Monday, November 26, 2007

Happy blogiversary to me

Two years ago today, I wrote my very first blog post. (My first and second blog posts, actually.) I'd been reading infertility blogs for over a year (the usual story: googling some variation on PCOS and infertility, stumbled across Julie, got hooked), but never thought I would start one of my own. But when I was hit with my UU diagnosis, I was filled with so much rage and self-pity and frustration and grief, and the only thing I could think to do with all of it was to sit down at the computer and pour it onto the Internet.

One year ago today, I had just hit the 28-week mark in my pregnancy, and completed the first four of what would end up being fourteen weeks of modified bedrest. I was scared and lonely and bored and couldn't see further than the next doctor's appointment.

Through it all, this blog has helped me keep my sanity. YOU all have helped me keep my sanity. The silver lining of all the crap I went through to have a child is that I was able to connect with this amazing, hilarious, loving, supportive, worldwide community. I couldn't have done it without all of you. So happy blogiversary to me, but a huge thanks to you, my online peeps.

(Okay, that isn't the only silver lining. There's also the fact that my dysfunctional ovaries and fucked-up uterus--not to mention my husband's B-plus sperm--were able to create and gestate the most delicious baby on earth.)
[Picture deleted for privacy. Sorry!]

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

A few philosophical questions

• How can you "sleep train"--and no, not CIO, but the most basic move of laying the baby in the crib at bedtime and sitting on the floor next to the crib to act as a soothing presence--when the baby, instead of lying there peacefully and drifting off to sleep, stands up, reaches through the bars to grab your nose, and laughs uproariously?

• Does it count as CIO if, at 3 a.m., you conclude that your hour-long efforts to soothe the crying baby are only riling her up, place her in the crib (where she immediately pulls up and continues to wail) and stand there until she literally falls down and goes to sleep? (My husband did this, not me. Hey, it worked.)

• At what point does a sleep regression cease to be a sleep regression and merely become a way of life?

(Nearly three months of "regression" now. Ughsfkunjwgiusefjhbg.)

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Cute overload

(Look, I don't have a baby book, so just indulge me, huh?)

Bat Girl took her first steps today!!!!!!

She's been getting ready for weeks now, pulling up then letting go for a few seconds, holding on to the sofa with one hand and sort of marching in place (hilarious), and more recently letting go long enough to give herself a round of applause ("AAaaayyyy!"). Today we were at a playdate and she pulled up on my friend's coffee table, let go, and took exactly one step before sitting back down. I almost cried, I was so excited. Then this evening, she was standing holding on to the subwoofer (yes, we let our baby play on expensive sound equipment, why do you ask?) when she let go, clapped her hands excitedly, and like it was nothing in the world, took three steps--left, right, left--then fell to her hands and knees and crawled off.

So exciting! And OMG we are so fucked!

Other cutenesses this week:
• Lately she has been holding her favorite little finger puppets up to my mouth (and sometimes just shoving them into my mouth) like she wants to feed them to me. (Exaggerated comical chomping noises in response are a big hit.) It is so cool to see her watching and imitating us this way.
• The other night, instead of falling asleep with her bedtime bottle like she usually does (I know, I know, it's a bad habit that will lead to all her [nonexistent] teeth rotting out of her head, we are terrible parents), she downed the whole thing then was still awake, so I turned off the lights to rock her to sleep. She snuggled in to me, grabbed the pendant I was wearing, and played with it while occasionally gazing up and me and giggling. Then she decided to reach up and pat my cheeks and chin, still giggling. And then my heart exploded into a million pieces.

(We will return to your regularly scheduled bitching and moaning next week. If I can't get my act together to write about my in-laws in the next few days, I am sure I will be VERY motivated to write about them after spending Thanksgiving with them.)

Monday, November 12, 2007

A promise of posts to come

I started writing this long post detailing my Friday night (wherein Bat Girl SCREAMED nonstop for over an hour and nothing, NOTHING I could do made one damn bit of difference--methinks she is teething again, not that any of her previous bouts of "teething" have yielded any actual "teeth") but the minutiae were just too damn boring. So: baby screaming, mommy crying, 5 a.m. wakeup, etc. Nice.

I have a bunch of heavy posts swirling around in my head but am not sure which to tackle first. If anyone has a preference, vote in the comments.
1. My lingering issues over our breastfeeding struggles and how that's been affecting my thoughts about having more children
2. Sex, or the lack thereof in the Electric household
3. Why I still feel so jealous and possessive and threatened by the idea of BG loving and being loved by my in-laws, instead of being happy that she has all four grandparents still living and that they all want a relationship with her (because I am cold and dead inside?)

Thursday, November 08, 2007


When my husband told me to call his mother, who wanted to ask me about Christmas presents for Bat Girl, I was pleased. I have been wanting to tell the grandparents that I'd prefer no plastic toys this Christmas--don't get me wrong, we have our share of giant hunks of plastic in our living room, but they are hand-me-downs and therefore (in my rationale) at least less environmentally horrible than something purchased new. And with all the recalls, I'd just as soon play it safe. At any rate, I was thinking of setting up an Amaz*n wish list with all the nice wood and organic cotton toys I've been craving, along with some Babylegs and other cute things. So I was happy that my MIL wanted to ask me what I wanted for Bat Girl for the holidays. Because I'm kind of selfish and controlling in that way.

But no, she had already picked out two giant hunks of plastic crap she liked, and just wanted to know which I prefer. And because just that morning my husband had reminded me how sensitive his mother is, and how I shoot down all her ideas and make her feel like she does everything wrong (like, say, having her carpets Scotchgarded right before we visit), I didn't have the heart to tell her that for what she was planning on spending on the plastic crap plus a savings bond (like...savings bonds? who still buys those?) she could get us something we really need, like clothes. (I mean, you could put wrapping paper on an empty box and Bat Girl wouldn't care.) So I voted for the less offensive piece of plastic crap, and even kept my mouth shut when she offered to dig out my husband's old plastic trains from the attic (from the 70s, probably covered in lead paint) for Bat Girl to play with when we visit for Thanksgiving. (Luckily, when I told my husband that, he vetoed the idea immediately.)

My in-laws live in a relatively rural area where the only place to buy kids' stuff is W*al*m*art and they barely know how to use email (my sister-in-law has to help them look at the photo website I set up for Bat Girl), let alone buy things online. They're certainly not interested in my lectures about the negative environmental and health impacts of all the plastic junk in our lives--they don't even have recycling there, believe it or not. So it's not like I can tell them, "Oh, just buy anything you like from Oompa." And I suppose it is part of the grandmother job description to buy useless fun crap and feed children garbage, while the mother hangs out in the kitchen pureeing organic vegetables. So I guess I just keep my mouth shut, accept the gifts in the loving spirit with which they are given, and live with the compromises.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007


I was just browsing the boards at a well-known attachment parenting site...I'm not generally a BB gal, preferring the unfettered egotism of my own blog (heh), but I like to poke around and see what other people are thinking. I do get good ideas sometimes, and generally I take what I agree with (the gentle stuff that jives with my instincts) and dismiss what I don't (the crazy extremism).

Anyway, there is a thread up right now that is making my blood boil. Someone posted that after she signed up for the coupon mailing list at a big chain baby store, she received a huge box of formula samples in the mail, and she was wondering what to do with them. Most people who replied recommended that she donate them to a food bank or women's shelter. But a sizable and vocal minority advocated THROWING THEM OUT. Why? Because maybe, just maybe, someone would get the formula at the food bank and it would tip her over from breastfeeding to formula feeding.

Okay. So don't even get me started on the horrifying wastefulness of throwing out FOOD (damn expensive food at that). If donated, the formula will more than likely go to someone who really needs it (and as one poster pointed out, there are many reasons beyond ignorance or coercion by evil formula companies that someone might not breastfeed...illness, inability to pump at low-wage job, etc.) and will therefore be FEEDING a BABY who doesn't deserve to starve to prove some overwrought lactivist point. Isn't that worth the small risk that it will go to someone who could have breastfed but is too selfish/evil/stupid (that's a heavy layer of sarcasm dripping off this sentence) to do so?

This website is a heavy advocate of the WHO Code, to the point of once banning an exclusively pumping mother from selling her old bottles in their classifieds section. This is just another example of even the best-meant thinking can turn completely cruel and moronic if taken to extremes.


Sunday, November 04, 2007

Nine months

Technically Bat Girl will turn nine months old tomorrow, but since I'll be at work and trying very hard not to waste time puttering around on the Internet (...ha), I thought I'd take time out from cursing whoever thought up Daylight Savings Time (clearly not someone with a baby who already sleeps like crap) to mark the occasion. Feel free to skip this one if you're not into baby minutiae.

At nine months old, BG is a crawling speed demon, zooming across the floor after the cat at Mach 3, and exploring pretty much every dusty, hairy inch of floor in our apartment, except for the kitchen (because it contains the litter box, and now you suddenly don't ever want to eat at my place, do you?) and, oddly, her own room (because she's generally only ever in there to sleep or be cuddled or changed). The steps up from the sunken living room pose no challenge now. She's also been experimenting with standing without holding on to anything and taking little hands-free dives from, say, the coffee table to the couch. We think she will probably be walking by Christmas. Unfortunately, all this activity comes with a lot of bumps and bruises, especially when you have mostly hardwood floors, and she's currently sporting a scab on her nose and a wicked bruise on her right ear.

She definitely says "Mama" now, at least in MY opinion. In fact, two Fridays ago, when I came home from work, she shouted "MAMA!" and zoomed over to the door on all fours--a pretty awesome moment. She also calls out "Mamamama" when she wakes up in the morning and is ready for me to come get her for our morning play session--and sometimes cries it in the middle of the night. My husband is jealous and is working very hard on getting her to say "Dada." Interestingly, I think I've figured out that "mehmehmehmeh" is her way of saying, "Dammit, get me a bottle NOW, you fools!"

She loves to play with my necklaces and my hair. Other favorite toys include measuring cups, these little finger puppets I got for $1 each, sugar packets at restaurants, and a stuffed carrot (part of a whole veggie set--she sleeps with the green beans). Her toys stay very clean because, oddly enough, she never puts anything in her mouth, except sometimes her fingers (and she sucks on her wrist when she's tired). So obviously finger foods and self-feeding have not happened yet, though I put some organic "O" cereal on her high chair tray at every mealtime, so she can work on her pincer grasp and I can have a few whine-free seconds to get her food ready. She goes through phases of loving solids and not-so-much-loving solids--right now is an anti phase, though she LOVED the beans I picked out of my chili for her the other night. I've been getting bored with the stuff I'm feeding her, so probably she's bored too and I need to be introducing some different foods and combos more aggressively (and broadening my repertoire a little).

What else...sleep is getting a little better (fingers crossed)--we've only had one or two wakings the past few nights. The latest wrinkle is that she will no longer go down for a nap with me--on the weekends, either my husband has to put her down or I have to trick her into a nap by taking her out in the stroller. I spent two hours yesterday afternoon trying to get her to go down until finally my husband pointed out that she's probably too excited to see me during the day and doesn't want to go to sleep. Which is one of those weird happy/sad working mom things. (Also happy/sad: the way she smiles and gets excited when she hears my voice on speakerphone; the fierceness with which she clings to my neck when I get home from work, so that I can't even put her down to pee.)

She's starting to get the hang of waving (though she hasn't quite worked out where the fingers go and sometimes throws a "peace out" or, for my readers across the Atlantic, a rude gesture), and she's fully on board with clapping, which she'll do any time one of us says "Yaaaayyy!" (Sometimes she responds with "Aaaayyyyy!" all Fonz-like.) Super cute.

Okay, boringest post ever. Thanks for tolerating my mommy overload.