Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Monday, October 29, 2007

Shoulda done those Kegels

Oh, how the mighty have fallen. For the past four days, I have been limping around in agony wondering what I could have possibly done to screw up my lower back quite so badly. At first, I hoped it was just regular back pain as many pregnant woman experience. The next day, the pain localized into one side, and I knew something was up. At times, I couldn't even put weight on the leg. Yesterday, it was so bad that I was using the stroller like a walker - anything to stay upright. Today, I'd decided that I had endured enough and called a physiotherapist that my doctor had recommended.

I suspected that it was somehow pregnancy related, of course. I know that things in the pelvic area tend to loosen up when you're late in the game. I even knew that you could do some damage if you weren't careful. But surely these things happen to Other People, not me. Oh no! I'm a runner! I am still - or, rather, was still until the back went haywire - running for about an hour, three times a week! I take a FitMom class once a week, and I walk a lot! Apparently all these good things are for naught if you don't do your kegels.

For some reason, I thought I was exempt. Or, perhaps I was lazy. Anyways, I could never find time for them. Now that I can't walk properly, I wish I had made more of an effort. According to my physiotherapist, I lack some of the core strength that kegels help to build, and I hurt/twisted/messed up the SI Joint. She gave me some exercises and stretches to do - all of which involve the muscles worked while doing kegels.

She also said that the pain may not go away entirely until I deliver, though. Fabulous. Nothing like chasing after a toddler who can outrun you.

So it looks like I've got my work cut out for me. Can I make up for 9 kegel-free months in just 3 short weeks? Only time will tell. One thing I know for sure is that I won't look like this at the end of my new workout regime:

This is SO NOT the outfit I would choose to wear while doing kegels. Assuming that white thing goes where I think it does - are we pretending that my little girl can actually compress that thing? It looks like a Thigh Master for pete's sake! Nuh huh. Love how the pregnancy benefits are hidden between things like better orgasms and heightened stimulation, though. . Now, if only I had the proper footwear to become a KegelPro, I'd be all set...

Now if anyone sees me in person, you're gonna be wondering if I'm doing a kegel. Arncha?

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


When I started this blog, I gave it the name "nomotherearth" because, up to that point, I had spent my time as a new mother feeling very much on the outside. I would look at the other new mothers in my neighbourhood (and there are ALOT of new mothers in my 'hood) and feel like they knew something I didn't. They all seemed to have their act together, and here I was stumbling along like an infant learning to walk. I took a lot of falls. Truth be told, I'm still stumbling. I was especially fascinated by the mothers for whom this mothering thing seemed to come naturally. It was as if the "Mother Earth" juice just oozed out of their every pore. They seemed to know the right thing to do in every situation, and everything was just so easy for them. I, on the other hand, found nothing easy.

Since then, thanks to the support of a lovely bloggy community and some wonderful IRL friends, I have been able to come to terms with my shortcomings. Not absolutely, of course. I'm still somewhat embarrassed by how much I don't know. But I feel much less alone. I've also felt that over 2.5 years with the Boy has improved my maternal instincts so drastically that most days I can pass for someonw who knows what they're doing.

So I was taken aback when Mr Earth made a comment the other day that we don't, as he has been noticing other couples do, spend a lot of time Touching the Belly. My first (unthinking) response was "Yeah, I'm just not all that into it." Mr Earth snorted at my non-maternal comment. What I meant, of course, was that I was just not all that into Touching the Belly. I am VERY into having a baby. You just won't see me fondling my distended abs and smiling that secret smile. I should mention that although Baby Earth has been kicking up a storm, (s)he will stop moving the moment someone puts a hand on the Belly. I have only felt the kicks from the inside.

I think I may have regressed. When I was pregnant with the Boy, I really did try to do everything "right". Poor Baby Earth seems to be on his/her own. Not only have I eaten soft cheeses and deli meats from questionable submarine joints, but I've gone weeks without vegetables crossing my lips (unless tomato sauce counts as a veggie..?). I'm pretty sure that I had some undercooked shellfish at one point. Kegel? What's a Kegel?? On top of everything, I have been CRAVING red wine. Absolutely must have red wine.

I haven't indulged yet. I know that most reports say that a glass here or there is no big deal, but, um...let's just say that I'm not the poster-child for moderation. Generally, when I find something I like to eat - especially during pregnancy - I will eat just gobs of it until I'm so sick of it I can't stand to even have it in the house anymore. So I take sips of Mr Earth's wine here and there.

Measly, sad, depressing sips.

I want to take a nice bottle from our growing wine rack that I eye every morning while I make breakfast for the Boy. I want to hold a glass full of velvety warm goodness. I want to inhale the edgy fruit smell. I want to feel that pleasant soft hum in my shoulders as I finally relax after a taxing day. As irreverant as it may seem, having a good glass of wine at the end of the day is a little bit of a religious experience for me. And with each passing day of this pregnancy, I want it more and more.

This is so wrong. I can't even get cravings right. No pickles and ice cream for me. God forbid I should crave something that contains anything that my body actually needs like calcium or iron. No. I crave alcohol. I feel like the Don Music of motherhood. Anyone care to join me for a glass?? Cause I'll never get it right. Never, never, never!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Music by Meme

Bren J from Stranger in a Strange Land tagged me for this meme, and I said I would give it a whirl, despite my embarrassing answers. I'm so uncool. Is it possible to be SO uncool, that you're actually cool? That's what I'm hoping for...

What song is in your head?

Other than the Rescue Pack song from Go Diego Go?? Hm, that's a tough one. It sort of usurps everything else in a most insidious way.

When I can get that out of my head, it's either Hold Tight by DDDBM&T or Chick Habit by April March (see next question).

My head has a lot of empty space, so I can store any amount of annoying sound bites on constant replay.

What is the newest album in your collection?

Hey - wonder of wonders - I actually just bought an album so I can answer this question! I almost never buy CD's anymore because I rarely have time to listen to them. BUT -- Mr Earth made me watch Quenten Tarantino's Deathproof a couple weeks ago. I didn't really like the movie all that much - pointless AND violent - but I loved the original soundtrack and wouldn't rest until I bought it. I love retro music.

What is the top album on your wish list?

My wish list pretty much only has books on it. However, I am really grooving on DDDBM&T (Dave Dee Dozy Beaky Mich & Tich), so I would be interested to have a compilation of their greatest hits.

What is the most recent live music event you have attended?

That would have to be the Boy singing "Skinnamarink" this morning in the stroller. Oh wait! I did see a musical puppet show about Alistair Ant. Take your pick. I'm a Rockin' Mom, either way.

What is the top live music event on your wish list?

Well, here is where I show my age AND how uncool I am all at the same time. The concerts on my wish list are all from the past. I would pay a lot of money to have seen Madonna on her Blonde Ambition tour. Barring that, I would really like to have seen Moxy Früvous, before they went mainstream and changed their lyrics.

What are the top three albums currently in rotation at your house?

Well, as mentioned, I don't really have a lot of time to listen to albums. It pretty much only happens when I clean. And I don't clean very much at all. Other than that, I listen to albums in the car. So here goes...

In my CD player:

1. Nine (Musical Soundtrack). I hope to do this show when it goes up in a couple years, so I was listening to it to see if there was any role to which I was particularly suited. I'd love to be the slutty mistress, but I almost never get cast as that (damn my wholesome face!)

Once on this Island (Musical Soundtrack). A musical I will never be cast in, but I love it to bits. Don't really know why this is in the machine.

3. Mixed CD by Mr Earth. Mr Earth rocks at making mixed CDs. I'm hoping that he will make one for me for the labour room. Although I have no idea what songs are particularly suited to childbirth and labour... If you have any suggestions as to what music is best for the pain of pushing out a kid, please let me know.

YUP, the vote's in. I'm SOOOOOOOOOOOO cool. I would tag other people, but I'll be lucky if anyone is still reading my blog after these revelations.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

All I Really Need to Know About Labour I Learned in Theatre School [MBT]

OK, so I've been doing a lot of reading lately about labour. With the Big Day coming up next month, I figured it was about time I got down to business. After all, this may be my second child, but since I had the Dreaded C last time, I didn't actually go through the whole labour experience. More importantly, I feel the need to arm myself with information, as doctors in these here parts ostensibly support VBAC (vaginal birth after Cesarian), while simultaneously jumping ship whenever something doesn't go exactly according to plan.

I've checked out Ina May's Guide to Childbirth and The Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth, as well as doing some reading online. While I found all this research helpful, I eventually came to the conclusion that all these suggestions for making labour easier and handling pain naturally sounded...well, familiar. What it took me FAR too long to realize is that all these techniques were things that I had learnt in my four years of Theatre School. Only, we were learning these things to be more "connected actors".

Some days I felt that these techniques we learnt were so amazing, and life-altering. But being the cynical youth that I was, other days I would just look around at the class moaning and drooling on the floor for an hour, and thought they were kind of, well, silly. I would question the process, and feel badly about wasting my parents' money. After reading these childbirth books, I feel that I am finally vindicated, and can prove to my parents that the money they spent on my theatrical education was not in vain.

Read more at Mommy Blogs Toronto.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Out of the mouths of babes

Overheard at Casa Earth...

The Boy: What's that on your forehead?

Mr Earth: Where?

The Boy: Dere!

Mr Earth: What does it look like?

The Boy: Stripes!

Nomo: Stripes?


Do you mean wrinkles?

(Scrunches forehead)

See, Mummy's got them too. They're called wrinkles, not stripes.

The Boy: Oh. Wrinkles?

Nomo: Yes.

(sound of Nomo snickering)

The Boy: Why you laughing?

Nomo: (some unintelligible comment about "wrinkles" vs "stripes" as I desperately try to stop laughing)

Friday, October 12, 2007

Livin' la vida Diego [MBT]

OK, so I've spoken before about my mommy-crush on Diego. Nothing to be ashamed of, right? It's a good show! If you're into kiddie cartoons. I'm not, actually, but my son is, so what's a girl to do? What I didn't realize is how much Diego has infiltrated our lives.

We bought a Diego backpack. Not so bad. The kid wanted a backpack and this one cost all of $6 at WalMart. I figured I got off cheap. And he is enormously proud of it. He shows it off to everyone at daycare, announcing loudly that he has an "Aygo backpack!" - each and every day. I think some parents are getting sick of hearing about it, but whatever.

We also have a Diego portable/folding potty seat. We've been experiencing some difficulty introducing the World of Potty at our house, and I thought that this might get him excited about the whole thing. No deal. Diego may be able to talk to the animals, but apparently he can't talk to the bladder.

Read more at Mommy Blogs Toronto

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Talking Potty: I'm such a cliché Mommy-Blogger.

A week or so ago, I picked up the following letter from the Boy's cubby at daycare:

Dear Pre-School Parents:

Over the next few weeks, we would like to begin toilet training. However, we will need your help in order for your child to be successful!

Consistency (between home and daycare) and patience are the keys to your child's success. Of course, there will no doubt be accidents!

Please let us know if we have your support and advise us of any questions or concerns which you may have.

Thank you for your support.
Pre-school Staff

Admittedly at first, I was really excited. I was kind of hoping that the daycare would take over the dirty work for me. The Boy is a follower by nature, and would fare much better if he saw his friends doing it. Ah, the power of peer pressure. It's not all bad, after all.

Staying true to my Slacker Mom profile, I have also not called the daycare to let them know of my support or ask any questions. I really should get on that..

You see, the Boy shows ABSOLUTELY NO INTEREST in the potty. Wait, he maybe shows some interest in AVOIDING the potty. Does that count? I didn't think so. Frankly, I haven't been all that concerned up to this point. Although I would love to save money on diapers, they are rather convenient. I don't have to worry about accidents, or running to find a bathroom. And, everything I've read said that it's not a good time to start potty training if your child is about to have a new sibling. So, I thought that perhaps January would be a good time to start, if he hasn't shown an interest by then.

But I want to be supportive of their initiative. We bought pull-ups for daytime use. I know a lot of people think that they delay potty training, but since I've seen no indication that he's actually ready, I thought it was at least a baby step in the right direction. That way we could pull them up and down easily if we got to the point when he actually might approach the potty. We still use diapers at night, though, because the pull-ups aren't absorbent enough for 10+ hours of pee, and there is no way he's going to wake up to go. And NO WAY am I going to spend mucho $$ for fancy "overnight" pull-ups unless I get some encouraging signs from the Boy himself.

So how, exactly, does a parent encourage and support an initiative with an unresponsive child? We've been talking up the potty for ages. We let him know when we're going to the potty. We take him to the potty with us if he shows interest. We bought Big Boy underwear with cars (!!) on it that the Boy chose himself (and that will probably remain in his drawer until he gets too big for them at this point...)

This week, I started taking him to the potty in the morning, stripping his diaper, and sitting him on his new Diego (!!) potty seat cover that we bought together. I try to make it as fun as possible, and I don't do it for long. I obviously don't insist that he pee or anything. I was hoping it would just become a natural part of the routine. I don't do it before bedtime though, because I don't want to force the issue or make it at all unpleasant for him.

The first thing that the Boy said to me when I went into his room to wake him up this morning was:

"I don't want to go pee."

And now I feel like a Bad Mother.

This kid always knows how to throw me for a loop. I am fully armed with knowledge on how to encourage a child who is showing interest in the potty. I am not versed on how to encourage someone who is not. And yet, at daycare, they say he has no resistance to sitting on the potty (although he has never actually peed).

So are they pushing him to do something for which he is not ready? Or, does he just regress and lose independence whenever he's around me?? I was all about the former, but lately I'm starting to suspect it's the latter.

What I do know is my head hurts.

Friday, October 05, 2007

the Boy's Song

You fill up my senses like a night in the forest,

fumbling around in the dark, i'm supposed to know what I'm doing, but I don't. i can hear you breathing, i can smell your baby fresh head, i can feel your hot silky smooth skin, but i can't see the path. can't find the way to go, so i'm walking on instict. my instinct has always been good but i don't trust it now. it's too new, you're too new, this whole new world is too new.

like the mountains in springtime, like a walk in the rain,

get your feet wet, jump in. it's so fresh and cool here when you take the plunge. after months i can finally breath. the air is so cool and i can finally breeeathe. breathe deeply. i didn't think i'd ever get my breath back. it's okay, it really is. but don't get the baby wet. keep him safe, make him feel safe. make sure he understands that i will never let anything hurt him.

like a storm in the desert,

tears again. running down fat cheeks. spotting his shirt. here. and there. clinging and groping. nothing I do is enough, nothing soothes. so I walk and walk and walk and walk and walk around the dining room table because there is nowhere else to go. go. i should go. i should go outside. i push the stroller a little too fast, a little too hard. i'm sorry baby. my patience is wearing thin and i'm sorry. i should be stronger. i should be calmer. i should be better. i should.

like a sleepy blue ocean.

asleep at last. how the world can change with just a little bit of sleep. a little bit of rest. how lovely you are baby. how innocent. how wonderful. sleep now baby, sleep for me. sleep instead of me, because i can't sleep when you do. the toothpicks will stay in my eyelids no matter how much i wish they would pop out. and let me sleep. no, sleep is for the weak. sleep means i won't be in control. can't lose control. must stay awake, but not wake the baby. the baby needs to sleep. so do i.

You fill up my senses, come fill me again.

you are your own person, and yet so much a part of me. i can see it in your eyes. your eyes are my eyes. when i look at you, i am looking at myself. i could drown in the brown. i think i am drowning, and it's a good thing. such a wonderful thing. but scary too. was that a smile? heart stops, stomach lurches. i think it was. drink it in. this is what i was made for. this is what life is about. it makes sense now, it does.

Come let me love you, let me give my life to you,

they tell you about diapers and wipes and cradle cap and thrush and colic and meconium and colostrum and sleep patterns and breastfeeding and formula and jaundice. words, words, words. they don't tell you about love. about how love changes. expands. how your heart gets bigger and stronger, but infinitely more vulnerable. they don't tell you because you wouldn't understand. it can't be explained. it can only be felt. the lucky ones get to feel.

let me lay down beside you, let me always be with you. Come let me love you.

always. never doubt but that I love. don't feel supplanted, replaced. that will never happen. could never happen. there is room in my heart still. i won't let go. i won't go away. you will always have a place. it will just be a little more cozy. you, your daddy, and this little person we have yet to meet. but you won't get lost in the crowd. i promise.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Red Rubber Ball

Last week in my Fitmom class, the instructor checked our diastasis (the amount of separation of the two halves of the rectus abdominus that happens in pregnancy). If the separation gets too big, apparently, it can become a problem that requires surgery after birth. What you have to do is lie on your back with your knees up. Then you lift your head off the ground and feel the area between the belly button and the ribs. When you do this, you should be able to feel the sides of the abdominal muscles. Generally, they are pretty close together, maybe a fingerwidth at most. They start separating during pregnancy to accomodate the baby.

When I did this, there was this sizable bump right above my belly button. It looked like the baby was pushing it's head (or bum) out of the top of my tummy, except that when you pressed on it, it felt like an air bubble. It looked pretty freaky. The teacher thought that it might be a hernia, and I immediately went into a semi-panic mode. Hernia means surgery! I don't want surgery! I am doing my very best to avoid any type of surgery with this birth! I wouldn't say Im a hypochondriac, but I am a bit of an alarmist.

So for this past week, I've been in a bit of a suspended state waiting for my doctor's appointment today. The doctor seems to think that it's just some loose muscles popping out. She didn't seem too worried about it. Personally, I think that loose muscles popping out of my stomach is not entirely "normal". (Or attractive, but let's just put that aside for the moment..) I hope that she's right. I don't, as a rule, question doctor's opinions, but sometimes I think that they can be somewhat dismissive of patient concerns. I don't think that my doctor is the dismissive type at all - she seems very nice - but I just started with her, so I don't know her all that well.

I'm doing my very best to focus on the positive side of things (not easy for me), and just assume that everything will work in the end. I've been having to do that more and more as this pregnancy progresses. I had my VBAC consult last week, and the obstetrician at the hospital said that if I got to 40 weeks without going into labour, they would just automatically schedule a caesarian for a week later. That concerns me. My impression is that if everything doesn't go EXACTLY ACCORDING TO SCHEDULE then the hospital is going to hop on the Operation Train. And when has a labour gone exactly according to schedule anyways?? Every labour, every woman is different. An acquaintance of mine was in the same situation awhile back. They had scheduled the caesarian for 8 days after her due date - only because they were too backed up to do it earlier - but she luckily went into labour on the morning of her operation.

I talked with my doctor about this and she looked confused. She said that they would schedule an induction if I went all the way to my due date, but not a caesarian. I could have misheard what the obstetrician said, but I don't think so. So we wait until she gets the letter from the obstetrician consult to see what it says.

I guess I just have to assume that everything's going to be alright.


Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Must-see Fall TV [MBT]

I have this vague recollection of my life before kid(s). We used to go to this place called a theatre (thee-ah-ter) where live people stood on raised platforms and acted scenes written by dramatic giants like Shakespeare, Shaw and Brecht. We also frequently attended a magical place called a cinema (sin-a-ma) where large screens showed the latest movies.

Safe to say that we don't get around much anymore. Now, I admit that I have always liked TV, but it used to play a more secondary role in my life. My other half will insist that "the couple who watches TV together, stays together". Still, it shows how much my dramatic standards have fallen when I admit to how much I was looking forward to last week. Premiere week on TV. All the new and returning shows flaunting their wares. (Cue the heavenly chorus here.) After a summer of TV drought, I was like a crack addict jonesing for a fix. I think I may have sported some drool.

Parents don't have a lot of free time, though, so we have to be selective. Hell, I'm lucky if I can make it through one whole show without falling asleep these days. So, I thought I'd fill you in on what, in my opinion, are THE shows to watch this season...

Read more at Mommy Blogs Toronto...

Monday, October 01, 2007

A Matter of Perfection

I can never quite remember how I start reading a particular blog. Sometimes, it's because someone new leaves a comment and I click through to officially "meet" them. Sometimes a blog post will mention or link to another blog. Sometimes I go through people's blogrolls to see who they like reading. Whatever the method, I am constantly discovering the wealth of beauty and talent that the blogosphere has to offer.

In one such instance, I stumbled upon Bon from Crib Chronicles. Something about her writing just clicked with me. It wasn't about her gift for words, which is apparent, but something in the tone of her writing was just so honest and unpretentious. It was like I was able to see the person writing the words as I read them.

This month, Bon wrote a post that quite simply took my breath away. If you haven't read it already, I urge you to go read it now. I can't remember the last time I've been so personally affected by a piece of writing. It's like she reached into my head and my heart, and pulled the thoughts and feelings right out. Only, I don't have the talent that she has, and I could never have written it so beautifully. As far as I'm concerned, the ability to do something like that is what makes a writer truly great.

So, I am awarding her a Perfect Post. It's my very first time doing this, and I don't think I could have chosen better. You deserve it, Bon.

The Original Perfect Post Awards – Sept ‘07

And, if you want to read more great writing, check out the other winners at Suburban Turmoil or Petroville.