Friday, June 29, 2007

What to say

I haven't meant to take quite such a long blogging hiatus. Sister's been at the beach with her dad all this week and rather than her absence providing me with a break, I've found instead that Bean's been requiring quite a bit more of my time than I was expecting. Sister keeps Bean entertained much more frequently than I realize, I think.

But the other thing occupying my mind lately is a friend in the intensive care unit of the hospital. She's got very aggressive thryroid cancer and isn't going to last much longer. She may be moving to a hospice facility today, but I'm still waiting to hear from another friend if that's the case.

I have known my sick friend for about 15 years now, but we haven't been in contact much since our lives diverged. She's an ardent feminist and activist, never married or shacked up, never had kids or even pets. I, on the other hand,...well, here I am a stay-at-home mama, pregnant with my 3rd baby and engrossed lately in another quilting project. I love her, but our lives haven't have had much in common for some years. Even the restaurant business fell away as something we both shared.

Still, I visited her in the hospital the other night and it was devastating to see her just dying right in front of me. I spent that night dreaming dark dreams of her and hospitals. My life isn't on hold like certain of her other, closer friends' lives are right now. She has nearly 'round the clock company from her many other friends, none of whom have children. Nevertheless, I've found myself unmotivated to blog about the trivial details of my life just now. Vacations, summer colds, Bean's new tricks, and even the fact that I learned I'm pregnant with daughter #3 on Monday seem like very light fare indeed compared to an old friend dying in the hospital.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007


All is well on the hair front now for those of you who read about my dyeing mishap on Father's Day. Suburban Gorgon's advice to tone down the neon orange with ash brown worked beautifully--after 2 applications, that is. It's rather a darkish auburn now. It's a good thing I have such short hair because while it's a bit strawlike now after so much mistreatment, all the damage will be cut off with a few trims within the next couple months. In the meantime, there's beeswax-based pomade.


Big decision today--whether to take the girls swimming or to the Museum of Natural Science. Probably the museum since it's looking like the sky's going to open up any minute here...

Sunday, June 17, 2007

How not to observe Father's Day

So far I've been a very bad wife today with respect to celebrating Husband's fatherhood. And he's such a very good father, too! I was the one who slept in this morning til 8:15, leaving him to get up with the baby. It's true that since she's a bit feverish she's been sleeping poorly and I got up with her a few times last night while he continued to sleep heavily, but still. I intended to give him a break for a change and do the morning routine so he could lie about.

And then later this morning, I thought I'd sneak in a quick hair-dyeing session while he and Bean were out in the backyard. I was excited to be trying out a nice, bright red to go with my sassy new pixie cut. While the color was processing, though, all hell broke loose with Bean. Husband tried to take her out for a walk with the dog and she grew hysterical. I was about to get in the shower to rinse the color so I couldn't take either the dog or her. And once I did get the color rinsed out and got a glimpse of myself in the mirror I was horrified at the near-neon shade of orange-red my hair had become. Suburban Gorgon, expert in all matters involving hair color screw-ups, reminded me on the phone that pregnancy hormones tend to produce extremely wacky results with hair-dye, even when you're using your usual shade. So once Bean goes down for a nap, I'm going back out for some nice ash brown to try to tone things down a bit.

Father's Day has been all about me so far. Maybe a homemade lemon chess pie will redeem the day for poor Husband later. I've gotta do something.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Summer begins

Sister, Bean, and I have settled into a lovely summer already. This morning, Husband went for an early run with friends, which left me expecting to get up early with the baby. Instead what happened was she stirred at 6:45. I got up to brush my teeth and put in my contact lenses while I still had both hands free. In the meantime, she'd fallen back asleep and I had the time to make the bed, take a shower, brew myself a cup of tea, putter while it was steeping, and then sit on the back porch by myself to drink it. I had an entire hour and a quarter to myself because Bean and Sister didn't wake til 8:00! The birds were singing, the breeze was blowing, and I could faintly feel my little baby squirming around in my belly. Such an unexpectedly relaxing way to start the day.

For the past 3 summers, the daughter of a good friend of mine comes to stay with us while her parents are at work. She's a year older than Sister and they have literally known each other since Sister was born. They don't attend the same schools and aren't in the same grade, but they get along so beautifully. Yesterday I allowed them to watch "What Not to Wear" and "10 Years Younger" with me during Bean's naptime. (DVR'ed, so no commercials.) Afterwards, they went upstairs to give Sister's Barbies makeovers. Since there were only 2--and one of them lost her head long ago--we decided to go to the thrift store in search of new ones once Bean woke up. We hit the Barbie jackpot there, scoring 8 scraggly, naked Barbies that nevertheless cost only $.50 each. All of them received make-overs once we returned home. The upstairs positively reeked of artificially flavored lipgloss, and the floor of Sister's room was strewn with Barbie hair. For two girls who go out of their way to declare to the world how un-girly they are, this struck me as hilarious and sweet.

I can already see the difference in Sister's face after only a little while of this. She's smiley and unstressed and laughing very freely. I love to see her this way.

Friday, June 08, 2007

I won't really do it, okay?

It's weeks like these that make me feel almost tempted to have a big slug of gin despite the pregnancy. Sister's been an emotional wreck during her last week of 3rd grade, going into even more exaggerated than usual fits of hysteria over the discovery that an old toy found in her grandmother's attic contains lead and she'll no longer be allowed to play with it. Whereas before it was merely an interesting curiosity, now that it's made of lead it's suddenly her absolute favorite toy and she' s going to miss it so much. As she's been crying to me all week.

The Ex picked a fight with me in front of Sister a few hours ago because he wanted to change her summertime schedule to begin effective in 5 fucking days, threatening me with a lawyer when I "irrationally" said no, that was not enough notice for me to change all my plans.

And worst of all, a 42-year old friend of mine who was diagnosed with thryoid cancer some months ago has now been told that it's spread to her liver and pancreas. She has no health insurance. I talked with her on the phone a few minutes ago about bringing her some food and listened to her struggle to talk with paralyzed vocal cords and lungs full of God knows what.

I certainly hope the rest of you have had better weeks.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Not just fat

My belly is definitely expanding now. In the middle of my 15th week, I am very ready for this to happen. I curretnly have only 3 outfits I can wear without looking like I'm either bursting out of my clothes or swimming in them. One outfit is a non-maternity black babydoll dress with short black leggings. One is a big sack of a vintage dress that I've only ever used as an inside the house dress during the summer because it's that shapeless. And one is a linen smock top and pair of olive green maternity capri pants that for the first time this morning did not feel as if I'd have to spend all day hitching them up.

I outgrew my regular pants and skirts a few weeks ago, but what few maternity clothes I have left from my summer pregnancy with Sister are either extremely dated, extremely ugly, or just gone now. I've got a few dresses left that still look like tents on me and a few maternity tank tops that look unacceptably baggy right now.

All in all, it takes me quite a long time to get dressed in the mornings and it's damn disheartening. I'm looking forward to looking really pregnant in a few weeks rather than just really stupid.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Blood sisters...or something

The other day after a playdate with her best friend, Sister informed me that they had swapped underwear as proof of their friendship. Not clean underwear, but the underwear that they were both wearing at the time.

I'm going to pause here while you contemplate that.

I still can't decide which I think is more weird and unsanitary--Sister doing that, or me at the same age pricking my finger with a filthy safety pin retrieved from the bottom of my own best friend's mother's purse so that we could become blood sisters.

Maybe it's best not to think about it.

Friday, June 01, 2007

Spring is over

For me it's over, that is. I don't know what the rest of you non-Southerners are experiencing weather-wise lately, but a couple of weeks here of 90 degrees, no clouds, and no rain means summer to me. I read somewhere once that some cultures regard the solstices and equinoxes as mid-season markers rather than season beginners. So this June 22nd would be mid-summer to some and not the start. Of course, those people probably don't live in places with summers quite this long, where the idea that September 22nd would be mid-fall is ludicrous...

Anyways, I'm tired and just babbling here. What really marks the end of spring for me is finally finishing up all the planting I'm willing to do til cold weather comes again. And of course, I'll be way too fat with child to be digging holes by then, so really it'll be more like next spring before I plant again. In the meantime, though, I've gotta get on the deadheading, and there's a fancy dogwood frying in way too much sun that I should probably move soon...