Monday, August 29, 2005

A Trio Interpretation

The day Junebug decides to grace us with its presence, two other very important people will be assisting me in the delivery process. They are my husband (of course) and, Christi, my best friend since first grade. The other night, we all had dinner together to discuss any concerns about the delivery room dynamic (there were none - Go Team!). At the end of the meal, we each picked up and ate the little metallic paper wrapped mint that the waiter had left with the bill. I couldn't help but notice how each of us had discarded the wrappers. The top one is Christi's, the bottom left is hubby's and mine is on the bottom right.

As you can see from her meticulously folded version, Christi is in the best position to take care of all of my needs, concerns, and delusions in the delivery room. Hubby's seems to be a reflection of confusion and uncertainty (but present) and mine, well, you can see how I must be feeling.

The Pop-Up Timer Has Popped

I happened to notice today that I can see the bottom of my belly button. I don't mean underneath it, I mean the very core of it, a part that has been neatly packed away for the past 36 years. The button has inverted and revealed its virginal flesh. Mind you, it doesn't stick out like an extraneous body part (thank goodness) but barely protrudes revealing a place on my body I've never seen before. I would also like to mention that this is a clear indication that the baby oven is done cooking this little bird and would like it removed as soon as possible.

I am very round in front now, like I have stolen a fourth grader's dodge ball and swallowed it whole, air and all. It's disturbing. One redeeming quality of this compact design, however, is when a carload of guys go blazing past me and begin a sequence of cat calling and hooting from behind. It's only a matter of seconds until they are knocking each other out trying to stuff themselves back in their vehicle windows when they see I am a front loaded baby makin' machine. Such satisfaction!

A couple of weekends ago, hubby obliged me with a weekend at a nearby resort. I was craving a couple of days of sitting by a pool, watching a TV loaded with channels, having someone else to cook and clean for us as we embraced one of our few remaining childless times together. There is such a place close enough to town in case we needed to suddenly head to the hospital. Like many resorts around Austin, this place is a golfing destination, a haven of greens and bogies. It's a very coiffed location with very coiffed guests. Being the lo-fidelity, indifferent couple we have a tendency to be sometimes, we arrived at the valet station in a car so covered in tree sap you couldn't see out the windshield. Empty water bottles, CDs and newspapers carpeted the floor boards and a basket of dirty laundry filled to the brim was sitting in the backseat. We snickered to ourselves as we handed a guy the keys and scurried inside to check in. "Hey, Uncle Jed, which way to the cement pond?"

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Mental Multitasking

I’ve been lying wide-awake in bed for the past hour. *Note: It’s 5 a.m. and we go to bed between midnight and 1 a.m. I’ve never been a morning person so I’m sure it’s Mother Nature’s way of preparing me for many sleepless nights to come. In my wakefulness, my mind races, ping ponging from one random scenario to another. Reminds me of being in a hotel room and the jerk next door turns on the TV at some ungodly hour. The volume is so loud, so intrusive; you can hear every word, every jingle. That’s my brain pre-daylight. Somebody call the front desk already.

As I try and get mentally comfortable, I wrestle with continual physical discomfort, the effect of months of sleeping on my left side. My limbs are taking on quite a bit of water weight now and I painfully drag my soggy parts to the loo a few hundred times throughout the night. My hands swell to the size of my doctor’s (he has huge hands, something I considered to be an asset until he started doing the cervical exams). I can barely bend them but can make an awesome sign language letter “C”. So, in the midst of my mental pre-dawn jibber-jabber, I was lying there thinking about how I would defend myself if someone broke into the apartment. My water-logged limbs are useless. Effective kicking and punching would be out of the question but I thought, “Hey, I could muster one hell of a slap with these giant hands of mine! They’re like water balloons on sticks. Just beat’em senseless, wear ‘em down with my frightful paws ‘til they’d beg for mercy." That's some quality programming in that head of mine, by the way.

So with that thought out of the way, I spent some time listening to the A/C click on, click off, click on, click off. Hubby, in the meantime, was snoozing contently, softly breathing, and I grew envious of his obvious comfort level. At some point though he started twitching his lower extremities like he was stepping on hot coals. He was probably dreaming of tiny Chihuahuas nipping at his ankles and feet again. He has this dream frequently. I think it has something to do with being from Laredo.

Of course, I spent most of my mental energy thinking about my baby who is due in 3 weeks! This month we go to the doctor’s office every Wednesday to monitor progress. Last week, doc claimed the child had a disturbingly large head and we might need to put a c-section on our radar. He even wrote in bold letters “large head” in two places on my chart. The c-section chapters are the ones I skipped in all of my baby books! I looked accusingly at my sweet husband who did have quite the cabeza when he came into this world and his mom had to have a c-section with him. “Tweety Bird,” I think he was called as a child. I missed that fine print somewhere. Thankfully, yesterday’s appointment revealed that Junebug isn’t unusually large in any way but having the baby sooner than later was highly recommended. I’m taking suggestions on how to get this delivery thing jump-started, by the way. He also told us that I’m 1/2 a centimeter dilated. Whoo-hoo! That’s about this…----…big. Not monumental but it’s a start. Finally, we’re finishing up this phase of this beloved endeavor.

Speaking of endeavors, did I tell you that an over-zealous army of drunken drag queens attacked our house one night and assaulted its exterior? See for yourself!!!

Can you scream “garish?” Yeah, so I agreed to a version of these tones but damn, don’t things look different when they’re life size? Hubby actually loves it and that’s enough to make me just fine with the cartoonish dwelling. I’m sure the neighbors have already phoned the neighborhood association though. What’s the prognosis on a date of completion? I never got a complete answer from my contractor yesterday, come to think of it. Internally, it’s still only walls and concrete. I’m guessing six weeks, maybe? Insert Serenity Prayer here.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

More Than Cake

This past weekend, despite many little curve balls thrown by fate, my husband and I finally settled in to our new apartment. It’s not home but we’re cozy enough. Junebug and I made the transition easier with a two-cupcake-a-day habit. I made 24 of the little SpongeBob SquarePants paper cupped chocolate devils. I didn’t know a box of mix would yield so many! *Mental note for future PTA events. I did frost and deliver 8 of them to a good friend of mine who loves anything “cake.” Miriana is the cake princess of the planet and can be cajoled into any feat, task, project or dare with the promise of cake. She’s Bulgarian and to hear her squeal the word “cake” as if asking its whereabouts RIGHT THIS MINUTE is a gratifying pleasure. She’s also a very talented painter. Back in late December, before I knew I was preggers with Junebug, my husband and I were vacationing in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, by default (we were supposed to be in Rome but weather delays changed our plans for us). While I was drinking rivers of tequila, wine and more tequila, I fell in love with a painting at our little hotel. I tried to buy it off of the proprietors who ran the place and who claimed they bought it for a song – robbery of an artist, if you ask me, but they wouldn’t sell it. I photographed it and wandered in and out of the San Miguel galleries asking if anyone knew of the artist. I had no luck. All I had was the photo. Well, a couple of months ago, I asked Miriana, the Cake Princess, if she would be interested in trying to recreate the painting for me. She agreed to but we never really followed up on the notion (i.e., pregnancy, my seasonal job, contractor negotiations, etc., etc.). On Sunday with cupcakes in hand, I was presented with a 4 by 5 foot reproduction of the piece and it’s a truly stunning work of art. It’s breathtaking in size and beauty combined. It is a reflection of love, life, and family. Perfect for my new home, my new baby, and my new life with my husband. It is the icing on my cake. Thanks Miriana!

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Onward Through The Fog

I want to apologize to all that read my blog for not keeping it up to date. A list of excuses would normally follow this sentence but I won’t bore you with the details.

Junebug is due to arrive within the next 4 1/2 weeks. I really can’t believe that this little person will come out of MY body, recognize my voice, and let me take it home to care for FOREVER. I can’t verbalize how surreal this really is. It's crazy that we get to name it, too! A much different opportunity so unlike naming the historical collection of dogs, cats, gerbils, horses, chickens, snakes, and so forth that I’ve loved in my lifetime. Smokey, Pokey, Oso, Stubby, Checkers, Babo, Kelly’s Dream (yes, I had a horse by that name). Our baby name decisions so far? Edie Allende Zuniga and Willem Joaquin Zuniga. If you love the choices, then you can see the baby someday. If you dislike them, then you can kiss my buns.

Latest personal pregger developments? I have the longest fingernails EVER! They’re talons and it wears me out to file them. I do it in shifts. About two nails at a time then I check my pulse, drink some water, stretch the filing arm and crack my neck before starting again. I also have to confess what a goddess vision I am to behold in the mornings now. As a result of this stage of pregnancy, I find the right side of my body puffy with water retention. Huge right foot, sausage fingers, and an eye resembling a middleweight boxer’s after a punch in the socket. Add to this a mess of hair that was put to be wet and I am a vision of horror, an ogre of the a.m. Thank goodness my husband is usually still barely awake when I dash off to hide the offending nightly developments. Jealous? Oh, I can't wear my wedding rings now so I'm embracing the unwedded mother look, too.

So what’s happened lately? Well, last Saturday we moved again. This time we relocated from our cozy little furnished duplex (that had already been pre-leased for the fall semester) to an empty one-bedroom apartment 3 blocks from our construction nightmare, I mean, castle-to-be. Since our material life is still in storage, we’re using bits and pieces of furniture I’ve collected lately. This includes 4 chairs and 2 lamps from the MTV Real World house (these have been thoroughly sanitized) and a chair and a small table from my current landlord. Our super comfy bed was moved over from our studio in addition to lots of baby stuff. In an effort to nest, an instinct that can evolve into very unhealthy behavior if not given some attention, I have hung up ALL of Junebug’s clothing. This includes bibs, side snap shirts, gowns, onesies, pants, overalls, etc. I realize that these articles of clothing have a place in a dresser drawer but a) the dresser is still in storage, b) I have lost track of what Junebug has gotten over the past couple of months, and c) I just want to see all of those little things in plain site and daydream about them covering tiny arms and legs. Oh, there’s not actually a rod in the closet yet to hang these on so they’re teetering on the edge of a shelf. It’s the best this mommy-to-be can do.

A collection of my sisters-in-law (I have 8 now, I think) threw us a baby shower the same evening that we moved (can you say POOPED?). Junebug scored the Pack N Play (portable play pen for those who aren’t in the baby know) and an awesome swing outfitted with enough bells and whistles to keep mommy and daddy entertained. We got lots of clothes (hope the baby just LOVES yellow!) and keepsakes made by the hands of some very talented and wonderful women. Junebug even got a handmade sock monkey that I will be using over the next couple of weeks to practice swaddling.

The construction is moving along nicely, according to my designer/keeper of some of my deep, dark secrets. She's been in town this week to spank the contractors and their crews. I think they like the spankings. She's picked out the carpet, tiles, fixtures, hardware and so on and so on. I get so excited everytime she shows me something and then I run to my apartment hideout and wait for her to call to show me more stuff. I like it this way. I'm not cut out for this house remodeling stuff. No thanks and never again.