June 2012

Last Friday, I aged another year but I insist that I remain in my “mid-thirties.” I figure 38 would be “late thirties,” so I’ve still got a few years. It seems like just a couple of years ago that I was making this argument about being in my “mid-twenties.”

Mr. W kept asking me what I wanted for my birthday. There really wasn’t anything I could think of. If Allie weren’t in existence, or if Dodo weren’t doing pretty well, I may have a few birthday wishes. Not knowing what else to do, Mr. W ended up bringing home what seems like 2 dozen beautiful yellow and sunset roses from his Costco shopping trip, and taking a couple of hours off work so he could take me out to an early dinner while Jayne was still at home with Allie. We had a delicious adults-only meal at Seasons 52 at South Coast Plaza, and after that, walked into the attached swanky mall to Sephora, where after a looooong hunt (and being delayed half an hour by an annoying salesperson who insisted she was “like, like, a makeup artist, like, you know,” and wasted my time putting unwanted shades of eyeshadow on me that made me look like a zombie despite my saying I just want a simple matte gray to go), I found my gray eyeshadow. It was a Sephora store brand, cuz EVERY OTHER brand they carried was either metallic or glittery or shimmery. I got overexcited and selected 3, and Mr. W insisted on paying for them at the register. So yay for a very much appreciated birthday gift! And good gawd, when did some powder pigments start costing $13 each?!

I was SWAMPED trying to clean up a certain problematic floater’s mess with a 3-defendant attempted murder trial at work, but I don’t want to dwell on that. It’s a good thing that in this day of layoffs and difficulty in getting a job, that I’m gainfully employed. Unfortunately, certain others are also equally gainfully employed, even tho apparently I’M doing THEIR work. Okay, I’ll stop now. There were good things that happened at work on my bday, too. For instance:

My former court reporter Louise must’ve had early notice that she would be in our courthouse on my birthday, because she popped in prepared with three very sinful, very gourmet cakelets (yes, I just made that up) from The Great Dane Bakery for me. This place makes wedding cakes, so you can imagine how fancy her little cakes were. I was being floated all over the building, so I “didn’t get a chance” to share. In the afternoon, a few hours after consuming one such cakelet for lunch, my courtroom assistant noted after witnessing my 700 wpm phone conversation about a case, that I was on a sugar high. Later, the nausea and headache set in. Amazing how sensitive my system has become given my very careful eating ever since I started prepping for pregnancy (and now breastfeeding). That didn’t stop me from eating the other 2 cakelets. YUM.

Of course, given the above birthday indulgence yesterday, I had to go for a run this morning. Mr. W opted to not go, so he stayed home with Allie. Finding myself not accountable to anyone for my run, I got lazy and slowed to a walk shortly after starting up a hill. Suddenly, I looked up and saw this:

So I sighed, obeyed, and ran the rest of the way, not stopping again until I reached home. As my friend Danielle said, “Sign, signs, everywhere are signs.”

I must’ve earned my karma, because Allie was THE PERFECT BABY today. She took her first nap at 8:30a for an hour and a half; took her second nap at 12:30p for another hour and a half. Mr. W’s son came over during Allie’s 2nd nap and we all went out to sushi for Son’s birthday which was earlier in the week. Thanks to her great rest, Allie was so happy, she didn’t even get stranger-shy around Son like she did about a month ago. She was super well-behaved and patient while we ate at the sushi bar, too. After this early dinner, Mr. W and Son went to purchase Son’s bday gift, an iPad3. I swear, Mr. W should get commission for those things. (My mom called, and I told her what our plans were today. She said, “An iPad? And you only got eyeshadow for your birthday?!” I guess she’s a lurker on my social networking site.) I stayed home with Allie and got to enjoy her wonderful mood all day, giggling, playing, dancing, humming. It inspired me to take a 10-minute video of her doing basically nothing but hanging out, crawling and playing, enjoying herself and her blocks that I stack up and she likes to knock down, and a sturdy plastic bag that I inflated and ziplocked. (I know, I’m not supposed to let babies play with flimsy plastic bags or any plastic sheeting, but she was well-supervised.) She’s so like her brother Dodo. You can buy all the expensive stuff you want for them, but their favorite things will be plastic bags, cardboard boxes, and crinkly paper. Mr. W and Son got home from the Apple store in time to spend some time frolicking with Allie before her bedtime, which was also caught on my 10-minute video.

Allie went to bed for the night without a hitch, and Mr. W is spending quality time chatting with his son in the backyard. I finally have the computer to myself. Now, if only the screaming neighbor boys would stop making all the noise playing basketball on their driveway outside of Allie’s bedroom window, it would be a great evening. They kept Allie tossing and turning. I blame summer’s long days and Daylight Savings hours.

Our little zodiacal rabbit just cut her 4th tooth (her upper right front tooth) some time between yesterday and today. Those upper teeth still look a lot larger than the bottom front teeth (which are cute and tiny and white). No wonder they say teething of the upper front and the molars are the hardest on the babies. Blunt exit out the gums. We looked for Sophie the Giraffe yesterday around the house but couldn’t find her. I’m sure Allie would love to teeth on her right now. Jayne said that Allie has been throwing things out her stroller on their walks and often, Jayne doesn’t see or realize what’s been thrown out until they come across it on the street on their second walk of the day. Good thing they take the same route. I’m hoping Sophie isn’t lost. =(

Anyway, once the upper teeth come down more, she’ll look like a little rabbit. I remember my godbrother Jacob when he had just his upper and lower front teeth; he was so cute. He used to click them against each other back and forth. He’s now a few years graduated from UC Berkeley. Time flies.

Claudio emailed me mid-week last week something about how we “need to catch up.” I haven’t seen him since before pregnancy, so obviously he’s right, but I was also wondering what prompted this “need.” I knew that he’d moved from his bachelor pad in San Diego to live with his girlfriend in Anaheim, but I didn’t even realize that until fairly recently. Claudio said he was working from home all last week and could spare a longer lunchtime, whereas my lunches have been shortened by half an hour daily due to my need to get back and pump, so he agreed to drive up to the court for lunch on Friday. I agreed to postpone my pumping a bit.

Turned out, there was nothing dramatic going on. Nobody’s pregnant, had a scandalous fight, made any dealbreaker discoveries about anybody’s past. He just realized that he hadn’t seen me since he moved from San Diego and wanted to spend some time with a friend. I don’t think it’s all Claudio; I haven’t seen much of anyone since having a baby. There just doesn’t seem to be time to get out and do anything meaningful around her naps, and it’s too hard to have people over when the baby’s demands require so much attention. Besides, I can just see my friends’ faces if I have to whip out a boob to feed Allie. Some friends who have had babies, no biggie. But I don’t think my male friends would quite know what to do with themselves. (Not that I would do that; I’d retire to her nursery.)

Anyhow, I’m happy to have good friends who understand and don’t take my disappearance personally, and I’m happier to have friends who go out of their way when they know I can’t go out of mine (anymore). I can’t help but wonder how my future peer groups would change, though. I know that a lot of people with young kids say that their friend circles now only involve other couples with young kids, and that makes sense. But I’d like to think that my friends are lifetime friends. After all, we stuck by each other when I got married and they stayed single. I did form closer friendships with other new moms, tho, as we text/talk frequently and share tips and experiences.

In case you’re bored, you can take up to 3 minutes to watch the below video of Allie giggling. This was taken May 26. We’d just bought her this little sleep-and-play outfit and Mr. W thought the fake Levi’s tag on her fake butt pocket was so cute. (He’d thought it was a real tag at first, then realized it was painted on.)

“One of the charms of a child,” my judge said earlier, “is their ability to be completely absorbed in observing someone. I sometimes become conscious that a small child is observing me — maybe it’s the movement, or the gray hair, who knows — but they are so completely engrossed in the study, until another distraction, something else comes along that takes their attention, and they just move on, with no memory [of their previous object of study]…” He paused, a big whimsical smile on his face. Coming back to the present, he looked at me and said, “I envy you.”

This conversation started because he asked me whether Allie has been interacting much with other babies her age. I told him she hasn’t had much opportunity, but she loves watching older toddlers, especially little girls, play at the parks. Little girls love her, too. They often come up and want to watch her closely, or speak to her. One little girl over the weekend walked up to us and offered Allie her pink cowgirl hat. If you’ve got one minute, you can watch this on the below video, taken by my mom as my parents, maternal grandma, and we had a late lunch at The Cheesecake Factory to celebrate my mom and my joint birthdays.

Isn’t it funny how grownups talk to babies? My grandma looked totally silly. Mr. W thought it was creepy that the entire soundtrack of many of these video clips taken over the course of the meal consisted of this:
Allie: Aaaah.
Allie’s grandma: Aaaaah!
Allie’s great-grandma: Aaah aaah aaah aaahhhhh!
Allie: Aaaah.
Allie’s grandma: Aaaah! Aaaah!
Allie’s great-grandma: Aaah! Aaah! Aaaaaahhhhh!

But yes, Allie is becoming quite the people-watcher. As long as we bring her some of her purees and feed her before our meal comes, Allie is content to sit in her high chair and watch the world go by, even if it’s happening behind her.

It’s very telling who the “kids people” are when you have a kid. Some people (usually older grandma types) would stop in their tracks and come over to talk to Allie, ask me how hold she is, etc. And then there’d be others (usually younger, high-school age people who are more absorbed in their own worlds) who wouldn’t make eye contact with Allie, even if Allie is staring hard at them. I used to be one of those until I got pregnant (unless I was with a baby I knew). I find myself liking “baby people” more. What kind of evil person would ignore a baby this cute, right? =P I remember as a kid also being able to tell the difference based on how adults behaved toward me, and I had resolved to not be like the non-kid grownups, until I became one of those. And then I understood how annoying kids are. Haha. And then I canceled my Disneyland annual membership.

It was also at Cheesecake Factory this weekend when we made a big discovery. Mr. W allowed Allie to chew on his thumbnail and all of a sudden, he said, “Her upper teeth are out.”
I said, “No, the doctor [at the 6-month checkup] said they’ve come down but it’ll be awhile until they’re out.”
“I can FEEL it on my fingernail,” he said.
So I poked her little upper lip up, and looked, and THERE is the white ridge of a big left front tooth, out at least one millimeter already. Her right side looks to be just on the cusp of cutting the gum, too. Wow. She’s been gnawing on her teething toys rather ferociously and sleeping about an hour less a day than normal, could this be why? And just a couple weeks ago, I was wondering why I’ve once again become sore after she nurses, like I had been in earlier days. Jayne had also wondered why she’d been clingier and slightly crabbier a couple random days within the last couple of weeks.

“I’m growing up, mommy,” Allie seems to tell us. “I have my reasons.”

For the longest time, Allie just looked like “Allie” to me. I didn’t see Mr. W in her like his friends/coworkers kept saying, and sometimes she’d have an expression that looked like an expression that I’ve seen in photos of Baby Cindy, but I didn’t really see “me” in her, either. Well, I still don’t see Mr. W or me in her, but recently, I’d see her and in a shock, realize she looks like a total white baby. I’d have a moment of feeling odd, like, “Whose baby ARE you?” but then she’d smile at me or do something cute and funny and all would be forgotten.

Meanwhile, why has it become impossible to get eyeshadow that just simple gray? Just a flat, gray, normal eyeshadow. Not something silver and dramatic and shimmery. Not black glitter. I guess the trend now is all about sparkles, which SUCKS cuz what about us working women? By that, I mean those of us who work in a professional setting, not strutting our stuff up and down Hollywood Blvd. I spent forever browsing the makeup aisle at my local drugstore yesterday, studying all the various brands of eyeshadows, and the matte colors didn’t have gray, and the grays all were teeny-bopper glittery. I finally found a set that seems pretty flat and basic (actually, Mr. W found it), and bought it. But at home, after trying it on, I looked about ready to deny my age and hit da clubs. Or maybe sprout some fairy wings and fly around Disneyland granting wishes. I can’t go to work in a COURTROOM with that crap on my eyelids! I can just see my conservative judge in the morning greeting me, and then doing a double take while saying, “Whoa!” So the little palette is now sitting on a more appropriate wearer’s desk, in the stepkidlet’s room waiting for her to come home from Germany and Spain. More and more, I see a need for a time machine. (So I can go back to the 90s and stock up on plain gray eyeshadow.)

We tried to visit my parents at their home on Saturday late afternoon to celebrate Father’s Day a day early, but Allie took such an epic noon nap (she slept for 30 minutes, woke and fussed and cried for 20, then dropped down and slept another hour and 45 minutes until I went to wake her up cuz it was getting so late) that by the time we hit the road and had to deal with the massive freeway congestion due to an early car accident, we realized there wouldn’t be enough time to spend at my parents’ until we had to turn around and take the long drive back home. So I called my mom and postponed the visit for a day. Instead, the three of us had a dinner out at The Counter (gourmet burgers) and ran some errands at Home Depot so that Mr. W could re-landscape two little areas in our front yard. Allie does pretty well at the restaurants in the high chair now, provided we bring along her purees and feed her there first. After that she plays with her toys at the table and people-watches.

Sunday, Allie’s napping was even worse than what she did to us on Mother’s Day. It seems like she knows when the holidays are and makes sure to give us a hard time as her own little joke. I remember Thanksgiving and Christmas being major cry-days. Mother’s Day, she had a difficult noon nap and then phased out her 3rd nap. Yesterday on Father’s Day, Allie fell asleep in my arms while I soothed her to sleep for her morning nap, but the doze didn’t survive the put-down, and she refused to go back down. I picked her up, she settled into sleeping position immediately on me, dozed off again, and again, when I put her in her crib, she woke up and popped up on her hands and knees, refusing to go down. This time I walked out so she could soothe herself into sleep, as she’d done before. However, now that she could do all sorts of stuff to keep herself awake, such as roll around, sit up, play with the bumpers, crawl to a different section of the crib to look out, she was active and cried through her entire morning nap period. As soon as I got her at the end of the nap time, she was fine.
During Allie’s 45 minutes of screaming, rolling, crawling, sitting, and crying, it was very hard for me but I sat on my hands and stared at the monitors, doing what I have learned through much research to do (i.e., nothing). Mr. W came downstairs and said it was pointless how I was just “torturing her.” I told him it’s not torture, it’s sleep-training, but I think he was upset at me all day anyway. He enjoys the fruits of a well-rested baby, but he hates me for it and the process. I guess I have to be okay being alone in this if my priority is doing what I think is best for Allie’s development. I’d read other resources recently suggesting the exact same thing I’m already doing, and saying that now is an essential time to put her sleep needs and nap training into action.
Allie’s noon nap lasted over an hour and she was out solidly, didn’t even turn her head. At this point I had spoken to my mom and told her I would be putting Allie down around noon and she’d sleep hopefully an hour, and my parents offered to come to us so that we wouldn’t spend so much of Allie’s very limited awake time on the road. They were running on Asian time and didn’t get to our house until almost 3:15 and were surprised when I said Allie was about to take her 3rd nap. My mom said accusingly, “You told me she was going to be done with her nap!”
I said, “Yeah, at 1. It’s 3:15!”

So Allie spent about 15 minutes playing with an excited pair of grandparents before I took her upstairs to try for her “as needed” 3rd nap, the nap she’d been phasing out almost half the time. She yawned, rubbed her eyes, and fell asleep on me, but as with the morning, she woke up and resisted at put-down. I picked her up, she immediately went to sleep on me again, and protested upon put-down. I tried the put-down three separate times but finally gave up. She did get a few minutes of dozing on me, I guess. I was a sweaty mess and just took her back downstairs. Mr. W looked a little smug when he saw my nap efforts failed. He reminded me he’d told me that she wouldn’t take it, but I had to try because she’d missed one nap already. We all went to a Chicago pizzeria for an early dinner. Allie’s moods were fine the whole day except for when she was crying during nap protests.
Mr. W suggested going to a nearby park with my parents on our way home as it was still early, 5:30p. So we played there awhile, with my mom being papparazzi.

Allie with Daddy and Grandpa on Father’s Day. My dad said that they went to Sprouts just before they got to our house, and a young male grocery checker looked up at my dad and said good-naturedly, “Oh, happy Father’s Day!” My dad thought it’d be fun to give the poor kid a hard time and said, “How do you know I’m a father?” Awkward. Dad laughed telling the story, saying the kid just assumed that because Dad is gray-haired that he must have kids.

Allie tries to stand when she’s sitting, even without something to pull herself up with. She’ll just bounce up and down on her butt hoping that miraculously, she’d bounce high enough to end up on her feet. When we offer her a hand, she eagerly takes it and pulls herself up to stand and walk.

She had a lot of fun being bounced around on daddy’s shoulders, having access to pluck things she couldn’t any other way, such as leaves and daddy’s hair.

In the car on the way to the park, my dad asked, “So when she sleeps after this, she stays asleep all night?”
“Yeah, until 6:15 in the morning when we have to wake her up before we go to work,” Mr. W said.
“Wow,” my dad said.
On the way back from the park, my mom said to Allie, “Sleep like a good girl, okay? Hope you can sleep aaaaall night!” I had no doubt at the time that she’d sleep all night through. It’s the one thing I can count on these days, given how her naps have been. But I started feeling nervous, now that it was brought up. I didn’t know how to handle if she started waking up in the middle of the night. Back in the day, I would just go in and feed her because that’s likely the reason she was up crying, the rare times she was. Now, I know she can sleep the whole way through (with natural awakenings, of course, after which she puts herself back to sleep without making noise). But I’d heard a few people say that babies stop sleeping through around this age and would wake and cry. I don’t know what I’m supposed to do when that happens. Do I do the sleep training thing and just not respond so she’s given an opportunity to learn to self-soothe through those periods again? I know she’s vulnerable at this age, due to her growing memory and her ability to make mental connections, to developing a night-waking habit once she realizes she’s able to get someone to respond to her calling. But I can’t just not respond if she’s actually wailing for long periods of time. How much time do I let her cry? 🙁
Back at home for the night after my parents had left, Allie went to bed easily, nursing to sleep quickly. But suddenly, a few hours later at 9:30p, I heard her wail. She let out a few more wails, then got quiet again. By the time I was able to force myself through my immobilizing terror and go grab my cell phone so that I could see what was going on thru the baby cams, Allie had moved to the foot of her bed and was sitting up. Mr. W was oblivious, playing his game on the computer with his ear buds plugged in. I showed him the baby cam on my phone, and he cursed. I stood in the living room, frozen, staring at the monitor, reciting over and over in my head, “Lie down and go to sleep. you can do it. Just lay down. Put your thumb in your mouth. Lay down and close your eyes.” At some point I became aware of my hard breathing. And then my sweating. Allie crawled around, pushing down on the crib bumper to look over it. I know that Jayne sometimes ducks down in Allie’s room after putting her down and Allie’s caught her there before and laughed, suddenly finding herself in a game of peek-a-boo, so maybe Allie’s checking to see if someone’s there for her hidden behind the bumper. It probably wasn’t more than minutes before Allie settled on a position she liked, sucked her thumb, and went back to sleep. But it felt like hours. Overnight, I was awoken by what I thought was Allie’s wail, something that hasn’t happened in awhile. My head saying, “Please be an auditory hallucination, please be an auditory hallucination,” I checked my cell phone for the baby monitors. Allie was asleep, and I was relieved and exhausted. I’m not sure if I’m truly getting auditory hallucinations in my sleep, but it’s shocking how much random noises sound like a muffled baby wail — screeching car brakes, cats, drunk people far away, garbage trucks.

I’m hoping this is just a very, very short developmental thing. =P

On Friday when we got home from work, Jayne was sitting outside the front door with Allie on her lap, and greeted us with, “Uh, I think you guys should lower her crib mattress all the way.” She told us about how Allie had awoken from a nap when Jayne was watching on the iPad’s monitor in the kitchen, and Jayne didn’t go up to get her right away, but a few seconds later, she looked back at the monitor and saw Allie standing at the foot of her crib looking toward the window. A flip flop halfway across the kitchen was proof of how fast Jayne went running upstairs to grab Allie before Allie decided to try vaulting next. Also on Friday, Allie started saying…THAT’S RIGHT, “mama.” Not “dada,” not “papa,” but “mama.” Mr. W says it’s her first word, but I wasn’t sure, since we didn’t hear her say “hi” again (which we had thought was her first word), so who knows, maybe she wouldn’t say “mama” again, either. I was wrong on that. “Mama” has become her new favorite sound. I don’t think it means “mother” to her, because based on the times she says it, it seemed at first to refer to food. Then through the weekend, it was just something she’d say at any time she wanted to say something. I took advantage. See this video of the first time she tried carrots on Saturday morning:

Mr. W complains that he’s unable to view my blog videos through his iPad. Anyone else have that problem? What about through a computer?

Allie now easily sits herself up on her own, and she also started crawling a little. She doesn’t crawl much, because her preference is just to get herself to the object on the ground she wants to reach better, or to get to some leverage so she could pull herself up. She still prefers standing and walking to laying and crawling. When she has contact with someone while she’s sitting or laying, she’ll use that contact to pull herself up and walk. All these new skills unfortunately cut into her sleep, as she’ll just sit up and play or mosey on to a different corner of her crib to chew on the bumper ties instead of going back to sleep when she wakes during naptime. She’s been getting an average of 13-ish hours of sleep per 24-hour period as opposed the old 14-15 hours. (I’d expected this, though.) Changing her diapers and clothes have become a 20-minute task sometimes because she keeps rolling onto her tummy so she could do the downward-dog pose, getting on her feet, but unsure of how to get her hands to leave the floor so that she could stand. She also managed to figure out how to walk in her Pooh activity walker this weekend. They’re small hesitant steps and are more circumstantial than deliberate, but she’s going through the motions.

Food is going really well. I have been adding a new food to her daily intake every 4 days, and she hasn’t had any negative reactions beyond harder clay-like poops, which I think we’ve resolved by working prunes into her diet. So this weekend, in a solid meal, she had an ice cube square of pureed peas (thawed, of course) thinned a little with prune juice, and an ice cube square of pureed pears thickened with some iron-fortified organic baby rice cereal. Since she also gets regular feedings of breast milk, that’s milk, vegetable, fruit, and grain. Once I have enough fruits and veggies introduced, I’m going to try white meats, i.e. chicken and turkey. Allie doesn’t seem to care much for sweet stuff; she doesn’t take juice well from a bottle when we tried to help her constipation by offering diluted prune and pear juices, and last night, Mr. W put a piece of watermelon in a mesh teether thing, which also didn’t go well. She chewed on it and sucked, and as soon as juice flowed into her mouth, she made the most awful face and shuddered, pulling it out. She tried chewing again, the face was made again, and she refused the object after that. I’m just happy she will eat prunes and pear at this point, even tho I have to “hide” it in other foods, such as rice cereal and peas.

My current favorite ball-point pen that I’m using to take trial notes with suddenly went from black ink to gray ink, and then to invisible ink. I examined the clear ink tube through the clear barrel and saw that an air bubble at the bottom, where the ink joins the metal writing tip, is keeping the ink from reaching the writing tip. I don’t know whether this is a hopeless situation. The rest of the ink tube is full so it’s such a waste if I were to give up on this pen and toss it. Is there a way to get the ink to start flowing down again? This isn’t a liquid ink pen so the ink is pretty viscous. And then I suddenly felt very ignorant because I have no idea how a ball point pen works beyond the basics of, the ball rolls based on friction against a surface, ink rolls from inside the tube to the outside and sticks to the surface. How does the ink make its way down the tube? Gravity alone seems unlikely, since the ink doesn’t slosh around when the pen’s put down on its side.

I started scribbling on a piece of scratch paper, trying to somehow create a vacuum effect so that the ink gets drawn down as air leaves the tip with the scribbling. Sometimes it seems to work as I’d get a few seconds of weak gray ink, but then it would disappear again. Re-examining the bottom of the ink tube hopefully, it does appear like the edge of the black ink has touched down onto the top of the metal writing tip, but the air bubble is still present. I’m not sure air can be worked out this way to draw the ink down; maybe only ink can pull its other molecules down, and it doesn’t work when the train of ink is interrupted.

It’s shocking how little we (I?) know about something that’s so pedestrian and ubiquitous.

Since I’ve been back at work, I’ve been meeting Mr. W for lunch dates nearly every single day. It sort of replaces our dinner dates and outings that we used to have before Allie came along. I can’t stay out long because I have to return to work early to pump, so Mr. W is still gypped 1/3 of his lunch time. Now that my trial is in full swing, I’m going to give Mr. W his full lunchtime and just stay in and work through lunch. It’ll certainly help my waistline.

My angles have rounded off so much in the last 2 months after maternity leave ended that I was convinced I’d gained 15+ pounds. Thank you, all the readily available chocolates, cookies, junk food at work and sedentary job shackled to my desk. And thank you, rich savory lunches with Mr. W. (In case that didn’t translate well over the internet, imagine the “thank you” said sardonically.) I’ve had no time to gym as I’d expected to; during lunchtime I have to choose between eating, pumping, and gymming, and I’d chosen eating and pumping as the essentials and gymming is the luxury. Since I’m still producing milk regularly, my appetite has been voracious. And since Mr. W has not been gymming, either, he has not been focused on his diet. The result are dinners like earlier this week, when we decided to try out a new pizza joint with a buy-1-large-specialty-pizza, get-1-medium-1-topping-pizza-free. The pizzas are definitely smaller than we’d expected, and the slices are small as well, but 9 slices is 9 slices. I have never eaten 9 slices in 1 sitting before. I mentioned it at work as one of our trial attorneys were walking out the door, and he actually backed up, returned to the courtroom and said, “Did I hear you right, Cindy? NINE SLICES?” Yes. All me. 9 slices by myself.

I weighed myself this morning, cringing, gritting my teeth, trying not to scream or pass out. Okay, it wasn’t that bad; just mild curiosity. I was relieved. I’d only put on 6 lbs since my return to work, weighing in at 117. Body fat percentage at 22%, with muscle mass at only 40lbs, which I believe means the 6-lb-increase was pretty much all fat, but 22% is still acceptable to me. Even so, putting on 6 lbs in 2 months when I’m only 5’2 is not an ideal situation. (Here’s info from my prior weigh-in(s), the last when Allie was 4.5 months old, 2 months ago.)

Okay, junk food ban starting forthwith.

Wait, it’s ice cream’s 226th birthday today! Okay, junk food ban starting tomorrow.

Mr. W had noted that despite having signed all the forms and taken the blood tests to donate our 3 remaining embryos several months ago to the fertility clinic, his credit card was still being charged monthly for embryo storage. We expected there to be some delay in seeing the charges stop as our tests needed time to clear before the doctor signs his approval and acceptance, but it’s been 2.5 months. So I called the fertility clinic today to ask about that.

I felt totally like a bad mother as I listened to myself inquire as to whether the results of the tests were okay or if there were a problem with the embryo donation since we were still being charged for storage. It sounded like I may as well have been saying, “Hey, stop charging us for our children, we already told you, we don’t want them anymore. We’d rather have the money.” Ugh.

The end result of the phone call is that the person I spoke to at the office checked through the computer records and confirmed that as of May 5, everything was finalized and we should’ve stopped being charged. She was going to call the finance department to make sure they take our credit card off file for the automatic payment deductions. She’ll refund for the May charge.

Bye-bye, little embryos. Mommy loves you. May you find perfect loving homes with parents who will love you at least as much as I do.

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