Still Pregnant…

Welcome to The Blog of Becky:

How NOT to give birth.

SIIIIIIIGH.

My friend who was due two weeks ahead of me now has a happy, healthy 5 week old baby.

My OTHER friend who isn’t due for another two weeks just gave birth last night.

The Squidgelet, on the other hand, appears to be dug in like a tick and showing no signs of evacuating any time soon.

Spicy food is ineffective.

Walking is nice exercise, but it doesn’t really do anything.

Nipple stimulation, which is about as sexy as it sounds, can bring on contractions, but as soon as I stop, they stop.

Raspberry tea tastes like crap… AND it’s ineffective.

Prostaglandins applied, errr… well… “Bean”-ically… well, let’s just say that it’s more fun than gallons of raspberry tea, but it’s still not really doing anything.

Plus, sex while 1,342 weeks pregnant (or is it just 41 weeks? I get confused…) kind of resembles a toddler attacking a Weeble-Wobble:

I sincerely doubt they’re going to be choosing The Bean and I to be the feature stars in any naughty movies anytime soon.

As far as progress, I have no idea if anything is even happening down there. My doctor hasn’t checked me to see if I’m dilated at all, and frankly, I’m okay with that.

For those of you who are blissfully ignorant, starting a few weeks before your due date many doctors will start checking to see if your cervix has “dilated” or are “effaced” at all.

The easiest way to understand what these terms mean is to think of a mayonnaise jar vs. a ketchup bottle.

When you are not pregnant, your cervix is shaped like the mouth of a ketchup bottle… very narrow (not dilated at all) and rather long (not effaced at all).

As you progress through labor, your cervix dilates (going from closed to a gaping 10 centimeters wide in diameter) and effaces (growing thinner and thinner, until like a mayonnaise jar there’s barely any “bottleneck”.

Back before I was pregnant, I always assumed there was a fancy, special little instrument that they delicately placed against your belly and threw back some kind of electronic reading of your labor progress.

Here is an artist’s depiction of how I thought this would go down:

Hah. Hah, hah, hah. Oh, how I wish.

Oh, no. No, no, no….

The reality is a lot worse than that. When a doctor checks to see your progress.. basically, he just rolls up his sleeves and diiiiiives on in.

He doesn’t even buy you a drink first, or make small talk.

It is, quite possibly, the most awkward experience a woman will ever go through.

To make it even worse, my doctor doesn’t even have the normal stirrup-type tables that I’ve grown accustomed to. Instead, he has these evil torture-chamber type chairs that mechanically flip you upside down like a beached turtle while he pokes about.

It basically goes down like this:

Thankfully, my experiences in the chair of torture have been few and far between. This is because I have the laziest doctor EVER. My appointments with him last between 45 seconds to a minute, and consist of him wandering in, asking if I have any questions, and wandering out.

I would complain, and ask him to be a little more proactive, but I have my reasons for keeping him at bay.

In fact, they are two very solid reasons.

Two very large, solid, GIGANTIC reasons.

My Ob/Gyn has hands like a silverback gorilla.

I’m not sure what I’m dreading more— labor, or the thought of having his gigantic hams coming anywhere near my va-jay-jay.


Oh, the joys of pregnancy.

Advertisements

Stubborn As a….

A horse’s gestational period is 11 months, give or take a few days.

Unless you breed it with a donkey.

When you breed it with a donkey, and it’s pregnant with a mule, then its gestational period is 12 months.

After going 2 weeks overdue with the DragonMonkey, and sitting around almost 1 week overdue with the Squidgelet… well, I guess where I’m going with this is that I’ve finally found legitimate, scientific proof that the Bean is an ass.

Hah.

Just kidding. I’m probably going to be struck down by lightening for making that joke. After all, this is the man who woke up yesterday, cooked me bacon, told me I looked beautiful, and then cleaned the kitchen.

Three cheers for marriages based off of getting knocked up by a some random customer you met in a bar !

At any rate, time has slowed down as we anxiously await the arrival of the Squidgelet.

Somewhere along the way, in addition to frantic, nesting-type cleaning, I picked up a fairly nasty cold. Swollen and moody, I’ve spent the past week doing the following:

1. Blowing my nose
2. Peeing
3. Blowing my nose
4. Taking the DragonMonkey to Frogg’s Bounce House
5. Peeing
6. Sneezing
7. Peeing while sneezing
8. Cleaning
9. Peeing while blowing my nose
10 Cleaning

It’s an exciting life, and I know you’re all jealous.

One of the hardest things about going past your due date isn’t necessarily the waiting— it’s fending off the various friends, relatives and complete strangers who corner you for updates. I’m not talking about people like you guys, who are of course dependent upon my spotty blog updates. I’m talking about people in my everyday, normal life— people I’ve seen only hours before.

“Any news, Becky?”

“Becky, have you had your baby yet?”

“You’re still pregnant?”

“You mean you haven’t had that baby yet?”

“When do you think you’ll go into labor?”

“Are you sure there’s nothing wrong?”

“Did you have the baby yet?”

Despite my constant reassurances that I will text/call/Facebook update/Twitter/carrier pigeon/snail mail/and telepathically reach out to everyone when the Squidgelet arrives, I still face a barrage of well-meaning questions on a daily basis. Apparently my promises to keep people informed are not enough, as most people seem to think that without constant supervision I will sneak off under the front porch, build a little nest out of cardboard and bits of my hair and give birth there.

Frankly, it’s starting to seem like a peaceful, appealing option.

My personal favorites are the strangers I meet on the street.

“You were due last week? REALLY?! So, you could, like, go at any minute, right?”

They glance at me expectantly, as if waiting for a fully-formed fetus to accidentally fall out of my va-jay-jay.

“Well, yes, I could, but labor takes awhile so I don’t think we’re in any danger of it happening in the grocery store.”

Invariably, they look disappointed.

In addition to the constant questioning, any time I head out in public I have to prepare myself for the onslaught of unsolicited advice and horror stories.

“Wow, you’re due any day, huh?” Random Woman #1 shakes her head sadly. “I remember when I gave birth— it took almost 90 hours, and in the end they had to use a chainsaw to slice me from sternum to groin in order to remove my 17 pound baby.”

I nod noncommittally, trying to discourage her.

It’s to no avail. Random Woman’s friend scents blood, and moves in, looming over me.

“She did. I saw it happen. It took over 4,000 stitches to sew her back up, and she still ended up with a colostomy bag. Of course, you should have seen me after I had my twins,” she says, in an attempt to one-up. “Since there were two of them I had double the amount of stitches, and TWO colostomy bags.”

Random Woman #3 senses my discomfort, and sneaks in from behind.

“My birth was actually fairly easy, but I paid for it later,” she says with a heavy sigh. “My son didn’t sleep through the night until he was 23. Even after he was at college, he’d call me up, wailing at 20 minute intervals throughout the night… I hope you get your sleep now, because once you give birth, you’ll never sleep again….”

At this point I interrupt them, trying to make them go away. “Oh, I know about all of this. This is going to be my second child. Thanks anyways.”

The women brighten, undeterred. “Oh! Well, you’ve had it easy, then. Once you have a second child, your life REALLY changes. In fact, once the second one arrives, you can pretty much say goodbye to any happiness you might have ever felt.”

“It’s true! It’s true!” exclaims Random Woman #2. “Once you have a second child, you’ll never have any time to yourself!”

“You’ll never find a sitter!”

“You’ll never get any sleep!”

They advance on me ominously, and suddenly I feel like I’ve been trapped by the three evil witches from MacBeth.

“You’ll never regain your figure!”

“Your husband will leave you and sleep with his secretary!”

“All the flesh will melt off your bones!”

“Wait a second!” I stutter. “”I don’t think that’s necessarily true…”

The women ignore my protestations.

“Your first child will turn into a bloodthirsty, carnivorous monster! He’ll start carrying a little prison shank with him to pre-school!”

“Your second child will never have the time, love, and attention you gave your first child, and will end up deformed and gangrenous!”

“They’ll both end up as evil little rapists!” At this point they usually start chanting in unison.
“You’ll be fat forever! You’ll never smile again! You’ll be a fat, unhappy, sleep-deprived mother of gangrenous little serial rapists!”

Sometimes I hate other women.

Of course, I’m not sure which brand of mom is the worse— is it the Doomsayers, or is it the UberMothers? You know the ones I’m talking about— they smile placidly, serenely, radiating peaceful contentment with every aspect of being a mother. They are just… so…. FULFILLED.

They really give me the creeps.

I was cornered by one of them at Frogg’s Bounce House the other day.

“Will you be giving birth in a hospital or in the comfort of your own home?”

I’m not sure what it is about me, but something about my face seems to make people want to open up and SHARE with me. The Bean never suffers from this problem. Not once have I seen The Bean get cornered at a checkout stand by an over-talkative cashier, and yet it seems to happen to me on a daily basis.

“Who was that?” The Bean will ask, sitting with our grocery cart at the entrance to the store, where he’s been waiting for ten minutes as I try to extract myself.

“I have no idea. I’ve never met her before in my life. But she’s nervous because her mother-in-law might have to move back in with her. When she’s stressed, it causes her shingles to return, and the last thing she needs is an outbreak of shingles only weeks before her daughter’s graduation…. did you know that her daughter is graduating a year early? They’re really proud of her.”

The Bean shakes his head and the two of us wander off to our next stop, where I will invariably be regaled with stories of cheating husbands, chronic hemorrhoids, and other such niceties that I’d really rather not know about.

Lucky me.

So, it really wasn’t that big of a surprise the other day when I turned around and found myself face-to-face with a complete stranger.

“I’m sorry… what?”

“Will you be having a home birth, or will you be doing a hospital birth?”

“Oh. Uh, I’ll be giving birth in a hospital. The Bean— that’s my husband— and I discussed a home birth, but he wasn’t comfortable with it.”

“Oh. That’s so sad for you.”

“Uh, sure.” I turned to watch the DragonMonkey bouncing happily.

Hippie Homebirth Woman wasn’t finished with me yet, though.

“I had a hospital birth with my first daughter. She was developmentally delayed because of it.”

I grunted in return, hoping to end the conversation.

Hah. I was so naive.

“With my son, I was able to birth at home, and he has been ahead of all his milestones. He rolled over at four weeks, and he has been lifting himself up and holding his head steady since only two weeks.”

I glance over at the chubby, cross-eyed little infant in the sling in front of her. While he’s cute, it doesn’t really look like he’s going to be doing complex Calculus anytime soon.

“Oh. That’s very nice,” I murmur, edging away to follow the DragonMonkey as he changes to another bouncy house.

She follows.

“I think it has a lot to do with my milk production. I’ve got so much milk this time that I don’t even know what to do with it all.” She heaves a sigh. “I’ve taken to pumping it and giving it to my daughter in the evenings to help her through the flu season.”

I glance over at her five year old daughter. While I agree it might be healthy in theory…

I just really didn’t need to know that.

Hippie Homebirth Mom hasn’t finished with me yet.

“It really has everything to do with the fact that I was able to use my placenta. Did you know that at my first birth, the hospital wouldn’t let me take my placenta home?” She shakes her head, outraged.

I stare at her, feeling slightly trapped.

“This time, though, I was able to save my placenta and make a shake out of it.” She smiles serenely. “It’s so healthy for you.”

I don’t know… maybe having a delicious, placenta-shake is something that is really good for you. Maybe it’s healthy, and delicious, and the rest of us are just missing out. It’s certainly natural— many animals in the wild eat their placentas after giving birth in order to restore lost nutrients.

But you know what?

A: Just give me a vitamin. Maybe it’s not as natural, but it probably goes down a whole lot easier.

and

B: Please don’t tell me about it. “Hey, guess what I did last week? I ate my placenta!!!” is not the sort of “Hi-Nice-To-Meet-You” conversation I usually like to indulge in.

SIIIIGH.

I can’t wait to move to Arizona. I bet once we move to Arizona, nobody will ever tell me about their delicious, homemade placenta shake recipes.

Maternity Leave



I started my maternity leave yesterday.

Considering my due date is, well, today, I figured it might be time.

I’m having an absolute blast.

I’m sitting in front of the Internet, nibbling on an apple, sipping some fresh-squeezed orange juice (at least, that’s what it claims on the Minute Maid carton), and occasionally biting into a 2 lb chunk of cheddar cheese.

Yeah, that’s right. I have no shame. Admit it: you guys all wish you were as classy as me.

Right now the DragonMonkey is peaceably watching TV, taking a break before we head over to Frogg’s Bounce House. I don’t normally plug places on my blog, but WOW. This place is incredible. Bounce houses, slides, air hockey, train tables, baby toys, toddler toys, comfortable couches, air conditioning, Michael Buble singing in the background… Unlimited monthly pass for only $30 a month? Am I in dreamland?

Every once in awhile, even I have to admit there are perks to living in Orange County.

At any rate, since I am about to spend another full day letting the DM romp in toddler heaven, I don’t feel too guilty about plopping him down in front of the TV and ignoring him for a bit.

After all, the DragonMonkey isn’t usually much of a TV watcher.

Of course, that was before we bought Big Bertha.

Big Bertha is our new television.

After over two years of saving up, the Bean and I bought one of those large-screen, wall-mounted, high-definition, Internet-savvy TVs.

The Bean is in love.

He sits in front of it, turning it on and leaning back with all the excited, expectant air of a man at a strip club awaiting a lap dance.

“Look at the clarity!” he exclaims. “Look at the color!”

“Yeah,” I reply.

His voice drops lower, almost sensuously so. “It’s like we’re looking through a window into someone’s living room…”

Mmmhmm“, I say absently, nose buried in my book.

“With the LED it reduces the glare impaction….” his voice is turning husky.

I glance over at him, annoyed. Maybe I should leave the two of them alone?

“You can see every detail…”

And the truth is, you can.

The Bean and I butted heads over Big Bertha for quite awhile before we ended up making the purchase.

I wanted a TV large enough to be able to see from the couch and thin enough that we could hang it on the wall.

The Bean wanted a TV with advanced enough technology that it could double as a portable space station if NASA ever had the need.

Who do you think won?

Well, let me put it this way.

When we used to watch Avatar, Neytiri used to look like this:

Now that we have paid an exorbitant amount of money for our fancy new television, I can now watch Neytiri in all her blue-ray glory, which leaves her looking more like this:


GIFSoup

Oh, well. At least the Bean is happy.

In fact, he’s so happy he even created an entire Facebook album dedicated to the television.

No, I am not kidding.

He has close-up photos of mounting plates and Cat-6 Network cables, all of which he describes in passionate detail.

I’d be jealous, but I guess I can’t really complain, seeing as how my own Facebook page is covered with one album from our marriage and about 76 million photos of Bunnygal’s horses.

Anyways, I’m off to Frogg’s to go see if I can bounce the Squidgelet out.

How much do you want to bet that all I end up doing is bouncing out some pee and wetting my pants?

Again?


What Am I Going to Do With Two Kids?



How tonight would have gone down in my single days:

“Hi, I’m here about the ad for the tv stand?”

“Oh, yes. I’m sorry, we don’t have any of that particular model in stock, but I can show you a slightly smaller one so you can get an idea if you’d like it.”

That’d be great.”

We walk over to the tv stand.

“Oh, that’s pretty. And the center drawer can be removed, so we can fit all the equipment in the glass section?”

“Yes.”

“And it comes in this color?”

“Yes.”

“Wonderful. I’d like to order it.”

“Thank you. Sign here, here, and here, and we’ll give you a call when it’s in stock.”

“Thank you.”

****************

How tonight REALLY went down:

“Hi, I’m here about the ad for…DRAGONMONKEY, GET BACK HERE… for the tv stand?”

“Oh, yes. I’m sorry, we don’t have any of that particular model in stock–“

AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA!

“Yes, I see the drinking fountain. I’ll get you some water in a second. SHHHH. I’m sorry, what?”

“I said, we don’t have any of that model in stock…”

AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA! AGUA!

DRAGONMONKEY, HUSH! If you don’t knock it off, no water for you. EVER.”

Agua? Agua? Mas Agua? Bye Bye? Go? Go? Go? Go? Go Car? GO?”

SHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!”

“…but I can show you a slightly smaller one so you can get an idea if you’d like it?”

“Huh? Oh, uhm… sure. What? Sure. Whatever…DRAGONMONKEY, NO TOUCH! DON’T TOUCH THAT! DROP IT!”

We head in the direction of the tv stands, the DragonMonkey lunging left and right, straining against the leash of his monkey backpack like an angry pitbull.

“TAKE MY HAND. NOW. DON’T TOUCH.”

“Ma’am, this is the tv stand. It’s slightly smaller, but….”

“I’m sorry, one moment…” I interrupt her and bolt (well, waddle, really) after the DragonMonkey, who has somehow managed to yank his monkey leash out of my hand and is flying helterskelter towards the open door and parking lot.

DRAGONMONKEY, WAIT!”

Hahahahahahahahahaha! Go! Go! Go! Hahahahahahahahaha!

I catch up with him, lunging forward to grab his collar the second before he hits the street, and end up grabbing some of his hair with it.


Ow! OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! MWAAAAAAAAAH!!!!!!!!!!! OWWWWWWWW!

I bend over and hoist him up to my shoulder (no small feat, seeing as how my due date is only days away) and huff my way back into the store.

OW! OWWW! OWWWWWWWWWW!

The DragonMonkey sobs incoherently, grasping at the back of his head melodramatically.

“I’m sorry, what were you saying?” I raise my voice to be heard over his tortured screams.

Uhh… I was saying this is similar… to, uh…”

The young woman in front of me is obviously childless. She keeps glancing at the DragonMonkey, and then back at me, waiting for me to acknowledge his obvious injury.

“He’s fine. He’s just tired. What about this tv stand?”

“It’s similar in style, but slightly, uh… smaller…” She seems distraught at my apparent lack of sympathy, so I give in to peer pressure and rub the DragonMonkey’s back absently.

The DragonMonkey calms his screams, mollified that I am at last acknowledging the grievous, evil, torturous thing I just did to him.

In fact, he’s so mollified that he immediately begins twisting around in my arms. “Go? Go? Go? Agua? AGUA? AGUA? AGUA?”

I drop him to the floor, taking a firm hold on the edge of the leash, wishing for the millionth time that it was legal to use a choke collar on a child. I’ve trained dozens of hyperactive dogs to heel… why can’t I manage one two-foot toddler?

“So, is there, uh, a big size difference between–STOP IT, DRAGONMONKEY — the two units?”

In an attempt to control him, I pick him up again. He immediately arches his back, flailing around like a seizure patient.

UP! UP! UP! UP! UP! UP! UP! UP! UP! UP! UP! UP! UP! UP! UP! UP!

He’s saying up, but he means down, and eventually I drop him at my feet, where he begins straining at the leash again, lunging at glass table tops and suede leather couches that I am deliberately keeping just out of his reach.

I’m beginning to understand why some animals eat their young.

The saleslady and I start increasing the pace of the conversation, both of us sensing that a meltdown is only minutes away.

“Differences?”

“Smaller. Shorter. Same Style.”

“Same color?”

“Yes.”

“Price on the internet?”

“Yes.”

We sound like two auctioneers haggling over the price of a horse, but it gets the job done.

I mean, I know it’s my fault— the DragonMonkey has a cold. He missed his nap today. It was past his bedtime. I should have known better and not even tried to go to the store….

Still, what am I going to do with two? Good Lord. Good thing he’s cute.