Wednesday, June 29, 2005


While I was nursing, my doctor prescribed the "minipill" for birth control, since extra estrogen and breastfeeding are not a good combination. When we weaned, I asked her if I should switch back, but she said that the "minipill" can be just as effective. If I was concerned about the regularity of my cycle, though, "regular" birth-control pills would be a better choice.
Well, I wasn't then, but I sure as heck am NOW! My first several cycles on the minipill were as regular as they ever were before I started taking BC in the first place. This last one lasted almost 40 days -- unprecedented for me. I didn't feel pregnant, and I took two home pregnancy tests with negative results. Still, this has never happened to me before (except when I WAS pregnant), so I didn't really know what to think.
We have talked about when to start on #2, and insofar as it lies in our power, we would like to wait a little longer. This doesn't feel like the right time, although some of our friends are currently gestating their second kids. That was a factor in the Hobbit's timing, but it doesn't feel so important now. We wanted for her sake and ours to have kids that would be close in age to people we spend time with. Now, though, any additional kids we have would have siblings as playmates. Plus, we're older and a little wiser and we understand better what it will take to parent a second child. I wouldn't change a thing about my first pregnancy -- timing or results. Nonetheless, I would like to approach my second (and probably last) child with a little more precision, if possible.
Anyway, relief prevails at our house today, AF has arrived, and on Friday I am going to return to the doctor on hands and knees. All hail the green pill week!

Monday, June 27, 2005

A Little Help?

Dear Clothing Retailers,

It is still June. Summer has just begun. I would like to buy a new swimsuit. I am neither a perfectly-figured teenage girl with a belly button that must be shown off, nor yet quite old or overweight enough to desire a mou-mou shaped swimsuit with a frilly flowered skirt.

All I ask of you is a simple, flattering suit that hides my stretch marks. And, if it's not too much trouble, I'd love to make my post-pregnancy bottom appear a little smaller, and my post-breastfeeding boobs look a little bigger. Is that too much to ask? I don't think so.

I'll be shopping again later this week. Please keep these requests in mind. Thank you.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Why I Shouldn't be Allowed to Listen to the Radio

1. This morning, the fluff morning radio show DJs to whom I usually listen were busy disparaging a new study. The researchers who conducted the study found that married men make less than single men, and that married men whose wives also work tend to make less than married men whose wives stay at home and do most of the housework.
The researchers concluded that this second trend is due to a number of factors: the husband has more time to focus on his job, and he is also able to spend more time honing his marketable skills. Also, since each spouse is engaged in the activities to which they are most suited, the household is more efficient.
2. When the fluffy station went to commercial, I changed to the Christian station. Unfortunately, instead of playing music, the DJs there were discussing the President's plan for Social Security. Their conclusion on SS in general was that Americans expect the government to take care of them from cradle to grave, and are thus replacing God with government.
I should state for the record that 1) I firmly believe that having one spouse stay home can be very beneficial for some families, and 2) I really have no firm opinion about Social Security and what should be done about it. However, I will be fuming about these two stories all day now. The first one, because the researchers seemed to take for granted the assumption that all women are more "efficient" at household duties than they are in careers. The second, because I have always deeply resented the notion that being a Christian and being a political conservative necessarily go hand-in-hand. Perish the thought, but why is it wrong for us, as the ultimate authority in this government, to use our collective resources to support each other?

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Romeo and Parvati?

What is the appropriate response to this situation? Does anyone have an "in" with Dear Abby or Miss Manners, and if so, can you help me out?
A friend from high school, with whom I have had sporadic contact over the years, just sent me an email announcing his engagement. Congratulations, right!? Sure, except he met this woman via a Yahoo chat room, and has yet to meet her in person. She lives in India. No worries, though, God guided him to the chat room in the first place, and God has assured the two of them that they are in fact in love and are meant to be married.
I am a Christian, and I do believe that God can guide our decisions. However, I am also a realist (I don't think I'm a cynicist, but you tell me). It's a little hard for me to believe that an internet relationship with a would-be immigrant (if she is who she says she is) is completely without ulterior motives.
I sent him a supportive email, figuring it wasn't really my place to interfere. Did I do the right thing?

Thursday, June 16, 2005

What's in a Name?

The Hobbit is one-quarter Indian. No one would ever guess this about her by looking -- she is as fair-skinned as they come, with blue eyes and a crazy mop of deep red, almost auburn hair. Nonetheless, her paternal grandfather immigrated to the US from Calcutta as a graduate student, married an American woman, and DH was the result. (This Grandpa is coming to visit us tomorrow, which is what made me think of all this.)Anyway, I am enough of a traditionalist that I changed my last name to his when we got married. It's quite long, by American standards, and every time we meet someone new, we get a lot of surprised looks. Some of the typical comments:"Wow! How on earth did you ever learn to spell that as a child!?" (DH, by this standard, is a sort of super genius -- he could and still does spell it with amazing ease!)"Oh, Indian, really? What tribe?" (DH, being braver than I am, has responded "the Bengali tribe" to this question. Unfortunately, people who ask this question don't know any more about Native Americans than they do about India, so the sarcasm is lost on them. It's not that we expect people to know what nationality it is -- I mean, 4 years ago I couldn't have told you. But trust me, it is not a name that sounds remotely like any Native American name I've ever heard.)"Gosh, what was your maiden name? ... Really? Why on earth did you take his!?" (Um, because I thought it would be fun to inflict pain on my coworkers by making them learn to spell it? Is that a good reason?)And on one wonderful, shining day, when a telemarketer called: "Is there a Mr. {several stumbling attempts to pronounce monstrosity of a name} -- oh, I hate this effing job!" {phone slammed decisively down}And that, my friends, is the real reason why we keep it (aside from pride in hubby's heritage, blah blah blah). We put people to a secret test -- if they're willing to learn to spell and pronounce the name, we know they must really care.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

The Ducks are Coming

Okay, Universe, enough with the ducks. Whatever you're trying to tell me, please just say it -- I don't know what the ducks mean!
When the Hobbit started saying the word, I really didn't think it meant anything to her. We all got a good chuckle out of it, while my rational mind said, "Oh, she's trying out a new sound. How age-appropriate and cute." Now I think that my poor innocent baby is being used as a vessel to communicate some unholy waterfowl-related message.
Since I first posted that entry, I have started seeing ducks everywhere. They are on TV. They are IN MY DREAMS.
The last straw came today at work. In good Corporate America fashion, my department is being reorganized. As a result, I now have a new job in a new group, with a new boss. This new group is called Quality Assurance, but there is much debate about what Quality we, as members of this group, are Assuring. There is also rampant confusion about what we should be called (it is TOO important, so leave me alone).
My coworker's tongue-in-cheek suggestion today? Quality Assurance Consultants -- Q.U.A.C.
Help! Please tell me what this means!?

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Lost in Translation, Part Deux

When DH read yesterday's entry, he said, "'Duck'? I thought she was saying 'dock.'" Shoot, this is even more complicated than I thought!

Monday, June 06, 2005

Lost in Translation

Toddlers should come with Toddler-to-English dictionaries. The Hobbit's recognizable words at this point are "hi," "mama," and "da." She hardly ever actually says "mama", and "da" can mean anything from "daddy" to "what is that?" to "now I'm going to throw my cup on the floor and there's nothing anyone can do to stop me." Despite the multiple meanings, we can usually decipher these messages. Once the cup is on the floor, I have a pretty good idea what that particular "da" meant.
Others, however, are not nearly so clear. This weekend, she started saying "duck." I didn't teach her this word, and she never says it in reference to any ducks that I can see. Possibly she has some imaginary mallard pals? If so, there must be an awful lot of them, because "duck" has almost replaced "hi" as the word of the hour. Either way, I can feel really good, I think, about the fact that my daughter thinks it's so much more important to be able to name aquatic birds than to be able to call my name. Sob.
The Hobbit definitely does exercise a fair amount of caution in the words that she chooses to learn. Since "hi" has turned out to be so popular, we thought she might be interested in learning to say "bye-bye." Nope, nothing doing. She will sometimes wave bye-bye, but that's it. I was talking to a friend of mine this weekend; she is the mother of a little boy who's about 9 months older than the Hobbit. Her son is exactly the opposite, in that he is very eager to dismiss people, but hates to greet them.
I think she should try to teach him my grandfather's favorite phrase, "Here's your hat, what's your hurry?" Which, as I'm consulting my Toddler-translator, is rendered something like, "ha-duck!"

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Singin' the New Job Blues

It's been almost two weeks now since I started a new job. I'm still at the same company, but different boss, different department, different responsibilities. It's a very good opportunity for me, and I think I'm going to be good at it, ONCE THEY LET ME DO SOMETHING.
Therein lies my problem. I was at my old job for almost 5 years, and in that time I've forgotten what it's like to be the new kid on the block. I am officially in training, which means that when one of my new coworkers has work to do that I will need to know how to do, they come and get me and show me how to do it. We are rapidly running out of things that I haven't learned yet, so I sit at my desk a lot and read procedures (or blogs, but let's not mention that to my boss!).
I can't wait until I have real work to do again, but right now nobody really has anything for me (or else they don't trust me to do it? - NAH, that can't be it. :) ).
My husband also started a new job this week. My new position is a good step up for me, but his is HUGE -- a much better fit for him than his old job. Unfortunately, his new job is in a different location. We used to be able to commute together, but now I drive alone every day, and he can walk to his office from our house (unfair).
I have decided to use my new solitary commute time to improve my mind, so I went to the library and checked out some books-on-CD. Our library doesn't have a very big selection (conundrum -- the books are all on tape, and the new mommymobile mini-van doesn't have a cassette player -- what to do?). I was able to find some good stuff, though. Right now I'm listening to Langsten Hughes reading some of his own poetry. One of my favorites:
Hold fast to dreams,
for when dreams die,
life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.
I was surprised how moving it was to hear him explain his thoughts on his work, and to tell the stories behind some of the poems. He speaks a lot about his influences, as well, especially African-American music like blues and spirituals that affected the tones and rhythms he used.
A very wise man, Mr. Hughes. He understood that singin' the blues can put the whole thing in perspective so you can move on past it.