Category Archives: general bitching

An Open Letter to My Daughter’s Teeth (And to My Cat)

Sorry for the mildly R-rated post but I’m having a day.

Letter #1: To my daughter’s teeth:

Look, I know we all have a job to do. I know you’re going to come in handy soon and that you’re roaring to come into the world and be useful. That’s nice. Very considerate of you. I get it.

But let’s be real here for a second.

Teeth, if you were a person, I’d kill you. Straight up. I would throw you down a flight of very steep concrete stairs and beat you with a hammer until you died from blunt force trauma and blood loss.

So here’s the deal. Quit dicking around and just come the fuck out of my daughter’s gum. I have been waiting for you to erupt for 2 fucking weeks. I can see you there, waiting, just being an asshole chilling there while in the meantime she is spending half her days screaming in discomfort. You know who you are. You’re the bottom center tooth on the right and you’re a little shithead. Be a good tooth like your neighbor and just come out already.

Seriously.

At least the swings make her happy.

Letter #2: To my cat:

Whiskey, if you shit one more time on my floor I’m going to lock you on the patio, open the gate, and hope that a coyote eats you.

Phew. It’s a good thing a friend wants to meet for dinner tonight because–just in case you couldn’t tell–I need a drink.

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A Soapbox

I have a bone to pick. I have a feeling this might not be a very popular post. I’m feeling kind of snarky today for no particular reason so whatever.

I don’t have a bone to pick with anyone in particular, really. I have a bone to pick with labeling. Don’t get me wrong, some labels are important. FDA labels. Medication labels. Warning labels. GMO labels. Those kinds of things are important.

I have a problem with parenting labels. It seems to be super important for mothers to label themselves and the kind of “parenting” they parent with. There’s so many “kinds” of parenting out there, and people have some strong feelings about all of them, and I’m here to say that it’s all bullshit. The specific thing that has my goat today (though I’m not sure why) is this whole thing called “gentle parenting” or “attachment parenting.” Mothers who adhere to this idea do things like extended breastfeeding, co-sleeping, co-bathing, babywearing, not using the cry-it-out method…you get my drift. And there is nothing wrong with ANY of those things. Nothing. But why do we have to call it “gentle” parenting? So say I don’t do things like co-sleep. Does that therefore imply that I’m not a gentle parent? Or that I’m not attached to my child because I allow her to cry sometimes?

I am really tired of people carrying around this label on their shoulders like it makes them a better mother than me because I don’t let my kid sleep in the same bed. Whatever way you want to raise your child is fine. Breastfeed till age 3? Congratulations. Sleep in the same bed till they’re in kindergarten? Fine. But why does anyone feel the need to broadcast this? Why label yourself an “attachment parent?” Why label yourself anything? Here’s something I’d like to broadcast about all this, in all capital letters because I’d like you to imagine me shouting it from the top of a big soapbox:

NOBODY GIVES A FUCK HOW YOU RAISE YOUR KID.

I don’t look at a toddler and think, oh, he was raised with attachment parenting. When you get to a job interview nobody asks if your mother let you cry till you fell asleep on your own. Chances are unless you were abandoned repeatedly or fed blue meth as an infant, you’re going to turn out pretty much the same as anybody else no matter how your mother(s)/father(s) chose to parent you. My daughter is not going to go to kindergarten and seek out friends who were formula fed and form a clique that talks shit about kids who were breastfed, or vice versa. Kids don’t give a fuck about this sort of stuff, so why do we? Yeah, it’s important that YOU care and feel strongly about the choices you make, but it has no business being anyone else’s business.

Mothers need to quit wasting time worrying that other women care how they are raising their children. Because nobody does. Who has time to care? I have time to raise my child in the manner that works for me, my husband, and our daughter. My motherhood does not make me a martyr and I have nothing to prove to anyone except myself. One method of parenting is not better than the other and nobody cares that you picked one over the other. Make your choices, raise your family, and shut up.

But one more thing, while I’m at it. Since I’m already up on this soapbox. Since my follower count is already dropping anyway. Can we do away with the pictures of the baby eating with the edge of your boob in the picture? I get it, you’re proud to breastfeed. Breastfeeding is cool. But do we need shitloads of pictures of it and your boobs?

You may now return to your regularly scheduled Friday.

It was just the train.

I really thought we had turned a corner in this whole colic/reflux/whatever ride. I really thought we hard started to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Now I’m thinking it wasn’t the end of the tunnel. It was just the train.

I know I said I was working on being more positive, and I’m trying to find positives in the fact that yes–it could be so much worse. My baby could be in the NICU. She could have suffered brain damage from the cord being around her neck 4 times at birth. She could have any number of much worse things happening and I do think about that and reflect on that. Sometimes that’s about the only positive I can come up with because man…some days are just. fucking. hard.

Our latest struggle is the fact that, by and large, unless she’s sleeping or tucked into the K’Tan (and sleeping, presumably), Caroline is crying. All the time. I get 20-30 minutes a day when she is awake and not crying–you probably think I’m exaggerating, and I wish I was. It’s not every day, but most days. She cries and sometimes screams and fights the breast and the bottle and being on her back and being on her tummy and pretty much every single damn thing I try to get her to be calm results in more frustration. Mostly I just wish I could figure out what it is–is she hungry? Overtired? Heartburn? Growth spurt? Everyone says at this age there are only a few needs that a baby needs to communicate via crying–but once those things are fulfilled and she’s still crying, what do I do? I feel like I have her on so many different kinds of supplements and meds for the colic and the reflux and not a goddamn one of them seems to be making a difference. I know babies cry. I know babies get fussy. But Caroline really seems to do nothing but cry.

The worst part is when I see other babies near her age who are able to spend good chunks of their days awake, alert, and quiet, happy to sit in their bouncy chairs or swings or on mommy’s lap and look at or play with their toys, smile and laugh…and I start wondering what I’m not doing right. Why can’t my baby be like that? I know it’s probably selfish to think that but really, deep down, I just want her to be comfortable and happy. And I want to be happy too! I want to spend time with her that is not otherwise spent in tears, I want to make faces at her and make her smile and sing to her and not just so that I can get her to sleep. I don’t want a baby who sleeps ALL the time, but usually that’s about the only time I can get that doesn’t involve one of us crying.  I’m terrified to bring her anywhere, terrified to invite anyone over, because I’m certain that she’s just going to cry the whole while and maybe I will, too, because what’s the point of going out and being with people when I can’t even concentrate on anything except my crying baby? Am I crazy to want to enjoy this time in my daughter’s life? Am I crazy to want to enjoy anything? I know raising children is supposed to be hard but isn’t it also supposed to be rewarding and joyful and wonderful? What else is the point in wanting to have children?

I know I’ve said it before but I’m not posting this looking for advice. I have more of that than I know what to do with and more than likely I’ve already tried it. I’m just using this as an outlet to vent because as much as I’d like to be, it is hard to be positive when the center of your universe constantly seems to be imploding.

In the meantime I’m just waiting for the train to arrive so that I can actually get on it…not just stand in front of it.

Hitting “That” Point

“That point” is defined as the moment in which Steph is tired, grumpy, and fed up with being pregnant…which I’m pretty sure is a point which all pregnant women hit, whether they admit it out loud or not. So what follows is not much more than blog!vent, feel free to skip right over this one. Really, go for it.

Last night was definitely my first feeling of “This is not fun anymore.”

Right around dinner hour last night, Caroline seemed to move into a very stretched out, vertical position and put either her head or her feet right into my stomach. And it hurt, a lot. Not so much that I was concerned, because I could tell exactly where the pain was and I could also feel her sitting there, so I knew it was just discomfort from that. I couldn’t even eat dinner because my stomach just felt so cramped. No particular way that I moved seemed to help much, so I tried to get her to move even just a little, but she was having none of it, so for about an hour I just laid back on the recliner because it was about the only way I could get comfortable.

Cameron was working late, so after the baby FINALLY moved and I was able to get some relief, I went up to bed to watch the ending of the Sunday night football game and ended up falling asleep sprawled across the bed for probably about an hour before he came home. He came into say hi and I woke up, which was fine, but after that I was pretty much wide awake until he came to bed at 11:30. And my heartburn was starting to rev up. It’s been sort of on and off so far, nothing too terrible, but the last 2 nights have been really exhaustive and very painful. I chewed a few Tums, had a sip of milk, and sat up in bed watching HGTV until Cameron came in. He naturally fell asleep in about 30 seconds from lying down, but this being the incoming fall allergy season, he’s snoring a lot more than normal until he gets into really deep sleep and then it stops. And he’s really tired from working so many extra hours lately, so on top of the snoring, it’s also harder to wake him up to get him to stop snoring. Finally I gave up, grabbed my collection of pillows, and traipsed over to the guest bed and tried to sleep there, but the bed is so much firmer than ours and just not easy to get comfortable on right now, since my range of options of sleeping positions is getting smaller and smaller. I finally gave up there too, and by this time my throat was pretty much on fire from the heartburn. I went back to our bed and propped myself up on a couple pillows, had a few more Tums, and listened to my husband snore…while I proceeded to get so frustrated and upset that I basically laid there crying till about 1:30 in the morning.

Hot, right.

The frustration wasn’t just from the heartburn, though it was SUPER painful, but also that I couldn’t seem to win no matter which way I tried. If I laid down flat, my chest felt like it was going to explode. If I sat up, I had to pee because the baby was sitting right on my bladder. And then my back would start to ache. And I was super jealous that Cameron was actually sleeping, which was also annoying at this point because he would quiet down until I was literally -this- far away from falling asleep, and then he’d turn over and start to snore again. Ugh. (That, and the uber-hormonal part of me was upset that he wasn’t waking up even though I was crying, but, I shouldn’t have been very upset about that one since there’s no need for us to both be miserable.) If I turned onto my side a little, the baby started having the hiccups. I really just couldn’t win. This all went on till probably 2:30 or so when I think I was finally able to fall asleep, at least for a couple hours. If I move out of my position in my sleep, I wake up with either a fetus on top of my bladder or aching hips, so I am waking up every hour or two to reposition. And I know this is all normal, the third trimester is the worst for sleep, that sort of thing, but I am so tired. My alarm goes off at 7, so needless to say I didn’t actually accrue many sleeping hours last night.

So, definitely getting to that point when I am not really enjoying this process very much anymore. I know you’re not supposed to say these things, but I hate it when she has the hiccups. I hate it when she flips around and wiggles all night long. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad that she’s healthy and that she is doing those things, but it’s not “amazing” anymore. It’s just annoying. I just want to lie down for 30 minutes and not feel like a human fishbowl. I want to sleep through the night just once more before she comes. I want to be able to turn over in bed and have it not take 5 freaking minutes because I am so huge.

Bluntly put, I am ready for this baby to be on the outside of my body. And it feels a little disheartening that I still have 10 weeks of this to go.

I know, I know, I shouldn’t be so despairing or negative. I am grateful for this, believe me. I’m not looking for a pity party or to sound like I’m looking for advice (this morning I made a joking comment on Facebook about my heartburn and the baby’s hair and it turned into so many people telling me what to try for the heartburn that I ended up taking it down because I really, really don’t give a shit about advice which is, again, the grumpy pregnant lady in me talking.), I’m just blowing off steam in about the only way I know how, which is through this. Since I don’t have too many real friends to talk to and I have already bitched Cameron’s ear off enough…the blog it is.

Stress is just annoyingly high right now. Cameron is putting in a lot of extra hours right now because it’s that season when it’s still fairly busy but he’s lost a lot of employees who went back to school, that sort of thing, plus there’s a bunch of new policy programs and scheduling stuff being rolled out that he is kind of being the guinea pig for, so he’s been at work a lot more, and while I know it’s only temporary, his stress feeds into my stress and I miss him, frankly, and it’s been a rough couple of weeks. His dad had a minor heart attack on Wednesday, and while that in and of itself was not entirely serious, the double bypass he was supposed to have on Friday turned into a quintuple bypass and there were serious complications when he had an allergic reaction to the blood coagulation medicine he was given, so he’s been in a medically induced coma since then. He is expected to be fine and taken off sedation tomorrow, but it’s been scary especially being so far away. So, Cameron and his brothers are waiting right now to see when/if they want to go out and see him, which for the moment is a bit “hurry up and wait” to see how everything goes and how much longer he stays in the hospital, that sort of thing.

I know that it’s just a few weeks more before everything really slows down and it will all be fine. I spoke today with my employers about the fact that I’m 98% sure I’m not coming back after the baby comes, so they at least know that they need to get someone in to let me train before I leave in early November. Cameron is able to take off 5 weeks when Caroline comes which is really, really helpful and I am so grateful for that…but in the meantime it still feels very, very far away.

All this negative being said, some positive…I did pass my 3-hour diabetes test, so no more worry about that. And today at work one of the managers who is out from Nebraska brought me ice cream, so either he was just being really nice or I look way more rough than I want to…