For about 20 seconds my unfinished and incorrectly numbered 100 things post was published, all because T was laughing at DeNiro on an SNL re-run. So I hit the wrong button. I wonder if the email people will get it?
I guess I can add this one:
37. Easily distracted.
Monday, July 31
For about 20 seconds my unfinished and incorrectly numbered 100 things post was published, all because T was laughing at DeNiro on an SNL re-run. So I hit the wrong button. I wonder if the email people will get it?
UrbanBaby is not healthy. That is my conclusion. Not simply because it could be addictive, though I think less so since its newfound audience, but for a very simple and serious reason. A large portion of the women are not happy in their marriages. While sympathy is important, they need marriage and sex councelling, and some of them AA, not to have their situations made to seem normal by sheer numbers. But more importantly those who are happy could be at risk of a slowly numbing self-doubt.
At first I was pretty shocked by the level of unhappiness. Then I thought it would let up, but it didn't. He's cheating, or abusive, or never home. He has no sex drive. Or he does but she doesn't like sex. So many just don't seem to like it. It's like they're eating from a totally different box of chocolates. Or she's fantacising about past loves, or other men, or even women, or maybe even cheating. Nannies, mistresses, and strangeness. Like he wants what she can't stand, and he won't give her what she needs, with no elaboration. So I went ahead and felt very, very greatful. Thank God I'm not like them, since it seems so common I guess I got pretty lucky. But then I noticed something else.
I began to wonder if so many marriages were so toxic, if mine wasn't an anomaly. There are a smattering of happy ones to be found, but they are not the more vocal. Probably because they're not spending as much time on UB, they're with their husbands in the evenings of all things! I began to find myself hard to believe, to see my relationship through the eyes of the unhappy. This is not rational at all, since I know, feel to my core, that my marriage is actually as good as can be and that's not only normal, but good, and I needn't be apologetic. We have the normal ups and downs, from gaga, to very close, to busy but in love, to irritated but loving, on very rare occasion to loving but not liking (though I can't remember this ever happening, come to think of it).
I asked T about the spelling of liking, and said, "not the green stuff on trees...", to which I replied, "God," to which he replied, "that's Sir God."
So we're in a good phase. And frankly that's the norm for us. Only severe stress has put us anywhere else.
"Can I ask you a question?"
"It's about the mortgage."
"Oh, no, that's a conversation, not a question. That's very different. I'm blogging."
Somehow we end up on the Total Gym together with me squishing him and giving oniony kisses. Now his back feels better and he's sort of trumpet-humming "Ring of Fire". He cracks me up. I really do just love him. We really are just happy.
The point is it takes work. And one thing I noticed on the UB boards was that women were there in their evenings instead of with their husbands. That's bad. T and I check UB together, which is amusing, but he also reads up on the news while I blog, then we head to bed. It's kind of a geeky home date with sharing tid-bits, reading to each other, and having some time to ourselves together. It's parallel to how most people use t.v. time, which we also have, but not all evening, just at the end sometimes.
UB will now be relegated to a lower check-in status. My crush has fizzled. Other blogs first, then maybe a few minutes at UB, but not every night, then my blog, then bed at a reasonble hour.
Why keep checking at all? Because there are some heartening moments, and some juicy tidbits, especially links, insider info, and general insights. Occasionally it's hilarious. Has anyone ever used a manny? It's often amusingly raunchy, like hausfrau South Park. In other words, it's a nice place to visit, and then only sometimes, but definitely not a good place to live. Daddy Types has a synopsis every now and then, which really should suffice.
I asked T about whether hausfrau was one word, and he's now reading Misfit Hausfrau to me. See? It's real.
Sunday, July 30
My grandmother wrote me a note telling me all about what t.v. shows she watches. I'm sad about it. She used to be pretty swift on the ball. My uncle says she's really happy though. I also have anxiety about sending out the announcements because it brings up all my idiotic familial issues.
I have to sleep. The thank you notes and announcement proof email are going to have to wait till tomorrow. Again.
I'm supposed to do so many things and they're getting away from me. GoDaddy isn't forwarding our website's email and needs to be called, I have to transfer my IRA funds from one custodian to another and can't seem to get all the info in the same place at the same time, I'm supposed to line up celebrants for Sept/Oct/Nov Integrity meetings, I still haven't managed to make it to church or La Leche, I'm supposed to email some homeschoolers regarding a plan, and contribute to said plan, I need to contact a merchant in AZ who's interested in our meditation cushions for her store, which means I also need to contact the manufacturer, in Spanish, and I barely have time to eat, sleep, kiss the kids, and not go crazy (hence the blog). Oh, and the current phase of the website needs to be finalized. And more gdiaper inserts ordered. And meals planned. And a little homeschooling tomorrow. Ugh, the laundry. At least the house is clean, more or less.
I am basically happy anyway. I'm so in love with my family.
Friday, July 28
1. The breast pump (or milk pull in French?!) has just arrived. It's not plug'n'play though because all the pieces need to dry, having been boiled. I looked up La Leche League and got the local meeting schedule.
2. I can see about one fifth of my desk. Which is an improvement.
3. T sent me this book review, and I must say it described what I always suspected. Always fractious and militaristic. And couldn't give a lesser fuck about the Magna Carta (further, democracies are for pussies).
4. Voluptuous is the word I'm choosing to go with that best describes my body right now. Why not work it? I see my self in the mirror and start grooving to Pull Up To My Bumper in my head.
5. The Integrity Naples board meeting went well. We've determined some of the calendar of events for upcoming season. It was totally my kind of meeting! We had a delicious dinner, then had the meeting while lounging in the livingroom, playing with their fluffy cat and oggling Baby D.
Thursday, July 27
Routine updating of links, visiting of listed links, and perusing for new stuff. Watch this space. Check the sidebar for new bits & pieces.
Does that sound official?
Here's your homework: Tell me who the famous/infamous people are who are three or fewer degrees of separation from you, and how. You can't know them.
JFK appointed my grandfather. We shared a building cleaning woman with Gotti's social club. The guy who took my first modelling pictures photographed Muammar Khaddafi.
Ominous goings on at UB...
Wednesday, July 26
This could be called "Beyond Biased", or "When Whack-Jobs Get Panties In A Bunch". Actually, I'm all for being biased. At least it's an unequivocal position. At least we don't wonder where they stand. I hate wondering because no one will just say it. I also think he's not wrong about completely different views being at the heart of the matter.
My objections? First, please tell me we are not really still talking about The Woman Question. Sexist old farts. May only women priests be available to give them last rites. And what knucklehead really equates the womb with the Holy Spirit? Why, in a feminized Trinity, would "womb" be a part? As though the Holy Spirit is inherently of a certain gender! Preposterous! As if God, or our human construct of the divine and/or indescribable nature of the Absolute, could be limited by such goofiness as gender identity politics! Read the mystics! We just use "he" so we don't have to say "it"!
Second, what's so sacreligious about Darwin? He was, ultimately, a most lovingly and attentively diligent man of God. I wouldn't be surprised if there was a word in Sanskrit for the yoga of observation as a form of worship. And he wasn't an atheist, he just didn't support the ridiculous imposition of dogma over reason. Good man.
Third, the Archbishop of Caterbury is yellow. The man is apologetic about Christianity! His own professed faith! To Muslims! He's got a big kick me sign on his head. And much of the Episcopal Church is as deluded as large portions of his Anglican gang. I guess I can agree that the low-church angle also misses the point. But both extremes are wrong-headed in their fundamentalism. No one seems to have a clue about how to proceed. There are too many factions. I suspect this is not only in the Episcopal and Presbyterian Churches.
Here are the groups as I have seen them:
Orthodox: Conservative politically and theologically. Advocate for high-church liturgy and biblical authority. Back Israel, due to some combination of politics and fulfillment of Apocryphal prophecy. Nihilist due to desire for parousia, though not an "all in all" interpretation, but as an ending. Create political room for nihilism due to resistance to change.
Intellectuals: Interested both in experience and erudition. Rely on trifold reason/tradition/Scripture, with some adding the mystics to tradition and others favoring more secular/political/justice additions. Some are uber-liberal politically, some more centrist, some conservative. May have an "all in all" interpretation of parousia, if they consider it, or they may disregard it totally, or may see it as having political implications. Create opportunity for usurpation of human resources by over-secularizing/over-politicizing. This comes from assorted forms of political guilt, and postmodern nihilism. This, in turn, leads to deluded and self-immolating behaviors such as having faith in the U.N., supporting terrorist groups in the name of peace, and believing cease-fires and diplomacy have no effect on an enemy's ability to regroup and come back stronger.
Experientialists: Can be mystical and/or fundamentalist. Not terribly interested in reason or tradition. May be conservative politically (religious right), or may be socially conservative but fiscally more liberal. Nihilistic interest in parousia. Create political leeway for nihilism with general resistance to non-faith-based argument and cultural cluelessness.
Luckily they all hate each other, some more than they even hate those outside of their faith. Okay, hate is a strong word. Let's be more specific. The first and last groups feel their positions will be vindicated when the other groups go to hell. Each faction of the middle group believes ignorance is its own hell, and feels some combination of contempt and compassion for the poor deluded souls whose thought is not in alignment with their own.
Parallels can be drawn in any faith, I'm sure. Probably in politics as well. Maybe even in family paradigms.
With such differing views there's frankly not a lot of hope. Unless perhaps we all bond over nihilism. Then we can just cut to the chase and convert, because it's over before it begins.
Tuesday, July 25
Do you ever google people you used to know? Is it war that makes me want to? I felt like doing it after 9/11, too, but was too busy getting the fuck off the target island. This time I have the luxury of being not directly effected. Except at the pump. Don't you watch John Stewart? Gosh.
It only works if they have distinctive names and might have a reason to come up. All kinds of lovely people don't have any ether mention whatsoever. I want them to so I can know they're okay, even happy. I won't have a highschool reunion because I switched schools. And so many people from one's past are from other places. T used to say I was so provincial, growing up in downtown NYC was like a small town.
So here are the ones I could find, regardless of how well I knew them!
Spring Aspers, from highschool, she was in the in crowd, always seemed mellow and unpretentious; Stash Franklin, after college, used to take me out on his motorcycle; Lars Beaulieu, highschool (and grade school with Mario), never knew him well but he was always popping up socially; Blue Kraning, highschool boyfriend--there was a resume link, but that seems intrusive; Susan Pitt, his mom, loved her; Tim Okamura, after college, part of a fun gang o'guys.
Couldn't find Elaine, college, but found her husband Yana Farrally-Plourde. Googled Rosie Creamer and got a two-fer! Janice Erlbaum. Whaddya know? I had heard things went south for Janice (she even wrote a book about it), but never knew her that well, and that happened after highschool. Sounds like she's doing well now. I wonder how Rosie is? We were good friends for a while. When I googled her a bunch of ceramics came up. Creamers with roses, I guess.
I wasn't even close to some I looked up, but you try finding Scott Laine! He was my best friend first year of highschool. How much I would love to find Kim Harris, but with a name like that, there's just no hope. She was a social hub and really funny. Jeremy Stratton, but not the guitar guy who comes up. He was funny. His cartoons were just not right.
I wish I could remember Caroline's last name. I really, really, really do. She was hilarious. Moved to LA, I think. We clubbed together and she could dance for hours, too. Remembering last names of party people, or from people sooo long ago I may never have known is a challenge. Dame, Jenny, Vicky, Carlin.
Girls are hard because their names change. Sometimes I can only find their parents. Carla Davidovich comes up, but I can't be sure it's her, as we were in grade school together, best friends for awhile, and this one is an attorney in France. But I know for sure Jaime Davidovich is her dad. Elise's dad is definitely this Mel Reichler. She and I were Jr. High best friends. He was a total and complete mench. And for the record, the knuckleheads who think they're reviving SoHo are clueless. SoHo used to be silent except for factories. Art is actually not usually loud. And many of the residences started out as illegal (no C of O), so people were quiet types in general. And there weren't many of us. We rode the school bus to P.S. 3 with the kids from TriBeCa and Westbeth, and still didn't fill the bus.
I'm still in touch with Dylan, highschool; and Michyio, after college, but no web presence I can find. And my cousin of course, but only on and off, and she's not in the ether. She could be so helpful remembering people's names. I wonder if she knows Caroline's?
In fact I can't find any family members at all. Not even at bitterwaitress. Only dead ones on rootsweb. Though my aunt's shop comes up. I can also find obit stuff on one grandfather, and references to out-of-print articles by my other grandfather.
Some of T's friends I ended up knowing fairly well: Raul Correa, after college, went to Columbia with T; and of course Ted Rall, from the same period (still in touch, sort of). A bit of an ironic pair. Both involved with the Middle East. Coincidence?
Friends of my mom's are sort of easy. Some of my faves: Stephen Eins, from ancient times, Betsy Freidman, still in touch; Bruce Pearson, got huge and fell out of touch; Hunt Slonem, very sweet; Laura Cottingham, a fearsome Scrabble player. I won't go on. That's a long list of who's who. How's this for a funny one? Son of Mom's friend from highschool: Leo Villareal. Don't you just need to do something in Marfa?
Anyway, apparently I'm not the only one feeling this way. Jim Nolet called, out of the blue. We were happy to hear from him.
Monday, July 24
This really is becoming a mommyblog. I promise I'm still thinking about politics, but there's this lack of sleep thing, combined with Israeli/Hesbola superaction I can't keep up, much less really think about it.
1This is about as far as I can get: Israel is right, Hesbola is heinous and is part of a movement that merely starts with Israel, but who's goal is taking out the west in general, calling it a proxy war doesn't seem entirely accurate, the left is deluded, if anything really atrocious happens to the Israeli soldiers, or to Israel, things could get really ugly. Like over. Like countries missing kind of over. On a more personal note, we can't sell our NYC apartment soon enough.
Back to mommisaurus rex.
If you think they're persnikety on UB, check out Taking Children Seriously. I read it for awhile after my first, until I determined they use all that persnikety vigilence to hide the fact they are nuts. I may actually be more respectful of my children for reading it, but they take it so far away from what is realistic for 99.9% of people.
B made a painting project for himself today, and produced some very nice work. Yesterday the kids were so cute! K made pancakes for breakfast, she's really on a pancake mission, in case you hadn't noticed, and B made pigs in blankets with Bisquick and kosher hotdogs. So K guessed they were really cows in blankets. It was his first time making lunch. So cute.
I successfully made one round of lace but then knitted a purl row. Ugh. Ripping crochet doesn't bug me, but I'm not comfortable enough with knitting yet to just rip and do over. It's the fear of losing stitches, or looping on the wrong way, or messing it up so it's pointless. I just don't understand the dynamic of the stitches well enough yet. Practice, right?
Integrity board meeting is Friday night, and some young-ish Republicans are coming over Saturday. Life is funny. I'll be tired, I guess. In fact I'm tired now.
Tiredness is funny. I just asked K if something was supersticial instead of superficial, I mix up words, lose vocabulary, call the shower the fridge. I'm glad I'm not driving. Wouldn't be prudent.
Sunday, July 23
I'm feeling very thankful for my husband, for our fantastic relationship, and for being able to be so in love. It's so sweet to share life with him, and so wonderful to have children together.
I'm not sleeping enough, and thoroughly blame UrbanBaby. I haven't even visited anyone else's blog this weekend, which is a shame I'm sure, and tiredness is creeping up on me in every way. But I'm happy. We went to the park today. It was lovely. The jacarandas are blooming purple wisteria-like blossom clusters. Gorgeous.
Prayers for Israel and the whole of the Middle East. What heartache. War is just awful, but if you're going to make it, you might as well mean it. Ugly business. May it be resolved (by any means necessary) sooner rather than later. I have no faith in the U.N.. Some friends are going to a wedding in Tel Aviv next week. Party! I think they're nuts, and she's pregnant, so even more so.
To bed, to bed. I'm looking forward to having more time for homeschooling, getting out and about, and working a little harder on the blog. My political commentary has evaporated, yes? I'll be back. Btw, I think all the crosswords and brain games I played while on bedrest have actually prevented most of the post-partum brain drain I experienced with the other two. Pretty wild, but I really think so.
Saturday, July 22
omg, I could so totally be addicted to UB!
- me too, but remember to only post in the subject line
- and to at least have lived in a city, doh! they can be pretty snarky if they suspect corn energy (and I don't mean ethanol!)
*what do you mean corn energy?
*midwestern--is that mean?
--not nearly as mean as they will be
if I've heard of UB does that mean it's over?
- nah, it's pretty self-selective, the new influx won't last
- totally, you wouldn't know a thrillingly undiscovered spot if you tripped over it
- just go away
*now that is mean. why should she have to leave because you're an ass?
**you should go too. You watch the Today show.
poll: how many UB addicts does it take to change a lightbulb?
- I'll tell you after I read one more post and check my "watched" list
This is no way to spend a weekend!
My good intentions? I just got the new Interweave Knits with a primer on lace, which I really need. I will conquer knitting lace! I also realized I'm not made for needlepoint, it's too coloring book. I need to be free! All the floss I have will be gorgeous on linen or tee shirts as "Art". Okay, as art. No cap.
B is so cute, he must have finished lunch because I hear "Camptown Races" on the lap harp in the livingroom. Darling.
Friday, July 21
Tell me you did not actually consider betting on my intestinal fortitude! Do you also look at hurricanes with that kind of calculating eye!?
I'm fine and dandy. Left the house today. Yup. Went to Waterside, where we visited the folks at Tourneau about my watch being weird on the whole time concept. Turns out bedrest doesn't do automatics any favors, especially womens' because they're smaller. So we left with more information and hope the watch will be as happy as I am about being up and about.
Rain threatened so we hightailed it over to B&N. I grabbed a stack o' mags and we chilled in the kids' section, Berlin's "The Metro" playing in the background. Very strange blast from the past there.
Nursing was okay. There was no D screaming as if in agony just so everyone looks and then pulling away from the boob to expose it to all the gawking children and disconcerted mothers while milk pours forth like fireworks. It was a legitimate fear, but all was quiet on the western front. We had a fine time.
Ran into J who was chipper as usual and hooked us up with a long overdue educator's discount card. She gets extremely cool hassle avoidance points on her chart. We discussed baby D, who was looking glamorous in a Provencal flowery dress, and J's new BarnesandNoblization. She seems happy and looks adorably official in her gear. Had me thinking about working there for a minute! Just to be around all the books, ahhhh, with the glossy new feel, not the sad and misguided feel of our dinky local library system. (Don't get me started! I think libraries should be humbling! I should not leave the library feeling any more cocky than I already am! I should be awed silent for at least an hour or two, with several weeks worth of general tempering of my know-it-all tendencies.)
You gotta see the article on moms in New York Magazine. Very disturbing, but also compelling. It makes me feel so totally thankful. I must point out though, the adjustment from no kids to one kid was much more dramatic than the adjustment from one to two. That was physically harder, but I wasn't dealing with identity issues like the women mentioned in the article seemed to be. But their marriages, mmm, mmm, mmmh. I'm sure my post of a few days ago seems pretty smug. Positive. I think I'll stand by it though, at the heart of it anyway: feminism must acknowledge it is primarily about relationships, the more intimate ones being the last front. My point was more about feminism than marriage. That's an important detail.
The article is about moms as they present themselves anonymously on the New York UrbanBaby website. I found it interesting there's a general portal, so you can UrbanBaby in a city close to you...
Here's my familial moment: K was in doing Spanish on my computer while B ate edamame. He came in and asked if she was going to eat hers. Emphatically yes, she was. So he left the room and sneakily ate hers. He was sent to bed without any more dinner, no stories. He wouldn't fess up to his wrongdoing either. Poor silly. No amount of opportunity to confess made any difference. We both expressed our disappointment. We both told him we love him and kissed him goodnight. Mom went in later with a small baked potato, which he snarfed in silence, then brushed his teeth and passed out with the light on. K found some of the edamame he had hidden, so she got some after all. We had gruyere and bacon on our potatoes. Yummy.
He couldn't get it that even though he made the hole in the boat that he could also be the one to start bailing it out. Luckily he's only six. And better we're tough now than have some exponentially bad version of this at sixteen, because it certainly won't get easier.
I got lovely thank you notes at B&N. Now I can finally get the shower ones done.
Thursday, July 20
Okay, you tell me:
If the car seat has finally, finally arrived, what must also be true?
a) the directions must be deciphered and understood by all of the adults of the house so the baby will fit in it and it will function as intended--before using it
b) the baby must be fed and happy before attempting to use the car seat
c) I must have the intestinal virus my mother has been suffering through for the past two days
d) all of the above
I don't know for sure about the virus, but wouldn't that just be perfect? It's been two months, let's just shoot for three, shall we?
On the upside, I made Pad Thai and a napa cabbage salad tonight both of which were delicious, and some tembleque from the recipe in the new Joy. It's a basic coconut milk and cornstarch pudding. It turned out so well, and was a perfect end for the Thai dinner.
Will I be able to eat any more tomorrow? Bets anyone? I officially give permission to bet on whether or not I have the bug. I'm afraid I know nothing about odds, but I did have to eat four papaya enzymes after dinner, and half a ginger ale. Generally I do niether.
You have until morning to place bets. I'll report then.
Tuesday, July 18
I'm making mousaka from the new Joy. The stages actually work nicely with baby because when she sleeps I can get several done and just leave the bits covered when she's awake. I'm sure that's not a coincidence of the recipe.
We're also going to make...
3 c. rolled oats
1/2 c. walnut pieces
1/4 t. baking soda
1/2 t. cinnamon
10 scrapes fresh nutmeg
1/4 t. sea salt
1/4 lb. butter (or oil)
1/2 t. vanilla
1/3 c. maple syrup
Roll into balls, press wells in the middles and put a small spoonful of jam in each. Apricot, blueberry, strawberry and raspberry seem to be most popular in our house. Cook 25 min. at 350.
Ruby's barking at thunder.
Monday, July 17
Mommy Wars, again. Or I guess more properly, Mummy Wars. (That makes me think of some sci-fi where Tut and Akhenaten battle, WWF style.)
I relate to this "women's issue" like I relate to aspartame consumption, or articles on relationships that have to start with basics like not lying, or chick flicks in which women talk and talk and talk and talk.
In other words, I don't relate.
The guilt mothers feel is so pervasive, so debilitating, you'd think it would be something they'd try to shed. But true to some inner drive gone amok, they instead bond over it, which I find inexplicable. They use it as co-miseration fodder. Like trashing their husbands. To which I also do not relate. Not that T is perfect (nor am I, for that matter--I know, shocking!), or that we don't have our less than stellar moments, but I don't tend to share them with others, or if I do it never goes beyond a few words and meaningful looks. And even that's rare. Mostly because I don't believe in leaving problems to fester, but deal with them with him within a few days whenever possible, and certainly as soon as possible in any case.
But back to guilt. Here's the ultimate thing I have to say on this subject. Attention parents (I guess especially mommies): The fact that you feel pangs of guilt means you're a conscientious parent, and therefore probably a fine parent. Which means you can rest easy. Guilt as an over-arching model is toxic and should be dealt with and let go. Either be at peace with your choices or change them, but you do not get to cry on anyone's shoulder about it more than once. It's not good for you or your children. Either vaccinate or don't, but move on once you decide, and don't feel judged by the decisions of others. Nurse or don't, for a long time, or not at all, but don't feel like you need to explain yourself. Public or private, nanny and or pre-k, homeschool or boarding school, just do what works for you and get on with it.
I find the most refreshing thing is when I meet a family that does things differently than we do and they can be friendly with us because they're secure in their decisions. We're different and it's fine with all of us.
What's frustrating is having each of my decisions feel so damn political that it's polarizing. I may not feel guilty, but may inspire guilt in another! Ack! That is not the idea at all! So because we chose to birth at home (and have been able to), choose delayed partial vaccination, nurse for three years, homeschool, co-sleep, use homeopathy and chiropractors with doctors only as needed, limit t.v., mix cloth diapers with gdiapers and huggies, limit sugar, seriously shun battery-operated toys unless there is something truly redeeming about them, never-ever-ever use artificial sweeteners, and choose movies very carefully so they are not vapid, or insulting to intelligence, or at least are well animated, never mind eating fruit and vegetables in quantity, and no video games, we are somehow pariahs among those who choose differently. They secretly suspect us of being vegetarians, or worse. But ultimately they feel perhaps judged, and quite possibly guilty. (This has been expressed on more than one occasion.) No, no, no. Not the point at all.
There is a difference between wondering or differing and having it move all the way to guilt. We had a wondering moment today about homeschooling. Not a full-on second guessing, but a discussion between T and myself and K. It was due to K having a bit of a strop about my mentioning hitting the books today. Is homeschooling still working for all of us? T, yes, me, yes, K, yes, but. He asked about what she liked, what she didn't like, how she thought school might be better or worse based on what she knows. Her answers were all basically happy and healthy, with normal dislikes (too much math), and likes (vacation in winter, during peak season). She was feeling lonely. Ahh, a primo opportunity for motherly guilt. But the situation is so temporary I can let it go. We've had a wild ride with this baby, it's been hard on everyone. Once we're back in the swing of the school year she'll be happy as a clam, just like normal, with classes during the afternoons each week and Fridays with the homeschoolers. So it's okay.
The key is not to need everyone to fulfill all one's needs. Not men, not a man, not friends, not a friend, not one's children or parents. Each person and group of people fits in a piece of the community puzzle.
It does all boil down to expectations. I think there is where modern women are missing the point. That, and that they mistake talking for communicating. And they choose an adversarial position with their mates, which makes no sense. If one can't function as a team member with one's husband what is there? It's like having sex but not being able to talk about it. Isn't that backwards? Like talking about it is somehow more intimate than actually doing it?
I think the expectation of women thinking they can discuss their own feelings in book after book, their own situation, and by extension that of the women in their cohort, if not all women in general, without discussing them in relation to men in a non-adversarial way (if a goal is to find happiness with men, vs. what? Separatism?) is folly. It is an excersize in futility. It is David becoming Goliath, because women are then committing the same acts of ignorance and insensitivity that men are historically accused of (however rightfully they may be).
It would seem a new springboard for discussing women's work, at home or out of the home, would be to approach it in context. Otherwise we risk describing part of an elephant as the whole. And that leads to rifts in communication with other women, our partners, and even ourselves.
I offer these three steps as a start to a new paradigm.
Step one: Forgiveness, of ourselves and others.
Step two: Commitment to working together, and accepting nothing less than loving communication.
Step three: Embracing our decisions, and doing what we need to do to find validation from outside sources, and further, validating the ideas of our partners, or working to find solutions so we both can stand together. Also understanding opposition is not a working relationship quality but sensational in an unhealthy way within the context of a loving relationship, and that the language we use with each other matters. Every time.
If feminism is about feeling happy and whole as women, we cannot ignore the people we choose to share our lives with, to bear our children with. The newest aspect of feminism starts at home, with our partners. When that relationship is comfortable, romantic and in tune, kids notice. Because parents are happy. Then the kids and parents will be fine with whatever the work mommy does, because there's no buyer's remorse, just commitment.
Saturday, July 15
Okay, so I was a little moody. And I can't say I got a nap, because I knew I couldn't sleep until mirrors, bathroom and coffee table were clean. So I grumpily cleaned them. Then nursed the baby, and then the guys arrived--early. She was done so I ran in to put on a camisole, since I've been dressing in the most expedient way for nursing, i.e. bra commando.
It was good to see F and D after so long. Even tired. In fact I forgot my tiredness, and my grumpiness went missing, too. So I made the salad and set up the table with the bread, roast chicken and said salad, then Mom offered the tortillas and pico. All was delicious and heartily received.
There was amazingly good news. The guys seemed very at peace with their decisions, and there was a last minute turnaround that occured at the Integrity meeting last night.
They are not leaving the chapter. Wow. I couldn't imagine how we were going to re-create the momentum without them.
That just turned everything around. I was prepared to be terribly sad, which I think contributed to my initial grumpiness about the evening. Also D was very, miraculously easy. She slept the whole time, and in true diva fashion just made an appearance for milk and charming little hiccups at the evening's end.
So what I thought would be a depressing story of doom ended up being a fantastic Integrity meeting about the future, and they were very logical about their leaving the Episcopal Church and Integrity national. They want to be more effective at drawing in disaffected younger people to organized religion of some kind and feel they can better serve from the Metropolitan Community Church. Fair enough. And also that they can push harder as activists from without Integrity's national body, especially on a local and diocesan level. They feel they'll be more effective. And now they're going to stay officers of our chapter, I couldn't be more thrilled.
Forgive me my own navel gazing hissy in the previous post. I'm not going to list my excuses. You know them if you read this blog. How many weeks in the house is it? The idiots in Mississippi we ordered the car seat and stroller from were holding the order until the backordered stroller arrived. Good God. Like I need that kind of stupid at this point. I was very clear about wanting it as soon as possible. Grrr. Breathing deeply.
Yesterday the kids came in in the morning with all their cuteness, and we all cuddled and changed D's diaper, and talked about poopy, and giggled, and cuddled some more. Out of nowhere they asked if we could make cookies. I was non-committal, but said I wasn't sure if we had enough butter. So B ran out of the room and came back with a pad and pencil. He wanted to write Daddy a note. And this is what it said:
He put it on T's desk, so he'd see it when he got out of the shower but before he left.
It turned out we had plenty of butter in the freezer, and no time to make cookies. Yes, T was amused. I think it's one for the archive.
Am I conflicted? Do I read to much into this?
Israel is being assaulted from all sides, on the eve of U.N. talks regarding Iran, and is not winging in a corner but hitting back in a way that looks not unlike a response to acts of war.
I just had a baby, she's three weeks old today, and has been fussy.
The Episcopal Church is navel gazing in a most annoying way, with the left being "progressive" regarding theology, but engaging in the most crass and commie politics, and the right being complete theological philistines, if not out-and-out bigots, but at least not apologizing for Christianity or some of it's missionary practices. Cultural captives indeed. I don't see Russia apologizing for making the Chinese play accordions.
So some friends are leaving the Episcopal Church, and their positions at Integrity both nationally and locally. And they're doing it now. They announced it at the meeting last night, and are coming here tonight to 'splain.
But why does it have to be now? Right this second? Why does it have to be over dinner and not over the phone, or just a quick tea? They wanted to go out to dinner, but our nursing is just too sketchy, never mind any fussiness that might occur. She's just so little. And they don't really get it. And that's buggy. So anyway, I suggested we do it here. They jumped on it and are bringing food. And I'm complaining?
I'm sure it will all be lovely, and I'll be glad we met in person. I guess I'd better nap first. T's already in bed, D's asleep in the "jigglizer" (a jiggly bassinet some friends are letting us borrow), and Mom is in the kitchen doing something with snapper, pico de gallo (she makes the best!), fresh tortillas and some really good fresh tamales from the tortilleria. Kids are cleaning their rooms so they can watch a movie during dinner. They're having a mixed time. Missing their routine, but loving the baby, but mad that I'm unavailable, but glad when I am...
Fine, to bed with me. I'll tell you how it goes with the guys later.
Thursday, July 13
Maybe I'm naive, or even a pollyanna.
I just don't see how L & D running off to San Fran to get married after twenty or thirty years together messes with the sanctity of my marriage, or of marriage in general. And I don't see why gay marriage can't be dealt with totally separately from other marriage issues (polygamy, etc.).
It's fair to assume marriage means a legally binding, monogamous (or monoandrous, as the case may be), committed relationship, perhaps even with the blessing of one's religious institution. I just leave the genders unassigned.
Here's a true story. A transgender friend of ours was asked by her former employer, Uncle Sam, if she was still married to her wife because she could still receive benefits. When she said no, the reply was, "too bad." In fact it happens that post-op people often stay married, effectively making them same-sex marriage couples. That being the case, no matter how infrequent the incidence, our country does allow it under certain circumstances. If it is true for some, why is it not true for all? I've not heard of states or feds chiming in on this one.
In spite of the fact no one was clamoring for a contract of marriage after Stonewall, in fact hetero models were seen as a cop-out, and Stonewall as a validation of gay alternative models, baths and all, and in spite of the likelihood that something changed that, whether AIDS, or the silent march of lesbians with kids and attorneys, or just the lustre of an adolescent-like freedom wearing off and a fogey-factor setting in, whatever. Now they want to get married, have kids, as a sub-culture to join the mainstream, I say great. Would that all our immigrants felt the same!
If that, then what about polygamy? Oh, really. Don't be ridiculous. How can we create some sort of equivalence between two people and group marriage? Why not throw in some parrots while we're at it? My point is this, just like the dog thought when the baby was born everything could be renegotiated, there are those who sieze every change as an opportunity, when clearly there is none, and perhaps never will be. We needn't indulge them just because they're begging at the table.
What, you may ask, makes me an arbiter of decency, morality, or marriagability? Why should my line in the sand be the line in the sand? No particular reason, except I have actually applied logic to a situation requiring logic, not getting one's panties all in a bunch, religious or otherwise. We're talking about a tiny number of people. They will never be a larger number, unlike letting guest workers into European and American cities who will reproduce citizens at an alarming rate, homosexuals will only ever be a tiny portion of a given populace. Period. Throw 'em a bone, life's hard enough! Try living it on the outside and see how fast you start advocating a little leeway. Especially if it's for the sake of mainstreaming! It's just nutty to nix those who would embrace the Western model, rear children and perpetuate our culture!
With Mexico doing it's level best to reclaim the U.S., slowly yet effectively, and the restoration of the Caliphate well underway in Eurabia by similar method, why, pray tell, is this such a gigantic issue? Don't we have significantly larger fish to fry? Has it occured to anyone that Islam allows for four nikah wives, by any means necessary (first obey Islam, then, if convenient, the laws of the land), and various clerics and mullahs suggest five children with each for maximum impact (never mind the fuck partner mut'a version)? You do the math. Meanwhile we have a group of people here clamoring to be included in a stabilizing institution, many as a prelude to having children (though not many actually wait around holding their breath, and luckily kids don't require marriage). And we say no on a technicality? It's idiotic.
Please explain it to me. Perhaps there's something huge and ominous I'm missing. If so, ignorance really is bliss. Maybe my drag name should just be Miss Le Point.
Monday, July 10
Kinda hard morning. Not enough sleep. I was leaking, bleeding, she was spitting up from her cold, had poopy but was too mad to change, I felt nauseous from tiredness, desperately wanted a shower and to bathe her, ended up also crying. She cried, I cried, and every bodily fluid that could be involved, was. Blaaaaah! T came in and rescued us.
She nursed, we showered, slept some more, she nursed some more and slept while I finally made breakfast at noon. I made oat bran pancakes, had a banana, some orange, some broccoli, cauliflower and carrots, cooked a vegetable lazagne and had some of that, several glasses of water, and went back to nurse her and get more sleep around three, after watching a thing on ancient Chinese emperors and the end of Buena Vista Social Club while dozing.
It always amazes me in that righteous way the reactions of the Cuban musicians to NYC, to progress. They say over and over again how beautiful it all is. If you ever feel ungrateful for capitalism, just look at it again through the eyes of someone living with communism. We may see life in Cuba as a fascinating time capsule, sad and quaint, but it's just got to be hell to have to live there, even disregarding the political oppression. Even in Europe the hospitals aren't air conditioned, and there's nothing quaint about that.
We have it really good in this country. It's hard not to feel righteous when the system has worked so well that people on welfare in our country live like the wealthy of some other nations. And we have skyscrapers, and etiquette, and literature, and political freedom, and law, and religious freedom, oh, I could go on for hours. Damn straight it's a beautiful thing.
Sunday, July 9
Boy, that Oriana Fallaci sure can tell a bed time story. Hoo-eee. T read me just a smidgen, some time around 1 A.M.. It's just as well baby D couldn't seem to settle until 2.
B just found my Star Wars characters from when I was a kid. I seem to have lost Chubaca and my Jawa, and some of the cantina characters, but still have C3PO and R2D2, as well as some boxy little droid that's blue with two feet.
"Where did you put them?"
"In my doll house Mio and I made."
"What else did you have?"
"I had a bunch of the creatures and robots. Jawa was my favorite. I saved my allowance and bought them from a tiny store in Chinatown."
"Hm." He considered this for a while. "When K was writing on her website, she wrote for Sirius [our black cat] and she wrote, 'I am Myar from a star'." A pregnant pause, "have you ever heard of Sunday afternoon cartoons?"
"No, I have not."
"I don't think so, my dear."
Sirius is now chasing a twist-tie B brought to him under my desk. And Miss Girl just said, "Aaa" to her Daddy, who's waiting for the World Cup. "Aaa" would be me, and make it snappy with the nursing.
T and kids took off for a "welcome the new assistant rector and family pool party" so Mom and I watched A Lot Like Love, which is my new favorite chick flick. I think chick flicks are good for relationships. Good for mine anyway. I always feel so grateful, and terribly in love. T doesn't always know why, but is quite happy to enjoy the result.
I have to tell you about a strange thing. I was biting into a banana this morning and a muscle in my jaw did something weird and painful, and it still hurts. I open my mouth and there it is, ow. Right there. I have a banana injury.
Anyway, I was hunting around for articles I have been meaning to read at Arts & Letters and found a light economic critique of the Crunchy Cons book in Reason. God, Guts & Granola is definitely worth a gander. I like the suggestions for further reading, but also anything that helps me articulate what it is that holds me back from identifying as a crunchy con. I just can't seem to embrace it, though there's definitely some overlap of identity, the manifesto upsets me. I don't know why.
I think it has socialist overtones that make me squirm. I'd be interested to see an Objectivist version.
I think it also gets so into the beauty thing, don't get me wrong, I'm all for beauty, but it seems to be so much about aesthetics it goes a bit Riefenstahl. The hypervigilance of my inner NYC Jew sends up red flags. I'm not making a judgement here, not at all. I attribute nothing intentional in that direction to the author or his fans, I just can't seem to go as far as he does myself. I'm sure I'm just over-sensitive.
The last thing would be related. That is each of the aesthetic delights the crunchy cons come up with is a signifier. I'm sorry. I can't help it. I'll clamp my hands over my mouth in a second. A signifier. Each is code for something larger. A flower is not just a flower. It is not possible in a post-postmodernist world to avoid consideration, at least, of semiotics in an aesthetic conversation. All eye candy means something. There, I said it.
Case in point, the architecture and organics in favor cost more than the author of the article in Reason can afford. So at the very least, they signify a certain economic status. Or at least an assignment of priorities not possible for him to live with, if you want to get snitty. Of course he has a choice, but not everyone is willing or able to live outside of the dominant culture. Perhaps most at issue is that very few people can make a living in bohemia, find a community (especially conservatives, though maybe being Catholic makes it easier for the author), or be comfortable without health insurance, or an IRA, for the sake of other priorities (somehow eating organic and having a valuable collection of handmade furniture seem insufficient plans to most people).
They don't call it living on the edge for nothing. The edge of town, the edge of prosperity (or poverty as the case may be), the edge of acceptibility, the edge of, some might argue, reason. Most people don't actually choose it, they just don't fit the other ways. Usually not for lack of trying either. Often people are part of the creative class for the same reason others are accountants, because it's in their family, and they're good at it, and it's what they know. I'm not saying there aren't crunchy con accountants, but the author is a bohemian in the creative class, which is not the same as being a creative tech, or a creative manager. I suspect the author of ignoring a serious number of trust funds among the boheme types.
I'm also busy disecting a piece on Islam and Feminism. Of course I'll post when I can.
In the meantime it hurts to yawn, evil banana, and D is saying "Aaa!". That's me.
Saturday, July 8
I started to really labor around 2:30 in the morning. By 4:30 it felt like transition and T called the midwife. I was laboring in the bathroom, with my head on a shelf of towels, holding on the the pole of the shelves. It was a real challenge to stay relaxed in the contractions, and I was tired, but I stuck with the natural rules: keep the body relaxed, including the face and throat, vocalize as much as needed, put the tension in the hands and release. Hard. But I did it. I wasn't convinced at the time that it helped at all. I know it did though. Building stress would obviously not have been productive.
Around Dawn's arrival, about 5, I moved into the bedroom and stood with my head on a pillow on the bed. Dawn and T took turns applying counter-pressure to my lower back during my contractions while I "ahhhhh"ed, and worked to set up Dawn's birthing tub in between (I love the everythingbirth site, I got my kit there, unbleached and cushy cloth diapers, cosmetics). Mom was back and forth with hot water from the stove, as the tap didn't seem to stay hot enough for long enough. I started to feel a slight urge to push at the end of my contractions. Dawn said to go with whatever felt right.
My legs were so tired I got into the tub around 5:30 or 6, I think. I actually have no idea. It could have been 6:30 or 7. I don't think I was in for hours, but I don't know.
I labored on my knees, with my head and arms on a towel on the side. A Thomas the Tank Engine towel. Being a visual person I really kept my eyes closed most of the time. I did look into the water. It was soothing to see it, to feel it. K came in as soon as T woke her up, around 7. She took the birth photos. She was so quiet, I knew she was there, but never saw or heard her until after.
T wanted to get in with me, so I told him to go ahead. But he couldn't move at all. He had to hold perfectly still and keep his hand on my lower back. He also handed me water as needed. He was marvelous. He whispered sweet things to me while I rested between contractions. I think for a while there I was falling asleep. That happened with K, too. So far the girls have been harder to push.
I started pushing in earnest, which I didn't really want to do, but there was nothing else for it. Finally I came to terms with the fact this baby was no B, and I wasn't just going to breathe her out. I was going to have to really work, and it was going to hurt more than I remembered. I was going to have to squat or it wasn't going to happen. Squat, push, push, push, breathe, rest, wait, repeat.
Finally I began to feel some pressure, and reached in to feel what was happening. I could feel the bag of waters just inside. I had T feel it too. A few more pushes and it popped, then I could feel her hair, waving in the water inside me. T felt that as well. It's really pretty cool to feel the baby inside before they're out. I like it. I pushed for what seemed like forever and she came down and nearly out.
It's a funny thing about being in the water, there's a deep-seated no-no from childhood about not pooping in the bath, of course, but the kind of pushing required not only is very similar, but the pressure goes way back as well, so there was this totally irrational struggle in the moment. No, no, no, musn't push with pressure there in the bath! Yes, it's okay, you're having a baby and that's the pressure you're going to feel. In fact, that's how you know you're doing it right. Go!
So I got back on my knees for her head coming out. I think it burned so much I wanted more control over the speed. I held her head on the way out, but it still burned, sooo much more than I remembered. No olive oil. Next time we do that before I get in the bath.
Pant, pant, pant, the head is out. I'm feeling very done.
"Can you help me?" My voice sounded so tired. I think I was finally crying with pain and relief that it was almost done.
Into the bath Dawn reached down her strong midwfe's arms and felt for cord, none, one more push with me crying into her neck, and swoosh, up came baby D. She said I did it, she just had her hands on the baby but didn't do anything. She also looked at her watch. 8:02.
Such hard work, and there she was. Quiet but alert, like B. She seemed not to know she'd been born. The sun was up, and she was squinting in the light, but otherwise no reaction. I asked T if I could sit on his lap. Of course. Then she opened her eyes and looked right over my shoulder, straight at Daddy. That was magic.
We had to finally wiggle her and rub her to get her to cry and take that first breath as she was going a little blue. Silly. She did it and pinked right up. I tried to get her to nurse but she wasn't that interested yet. The cord had stopped pulsing, but we opted to wait to cut it until we were out. We stood up to get out for the placenta and immediately I knew it was too late. Dawn grabbed a chux pad and caught it just in time, then dropped it into the water. It was a mess, but all worked out. We set up pads on the bed and switched D's towel for a dry one, wrapped me in one, and we finally nursed for awhile.
T cut the cord, more nursing, then Dawn weighed her in a fish scale with a cloth sling attached. For the record I'm about 5'3" on a good day, and usually weigh about 105 lbs.. I gained 38, but am still pretty small. She was 7 lbs, 7 oz. The biggest yet. K was 7, 4 and B was 7, 6.
T and the kids got her diapered and dressed while I showered. We nursed some more, measured her length, 21" (K holds that record at 21.5", B was 20.5"), then Mom made pancakes. Juice, fresh fruit, water, water, water. After eating I began to hit the wall of exhaustion. Dawn just nodded and suggested we get back in bed.
It was a lovely and magical birth, equal to the other two. We are truly blessed in so many ways.
Dawn came over the next day to check on us, and several times over the next week to do footprints for fun, to give us the birth certificate form to fill out, to check our progress.
She's coming again today to do the PKU test. We tried yesterday but couldn't get D to bleed at all, much less five big drops. Poor thing. At least we can nurse while we do it.
We've ordered the car seat, so it should be arriving early next week. Hooray! It will be so awsome to finally leave the house! And the slings P got us arrived yesterday, so some of this has actually been typed with both hands! Thanks, P!
Thursday, July 6
Some of the key players in Integrity are leaving. Leaving our chapter, leaving the national organization, leaving the Episcopal Church.
I just don't even know what to say. They want to take us for dinner and explain their reasons. The abbreviated version is, though they're happy the new Primate is a woman, they do not feel she did the right thing in making concessions on the last day of convention. They believe continued use of what they see as a failed strategy (presumably that of appeasment and compromise) is pointless. They can't stand to watch it anymore.
Fair enough, if they're burned out and just want to be done, fine. I'm fairly new blood in all this, so I can't pretend to really understand, but I have seen burn-out elsewhere, and that's what this seems like. Activism in a religious forum can really get in the way of one's spiritual practice. We invest so much, we want a return, even if that's not rational. I don't think rationality is a requirement in all matters, all the time. We are human.
I am disappointed at the disappointment, I must say. But I guess I'm a feminist first, and so elated about a woman making this history. Four hundred years of the Episcopate, women's secular struggle since the turn of the century, and this monumental thing happens and I get to see it, as a fairly young woman. I'm ecstatic! And she's unabashedly pro same-sex union, which is no small thing. Whatever concessions she made were purely strategic. I support long-term results and understand there is more likely to be evolution rather than revolution in a religious organization. Still, we're not the Catholic Church. Things really move pretty quickly in "Episcopalia".
Not fast enough for a large portion of the gay gang down here, though. One guy has already left, now this couple, and another couple is coincidentally leaving town, and the only lesbian members are snowbirds. That leaves a couple of people in the target market, and a large, seasonal contingent of those in the "friends" category.
Watch us end up like some other Integrity chapters, meeting to be supportive, but with no LGBT folk at all in the membership. I don't find that prospect amusing. What can we do, except do what we can?
Dinner's a week from Saturday, then there will be a chapter meeting at which they will explain and resign. Blaaa. I hate it. I just want it to not be true.
Wednesday, July 5
Another hampy funeral tomorrow. Poor Butterscotch. He escaped, made it to the piano, Ruby discovered him, there was squeeking, he was limp and put back in his cage, I came to check on him, he didn't look too hot, I checked back about five minutes later and he was gone. K had a Maison du Chocolat box. Poor hampy.
Today was one of those days where I felt very in love with D, but also very glad for breaks, like I really needed a break from having someone on me for hours. Still very sore nursing, both latch and let-down. If her latch doesn't improve by the time my let-down stops hurting, then I'll worry. In the meantime I get to have practice with patience and fortitude.
I pointed out to Mom, who used to really kick herself for not being successful nursing me, the level of support and nudity required to establish nursing. She does see how night and day this is from what her situation was. She also makes amazing pasta sauce and pot roast. That's an aside, but I just had to mention it.
T scared me half to death today. I put D in an adorable little dress and we went to nurse outside and watch T conquer the ficus tree pre-hurricanes. Something bit him near his eye, he let go of the trunk, and wobbled on the branch waving his hand and the axe at his head. Good Lord. He's fine, a little ice and tylenol seem to have done the trick, but I'm going to have to do something about getting rid of that visual. It makes me feel ill with dread.
It did help to see him get back out there and play bucket tag with the kids. Until K came storming back in because she has more hair than they do and that gave them an unfair advantage in balancing a beanbag on their heads, especially Daddy, and no, she's not playing.
ChaCha's tweetling a sweet evening song. He's really enjoyed being out during the day. I don't know what we'll do in the winter when it's too cold for him.
Tuesday, July 4
I'm much better rested, but I also thought today was Monday.
D's sleeping on my shoulder. She smells so sweet. And I get to hear her tiny breaths.
T is reading Londonistan. He reads it to me at night and in the morning while D nurses. It is perhaps the best, most succinct telling of the problem of the invasion of Marxist thought creating a cultural vacuum I have heard yet. In the U.S. we still have the luxury of watching the battle unfold, and we're not so far gone we can't stop its progression. I attribute that to several factors. Our immigrants are primarily from culturally Christian, if Marxist, countries. Our homegrown Pat Robertson types are hypervigilant about signs of deterioration of "Christian values" (my residual lefty training forces me still to put that term in quotes). And our innate libertarian, with a small "l", streak.
I think it should be required reading. It's a quick read, just the facts ma'am, no jargon. Seriously, you should pick it up. They won't even publish it at a major house in London. Dhimmis. T's Dad couldn't find it in stores there. If the canary has stopped singing, this book is what that silence sounds like.
Now check in with Jihad Watch. They're talking about reading the Declaration, and how the mindset of fundamentalist Islam cannot put the will of the people before the will of Allah as expressed in the Koran.
More cheery news? Iran sent a bunch of engineers to hang out, all pally, with the N. Korean gang, and China's knee deep in the deal. Still the U.S. and the Iranian people can still hope for a velvet revolution. I think N. Korea is just a distraction, even with their little Independence Day launch-fest. The real action is in that strip of bloodsoaked sand that is Israel, and the excuse mongers pretending some sort of bully appeasement will quiet the jihad declared against all things Western, or at least non-Islamist.
The most attractive weakness I can see in our Islamist enemies is that they can't even agree among themselves which Islam is the true Islam. So it isn't really a uniting force. The only thing they have to unite them is hatred of the West. Is that really enough for the long haul? Especially if certain elements of the West, like the U.K., are party to their own coersion and demise? You can't fight something that goes belly up, you've already won. So what's to hate? When that happens, it's over, and just a matter of counting heads, foreskins, chattel. Next.
I never thought I'd be so grateful for our own fundamentalists. At least they know one when they see one. Poor old Britain chuckled its sophisticated way out of business when it chased its own fundamentalists to our shores. I don't want it to be true, but the stats don't look good. One of Britain's great historical strengths it learned from Rome. Solve two problems by setting one against the other. Anyone know of a new continent just itching for explorers? Maybe Stephen Hawking is partly right. We need to colonize the moon and Mars, but not because of global warming. I like the idea of them starting off as post-WWIV penal colonies. Heh.
Chapter 8 is really something on the Anglican/Episcopal front. Yikes. Rowan Williams is a nightmare of muddled thinking. I'm not going to elaborate because I really want you to read it.
T took the kids to watch the fireworks from the softball bleachers at the park. Very clever. Great view, no traffic, no bugs. The beach is way to much of a production. We never get home till after 11. This was much better. Last year we just sat on the roof of the truck in the driveway. This year Mom and D and I, and oddly both the dog and one of the cats, all watched from the livingroom. It was very tame and good for babies. And pets. We talked about eventually building a second floor with a sunset deck on which we could have parties and watch fireworks.
We also talked about godparents. Godparents are hard these days. Especially if you expect them to actually do something. Especially if that something is religious. Never mind the problem of politics. We have until November. What is the protocol for changing one's godparents? K and B need to. Cousin. It seemed like a good idea at the time. But she doesn't want her family, so there's not a whole lot we can do. It is a shame. Onward! Who can we have?
I think a godparent should, minimally, buy the child a decent Bible, and inquire after the child's religious education, especially if something untoward happens to the parents. This is a person who offers some security in faith. How's that for a tall order?
Sunday, July 2
Here's a wierd thing, what with all the emails about old Mentos ads circulating. A couple of geniuses have figured a glorious celebration of 4th of July using only their wits, diet Coke, and Mentos. Happy 4th!
I'm not sure the two should be ingested together, but apparently both companies are elated. Tweedledum logic, in my book. But it makes for a good show.
The gdiapers thing is too cool. D's cord fell off, so we've switched. Everyone's happy. Except for Ruby, who's been eating cat messes in the yard and ain't feelin' so hot. Why are we always surprised when dogs act like dogs?
We're having the announcements made by 5 Star Baby. I can't remember where I saw the ad, but they are such a great idea.
(Update: The 5 Star guy sent the proof, asked about changes, and never responded to another email!)
Oh, and I figured out the mystery of motherwort. Immediately postpartum the cramps are a big problem, and so is potential for engorgement, so if it lessens milk supply even slightly, that's actually a big help at that time. I kept forgetting to drink it, feeling awful, having some, and then feeling fine. I just love it when things do what they're supposed to. T quipped that those witches sure knew their stuff. Too bad they were all "innocent". Heh. Dark. Heh.
Last but not least, the kids have started Sanskrit. B wandered off after a few minutes, but K listened to half of the first lesson and liked it. Vyass Houston is so great at articulating why and how the vowels are enunciated the way they are, then he sings them, and he is persistently mindful of the sacred nature of the language. He never says so, it's just in his treatment. Really cool.
I read an op-ed in the paper today about the supposed death of multiculturalism. Its demise is due, according to the writer, to the realization that multiculturalism has been the open-armed vehicle for allowing jihadism to flourish in non-Arabic countries. Perhaps a few governments in Europe are finally off their patchouli flavored happy pills and are seeing the light, but I won't be totally satisfied until it's out of the education systems there, or here for that matter. When "feelings" finally exit the math classroom, I'll have to find a new education pinata. In the meantime I think it's safe to say the po-mo gang is still firmly ensconced in both government and education, no matter what the press says. How I would love to be as hopeful as the writer. No link now, all the lights are off, but I'll try to find it for tomorrow.
Saturday, July 1
The shower last night was so dear! D handled it beautifully. I was so excited by it all though that I couldn't fall asleep. I watched her sleep, like a fool, as though I could be vicariously rested.
J and P came over early and performed a miracle of pinkness and love. Food, cake, flowers, candles, quotes, favors, fluffy things, all manner of sweetness and planning. I couldn't watch without crying. Everyone was so lovely. There were fun and silly games. D made the rounds getting cuddled, making "O"s and having her diaper changed. Conversations were animated. There was laughter. It was so nice to see so many after such a long haul of bedrest. My voice actually got hoarse because I'm so unused to talking that much. It was a true celebration. It was both humbling and strengthening. I guess most truly good things are.
Earlier yesterday I finally got the church dinner ministry thank you notes done. Everyone signed them. We just need to teach the dog to lick envelopes and they can be mailed! I need a new pack for the party gang. I know I was talking about those thank you notes weeks ago, and acting like they were as good as done. I swear, reading this blog, you must know that only a fraction of what I say I'm going to do happens. If I report it done, it is done, but if it's on a to do list, it is in the ether until further notice, no matter how good an idea, or how dire the need. So the dog thing, for instance...
D is latching a little better, meaning about half the time she gets it totally right, and the rest of the time she's either just got funny lip technique, which is easy to adjust, or she does her clenched suck trick, which makes me cry.
There was one strange thing that happened at the shower.
Of all topics, Blue Lagoon came up. The two discussing it don't read my blog. But there were some readers who noticed. It was so surreal. Freaky trick of the universe surreal. I almost had to laugh. I guess one can't really set energy in motion and think it will stop just because it's no longer being attended. Is that too arcane? God's sense of humor can take some getting used to, and is usually a bit scary. Hence that whole "awe" thing which is so often translated as "fear". It certainly does get your attention when it happens. A real thigh slapper.
I didn't hear the beginning of the conversation, but it was something about bad movies of the '70s, and how kid-unfriendly they were, and The Bad News Bears, and then Blue Lagoon, and something about being forbidden to see it, but there was one girl who was allowed, and the most unlikely person at the party had actually seen it, but remembers there was a police officer at the theatre to make sure underaged kids were not going to it without parents.
I just keep thinking about that. There was a police officer there.
It's almost better to just have that slight doubt, that child's unsure opinion, than to have a corroboration of destiny. I was definitely tired today from not sleeping with D's schedule last night, but I think the thought of the reality of my, ugh. Whatever. I was weepy today.
I'm being a fool again tonight. Go to sleep! She's sleeping, just go! Go! But I'm sure there's one more thing to tell. GO! Shouldn't I end on a more postitive note? Sleep is positive! Go sleep!