Which of you searched for my blog with the term “the babby is about the size of one of the large raspberries that i drop into the blender when making a smoothie”??
Perfect Husband took me to buy a new bathing suit at a maternity store after my birthday dinner on Thursday. He has this week off as a random much-needed vacation and he had taken transit out to the local mall while I was at work. When we walked into the maternity store, the clerk smiled at PH and said “back for the bathing suits?”
I have to say, I feel that it must take guts to walk into a maternity store when you are an unaccompanied male. I was nervous walking in, just because I wasn’t visibly pregnant!
But the first reality of my upcoming maternity hit at the cash register.
“Would you like to register for our points card? When you sign up you get sent 400 dollars worth of coupons, and free Pampers and Enfamil samples.”
For four hundred dollars in coupons, I might have said yes. But the Pampers and Enfamil stirred me to such a “hell, no” reaction that I had to make a conscious effort in being polite as I turned down the card.
I suspect I’m going to end up being a relatively crunchy mom, but I’m not a lactivist or anything. I don’t think that mothers who give their babies formula instead of breast milk are bad mothers. While “everyone knows” the benefits of breast feeding, I know that it doesn’t work for everyone. Some people have babies born with cleft palates, who can’t latch. Some women simply never reach full milk, or for some reason their milk doesn’t seem to satisfy their baby. I think it is a good thing that formula exists, so that mothers have something to fall back on when their natural equipment lets them down.
I don’t think that mothers who use disposable diapers are bad mothers, either. I’m a hundred percent sold on cloth diapers, especially when I can hire people to take the diapers away and clean them for me, and have them dropped back on my doorstep weekly, without my ever having to lift a finger. I have already found the diaper service that I plan to use, and while the cost is probably equivalent to disposables, it’s worth it to me, to be able to use cloth without sacrificing convenience. But I understand that some mothers simply prefer disposables. That’s their choice.
But it really bothers me when I see these companies coming in and setting up future mothers. They’re trying to hook women onto their inferior products. I’m sure you have all heard of how baby formula companies “donate” supplies to mothers in third world countries, and have a history of aggressive marketing. It’s positively evil. It’s just that same kind of aggressive marketing that leads women who shop for maternity clothes to be sent free samples of formula. I think it’s sick. I think baby formula has its place, but that should be as a resort for mothers who can’t breastfeed, or for whom breastfeeding is not working. It is not the kind of thing that they should be sending free samples of!
I feel the same way about disposable diapers. I can hardly knock ’em before I try ’em, but we all know how disposable diapers make up 1/3 of all landfill space, that they increase chances of asthma and reduce fertility in boys. We know that they tend to come with increased diaper rash, and a later age of potty training. I’m glad they exist, because cloth diapers don’t work for everyone. They may not even work for me. Even if I love my diaper service and cloth nappies I’ll probably use the occasional disposable. But I don’t want those diaper companies hawking their products at me, trying to get me hooked before I even have a chance to try something else.
Am I overreacting, or does this kind of marketing sicken others, too?
Today was a big day for me, mental health wise. Not only was it the first day of my GAD therapy group, but I got a call from the Reproductive Mental Health section of the Women’s Hospital telling me that they wanted to book me in for 9 AM the same morning. I said I couldn’t do it, because I had to be at a totally different hospital for 10 AM.
“Well, we have you listed as an urgent referral, but our next opening is in March.”
“…Okay, I’ll be there.”
So then I had to tell my manager that instead of working crazy long hours to make up for the time I’d be in the GAD group, but I wasn’t going to be able to make it in at all this morning and she would have to give me half a sick day or unpaid leave or something. I left the choice up to her so she would hate me less for buggering off for half a day. Then I had to call my GAD group and leave a message saying I’d probably be very late. The whole thing was making me very anxious.
At the Women’s Health place a psychiatrist drilled me for an hour on my history. She got me to describe any depressive instances in my life, focusing most on the episode that led to the prescription of Wellbutrin. Like all the other people I have spoken to, she raised her eyebrows and looked shocked when I described my encounter with Dr. Useless and nodded when I explained why I hadn’t taken the Cymbalta that had been tossed at me. She asked me about my family, where I was born, my drinking habits, my husband, my education, and a million other things. It was all familiar ground to me. I am getting used to repeating it to counsellors, psychiatrists, doctors etc. As usual, she seemed surprised and impressed by my description of Perfect Husband. When I called him my best friend, she looked pleasantly shocked. This makes me sad for the other wives she talks to.
“So, basically,” she summarized at the end of things, “You have a history of worrying and anxiety, with episodes of seasonal depression in winter, culminating in Major Depression last year.”
It made me sound so healthy.
For Gawd’s sake, don’t go off the Wellbutrin.
Those weren’t her exact words. She used much more clinical terms to impress on me that Wellbutrin is not teratogenic, that I am on a low dose in any case, that depression can have severe consequences on the developing baby and that I am at a high risk of redeveloping the depression either during pregnancy or in post partum. As it is, she decided that I should be watched carefully for recurring depression through my pregnancy and booked a follow-up in May. She also strongly advised Cognitive Behaviour Therapy. So I told her about the GAD group and she was delighted.
“That’s perfect! When does it start?”
“Today.” (Actually, the most correct answer would have been “ten minutes ago,” but I wanted to spare myself that conversation)
“Well, that’s excellent. You’re getting mentally healthy in time for your 28th birthday!”
She had a student observer with her and he seemed simply pleased by the fact that he had met someone who was actually helped by her antidepressants.
I am clearly fortunate in many ways.
Anyway, I showed up to the GAD thing and hour and fifteen minutes late, but they didn’t scold me (if they had, it would have cast serious doubts upon their ability to work with anxious people) and they gave me a million forms to fill out, which I still managed to finish before other people there.
An emotionally exhausting day, but a productive one, at least.
Oh yeah, one more thing. She asked me what I did for Perfect Husband, after I described what he does for me. I was like “Uh… sometimes I’ll cook dinner… if I can keep him from chopping vegetables illicitly. And I encourage him to spend money on himself now and then, because if I don’t he won’t.”
She recommended that I consider some Self Esteem CBT as well, since I didn’t seem to notice my own contributions to our relationship. Maaaaybe. Or maybe I just need to start pulling my weight around the house.
It doesn’t help that I’ve gained quite a lot of weight in the last couple of years. That, now aggravated by my growing breasts, has created an urgent need for a new bathing suit. My two current bathing suits are completely inadequate to restrain my bouyant bosom in the water. Last night my nipples kept popping out for a peek. I made a point of pulling up on my suit before surfacing each time, but I may have given those teenage boys wearing goggles a real treat.
This stupid delicate stomach is ruining all my plans of eating amazingly healthily and dropping pounds to become a beaming beacon of health. While I have only thrown up a couple of times, and feel okay most of the time, I can’t handle anything heavy. That means I’m avoiding even the leanest of meats in favour of a small bowl of spaghetti and cheese, or a grilled cheese sandwich. I haven’t touched a burger in I don’t know how long, which is good, but I also haven’t had any healthy meals, either. Pasta, sandwiches, fries.
I’m guzzling juice, which is technically healthy but also full of sugar. I’m also eating tons of fruit, which is full of vitaminy goodness. But I really feel like the simple carbs are unhelpful… except that it’s all I seem to eat, plus the occasional blob of cheese for protein.
I don’t want to eat junk, but when it’s all you feel you can eat…
I’m gaining weight.
And don’t tell me that you’re supposed to gain weight in pregnancy, because I’m only eight weeks along. The Babby is about the size of one of the large raspberries that I drop into the blender when making a smoothie. This is NOT baby weight. This is a food baby.
…My Babby’s gonna be fat.
I went in this morning for bloodwork – you know, the usual – Hcg, rubella titre, HIV (so they know whether or not I can bleed on them in the hospital when I give birth)… and glucose.
Is it just me or is it cruel to make someone in the first trimester fast for 10 whole hours and then suck 33 mL of blood out of them?
That’s right. 33 mL. Now, I realize that this is just a drop in the bucket bloodwise, and that I would have much more taken out of me at, say, a blood donor clinic. But still, when you’re sitting there, feeling all gross and nauseous and low blood sugar, looking at seven massive vacutainers waiting to be filled, it’s daunting.
I felt gross for the rest of the day. It has become very clear to me that my “no morning sickness” luck goes entirely out the window if I go more than a few hours without eating. A snack at night, and breakfast in the morning, and I feel fine. But on weekends, when I sleep in, or days like today when I can’t eat because that’s how the vampires like it… I do NOT feel good.
I have to say that it was a very weird experience, to call my parents and announce to them that I have a sexually transmitted medical condition. It was really awkward. It was even weirder to me for my husband to then call his parents and make a similar announcement to them. I am not accustomed to talking with my in-laws about my insides.
Love my mother’s response. A long, drawn out “Oooh…” in about seven different emotional flavours, from pleasant surprise to concern to horror to doubt to worry and back again. “OH…Ooo!ohh…OHHHOohh?OhhhOh!” Then after a pause that went a couple seconds beyond normal polite reaction time, she managed a “congratulations!”
So overall it went much better than I thought it would.
My mother-in-law just wept with joy, which was exactly what we knew she would do. All it took was my husband saying “So, you weren’t really stuck on having nine grandchildren, were you? Ten seems like a much rounder number.” And off went the water works. She’s such a sweetheart.
In other news, we went to the Canucks game vs the Penguins last night, as part of Perfect Husband’s Christmas present. Going to sports games is always a rather stressful experience for me because the atmosphere is SO very extroverted. They pack in as much flashing lights and loud noises as they possibly can, and every now and then, if they think the crowd is becoming understimulated by an unexciting or disappointing game, they instigate the crowd to make loud roars just to try and keep them happy.
We got stuck in front of a bunch of loud yabbos who felt the need to communicate constantly and at the top of their lungs. As they became more and more intoxicated, their wit levels dropped lower and lower, so that by the second period this fat American fuck was standing in the aisle with his sixth beer hollering “Hell ya, America starts random wars with people! You guys got oil? Our boys will come over and fuck you up! They won’t have a high school education! They’ll just have GUNS!”
By the third period he had slopped beer on my husband and was shouting insults at one of the other guys, who supposedly had an Irish heritage.
“Fuck you, Irishman! You suck. Is Ireland even in NATO?”
Perfect Husband can’t wait to bring The Babby to his/her first hockey game. We better not sit in front of any yabbos. But if we do, at least I’ll have the opportunity to teach my child about the stupidity of other people.