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1st Month

  • Love me the way I love you

    I love you.  I want to show you that I love you.  I do this by doing things I think you like.  Sometimes I show my love by doing things I would like, because I want you to notice, and then do these things back to me.  I love you the way I want to be loved.

    I want you to know I love you, so I try and show my love in ways that seem obvious to me.  But maybe it is not obvious to you.  The way you show me love is different from the way I show you love.  Sometimes I don’t notice your love, and sometimes you don’t notice mine.  It is like my love efforts become the red headed stepchild that you look right through.

    I do things for you that you would never do for me.  But I guess you do things for me that I would never do for you.  It is hard to appreciate your love because it can feel foreign.  I have to search for the signs and keep my eyes open to see the clues.  Just because you tell me you love me doesn’t mean I always feel it.  But just because I tell you I love you doesn’t mean I always show it.



    June 28, 2012 • 1 year old, 1st Month, Musings, Relationships • Views: 536

  • A Song in Your Heart

    One of the more exiting aspects of parenting is those moments where your child makes a developmental shift that blows your mind so much that your brain innards ooze out your nose and ears and cascades the contours of your face. Your kid goes from having zero capacity to do something, and then the next day they suddenly have the ability. It is truly remarkable to witness the actual connecting of synapsis as their brain matures.

    Recently The Munch has started singing. Her favorite song right now is “ring around the rosie” which is a bit morose, but she is really into it. We sing it holding hands swaying back and forth, we sing it to her baby, we sing it to her facecloths in the bath… But this idea of music coming into her life is really meaningful. No longer are songs an outside force of entertainment, but now an actual energetic force that she can create!

    It makes me think back to a time in human evolution that was pre-music. Who was that first person who starting grunting in rhythm, humming to a beat, and what effect did it have on those around them? All animals have sound, some more musical then others, but are the intention of those noises for pleasure or for communication? Are birds singing for the beauty of it, or because they are trying to get laid? The human desire to create and appreciate music is so engrained in our culture that I tend to believe that all members of the animal kingdom have their own artistic expression of sound. That there is an auditory need to marvel at the capacity ears have, and challenge what vocal cords can manifest. Now if I can only get The Munch to broaden her horizons because I am covered in bruises from all the times I have to “all fall down.”

    March 21, 2012 • 1 year old, 1st Month, 1st time for everything, Birth • Views: 298

  • Cranky Mornings

    I find my baby to be super cranky in the morning. She is still only a few weeks old, so I am still getting to know her, but mornings are not her finest hour.

    Do you want to know why?

    Because she has to poo. She has to take a big giant dump, and it is complex for her to figure out how to relax her little tiny anus, while at the same time pushing out a nice sloppy wet poo for me to clean up.

    My point in saying this is that when they are so young, their moods are not because they don’t like you, or aren’t super psyched you are their mom, it is because they have some overwhelming bodily function. As adults, we totally take for granted these things, because they have become unconscious activities. We don’t have to concentrate to take our morning craps. But for babies, her taking a shit is a full body experience.

    I feel like it is okay to rationalize your baby’s moods so they don’t hurt your feelings. As adults, we get into a bad moods or cry because of our emotional discontents, but I really think that for babies, it is all about them getting used to being inside their bodies.

    January 11, 2011 • 1st Month, Baby Body • Views: 287

  • Are You Trying to Manipulate Me?

    So I decided that I was going to try to give the baby a pacifier. Considering how much sucking is part of her daily life, I figured it would be nice to suck on something other than me. So I put the thing in her mouth… she spits it out. I do it again… she spits it out. I do it about 10 more times, and get the same reaction.

    So then I put in her mouth, and hold it in with the tip of my finger. She sucked on it for a minute, then sort of heaved in a gagging motion until my moved my finger and she spit the damn thing out again.

    My friend Grace came over, and asks how she was liking the pacifier.

    “Well she keeps acting like it’s gagging her…”

    “Acting like it’s gagging her, or it is gagging her?” Holy crap Grace… You have one hell of a point there! She is not pretending to gag to mess with my mind… She is actually gagging!

    I know maybe that sounds dumb, but it was a total revelation for me. She is not trying to manipulate me by gagging, or crying, or fussyness. She is just feeling what she feels and reacting. She may not even get that I am spending my entire life and energy just trying to understand her needs. She is just living her life and reacting to what I put in front of her.

    They are crying out of need, not emotion. There is no need to take anything personally.

    So as potentially obvious as this may be, your baby is not fucking with you, they are just trying their best to communicate to you!

    January 7, 2011 • 1st Month, Baby Gear, Parenting • Views: 265

  • All I Do Is Feed This Thing!

    Okay, seriously, all I do with my day is feed this baby. I never in my wildest dreams imagined how much such a little tiny being could eat. I swear on everything holy, if she had her way, she would be permanently stuck to my boob.

    So here are my little perils of breastfeeding that keep my day exciting, considering that is how I am spending my time.

    1) If she pukes, you would think she wouldn’t want to eat for a while right? Like she would be all “Ohhhh, I don’t feel so good. I just barfed. I think I am going to take a break.” But au contraire my friends. It just means she is hungrier because her stomach is empty! It defies all logic!

    2) She chokes! It is almost embarrassing for me. I have to apologize for my excessive milk flow that is ricocheting into the back of her throat causing her to get all red faced and cough, cough, cough, it out. You would think there would be some sort of valve or mechanism to control the flow. Like I could twist the nip and turn it down a bit.

    3) I feel like a human vending machine. If I am going to producing liquid food out of my boobs… (Okay… lets just digest that for a moment… I am producing food with my tits) …you would think I could produce other beverage products as well. Like perhaps coffee, for those sleepy mornings. Or beer, so I could be the life of any party. Why do I have to be such a one trick pony?

    4) Sometimes I wonder if she is thirsty for just plain water. I don’t know about you, but when I am parched, I do not go for a glass of milk.

    5) There are times when I am feeding her with one boob, and the other boob starts leaking. Ummmm this is not cool for me at all. I don’t know about you, but I do not enjoy leaking out of any orifice of my body, let alone one I didn’t previously understand had a hole.

    January 7, 2011 • 1st Month, Breast Feeding • Views: 292

  • We Are All Just Animals

    Having a baby has really exposed me to the most primal understanding of being human. From the birth, to the breastfeeding, to the baby bodily fluids that coat your skin (and you of course ignore, or rub in like its moisturizer)… this whole experience has opened my eyes to see how I am actually a part of the animal kingdom, and not just a distant observer from the Discovery Channel.

    Yes, there are many attributes that distinguish us from other mammals, those are obvious…. But being around this baby is making me realize the subtleties of our similarities.

    Think about how a baby thinks. She doesn’t have any language, or true comprehension of time. She doesn’t have any shame, or awareness of social convention. She is an observer. Of course, she has emotions, and can react to her surroundings, but so do animals. Is it possible that the nature of thought for our cats and dogs, is much like the nature of how our babies think? In pictures? With the whispering of memories coming in and out of our consciousness, but mostly just watching what is going on?

    Or their relationship to their bodies. Have you ever been to the circus, or a zoo, or a farm, and just watched the animals inadvertently shit. Not a care in the world. Not concerned about where it happened. Not running to a secluded spot. Just plop plop plop. Babies are the same way. Not just with their poo, but their pee, their vomit, anything. They just let it all out when the sensation arises. It is like they are totally one with their bodies because there is no suppression. A baby is not going to hold in their fart to spare themselves the embarrassment. They just let it rip! Isn’t there such freedom in that? Not that I am suggesting that adult humans should just crap where ever they please, but there is something to be said for having a bodily need, and just satisfying it without thought.

    I guess the reality of dealing with someone else’s bodily functions and secretions all day will make you ponder such things as the body, how it works, and how everything that is alive has the same processes to deal with. How we are all one, and that as parents, we can connect to our understanding of animals as we try our best to intuit the needs of our babies. Neither species can talk, and both will pee in your face if you’re close enough. So why not honor animals like we do our mini humans? Maybe it is my responsibility to become an animal rights activist. Maybe it is yours too! Maybe I should go back to being a vegan because what is the difference between eating a cow taking a bite out of my baby’s thigh?

    Of course, I am writing this with barf that smells like breast-milk coating my sweatshirt sleeve, and pee stained jeans from when it took me to long to replace a diaper… so you can only take me so seriously anyway.

    January 6, 2011 • 1st Month, Musings • Views: 249

  • The Happiest Baby on the Block

    Even if you have been around babies before, newborns are an entirely different species. They have these floppy heads, they make faces that have absolutely no correlation to any emotion, they have no control of their arms and legs that just flail about… in short… they are not really humans yet. It is like they are little exposed embryos.

    I decided maybe I would try to read up on these mysterious beings, and came across a book called “The Happiest Baby on the Block.” What an enticing title right? Who doesn’t want the happiest baby on the block? Because that is not just a happy baby… but the happiest. Like no other baby will have more joy in their hearts than your baby. If you read this book, your baby’s happiness will crush all the other babies and you will win! Sounds awesome… I am sold!

    The book talks about how the first three months of life for a baby are really like the 4th trimester. Meaning, in order for the baby to feel at peace, you have to re-create the womb as much as possible. The author suggests 5 strategies to make your little snuggle bunny feel like they are still stuffed up your vagina.

    1) Shhhhh(ing): The sound of shhhhhh is not just something you say just to get someone to shut the hell up. It is also a noise that soothes babies like you wouldn’t believe. Supposedly… it mimics the noise the baby heard in the womb of blood rushing around all the veins and arteries and the like. And not just a soft shhhhh noise either…. But a pretty hearty SHHHHHHHH. I am telling you, this works like a charm.
    2) Swaddling: Basically this means that you take a blanket, and wrap your baby up like a baby burrito. Newborns have a reflex called the “moroe reflex” that shoots their arms out
    3) Swinging: Really… it is more of a jiggling… but I think the author was sticking to the whole S theme. Babies were jiggled around in your belly the whole time they were in there, and that movement totally soothes them. Crazy town right? You don’t want to be still for them to at peace… you want to jiggle them! Sometimes I would put her on my lap facing me, and just bounce my legs like I was super nervous, and she would go right to sleep.
    4) Side-laying: This one wasn’t that important for me, but a lot of babies like to lay on their side when in your arms. The book talks about facing the babies out, but I always faced my baby in towards me and it was more of a side tilt.
    5) Sucking: I know there are all sorts of conversations regarding the pacifier… my baby never took one. I tried, and she just spat that shit right out like she thought I was trying to fuck with her. So she is all about sucking on my nip. But the sucking, whether they are hungry or not, will soothe them. They somehow can figure out how to suck to get food, or just suck to suck… you can actually feel the difference.

    This advice has helped me so much I cannot even tell you. I have yet to have more than a few minutes with my baby crying because of these great tools. Now, I totally know that every baby is different, and some are more sensitive, then others… but I am just saying that this really helped me and it is totally worth trying!

    January 4, 2011 • 1st Month, Books, Parenting • Views: 372

  • Parenting 101

    In order to be good at anything in life, you need at least 1 of two things; experience or education. Sure, innate talent factors into the intensity of potential excellence, but I am talking about even being decent at something.

    Think about it… would you see a dentist who just woke up one day and said “Hey I am a dentist now. Open up and lemme see those teeth of yours.” Hell no you wouldn’t! You would want that guy to have gone to dentist school, and to have dentist-ed on a bunch of other motherfuckers before they are even think of drilling into your mouth.

    Or a cab driver? Would you just get into the back of the car with someone who has never driven before? They were just like “Hey, I am a new driver…. First time behind the wheel. But I figure I will just do the best I can.”

    Would you even let someone cut your hair that has never cut hair before? Probably not… and your hair grows back!

    I got thinking about this last night, because it suddenly felt so crazy that you could be a parent without any experience or any education… and you are raising a human being!!! It is probably the most profound thing you could ever do… with so many potential ways to fuck up, and there is no certificate you need to earn to do it. This person’s life is totally in your hands, and there is absolutely no prerequisite besides knowing how to fuck.

    Even if you were to adopt a child… it took Sandra Bullock 4 years to adopt her son and she is a gagillionaire! And she seems wicked nice! There is way more scrutiny for a person that wants to help an already living being than for those who intentionally, or haphazardly create one.

    I am not saying I have a solution for this. It is not like you could or should require people to have at least 2,000 hours in the field, plus a Masters, in order to procreate. But I will say, for those that are lucky enough to have had a baby, it is your responsibility to do the best you can to educate yourself while you can the experience.

    Sure we all have our instincts and intuition, and those should be paid attention to and honored… I am a huge fan of intuition. I totally believe in it, and feel it all the time! I am like an intuition-phile. I loves it so and will probably write about how relevant it is too. I am in no way am advocating that everything you need to know about parenting can be learnt in book, or taught in a class, but I still think there is a lot of information and help out there to guide us through the process.

    December 19, 2010 • 1st Month, Books, Parenting • Views: 381

  • Thinking Too Much About You, Will Make You Miserable

    Thinking about yourself is the root of all misery. I know this from personal experience. I have spent a lot of time thinking about myself. I would in fact, spend most every moment, of every day, thinking about me. Even if I was thinking about someone else, I was thinking about how they were affecting… me. Me. Me. Me.

    Take a second to think about what you think about. Really try and recall what that voice in your head is actually saying to you. Chances are that it is not that positive… not that productive… and not serving you. I feel like our inner monologues are the cause of much internal suffering with the blah blah blahing that clouds our thoughts. “Am I too fat? Am I good enough? Does he like me? Why doesn’t he like me? What should I wear? Will I look hot in that? Does my boss hate me? I wish I hadn’t eaten that. I like her boots. I would like lame in boots like that. I should work harder. I work too much. Will I ever succeed?” It’s exhausting how our minds torture us.

    In so many ways, I feel like so much of what we do is an attempt to distract ourselves from ourselves. To not be haunted by the you inside of you. Work, exorcize, sex, tv, reading, drinking, drugs… is all an attempt to escape.

    Maybe that is why falling in love can be so intoxicating. For a short period of time, you think about something other than yourself. The thought of that person totally consumes you and it is as if you can’t think of anything other than them. In a way, the impulse to find love, is the same that inspires us to get puppies. Yes… I do believe that is true. Falling in love with a man is totally like getting a puppy. But hopefully, a man won’t shit on your living room rug. At least more than once.

    When we get a puppy (or any animal), we bring home a being that is totally dependent, totally adorable, and utterly loveable. The responsibility of having a pet creates a dynamic that enables you to care for another being other than yourself. It takes you out of the mundane misery of thinking about you all day. You now can think of your sweet little creature and have peace in those moments.

    So in a way, having a baby is like bringing home a puppy and falling in love at the same time! I have been so zenned out since having her because I have had zero time to think about me and all my dumb problems and insecurities! I am fully aware that I if I come to use her as too much of a distraction that will totally backfire in my face… but I am definitely enjoying the beauty of thinking about her all day.

    December 18, 2010 • 1st Month, Mommy Mind, Musings • Views: 2579