Monday, January 21, 2013
Friday, July 8, 2011
The same woman who taught the breastfeeding class (who I mentioned in yesterday's post) was giving the tour. She recognized me and Chris right away and even had me answer questions/act as her assistant as the tour wore on. Clearly, I was established as the teacher's pet--which, normally doesn't bother me. But I'm so intimidated in mom circles, that I couldn't help but feel like all the other moms were shooting daggers my way.
Eventually, we got off the elevator at the Labor & Delivery floor, and the entire class was in the waiting area. Our tour guide was sharing some logistics and explaining what we were about to see. Well, who should walk through the door but MY obstetrician! It was awesome. She came right over, said hello to me and Chris, rubbed my belly... I mean, the woman all but gave me a hug. Chris and I looked at each other, and immediately, we were put at ease.
Shortly thereafter, we walked through the hallway and into the waiting room. We were about to enter one of the delivery rooms (all of which are private, by the way) and therefore, we passed by the nurse's station. Well, who should we see at the desk but my friend Julie--a labor and delivery nurse at the hospital. Neither of us thought to check her schedule, confirm when/if she'd be there, or even alert each other to the possibility that we could run into one another. This time, there was more squealing, more hugging, and more hushed conversation as the tour guide said, "Well, you just know everyone, don't you?"
But all of this is not the reason why I'm writing today.
Here you be: As part of the tour, our guide mentioned the possibility of listening to soothing music while you're laboring and delivering as a means of relaxation. Both Chris and I had heard of this, but we never really considered it until being in the room, looking at the bed, and imagining ourselves going through the miracle of birth.
So, onto the awkward. I'm assuming that labor will take me a while. And I'm assuming that if I bring CDs, I'm probably going to get annoyed with one person's voice for all that time. Make a playlist on your iPod, you say? Well, yes. We thought of that. But how long do you plan for? What if it runs out? Do you just repeat? Will I get annoyed with the fact that I might not be surprised at what comes next? For these reasons, I'm thinking Pandora might be a nice option. But here's where it gets uncomfortable. I'm listening to one of my created stations right now. It's easily my favorite--lots of airy female vocalists and even-tempo songs. I listen to this at work regularly, as it relaxes me and helps me focus. HOWEVER (and this is a big however), many--if not all--of the songs feel or sound like break up songs. Like sad bastard break up songs.
It's weird to listen to sad bastard music while you're giving birth, right? I mean, I've never done this before. I don't know. But I'm assuming that's not the "dream" introduction to the world that you'd like to give your daughter: "Hello, little one! Welcome to the world. This place is pain-filled--sometimes horribly so--and hard to navigate. But some bitchin' art usually comes out of it." Or the memory you'd like to share with her when she's old enough to hear the story of her birth: "So, lovely. You were born. And I'll never forget it. Sara Bareilles was singing 'Gravity,' and the words--
'You're neither friend nor foe,
though I can't seem to let you go,
the one thing that I still know,
is that you're keeping me down...'
have very special meaning for me."
Don't think I'll be winning any "Mother of Year" trophies with that one.
So, I find myself at a loss. Music? No music? Different music? Length of music? Medium of music?
Whatever advice you'd like to share is appreciated. I promise. No judgements.
Thursday, July 7, 2011
All this to say, I kind of freaked out. To which my husband said, "Um, Jessie? The baby's kind of running out of room in there. She's probably just hanging out."
Common sense is so amazing!
Why don't I have any of it?
Not long after that, my dad's voice came rushing to my mind: "Jessie, when things start to go wrong in pregnancy, they start to go really wrong. There's blood. There's pain. It's not pretty. Don't spin yourself out of control."
But like a dradel on 'roids, that's exactly what I did. I scoured the internet, looking for other people who were suffering the same trauma. It turns out, there are some *really* stupid people out there. And to be honest, stupid people frighten me. Which then makes the terror worse... because then I start to fear that I'm actually one of the stupid ones. (Are you getting tired of reading this? I'm sort of getting tired of writing like this. I hope I mellow out soon. But what can you expect from a girl who hasn't had a drink in 8 months!?!?)
Which brings me to my next point: birthing class. We went to a class last night and talked mostly about breastfeeding. The teacher was cute, and asked us who was craving sushi? Beer? Any kind of hard liquor?
Literally, I was the only person in the entire room that raised her hand. And I raised it each time. Sushi? Hell yeah. Beer? Definitely. Hard liquor? Yes, my 4th of July was sorely lacking--thank you very much. But I mean, come on. Seriously? The judgement from other moms is *insane*. The teacher even commented: "I love this woman. At least she's honest."
So, to all of the other moms in that damn breastfeeding class--I'm calling you out. In fact, I'm willing to put money on the fact that our husbands will run into each other at the same sushi place when I force mine to get me a spicy tuna roll and eel hand roll the SECOND the doctor clears me. Oh, and a saki. For the road.
But there are also moms (and women in general) who make life easier to bear; who help shoulder burdens; who free you from needless anxiety and worry; who encourage you to write because they know you love it, even though you think you don't have anything to say. They call you when they know you're overwhelmed. They email you back RIGHT away when you're nervous. They never make you feel stupid. They remind you that you've never done this before and it's going to be ok. It's going to be gnarly. But totally awesome and ok. Thank God for them.
Monday, October 18, 2010
I've stumbled on a few blogs recently that I really enjoy. Both of them are written by women who have such compelling and different voices... yet, there's something similar that I can't quite nail down. Perhaps the fact that they're both extremely talented is enough of a connection. But it's more than that. Neither of them are pretentious or self-glorifying, which I think people in the "blogosphere" can so easily be. For lack of a better phrase, they're so clearly them. Which, truth be told, is a bit awkward for me to say--considering I don't actually know either of them.
But. Here they are: Kelle Hampton and Sarah Markley.
Check them out. Enjoy their voices. Be inspired.
Thursday, September 23, 2010
- Taking a shower
- Doing my hair
- Putting on make-up
I almost NEVER accomplish all 3 on any given morning. In fact, if I'm honest, my hair is sorely mistreated. But, I will say, I've gotten quite clever at messy buns and half completed braids. This makes is appear as though I've tried to get my hair to do something... but really, I've spent the extra 15 minutes snoozing. Because apparently, I'd rather sleep than look cute.
I don't even have kids and I'm already sacrificing appearance for comfort. The writing on the wall is clear: I will not be one of those moms that's well put together and adorable.
But, I'll be comfortable. The kids will be comfortable. And hopefully, that'll be enough.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
The thing I struggle with most in my relationship with God is trying to make sense of all the suffering and evil that takes place in the world--and knowing that God could stop and prevent all of it. But doesn't. Why not? I mean, really. AIDS. Darfur. Haiti. Cancer. Rape. Sometimes I'm simply overwhelmed by it.
There's this one scene from Blood Diamond (with Jennifer Connolley and Leonardo DiCaprio) where they're talking about the monstrosities that took place in Africa during Apartheid. And Leo's character says, "I wonder. Will God ever forgive us for what we've done to each other? And then I remember, God left this place a long time ago."
Or maybe you remember that "Dear God" song by XTC. I just heard Sarah McLauchlan do a cover of it on the radio the other day. And the last verse is still ringing in my ears:
You're always letting us humans down
The wars you bring, the babes you drown.
Those lost at sea and never found,
And it's the same the whole world 'round.
The hurt I see helps to compound
That Father, Son, and Holy Ghost
Is just somebody's unholy hoax,
And if you're up there you'd perceive,
That my heart's here upon my sleeve.
If there's one thing I don't believe in...
I mean. This stuff breaks my heart. And not because these people don't know Jesus. It kills me because I can see and understand why people believe in this. For me, sometimes the only thing that keeps my faith alive is the vain hope that there has to be something better. There just has to be. This can't be it.
So anyway. The latte.
After meeting with my director this week, she suggested I do a spiritual discipline with my favorite treat: the latte I treat myself with once a week (usually on Fridays). She advised me to take some time and really experience it with all my senses. To let this be my "devotional" or "God time." So, today I decided to do just that. Here's an excerpt from my journal about the experience:
I love feeling the drink roll down my throat and feeling it settle in my stomach. I love the lingering taste it leaves on the back of my throat. It's almost like I taste more of the flavor after it's been swallowed. Maybe God is like that, too. He's in our midst and always present--but it's not until after we think He's already left that we feel his presence more strongly. I still have the taste of coffee on my breath, my tongue, even though it's been a while since I took a sip.