Thursday, March 31, 2005

They're Off

More news to come...

Wednesday, March 30, 2005


I am having a recurrent nightmare in which I get a call from Peanut's orthopedist's office and they say that something has come up and we'll have to reschedule her getting her casts off tomorrow and the next appointment isn't for another month.

I will drive very carefully to the hospital tomorrow morning.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

A Policy Idea

If the Bush administration was really serious about saving marriages and all, it would propose subsidies or tax credits for weekly housecleaning for parents as well at least three hours of babysitting a week. Not to mention personal trainer fees.

That would help my marriage far more than keeping gays from getting married, or any covenant I would have signed pre-wedding.

Monday, March 28, 2005

Another Boring Post

I know I've been boring lately. Trust me, after last week nobody wishes my life would become pleasant and amusing more than me. You don't even know about Peanut's allergic reaction to baby lotion over the weekend. It's just hard to think of anything to talk about, or think at all, when you are as tired as I am. Peanut's casts come off this Thursday. It is my understanding that she'll still have a short cast on her right foot for a while after this, but at least my child won't be clunking and thunking around as much. And then we can all hope she'll go back to sleeping through the night--or even waking up just once! Heaven!-- and be generally less clingy and I might just be able to walk out of the room to do laundry when she is awake rather than using up precious time when she is asleep that I could be using for my own sleep purposes.

Because if she doesn't, this mothering thing will offically suck ass.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

No Trip, Bad Trip

We aren't going anywhere for any funeral because there isn't going to be one, just a scattering of ashes. Which is good, considering that T. fell down the basement stairs at five this morning (he had an early flight to catch) and ripped up his left shoulder.

Peanut had just woken up wanting to eat when I heard a horrible crash, and T. shouting curse words at the top of his voice. When I found him, he was crumpled on the landing, his shoulder deformed under his robe. I called 911, and told him not to move. He lay there, groaning, and I was so afraid there was something even worse wrong with him. The paramedics arrived, and asked him if he could get up. He popped right up, and started moving his arm around. "It popped back in. And you told me not to move". They ended up taking him in anyway, because he was feeling light-headed, and the last thing I needed was him passing out in the car with me and the baby. His x-rays were funky because he separated his shoulder playing rugby fifteen years ago (yes, my husband played rugby in college), so it took a while to get the doctor to clear him to go. But he's home now, and doesn't need a painkiller unless he starts to use that arm. He is, of course, left-handed. It's been a very, very long day.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Uncle Chris

My husband's uncle is getting taken off life support today. This isn't a Terri Schiavo thing. The doctors said the only thing keeping his heart beating was the drugs, and there would be no recovery -- the heart attack, pulmonary embolism, and subsequent infections took their toll.

Uncle Chris was one of my favorite's of T.'s relatives. He spoke like Boomhauer, his rapid, deep Carolina drawl seeming to get stuck behind his bushy mustache. He was the biggest raving liberal redneck good ol' boy you've ever seen. I wish Peanut could have gotten to know him.

That's about it for Peanut's great-aunts and uncles. My parents each have a sister still alive, but I don't have any contact with them (for very good reasons, believe me). Maybe this is why I felt such a need to have a baby, because our family is so very small.

T. is feeling especially bad because he had the chance to call him when he'd first gone into the hospital, but never got around to it. I tell him that there is no point in beating himself up about it, his uncle knew he loved and cared about him, but I know it doesn't help. We'll be taking a trip for the funeral in the next several days, so if I seem to disappear for a bit, that would be why.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

By Popular Demand

Since the other picture has been so popular, I thought I'd post its partner. She's starting to learn to pose for the camera. Thanks for the compliments. I think she's pretty cute too.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Random Pictures

This is what my backyard looked like Thursday morning. If you look carefully, you can see the squirrel attack dog that lives with us, on alert.

She has my pen, wallet, and datebook, and got more work done than me.

Thursday, March 17, 2005

The Big Time

My blog is the number one Google search link for Bad Mama! I've FINALLY beaten out Angie Dickinson and William Shatner!

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Counting Down

Fourteen days, ten hours, thirteen minutes until her appointment for her cast removal.

If it was in the next minute it wouldn't be soon enough.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

To Make Up For The Last Photo

This is Peanut when she was about 12 weeks old, in her first set of casts.

A Clarification

You may notice that my profile is gone, and listed instead are Carrie and Anna as contributors. Anna has very generously offered to help me (well, I asked) update my blog from the standard Blogspot template, and giving her access to my code has changed the profile. So all the content is still mine, but the look of the blog will be, at least in part, hers before long (if she has enough time). Thanks Anna!

It Sounds Like I'm Ungrateful, But That's Not It

There is a recent post on MomInTheMirror that asks about how your kids are and are not like you. This touched me in a particular way, because Peanut is so very much not like me in most ways. An exercise in a book about infertility I read way back when asks you to list all the things you are hoping for in your child, and then to go back and think about what characteristics are inherited and what are taught. Then you were to look at that list and understand that none of those inherited characteristics were guaranteed to appear. For instance, you might have this picture of a little black-haired, green-eyed baby who loves to sing and read and hike outdoors. The black hair and green eyes are inherited, but your child may still end up with light brown hair and blue eyes. Singing ability might be inherited, but can you can also teach your child to love music. You also are more likely to teach your child to love reading and the outdoors than for them to have some inherent desire for those things. The object of this was to help you get over the idea that you must have a child that is biologically related to you in order for you to have some control over how they turn out. That really all you lose if you use donor egg or sperm or adopt is the discussions about baby getting those long fingers from Grandma. I think it is an important thing for anyone who is planning to have a child to understand, because it helps you realize what sorts of expectations you are already putting on your child.

This was difficult for me to accept, more difficult than I had realized. I didn't get that black-haired, green-eyed baby, getting instead a beautiful blue-eyed, brown-haired girl. I certainly didn't expect a rare cogenital condition. I don't yet know where her future interests lie, but I know that her approach to them will be different than my own. She is far more laid-back and mellow than I could ever hope to be. In fact, the only things where I can see we are alike are in our darker sides. She is a perfectionist, like me. She is stubborn. And, like I did, she has chosen not to talk at the same time other babies do, refusing to say Mama anymore unless she really wants to, not babbling all the vowels, showing no interest in talking at all. I adore my daughter, but it is so strange for me to look at her and see so little of *me* in her. The fact that she does look and behave like my husband doesn't console me in the slightest--I wanted her to be like me. I wanted a child for the ego boost, it seems.

How are your kids NOT like you? What has surprised you about their personalities, their looks?

Why I Haven't Been Posting

The one good thing about getting sick on the weekend and then the baby getting sick and your husband going out of town for work leaving you alone with sick baby that cries all the time and then you getting sick again and the baby getting sick again and vomiting up a gallon of mucous and neither of you getting any semblance of a good night's sleep for what seems like months is that you also lose your appetite and lose a big chunk of weight.

It's the little things that keep me going.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

I Am Batman

When we bought our house last summer, my mother and I were exploring the backyard, which is surrounded by perennial flower beds. There are all sorts of interesting things about my backyard, and one of them that drew our attention was a fifteen-foot pole at the back fenceline topped with a dark birdhouse on top. My mother said, "that's a purple martin house". So I bought some suet and hung it in the yard, and didn't think any more about it.

This weekend I was out poking around and went to get a better look at the pole and birdhouse, when I made a discovery: It's not a purple martin house.

It's a bat house.

I know all about how bats are not bloodsuckers, that they are good for the garden because they eat bugs, that they don't try and dive-bomb your head unless they are inside and panicked, etc. And I always liked the idea of bathouses--I'm all for helping out unfairly maligned wildlife.

Apparently I am all talk, because this creeps me out. I don't know whether or not there are actually bats in there, and I don't want to go and shine the flashlight in the bottom to find out, I really don't.

I don't know where this squeamishness has come from. I once found a bat in my apartment, skittering around on the floor. I scooped it up in a shoebox and threw it outside. I think it had been poisoned somehow, but it didn't scare me (my cats at the time, Suki and Sasha, were another matter altogether. They were brave hunters stalking their prey, alerting me to the bat in the first place when it moved and they both dashed back out of the room and under the bed). I don't want to look now, and I don't know what I'll do if I find out there are some living there. When did I become such a wimp?

I titled this I Am Batman because it reminded me of my favorite commercial ever, for Snickers. A coach runs up to a football player getting up after getting clocked on the field, and asked him, are you all right? Do you know where you are? Do you know who I am? The player answers appropriately, and then the coach askes him his name. There is a pause, and he answers, very seriously, "I am Batman". I don't know why, but I still crack up, years later, when I think of it. I know you kind of had to be there, but I am laughing to myself as I type this. Perhaps it's the Nyquil.

If you want to see the ad, it is here.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Good Mama, Bad Mama

On the same day that I was patting myself on the back for the great results (<2 ug/dl) on her lead test despite having been pregnant and raising her in a lead infested apartment and house, she got her hands on a Milk-Bone and was eating it for what I believe to be several minutes before I noticed. Not only was it a dog treat, it was one the dog had carried around in her mouth a while before hiding it in Catie's toys.

I blame television. And the current administration.

How Things Are Going

I just found a really great website about hip dysplasia in babies. It answered a lot of my questions about Peanut's future. So if you are wondering what it is she and we are going to be going through, check out She has unilateral hip dysplasia, so she will be getting the 1.5 spica cast. The last I heard, the leg cast will be down to her toes, but that was when she was going to have the surgery right after her knee and foot surgeries, so that might change. I also know already that she'll be getting at least a femoral osteotomy. For definitions, check out the site.

We are the walking dead around here. She is just not happy unless she is sitting in one of our laps, with the phone or the remote control or some other intricate piece of equipment in her hands. I wish I liked to watch TV more, because then we'd both be happy. She doesn't sleep well, even when drugged up on her pain meds, resulting in sleepless nights for all of us. I took the nights when T. had to work last week, and he is taking them on the weekends. I had 5 total hours of sleep in two nights with no nap last week.

There have been some bright spots. Her brain really seems to be clicking lately. She's identifying ears, nose, eyes, and mouth by pointing. She knows the kitty in the book, the stuffed kitty, and her real kitties are all the same. She pointed to the baby in her book, and then pointed to herself, as well as pointing at me and at the mama in her book. She's not anywhere near talking--it appears she's going to be a late talker like I was--but she makes humming sounds in conversational tones, with a specific hum for Hello, another for the cat, another for Up. She puts the pieces of her shape puzzle in the right spots even when you mix them up. She knows how to turn on the TV with the remote, and how to speed-dial Grandma on my cellphone. We also got a small glimpse into her dreams recently. While napping, she suddenly opened her eyes wide, reached out her arm and starting waving bye-bye. Then her eyes closed and her arm dropped, and she was back sound asleep. Who knew?

The other bright spot has been the moms in the mother/baby group I am a part of. It really has become a group of friends now. Some of them got together to pay for some meals to be delivered to us, which was a great help when T. went back to work and I was too tired to get dinner together for us. Others have loaned us clothes. Peanut is the smallest in the group (though she's catching up). The month before her surgery, she outgrew all of her old sleepers, so rather than have me have to buy clothes that she would only wear for the next few weeks, one mom loaned me a bag of her son's outgrown sleepers. Another one loaned us a bag of dresses that she can wear with the casts, because she can't wear pants. They have all offered moral support and wonderful friendship, and I can't believe I got so lucky to meet them.

Of course, the other friends and family that are not a part of this group have been fantastic too, as well as the people online that have given me amazing support and encouragement. We are enormously blessed, not just with a lovely daughter but with the people who love us.

Friday, March 04, 2005


They drove a house down the wrong side of my street last night. It is one of many reasons I haven't had enough sleep in a very long time.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Proud Mama

We got this CD in the mail today, after I was intrigued by the duet involving Deborah Harry singing Waltzing Matilda. I put the CD in, and when the music started on Old Joe Clark, suddenly Peanut just lit up. For what seems like the first time in weeks, she started to smile and giggle, and then she started clapping her hands and wiggling in a kind of "dance". This is the first time that she has really seemed to take notice of any music we played for her, other than to calm down to classical music. She started clapping in some kind of pattern, clapping three times and then putting her hands down to her sides for the fourth beat. It was amazing. It is so incredible to watch her when it is as if you see the light bulb turn on in her head and she gets it.

I just had to share. Next time I brag it will be about her abstract thought and problem-solving skills, which are far advanced for her age--hell, she's entitled to be ahead in something, isn't she?

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

More Ick

I hope the person doing the search for "long leg casts images" was looking here for reasons other than what the other search results might suggest. Some people have some very...unique fetishes. Makes me kind of afraid to post any pictures of Peanut, though.

Ungrateful Mama

Isn't she 18 yet? I mean, it really feels like it.