Monday, December 27, 2010


Greetings from Paris! We arrived yesterday morning after pretty much the best you can expect from an international flight. We flew direct Seattle to Paris on AirFrance, and let me tell you, the French know how to run an airline. There was a real meal that started off with a smoked salmon salad, and complimentary wine, and individual movie screens at each seat.  I think Kyle ended up watching approximately three whole movies, which wasn't exactly in his plans to sleep through the entire flight, but better than being awake and staring at the back of a seat. All and all, it went much more smoothly than I anticipated.

My family held off on "Christmas" until yesterday, although Kyle slept through all the festivities, since he didn't get any sleep on  the plane or the night before we left. There is only a very tiny oven here, so my dad cooked us Cornish game hen instead of turkey, which was wonderful, and we opened gifts, most of which were for my fetus. Baby now has a plate and bowl with animals on it, a stuffed elephant, and bunny slippers, which are possibly the most adorable things I have ever seen.

We are also joined here my some Dutch cousins of ours, and they are pretty much my Dutch mom and dad, so it is lovely seeing them and telling them of my pregnancy. Also, my sister. Since she's been here, she clearly become a classy French woman--it suits her magnificently, but when I am around she devolves into my baby sister, making dumb noises and faces and climbing all over me, and I miss her so much. It's very clear that she loves it here and has no intentions of coming home any time soon.  I told her she has to come visit after the baby is here, but she doesn't make very much money blah blah blah. I'm sure she'll find a way, though. Probably by talking my dad into buying her a ticket for Christmas next year.

We did the Louvre today. Kyle ended up splitting off and hanging out at an internet cafe, which is typical for him, but I figure that whatever keeps him happy is fine with me, as Paris really isn't his ideal vacation spot. The Louvre is kind of disappointing, though, to be honest. It's super crowded, and the collections don't seemed to be arranged with more thought than "this room is shit from Egypt." I think I prefer smaller, more specific museums. I loved the musee d'Orsay when we visited Paris last (I was 15 or 16), but I wanted to see the Louvre this time, since I hadn't before. Some of the Egyptian stuff was pretty lovely, though, and when we found rooms that weren't to crowded it was nice. We also saw the apartments of Napoleon, which is all the original stuff from when the museum was a palace, and that was amazing and definitely worth seeing.

But that picture doesn't even begin to capture the majesty. When you see the ostentatiousness of it you think no wonder they got overthrown. And behind all the walls filled with painting, every room is like this.

After the museum we went to a cafe for lunch. I thought it was funny the French onion soup is just onion soup here, but I guess that makes sense.

Tomorrow is sister time, I think. We're going shopping. I'm not too worried, for once, about spending too much money, since I can't really buy any clothing right now, with the whole maternity thing, but we passed today a lot of adorable expensive looking baby shops, so maybe that.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Like a kid on Christmas Eve...

So you know how the night before something exciting, like your first day at a new job, or say, a trip to visit your sister in France you don't feel like sleeping and you say it's like you're a kid on Christmas Eve? Yeah, I just had that thought. And then I remembered that it is in fact Christmas Eve.

I haven't really been feeling very festive this year. We didn't do any decorating, since leaving three cats alone in our house with a Christmas tree seemed like a poor choice. I'm not exchanging a ton of gifts with people this year, either, and what I'm getting will be for the most part purchased in Paris, so I haven't really done that either. Combine that with the stress of working in retail during the holiday season, and well, you wouldn't be feeling so jolly either.

It's Christmas Eve and I'm sitting in bed waiting for my nail polish to dry before I go to bed. Kyle is out getting a beer with a friend. We had mac and cheese for dinner. It's very unChristmas-y. And tomorrow we are taking the bus to the airport. Wahoo. We don't actually make it into Paris until the 26th, but the family is holding off on the festivities until we get there. So that is nice.

My dad's favorite cousin and his wife are also joining us for a few days in Paris, and I'm really excited to tell them about my pregnancy. When they saw my sister in November (right when I found out), they were asking her if I was going to do the baby thing soon, so they'll be excited. And it's pretty amazing to be able to tell the in person, since the last time we saw each other was at my wedding.

I'm itching to announce it. Now that we've made it this far, there's no point in spoiling the surprise before we get that ultrasound done in January when we get back, but I'm ready to be out. I feel lately like everything in my life relates back to this, and I'm finding it difficult just to carry on normal conversations with people for fear of letting something slip. And the whole growing belly thing is clearly going to become an issue soon. (I went through all my dresses trying to find something appropriate for going out in Paris and nothing fit!) But we'll be able to be out with family this week in Paris, and then we only have a few days after we get back before we can tell everyone. Ready ready ready.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010


Also, Kyle and I stopped by Target on our way home from dinner the other night, and I decided to buy a Bella Band (well, the knock-off Target version, anyway), so in the case that all of the sudden my pants don't fit I am not stuck buying a whole new wardrobe in a foreign country. So of course, as soon as we get home I try that sucker on. Omigosh, I never want to button my pants ever again. Amazing. I will probably end up buying a few more, as I can already tell I'm going to end up living in the thing. Question to the more experienced: is it worth it to pay extra and get the name brand?

Two more days...

...of work before vacation. Hallelujah. I also need to get the hell away from work because they are all going to guess my secret because I think I'm for real starting to look pregnant. I can still suck it in and look like a normal human being, but if I relax or slouch at all... there's a tummy. And it's kind of weird how it's clearly a bump and not like, fat. Well, I guess that isn't weird at all, since I am in fact pregnant, and not fat, but you know. I thought I would go through a fat-looking phase before I got to the part where I started to look pregnant, but apparently. not.  I still don't have pictures because camera cable is still MIA, although it supposedly is in transit to us right now. So soon I will have a barrage of photos, since I have been dutifully taking them every week, even if I have no where to put them

I do, however, have this fabulous (and by fabulous I mean crappy and blurry) camera-phone picture of the new haircut I got today!  (I deliberately took this picture extra up-close so there wouldn't be any belly in it for the facebook viewers--sorry!) I love haircuts. I haven't had one since February because my regular stylist went and had a baby and I've been hair-homeless for a while now. My last cut was a cheapie at a hair school and I wasn't completely happy with it, so even though I've been wanting a change since at least this summer, I wasn't really sure where to go. But there was no way I was going to go hang out in Paris with split ends that are visible from a mile away, so I made an appointment at VAIN, and voile! I get so bored with my hair. I've been growing it out since I got married in 2008 (me and BFF decided to do it together--we made it to our goal in September), and it's been driving me crazy, because I like to change it up, well, far more often than that. So hurray. I feel awesome.

So, eleven weeks and everything is awesome. I can't wait to see my family.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Crazy Girl

So, scratch what I said about not barfing anymore. Still doing that, apparently.

The last few days have been interesting. My not-feeling-pregnant-anymore and worrying-baby-stuff stress came to the head the other night. I was just talking calmly to Kyle about how I was starting to feel overwhelmed with all of this stuff that I didn't know and how many options there are, etc., and all of the sudden the tears started flowing and I was freaking out. Hormones. Very fun.

Kyle doesn't know quite what to do with me in times like these. When we were first together, years ago (and hadn't really grown up yet), I had a habit of taking everything really personally and flipping out and crying and that didn't get us off to a super great start. I also just tend to be a highly emotional person, and when my emotions run high, often so do my tears. So recently I've had to tell him to ignore the tears and listen to what I'm saying, because otherwise it has a tendency to look to him like I am trying to be manipulative, when really crying is just my physical response to a high stress or high tension conversation. So he's been pretty good about just ignoring the tears and treating the conversation as he would without them.

This thing the other night, though, was different. I didn't start crying because our conversation was making me emotional, I started crying because I am a big crazy hormone filled ball of stress and honestly in this instance I needed him to see that I needed more than for him to just take what I was saying at face value and instead to calm me down and comfort me, but I have trained him too well to ignore my outbursts, so he asked me to turn off the light to he could go to sleep. And I continued sniffling in the dark for a good hour because I'm crazy, and, you know, PREGNANT.

I did manage to get across to him that I really need him to start thinking about things. It's really stressing me out that he's not worried about anything relating to this pregnancy or caring for a baby or witnessing another human being come barreling out of my nether regions. And it's because he doesn't have a freaking clue what he's getting himself into. Unlike, say, me, he hasn't spent a bazillion years reading the books and the blogs. He doesn't have a lot of friends with kids, and the ones that do he doesn't see or talk to very often. He has no idea that there's anything that he ought to worry about. I don't even care that he choose to worry about the same things that are stressing me out. In fact, it would probably be better if he chose his own topics so that he could calm me down about car seats and daycare, and I could help relieve his stress about say, the likelihood of me dying in childbirth .Because that's something I'm pretty not worried about. But at this point he's only really worried about money, but we're both always worried about money, baby or not, so that's not really different than it was before we got this party started.

He has vowed to begin doing some reading. I've given him Henci Goer's The Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth, because the ΓΌber-sciencey nature of it is right up his alley, and because even though he's been supportive of my desires to have a natural and low-intervention birth, I want him to be on the same page with me on the reasons WHY I want that, so he can better support me in getting what I (we) want and not calling for an epidural at the first sign of wife-in-pain, as one of our friends did for his natural birth craving wife. And He also has Penny Simkin's The Birth Partner, because, well, duh. That's all that I'm asking of him at this point. When he gets through those, we'll see if he's interested in anything else. At least we have a couple of 10+ hour plane rides coming up to work on all that reading.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

I need a vacation

Okay, I am tired of being pregnant. While I am aware that most women feel this way at some point during pregnancy, I'm pretty sure that usually they last longer than ten weeks. But I'm ahead of the curve. Or something. Really, though, I'm over it. I don't want to like, not be pregnant, either, since I'm rather heavily anticipating the prize at the end, but I wish there was a pause button somewhere, so that I could maybe take a week's vacation from it all and then start back up where I left off. And I could eat raw fishes and soft cheeses and rare steak and have a god-damned cocktail. A girl can dream.

But seriously. I feel like I'm in some sort of pregnancy limbo-land right now. I'm definitely not showing yet, and we're still not sharing the news. The people that do know about it I think have gotten over their initial excitement, and so it's not LETS TALK ABOUT THE BABY!!! time anymore. Our first ultrasound isn't until January. And most of my early-pregnancy symptoms have tapered off. My boobs are still a little sore, but not all-the-time distracting. I'm periodically nauseous, but no longer vomiting. I'm not dead-tired anymore, but I'm still only running at about 80%. I suppose I should be happy about these things, but it just makes me feel like I am in no-man's land. At least I got to be constantly reminded that I'm growing a BAYBEEE! And, you know, I kind of like having something to complain about. Weird, but true. Now it's just whatever.

Lately I have also completely lost my appetite. Food does not interest me. Except for maybe chocolate. But nothing, say, nutritious. Or filling. And as such I forget to eat. And then my stomach starts growling and rumbling and it's uncomfortable and my body is telling me it's hungry, but my head? Still not interested. So then I eat some chocolate ice cream to quiet my stomach so that I can get some sleep. You think I'd be doing everything I could to make healthy choices for my fetus, but um, apparently not. At the end of all of this it's entirely possible that I will give birth to a baguette, since French bread is the only thing that doesn't seem completely unappetizing right now. Great.

Also, I am kind of freaking out. Interestingly enough, I am not really scared of becoming huge and swollen ankles and varicose veins and stretch marks and back aches. I don't fear contractions. I am not afraid of labor, or the "ring of fire," of any of it. I'm pretty sure it will be hard and it will be painful, but I'm completely confident I'll come out on the other side just fine. I think this is the result of spending oh, the last two years reading everything I could get my hands on about pregnancy and birth. Pregnancy and birth are old hat to me. Totally fine.

But everything else? I'm at a loss. I can push a baby out, but what the hell do I do with it afterward? Seriously. I've never babysat, ever. Never changed a diaper. I have given a baby a bottle twice, with supervision, and one of those times I was eight years old and I wouldn't even remember it except for the photographic evidence, so I'm pretty sure it doesn't count. I don't know a thing about car seats or strollers, and I'm pretty sure that babywearing sounds awesome, but as soon as I start thinking about the myriad options for slings and carriers I start panicking.

Lately I've been spending my time reading the archives of Alphamom, because it's so much more interesting than doing the dishes, or like, putting on pants. So last night it occurred to me, all of the sudden that not only am I going to have a baby, but at some point that baby is going to become a school-aged child, and perhaps a  TEENAGER and we'll have to talk about SEX and what the hell have I gotten myself into?

When did I get so crazy? Before getting pregnant I had all sorts of modern, positive ideas about age-approriate lifetime sex education and blah blah blah and this sort of stuff never worried me before and then hormones and you read one silly blog post about teenage boys and internet pornography and your brain explodes.

Did I mention I need a vacation? Welp, we go to Paris in nine days (holy crap!), so there is that. I will probably be pretty lax on the avoidance of fancy cheese and bubbly alcoholic beverages, because really, I need a break, and moderation and all that. Okay.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


Hi Blog! Today marks ten weeks! TEN. Very exciting. According to the stupid email I got from Baby Center today, I am now officially harboring a fetus. You know, instead of an embryo. I'm sure most pregnant women just think of whatever they are incubating as simply a baby, or rather the baby, and I do that, too, especially when talking about it because no one likes hearing me wax poetic about a fetus, and as much as I am attached to my little parasite (oh, am I), I am sort of loathe to grant personhood to the unborn, my own or otherwise. I don't want to get all political on you, but um... that's exactly what I'm going to do.

I've always been "pro-choice," that much is certain. In fact, for the longest time I never really even thought of it because it seemed pretty obvious to me, and growing up in a very liberal area, this belief was never challenged by, you know, real people that I actually knew. Early in our relationship, Kyle and I discussed the possibility of unplanned pregnancy, and at that time as a college student looking starry-eyed into the future, my plan was to rush to the nearest clinic in case of emergency. Kyle was a little less convinced that would be the best plan, but I was unconcerned. It ended up being a non-issue, of course, because I went and acquired the most effective birth control I could find. Easy-peasy.

Being pregnant puts all of this into new light. My pregnancy is not especially difficult in the grand scheme of things, but honestly, it's still a huge pain in the ass. And in the boobs. And let's not even discuss what awaits at the end of 40 weeks. Pushing a what out of where? And we haven't even begun to discuss the whole child-rearing issue. That's eighteen years at least. This pregnancy is more wanted than, well, anything else I have ever wanted, but even then I have days where I could go back to September and make the decision to wait just a little bit longer.  I can't imagine having to go through all the trials of pregnancy and then childbirth when you didn't want it.

And I'm not suggesting that every unwanted or unplanned pregnancy should end in abortion, because clearly, just no. Choice is about choice, and for me there was a point where my outlooked shifted and an unplanned pregnancy would have been something I would have decided I wanted more than not. But... just... not even being given the choice, and having to do this when it's the last thing you want... there are no words.

It's also a good part of the reason why we haven't announced our pregnancy yet. While we are like, the most low risk pregnancy ever, I know there is a tiny chance that something is horribly wrong. And if that's the case we're planning to pro-choice the hell out of it, if you know what I mean. Obviously, this isn't everyone's choice, nor should it be, but Kyle and I feel very strongly that we would not be good parents to a special-needs child, nor would having one allow us to be good partners to each other. And while I'm secure in my feelings about this issue, it's so not something I want to discuss with Kyle's Catholic Grandma, or like, anyone really.

So, we wait. Until January, even though a Christmastime announcement sounds oh-so-nice. And assuming everything at our ultrasound looks peachy-keen, it'll be go time. And maybe I will stop thinking about it as a fetus. But probably not, because the scientist in me likes that.

P.S. Still no camera so I google-image-searched "10 weeks fetus" for something innocuous to put here, and OMG, don't do that. Lots of really unpleasant abortion photos or possibly doctored images. Not convincing me of anything, but still, ick. So no picture for this post.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Let's talk about...

SEX! No, really. Kyle and I haven't had sex since we found out I was pregnant. Well, we tried once, but it was uncomfortable for me so we stopped and yeah. And we only did it once between conception and the positive test, and I don't think you could count it as good sex, since I was too distracted by my boobs hurting to be paying attention. Pathetic, yes I know.

So anyway. When the hell are we going to do it again? I think Kyle's actually appreciated this time he's had without me bugging him, since my sex drive has normally been irritatingly high, but like normally if I don't initiate for a while he still does and it's been a month and a half and nada. I don't even feel particularly like having sex, really, but I miss the intimacy and I'm kind of afraid that we'll just never have sex again. Like we'll just forget that we ever liked it and how to do it and we've been okay for this long so why bother? Is that stupid? I don't know, but that's where my crazy, hormone-addled brain is going right now. And then I start worrying about how we'll ever have another baby. As if I needed to start even thinking about siblings yet. For real, I am a mess.

Maybe vacation will help. France in sixteen days!

In other news I am nine weeks pregnant as of yesterday. Actually it was more like HOLY CRAP NINE!?!?!?! WEEKS! Yeah. Still no pictures as I still have no camera cord. I am dutifully taking them still, though. I feel a little bigger this week, maybe, but in a lol, where'd my waist go kind of way. Definitely not looking pregnant yet. I did wear a maternity dress yesterday, but it's one that I bought back last spring just because I thought it was cute, and there's no way it will actually fit me when I am in fact needing maternity wear, so I don't think that counts. Oh well.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

A little bit of everything.

Oh man, I have been a bad blogger. I am sorry. Unfortunately now that I've let it go so long without posting anything, it's hard to even know where to start. Lots has happened recently, and I think a bog post full of bullet points is the only way to get through it with any sort of coherence.

Please accept this as a substitute for a belly picture.

  • I had my first midwife appointment this week on Thursday. It was a little crazy because the birth center had two births that day so I ended up seeing one of the assisting student midwives, and the end of my appointment was very please-let-yourself-out-I-have-to-go-catch-a-baby, but honestly I'm glad that laboring women get priority, because obviously that will be nice when I'm in need of a baby-catcher. We went through my medical history, etc., and the just of the appointment was pretty much, "wow, you are ridiculously healthy and well informed." I knew that already, of course, but it's nice to hear. Basically everything I already knew; I am at an increased risk for post-partum depression, but other than that, everything is groovy. We talked about what they reccomend for that, and she let me know which local doulas and childbirth classes are dreadlocked hairy-armpitted hippies, not because I care, but because I know such things would put Kyle off, and I need him to be comfortable too. And then I peed in a cup and they took some blood and everything is peachy keen, as far as I know. They've referred me to a local hospital's fetal/maternal medicine unit to do my combined screening, and we're hoping that we can get in before we go to France. It will be our first chance to hear the heartbeat, etc., so I am super looking forward to that, and also getting assurances that everything is going well. So far, the only confirmation I have that I am even pregnant, is my home test pee-stick, and while my symptoms regularly remind me that something's in there, it would be nice to be able to see what's going on. Soon.
  •  We hit eight weeks on Wednesday! It seems like a lot. I took pictures, of course, but Kyle somehow mangled our camera cord, and my laptop doesn't read HD cards, so they are trapped forever there, or at least until we get a new cable. However, if you want to know what I look like you can look at any of the pictures from the last four weeks, because I look exactly EXACTLY the same. I know this is a blessing, especially since I'm not "out" yet, but honestly, I'm excited for stuff to start moving around. Or at least for bigger boobs. Something, please. Anyway, blog posts are much better with pictures, so instead of my non-belly, there is an adorable kitten for you at the top of this post, care of google image search.
  • Speaking, of being "out," or not, as the case may be, I've been thinking more about how and when to tell the general public about all of this. For the most part, I don't really care who knows, I just don't want to actually have to announce it. I'm a fairly introverted girl, and I don't like making myself the center of attention. I had a hard time telling people I was engaged when Kyle and I were getting married, too. It just seems very difficult, to me, to find a way to bring up, completely out of context this random (though, yes, exciting) news, and like, change the subject to being ALL. ABOUT. ME. It makes me feel horrible and awkward, especially because there are quite a few people who would be upset if they were not to get a personal phone call, which makes it all the worse for me. I'd like to tell as many people as possible via mass email or facebook announcement, so that I just don't have to deal with it. And I'm sorry, as much as I like talking about it, I'm afraid that by the ninth set of aunts and uncles (and we'd not even be all the way through Kyle's side yet!) I'll just be so over answering the same questions that I'll be feigning excitement and it just won't be good. Fortunately, though, my mother-in-law decided that an email would be appropriate for most of Kyle's family,  so we'll only have to make a few calls when the time comes.
  • I'm especially anxious about everyone at work finding out. For the most part it will be fine, and I know everyone will be happy and excited for me. My friends that I worked with at my old location all know how much I wanted this so they'll think it's awesome, and there are so many mothers working at my new location that they'll be totally cool, too, so that's not the problem. Just there is one guy in particular that I am worried about. He is technically my boss, which makes things more complicated, although boss-lady won't let things get too shitty because she is awesome. He is a pain in the ass to work with as it is for a myriad of reasons (he doesn't really respect women, we have very different ways of looking at things, communication styles, etc., he thinks that to be respected he has to be an asshole), and I know that as soon as he finds out I am pregnant he'll be super nice to me, but in a very paternalistic, no let me lift that for you kind of way and I really don't want that. I know when to ask for help and when I am pushing myself too hard, and I want to be able to make those decisions for myself, so I can't help but worry about that whole dynamic.
  • My plan right now for telling people is to announce just before we leave for France, so at least the news will have a week to sink in before I have to deal with everyone. I'm real magnanimous, I know. At least by that point we'll most likely have fetus pictures, that will make the news more fun. However, if anything looks funky in our ultrasound, I'm probably holding off, because we're pretty sure we are terminating if anything is really wrong, and I don't think that would go over well with Kyle's catholic family. Or with anyone, really. So. But we're not really high risk for anything so I'm trying not to worry about it. One of Kyle's cousins does have Downs Syndrome, though. I don't know.
  • My regular yoga class is getting super uncomfortable. I really started to feel it this week. Next class is restorative poses, which I definitely don't want to miss, and then the following week is the annual, teacher takes us all out for Indian food not class, which obviously I can handle, but I'm probably not going back after Christmas. Sad. I did drop into a prenatal class this past Monday, though, and I really liked it. It was the only one I could find offered at a reasonable time (i.e. not 1pm on a Tuesday... really?) but actually managed to be pretty awesome. The instructor and owner of the center is one of the local premier prenatal teacher trainers, I guess, so that is pretty good. I was the least pregnant woman there, by at least eight weeks, but it was good and all the women were super nice, which was cool, since I know like 3 people who are or have in the last five years been pregnant in real life, so. So. Glad I found that.
Okay, so that's as much as I am going to cram into this post, because it's clearly way too much information and now my brain feels like mush from trying to sort all that out (or possibly because I am pregnant and my brain feels like mush most of the time), and I need to go to bed, because the more sleep I get the less likely I seem to be to spend my entire morning barfing. So, goodnight.


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