Ten Things on a Tuesday Afternoon


  1. I am sick for the second time in two weeks, and I am pissed about it. After we got home from vacation, I powered through a day of intensive training prep and then a day long training, and then promptly woke up sick on Saturday morning. I spent the entire weekend in my pajamas coughing but went to work on Monday because I had too much catching up to do. The cough faded to just a tickle by the end of the week and that was that. This past Friday I started getting a drippy nose that devolved into a full blown cold on Saturday. In between, Ansel had a miserable snotty nose and cough. L has, for the time being, seemed to escape the cycle. Toddlers, man. Rhinovirus, man.
  2. I really do not do well with financial stress. I’m just not good at money stuff, and my method of coping is definitely the head-in-the-sand variety. I’m also horribly impatient when it comes to these conversations and processes. The mortgage acquisition process will be the third in my adult life – I am NOT new to the nuances and complexities. Even still, I somehow had this idea in my head that we would submit our application for pre-approval and then they’d send us back a letter that said, “You’re approved for ___________” and then we’d be on our merry way until we had to dive into the actual process. This is, after all, kind of how it goes when you go to the bank for a car loan, right? Or, maybe that’s true just in my flawed memory and isn’t actually the case at all, for cars or mortgages or anything else? In any case, I have been obsessively checking my e-mail since submitting our pre-approval app, and getting . . .well . . .nothing.
  3. Until today at noon, when the broker sent me an e-mail asking me to call her to answer some questions. I (wrongly) assumed these would be few and brief, so I called from my desk. I work in a cubicle that is hardly even a cubicle. The walls are 4 ft tall, tops. There is less than 0 privacy. Aside from sharing some financial information that I probably wouldn’t just volunteer to my colleagues (like my rent payment or how much I want my mortgage payment to be . . .) I also started crying when I was talking about the unknown collections accounts that have botched my scores. Because I am a fucking crier. A cry-baby. I cry when things are overwhelming, or hard, or frustrating, or make me angry. My feelings come out mostly through my face. The good thing? My colleagues were very understanding (I work with nurses who do social work, basically, so . . .like maybe the nicest people on earth?) and checked in with me and I don’t think judged me too much? Even still. I hate crying at work. Ugh.
  4. My credit has definitely taken a hit from the collections accounts. It’s not terrible, but it’s not great. L’s credit IS great. The problem? Because L isn’t working right now but also has a lot of student loans (that we don’t make payments on because she isn’t earning anything right now), it screws up our debt-to-income ratio when we apply together. By ‘screws up’ I mean, we probably wouldn’t get a loan. So, I’m on my own applying for the loan, although we’ll both be on the title. The good thing is that paying off those damn collections accounts should mean my credit will improve in the next few months and it’s very likely we wouldn’t close on a loan until June anyway. For now, we are moving forward with getting a pre-approval based on my less-than –awesome credit and maybe things will look a little better come closing. This is not what I wanted, but it is what it is.
  5. L started taking zo.fran this week, after acupuncture failed to produce lasting results. The Zofran has not eliminated the nausea, but it seems to have improved it enough for her to not be so depressed and checked out. And that was really the issue – that she felt so worn down emotionally by being sick for so long. I really hope that L gets a relatively easy labor and delivery since she’s spent the last 17 weeks feeling miserable. But I also know there’s no rhyme or reason to how these things work. Still, I’m putting in an order.
  6. Longtime readers may recall that no one, including US, knew what Ansel’s name would be before he was born. We had a short list that we planned to choose from (with L getting final say, as per the agreement reached prior to the pregnancy process – where the person without the fetus inside them gets final naming choice) but we really didn’t have any idea what his name would be until about 5 minutes before we went back for the c-section, when we looked at each other and just knew that his name was Ansel Jack. This was surprising to both of us because one of the names on our list was a pretty classically Irish name and Ansel was born on, you know, Patrick’s Day. But it just wasn’t his name. We have been talking about what Tiny’s name will be for the last while, assuming we’d probably go with a very similar process. But it seems that we may have made a bit of a decision. Not enough that I’m going to tell anyone (not even you all, sorry friends) but enough that we said it outloud and even had Ansel say it. The great irony? The name I think we’ve decided on is that Irish name that was not Ansel’s name. But . . .we’ll see.
  7. My skin is not doing well in Seattle and I don’t understand why. I’ve always had more sensitive skin – prone to contact dermatitis or other problems, but mostly things have been in check throughout my life without any ongoing issues. In October, I developed a patch of what I initially though was eczema and which I treated as such (ie: with high moisture content lotion) to no avail. Then a friend said it might be ringworm, so I used an anti-fungal, which also didn’t work. Finally, I made an appointment to talk to a dermatologist about that and a few other things, and lo and behold – it WAS eczema, it just wasn’t going away because it actually takes more than Aveeno to deal with eczema. Now I wash with a ‘bleach bath’ cleanser and use steroid creams on the (now multiple) areas of eczema I get, which seems to clear them briefly before they come back. Even worse, I’ve now started getting some sort of eczema/dermatitis on my GD I am going in for allergy testing next week but am also starting to realize that I may have to do some additional things, like look at auto-immune eating type plans. I generally don’t do “diet” things unless I have to because I have a lot of issues/trauma/mental health shit around changing the way I eat. But, damn. So, I guess if you have ideas about that, particularly if you have strategies that won’t feel triggering, I’m open. (i.e.: immediately eliminate ALL THE FOODS will not be helpful for me!)
  8. Ansel Highlights: He LOVES coloring so hard – both with ‘wonder magic’ markers (the kind that only color on special paper in special expensive coloring books) and with regular old washable crayons on giant blank paper pads and He takes the job very seriously. He’s still probably on the ‘slower’ end of verbal stuff but is saying a lot more short word sentences and is now starting to say words we didn’t even realize he’d heard or knew, so that seems promising? His 2 year appointment is on Friday and I’m hoping to get some clarity about whether we need to get him evaluated or if he’s just on the back end of the curve on this one and will catch up at some point soon.
  9. Toddler sleep: So many of my blogging compatriots are in the throes of baby sleep hell, so I wanted to let you know that it both does get better and also doesn’t (light at the end of the tunnel/misery loves company – pick your poison?) Since we used the “Happy Sleeper” method to ‘sleep train’ Ansel at 14ish months, things have been pretty rad. 97% of the time, he goes down easily (we do his routine, put him in his crib, say goodnight and he closes his eyes) and sleeps through the night. Aside from when he’s sick and the occasional time when he’s thrown off his game (see: Christmas) he sleeps very well. Recently, though, this has started to not happen as consistently. He’s been harder to put to sleep (demanding to be sung to “one mo’? one mo’?” over and over, needing his belly rubbed endlessly) and has had nights when he wakes up and basically cannot be consoled. On Friday, the power went out at about 10:30pm, which turned off his white noise machine. This was bad. The worst threat was that, when turned off abruptly like this and then turned back on, the machine switches from white noise to heart beat which fucking terrifies So, rather than risk that, I snuck into his room after the power outage to grab the machine and unplug it. I wanted it to be a James Bond 007 execution. It was probably more akin to Austin Powers/a baby elephant execution and he woke up. Given circumstances, I decided to nurse him to sleep. This did not work. He continued to wake up hourly and refuse to go back to sleep. We finally put him in bed, figuring it was the white noise machine. But Saturday, when the power was back and his normal static comfort restored, he still did it. We doubled down and revisited the Happy Sleeper principles, which meant at one point sitting on the couch being convinced that the devil himself was inside my sweet boy because OMG I have never heard that sound before in my life. We have recommitted to the process and found that, perhaps not shockingly, if I am not involved, it tends to go better. (this is because I am the pushover mom who also has the magic milk. Whoops) However, this is going to have to change, since in a few short months, L will be busy with Tiny. Basically, you guys, nothing is forever. Not the good luscious sleep, not the shitty awful Rosemary’s baby screaming. None of it. So just do what you can to survive. Its every mom (or dad) for themselves.
  10. You guys, I hate money and really maybe (not) secretly wish we lived in a communist utopia where we all just had our needs taken care of and there wasn’t all this bullshit about your value as a human being connected to your earning potential and your buying power and the shit you have. Ugh.

Party Hard / Finding Home

Another exhausting weekend.

We celebrated Ansel’s birthday with a joint party at a friends house. These friends, two of four we had when we moved, have a daughter who is just 3 days younger than Ansel, and we’ve been spending a lot of time with them lately, so it made sense to share the expense and energy of throwing a party. Plus, you know, we don’t really know enough people to justify having a party of our own so . . .sharing guest lists was a nice idea, too.

Initially, we talked about renting a party room at a toddler gym/jumpy place/whatever and investigated that idea. It was . . .ok, but felt like a lot of money to have a little corner of a place carved out where our friends without kids would be bored and the parents of kids would be chasing after their toddlers to make sure they were safe.

Our friends live in a beautiful, super open, high ceilinged town home and called us one night a few weeks back. “We can totally fit a bouncy castle in our living room. do you want to do it?!” An irresistable option, if you ask me! So, we paid less to rent a small bouncy castle/ball pit to put in their living room, bought pizza and veggie trays from Costco, and all got to hang out together in the comfort of their house. More comfortable for adults, for kids, for parents and non-parents. It was fantastic!


Ansel’s birthday stash grew via mail and party contributions, and he ended up really rounding out his vehicle collection: a recycling truck, rescue boat + helicopter set, sea plane and trolley (a la Daniel Tiger or “Dan” as Ansel calls him), a car garage/filling station,  plus scoring some coloring books, stickers, sundry art supplies, a care bear costume, puzzles and a plush bowling set.

In the last few days, he’s really been into pulling us into playing and directing what we do, telling us how we play with the Daniel Tiger figures or drive the plane or whatever. It’s cute and, you know, a little bossy. But really, I love it and it feels like another developmental shift.

Yesterday, L and I took the day off (A went to the babysitter) to get our taxes done, both because it’s necessary and to be prepped to apply for a mortgage. Today, I reached out to a few lenders to begin the application process. I also checked my credit – something I haven’t really done since we moved and paid off all of our debt – and discovered that an account from the hospital where I delivered Ansel had been sent to collections without anyone notifying me or trying to get payment. It’s about $3k, and I was under the impression that the payment plan I’d set up two years ago covered this bill as well. But, you know how hospitals do – they have a million different bills coming from the facility, the physician, the anesthsiologist . . .so, this bill was from something else that didn’t get rolled into the others and also, somehow, no one tried to get my money before sending it to collections, who also didn’t bother contacting me.

I asked my mom if we would pay the debt off via her credit card and then make the monthly payments to her, rather than pay down the collection agency, which would result in the account staying put during the mortgage application process. The whole thing makes me so angry, since we’ve worked really hard to fix our credit and this totally fell through the cracks. Ugh. Thankfully, this is the only derogatory mark on my credit report and it only shows up on one of the two major credit reports – the other is excellent and hopefully, that counts for something.

We’ve been talking more and more about where we want to live . . .of course, we’ve been looking at real estate in the area since we moved, but as time has crept forward, we’ve had to be more realistic and thoughtful. Based on what I think we will qualify for (looking at my income, how much we want to pay in mortgage, our monthly expenses) we can afford, well, almost nothing in Seattle. I’m not really exaggerating. I am not sure there is a house in the city limits within our budget. There are probably apartments, and maybe townhomes – though, I wouldn’t bet on it. As you travel south, more and more pops up. Just south of the city, we could get a small fixer (for our max budget; no room for a reno budget even if we wanted to do it ourselves), in the city where I work, things start improving.

But you get to Tacoma, and all of a sudden there are renovated craftsman homes, houses that have newer roofs and plumbing, that have most of our list already. And there aren’t just a few. There are a LOT.

When we moved here, we talked about Tacoma. We visited and I liked it, but then we thought . . .do we want to invest time and energy into building a community here in Seattle just to move again? That’s still true, of course, but maybe feels less compelling. And lots of people we know think Tacoma is a good idea; it’s hard not to when you look at the facts.

So, we’ll see. When the broker calls back we might know more about what we can afford, and then we can talk to a realtor and start really digging in to the process. We have four months until our rental lease is up, 5ish until Tiny shows up . . .Clock is ticking.


Two years ago today after a 5 day induction process that included approximately 12 rounds of cytotec, many varying IV levels of pitocin, a foley bulb, two manual manipulations to turn my baby from sunny side up to face down, 10 midwife/nurse shift changes, countless bland hospital meals, an entire season of “The Good Wife” on hulu, and so many tears . . . the fetus known as Seafoam was born via cesarean section at 6:20pm MST. He didn’t breathe for the first 5 minutes of his life outside my uterus, then coughed and flung his eyes open and started inhaling and exhaling, though he did not cry. Ansel,  german for God’s protection, was born into the world on the feast day of St. Patrick.


It feels like a lifetime ago. But also, I can still feel the aching shivers in my body, tied to an OR table, and I still leak tears thinking of those first moments when I couldn’t see him and had to trust that the world outside my body would care for him now. I met him for only a second before his Mommy accompanied him to the NICU for a brief stay. Those moments echo through his first few years: he is still fiercely calm in the face of danger, wide eyed and watching, and my heart is still not quite as strong as he is.


At two, Ansel is fearless and deeply loving. He is curious and insightful, deeply empathic and intuitive. He is very funny, very laid back, so brim full of joy. I am so excited to see how he lives into himself, how these traits that have defined him since his first moments will continue to express themselves, what else we will learn about him, how he will become himself.


At two, Ansel loves trains and other things that move (buses, cars, planes, but mostly trains.) He loves pretending – with food in his kitchen, that anything tangible can fly, that his new baby doll can also build with magnatiles. He would only eat ruffles potato chips and ketchup, if we let him. But he also still loves hummus, just like he did a year ago. He likes dancing by spinning in circles, and prefers to do so in a tutu or a skirt, to early disco or R&B classics. He loves his “mom-I” and mama and often just wants to hold our hands or know we are there next to him. He snuggles and gives kisses and hugs, though they are coming less frequently as he wanders farther afield from us. He is content to play by himself, but also looks wide eyed at bigger kids and (mostly happily) plays next to his peers, O & K.


At two, Ansel continues to nurse before bed, when he wakes up, and often other times as well. In the last two weeks I have noticed a drop off in the length of time overall, but he continues to seek it out and ask to nurse fairly frequently. I continue to feel positive about it 85% of the time, which continues to meet my threshold for continuing and allowing him to self-wean. Two years ago my biggest fear was that I would not be able to breastfeed him. While it feels a bit silly now (and I feel a strange amount of shame for how deeply insistent I was about him only having breastmilk), I can also remember the anxiety and fear and struggle very, very well. And I believe there has to be a better way to support new parents who want to breastfeed, as well as those who don’t or can’t. 11781743_10153065349886864_4503469072448738285_n

At two, Ansel is both everything I longed for in the many years it took to make him a reality, and also nothing like I could have ever dreamed. Parenting is both so much simpler, and also so much more intensely difficult. At two, I am no better than I was although I sometimes get fooled into thinking I might be. I live in fear and anxiety of the day he climbs out of his crib, or when he starts pretending to shoot guns, or when he asks about homelessness or when we have to tell him someone died. At two, I am confident about how to get him to sleep and bathe him, but I feel overwhelmed some days with how to live into my parenting values when time and energy is in short supply, and it feels like the whole world is trying to undo my best laid plans.

Today, Ansel is two years old, and I am two years a mama. I am grateful every day for the gift my son gave me: making me a mother.

Magic Toddlers at the Happiest Place on Earth

OMG, we went to Disneyworld.

In many ways, I continue to think we are nuts. I mean, we flew from the northwestern corner of the country to the southeastern corner, which means we spent two solid days on a plane. And I am convinced that one circle of hell is probably being trapped on an airplane with a toddler and no extra seat indefinitely. We also took a not quite two year old to one of the most crowded and overstimulating places on the planet. And we won’t mention how, if I start to dig at all, my politics and the great Disney machine come to blows pretty quickly.

But also, OMG it was SO MUCH FUN! Like, I’m not even kidding or pulling out moments of awesome in the midst of a total shit show. Like, there were issues, sure but also? SO MUCH FUN.

Getting there was NOT. Either due to his sensi pisces intuition or because we put the energy in the air, Ansel slept like shit the night before. We already had to get up at 4am to get to the airport for our flight, but he woke up every hour and a half up until then. At the airport, Ansel dumped his apple juice on my head when I put him on my shoulders to distract him from running around before we boarded the first flight. He napped from Seattle to Chicago for an hour or so, but then had to be contained for the rest of the flight and our third person seat mate spent a LOT of time staring at me while I nursed him in some attempt to keep him calm. We resorted to oreos at the end and it was rough. We had just enough time to eat lunch before we got on another plane. I was hopeful that Ansel would sleep most of this (very long) flight but . . .no. He didn’t. AT ALL. It was a mess and the free in-flight TV had nothing of any interest to him and there’s only so long a toddler can color with his Crayola Wonder Magic markers. Somehow, we made it to Orlando and collected our bags. But then we had to wait for our Uber to the hotel, and Orlando only has the super fancy ride sharing that is actually not ride sharing it’s just towncar companies using ride sharing platforms so we actually had to wait sooooo long and Ansel was done. He lost his shit like he has never lost it before. Just sobbing and screaming and pointing to the exit the entire, grueling 20 minute wait. And then L and I got snippy with each other because of course we did, we are all exhausted and our child is losing his shit, so why not be a little mean to each other?

We finally made it into the ride where Ansel promptly fell asleep. We got to our lovely 2 room suite hotel room where L’s mom was already waiting and checked in. We ate some pizza and I drank a rum punch and the bathtub in the room was the size of a spa and Ansel loved playing in the huge pool of bubbles. And rightness was restored to the world.

We spent the first day of vacation hanging out at the pool and taking a walk to the grocery for the things we inevitably left behind, as well as snacks and some discount Minnie mouse ears for the kid (because he saw them and his eyes widened and then he wouldn’t let them go!) It was a little too cold for it to be the perfect pool day (and the pool wasn’t quite heated as well as it should have been) but it was still a vast improvement over working and rain and screaming toddlers.

The next day we went to Epcot. Highlights: Ansel literally swooning over Minnie Mouse (she kissed his cheek and he held it tenderly while staring in awe at her) and having memories of early 1980’s Figment the Dragon come racing back. I mean, there is a lot of cool new stuff but also, things haven’t changed that much in 30 (!!) years. We transferred from the sweet two room hotel to the Disney resort (budget!) which wasn’t as nice but gave us a discount at the parks.

Next up was day #1 in the Magic Kingdom. We started the day off with a giant lollipop, rode the Jungle Cruise (OMG, this is only the starting point for a post I want to write about the awful casual racism of Disneyworld. UGH.) and the magic carpets and dumbo and the teacups and It’s a Small World and the carousel and some other stuff I can’t recall. Ansel loved it so much. He didn’t tantrum or lose his shit until just moments before we were leaving around 5pm, which is especially impressive since the only nap he got was a 30 minute snooze in my arms while we ate dinner at the Lady and the Tramp Italian place. His joy was incredible.

Day 4 was spent at Hollywood studios which was a big meh. Probably would be more interesting for folks who are super into Star Wars or movies in general. We did go to a Character Brunch with the Disney jr. characters and Ansel LOVED Doc McStuffins, so that was fun. L’s mom and I rode the Tower of Terror which was also a good time (questionable whether it was a 45 minute wait’s worth of good time but, that’s how these things go) and the Toy Story ride gets a huge thumbs up but probably not our family’s choice next time.

Last day we went back to the Magic Kingdom, this time with a better game plan. Having worked out a better strategy for using the “fast passes” and planning to catch things like the parade made the day even more successful. We also managed to get Ansel to snag a nap in the carrier while we did some low key rides which I think helped immensely. Again, he lost it a little right around dinner time, but it was a much smaller and more reasonable tantrum and honestly, we were all pretty done at that point.

Travel home was significantly easier. We caught the bus from the Disney resort to the airport, Ansel slept basically the entire first flight from Florida to Denver, and on the last leg home we had a seat between us which gave him some additional room to hang out and do his thing. Which isn’t to say I wasn’t very excited to see my own bed in my own house.

Sleep was mediocre for the whole of the trip. Ansel slept about 50% of most nights in a pack and play (in our room at the first hotel, in a cove by the bathroom in the second hotel) and about 50% in bed with me. I nursed him to sleep, since our attempts at just putting him down failed on night #1 and we weren’t willing to keep trying. This was effective but not ideal, since I sleep like shit with Ansel at home, but especially when I’m in a crappy hotel bed.

Overall – two thumbs up. Highly recommend. Maybe would be harder without a magic toddler? Maybe always get the two room suite hotel even if it’s more expensive? Maybe we won’t do this again until Ansel and Tiny are much older?

The Road to Hell

Once again, I’ve let not only time but CONTENT lapse here and am faced with a lot of stuff I want to write. I’ve decided to put the more fluffy stuff (ie: our recent Disney vacation) in a separate post because it’s a clear demarcation and also so many pictures.

The vacation has been bookended with harder stuff, which means it was both much needed and, as is often the case, so dearly fleeting.

The week before we left on vaca, L was in Denver for a professional conference and I was on my own parenting. It was both difficult and shockingly not so hard. Which is to say, nothing really happened that made it all that hard (we were both healthy, Ansel was on average toddler mode, not nuclear toddler mode; I was able to take some time off work) AND I do not want to do it again soon. I know that there is a certain amount of difficulty in this situation because it’s not my norm but I really don’t know how single parents keep their heads above water. It’s so exhausting. And not even just tired-exhausting, but emotionally and socially and all other kinds of ways.

I did get to see a friend from PDX who was up with her kiddo for the weekend, and we went to the free open toddler gym at the local rec center (OMG the BEST!), and we went to the children’s museum and did other things that usually a work-away-from-home parent doesn’t get to do, and the worst ‘thing’ that happened was when Ansel pooped in the bathtub and I missed it for a few minutes because of the huge amount of bubbles in the tub (thanks, Mr. Bubble) although Ansel did tell me about the poop so that’s a good thing, right?

But after a trimester of feeling the burn, it was a LOT to also solo parent for 7 days and 6 nights. I was definitely at the end of my metaphorical rope when L got home, and very much looking forward to vacation.

Vacation came and went and, because it was to Disneyworld and because it was with a toddler it was not relaxing (fun, rejuvenating, exciting, joy-filled. NOT RELAXING.) That plus cross-country air travel (sure, we’ll fly from one corner of the contiguous United States to another, no big!) landed me with a chest cold that has basically knocked me on my ass for three days. In between vacation and illness, I did facilitate a giant training – and well – so, that’s something.

The thing I really want to talk about though, are the casual, well meaning micro aggressions of homophobia that I am feeling right now. Pronounced, undoubtedly, by my newfound role as non gestational parent.


  • Before we abdicated to the Disney owned hotel, we had two lovely nights in a less expensive and very lovely two room suite at the Florid.ays hotel (don’t want ads, do want to talk up this awesome resort) We arrived around 5pm on Thursday night, after L’s mom had already arrived and checked in earlier in the day. The suite had two bathrooms, a kitchen, a dining area and lounge area, and two bedrooms – one with two double beds, the other with a king size bed. L’s mom (who, BTW is awesome and I love and adore her deeply) had put her stuff in the king size bedroom and given us the 2 double bed room. When we chuckled a little, she said “well, this way we can each have our own bed!” We mentioned that, you know, we usually sleep in the same bed and she mumbled something about moving if we wanted her too. Ultimately, it wasn’t that big a deal and I didn’t feel like it was my role to make that decision. And, you know, it ISN’T a big deal. But . . .would she have made the same assumption/choice for her son and his wife? I’m guessing not. She is a lovely, thoughtful, kind woman who absolutely treats me wonderfully and sees Ansel entirely as her grandson. But, I do think there is a level of disconnect where our relationship is not seen in the same way. A tiny bit awkward, a tiny bit hurtful.
  • At the training last week, I disclosed to a teacher I work with (who was attending the training) that L was pregnant. I did this mostly because the teacher is pregnant (she told me last time I guest taught in her class in January) and I inquired about how she was feeling. And then I did that thing to try and relate and told her L was pregnant and struggling with first tri nausea. This, unfortunately, opened the door to all kinds of comments and questions. The first was to ask if we were able to use the same donor (I lied and said we did because that whole process is still tender and so long and I don’t want to get into it) because, of course, that’s the number one thing people care about off the bat. Then she joined me at lunch (side note: when I spend all day training, I long for my ½ hour lunch to get some tiny introvert time so I actually don’t want to talk to anyone) and we ended up in this incredibly awkward conversation where she kept insisting that I will “probably not bond the same way” with this baby because it didn’t “grow inside of me” like Ansel did. And I kept trying to steer her towards more neutral and less offensive territory by saying things like, “I am also interested to see how the experiences will differ and be the same.” But she just.kept.going.there. It was exhausting. I have to maintain a relationship with her, so I couldn’t just say, “Um, you’re being really fucking offensive and insinuating that biology or gestation is the only way to have a real, legitimate relationship with a child which is offensive on so, so many levels (like, adoption and step children and on and on) so can you please STFU?” without running the risk of it impacting my job. But also, I was trapped there, eating my damn sandwich, trying to wedge my way out so I could pee and prep the next part of the training. And she TOTALLY meant well. She totally though it was ‘neat’ that I gave birth to Ansel and L is giving birth to Tiny, but she absolutely was reinforcing all these fucked ideas about what parenting is.
  • Today as I sat at my desk, sick and light headed and exhausted, a lady who I’d gone through new employee orientation with (who I really like, very bubbly and effusive and fun) stopped by and saw my pictures, which include the photo of the three of us from our baby announcement. “Big brother!” she exclaimed and gave me a look. “Yeah, my partner is pregnant!” She was very nice and congratulatory, but it quickly devolved into another weird conversation about how maybe she should have had a wife because the “baby maker” at her house was nothing but trouble and she really just needed a clone of herself. I didn’t bring up the fact that L is not my ‘sister wife’ she is, you know MY ACTUAL WIFE and we are married because we are in love, not to improve our household economy. And then she said the thing about how now we’d both be moms, how exciting! And I gritted my teeth and smiled. Then she congratulated me again and walked away.

It’s weird, because there are moments in all of these experiences of kindness, of being seen. These are not instances where someone is being shitty. And maybe it’s a language issue, or people just not being thoughtful and careful. I’m ultimately glad that I have to deal with this kind of homophobia/heterosexism and not the kind that is abject hatred and total invisibility. But, it’s exhausting, y’all. This is the kind of stuff that really wears people down. I know that people are curious and excited and just don’t know how to express it well. So, that’s why we need a lot of straight folks out there talking to their friends about how to be good, curious, supportive people with queer families so that those of us who are living it don’t have to use our damn lunch breaks feeling exhausted trying to defend our lives, politely.