Monthly Archives: June 2009

Pride and Provinciality

A kind reader wrote me a note asking why I didn’t write about Brooklyn Pride.  I was there with my family and my extended gay parent family, it is true.

I guess I didn’t write about it for a good reason: Pride is fun, but no longer the highlight of my year.  What I mean is, I am lucky enough to live in a place where hanging out with the gaybies and their folks is not an unusual event.

Recently, as we were planning our summer vacation trip, we had the idea of going to Family Week in Provincetown.  It seemed fun, though a little hectic.  Upon thinking of it more, I realized that we don’t really need to go to it.  Our motive would be to have a nice vacation around a bunch of other gay families.  We are always around a bunch of other gay families.  So why drive eight hours and pay a grand?  Well, maybe when the boys are old enough to understand it, it might be worth the effort.

I remember when Chicory of the late great blog An Accident of Hope posted pictures from the Utah Pride family tent, which she helped organize.  It looked like a theme park.  There were so many people and so much to do.  Our tent was on such a smaller scale.  We had some yummy food and an arts and crafts table.  Cake made a monster puppet and taped a third eyeball on himself and called himself an “Eyeclops.” We had frisbees.  It was great.  It was enough.  We played on the grass while gay friends from different arenas showed up.  The familyo was there.  My lovely readers/friends from way uptown surprised me by stopping by with Trucker’s sassy little girlfriend in tow.  A bunch of families from that crazy lesbian mom gathering I’d hosted in February showed up.  There were also some gay dads there, one of whom claimed that his partner was Angelina Jolie’s stylist — upon googling when I got home, I found that her stylist is a woman, so maybe he was her stylist’s assistant or something. We had a great time.

I guess my point is, I’m happy I live here.  I’m happy that blowing bubbles in the park with other gay parents is not just a once-a-year event.  I’m really grateful for the folks who set up our little family tent and taped an extra eyeball on my kid;  for the drag queens who were performing for about five people on the stage a few hundred feet away; and for the kid-less dykes who played air guitar with Cakie.  I’m grateful and proud.

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Filed under family, LGBT, NYC What is it about you?

Post Post Post Partum Post

Trucker is almost a year old.

Almost a year ago, I pushed a nine pound, three ounce baby out of my body.  Now, if you are pregnant right now, you may want to click away.

I tore, but it wasn’t bad. Not as bad as it can be.  But a year later I’m still recovering.  I want to know if this is unusual.  The tear healed in a few weeks.  My muscles, my pelvic floor?  Not so much.  I’m still feeling all loosey goosey down there.  I still feel somtimes like parts of me are going to fall out.  Do I do enough kegels?  No.  But I feel like when you tear a muscle, it heals fairly quickly.  What’s up with my super-hero pelvic floor?  Why so wimpy?

In other areas, My hair is freaking out.  About two months post-partum my hair started to fall out.  It fell out for about two more months.  I knew it would fall out, but for two months?  Now it is growing back.  It is more curly than it was pre-Trucker.  And I have these frizzy halo hairs around my hairline that make my hair look bad in a pony tail.  A mother of two can’t afford to have her hair look bad in a pony tail.  I could cut it short in a dykey little pixie like I had in my early twenties.  But have I mentioned the color?  Bright, fire red?  It is very pretty long.  I’m also a little afraid that if it chooses to be more curly,  perhaps I might look like I’ve been hanging out with Daddy Warbucks if I cut it short.  Now right near the temples, it is a different color.  My friends have been going gray for a long time.  I always wondered when it would hapen to me.  I’ve had days at work as a teacher when I was sure I’d see a shock of white hair the next time I saw my reflection.  My hair is not going grey, however.  It is going gold.  I’m gold around the temples.  I guess it goes better with red than grey.

My body elsewhere is a little weird, too.  From nursing I’ve lost lots of weight.  Only in my legs.  If they were long enough, I could wear a size six pant.  Before I gave birth, I wore ten or twelve.  My gut, on the other hand?  It is bigger than usual.  Which is to be expected.  But I can’t figure out when to exercise.  Well, now that school is out, I’ll be able to form and start a plan, but once it resumes, I’m not sure how I’ll squeeze it in.  But the nursing is happening less and less often. Soon the nugget will be able to drink cow’s milk and I’ll be probably cutting out the afternoon nurse.  I need to get cracking with the exercise.  I want to be healthy.

Nursing Trucker these days is a full contact sport.  He’s very big and active.  He likes to climb around on me while he nurses.  Sometimes he tries to walk away with me in his mouth.  And now that he has his teeth (4!) he tries to bite me.  I’m trying to do what the nursing book says and take him off before he bites and end the feed.  But I don’t think he’s making the connection that the feed ends because of the bite.  I think he just thinks biting my nipp1e is hilarious.  Ha ha.  I’m laughing so hard that it is not apparent to the naked eye.

That’s it.  Besides the lovely spider veins that have appeared near my knees, I have nothing more post post post partum to report.  Who knows how much of it is from giving birth and how much is from being almost 38?  Not I.

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Filed under b00b food, Labor & Birth, my second son, Post partum, teaching, working motherhood

Dear Trucker, (11 holy-cow-wtf? months)

Dearest Trucker,

I am planning your first birthday party.  What?  WHAT?  I don’t understand it, either.

What can I tell you about 11 months?  This week you have decided that you can walk, and you haven’t really looked back.  You now think you can walk carrying one thing in each hand; or carrying things that are impossibly large.  You sprouted your first two teeth at the end of last month: one top and one bottom. Opposite sides.  Like a Jack-o-lantern.  Now you are working on the other two top and bottom front teeth.

You remind me of a seltzer bottle.  Whenever Mommy opens a seltzer bottle, especially when she is at a party or in the kitchen of her boss, or sitting at a well-set formal dining table, the whole thing explodes in a shower of what Cakie would call bubble water.  The floor, the ceiling, the pretty table cloth, my boss’s shirt — all get covered.  For you, instead of bubble water, we get laughter.  It is always sitting in you, just waiting for someone to open the top.  Anything could do it, a glance at the cat, hearing your brother talk, touching Mama’s hair — anything.  Then we get the laughter, a deep guttural baby laugh, punctuated by shrieks of bliss.  I have it on video.  I’ll show it to you when you’re older.  I’ve show it to anyone who will stop for 40 seconds and watch the clip.

As the second child, you have some challenges that Cakie never faced.   When Cakie was little, we didn’t have to negotiate for toys.  Whatever he wanted to play with was available whenever he wanted (except our computer, our knives and our pills.)  You don’t have it so easy.  Your brother loves to play with your toys, but doesn’t really like you to play with his.  And your brohter has an array of toys that you really shouldn’t play with.  I get nervous every time I catch you with a possibly-lead-paint-laden matchbox car in your mouth.  And all of these cheap goody-bag items all over the place from countless birthday parties.  Cakie never had these things within his reach. On the other hand, you have so many more toys to play with than Cakie ever did as a baby.  The toybox is your oyster… at least when Cake isn’t around.

This week you walked around in the playground for the first time.  And tonight you walked around the living room nak.ed for the first time.  I probably could have watched you do that for hours, if Mama weren’t so worried about possible pee on the rug.  Your little body is so cute.  Especially when it is walking all by itself — a little bit like a frankenstein-like crab — but walking!  I’m starting to feel like a babbling teenaged girl.  I’ll leave it at that.  You are the cutest, most suave, most ambitious little walker I’ve seen in quite some time.

I’m totally unbiased.

I had to cut off your hair.  It was so sad.  But now you really look like a clean-cut kid.  Like, maybe someone besides me takes care of you.  (Well, you and Cakie both always look fab when Mama gussies you up.  Me?  With me you get more of a Little Rascals look.  I try.  It just ends up kind of freestyle every time.)  Now you sometimes make us sing the “Happy Days” theme song.  Though I don’t remember any teenagers-of-color on that particular show, you would fit right in when you wear jeans and a button-down shirt or a white onsie.  Your hair is straight on the sides and back and curly up top.  Again.  So freaking cute.

Ok, my baby.  I don’t really understand how you got so old so fast.  It felt so much longer with your brother.  But I’m so happy to know you.  You make my days whole.  You make our family whole.  We love you.

Love,

Mommy (and Mama and Cake by proxy)

XXXXXXXXXXXX OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO XXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

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Filed under my hon, my second son, my son, Trucker

Contragulations!

I need to send a big Woot! Woot! Out to a few fellow bloggers for whom I’ve been doing a happy dance.

For the occasion, I’ve bought you a cake.  Well, actually it is just a link to the only blog that makes me laugh pretty much every day of my life.

I am so so happy for the Babypantses.  Their little baby finally arrived.  Better late than never.  And late he was.  He drove his moms to distraction.  Now that he’s here the wrinkled brow in the stripey hat totally makes up for the wait.  And the moms built up a lifetime of patience waiting for the precious little dickens. It is a win-win-win.  I can’t wait to see that baby in my baby’s pants soon.  (That’s right, if you are sweet and bring chocolate to my house and live nearby, I will unload bags of babypants on you, too.)

Which brings me to my next, cautiously excited cheer to a fish and a chicken who are, and I quote the nurse who gave them the most recent beta results, “very pregnant.”

Last, but certainly not least, some wild gals are very very pregnant indeed — pregnant with two babies.  Check out the floating smiley face in their ultrasound picture.

From my heart to your collective uteri — congentulations! *

*If you think I can’t spell, you need to go back and click the first link.  Grazie. XXXX!

4 Comments

Filed under blogitty blog blog

Ambivalent Activist

I just spent a good ten minutes looking at someone-I-don’t-know’s wedding pictures on Facebook.  My brother was in some of them, so that’s how I could see them.  I was fascinated because the photography was so good.  He made each shot look like a movie set by that director who did that Steve Zizou movie.  And everyone looked hip.  And he made the cheesy place where they had the wedding look very chic.  Which made me think how sad I am that I couldn’t fly this guy out from California to shoot my wedding.  And how even sadder I am that my friend, Joannie, who I had always assumed would take the pictures at my wedding, has passed away.

All of that mindless wondering lead me to this thought: why am I planning my wedding?  I probably won’t get to have one.

My honey only wants to get married if we can do it legally in New York.  Because why get married in every state, and possibly have our rights taken away anyway like our friends in California?  My state has gone loco en la cabeza, with a coup and whatnot.  The Empire State Pride Agenda — or at least Tom Duane —  appears to be sleeping with the enemy.  And what is my real goal here?  I want rights like any married straight couple.  But those rights wouldn’t be equal even if I could get legally married in New York because it wouldn’t count everywhere.  Because of DOMA,  it wouldn’t count on our federal taxes.   Because of DOMA, we still couldn’t receive each others’ social security benefits.  If we visit A’s mother in South Carolina, we’d be suddenly unmarried.  It almost seems like getting married would make me more, rather than less frustrated.  Speaking of taxes, there is actually a hefty benefit to being an unwed mother.  There are two of us here in this house.

So why do I want to get married?  I really want nice towels and a big party in which I get to feed my closest friends good food.  I want to buy a really nice dress and tell everyone how much I love my honey.  I want a honeymoon.  Yes, I want rights.  But not a bone tossed from the table of civil marriage.  I want the whole beast.  If I can’t have it, I can have all that comes after (with additional lawyer fees, which by-the-way, because of DOMA I’d still have to pay)  kids, a house, a happy life together, babies on beaches with fists full of sand, dinners at the table together, bills, cupcakes, covering our ears for the fireworks.  That I can have.  I do have.

Until DOMA is overturned, I don’t know why I’m bothering to fight or fret.  Until DOMA is overturned, it is all pretend… pretend-ish.  I don’t want to void or belittle anyone’s vows.  I’m just saying.  I don’t buy the bull.  But I do want the towels.

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Filed under family, gay marriage

June, House, Baby Steps

I feel like a very neglectful mom to this blog.  But once the real baby is up and about, there just isn’t much more suspense left.  The whole reality tv show aspect of the ttc blog is out the window. Which is what we all hope for, anyway.

So now the blog feels more like a state-of-the-family letter shoved in with the christmas card.

Here it is anyway.  As a teacher I always look forward to June because it is the last month of school.  And as much as I like my job, I love summer more.  However, I forget how very hectic June is for teachers.  We have report cards; cumulative records to update and pass on; assessments up the whoo ha; the need to pack away and clean and organize our rooms;  a room full of kids who are half sick of each other and half already missing each other, we have the emotional baggage of leaving our kids and our colleagues who are moving into retirement or other jobs, and end-term parties, and many margartias to drink.  It is rough.  Rough and almost over.

On Memorial Day we spent the day lounging in our friends’ new backyard.  For those of you who don’t live in NYC, a backyard is a novelty in these here parts for those of us who are not lawyers or bankers.  The next day a I got a text from my honey: I think I figured out a way we can afford a house next year. I love real estate.  And though I haven’t officially started obsessing, I am thinking about it.  I’m thinking about actually owning land in Brooklyn.  Land and a deck and a grill and a washer and a dryer (Yes, my suburban readers, that is another novelty.  How do we live?  I don’t know.)  There is one old wreck of a house for sale I pass on my way to work each day.  It has seven bedrooms.  And a broken window in the attic.  And water stains down the side of the needs-a-paint-job siding.  I know we probably couldn’t afford to heat it.  But I really want to see the inside.  You know.  Just to see it.

Trucker can walk.  He doesn’t really fully comprehend this yet.  But he can.  He’s done it every day.  And he just turned 11 months today.  Which means he walked at 10 months.  Which is just… what is that? I’m not sure.  But it is cute.  And unbelievable.  In one month he will be a year old.  I just don’t understand that.  Yet, most of his life thus far has involved me sitting back, mouth open, in awe.

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Filed under blogitty blog blog, my second son, NYC What is it about you?, teaching

Dear Trucker, (10 months)

Dear Trucker,

You are so old.  You are one geezer of a baby.  I have no idea how you’ve aged so quickly.  One part of me is still sitting on my bum, making a playlist of music to listen to while I’m in labor — oh, ill-fated unused playlist.

Trucker, you can do so many things now.  This month you took your very first steps.  Mama and Mommy saw them.  And even though we know that you have no idea that you took the steps because you weren’t paying attention, the steps count.  They are already inked in to your baby book.  I refuse to pick you up from daycare to be told that they saw your first steps.  So ha!  Thank you for taking them at home.  Of course you are slowly realizing that you can walk.  Today you were sitting on the floor, then slowly standing.  Then you stood stood stood and slowly sat.  You did it several times.

You’ve finally gotten yourself off of your Mommy-is-the-only-girl-for-me kick and have been giving your Mama some much-earned love.  Whew.  I was beginning to feel like quite the baby hog.  Which doesn’t bode well for someone who claims to be writing a book for non-bio moms.  Now you like to play peek-a-boo with Mama over my shoulder.  You both bob back and forth using my head as a hiding place and you both end up in stitches.

Only Mama, it seems can make you go to sleep.  I swear I didn’t do this on purpose.  Perhaps you know I’m a sucker.  We had one bad bad night during which I decided to try to put you back to sleep.  You fell back to sleep three times, then awakened every time more angry than you were before.  I basically got twenty minutes of sleep that day between 3 am and the next night when I went to bed.  When I fed you that morning, I learned that I was not the only one to blame for your lack of sleep.  You had a white sliver of tooth peeking through the pink of your gum.  Your first tooth.

Have I ever mentioned your hair?  It is really out of control now.  In an effort to prove that I do, in fact, comb it, I took a picture right after a combing and five minutes later.  During the five minutes, I did not touch your hair.  At the end of the five minutes, you look like Marge Simpson without the blue.  On Tuesday, you and Cakie will go to Cakie’s hairdresser and get it cut off.  I know after that you will look like a boy.  Your hair has always made you look more boy than baby to me, but I am fully-aware that after the professional haircut, you will be un-babied — fully boyed.  Sigh.

Next week you will be eleven months old.  Time to start planning your birthday party.  Sigh.  Again, sigh.

Apparently I have not yet freed the Marge Simpson shot from my huge camera card.  But I do want to leave those of you who still bother to read my blog after so much dead air with a little treat.  A full-on shot of my ten month old Trucker:

IMG_2302And that’s my Cakie in the background.

Love you my big boy,

Mommy

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Filed under My Book, my hon, my second son, Trucker