Thursday, April 30, 2009

Thursday Morning Thoughts or How I Ended up Walking Around Covered in Spit up and Poop

Miles, are you really up for the day? Really? It's 5AM and Mommy needs to shower because we're going to the DMV today.

"Nelson! Wake up. Watch Miles while I shower, please."

Ah, clean! And make up! Must put on LOTS of under eye concealer. This photo is my identity for the next seven years and god forbid it makes me look as exhausted as I always feel.

Okay, Miles, you and me! Lets make Daddy lunch. What? Are you kidding me? Can you please just not spit up all over me one day in my life? Just one? Looks like I have to change. But, wait, is that Oscar? It IS Oscar. Let's go get your brother.

Oscar! Smiling, that's good, good way to start the day. Hmm, Daddy was going to put this stained shirt on you, but lets find a neater one. We are going out in public, after all.

Okay, lets get Miles dressed. Oscar, Oscar, where are you? No, no, no. Leave the toilet paper. Leave it. No, the bunny does not drink from the toilet. No, we do not smack Nebo in the face. Downstairs.

Miles, in the Exersaucer. Oscar, TV on already? What is that? Barnyard? Whatever. Bagel, water for Oscar. TV off. Playing puzzles.

Wait, what IS that in the bottom of the Exersaucer? No. NO IT IS NOT. NO. Goddamn it. It's poop, isn't it? Poop. What the eff, Miles? Your poop DID NOT just leak out of your diaper and run down your leg and form a POOL in the Exersaucer. Unbelievable.

Okay, move Miles, clean poop pool, get clean outfit. What time is it? 7:15, right.

Baby changed. Wait, is that poop all over my sleave? Great. I still need to change. Baby nursing. TV back on, good one, Oscar.

7:55, time to get Nora to school. Jackets, jackets, shoes, hats, Snuggli, lets go go go!

Walking back from school, who is that on my porch? Oh, crap, the cleaning people! Their key is broken, I forgot to get them a new one! Sorry, sorry, sorry!

Back in the house, packing up for trip to DMV. Cell phone, pretzels, granola bars, water, toys. Pick up puzzles. Load up Miles in infant seat. Pick up puzzles again.

Load children in car and on the road. 8:23, score! Driving against traffic, Miles falls asleep, Oscar watches cars. Perfect, peaceful ride.

Arrive at the DMV. Unload monster double stroller. Load up children. Go into DMV, wait in line for like two minutes and get my number to wait some more.

Sit down, pull out pretzels for Oscar and my number is called. What? My number? Really?

I give her my license, she takes a new photo, it prints out in two minutes and we are outta there. Load kids and monster stroller back into car. Look at the clock and realize it took me longer to load my children into the stroller than it did for me to get a new license. Am shocked.

Drive to Target. Get new phone since ours is no longer working. Thanks for that, Oscar. Oscar TOTALLY FREAKS OUT when he sees all the PHONE? PHONE? PHONE? in the aisle. Grab a moderately priced phone and leave. Get rash guards for the boys, get them each a new shirt.

Oscar demands Cars ice packs in check out isle. Notice that Oscar has a pile of stuff in in seat. Hand pile of stuff to cashier with apologetic smile. Pay and get out.

Home to clean house! Oscar demands Elmo. Put in Grouchland. Nurse Miles, put him in Exersaucer. Get snack for Oscar. What Oscar? Miles poop? Okay.

Miles has complete crapped it out yet again, nice. Up the back this time, switching it up, I see. Okay, new outfit, back in Exersaucer.

Oh, laundry. Better get folding. Laundry. Wait. Right. I was supposed to change. Or I could just walk around in public with spit up and poop all over myself. That would be better. Am so cool.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Random Tuesday Thoughts: I Suck

Are you random on Tuesdays? If not, get with it, 'cause Xander's mom has got it going on.

*I cannot find my baby sleep book and I'm freaking out. Because, Miles? Miles has been waking EVERY TWO HOURS for the last three nights. And it's killing me. And, he's not even hungry, he just wants to HANG. Well, Miles, I don't want to HANG at 10pm, 1am, 3am, and 5am. I want to SLEEP. And so should you. I can't figure out his deal. Is it the heat? We've got the air on. We're still swaddling him (I know) and he seems to be fighting against it, but if he's not swaddled he only sleeps for eight minutes at a time. I don't know what to do here, people, but I am starting to freak out.

*While looking for my sleep book, I stumbled on some of Oscar's photo albums. Know how many there are? Five. Know how many Miles has? Zero. I suck. And framed photos? Oscar has many like a dozen or two. Miles has one. I double suck.

*I've convinced Oscar that those Chinese rice crackers are cookies so I won't have to give him so much sugar. But they have tons of sodium, right, so they really aren't that much better. Except they don't make him go completely ape shit crazy after eating a handful. So actually they are much better.

*Miles is finally into his Exersaucer and loving it. I love it more.

*Oscar's been called a girl three times in the past two weeks and it bothers me more than I though it would. Because I though it would bother me zero but it actually bothers me kind of a lot. I mean, I realize his hair is long and his eyelashes are long and he's a "pretty" boy. But I dress him in black and navy and brown and trucks and stuff. Nowhere approaching gender neutral. Does society hate long haired boys that much?

*It has been blazing hot in DC these past few days and I'm melting. I need some spring, okay? At least like a week. I cannot deal with 90 degree heat yet.

*And? The air conditioner in my car broken so I can't go anywhere with the kids and since I always have the kids, that means I can't go anywhere period. Black leather interior looks cool but is not very practical. My car is like a oven and since I don't want broiled children, home we stay.

*And...I found tick on me the other day. This is because our grass is so freaking long it looks like a...a...I don't know, a field of grass or something. The backyard is almost up to my knees, the front comes over my ankles, so it's like tick paradise out there. Which means I can't take the kids out there to play because there meaty little legs would be way delicious to ticks. And, I can't take them to the playground because the equipment is boiling. So, inside it is.

*Oscar moved on from Nemo to Cars. Have you ever noticed how Cars is kind of like the movie Doc Hollywood except it takes place in the southwest instead of the deep south and it has cars instead of people? Anyway, he's off Cars now and on to Monster's, Inc. (Thanks to Cameron for the suggestion.)

*Oscar is really doing a lot of cool things these days and I've been meaning to do a whole post about it but I never seem to have the time. I feel bad about it.

*Miles is scratching the shit out of his head and face and it really bothers me. I've tried everything to get him to stop - olive oil, Nizoral, oatmeal soaps, socks on his hands, clipping his nails three times a week. His head is just super itchy. And he's getting eczema all over his trunk as well. I vaguely recall Oscar having it too, but Oscar wasn't bothered by it. Miles clearly is. I feel at a loss to help him, my poor, itchy munchkin.

*I haven't done a HASAY update in basically forever, but I'm going to do one this week. But, likely, I'll forget again. But I am loosing weight. My cleaning lady actually commented on how good I look. She's clearly a woman who knows how her bread is buttered.

*My mom has recently made a lifestyle change and I'm not sure if I should write a blog about it or not. It would be hilarious but I think it might me crossing the line, like too personal. Because it's not really my stuff, it's her stuff. No, she's not gay, for the record, because I know when the word "lifestyle" gets thrown around the word "gay" is not usually far behind.

*When Oscar was little (now, even) when he is really sad, I sing him "I've Been Working on the Rail Road," substituting "Oscar" for "Dinah." It always calms him. For Miles I sing "Natural Woman." It calms him almost instantly. Baby's got soul. The thing is, why are the songs so completely different? You'd think they'd both be folk songs or both be soul songs, but no. One of each. And, does anyone else sing either of these songs to their kids? I doubt it. I'm so weird.

That's a whole lot of random for you, but stop by at Keely's for some more RTT.


Monday, April 27, 2009

Around the World in 80 Clicks

Barbara over at Barbara's 366 has tagged me for the Around the World in 80 Clicks meme and I am so excited about it! The idea is to link mommy bloggers all over the world in a kind of virtual, international play date.

The rules are to list five things you love about parenthood and link back to the meme's authors, Catherine at Her Bad Mother and David at It's Not a Lecture so they know you need to be added to the departure lounge. Then, you need to tag five other mommy bloggers, some from your country and some from others. David is hooking everyone up - see the HBM post I've linked to above for details.

So, here goes, five things I love about motherhood.

1. My kids are gorgeous. I realize this is superficial, but I just love to look at them and marvel that such spectacular looking children came out of my relatively average body. They are real lookers and I imagine that everyone who meets them is secretly jealous that my kids are so good looking. I love it when they flash their megawatt smiles for strangers in the grocery store, causing pools of melted grandparent all over our nation's capital. I mean just look at them:
2. It's a challange. Just when you think you've got everything figured out, they change it up on you. Sleeping through the night? Then they start teething. House finally baby proofed enough for your crawler? Then they start walking. Think they love broccoli/peanut butter/sweet potatoes? Then they throw it in your face. There is a new monster to tackle almost every single day. But I like it. It keeps me on my toes. And it's really pretty humbling. It's also humbling when your toddler sticks his finger in the crack of your rear, which is hanging out of your pants as you squat on the floor to mop up his 100th beverage spill of the day. Dull motherhood is not.
3. Breastfeeding. It's true. I really do love breastfeeding my kids. I love that my body alone is able to supply them with all the nutrients they need for the first six months of their lives. That's just amazing. And I love the closeness I feel with them while they nurse; the contented baby sighs; they way their eyes roll back in their heads; the way their toes curl. I love the way I feel so calm and relaxed when Miles is latched on and I love it when we both fall asleep while he's nursing. I nursed Oscar for 12.5 months and I hope to nurse Miles for at least that long and as long as it's working for both of us.
4. Seeing my kids enjoy each other. They are still a little young for this, but I love nothing more than to see Oscar and Miles grinning and laughing at each other. This is what it's all about. I know the best thing I could have ever done for them was giving them each other - a sibling to share their lives with, to grow up with, someone who will love and support them always, even after I am gone.
5. Ah, the love. I never knew I had such a capacity for love, but since having my kids it's like a bottomless well. And they love me back. There is no expectation, no pretension, just love. It's like a drug. And they make me want to be a better person because of it. I feel like I've done nothing to earn their adoration so I try every day to be a mother worthy of such princely sons.
I'm tagging:
1. FoN over at Kids and Daiquiris
2. Cara over at Momma Says
4. Becky at Suburban Matron
Go forth and spew your motherly love!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Four Months

Oh, dear. It's seems I'm late. Today, my Miles, you are in fact four months and seven days but I figure since you were ten days late in your arrival you will forgive me this.

Four months. What is the deal with you, my little man? You seem to be determined to grow up too fast. You started rolling over last month. Rolling over! A full month before your brother even attempted such a feat. And my are you a big one! You are almost the same size at four months that your brother was at six. It seems likely you will be bigger than your older brother, which seems fair since you will always be younger, always be second to do the fun things like driving and seeing R rated movies.

Kiddo, you've been scratching the heck out of your face and head these past few weeks. I think your cradle crap is really starting to bother you. I'm doing my best with olive oil and medicated shampoo and clipping your nails every three days but I'm really not much help. You're ruining your beautiful face but all the scratches make you uniquely you, so I still snap photos even if you are a gory mess.

You are such a laugher. I can just look at you cross-eyed and you burst into this full-bellied chuckle. And my god are you ticklish. A stray finger on your tummy or ribs or even under your ample chin has you squealing. Even Oscar has taken to tickling you.

Laughing is not the only noise you make. You squeak and coo like some kind of baby bird. Oscar shrieked with delight, but you make softer, more contented noises. I love to hear you sigh when you settle in for a good nurse. We have so little time alone, you and I, so I savor these moments when we are both so contented and so happy.

You positively worship Oscar. You watch is every move, trying to catch his eye and snare him with your smile. I'm never happier than in the moments when I'm holding the two of you on my lap and you are looking at each other and laughing at each other. It's a beautiful thing.

I am so enjoying you right now, at this stage. You still have eyes for only me. I am the one who gets the best smiles, the best laughs. You light up when you see my face. No one can calm and comfort you like Mommy. I realize how selfish this sounds, but I say it with the surefire knowledge that ten months from now your total dependence and infatuation with me will be less than memories when, as a toddler, you fall hard for Dada. I will be ridiculously jealous.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Scene: Jenni reading celebrity gossip magazine. Oscar sidles over to "read" over my shoulder.

Jenni (to Oscar) : What do you see, baby?

Oscar (pointing to a picture of Heidi Klum): Mom. Mom. Mommy.

Jenni: Aww, thank you, baby. I wish I had those legs. What else to you see?

Oscar (pointing to a picture of Matthew McConaughey) : Dada!

Jenni: He's cute enough, but Dada has longer arms. Mr. McConaughey has little T-Rex arms.

Oscar: ...

Jenni flips page.

Oscar (points to a picture of Britney Spears) : BIG BIRD! BIG BIRD! BIG BIRD!

Jenni: Yes, baby, something like that.

Monday, April 20, 2009

The One Where I Saved a Kid From Drowning

As a teenager, I was a prolific babysitter. My parents wouldn't let me get a "real" job, so I had to do a lot of babysitting so I could have my own spending money.

I was maybe fourteen* and my dad's sales company was having some meetings in our town. One younger couple that had recently relocated to our area did not have anyone to watch their two small children, so they brought them along. I was commissioned to babysit while the dad was at meetings and the mom was doing things with the other wives - shopping, lunching, sight-seeing.

The kids were a 7 or 8-month-old girl and an almost three year old boy. The mom actually took the little girl, Bailey, with her most of the time. I only watched her in the evenings when the adults went to dinner.

I spent the days (2 or 3) watching the little boy, Kevin. He was named after Kevin Bacon (true story.) So, his parents were staying in a hotel, and there wasn't a terrible lot to do. He had some toys, but you know how long toys keep a toddler occupied.

Luckily (ha), there was a marina in the back of the hotel. It was early summer, so the weather was pretty nice most days, a little humid but not too bad. So, Kevin and I spent a lot of time walking up and down the piers of the marina looking at all the boats. This was actually pretty awesome because he loooooved boats.

There was this one boat in particular that we went to look at every day. It was docked at the end of one of the longer piers. It was a blue and gold sail boat and decked out to look a bit like a pirate ship. Pretty neat, particularly to three-year-old boys.

It was a sunny day. Humid, but not terribly hot. We were strolling casually, I was holding his hand. Kevin was a good hand holder. We had walked to the end of that pier for maybe the 50th time and were admiring the boat. I decided it was time to head back for lunch. We got about 50 feet up the pier, and he just broke free. Just let go of my hand, and took off like a shot, back towards the boat.

"LOOK JENNI, LOOK!" he yelled to me, look back at me over his shoulder while he hurled toward the end of the pier.

"LOOK AT THE BOAT! IT LOOKS LIKE A PIRATE BOAT!" he was still running at toddler speed (= speed of light) and looking over his shoulder at me. He was so excited.

And I knew it was going to happen before it did and I could neither move or speak. I was frozen with fear and shock.

See, the boat was docked at the end of the pier. But, as you may know, the boat did exactly abut the pier. It was tied to the pier and sat in the water leaving maybe a two or three foot gap between the boat and the pier.

But, Kevin most certainly did not know this. He thought he was running right to the pirate boat. Maybe if he hadn't been looking back at me he might have seen the gap between pier and the boat, but I doubt it. Toddlers just aren't that observant.

So he was running, yelling excitedly, pointing the the boat and I was motionless, speechless, waiting for god to intervene. He didn't. And then, SPLASH! Kevin was gone.

The splash knocked me out of my stupor and I ran to the edge of the pier. I was terrified. Would I be able to see him? What if he hit is head on the pier or the boat on his way down, what if he sunk like a rock, what if I couldn't find him?

I knelt down and looked into the water. And I could see him! He was there, just a few inches below the surface, treading water**. Without thinking, I immediately jumped off the side of the pier into the water. The water line was around five or six feet below pier and it was COLD! It was early summer and the water had not yet had time to warm up.

I swam the three or so feet over to Kevin and I hoisted him out of the water. He panicked and started trying to climb on top of my head, which was not so good because he was pushing me under the water. I was worried that we were both going to drown.

I pushed him away from me (hard, since he was trying to climb on top of my head) and held him at arms length, kicking with my legs to keep us afloat. It was really hard. I remember thinking I was never going to be able to do this, to get us both out alive.

"KEVIN! Calm down. I've got you. CALM DOWN!" I told him. "You can put your arms around my neck, but NOT ON MY HEAD. Okay? Not on my head." I'm really thankful he was an older toddler because he understood what I was saying and could follow directions.

I pulled him back towards me and he grabbed me around the neck with a vise grip. He was kind of choking me, but because he was on the front of me, it was okay. With him holding on, I swam over to the front leg of the pier. It was about three feet wide and Kevin was clinging to the front of me, so really it hard to hold on, but it was all I had.

So I was holding on the the pier, catching my breath, trying to figure out how the HELL we were going to get out of the water. The pier was a good five feet above my head - there was no way I could reach it to hoist us out. It was a marina, so there was no actual shore that I could swim to. There is a spot where boats that were not docked put in to the water, but that was so far from where we were that I could not even see it.

Kevin's lips were turning blue. He was crying. We had to get out of the water. It was brackish and nasty. I hadn't though about how we were going to get out when I jumped in. I just knew I had to save him. So, I started yelling, "HELP! SOMEONE HELP US! WE FELL IN! PLEASE HELP! HELP!"

Lucky for us it was a nice day, so the fishermen were out. Or in, rather, from their morning excursions. After about a minute, four or five men came running over and peered over the edge of the pier at us. I burst into tears. Until that moment, I was not sure we were ever going to get out.

"Please, help! We can't get out! He fell in and I went in after him and now we can't get out!"

They instructed me to hold Kevin up so they could pull him out. With some difficulty, I pried Kevin from my neck and held him up as high as I could, and two men grabbed him by the arms and hoisted him out. Then, two more men leaned way down off the pier and grabbed my arms and pulled me out while I braced my legs against the leg of the pier.

And, we were out! Sopping wet, crying our brains out, freezing, but alive and out of the water.

"You jumped in after him?" one of the men asked.

"Yes," I said.

"Wow, you are one brave young lady," he said.

The whole experience, from the splash to the rescue, was probably about five minutes long. It felt like a lifetime though.

Kevin and I headed back to the hotel. I put him in a lukewarm tub and got him changed. I order room service, put Kevin in front of the TV, and took a shower myself. I had my bathing suit and an extra pair of shorts for the pool, so that's what I wore.

I was really afraid of telling Kevin's parents that he'd almost drowned on my watch. When they got back a few hours later and I told them, they hugged me. "You saved him," his mom said, "you saved my son's life. Thank you so much."

At the time, I didn't get it. I thought he almost died because I was not careful enough. I thought they would be furious. Now that I have kids of my own, I understand. It wasn't my fault that he fell in. Kids break free, kids run away, kids get hurt, no matter who is watching them. They were thankful because I responded quickly. I went in after him, I got him out no worse for the wear. As a parent, you can't ask for more than that.

*Although I was clearly a STELLAR, LIFESAVING babysitter, I would never in a million years allow a fourteen-year-old to babysit my children.

**Kevin had been taking swimming lessons at his local Y, so he had some fundamentals. I didn't know this at the time - his mom told me post rescue. I shudder to think what would have happend had he not known how to tread water.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Snippits - A Stimulating and Ultimately Unfortunate Conversation About my Mom

Alternate Title: Yes, I am Really This Boring

Jenni (reading email): So, my mom wrote me an email telling me she'd finally gotten her new cat, but I never even knew she was getting a cat.

Nelson (watching Gangland): Huh.

Jenni: It was like she though we had a conversation about her getting new cat, but we didn't, and she just picked up the conversation where it left off.

Nelson: Mmm-hmm.

Jenni: But we never had the conversation, so I'm reading the email and I'm like, "What cat? What are you talking about?"

Nelson: Hmmm.

Jenni: Oh, she sent a picture of the new cat. Aww, she's cute!

Nelson: ...

Jenni: Mom named her Lilly, with two "l"s, because she can't spell! Ha ha!

Nelson: What? Did you just say your mom shaved her lily?

Jenni: No. What?! NO! NO! What does that mean? Why would I say that? NOOOOOO! [Jenni falls to the floor and quivers like midwestern jellied side dish , a horrible image burned forever in her mind]

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Random Tuesday Thoughts: Thoughts?


Casey says this is what the cool kids are doing, so here I am with another edition Keely's now famous RTT.

Have you ever seen that movie Forrest Gump? Of course you have. Every one's seen that movie. Okay, well there's this scene, right after he somehow miraculously graduated from college where an Army recruiter comes up to Forrest and says something like, "Son, have you given any thought to your plans after college?" And he responds, "Thought?" as though having an actual thought never occurred to him. That part absolutely SLAYS me. Yeah, I know.

Miles rolled over for the first time two and a half weeks ago. He was just over three months. Now, he's rolling all over the damn place and loving it. Except once he gets to his tummy, he can't roll back onto his back, so he melts down after about five minutes and I have to roll him back over. At which point he almost IMMEDIATELY rolls back over onto his tummy again. Oscar didn't roll over until he was four months, but it wasn't until he was six months that he did it with any regularity. Miles is on fire.

Speaking of tummy time, Miles does not get enough of it and I'm certain he's getting a flat head. Certain in the way all moms of newborns are obsessed with their baby's heads, because right now I'm looking at it and it is perfect.

Another word on Miles: teething. Boy is drooling up a storm and nipping at the nips ALREADY. Memo to Miles: don't bite the boob that feeds you, or you'll be sucking on synthetic whether you like it or not.

And feet? Miles has found them. It's a love match.

Oscar is talking up a GD storm. I'm estimating that he has in the neighborhood of 200 words and maybe 5 or 6 two and three word sentences. I can understand what he's saying most of the time. He's been screaming "BIRTHDAY!" and requesting to "Wa han?" (wash hands) like forty times a day. There has never been a child with such clean hands. He's also now saying "Lub you" (love you) and I cry just about every time he says it.

Nelson has fixed the sink! And exterminator is coming this week! And my nipples no longer itch. Hopefully, this is the last you will ever hear of leaks and ants on this blog. There will likely be more talk of nipples. Sorry, just being honest.

While Oscar was down for the count, he watch more TV than he ever has in his life. It was mostly in the form of movies. And when I say movies, I mean movie and that movie was Finding Nemo. One day we watched that bad boy four times. He'd occasionally settle for Cars, but found WALL-E unbearable and just ask for Nemo the whole time it was on. Now that he's better, we're off Nemo, but that doesn't stop him from asking for is 40 bermillion times a day and melting down at least 50 percent of the time when the movie is denied.

I have been extremely cranky and short tempered this past week and I think it's because my neck hurts so bad I think it might fall off. I'm hoping a visit to the chiropractor will help because I can't stand myself and if I can't stand myself, poor Nelson and Oscar must be ready to nail my ass to a cross.

It occurs to me that it is probably in bad taste to make a crucifixion joke so soon after Easter. But, it has been nearly 2,000 years so I think Jesus jokes are fair game.

I'm going to bite the bullet and go to the dentist sometime next month. Be prepared for lots of whiny posts about my terrible dental health. I'm only going for the blog fodder. It's gonna be awesome.

I just heard my dog vomit in the other room. I'm missing a crayon so I bet that vomit is gonna beeeeeeeeeeee - BLUE! Ding, ding, ding! And what do I win? A chance to mop up blue dog vomit? Now that is truly awesome.

Monday, April 13, 2009

For Maddie

I'm going purple for Maddie. I know I promised a mom post today, but I am absolutely beside myself with Maddie's passing and I hope blogging about it will help. I had no idea I could be so bereaved for a child I never even met.

I was an avid reader of Mike's blog The Newborn Identity, so I know how much he and his wife worshiped their little girl. She could not have come into a better family and been more loved during her short life. I can not even begin to imagine what Mike and Heather are going through. She made it through so much to have to go so suddenly. The world is a brighter place for her having been a part of it, however briefly. My heart and thoughts have been and continue to be with the Spohrs and they try and cope with this staggering loss.

Hug your babies extra tight tonight. Please, help the Spohrs if you can.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

What's Going On (Like the Song, but Not)

Wow, things have been crazy this past week. Poor Oscarelli and my reader have been quite neglected. But, it seems I've been much to busy living life to blog it this past week. Shocking, I know.

Oscar is doing much better. He's still got a bit of a cough, but he's breathing, which we like. Three cheers for breathing!

Miles had his visit with the surgeon last week and was declared abscess-free. Okay, it's still there, but the surgeon said it's fine how it is - that it can continue filling and draining until it stops or I get tired of it and want to bring him back in. The surgery would involved the surgeon opening up and "filleting" the abscess and cleaning it out and we are just not all about that. NOTE TO SURGEONS: Do not refer to surgery as "filleting" especially when the patient is a child. It's mucho creepy.

This weekend, we went to Philly to one of my college roommate's wedding. It was an Indian wedding and it was basically the most awesome wedding I've ever seen or heard of in my entire life. Her family partied their faces off. It was amazing and beautiful and I'm so glad we are able to be there and celebrate with her and her new husband. Congratulations, Ami and Neil! Here's wishing you a long, happy life together.

Oscar stayed with his grandparents for the weekend, but Miles came with us and he was a trooper. He melted down on the way home from the Mendhi party on Friday night, and cried when my friend Greta held him (just to spook you, Greta) but was otherwise a Model Baby. He even slept in Saturday and Sunday until 8:30, proving once again that he is the perfect baby.

Blog spoiler: a crazy mom list tomorrow and later this week a story about how I saved a kid from drowning.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


Oscar's been fighting off a nasty cold for weeks. Goopy eyes, sticky yellow snot, the works. On Friday, the runny nose stopped and he started coughing a little. I though the cold was finally moving on.


On Monday he woke up coughing and wheezing. Oscar was MUCH worse than he'd been on Sunday and had been getting worse for the past two days. And he was burning up. Miles had another appointment with the surgeon, so I told Nelson to call the on-call nurse at our pediatrician's office and tell her what was going on and to watch his breathing.

When I got home an hour and a half later, the wheezing had turned into gasping for air. He looked like a fish out of water. I looked at his chest and he was having clear retractions (the skin between his ribs was being sucked in with each breath.) And he was hot, so hot. I gave him some Tylenol on top of the Motrin we'd given him in the morning.

I felt panic. "Nelson! Look at him! He can't breathe!"

"I know, we have an appointment for 12:30."

"That's not soon enough. I'm calling back."

They told us to come right in.

What was so scary to me was how quickly he'd gotten worse. And just seeing my kid struggling to breathe and there being nothing I could do to get him air.

I was certain it was pneumonia.


It was a virus. Just a virus. But, because Nelson has asthma, Oscar is predisposed to have difficulty breathing with even a minor cold, according the pediatrician.

Okay, it wasn't just a virus. He also has a double ear infection. A real nasty one, giving him fevers of 104 and higher.

Yesterday we had to have him on the nebulizer every three hours; every four over night. Nelson slept on his floor because we were both so terrified he'd stop breathing in his sleep. That's how bad his breathing sounded. He's also on antibiotics for his ears.

This morning he was a new boy. Still wheezing, still feverish, but no longer gasping for air. When we took him in for a follow up, the pediatrician was pleased with how he was doing. He'll be on the neb for the rest of the week, but she thinks he'll be fine after that.

He's gotten to spend the last two days watching movies, drinking juice, and eating cookies. If I have to watch Finding Nemo one more time I think I might drown, but he's feeling better. I'm exhausted.

Thursday, April 2, 2009


It's the perfect moment: Oscar is sleeping soundly for his morning nap and Miles has just drifted off at the breast. I'm beginning to drift off myself.

Then, I hear it. A start, a quiet sob, from upstairs. I wait. Will he fall back to sleep or will I need to go sooth him?

The sobbing begins. Heart wrenching, full-bodied sobs. Soothing it is.

As I lay Miles down in the Pack'n'Play to sleep, his peaceful little face crumples. He begins wailing the wail of an infant disturbed; angry, sad, afraid. I let him see me and he calms down. He smiles, coos.

I leave him for Oscar, and I find him standing in his crib, sobbing, snot running freely, eyes still heavy with sleep. He is exhausted. When I pick him up, he clings to me while sucking his thumb and clenching his bunny. I sway with him in my arms and his lids get heavy.

And it comes. Miles, mewling softly for me. He gets louder and louder until he sounds frantic with anger and need. Oscar hears it, too. His eyes snap open. He looks at me, questioning me silently. Will I stay with him, help him to sleep, or will I leave him for Miles? What will I do? What will I do?

Miles who's cries have reached fever pitch! I can see him in my mind: his face red, his arms and legs raging against the empty space that I usually fill; real tears squeezing from his eyes.

Who needs me more? Do I stay with Oscar until he's over his fear and able to go back to sleep, or do I go to Miles who is desperate with need? Someone will be left crying and alone. I don't know how to make this decision.

I tell myself that neither of them will remember this moment. Oscar and Miles will not remember who was left to cry while his brother was cuddled in Mommy's arms and soothed by Mommy's voice.

I try to reassure myself of this truth, comforting one son while the other rages.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Warning! Meme to Follow

So, Anna over at abdpbt tagged me for this six random things meme. I'm actually totally stressed about several things that I've already blogged to death (Miles's abscess, my leaky sink, ants, and my itchy nipples), this this couldn't come at a better time. Because, to be honest? Even I'm tired of hearing about all that crap. So here goes.


1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules on your blog.
3. Write six random things about yourself.
4. Tag six people at the end of your post and link to them
5. Let each person know they’ve been tagged and leave a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know when your entry is up.

Six Random Things About Me.

1. My last semester in college, I drew a giant penis on the college president's parking place. My feminist group was doing it in protest of the fact there had been several stranger rapes on campus and just off campus and there had been no response from the administration. No warnings to students, no nothing. So, we went all around campus drawing penises and writing, "This is power at [insert college]" and "Your daughters are not safe at [insert college]" and stuff like that because it was spring and there were a ton of prospective student's touring the campus. But, what's really funny about this is that the reason I was the one to draw the giant penis and not either of my two buddies (it was night, so we went out in groups because, you know rapist on the loose) is because I was the only one who'd ever actually seen a real, live penis. But, it didn't really look like one anyways. It looked enough like one that you'd know what it was, but it was more like a penis caricature. At the time, I didn't even think it was a big deal, until it was on the front page of our campus paper the next day, and the administration invited our group to a meeting to discuss campus safety and such. Score us!

2. I started dying my hair when I was 15 and didn't stop until I after I became a stay-at-home mom. Expensive hair cuts were one of the things nixed from our budget so I could quit my job. Up until this point, Nelson had never seen my real hair color, and I couldn't remember what it was. And, you know what? I actually really like my natural color. Who'd of guessed it?

3. While Nelson earned his PhD, I worked super shitty non-profit jobs to support us. Or, rather, to almost support us. Even though he had a fellowship to pay his tuition, we still went into significant debt because we did things like buy groceries. But, I was the bread winner in these parts for some five years. One day, Nelson saw my bi-weekly paycheck and it was for like $725 or something like that, and he was like, "This is what you get paid ever two weeks?" And I was like, "Yep, that's it." And he said, "Oh my god! We're rich!" I kid you not. He still has no concept of money.

4. I back in 2001, when I was driving my '89 Ford Escort (five door hatchback, white with a red racing stripe) I was pulled over by a cop who stepped out in the middle of the street and put his hand out, like crossing guards do when they want to stop traffic. I was going 55 MPH in a 30 MPH zone. The Escort's maximum speed? 55 MPH. On a hill.

5. Yeah, I'm all out. My nipples are itchy, my kitchen has ants, my sink is leaking, and my baby has a persistent peri anal abscess.

I'm tagging:

1. Sarah, at Sarah's Blogtastic Adventures
2. Peggy at Sir Crazy in the Suburbs
3. Cameron at Get the Stink Off
4. Keely at the Un Mom
5. Monica at Oh, Susanica!
6. Kat at 3 Bedroom Bungalow to Let in Crazytown