Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Christmas 2004

Ben's sleeping, so I thought I'd take the time to say Merry Christmas or Happy Hannukah (sp?) for my Jewish friend Malka (to whom I owe a present and some pictures of Ben--they are coming, I promise). None of my black friends celebrate Kwanzaa, but Happy Kwanzaa. The thing I like best about being a mom is that I get to show the world to a person who's never seen it before. You know how it's fun to watch a movie you've already seen with someone who's never seen it? It's like that, only a million times better.

Not that you care, but I've decided to wean Ben from the breast. It's too exhausting and I can't eat beans and I'm going back to work. Yesterday, I was trying to feed him formula, but he kept going for my breast, and it made me cry. I feel more guilty about this than anything I've ever done before, but I know it is best for me, which in turn is best for Ben. He won't remember any of this, but it is traumatic for me.

Christmas this year was great, but Ben was ambivalent towards Santa. He didn't like him, he didn't dislike him. I feel the same way.

With the creepy Santa that checked Jill out Posted by Hello

Opening his present against his will Posted by Hello

Christmas morning Posted by Hello

In his cowboy outfit Posted by Hello

This was Ryan's onesie when he was a baby Posted by Hello

on the go Posted by Hello

swaddled! Posted by Hello

Santa Ben Posted by Hello

Sunday, December 19, 2004

my downward spiral in a local wal mart

This happened quite some time ago, but it's still on my mind. The other day I was shooting all over town looking for a vaporizer for my post-vaccinated sick baby. I needed a vaporizer, not a humidifier because the latter apparently harbors bacteria. I went to Target...nothing. I went to Lowe's...nothing. The only store remaining was Wal-Mart. But it was a Saturday. And it was after Thanksgiving. And I was so, so sleep deprived. If it wasn't for the baby, I wouldn't have braved it. But he needed a vaporizer, and it was my responsibility to provide him with one.

The only space in the parking lot designated for Wal Mart was behind a broken down beige motorhome that had been there for weeks. So I had to park miles and miles away at Hollywood Video and trek on foot to certain chaos. A shabby Salvation Army man tinkled away at his bell. A fat woman in a green sweater and red Santa hat ambled in front of me. I took a deep breath, stepped inside and forced a smile at the shriveled people greeter. On my left, people with perms and blenders under their arms waited in the windy return line. On my right, a crowd milled over piles of things on sale: lighters, body soap, plastic watches. I pressed forward to the pharmacy. "Where are the vaporizers?" I asked a young man in a blue vest. He pointed me to aisle fourteen, and I found it. It was at this point that I should have got in line, made my purchase and left. Since I'm here, I unwisely thought, I should get that potato masher I've always wanted. Maybe I'll splurge and buy some undershirts and handkerchiefs while I'm at it. The potato masher was relatively easy to find, but when I got to the undershirts, there was a crowd of tiny Mexican men digging through the mediums. I took a leisurely stroll around the sock aisle, but the Mexicans remained. I found some handkerchiefs, but the Mexicans were still agressively digging through the mediums. This is why there are never any shirts my size, I thought. Because me and Mexican men wear the same size. Suddenly, I was hit by a wave of exhaustion. The baby was sick, and I'd only gotten three hours of sleep the night before. I felt hot and clammy and a little bit sick to my stomach.

I ditched the undershirts, and I made my way to the front of the store. Far in the distance, I could see the promising rectangle of gleaming light from outside. I just had to make it through the checkout. Two twelve year olds in skin tight jeans passed me followed by a sixty year old man intently staring at the girls' asses. A line of men and boys stood dumbly watching rows of televisions blaring Jurassic Park. I felt my throat grow thick.
"Angela," came a voice. I looked up. It was Candy, my neice's mother. She and her friend were doing some Christmas shopping she said.
"The baby's sick," my voice cracked. "Some old man was checking out twelve year olds."
"Gross,"Candy said, but she didn't seem as fazed as I was. "I've got an extra vaporizer if you need it,"she offered.
"Thanks,"I said, and I suddenly felt like crying. "I'm sorry I'm so weird," I said. "I'm just tired."

By the time I got outside, the sun had begun setting. I pulled out onto Redlands Blvd. and made my way home to my sick baby. I thought of the boys in staring at Jurassic park, the milling Mexicans, the old pervert, and I began to cry. This progressed to hysterical sobs. I'm a mom now, I thought, my glasses growing wet. I have to find deals. I have to find vaporizers. I have to shop at...Wal Mart. This is what my life has become. I am one with the Wal Mart crowd.

Later, I thought that maybe I was having a relapse of the "baby blues," as doctors condescendingly refer to post-partum depression, but, weeks later, I still think it was Wal Mart. Kmart is obsolete, and Target is more cosmopolitan. They are both benign. But there is something about Wal Mart, something uniquely depressing that I can't put my finger on. Something that makes me feel like my life is a black hole that I've been sucked into. The baby is better now, and last night I got seven hours of sleep. Needless to say, I haven't been back to Wal Mart, and I don't plan on going any time soon.

Monday, December 06, 2004

the above average baby

Yesterday was Benjamin's birthday. For those of you that haven't been keeping track, he is two months old. Today we took him to the doctor, and they told us that his height and weight put him in the 90th percentile. That means that he is bigger than 90 percent of all babies. In other words, he's ginormous. His head, however, is just average. Hopefully he won't have a tiny pinhead like his mommy (which she cleverly disguises by making her hair bigger). Benjamin got first round of shots today. I tried to distract him with a fuzzy koala rattle, but he ignored it once the needle went in. His face went red and he scrunched his eyes closed and he held his breath and made a silent cry. My poor baby.

On another note, I'm sorry that I haven't posted more frequently. There is a reason for that: I have a baby, and he doesn't enjoy sleeping. As of two days ago, Benjamin has been sleeping slightly better. The problem is, he will only sleep in his carseat or on Ryan, my or pretty much anyone else's chest. So, for now, his carseat it is.

Ben and Aunt Birdie Posted by Hello

Josh thinks shaking a baby makes him feel better. Posted by Hello

Ben, me and some strange Australian girls I met on the street Posted by Hello

I swear I didn't prop him up.  Posted by Hello

My suspicious little baby Posted by Hello

Fat man at bath time Posted by Hello

Ryan, Natalie, Brenton, and, of course, Ben at a sports bar. Ben's a Raiders fan. Posted by Hello

Monday, November 15, 2004

the fattest baby alive Posted by Hello

today i spun!

I went to the gym today and took a spinning class led by a woman named Becky. It is always disheartening to take any sort of fitness class from a person who is overweight, and, unfortunately, Becky had a few extra rolls protruding from her black leotard. If the instructor is in amazing shape, then you feel like one day, if you just keep at it, you will be in amazing shape too. But if your instructor is a little chunky, then you feel like even if you keep at it for months, or even years, you might still be chunky. Still, I took the class, and only twenty minutes into it I felt like giving up. But there was a svelte blonde in the class who kept looking at me like she expected me to give up. And I wasn't going to give her that satisfaction. So I kept on going. Together, our class climbed imaginary hills as we listened to the Blue Man Group. Becky kept asking us to cheer, and I kept ignoring her. And before I knew it the class was over. I've lost eighteen pounds since the baby was born. I've got twenty more to go. She doesn't know it yet, but Becky will be seeing a lot more of me.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

the day after

Let me just take one moment to express my disappointment in all (well mostly just the middle) of America this day after the election. Last night, I watched all my hopes slowly slip down the drain. Looking at the mostly red map this morning, I came to the conclusion that the people in this country are becoming mindless drones driven by misguided religion. Analysts say that voters chose Bush because of the war on terror and for moral reasons. What could be less moral than sending poor people's kids to their death in an unjust war, drilling for oil in Arctic Preserves, and catering to huge corporations at the expense of the majority of Americans? Why don't the people who vote for Bush see anything clearly? Why? Why? Why?

That said, here are some Halloween pictures. Ben looked really cute and Rito was ravishing.

Uncie Mike and Rito Posted by Hello

little bear Posted by Hello

lauren, bridget, jillian, ben Posted by Hello

happy halloween! Posted by Hello

Thursday, October 28, 2004

greetings from the trenches

I am now taking showers daily, though yesterday, I put him down for a nap, jumped in the shower, and the second the shampoo touched my hair, Ben started screaming. So I had to get out asap, throw on my robe, and rescue him from the bassinet. He was--surprise!--hungry, so he ate, poohed and fell asleep, and I could resume my grooming. I never realized how much I took for granted long showers, and whole, uninterrupted minutes of arranging my hair.

Ben has stopped sleeping at night. He likes to pretend to fall asleep for a few minutes, teasing Ryan and me with the prospect of sleep, only to open one eye, then both. He then lets out a high pitched squeal, and we have to sing him back to sleep. Last night he was up from11am to 1am and 2:30 am to 5:30 am and 6:30am to 8am...It's a good thing he's so cute or I might not hang out with him anymore.

gassy ben Posted by Hello

angry bath time Posted by Hello

a rare moment of sleep Posted by Hello

Friday, October 15, 2004

3 ounces! Posted by Hello

creepy... Posted by Hello