Friday, January 27, 2012

Poopy One & Disney is from Hell

Can somebody PLEASE tell me the fascination with POOP for a toddler? Am I the only parent who has not one but two three year olds constantly referencing POOP? For goodness gracious sake, Vivienne won't even poop in the toilet but she has no qualms with discussing it over all 13 meals she consumes a day.  When I change her diaper, she wants to "see it." When I throw the diaper in the diaper genie, she wants to know "why it's in there," and further, "if it will be ok?" She has insisted on looking at mine and giving me an analysis ( I thank her physician father for her inquiring mind) and her favorite part of seeing her brother poop is watching us wipe it.....

VV's fascination goes beyond seeing it. She likes the word itself. I like the word "pontificate." I find myself working that word into conversations all the time.  VV, she likes the word POOPY.  For example, I often find myself having little love chats with VV as she falls asleep at night and one of the things I always tell her is that she is a beautiful princess.  Her reply, "Poopy Princess."

A good friend of mine recently turned me onto a fabulous book called 1-2-3 Magic by Dr. Thomas Phelan (whip your kids into shape, check this out.  1-2-3 Magic is a theory on disciplining your children of all ages. When a child does something out of line, you give them a "1." If they continue, they get a "2." If they reach three, they take time alone or lose a toy, depending on the age and the degree of their crime.  So, we tell Vivienne, "THAT'S ONE!" Her reply, yes, you got it... "Poopy One." And although she may think that's funny, she never meanders over to Poopy Three. Rick and I worship this book. It's basically a fabulous way to get your kids to do exactly what you say and if they don't, they lose. It has to be the most controlling method known to man but God, DO WE LOVE IT. They are terrified of THREE! Three to Max and VV is like a call from telling me my credit card has been declined.

About a month ago, when we returned from our breakout first-timers all family Disney trip from Hell, I consumed a few too many glasses of wine, then proceeded to book another trip to WDW (WTF was I thinking)? I mean, it wasn't enough that the first trip nearly broke up our family... My good friend and I were texting while we were in Disney and she basically said, "Look, take it for what it is, it's not a vacation, it's entertainment for the kids. My husband never gets laid in Disney." I about snotted myself as I popped a Xanex and wrote her back, "Laid, LOL, my husband is lucky if we are still married in three days." It was at that moment I knew the importance of wine.  Furthermore, I questioned the motives of the EVIL Disney people who decided to make Magic Kingdom a "dry" park.  Goons. If they had a clue, they would let parents drink their "baba's" and it would certainly ease the pain of the $30 toy each kid wants after every single ride. (email me for specifics on how to smuggle your poison in the park... that's what Mickey and Minne sippy cups are for).....DUH

Anyway, back to poop (as I sip my wine).... Heading back from Disney trip #2, Max and VV are strapped up in their Britax's watching Nemo and Little Mermaid for the 400th time that weekend. VV asks Max if she can play with his Buzz Lightyear toy (sidebar: we have TWO of the exact same toy at home we purchased for both children and they both ignore him but in Disney Hell, they are reminded of their love and loyalty for Buzz.  At the insistence of a tantrum in public and the failure of 1-2-3 not so magic at that moment, we bought another). After a reluctant "yes" from Max, Vivienne begins playing with Buzz. Within thirty seconds,  Max says to VV, as he stares continuously at the Nemo movie and wearing his headphones, "Now VV, you better not POOP on my Buzz!"

I have given this POOP topic a lot of thought. I have found myself wondering if it's a Freudian stage or if perhaps, VV has toilet envy for Max or diaper envy for Baby Luke - the list of thoughts go on and on. That was until today... when I heard my nanny from the other room answering Vivienne and Max's inquiry as to where mommy went. Yes, you got it again, "Mommy is pooping."

And there you have it. It's not Freudian and it's not sibling toilet/diaper envy.  According to my nanny, every time the kids ask where I am, well, you know where to find me.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Actual Reader (dare I say fan?) Mail:

Dear Diaper Diary Bitch,
Where did you go?
Busy with 4 kids? Too F*$#%g BAD.
We're waiting.
Your 4 months sabbaticals are over.

See you soon.

Mother of 3 in Washington DC

Friday, April 15, 2011

Hello Mom… Are you in there?


I can remember like it was yesterday- well it probably happened yesterday too but getting back….. I can remember like it was yesterday and I was a young girl and my mother would say something that sounded so idiotic I was almost embarrassed for her even though we were alone. My mother is an intelligent, well educated and successful woman- she was then, still is.  These comments, some commands- sent chills up my spine and the little blond hairs on my arms stood at attention. 

What’s funny about these little quirky comments or idiosyncrasies my mom said and displayed is that I really couldn’t tell you what they were specifically a few years ago. I was just your average woman in her early thirties raising a cute little girl (who I would never dream of saying idiotic things to or embarrassing the way I had been) and while I recalled my mom was a little odd and embarrassing at times, who knows why that was- it was over 20 years ago. All I was sure of is that I am a “cool” mom- my hair will always look great when I go to her birthday parties, I will always stay slim, drive a “cool” car, I will always make my daughter feel proud to have her friends over and not say silly comments to embarrass her.

That was until my cute little girl decided to hang her pig-tails up and grow a set of horns on top of her halo! I don’t know who flipped the hormone switch in this girl but watch out!  My sweet doodle bug has gone full blown coo coo for CoCo Puffs.  From lies to manipulation, mood swings to tantrums ( all the qualities that I could at one time find in my ex-boyfriends), this girl has got her “Sassy Ass” on! Giddy Up!!!

Low and behold, it’s like a ghost from my past, what the F*$*&^k did I just say and where have I heard that before? Oh yes. It’s happening. I have been possessed by my mother during my fits of rage with my daughter. The words just fly out- it’s amazing. Did I just do that embarrassing eyeball roll while chewing on ice? Did I just imitate Fresh Beat band for my 2 and 3 year olds to make them laugh and get the look of death from my little tween?  It’s like my mom knew when she was saying these dumb comments to me or acting like a goof and I would quietly make fun of her for sounding so “nerdy,” that one day I would find myself saying the same things to my little demon girl.

Now I find myself cringing when I hear myself tell her to please not use the word “butt” – call it a fanny or a tushy. I say the word “sucks” all the time yet I have recently told my daughter only trashy people use that word. Please don’t say the word fart, I will explain there are a variety of other words that are much better- like windy pop. (OMG, she will get her ass kicked if she actually uses that word at school). My mom used to use this expression, “What am I ? The cat’s aunt?” To this day, I think it sounds ridick yet I am now I user of the ridick saying. Did you ever think you would address anyone “young lady?” “Did you brush your teeth? Come here and let me see.” “Honey, you can’t wear those, you look like a little hooker.” I know nice. I tried explaining to my daughter the other day she couldn’t wear daisy dukes in public was because when you bend over, everyone can see your va-jay-jay. I know that permanently scarred her forever. Va-jay-jay? I mean….

Yeah. I know… give me a martini, dentures and a walker now.  Couldn’t stand when my mom would tell my friends about how she was so cool as a kid, blah blah- Now I find myself nudging childhood friends in front of my daughter saying, “Tell my kid I was cool.”  HA!

My mom did teach me a lot of great things through her repetitiveness too- it wasn’t just the annoying babble that wouldn’t take a break and has now returned to haunt me in the form of haunting my daughter. She used to tell me when I was having a hard time with the girls in middle school, “Tracy, you have to be a friend to have a friend.” That stuck. I live by that. Something else my mom said throughout the years that I eventually tuned out (probably after the 350,000th time) was that I would never understand a mother’s love until I myself become a mother. Well, here I am, Mom, a mom. 4 times. I get it. You’re still a little nerdy to me but what really SUCKS, is that I am too.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

A Womb With a View: Top Ten Things NOT to Say to a Pregnant Mamma

Recently a great friend of mine who owns the most successful maternity consignment shop in my local area requested I create a list for the My Diaper Diaries blog regarding the Top Ten things people should NOT say to a preggo mommy (PM). This really hit home because if you remember in my post back in December called Meddling Mouths, I had become fed up by my eighth month of people and their unfiltered mouths. Clearly, my bump had an invitation on it that READ: Come make conversation with me because like 2 billion other women right now, I am knocked up.
What is so incredibly dangerous about this escapade is one really does NOT know who they are dealing with when approaching a pregnant mamma (PM).  Hormones are her dominator and hormones are not a force to be reckoned with (men, women and children know this).  Let’s be realistic, some days a PM awakens and feels like praising God, the Universe, her husband or whomever quite frankly, will listen to how grateful she is and how perfect this life is- how although she feels sick in the morning, it’s so amazing to barf over and over and discover ass cheese (aka cellulite). She may be the size of a hot air balloon but feel her utmost sexiest. She may have a face full of acne, hair falling out in clumps and the inability to see her feet (among other body parts) but feel like a sex pot vixen ready to pounce her man.  However, DO NOT BE FOOLED- this same PM may have a set of hormones slam on the brakes the next day and all of the sudden… “Hello Satan.”
It is best to keep in mind, that while you may have felt like a sexy firecracker and enjoyed shinier and thicker hair, perky tits and only 12 lbs. of weight gain (because you were either dying from morning sickness and barfed your pounds away or because you’re a head case and you starve your body and unborn child), that many Pregnant Mammas feel like they have some parasite sucking the energy out of them and they should have a temporary tattoo on the tushy that reads WIDE LOAD.
It is important to let these women take the lead when it comes to discussing their condition. My friend mentioned this blog needed to be written as she had a customer in her maternity consignment store (yes, it’s the best- who was nearly brought to tears by something someone said to her.
Now without further ado and in an effort not to sound like Dave Letterman- I present you the “Top Ten Things Never to Say to a Pregnant Mamma (PM)”
1. First things first:  “When are you due?” or “How far along are you?”  That must be confirmed ONLY by the PM admitting she is pregnant.  NEVER ever ask a woman when she is pregnant if she has not told you, not even if she looks 8 months pregnant! Many things to consider are that she could have just delivered and looks pregnant still. She could be a rape victim or in a situation where sexual abuse was the cause of pregnancy. And if PM is tiny but clearly pregnant, she may not have shared her news with anyone or she may have recently had a miscarriage.
2. “Wow! You’re about to pop, that’s a big baby!” (in other words, you look huge). This was a phrase I became very familiar with as I carried rather  large babies and I was just BIG for my frame size. I mean, do you go up to women shopping the Tampax section and say, “Hey wow, you’re getting the Super Flow box… heavy period huh? Big Vag? Good luck with that. 
3. Best to avoid, “Oh my God, are you sure you don’t have twins in there?” Yes, lady, somehow after 7 months of being pregnant, 3 ultrasounds and countless heart rate reading, my doctor, nurses and I all missed that.” So, once again, another way of making you feel … HUMUNGO.  
4. Sticking with the twins/multiples for a moment, “So did you get pregnant with them naturally or IV?”  This in my opinion is taking “Are you a natural blonde” to another extreme. One doesn’t know what this PM went through to become pregnant, whether she had a long road of IVF or if she was just blessed to have a natural occurring multiple pregnancy. What I do  know is that if she wants YOU to know, SHE will tell you.
5. One of my personal favorites, “Is your husband excited?” Possible answer, “No, he isn’t. He is stressed out and has been taking meds for his blood pressure. Yes, that’s right, you have stepped into a big pile of shit. Do not ask if the husband is excited. That is just dumb. Too many men aren’t excited until they actually meet their little bundle of joy- and with that said, you have set yourself up for a disastrous question.
6. “Are you going to breastfeed?” Ummm, this question is double loaded ladies. If you say yes, you’re in for one of two things: You will be praised and told how great it is for your baby, how herSidenote- breastfeeding is an extremely personal decision and one reserved for the mother and father of the baby. I feel very strongly about pushing my personal opinions about breastfeeding on to others because the commitment is not an easy one and a new mom, with hormones, doesn’t need to be judged first day out of the gate on her decisions regarding her child’s nutrition.
7. Many of my friends who are readers know that my first child, 10 years ago, was one out of wedlock and I was at end of completing my Bachelor Degree at GWU and had been accepted to the Law School for the following fall. I continued on through the remainder of my classes, pregnant. I am sure it was a shock for all the students I had been working so hard with in study groups for a couple years  to accept my new bump and decision to complete the only undergrad degree but forgo the JD/MBA degree I was very excited and prepared to work very hard for. This opened up a breed of questions I was just mortified by as a 23 year old woman. Number 7 is in three parts:
a. “Are you going to keep it?”  Let me point out to you, if pregnant mama (PM) is to say , “No, I am not” for example, I do hope the shoes you are wearing are made of fine leather for a good chewing experience." And should PM inform you that she is going to deliver but she is going to have to put him or her up for adoption, you have just opened a can of worms that are poisonous. There are so many variations of “mess” that can come from that question. Don’t ever ask it please.
b. “Babies are expensive, can you afford it?” First of all, no matter the topic, it is classless to ever count other people’s dollars. One should not assume anything when it comes to a mother’s will to “find a way” to afford a baby.
c. As I mentioned, my first baby was out of wedlock so I was often asked, “Who is the baby’s daddy?”  I mean, really people…. Don’t. Just don’t.  You don’t know if it’s someone who was very close to the PM and they just couldn’t agree to get married or if perhaps she wanted to get pregnant so badly that she went recklessly sleeping around in an effort to become pregnant. And while it is sad to consider, women are raped and sexually abused , they do end up pregnant  and some of these amazing women bring these beautiful babies into the world. Regardless of the circumstances, it just isn't a discussion for the produce section at Whole Foods.
8. Then there is that inevitable woman who has to chat about diet. “You must be dying for a glass of wine (or coffee) by now, honey.” Me: “Actually, no, I have wine with dinner and if I really crave a cup of coffee, I splurge. Docs orders say it’s ok.” Just brace yourself for the look of contempt, disagreement and major disappointment. However, if you’re lucky, she has shut the hell up by now and moved on.
9. “Are you having your baby naturally?” “No, I am having him unnaturally.” What IS unnaturally having your baby? People think it’s ok to get into all of your business so give them an answer like that.  Having a vagninal birth in a hospital, home or center with or with or without drugs or having a c-section are all, in my opinion, natural ways to deliver.
10. Number 10 is not something to avoid saying, it is something to avoid doing. I have said it before back in the Meddling Mouths blog in December. DO NOT TOUCH THE GOODS WITHOUT AN INVITE PLEASE. “I am pregnant, not a petting zoo. Please remove your hands from my stomach.”
What I have found is that most people are not just total idiots with diarrhea of the mouth. Clearly, they found their own pregnancy/pregnancies to be one of the greatest events or most traumatic events in their life thus far. It is human nature to want to talk about it and when a woman sees the mommy with the belly, it makes her feel good to have an opportunity to discuss it with a new mommy. This behavior is more about the woman who wants to chat, not about you, the beautiful and vulnerable pregnant woman. In my opinion, people are good and they come from a place of love but while they often wear their rosy-colored love glasses, they also too, forget to wear there mouth filters. Try not to take it personally and remember, human nature says they are more likely interested in talking about themselves than hearing about you. They see you as an opportunity to talk about their experience.
I would love to hear back from you pregnant and previously pregnant mommies who may have some funny filter less comments tossed at you during your pregnancy and postpartum weeks. Please feel free to comment under this blog and share your funniest or most offensive Preggo Punches!

Friday, March 25, 2011

A Boob Toon


Do your boobs hang low? (Um, yes, 4 kids…. think south)

Do they wobble to and fro? ( I am unclear as to where they wobble to and fro but yes, they do)

Can you tie them in a knot? (Apparently, I cannot tie them in a knot but I do get knots in them…Like Mastitis. Read below.)

Can you tie them in a bow? (um, no bows thanks)

Can you throw them o'er your shoulder (I dream of this concept. Imagine, you have your toddler in the sling wrapped on your back or the backpack for kids and you can just sling your boob back there like a straw for them to have a few quick sips from.  I have 4 kids and my breasts ability are certainly seeing the stretch but I am not close enough for this action. Would love to hear from a mom who can)!

Like a Continental Soldier? (hmmm, nothing funny to say here).

Do your boobs hang low? (Yeppers, as mentioned)

Do your boobs hang high? (Perhaps as I reflect on pregnancy boobs, ahhh…. yes, they stood at attention and looked fab…. for an hour before I became  humungo)

Do they reach up to the sky? (No, but living in South Florida, I see a lot of boobs that do that and I must say, I am not a fan).

Do they wrinkle when they're wet? (yes like Raisinettes. Look, this blog says it like it is … if you can’t handle the graphics, subscribe to Woman’s Daily)

Do they straighten when they're dry?( Not quite)

Can you wave them at your neighbor (my creepy neighbor waves AT them)

With an element of flavor? (I’m definitely going to go with MILK)

Do your boobs hang wide (yes)

Do they flap from side to side? (and yes)

Do they wave in the breeze (yes and tumble to my knees)

From the slightest little sneeze? (ok, so sneezing postpartum after a few kids is a whole other song… you know what I mean if you’re there…)

Do your boobs  fall off? (Soon, very soon).

Yes, there are quite a few more verses to that song but we get the point eh?

What a great lead in to what I want to share on this blog. Let’s talk tits. A couple of weeks ago, my boobs adopted a horrific case of Mastitis.  Think it sounds worse than it really is?  WRONG.  It’s worse than it sounds.  I have never in my 34 years felt such a tremendous amount of pain.  Yes, I have delivered 4 children, am a migraine sufferer and this takes the cake. Like I always say, delivering babes with an epidural is an unfair comparison to regular childbirth pain but still, it’s makes for a more dramatic example.

One evening,  I felt flu like symptoms come on and by the next morning, my left breast was extremely tender to the touch and I had an intermittent fever and absolutely NO energy. By 1:00pm, I had a 104.5 fever, severe chilling and sweating,  I could barely sit up on my own and my breast was untouchable. By 3:00pm, I was unable to walk, turn from side to side alone bed and completely incapable of caring for my 5 week old son or other kids for that matter. I am so grateful to my babysitter who was able to watch the other children while the baby slept in the co-sleeper next to me until my husband came home.  When I tell you the pain was so horrific, I reflect on this as some version of bad karma haunting me in the worst version of pain ever known to my body. Who in HELL did I piss off in my last life?

The following night and 2 days were filled with tears.  Tears from physical pain and tears from feeling inept at caring for my kids, and sadly, I even saw tears weld up in my husband’s eyes as he felt a little helpless in regard to taking the pain away (hmmm, now that I am thinking more about that, it may have been tears because we had to cancel our Aspen vacation). The baby had to be held up to my breast to feed as I clutched in pure agony to a pillow and breathed my way through the nursing session.  My husband walked me to and from the bathroom, as I cried every step of the way. He fed me. The gravity pulled at my breasts when I sat up and caused me to wince and tear for days. At one point I looked up at Rick and asked if I was going to survive (yeah- you think it’s dramatic but I beg of you to feel that pain and not WISH you were dead for a minute).  The good news for women who suffer from Mastitis, there is a very low instance, like 2-3%, that it will occur in the other breast. The bad news is- you got it… I am the 2%. So, to make matters even more magnificent, I had this in both breasts.

Apparently, I had a clogged duct and it manifested into an infection. As it progressed,  an abscess formed and when the puss drained, it caused the excruciating pain.  I had Mastitis with my third child and it hurt, a lot, but it never grew into the monster it did this time around. The symptoms presented the same initially but this time it was beastly.

I had several IV’s, 3 rounds of antibiotics (I am normally against antibiotics, however, they quickly became my dear friend). Let’s not forget my BFF Percocet- (that’s  a whole other blog… is everyone aware of what Percocet does to the traffic flow in your colon? Just think, 18 car pile up ).  My husband and babysitter were angels in getting me through this and Susan, my acupuncturist is GOD as far as I’m concerned.

It’s been 3 weeks and there is still tenderness in the affected area but it’s much better.  My little guy nursed all the way through it and never had to have a bottle- (applause please) – I give thanks to my amazing husband for waiting on me hand and foot for several days (ok, that happened before and still continues), WINE, antibiotics, narcotics, babysitters, WINE, fantastic girlfriends who don’t accept, “NO, I DO NOT NEED ANYTHING” as an answer, WINE and a week in Aspen didn’t hurt either. The wine is Aspen was particularly healing if I may add.

Girls, pregnancy has it’s ups and downs.  Full time nursing is depleting in ways I seem to forget every time I am pregnant and am begging God and the Universe to GET IT OUT.  Love, love, love the sweats all night- the continuous hot flashes, the boobs that stick to your ribs from the dripping milk all night, the dried and crunchy hair, less than desirable skin and dehydrated scales on my arms and legs- even after a half gallon of lotion after every shower…. The lack of sleep is something I have come to accept as a way of life with three kids under three but nonetheless, thank  you babies. The gi-normous grocery bill grows as I continue to eat my way through the day. The super hot nipples from pumping, the sex-a-licous smell from the milk leaking, the hormones, the ups, the downs, the blahs….

It’s all amazing. I love it all. I have no idea how women who don’t BF do it.  I have a lot of respect for mommies who get up and make a bottle every time a baby is hungry. It seems like so much work compared to whipping boob out and feeding ON DEMAND. All day long. All night long.  It comes with it’s drama, it’s work, it’s a commitment, abscesses and all, I love it and am so grateful to be able to do this.

And I love all of you for listening to me go on about it.

XOXO for now.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Beauty & the Bitch

Hello hormones, welcome back. Now beat it.
Like roller coasters? Great. Give birth and breastfeed. Holy moly hormones. Sometimes I think I have multiple personality disorder but then it occurs to me, “Oh yeah, I’m riding the hormone-coaster from hell… again.
Mood swings have become more acceptable in today’s society for women prior to their cycles- even joked about by most.  What we don’t talk about a lot is postpartum depression after delivering.  It’s still a  hush hush topic and spoken of very delicately. Well, as the big mouth mommy blogger, I am here to hopefully begin to change that. It exists and it landed in my world this time.
I thought I was on top of the world a few days after delivering when I arrived home and was immediately eager to get out and grocery shop, pick my kids up from school, go to the mall to grab a few things, do the usual errands, take all 4 kids to the beach for the day as well as lunch with friends and family. I proudly checked in on Facebook with my status mentioning date night 4 days after I delivered, displayed pictures of my new babe and me with a smile and a “glow,” as I cooked dinner for my new family of 6 wearing my baby in sling. Essentially, I made sure the rest of the world new that I am a SUPERMOM.
That was until the 18 wheeler hormone fun bus from Hell plowed into me about two weeks later. Initially, I decided I was tired and the round-the- clock nursing was taking a lot out of me. As I felt a little disconnected from my friends and began to lose an interest in virtually everything except the baby, I just wrote that off as nature’s way of forcing me in to the cave to bond with baby. My appetite dwindled down and I couldn’t be bothered to eat much, I was just thrilled that I would be shaking my muffin top sooner than later. This continued and I secretly tried to wish it away and hope it was fleeting.
I tried everything. I went for a walk with my two youngest and tried to enjoy a perfect temperature day and the privilege of taking a mid afternoon stroll with these beautiful babies. I couldn’t wait to get home and get back into bed. Screw nature and scenery. I tried spending time at the beach with my kids- the sand was gritty and annoying and the sun was too bright. Back to the cave please.  I tried wearing a little make-up during the day (for myself), wearing the white sexy camisole that I think makes my boobs look fabulous- ( you know the one… you know you wash it three days in a row when you feel like looking sexy).  I drank a goblet of wine before and after dinner. Yes, it’s fine for the baby, back off.  Things just went downhill and soon enough, there wasn’t much room to hide this. Turned out, the rest of the planet had not become especially annoying in the last week, my husband isn’t an insensitive jerk (poor guy almost lost his life to set a Shun knives I received as a Mother’s Day gift last year- that would have made for an interesting newspaper headline)… The ugly truth is I was suffering from a bit of postpartum depression (PPD).
We hear of postpartum depression and many of us think of the ultra depressed new mother who can’t get out of bed, cannot connect with or even refuses their new baby affection… we immediately make judgments about it based on what we have seen in the movies or what we have heard- which for me was limited- No one I know talks about it. While PPD can be as extreme as that, it’s often not.  As I have become more aware of what I am feeling, I have mentioned my symptoms to some of my closer friends who are moms and the response has been more often than not, “Oh, wow, I think I went through that…” or “I went though that too but I didn’t have postpartum depression.”
Yes, you did- you just didn’t realize it. One doesn’t have to display all of the possible symptoms to have been considered postpartum- For example, I never felt disconnected from any of my children- I still maintained my libido (surprise surprise coming from a woman who gets pregnant three weeks after delivering), and I didn’t experience thoughts about hurting myself – just my husband and quite frankly, that happens all the time not just postpartum.
The first few weeks after delivering are supposed to be some of the most special times - a time to be savored. Well, it’s scary as shit to feel your personality slip away only to be replaced with a case of the super BLAHS, loss of appetite, a lack of desire to do anything, including get out of bed. As scary as it is for me, I can’t imagine what went through my husband’s mind as I awakened him out of a deep sleep one night after an amazing and romantic dinner out so I could scream at him about leaving faucet running, cry about something completely ridiculous and command a discussion about one of our other kid’s issues that was keeping “me” up. Actually, I take that back, I can imagine what he thought, “Oh my God. Sybil.”
Yeah, well too bad – if I have to ride the hormone fun bus from Hell, so do you my love. 

That is why I wrote this tonight. I didn’t write it to complain or make an excuse for not having written for two weeks. I wrote it to help.  If we can educate or at least create more of an awareness about PPD, it will become much easier to identify this in ourselves, sisters and girlfriends. From there, we know that it’s much easier to find support and treatment if we know what’s happening and don’t feel embarrassed or ashamed to discuss it.  I do wish this blog entry could reflect more of my usual, quick witted and humorous writing but that isn’t me right now, temporarily.
Through all of this, I maintain that I am grateful for it. All of it.  I am utterly grateful to have crazy hormones caused by giving birth to an amazing baby boy- a perfectly healthy child. I am grateful to my muffin top as it is what allowed my body to stretch and carry my baby. I practically worship my tribal titties (yes, the look like something out of National Geographic)… as sore as they are and as uncomfortable it is to awaken all throughout the night soaked in breast milk (oh, the smell)…I feel very fortunate to have the ability to breastfeed full time and on demand to my baby. I see my dark circles under my eyes and feel privileged to be able to be up with my little guy all night to feed and comfort him as he tries to get used to being out of the womb. The kind of bonding a mom gets from those nights is priceless.  And if the price I am paying is a ride on the hormonal fun bus, I am happy. At the end of this, I am happy again. A little acupuncture to get my Chi stronger and life through my eyes started to play out in color.
My wish for you, my blog readers, my friends and anyone else that reads this is for you to become aware of the power hormones have over us. Whether we are referring to menstrual cycles, pregnancies, birth and postpartum, or menopause, it’s a great idea to respect them. Read up on them, talk about them, they are real and clearly, much easier to deal with if one knows she is at risk for their surges. As soon as I realized I was experiencing PPD, I knew what I needed to do – seek help- but I wasn’t ready to. I think I was a little disappointed that I was going through this and I wasn’t sure I was prepared to mention it directly to my husband or friends ( as if they didn’t know that Sybil was a little “off.”  Smile   It was actually my husband who came home early from work once day and said, “Have you made your appointment with Dan or Susan yet?” “No, I will soon.” He replied, “How about we go down there today?”  He held the baby for 2 hours while I had an intense acupuncture session.
I am happy to say that I feel things looking up and I will be back to my sassy- ass humor in no time. In the meantime, thank you for letting me share my experience with you. I look forward to writing a more typical blog entry in the very soon future. And I have some great news to share with you…. I am pleased to announce that I was able to relocate my ankles. They are back and looking as ankle-y as ever.  And as you would expect with me, I am once again, full of gratitude…Open-mouthed smile

A tid bid a humor to add to this:
So, tonight my husband and I grabbed a quite dinner at D'Angelo' in Fort Laudy. We were seated near a very large (300lbs+) man who kept peering over to me.Many like to look and check out the sling we have  the baby in so I never think much of it. Later, we were all in the valet and Mr. 300lbs turned to us and said, "Well, I am relieved to see she has  baby in there. I spent my dinner worrying she was severely deformed."

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Birth, Fembots & Muffin tops

Sabbatical is over. Sorry, had to go deliver a babe.  Luke was born January 17- he was 8.5 pounds and over 20 inches- but let’s be honest- WHO really cares about what babies weigh if they’re healthy and in the normal range?  Why is it we all feel compelled to include the weight and inches on every piece of literature and in every conversation when a baby is born? Is it because we are all competing to have bigger babies?  Who’s vag had to stretch more?  Who was able to eat more steroid injected foods and pop out an 11 pound babe with a tooth sticking out? Well, for me it was definitely not about the poundage, I was 38 weeks and ready to pull Bam Bam out myself if he didn’t make an appearance (refer to previous blog post).
Some things about the hospital stay I must admit I enjoy- staying in my pjs all day and night, not having to do anything but anticipate Nurse Battle Ax with my Scooby snacks every 4-6 hours (Motrin & Percocet),visits from friends bearing gifts and flowers and of course, no other kids to tend to for a couple days. Things I can do without- well let's name them in order… THE BATHROOM, Nurse Battle Ax and friends coming in every hour the first 24 hours for some reason or another ( I mean really, do I need to sign my refusal for the flu shot for Bam Bam and me at 3am in the dark after a dose of Percocet? I could be signing my organs away for all I know). PLEASE.  Wouldn’t it make more sense to let a woman who just labored 9 hours to sleep a couple of hours?  Love having my meals delivered but I would rather eat graham crackers and peanut butter for 2 days than eat what they bring. I’ll need more Percocet for that please.
Then it’s time to return home and bring on the postpartum fun. It’s a paradox to me as to the rush we are in to deliver the baby to welcome all that we experience postpartum. As I stare in awe at my new little mini-me, and all those maternal loving thoughts flood my mind and heart, I cannot believe the pain as my uterus contracts during breastfeeding, the pain in my udders is utterly unbearable. Don’t tell me the bleeding and cracked nipples is from latching wrong! I have done this 4 times and this kid apparently came into this life to EAT (he began on the L & D table 5 minutes after birth). I could pass on the super hot mesh diapers I have to wear the first few days. Love the hot flashes and chills during the first few weeks of breastfeeding.  Nothing like showering before bed to awaken to your hair stuck to your neck and your boobs feeling like they are super-glued down with sweat and dripping breast milk. Hungry yet?  Oh, and I had a little Pitocin during labor and doc said it causes water retention for up to a couple weeks. I have yet to find my ankles. 
I’ll never forget after the first baby my husband and I had, the “Fembot” moment.  If you have nursed and been intimate with your partner shortly thereafter, you know.  If you haven’t, prepare yourself. Oxytocin is fabulous. It is a neurotransmitter synthesized by the hypothalamus at the base of the brain. During sexual activity and in childbirth, it prompts the desire to nuzzle and protect infants. Oxytocin induces feelings of love, warmth, calm, bonding, tenderness and togetherness, sexual arousal and sexual fulfillment. It is during orgasm in both men and women that oxytocin floods through our bloodstream. It also makes your tits squirt milk after an orgasm. A little advice, avoid the top position. Your husband will thank you.  Refer to my Fembot reference… remember Austin Powers? Memorable moment for sure.  My husband is still talking about it 3 years later.
Oh…. and the muffin top. The DAMN muffin top. We knew this was coming. Yet, I still would rather the muffin top as it droops over my pants and shapes me like a Bosc pear:
than third trimester pregnancy… So, welcome back teletubbie belly.  I'm going to get my friend Pilates to kick your ass.
This blog could get quite long as we list the Joys of Post Pardum Bliss.  I couldn’t be happier, however.  I am quite confident that Mother Nature plans it this way- She casts the spell of misery over a woman in the end of the pregnancy so memorable that she will be all the more grateful for baby Bam Bam upon arrival. Welcome back Fembots and muffin top. So happy to see you.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

It’s a Bird, it’s a Plane…No- it’s Labor Pains!

You would think one who has delivered three children- 2 in the last 3 years and 10 months apart- would know what it feels like to go into labor. Apparently, I don’t.
I swear I am in labor like 8x a day.  I have a dozen Braxton Hicks contractions and I think it’s starting. I hold my pee too long, it’s labor. A little cramping and nausea, it’s time to go to the hospital.  How many times have I Googled “signs of labor.” Yes, I know them by heart: menstrual-like cramping, back labor, nausea, diarrhea, consistent contractions gaining strength and time- I must check my panties 10x a day for the plug. I am convinced time and time again that the watermelon bearing down in between my legs is a tiny hand sticking out. Nonetheless, I have versions of all those symptoms and there IS NO BABY YET.
I actually called a friend today who recently had her second baby. “Hi, it’s me. How are you? How is the babe?  Is your milk in? How is the big sister? Can you call me back?  I want to know what I am expecting here… Is there like a huge earth shattering contraction that is different from these very painful Braxtons I have?  Will I vomit at the onset? Is it gradual? Can you function and finish what you are doing then head home for a shower and get going? Were you dilated? Did you lose the plug before?”
I know, you’re wondering how I managed to get three other kids out and not know the scoop on labor pains.  Truth be told, I know labor all too well- 14 hours the first round, 13 the second, 10 with the third. Induced, all three times. Went in, had a pill put up there, dilated, water broke, contraction, ouch, contraction, a little more Pitocin, a few pushes and out comes the babe. 
We have no intentions of induction this time.  At a time in my life where it may be MOST convenient to schedule my delivery- I have three kids, my husband, Dr. Caveman, is often stuck in a case at work he cannot escape (even for his wife in labor), I now live 40 minutes away from the hospital- we are going to let nature take it’s course.  That is, until it’s epidural time- then nature can take a hike.
In the meantime, I am enjoying my toddlers who are both in full terrible two tantrum mode, dealing with my 9 year old tween who has more drama than Lifetime Network for Women, stimulating my nipples, walking, ripening cervix with sperm (yes, when a male ejaculates, the semen  contains hormones called Prostoglandins which help to soften and ripen the cervix-my husband likes this method most), drinking red leaf raspberry tea, acupuncture, acupressure, speed bumps… And of course, some may think it’s like Chicken Little but  I embrace the art of positive thinking:  Convincing myself 8x a day that this is it, I am in labor.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Feminine Elephant

If I haven't heard 100 times during my four pregnancies, "You're glowing." Or, " You look so beautiful with that tummy." Or my personal favorite, "Pregnancy is really the most beautiful time in a woman's life."

Quite the paradox if you ask me- quite frankly I feel like an elephant when I walk and when I try to walk gracefully, perhaps an elephant on roller skates.

I love the way people stare at you as if you're the Virgin Mother when you're walking around in public, the stares at 9 months pregnant are as if there weren't 6 billion other people who arrived via pregnant mommy. There is, I admit, something fascinating about the way the belly protrudes into such a perfectly round ball and how hips spread so naturally and quickly to accommodate the belly. What baffles me is why it doesn't feel so pretty? We waddle, we hunch to accommodate the pain when the head is dropping (lightening), we cannot cross our legs when we are seated at some point and legs are often open as the belly droops in between, we hold on to things in an effort to stabilize, we cannot see the floor so we trip and stumble- quite often if you ask me! I have often found myself in the ninth month feeling like a turtle at times stuck on my back/shell unable to flip around without help from someone!

I have put a little thought into why others see us as beautiful but most of us feel so unbeautiful during pregnancy. Feeling like Humpty Dumpty goes against all the feminine instinct I was taught. Keeping my legs closed while I am seated, walking with my head straight, back arched, not waddling or stomping my feet while I walk are all contributing factors to what makes me feel like a lady much of the time. So, when it's physically impossible for me to perform these acts of ladylike behavior, it robs my feeling of femininity. It's a shame because I do believe the act of carrying a child in your womb is simply a miracle and absolutely beautiful; however, it's physically hysterical.

Yes, I know there are many of you out there scoffing at this epiphany I have had and thinking to yourselves, "Oh, I felt beautiful the whole pregnancy." Or, "I never waddled or sat with my legs uncrossed." Yes, we know. You're the same ones who "felt great the whole time." And "love being pregnant." And we know, you never had gas, never had reflux or heartburn, never had constipation, never had the egg white treats in your panties from the cervix softening during late pregnancy. Yes, we know. This blog isn't meant for you…. It's meant for all my Humpty Dumpty girls out there who feel like an elephant trying to walk the walk of a ballerina when you're 40 lbs heavier than usual, have an 18 inch protrusion from your abdomen, have swollen everything, have lost your curves and have noticed a little bra flab developing. You girls will always be beautiful to me when I see you because I know how you feel and it makes you more of woman if anything at all.

Cheers to us hot mammas.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Meddling Mouths

Can somebody tell me when it became acceptable to consider the bump protruding from a pregnant lady's abdomen a free pass to interrogate her entire personal life? A day does not pass when I don't get the inevitable Q & A…. and so here is my new t-shirt currently being designed for you ladies who are fed up with the intrusive personal space invaders:
Yes, I'm about to pop.

Yes, I'm sure it's not twins.

No, it's not my first.

Yes, it's my fourth.

Yes, we have cable.

Yes, we know what causes this.

Yes, perhaps we should consider a vasectomy but is it any of your business?

Yes, I feel great.

Yes, I have different cravings with all of them.

No, it's not for pickles and ice cream (nerd).

Yes, my older daughter is excited.

Yes, my husband is excited too (are you really asking me that?).

Yes, we know it's a boy.

Yes, we will have 2 of each now.

Yes, that's perfect.

No, we don't have a name yet.

And finally, I am pregnant, not a petting zoo. Please remove your hands from my stomach.


I mean really- If I just walked up to a female stranger and asked:

So, you look bloated!

When is your period due?

Do you get regular cycles?

Do you crave salty food or sweets right before?

How old were you the first time you menstruated?

How heavy is your flow?

Do you prefer plastic or cardboard?

How many days does your period last?

Do you get cramps?


Yes, exactly, she would look at me as if I had lost my mind, possibly become physically aggressive and definitely walk away. With that established, why is it ok to ask a pregnant lady the most invasive questions?

While I am polite and I answer their questions with a big toothy, "I'm so proud and happy to share this personal information with you" grin, my raging hormones are truly saying, "And Mr. or Miss Meddler, if you must know, I get gas after anything and everything, my boobs are sore and leaking already, I miss seeing my feet among other body parts, I have horrific heartburn and can taste my food hours after I eat it, I feel like a dog with fleas the way I itch my stomach as the skin stretches and since you're so concerned with me…. I'm sick of changing panties after every time I sneeze, laugh too hard or cough.

Any more questions?
Custom blog design by Blogger Boutique