The amazing incidence of the new sofa shaking things up

glitch in the matrix
shocking kids is just enough
for inspiration

We got rid of our couch. And the chair. And the ottoman. They served us well over the many years, and now they will serve others well. Hopefully the others will manage to keep their children and animals from peeing on everything. We were not so lucky.

The new (leather, and easily cleanable) sofa and chair were bought on Saturday. The old couch and chair and ottoman were hauled off on Sunday. And the new stuff was delivered yesterday evening – late. That left us with a full day of one giant, empty room.

With most of the furniture gone, the room seemed massive, and it got vacuumed like four times because it looked so nice and clean. The kids LOVED having the empty room. They ran around and built forts and did somersaults. Incidentally, this is also the room with the gigantic TV. Only, with no furniture to perch on, the kids seemed to completely forget about the television.

In fact, even with the new sofa and chair, they still seem to have forgotten the TV. They've spent all day dragging the kitchen chairs into the room, laboriously draping them with blankets and pillows. They've created forts and hideaways and even a hospital bed where they snuggled and read books and I had to walk briskly into the other room and cry a little bit.

Only once did the wee-er one ask to watch Elmo, but she soon found her new bilibo and sat in it like a tiny Will Smith in MIB taking his exam. Then she put it on her head. Then she spun it. Then she used it as a stepping stool to reach the "hospital bed."

Yesterday and today the kids were kids. Sure there was screaming and fighting and crying and all of that, but it wasn't frantic and was sorted out between the two of them for the most part. They integrated some of their Christmas presents into their forts. (Snap Circuit lights! Toy car seats!)

And we read. I ashamedly admit that I didn't know much about Neil Gaiman's Coraline until we started seeing previews for the movie last week. So I checked the book out from the library. It's kind of intense for the wee-er one, but he loves it.

I spent part of this afternoon lounging on the new sofa, reading to him and the wee-er one, with Ike propped on my knees, and it felt like some kind of storybook "so THIS is how it's supposed to be to stay at home with your kids" moment. Of course, a few minutes later there was running and screaming and I was shouting for everyone to be quiet or quiet would be forced upon them. But for those few minutes things were really nice.

You know what else? It wasn't just the kids. After they went to bed yesterday, my husband and I hung out in the kitchen and the playroom. He folded clothes and I read a book and dozed and nursed, and somehow we had a conversation. It was nice.

Now, I am a big proponent of television. I love it. When I grow up, I want to write TV shows. When you find the right things to watch, television is more than just escapism. It's humor and empathy and fine storytelling and surprising and artistic. It's educational and interesting and worrisome and nostalgic. TV and I are longtime friends. But during these past two nearly-TV free days, this house has become humorous and empathetic and full of stories and surprises. It has become educational and interesting and worrisome and nostalgic.

How about that?

Switch around some furniture, add a few toys to the mix, find a good book, try to stop saying No so much. It sounds simple. If it's so simple, though, why did it take a new couch to figure it out? Why has there been such a gap between the days when the kids are just kids? No homework helps. The wee-er one getting older helps. Me having to sit still and nurse Ike-a-saurus helps – heck me being at home helps!

Whatever the mystical occurrence was that spawned these past two days, I hope it sticks around. Kids being kids are fun to be around.

And maybe that is the most educational, interesting, worrisome and nostalgic thing of all.

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oversharing?

I am on the hospital’s wireless network right now and a shared iTunes library has just shown up in my iTunes.

The title?

"Les Breeding’s library"

Is this some poor dad’s cry for help or just a hilarious coincidence? The abundance of Ace of Base songs and Camus books in his library make me worry for him.

####

The more I think about this, the funnier it gets. I’d like to create some companion iTunes libraries to show up with Les Breeding on the L&D floor.

E. Nuff Gushing III’s library

Maura Contra-Ceptzione’s library

Manny A. Child’s library

Thora Butt’s library

I could do this forever, I think.

Prom Queen

I don’t think I’ve ever posted the official diagnosis of what’s going on with my embattled self. It’s called PROM, or pPROM. Preterm Premature Rupture of Membranes. (AKA: The Thing That Happens To Pregnant Women That Really Fucking Sucks A Whole Lot And That Is Scarier Than Anything You Could Ever Imagine, or TTTHTPWTRFSAWLATISTAYCEI. PROM is way easier to remember, though.)

Whenever the nurses leave the computer monitor on in my room and I can sneak a peek at the other patients (never any names, just room numbers, how dilated they are, who their doctor is and what status their membranes are in) I search in vain for other PROM patients. There are SROMs (spontaneous rupture – that’s at full term, I think) and AROMs (assisted rupture) but never any other PROMs. That’s good for the other pregnant people in the world.

Once there was a BBOW and I had to look it up on google because I didn’t know what it was. Bulging Bag of Waters in case you’re interested. That’s not a good one to have when you’re 18 weeks like she was. Though at a different time a nurse told me a great story about a woman who had BBOW at 19 weeks, was checked into the hospital and basically hung upside down like a bat for ELEVEN WEEKS until her baby was born perfectly healthy. Apparently, this BBOW lady had some gigantor boobs that practically smothered her the entire time she was upside down. So, yeah, at least my boobs aren’t trying to suffocate me through all of this.

I was just sitting here wondering, other than being killed by boobs, what other situation would be yucky enough to make me happy to be in my situation. Being forced to run a marathon in China would qualify, I think. But more aptly, I started wondering which was worse, this PROM or my high school prom.

PROM – minute-by-minute life and death uncertainty
prom – minute-by-minute boy catastrophes

PROM – gigantic blood-type cross and screen bracelet strapped on wrist
prom – gigantic perfume-sprayed white flower strapped on wrist

PROM – stuck in bed with a view of a rooftop pipe thing
prom – stuck in Mazda with a view of the driver’s hash pipe thing

PROM – encouraged to  dull my senses with sleeping pills and screechy uterine monitoring devices
prom – encouraged to dull my senses with pot and screechy Mariah Carey slow dances

PROM – healthcare costs astronomical
prom – hair care costs astronomical

PROM – unpredictable gushing of various body fluids
prom – unpredictable gushing of various body fluids

PROM – gown is air-conditioned in the back
prom – gown was tight and hot

As you can see, it’s really a toss up. I’m going to have to go with PROM for being shittier. Though at least now I can wear comfortable clothes and I don’t have to fuss with a strapless push up bra.

27 weeks 3 days. That’s where we are today. Sunday night was another "oh shit, is it time?" night, with contractions 3-6 minutes apart for hours and hours. But we made it through.

Even a Mazda and a hash pipe couldn’t make this chaos more insane.

tick tock tick tock

Today is my three week "anniversary" of being in the hospital. At $1,000 a day (that’s the low estimate) just think of what I could have been doing instead.

But, really, who needs the Four Seasons on Maui when it comes to brewing up a little baby for three more weeks than anyone expected. My view might not be great, the food might be fairly tragic, my mood may often be even worse, but this is the place for me.

As many sleeping pills as you want (equally as many stool softeners, if you’re into that), some opiates for good measure on the really bad days (which, by the way, SUCK. Fuck that opiate noise), and some exciting heart-racing tocolytics to keep the contractions at bay… it’s a pharmaceutical lollapalooza. Though, admittedly, I decline pretty much everything. What would happen if I took an Ambien and then sleepwalked out of my room and drove around town and tried to make out with strangers? The commercials warn of these things, you know. Mostly, though, I hate the Ambien hangover.

There are always friendly people peeking into my underpants, and asking about my kids (sometimes at the same time!). The TV works. There’s an OT lady intent on making me paint a ceiling tile. And there is constant hammering and drilling because the L&D floor is under construction. What’s not to love, really?

Morgan, Laura, Laura II, Summer, LaRhonda, Melissa, Kristin, Katherine, Christine, Mary Lou, Bertha, Jennifer, Becky, Julie, Stephanie, Jenny (the best person to give shots ever) and many, many more who’s names I can’t remember. These have all been my nurses, and they’ve all been very nice. There was the one exception of Super Chatty Nurse telling me all about her dog’s strangulated testicle and her own loss of a 20-something week twin, and another exception of Nurse Who Made Me Pee In A Bedpan Because She Was Freaking Out, but really, they’ve all been nice.

And it’s nice to know that when things start spiraling into OH SHIT, they are here to help. It’s also fun to talk to them about their kickball team. A nice distraction when you’re getting 6 terb shots.

Yesterday was not a great day for me emotionally. The wee-er one has entered the "why" stage and she said "Mommy come?" when it was time for her to leave. I said I couldn’t and then the "whys" started. It made me very, very sad. She will grab my arm and say "Mommy come now?" and it is all I can do to keep it together. I have come up with a story about magnets in my butt that won’t let me leave the bed. Kind of ridiculous, but it makes her laugh when I pretend to struggle against them.

Of all the struggles, why is the pretend one the hardest?

me like food

After 18 days in the hospital (18!), I learned something very important today. I don’t have to eat that food they bring me. I can actually order anything from the cafeteria and they will bring that to me instead!

For lunch I have had a grilled cheese, a half a BBQ pork sandwich, vegetable soup, potato wedges, and a brownie (with another brownie I am saving for later). It is still not the best food I’ve ever had, but it is also not meat crepes (thanks, Claire, for that disgusting, but apt description).

They are also bringing me snacks now. Cheese and crackers or PB and crackers for 10 am and 2pm, and a sandwich and fruit for 10pm. Again, it’s kind of gross (sweaty american cheese slice, anyone? Moldy strawberries?) But I give them credit for knowing that grouchy hospitalized pregnant ladies get fucking hungry.

Also props to my friends who bring by non-moldy fruit and non-sweaty cheese and candy and trail mix and all sorts of yummy things.

Food. Good. Hospital. Sucks. Expectations. Lowered. Need. Salt.

Tired.

Just wondering

If I were to walk down the hallway and pass by the nurses station, holding my wallet and wearing only my t-shirt and underpants (my daily uniform), what would they do?

The plan would be to make it downstairs, hail a cab, ride to the airport, buy the first ticket on the earliest flight to Hawaii and then run away away away.

How far could I get with no pants and $11? I would at least settle for a margarita in the airport bar. Or even a bloody mary. Somehow that one seems more appropriate.