Saturday, May 29, 2010

Moving Along. . .

I am exhausted. I have been chairing a committee for a local nonprofit, and today was my last "official" act--throwing a fundraiser. I ran around all day. T. had to work, so I brought the baby with me. She was absolutely perfect all day--she hung out in her stroller for most of the day, smiling and giggling at everyone. I think she LOVED the mental stimulation of being outside. She is zonked now! My legs ache from all of the running around, though.

I have been putting off listing our house for rent, simply because I'm dreading dealing with it--the taking of pictures (there are piles EVERYWHERE right now!), the phone calls, the showings. It's pretty much the last thing I want to do. But, it must be done. I just listed the house on Crai.gslist a half an hour ago, and within 10 minutes, I'd received two different phone calls about it!

T. and I agreed on a price before I listed it. It's a fair price, and covers all of our expenses, and it's well within the price range for houses for rent in our area. It's gorgeous space, too. The renovations have turned out really nice. The custom kitchen went in this week, and I love it. I would have been so happy living here! I must be crazy. . .Once I started getting the calls, T. said that he didn't think we were asking for enough money, but I think it's a good price. Hopefully, we can find the right people to rent it.

By the way, to answer the question about which brest pump I am using, I have the Med.ela I love it, love it, love it. It is tiny and light and works really well, and I don't even use the highest settings on it. The pump literally fits in the palm of your hand, and you can throw it into any bag you want. The parts are easy to find and relatively inexpensive. You can sterilize them in the microwave or dishwasher, ALL of them. There are bottles that attach right to the pump, and it comes with a little separate refrigerated bag and freezer pack that fits 4 bottles. It's made pumping totally easy, and totally portable. I went to the store and picked up some of the other pumps, and they weighed SO much more that I spent the extra cash to get the I haven't been disappointed. It was worth every penny.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Basement Strata

I am a more serious packrat than I remembered. Truthfully, I have been long casting a blind eye toward the towering piles of boxes in my basement. I found boxes full of stuff from grad school. High school!

It has been like revisiting my life, layer by layer. Prom pictures...reply cards to our wedding...letters from college friends and the ghosts of boyfriends past alike. (Letters! Can you imagine recent college grads writing each other LETTERS today?!).

Truthfully, I kind of wanted to save the letters, but a) I am tryong to de-packrat, b) it seemed sort of wrong to keep letters from old boyfriends (no matter how hilarious), and c) some of them referenced conduct that I wouldn't want my daughter reading about (yes, I am a "do as I say, not as I did" parent. Or maybe, "don't ask, don't tell.". Or, just utterly into revisionist history, or all of the above.). It was fun to go through the strata. Now that I am in the harbor of my life, with amazing baby and husband, it was like walking down the corrider of other lives that Might Have Been. Some of the letters were truly fabulous. There was a hand-drawn non-Valentine's Day card from one guy that was cut into puzzle pieces, which is exactly the kind of quirky surprise that I still enjoy today. (He used to be a funky and alternative Ph.D candidate, but he turned up for one of our last dates with really bad shoes, and that was the end of it. He no longer seemed cool or alternative, which was frankly the only attraction. And no, that is not the only guy I rejected based largely on footwear. I still maintain that shoes say a lot about a guy, and I'm sticking to that!). There was a very funny letter from a college boyfriend that asked, between the lines, whether there was any sort of future for our relationship shortly after college-and I know that I missed that question when I originally got the letter, but it's there plain as day (but,nope, even if I'd seen it then, there wasn't-loved hanging out with him, but our entire relationship was based on our mutual collection of partying friends, his friends who were dating my friends...and partying...although, he was hysterical, and I should really see if I can find him on We stayed in touch for a few years, until he moved. I'm not always so good at keeping in touch..). There were pictures, too...ah, the memories, and that '80's hair!!! Hilarious.

It all reinforced that I have ended up in exactly the right place. I am where I am supposed to be, and so content. I have 15 years of history with T., and as I dig back through the strata of our lives, it feels rich and heavy and meaningful to me. We have created such a good life together, and no one else could ever compare. He is my rock, my partner in adventure, my universe. I am so, so blessed.

Now if this cleaning-out phase would just hurry up and be over. As much fun as bits and pieces of it have been, it mostly sucks. I found a favorite sweater yesterday, and moths had eaten it. Moths! Blech. I hate cleaning and sorting and planning and thinking, and oh yeah, endings. I wish I could fast-forward through this Ending phase to our new Beginning in the new city. I wish I could wave my magic wand, and have everything neatly sorted and organized and DONE.

We had a family going away dinner last night, and someone asked if I'm nervous, etc. She kept asking, in fact, all different ways. I'm not, and that's how I know that this is the right decision for us. I think people expect me to be apprehensive. Honestly, I'm not. Not even a little. I am still beyond thrilled about all of this (except, I wish I'd cleaned everything out about a decade ago). The only thing that is giving me anxiety is the fact that the movers come three weeks from tomorrow, and I have SO much left to do. I am FREAKING out about that. Of course, no one offered to help when I said that, which bummed me out. I hate having to ask for help, but I've had to. I've been begging peope to come sit with the baby so I can clean things out. I am tapping out all of my resources, though. I think I'm going to run out of people who are willing to help, before I run out of needing help, and that sucks.

And, I'm suddenly down to only two more weeks of work. I did my last few "official" acts on Friday. I don't have much else scheduled now, other than cleaning out my office and handing over files. I'm not really sad. I will miss people, and I will miss certain functions, but I've had a good run, and it's time to move on. I got hung up on Friday on something, and ended up waiting around for forever. I was working with a colleague from another entity, who has become a good friend over the years. It was one of the things I'll miss--shooting the breeze about everything and nothing while waiting around on something that's kind of a big deal, but feels like no big deal because you do it day in, day out. I will miss that. Still, it was perfect that I got to do one of my last official acts with him, because he's been there for me professionally through thick and thin. Together, we've seen a lot of shot go down, and in this job, that creates the kinds of bonds that you don't often see. I'm sure I'll find that kind of camraderie in my new job, too, given the type of work that I'll be doing, but I'm going to miss relationships like this one. I hope old friends like him will come and visit T and I when we move.

Three weeks. THREE WEEKS!

Friday, May 21, 2010

The Things We Do For Love

I'm currently standing in four inch heels in a bathroom stall in a public building, with my dress around my waist and my bra off, so I can pump. Oh, the glamorous life of a working mother. There were just no other options, and I really had to pump. I guess I should be thankful for modern technology--i.e., the speedy, light modern pump that fits easily in my bag and is done in 10 minutes in a pinch, and the fancy cell phone that let's me blog with one hand.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Four Months

Miss M turned four months old over a week ago, but I am behind in every aspect of my life right now. I love to see how she is growing and changing every day. I regret that things are so busy right now, because I am missing so many little things. On the other hand, in a month we will be in a new city and things will (hopefully) begin to calm down a bit. This craziness is short-term, and in the long term the changes we are making now will mean that both T and I get to spend more time with her, and that she will have amazing opportunities as she grows up.

At four months, Miss M continues to be a happy, smiling child. She has a gentle, beautiful soul. I just adore her. When she wakes up in the morning, she lays quietly in her bassinet (still haven't transitioned her to the crib...), then gradually begins talking to the crib card animals that are above her. She speaks louder and louder, until we get up and get her. When she sees us, she breaks into a huge grin. It is just awesome.

Miss M can roll from front to back. In fact, she still hates to be on her tummy, and promptly rolls onto her back again if placed on her tummy. She is very close to rolling from back to tummy, as well--she can get all the way over, except for the arm that is underneath her when she rolls. She hasn't quite figured out how to pull it from beneath her, and will quickly flip back onto her back after almost rolling over onto her belly and licking the playmat (no idea why she licks it, but she does EVERY time she almost-rolls over).

She can hold her bottle with both hands. She grabs at her toys on the swing and playmat. She tries to put everything into her mouth, and has lurched at me a few times while I've been holding her and latched into my jaw, sucking away. I call her Vampira.

Miss M babbles away at us. She laughs out loud at things like throwing the stick for the dog. She pets the cat, who can't seem to get enough of her even though she pulls at his fur at times.

She is just a joy.

As we enjoy every moment with her, thoughts obviously turn at times to whether/when we build our family. I will turn 38 this summer. It wasn't terribly easy to make it happen the first time. If we want to build our family, we can't wait too long. On the one hand, I never thought that I would have a single child. It was always childfree, or more than one. I nver saw just one as an option I would want to pursue.

But now that she is here, I can envision a life with a single child. We enjoy her so much, and it is so easy to just focus on her. The idea of chasing two yound children who are going in two different directions sort of scares me. It sounds exhausting. On the other hand, it also sounds fun.

I have told T. that I think we should enjoy this first year with Miss M., and not make any decisions until she is a year old. I'm not anxious to be pregnant again, or to start trying again (not that we even could-we're still breastfeeding full time, and plan to do so indefinitely, and I'm not currently ovulating). But it's there, in the back of my mind.

As T said yesterday as he changed her diaper, and I marveled over how amazing she is, she is so fabulous that it would almost be a shame not to have another.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Food For Thought

The baby is four months old, which is hard to believe. I feel like I'm living in a world where time is flying by in hyperwarp speed. I spend every spare second with the baby, but those times fly by (and there is still little packing going on!). The nights feel over in the blink of an eye. I barely get to the office these days, and then it's time to leave. Time is just melting.

Miss M. Has slept through the night for 4 of the last 6 nights, and was up only once each of the other two nights. You would think I'd feel somewht rested at this point, but I do not. It occurred to me today that my diet is probably the problem. We have been living on takeout. Not fast food, but still...not as healthy as I eat when I cook. It's been helpful to be able to just pick it up and eat it, but I think we're going to have to give it up. I bought a bunch of stuff to grill, and made this amazing pasta last night with tomatoes, garlic (which is not the baby's favorite, so I really had to tone it down!), olive oil, fresh mozzarella, basil, and olives. It was yummy, and fun to cook. I can't even remember the last time I cooked from scratch! Today for lunch is fresh mango with lime squeezed on it. Hopefully, a revamped diet will give me some energy back!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Busy, Busy, Busy!

Someone (hi Manda!) Reminded me that I haven't updated with my MRI results. Indeed, they came back just fine. It was a HUGE relief to get that call from my doctor. I haven't posted because things are just crazy busy. T. and I are running around like lunatics, trying to wrap up professional obligations while seeing as many people as possible while sorting, packing, weeding out. The movers come five weeks from yesterday, and I am sorely behind. It is ridiculously difficult to clean out the basement while also watching a baby! Thanks heavens for good friends and wonderful family, who are lining up to hang with her over the next few weekends so we can try to be more productive. I am stressing a little about getting it all done, needless to say. And I keep losing things...just can't find Miss M's social security card, which I put in a "safe place" so I wouldn't lose it. Argh!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Stress of a Different Flavor

I've been so busy worrying about, well, everything else, that I forgot that I need to have an MRI today. It's just a followup MRI to verify that this thingy in my abdomen that they think is nothing is in fact nothing. It appeared on a scan I had last year, and they think it's just a quirk of my own anatomy. I was supposed to have the repeat scan six months after the initial one, just to confirm that the thingy was the same and not growing or anything, but my doctor knew that I was trying to get pregnant, and told me to keep trying. She said that if I wasn't pregnant in three months, we'd do the repeat scan then, and otherwise, we'd do it after I had the baby. I've read the radiology report myself, and it actually made the repeat scan sound optional. My doctor recommended it, but didn't think there was any rush.

I've been doing everything I can to bank milk in advance of the MRI, because I have to pump and dump for two days due to the contrast (which is radioactive, I think). We should have just enough milk stored up, with a few extra "just in case". It's been hard to bank milk while also feeding her through a growth spurt. Fingers crossed that we have enough milk to get through the next 48 hours.

I am really stressing this morning about the MRI. I don't want to have it done. I hate having to have the contrast. Even though I've had it before, I always worry about having a bad reaction (because I'm neurotic like that). I also hate having to go in that little tube of a machine. I'm not claustrophobic, but it feels very confining, and it's so loud. I know they have MRI machines now that aren't all closed in, but I also know that my hospital doesn't have one of them yet. Sigh. I am dreading this appointment.

And then there is the nagging little worry that maybe the scan will pick something bad up. I am trying to be positive, but I can't help but have a little anxiety over that. Things have been so good, with the baby and the new job. It makes me worry that something is going to come along and ruin everything. I am such a worrier.

Okay, happy thoughts now. Writing this has unloaded all of the bad thoughts, and it's going to be just fine.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Sunday Afternoon Procrastination

I spent a few hours yesterday sorting/tidying/throwing out. I was shocked by HOW LITTLE I accomplished. There are boxes and boxes and closets and cupboards and basements full of things to be sorted, sold, thrown out and given away. I have no idea how I'm going to get all of it done. Oh, and for the next two weeks, I am completely busy with work, on a project that I can't get out of, so there will be little sorting/packing/throwing out going on until that's done.

I have to schedule the movers tomorrow, and we decided that the latest we can schedule them is SIX WEEKS FROM TOMORROW. Six weeks isn't a very long time. It's going to fly by. Ay-ay-ay-eeeeeeeeeeee.

The good news, I suppose, is that I have our housing sorted out. We'll have a furnished two bedroom two bath place while I'm in training. Everything will go into storage on the company's dime while I am in training. So essentially, once we get throug the next six weeks, life will be a lot easier, because it will just be a matter of moving our personal stuff in, and showing up for work.

I'm sure it will all get done somehow. I think.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Sudden Sadness

Tonight it really hit me. . .I'm leaving this place--this very safe place, where I have finally created a happy life for myself. In six weeks or so, I won't live here any more. I'm not leaving for a week or a month or a year. . .I may not live here again for decades. I may decide not to ever live here again (but I can't quite even contemplate that, frankly).

It all came raining down on me as I was stopping to pick up dinner for T. I stopped at a place that's near our house. I haven't been there in a few years, but noticed recently that they were open late, and seemed to sell take-out. It used to be just an ice cream place, and I didn't particularly like their ice cream the last time I stopped by (and seriously, how do you screw up ice cream?). Inside this time, I discovered they had a decent selection of dinner items and reasonable prices to boot. I picked up a wrap for T., and as I pulled away, I was mulling over all of the things I could remember the building housing over the years. . .a convenience store for the longest time, a few other unmemorable things, the ice cream place. . .and I realized that I have such history here.

As much as I want this new job, as much as I'm excited for it, I am also giving something up to get this other thing I want. I can't have both. I am giving up family holidays and birthdays and and endless parade of people who are willing to come and sit with Miss M. for an hour while I do errands. That is scary, and it is sad, and it makes me second guess myself. We are really going to be on our own.

I know it will be fine. I know that this is a good choice for us. But in these quiet moments before I go to bed, I am feeling a little overwhelmed.