Monday, April 26, 2010

The Childbirth Secret No One Tells You and Celebrating Joy

Two years ago at this very moment, I had just shat myself on a delivery room table.

My helpful husband informed me of this.

I probably did it with the first two kids, but no one felt compelled to let me know. It was information that I had been blissfully ignorant about for years and years.

Upon my mortified further investigation, it apparently happens all the time. Often enough to not receive a big reaction from the doctor.

Because he ALSO let me know that the doctor was "very professional" about the whole thing.

"She was very matter-of-fact and professional about it," explained my husband. The doctor apparently did her job well. As in, didn't gag or barf .

The last two years have been very different with a baby girl. And because she is very vocal, our house has also been very loud.

I recently heard of an old wives' tale that girls "steal your beauty." I completely buy into it.

"What's up with your face," my brother asked today as he gave me a hug. He visited , along with my parents, to celebrate Maggie's birthday.

"What do you mean?"

He gestured to my forehead area. "That whole thing."

"I've had this for TWO years," I explained.

I didn't add that it was caused by the oral contraceptives that I had to take after Maggie was born, because it would probably freak him out.

Another fact that people don't generally disclose (along with the unpleasantness of crapping during childbirth): Oral contraceptives can make you fugly and make people wonder to themselves "What the frack is wrong with her skin?"

Except, apparently, for immediate family members. I suppose they are supposed to point out the obvious ~ the food in the teeth, the booger in the nose, the dark spots on the skin. You know, helpful stuff like that.

I made a mental note to hound my doctor for some industrial strength fade cream.

Another obvious change after the birth of my daughter were my tastes in food.

I would hum and practically acheive nirvana when I dove into a pint of Cherry Garcia. Now I get a similar reaction feta cheese and soy sauce.

I ask for extra jalapenos; I eat sauerkraut "just because~" I don't even need a polish sausage, although that scenario would be highly preferable.

I honestly think I would stick my face in a vat of full-fat, chunky blue cheese salad dressing if it wouldn't ruin my fine reputation as a completely rational, sane person. It would also probably cause undue horror and result in social suicide.

In addition to the skin and cravings, I have a new relationship with deodorant powder. I also "get" the leaky faucet bladder commercials on television.

But Maggie is a joy. She has brought a breath of fresh air to our house.

She has given us a new sense of unity and brought our family closer together.

She's a brilliant, sweet and beautiful little girl who loves balloons, Elmo and pickles. She squeals with joy and has her own language.

Hopefully we'll speak the same one very soon, because I want to understand her thoughts and her dreams.

I want to protect her and not let the world in to chip away at the innocence that God gave her.

I want to watch her, now, as she sleeps in her crib filled with silky blankets and her favorite stuffed animals and dolls.

I want to thank God for our special gift that was sent to us two years ago today.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Toilets and Motivation

As you can see, it has been a month since my last blog post.

"Wow," you say. "She must have accomplished an astounding amount of work during that time!"

Quite the contrary. I accomplished very, very little.

For instance, I have not ventured back to the gym.

After that TRX class I was barely able to sit on the toilet for about a week. I had to ingest ibuprofen to function normally. And my muscles were painful to the touch; I was practically crippled.

Then .... we moved.

We only moved down the street. Not even a block away.

But I believe that ultimately sucked more because of the lackadaisical attitude I quickly adopted about the whole process.

I thought it was going to be waaaaaaaaayyyyyyy easier than it turned out being.

It was sort of like those first time moms who insist that "since women have been doing this for hundreds of years, childbirth can't be all that bad."

For some it isn't. I have heard of those orgasmic birthing experiences. But I think they are full of shit. Or at least in the EXTREME minority.

I was definitely not one of those women; I was quickly barfing in pain.

***As a side note, that day was EXACTLY fifteen years ago today. My first-born turned fifteen today. I know right? I'm way too young-looking and hawt to have a fifteen year old. That is what you were thinking, right?***

So, when people would ask if we were ready to move, I would respond with an enthusiastic, "Yes! We're only moving a block away! Piece of cake!"

The concern did not register until I saw our friends' twitch of horror when I showed them around the rental.

"Really, only grab the large stuff," I said reassuringly. I gestured to the disaster of a bedroom. "Like only the bed, the dressers. Don't worry, I'll get all the small stuff."

The problem is that it was pretty much ALL small stuff.

The large items were moved within the day. The small items were still being moved a week later and I wanted to drown myself in the garden tub.

I suspect there was some rolling of the eyes behind my back and it must have made for some juicy gossip fodder.

I can just hear it: "That place was a MESS. A DISASTER. That pastor's wife does not clean. She must watch movies and BRAVO programming all day long!"

Ummmm....that is sorta true.

The whole "I'm not cleaning until we move" fabulosity that I had adopted about two months before the moving date? That wasn't such one of my most brilliant ideas evah.

In fact, it was freaking stupid.

That is why I am cleaning all four bathrooms in my new house every single Tuesday whether they need it or not. Honestly? They gleam. GLEAM. You have not seen such shiny tubs and toilets. In your whole life. It's THAT impressive.

I learned the hard way that dirt builds up. And bugs are insidious. Especially in the south. I felt that the both the former AND the latter were ferociously taking me out by the time we moved out of the rental.

About a week after we moved into the new house, I began painting my front hallway.

Honestly, I tired of painting astonishingly quickly.

I had a short-lived spurt of motivation by visualizing how kick ass everything would look once I was finished.

But the ceilings turned out to be higher than I am used to and I had to stand be on my tippy toes for extended amounts of time on the chair to finish the trim. It resulted in cramping.

All in all, it was waaaaaaaaaay less "zen" than my previous painting experiences in our previous residence.

To me, painting can be relaxing.

Until that very last wall. Then it becomes pained and desperate.

The problem is, I ran out of the paint and the "oomph" I needed even before I finished the front hallway.

SO... upon first glance, the entryway is welcoming and inviting. It is an olive green color and is very warm.

Upon second glance, it needs one more coat of paint.

Upon the third glance, the detailing sucks monkey butt.

On the "glass half full" side (which I am desperately working on), I have completed painting 1/8 of the house.

That is a very unscientific assessment of percentages, because honestly I have always sucked with percentages. It is the reason I went into journalism instead of the medical field. The math requirement is minimal in journalism.

So right now my sinks and toilets are really, really clean.

I can cling to the toilets and sinks, because they make me feel productive. There is a whole lot else that needs to be done and my vacuum cleaner is broken. Which is just phenomenal, by the way. Just phenomenal.

But I have the toilets. Dagnabbit, I have the toilets.