Sunday, November 29, 2015

I believe in laxatives, not miracles

Yes. It has happened. I pooped! and it wasn't the horrible experience that last week's BM was either (bonus). I think not quite going an entire week between movements paid dividends.

I took a "gentle, overnight laxative" last night before realizing it wasn't simply stool softener (not supposed to use laxatives while breastfeeding apparently) and it was just that; gentle, overnight, a couple gravely rumbles but not gut wrenching cramps and then this morning: voila!

Praise aside, I don't want to use it again if I can help it. Baby Bananaface hasn't erupted yet but I'd rather avoid the possibility and I prefer to take care of things with diet, fiber supplementation, and exercise... but I am relieved and pleased.

The war is still on and I will be regular again *angrily shakes fist* The hubs and I are considering my constipation a top priority since if affects so many other things, possibly my mood the most. We think it was the anti-nausea meds (we hope) otherwise we get to figure out which psychiatric script it is and that could be a pain in the... well, you know.

Typing of, my mood has been a weird up and down combo. I've felt overstimulated and "up" and had difficulty sleeping but also feel a bit sad going into the holidays with family stress. I'm coming to a point where I'm ready to focus on sticking in the now as much as possible and letting go of things instead of trying to grapple with every emotional wave and conquer it completely. A tall order for me, but I'm weary.

Today we head to the mall to foist our snotty child on a stranger who resembles Santa for some *hopefully* cute pictures. This is not a tradition in either of our families but I didn't want to regret not having a picture of BB's first Christmas picture with Santa, so we are playing it safe. We'll see how it goes!

Oh, and I'm feeling just about 100% better physically after my second bout of flu, just dealing with a runny nose. *knocks on wood*

Our couple's quote for the day:

The hubs chuckled this morning: "We don't have a Bible in this house, we have a dictionary in this house."

And I happily chirped: "Amen!"

Not entirely sure how poop and faith got mixed up in this post, but there ya have it. ;)

Friday, November 27, 2015

Black Friday!!!!

Okay, all the exclamations are uncalled for as it was actually a quiet peaceful day.

The highlight was going for a drive with the hubs while Baby Bananaface slept in the backseat. We drove out to his childhood home and neighborhood and he gave me a tour of his old schools, church, and hangouts. It was nice to see where he grew up. I love imagining my love as a young man and having the images to go with his stories is lovely for my visually minded self.

We stopped at a local park where the hubs swore remnants of an old internment camp were, but the signs claimed it was simply a military prison. We were unconvinced and a little confused but used the opportunity to take some pictures of me and BB on our special "9 months in/9 months out" anniversary.

Broke out the mittens for the 1st time!

It was frigid, BB's nose went red like mine though you can't see it here.

 At the prison park (or whatever) I saw these cool leaves and had to take a snap or two! They were nearly pure white and looked frozen, well they probably were. They felt fake, not crispy/cold like I expected.

After BB woke up we headed back into town and hit up Barnes & Noble at the local mall. Walked the mall a bit but it was crowded and we were hungry so we bailed for noodles/pho and then back home. No major shopping, nothing extravagant bought, no stampedes.

The hubs with his candid shooting again.
I said, "I look like I'm gonna kick your ass," and he said,
"Yeah, that's how you usually look."

Looking at it now I think:
Huh, I look pale. Whoa, that's saying something!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Words for... when I get around to them

This week's prompts came from thecontemplativecat and are as follows:

Choose, thick, reinforce, insurance, queen, interface


Statement, stool, disgrace, jaw, avenue, fun


Most vivid amongst the memories of his home town...


"I choose to reinforce positive thoughts in order to create a happier life for myself." Susan stirred caramel covered foam into her latte with a tiny silver spoon before looking through the fireplace behind Donna and sighing, "If I don't, if I simply muddle through without much intention, it doesn't take long before the bottom drops out again."

"The depression." Donna made the statement with a tinge of skepticism that betrayed her false empathy.

"Yeah." Susan grimaced. She didn't like to talk about this, but Donna had asked her to coffee and poked and prodded until Susan's walls crumbled. It would be nice to have someone understand, it would be nice to have someone know her for who she really was, what she really experienced. Only a very small part of her thought that was possible but the slightly large part of her that hoped for such a life tortured her, tempted her to risk disgrace in an effort to seek that supportive relationship that she'd never known.

"I've heard exercising is very helpful," Donna sipped her mocha through a thick layer of whipped cream, "Doesn't that take care of it for you? I see you get ready for the gym before you leave work. I'm a member at Gold's, we could go together! Where do you go?" 

Susan rubbed her jaw and shook her head, "I"m with LA Fitness. That's okay. I do workout regularly but sometimes that isn't enough. The mindfulness seems to-"

"That's too bad." She shrugged and sipped, seemingly unaware that she had interrupted Susan. "What about drugs? I'm always seeing those commercials for antidepressants. I read somewhere that it just takes the right combination. Have you tried those? Like really stuck with it?"

Heat rose under Susan's collar and a flush brushed her cheeks. Of course she had tried antidepressants. She took a slow sip from her latte as she recalled the dozen or so drugs she had tried in various combinations over the past two decades. All the side effects, disappointments, prescription bottles, and appointments rattled around her brain and she resisted the urge to think poorly of herself.  "Yes. I have tried those."

Her gaze strayed to the cafe around them; the stools at the bar where baristas chatted nearby, the overstuffed, worn leather chairs occupied by two young ladies near the gas fireplace, the other small tables with petite iron and wood chairs and a variety of cafe dwellers. Was anyone listening? Did they find this conversation as painful and awkward as she did? The snippets of conversation she heard ranged from insurance quibbles to the new restaurant on 5th Avenue, some comfortably clothed shaggy haired men in the corner were leaned over their table in intense conversation about what she could only guess was a software interface. No one noticed her and Donna's impasse. 

"I'm so glad we finally got to get together." Donna smiled and proceeded to discuss her opinion of last week's staff meeting, how her cat, Queenie, didn't seem to like tuna like "all the other cats," and how her ex-husband never knew how to have fun but now enjoyed parasailing with his fiance.

Susan wondered just how many cats Donna had while she smiled and nodded through the conversation. Another zombie, she thought and sighed. It had been so long since Susan had found someone she really connected with that she had slid into the belief that she simply wasn't compatible with anyone. It was a bad mental habit she was working on reversing and a large part of how she ended up going out for coffee with Donna, but she had begun to regret the decision. Her ambivalence was worse than being alone. 

She would small talk for just a bit longer before extricating herself from the visit and fleeing to her one bedroom apartment and an old Julia Roberts movie. Maybe in another few weeks she would venture out again and explore friendship options, but for now, she would give herself a break and regroup. In a world full of Donnas it took a lot of energy to be a Susan, and that's okay, she thought. It's okay to be me.


Not my favorite writing exercise ever but I did it!

In other news, Baby Bananaface has had an up and down day just like me and the hubs. Feeling okay and then feeling sick (teething/coughing/snotting). The hubs is taking medicine now too and I must admit the Tylenol I took earlier did help for a bit. We are all a bit of a mess I would say.

He was happy to be at the table,
not too thrilled with his early dinner.

He grabbed his hair with a fistful of mash!
Never done this before but illustrated his displeasure
quite effectively (though you can't tell
because he smiled for the camera).

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Barfzilla Take II

Seriously. It's back. It's like I rediscovered the same virus!

Today I puked in this vacant lot:

And them hopefully surmised that breakfast wasn't sitting well with me and that I was good to go ahead and eat lunch. At a Thai restaurant. Yes. It was delicious going down but terrible coming back up a few hours later.

Then the aches and chills began and feeling shaky and dehydrated. The hubs attempted to get in contact with the urgent care I went to back home just over a week ago (we are at the in-laws) but they didn't get back to us within 45 minutes so we went to a local urgent care. My blood pressure was super low, they said not eating/not keeping anything down can do that to ya and warned that I could end up in the ER.

After the obligatory waiting I got more Zofran; less nausea and aches and chills for a bit but I'm feeling the aches and chills coming back at the moment.

In other news, I saw my younger self on the wall of Walgreen's as we pulled up to get my prescription (sucks for them being open til 10:00 pm but we were sure happy for it). Here's what I looked like a wee one:

I stood next to it but ya can hardly see me. Little different around the eyes, just barely but boy, it really looks like my baby pics!

So. We shall see what evening brings and what I can eat, so far I have half a bowl of old Corn Flakes with almond milk and three Fig Newtons to my stomach's name. Nursing the Gatorade and hoping for a solid night's sleep.

Oh, and still battling The Constipation. My life is just scrumptious lately.


Monday, November 23, 2015

Words for... well, when I damn well need them!

I spaced last Wednesday about "Words for Wednesday" and I didn't have time to write this weekend either so ya know what? I'm going to do it now!

The prompts I am using today are from Delores at Under the Porch Light and her "Thursday Trauma" prompt post.

The words are:




I did not include the rhyming ones as these two were more than enough for me at the moment. And... I may change "beasts" to "breasts" but we'll see :)


Gratuity Only

Petite hands kneaded and caressed Therese's hairy calves as warm water bubbled and swirled below in the small tub portion of the pedicure chair. Tiny LED lights tinted the water blue, then pink, then blue again, reminding her of "Sleeping Beauty's" fairy godmothers and their frivolous battle over the color of Aurora's gown.

Her pedicurist spoke in fast paced language Therese couldn't understand or classify. Korean? Vietnamese? Thai? It didn't matter. The dark haired woman was hoarse from her impatient barrage of gossip volleyed all day long with her compatriots. Therese hoped it was the gossip, not a cold or flu virus.

She had become more aware of everyday colds and the all too common flu these past six months. The day she gave birth wreaked many changes in her life, becoming overly aware of the symptoms of strangers was just one of her new traits and not nearly her least favorable. Her once virginal white and smooth belly had become a network of bright pink stretch marks and was currently the consistency of yeast dough risen, ready to be beaten down with powdered fists.

Therese sighed. The oil and sugar crystals on her legs were soothing and just irritating enough to be therapeutic. Scents of orange blossom and jasmine wafted to her nostrils and she slumped deeper in the massaging chair, tears of relief springing to her eyes as the rollers dug hard into her knotted shoulders.

Motherhood wasn't what she had expected. It was more difficult than she had ever imagined. Coming to a nail salon and being pawed at in a professional sense for 20 minutes suddenly felt like a FEMA tent to a disaster victim. She understood the emotion now in those pictures of flood victims being hauled up to helicopters by the Coast Guard, the grotesque relief and gratitude on their faces beyond the grief and shock.

Therese wasn't sobbing her gourd off but her quiet tears pooled at the edges of her eyes as her legs were rubbed with hot towels and she thought of the illusions of motherhood she once held. Cloudless skies and giggling, frolicking children in matching pants and stain-free shirts. Volunteering as chaperon on the annual elementary school trip to a local creamery, name tags and packed lunches all perfectly legible and neatly folded.

A small part of her held out how that the day would come but considering the dept of her disillusionment so far, she doubted it. There were no neatly piled stacks of diapers or racks of neatly hung baby clothes. Her daughter was rarely in a coherent outfit and the body suits she did wear could never be folded in a uniform matter, much like a fitted sheet, perpetually frustrating Therese's organizational impulses and wrinkling.

If her daughter was a passable disaster, Therese was arguably a post-Godzilla Tokyo. Her breasts were lumpy, leaking beasts that ached when overfull and shot breast milk three feet in every direction at a moment's notice. In addition to her "bowl full of jelly" belly, her hair was falling out in clots and her nails had grown to troll length, she had no idea when she had last trimmed them. Her efficient self care routine was long ago obliterated and she had deserted even the feeblest attempt at picking up the pieces.

Her husband had not quite given up so easily. He had been the one to send her here; hairy legs, bright pink and navy blue yoga pants, leather clogs, his baggy camo hooded sweatshirt and all. She had breeched the entrance like an adolescent catapulting into the local gas station shoppette, hot off a skateboard and lawn mowing gig that yielded ten dollars and grass stained high tops. She was a wreck, and she just didn't care; but she had fifty dollars, gnarled nails and fuzzy eyebrows and no baby, Mii Mii Nails was a paradise.

Therese lie in the grinding mechanical chair with her eyes lightly closed and reflected on her junky appearance and groaned as the technician applied the sparkling violet polish. No one ever said parenthood was really about feeling like a huge failure over and over. Her tears welled, the weight in her chest throbbed into a boulder and unuttered sobs knotted into a ball in her throat and she felt like the hot tears slide down her face.

As she silently cried for a moment the hubbub of the salon seemed to fade and she sighed a heavy sigh, feeling the lump in her throat and weight in her chest release just a little, just enough to feel like she got something off her chest.

She smirked, thinking how this place was mostly about putting something on; lacquer, length, sparkle, but the taking off was less vaunted; the fees hidden away in small print for removing old polish or wresting stubborn hairs from faces, and no fee for "get something off your chest." No fee for what you really need.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Thar she blows... nope, give it another hour or two.

I was in the bathroom. Both lights on, fan grinding away, my arms working back and forth as I plunged my heart out.

Seven days without a bowl movement had snuck up on me, but it wouldn't sneak away that same way. Damn.

The baby cried in the background and I heard the hubs open the door behind me just a crack.

"Crested her shores!" I hurrumphed, assuming he was surveying the damage. The door shut again without a word from him

I kept plunging. My husband returned.

"Why don't you take care of the crying baby and I'll take care of this? Play to our fortes?" He walked into the bathroom from the other door leading from our bedroom, talking as he reached for the plunger. "What the--aw fuck!" His socked foot found the toilet water pooled on the white tiles in front of the bathtub.

I grimaced and giggled.

"You didn't tell me you flooded it!" He observed the pool of water and clumped up bathmat and sighed disapprovingly.

"I said 'crested her shores,' what more was there to say?"

"That's too vague! Crested Her Shores, what is that? a porno?" He was amused and frustrated, the amusement winning out.

We laughed and went to our respective positions, him at the toilet, me with our baby at my breast. It would be a few minutes before he broke the plunger and we took an impromptu family shopping trip to ye old Fred Meyer, meandering the supermarket in a distracted shuffle of shame so often generated by hoisting a plunger outside the hardware section.

We are officially renewing our effort as a family to keep me on fiber supplements.

So that was part of our evening. I'm not sure if it's my meds or being sick or what, but things got bad this week. Seems like they might be getting worse as Baby Bananaface puked all over himself, me, and a portion of the carpet and has developed a little fever. We're monitoring him and he's got some Tylenol now, but I am worried. Anything like what I went through and he's gonna be at risk for concentrated lithium.

Ugh. Happy weekend us! Not.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

The redesign is coming, the redesign is coming!

Okay that's only partially true.

Yes I intend to redesign the blog. No I haven't started.

Here's what I am aiming for:

-my personal artwork featured in the design

-a less "glaringly cheerful" facade

-nothing too morose but something that represents the full picture of my life

-dead owl or a tribute to him/her in some form

-Spocko or something Star Trek

-Golden Girls


-Edith Wharton

That's a lot but that's how my brain works. As the hubby would say, "you're definitely not a minimalist."

We'll just see what happens.

In the meantime, I am tired today. A little frazzled and desirous of rest and relaxation.

Also, I ordered an address stamp online and underestimated it's size. I was appalled at first, embarrassed that I ordered a size too big but deep down I kinda love it. It's like I'M SO BIG AND IN YER FACE SEND ME A LETTER BACK YOU BITCH or simply glasses-free reading friendly.

It's almost so massive I need a carport for it.

I think the fact that my last one was so tiny I struggled to read the addy on it is skewing my perception a bit... but truly, this is is huge.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

What now? Just be.

The lights are flickering in my house and the menu music is looping on my The Golden Girls DVD as I write this. Occasional gusts from our storm system are hurtling somethings onto the roof. I had thought it was just pine cones but my goodness, there better be at least a  good chunk of branch up there to justify my dog's barking and the rumbles!

I am still weak and occasionally nauseated, most certainly watching what I am eating but I am feeling well enough for the familiar pressure to "do more" to reenter my mental sphere. I hate that internal whisper, that state of unease that follows me everywhere, the pressure to do something, anything because just me, just being isn't enough.

That's the old school view anyway. The old programming. I had to "do" to be "enough," I had to achieve to earn love, but nowadays that doesn't earn me anything but blacker days. Nowadays it just earns gentle reminders from my husband, "Why don't you take a break? Want to do your coloring book? When did you last eat?" Nowadays are new days but I haven't acclimated yet.

It's like when I step off the plane in Hawaii or Vegas, the heat finding every space of my body like an overly thorough frisking. It makes me angry. It pisses me off. Why should I feel this uncomfortable? A little part of me knows that the sensation will fade with time but the bigger part of me balks at anything so invasive and offensive.

Kindness is new and offensive. Stillness. Calm. Patience and caring. These things are things that I have little tolerance for and need to become acclimated to.

Now for baby pics as I'm wishing I were the momma I know I can be and not an exhausted slump of "why me?" and feel "reminisce-y." Enjoy :)

Throwback: 1st shopping cart ride ever happened
to be at Costco so he looks normal baby-sized!
He was people watching, as usual :)

The boys. Wow does Baby Bananaface do "trucker" well!
The hubs does "haggard programmer" well cuz, well, that's what he is.

"Reading" I love watching him assault his books! This was a rare, peaceful moment.

Just. Cool.
See Hubster's cool Star Trek socks?
My sexy pink stripes are off to the left.
Costco hiking socks for the cozy win.

Getting closer to walking everyday, not show here, but he
stands and balances without aid quit a bit now!

Monday, November 16, 2015

Unexpected Weekend

Unexpected weekend development early Sunday morning: I started barfing. I started barfing at 3 am and I barfed four more times before we went to urgent care and got me some anti-nausea meds that are delightfully fast acting and fleetingly tasty and then gritty and a tad too strong on the cherry flavor.

Barfing is one thing, but the constant nausea is what gets me. We are not sure what I did or what I ate but we don't believe it's the stomach flu and I very much hope that none of the boys get sick. I don't even want to fathom a barf filled crib especially when I feel so bad myself.

I am recovering and working back up to eating like a normal person though for now my diet is pretty restricted and just getting enough water is a challenge as I feel sick and don't want to eat or drink anything. My psychiatrist informed me that the dehydration from all the barfing and not drinking/eating probably threw my lithium levels off and concentrated it in my system = more nausea and tremors and confusion. Just a cherry on my cherry prescription and barf flavored sundae!

Oh, and of course I got the face mask walk-in clinic pictures! I know you were worried there for a sec ;)

Yes. A bit creepy.
The "barf bag" I didn't have to use but
pondered at how to open-it wasn't
as easy as I thought it should be!

 Therapy was good this morning even though I was having a hard time focusing. Basically, the goal is to back away from my family for a bit, build up my self-defense skills and validate my feelings and opinions so I can push back and protect my boundaries around my family when I return to the fray.

As such, our solo Christmas plans are just what the doctor therapist ordered and even though the hubs wanted to completely snub my family as far as Christmas gifts, I said we had to send a box of something and my therapist agreed. Not had to but it would be wise. Setting boundaries and stirring up shit ain't declaring all out war and being a total bitch just to be a bitch. Ya know? And they are my family and I love them, and in my family presents = love. Not the love I need lately but moving on....

Other end of last week/weekend developments:

Bored baby.

Seriously hoarder/dumpster diver neighbor
getting moved out (we think, or just reset?) by a slew
of people that could be family or otherwise. A little noisy
with them throwing junk off the balcony all day.
Days and days....

I "lost" my hat at the mall, or so I thought,
was very glad when I found it trapped in the collapsed
stroller in the trunk!
Ugh. Gonna try some dinner.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Sisters-The Backstory and/or A History Lesson

I include this video for many reasons. So many reasons I cannot quite spit them all out on cue, but a big reason is because my sister and mother and I have a long history of regimented Christmas-mania. 

Only recently I have begun to count myself out of their obsession, having gained some healthier perspective and developed my own traditions, but back in the hey-day the holidays would begin only after Thanksgiving, Christmas decorations would have to be over the top and painstakingly positioned and agonized over before being rearranged and then put back again, many baked goods would be made, gifts wrapped as perfectly as possible, and a variety of Christmas movies watched at least once but sometimes many, many times throughout the season. All ethereal rules that were created and enforced without speaking.

Now, don't think that my mother is a decorating maven or any sort of Martha Stewart or Betty Crocker. The perfectionism is on the part of me and my sister, birthed out of the unending comparison and competition between siblings in my family. The love/hate relationship between the sisters in White Christmas? Not quite us, we have barely a teaspoon of love, hardly any fun or speaking terms, no support, but the deceit and feigned affection, manipulation and competition-yes, we have more than enough. 

It's been that way a very long time. I remember horrible fights-physical and verbal-between us as youths and very often thinking that I did not want to have a sister, or that if my parents divorced she would be guaranteed to go with Mom so I could go with Dad and get away from her! We shared rooms off and on throughout our time at home and usually fought so horribly we would be again separated (eg. setting out tacks beside each other's bed or outside the bathroom when we got up in the middle of the night-yep, blood was drawn). Some normal sibling sisterly stuff, other, not so much.

I was the oldest, my brother was 18 months younger and the middle child, and my sister was 4 years younger, and the baby. My mother was the baby in her family, my dad was second oldest and then oldest when his favorite sister died unexpectedly a little over a decade ago. I know it's pretty natural and expected to have parents make exceptions or "baby the baby" and this happened in my family, no doubt, but it was almost always mom doing it and my sister and my dad-whew, cats and dogs in an oil and water arena.

What I believe is not normal, is the fact that my sister is still treated with kid gloves and my mother has told other adults (her friends or relatives, couches, teachers) that "you need to stop doing A because it makes (my sister) feel B" or procuring "playdates" of sort for my twenty-something sister. 

All this micromanagement is complicated by the fact that quite a few people believe that my sister may be some type of Bipolar or have a personality disorder, at the very least anxiety problems. She's a powder keg with a very sensitive fuse and my mother runs interference for her (quite possibly always will) but on the flip side she will say horribly cruel and offensive things, straight-up lie, or manipulate people and if things turn on her (as they quite often do) cries and plays the victim or invokes protection and approval from my mother.

For me, as a sensitive person and one that with a low tolerance for sarcasm and meanness, my sister is a caustic, risky game of Roulette. I never know what I'm going to get and often I get burned. The very few times that I felt genuinely connected and that she was speaking honestly with me the interactions were quickly overturned and categorized as deft deceptions. 

One highly relevant example would be when my sister came to meet my son. It was two weeks after the birth and she came for visit and fawned over our gorgeous baby. I can't remember much of the visit except for an odd off-hand conversation about what a bastard child was (related to something off Facebook) and as you all know that became quite topical.... anyways. It seemed like a great visit, I thought, "maybe she will be a good aunt."

Not quite two weeks later she was back again, supposedly visiting with my mother and coming to help me out since I was barely a month postpartum. No. They showed up with her new boyfriend and neglected to bring us food as we requested, chatted about themselves for 45 minutes while our stomachs rumbled and then proceeded to make me get up and go to the bedroom where my sister dramatically sat me down and told me she was pregnant. I held my cool for 5 minutes (they promptly left to fetch said promised meal at that point, ya know, since their business was done) and then I sobbed. The insensitivity of their visit appalled me, the dismissal I felt, the threat to my baby-dethroned at a month old! That's some of what I felt....

My postpartum depression issues set in after my sister passed twenty weeks. My psychiatrist would say it's a coincidence but my therapist says it's linked. I had been waiting for her to "lose the baby" that wasn't there or "I'm not really pregnant" like she had joked dozens of times before but no such luck. Our children would be 8 or 8 1/2 months apart and the stage set for a lifetime of comparison. 

Comparison, that dirty word that had torn apart my childhood and left me with a torn patchwork quilt of a family. My mother loves to call that ragged quilt a marvelously crafted masterpiece, but whatever she call it, it leaves me shivering. 

As I knew mom with a pregnant sister I became a convenient source for her dramatized questions or tales of woe (AKA common symptoms) or, as happened during our trip to Leavenworth, the magical elixir to her breakdown after her baby moved around too much (I told her eating half a cheese pizza and then a couple root beer floats before lying down was gonna set any baby up to kick ribs and sent her for a walk, the sobs stopped and she shuffled out, I wasn't buying the drama, so she stopped selling).

I have had dips in my mood around landmarks in her pregnancy: the baby shower I ended up in the hospital, her due date I went down to a terrible low involving self-harming, finding out about the birth was okay initially and then a bad day to finish. I'm working now on getting those feelings out and then trying to separate the issues with my mother and my sister and the baby. 

And on that note, I'm not a terribly cold auntie, I sent an outfit and a card over for the little one... but I must say, the feelings and thoughts that came up with that were "she doesn't deserve this much" and a poisonous sense of superiority and resentment. As I said, separating feelings is on the docket! 

It's still raw for me. The pregnancy and all those hurt feelings. In my family, relationships aren't healthy, things get taken personally more than they get completely ignored and her getting pregnant just as I had my baby.... it feels like a personal attack, another move in the comparison game, and yet another disappointment in my sister whom has berated, deceived, lied, hurt, and confused me for as long as I can recall. I don't think I know her that well at all.

What does the future hold for us as sisters? I have no clue but I do know that right now I am keeping my bruised and battered self as far away as I can and as hard as it is for me to own my own feelings or opinions, I feel really justified in that decision. Now THAT is saying something!

I don't understand all these ins and outs, but this is what I know for now. 

That'll do Me, that'll do.


Other "sisterly" posts include Monday Missives #1 and #7

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Last Night

Last night I was agitated, fidgety, feeling paranoid and jumping at every sound. My foot bobbed and my fingers fiddled, I tried to read and eventually fell asleep with the light on. No one climbed up our balcony, no one broke in, no one snatched or killed my baby, we woke up this morning to another day.

I'm not sure if it was meds or if I'm just that depressed and anxious again, but this morning I had a superstitious moment of "So that was it..." when the hubs gently broke it to me that my sister had her baby. It happened last night just before 11:00 pm, a Veteran's Day baby.

So. It happened, this thing I've been dreading for about 7 months. I feel something but it's so deep I can't understand it yet. Part of me just doesn't give a flying rat assed fuck (no, I don't know what that is) and then this other part of me is angry and a wittle part of me is sad at the distance between my family and not feeling closer. But when my mother passive aggressives about it in the texts to my husband, kinda stokes my fire and flushes my caring.

What I do know is that this lady gets to pick out an easy chair!

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

A Little Big Update

What's up with the meds?
So I was running high on lithium (thus the tremors and maybe a little of why my mild state of hypothermia on the mountain was a bit more kukoo than I expected) and now I'm back down to 900 mg at bedtime. The Seroquel wasn't working and I was already backing that down but my depression was so severe last week and the last couple days that my psychiatrist is ramping up that dialing down=I take 100 mg for two more nights and then no more Seroquel. Instead I have started taking Risperidone 1 mg and will for those next two nights and then up it to 2 mg at bedtime. I'm also taking Klonapin in the morning for anxiety. I'm not sure if it does anything....

I'm having those "danger is everywhere" thoughts, feeling a little paranoid and irrational. It's pretty unlikely that our downstairs neighbor (been writing passive aggressive notes to us) is going to blow up her apartment in an attempt to kill us or sneak in and turn on our stove top to try and burn us down but that's where my mind goes lately. I'm having body aches and tiredness beyond tiredness, lack of appetite but nomming junk food and chocolate when nothing else sounds good (hell, the chocolate doesn't even sound good!), I have some angry outbursts still, been struggling to cope with the baby for very long, oversleeping, and still obsessive about my sister and my mother and not feeling like I'm moving on. Self-harmed on Monday, scratched my right forearm with my left nails. I should be disappointed in myself, but I just don't care.

Side Effects?
Still waiting for tremors to go away. Wiggly worm legs and arms after evening meds is back.

Nursing during the day and sometimes in the evening but he bit me several times last week and this weekend and that had made me angry and not willing to breastfeed (along with my very poor mood). It's been better lately but I have a therapist telling me to wean and a psychiatrist asking if I am still breastfeeding so I'm not sure how much longer I'm going to make it. Part of me is heartbroken and disappointed, but for the most part I just don't care about much anymore.

Ugh. The hubs and I have little moments or normality but lately there has been more lapses in communication and resentment building. I feel like he doesn't help me do certain things around the house but he's busy with work and taking care of me and the kid and the dog and other things, but I can't feel appreciative, I just feel frustrated and angry. He's not a saint, don't get me wrong, but my reactions are amplified for whatever reason and unreasonable... Part of me is concerned, but, again, for the most part I just don't care. I just don't want him to bother me. I just want to be alone. No kid. No husband. The dog is okay. Usually.

Still not good. Not good at all. Today I got up at 8:30 am and made it through breakfast but ended up back in bed for 45 minutes before I could actually start my day. The hubs worked from home Monday, Tuesday, and today. This is not sustainable. I'm not functional. This isn't fun. And at the same time... fuck it. I just don't give a rip. I'm miserable, I'm sad, and I don't give a fuck.

So, not good.

I think I'm safe, but I did self-harm Monday and have had suicidal flashes. Psychiatrist wanted me back in the hospital and I said no it would "just set me up for another fall, I don't have support (IRL) when I get out and I just slide back down." She also recommended something called TMS which I haven't had much time to look into. So, I slog on.

Now, I shall draggeth myself to the gym.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Words for Wednesday

Elephant's Child and other blogging buddies have orchestrated a rotation for the weekly writing prompts and this month Susan Kane at thecontemplativecat is providing the brain jolts! Here are this week's, copied from Susan's blog:

This second week of November provides two sets of words and a sentence prompt. Choose one set, both sets, sentence prompt, just a few words--it is yours for the taking! See what you can make from them:

Wall, mail carriercoolflourish, weddingcreep

And/and or/Or

Pollgraduatefloormessage, break down, exclusive

The sentence prompt for this week:

Half the names on the list had already been crossed off.

I missed last week's and honestly, I've been such a raging mess I'm not sure I could've participated anywho! This week, despite feeling lower than shit, I'm going to try and write. Well, write slightly more than I cry, I think that's a good, realistic goal for myself...

Ahhh, back to the clacking. Let's do this :)


The small event hall looked like a reunion for wannabe vampires not a wedding reception. Garish red tablecloths overlaid with black lace laid the stage for centerpieces that quite obviously did turn out as the design had implied. Black silk roses encrusted in silver glitter and small clear beads did not lend a mote of romance to the air. I shook my head at the red mesh jammed into the vase, its base meagerly filled with black and silver pebbles. Pinterest had claimed yet more victims.

Romance wasn't guaranteed at any wedding, but this one had come to the table with far less chance than most. The bride was a recent college graduate and new mother, the groom a grocery store bagger/stocker/checker and recently deflowered virgin. Had a poll been wrought the outlook for this marriage, it would've been bleak.  

He had been nineteen and playing basketball for a community college back east when Natalie happened into the gym. Like hooking guppies in a toilet bowl she stomped over to him in her knee-high faux suede boots and handed him a folded piece of college-lined paper with her number on it. "You need to call me," she had commanded. He blushed, he blustered, a day later Ryan called. 

Ryan was a nice boy, a sheltered boy. Natalie was twenty-one and could feign nice pretty well but excelled at head spinning mania and biting sarcasm, pushing away and reeling back in. "The doctors say I can't get pregnant," she coaxed one night and hooked him for him good. 

The wedding ceremony's atmosphere hadn't quite achieved solemn despite the bride's traditional voluminous white gown and puffy veil, the groom's rail straight posture and meticulously leveled clip on tie. I watched the beads of sweat at his temples as the reverend's Adam's apple bobbed with agitated swallows throughout the ceremony; I guessed Natalie's tattoos hadn't inspired much faith.

Their nine month old's cries were soothed by impromptu grandparents and otherwise ignored. Natalie was still, concentrating on her posture and smile. Even I struggled to detect when she was being genuine or manipulative, a sorry commentary on our sisterhood. 

The guests waited for their cues: nervous giggles, tears, smiles, but they were given no chance to orchestrate a community aw or appreciate giggle, silence reigned. Polite applause sealed their fates.

In the reception hall I avoided the exclusive tables for family members near the front, escorting my toddling son toward a table at the back edge of the room. I glanced toward the front of the hall and the newlyweds' table positioned before of the stage, behind the dance floor. The back wall had a variety of LED lights projecting streams of red onto the industrial taupe with two beams of pure white highlighting a gigantic, sparkling black 'S' suspended behind the stage and the DJ's equipment. 

"Good God, it's my prom all over again." My husband scoffed as he pulled my chair back for me. He smiled and scanned my face, "How are you doing?"

"I made it through the ceremony," I smirked. Sighing heavily I shook my head. "It's still emotional. I don't think I can make it much longer. I thought I would be over this by now...."

"No worries," he grinned viciously and kissed my head as I plunked into the proffered chair. "You are doing what you can and damn everything else. They don't deserve anything from you. Not a thing."

Settling into his chair he watched me fumble with my napkin, folding and unfolding the white linen as I suppressed tears. It had been nearly 18 months since Natalie had told me she was pregnant. I had just delivered my son when my mother had shown up with Natalie and her new boyfriend in tow. Instead of being about her new nephew or the change to our family, the visit was about her. 

You should sit down for this. Natalie loved to prime an audience. Now don't feel like your sister is stealing your thunder. Mother knew how to trigger the sibling rivalry and negate my emotions with sickening efficiency. 

As the postpartum depression settled in a few months later the breakdown seemed irrevocably tied to that afternoon when Natalie had sprung her news, Mother had shushed me, and Ryan had shirked in the corner. As her baby shower neared my depression suddenly worsened. As her due date approached I was again dragged back from any progress and thrown down into the depths again. I couldn't visit my nephew, I simply sent a card and returned to twice weekly therapy and new medications. Our family holiday gathering triggered the darkness again and I began to dread the mail carrier and his wedding message, knowing that attending the wedding would be yet another challenge. 

Somehow, I had managed to keep my cool through introductions and hand shakes, in-laws and friends-of-friends that I'd never see again. I had stared politely at the ceremony, clutching my son in my lap to avoid arousing suspicion at my clapless hands. 

Over a year of therapy and medications couldn't fix what was wrong with me. All that "help" couldn't "help" where I needed it. I still felt wronged, I still felt unloved, unsupported, rejected. I still felt angry.

The microphone whined and the DJ hushed and rushed everyone to their respective tables before cuing "The Imperial March" from Star Wars. Instead of a legion of Darth Vadars, three young women clad in glaring red bridesmaids gowns marched forward on the arms of three young men clearly uncomfortable with the idea of cummerbunds. After the troop of wedding lackeys had seated themselves on opposite sides of the head table, the DJ scratched and scritched and hollered for everyone to rise and applaud the newlyweds. 

Everyone watched as the couple had their first dance, then dinner was served, speeches ensued, and then the newlyweds sidled toward the cake table. 

I sighed. All the wedding festivities had grated and clawed at me. Watching Natalie's fake smiles and marveling at the real life MTV marathon she had made her life into. My son had enjoyed the dancing, the food hadn't been bad, but I was done with this scene, this illusion, this mockery. 

Anger welled up like a geyser whose stream was capped by stone. Except my stone was cracked. My stone was giving way. 

Standing, I grabbed my napkin and put it in my left hand. My husband looked up, questioning, but I reassured him with a shake of my head as I edged toward the side of the dining area. It was a common thoroughfare leading to and from the hall to the restrooms and front exit, and I strode casually toward that end. 

The exit also happened to be on the same side of the reception hall as the cake table. As I came to the double doors I saw that Natalie and Ryan were positioned behind the cake for their cutting and feeding ceremony. As the DJ called attention to the couple and cued "Pour Some Sugar on Me" my resolve was set.

Disregarding an opportunity for an eyeroll, I hastened my pace and began to creep up behind Natalie and the cake table. As I reached her bubbly bustle I accidentally stepped on her gown. Immediately I launched my attack sequence. As she reared back I flung my arms up and pressed her shoulders down and forward, toward the three tiers of peanut butter and Oreo flavored cake. 

She screamed like a dragon whose lair has been desecrated then wailed as her face and hands met with gobs of buttercream and layers of cake. Lost in my moment of reckless delight, I scooped up a glob of massacred cake and rubbed it into her sculpted hair with a victorious flourish of my hand. 

"HA!" I bellowed, before releasing her shoulders, pivoting, and dashing back toward my table. 

Loping alongside the dining tables jubilantly I punched the air and then used my napkin to wipe my messy hands. Catching my husband's open mouthed stare I jerked my head and motioned toward the rear exit just past our table. Scooping up our son and the diaper bag he joined me as I ran past, tipping a chair and nearly ripping the tablecloth from our table in his quick exit. We both gasped for air as we banged through the double doors and then began laughing as we jogged to the car. 

"Worth it?" He gasped as we zoomed from the parking lot at barely legal speeds.

"We'll see in the morning... but right now? Hell yes." I smiled and wiped tiny tears from my eyes. I couldn't tell if they were happy tears, sad tears, of tears of fear but in that moment they felt happy enough. 


If you have been following my story it probably didn't take you long to recognize the true life bits in this "Words for Wednesday." 

I am feeling so good about this in a therapeutic way it blocks out the criticisms of my writing! Now that's AWESOME, I do declare :)

I think I managed to get all the words in, though that poll one was hard. Didn't do the sentence, but oh well.

Thanks to all the "Words for Wednesday" folks for keeping this rolling :)

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Actually, Really Slippery Stuff (long post about a hike gone wrong)

So the hike.

It started out in glorious fashion. The rain misting and then falling heavily til big glops fell from our hoods and hat brims, the trail coursing with run off between the massive sopping trees alternately covered in lichen and moss and fungi or stripped clear and beaten smooth with rain water. It was lovely. I was hopeful, energized, curious, and motivated to make a new summit.

We hit the first section of talus and found ourselves exposed to the wicked winds of the higher elevations. The hubby had been using an umbrella to shield Baby Bananaface from the rain but it now half-flipped out and became useless. Fearing the upcoming exposure and wind further up the trail, the hubster said he didn't think we could go on. I really wanted to. I hadn't summited a new peak in years and he had told me I could this. We decided to split up.

***Yes. I know, bad idea. We were very much aware of this after the fact, with the hubster regretting his decision to give me his watch and set me loose almost immediately as he hiked down and back to the car***

The first part of my solo hike went pretty well. The trail through the next talus slopes were hard to discern but I found my course and kept a decent pace. I enjoyed the wet, rocky section with orange tinted sand and rock, streams of water flowing over my yellow stone road. I felt good, I felt like I was going to make the summit and achieve something. It would be an analogy for my life, some sort of example I could live by as I practiced setting boundaries and taking care of myself.  I rearranged my hood under my waterproof hat borrowed from the hubs and cinched the strap tight to my jawbone to combat the wind and went forth into the harsher elements, accepting the challenge.

Along the way I met other hikers. One nice lady told me there would be a little ice and snow near the top, I thanked her for the heads up. Another told me to make sure I shut the door on the lookout tower and do not open the shutters. I reassured him that I would make sure it was shut and took comfort in the fact that he seemed to think I could make it.

It wasn't long before I encountered snow and thought of the woman's words-I must be getting close to the top! Little did I know that first small patches of snow and ice would be quickly replaced by large swathes of snow and a pathway of wet, icy snow and then packed icy snow each speckled with sharp rocks and large boulders. I hate hiking on snow period but without gloves, sticks, or microspikes? I should've turned back. I should've turned back so many times....

Instead, I kept going. I was stubborn. I wanted it. The hubs said I could make it. He said, "turn back at 1:00 pm," so I should make it by then. The man told me to shut the tower door, the women told me of the snow, I should be able to do this. I scrambled forward.

After half an hour of climbing over rocks, snow, boulders, and ice, with my bare hands in my pockets as often as I could balance or scramble without them, my once-waterproof jacket sopping and cold, the wind blowing up the side of the mountain in a fierce fashion I had never witnessed before, I found myself on a snowy trail, reentering the forest but still exposed to the wind. A bright orange trail sign bore a brown and white sticker of a watch tower and an arrow, another sticker with a large letter "P" for parking with an arrow pointing back down the mountain. It was 1:30 pm.

I hadn't made it. I couldn't make it. My hands were a bright shade of pink, my body so cold the wind hit me like someone had thrown razor blades into the gusts. I knew that the summit must be close but I couldn't go on. I fumbled with my pack, even colder with it off my back, grabbed two of the snack bars and hurriedly replaced my pack. I ate one of the chilled bars as quickly as I could, pocketed the other. I would eat it when I hit the spot I had split up with the hubs I decided, a benchmark to motivate me.

Getting back down the mountain was horrible. I was disappointed that I hadn't summited, embarrassed that I hadn't handled the situation with more wisdom I didn't have, and angry at my husband for misleading me about the trail. I could barely contain the emotional strain but descending tore me apart. Going down in a state of hypothermia wasn't just cold, it hurt. Not to mention the missteps and falls resulting from my diminished mental and physical state. I slipped on snow and caught myself as I fell down boulders, I slipped on a boulder farther down and found myself in a stream of water, soaking through my jacket, pants, and boots; I trudged, slid, and fell down the mountain without fanfare, I was beaten down in so many ways I didn't see faces when people passed, only boots.

***Another stupid moment, I didn't ask for help, I think I was too ashamed and uncertain of what anyone could do for me, but gloves certainly would've helped. Thankfully I'm not suffering any long term injuries as far as I can tell****

My left knee began bothering me pretty quickly once I began my descent. After a particularly unhappy fall I thumped my right elbow pretty hard and gave myself a goose egg on my right hand, that was when the "something extra" kicked in and the pain started to fade.

The pain faded but my legs were quivering and dragging. I fell again and upon standing found a triangle shaped rock near where I had fallen. I grabbed it. I stood it up on it's bottom like a Christmas tree. Then I took of my pack, shoved it in a pocket, and took it. I never do that. I know there are rules for collecting things but I did not familiarize myself with them, I never took anything. Until now. It was my rock and I did not feel it's weight at all. I slogged on.

When I reached the first talus slope where I had separated from the hubster and baby I promptly ate my second snack. By this time my pockets were so wet from the rain sliding from my sleeves it was difficult to get my hands warm though I had a wool cap in my left pocket that helped a bit. I began to worry about my baby, thinking about how he hadn't eaten and I abandoned the chant of "step lift up" (or something like that, I cannot recall the original version) reminding me to lift my feet so I didn't become entangled in rocks or trip for a single word, his name.

By the time I reached the last portion of the trail I was canted forward and dragging my wobbly legs down the trail as fast as I could, splashing through any mud or water without caring how much got into my boots or on my legs as I was already soaked through and toting standing water in my boots.

When I made it to the car the hubs was jovial, obviously not comprehending my troubled state. I told him I just wanted to nurse, and I peeled off my pack and jacket and sopping shirts. Baby was hungry and even though my pants wet his pants and socks, he didn't care. The hubs noticed my vacant stare and slack face, he felt my pants and boots and realized how wet I was. He asked if I wanted my boots and socks off and the bottom portion of my pants and I said yes.

I ended up in my wet, now shorts-sized hiking pants and a button up hiking shirt I had left in the care to change into. My bra had been so wet I couldn't keep it on and I didn't care who in the parking lot saw what. A few minutes later we had driven down the road and the hubs looked over at me. My arms were crossed, my shoulders slumped, my legs smashed together and my knees drawn up in as attempt at a fetal position. I still stared, I didn't talk much. He touched my leg and my arm and they were cold. He pulled over and cranked the heater, unbuckling both our seat belts as he gathered his dry waterproof shell, fleece, and my fleece. I put on his fleece, he wrapped mine around my legs, and laid the shell over the top of my lap.

I was still cold for quite some time, nearly the entire drive from the trail head to Lake Stevens, my toes burning from the car's heater before my core felt warm again.

But eventually I warmed enough to started talking. My voice wavered and tears came to my eyes as I described the hike. I had felt so helpless. And then I remembered the anger at my husband. Why were we even on this trail? You couldn't have made it with the baby at all! The conditions... what I was wearing, we weren't prepared. You sent me... Why? I can't believe it was a mistake. How could you do that? I was mad and heartbroken.

There had been an incident before when the hubs picked a hike for us to go on as a couple. I was excited and ready to try a new trail but it didn't take long to realize it was beyond my skill level. I felt ashamed, betrayed, heartbroken... and this made me feel all those things again but it was so much worse being out there by myself. It felt like a major break in the trust between us. Like more and more we are less partners and more roommates doing our own thing. I miss understanding and accommodation, caring and comfort, finding something that will please both of us and building happy memories instead of traumatic ones. It's bad enough being depressed, but then these feelings? Jeesh.

So... I know this is long but I hope it gives a taste of what I went through and what it meant to me. That hike was supposed to be a great achievement, something to encourage in me in working toward a healthier, happier me, but instead it turned into a horrible analogy of all the worse parts of me; putting my well being last, pushing myself too far, straining to achieve unrealistic expectations, not being kind to myself. It is embarrassing but too important not to share.

Failure happens.

***The hubs told me later that he immediately realized how woefully unprepared we were after our separation. He did not have a pack, any water, nothing and he realized that we did not have proper layers of clothes and he also realized how bad the weather could be further up after observing the weather down below. Initially, when I had approached the car he had asked if I had summited and said he wasn't sure if he should be proud or concerned. Awkward!****

Friday, November 6, 2015


Today I talked to the hubs about my fearful thoughts and had a moment of "good grief" as I reflected on how I've been feeling and living the past few weeks and just how shitty that has been. He sounded so concerned over my thoughts that it made me realize how "no bueno" they really are...

The thoughts being things like "lock the car, lock the car, the carjackers are right out there" or "cranky lady downstairs is gonna set a bomb in her apartment to blow us up up here." I'm having a hard time coming up with more examples but I think that illustrates the badness going on.

I'm also having memory problems. Which is usual for when my mood is poor and my anxiety is high, I simply don't retain what I usually do. The evening past? Poof. Remembering actresses names or events or dates from my past? Pfft. Basically my brain is fried and it's pretty understandable.

My week was rough. Low energy, super hard getting out of bed, resisting going to the gym or being in public, I drove around in my car for many hours, especially when the baby was sleeping, cried to myself on a variety of occasions and in therapy sessions, felt pissed off that drugs weren't helping and that I felt so poorly but also felt low and like giving up on the meds. My anger hardly ever burns long enough to spur much change or action, simply sucks in on itself and lights off self criticism or other negativity. Oh the habits of my brain....

It's crazy how this all slips my mind so often. I just write it off or don't notice just how hard I've been struggling. Slippery like that, this depression.

Got an email from my sister. Total crock of deluded shit. I am choosing not to reply.

Talked about my family and Christmas and everything with the therapist and since have been talking about maybe excluding my little family from my parents' Christmas. That last time I skipped out my mother didn't talk to me for three months. It scares me but at the same time I'm sick of the status quo and I'm sick of not standing up for my feelings and I'm more at a "I don't give a shit what anybody thinks or feel" place than I've ever been before....

I look in the mirror and see that I haven't become the woman I wanted to be and I don't want another quarter century to pass and miss out on being the me I have wanted to create. I see how my aunts and parents and relatives have lived for others in unhealthy ways, remained hollow, unrealized versions of themselves, and it breaks my heart and pisses me off. I want better than that for me, for the hubs, for Baby Bananaface... But damn is it hard to fight what has been laid before you.     I must.

In other news I got my blood drawn for my thyroid and lithium labs, so we'll see how that goes. Got a new chick, young little thing, nice though, and diligent. And she didn't sting me with the alcohol and the needle!

Now for the weekend. I know the hike we are planning will kick my butt but I am looking forward to getting out in the trees. Also have yoga plans for Sunday with the hubs, been years!

OH. I have had some tremors but am not sure if they are consistent enough to be.... validated? Ugh... I'm gonna go with it being a side effect of backing off my Seroquel and let it be for now.


Why, yes! There is a shitton of Ben & Jerry's in the fridge.

Excuse me while I spoon away my sorrows ;)


Nah. Tea and Bengay is a better combo!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Going, Going, Going

I didn't want to get out of bed this morning but the hubs got me going and I just kept going to avoid feeling as much as I could. The feelings caught up with me at couples' therapy but for the rest of the day I just kept busy until dinner. I couldn't keep going anymore. I felt exhausted all of a sudden, angry, and in desperate need of a break. The hubs took Baby Bananaface to Costco and I got alone time.

I'm just.... I'm down. I don't want to do anything let alone taking care of a babe or keep up with appointments and gym classes, but I'm going through the motions. Going through the motions and wondering if any of the other yogis will notice that I'm tearing up or if the other sweaty pigs beside me on the treadmills will catch on to the fact that I'm miserable.

*big ole sighs*

Couples' therapy has been going well though I can't say that we are experiencing any immediate benefits. We keep up with our individual self care and this week we going to focus on asking how the other person is and listening and validating.

It is simple stuff but things are devolved to the point where we need to work on simple things and build up to the loving, supportive marriage we know that we can have. I'm quite internalized, isolated and shut down lately. I stopped replying or initiating our usual "I love you" farewells and being touched or hugged or kissed makes me feel very odd in a not so good way. The hubs is zipped up, avoiding talking about feelings or what is really going on. He's putting up a strong front trying to keep it all together while I'm ready to dissolved into a huge pile of goo and permanently adhere myself to the bed.

So. That's part of what is going on. I've also got therapy just for me going on twice a week. It's difficult with the baby along but I feel like we're doing better work than we have in a long time. It's very focused on coping strategies for right now, not dredging up the past or indulging in too may sob fests.

I feel overwhelmed and overworked but I look at my days and wonder why I complain or feel so bad. I know it's my bad mental programming putting myself down.... but it sure is hard tell myself that it's okay to feel this way and believe it.

In other news, we gave Fio a massive bone (well, for his miniature stature). At first we weren't sure if he could handle it but he's been gamely hauling the behemoth around and giving a corner of it his best shot with awkwardly angled nibbles. After he downed a smaller sized rawhide in one afternoon we knew we had to up the ante.

Also Fio related, I gave the baby a canister of stupid half-stale puffs to play with and while he wasn't interested in the puffs, Fio was! Baby Bananaface much preferred to nibble on the lid. I took this as the beginning of a long, mutually beneficial food disposing relationship!