Thursday, July 31, 2008


...for all the supportive comments. I wasn't sure whether to post about it, honestly. I mean, as veterans of IF and/or regular readers of IF blogs, we've all seen our share of darkness and bitterness online. But I just didn't feel like posting one more tale of woe. I hate what my blog became when I was in my darkest times before Bat Girl's birth--though I of course leave it all up there for honesty's sake, and to let others know they aren't alone--and I didn't want to go back to being one of those blogs where, as much as you care about the person writing it, you're like, "Oh god, what is she complaining about now?"

But again in the interest of honesty, I continue to put it out there. I probably won't post about therapy in any detail, because who really wants to read that? However, if in the course of therapy I hit on the magic formula for wanting to have sex nonstop (other than, "get in a time machine and go back to being 21 years old"), I will most definitely share it with you all.

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Friday, July 25, 2008

Welcome to crazytown

Yesterday I saw a new therapist. I have been in therapy before, but it has been six or seven years since the last time I saw a shrink--before I got married, anyway. The purported reason for my seeing this new therapist was my complete lack of libido and its attendant negative effects on my marriage.

I know I've been promising to blog about the whole sex thing in detail but I've just never gotten around to it, so you'll have to make do with a quick summary: No sex allowed during entire pregnancy, and I was frankly too cranky about it to "take care" of my husband in other ways instead. After I was cleared for sex post-delivery, we tried a few times, but each time was very painful for me. My libido has also been non-existent. It has been close to a year since the last time we tried and while I miss sex, it is only in a theoretical kind of way. I am too tired, too sapped physically and mentally and emotionally, to feel anything approaching desire, and I also just don't feel very sexy or sexual these days. I recognize that this is not good for my relationship with my husband (who is increasingly frustrated with this state of affairs), and I even mentioned it to my OB at my most recent checkup--even asked for a hormone workup to make sure there was nothing physically wrong. She basically said, "You work full-time and you have a kid. Of course you don't want to have sex. If you DID want to have a lot of sex, that would be unusual."

At any rate, I finally got my shit together and managed to find a therapist who not only specializes in post-partum issues, she also specializes in infertility issues AND she takes my insurance. Our first session was yesterday.

I feel pretty confident that, while there are probably biological and post-partum components to my current sexless state, a lot of it stems from relationship issues (sorry, can't go into detail), and the relationship issues and lack of sex feed into each other in a vicious circle. So I arrived prepared to delve into that. I also recognize, intellectually at least, that the whole IF/tough pregnancy/breastfeeding clusterfuck probably left me with some lingering issues about my body and its capabilities. But, while I was certainly prepared to talk about those things, I generally feel on a day-to-day basis that I've bounced back pretty well from all that crap, and in fact I feel pretty proud that I've been able to let go of the horrible bitterness I once felt.

However, when I was giving the therapist a short summary of my backstory, by way of explaining how our sex life had gone south in the first place--two years infertility (which is so short in the grand scheme of things!), tough pregnancy, one trimester of bleeding, two trimesters of contractions, four months of bedrest, c-section, breastfeeding disaster--she kept making these shocked and sympathetic and wow-how-horrible noises. A therapist who specializes in seeing women with fucked-up reproductive histories was shocked and appalled by what I had been through. And the floodgates creaked open, and I started to cry, and I couldn't stop sobbing.

So I guess I'm not as healed as I thought I was. I'm going to have my work cut out for me.

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Sunday, July 20, 2008

10 things I learned on my summer vacation*

*credit due to Shanna. And yes, I got back from said vacation two weeks ago. It turns out it takes a long time to catch up from a week away, even if you technically only missed three days of work.

1. Get to the airport way earlier than you think you need to. Because when you take into account checking bags, getting through security, getting food for everyone, eating food, running around trying to burn off energy before a flight, and early preboarding, one hour is not nearly enough.

2. If you put brown knit pants on your somewhat bald daughter (because she needs something comfy to wear on the plane), the flight attendant will think she is a boy, even though she is wearing a pink and orange flowered T-shirt. Because heaven forbid that a girl wear neutral colors or anything other than pink ruffles from head to toe.

3. Keep your kid in their infant carseat as long as possible. In fact, buy this carseat and if you have a tiny kid like mine, you'll be able to use the seat well into toddlerhood. Which means no lugging a huge convertible seat through the airport--you can hang the infant seat off the back of your stroller by the handle. Awesome.

4. You really need a lot fewer toys and entertainment than you think you do. We got by for six whole days with a magnadoodle, a toy cell phone, a couple little cars (tucked inside a little purse, for the joy of carrying and removing and replacing), bear for bedtime, books for bedtime, and a little finger puppet that lives in the diaper bag anyway. (And portable DVD player stocked with Blue's Clues for emergencies.) BG entertained herself for hours carrying around the little individual creamers that came with the hotel room coffee pot, and the plastic-wrapped cups, and our empty water bottles. And the emergency instructions card on the plane.

5. Waiters at nice restaurants who are kind to small children and the parents of said small children deserve a special place in heaven. Especially when a child throws fries on the floor and the mother goes to pick them up and the waiter says, "No, no, don't worry about that, this is your time to relax and enjoy yourself."

6. Traveling with a small child is really, really different from traveling with just adults. That sounds stupid, but it didn't really hit me until this trip. Our old style of travel was to basically eat our way through any given city. This time, we managed to eat reasonably well, but forget about swanky bars and posh restaurants with velvet banquettes and low lighting. And all activities were extremely toddler-friendly.

6a. Kids love aquariums. They just do.

7. Wedding ceremony held outdoors on a damp lawn + four-inch heels + toddler who insists on being carried all the time = not an ideal combination.

8. 17-month-olds are a lot more flexible than you would guess. Napping on planes, adjusting to a three-hour time change AND staying up later than usual, spending way more time in the carseat than you're used to, eating out every meal, taking baths in the big tub and showers with Mommy when you're used to a small toddler tub, lots of strangers, all no problem.

9. However, no matter how flexible a kid is, taking a total of only 45 minutes of nap on the day of a big event translates into very cranky child, especially when Mommy suddenly gets up and leaves you with Daddy and walks down this long aisle and reads some poem to all these people and you're supposed to be quiet but you just want MOMMY!

9a. If you take a toddler to a wedding, don't expect to hear or see much of the wedding.

10. Vacations are nice, but it's good to be home.