January 26th 2014
Wilder is thirteen weeks old.
This past Monday was a holiday so Cody and I spent our day off the right way. We traveled to Baton Rouge to get groceries at Trader Joe’s. In reality we spent much more money on booze than we did food, but it was completely worth the long drive. Not only that, but we were able to spend quality time together in a car, since sharing an office isn’t quite enough for us. We left around noon and I was home relatively quickly and able to spend a good part of the day with Wilder. Andy doesn’t share my absurd adoration for Trader Joe’s, so I was happy to have Cody on my side.
Amanda started nursing school this week and I already miss her incredibly at work. Our office can be high on stress as well as high on general bullshit and she has an amazingly calm disposition that is lacking in the rest of us. I am really proud of her fortitude and I know that she is going to be an amazing nurse. I’m just sad that she won’t be around as much, nor will she have as much free time. Our novel has been put on the side for a while, mostly due to her pressing schedule. I’m very hopeful that when she gets into the groove of school and work, she will have time to further her writing. Until then I plan on focusing on personal writing projects. That is, if I can find the time.
Guess who still feels like a fat ass? This girl. I’ve continued eating healthier and exercising frequently but my energy levels have plummeted. I emailed Jackie, who is in Germany, to whine about my feelings of discontent. I always feel like an asshole when I complain to Jackie about anything that could be seen as trivial since most of her life’s work has been with unjustly incarcerated individuals. I think I have problems. She is always there to listen though, and generally doesn’t make me feel like a heel for being somewhat self-absorbed. I wrote to her explaining that I felt as if my metabolism had decided to completely abandon ship post-pregnancy. She made some smart suggestions and told me that she loves me just the way I am. I think she called me magnificent, which I considered a beautiful compliment. I felt better immediately after our email exchange. Sometimes I get so caught up in my physical appearance that I forget to be grateful for all that my body has done. Sure my hips are larger than I’d like them to be, but I nourished an amazing baby and can still jog over three miles at a good pace. I need to get it through my thick skull that it’s going to take some time for me to get into the physical shape I was before I got pregnant. I’m my harshest critic, and it’s becoming fucking exhausting.
In news of the mayor (Wilder that is) he has made an amazing discovery – his hands! Over the past week I have witnessed as his seemingly crazy flailing arms have become more articulated in their movements. He watches his fists and perpetually brings them to his mouth to suck on. It’s quite adorable, the way he literally “waves a fist” at me when I engage him. I think we picked the right nickname in calling him the mayor. He certainly is refining his public speaking body language at a young age.
Work has been stress city. I am currently focusing my energy on a project that requires reviewing daily summaries of work performed for various clients by people within our company. I have a deadline for reviewing and categorizing all this data for a presentation. Unfortunately my team lead keeps changing her mind on how she wants the data to be not only sorted but which information is most important to summarize. Add the frustration of trying to complete something with little direction to the fact that I’d rather be home with our son and you’ve got one unhappy employee. I’m not the only one facing a deadline in the office and the use of profanity had gone up significantly as the week wore on. As Ellen once told me, “Some days just go to shit.” Well, this past work week had for sure.
One of the more fun things that I completed this week was planning a puja for Wilder. A puja is a Hindu ritual that can be used to celebrate a lifetime event; in our case Wilder’s 108th day of life. The number 108 has long been considered a sacred number in Hinduism and yoga for various reasons. Because we are not having a traditional baptism for Wilder, we wanted to have a ceremony that will be a gathering of those people who we consider to be an extension of Wilder’s family. There will be chanting led by one of my dearest teachers, Keith, and one of my closest friends, Jackie, as well as a time for spoken or silent blessings for Wilder. Because this is a party I am planning, there will also be petit fours and champagne. I am looking forward to this unique celebration with our unique family.
Lee Kyle’s dear friend Cathy arrived in from New York this week, just in time for him to head out on his trip to the Pacific Northwest. He will be visiting both Portland and Alaska while on that side of the country. Because his trip and Andy’s overlap, Cathy and Andy’s sister will be helping me with Wilder. Unfortunately due to my work deadline, I am not able to take time off, so I have enlisted their help as well as the help of several of my friends over the next two weeks. I am nervous about having to depend so heavily on other people, although I completely trust all of them with the care of our son. It’s difficult for me to have people in my personal space for long periods of time, hence the reason Andy and I have always lived separately (until recently). It will be a good lesson for me in learning how to receive help from others and sharing my personal space.
We went to Flanagan’s again this past Friday, as it is becoming somewhat of a weekly ritual. I didn’t drink as much this time, which was probably a good thing. Jennifer Jane dropped in on her way to the Peaches show at One Eyed Jacks and we were able to catch up. She is always so happy and entertaining that it’s infectious. We had a good time chatting while Wilder napped on my shoulder. Cody and Patrick also stopped by and had a drink with us. Ellen was working and the crowd was relaxed so all in all it was a good night.
This past Saturday was the one year anniversary of my father’s passing. It’s hard for me to believe that it’s already been a full year. Andy said that it feels as if more time has passed by. Our difference in perception is interesting to me. So much has happened and it does sadden me that neither of my parents were alive to see me make major decisions this past year, such as buying a house, a car and having a baby. I know both my father and my mother would be completely smitten with Wilder and I do feel it is a loss for him that he will never get to know either of them. I miss certain things about my father, particularly his story-telling and his laughter. Toward the end of his life he was literally losing his mind to dementia, so I don’t regret his passing as much as I mourn for the person he was before he became ill. Neither of my parents were perfect but just in the few months since Wilder’s birth I have come to have a deeper respect for them as parents and I’m glad that they instilled certain values and beliefs in me.
Wilder has been not only fascinated with the discovery of his hands but also holding his head up with more control. This a major turn of events for both of us, as I feel less like I’m going to break him. He still has the bobble head thing going on, but there are muscles working now that seemed to be nearly non-existent just a week ago. We sat him in his bumbo chair for a few minutes and he held his head up on his own! I also sat him in his highchair which has a higher back and he did wonderfully lounging there for a few minutes. It’s quite incredible watching him grow and learn new things. I cherish the moments when I get to witness him growing before my eyes.
We ended the week with Andy packing on Sunday for his trip the next day. He is going on tour for two weeks with My Graveyard Jaw, which will take him to Texas, New Mexico and Colorado. I have been nervous about him leaving and so I spent Sunday doing what I usually do when I’m uptight – cleaning. I was able to get the entire place in order which was a relief since Cathy and Andy’s sister will be staying over. I want them to be as comfortable as possible since they are doing us such a huge favor. I am happy that Andy is getting the chance to go on tour, which has always been a goal of his. The time away will also allow him a respite from the daily duties of caring for Wilder while I am working. Hopefully he will miss us. On cue, to show how adorable he is, Wilder performed a new trick on Sunday night. He grabbed a little chew toy (made for babies, not dogs) and brought it to his mouth on his own. Andy caught him in the act and I got a picture of him. He’s growing so fast. It’s very exciting and I don’t want to miss a moment of it.