Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Over. It.

I haven barely begun to write when the guilt over what I am going to say is already creeping its way in, but Im just gonna say it.

I'm over being pregnant.

I'm 26 weeks, barely halfway there. Not once have I puked. My face has seen a smidge of acne - my back is a different story - but it's not on my face, so I don't care. The weight gain is primarily just in my belly, and people who don't have to endure my daily inspection of inner thigh and waist spreadage swear they can't tell I've gained anywhere else. So what I'm saying is that in the grand spectrum of pregnancies, mine is the proverbial walk in the park. But right now I just want to fast forward this thing and get on with it.

My back is killing me. A problem that plagued me in my first trimester has reared its ugly head - my piriformis muscle is irritated and keeps poking my sciatic nerve, so I'll just be walking over to get something and suddenly its as if someone is stabbing my lowback with a penknife. The pain is so sudden and intense that it gives me a goofy limp, like I'm a pregnant zombie. What really bums me out is that I'm convinced my awesome new workout tape - the one led by an eight months preggo former Cirque du Soleil performer - is the guilty party.

I miss sleeping on my stomach, and the weight of my bowling ball uterus pressing into my lungs as I roll over in the middle of the night wakes me every time. I hate that my coke a day and my holiday sweets fest is convincing me that I'm giving my baby gestational diabetes. I hate worrying over every little piece of food that goes in my body. I hate the depression that has taken a firm hold of me this past month. I hate bitching about being pregnant.

But what I love. I love that the baby kicks stronger every day, and almost always when I think about them, as if we were telepathically connected. We are already communicating, and we haven't even been formerly introduced. I love my husband's smile when he looks at my belly, his look of shock when he feels the baby move. I love that this kid, for better or worse, is gonna be a big mushed up ball of the very best and worst of us.

I think that is the main reason I'm over it. Because I can't wait to meet the little fella.

Friday, December 15, 2006


Two doozies, back 2 back. Doesn't take a degree to figure out the mysteries within.


I'm bleeding. Profusely. Down there. I know I need to get to the hospital, and of course I'm in some cavernous train-like station lost and scared. Not much plot, just terror of the impending chaos.


My baby - a girl in this dream - is in the front seat of a large passenger van I'm driving - like a Mystery Machine straight out of the 70s contraption. My sister is also riding along, but she is maybe 13 here. That doesn't stop me from literally flinging myself from the van as it's moving. I run after it, but clearly I can't catch up. I guess my 13 year old sister is driving at this point. I find a tricycle and use that to pedal home. The whole time I'm staring at my thighs which jiggle with the fluidity of ocean waves. I make it home and my sister informs me that they got home safely, but she had to tell on me to mom. My sister looks amazing - like supermodel body hot - while I stand ashamed in my fatness. My daughter looks ridiculous - lots of bows and headbands and frilliness.

Apparently, I'm absolutely brimming with confidence about my abilities as a mother.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006


I'm in Florida right now, a girls trip with my mom, sister and 3 month old Avery, my cousin and her 2 children, 1 being 6 weeks old, my other cousin and her 3 month old and their mom. And then there's lil pregnant me, a bit scared out of my mind by the babyness of it all. All the crying, screaming, spitting up, constipation, gas, and general chaos has been a little overwhelming to say the least. My poor cousin with the 6 week old - the baby cries like someone is holding a hot poker to her skin. They have tried so many different remedies based on their doctors (and friends and families' advice) and the child just screams like the devil itself is on her tail. So while the terror sent me fleeing to the bath with an US Weekly, I woke up today to see my niece roll herself over for the first time. Watched her take in the world around her and laugh and smile- and cry and spit up and drool - but this morning it didn't seem quite so terrifying.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


I started this journal because I am a writer and I am pregnant; therefore, I figured I would write about how my dreams, aches and pains and rapidly expanding belly are affecting my life and the universe around me. Unfortunately I've barely been able to commit to a few measly postings, and this really bums me out. I'm already learning that the brain post pregnancy doesn't remember a whole lot of what happened prior to that baby sliding out of their body. Do they remember when their nipples began to turn brown and expand, when the breasts stopped throbbing with pain, when the inner thighs turned to jelly, when forgetting thoughts midsentence became routine, when that mysterious brown line bisecting the belly appeared, when the doubts and fears crept in, when the minor revulsion at seeing your body warp and shift and change suddenly, slyly became joy?

It seems the answer is no. When I ask my sister or my two cousins - all with brand new babies - when this symptom began or why I might be feeling a certain way, they just shrug and plead amnesia - or momnesia if you will.

The past few weeks so much has happened and it already feels like its one big jumbled blur. But enough self flagellating and more chronicling:

Caleb and I saw The Departed a week ago Sunday and the baby decided to say hello. Just as the Rolling Stones' Gimme Shelter started blasting on the soundtrack. I'm not sure if I've ever seen my husband more proud.

The following Wednesday was the big 20 week ultrasound. I get why Tom and Katie bought a sonogram machine. Our viewing of the baby lasted maybe 20 minutes but each second felt like a birthday. I couldn't get enough. As the technician placed the wand over my belly, the baby was staring at us, as if expecting our arrival. Then the tech pointed out a little hand - that immediately started waving to us. The kicker was when the tech took a few "snapshots" for us as keepsakes. The second picture is the baby staring directly at the "camera," resting his/her chin on its hand. If this kid wasn't already papparazzi ready.

Monday, November 06, 2006


We hit a milestone the other day. It wasn't an item on one of those What To Expect checklists or seminal moments in pregnancy development, like the baby moving around (and anytime you want to start doing that, kiddo, I'm good). I got a Volvo. As I drove the Mini on our last rites to the Volvo dealership, I honestly thought was going to start crying. Which was ridiculous. Here I was getting ready to own a fantastic car that vaunts safety above else, has storage for passengers and the dog, a built in booster seat, and 14 cup holders to boot. Yet it was hard not to see it as a yet another definitive moment in the transformation from carefree girl into responsible mother. It's still just so crazy, that in a few short months I'm going to be a MOM. A Mini Cooper-less, Volvo driving, 14 cupholder-owning mom. I am definitely showing now, just in time to have my bridesmaid's dress for Alexa's wedding let out. But on a more positive note, it's also in time for next week's ultrasound where we get to peek in on the little fella and see all the fingers and toes. But no naughty bits. We're waiting until the bitter end for that reveal.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

I AM maternal!

Two doozies since I've been in LA:

I dream that I am in India and the town we're visiting has been struck by a deadly plague. The few remaining healthy are clustered together in a sterile safehouse with a glass door that lets us see out into the village. It's monsoon season and the town is engulfed in rain. The light is really strange, kind of a reddish yellow at sunset. A little girl stands outside the glass door, barely visible under the sheets of falling rain. I want to help her, but the survivors tell me to let it go - I'm pregnant and I can't risk exposure.

Suddenly, this is all just too unacceptable to me, and I fling open the door and take the girl into my arms. She is burning up, and as I hug her, her fever passes into me, and I black out.

The next night I dream that I am pregnant and the Hulk - yes, the same from the comics, is on the loose in the city. Most are terified of him because he has become increasingly unstable, his good deeds easily confused with the bad as he has become more violent and unpredictable. Apparently the Hulk and I are acquaintances. Anyhow.

I enter this mansion where these beautiful,gothy people perform these Cirque du Soleil-like acts on stilts, but something about them scares me. I use a pole o launch myself up onto a narrow beam on the second story. Good thing, because the people are vampires are some similar baddy, and they have decided they want to kill me and take my child. So now I'm on the run through this crazy mansion with vampires cirque du soleil performers after me. I stumble down a flight of stairs and a man chasing me tells me to slow down because he "wants it to hurt when he cuts me." I finally scream out for the Hulk to come to my rescue, and most of the mansion is destoyed when he arrives like a cyclone and punches through walls. That's all I remember.

Lesson learned? No more pizza befoe bedtime.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

the zoo

There's nothing like a trip to the zoo to bring out one's inner misanthrope.

On our way to check out the pandas, we made our way through the world of birds as the zoo rightly assumed that the only way most people would brake for birds would be to sandwich it between the cats and the bears. I'm no birder, but all of a sudden, there it was. Just the most beautiful bird I'd ever seen. Colors like a psychedelic light show but real. On a bird! I said to Caleb that this looked like the kind of bird that one would have to trek to the top of a mountain in Tibet to hopefully just catch a glimpse of.

A cute, skinny mom with her two kids and pregnant friend in tow blew past us when she realized her daughter was no longer beside her. The little girl stood on front of the golden pheasant, transfixed.

Her mom stared at her, impatient.

"Baby, those are just birds. Don't you want to see the bears?"

The girl didn't move.

"Honey, c'mon. Wouldn't you rather see the bears?"

The girl slowly moved away and hurried to catch her mom who was, indeed, booking it toward the bears.

Right then and there I decided my child and I would brake for birds, even the ugly brown ones you don't have to climb a mountain to see. Just on principal.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

The Heart of Rock N Roll is still beatin

I heard my baby's heartbeat today. That was pretty amazing. In all honesty, it sounded more like a 1950s sci fi radio serial than a distinct ga-gong, as Patrick Swayze so eloquently put it. More of staccato rythym over a spaceship. But still pretty freakin cool. I still can't believe I'm growing a baby in there.

Not much has changed over the past few weeks, hence my not really being over here to post. My energy level has definitely increased, I believe I have graduated to a C cup, and my 9th grade acne has decided it's time for a high school reunion. But other than that, I'm great and I can't be more thrilled about it.

Last night I dreamed about holding my son who was in diapers as we were getting ready to board a plane. I think he was not quite 1, yet he told me in no uncertain terms that he was really excited about getting to visit Italy. I told him that I was glad he was excited, and then I made a bunch of weird faces when he wasn't looking, because my one year old was speaking in full sentences.

I'm pretty much convinced it's a boy.

Monday, September 04, 2006


The hormone fairy paid a visit today. Last time she came she left a trail of cystic red acne all over my left shoulder and arm which my husband thought were spider bites, because seriously, who gets zits on their triceps? So, today. Do you remember that movie 28 Days Later - not the Sandra Bullock AA shite but the one in England with all the zombies that were infected with a REALLY ANGRY VIRUS?

That was me, with maybe slightly better table manners. I felt it bubbling on the way to the neighborhood grocery store, the one I've already learned to hate with its mini-carts and claustrophobic yet tiny maze-like feel and cranky cashiers and terrible produce, so I was primed. And then it started. Just minding my own business in the 2 ft wide aisle in front of the oranges when a woman barrels by with her daughter in the cart, offering a snippy EXCUSE ME EXCUSE ME EXCUSE ME as she literally crashes into my cart, squeezes on through and sends my groceries careening into the path of a polite college student. We shared a "Check Out the Crazy Beeotch" smile, and I did my best to shrug it off. And then I made the mistake of shopping for pasta sauce in the same aisle as Her Majesty. The Queen and her entourage sauntered down my aisle and, realizing people headed my way, I moved my cart of their way, which prompted:

HER MAJESTY: Get out of my way. You got to be kidding. Taking up the whole damn aisle with your cart. SHEEE-IT.

ME: ****

Too stunned to respond, I just gaped in shock. Did she just speak like that to me?

They cleared the aisle, and I just stood there. And then molten lava replaced the blood in my veins. I grabbed my cart and raced to the next aisle - bitch was about to get an earful from me, scary IQ- challenged entourage be damned. Every stinging retort, curse word, epithets and putdown raced through my head as I rounded the corner.

But they weren't there. And that was probably a good thing. The kind of woman who grocery shops with an entourage and says things like SHEEEE-IT in conversation probably routinely picks fights and beats little white girls like me to a pulp. And that probably wouldn't be so good for the baby. So I let it go. I was finishing up my shopping when the checkout lanes came into view. There they were, her majesty and the entourage, giving the cashier a hard time over something judging by the loud voices and posturing. And that's when I noticed it.

She was pregnant, too.

In an instant, I got it. And kinda felt sorry for her. And then I fantasized about running her over with my truck.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

In the Womb

I woke up exhausted this morning. Must have been from all the cross country trekking through Freud territory last night. I boarded a train for a ski trip - I'm finding train trips and their wild disorganization seem to be a common theme of late - and emerged on the snow with my skiis and a surf board for good measure. I opted to take to the water. The surfboard turned into a small boat just in time as people started shouting that a shark had been sighted. This massive pair of jaws erupted from the depths, only to be revealed that it was a grizzly bear a guy had captured and was now - quickly - transporting by raft. The raft skimmed the water faster and faster until it was flying. I was flying. The raft touched down in the woods and the grizzly bear started to run as I flew past him. The forest was incredibly dense but I flew deeper into the woods, knowing that I risked losing speech, sight - even sense of self in order to get to the heart of the forest. But I had to keep moving deeper into the forest.

Retreat into the womb? Searching for my baby? That bowl of Cracklin Oat Bran right before bed?

Last night Caleb sleepwalked downstairs. When I asked him about it, he seemed shocked to remember it. He said he had been looking for our son who he was afraid had been left in the backyard.


Friday, August 25, 2006


As each week of my pregnancy passes by, I feel like I have become qualified as an expert in its passing - and therefore - should never have to experience any of its symptoms again. So I find myself shocked when yet again I sit down to dinner and and the insides of my stomach feel like they are trying to trade places. We tried Golden India last night, a restaurant really close to our house, and we were very excited to find that the food was just as yummy as our favorite Indian place in LA. Sadly the chicken tikka masala nearly sent me sprinting for the bathoom, but a Sprite finally got my stomach under control.

We moved to town on Sunday, and Caleb has been frothing at the bit to get settled, but with no moving van here, there is so much he can do. But we're always supposed to be doing something. And then there is me. Walking up the stairs feels like mile 20 of the marathon. 3 PM usually finds me asleep on whatever surface will hold me. He says he understands that I need to sleep - and don't get me wrong, I don't think I could have married a more supportive partner and father to be - but I don't think he really believes just how tired I am, that the naps are just a way to get out of running to Target or going to the DMV.

Well, the latter part might be true.

I slept for 12 hours last night, so my brain took the opportunity to offer up a kind of David Lynch highlight reel. A friend of mine in his 40s was the star - he was trapped in some gothic New York apartment building like the Dakota where he had to defend his sanity to a clearly deranged panel of "doctors." It felt a whole lot creepier dreaming it then writing it down now - but in the dream, the paranoia and claustrophobia was just overwhelming. My friend managed to find a way to escape at the basement level of the building that now looked suspiciously like my childhood church. I'm gonna try not to read too much into that.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

The Sexy stuff

I was inspired to start this blog after devouring Anne Lamott's book on her son's first year as a single mom - Operating Instructions. I was blown away and moved by her bracing honesty and candor, and I felt that in my chronicle of becoming a mom,I should attempt to do the same. Write things down without fear, without afraid of being shocking or gross or worried that my grandfather is reading. I was all set to go.

Until my dream two nights ago.

No way around it - it's flat out embarrassing. I've put off writing about it and considered just ignoring it, but in the interest of being true to my mission statement, I've just got to suck it up.

The other night I dreamed that I tried to seduce Macy Gray.

I know.

I invited her over to my house, and she showed up giggly and possibly stoned. I plied her with cocktails like I was some horny frat boy with a rotten core and when I thought she wasn't too alert or keen to fight back, I went in for the kill. I grabbed her waist, and her body made me shudder. And not in a good way. Her skin felt like playdough, like there were no bones in her body. No rib cage. Just rolly dough skin that I could have probably worn as a blanket.

I don't think I've given an awful lot of thought to Macy Gray either positively or negatively. I've enjoyed a few of her songs, questioned her personal style and sobriety when she's given interviews, but I can honestly say that not once have I ever taken in that helium canister voice and afro and said "DAMN!"

But if I'm to play armchair Freud here, I think what might be going on is that in my dream, I tried to seduce myself, Macy Gray being the ugly mother extension of who I am afraid I am going to become. (My apologies to Miss Gray if she ever reads this). In the dream, I - being a man yet still myself - gotta love dream logic - remember being horrified by her body, how ample and fleshy and distorted it felt. In waking life, I eye my hips and stomach, wondering if the miracle I'm about to experience will be overshadowed by some F-in serious, hardcore vanity. Will my husband be repulsed by me? Will I be repulsed by me? More importantly, if I was in some LA nightclub and ran into Macy Gray, would she be repulsed by me? Or would she be too stoned to care?

Monday, August 21, 2006


I’m in the clouds as I write this. We’re somewhere between LA and Memphis, an empty duplex and wonderful friends behind us and family and a new baby waiting on the ground. My sister’s water broke around midnight, and 5 hours and 1 C-section later, Avery Cobb Suber, a 7 lb. 12 oz. ball of fury and black hair, hollered her way into the world. Avery was in breech position, so the C section was unexpected. I keep reading about celebrities and busy careerwomen who actively choose to have C-sections and where I understand the thought process of trying to control the labor or avoid the pain, electing to have your abdomen sliced open in addition to not sleeping for 3 months with a squalling newborn seems a trifle masochistic. But then that’s what the nannies are for, I suppose. Lindsey’s voice on the phone was thick with drugs and nausea. Apparently Mother Nature can’t be fooled so easily – it seems trading in labor pains for the epidural can result in one humdinger of a headache. I suppose in the long run jabbing a needle into your spine and getting a migarine after major surgery is preferable to experiencing an earthquake in your vagina, but sheesh. Anyhow, she sounded proud and excited to finally be a mom. We’re going to see her in the hospital tonight after we land, the same hospital where I will be delivering. I’m gonna do some snooping, see if they have one of them waterbirthing contraptions hidden away. I have it in my head that waterbirth is like a hottubbing party of one. Get the jets going, crack open some brewskis, maybe the doctor will have a giant mullet. I shared my thoughts with mom. I don’t think she shares my enthusiasm.


I met Avery last night. I never knew something so tiny could have the power to strip away all the sarcasm, the bravado, everything until all that’s left is awe. She is absolutely gorgeous, and not in the she’s really a lizard baby and I’m being a kind aunt kind of gorgeous, but the Oh My God there’s clearly no way anything that springs forth from my loins can compare with this kind of beauty. I now also see a major perk to the C-section. Instead of going through the trauma of birth, the baby gets plucked from the womb, their faces rosy and not squashed or misshapen or lizard-like. I can’t wait to go back today and just stare at her some more.


Praise to Allah and Jesus and the Cow Farmer because Uncle Ben has lifted the fatwa against meat! I just ate a French Dip, the bread nice and soggy and collapsible from au jus. It tasted like sunshine. Not once did I gag or have to poke at it with a fork but ate the whole thing like the big girl I am. I hope Uncle Ben continues to be merciful. I haven’t felt queasy in days, and I am very cautiously beginning to hope that my week of not-quite morning sickness is just that.

When I wake up in the morning, the first thing I do is grab my boobs. With most of the obvious symptoms not yet lurking around, my boobs have become the bellwether of my pregnancy. The boobs hurt, therefore, I am pregnant. And then I sit up and wonder why I go through the whole grabbing rigamarole because they hurt so bad it feels like Caleb held a lit match under them as I slept. As soon as I sit up, gravity takes over, and the millimeter or so that they fall feels like they have conspired to free themselves from their fleshly prison and skydive to the floor.

I have never had big boobs, and I can admit fairly honestly that, aside from spying the occasional screen goddess on the cover of a magazine with a sexy rack, I have never wanted big boobs. I’m athletic and I think they would just be in the way of all the running and jumping. When I was seventeen and first on the pill, my boobs got all billowy with estrogen, and when paired with a sassy push up bra from Victoria’s Secret, I had an honest to God rack. I can’t remember where I was going that day as I walked out the door, my head and chest held high, but I remember scuttling home hours later like some misshapen dwarf, my rack sucked into rib cage, my arms crossed over my chest in shame. The stares, the creepy whistle-slobbers they attracted! It was truly shocking how weapon-like my body suddenly felt, like I was kid whose hand just closed around the steel of a .38 special. I switched pills and waited happily for the male gaze to return to my legs, where at least I had the power to run away if things got too creepy.

But now my B cup bra actually fits, and at the rate they are expanding in their strange lateral direction, I might have to upgrade soon. I don’t think I mind. I am proud of my perky little B minuses as Caleb called them, but with all the change that is swirling around us right now, I think a C cup is one more thing I can handle. As long as I don’t get freaky soda can-sized nipples. Because miracle-shmearacle of motherhood, that’s just gross.

Friday, August 18, 2006


I love meat. Meat of all kinds. Sausage, corn dogs, salami. prosciutto, bacon fat. I draw the line at gas station hot dogs and jerky. But I love meat. Fried, seared, pulled, cured, smoked, bbq'ed, sauteed, sauced, grilled - I seriously can't go a meal without meat. It's an embarrassing admission, b/c I feel like it lumps me in the same category of people who shop exclusively at WalMart or learn their politics from Toby Keith songs. But I love meat everyday, any place, any how.

But Uncle Ben does not like meat.

When we learned that the baby in my womb was about the size of a grain of rice, we came to call it Uncle Ben, because anything seems nicer than "it."

But seriously, Uncle Ben hates meat. And since he has control of the joystick in the game that is me, I hate meat. I can't stand it. The mere thought of it makes my insides flip and my skin crawl. Dinner the other night was at The Magic Castle, the kind of place where one goes for wedge of iceberg lettuce and blue cheese and a big honkin piece of meat smothered in tangy, burnt dreaminess.

I had the pasta primavera.

Fruit, on the otherhand, I can't get enough of it. I wake up with peaches on the brain. the taste of pluots on my lips. Plums in my heart. After 2 weeks of this I finally went to the store and picked up about 6 pounds of fruit so I would be set.

This morning I woke up and I looked at a peach. It stared back. I put it down. Now I don't seem to like fruit anymore. At all. Couldn't I at least get a memo for these things, so I don't have 6 pounds of pluots rotting in my kitchen?

But the thing that warms my heart?

Uncle Ben has got a killer sense of humor.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006


A haiku:

2 tests in a box
The first one was negative
Two lines say "SURPRISE!"

I am going to be a mother.

Holy shit.

As a former college student, Angeleno and now wife, I've taken my fair share of pregnancy tests, and I am well acquainted with the one line. The reassuring thing about taking a pregnancy test as you are sweating bullets and imagining breaking the shocking news to your baby daddy and wearing elastic waistbands and screaming through labor like they do on TV is that the one line pops up almost instantaneously. It says, Calm down now, you paranoid little wretch who is on the pill. All is well, and remember that promise you made in the bathroom to God next time you decide to get it on.

But this time, the one line wasn't there.

I had taken a test just days before, and it was negative. The one line said "Go ahead and make your nine months pregnant sister order you a glass of wine just to rub it in." I wasn't pregnant.

But days later, my period was still MIA. And there was one test left in the box. So I took it, and that one line didn't come. I stared at the two little windows, waiting for the line, wondering if maybe the test was defective. Or...

And that's when the 2 lines appeared.

60 seconds later my husband and i were laughing and crying on the couch, staring at a stick that said everything is about to change.

I am going to be a mother. And I'm really happy about that. And when I'm scared shitless, I'll write about that, too.