. Go to work, tell boss. Vaguely hear something about PPE and try not to throw up. Google ‘hcg’ repeatedly despite knowing damn well it’s not a party trick and I can’t MAKE the number double. 9/14: Give more blood. Get bad news. Go home and proceed directly to totally but very uncomfortably numb. *********************************************************************************** Feel much better after writing this.

Much unpleasantness ensues

Yuck.  That about sums it up, actually.

So yesterday was the sonohystogram.  Woohoo, dildo cam!  Ugh.  Not…pleasant.  I mean, you know it’s going to be fun when they recommend four ibuprofen four to six hours before, then a repeat dose an hour before.  Which I did.  I think I should have tripled it because OW.  I mean.  Ow.  I could think of plenty more pleasant ways to spend thirty minutes.

But the good news is nothing at all abnormal…mostly…I think.  No fibroids or polyps or other weirdness…but they count follicles on ovaries – one wasn’t viewable from the right angle or something because of a large one (which he didn’t seem concerned about and I’m not playing Dr. Google today), but the other had twelve.  Which is the line for a PCOS indicator.  I thought he said more than ten usually is, but I was sort of breathing through some ridiculous cramping and all I could really think was CAN YOU GET THAT THING OUT OF MY CERVIX YET? and this here thing says more than twelve.  So…woohoo, still no real answers!  But it makes sense to me.  This is starting to feel like a somewhat futile investigation, but I will still do the pincushion thing next week.  I mean, who doesn’t find hormone levels interesting?  Not me!  It will be interesting to see if I have any insulin resistance.  My grandma had diabetes.  She also lost at least one pregnancy that I know of…came up in some conversation well after her passing.  I guess it was far enough along that there’s a grave somewhere, but they didn’t name the baby.  So sad.

Oh, hey, look at that!  My genealogy buff cousin has photos up on one of the tree sites.  Sweet.  Here she is  at eighteen, 1932:  (link)

Cute as a button, that Carmel Cappabianco.  Awww.  That would have been four years before she married Grandpa.

So.  Yeah.  I really dunno where I was going with that.  To top it off, the antibiotic they prescribed as a precaution for the test decided to make me violently ill this morning.  So…gross.  People should never have to vomit unless they’re drunk or…pregnant, I guess.  Dammit.  Okay, full circle.  We’re done here.  For now.  Nap time, if I am lucky.