Monday, December 27, 2010

How I got the news

How do you imagine you'd learn you're pregnant?

I had always envisioned this scenario: some 6 weeks after my last period, in the privacy of my bathroom, with a store bought test. I figured the anxiety of having to wait those 3 minutes, exchanging looks with my husband and speaking aloud the what if's that would cross my mind, and then maybe celebrating the positive result with a hug and a kiss.

Needless to say it didn't happen that way.

I hadn't had the chance to miss the missing period when I started feeling odd, on Christmas day last year. It was like a bubble on my left side which I hoped it would just go. It didn't go but got worse and when I couldn't move any longer (including deep breath or filling my stomach), I gave up and let my husband take me (haul me) to the emergency room. Given the fact it was cold - we were in Minnesota and last time I had experienced a similar symptom it was a mega kidney infection in the making, it just made sense.

Like every other time I went to the ER I got tested for a slew of conditions including pregnancy, and unlike every other time they made us wait like for two hours in those dirty seats, looking either at an aquarium with monster sized fish or a TV with awful programming.

It seemed forever but they finally called my name and we were taken to one examination room, where two people in a row asked exactly the same questions I had been asked already. One senior female nurse asked me repeatedly if I thought I might be pregnant and if there were chances of it, and how would I take it, and then broke the news.

I was stunned. I didn't celebrate, I didn't kiss or hug. I didn't do or say anything, maybe said, oh.

Then, they started trying to find out what was causing that bubble thing. They ran a lot of tests I don't remember, except for the sonogram to see if the embyro was nested in the right place. It was hardly noticeable, just two weeks old, and yes, it was in the right place. We didn't have to wait the 3 minutes to see if the test gave positive, but those seconds searching for the tiny spot were stressful. Later that night I was discharged with a "come back in 24 hours if you don't get well", which I did because I didn't get well. There, 36 hours after the first sonogram, I had a second one done... the difference was remarkable.


I'll never know what was wrong with me. After a painkiller's effect wore off I got a little woozy (as been told), threw up and got well. Miraculously.

A belated Christmas present if I ever got one.

Monday, December 20, 2010


The best unexpected thing about parenthood is wanting to be best possible person, just because the child deserves it.

The worst, making loved people feel questioned by making other parenting choices.

Would you still believe I had a happy childhood even if I don't want the same things for my child?

Monday, December 13, 2010

Daily glamor

Often, it feels like maybe too often, I struggle with dinner. Planning it and cooking it seems like an impossible task, and it feels like we're having soup again. Or dang, another overpriced cold delivered pizza. It used to feel so good and now it feels crappy, that delivered pizza.

In order to solve my predicament, I turned to my ever friendly Google and I ask it (though "begging" is more like it) how I can, once and for all, plan our dinners. Just once a week, or less, once every few days. I've subscribed to plenty websites, I've read plenty cookbooks, but it's of no help.

And you know why is that? Because food is ingrained to the very core of who I turn out to be and where I happen to live. What to eat, how to do it and when to stuff our mouths with it in this global era, is still pretty much a business of where we live and who we are. I love meat but I find organs disgusting. I don't eat seafood. Poultry and chicken are synonyms to me. I can't eat hot spicy ingredients, or I feel my teeth are falling off. I find green vegetables boring (sigh), and I need extra encouragement in the form of mayo or mustard to plow through potatoes and other roots (double sigh). Touching raw food is unpleasant to me, and I work with spoons and spatulas and forks so I can avoid it as much as possible. Things that require many steps, like moussaka, I might adore but are way off my patience's league. I'm a grown up picky eater who would like to break the old habits, but is unsure of how to.

Reading cookbooks and recipes is exciting, but the ingredients (kale, anyone?), the proportions (is that butter?), the required accoutrements (some as silly as an oven thermometer) make most of the reading pretty close to science fiction. Or it is that I'm overwhelmed?

In the end it's just me complaining. The department of health has issued a cookbook with simple, cheap and healthy recipes with nutritional information, and in spite of the general lack of glamor and disgusting measuring terms like "1/2 package of...", it should fit my bill. But it still feels so... hard. Is it so for everybody else out there?