Monday, November 28, 2005

Packing it on

I'm up to 135 pounds today! woo hoo. That means I've gained 10 lb baby-weight of which 1 lb is baby and the rest, apparently, is boobs and belly. All my weight is forward, I still look relatively normal from behind. Bring a winch if I fall down cause I won't be getting up again any time soon! I already have to roll onto my side to sit up, or do this wierd diagonal lurch if I'm sitting on a really bottomless couch. I can't see my toes any more. It's all very exciting.

I'm still pathetically behind on getting the house ready (nesting hormones) and I've already ranted about being fit (labouring hormones) so now I think I'll pontificate on eating (nurturing hormones). I haven't had any food cravings until yesterday, when I HAD to have mashed potatoes or ... well, I wasn't brave enough to resist the craving. I probably would have been driving to the Wendy's window for a potato at 3am. That's where a hubby or male counterpart of some kind would really come in handy. hee hee. I can see it now:
Moi: Get me a potato!
Him: it's the middle of the f--- night!
Moi: (brandishing nearest baby rattle) get me a potato NOW!!
Him: okay okay just don't point that thing at me!
(staggers back an hour later with piping hot potato)
Him: sweetie, wake up, here's the potato!
Moi: zzzzz ... snore.... wha?! oh. ....eww. it smells wierd. I can't eat it...just put it in the fridge, honey, thanks. ...snore...zzzz
Him: (to self) I'm going to kill her. I'm going to kill her. breathe, count, breathe, count... thank god for those birthing classes...

Friday, November 25, 2005

Buns of... firmness!

I couldn't bring myself to aim for "steel" - however, I am aiming for something more robust and ...further from the ground. (I fondly remember an old Sally Forth comic where she asks her husband to measure the distance from her butt to the ground to see if it's sagging. He, being the clever pumpkin, suddenly remembers an important engagement elsewhere in the house. No wonder men love garages).

Anyway, back to me: I've hired a personal trainer! Inspired by my friend S, the Queen of Determination, I have followed her good example and decided to start coaxing my body into some semblance of fitness - mainly to train for the birthing marathon I'll be involuntarily participating in sometime in April.

What would runners do if they were told: some time in a four-week window, you will have to run for anywhere from 6 to 36 hours, and you're not allowed to stop. We might make you start in the middle of the night. We won't tell you in advance how long the race will be. We won't tell you what the terrain will look like. If you finish succesfully, you'll be rewarded with a completely helpless creature who depends solely on you for its survival. And to top it off, we'll make sure you're deprived of sleep for the next year or so.... Odd thing, Nature. She does stack the deck a bit by making babies indescribably cute, and flooding moms with baby-loving hormones, but the more I learn about pregnancy and child birth, I continue to marvel that the human race (giggle) succeeds in propagating at all.

So anyway, the trainer is in charge of whipping me into shape, mostly core, butt and leg work, and flexibility (of the leg-spreading kind. smirk.) I don't have to contend with staring jocks since I'll be at home, but I will have the usual insidious motivational gremlins haunting me. I'm not sure how often to make appointments with her, but I suspect two weeks will be as long as I can manage without falling off the wagon.

First class is next Thursday, so I'll be cleaning the basement this weekend to eliminate embarrassing armies of dust bunnies and old cat puke (don't ask).

Tuesday, November 22, 2005


I withdrew from my Psychology course today and am feeling inadequate. I've entered "quitter" zone and it isn't sitting well. Our society has so many negative values attached to stopping something before one has finished it - connotations of laziness, ineptitude, or lack of foresight, or plain stupidity.

A sinister little voice is whispering accusingly "You should have known before you started you didn't have time to do this"... "You haven't got what it takes " ... "Maybe you're just too dumb to go to school anymore" ... "You'll never get anywhere in life" ... yikes. I've never tried writing out all the little whispers before. Who knew that voice was so evil? I'm going to have to turn the volume to "off" for that one. We carry our enemies in our own heads. In meditation class last night (which partially led to my decision to withdraw) we were talking about how we project our own perceptions onto reality and act out our karma blindly, unaware of its gears grinding behind our decisions and actions.

Thinking about this, I realized the whole do-my-doctorate thing is yet another of my projections, based on unspoken familial expectations (every one of my four maternal aunts has a PhD or an MD, and most of my cousins have multiple undergrads and at least a Masters). Most of the pressure is my own doing, my parents never make mention of it - directly, anyway, other than to speak wistfully of all the degrees the OTHER aunts/cousins have.

What with my job, (which is blessedly in a lull right now), trying to put my house together, doing community work, providing a modicum of care for my parents, trying to take some time to myself for choir, the odd massage or hair appointment, and staying connected with my friends and family, I don't have time for academics, or exercise for that matter (and that's a whole other rant). And on top of it all, I'm worried about how the stress/anxiety is affecting Baby's anxiety levels.

Am I wrong to ditch this course? should I have finished it? There are no absolute answers. There are no rules. I've lost the money I paid for the course, which is too bad, but not the end of the world. I withdrew in time that it won't show as a "fail" on my record (which is yet another rant) At least now I'll have time for exercise.

hmm. lots of ranting going on in this corner. I know I've done the right thing for me, for my life, right now. The emotional baggage will scream, yell, burble and dissolve away into primordial consciousness. Ultimately the universe isn't judging me on how many letters I have after my name... is it?

Friday, November 18, 2005

good livin'

I got one of those emails with statements of life advice in them (do guys send these out? I only ever get them from other women) so in the general spirit of ranting, I thought I'd post them and add my not-so-humble opinion. It occurs to me I can be quite snarky. No wait, let's call that 'razor-edged wit' instead.


Accept that some days you're the pigeon, and some days you're the statue. And some days you get to be the falcon lunching on that juicy little pigeon that was crapping all over the statue...

Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them. If I'm ever that hypocritcal please take me to the nearest river and push me in (I don't swim).

Always read stuff that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it. If I die I won't really be caring what people think of what I was reading.

Drive carefully. It's not only cars that can be recalled by their maker. And if your maker calls, it won't matter how carefully you were driving: some other idiot will do you in...

If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague. ooh, a wee nugget of kindness. Classy too. Love it!

If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again, it was probably worth it. Amen.

It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others. eh? so does this mean I should be B-A-D?

Never buy a car you can't push. Umm so that would rule out every car ever made except for austin minis or those cute little smart cars. wierd advice. What could it mean?

Never put both feet in your mouth at the same time, because then you won't have a leg to stand on. Yawn. How about "if you're standing on one leg cause one foot's in your mouth, don't try to shove the other one in too" - If I'm that much of an idiot, just shoot me now.

Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance. I can't think of anything more uncomfortable than dancing while feeling self-conscious or embarassed - I'd change this one to "If you care whether other people think you dance well, don't go to dances, go to a therapist"

Since it's the early worm that gets eaten by the bird, sleep late. oy, now I have permission. I'm sure that makes it all okay!

The second mouse gets the cheese. if you're in danger of being killed in a trap, do your best to lure someone else to certain death, and then walk away with the loot? ewww.

When everything's coming your way, you're in the wrong lane. What planet are you from? I'm supposed to AVOID good things coming my way?

Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live. Not quite, it's the "longer you HAVE lived" - tomorrow might be the day the maker issues a recall on your particular model. Just marking time has never been my idea of a fun way to live.

You may be only one person in the world, but you may also be the world to one person. aww. toe tweet. Pardon me while I gag (delicately, of course)

Some mistakes are too much fun to only make once. NOW you're talkin! Bring it on, Beulah!

We could learn a lot from crayons. Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull. Some have weird names, and all are different colors, but they all have to live in the same box. And some should never have been made. Who ever thought up ecru, anyway?

A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour. And to end it all, a non-sequitur...

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Two more sleeps...

...till the next Harry Potter! I'm all excited. I'm going to try reading the book again before I go to the movie (yes, I'm a purist). Yet another reason why my abnormal psych homework is floundering dismally. I idiotically signed up for a distance-ed course in August, and now have missed the withdrawal date and must somehow get through the thing. Harry is NOT helping.

In fact, almost any distraction is... distracting. What's with that? I firmly resolved to study thursday nights and saturday mornings and then cheerfully proceeded to book the next two thursdays and saturdays with fun social activities. At this rate I will FAIL. That has to be THE fate-worse-than-hell for an aspiring PhD student. Not that I'm aspiring yet, but I have fond hopes of staggering through a PhD within the next ten years or so. I'll have to phone my friend S. and team-study: when she hits the books, so do I. Barring, of course, any pressing social engagements. (KIDDING! I am seriously getting worried. S, I will be calling!). Then there's my other friend S. who managed to do an entire Bachelor's over ten years WITH three children and a stunningly dysfunctional husband howling in the background (that was not a misplaced modifier. They were all howling. I'm sure of it).

For all you grammar-types out there: does the period go inside or outside the brackets? Being a compulsive bracketer I need to know. Also, if I have an exclamatory statement within brackets, do I punctuate the rest of the sentence immediately outside the brackets? most confusing. I generally punctuate outside the brackets, or inside, or both. ...Okay, so maybe I just randomly assign, but at least I'm punctuating!

But back to the topic at hand, that of Unrestrained Procrastination. What to do? I think part of the problem is I have no Study Space. Nothing that says to my errant mind: quit it, shut up, focus, we're in the Study! Of course, creating a study space would take up valuable time I'm supposed to be using for studying. But perhaps the investment is worth the payoff.

*sigh* help!

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Death or the lack thereof

I went to a life-celebration this weekend. A friend's 27 year old brother had a heart attack, slipped into a coma and died six weeks later. There was no "real" reason for this to happen, he was absurdly fit from a lifetime of martial arts, full of joie de vivre and packed to the gills with charisma, good looks and loving friends. He was one of the golden ones, a bright star in our benighted world.

I've never been to a funeral outside of a church ceremony so I don't know what other funerals are like. There was no body, Alexis had been cremated two weeks earlier. The hall was packed to the rafters, probably well over four hundred people were there. There had already been ceremonies with hundreds of people in Vancouver. Now it was his home town mourning his loss and applauding his life. Instead of the moment of silence they had a moment of noise, because he was just like that. Blazing larger than life.

After all the inadequate cliches and platitudes we hear around death, the ceremony was as fresh, cool and invigorating as a blast of mountain air. His life was remembered through the experiences of family, friends, and his colleagues at the radio station where he hosted a razor-edge sharp and funky show on "finding the extraordinary in the ordinary". His life was celebrated and appreciated. Songs were sung, drummers drummed, and everyone wept.

I've written eulogies for myself as part of self-help exercises, written as if I had died of ripe old age. Who would I be by then? What would I have done? The purpose of writing one is to energize people into dreaming and setting goals, even if they seem outrageous. After hearing about this young man, I thought "I hope I do half as much by the time I'm fifty" and "I hope there are more than two people at my funeral" and "Why do we do this AFTER the biggest passage of our lives, when we can no longer hear everyone's approbation?"

Bottom line, to my mind is that I don't try enough, live enough, appreciate and love enough. I try to do these things but I think I could burn much brighter than I currently do. Good intentions are worthy, but action is what brands one's life onto the universe.

I'm going to write myself a living eulogy when I pass the next decade marker, even if all I say is "Hey, I made it through another decade, emaho!"