Archive for November, 2011


yes, another password protected post. same as last time. read at your own risk. as for me? i’m going to bed.

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Protected: stolen coffeeshop moment.

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Tankful Addendum

1. jude does not have pinkeye, glory be. she “only” has a nasty ear infection, which totally explains why she has taken to saying WHAT?! (in all caps) to everything we say. i hope you can hear her say it someday. it sounds vaguely british, with a very hard ‘t’ at the end, and my mother would be so proud of the way she properly pronounces ‘wh’ as ‘hw’. all this to say, my poor kid hasn’t been able to hear worth a damn for a week, and it’s been truly adorable. HWOTT?!

2. below is what greeted this very early morning, as i stepped out on my porch to begin the day:

3. the fact that oprah was right. as my high school chaplain used to say in what seemed like every liturgy, “the attitude of gratitude ain’t no pious platitude.” [though my seventeen-year-old self was thoroughly annoyed by this pronouncement, and though my annoyance was only (and rightly) exacerbated by navy blue cardigan worn constantly over his otherwise black priest garb, the truth of it rings true now, sixteen years later.]

oh, and reader, i’m serious: so curious about your thankful thoughts, big and small. bring’em!

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tankful tuesday, round two.

it’s been a week since i last posted? i had no idea. here i am, continuing to be a tankful, and for a lot of tings, such as:

1. uncle g, who can always be relied upon to pick up the rear when we are unwell. zig has a rotavirus that has given him copious diarrhea since last tuesday, jude has the crud (and burgeoning pinkeye…), clemdog has been vomiting for a week, and h and i are both meh. uncle g spent most of this past weekend entertaining the sick kiddos, applying lotrimin to raging diaper rash, and cleaning dog vomit, all while h & i either rested or caught up on cleaning various things. somebody give this man an award. or at least a hefty meat entree.

2. solid poo, the first of which, in recent memory, zig had this morning.

3. our pediatrician, who can see our children on a moment’s notice. like this morning, at 9:45.

4. netflix streaming the red balloon, which is currently blowing jude’s mind. “that is a cheeky balloon!” she laughs over and over. [aside: h watched it for the first time this weekend, and decided that the ending isn’t about transcendence, or ascendence, or even relief; instead, all the balloons of paris are taking young pascal “away” after finding him responsible for the death of their friend. kind of changes the whole story, eh?]

zig also enjoys the red balloon:

5. the fact that, when faced with simultaneous illness, my children snuggle each other:

6. imminent thanksgiving, even if we are quarantined to our house with no traditional fare, because we gots enough love and cheese and wine to get us through.

dear reader, what are you tankful for?

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tankful tuesday.

lately, my brain has functioned a lot more crisply when i write things in a numbered fashion. (see last post.) in the spirit of crispness, and a stolen moment to write at 7:18 am, here is a list of things i am thankful for today:

1. rain. it’s coming. soon. like, within an hour or so. see?

the reality of rain makes my toes tingle. i’m investing a whole lot of hope into this kind of cleansing, of drought relief.

2. norton bodega malbec reserve. the oakiest, smokiest wine i can afford. it is the flavor of this autumn.

3. leaving work before 5pm sometimes. h sent me this pic late yesterday afternoon:

i immediately closed my laptop, dashed out of the office, and met my fambly at the park, just before sunset. we played until the sun went down, and then ate sandwiches outside. “we’re eating in the dark!” jude said with a giggle, delighted and bewildered by previously unknown possibilities.

4. stitcher radio app. its existence makes my commute a happy one, what with so many podcasts to enjoy. [not a paid endorsement.]

5. the marriage plot. mr eugenides’ most recent novel has made me hungry for fiction again.

6. my fambly (por supuesto). they are the centered breath in the chaos of my worries.

7. sandboxes. they are perfect props to showcase my beauties:

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sunday morning. h is doing her sunday morning ritual: meditation at the shambala center, followed by a trip to the recycling center. the boy is asleep. the girl is running around the backyard wearing a superman cape, saving uncle g from some imagined bad guy. (so much of the imaginative play is about bad guys anymore, and jude always saves the day.) clem-dog follows them around, trying not to be nervous. in fact, he follows us everywhere now; he is our only dog anymore. we’ve become the kind of family takes the dog wherever they go.

i’m hiding out in my bed for a bit, deeply feeling the achy balance of gratitude and change. my hormones are raging like pms. but.

it’s not pms. it’s the fact that my son has weaned himself. he is a very communicative boy about his wants, and he does not want to nurse. in fact, he has taken to emphatically shaking his head ‘no’ when he sees my breasts at all. message taken, sir. i’ll put them away. instead, he drinks cup after cup of hemp milk. i’m still not used to offering a cup in the middle of the night, when he wails for teething relief.

he nursed for 13 months, the last of which was completely led by me. i know that we lasted a long time, that it is enough, that we “succeeded” in our breastfeeding relationship. but.

i project way too much meaning and metaphor onto my ability to breastfeed. i own this. i talk a great deal about it in therapy. my story is unoriginal in every way: as a working mother–away from home so much–i find great solace in being the (only) one to provide a certain sustenance to my son. this one act has served as a kind of “forgiveness” of all the distance–i.e. i am still being an actual mother to my son, despite so much separation.

and yet, over the past several months, i grew too busy at work to take the time to pump. my supply dwindled. of course he wasn’t so interested anymore. why would he be? [insert all sorts of guilt about priorities here, including this past week, when i traveled to california for work, pumpless, and didn’t even think about breastfeeding at all.]

i cycle back to the beginning now: i am all kinds of hormonal with this not-pms, as my body completely resets itself to fertile mode. and so i’m giving myself a little room–a little grace–to feel the bigness of grief, of time passing, of letting go. i know that only i hear the sweeping sad score. the melancholy orchestra plays just for me. it’s only a matter of time before my body rights itself again. in the meantime, i’ll give my boy his hemp milk in the middle of the night, and let the gratitude for those stolen moments alone be enough proof of my ability to mother him.

…and now he is awake.

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happy november 3rd, everybody! in case you were wondering, no, i’m not participating in nablopomo this year. well, not in the blog every day kind of way. instead, i’m setting the bar to a realistic level: some sort of post once a week.

better than nothing, right?

and to kick it all off, here is my little superman realizing that yes, her mommy is, in fact, brobee.

more soon.

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