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.


Leslie said...

You are SO pregnant sister!! I love it when the mood swings and emotional outbursts shine through in blog posts- LOVE IT!! We are lucky aren't we...maybe we should remind each other now and again to keep us on our toes. Love you.

The Stewart Report said...

I can't believe you're 30 weeks already!! I know it hasnt' flown by for you (oh how well I remember time stopping) but it seems like 2 weeks ago I found out :) I can't wait to see pictures!!

Debbie said...

So glad to hear all your updates. You look great - and don't feel bad, I just did my first belly shot too :-(

And believe me, the symptoms are definitely much worse this time around. The freakin heartburn, the aches and pains, the basketball that keeps getting in the way when I have to constantly be picking things up off the floor. No one bothered to tell me toddlers throw things on the floor - ALL OF THE FREAKIN TIME!

It's all good though - 8 weeks and counting, baby! We'll be complaining about the lack of sleep in no time :-)

Gammy said...

I have loved reading your blogs...they always make me laugh! It is nice reading your sentimental side and I'm ecstatic about you moving home!! I can relate to your Mom and I know she's "over the moon" with joy!!!Can't wait to see you and Katie and to meet your little man!Of course I include your handsome hubby!

Mom said...

I think Katie had some help with the hand painting job!

Anonymous said...

Geez, Mali, you brought a tear to my eye! You look wonderful!
Sarah will deliver July 13 if not sooner. She too is soooo ready--can't eat, sleep, sit, stand, tie her own shoes--ahh, the joys of pregnancy!
We are truly blessed. Take care of your little guy (and girl)!
Love you!