Saturday, August 21, 2010


by Martha and the Vandellas

It's like a heatwave/ Burnin' in my heart/ Can't keep from cryin'/ It's tearin' me apart

In the land-locked portions of the continent, temperatures of 90 degrees may be commonplace, even unremarkable.  In the coastal, temperate Seattle, however, such temperatures send us running for the hills (metaphorically, in this case).  In our little purple house, we have no air-conditioning, and only 2 fans, so the week of elevated temperatures hit us like a ton of bricks.  A super-heated, stifling ton of bricks.  After a few nights of poor sleep, we scrounged up a couple of window fans from LB's family, and set up camp in The Bean's future room, which stays slightly cooler.  LB, being the gracious lady she is, let me take the twin bed we have set up in there, and she slept on another mattress on the floor.  Our pug took advantage of the floor bed to snuggle up to LB all night, while the cat found shelter in the cool basement.  After two nights in this setup, it cooled down enough to move back into our bedroom with the window fan running, and we have now returned to the usual array of blankets and pillows. 

The downside of returning to our usual temperate clime is that back pain, not the heat, is now keeping me up at night.   Somewhere during our European adventure in July, I started having hip/back pain while walking.  I figured I was walking too much, or perhaps walking poorly, and didn't think too much of it.  Now, the pain has become nearly constant, and is interfering with rolling over at night, standing up, and picking things up from the floor.  The search for a way to end the back pain is on!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Pregnant Women are Smug

Pregnant Women are Smug
by Garfunkel & Oates

Pregnant women are smug/ Everyone knows it, nobody says it, because they're pregnant/ F-ing son of a gun/ You think you're so deep now, you give me the creeps now, now that you're pregnant

"So, do you want a boy or a girl?"
"Oh, doesn't matter, as long as it's healthy"
"Really?  'Cause I don't feel that those two things are related.  It's not like one or the other"

Wow, are we already into the second trimester?  And nearly 17 weeks?  Holy cow.  Tomorrow we'll be on the next big two-page spread in A Child Is Born - and The Bean is finally starting to look baby-like!
This week we had our 4-month checkup with the midwives, and got to meet another face from our midwife team.  We also got to meet the usual nurse when we came in, who was much friendlier and reassuring than at our last appointment.  Last month, the nurse who checked my vitals seemed disappointed that we had left the OB to come to the midwives, almost as if she was trying to convince us to go back (which was a little odd, considering she was working at the midwifery clinic).  This time, we were welcomed by a woman who can be remembered only as "hippie nurse," in a bright turquoise batik blouse and skirt.  She asked us how our travel had been, and chatted with us about various cruise lines as she took my blood pressure.  As LB and I waited to meet the next midwife, we agreed that this nurse made us much more comfortable than the last (we had been questioning our decision to change care providers after the last nurse).  Midwife #2 seemed like the quintessential Seattle midwife - kinda crunchy, laid-back, and informal in her demeanor.  Very appealing to LB and I, but it made me chuckle, especially as my latest baby-prep reading has been Deliver This!, in which one mother describes her view of natural birth as being for "hippie moms who live in Seattle."  So, we're referring to this midwife as "Granola."  Yeah, we're stereotyping, but with only our first impressions to go on, that's what you get.
Granola was very friendly, immediately introducing herself by her first name (I like this from health care professionals, perhaps it's because I'm a teacher?), and greeting me ("Hi, frankncents") as well as LB ("And you must be LB") by name.  She was very patient about all the questions I've been contemplating over the last month, from hip pain to itchy skin, and took notes on our questions while she listened, so she was sure to address all of them.  Finally, she pulled out the fetal Doppler so we could try and find the heartbeat.  After last month's inability to find any heartbeat, even after 2 different machines, I was pretty nervous, and had been worried periodically all last month, about whether we would hear a heartbeat this time.  First, Granola found my heartbeat, whooshing along a little faster than usual, and then, she moved the wand a little, and there was The Bean!  It was incredibly fast (156 beats per minute), and LB and I just looked at each other and grinned.

I'm trying very hard not to become one of the pregnant women described in the song above, but I find it privately hilarious every time someone asks about whether we want a boy or a girl (LB really wants a girl, I would prefer a boy), or what we're thinking of naming it (we haven't decided for sure, but we'll be keeping it under wraps until The Bean arrives), or any of the other bits from the song.  Funny, funny, funny.

Haven't heard the song yet?  See the video here