Thursday, June 25, 2009

Teeny, Weeny, Itsy, Bitsy...

...Brown polka dot bikini!And she wore it and her "beautiful girl" pose for the first time today. She loves her new suit. Grandma sent it over to her. I told you the only reasons Poor Katie has anything new to wear are Grandma and Nana (Nana sent over 3 new tops today). I just let her run around naked and add computer-generated clothes later only to stave off Child Protective Services.
I said to Katie, "Let's put on your new bathing suit".

She thought I was saying, "baby suit" and pranced around the room singing, "Baby suit, baby suit." Then she said,

"Yeah, mommy, let's put on my 'Michael suit'".

She is going to be such a good big sister.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Due dates are for sissies

So as you know from my last post, I was having a sympathetic freak-out for my friend, Kristy whose due date was July 4th. I nearly hyperventilated when I got notice that she went into labor Saturday morning!

"This cannot be!", I declared outloud. "We aren't ready!!" I stated to a dumbfounded crowd of onlookers including my husband, daughter and out-of-town guests. Then I paced and wrung my hands for the next few hours, awaiting further updates.

Somehow I really felt that my unpreparedness might somehow adversely affect the process. Megalomania with side of egocentrism, anyone?

Kiley Faith arrived without complication (and, amazingly without my assistance) at 4:50 pm on Saturday, June 20th. And, my word, she is a beautiful girl. Really gorgeous - right down to perfect little eyebrows and pouty lips. And normally we say nice things but don't really mean it when talking about newborns, but just look at her...
Kristy and Nick are great, beautiful people but c'mon - who knew they were capable of this?
Now, a big, pink, poofy dress on Day One? I think I knew they were capable of that....(Dont look at me for fashion tips though, I kept Katie in nothing but a onesie and socks for the first three months of life. That's all she'd be wearing now if it weren't for the hard work of Grandma and Nana.)

She is just perfect. Great work, guys! Now, send more pictures!

Next up on the "to due" list is my cousin Sarah. She is supposed to have her second little girl on July 13th. Let's see if she knows how to keep a promise. I don't think my heart can handle another jolt..

Monday, June 15, 2009

Ketchup and Relish

Forgive me Father, for I have sinned. It's been two weeks since my last blog post.

Time for some ketchup.

I finished my work-release program at the hospital in Dublin. Seven long weeks that in the end seemed to have flown by. I hope to have a whole post dedicated to the experience but I can't write that until I have my registration papers in hand. (until then I am not sure how many expletives will be required to describe the process)

Katie and I were struck down with the Coxsackie virus, causing Hand, Foot and Mouth disease. If you look it up on the internet, the first thing you will see is that it is NOT Hoof and Mouth disease. Despite current appearances, I am not bovine. It is described as a painless, blistery rash that develops on the...(surprise ending here...) hand, foot and mouth. (never saw that coming) Well, I don't really care what the internet or 'doctors' say as they also say it only affects pre-school age children and I disproved that theory. I sat for two days with my hands in a bowl of ice water and hobbled around for the throbbing pain I felt. My doctor said it was probably because I am pregnant that I was so susceptible. Wow! Another perk of pregnancy! And I thought I'd discovered them all...

Obviously that is not a picture of me, but it does a good job of showing how gross it is and I love how excited the girl looks in all her grossness.

We are foster parents to two kittens. Nana and Papa need some farm cats to keep down the rat population, but right now they would be doggie treats, so we said we would take them until they grow a bit and have a fighting chance against Brownie and Rex. We thought it would be a great experience for Katie too- to play with them and snuggle up with them at night...
Fat chance. These are two feral cats that spent the first two weeks here a) under the shed outside then b) in a hole in the wall behind our downstairs toilet.

Katie had to play by herself. She also may have developed a bit of a catnip addiction...
But finally, lo and behold, last week the cats came out to play.
Katie loves them. They tolerate her. She is learning "Gentle!" and "Don't squeeze Kitty!"
It is so precious to watch her interact with the kittens. She takes her job to feed them in the morning and give them milk very seriously and she hunkers down with her hands on her knees to talk to them. ahh, motherpride. Then there is the smell of catshit in the morning. And the crunch of litter under your foot. And the black hair coating the orange chairs. And the little fuckers clawing at my legs as I type this. Can't wait til they move out. Here Doggie, Doggie!

Cousin Nicholas gave Katie a paint set for Christmas. Six months later I worked up the nerve to let Katie play with them. It all started out so well...
Then she painted her hands.
We are getting Cousin Nicholas a drum set and a blowtorch for Christmas.

I got my planting done this weekend. Saturday was another gorgeous day, though a bit windy. Not sure my rose bush will survive the transplant. Got some herbs there at the end. Herbs, for cooking,.. not herb. Couldn't even plant catnip, what with Katie so fresh from rehab and all.
We are really making our back garden our own. It will be the hardest thing to give up. Manus got himself a new toy too.
True to our DIY history, we went to fire'er up last night only to discover that we had 1) the propane tank and 2) the BBQ gas hose but failed to procure 3) that which connects the two. Oven-baked burgers anyone?

I am pregnant. And how. I feel everything so much more acutely this time around. From heartburn to hormonal swings to tiredness, breathlessness and an aching body. Our doctor said that is very common. Second Child Syndrome, he calls it. Says it could be mental or physical - that our bodies remember the process, thus engage in it earlier and with gusto. Forgive me, but I think it's probably mental. There isn't the same wonder and excitement as there was the first time around. I know that I'm just going to get more and more uncomfortable, I am terrified of actually having to push this watermelon out of my kiwi and I know that the "light at the end of the tunnel" really means at least one solid month of getting sleep in only two hour spurts.

The worst thing I feel is pain in my "pelvic girdle". The progesterone and relaxin loosen the ligaments of the hips and pelvis to allow for birth. This loosening causes movement and a change in my anatomy. This change is painful. Especially in my sacrum and pubis symphysis. What it really boils down to is if you come to my house, you will see me walking like Frankenstein and howling, "Oh! My butt hurts!", "Oh! my crotch hurts!". Once a lady, always a lady...

Another symptom of Second Child Syndrome is that I am now 30, yes thirty, weeks pregnant and this is my first belly shot.
It captures the stretch marks Katie gave me nicely I think. This is what the baby is doing to my outside, but what it's doing on the inside is even creepier...
I drew in the outline for clarity. But I did not make up the fact that he is LICKING the uterine wall. On the ultrasound you could see his little tongue darting in and out. wtf? This is soooo Manus' fault.

I spend a lot of time whining and complaining. Its a hobby. And a gift. But I am relishing my life. Every day I am reminded how lucky I am.

I am lonely here and sometimes bored, but I have been given an opportunity to watch and help Katie grow up. We are returning to Miami on November 15th (one-way, non-refundable tickets) and then I will go back to work and put the kids in daycare and long for the days of Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and reading Cinderella (AGAIN?!?!#@!!)

We are moving, but we are moving home. My cousin and my friend are both moving across the country this summer to places unknown. They are in for a great adventure, but I know it will be tough.

I like to gripe about Manus, but he is the best thing that happened to me. My friend is looking at divorce and it is breaking my heart. She talks of future dreams lost and I cannot imagine her pain.

I had some weird hand rash, but was assured it will do no damage to the baby. A nurse where I was working in Dublin just lost her baby at 35 weeks. How do you deal with that?

I am looking forward to meeting my son. But I'm not ready yet. My friend is due early July. I am grateful for my two more months of prep time.

I have made some friends here, few though live in Kilkenny. We are planning a 4th of July party and I am so excited for a taste of home. My friends, Naomi and Denny are coming here next Saturday for a visit and I just can't wait for them to get here.

I miss my parents so much. We video-call, but its not the same as a hug and an in-person chat. But they are healthy and full of life. We have a two friends whose mothers are fighting cancer and another whose father died just yesterday. We are headed to Belfast today for his funeral.

I am blessed with a better life than I deserve and I owe it to the universe to work every day to fully appreciate my gifts.