Monday, September 17, 2012

NY Moms

FYI, we are getting relatively settled here in NYC. That being said, I have been noticing that NY moms are truly a different breed. I am in awe of them to be quite honest. I don't know how they manage... at least the ones without the luxury of nannies and full-time housekeepers and such.

I see NY moms on the subway with strollers, and I find myself marveling at how they even managed to get the stroller up and down the subway steps. What do these people do when the subway is jam-packed, as it often is?

I can barely manage myself here yet, and I'm sitting here thinking - HOW ON EARTH AM I EVER GOING TO BE A MOTHER HERE?

I am sure part of my concern arises from the fact that our move did not go according to plan and that it has, as I wrote previously, taken FAR longer to get fairly settled than we ever could have imagined. It is still a process, but the good news is that things are finally falling into place... finally.

I adore our apartment. It is truly the perfect place for us, and the job is pretty darn fantastic as well, albeit incredibly demanding and time-consuming. It is however my favorite job I've ever had. It's challenging in the best imaginable way - and I feel like I finally found a fairly permanent 'home.' I also LOVE NY. It's just beyond awesome and I feel like a kid in a candy store - seriously. I keep taking pictures of things and wondering when I'm going to start taking them for granted. I hope that never happens but I'm sure it will. (I've included a few the pics below). It is amazing to me that we live in this adorable little neighborhood and can walk to phenomenal restaurants and shops - and that Manhattan is a pretty quick subway ride away, which is good, because I work there. It has yet to cease to amaze me that I work just down the street from the Empire State Building and the Flatiron building... one of my all-time faves. I often find myself wondering why I didn't pay more attention to ALL of this stuff when I was at NYU. I guess I was too busy obsessing about boys.

And now I get to share all of this with John, which is so awesome on so many levels.

But I seriously digress...

I am sitting here at work, wondering how on earth I will ever become a parent in New York - and if I do, how I'll manage everything. I'm sure I'll eventually figure it all out - but thank goodness John works from home. In the meantime, all of my viable eggs are probably shriveling up... but I'll just have to hope that isn't the case and cross that bridge when we get to it.

For now, we need to just take all of this in.

Monday, August 27, 2012

Clearly this getting settled business is a full-time business for now.

The bad news? Getting settled in NY, (the new digs and the new gig), is proving to be far more time-consuming and complicated than I anticipated. The good news? We love the apartment and my job is amazing.

But, to bring anyone still reading up-to-speed... let's start with the nightmare that was the cross-country trek:

Moving two people, two puppies, critical computer equipment, and the basic necessities across the entire country in a tiny two door Honda CR-Z is by no means a picnic. My advice to you all: Don't ever attempt this... ever.

What we were hoping would take three days took five. Add to that a lightning/thunderstorm/torrential downpour at night in the Colorado Rockies - a pup who had a nervous breakdown in the middle of the country and cut off his own air supply turning his tongue blue, thus scaring the hell out of his frantic puppy-mommy who was doing her best to hold it together, muggy disgusting humidity for virtually 90% of the trip, an inability to actually enjoy any of the cities we passed through because we had pups in tow, eating fast food for 5 whole days and feeling repulsive -and driving to our new home in Brooklyn - that we had not yet seen in-person, hoping that we weren't sold on a complete disaster.

It was a lot - especially following selling a car, packing up an apartment, finding a NYC broker/apartment, finishing up two weeks at my now former place of employment, selling furniture, finding a mover and about a million other little things. Needless to say, it's been a hectic coupla months.

To boot, our movers finally arrived - and guess what?!?!? They managed to LOSE furniture and other belongings - including irreplaceable antiques and artwork. I think it's virtually amazing that I myself have not yet had a total nervous breakdown.

BUT... thing is, I am so madly in love with NY that I am completely beside myself. I know this was absolutely the right move. The job is fantastic, the apartment is fantastic - and despite some hiccups, we're doing great.

Now if only I could find more hours in the day - because quite honestly, I'm not sure if I'm gonna be able to carry on this blogging business.

Only time will tell.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

FYI... I am en route to NYC and can't post for at least 4 - 5 more days

For those of you who are actually still reading. And to those who are, thank you and check back after the 10th of August, and thanks for being patient.


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

A New York State of Mind

It has been quite a week!

Looks like we're moving to NYC, and this came as a bit of a surprise... a very, very welcome surprise - but a surprise nevertheless. We are beyond excited... like over the moon... but we've had to act very quickly. We need to get ourselves, our pups and some of our stuff moved to the other side of the continent in less than four weeks.

And is anyone aware of just how hard it is to find a place in NYC in the summer? Trust me when I tell you, it's bad enough to try to rent in NYC in general, but the summer seems to be brutal.


1. Give notice to current landlord (Check).
2. Hire broker, find an apartment in NY that isn't a shoebox. (Check... well, first half anyway. Second half pending).
3. Sell virtually every piece of furniture (In the works).
4. Pare down everything. If you haven't used it in a year or more, it goes. (In the works).
5. Sell car (Slated for this weekend).
6. Find a mover that won't totally screw us over (Check).
7. Take deep breaths (As soon as I'm done writing this).
8. And finally, somewhat reluctantly, put baby-making on hold for a bit, until the dust settles.

That last one is intense, given our circumstances, I know.

But here's the thing...

We've been trying - and it hasn't worked out yet.

And this DREAM JOB came along... and it will literally make our lives SO MUCH EASIER, and therefore better for a potential baby, so it's all good.

That said, we're still planning to kid, but this has messed with our odds a bit. We are very much aware that it's a bit of a gamble, which is why if we are unable to procreate ourselves, we are just as excited to potentially adopt.

And once we get around to kidding, I hope to make it look as easy as SJP here, even though I know I'll fail dismally.

Hopefully I'll still rock my lipstick and heels - but the heels might have to come down an inch or two.

Of course, this also raises the question of what it will be like to raise a NY baby. This thrills and scares the living bejeezus out of me.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Finally! A Reasonable Explanation as to Why I am an Underachiever

My exceptionally talented and wildly intelligent friend Kristopher Dukes, whose website is nothing short of fabulous, posted about an article she'd read in Psychology Today entitled, "The Trouble With Bright Girls."

The gist is as follows:

More often than not, bright girls believe that their abilities are innate and unchangeable, while bright boys believe that they can develop ability through effort and practice.

...bright girls, when given something to learn that was particularly foreign or complex, were quick to give up - and the higher the girls' IQ, the more likely they were to throw in the towel. In fact, the straight-A girls showed the most helpless responses. Bright boys, on the other hand, saw the difficult material as a challenge, and found it energizing. They were more likely to redouble their efforts, rather than giving up.

Why does this happen? What makes smart girls more vulnerable, and less confident, when they should be the most confident kids in the room? At the 5th grade level, girls routinely outperform boys in every subject, including math and science. So there were no differences between these boys and girls in ability, nor in past history of success. The only difference was how bright boys and girls interpreted difficulty - what it meant to them when material seemed hard to learn. Bright girls were much quicker to doubt their ability, to lose confidence, and to become less effective learners as a result.

Kristopher's response to the above was:

"So that’s why it’s 8 pm, I’m still sitting in my Marlies Dekkers, staring at my MacBook, thinking maybe I wasn’t meant to write a Great American E-Book instead of pushing myself to do so. I’m glad I found this article and was able to understand how it applies to what I’m dealing with right now."

This is something I can wholeheartedly relate to. I cannot even begin to count all of the times I've taken something on that was extremely challenging for me, only to quit because I wasn't immediately exceptionally brilliant at it.

The best example I can think of was my foray into Tae Kwon Do about 8 or so years ago. I was extremely enthusiastic about the prospect of learning a martial art - and the idea of being able to kick some serious ass - and I dove right in to classes multiple times per week. I was elated when I was able to chop through multiple boards with my own hands - and felt as if I was invincible. And then came the challenge that did me in. In order to 'graduate' from yellow belt to purple, (or whatever the colors were), I had to break a few boards with my foot. For whatever reason, I was crazy intimidated by this - and when it came to test day, I failed... dismally. It was heartbreaking. I left the class without having obtained my fancy new purple belt, and I drove home in tears. I felt like I was 13 years-old all over again.

I never went back.

Talk about a perfect case-in-point.

Needless to say, this is a terrible character flaw. It's embarrassing and inexcusable - and I hate the idea that because I happen to be a girl, I was somehow wired to behave this way. WTF?!?

If we manage to produce a child - and it's a girl - and she tries to quit something that she seems to be passionate about just because she's not immediately perfect at it, I'm going to do everything in my power to convince her not to give up.

You can read the whole article from Psychology Today here.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Best Pregnancy Book Ever... Thanks Teresa Strasser!

So a little while ago, I polled all of my mommy friends about which books are "must reads" on pregnancy. I figured that if I'm committed to this whole kidding thing, I better start doing my homework and find out what I'm in for if I actually manage to get a bun in the oven. (Man do I hate that saying, but knocked up is starting to make me nuts too). Anyway, I have absolutely no desire to purchase the "What to Expect When You're Expecting" tome and am thus avoiding it like the plague. I don't necessarily have anything against it, but for me, it's a lot like Jurassic Park. That movie came out and I swear I couldn't walk two feet without someone telling me that I absolutely had to see it immediately. Guess what that does for me? It has the polar opposite effect. Jurassic Park was released in 1993 - I finally saw it in 2010. (And I actually really liked it... but I digress).

My mommy friends' recommendations included The Girlfriends' Guide to Pregnancy and Belly Laughs. I have since read them both, (sort-of). Let's start with Belly Laughs. It's Jenny McCarthy's humorous and semi-scatalogical take on the whole pregnancy thing. It's a quick read... and it isn't terrible, but it's one that I could've probably lived without. It left me with the impression that Jenny was a little too busy being pregnant or already basking in the glow of her child by the time she got around to writing it to really give it the substance that it seems to lack. A lot of the content also felt very been-there, done-that to me. (Maybe because I've been reading way too much about pregnancy online. Who knows?)

Next up is The Girlfriends' Guide. In all fairness, I must report that I haven't yet finished this one... but I've read a decent portion of it, (at least half). This one, in my humble opinion anyway, is far better than "Belly Laughs." There's plenty of substance and anecdotes, and it isn't obnoxious. Parts are even quite funny.

But here's the problem.

Halfway through The Girlfriend's Guide, I remembered something, or rather, someone and her something.

Teresa fucking Strasser.

How the hell did I completely forget about the fact that she just wrote a book about her own first-time pregnancy aptly titled, Exploiting My Baby???

I had it overnighted, because I'm impatient like that.

Now, 155 pages in, I've dogeared at least 50, some of which I've dogeared multiple times... you know... the double and triple folds, to remind myself that Teresa said something that was either particularly horrifying or hilarious, and that I absolutely had to blog about it. I find extreme comfort in knowing that there's a woman out there who over-thinks everything as much, if not more so, than I do.

My mommy friends probably aren't aware of this book, because sadly, it didn't exist when they were pregnant. I feel badly for them. I'm not even pregnant yet, and I can already tell that this book will become my security blanket during pregnancy. I will refer to it when I'm scared, anxious, hormonal or feeling very Jewgly - knowing that I will feel much better having done so.

Here's some insight as to why this book is just so fanfuckingtastic:

Chapter 9 is entitled, "How Freaky and Paranoid is Your Google History?"

The next seven pages consist of Teresa Strasser's verbatim history of her baby-related Google searches pertaining to her third month of pregnancy.

Here are a few of the inclusions:

Imminent miscarriage
Nonviable pregnancy but no miscarriage yet
CVS not risky?
Nonalcoholic beer during pregnancy
Positive urine nitrate test
Down syndrome likelihood 38

Mind you, "Imminent miscarriage" is listed 7 times in as many pages.

This woman totally speaks my language and I love her.

You should read this book - even if you've already pushed out a few and/or have no plans to be pregnant. (That includes you Simone).

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Learning a Foreign Language

As stated in a previous post, I've been googling the hell out of EVERYTHING related to fertility and pregnancy... and oftentimes find myself on sites with fertility forums and support groups and what not - and OMG is it totally overwhelming.

When I first started reading these things, I was like - wait a minute - why is everyone writing in code? How the fuck am I supposed to decipher any of this?

But eventually, you get the hang of it.

I have literally begun learning a foreign language:

TTC - Trying to conceive
TWW - Two week wait
BFP - Big fat positive, (as in pregnancy test)
BFN - Big fat negative, (as with above)
PG - Pregnancy
AF - Aunt Flo
FSH - Follicular Stimulating Hormone, (waiting on my test results for this as I write)
AMH - Anti-Mullerian Hormone, (already know that mine is low).
ET - Embryo transfer
IUI - Intrauterine Insemination
ICSI - Intracytoplasmic sperm injection
HSG - Hysterosalpingogram
HCG - Human chorionic gonadotropin
TCM - Traditional Chinese medicine
POF - Premature ovarian failure
DOR - Diminished ovarian reserve, (this is me).

I'm sure I'll be adding to the lexicon as I continue to read about the first-hand experiences of countless females I'll never meet.

What I won't be doing is adding one of these ticker thingies to my blog.

Not only is it a wee bit too cutesy for me, but dare I say that it's a bit creepy too? And I mean, talk about setting yourself up for potential disappointment.

No thank you.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Hmm... maybe we ought to revisit this whole kidding thing after all.

Evidently, the cost of raising a child just went up by another 8K.

Just kidding. Sorry - couldn't help myself.

Plus, I've had NO time for blogging this week. Come back next week, if you dare... or care... or swear, or Nair!


Tuesday, June 5, 2012

This Trying to Get Knocked Up Shit is MADDENING

John and I have only just started trying to get me knocked up - and it's already driving me absolutely bonkers. Don't get me wrong... trying is fun... but the waiting business SUCKS BIG TIME.

We definitely gave it the good old college try - and now we're just... waiting. Waiting to see if I miss my period or not. Its beyond annoying. Why? Because I'm having all kinds of symptoms that could easily be PMS or pregnancy. How obnoxious is that? I mean talk about a massive mind-fuck!

I have Jewgled, (paranoid attempts at self-diagnosis via Google) every incarnation of early pregnancy symptoms, how soon you can have them, what the subtle differences are between PMS and pregnancy, how soon you can test to see if you are pregnant, if there's a test that can detect pregnancy before a missed period and so-on and so-forth. And the thing is, I can't stop doing it. Talk about being obsessive, paranoid, anxious - and above all else... impatient.

That's the thing. We're less than one month into this and I am already antsy! I am going to be the worst pregnant woman on the planet. (Sorry John).

I'm pretty sure that all of these symptoms I'm experiencing are in my head, because come on... what is the likelihood that we succeeded right out of the gate? +But... some of them are quite pronounced... like this heightened sense of smell nonsense. WTF?!? And last night, when I suspected that I might be getting a little PMSy, I started crying. We're talking weepy, intense, sobbing style crying too.

And don't get me started on the other stuff...

Frequent trips to the bathroom
Slightly bloated and a ever-so-slightly crampy a bit too early in my cycle
Distaste for certain wines that I used to love
Body feels much warmer than usual

So maybe I am pregnant.

That would just be nuts. I mean come on... what are the odds?

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Alright Death... I've Got a Game Plan

Now that we're embarking on all of this kidding nonsense, I've been marveling at how I've begun to look at things quite differently - like death for instance.

Anyone who knows me well, or has been reading this blog for any length of time is aware of my overwhelming fear of the inevitable. It's been an almost crippling issue for me in so many respects, that I could probably write an entire book about it. Perhaps this is why I'm somewhat amazed that I think I may actually be getting over it. It's remarkable at what even the prospect of becoming a parent makes you think about.

What really sealed the deal for me was an article in New York Magazine, that quite frankly, I think should be REQUIRED READING for pretty much everyone - parents and children alike:

Why? Because it addresses an issue that is predominantly unique to ours and our parents' generations. People are living longer than ever before - and while medical miracles are nice and all, there comes a point where you have to ask yourself - is this life really worth living anymore? And what if you're not even capable of asking yourself that question? What if you're the uber-elderly patient... a shadow of your former self who appears to be living in a state of constant discomfort, confusion and irritability? Do you really want that to be your children's last memory of you? Do you want to subject them to years - possibly decades of service as your caretaker? Do you want to drain yours and quite possibly your children's savings to sustain a life that barely resembles a life anymore?

I know I don't.

And now that we're planning on kidding, I'm diligently working towards embracing my inevitable death as an eventual blessing to any children I may be fortunate enough to have. Further to that, I am embracing the idea of what I would like to be a celebration of my life in lieu of a funeral. No dark, dreary costumes at the end for me... no seemingly endless series of speeches talking about how wonderful I may have been, (or not)... just a party. I want anyone willing to show up to promise that they will only share anecdotes about time we spent together to whomever feels like listening. That's it. Nothing morbid - nothing sanctimonious... just a nice little gathering of friends and family with plenty of food, alcohol and great music.

Don't get me wrong... I want to live as long as I possibly can in good health - to support our children and whatever lives they may choose for themselves, but I never want to become a painful burden that adversely impacts every corner of their lives. I want them to see me go as peacefully as possible. I want them to remember the good things... the celebrations, the love and the laughter... not a decade or so of what can really only be described as a living hell - one that I'm pretty sure any God that might exist never intended.

And because of that, I'm going to have a very specific, solid plan in place when I hit that wall.