Monday, September 27, 2010

[insert clever title here]

If you are Mormon, you may recognize the man in the background:

This man happens to be a customer at my work.  He also happens to think I'm nuts.

Charly is one of my favorite movies.  So three years ago, when a coworker told me the actor who plays Sam was shopping in our store I was a little excited.  I stood at my register hoping he would come through my line.  I tried to make eye contact with him to show him I was the friendliest cashier.  Just as he began to approach my line, a little old lady stepped in front of him and began to load the belt with bulk oatmeal.  He looked over to the next available register and my heart sunk.  Missed my opportunity.  But I knew he'd come in again-- I just didn't know when.

In a manner of weeks I was trained on dairy and no longer checking out customers.  On a fateful fall morning as I filled the cheese cooler You-Know-Who walked in.  (Not Voldemort.)  "Sam".

As he tried to squeeze past me and my cheese mess, I attempted to move as well.  My little fanny shimmed into a stack of chip cases which proceeded to topple in slow-motion on top of "Sam".  I was mortified and apologized profusely.  He, of course, was gracious and forgiving.  But the damage was done; I decided to give him wide birth in the future to avoid further embarrassment.

But a few months later he took me by surprise while I was filling milk in the dairy.  I saw him walk into the aisle and I tried to look as busy as possible.  "Hello?" I heard him say.  I started to panic.  I was going to have to talk to him, and flashbacks of the chip casestack fiasco flooded my mind.  I turned to face him and hollered, "HELLO!" rather loudly and dorkily.  He had been studying the sodas, but he turned to look at me and I realized he was actually on the phone.

As you can imagine, I've been avoiding him more since then.

Last Wednesday he came though my line.  I felt trapped, and my nerves kicked in.  He handed me his preferred customer card and I noticed he real name is Jeremy.  So, what do I say to him?  "My car's name is Jeremy."  He gave me a worried look and I realized he thought I'd named the car after him.  Great.  I began to stutter and explain the story behind acquiring my Corolla, but he left looking unsure of my sanity.

I have a couple of months left to embarrass myself in front of "famous" people, but hopefully I'll never have to run into "Sam"/Jeremy again.  I don't know if he could take anymore of my nervous antics.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Doctor code

Good prenatal care requires many medical appointments.  Before I got pregnant, it had been years since I'd visited a doctor for illness or injury.  I avoided doctors at all costs.  But now I'm beginning to become comfortable with the medical setting.  I've even picked up on some of their secret codes they use to make patients more comfortable in uncomfortable situations.

First, there is the "how are you feeling?" question.  This is asked to gauge how open you are to talking about your bodily functions.  If you answer, "Good, I'm feeling good," they will proceed to probe until you've divulged all your embarrassing stories about peeing when you sneeze and uncontrollable gas in crowded elevators.  I've tried to resist, but they are just too good.  I just answer honestly now.  They ask, "How are you feeling?"  I say, "Good.  I have some pressure on my bladder, but I'm still drinking lots of water and making frequent bathroom stops."  They like to hear that.  In fact, if you add "drinking lots of water" to about anything you say to a doctor it will satisfy some deep inner aqua-pushing urge the medical community seems to possess.

One of my favorite phrases is: "Wow, those are cute maternity pants!"  This means "it's time to pull your pants down."  I noticed my nurse/midwives say this right before they look for my pubic bone to measure fundal height.  But today I was at the hospital to receive my Rhogam shot, which is administered in your tush, and the nurse mentioned how cute my pants were.  As soon as I heard the compliment I knew it what time it was . . .  and I was not disappointed.  By the way, getting a shot in the bum isn't as bad as it seems.  The nurse even put a little band-aid over the injection sight when she finished.  So nurturing!  I think pulling that band-aid off my bum will hurt worse than the shot.

One of my least favorite phrases is: "Go ahead and just lay back while I pull out these stirrups."  This mean things are about to get really drafty.  'Nough said.

"This might be a little cold," usually means, "I just pulled this from the freezer and I'll now rub it on your bare skin!"  I'm actually kidding about this one.  Any time a nurse has told me something might be a bit chilly it has been a reasonable temperature.  I think they got a lawsuit once that involved cold tummy gel and black frost-bitten toes and they are now required by federal law to give a disclaimer.

Another subtle little phrase they use at the my doctor's office is: "The bathroom is available if you'd like."  This does not mean, "I know you have a little person pressing on your bladder so feel free to use our facilities anytime you'd like."  It means, "Go pee in a cup now before the next appointment arrives."  I've pretty much mastered this whole peeing-in-a-cup thing.  There's a ten step instruction chart beside the toilet filled with tips and recommendations to make this experience easier, but I find in this case practice makes perfect.  Before I got pregnant I never thought this would be a valuable skill to have, but it is.  For those of you who've not had this experience yet, it's all about timing and hand-eye coordination.  I'm going to stop there.

We'll see if I get to learn anymore phrases tomorrow when I go in for my 28 week appointment.  Have a happy week, all!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Err 405: Pregnancy brain

Opps!  I wrote a post for last Sunday and then I totally forgot to post it.  I'll post it now for Paul.  He, after all, is in it.

So far this semester has been. . . crazy.  Aside from time I've spent in class, at work, and driving between the two, I've had about five minutes to breath and sit.  Friday amidst my travels my car died in the middle of the road and had to be towed.  Then I lost my purse on campus.  While wondering what I was suppose to be learning from the latest set of trails, I came to the conclusion that it was patience.  I've had a variety of trials in my short lifetime that have tried to instill patience into my little soul, but I've been very resistant.  So, I'm accepting this lesson and hoping the catastrophes will end for a season, because I'm worn out.

But I have a couple things that keep me going.

First, there's this sexy beast:  (You may want to send little kids out of the room because of the sheer hotness of this picture.)

Yup, that's Paul in an apron doing dishes.  He's always been good about helping when I ask, but I took over most of the chores this last summer while he studied through fifteen credit hours of school.  I thought when school started for me I'd be able to keep all of my responsibilities easily.  Ha ha!  No, two days into the semester I realized I was in over my head.

Paul and I talked about it and agreed that he could adopt some of his old chores back and then a couple more on the side.  It's been wonderfully helpful!  I don't know what I'd do with out that man!

And I'm trying to be strong for this little girl as well:

She deserves to come to a happy place and to a sane mother.

Thankfully, sanity is relative.

Speaking of relatives, these two have helped keep me sane this week.  My dad has been working on my car, and my mom has been working on my self-esteem.  Both are making fantastic progress.


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Mirror, mirror

Me and baby Braden, 1999.
I remember what it was like to be the fat girl in school.  I remember moving to Utah and making friends with a girl who approached me with quite the opening line: "Do people tell you that you're fat?"  I was nine and so quick to forgive.  We played together on the playground that afternoon.  She introduced me to jump rope and I hesitated because I couldn't jump well and I. . . jiggled.  I offered to just twirl the beaded cord.  In a few days the other girls encouraged me to try a simple rhyme.  They said I could stand by the rope and tell them when I was ready for them to swing it around.  They knew how to jump in with the continuous beat of each twirl.  I did not.  Eventually, they taught me.  I loved to jump rope.  But I hated that I jiggled.

I remember being followed in the halls by a boy who lived in the neighborhood.  I remember him yelling at me, calling me fat and ugly.  I went to my teacher crying and related to her what had transpired.  She told me to just ignore him.  I learned to ignore a lot of other people too.

I remember school pictures.  Students, so proud of their smiles and eyes, passed out picture of themselves to classmates.  I didn't.  I was not proud of my rolls or my chins.

I moved on from the elementary traditions and stepped into junior high.  I was a seventh grader who got stuck with the eighth grade lunch slot-- no friends.  I ate lunch in the bathroom.  I was so ashamed to be seen eating by my peers, even peers I didn't know.  I was afraid of judgment and rejection.  By eighth grade, I quit taking my lunch altogether, willing to wait 'til I got home to eat.  I hated looking into the mirror.  I hated my body.  I hated that my friends were naturally skinny while I worked so hard and remained tubby.

The summer before ninth grade I started exercising and reducing my portions.  I lost thirty pounds before the school year began.  Boys started to like me, I had more confidence, and people were nicer.  I threw away my fat pants and swore I'd never go back.  While my weight fluctuated with in a ten pound range over the years, I never did go back.

But I'm creeping toward that number now.  Every month, the scale confirms it.  I know I'm carrying a baby.  I know I'm suppose to gain weight.  But I feel ashamed of the way I look.  I feel stared at and judged.  People keep asking me when I'm going to start looking pregnant.  I hate that.  I wish my belly was round and beautiful like everyone thinks it should be, but it's not.  It's lumpy, uneven, and divided in two.  Hard baby on bottom, squishy fat on top with a crease in the middle where my belly button stinks in.

I try to remind myself how amazing this body is.  It has carried my daughter so far, complication free.  I've thrown-up, eaten cases of ramen, worked twelve hour shifts at a very physical job, hiked to classes and back, moved to a new apartment, and this amazing body has kept my little miracle safe and healthy.  These changes are the battle scars of motherhood and I should celebrate their arrival.

But I wonder if I'll ever feel pretty again.  I wonder if I'll ever feel comfortable and confident snuggled up to my handsome husband like I use too.

I hope so.  I really do.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Difícil por la tarde (I don't know what this says)

I. . . I. . . I!  I'm trying desperately hard to write something positive.  This has presented itself as a challenge considering the annoyances I've been through just this afternoon.

But I don't have the time or hard-drive to write about all the horrid drivers I encountered on my way to school, so I can spare you of that entirely.  You are lucky.  Unless you were out there on the roads today in the Orem/Provo area between three and four, in which case I apologize for the trauma it must have caused.  I understand completely.

There is only one class I've been really looking forward to this semester.  Parenting and Child Guidance.  It seems prevalent in my current situation.  And it's a subject of general interest as a part of my major.  Bonus.  Naturally, I've been waiting for Thursday all week for the occasion of this once-a-week class.  I've been looking forward to sitting at the feet of a master and learning all the secrets that a marriage/family therapist has to offer.  Two and a half hours of drinking secret, masterful goodness.

Then the projector, DVD player, and AUX jacks in our classroom failed at the only job they have and that is to work.  She let us out two hours early so she could lecture in full technological glory next week.  I attempted not to weep bitterly at the news.  Darn hormones.

I huffed and puffed (it's the only way to get around when you are pregnant and out of shape) my little (okay, not horribly little) fanny over to the library to use a computer and la internete.  That's Spanish, for those of you who are unfamiliar.  I've watched Dora the Explorer, so I consider myself mucho familiar if not nearly fluent.  (My husband might cringe when he sees this attempt at Spanglish humor.)

Since moving into our new apartment we've been without internet.  Hence Dora the Explorer.  I didn't think this would be a huge problem.  We were without internet for almost a month when we got married, but we weren't in school then either.  On the first day of class, my Family Fiance instructor stood before us and said, "I hope you got the two e-mails I've sent you.  And I hope you've all printed off a copy of the syllabus that I posted online."

Second class:  My Human Development teacher announces, "Your first paper is due in two weeks.  I posted the guidelines and articles for you to analyze online."

Stupid internet.  I miss the good ol' days when teachers just killed trees with handouts.

Especially since the library computers don't have the program needed to view the articles of great value and enlightenment needed for this tome of a paper.

And aside from the required concert I have to attend for my Humanities class for which I can't get off work, and the number I was given to schedule an appointment for my rhogam shot (the shot that keeps my body from killing my baby) is an answering machine so I still don't have an appointment, aside from that, I have nothing further to complain about.  Thank heavens.

While this may seem a bit morbid and pessimistic, writing this out has been very therapeutic.  I'm reading through most of these problems realizing ways I could be more proactive in finding a solution.  I sat down in this "Family History Lab" feeling completely helpless and lost.  Now I know what I must do, and I am empowered.

Look out world!  Here I come!  Los empoweredante!  (He he. More Spanglish humor.  Forgive me, Pablo! XoXo!)