1. This morning I got injected with barium contrast dye and had pictures taken of my brain. It took the tech 4 tries, a bunch of bruises and calling a second person in before the IV made it into my arm, which was absolutely the worst part of the experience. Results should be sent to my neurologist by tomorrow, and hopefully I’ll hear back too. The vascular ultrasound isn’t until June 2, so there is still waiting to be done. But this test looks for aneurysms which is not the cause of this fainting business but is a constant fear in my life so at least that will be out of the way.
2. Last night Ansel woke up wet – he’d leaked through his diaper, something that’s been happening more regularly now, unfortunately – which necessitated a change of clothes and bedding, which then made returning him to sleep a much harder task. It took some time and L got the last pass, after another devil-inside-him screaming fit, and found him . . .out of his crib. He was pointing to his head saying, ‘hea’, hea'” so we were a little nervous to put him back down, but did, and he went to sleep very quickly. We hoped that maybe the head bump with the escape would keep him from trying again. Alas, this morning when I went in to retrieve him following his “mama, are you?” I found him waiting for me at the door. So, we decided since he’s 26 months to just got for the toddler bed. Of course we had managed to purchase the full bed rails for our convertible crib but not the toddler rails, so this necessitated a trip to Buy Buy Baby for a toddler rail. He took a decent nap this afternoon in the new ‘big kid bed’ but he fell asleep in the car and was transferred, so it wasn’t actually an accurate assessment. We just put him down and . . .all things crossed . . .it seems to have gone well. We stuck to the routine and it took two extra rounds of “You Are My Sushine” but otherwise he seems to have handled it quite well. Say prayers to whatever you pray to that this continues.
3. Ansel is both talking and understanding things at an astonishing rate right now. He basically repeats everything we say (guess it’s time to start limiting the fuck words, huh?) and has picked up on things I wasn’t even aware we said a lot. Like . . .tonight on the way to his bed we said, “You get to sleep in your new bed!” and he replied, “Oh boy!” Which, I mean, he’s obviously heard before but OMG are you kidding me?! Yesterday L told him to come tell me he needed a new diaper and he walked into the bathroom and said, “I ‘tinky” . . .He regularly asks Hilda (“his” bulldog) if she wants to play, has started doing a lot more pretend play with his animals or cars or other things interacting. He also is clearly paying more attention when we are talking to each other and we have to be much more careful about talking about things – like discussing dinner plans and mentioning pizza and then not being able to keep him from demanding pizza for the next 20 minutes.
4. A co-worker of mine connected me to a friend of hers who lives in Tacoma so we could get a bit more of an inside scoop on neighborhoods. We’ve been e-mailing with them for a while but drove down this past Sunday to meet up. It was SO GREAT. For one, I feel really confident that we are going to be friends with these folks. We connected really easily, they seem to have similar culture and politics as us, and even though they don’t have kids, they were super understanding about our attention being split and so engaged with Ansel. I also feel way more excited about moving to the City of Destiny. They gave us some ideas about neighborhoods and recommended some Tacoma specific realtors who are also doing a lot of work to boost the city in a lot of other ways. We decided to fire the realtor we’d met with earlier, in part because she kept really kind of pushing us to the suburbs and not seeming to understand that ‘safe’ for a queer family is likely very different from ‘safe’ for a hetero couple. It just wasn’t a great fit. But, we are meeting up with a different realtor this weekend, and I feel way more comfortable with her. We also toured some open houses and got a better sense of some neighborhoods we’d like to look in. As a top off to the otherwise lovely Sunday, we definitely got homophobic-shunned by the listing agent at the last open house who basically did nothing to welcome us but was happy to show the cute male-female couple who came in next around.
5. Tiny is moving like crazy, according to L, and I’m like dying to be able to feel him from this side. Being the not-pregnant one is hard in a lot of ways that I could have guessed but didn’t fully appreciate. Not being able to connect to the baby before he’s born is one of them. I just feel checked out, but I’m not sure how to be more connected. I can almost understand why some dudes get overwhelmed and weird and freak out when babies are born because they just didn’t understand what was going on . . .almost. Do any of you more experienced NGPs have ideas about this? I think I feel especially frustrated because I sort of know what I’m not experiencing, so I feel sad. Of course, as Tiny (and L) grow, I’m at least more regularly reminded of our impending second child but I want to be able to connect to this kid.
6. Ansel LOVES Hilda, our little bulldog. He has such a clear preference for her, which we started noticing a little when he was about 10 months old and would laugh uproariously at her when she chased a ball. Lately, it’s become so intense and adorable. The thing you have to know, which makes this cuter (IMO), is that Hilda is pretty grumpy. I mean, she’s SO CUTE and can be incredibly sweet in many circumstances, but she’s definitely the grumpiest of our dogs. Cletus, the big old bully, will lay on the couch with his eyes closed and let Ansel sit on him; Eliot the spaniel is a nervous but incredibly docile dog. Hilda has been nicknamed Hildabeast and Killda but also . . .Honey-Bunny. She’s salty-sweet. But Ansel can only see her goodness. And she, for her part, tolerates most of his advances and excuses herself to her bed when she needs a time-out. Every morning, Ansel asks, “Where DaDa?” (the irony that he calls the dog Da-Da is not lost on us), asks her to come outside with him, gives her play food to eat, puts trains in front of her, tells us to pet her, kisses her, and generally dotes on her. Tonight, he sat next to her and hugged her, then grabbed me by the hand and brought me over to the couch, “Picture mama” and then posed with her. KILL ME NOW they are the cutest. (PS- why does my kid look, like, GROWN in this picture?!)
7. Ok, so I have a lot of feelings about police, now because of all the incredibly heartbreaking instances of cops shooting black people unprovoked and then, you know, not being fucking held accountable, but also because of my own personal experiences. I’m also really aware that my white boy child is likely to receive mostly messages of police being friendly and helpful and there to protect, which will likely be true for him because: white boy. I am noticing more and more how much for very small children that is centered on cops being good (in a way that isn not true for, say, the military in this age range) – police in books, police cars in story lines, police cars as toys, etc etc. Lately, I have found myself doing things like changing “police officer” to “nice person” in Harold and the Purple Crayon, or referring to a police-type character as a “helper” or not talking about police cars (only fire engines, cause who can’t get behind fire safety?) because I don’t want to create this sort of calm acceptance of policing as a normal part of life, or equating police as an always helpful ideal, or people who we want to emulate. But, I don’t know if this is actually an effective strategy. I mean, cops exist. I don’t want my child to wholesale dislike police, I just want him to understand the complexities of policing and not grow up to be the guy who will call the cops on his brown neighbors or friends. (also, I mean, please God can we change some things about policing and race between now and when Ansel grows up? I’m trying and hoping and praying) I dunno. For those of you who have similar critiques of police, how are you handling early conversations about cops with your kids? I definitely don’t want him to grow up playing cops or glamorizing police work but I also don’t need to set him up to hate them.
8. OMG also how do I stop my kid from only wanting to eat ketchup? It’s the only food he regularly requests. I can’t stand the smell anymore. It’s so gross. Send help.
9. L is finally feeling well enough to have cravings. They are meat. all the meat.
10. I’ve determined that I feel really ok with the weather here in Seattle because it’s really like extended spring and fall, with very short winters and summers. That said, it’s supposed to be sunny and 70 degrees tomorrow and I am psyched.