Saturday, January 31, 2009

Oh My God, He Has Friends!

Okay that title is a little tongue in cheek. Of course my boy has friends. But I just don't experience it all that often. In my daily routine, I take The Boy to school in the morning, and my mom picks him up at the end of the day. So I am never the one to pick him up. When I take him it is usually pretty early in the morning and there are only about 3 other kids that are ever there. So I never really experience watching him interact with all the other kids at his school.

Wednesday night The Boy woke up 3 different times in the middle of the night...coughing. He was perfectly fine during the day on Wednesday so I wasn't sure what his deal was. The first time I just brought him some water and he went back to sleep. When it happened again an hour later I sort of had the realization that he didn't just have a "frog" in his throat. That was confirmed when I walked into his room and asked him what was wrong.

"Mommy. I have a da bad germs. In my mouf."

Oh good. Bad germs. Nice. So I asked him if he needed medicine and when he told me that he did, I thought we might be headed down this path (how lucky am I that my boy not only takes his medicine willingly, but he also informs me when he needs it). So I gave him some cough medicine and sure enough, when he got up on Thursday morning he had a cold. Shit.

He had to go to school because, well, this is January and I simply cannot take a day off right now. His Gigi was able to stay with him in the afternoon but she had a doctor's appointment and a haircut in the morning. So it was decided that I would go and get him after lunch at his school, take him to my mom's house and wait for her to get home, and then once she got home she would keep him at her house to nap and I could go back to work. So I headed over to his school right after lunchtime.

He was outside riding his bikes with all his little friends. There were like 10 of them. Also my boy goes to a Montessori School and most of the other kids that attend are of Indian descent. So it is hysterical to see my bright red-headed boy in a see of black-haired kids. Too cute. But the adorable part came when we walked across the street to our car. I heard a bunch of kids yelling, "Bye [Boy], Bye!!" I looked back to see like 7 kids standing up against the fence all yelling his name and waving at him. He called back goodbye to every single one of them individually and then also called goodbye to both of his teachers who were outside with the kids (he had already given the one inside a goodbye hug--she is his favorite). I don't know why it touched me so much, but seeing my baby, well actually my little boy now, waving goodbye to his friends at school just illustrated how very much he is growing up. And not only that, but he seems to be pretty good at it. He has little friends. And they like him. Like Mikey from the LIFE commercials...they actually like him. My big boy.

Pictured above...The Boy at Halloween with two of his best buddies from school.  And yes, I blurred out their faces...I am not a master with the photoshop so sorry about the shoddy job.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The Power of the Small Red-Head

So those of you who know me in real life, and those who read my blog frequently, understand that my mother is a HUGE part of my life and The Boy's life as an extension. He loves him some Gigi. And he should. She rules. But today is a perfect explanation as to one of the many reasons why he feels that way about her.

So lately he has been talking about being "a big boy." I am totally talking that up being that there is a baby on the way and he needs to know just how special he is and how very different he is from the little ball of crying-ness that is about to interrupt his world. Plus there are a few things that need to be done prior to baby's arrival. 1) Transition to big boy bed, thereby giving the newborn back the crib to sleep in. 2) Learning to use the toilet for goddamn sake. This whole potty training thing is just too much work for my lazy ass, but alas, it needs to be done before baby gets here. And 3) Removal of the binky. Those are my three goals to get done prior to baby. They have been my goals since I learned I was pregnant...a...very...long...time...ago. And yet none of them have actually been accomplished. But anyway, it has to help the process along to continually discuss with him what A BIG BOY his is. Right? Totally digressed...

So anyway...(man, I am all over the place), one of the lovely effects of being a "big boy" is apparently deciding that the old blankets from his crib just simply don't work at bedtime or nap time anymore. They are decidedly too small. So my mom had bought him a big Thomas quilt thing that he loves that he insists on sleeping with now. Don't try and give him any of those small blankets. They don't work. And being that my mother is the best and that she takes care of The Boy on multiple occasions, she has an entire Boy setup at her house. Recently he declared that the blankets being used at Gigi's house were too small for this Big Boy. So, of course, she went right out and bought him a bigger blanket that had dinosaurs on it (we were a little concerned that he might not "approve" the dinosaurs because he isn't really into anything that isn't a truck, scooper, train or plane...but alas he loved it) for his nap time. He loves it. This brings us up to this morning.

When leaving the house all of a sudden he stopped in his tracks and said, "Wait Mommy!" "I need my banket," and went running back toward his room. I paused because I had not ever heard this particular stalling tactic before. I wasn't sure what he was talking about. When he came running down the hall with the large blanket from his bed dragging behind him I just sort of looked at him like, What the fu..? I then explained to him that, no, his blanket needed to stay here and that if he was cold I would turn on the heat in the car, and FOR GOD SAKE, WE ARE LATE, GET IN THE CAR... He did go to the car without much fuss, but as soon as he was buckled into his seat he started...

"Mommy, I need you iphone." (He says "need" like he is a hungry child in Africa begging for some rice...)

"I need call Gigi."

"Why do you need to call Gigi?" I asked him.

"I need tell her buy me dinosaurs take school nap" slowly starts to sink in what the hell has been going on for the last couple of minutes. His blankets at school for nap time are still of the baby blanket variety and apparently are no longer sufficient for him to nap properly. He knows his Gigi is a sucker and will pretty much get him whatever he can bat his long eyelashes at, hence calling to ask her.

So I dial the phone and hand it to him. "Hi Gigi, me [Boy]. I need you get me dinosaur banket. Pees. Tank you." And he hands the phone back over to me.

I take the phone and explain to her that when she has time, he would like her to get him a new blanket for school because the other one no longer works...etc... She laughs hysterically at him and says that she didn't have any major plans for today and, oh good, project, and oh dear, she hopes that they still have them at the store she found the last one at...and she better head over there first...

I don't even bother telling her that it really isn't necessary to indulge every single desire of the small child and that perhaps she is spoiling him by getting him everything he asks for because, really, if you've met my mother, you know that it simply doesn't matter what I say. The small child who owns her heart has spoken. And he needs a new blanket.

When we get to school, he informs his teacher that he is getting a new dinosaur blanket in his little broken English way, and I explain what has transpired in the car. The teacher, knowing my mother, just laughs and says, I am sure it will be here by the end of the day.


So my mother just called me. I answered and she said, "I am such a sucker for that little boy. He just amuses me..." So apparently my mother left the house at like 11:00am and went straight over to his school with the dinosaur blanket from her house. She brought it to him immediately because, GOD FORBID, he would have to go down at nap time without the new blanket delivered to him like a prince. So he had a new blanket two hours before he even would have used it. She then proceeded to drive to two different stores (well same store, two different locations) and was ALL FREAKED OUT because she couldn't find the perfect blanket to replace the one she had taken to school when...she finally had a thought...check the sale area. And lo and behold...there was one blanket left...and it had been marked down to only $10...and luck of all luck but it wasn't dinosaurs. It was even better. It had fire trucks and scooper trucks and police cars on it. She was so giddy with herself that she skipped to the register to pay for it. And then called me to report on what she had done so far with her day.

Now I ask there a better Gigi out there in all of the world? The Boy and I think not.

Monday, January 26, 2009

This Already?

Short post today's the last week of January and I can barely see straight much less post and actual thoughtful post...


Holy crap my daughter has the hiccups. The Boy used to get them ALL the time when I was pregnant with him. But I thought that I couldn't feel them until much later in the pregnancy. In fact, isn't this kind of early to feel it? I have no clue. But right now is the third time that I have been convinced that I can feel it and I am pretty sure that is what's happening. It always seems to happen after I eat (just finished lunch). Hope I am not giving her indigestion or something. I ate a very healthy lunch, I swear... Some oatmeal, a banana and yogurt for breakfast, and then a hard boiled egg, an apple, a turkey sandwich and some wheat thins. That shouldn't be upsetting her too much should it? So either she has the hiccups or she is sitting in my belly hysterically kicking me and then doing a count of It is completely rhythmic and it last about 3 minutes or so I would guess. Me thinks that is the hiccups.

The funny thing is that she is sitting SO differently in my uterus than The Boy was. I distinctly remember (and also went back and re-read my journal to verify this) that The Ex could totally feel The Boy kicking from the outside at this point in my last pregnancy. So with this current pregnancy, every time I feel some movement I put my hand on my belly to see if I can feel it from the outside. Most of the time I can't. Like maybe one kick out of 100 I can physically feel it on the outside. But for the most part, you can't feel a damn thing. My mom has felt her kick ONCE, and then there was the one time where The Boy was laying on my tummy and he got up and yelled at me because the baby kicked his head, but other than that, no one has felt this baby except me. I guess it's a good thing since I am single this time and no one really cares to feel the baby moving, but I still find it odd. And even when she has the hiccups, you can't feel it from the outside. I can feel it almost on my pelvic bone, and sometimes it feels like she's kicking my butt. Like if you could put your hand on my ass cheek you would have a better chance of feeling her from the outside than you would if you put your hand on my tummy. Isn't that a charming reference?

This is just so strange. Hiccups, yet no physical proof of a kicking baby from the outside. I guess it really is true when they tell you that each pregnancy is different. 26 weeks tomorrow for anyone keeping track.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Beware of the Crazy Lady!

In case you were wondering, I am talking about myself.

Call it January (absolute HELL month at work), call it pregnancy hormones, call it whatever you want, but I am a mess.  I even annoy myself.  My emotions are all over the goddamn place.  It is almost kind of amusing.  One second I am so annoyed at [pretty much anything], and then the next minute I am musing about how good my life is.  Two seconds after that I could be crying and then 5 minutes later I am laughing at how ridiculous I am being for crying.  Fun times...

So rather than try and put together a comprehensive post, I will give you all a few updates about things I have written about lately.  First of all, let's talk about my sleep and the issues I was/am having.  If you remember, I posted about how my arms fall asleep when sleeping and then if I move onto my back, my sciatic nerve kills me.  My doctor had given me three things to try and improve the situation: 1) Buy one of those annoying body pillow-things, 2) Wear carpal tunnel braces on my wrists when I sleep, and 3) Go and see a chiropractor.

So yesterday the snoogle was delivered.  Last night was my first night sleeping with it.  I have to admit that it is pretty comfy.  However, I am not one of those people who falls asleep in one position and wakes up in the same place.  I toss and turn and go from side to side while I am sleeping.  Always have.  So while the pillow makes that initial position really comfy, when I inevitably have to go to the other side, or move around at all, it is extremely difficult to move.  Either you lug the pillow with you so you can flip, which with sheets etc. is quite hard, or else you leave the pillow where it is and flip and therefore lose all the benefits of said pillow.  I should point out that I am sleeping alone in a king sized bed as well, so this would be even more difficult if you were trying to share the bed with someone else.  So my jury is still out on it.  Overall it is quite nice, but bulky and cumbersome if you don't happen to sleep in the exact same spot all night long.

When my doc told me about the carpal tunnel things, I thought she was a little bit crazy, but I was just sleep deprived enough to try about anything.  The first few nights I wore them I had crazy dreams about being in casts and breaking my arms and people sitting on my arms etc.  But every time I woke up I realized that my arms were not asleep.  It is crazy, but it appears to work.  Holy crap, color me shocked.  They are quite annoying to deal with being that I wake up approximately 6 times a night to pee, and trying to wipe after peeing with a HUGE belly and "casts" on your arms proves to be quite difficult (sorry if that's TMI), but it is working.  My arms have not fallen asleep since I started wearing them.  Go doc!

The third option is one I have not pursued yet.  I would love to make an appointment with a chiropractor to see if she could help, but I am pretty sure it will not be covered by insurance.  And if it is, I will most likely have to pay out of pocket and submit the paperwork and then wait for a reimbursement check.  Since I recently had to start doing that for all of The Boy's speech therapy I am a little short on cash right now and therefore have put that on the back burner.  But if things get really bad again, I still have the phone number and won't hesitate to call.

So sleeping is still a bit of an issue, but that goes with pregnancy.  It is much more tolerable without the dead arm thing, so that is a step in the right direction.  Now if they could just make a splint that repaired the brain from all the emotional ups and downs I would be great.  My child just got home from a couple hours with his Mom (where he apparently met the new girlfriend who showed up "unexpectedly") and while he was gone I managed to do anything and everything except the work I so desperately need to do.  So before I manage to miss the opportunity of working during his nap, I will sign off.  Happy Sunday everyone.

Friday, January 23, 2009

When Someone Says, "I have Some News..."

Oh how very different the outcomes can be...

I heard that phrase twice last night.  The first time it was wonderful news.  I had taken one of my BFF out to dinner to celebrate her birthday that I had missed when we were in Hawaii.  Right before we placed our drink order she told me, "Well, I have some news."  It was followed by "We are pregnant."  Woo Hoo!!  How happy was I?  This is my oldest and dearest friend and we have been close since 7th grade.  Not only that, but her son is 4 1/2 months younger than my son.  So our kids are the same age.  And now?  Well now her second child will be 4 months younger than my second child.  How perfect is that?    I was so unbelievably excited and happy for her and her husband.  They are such a wonderful couple and truly one of those couples that I look to with envy and hope that I might find a partner one day and have the type of relationship that they have.  I could not have been happier for her.

I have 3 close girlfriends in my life.  And as of now, 2 of them are pregnant at the same time that I am.  It is such a wonderful thing to be able to raise your kids while your friends are going through it at the same time.  It makes for wonderful BBQ's and future family/friend vacations and allows you to seek advice from the people you trust most when going through the most challenging thing in the world:  Parenting.  And my other girlfriend that isn't pregnant?  Well she already has two kids and I don't think even I can convince her to bust out one more.  But her kids are around the same age as mine are, so I continue to be lucky in having my best friends to turn to when challenges arise.  So this was fabulous news indeed.

When I got home from dinner I sat down on my couch to rest my protruding stomach (because that milk shake after dinner was complete overkill and I felt as though I might burst from being so full).  The Ex, who had been watching The Boy, turned off the TV and turned to me and said, "Well, I have some news."  Of course I immediately assumed the worst.  She had lost her job, she was sick, something bad was surely about to happen...

But it wasn't necessarily bad news.  She has met someone.  And it looks as though it might get serious.  She has dated since we have split up, but it has never been anyone who would permanently stick around.  Well it seems as though this one might.  Unlike her previous girlfriends, this woman is an adult.  She is an adult who has a professional career, owns her own home, and quite honestly, sounds like a lovely woman.  To be totally honest, I really am very happy for The Ex.  Believe it or not, I want her to find love.  I want her to live a happy and fulfilling life.  And just because that wasn't the path for the two of us, that doesn't mean that I don't wish that for her.  And I give her credit for coming to me in the honest and truthful way that she did.  This is someone who will eventually meet our son (she hasn't met him yet), and if things go well, will eventually be someone who is a part of our son's life.  She takes that seriously and I appreciated how she came to me to talk to me about it.  It was a sad moment for both of us, and she cried while telling me about it.  She expressed that it was bittersweet because while she is happy and excited about her new relationship, it also highlights the fact that ours didn't turn out the way we wanted.  But she seems genuinely happy and I am truly happy for her.  It's just that...

Well I would like to have that too.  And no, hearing this news doesn't make me want my Ex back.  It doesn't take me down the path of memory lane and wish that I could turn back the clock and "do it right this time."  But it does make me wish that I too could find a new relationship.  It makes me hope for the future when I am in a place to do that.  Right now obviously isn't the time.  I am 25 weeks pregnant and that is not the time to do anything drastic.  For God's sake they say to not even get your hair cut differently while the pregnancy hormones are raging, so it definitely isn't the time to go out and get involved in a new relationship.  But I do miss that.  I miss having a partner.  I miss that feeling of having someone close to you and someone to lean on and trust.  And I miss the physical touch of another woman probably more than I should (again with the pregnancy hormones).  But it isn't my time...yet.  I made a conscious decision to have this second child on my own.  I made that decision knowing that it meant that I would be putting my personal life on hold for a little while to focus on building my family.  And I am still okay with that decision.  I still think it is the best decision for ME, and also for my growing family.  But hearing this news from The Ex just makes me feel a little...well I guess it is a little jealous.  Not jealous of her per se, but jealous of what she has found.  And it makes me feel wishful.  Wishful for my future.  Hopefully one day I will be writing a post about the wonderful new woman I have found to be a part of my family.  It just isn't my time yet.

And in the meantime...I am genuinely happy for both of the women who gave me "news" last night.  I truly am.  It just goes to show that you never can tell when what emotions are going to come up when someone close to you comes up to you and says, "Well, I have some news..."

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Oh, the Things They Say...

I swear since The Boy has turned three his expressive language has exploded!!  Not necessarily in his pronunciation, because frankly that still sucks, but in the actual words he is using.  He is cracking me up.  For my own posterity, I would like to list some of the new things he is saying here:
  • "Don't bodder me Mommy"  (Don't bother me Mommy)
  • "Dat jus not fair" (That's just not fair)
  • "Dat funny?" (Asked to confirm whatever he just did/said is deemed funny)
  • "To da see it and bond!" (From his favorite Buzz Lightyear...To Infinity & Beyond)
  • "I know, I know!" (Said in very condescending manner when told not to do something that he knows he isn't supposed to be doing)
  • "I have tell you something...CLOCK!!!" (I will never understand.  He leans in like he is going to tell you some deep, dark secret and then screams CLOCK in your ear.  For some reason he finds this hysterically funny)
  • "You ready...?" (Said almost as a warning before he does something like poke his fingers into your eyes, or jump onto your it somehow makes it better if he asks if you're ready first)
  • "You sing a me sunshine?" (Used as a stalling technique before any sort of bedtime)
There are so many other little things that you have to know the kid to understand them.  But he is hysterical.  Plus he is finally able to use his language in a way that helps me to understand his needs and wants a little better.  The other morning I held up his two pair of brown shoes and told him to tell me which ones he wanted to wear.  In the past he would have just pointed at one, or said, "Dat one," and been done with it.  But the other morning he said, "Dose too tight.  Dees better," and selected his favorites.  I can work with that.  Also when I was leaving for the grocery store on Sunday I told him I was going to the store.  Rather than just saying, "Bye Mommy," he proceeded to give me a list of the food he wanted me to bring home to him.  Now for a kid that is notorious for not eating, this works for me.

Of course not all speech in working in a positive direction.  I just put The Boy down for bed and since he was engaged in playing with his tractor in his bed he forgot to ask me for his Binky.  I discreetly slid it into my pocket and left the room hoping that he would go to sleep without it.  Of course about 5 minutes later he started saying, "Hey Mommy...hey Mommy...hey Mommy..."  I let that go on for a while until he started yelling it.  But since he wasn't actually calling for Binky I decided to go back in and see what he needed.  I walked in and he said, "I need Binky."  Little shit.  So I gave him the Binky in my pocket (the actual abolishing of the Binky is coming soon, but it isn't a battle for tonight), which I had picked up from the floor.  He put it in his mouth, took one suck, and took it out and said, "Not dat one.  Dat one for baby [The girl's name]."  I hadn't even looked, but it was his same brand of Binky's, just the one step up (the older version) that is harder than the newborn one he still uses.  So he got his point across, but it isn't always used for the greater good.

Last night he went to bed around his normal time.  I finally fell asleep a little before 11:00pm I think.  I heard him calling me and looked at the clock: 1:08am.  Shit.  I staggered in there.

"What's wrong Boy?"

"Hi Mommy."

"Hi, what's wrong?"

"Noting, I just wake.  I go Mommy bed?"

"No, you can't go to Mommy's bed.  It is the middle of the night.  You need to lay down and go back to sleep."

"I know, I know Mommy.  You cover me? [I put covers back over him] "You a sing a me sunshine?"

I went back to bed.  This repeated at 2:05am.  Then at 2:37am he was actually almost crying when he called me.  So I went in...

"[Boy], what is wrong?"

"I have boogie Mommy."

"You have boogies in your nose?  That's why you called me?"

"Uh huh, yes.  I need a a keenex."

"You have got to be shitting me...I grumble and stagger off to the bathroom and return with a kleenex"

"Here you go."  Put kleenex up to his nose.  "Blow."

He does the most pitiful little blow ever.  Then says, "I do it."  He takes the kleenex from my hand and rubs his nose.  Then hands it back to me.  "Tank you Mommy.  You greatest."

Then he lays down and goes back to sleep.  Fortunately that was the last time for the night.  I should mention that this rarely happens.  I happen to be blessed with a great sleeper (knock on wood) and he almost always sleeps straight through the night.  When I asked him this morning why he kept waking up all night long he looked up at me and said, "I not tired Mommy.  I wanna a talk to you."

How can you argue with that?

Monday, January 19, 2009

Pregnancy Update, 24 weeks

It occurred to me that I haven't written about my pregnancy in a while.  Part of that is because I am in the sort of boring, middle section of pregnancy where really no news is good news.  But beside the above belly shot, I will fill you all in on what's been going on.

This baby doesn't seem to move nearly as much as The Boy did.  Now I reserve the right to retract that statement in a couple of months when I feel like all she is doing is kicking the shit out of me, but right now?  Not so much.  I feel her move maybe 5 or 6 times a day.  It always takes me by surprise.  "Oh yeah...HI!  How's it goin' in there?"  And then, of course last week when I was in Hawaii she barely moved at all.  Scared the living shit out of me.  Like maybe I felt her once a day.  I was convinced something was wrong.  I kept having The Boy give her zerberts, and I was drinking all sorts of juice trying to get her to move around, but really, either she was just relaxing or else I was too busy doing other things to feel her.  But basically it scared the crap out of me.  Of course the day we flew home she moved like crazy.  And then ever since we have been back in California, she is moving pretty normal again, so I am not sure what was going on.  But all seems to be good now.

I had my 24 week appointment on Friday and it was very quick and easy.  I got measured and am apparently measuring right on, she listened to the heartbeat and was able to find it quickly (this child has NEVER been able to be heard on the doppler before...again being difficult before she is even here...) and said it sounded great.  We had a quick conversation about previously mentioned paranoia on my part about her lack of movement and I was told that at 24 weeks, that is pretty normal.  If I had experienced that at 30 or 35 weeks, we would be concerned, but now?  Not so much.  She seems to be doing fine.  And joy of all joys, it is time for the lovely baby sugars test.  Fortunately they gave me the lovely liquid to take home and I am instructed that anytime over the next couple of weeks I am supposed to drink the crap with nothing else in my stomach at around 7:15 in the morning, and then come into the office when they open at 8:00 for my blood test.  Sounds like a great time.  But I will do it, and hopefully I will pass.  We're just going to assume that because I am NOT a fan of what happens if I don't pass.  So until we have to cross that bridge...

So now I get to the part where I complain.  I have been good so far in this post, right?  Okay here is the shitty part of it all.  Sleeping.  Now perhaps I should mention that me and sleep don't have a great relationship to begin with.  In fact, Ambien was one of the things I had to go off of before attempting to get pregnant.  So it is normal for me that I don't sleep.  Even expected really.  But what has been happening to me is above my normal neurosis.  So when I fall asleep lately I attempt to go to sleep on my left side (best for the baby, blah blah blah) with a king sized pillow between my knees and my arms loosely going around the top of the pillow.  At some point I might go to the right side, but that doesn't matter.  At around 1:00am I will awaken with HORRIFIC pain going down both arms because they have fallen sound, sound asleep.  Now when I say "my arms are asleep," it isn't a cute little pins and needles type feeling.  This is shooting pain and when I try and propel my ass out of bed (to pee of course), they literally cannot even move to help my large arse out of the bed.  When I finally get up, it honestly (this is NO exaggeration) takes at least 5 to 7 minutes of walking, standing upright to get to the pins and needles point, and about another 10 minutes to where they are partially functioning again.  And if god forbid I try and do something that requires them going above my heart, or even above my waist (like say, wiping after going potty), they immediately fall back asleep and cease all function.  Not kidding.  It is horrific.  So for the rest of the night, I cannot even lay flat (since that would not make my arms lower than my heart) on my bed to sleep, much less sleep in the coveted side position.  So I have to prop my pillows all up and, again--not kidding, sleep sitting up so that my arms remain below my heart at all times.

Now aside from the fact that this is completely and totally UNCOMFORTABLE, and no one without a horrific cold should have to sleep in this position, it still doesn't solve the problem.  Because see, in that position, the baby is apparently sitting directly on my sciatic nerve.  And therefore when I get up the next time to pee (sensing a pattern?), the horrific pain that shoots down my ass cheeks and all the way down to my ankles makes it so I literally cannot walk.  It is horrible.  For those of you out there who have experience sciatic nerve pain, you can agree that this is no laughing matter.  So my sleep is definitely a situation of damned if I do, and damned if I don't.  So the result?  Not so much sleeping.  And not sleeping makes for a very cranky human.  
So at my appointment I begged my doctor for some kind of help...ANY kind of help.  This is what we have come up with, and this is what I am going to try.  First of all she recommended a chiropractor that she knows and likes.  I am going to call on Monday morning and make an appointment to go and see her.  Secondly, even though they are like $50 and I swore I would never need one, especially with my king sized pillows, I went online and ordered the snoogle.  Still bitter about that one, but it is on its way.  The third thing she recommended is that I sleep with splints on my wrists for carpal tunnel syndrome.  She said a lot of times this is caused by a kink in the wrist that happens when we sleep even if we are purposely trying NOT to sleep in that position.  So I went to a fancy pharmacy place today and bought those.  Tonight will be the first try with them.  In the meantime, I should warn you that it might not be in your best interest to point out to me that I have bags under my eyes bigger than the luggage I took with me to Hawaii.  Oh, and why do I look like this when I just got back from a week vacation?  Yeah, it just might not be a good idea at all...Consider yourselves warned.  I will let you know how my three suggestions work out.

Other than that, pregnancy is going great.  Love it.  So pleased with the progress.  :)

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Return from Paradise...

We are back from Hawaii. Getting back into the grind again is tough...I can simply shut my eyes and still feel like we are sitting next to the pool, or on the beach, or just relaxing...and then the damn eyes open again and, well, not so much. This morning when I was getting The Boy dressed for school he insisted on wearing his sandals. Apparently he isn't ready to join the world of "those who must wear socks" yet either.

The plane ride home was as good as the flight over. We took off late and didn't arrive back in Silicon Valley until almost 11:00pm. The Boy slept from 7:00pm until 9:00pm on the plane, so he was in NO mood to sleep. And once we arrived home (around 11:30pm), he needed to go around the house and make sure that ALL of his toys were still there. He was so excited to see them. The day before we left Hawaii he started asking if we could "go back a Mommy's house; see toys" so I knew he was ready. Whereas I was thrilled to see my bed and my house still standing, he just wanted to make sure that no one had stolen his garbage truck or his tools while he was gone. When I put him in bed (at around midnight, god help me) he said to me, "Mommy, I yike a my bed," and then he layed his little head down and went to sleep. So sweet. I did make it to work, and he to school today, but we were about an hour late. Based on when he fell asleep I decided to let him sleep later than usual and called my client and told him I would be in an hour late. Plus when The Boy woke up, he still had more checking on his toys to do. While we were in Hawaii we carried around a portable DVD player (btw, if you are traveling and don't have one of these...GET ONE!!! Seriously the best thing ever, he watched it in the hotel before naps, and even if we were having a leisurely dinner I would prop it up on the table in front of him and he would sit happily in his high chair and watch it while we finished dinner...and no, he doesn't get to do this normally; just on vacation) and by far his favorite movie of the trip was Toy Story. Who knows why, but he watched it a zillion times. And when we got home? He wanted me to locate RIGHT NOW his Buzz Lightyear toy. Of course before we left, he hadn't picked up Buzz for like 6 months so I had no idea where it was. And at midnight last night? Yeah, wasn't the time to start searching. So last night I told him I would find it for him sometime today (meaning after work and school, kid). This morning when he woke up the first thing out of his mouth, I mean seriously right away, was "Mommy you find Buzz?" How can one resist? So there I was at 9:00am, half dressed, with my pregnant belly hanging all out there, searching through boxes until I found his precious toy. And after I found it? "Tank you Mommy, tank you. Tank you so much, I needed Buzz, tank you..." So fucking sweet he kills me.

I said it in my previous post but it merits saying again. What an amazing trip and time this was with my son. I get all weepy just thinking about it. I had 6 days and 6 night with nothing to do but allow my son's desires to dictate where we went and what we did. We played in the sand (but NO beach thank you very much. "No see water Mommy, you go get bucket a me Mommy. I no yike da water), we played in the pool, we walked all over the beautiful grounds and looked at flowers, we discovered The Boy's love of taking pictures with my camera (and he has a damn good shot for a 3 year old...I will post a couple of his pics later), we walked along the beach at night and enjoyed the hysterically fun game of "chase Poppy's shadow," we ate pringles for breakfast and strawberries for dinner and popcorn in between... I could make that run-on sentence last forever because that's what this week felt like. It felt like forever. Like a forever full of amazing memories for me that I can hold onto for the rest of our lives. My little boy is such an amazingly funny, and sweet and special little dude. He never once cried, he never once threw a fit, he never once did anything other than charm the shit out of everyone he encountered the entire week. Myself included.

Call me crazy, but I have never been one of those moms that wished that she could have the finances to be a stay at home mom. It is my opinion that SAHM's work a hell of a lot harder on any given day than I do at work. And for me, I am able to make my own work schedule so I don't work a lot. With that, I felt like I had found the perfect balance of child time vs. adult time and brain stimulation time. I never wished it to be any different. This week I got it. I understand. I have learned how absolutely amazing it is to be able to spend your entire day with your child. What a gift. That doesn't mean I still don't think it is an assload of hard work, but I finally get it. These little beings that we are helping to shape into their own people can be amazing. And the gift of being able to spend time/witness that shaping? Priceless. I will never forget this week that we had and the time that I was given with my boy.

Okay, now back to the grind...time to head off to another client. Aloha!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Greetings from the Island...

Aloha from Hawaii. Even though The Boy caught a nasty cold from one of the kids that came to his birthday party last weekend, he is having a great time. We are all having a great time. I have to say that I am very lucky to have a great traveler in my little boy. The 5 hour plane flight was without any drama and, I dare to say, almost pleasant. He spent the first two hours watching a movie, and then spent about an hour going back and forth between my seat and my mom behind us, and then took a nap. He slept for over and hour and then just sort of hung out for the last hour or so. It probably helped that he wasn't feeling 100% and was pretty tired, but whatever the reason, I will take it. (I am sure I just jinxed the flight home, so I am knocking on all wood-like substances around me...)

I have to say that last time we came to Hawaii I came home more exhausted than before we left, so I was a little skeptical about doing this again. And this time I am 23 weeks pregnant. But like the plane flight, I have been pleasantly surprised. I am having a great time and am even getting in a little relaxation. Being pregnant means that I am tired more than usual, but I am just making sure that I nap when The Boy naps and basically I go to sleep when he does at night. Since I am pregnant, I can't be enjoying adult beverages like I normally would, and therefore I am functioning at about the same level as my boy. We are a perfect match.

One thing I have to mention before I sign off is that I am just so aware of the time I am getting to enjoy with my boy. This is truly the very last time that I am going to get to spend alone with The Boy, just he and I, with no other distractions before the baby comes. There will be plenty of time at home, but not only will I be working up until the very end of my pregnancy (or until I end up on bed rest like last time), but when I am at home alone with my son there is always something to be done. There is never a time when the laundry isn't calling, the house doesn't need to be cleaned, or toys don't need to be picked up. This is truly an amazingly special time between The Boy and me. I am loving just having time to lounge around in bed with him, or let him dictate wherever he wants to go, and whatever he wants to do. I am just getting to hang out with him and I am loving every minute of it. I am feeding my soul with this child. He is such a special, happy boy and to be able to spend every minute of every day with him, without any pressures of normal life is just amazing. And although this isn't our last vacation, it is my last vacation with him before the new baby comes. And he is everything I need and I am just enjoying every single moment.

I am off to finish enjoying my vacation, but I wanted to stop by my blog and let you all know how lucky I am to be on this vacation and how much I appreciate where I am and what I am getting to do everyday. I hope you are all enjoying your January just as much. See you all when we are back to reality...

Wednesday, January 7, 2009


The Boy and I are off to Hawaii!  We leave Thursday morning and will be back next Wednesday the 14th.  Most likely I will not post during this time.  Although my step dad is bringing his computer so if I am feeling like I need to vent, I might steal it for a few minutes to let you all know just how very relaxing it is to be on vacation with a 3 year old.  Seriously though, we need this vacation.  And for all intents and purposes, it will be my last vacation for a very long time...or at least until the baby is born.  So enjoy January and we will talk to you all when we get back!  Aloha!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Speech Update and the Downside of Turning 3

So today was our first speech therapy appointment since The Boy turned 3 years old.  That might not seem significant to most people, but to those of us "in the system," we know it means that he is no longer covered by SARC.  For all that don't know, that is the state funded early start program that has meant that The Boy has had twice a week speech therapy completely paid for by the state!  Lovely thing, that SARC is.  I mean, I sincerely hope your child does not need it, but if it is a given that they are going to need services, it sure is nice to not have to pay for it out of pocket.

When I was leaving today I was filling out new papers and giving them my credit card information so that I can start to be billed for his services again when the ladies sitting behind me overheard me talking...  "Yesterday was his birthday, so today's therapy will be the first one..."

"Oh no!  Did your son just turn 3?" one of them asked me? (I love how they can recognize the bad side of turning three...)

"Yes, yesterday..." I replied.

"They should offer a support group for the adults who have to transition out of SARC...we need a SARC graduation therapy group..."

They then proceeded to tell me how horrific dealing with the school district had been for their children.  Once the child turns 3, they leave SARC and then have to try to get coverage from the school districts.  Even if they qualify, which is MUCH harder than it seems, once they get into the system, apparently they soon realize how horrific the actual therapies are compared to what we are used to.  Great, that is so comforting.

We had been told by our therapists that there was very little chance that The Boy was going to qualify under the strict guidelines of the school district.  On paper, The Boy is much better than he is in "real life."  When they ask him any sort of receptive language questions, he rules.  He has NO issues with understanding whatsoever.  In fact, he seems to understand and comprehend on a level of a 4 year, 8 month old.  So clearly, no coverage there.  But we know his issues are with expressive language as opposed to receptive.  And again, on that level he is complicated.  When asked to say single words, he does fine.  Most of the time he is clear and you can totally understand what he is saying.  However when he just starts talking on his own, and goes into any sort of sentence, he loses that pronunciation.  It becomes very difficult for anyone, besides myself and my mother, to understand him.  But most of the time they don't test for this.  They ask them to express single words and judge him on that.  So we really didn't have any expectation that he would qualify for therapy through the school district.  Is was clear to me, and really anyone who has attempted to have a conversation with him, that he still needs help in the pronunciation department.  So I had resolved myself that I would keep him in his current therapy, but cut it down to once a week instead of twice, and just pay out of pocket for the services and begin my battle with his health insurance to reimburse for the charges.

So imagine my surprise when we went to our assessment with the school district and were told that he would qualify for a half an hour of services a week.  I was shocked.  But we got lucky.  Very lucky.  This therapist not only did the standard assessment (which he passed with flying colors), but she decided that she would use the last half an hour to just sit with him and try and have some conversations with him.  You see, at age three you should be able to understand about 80% of what a child is saying.  That is normal for a three year old.  But after hanging out with The Boy for a while she deduced that she could only understand about 15% of what he is saying.  So it appears that he is going to qualify.  We were shocked.  We have a meeting with them on Friday the 16th after we get back from Hawaii to do the "intake" and find out exactly what will be covered.  It also appears that he will be meeting with the same woman who did his assessment, which is GREAT because she was not only a great therapist, but she seemed to be a lovely person.

After chatting with the other mothers at therapy today I realized how lucky we really are.  We are in a different school district than that two moms I spoke with today.  According to them, the fact that she took the time to listen to him actually talk (imagine!!), is completely out of the ordinary.  I told them that the woman who did the assessment was lovely and they said something to the effect that "so was the person who did our assessment," but that they actual therapist was someone entirely different.  And I believe they referred to their speech therapists as people who were as effective as traffic lights.  Case in point, they were still sitting in the private therapists office, and not sitting in the office of the school district.

So I am cautiously optimistic for The Boy at this point.  I am going to continue to keep him in his private therapy on Thursday mornings.  I will pay out of pocket for the services and then attempt to collect from the insurance company (wish me luck on that one).  Then if everything goes smoothly he should have another half hour session with the woman from the school district on Tuesday afternoons with one other child.

It would be lovely if my child didn't need any services at all, but I have to say, if it is a given that he needs a little extra help...I am going to get it for him.  Poor little pumpkin is teeny tiny, has bright red hair, and doesn't talk so well.  As I mom I would have to kill any child that dares to make fun of my child when he goes to school, so I have to do all I can to make sure that he isn't different to the point of being made fun of.  And like I said, he might be adorable in my eyes, but kids can be mean.  I can't help the red hair (and I even contributed to it--sorry Boy!), and I am doing my best to help the growing thing, but the speech?  That I can do.  So even if it sends me to the poor house, my boy is going to talk pretty one day!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Happy Birthday My Angel!

My Dearest Boy:

Three years ago today, I became the happiest Mother in the world. After a long, long fight to get pregnant, and a tough end of pregnancy, it all became worth it on 9:17am, January 5th, 2006. As I tell you every year, your Mom and I went to the hospital the night before and after almost 15 hours of labor, the doctor helped bring you out to your Moms. It was, and will remain, the greatest day of my life.

This last year has been an amazing one for you. When I think back to where you were this time last year, and where you are now, I am just shocked at all you have done this year. I think the biggest thing that has changed is how well you are speaking. At this time last year we were just entering Early Intervention services (although you had been in your therapies for some time before this) and you literally could not even put two words together. I remember in late February you said, "Bye Paul" to your uncle and it was the first time that you had put two words together. About a month later, when we took you to visit Disneyland, you loved the train ride so much that when we would walk away you would say, "Back Choo" meaning you wanted to go back to the Choo Choo that you loved so much. To go from that to where you are now is astonishing. You quite literally never shut up. You have so much to say and although sometimes other people can't quite understand everything that comes out of your mouth, as your Mommy, I always can. And I always love what I hear. I always want you to be able to talk to me, and I give you my solemn promise that I will always listen. Your words mean more to me than you will ever know.

You had quite a few big events in your life this past year. In February you left your beloved daycare where you had been since you were 3 months old. In doing so, you left your caretakers, known as The Aunties, and moved into a new school. Even though you had just turned two, you jumped right into the school portion of this new place and made friends right away. You love both of your teachers so much that you usually don't want to leave at the end of the day. That alone lets me know that I made the right decision in where I sent you. I am so proud of the big boy that you are at your school.

You got to go on quite a few fun trips this year as well. We took you to Disneyland for the first time and, although you weren't so much into the rides, you LOVED the experience. You are a great little traveler and loved staying in the hotel with your Moms and loved meeting Mickey and, most of all, loved riding on that train. You also made a trip up to your cabin in the mountains and showed your Mommy that the love of throwing rocks in the rivers and lakes is something that will go down in our generations. You showed me that you are an outdoorsy boy and you loved running around and seeing all the beautiful sights and enjoying nature like your Mommy does. You also got to go to Hawaii for the first time and experience your first plane ride. You were a trooper and didn't bother any of the other passengers during the flight, although you were quite verbal with Mommy about being "done" with the plane on the flight back. But you LOVED the pool at the hotel we stayed at and enjoyed looking at the beach, although you weren't so keen on actually playing there. We took you on many weekend trips to see the zoo and the aquarium and to get pumpkins and Christmas trees. You are such a happy little boy that as long as you are surrounded by the friends and family that love you, you willingly go pretty much anywhere.

Some of your favorite things this past year have included Thomas the Train (which you loved with the ferocity of a thousand suns), all things fire fighters and police, anything related to the movie Cars, any and all tools that you can get your hands on. Most recently you have discovered your love of the kitchen and all things food. You love to help me make something in the crock pot every Sunday morning, you made some Christmas cookies with your Grammie over the holidays and most recently, helped make your very own cupcakes for your birthday party with your Gigi. You love your cats and think that they have been put in the house for your sole enjoyment. Your favorite is Rudy, mostly because he allows you to grab him around the neck and carry him around the house. The other two simply tolerate you, but your affection with Rudy can be heard by his screeching throughout the entire house. And although he complains, he follows you around and lays down and purrs at you so you can lay on top of him and "give him big hug." Your favorite thing in the world continues to be your Lambie and you still enjoy your Binky in your bed (but enjoy it quick, cause that is coming to an end very soon). You insist on having one of your original blankets that was given to you as a newborn in bed with you at night, but you MUST be covered by your coveted "Big Thomas" blanket now that you are bigger and need a real blanket for warmth.

The most amazing thing about you, my precious little boy, is your wonderful personality. You truly are the sweetest person I know. You are always happy. If for some reason you aren't acting happy, then there is something wrong, and once we fix it, you return to your happy little demeanor. You are polite, and considerate and genuinely care about the people around you. You love to give hugs and to give multiple kisses on each cheek (how very European of you) and you still appease me by giving me snuggle time each and every morning even though I know you would rather be playing with your toys. You tell me, "Okay Mommy, five more minutes, den I go pay my toys." I treasure those 5 minutes my boy. You are smart as a whip and it literally scares me how much you understand and know. Just this morning I told you it might rain and therefore you got to wear your favorite fire fighter raincoat. While driving to school you asked me where the rain was and I told you it wasn't raining yet, but that it was going to later. You said, "Da rain still in da clouds Mommy?" How the hell you knew that, I will never know, but wow. You can point out where you live on our globe at home and also point out where we are going on vacation next week (Hawaii). You can count up to almost 30 (sometimes you miss the number 16 though, not sure why you don't seem to like that one...) and not only can you sing the ABC's, but you can point out and understand every letter of the alphabet. And lots of times you like to torture me by pointing out any and all letters no matter where you see them (on a magazine at the grocery store, on an ad on the TV, on the box of your toys...) You know the words to about 10 different songs and sing them if you can't come up with anything else to say. I could go on, but let me just tell you that I am impressed by how smart you are each and every single day.

You have so many wonderful people in your life that you love. You are a lucky little boy to have so many people who love you and treasure you. The people who never fail to put a smile on your face, or a hug in your heart are: Your Mommy and your Mom. Your Gigi, who you love like she is a third Mommy, and your Poppy. Your cousin M, and your Uncle P and Auntie E, and even little cousin E. Your BeeBee is a favorite as well. Your Uncle B and Uncle M (the Gay boyfriends), and especially Mommy's cousin MO. You love your Grammie and Gramps and all of your other cousins (although seeing as how she is the oldest, you seem to be a bit obsessed with cousin M right now). I don't think there is any way you could understand how very many people love and adore you. Both you and I are very lucky to have all these amazing people in our lives.

My boy, you are truly the greatest gift that has ever been given to me. I have loved and treasured every single day of these past three years. You will never be able to completely understand all the amazing things you have brought to my life. I love you more than I ever thought possible to love another human being. In a few months, we are going to welcome a sister for you into our family. But I want to take this time to tell you how very much I have enjoyed having you, and JUST YOU, as my baby. You will always be my very favorite little boy and you will always be my first baby. I think you are going to like having a little sister. I think it is going to make our family even better. Happy Birthday my big boy. I love you dearly.

Pictured above, a picture of you over the weekend with your present from your Grammie and Gramps: A New Big Wheel! Even though your feet can't reach the pedals yet, and you can barely see over the "steering wheel," you love it!