Monday, April 17, 2006

two years old

Iz is two years old today. When he turned one, another mother asked me if I was having flashbacks to the day he was born. I didn't. Now I am.

I remember the last month of pregnancy:
  • I had to stop running that last month, so I would walk around town with Zi the Dog
  • The weather was typical DC area spring weather, up and down temperature-wise -- unpredictable

I remember labor and giving birth:
  • Going to The Maternity Center three times and not being dilated even a little bit (I was in prodromal labor -- which wasn's so painful as the real thing, but what did I know?)
  • Taking the sleeping pill the midwife gave me (the famous ambien) and asking Abraham, "How do sleeping pills work? I've never taken one." He reports that I fell right asleep.
  • Waking up at 4 o'clock and wondering if these contractions were real (I was assured I would know, but the prodromal labor had me wary of my decision-making abilities)
  • At 10:30 am, we were back with the midwives. (Oh, the traffic on the Beltway sucked! Some major construction was going on.)
  • By 1:00 pm, we were in the hospital because there was meconium in my water and my blood pressure had shot up, then the baby monitor thingy told us his heartrate was dropping at the peak of my contractions (everything was fine in the end and the midwife delivered little Iz -- though there was some craziness and the looming possibility of a c-section -- the doctor even came in dressed in his scrubs!)
  • Screaming and yelling and cursing (all me) -- all the while I wondered why no one had closed the door (the curtain was pulled across the doorway, but I could see the feet of passersby and wondered how many people could hear me)
  • Iz was born at 3:59 on that Saturday. The midwife guessed he was six and a half pounds, but he was a tiny 5 lbs 4 oz. (Still tiny at two years, 22 lbs)
  • Iz put on my belly -- his mouth and huge eyes open

I remember the first months of Iz's life:
  • Holding him just to hold him -- how he fit on my forearm
  • Trying to figure out the br*east pump when one br*east was twice the size of the other
  • Being desperate for non-maternity clothes but fitting into nothing
  • Iz's first smile at three weeks old (on my birthday, no less)
  • The minor bout of inconsolable crying fits -- Iz's, not mine (he'd cry for a few hours straight two or three times a week)

Maybe I am thinking about this because we are about to "pull the goalie" (almost literally -- an IUD) to go for a second child. Or Maybe I am flashing back because Iz is two today.

asking for help

I have come to the conclusion that I am not good at asking for help, relying on others, getting support. Who knew? As a result, I can become crazed at a moment’s notice if something goes wrong, not according to plan. (I do know that all of us with kids have to be especially flexible – and I am talking about rather flexible plans – though maybe I am not as flexible as I think).

Somewhere along the line (before Iz, I think), I learned to be “independent.” (I put the word in quotes because it seems like a positive way to describe oneself, and I don’t mean to present it that way.)

I live in a cute town in Prince George’s County, Maryland, and I have some friends – but I don’t call on them when I become crazed. I call Abraham – which is leading to some marital strife here and there.

It took a couple, good family friends – almost family –coming all the way from Sydney, Australia, to make me realize my problems with asking for help.

When Iz would not take his afternoon nap (and I had a date with a spinning bike and a bunch of last-minute editing jobs), they immediately offered (insisted, even) to take Iz to the grocery store with them (and they were going to make dinner!).

I don’t think I had displayed overly crazed behavior – raised, panicky voice, cursing, fatalistic ramblings – when I came downstairs with a clearly awake child. But I did spend far too much time with him last week. (Weekly babysitting fell through because the sitter’s kids were sick; Iz wouldn’t sleep, so I had to sleep with him last night; The list could go on.)

And I felt guilty, as if I had pawned my child off on houseguests. But they offered, they really wanted to help (and told me how lovely Iz is, how easy). I should not have felt guilty.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

some kids have swing sets…

Mine has mulch and a pit of gravel and sand (which is to become the foundation of a brick patio – an eight-month-old intention). But he seems happy. Especially so when he can pile mulch on his head.