Monthly Archives: January 2015

22 Weeks

October 24, 2014

You already know that this week has been, well, a week.  And I’m really glad that it’s Friday.  And I’m really happy to be curled up on my sofa, in my jammies with my keyboard on my lap.  There were, fortunately, a few high points to the week.

  1. On Wednesday as I was leaving work, two workmen were walking into the building.  The second one saw me coming and stepped back to hold the door for me.  I smiled and thanked him.  “You’re welcome,” he replied.  “Have a nice afternoon!”  And he was genuine and sincere and it was exactly what I needed at that moment.  Honestly, I almost cried as I was walking to my car because it was so nice to have the reminder that, on the whole, people are friendly.
  2. My Small American Woman came on Wednesday.  And not only did she empty the dishwasher and clean the bathroom and dust and vacuum, but she brought Jergens crema for when my belly is itchy.  I already knew that I would get home to the relief of having a tidy apartment.  I wasn’t expecting a pressie, too.
  3. Bridget Lancaster and Jack Bishop from America’s Test Kitchen were on Fresh Air yesterday.  I don’t care that their new book is all about meat meaning the chances of me cooking anything from it are slim.  They are always a delight to listen to.
  4. My parents recently repainted their bathroom.  And so my mom went to Kohl’s to buy new towels.  We’ll just say that she saved a lot of money in buying the new towels…  Any of you who shop at Kohl’s knows what that means.  Anyway, it also meant she had Kohl’s Cash.  What she wanted to spend it on wasn’t an option, so she decided to look and see if they might have new slippers for me.  You see, I’ve been wanting new slippers for a while now.  My winter slippers have a tendency to fall off when I take the stairs, a particularly awkward situation when I’m also toting a laundry basket.  So I’ve been thinking about replacing them with a bootie-style slipper.  And then I put my big toe through the lining, so it really was getting to be time to replace the old slippers.  Anyway, she did find slippers, and they are exactly what I was looking for.  They keep my feet warm, and they don’t fall off.  (And my toe doesn’t go through the lining.)  Oh, and they’re purple! Slippers are even better when they’re at least a little fun!
  5. Sheri’s been having a Jamberry party on Facebook this week.  Yes.  On Facebook.  Not in person.  No need to put on a bra or pants to participate.  And it’s been fun.  And I even won a prize this morning!  Definitely a happy start to my Friday!
  6. Mary had an 11:30 opening for me to get a massage today.  So I took the afternoon off.  And it’s been good.  The massage was good.  I picked up lunch at Shawarma King (falafel and fattoush), so lunch was good.  And then I came home and have been lounging ever since.  And it’s been lovely.  A little knitting, a little shut-eye, a little more knitting.  I definitely needed some respite after this week.

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Three Drops of Blood

October 23, 2014

I told you I’ve been having a bad week. So in keeping with a week full of little things that normally one would be able to brush off, I spotted last night. Three little, teeny, tiny drops of blood. On the toilet paper. One time.

That’s it. Just three drops of blood. No cramps. No contractions. Just three drops of blood. (Honestly, I’ve had more blood come out of my nose from a broken-capillary not-really-a-nosebleed this pregnancy.)

But the Mayo Clinic book doesn’t differentiate between spotting and bleeding in their guidance. And the internet isn’t much use either. Even though I knew what I would find there, I looked. It was what you’d expect.

Oh My God! You’re dying! Go to the ER immediately!

And my brain is saying, “But it’s three little drops of blood. And that’s it. Nothing on the pantyliner. No cramps. I don’t think I need to go to the ER.”

But the Mayo Clinic is saying the same thing. Okay, minus the hyperbole.

And then I remembered that Lori had given me her number. I hadn’t planned on ever using it. It was just reassuring to know that I had it. I got her voicemail and left a message. I figured I’d call Labor & Delivery if I didn’t hear back from her.

But she called back. She’d been the midwife on service, so I would have gotten her if I had called Labor & Delivery. We talked about my symptoms, or lack thereof. She agreed that it could wait until morning. “Maybe it’s a UTI,” she suggested. She told me to call the clinic in the morning to get a lab order. And then she told me she’d tell the midwife who was coming on for the night just in case I needed to call overnight.

And I managed to get some sleep.

After talking to the clinic, I called my mom and asked her to go to the lab with me. This turned out to be a REALLY good plan because the week continued to pester me. I got to the lab, went to take out my driver’s license and insurance card, and discovered that I didn’t have them. I’d never taken them out of the pocket of my market basket. On Saturday. I’ve been driving all week without my license. Fortunately, I’ve been to the lab recently enough that everything was current in the computer, so I didn’t have to go home just so that I could pee in a cup.

The results? Negative. Yup. Still UTI free. No clue what was going on. We’ll just go with Nicki’s suggestion. “Maybe your cervix sneezed.”

P.S. It’s Mole Day today. I’m wearing my new Mole Day socks. I figured that would be plenty of celebration. But apparently my body decided it needed a closer visit with chemistry in honor of Mole Day this year.

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October 22, 2014

The past few days have been rough. I don’t know why. No particular reason. Lots of little things. Colored by one not-so little thing. But I learned about that after the roughness started. So that’s not the cause. Just the cause of the continuation.

Last week, a friend and colleague stopped to chat. And by stopped to chat, I mean to commiserate about ART. She’s going through IVF. If I remember correctly, this will be her fifth round. She’s had two miscarriages. And everyone is pregnant. And I’m glad that she shared. I’m glad that she knows that I’m here to listen. Even if I’m one of the “everyone” who is pregnant. I know prayers, good thoughts, whatever positivity you wish to send into the universe on her behalf is appreciated.

So there was that.

And then, because my sciatica has been awful, I’ve been taking the elevator. This does mean I can stop and chat with our receptionist whom I hardly ever see now that Courtney takes care of checking the mail every day. (The stairs bypass the reception desk.) Our receptionist is due in December. (I told you everyone is pregnant.) So we were talking about being pregnant. And she doesn’t read my blog. So she knew that Sofia had died, but she didn’t know how. And I told her. And there are things I’m happier not thinking about, not remembering.

Friday night, I was okay. Until I climbed into bed. And then I started to sob. To weep. And I couldn’t stop. No particular reason. Just my brain thinking too hard. Worrying about things that aren’t worth worrying about. Being scared that I won’t love this baby as much as I loved Sofia. That this baby will grow up thinking that I’m trying to replace the baby I lost and that it can’t live up to my expectations. That it will be a boy and it will know I wanted a girl. That it will be a girl and will think it can never be as perfect as the baby who died.

So I called my mom. And she said that when she was pregnant with me, she shared the same fears with her mom. Grandma told her that love is not finite. That we will be amazed when we have that second child at how much more love there is to give.

We talked for a couple of hours. And I was finally able to stop crying. And I could breathe again. And I finally fell asleep. I didn’t sleep well, but I slept some.

The cloud came on Saturday. One of my cousin’s best friends has a five-year-old daughter. Jenna has been in chemo for a brain tumor for a while. Friday, she received a terminal diagnosis. The tumor is inoperable. And growing. (I thanked my mom for not sharing this info when we’d been on the phone Friday night even though Shawn had already shared it with her.)

And now I’m going through a work week of little things. I left my keys at home on Monday, so I couldn’t get into my desk to get to the full bottle of water. I knew I had a full bottle, so I didn’t pack one. We have an applicant who is making things much more difficult than they are. (When you finish the form, hit the “submit” button. Is that so hard?) The Dean is having his assistant reschedule meetings without bothering to do a busy search to see if invitees will actually be available and not, say, working an ER shift. The bathroom is too damn far away. (I told you my sciatica has been bad.) My phone decided it wanted to just text and take calls and not be a smartphone anymore. (I rebooted. That fixed it. Thanks for the suggestion, Daddy. I didn’t have enough brain power to come up with that as a possible solution myself.)

I’m having a hard time focusing. I know I’ve gotten some work done, but I’m not sure I could tell you what. And I sit here and can feel that I’m on the edge. One more thing and I’ll start crying again. And it won’t be anyone’s fault. Not really. I’m just having a hard time keeping my balance right now.

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What’s Making Me Happy

October 17, 2014

  1. On the work front, Dr Z and I had an awesome meeting with our new neighbors, the Division of Epidemiology & Biostatistics.  We all agreed that there were a lot of ways that we could work together, and we’re already moving forward with it.  There are any number of things that I’ve been wanting to do with our CME program since I became a coordinator, and now it finally looks like we can start doing some of them.  Very exciting and very positive.  A nice reminder that I really do like my job!
  2. This article on Slate.  Because philosophy humor.
  3. Neil Patrick Harris was on Fresh Air.  Need I say more?
  4. Ari Shapiro is on this week’s Pop Culture Happy Hour.  I haven’t had a chance to listen to it yet, but I know that he’s on it because he announced it on Facebook.  I quote: “If you don’t already subscribe to NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour Podcast… 1) What is wrong with you? 2) You can listen to my guest-appearance in this week’s episode here: (P.S. This was so much fun.)”  The consensus among the commenters was that #1 was exactly the right question to ask.
  5. Last week’s Finding Your Roots (which I finally watched over the weekend) was amazing.  Probably one of the best episodes they’ve had yet, and for no other reason than history contains some incredible stories, one of which happened to be unearthed in the genealogical research done for this episode.  If you watch no other episode, you should at least watch this one.

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Madge & Dorcas Do Their Thang

October 13, 2014

I don’t know why, but I foolishly thought it wasn’t possible.  I mean, I’m an intelligent, educated woman.  But I really didn’t think Madge and Dorcas would get bigger.  And by bigger, I don’t mean that I didn’t know they’d grow when I got pregnant again.  I didn’t think they’d grow more than they did with my first pregnancy.  They’ve outgrown all but one of the bras I picked up at Mastec when I was pregnant with Sofia.

Think about that.  After Sofia was born, they shrunk.  They shrunk to something smaller than their pre-pregnancy size.

So come Saturday morning, I was effectively back down to one bra.  (Okay, I have a few nursing bras, but they’re not underwires, so they really aren’t terribly work appropriate.  Comfortable, yes.  Support, not so much.)

Now, since fall has come to Michigan, and we’re looking at mornings hovering around freezing (or at least we had been until this week when the weather is supposed to be back up in the 60s and 70s… oh, Michigan!), I really needed a coat.  Don’t get me wrong.  My fleece is plenty warm still.  And it’s wonderfully comfortable.  And I love wearing it.  But I like to wear tunic-style sweaters for work.  And there’s something about putting on a long sweater and then a fleece hoodie that really makes one feel unprofessional.  I needed a coat to wear to work.  And my parents said they’d buy me one for Christmas.  And Motherhood has their winter coats in.

Yes, I am now in possession of a very nice wool coat that will last me through this entire pregnancy.  And I should be able to wear it while baby-wearing, too.  (Again, now that I have a coat, it was 55 when I went to work this morning and didn’t need any additional layers beyond my work clothes.  Oh, Michigan!)

And while my mom and I were there, we figured it was worth a shot to try on bras.  Miraculously, we found one.  Unfortunately, it only comes in black.  But the one Mastec bra I have left is nude, so at least this brought me back up to two bras.  I’m not sure what I’ll do if Madge and Dorcas decide to grow much more…

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What’s Making Me Happy This Week

October 10, 2014

What a week!  Somehow Courtney and I didn’t notice that IT had moved off our floor.  That’s really only relevant because it meant that construction has begun on our floor.  Said construction includes the office immediately next to mine.  The drilling, oh the drilling!

But I digress.

  1. I was walking back from the bathroom, and Connie came up behind me.  She shook her head and said, “We need to get that baby to dance a jig so that it will get off your sciatic!”
  2. Someone made a machine gun that assembles and shoots paper airplanes.  Really.  Thanks for the tip, Marketplace Tech!
  3. Because… why not?  One of the topics on Science Friday today was the evolution of the violin.  As in comparing it to biological evolution.  Because science?  It really was interesting.  Thought of my friends Sheri and Betsy when they got briefly sidetracked by a discussion of the viola.
  4. The crew over at Pop Culture Happy Hour told me that Terry Crews is now one of the voices available on Waze.  If you don’t already use this GPS app, I highly recommend it.  And now it comes with Terry Crews!  I let him give me directions home from work.  He gets super excited.  Which is one of the reasons we love him.
  5. Oh, yeah, and then there was yesterday.  When I had my ultrasound.  I think I forgot to mention that.  Everything looks good.  Lori saw nothing on the report that was concerning.  (I’m trying to convince myself that 54th percentile is a good thing.  Yes, I know that it is.  No, the irrational half of my brain does not believe that.)  It was a relief to see it with its hand over its face.  Just like its sister.
  6. And one final thing that’s that different kind of making me happy.  Not funny or even cheery, but oh so relevant.  Honestly, if this had been posted on WordPress, I would have reblogged it.  In real time.  It’s a wonderful post called How to Help a Grieving Friend: 11 Things to Do When You’re Not Sure What to Do.  Read this.  Save this.  Share this.  Keep it handy to give to your friends when you’ve lost a parent or sibling or significant other or <pfft pfft pfft> child.  Take numbers 6 & 7 to heart.  I can’t tell you how many people said “let me know if there’s anything I can do.”  I know they meant it.  At least I’m pretty sure they did.  I still can’t tell you what I could have asked them to do.  But if they’d said, “I’m going to clean out your fridge every Friday.”  Or “I’m going to check your mail every day.”  (Okay, my mom wound up doing that, but you get the idea.)  This post is just so well written.  The next time you need to comfort a friend, the next time a friend needs to comfort you, go back to this post.

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Ghost Moon

October 8, 2014

I sat in the car for a while when I got to work this morning and watched the moon set.  And when it was out of view, I walked up to the third floor and found a window in an empty conference room and watched it a bit longer.  And no one seemed to notice either me or the moon.  Which is a pity.

It was a magnificent sight this morning.  The moon in nearly total eclipse sinking out of view as the sun rose on the other side.  And I saw my colleagues walk from their cars to the building without so much as a glance.  I saw college students waiting at the bus stop with their heads buried in their phones.

And meanwhile, a ghostly moon was drifting slowly toward the horizon.  The ghostly galleon of poetic fame.

I just wish I had a westward facing window in my apartment so that I might have watched it longer.

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