Tag Archives: parenting

Maybe I CAN Wait

Yesterday I got into the elevator and there was a young woman in there with her newborn baby girl.

Me: “Awww how old is she?”

Woman: “Almost a month.”

Me: “She’s adorable.”

Woman: “Thank you. How far along are you?”

Me: “A few weeks to go! I can’t WAIT to not be pregnant!”

And then the woman’s tired, weary eyes grew wide and essentially this is the scene that unfolded:

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Bonehead Decisions

Yesterday Eric and I went to the hospital for our 36-week growth scan (a thorough, more in-depth ultrasound to track baby’s growth/health, generally performed every 4-6 weeks in pregnancy). After the hell parade that was Sunday, we* were pretty anxious about what this scan might reveal.

*we = I . Eric doesn’t scare easily. See “marrying me” as evidence.

The first thing the technician said before performing the scan was “So, now that you’re 36 weeks and 3 days along, baby should definitely be in the head-down position, preparing for delivery.”

“Funny you should say that,” I countered. “Because we ended up in the hospital on Sunday due to contractions, nausea, and shortness of breath, only to learn through a quick ultrasound that baby flipped to breech, even though she’s been head down since week 30.”

“Ugh,” said the technician. “What a little stinker.”

I immediately liked her, and wondered if she’d be interested in nannying my child as a side-gig.

“Yes,” I agreed. “We’ve been using the term ‘bozo,’ but stinker works too.”

“Alright, well let’s see what Stinker’s up to today.”

She placed the ultrasound wand on my belly and immediately determined that baby had, somewhere in the past 36 hours, flipped back to head-down (the correct position).

“Oh, thank god,” I sighed, followed quickly by, “Fucking…seriously, though?”

My initial interpretation of this behavior was that this baby is exactly like Eric– an energetic bunny hellbent on filling her day with activities, despite the person sharing space with her being in NO MOOD.

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A true Lerman baby, by contrast, would have found a cozy spot at week 6 and not moved a muscle until she was tugged out with forceps, suction, and a blowhorn at week 43. But this kid has been kicking, jabbing, and playing my ribs like a xylophone for months now. Activities!!!!!!!!!! 52a0e87bb80b3b54af4cff0f2a2266bb imgres-252a0e87bb80b3b54af4cff0f2a2266bb imgres-252a0e87bb80b3b54af4cff0f2a2266bbimgres-2

Textbook Eric.

But upon further contemplation I realized this late-in-the-game-flip-trick was maybe less a display of restless hyperactivity and more indicative of chronic indecisiveness. A sudden, crippling fear that she was doing everything horribly wrong, and attempting to change course when it made absolutely no rational sense to do so. Or perhaps it was just straight-up bitchery performed for her own amusement. All clearly traits of her mother. img_1179-1

Terrifying realization that my daughter might be exactly like me aside, I was relieved that our little gremlin found her way back home because no breech = no automatic c-section, which, sure, might still happen anyway, but at least now it’s not a set inevitable. (Side note: after listening to several women in the throes of excruciating labor on Sunday, a c-section did actually start to sound appealing. But in general I have a rule about avoiding knives to my body if/when possible. Nose job at age 15 aside, of course. That was obviously necessary, according to my mother.)

Then, suddenly, something dawned on me, and I quickly formed a medical hypothesis about Sunday’s trauma that no doctor had offered up, because apparently in this pregnancy it is up to me, with my BA in Sociology, to accurately diagnose all health conditions with no help from the people who attended 7+ years of medical school (see: Hypothyroidism section of this post for further evidence of how I am smarter than all doctors everywhere my own best advocate.)

So I presented my hypothesis to the technician: “Wait, so– on Sunday they chalked my nausea, contractions and difficulty breathing up to dehydration or something I ate. But is it possible I got sick because of her breech position? Because honestly everything felt different and so uncomfortable for that one day, even the way I was able to move and lay, and I think maybe it was because she flipped to breech so quickly?”

“Oh, that’s absolutely possible,” replied the technician/my future nanny/new best friend. “At this stage in pregnancy all of your organs have shifted up, and there’s not much space left in there. So when baby flipped and pressed her head against all those organs, it definitely could have made you sick.”

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What exactly did I know? That this was ALL HER FAULT– NOT MINE! The doctors kept trying to tell me I’m not drinking enough water (literally impossible– I’m blogging this from the porcelain whiz palace, because I live here now) or that I “shouldn’t have eaten that chicken salad” when in reality I drink 20 vats of water a day (as something had to replace the wine) and Gracie Mews Diner would NEVER hurt me.

No, Sunday’s disaster was the result of baby’s choice, not mine, and to be honest I am slightly resentful that I had to take the heat for HER poor decision.

Although I suppose, in the end, this is exactly what parenthood is– begrudgingly accepting responsiblity for your kid’s bonehead choices.

And fine. I accept that. I guess I was just kind of hoping the boneheadedness would hold off until toddlerhood. Or, at the very least, birth.

Anyway, she heard all this so here she is trying to give me the finger.

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I’m sure she’ll have that down by the time I meet her.

 

 

Soothing Sounds

From what I’ve been reading, (4-sentence articles on The Bump app, plus the first 2 pages of every baby book I’ve been assigned), at this point baby can recognize regular, repeated sounds she’s hearing, and these sounds might be soothing to her outside the womb. That’s why many newborns are calmed by lullabies that were frequently sung to them in utero, or the sound of the vacuum.

Our baby will be soothed by mild cursing, text alerts, sarcasm, the universal accent of all food delivery men, and the sound of the toilet flushing.

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I’d Stay In There if I Were Her

Apparently our baby can now fully recognize my voice and maybe even the voices of the regular characters in my life.  Here are the thoughts I imagine she is having as she processes information from the outside world:

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  1. My mom has a lisp. Christ.
  2. My dad keeps saying he hopes I look like my mom. I guess he thinks it’s bad to be something called “prematurely bald” and have something called “stumpy Corgi-legs.” I really hope I look like Mom too, because if I do, Dad said he’s already planned a gift for me on my 16th birthday. It’s called a “rhinoplasty,” and it’s very expensive. I can’t wait to open it! I have the nicest dad.
  3. My mom’s favorite chair is the oval-shaped white one with the hole in the middle that makes a whooshing sound when she stands up. She sits on it all day. Sometimes I wonder if she has time for a job.
  4. My mom has a best friend named Sauvignon Blanc. For some reason, this friend went away. I know this because my mom talks about how much she misses her, pretty much all day every day and sometimes even in her sleep. But the exciting thing is that her best friend will be back, quote, “the second this thing (that’s me!) comes of her vagina.” She says they’ll reunite right there at the hospital bed. It’s nice that Sauvignon is coming back just in time to welcome me to the world.  She sounds like a good, dependable friend. I get why my mom relies on her so much.
  5. There’s only one other kid in my mom’s family, and they named him “The Boog.” I am fucking terrified to be named by these idiots.
  6. I don’t know what a couch is yet but it sounds like something you binge-eat and complain on.
  7. My mom isn’t thrilled about what I’m doing to her body. I know this because whenever my dad politely asks to take a picture of her, she makes a noise that’s kind of a mix between the frantic wailing sound I plan to make once I climb my way out of here, and the sound of a tortured, vomiting animal. She reassures me that she still loves me, she just wishes she had $100,000 so that she could pay for me to destroy someone else’s body and sanity, but then still get to take me home after. It’s something called a “surrogate” and she does a lot of research about it because she’d, quote, “rather manually drill holes through her eye sockets than have to go through this again.”
  8. My mom is pretty fucking dramatic.
  9. My dad’s job is to bring stuff to my mom when she points at it. Sometimes this pointing is accompanied by a whimper or a grunt, but rarely by actual words.
  10. My dad’s other job is to tell my mom about investments, 401Ks, budgeting and savings plans while my mom sits quietly. She’s so quiet while he does this, in fact, that sometimes I think she’s asleep.
  11. Mom loves to be asleep.
  12. There is someone in this family named “Uncle Jeremy.” I don’t really know who he is or what he does or where he goes, but I already understand that at some point down the line, I will be responsible for providing him with food, booze and a place to stay.
  13. Uncle Zack takes four years to say one sentence.
  14. Aunt Steph is the one whose voice never changes. She might be the happiest person in the world, or the saddest. I cannot tell.
  15. Big Steve has all the money. My mom is the best at getting that money. She will teach me, and I will be even better at it than she is.
  16. This family has a tiny pet bird with a very soft voice. Its name is Charla. Cha Cha for short.
  17. My mom has this thing called a blog, where she writes down all her thoughts and feelings and everyone in the world can read them. She seems to love to write and to share her writing but I don’t know, man….seems like this might mortify the shit out of me someday. I think that because I’m family, though, she’ll be careful about what she says, and she won’t purposely embarrass me. But the Cha Cha bird says these are “famous last words.”

 

13?!

My endocrinologist, who I now see for my newly acquired thyroid problem (thank you, pregnancy) is VERY old and the NICEST man, but also quite possibly the weirdest, and he never lets the appointment end without giving me parenting advice that I did not ask for.

Doctor: “The books are going to tell you all kinds of things, and everyone is going to have their opinion, but let me tell you right now, the best thing you can do is have your baby sleep in the bed with you.”

Me: “Oh, yeah I mean I have no judgement about that. I’m not sure it’s the route we’re going to take, but–”

Doctor: “I’m telling you, do it. It’s just the most wonderful thing to have your kid in your bed with you. And don’t let anyone tell you it’s dangerous, or it’s not healthy. That’s nonsense. Don’t listen to the critics– you can have them sleeping in your bed with you ’til they’re 13!”

Me: (laughing) “13!? Alright well THAT’S a little extreme.”

Doctor: “That’s what my wife and I did with our son.”

Me: img_6189-3

Doctor: “Yeah and I’ll tell you what, he grew up to be a very nice Jewish man. Very successful, very smart, very well-known. Went into politics. ”

Oh. Is this him?

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