Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Thank goodness there's still time to fix her...

Before she heads out in the world with this outlook:

Fiona: Mommy, if I were in Belle's movie I would marry Gaston.
Me: Why? Gaston isn't very nice to Belle.
Fiona: But he's handsome.
Me: But he's not a very nice man.
Fiona: But he wants to marry Belle, so she should just marry him.
Me: Sigh....

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Twenty years ago...

I heard a spot on This American Life yesterday that had a woman performing at an open mike event by reading exerpts from her high school diary. I had to copy the idea and dragged out my old diary. Being a teenager was apparently pretty horrible. Or maybe it was just that I was quite the piece of work back then. Here are some of my choice selections (spelling and punctuation intact):

August 23, 1985

Today I got up and went downstairs and played with the kitties and read for a while and my mom came home and yelled at me for not doing the dishes or cleaning up the house but we don't get an allowance so I don't think we should be maid's.

There are a lot of entries about my sister in there, which is interesting reading now that I'm going to be raising two little girls. Please note that my sister and I are now very, very good friends.

March 30, 1986

My sister is such a baby! We were playing hearts and I warned her that if she laughed at me for getting the queen I would hit her in the head with an Easter egg. She started to cry and to punch me, and the egg didn't even crack! What a wimp! The rest of the day was good tho.
P.S. So my mom gets mad at me because my sister is a wimp, that makes a lot of sense doesn't it!

I was such a lovely human being.

April 1986

My life is falling apart. People at school hate me. Not all of them but one particular group. My sister is a brat and starts all of our fights and according to my mom I'm on Parole becasue my imbeciliac sister started a fight with me. I know what you're thinking ignore your sister when she starts a fight well then my mom says "Tavia you have to talk to your sister you're going to be with her you're whole life." right mom! . . . I've got news for you mom, Tamara isn't the sweet all American girl you see before you. I squirt her with a squirt gun. She starts to cry and tells my dad. And dumps a cup of water on me. I get in trouble for having a squirt gun in the house. Geez!! What do they want me to be emotionless, like them? My mom is prejudiced against teenagers! Anything we say is a smart remark.

Did you notice that in those two entries I totally instigated the problems and then complained that Tamara was the brat?

Also, early evidence that I've always had this crazy compulsion to be right. All the time:

May 1986

I hate Mrs. Mcphee. She just hands you work to do and doesn't explain it one single teensy weeny little bit! She said I missed one that I didn't miss and when I proved it to her she said, "Well you got a one anyways." If I had got it right I'd have gotten a 1+ and that may not matter to her but it matters to me!

That's probably enough for you to get the gist of my inner teenage life. Tamara, sorry for being such a bitch to you back then.

I think I'll drag out my diary again when Fiona's entering junior high and let her read it so she knows she's not the only kid who ever experienced the joys of the teenage years.

Snow White and the baby. Posted by Hello

Mommy, please stop trimming my bangs by yourself.  Posted by Hello

Friday, June 17, 2005

Raging hormones

I don't have the baby blues - I don't really feel sad all of the time or anything, but I'm extremely quick to tear up lately. Case in point, last night. Reservoir Dogs. Andre has been trying to get me to watch this since we started dating, but it's just been a little too Tarantino for me. The dearth of summer programming has left me high and dry so I finally broke down and said I'd watch it. We got about halfway through it last night and I burst into tears at the ear slicing scene. I just couldn't fathom someone doing that to someone else. Even after we turned it to the something else, I still kept leaking tears thinking about it. Fucking Mr. Blonde, why did you have to be so mean?

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Birth story

Here's the is the extended version of the story. It's taken me forever to type it up. I know some of you non-mommies may not like this level of detail so feel free to just skip to the next post below and admire my beautiful child.

So. There's a good possibility that you already know how impatient I was getting to meet this little child of ours. I had gone eleven days past my due date - that's like fourteen years in non-pregnant, rational human time. My midwives scheduled me for an induction on Tuesday, but when I called in to labor and delivery, they were swamped and I was bumped for the night. I called back in on Wednesday morning and they said to come back in between 1:00 and 2:00 pm, so we packed up, kissed Fiona, and left her with Grandpa (they had big plans for popcorn and a movie).

When we arrived at labor and delivery, they took us right to a room and got me gowned and hooked up to all kinds of monitors and a hep lock. It was a little intimidating to think that there wasn't really much chance we were going home without a baby at this point. The midwife on duty that day, Mary, explained that they normally start cervidil (to ready the cervix for dilation) in the late evening as it should stay in for twelve hours before starting pitocin (to start contractions). Twelve hours of cervidil would put us at a 2:00 am start time for pitocin, which would mean I'd be laboring in the middle of the night without a lot of rest. We decided to just go ahead and start the cervidli right away and leave it in longer than normal, then start the pitocin when we woke up in the morning. Good plan, good plan.

An hour later, my water broke and when I stood up to get cleaned up, out came the cervidil. Mary reinserted it and we settled in to wait. Andre and I settled in and watched a couple episodes of Freaks and Geeks. We ate dinner and watched some dumb TV shows and I started to have some painful contractions here and there. By about 7:00, the cervidil had come back out again. Mary let us know that the cervidil was kind of pointless if it was just going to get washed out repeatedly so we decided to just go ahead and start the pitocin at that point. The flurry and scurry started and all kinds of IV bags were hung and pitocin put into the IV pump. I was a little freaked out because of all the stories I'd heard about pitocin, but tried to just mellow out a little and go with it. The pitocin was started at about 7:45 pm along with some antibiotics. Within an hour, I was in some serious pain and had gone from contractions every 10 minutes or so to contractions every 2 or 3 minutes. I was pretty mean to Andre at this stage of the process and kept yelling, "Hand!" if he had gotten distracted between contractions and wasn't ready to hold my hand. I'm pretty sure I crushed several small bones in his hands, but he was very good and didn't complain at all. At that point, I asked Mary to check me to see how dilated I was and said that if I was at a good point, I'd like to have some pain medication (I don't even know what I meant by that - I think I pretty much meant whatever I was dilated I wanted the meds and now!). Mary said I was at five centimeters and called the anesthesiologist to start an epidural.

By the time we got all set up and ready for the epidural, I was contracting every minute or two and it was extremely hard to sit still while my new best friend the anesthesiologist did his thing. It seemed like it took hours for him to get it done, but I'm sure it was only about 15 minutes. Unfortunately, at first it was only working on one side, so one side of me felt totally numb and the other side felt like the contractions had just concentrated on one point. Andre kept trying to comfort me by stroking my numb leg which felt totally bizarre and I kept yelling at him, "Don't touch the leg!" I think he was trying to stay away from my hands and the grip of death. My new best friend adjusted the epidural and gave me a whole bunch of lidocain and after a few more contractions I felt SO much better. I wasn't feeling the contractions at all except for one spot just below my diaphragm where I could feel a little pressure. It was quite amazing to look down at the monitor and see the contraction spikes and think to myself, "Huh! There's another one. I think I'll take a little nap."

Right after the epidural was put in, but before it had actually started working, Mary checked me and I was at 9.5 centimeters. My new best friend laughed because he didn't think all of his epidural work was going to go to much use. I probably could have started pushing as soon as he was done with the epidural. However, I'm Group B Strep positive, which means that there was a slight chance that I could pass GBS to the baby, hence the antibiotic drip. If the antibiotics haven't had at least 4 hours to work, the hospital wants the baby to stay at least 48 hours after birth to make sure she hasn't been infected. I HATE staying in the hospital (birthing in the hospital is great, staying there afterward not so much). Once the epidural kicked in, and I wasn't feeling the contractions or the urge to push, we decided that I would try to hold off on pushing until the four hour mark had passed at about 11:45 pm. I was able to close my eyes and rest a bit and it felt so good to know that it wasn't going to be much longer.

The four hour mark finally rolled around and Mary had me try a practice push. Pushing with an epidural was a lot different than pushing with no meds. I couldn't position myself very well - heck, I couldn't even tell when I was actually lifting my butt off the bed let alone sit up and use a squat bar. I wasn't too nervous about it though - been there done that, I guess. Two hours of pushing with Fiona gave me plenty of practice. On my practice push, Mary said, "OK, this isn't going to take long at all, her head is right there. So they quickly unwrapped all the various instruments, brought over a mirror, and had me go for it. It was really neat to be able to watch the birth in the mirror - with Fiona I was way too inside my own little zone of pain management to even open my eyes. Andre and I actually talked between pushes instead of me yelling at everyone to shut up like with Fiona. Within just a few pushes I saw Amelia's head appear and within twenty minutes of pushing, her head was out. Mary suctioned her because she had spilled meconium in utero (pooped) and then I was able to push her totally out. The pediatricians were standing by and tried to whisk her away to get checked because of the meconium, but Mary shooed them away and said that the suctioning had been enough. She placed Amelia on my chest immediately and, wow, there was our daughter. Twelve days past her due date, 12:19 am on 06/09/05, 9 lbs 1/2 oz, 19.5 inches long.

Andre got to cut the cord and then the nurses took the baby to get a little extra oxygen and to get weighed, measured, and cleaned up. Mary showed me the placenta and how old it had started to look - it had calcifications all over it. Interestingly though, Amelia was still covered with vernix, that's unusual in a baby that far past her due date.

Everything was so much easier and shorter this time around than with Fiona. I certainly didn't enjoy the 2 hour period of going from 2 cm to 9.5 cm, but it certainly didn't tire me out as much as Fiona's 16 hour labor. I'm much less sore this time around too, two hours of pushing is apparently a lot harder on the body than 20 minutes. And now that I know all about this epidural thing, I'm ready to push out 7 or 8 more kids. Guess we're going to have to buy a bigger house.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Brand new, and extremely mad, baby Posted by Hello

Ready to go home Posted by Hello

I love my new sister Posted by Hello

All snuggled up Posted by Hello

Fiona and Amelia Posted by Hello

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Mission Accomplished

Amelia was born June 9th, 2005 at 12:19am (sorry Louie!). 9 lbs 0.4 oz, 19.5" long and an Apgar score of 8-9.

Mom and baby are doing well!

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Tavia says...

"I love this epidural."

She's perfectly serene now. She was seriously uncomfortable while they futzed with things, but they finally got it right.

Word is... This baby is probably coming before midnight (i.e. a little over an hour).

Almost there

Epidural in - pain out.

This is going to happen very soon.


Painful contractions every 4 minutes or so.

The good stuff

Well, it looks like we're skipping the cervidil and going straight to pitocin. The IVs are getting hooked up to Tavia right now.

Anything can happen at this point. Things could take a few hours or a dozen. We'll see.


Klaxons blaring. Nurses sprinting.

A hard shaft of light envelops Tavia as she screams from the piercing agony of a thousand sins. "OUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUT!"

Fighting. Straining. Her husband Andre cranes to view the Miracle.

Too dark. Too noisy.

He tilts his head and finally sees It. Joyously, he reaches out.

"Freaks and Geeks" flickers onto the laptop's LCD monitor. All is well.


Nothing exciting yet. Tavia just downed an airline-quality hospital meal that probably cost as much as a fancy dinner for two.

More to come...

We have water breakage

The cervidil was in for an hour and my water broke. No real contractions yet so they're going to put the cervidil in again and we'll just wait and see. Hopefully this means we won't be here forever and a day. They generally like to see babies born within 24 hours after your water breaks.


Guess what I have in my hospital room? Wireless access! The next twelve hours of waiting for the cervidil to work are going to be no problem at all. I'm so excited.

Yes, we are geeks.


I'm going in to the hospital at 1:00 pm and hopefully won't get turned away again. Tamara will post an update here, when there's something worth posting about.

Negative eleven...

Still pregnant. We just got Amelia's SAT scores back and it looks like she's going to be able to get into some great schools! I've started working on all of her college applications. The whole "still being in utero" thing was a little hard to explain, but we're looking at some progressive schools, so hopefully it won't be a problem. Her senior prom was terrific. I danced with all of her friends for her. It's been so nice these past eighteen years to share all these experiences with her, it's really allowed me to relive my teenage years. I must admit that taking her driver's license picture was a bit awkward, but a mother will do anything for her child.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Scratch that...

Labor and Delivery is full tonight so I've been bumped from the list. I have to call back in the morning to see if I can actually have this baby this year. I'm way too crabby to come up with anything else to say.

Negative ten...

Still pregnant. This is officially the longest I've ever been pregnant. I go in to start the induction tonight. Yipes! I tried to get a good night's sleep last night and Ellis decided that he HAD to sleep with Fiona last night so she woke up screaming at 2 am and 4 am and then was so freaked out that she started crying again at 4:30 saying she didn't want "to bounce anymore and Ellis must be under the bed hiding in the shadows bouncing my bed." Sigh... She ended up in bed with us and I could NOT go back to sleep so I finally crawled into her bed at about 5:30. Gee, I feel well rested. It's definitely a nap day.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Negative nine...

Still pregnant. I'm not as pissed off as yesterday, but I'm still irritated by the fact. I'm also getting a little freaked out by the prospect of induction rather than natural delivery. I'm pretty sure my body is ready. Good god, it better be. I just don't really know what to expect. Hopefully just the cervidil will be enough to put me into labor and I won't have to deal with pitocin. I don't even know what to say anymore, sorry to be boring. I'm pretty bored of this myself.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Negative EIGHT...

Still pregnant. I'm really trying to be patient here but I'm getting a little frustrated with my lazy freaking uterus. Start contracting and get the baby out of me please. I am DONE now. I know, I know, a normal pregnancy can last up to 42 weeks blah, blah, blah. Shut up! I don't care! I'm in no mood for your rational discussion. 41 weeks is more than enough. I think I'm being generous actually. And what about all of you know-it-alls who said that second babies come earlier than first babies? Not so smart now are you! My uterus is determined to prove you wrong.

Baby, out!!

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Negative seven...

Still pregnant. Guess what's going on? Yup, that's right, nuthin'. But it's OK, the eviction notice goes out on Tuesday night. I go in then for cervadil to ripen the cervix (which makes it sound like fruit and kind of creeps me out) then Pitocin on Wednesday to start contractions. Hopefully things will start happening before then, but at least I have an end in sight.

At the non-stress test yesterday (which is when they monitor you for at least half an hour while you're lying down and measure the baby's heart rate compared to its movements) Amelia was being quite the lazy little baby and wasn't moving enough for them to get the readings they needed. So, the non-stress test lady got out her buzzer and gave her a loud buzz right on the butt. She jumped so hard that it startled me too! I couldn't stop laughing at the image of her wondering what the hell was going on out here. Fiona was quite amused by the thought of it too and proceeded to tell everyone she talked to yesterday about the nurse "buzzing her baby sister on the butt."

We have a busy day of laying around planned, maybe a little nesting thrown in for good measure. Fiona has her movie picked out for the day. Tamara, here's a quiz for you. I know you'll know what it is:

"Get out of there!"
"They're too big. I'm too small to breathe it in!"

What movie is that from?

Friday, June 03, 2005

Negative six.... (And positive 5!)

Still pregnant. I go in for a non-stress test and an ultrasound today. I'm fully expecting them to see Amelia all curled up with a little reading lamp and a good book, maybe a bowl of ice cream or something, motioning us to go away and leave her alone. I understand how it feels to get interrupted in the middle of a good book, sorry kid.

In other news, it's our five year anniversary today. We're leaving for a romantic cruise to Alaska where we'll while away the days dining on wine and sushi. We'll go hot-tubbing every night and glacier expeditions every day. Oh wait! That's right. I'm a million and a half months pregnant. We'll probably try to get close enough to one another to actually kiss on the lips. Maybe we'll toast one another with some sparkling water. It'll be an anniversary to remember.

Happy anniversary Andre, I love you.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Negative five...

Still pregnant. So tired. Fiona has chosen this opportunity to start waking up in the middle of the night and Ellis the cat is taking this opportunity to wake her up at the crack of dawn every morning (well, OK, 7 am but it FEELS earlier). I don't know what to do about either one. I think the middle of the night wake up last night was directly related to the Shark Boy and Lava Girl preview we saw yesterday. Fiona is afraid her teeth are going to turn into shark teeth now. Before she went to sleep last night she called me back into the room to tell me that her teeth were "sharp in the back." As for the cat, I have no idea how to keep him out of her room. She's afraid to sleep with the door closed and he's way too big to be stopped by anything so trivial as a baby gate. Stupid cat.

Thank goodness for naps. I'm loving the naps.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Negative four...

Still pregnant. At my appointment yesterday I was about 2 cm dilated, which means....nothing! Left to my own devices it's entirely possible I could be pregnant for years. The midwife asked how long I went with Fiona before delivering and when I said nine days past my due date, she said, "Well, it looks like you're right on track!" Perky smile! Much gnashing of teeth ensued.

We're taking Fiona to see Madagascar today. She's much more excited about the prospect of popcorn and lemonade than the actual movie, but I thought it would be fun. It'll be a while before we go to the movies again. Hopefully. Who knows though, if I stay pregnant all summer we could get a lot of new releases in.