The Turd in the Punchbowl

I couldn’t fall asleep last night and I started wondering what I should blog about – besides rambling on about Entourage. I know I said I have NOTHING on my mind right now but the truth is this is one of those times when I only have one thing on my mind and it’s something I wish I wasn’t thinking about so I tried ignoring it for awhile and pretending it wasn’t there but that’s completely not working, so here it is.

The truth is I feel fat. Right now I feel really fat. And for me, at least, I kind of am fat.
I am not sure how exactly how much I weighed when I gave birth but pretty much, I’ve gained weight since I gave birth. It’s rotten. I hate thinking about food all the time and I hate being stressed about what I look like when I worked for so long and so very very hard to be thin. I hate it. I really hate that none of my clothes fit me and that eve the things that do fit are all bunchy and too tight and unattractive. I hate the tightness of things and the shortness of things and pulling things down and hitching things up.

Even thinking about this stresses me out so intensely. I hate that I am right back here again. And please don’t tell me that I have nine months to lose it or that I got a baby out of the deal. I know all that. I do. It doesn’t change the fact that I have ONE pair of pants that fit me and a closet full of size 4 clothes and that I weighed 156 pounds when I gave birth and I weigh 149 pounds now and that I just spend two years working my ass off to lose all that weight and now it’s right back on and this feels really hard and really awful and it’s making me feel panicked. I worked harder than I ever have in my life to not feel gross in a pair of shorts and now I can’t even look at those shorts. Thinking about shorts and my thighs makes me want to throw up, I’m so stressed out it. That’s got to stop, I think.

So. I don’t want to have to buy new clothes. And I don’t want to feel stressed or panicky or fat any more. I don’t want to look down and see rolls. I don’t want to have to fidget with my t shirts. I want to spend some of my summer wearing shorts instead of elastic waisted pajama pants. And I also don’t want to hide the fact that I had a baby and I gained weight and I’m having a lot of trouble with that.

My goal is simple. I want to lose enough weight to fit back into all my clothes. At the same time, when I get there, I want something else I never had before. I want to feel ok about myself. I want to feel enough. I want to feel like I am attractive and I am the right size. I don’t want to wish I weighed five less pounds for the rest of my life.

I’m signing back up with Weight Watchers online. Right now, I think. I was going to wait until Tuesday but I think I have to do it now. I’m going a little crazy and I need something to help me, kind of right now.

I’ve got some new challenges that are scaring me this time around. I’m lucky because I know I can do this, I did it once before. But I also know how hard it is because I already had to do it once. And now I’m also stressed out and bored and really really hungry (from breastfeeding), which for me is a deadly combination. When I am bored and stressed and hungry AND there are ice cream bars in the freezer, look out. All I can think is that it’s just gonna have to be hardcore for a bit. We might just have to buy not buy any freaking ice cream bars for awhile.

A Glimpse Into the Vast Nothingness That is My Brain

I have to say, it’s really wrong how much I love Entourage, and also how often I think to myself “Ooooh, I really like Vince’s outfit” As in, I want it for myself. I keep thinking about this navy blue t shirt and these dark jeans and these aviators he had on and wondering where I can get all three of these things. I also can’t help but notice that Vince wasn’t wearing a two month old baby in a Moby Sling. Perhaps if I get the stupid sling in navy blue it will blend in? Now that I’m a mom I feel hopelessly unhip. I’m one step away from elastic waisted jeans. Actually I’m not even, because the only jeans that would fit me, if I allowed myself to wear them, would be maternity jeans, with an ELASTIC WAIST. Sigh. Tuesday night while watching Entourage I noticed Eli was watching it and that’s bad dude! Babies should not watch tv. But it’s his favorite show and so I had to ask Mr. E “Do you think Entourage is appropriate for two month olds?” (kidding. I mean, I did ask that, but I was KIDDING.) Although if Eli was allowed to watch TV, I’d let him watch Entourage before Baby Einstein. HATE.

Apropos of nothing, I once asked a friend of mine who was in the navy if he had to wear the “navy outfit” and he gave me a look of withering scorn and informed me that men don’t wear outfits. So now whenever I can always tell guys I like their outfits. Isn’t that fun? Life of the party over here.

Speaking of men and outfits, Eli is outgrowing all of his little blue sleepers and such at a rapid rate as he doubled his weight in only two months. The doctor seems shocked, but it doesn’t surprise me, seeing as how my breastmilk is likely comprised of chocolate, chocolate, and leftover Easter chocolate (thrown in for a little variety).

So, the Moby Wrap. Eli has three snuglis, a maya wrap, another ring sling made of thai silk (it really is gorgeous), an infantino sling rider, and a baby bjorn. Yikes! Luckily, I didn’t buy any of this crap, as the only one he likes is the Snugli, but it’s hard to get him in and out of, he can’t nurse in it, and it hurts my back and shoulders. We’re going to try the Ergo once he can hold his head up, but since he refuses to EVER be put down, I need something to use until then, and I’m thinking the Moby wrap. If nothing else it’s returnable and my decision has nothing to do with the fact that Brad Pitt is wearing one with Shiloh in it on the cover of US Weekly.
And coincidentally I think I just decided to give up celebrity gossip magazines. I don’t read them a lot, as in I don’t have a subscription, but I do read them sometimes and I realized they don’t make me feel good about myself and who needs that shit? I prefer beating myself up over Martha’s stupid impossible craft projects rather than Jessica Biel’s ass. But then what do I read on the rare occasion that I get a pedicure? Sartre? Somehow that doesn’t seem right.

Must start running again. Am nervous about state of the boobdom during running. Wish me luck.

Have decided to dress child only in stripes. Very Gaultier.

That is all.


Thin Skin

When my son was born I didn’t have an instant bonding moment with him like I’ve heard some people say they have. Waves of love didn’t wash over me and I didn’t cry and I didn’t think “oh my god I love this creature more than anything else on earth ever no matter what.” Which was ok. I was kind of prepared for that. I know myself and I know that sometimes I am slow to warm to these things that involve massive amounts of change all at once and when I didn’t have the overwhelming love wave crash I was fine with it. Plus I was so so so tired and out of it I really didn’t even think that much about it, you know. I knew I was happy, don’t get me wrong, but there weren’t fireworks in my hospital room or what have you. I’m not that girl.

And then we went home and the business of taking care of another human being took hold and right in the thick of it, covered with breastmilk and spit up and poop and being so incredibly tired and having your period for five weeks and all that, bonding is pretty far down on the list of things you worry about. You just don’t have time. You’re too busy changing diapers and dealing with visitors and endless feeding and baby poop charts and breastfeeding consults.

But we sent out birth announcements for Eli about two weeks after he was born and I was waiting in the car in the post office parking lot while Mr. E mailed one to my cousin who lives in Japan. Eli was in the back seat and despite my misgivings regarding of the moment hipster indie wailings, Sufjan Stevens was playing on my IPOD and the song John Wayne Gacy Jr. came on. And I will admit I’ve never paid super close attention to the words of any Sufjan song but I’ve always found the melody of this particular song really beautiful and haunting and yet when Sufjan started to sing about Mr. Gacy Jr and his predilection for young boys although I am sure I will be kicked out the hipster club forever for saying this, that was it for me and that song. No more for me.

And then when I read a few days later that little Iraqi kids – LITTLE KIDS – were being used as decoys and killed in car bombs in Iraq – I don’t know. Hearing that hurt me in a way it never had before. And then Mr. E’s mom told me about what it was like when her parents sent her brother off to Vietnam and all I could say was I couldn’t imagine and I really couldn’t. I could not imagine that. Eli going off to war. It makes my breath catch just to think of it.

And when Mr. E came home that day last week and told me about what had happened at Virginia Tech I felt the ground lurch under me and I had to grab the counter to keep from throwing up. People’s babies, older, yes, but still, just like mine, lined up and shot. Again, it’s hard for me to breathe when I think of that. It’s hard for me to think that we live in a world where that happens. And then I tried to watch Blood Diamond and even that’s just a stupid fake movie and little boys were getting strafed with gunfire and I had to turn it off ten minutes after I started it and when I tried to explain why I couldn’t watch I couldn’t even really explain it but I think Mr. E understood anyway.

People often say that parenthood is like forever having your heart walking around outside your body. I don’t know that I would describe it that way. For me, it’s as if I’ve developed this incredibly thin skin I never had before. I think I’ve always been sensitive, but this is to a different degree.

This might not even make sense. But this is the best way I can think of to explain this thin skin of mine – and what feels like a constant heartache for the violence of our world. I heard that Sufjan song, thought of boys scared and hurt or worse; and on that same day I looked down at Eli’s hands and saw that on one of his fingers he has this tiny little ragged crooked fingernail. And it hit me, all at once, that somehow that tiny tiny fingernail, something so incredibly small – had just become my whole whole world.

Yes, They Do Make Baby Legwarmers

Picking Up Socks

You know how when you were a kid and your brother never did any of his dishes and so you did them for him every single time? Or when you were in college and your roommate left her rabbit in her room and you ended up cleaning up the rabbit poop that was all over the hallway of your apartment? Or how when you first moved in with your now husband and he left his socks on the bedroom floor and you picked them up for him every fucking morning? And you know how every time you did the dishes and picked up the poop or washed the socks it pissed you off immensely, but not as much as the fact that every time you complained to each of these totally irresponsible people their answer to the situation was always “Well, don’t do my dishes, then” or “Don’t pick up my socks, if it makes you so mad.”

I wish, with every fiber of my being, that I was that person. I so wish I was the person who could step over dirty socks every morning of my life, ignore them forever, and leave them there until they crumbled into non existence, eons from now.

I am so so so so so so not that person.

Thanks Mom

Lately I find myself doing something I really don’t want to be doing.

And that is this:

I’m very judgemental of moms who don’t breastfeed.

Not out loud, and not on purpose, and I told myself ahead of time I wouldn’t be a mommy judger and I’d just mind my own damn business, but the judgement happens, in my head, all the same, despite all this. Of course I wish I wasn’t like this, and so I’m working on not doing it, and as I thought about how to not be like this I started thinking about why am like this and I think it’s the same reason that while I was in the process of losing sixty pounds I was so judgemental of everyone else who wasn’t. I was extremely judgemental of the larger person in my office who ate a bag of Chex Mix every day as a snack and I couldn’t help myself then either, and the reason I think I do this is because when I work so hard at something, it’s really hard for me when other people don’t.

In other words, dieting sucks. NOT eating the ice cream sucks. And guess what? Breastfeeding sucks too. It’s really hard and it’s never ending and it’s just not something I really enjoy. I do it anyway, because it’s something that’s important to me. Just like I DIDN’T eat the bagel. But when you are making yourself do something that is really difficult and that often times sucks and that you wouldn’t choose to do if there were any other way, it makes you really bitter towards all the other people who aren’t choosing that path. Not eating the bagel makes you kind of hate the bagel eater even though you know all the good reasons why you shouldn’t. Breastfeeding is so hard, and I am making myself do it any way, and so I judge people who don’t.

Man, that sucks to admit that, because it makes me sound like a huge asshole, I know. Maybe it’s just that simple. I need to not judge people who chose another way because otherwise I am a huge asshole. And there’s really no excuse for it, sadly.

The more I think about it the more I think that my problem is that breastfeeding is a thankless task. Although I have convinced myself that it is of the utmost importance that my child never consumes a drop of formula, let’s be honest here…we’ll never know if it made a damn bit of difference in anything, in the long run, and he’ll almost certainly never say thank you, at least not out loud. When was the last time you called up your mom and thanked her for all the boob time so many years ago? Yeah, me neither.

What it comes down to is this. There’s so many good reasons to breastfeed and none of them mitigate the fact that for me, breastfeeding is incredibly hard and I have to force myself to do it every single time and this makes me resent everyone who doesn’t. In my search for freedom of this resentment I searched for some deeper meaning, some real reason why I was doing this besides the fact that supposedly someday my son might have improved muscle tone or some other La Leche league hoo ha and all that. And then I remembered that once upon a time, someone breastfed me. My mom sat with me for countless hours and breastfed me for a gazillion years and I never said one word of thanks to her either.

So yeah. I’m breastfeeding. It sucks. And I’m doing it anyway, beacuse someone who loved me once did it for me. And I hope that this circle, this feeling of, I guess, repayment? Will somehow give me a chance to let go.