Wednesday, February 18, 2009

MIL's birthday

Last week was the mother in law's birthday. My husband sent cards and posted some pics on our family photo site (we post family pics on a password-protected site (think Picasa, Kodak Gallery, and the like - since we live so far from family/friends).

MIL wrote my husband an e-mail just thanking him for the cards. Husband wrote her back and said she was welcome, and we had just had some studio pics taken that we would mail to her once they came in.

My husband just told me today that MIL wrote him back. She asked - why did we care about her now and seem to be reaching out after ignoring her since December 2007 and keeping news about her grandson from her.

Let me repeat that - keeping news of her grandson from her.


She really heard nothing of what we told her when we told her about the pregnancy.

Husband wrote her back today and said he had been hurting so much in December 2007 and needed their understanding and didn't get it - got in fact the opposite. And that had really hurt, and he needed time - a lot of time - to recover from that.

Gah. We're getting sucked back in, aren't we?

*since I had to edit to correct a typo, just thought I'd add - how on earth did I marry into a family where a $4.29 card from Target is the be-all end-all in emotional communication?

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Called my folks today and got my dad. He's feeling better, not in as much pain. He did try to see his doctor early (had appointment scheduled for today), but the doctor was totally booked. So he saw someone else, who adjusted his medicine slightly. And gave my dad food for thought, as he sits in his recliner with his foot elevated. New doctor said he should have been in the hospital, but the danger had passed, so there was no need now. And new doctor gave him some other tips and information. My dad said, come to think of it, when he had the ultrasound to diagnose yes, there was a blockage in a vein, the nurses said they would call his doctor with the news. And when they came back after calling the doctor, they seemed surprised the doctor just wanted him back in the office, not directly to the hospital. So, my father plans to get through this, then find a new GP/internist.

My mom's family is the one who refuses to visit the doctor unless it's clearly absolutely necessary. I'm that way, too - oh, it'll pass, it's not that big a deal, it'll be fine. But I do know sometimes it is a big deal. I try to keep that in mind for myself, but yet I have no 'regular' doctor - just the OB. Once things settle down a bit - after my annual OB visit in the early summer - I plan to find a good GP and have a real physical (the first in, I don't know, 10 years or so?). Though, see, this is where I always talk myself out of it, I'll still be breastfeeding, so I should wait.....but really, I'm 40 now and should have a real workup, cholesterol, screenings, the works for my age. I did ask the OB about mammograms starting at 40, and that is the one test that does wait til after the breastfeeding is done, so I'm ok there.

Feeling slightly better than I have been. My father was cheerful and sounded like himself, though he did say he needed another week before going back to work. He is on the mend, though, and that's what matters.

I was thinking today, though, of his weight, and his heart issues, and how I so desperately want him around another 10 years at least (he's 67). Really another 20 (or 30). (Or forever, honestly.) And how I think he really should exercise more (though the bypass has resulted in him regularly exercising doing therapy), eat better, and drink less (alcohol). The same applies to me, too. I want to stick around a long, long time. And carrying this excess weight, and eating junk food, is not the right path.

My public service announcement - visit the doctor. Take care of yourself. And I'll do the same.

Do you go regularly? Am I unusual in not having a physical in a long, long time? Or do you just rely on your OB appointments to catch things?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Last week I got a call from my sister. Have you talked to Mom and Dad lately? No, I hadn't. You had better call them, I just hung up and Dad has a blood clot and it's the size of a small child and he can't walk and there's a risk of stroke and why don't they ever call us and tell us these things, why do we have to call them before we hear anything.


So I called. He's had this happen before - blot clots in a vein, backing up from his groin to his knee. He told me it had happened in 1961, when he was 19, and again in 1972. I remembered - I was 4 - he had the vein removed from his leg and was laid up for a little bit. They have him on blood thinners, and he's not to walk around or move much so it doesn't dislodge, they want the blockage to dissolve.

My father had triple bypass in October '07. And in the past 10 months his older sister and older brother have died. He's had a rough time of it lately.

I talked to them most recently a couple of days ago, and I should call them today. My mom cheerfully reported, 'well, everyone I know who has a blood clot is in the hospital, but not your dad! The doctors hope this will work, but his leg is swollen and he's in a lot of pain.' I talked to my dad, and yeah. I've never really heard him sound like that. In a lot of pain is, I think, an understatement. He was scheduled to visit the doctor on Thursday, but they were going to call and try to get in earlier. I really should call them today, but the huge denial part of my brain wants to just wait til they call me.

I've not surprisingly been unsettled all this week. The conversation with him was awful - I could hear how much pain he was in. I feel helpless. And there isn't anything I can do. Just waiting. And hoping. And praying, too.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

A week

A week since posting. Where does the time go?

Last night I had a dream - one of those where you're semi-half awake and know it's a dream, yet it keeps playing out in your mind. I dreamt my husband and I were in the kitchen, talking. He was about to leave, to go to his new girlfriend's house. He had just bought a chainsaw, and said, 'oh, I'm going to take this home with me.' At the word home, my heart just sank, hearing him call another place home. He saw that on my face, and quickly said oh, I mean Rebecca's. (I think we were separated, but I wasn't supposed to know he was living with Rebecca, who is a good friend and former work colleague who is quite happily married and lives a million miles from here in real life). Then things shifted a bit and I knew he and Rebecca were trying to conceive, and I asked him how it was going. Not great, he replied, but she is already nesting, the house is spotless. And I had that hollow empty feeling in my chest again, looking around at how messy my counters were (in reality I might be cluttered but my counters are clean). But I smiled and nodded and asked more questions and pretended I wasn't hurting. I finally shook awake, still remembering that pit of despair feeling in my body. The cat was tucked under my arm, and my husband was holding me close. But I was annoyed at his closeness, still thinking of how easily and unintentionally a casual remark could sting.
Tonight we are going to a reception sponsored by one of my alumni groups. I arranged for the nanny to come late today and stay late so we can head out for a no extra babysitting fee night out. When I start part-time work, I've been thinking about once every two weeks or so having the nanny's hour shift like that so we can have one on one time. I said to my husband though - wait, I get extra kid time (a blessing and a bane with a willful 3 year old and on-demand breastfed baby), while you get a night out.
A couple of nights ago he walked in after work and said, I love you. We don't often say it to each other, so I was surprised - to what do I owe the occasion? He had heard on the radio while driving a piece on how some relationships don't include saying I love you, featuring a man who had been married 12 years and never once heard his wife say it, another woman who hadn't heard it since their wedding day three years before. The takeaway as relationships were healthier when it was said out loud with some regularity. We should try it, he said. And the three year old chimed in, wait - I LOVE YOU, Mommy and Daddy. It comes easily to her.
I've been making my husband laugh lately. I can feel him smile at me and radiate contentment. These are things you know. I don't think he remotely can tell how I am feeling.
I went to dinner last week with some friends, and we talked about another friend who has had some troubles with au pair arrangements. There was a time I had thought we were an au pair-type family and would likely go that route. But I had told my friends - and husband - last fall no au pair anytime soon. I wasn't ready to have a 20-something living under my roof, especially if there was any chance she was remotely attractive and liked to party. One of my friends said last week, oh, but you don't think anything would happen now, do you? Hell yeah, I do, I replied. I can see it now - she'd be lonely and bored and want to go out and my husband would suggest, oh, I'll just show her around to a few places and the next thing you know..........stupid and ridiculous, I know. And I do believe unlikely, but not impossible. So no au pair for a while, if ever.

A week in a marriage.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

soon to be employed

OK. Wow. I accepted the part-time job just half an hour ago. There was a wee bit of pressure (sure, we took 5 months, but can you decide in one day? because we have to get back to the other people we've been stringing along.)

The contract came via e-mail at 2 pm. I still went to the full-time interview at 4 pm, and I have to say it was great. I really, really liked the person for whom I'd be working. I know how to do the job he needs filled, and I find it interesting and energizing to do that sort of work. The part-time job? Is a stretch for me. But a good one - for a part-time position, it's a major resume builder. It's a skill set I've done as part of my other positions, but never very much. It has high visibility and I'll make a lot of contacts. And I really, really liked them and wanted that job last fall - I think the long delay and my frustration with them has clouded how excited I was I came home last night totally torn. I'm still torn, to be honest.

And, having my ego take a major bruising last year, I'm gun shy. Am I really a good employee? Am I really talented? Do I have things to offer? The full-time gig interview was good for my ego, and doing a job I'd totally know how to do, in a big organization, has some safety appeal. A contract, located away from the home office - hello exact same situation from which I was fired last year. But, maybe that's also a reason not to shy away. To get right back up there and succeed.

I'm worried about money, and full-time gives us more money. But we've started going to open houses to get my daughter into school (since we live in a city, we have options even for public school, it's not just go to your neighborhood school). And at each one I've thought - but how will we pick her up from school? How will we all get ready and out the door by 8 am? When will I be able to ask her about her day? When will I get to spend time with her? Some organization did a study on working parents about a year ago. The holy grail for working parents is meaningful, well compensated part-time work. And that's what this is.

So I took it. The funny thing? I read back through some old job posts and saw I said we'd be relatively ok financially through March, if we instituted some belt-tightening. And that's exactly how this will play out. I'll start working March 1 (or 2nd, really) and be paid monthly in arrears, in early April. Just like everyone, there's more belt-tightening to come, areas we can cut back, credit cards to be paid off. Scary inancial news everyplace we look.

But. Whew. This is a big relief. I've been thinking where I was a year ago - new job, newly pregnant, thinking 2008 would be a much easier year than '07. So here we are, '09, new job, new baby, working on the relationship, hanging in there. Worried about the financial mess this country is in right now. Trying not to think about what could possibly go wrong next (and there's a few possibilities). How's your '09 looking? Are you optimistic? Pessimistic? Just taking it as it comes?

Monday, February 2, 2009


Thanks so much for all the good wishes. It really is just such a relief. I don't know many details, though. Which, as time has passed, has made it seem not quite real. Here's what I know.

Wednesday I finally got a call from the full time job I was pursuing, to schedule an interview. I played phone tag with the guy, just leaving messages, and was going to blog about that. The phone rang, and caller ID registered the part-time place. I seriously thought, oh, shit, here it is. The rejection call. I almost did not answer.

It was the head of the organization - he said it had been a long process, btu I had come out on top and they were offering me the job. All I could say was, really? I told him I was so pleased and excited. He had few details - they want it to start March 1. They have office space, but it's under construction (I would be the only person based in this location), and so not available til April 1, so could I work from home? And 20 hours per week, paid hourly. Really, it's perfect. Little man will be 14 weeks old on March 1. But otherwise, he had no details. My computer is acting up, so I asked if they would supply a computer or if I needed to use my own, and they will supply. There are no benefits, but that's fine right now.

At the end he said, well, I legally shouldn't ask this, btu how are things with the baby? Weird way to phrase it. If they're offering me the job they can certainly inquire politely, right? I just laughed and said things were good, he was up to 6 hours sleep at night, and 6 hours makes you human. He just laughed. So now I'm waiting for an official offer letter, which should contain more details.

Meanwhile, I've got this other interview out there. I was busy Thursday and Friday, so had suggested today, and we had scheduled for this afternoon. I've been trying to get into this other organization since I began this blog. But for where my life is right now, this part-time thing is really the best thing. Though, I have to say, watching our economy tank, and knowing the interview place pays well, a part of me wonders if I should go full time and try and save money. But full time is a tough road with an infant, and the part-time pay is enough to still contribute to savings, jsut not as much. I am going to call the interview and say I have an offer coming and see how they react. Without the actual offer in hand, though, I feel a little unsettled, you know? I really don't know how best to handle where things are now. Any ideas?