Tuesday, April 29, 2008

even the computer smells funny

When I got into my top choice for law school, I was shocked. Really, really shocked. The acceptance letter came in a thin envelope, and everyone knows what that means. Applying to the school had been such a stretch that I wasn't even particularly stunned about the thin envelope, and as I sat in the campus mail room, I considered throwing it away without even opening the envelope, to spare myself that additional twinge of seeing the actual words written out. I settled on sliding open the envelope over the gray trash barrel, and I barely slid the letter out, opened the top flap, and almost lost my lunch as I read "We are pleased to inform you..." I spent the next two hours blubbering into the phone as I read the letter to my mom, and Josh, and his parents.

When Josh proposed, I was also shocked. We'd been dating only 2 years, and had just entered the foray of long-distance dating when I moved to Connecticut and he remained in Boston. I'd come up for the long weekend after my first semester finals, and he woke me early on a Sunday morning and began professing his love to me. A proposal was the furthest thing from my mind, and I was terribly annoyed that he was waking me up so early to state the obvious. I rolled over to give him a dirty look, and then I saw it, the look on his face, the box in his hands. So I made him start all over again because I missed the proposal the first time through. I was seriously surprised, and seriously wasn't expecting to even talk about married for another year at least. He definitely succeeded in blowing me out of the water.

Over the years, I've had many other moments of surprise. When I got a job offer I wasn't expecting, when I got a high or low grade in a class, when Gabe said "mama" for the first time, when my car broke down on the highway in rush hour traffic, when a childhood friend finds me on Facebook after 20 years of not talking.

This, though, this takes the cake. I spent a week thinking I had some horrid form of the flu. Some vicious flu that made you weak and lightheaded and achy and nauseous. A virus that made it difficult for me to even sit through Gabe's music class because dancing in a sitting position was too much exertion for me. Turns out, I didn't catch the flu. I caught the pregnant bug.

I'm totally pregnant.

And it was very much a surprise, a surprise that had my heart pounding in a way I have never experienced, and had Josh staring at me dumbfounded when I blurted it out to him. Don't get me wrong, we're excited and happy and anxious, but we were definitively holding off on trying for another 3-6 months, at least. We were actively preventing. Turns out the best laid plans, blah blah blah.

It's early, I'm about 6 and a half weeks, almost 7, and we saw the wee little flicker of a heartbeat yesterday on the ultrasound after I called my doctor to tell her the unbelievable news. I'm also horribly, terribly, disgustingly nauseous and dizzy and sick in a way I wasn't with Gabe. I am barely making it through the day, and nothing seems to help. Not crackers, not nausea reducing wristbands, not eating throughout the day, not drinking water or juice or flat soda, not lying still, not walking around, not special prenatals that claim to reduce morning sickness, not anything. I was sick with Gabe, but it started much later than this has, and if you have any crazy advice that worked for you, I beg you to share it, even if it sounds totally wacky. I'm willing to try anything at this point.

Despite the nausea, we're really excited, and yesterday I looked at Gabe from my position on the couch and wondered if it is even possible for us to make another as amazing as he is. It isn't, right? It can't be possible. I have to wonder about the timing of all this, too, given all the drama going on with my parents. I almost feel as if this is an imposed distraction, something to take me away from my place in the middle of all the problems. We're definitely lucky, that's for sure. In the meantime, we'll be keeping all fingers and toes crossed for a healthy pregnancy.

Now if only I could stop gagging, everything would be perfect.

Monday, April 07, 2008

the travel never ends

Gabe and I arrived late last night from another trip to California, where we've been for the last 10 days. It was a looooonnggg trip, and both of us are relieved to be home. I could tell by the way Gabe kissed each of his toys as he pulled them out of his toy basket, and the squeals of glee when he saw the dogs. I could tell how relieved I was by the way I threw myself at Josh when we got off the elevator at baggage claim. What can I say? It was a long trip, followed by a long flight with Gabe on my lap the whole time. I'm shuddering just thinking about it.

We were in California dealing with some family issues, and also attending the wedding of a law school friend. The wedding was this past weekend, and I had the best time I've had in quite some time. My law school girlfriends and I met up at the wedding locale and went out on Friday and Saturday nights until the wee hours of the morning. My mom took care of Gabe while I lived it up at restaurants and tourist spots and karaoke bars. Why did no one tell me how fun karaoke is? I don't think I've laughed that hard in months. I spent most of the time during karaoke doubled over in tears from all that laughing.

I really needed the release, because the truth is that things on the home front aren't great. My parents appear to be in the process of separating, and there are painful, raw emotions running all over the place. I don't want to talk about it much, because it is complicated and difficult and I'm very sad about it, but that is what is going on.

Gabe, as seems to be the norm around here, is sick again. He has been up coughing for the last few nights and was running a low-grade fever for several days. Tomorrow we have his 15 month visit, and I'm hoping they can shed some light on what is going on with him. Besides this sickness, though, he is cuter than ever. Now I understand how you can stand to see your baby grow up, because the person they turn into is just as adorable as the wee babe they were! He is scrumptious.

He is running around like a maniac, climbing on everything, jabbering nonsensically in the cutest possible way. When he wants you to sing him a song, he moves his fingers as if he were singing the "Itsy Bitsy Spider". He does that sign ALL THE TIME. Once I've shown him a trick once, he almost always remembers how to do it the next time. He can throw things in the garbage, put toys away, give hugs and kisses on command, go up and down stairs, feed himself with a fork (somewhat), open and close doors, retrieve things by name, throw a ball and kick a ball, share a bite of food with you, and the list grows constantly. It is a lot like living with a tiny monkey that learns things instantly, a little like a sponge. And it is so much fun.

So despite all the sadness, life is still really great. We are still really lucky. In the meantime, I'll be enjoying life at home while the three of us are together. At least until we have to leave again for Florida next Tuesday. Ugh, someone shoot me now.