Just the General Update

So I realized I hadn’t written a blog in about three months. Jesus! My apologies for the surprise hiatus.

 So Ari is… huge. She’s grown over six inches in three months! (What the hell do they put in Similac anyway?) She’s so much more interactive, too. At first she was just in sleep, poop, eat mode, which was pretty boring, but now she can do all this other stuff. She’s smiling ALL the time, at pretty much everybody except my stepmother, who she won’t even look at… to be honest, I didn’t feel too bad about that. She’s started laughing a little, although the only “real” laugh (like a ha-ha-ha laugh) she’s done was when my mom accidentally tickled her. We’ve all been tickling her like crazy ever since, trying to find the goddamned spot and have been unsuccessful. She’s also started talking and verbalizing a lot, which is so cool. You can definitely tell she’s a girl, she’s always babbling. It’s so cute… she’ll just be staring you in the eyes, carrying on and on for like ten minutes. I can’t wait until she can speak actual words and sentences. She’s also started trying to stand up – she can put all her weight on her legs, but she needs some help to balance. A couple of times she’s been able to stand still for a few seconds on her own, leaning on something. Her cradle cap is finally gone (thank god!), and her hair is so soft and pretty. She looks so cute with a little faux-hawk… I can’t wait until her hair is a little longer so she can have a more respectable one. What else… I’m going to try to start transitioning her to sleeping in her crib over the next couple of weeks. I want my bed back! I’m kind of torn… I like the closeness of sleeping with her, but then we wake each other up, and I want to be able to spread out in my bed and take up the entire thing. I’m also scared to sleep on my  stomach when she’s in bed because I’m worried I’ll roll over on her. So I think I’m going to go ahead and have her start using her crib, which until now has been toy storage.

So school’s not going so great… it was a bad idea to be taking classes and getting adjusted to motherhood simultaneously. But, now that Ari’s settling into a schedule, hopefully I can get into more of a schedule as well so I can do better with schoolwork next semester. My mom was talking about me switching to some kind of a nine-month program that would certify me for something, but I don’t think it’s a good idea. I wouldn’t be able to support myself and my daughter and pay all the bills and everything with one of those jobs, and if I can’t move out and support us myself, then what’s even the point??? So I’m going to keep trying to get my teaching certification. $2500 a month isn’t terrific, but I could at least keep a roof over our heads on my own, and with that job, I wouldn’t have to put her in day-care or anything, since we’d have the same hours and vacation days. Maybe someday when she’s old enough that she can be at home alone, I could go ahead and get my master’s and teach at a community college or something, which would be a considerable pay increase, and a much more enjoyable job. Public schools just have so many restrictions now… you’re teaching a freaking test and outside of the material covered by that test, nothing you have to say is considered relevant, so you’re not supposed to teach it. For example, the history test doesn’t cover government, or anything from the World Wars onward, so that’s not in the curriculum. Say I: How the hell are you going to teach a United States History class in which FDR isn’t even mentioned??? Half the kids my age don’t even know what the Cold War was. Ugh. Thank you, George Bush.

Bastard.

Anyway, enough of political talk. Don’t want to get into that rant. In other news, Heather’s gone off to Illinois… What the fuck is in Illinois??? Come back, we miss you! She’s gone and left me all alone in Ranch Country. What else has been going on… I’m now 21. My birthday was a blast. I went with a couple of people to go have margaritas, and then we went to a hookah bar to hang out. The hookah bar was awesome; it was live music night, and it was this Middle Eastern electronic pop music. It was definitely different. A guy got up and started bellydancing. Crazy! I’ve never seen a guy bellydance, but it was kind of hot. *lol* I can’t wait to go back! Now I just have to get some people together and drag them out to Richmond.

What else? Back near the end of September, I started having these horrible pains in my abdomen and my back. It was really bad… it felt like I was being stabbed with knives, and my chest got all tight and I felt like I couldn’t breathe. The worst thing was my back, because there was nothing I could do about it. I have a pretty good pain tolerance… I’ve had cracked ribs, I’ve been hit by an 18-wheeler and walked away, I’ve been through ten hours of labor and recovered from a C-section, and I can honestly say this is by far the worst pain I have ever felt in my life. It’s horrid. With everything else, I could do something to make it feel better, or it would be a come-and-go pain. For example, when I was in labor, it would hurt for a minute, but then I’d have a couple of minutes to recuperate and prepare myself before the next contraction hit. Or I could change position to ease it a little. With this, there isn’t a damn thing you can do but lie there and cry. For hours. So I saw two doctors for it. One of them told me it was just gas pains, and the other said it was normal to have that after you have a baby. They basically told me the same thing: it’s normal, it happens to everyone, you’re being a baby, get over it. Finally, I badgered one into sending me to the hospital for tests. Lo and behold, I have gallbladder disease (which is what I kept telling both doctors). So I need my gallbladder out. Fucking great. I can’t afford the surgery, and once I can afford it, I’ll have to figure out what to do with Ari, and plus, I’m freaked out. At least when I was having the C-section, I was awake for it and my mom was able to be there about half of the time. Having this, I’m going to be unconscious and alone, which just completely freaks me out. I am so scared of hospitals, it is ridiculous. I actually considered having a home birth, I am so freaked out by them. I don’t know, I guess I’ll suck it up. Or I could go with the diet that wouldn’t allow me to have attacks… no sugar, no fat, no caffeine, nothing spicy, nothing greasy, no cholesterol, no salt… okay, never mind. But fuck, why is this happening to me??? This is only supposed to happen to old people.

Anyway, this is already too long, so I’ll write something else later – I’m trying to get back into the habit of blogging.

Ink

So I have a disaster on the back of my neck. I already had a bunch of pink stars on the back of my neck, and, drunk and stoned as could be, I decided it would be a good idea to get this friend of a friend to tattoo “Luna” (“moon” en espanol) underneath them. It’s horrid. I’d always hated text-only tattoos and thought they looked so tacky and ghetto, and I hate the font he used, and it’s just not a good tattoo. It was done at two in the morning in someone’s living room by a stoned guy, and you can tell just by looking at it. Blech.

So I knew I wanted to get it covered up, but I wasn’t sure with what. I tried coming up with pictures of a butterfly or dragonfly that had a dark background and so could cover up the black text, but they didn’t really seem right.

I also was thinking about getting a tattoo for my daughter. However, now that I’m sober and in my right mind, I fall back on my original opinion about text-only tattoos. So I don’t want her name and birthdate or anything. For one, text-only = yuck. For another, it’s just so generic and boring. I want a picture to represent her.

So finally, last night, it finally occurred to me to get a picture, symbolizing her, over the catastrophe on my neck. I know, it should have occured to me a long time ago. So now I’m trying to come up with a picture that could symbolize her and that would do a good job of covering up the tattoo. Now, I’ve heard from a couple of people that color should be able to cover up the dark ink that the guy used on me, just because it was cheap ink and a horrible job. I’ll have to talk to whatever shop I choose about that, but I hope it’s true; it would give me a lot more options. I was thinking about maybe something using a lion, as her name means “Lion of God”. Her middle name means “Faith”, and there’s no way I’m getting a cross or some such on me – that’s worse than text!

 Fussy baby! Finish this up later!

I Can’t Keep My Eyes Open

Sleep deprivation blows. Like, it seriously blows. The entire speech that Edward Norton’s character gives about insomnia in the beginning of Fight Club? All of that is just as applicable to new mothers as it is to insomniacs. Seriously.

I don’t know, she just seems stuck on this nocturnal schedule. I can try keeping her awake during the day, but it doesn’t seem to do any good. Especially since even when I’m trying my best to keep her awake, she can suddenly sleep through anything. When I finally manage to coax her to sleep at night, the sound of me lying down on my bed jolts her awake!

AUGH!

:: Update ::

So I’ve been told to do a blog post, but there’s not really much going on over here, so I guess I’ll just give a general update.

I’m fine, although extremely sleep-deprived. I’ve been reading a good bit when I’m awake and not being a slave to my tiny tyrant’s every whim; most lately The Girlfriends’ Guide to the First Year of Motherhood by Vicki Iovine. That book is awesome to read one-handed during the 2:30AM feeding, just because I’m a firm believer that laughter really is the best medicine, especially for postpartum depression (and anyone who isn’t feeling postpartumish when they haven’t been able to sleep all night because they’ve been reduced to a constant food source for a baby going through a growth spurt is just inhuman – or lying).

Arielle is doing well. I ended up saying “screw the doctors” and went ahead and did what I wanted to do, as far as feeding her, and the jaundice went ahead and cleared up on its own; she had her last blood test yesterday (thank god!) and her bili was 8.5, which is out of the danger zone. Now that she’s not jaundiced anymore, she actually woke up on Sunday and has been practicing psychological warfare on me every night since. Did you know that someone who hasn’t slept in 24 hours has the same lack of concentration and about the same response time as someone who is legally intoxicated? I can definitely believe it now.

In other news… My classes are going pretty well; my history professor should be committed, but whatever. It kind of sucks right now because my best friend is moving in less than a month – to Illinois! What the fuck?! But that’s okay, it gives me a good excuse for a road trip to a place I’ve never been before. (Anyone know what there is to do in Illinois?)

Yellow Baby?

Jaundice is evil and is destroying my life. Seriously.

So in the hospital, the last day I was in, they said that Arielle looked a little pale. They did a blood test, and her bilirubin level was high – 11.7. Not horrible, but almost high enough to keep her in the hospital after I was allowed to go home. So at her first doctor appointment on Tuesday, when she was a week old, they did another blood test because she was very yellow at that point. 15.1. Great. They told me to feed her every two hours during the day and every three “or so” at night to try to flush her system out, twenty to thirty minutes per feeding. Two days later, at today’s appointment, she’d gained more weight than she needed to, so she was obviously eating well, and she looked more pink and less yellow, so I figured today’s blood test would be the last one. Which would be great, because I’m starting to feel like these people have mistaken my baby for a pincushion.

15.8 with a direct of 1.5 (really bad, in other words).

So I get to take her to the doctor for another blood test tomorrow, and they said to leave Saturday morning open for another blood test as well, since she’ll probably have to have another one then. I’m to keep her in indirect sunlight as much as possible, and I’m banned from breastfeeding until her bili goes down. That’s the part I really hate. I kind of complained a little about breastfeeding; my breasts hurt and everything, and I was starting to feel a little like a milk cow, but there was a real feeling of closeness with her when I fed her that I don’t feel now when I feed her from a bottle, and it just makes me so sad. I cried when I gave Ari her first bottle. Then there’s the fact that she doesn’t seem to like formula as much, and she doesn’t want as much as they want her to have, so I’m spending an hour at each feeding trying to force-feed my daughter. I can’t wait until this is over, but it’s going to be hard until it is. I mean, right now the schedule is: feed her for an hour, wait an hour, feed her an hour, wait an hour, and so on and so on. That’s going to suck at night. Actually, since I won’t be breastfeeding, I’ll probably just have absurd amounts of caffeine and pick up smoking again (I haven’t had a cigarette in weeks) to stay awake. There’s no point in sleeping thirty, forty-five minutes at a time, and I’d probably sleep through the alarm if I tried to nap in between feedings.

Special Delivery (Or Oh, The Pain!)

You know how they say you should always be careful what you wish for?

 They’re damn right.

So on Monday afternoon, I wrote a blog post about how I was so ready for the pregnancy to be over. I was so ready to just get childbirth over and done with. I was so ready to have the baby here. I published my blog post, stood up from the computer, and realized that my pants were soaked… my water had broken.  Now how’s that for irony?

Of course, I wasn’t quite sure what happened. I was afraid that my water had broken, but I hadn’t had any contractions. I wasn’t in labor. I wasn’t supposed to be in labor for weeks. I remembered reading that sometimes pregnant women had bad bladder control. That hadn’t happened to me, but maybe this was the first time. (Yeah, I was clutching at straws.)

I finally decided that my water had broken and I got to the hospital shortly before midnight. They started me on pitocin to induce labor, but it didn’t work well; it gave me horrid contractions, but they didn’t make me dilate at all. Everything seemed to be going wrong. I had to be constantly monitored, and the nurses kept having trouble finding a heartbeat. After fifteen or twenty minutes of searching, they might find it, but it was very faint and they would lose it after a few minutes; then they had to find it all over again. The baby’s heartbeat was very erratic, and it would often drop dangerously during contractions. This all went on until about 10:00 AM Tuesday morning. I’d had an ultrasound a few hours earlier. At the ultrasound, everything was fine. The baby was head-down, the umbilical cord wasn’t doing anything funky, the placenta looked normal. I was almost out of amniotic fluid, but aside from that, everything seemed perfectly normal.

I asked the nurse if I could be detached from the monitors for a couple of minutes to run to the bathroom. She agreed, after groaning a bit about having to find the heartbeat yet again once I got back. She moved the sheet that had been covering me aside, and gasped, “That’s a lot of blood!” She snapped something quick into a walkie-talkie-type thing and within two minutes, people were coming in and getting me ready to be moved into the operating room. Five minutes later I was down the hall getting a spinal block, and ten minutes after that, they were opening me up. My mom got there a few minutes later; it took a few minutes for her to get properly dressed to come into the operating room, and they felt they couldn’t wait. Everything happened so fast, it felt like I’d just been sucked into a tornado. Arielle was born in short order, at 10:37, and they let me look at her for a quick moment and kiss her forehead before whisking her away to the nursery; normally, they allow you to hold the baby before they take them, but they said they were too worried about her condition.

Later, they told me that the placenta had ripped away from the uterus, which caused all the bleeding. The amniotic sac had filled with blood; Arielle had swallowed and inhaled a lot of it. I had lost a lot of blood and I was in danger as well; I have no idea how long I’d been bleeding on the L&D table and hadn’t even realized it; I just thought the liquid I was losing was more amniotic fluid, which had been leaking steadily with the occasional gush all along. Arielle’s low heart rate was due to a knot in the umbilical cord which had tightened; if my water hadn’t happened to break that night and made me go to the hospital anyway, she would have been stillborn because of the knot. She also had managed to flip sideways; they had cut me open, thinking that they would just pull her head out, but there was nothing there! They were able to turn her and pull her out by the feet. After they pulled her out, they pumped her stomach and suctioned her lungs really quickly in the operating room to get all the blood out. Then they let me see her for a second and took her to the nursery. I was able to get her back about five and a half hours later, but my mom was able to go see her in the nursery for a little while. They were concerned because of all the blood and had to do an X-ray of her lungs to make sure the fluid was all out. They also were concerned because she was about five weeks premature.

As horrendous as everything was to that point, everything was pleasantly boring and textbook afterwards. Both of us recovered very well and quickly, and we had an uneventful stay in the hospital after they brought her back to me. She had been born on Tuesday, and we were discharged Friday.

Arielle Vera Wilson

Arielle Vera was born August 21, 2007 at 10:37 AM. She was 18 3/4 inches long and weighed in at 7 lb 1 oz. She is beautiful and is doing great, despite a difficult delivery and the fact that she was born five weeks early. I’m so happy that she’s here with me and that she is all right! Pictures will come later!

So Tired of This

Okay. The biggest thing that’s irked me about pregnancy is that nobody ever tells you how much it sucks… until you’re past the three-month mark and you’re locked in with no way out.

So right now I’ve got sixteen days to go until my due date. (Crazy, huh?) I’m getting my hospital bag packed, my contact list ready, all that good stuff. I’m so sick of being pregnant. Labor doesn’t seem so bad now, just because it will mean the end of being pregnant. For one, there’s the drinking. I didn’t think I would miss it, and I probably wouldn’t, except that every time I see someone with a beer, or I’m in a restaurant and see that they’re having a margarita special, or I see my mom slipping some coffee liqueur into a glass of milk as if nobody’s going to notice, I’m reminded that not only do I not have it, but I’m not allowed to have it, which makes me want it more. I’m really not a big drinker, but nine months is a little much.

I’m ready to be able to lie down comfortably in bed. I’m ready to stop having stabbing pains in my groin area. I’m ready to be able to go an entire hour without peeing. I’m ready to have the lung capacity to take a deep breath. I’m really ready to be able to sleep on my stomach or back again. I’m ready to go ahead and get through labor, just so I don’t have to be scared of it any more.

I’m ready to see Arielle. I’m ready to stop worrying about whether she’ll be okay. I’m ready to see what she looks like, to hear what her voice sounds like (as if every screaming newborn doesn’t sound the same, but I still want to hear her, if that makes any sense). I’m ready to start my life as a mother. Okay, I’m not ready, but I’m eager, and that should count for something.

Sixteen days. How crazy is that?

School Troubles

So I have six classes left to take before I’m done with my basics. Two natural sciences, one psychology/sociology, two government, one math/reasoning. Of all of those subjects, there’s three classes available online in the fall, so I figured I’d retake my math class, which I’m not doing too hot in. In order to keep my medical insurance, I have to maintain full-time student status, which means four classes. So I finally get my classes together, and guess what?

Apparently I can’t register because “State Testing Required”. Say I: What the fuck?! What do you mean, state testing??? I’ve got shit to do! I have to get registered! What the hell is state testing? Why didn’t someone tell me at some point that I had to go through some sort of testing in order to register for classes?

I’m just so frustrated at this point. Not only are half the classes I need unavailable, but when I finally try to sign up for some, I’m unable to. What bullshit.

Vita? WTF is that???

vi·ta  
n.   pl. vi·tae (vī’tē, vē’tī)

  1. A curriculum vitae.
  2. A short account of a person’s life.

No, it’s not a stripper name. It’s my new blog. I realized that I had a blog for political writing and a blog for commenting on other articles and issues and stuff, but no blog about me. I’m not sure anyone will be interested in reading this, but I’m writing it anyway. So there!

 So I guess a little bit of background information about me is in order, seeing as how I’m the main point of this blog. Wow, I sound so conceited. So here we go.

  1. I’m expecting a little girl in September.
  2. I’m dating The Randomized Guy/The Beguiler/Jaime, who’s a really cool guy, except that he lives way too far away.
  3. I loathe Times New Roman font.
  4. I think about weird stuff, like what the offspring of a bat and a hamster would look like. I think they’d be pretty cute, actually. A winged hamster? With little fangs? Adorable.
  5. I wholeheartedly believe that Sex and the City was one of the greatest television shows ever made.
  6. My guilty pleasure? I spend way too much money on drinks at Sonic like blue-coconut-vanilla-Cokes.
  7. Don’t bother trying to figure out my style of dress. There is none. One day I’ll be in jeans and a T-shirt, the day after, I’ll be boho-ed out, and next, I’ll be all in pink.
  8. No matter what I’m wearing up top, it’s almost always flip-flops down below, though. I’m trying to get out of that habit and get to where I can be comfortable in shoes, though.
  9. I’m a history major with an art minor, and I want my teaching certification.
  10. I love my family, they’re my life right now.
  11. I read far too much. I don’t go anywhere without at least one book.
  12. I live in Houston. Actually, I wish I lived in Houston, but I live in Hockley, which is a tiny place on the outskirts of Houston. However, if I tell people I live in Hockley, they reply, “Hockley? Where’s that???”, so it’s just easier to say Houston.
  13. I love arguing, debating, or discussing politics and such. What fun, what fun.
  14. I can’t think of anything else to say.

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