4 Months...

Today is Ethan's 4-month well-baby checkup. I'm excited to find out how much my little chunker weighs and how his height and weight and head circumference compare with other babies his age. I'm also looking forward to talking to the doctor about starting him on rice cereal and other semi-solid foods in the next 2 months. However, there will also be shots involved and this makes me happy in the same way that sticking a needle into my eyeball makes me happy. I look forward to THE SHOTS about as much as I look forward to wiping my ass with sandpaper.

Ethan did amazingly well with the 2-month shots. He cried, yeah, but once we got to the car and I nursed him he was fine. He fell asleep on the way home and I didn't notice anything out of the ordinary for the rest of the day (i.e., extra fussiness, etc.). HOWEVER, I will most certainly knock on wood because babies like to keep you on the edge of your freaking seat, they like to change things up, they like to KEEP IT REAL. This time his head might spin around and he might scream for 18 days and he might mentally note to stick me in a nursing home the very first chance he gets, because CLEARLY I am the one sticking this sharp and painful object into his fat little thigh and I should be punished immediately.


Anxious Much?

My anxiety level these days shoots through the fucking roof, into the sky and actually reaches the outer limits of another world entirely. The constant flow of change and worry and things to come balled into one gigantic tangle of INSANITY makes me think that a shot of heroin is a mighty swell idea. Why, you ask?

  • The move. To a WHOLE OTHER STATE. And not just any state, but LOUISIANA.
  • Ethan. Finally adjusted and happy and fabulous and then I'm going to up and move him.
  • Money. I always worry about money.
  • Change. I myself do not do well with change in general.
  • Moving away from my friends and family. For the first time ever.
  • Marriage. Learning to be married again after being away from my husband for 4 months.
  • Learning to balance being a mom and being a wife. FUCK.

Ethan and I have settled into a very do-able and enjoyable routine. We're really two peas in a pod. He stops crying when I pick him up and he laughs at me for no reason and smiles at me just because I look his way and holds my boob with both hands as he nurses and loves walking with me and sits outside with me each night after dinner while I drink coffee and... the list goes on and on. He is a joy, a real happy baby all around unless he gets overly tired, hungry or has gas. Hell, who doesn't get cranky when they're starving and in need of a nap and farting all over the place?

Anyway, my point is that it's been just the two of us, and as much as I hate to admit it I'm really nervous about 2 plus 1 making 3. I mean, how will my husband adjust? I've had time to get to know Ethan and learn his cues and what he likes and what he hates, but my husband hardly knows Ethan at all. Obviously he'll just have to learn in the same way that I did, they'll have to get to know each other and do some major catch-up bonding. BUT! How will I adjust? How will I peel myself away from my motherly duties long enough to be a good wife and fulfill a hungry and horny and lonely man's needs as well? HOW?

I know this all seems selfish. I know I'm being a big baby about it all and that D and Ethan will do fine, that we will reconnect as husband and wife and somehow morph into an actual real live family. And it'll be nice and I'll wonder how I was able to do it alone for so long and it'll all be fanstastic. Right? I never once stopped to think that maybe being a mom and a wife would be a challenge. I always thought that they naturally went hand in hand. Not so! Both are hard and require constant maintenance and care and attention and you can't neglect one for the other. This scares me. The pressure is on. I'm scared that I forgot how to be a wife, the fun girl that D fell in love with, and instead I've become just a mom. It's all about Ethan. I need to make sure that I factor D back into the equation. He's done nothing but good things for us.


Week 15

Ethan falling asleep in his swing is one of the funniest sights EVER, unless he's got some extra zip in him that day and is feeling especially resistant. He fights it, fights it gooood, and eventually gives in. This is how it usually goes:

Place Ethan in swing. He looks up at me with worried eyes because he knows what I want him to do. I make sure he's comfortable, kiss his cheek and turn to hide in the corner where he can't see me.

He'll look around, smile at the fan or a stuffed animal within view and mentally go over his to-do list for that day (poop diaper, smile and laugh for awhile, get bored with whatever toy mom gives me, roll over, eat, spit up on mom, spit up a bit more after she's wiped her shoulder off, repeat) a few times. Then he gets angry.

At first he'll cry. Then he starts cursing... throwing out baby profanity that makes even me blush. And yeah... he totally kisses his mother with that mouth! Unbelievable! Eventually he'll give up, focus on something straight ahead and let his eyes become fluttery and heavy. After he spits a few more random obscenities, he drifts off into baby dreamland. And there is silence. For, like, thirty minutes or so. All hail the mighty swing.

I don't depend on the swing all the time. It just saves me from rocking him to sleep when I want to do things like TAKE A SHOWER. At night I ALWAYS rock him myself, or jiggle, or whatever else might be necessary to calm him the fuck down and sleep already. Sometimes he'll grow very quiet and just GO. TO. SLEEP. But more often than not he "unwinds" with a short crying fit before drifting off for the night. In reality this crying jag lasts approximately 5 to 7 minutes. When you're rocking him and he's squirming and kicking and cursing and screaming, it feels like it lasts for hours.

Ethan is almost 16 weeks old. May 15 we are making the grand move to Louisiana. Right now we're living with my mother, as we've been doing since Christmas weekend 2005 (our apartment lease was up December 31). Ethan was born December 27. (It was really great timing.) Anyway, I am going to start letting Ethan semi-cry it out once we've moved. Some of the many reasons for doing it then instead of now are: he will have his own room once we've moved (right now we share the master bedroom), there will be less people to make noise and wake him (my teenage brothers and sister live here, too), there will be one less annoying dog (the family dog, Daisy, has the loudest and most annoying bark I've ever heard. And I own a chihuahua!), and because Ethan will be nearly 5 months old by that time.

Our very first night in our new house in Louisiana I am going to enforce a bedtime routine beyond the rock and shhhhh that we've got going now. Bathtime will be moved to the evenings, there will be bedtime stories and cuddling and then... leaving him in his crib.


In other news, I've got a wicked-ass farmer's tan from taking Ethan for walks each day in a t-shirt. Must purchase sunscreen. Also, tanktops. Am wondering: is 'farmer's tan' a Texan term? And now I am mentally noting to STOP using that term immediately.


Happy almost-Good Friday to all. Though I am not very religious, I will be celebrating the day by going to Starbucks with my mom, and then grocery shopping. May your day be equally as eventful.


When Family Photos Go Wrong...

A) I don't know if it's the shirt or the angle or if I needed to feed Ethan, but the boobs? Will soon take over the entire fucking universe.
B) My outfit in general. We were drinking and grilling chicken and generally just lounging, but sheesh. Pink terry skirt plus nicely matching blue t-shirt equals one serious fashion disaster, even if they are comfortable.
C) Ethan's leg. Is twisted. He looks slightly less than thrilled.
D) Last but probably not least, my cheeks. I think my dad was part chipmunk. No, I'm certain that he was.

Rolly Polly...

Ethan rolled over today for the first time, from his back onto his belly. Crawling is NOT that far away and I am very, very afraid. You should be too... he's practically DRIVING people! Watch out!


Calorie Content and Flip Flop Tan Lines...

As a growing addiction to Starbucks takes over my very soul, I naturally check out starbucks.com to scare myself out of it with the nutrition info. My grande nonfat cafe latte has 160 calories and (!?!) 16 grams of protein. My grande caramel Frappuccino Light has, drum roll please, only 180 calories? Can this be true? I am like a small child at Christmastime! All rejoice! I think I stared at this information for nearly 5 minutes, then went back to the main menu to be sure I had indeed selected the correct beverage. It's really just too damn tasty to be so low on the calorie scale, so of course now I'm all suspicious and am thinking 'hmmm... maybe they tricked me and really gave me a REGULAR grande caramel frappa?'. Because if they did, I'd have consumed 280 calories sans whip, and that's just too damn much for a drink. Right? Right. I have my eye on all you baristas.


Does everyone get those awful flip flop tan lines, or is it just me? Why doesn't anyone ever talk about it? Are you people applying sunscreen to the tops of your feet? Because I am not. Meh.


I was walking with Ethan today and I saw this little kid, maybe 7 or 8 years old, out in front of his house with a skateboard. I probably see at least 5 kids with skateboards every day, but the difference between them and this kid was that he was decked out from head to toe in protective gear. The kid in me laughed and the parent in me nodded with approval. He looked so damn akward in his plastic armor. He could barely bend his knees to step up on to the board, and his arms stuck straight out at his sides like a scarecrow. It made me wonder: Will I be that kind of mom? Is there a middle ground? Will I buy Ethan a cool new bike or skateboard or whatever, get him all excited about it, and then wrap him in bubble packing and send him on his way? Part of me says yes, OH YES and the other half says ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

Perhaps I will keep an eye on that boy down the street, see how he turns out. Then make my decision.

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