A few weeks ago you turned 1. Well, 11 days ago, actually. You are definitely a second child, as it has taken me this long to take the time to put my thoughts about you into writing. (Although, before the blog, I never wrote anything about either one of you, and Isaac was almost 2 before I started the blog. So really, you are the winner here. I may be 11 days late, but it's better than never. Just ask your brother.)
Truthfully, there is a reason it has taken so long. We have been having some awfully eventful days around here lately. Your birthday was on a Saturday. Father's Day was Sunday, and your brother's surgery was Monday. We have all been pre-occupied with worry about your brother, and for letting that color your 1st birthday experience, I am sorry.
We did have a party for you, though, and everybody had a great time. You made out like a bandit, as any 1 year old should. And you loved your cake.
So it's not like we failed you altogether.
Actually, you've got it pretty good as a 1 year old. You have a built in play-mate--your brother--and you generally enjoy him, whether he is stepping on your back or ripping toys out of your hands or what.
Recently, we went to the doctor, and two great things happened: First, you have made it onto the charts for the first time since you were a newborn. Second, you still have an ear infection, so you didn't get any shots!
Some more interesting news: you now have teeth. Well, not teeth exactly, since the casual observer would still claim you to be toothless. However, if I look closely at--or better yet, feel--your front bottom gums, there are definitely some sharp white things popping through. We may have to move on to real table food once those chompers show up for real. So far you have rejected cheerios, cantaloupe, and pineapple, though you seem to love pretzel sticks, especially if they are stale.
You are 1 now, so every time I meet someone in the market, or on the street, they say, "Oh, she's 1? Is she walking?" And I say . . ."No." Yeah, you don't seem to have much interest in that particular milestone. Though to be honest, you haven't shown an interest in making any milestone on time. You walk along the furniture, and pull up on anything handy (including Mommy's sweatpants. Remember, sweetie--elastic waistbands do not make for sturdy support). But you don't stand on your own, and when I grab your hands to walk you along, you immediately sit down. I don't mind, though--at barely 18 lbs, carrying you is no big strain.
You are still a pretty mellow girl, and I am continually amazed by your ability to entertain yourself. You can sit in the playroom, alone, for 30 minutes at a time, happily. And even better news? You have shown your brother this trick, and he is learning it! Yesterday the two of you played in the playroom for 40 MINUTES together, happily, while I was blogging. I kept peeking out at you, sure that your brother had smothered you, or left you for dead while he explored the back yard, but instead the two of you were sitting together by the stack of books, or a few minutes later, over by the toy chest, having a wonderful time. I really wanted to take a photo, but I knew if either one of you saw me, the spell would be broken and you'd both start clamoring for me.
But this mellowness seems to be just one piece of you, because you also have an adventurous side. This first manifested itself when you climbed out of the highchair and fell 3 feet to the floor. Since then, you have tried climbing out of the grocery cart, into and out of the slippery bathtub, off Mommy and Daddy's bed, and off the changing table. For a girl so opposed to walking, you definitely like the climbing gig. Be careful, Viv. Remember you are the second child, so Mommy is more apt to be blogging than watching you vigilantly. And these are dangerous spots to climb.
Sometimes when you are crawling around while your father, Isaac and I wander from room to room, you will lay your head down on the hardwood floor with a sigh, as if to say" "Well, it's just too much. I can't go an inch further." Or sometimes you lay your head down on the carpet and smile happily, as if to say "Ah, now this is comfortable!" Occasionally, you will roll around on the carpet like a drunk, giggling merrily, and I just have to laugh with you, though I have no idea what you find so wonderful about cheap nylon fibers.
One day, when your brother has figured out that when you get in bed, you are supposed to close your eyes and go to sleep (you figured this out long ago), then we will move you back into your crib, currently lying empty in the room with Isaac. Until then, you are relegated to the pack n' play in the office--where, in fact, you are sleeping soundly this very moment, your breath steady and soft. I will miss you sleeping beside me as I type furiously at the keyboard, but I suppose you would appreciate a regular mattress, and a room and space to call your own.
Congratulations on surviving your first year, Vivian. We all love you to pieces, and so much more than we did last year at this time. (Not to worry, last year at this time we loved you to pieces, too; we just had no idea how this love would grow and grow, as fast as you do.)
P.S. That's MA-MA. Not daddadadbwah, or diggadiggadiggaba. Time for some words, child. Mimicking Isaac sing Old MacDonald today was pretty good, but I'm betting you won't be able to do it again tomorrow.
Wednesday, June 29, 2005
For the last several weeks, Isaac has waged a war against bedtime. I am afraid he is winning, and it looks like I might have to retreat.
Isaac began climbing out of his crib months ago, but I was hesitant to change him to a toddler bed, knowing that without rails, keeping him in it would be difficult. However, he quickly became so adept at climbing out, that it made no difference whether he was in a crib or not. In the interest of safety, we converted his crib to a toddler bed. For a few weeks after that, at every naptime or bedtime, he would hop out of bed and play in his room. He eventually learned to climb on top of the bookcase to open the blinds. And to push his rocking horse over to the wall so he could reach the lightswitch. No matter how many times I went in there and "calmly" put him back in bed, he was undaunted. I moved the rocking horse out of his room. I wrapped the blind cord around the curtain rod, far too high for him to reach, no matter what he climbed on. I cajoled him, I bribed him, I threatened him. Still, he would hop out of bed the minute I turned my back.
After his surgery, I didn't want him to irritate his stitches, so I sat by his bed until he fell asleep. I sat there for TWO HOURS until he fell asleep. This on a day when he'd had general anesthesia, tylenol with codeine and god knows what else. That night, I sat outside his room, with the door open, in the hall, until he fell asleep. Again, it took two hours.
After that, I started sitting in the hall reading before every nap and bedtime. Sometimes it takes 30 minutes. Sometimes it takes a few hours.
And I am tired of it. I want to BLOG during naptime, for pete's sake. And Vivian needs some attention, too. I can't keep leaving her in the playroom, alone, for the hours it takes me to get him to sleep.
What do I do? How do I make him stay in bed? I have tried taking away his blankies, his bears, turning off the radio--all the things that he likes when he goes to sleep. All this accomplishes is making him more upset and less likely to sleep. I have offered him candy if he goes to sleep quietly. I have told him that he can have a "big boy bed" as soon as he learns to stay in his bed. None of this matters to him.
Does anyone have any advice at all?
FOUR former North Carolina Tarheel basketball players were selected in the lottery of the NBA draft yesterday. It is the first time one school has had so many players go in the lottery.
Check them out.
We now return to your regularly scheduled programming.
Tuesday, June 28, 2005
First and foremost, many of you know my friend Amy. I wrote about her awhile back, as she is one of my "fairy blog mothers". She has recently suffered a very sudden and terrible tragedy, and needs some love and support. Please wander over there if you have time.
Second, my friend Crystal, who also comments from time to time, recently started her own blog. Check her out when you have a few minutes. She's a HUGE Cubs fan.
Sunday, June 26, 2005
Vivian is 1, and I owe her a birthday post. I started it (by that I mean that I titled it, and saved the title in blogger) but still need to get the "rest" of it done. In the meantime, I do need to report some really exciting news.
We are on the charts!
Last weekend Vivian had a growth spurt. She drank 35 oz of milk per day, ate two or three jars of food at each feeding, and woke at 5:45 every morning to be fed. This from a girl who rarely gets 20 ounces in her, and pushes away almost all babyfood. I think she knew her appointment was coming up, and was determined to bulk up. Actually, she's still eating pretty heartily, for her. At this rate, we may even hit average size by our next appointment.
She is 10th percentile for weight and head size, and 5th percentile for height. Woo hoo!
Friday, June 24, 2005
A very good friend of mine has finally started her own blog. She is a wonderful writer, and funny, and--did I mention?--a good friend of mine, so go check her out. You may have noticed the pearls of wisdom and support she leaves in the comment section from time to time.
I met Heather almost 17* years ago, in the lobby of Hinton James, our enormous (home to 1000) freshman dorm. I was scared to death. She was nervous too, though she won't admit it, but once she took me under her wing, we did fine. We bonded over a shared love of The Princess Bride, clove cigarettes, and Domino's Pizza. (You can charge it to your meal card!) Not to mention that we were each convinced that our long-distance romances with our high school boyfriends would survive the trials of a first year apart (neither did).
*Heather, I had to do the math with a calculater, I was so sure I added wrong. How can we be this old?
Thursday, June 23, 2005
Wednesday, June 22, 2005
Sunday, June 19, 2005
Things my father told me
1. Always do your best
2. Rely on yourself
3. Don't worry about the details
4. Concentrate fully on the task at hand
5. Read, read, read
6. Obey all the rules
7. You can do anything you set your mind to
8. Be careful with money
9. Trust people, and they will be good to you
10. You can always do better
Whether or not I listened to/believed him is another matter altogether.
Thursday, June 16, 2005
4 years ago we moved into this house. About a month after that, Lance went on a "surf trip" with some of his buddies from high school/ college.
If there is one thing I could change about Lance, it would be that his parents did not send him to expensive schools where he met and befriended people whose reality is completely different from ours. That is to say, who are independently wealthy and have never had to work. As a result of hanging out with people like this in his youth, Lance sometimes gets an attitude that his life really sucks because he has to earn a living.
But this is not about Lance.
Four years ago, he went on a "surf trip" to Indonesia with some of these people. Every summer they spend over 5 grand to go to Indonesia and live on a yacht with a chef and surf guide, where they chase the best waves, and then come home and talk about it ad naseum. And basically make anyone who hasn't gone on the trip feel lame--not just because you are missing out on something great, but also because you are somehow so much less cultured than they are. YUCK.
Hmm, but this is not supposed to be a bitch session*. Or about Lance. To continue. . .
Lance went on the trip, which meant he was incommunicado for 3 weeks. There is no cell service on the boat, nor is there a land-line (obviously). Before he left, we had begun trying to conceive Isaac. Neither one of us expected that I would get pregnant on the first try, but a week or so after he left, I discovered I was pregnant. I was terrified! And excited! And had no one to talk about it with! I told my girlfriends at work. I told my parents. I called all over town to find an OB that was taking new patients.
That weekend I had a miscarriage. Fortunately (?) I was so early, the miscarriage was not very painful, just like a heavy period. I didn't need a D&C, I didn't even need pain pills. Still, it was a difficult time, especially since I could not reach Lance.
The Tuesday after the miscarriage I returned to work. Everyone there was very sweet to me, and I started feeling just a little bit better. At one point in the afternoon, Lisa asked me: "Do you feel really lonely at home?" I nodded and cried a little. "What if you had a pet?" she asked. She went on to explain that she had found a stray cat recently that no one had claimed. Lisa didn't want to keep her, because she already had 3 cats.
That is how Cleo came to live with us, and that is what this post is supposed to be about. She was a sweet and loving cat, and happily sat in my lap the last week or so until Lance came home, helping me heal.
Cleo is a very small cat, less than 10 lbs. She is around 13 years old. She has long grey hair which she grooms meticulously. She is not playful, preferring to sleep or sit on the porch and watch the cars drive by. However, she LOVES to be petted. She will happily jump on a newcomer's lap, just itching for a stroke of her head.
She also has very bad teeth, which makes it hard for her to eat dry food. As a result, one often has to feed her wet food up to four times a day. When she is hungry, she makes sure everyone knows about it, by meowing at the top of her lungs until you feed her. She also meows at the top of her lungs every morning around 6am, because she wants to be let out. She sheds a LOT. She gets hairballs and vomits frequently. She has been known to pee on the carpet if we leave town for an extended period.
Ever since the children were born, Cleo has taken a back seat. I don't have time to brush her as often as she needs it, which has resulted in more hairballs and more vomiting. On the mornings when the children sleep past 6am, it is really annoying to have to wake up anyway, just to let her out. After taking care of Vivian and Isaac's needs all day, I don't really want to pet her. I don't even want Lance to touch me some days, so Cleo's needs really get pushed aside.
Yesterday, Lance and I found Cleo a new home. She is going to live with Candy and her husband, who love animals and have no kids. Candy just moved here and misses her family, and needs someone to keep her company. Cleo is the perfect cat for that.
I miss her already. And I'm not sure what I'll say when Isaac asks about her. (Both children ADORE Cleo, though she really had no time for either one of them). I hope she likes her new place.
*I'm afraid that the reason my last few posts have been so bitchy and negative is my anxiety/terror over the elephant in the room, i.e., Isaac's surgery on Monday.
Wednesday, June 15, 2005
I feel a need to tell a story or two about some people in my life. These people are related to me by marriage and they are not what you would call friends. The only reason they are in my life is the sad and unbreakable fact that they are related to me by marriage.
The thing is, I promised myself I would not discuss them here. For one, it is disrespectful to my husband, although he feels the same way as I do, with the added ratfuck that he still loves one of them, since he is related by blood. For two, what if they stumbled across this blog? For three, and perhaps most importantly, I am afraid that once I start I will be unable to stop. There are stories I could tell about these two, people. And I mean storieS. Sadly, as desperate as I am to vent about these two, I fear that after the first couple stories, you, my loyal lonely readers, will become bored bored bored and leave me for greener pastures.
But still. I must. I must. I must.
My husband's grandmother, Nana, is ill. She is 89 years old, has either beginning Alzheimer's or dementia and was recently diagnosed with colon cancer. She is a wonderful woman who has lived a long and happy life. Her husband died a year ago of the same cancer.
My husband's younger brother, Thing One, is almost 30 years old. He was married a year and a half ago to a princess, Thing Two, who is 26 years old. They both have an incurable intestinal disorder. Thing One has had several surgeries and is on some kind of medication for it. Thing Two's is much less severe. They are strange people. Both very immature and incredibly self-centered. Ego-centric, really.
Since before they were married, Thing One and Thing Two have spent a lot of time with Nana. My personal feeling is that they are comfortable around her because they can control her. She is not entirely with it, so they can tell her what to do. Control is big for these people.
Okay, so before I get too involved in this, here is the story I want to tell. This story is completely typical of the way these two act, which is the reason there is much animosity between them and the rest of the clan.
Nana had three sons, who have gone on to have 14 children among them. Friday, Nana was sent home from the doctor's with instruction to drink two cans of Ensure on Sunday evening and come to the hospital Monday morning for surgery to remove a cancerous tumor from her colon. Sunday evening one of Nana's sons arrived at the house to find Thing One and Thing Two feeding her a bowl of chicken noodle soup.
Now, here's the kicker. Thing One and Thing Two were well aware of the doctor's orders. They had the piece of paper with the instructions clearly written on it. They had told the uncles that they would love to stay with Nana and take care of her until someone came to spend the night. AND, when questioned about the chicken noodle soup, they claimed that the doctors didn't know what they were talking about, and there was no reason Nana couldn't have chicken noodle soup.
Further, when the uncles got pissed off about this, Thing One and Thing Two acted completely put out, as if they were the victims. They were only trying to help, and everyone else was being ridiculous, and mean to them!
Please tell me on what planet it would be appropriate for the 26 year old in-law (who is NOT A DOCTOR) to decide what medical instructions the grandmother should follow. And without bothering to ask the sons of said grandmother! The arrogance, rudeness, idiocy of these two is without equal.
I could tell you more stories. Here's one: Thing One was a groomsman in our wedding. He overslept and arrived at the rehearsal dinner 2 hours late. We had the pictures taken before the ceremony, and he arrived 45 minutes late, wearing the wrong color jacket (the men were supposed to wear grey suits).
But now I must stop. NO MORE.
Though I do have another secret.
This week there is not enough money in my checking account or either savings account for me to buy groceries. Southern California is expensive, especially with two in diapers, and only one income.
Tuesday, June 14, 2005
I've decided to be a little more cautious on this blog, since I noticed that someone was able to find me by googling "bubble butts". I added the search engine blocker code to my template and I'm going to open a flickr account. However, I am sure flickr will take me some time to figure out--in the meantime I'll keep using hello and hope for the best.
I'm still not convinced that any stalkers or weirdos would be bothered with me and my little blog, but as they say--"better safe than sorry". Also, if I ever tell my family about this blog, the first thing they will want to know is how private it is. This way, maybe it won't seem like such a strange concept to them.
Friday, June 10, 2005
A few days ago Phantom Scribbler wrote a post about the scary fact that some people had found her blog by googling a photo of her daughter.
I think about this from time to time. Some bloggers use their full names and locations and post pictures with apparent abandon (like me). Others use pseudonyms and don't post any photos at all. Or they use their real first names but don't give out their location, or don't post photos of the people in their lives.
And I wonder if being as open as I am is wise. Is it fair to my children to post pictures of them on the internet, for all the world to see? It's not as if I have their permission. There is much talk about predators that stalk the internet, looking for kids to target. What if some weirdo saw a photo of me on my blog and tracked me to my home. Once you find my blog, I can bet it wouldn't be too difficult to figure out my last name, address, phone number etc.
On the other hand, I am under no illusion the stalkers would stumble onto my little tiny blog easily, nor do I think anyone would be bothered to stalk me or my family. I tend to not worry about things like this, to take an attitude of "it won't happen to me". But perhaps that is being naive.
I am considering opening a flickr account, because apparently you can have more privacy control there. But I don't know, I think maybe that's being a little paranoid.
A commenter left a suggestion on Phantom Scribbler's blog that I am taking under advisement too. Apparently if you add this code to your template no one can get to you via Google. And since I don't get any readers from google (or if I did, I would have no idea), that seems like a good trick to me. Anyone know--can I just add that code anywhere on my template?
So tell me what you think: why do you keep your identity secret, or not? Why do you post pictures, or not?
Thursday, June 09, 2005
Wednesday, June 08, 2005
Today I was getting Isaac's lunch ready while the kids were playing out in the backyard. I looked out the kitchen window just in time to see Isaac knock Vivian in the head with his foot as he climbed his way out of the wagon. He also banged her arm on his way out. I cringed, waiting for her to start wailing. But although her hand flew up to her head where she had been kicked and she frowned for a minute, she shook it off and continued playing without a peep.
This kind of thing happens all the time. Isaac is always stepping on her fingers or banging her with the end of his toy as he walks past, or accidentally dropping toys on her as he pulls them from the toychest. And he also has been known to not-so-accidentally smush her face into the carpet, or push her from the table she has pulled up on.
Unless she is really hurt, Vivian generally accepts these potentially harmful invasions of her personal space without complaint. Even when he snatches a toy from her fingers, she doesn't always start howling.
I can't help but wonder when she will learn to manipulate these situations, and scream bloody murder if he so much as touches her in their joint quest for the perfect toy. I'm sure that day will come, and it's kind of sad. Right now, she's so enamored of her brother that she's willing to put up with all sorts of indignities, just to have him near her. But eventually she will learn how to throw him under the bus in order to get what she wants--just like he does to her now.
For the time being I'm enjoying it. I encourage Isaac to watch what he's doing, and be careful around her, and he doesn't pay a bit of attention to me. Vivian follows him around, often getting trampled in the process, but even as he's scratching her leg, he's laughing at something she did. "Vivi's singing, Mom!"
It's a joy to watch, really.
Monday, June 06, 2005
Friday, June 03, 2005
Today after lunch I gave Isaac an Otter Pop and sent him out to the backyard to eat it. I put Vivian in the playroom, and instead of going to the kitchen to clean up, snuck into the office to get on-line. There I found a new comment from Yankee Transplant, who mentioned she had found me via Phantom Scribbler. I was so tickled at being mentioned on someone else's blog, especially a blog I found recently, that I sat down and started blogging in earnest. Only after about 15 minutes did I realize that the children were basically unattended, and I wasn't hearing any Vivian babble coming from the playroom.
Our house is small, as is our backyard. The backyard is completely fenced in, and I'm fairly confident leaving Isaac out there to play by himself. As he gets older, he is more and more able to entertain himself--especially outside--so long as I check on him every so often to make sure he hasn't poked himself in the eye with a rake, or face-planted on the bricks. The playroom, where I left Vivian, opens up to the backyard (though I made sure all screen doors were closed before I turned away). It is a completely childproof room, gated off from the rest of the house. So in truth, although I had left them unattended, it's not as if they were in imminent danger.
But when I got up to check on them, Vivian was nowhere to be found. Not behind the TV, behind the rocking chair, under the sofa. Nowhere. The screen door to the backyard was still closed. Where in the hell could an 11 month old go? I looked outside, and could see Isaac raking up some leaves, but no Vivian. I ran to the other screen door--still closed--no Vivian out that side either. Panicked, I ran outside. "Isaac, where's Vivian?" I shouted. And he grinned.
Then I knew. "Did you open the door and let her out?" Suddenly I heard her babble. She was outside, just around the corner, having a grand old time playing with Isaac's wagon.
It never occurred to me that Isaac would let her out of the playroom. And further, that he would shut the door once she came outside. I can't get that boy to shut the door after himself no matter what I do! Apparently the only enticement he needs is giving his mother a heart attack, then that door is miraculously easy to close.
So, crises averted, though it wasn't much of a crises, really. As I said before, the backyard is gated, so she couldn't have gotten far. While I was panicking, deep in the rational part(s) of my brain, I knew this. Though the other, more present part of my brain was imagining the uncovered hole that she must have fallen into (Baby V, anyone?), or the stealthy serial killer/child molester who had snuck into the playroom and grabbed her, only leaving Isaac because he would make too much noise screaming.
And it is true that while the backyard is an okay place for Isaac to play by himself, it's really not such a great idea for a baby. God knows what poisonous plant she could digest. Or how many fingers she could lose in the lawn-mower.
So I suppose the moral of the story is: Leave the blogging for nap-time. Sigh.
Thursday, June 02, 2005
Isaac has been climbing out of his crib for awhile now. The first few times he tried, he fell and hurt himself. Not badly enough to worry me, but badly enough to discourage him from trying again. So really, the perfect amount of pain. Then about a month ago, he started climbing out again. Only now, he can do it without hurting himself at all.
On some level, this is a good thing, I suppose. At least I don't have to worry about running him to the ER.
But mostly, it's just annoying. Isaac is a child that really needs sleep. When he misses his nap, we all feel the pain. Now that he can climb out of the crib as easily as he opens the front door, he often spends naptime in his room playing in the dark.
I don't know how to deal with this. Fortunately, for now he does not leave his room once he escapes the crib. So I still get a break, even if he's not sleeping. But he can't really handle skipping a nap, at least not without several afternoon melt-downs, so the "quiet time" playing in his room doesn't work either.
Right now what I'm doing is checking on him after a few minutes, and sternly putting him back in his crib if he's out. I also take away his bears, and turn off the radio. This works about 1/2 the time.
Recently I started threatening him with a spanking, and here I hang my head in shame--because I actually did spank him the other day. I was so frustrated with him, and I lost it.
"That hurts, Mommy", he said. And I was so ashamed. I do not want to be a spanker. Spanking goes against all my parental instincts.
But I find myself getting so frustrated everyday. And to be honest, the day I spanked him, after I apologized and hugged him and promised not to do it again, he went right to sleep. I can't seem to find anything else that works.
Awhile back I read that "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child" book. At the time I was trying to get Vivian to nap for longer than 30 minutes a day. According to the book, sleep begets sleep. It makes the case for getting your child some good sleep, claiming that overtired children don't learn well, can't focus, are accident-prone, etc.
Vivian was about 4-1/2 months old at the time--old enough, according to the book, to have two solid naps a day. According to the book, if I would just let her cry for a few minutes, she'd fall asleep, and get used to napping. This is not what happened. Until Vivian was 6 months old, she had a few 20 minute naps a day. She couldn't nap longer than that, no matter how I tried to force it. Around 6 months she settled down into more of a routine. Of course, until that time, she was frequently crabby, and I was about to lose my mind. But finally longer naps became the norm instead of the exception, and as she grew, so did her naps. Not because of something I did, but because her body clock determined the time was right.
So I have learned: you cannot make your children sleep, whether they need it or not.
I guess I've just answered my own question. I'll just let him play quietly in his room and deal with the meltdowns. At some point he will either outgrow the meltdowns or decide that napping in the crib is not so bad. Right?
Wednesday, June 01, 2005
What makes this so hard for me, and makes me feel so put upon?
Sometimes I don't like myself very much. I don't respect what I do. I feel like a cop-out or slacker for being a stay-at-home-mom.
And I know that rationally that doesn't make any sense. I know that staying home with these two is a really great thing for them. I know it has value.
But it doesn't feel like it. I mean, how can I value my time when all I do all day is wipe monstrous disgusting diaper blow-outs? Really, doing the laundry and making dinner is not rocket science. Neither is taking care of the munchkins.
It's like when you're in highschool, and you're working at the yogurt shop at the mall. When your Dad says "We're so proud of you", or "Look what a great job your doing", all you can think is "Give me a break." You know that what you're doing is lame. You're getting paid minimum wage, for pete's sake! You pour frozen yogurt into cones all day long. Nothing great about that.
That is how I feel some days. Since I hate myself at those times, I pick fights with my husband. I act like my day has been intolerably hard--because if it's hard, then it must have value, right?
I wonder if this feeling put-upon would manifest itself in a different way if I worked.
19 days from right now we will be out of surgery with Isaac.