11.29.2004

Home

We're home, we're fine. I am extremely sore and mostly immobile from the post-birthing tubal ligation surgery. How do people function after c-sections? Damn. And now my milk is coming in. Boulder time! Ow ow ow. I will post more details later, but thanks to everyone for all your wonderful warm thoughts.

11.27.2004

welcome
miss mali jane rosenberg
born nov twenty-sixth
11:52 p.m.
7 lbs 15 oz
all is cool
more later

11.26.2004

Thoroughly Confused

I guess "every pregnancy is different," but WTF? This baby should have been here by now.

Although I am ever so grateful to have made it through the absolutely scrumptious Thanksgiving dinner that everyone else cooked while I sat by the odd stove insert in our fireplace and systematically incinerated a good chunk of the documents that the shredding people wanted $200 to dispose of. (When you're a crazy pregnant lady, people cut you lots of slack.)

We used all our china and crystal and silverware. The latter had never been used even though it was a wedding gift from almost a decade ago. Seymour's mom, the cutlery benefactress, was absolutely tickled that we finally busted it out. It'll probably be another decade before she sees it again (it all has to be hand-washed--right!), but there is no contesting how pretty it looked.

My mom and Seymour's parents were dishwashing angels. Bless them! But since we don't normally make food for 15 people when we're only entertaining six, they ran us out of every square inch of foil, tupperware, ziplok baggies, waxed paper, and every other storage-type device or material in the house. Time to target the store of the same name.

Off to enjoy a bonus day of extreme nesting.

11.25.2004

C'mon C'mon

No signs of anything yet. Damn it all. Had contractions every 15 minutes through dinner last night with my mom, family, and Seymour's folks, which made me none too chatty or fun. But, as I warned Seymour they might, they ceased when we got home and I went to bed.

Then Scabby decided she needed to sit on my head and have a good scratch-fest at 2:30 A.M. No going back to bed for me after that--I was up until 5:30 or so (good opportunity to catch up on the DS9 TeeVO backlog and complete the Leelo's Day books which were supposed to go out, oh, a year ago).

Now I am extra low-energy. And feeling cumbersomely big. Every day this baby decides to stick around my interior is a day for him or her to put on weight and thus rip me farther asunder (big babies arriving quickly do not leave much time for such things as wonderful, wonderful stretching and tear-avoiding perineal massage). I want it out now!

But it is Thanksgiving. My OB told me that I was under no circumstances to have this baby today (which, because I am contrary, just raised any odds in that event's favor). My auntie (my mom's sister and JP's mother-in-law) is in town but needs to leave tomorrow. She wants to see the baby before she leaves, dammit. Seymour says that, for work reasons, Saturday or later would work best for him.

I still want it out now. My dear little Heetachi Magic Waand didn't do a damn thing. I wonder if a double-shot of caffeine would do the trick?

Regardless, happy Thanksgiving to any U.S. passers-by, and a pleasant day to the rest of you.

11.24.2004

39 Weeks

Never made it this far before--first baby was 3 weeks early, Iz was 13 days early, Leelo was 10 days early. Most intriguing. Ready to go. Don't want to be responsible for anything about Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow, and so am wondering how to get this little person motivated to appear and remove me from the scene. That way also I'll win the betting pool.

Suggestions so far:
-Sex (yeah...right)
-Spicy food
-Any others?

I was once again a whirling ball of energy last night, trying to complete all sorts of never-before-considered last minute tasks. My mom remarked that I must be getting that last pre-labor energy burst, and that the baby should definitely be coming soon! Didn't have the heart to tell her that I'd accidentally ordered a regular latte, right before dinner.

11.23.2004

Carpetbaggers

Those of you who ride on the DAN! train, or are simply POA's (parents of autistics) trying to do the best you can by your child know that the associated therapy and treatment field is rife with people who are only too eager to use your grief as a direct line to your wallet.

We've definitely put Leelo through some procedures of questionable validity, but in each case they weren't that costly, were harmless if not effective, and we were apprised of the price beforehand.

However, thanks to a brain fart on the part of Dr. P or his staff, Leelo's blood was recently subjected to a test that we didn't ask for, at a cost we were never warned about. An $845 test. I am totally fucking livid, as Dr. P is not covered by our insurance--we pay for him 100% out of pocket.

I expected to pay about $800 total for the blood draws, testing, supplements, and office visits involved in Leelo's re-evaluation. That is what the lot cost 18 months ago; we budgeted for that. We did not double-budget for it.

Though I am not out to impugn Dr. P or his staff, I feel that not advising us of the cost of this test beforehand is certainly an egregious fucking oversight, and I will make sure that they know we are not pleased.

---

Addendum: I do not consider our initial diagnostic outlay of $800 to be anything other than costly, nor do I consider those same tests to be less than informative.

What I am complaining about (this time) is a tendency by some autism professionals to assume that parents will not only suck up any costs thrown at them, but will in fact bend over, thank them, and ask for more.

Can't Deal!

I can't stand having all these people in my tiny house! Where there is only enough room for everything exactly and if you don't put things back precisely where they belong, it all starts erupting into this clutter miasma.

Where people don't understand that when I say "you need to be downstairs or outside when Leelo is working," that doesn't mean go upstairs and use the phone right next to him and Therapist F and talk very loudly so Leelo can't concentrate even one bit. Jesus Fricking Kee-RIST.

If I am this grouchy the baby must be coming soon. Or maybe it's just that it's Tuesday, our very worst day for busy-ness anyhow, I turned my alarm off this morning after the first blast and since Seymour has an only a tenuous grasp of the realities of alarm-setting vs. scheduling, we all woke up late late late, plus I've all sorts of gardening work scheduled for this morning with flaky people who don't always return my calls...why am I even bothering writing about all this! I have nesting to do.

Apologies for the boring domestic rantiness of everything lately, but if you come here for reality then, hey, that's what reality is these days.

11.22.2004

Twiddling Thumbs

My mom is here to help out with the squallers.

I've got most of the baby stuff done, and holiday stuff too.

The house is mostly ready, except for the laundry which I am trying to get completely done as I don't want anyone else touching it while I'm in the hospital (a documented neurosis, hopefully everyone will understand this time that I really do fucking mean it). Oh, and the office closet is a mess, but I've been ignoring it for three years and don't have a problem with tackling it post-partum. It's not a priority.

Turns out I didn't do anything with my Carfe Prisse store. The ideas I was considering have already been done, sort of. And as I was mostly thinking of them as present designs anyhow, I've simply ordered the existing items for the kids in question.

I didn't write a story as a holiday gift to torment all the kids with this year. Perhaps I'll write one for Iz's birthday. Most of the kids still got something home made, although much goofier and simpler than a book. Oh well.

Mostly I've been spacing through the last few days, working working working on nesting crap, and considering at each junction--dropping Leelo off at school, picking Iz up from school, taking Leelo to OT, just getting out of the car or getting the kids snacks or going up or down the stairs if I've forgotten something--how much more complicated each task will be with a tiny one in tow. On the flip side, I am grateful for the ease with which such tasks get accomplished in the here and now.

Also, I worry. Several of my friends have experienced horror and catastrophes in or right after leaving the hospital. I won't elaborate because already I am freaking myself out. But know that I take no step in this for granted, that I qualify everything with "if all goes well, then," but that I am still excited and am hoping for the best.

OB appointment tomorrow morning at 9:40. Will I make it? Lots more Braxton-Hicks today.

Panic!

Things must be getting imminent as I'm embroiled in a frenzy of holiday gift-wrapping and sending-off and delivering. Recipients are encouraged to open and enjoy gifts now, why not? Individual items get so lost in the holiday crush.

Other than this panic, which is probably also due to the fact that my mother is arriving this afternoon to stay for 6 (six!) weeks and will be sleeping in the very same office/nursery that is currently covered in giftie detritus, no other signs of anything.

11.21.2004

Misery

I still am not sure why, as this didn't happen during my other pregnancies, but I spent yesterday in absolute misery. Absolute. The baby dropped, and in doing so crushed my bladder and rearranged my ligaments to the extent that any change in position was excruciating. Somehow I got all those errands done (except the books, which dear Seymour retrieved) even though all walking had to be done in teeny-tiny steps, as though my feet were bound.

The drop was accompanied by lots of nausea and malaise. Fun for my family! I spent the non-errand part of the day downstairs in the nursery/office, verrrrry sloooowly doing what needed to be done. As the discomfort increased, I contacted the OB on call. She was not in the least impressed, said that these were all typical late-pregnancy symptoms, and that I should go to bed. Which I did.

Today is better. Not 100%, but I am semi-functional. Or at least I feel reasonably certain that I won't spent the entirety of Baby Daniel's christening sporting a rictus grin.

11.20.2004

No, No, No

No, Jo, I am not in labor. But I am feeling disoriented and disorganized--five million things to do and can't concentrate on any of them.

Last-minute errands for today:

Baby Store: bassinet sheets, changing pad, changing pad covers, christening present for my nephew Daniel whose parents have chosen me (!) to be his Catholic godmother, and whose baptism is tomorrow. Heathen Seymour is to be the godfather. Hope the priest doesn't check his credentials. Or ask me if I've been to Mass in the last two years.

Bookstore: Holiday books for various folks. I think my brother who works for the DOD will like Stephenson's Quicksilver. Therapist L will like vegetarian cookbooks. Don't know what the heck to get Seymour's dad.

Waldorfy Store: Obnoxious presents for family babies whose parents will either appreciate such things, or who I snottily think chew on too much plastic.

Salon: Iz and I to get mom/daughter manicures/pedicures--reward for her for stopping chewing on her toenails (groooooosss!). I just like to have nice feet in the delivery room.

Baby/labor bags packed, need to go in the car. Reading: I am bringing some writing from a non-blogging friend, and Artemis Fowl even though the informal writing style is distracting and sets my teeth on edge. I can't bring the main book I'm reading as if I fall asleep while holding it and it falls on the baby, it'd crush the poor little bit.

Off to the cafe, hopefully to be joined by Badger and co.

Woke up this morning with bad gas pains that won't go away. Somewhat worrisome, as this is how Leelo's entrance into the world was precipitated.

Web Channel Dedicated to Autism, Etc.

Yep, it's true.

I am too frantic to check it out right now, anyone else want to take a stab?

I'm so panicky that I'm sitting here with my bra on but not hooked because I can't stand bouncing but I also can't deal with the pain of hooking it up and Seymour's not awake yet and there's shit to be done.

11.19.2004

Big Fat Leelo Updates

Leelo just hasn't been doing as well lately as he had been about six months earlier. Part of this is his having been ill (low grade, but real) for the last few weeks. Part of it may be that we measure most of his progress in terms of his expressive (spoken) language, whereas lately his big strides have been in receptive language (understanding, following directions) and gross/fine motor skills.

Still, he's having a rough time. You can tell by this past week's
team meeting notes.

Another explanation may be that his system is all fucked up again. I had a big long meeting with the inestimable Dr. P (our DAN! doctor) this morning, to go over our progress during the last 8 months. Here are the horribly written, quickly dashed off notes.

Quick version: Our boy has a yeast overgrowth (again) and a gut flora imbalance. This will make a person act crazy/drunk, I do believe that. We need to treat it. Eliminate sugar, try some new antifungals, probiotics, and digestive enzymes. No problem.

Dr. P also would like us to take him off of dairy, peanuts, almonds, and soy. But not gluten, which is a relief. Still, our vegetarian boy gets all his protein from the soy and the almonds. Don't know what the fark we're supposed to do about that. I may get a second opinion on this matter, as these sensitivities were determined by IgE and IgG measurements, which are controversial. They may simply indicate that, yes, he does indeed eat a whole lot of those items.

Leelo is deficient in a lot of minerals and vitamins. Dr. P thinks that this is due to his gut's inability to properly absorbs/transfer nutrients, due to the critter infestations and resulting inflammation.

Finally, he is once again pushing chelation. A softer, gentler form: Transdermal DMPS cream. We're to research and consider that. In the mean time, a combo of B12, TMG (like DMG but superpowered) and Folinic Acid (absorbable Folic Acid) should help boost some of the enzyme pathways that mercury may be suppressing.

Plop

Well, there goes the ol' mucus plug. Guess I really should get that hospital bag packed.

Flabbergasted

Literally. That is what Iz's teacher said about Iz's Spanish reading and comprehension during our parent/teacher conference last night. Apparently, after only three months' exposure to Spanish, our girl is already reading several grade levels ahead. Hmm.

Of course, she is also defiant, disorganized, and distractable. So it all balances out. We're to make a chore chart for her at home to help her become more responsible.

Iz has also figured out how to manipulate her classmates into cleaning up for her, as needed. Sneaky thing. Never, ever give that girl an "in," or you're toast.

She got a "needs work" in her English class. I asked the teacher what they did in this class (which is taught by a different instructor). She said that they listen to short stories, and then discuss what it's about, what is the beginning, middle, end, etc. I asked if they were aware that Iz already knows how to read in English, quite well, and she said she didn't know, and will mention it to the other teacher. Yeah, that might be an issue--she just might be, perhaps, BORED OUT OF HER FUCKING GOURD.

But for the most part, the teacher agrees that Iz is working at or above grade level, and is appropriately placed. Whew.

11.18.2004

Two More Annoyances

Since I do nothing but grouch these days. Although there was a brief moment of wonder and astonishment this weekend when I placed some baby keepsakes on the new changing table/dresser, and realized that we really are expecting a new family member.

The office/nursery purging and transformation resulted in a five-foot tall stack of personal papers that need to be shredded. Plus several more bags of non-recylable receipts and carbons, etc. Estimate for shredding from a service: $200. FUCK THAT. Anyone want to come help host a bonfire in my driveway this weekend? I need those boxes gone.

My mom has been in a snit since Sunday. She has a particular take on her sulks that I usually find simply aggravating, but this time she's driving me fucking insane. And it's not even that she's wrong, as she isn't. She merely has never, after 35 years, figured out that attacking me when I've done something she doesn't like and then sulking for several days while everyone else in the family wonders why I am being so horrible to her that they all CALL ME and ask me what the hell happened, makes me completely incapable of any conciliatory measures.

Here's what happened. This weekend, I, crazy nesting pregnant lady, had a chance to get the futon and excess office furniture out, and the changing table and crib into, the house. Iz's Godmother Stacy and her partner offered to do it out of the goodness of their hearts, and even assembled the crib. I of course said "yes yes yes" to everything. Our home is strangely configured, so, even though the move only took care of four pieces of furniture, it took about two hours. Two rather rough hours, especially with the unwieldy futon frame.

I had been up most of the preceding 24 hours dealing with the office transformation. Any other current or previous crazy nesting ladies know that, although it would have been easier to merely toss all the papers and crap in boxes and shove them in the garage, that wasn't going to happen. Everything had to be done right. I purged all non-essential records from the last seven years and created a labeled filing system for the remainder so that now even Seymour will know where to find critical documents.

I did try to get some sleep during those 24 hours, but Leelo decided to wake up moving morning at 4:00 A.M. and woke me up completely as well. Darling Seymour agreed to watch him as I dove back into the office.

By 5:00 that afternoon, all the papers were purged and all the furniture moved, and we were all exhausted. At that very moment, my mother called to check in and ask how things were going. "Really well!" I crowed, "we finally got all the office furniture out and all the baby furniture in!"

***silence***

"But you said you weren't going to move the futon until after I left!"

Uh, well, now. I had mentioned that as a possibility. But I also completely forgot about it when faced with the opportunity to move all the furniture at once. Plus she never mentioned that she didn't want to sleep in the living room. Let's also recall that I made many, many attempts to find her alternative lodgings up here whereas she completely dropped the ball on investigating housing exchange services.

Regardless, my reaction to anyone else would have been to say, "Wow, I'm sorry. I spaced. No big deal--we'll move the crib, and get you an air bed."

However, she didn't leave me space for that. Instead, she launched into me and told me that I was an ungrateful, horrible daughter and how could I possibly do such a thing to her when she was coming up there to help us out and take care of us and what the hell was wrong with me? Hadn't I already said that we'd be keeping the baby in our room, in a bassinet?

Being exhausted and crazy, you can imagine my reaction: "We spent two hours getting that futon out of there, and are NOT about to put it back. We'll figure out something else." FYI, I do not curse at my mother, much as I'd like to in such situations.

Her reaction: hanging up. And bitching to everyone else in the family. To the point where I've now received a call from my Dad and my pilot brother JD, and am certain to hear an earful from her sister this morning as she's visiting JP (her daughter-in-law) and will most likely be coming to coffee.

Apparently I'm to fling myself on my back and expose my soft underbelly to her some time before Monday, when she flies up. Fuck that. I wrote her and told her that we'd be happy to move the crib and get an air bed, but that that room is now the nursery and that wouldn't guarantee her absolute privacy, as we'd still need to come in to change diapers and clothes from time to time.

I don't have time for this shit. I don't have time for whining and manipulation, even when she is largely in the right. I don't know why she can't figure out that the reason we kids explode in her face all the time is because her reaction to any perceived wrong is a howling guilt attack followed by sulking and then more guilt. It makes us fucking insane and attack right back, instantly.

GAAAAAAAAAH. Seymour has half a mind to call her himself and tell her that of course we will accommodate her however she needs but that I am severely stressed at the moment and she needs to back the hell down, but I suspect that would just help feed her self-righteous fires.

In the meantime I am waiting for her to reply to my email. It's been almost 24 hours.

11.17.2004

Weird Traffic Spikes

For some reason my blog traffic has almost doubled over the course of the last two weeks. What's up with that? Are you all checking to see if the thirdling's arrived yet? Apologies for any delay; I'm guessing you'll need to wait at least a week.

11.16.2004

Bitchfest

I) I am in pain. It's not intense unless I need to use my hands or wrists. Holding the phone or a book? Hands go numb. Holding Leelo's hand tightly enough to prevent him from bolting across a busy parking lot? Numb and painful. Twisting my hands behind my back and then grabbing all five thousand hooks of my bra tightly enough to fasten them? Searing agony.

My fingers look like a tasty red clutch of sausages. If I extend all those fingers simultaneously, they turn white. If I'm not doing anything at all, both hands just hang there and ache. Typing, thankfully, is still okay.

Can't even imagine how debilitating it must be to have a similar yet non-transitory condition like arthritis. This is one pregnancy symptom I'm ready to be rid of.

II) Stupid fucking Iron Gate does not give parents any sort of maternity reprieve from its night classes. We are allowed to miss two classes per year, total, and I already missed one on the night of my birthday. Any classes I can't make due to, for instance, having a one week old child, Seymour gets to go. GAAAAAAH. I told Teacher K straight out that I thought the situation was fucked up. She laughed and said, "Why don't you tell me how you really feel?"

III) Made a special trip to Llave Market after the Iron Gate class, to get more ingredients for the special holiday gifts Iz and I are supposed to finish up tomorrow night, and forgot my fricking wallet. And I was driving Seymour's car instead of mine, so I didn't have the usual five or so dollars stashed in the glove compartment to fall back on, and which would have covered my tab.

You'd think that, since I'm there almost every day, they'd cut me a break. Or you would if you were all on fire from your day of pain and Iron Gate fuckedupedness. Oh well, Holey Foods opens up tomorrow. I'll go there instead and show up those heartless, rule-abiding Llave bastards.

Thirty-Eight Weeks

As of today. But no progress on dilation or effacement. Maybe I'll go full term with this one. Wow--two more weeks to get shit done; what a luxury that would be! Giddy's already on the slippery D/E slope, so maybe her little bit will beat ours. May as well go order that Thanksgiving turkey.

Had a meeting with our doula yesterday, about various logistical issues such as what to do if the baby is indeed born on the front porch. She also reminded me about the Vitamin K shot, which I'd spaced out on. They usually give it to the babies as soon as they're born, so if we're to avoid it we'll have to be 100% on top of things. Doula A says she can bring oral vitamin K instead, which is just as effective.

In the mean time I will try to eat things that boost my own transferred vitamin K supply, like dark green leafies. I made sushi for dinner last night figuring that nori had to be in that category (plus homemade sushi is one of the simplest and quickest dinners around).

Not writing much lately because things are just wacky beyond belief. There is a tidal swell of boxes left over from the nursery transformation plus holiday gift deliveries and baby paraphernalia deliveries--it is taking over every room in the house. Somehow I've got to tame and reorganize that while getting all the holiday shopping and shipping shipped and shopped. Gack. Not a moment to breathe, which of course means it's time for another three-hour Iron Gate meeting this evening, and Iz gets out one hour early every day between now and Thanksgiving.

Leelo is a fricking nut job today. We ran out of DMG and so today is his first day without it (we're going to eliminate it and see what happens, as we never noticed any change in his behavior after it was introduced), but he's no different than he was yesterday. Nuts! No language! Thank heavens for the limitless patience of his therapists.

Much more but, again, no time to think. More later, mayhaps.

11.13.2004

Romanian?

Iz had been really wearing out the skeleton joke from below, so Seymour tried to inject some randomness:

Iz: "Why did the skeleton say "bon appetit"?
Seymour: "Because it was Spanish?"
Iz (rolling eyes): "No, Daddy, it was speaking a different Romance language!"

So tired. Belly so big. Leelo totally fucking nuts today. Why? Perhaps yesterday's donut--he asked for it with such spectacular language that I couldn't not get it for him. My fault for forgetting to avoid the Kruddy Krapp display.

THAT Weekend Has Finally Arrived

Yes indeed, it's the weekend when I finally transform the office into a nursery. I even have a deadline: 2:00 on Sunday when Iz's godmother Stacy and her fine, strong partner arrive to help move the futon and armoire out, and the changing table and crib in. The desk/computer/filing cabinets stay. We don't have anywhere else to put them.

Anyone who's ever been allowed to see "The Hole" knows that, unless someone is coming to stay with us and I have shoved all visible detritus inside the armoire, it generally looks like a bomb has been placed inside a box of random papers and crap shortly before detonation.

There is a system which makes sense to me, me, me, but I'm not the only one who lives here. Seymour has put up with this for 10 years. I don't know why I can keep the rest of the house semi-organized but fail utterly in this space.

I would take before/after pictures but many of those random piles of crap contain holiday gifts and we can't have that.

Wish me luck and not too many lengthy detours as I find and moon over old papers, etc.

11.12.2004

Snarf Snarf

Iz's latest joke:

Q: Why did the skeleton say "Bon jour"?
A: Because it was French!

Yeah! Everything's funnier after a day with absolutely no breaks from one's children.

11.11.2004

Score: -1

Pediatrician candidate canceling appointment due to illness: -1
Leelo figuring out how to unbuckle himself from his car seat: -1

Oversized footie fleecy jammies put on backwards with feet twisted forward effectively ending Leelo's shitstorms: +1

While our overall score might be negative, I am feeling rather buoyant. Rescheduling and rebuckling I can deal with, fecal frenzies I'd rather avoid.

Excellent Gifts

Still slowly working our way through Leelo's birthday gifts, opening one or two a day so as not to overwhelm the boy. People have been fantastic about considering Leelo's actual interests and needs rather than getting hung up on the useless-even-with-typical-kids age labeling system. I am so grateful.

We have come across a slight hitch, however (more of a hitch than Iz coveting every single item and trying to hide it where Leelo can't get to it). Two of the gifts--a six pack of squeaky puzzle eggs and a growling lion flashlight that makes Leelo giggle like a madman--arrived without identification. Are they from you? I'd like to know who to thank.

Ep and Jo have traded off on opening their homes to Iz today. My gratitude is as boundless as I am bovine and breathless.

11.10.2004

Oh, Happy Day

Ashcroft resigns!

Autism Interlude

Leelo celebrated his birthday by taking a sharp turn into loopy-land. He's still there. Chattering away, difficult to get his attention. His three-week-old cold has suddenly become more pronounced as well. Coincidence? I think not.

We have finally taken away his high chair (which I loved for its containment factor) and are having him sit on a stool at the counter like everyone else except the serving wench (me). He can do it, but on days like today his compliance is not great.

I am not so well able to deal with him as I am wrecked. Not ill like Badger, poor dear, but still almost gone. Tuesdays are our hyper-busy sucky schedule days, I was on the snack committee for last night's Iron Gate meeting (6:30 - 10:00 P.M.), Iz was up most of the night with tummy trouble, Seymour has very cool but time-consuming work responsibilities and couldn't help prep the monsters for school, and then I worked in the Iron Gate nursery this morning. I am pooped. Time for a short nap. But first, a mixed bag of autism items that've been piling up:

Tomorrow I'll be interviewing a new pediatrician candidate. She seems too good to be true: She is a board-certified pediatrician as well as a certified homeopath, and is treating several DAN protocol patients. She says she is completely comfortable with our desire to reduce or eliminate vaccinations for our kids. She is happy to correspond via email, and so far has been very prompt about doing so. She is here in Deadwood, near Iz's school. Did I take some sort of hallucinogenic? Can she be real?

The only potential snag is the insurance side of things--I am used to the smooth processed world of our HMO (yes, they did swallow that MRI bill), whereas she only works the PPO angle, meaning I'd need to be the one to process and stay on top of all the paperwork. Barf. Worth it, though.

Here are Supervisor Andil's thoughts on Leelo's neurology evaluation and its EEG spikes. (FYI, the "Super" in supervisor comes from her being able to do things like write this less than one week after giving birth.) Anyhow:
Squid and all...As far as the EEG in my opinion it is not so bad. Blanking out is common with people with autism and may be seizure activity or other just lack of attention. If you see an increase in blanking, a decrease in progress, or most important when kids are having seizure type activity they lose skills they just mastered. It mostly affects short term memory. So, we would see this show up in the data. Typically, if seizures do develop of a more severe nature these do not usually emerge until adolescence (hormone related) and are most likely seen in more severely autistic people. I agree with the doctor that there is no reason now to start medication. As far as the ADHD meds--if he can make progress and is able to attend in his ABA program and preschool I would wait until school age where being seated for lengths of time is required.

Reassuring.

From MB, recently back from the El Lay DAN! conference:
There is substantial backing for the DAN! theories. Many, many studies by credentialed people from prestigious institutions, in peer-evaluated studies published in respected journals. They are thinking a particular polymorphism within a certain gene interferes with that individual's methylation pathways - which screws up everything. That polymorphism must have been around a long time; it's the last ten years of heavy metal exposures in both vaccines and other places that are showing up now in these kids, who are exposed to much more than, say, we were as kids.

Happy notes about Leelo's progress. He was doing magnificently last week, and through Monday. Maybe turning four flipped some cuckoo switch.

Encouraging notes from Therapist F about his progress at Iron Gate Nursery School.

Finally, a very cool autism article, courtesy of Seymour. The research is coming along, breaking through...and hopefully will come to fruition soon enough to help our kids. Fingers crossed.

And now, to bed.

11.09.2004

Quoi?

Okay, French speakers...what is my Malian buddy asking about this time? French is impenetrable enough for me, but Malian French...aaaaigh! Aidez-moi, s'il vous plait!

"hi squid je te telephonne deux fois mais sa marcher
pas donc je fini mes etude de tourisme et je mon
lisence donc j'aimerai si possible envoyer des photot
de mali avec des circuit sur les mali si vous et ton
marie me faire un site web sur le mali ces important
pour moi .
je salut iz et leelo sans leur pere tout va bien ici
j'espert la meme."

And Then There's Iz

Really having a good time with her, when I'm not forcefully reminding myself that We Are Not a Corporal Punishment Family. Love her, but sometimes also want to tie her to the roof and leave her there for a while.

Right now we are reading The Silver Chair as her bed time story. She was overcome with joy when the friends discovered that the Dark Knight was really Prince Rilian! And then they got to slay the "vicious worm" that killed Rilian's mother! She finds the closure and vengeance most satisfying. Although she keeps bugging me about the "live jewels" part of the story, which I've been using as bait since we started the story.

I get the feeling that school is really overwhelming for her, and is the basis for her frequent bad moods and bouts of intransigence, of late. All that fucking homework all the time, all those unmoderated social interactions. Plus we've all been sick for two weeks, and I am short-tempered and hormonal. Thankfully November is a mellow month for her, with Veteran's day holidays, Thanksgiving holidays, and a week of early release days due to parent/teacher conferences.

Oh, and that parent/teacher conference should be interesting. Yesterday Iz's maestra (teacher) told me that Iz's Spanish reading comprehension is lagging behind her actual "reading," which she does at light speed. I agreed, and said that I thought she was doing pretty well for only having started in August. She raised her eyebrows and nodded and agreed that our girl was doing very well indeed.

Tomorrow is supposed to be my night to myself, but as I would probably only use it to nest, I am instead going to have dinner with our girl and then take her to see Les Incroyables.

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Seymour and me a few days ago, "So, what is bronze made out of again? Copper and iron?" Iz, piping up from the back seat: "It's copper and tin."

High and Tight

Since I have been too crazy to blog much lately, I have decided to slow down and make this a day of posts. Tons and tons and tons! Your eyes will glaze over. Even Jo will get fed up.

Tuesday is now official OB visit day. My doctor determined that the baby's head is still not lowered or engaged (I would have said "yes, I know!" but I was too out of breath as the baby is still occupying most of my usual lung-space). Nothing going on in terms of dilation or effacement. Whew.

There was a really fun moment when the doctor couldn't find the heartbeat, before she realized that her machine wasn't hooked up properly.

We are 37 weeks as of today. If I drop this puppy tomorrow, it will be considered full-term. Although it will be born into a completely unprepared house. I need another week or two, minimum.

Note to all pregnant nesting ladies out there: Do Not Go To Targgget in this state. I am still hauling bags out of the back of the car, and it's been over 24 hours since the actual pillaging took place. Although now I have nursing pads, and really, what else does one need?

Happy Birthday Leelo!

Can't believe our little bugger is four.

Also can't believe what a different boy he is this year. He smiles when people sing happy birthday instead of sobbing, and seems to have an inkling that the singing might be about him.

He is interested in opening presents this year, too, which he never has been before. He's still not going at it like a typical present-crazed four-year-old, but he definitely loves tearing the paper or ransacking the gift bag to see what's inside. Our friends have been extra-careful and wonderful in their gift selections, and Leelo has been interested in every one so far, often demanding "Open open open!!!" when he sees what the present is.

He still doesn't really get the idea of or reason for his birthday, but he's happy and enjoying the experience and that is enough for this year.

Switching to a New Bank

I am getting tired of reconfirming my Citibank account information several times a day. I believe I will move our assets to a less annoying financial institution.

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Yes, I am joking.

11.07.2004

Happy Birthday Party Leelo!

Yesterday was Leelo's birthday party. Normally birthday party days are all-out freakouts for me, in terms of house prepping and coordinating. However, yesterday I was sick, I decided to eschew the usual customized gifties, we didn't invite all that many people, and Leelo doesn't ask for much in terms of special entertainment. So I ordered a jumpy house and some Indian food, decided to buy a cake, and we went on with our usual Saturday morning routine instead.

It turned out to be a fantastic day. Beautiful weather.

We toodled over to the cafe, where Iz's head almost exploded--Ira Russskin was there! She was beyond excited. She got to meet him and talk to him and tell him that "we voted for you" and that she was so glad he won. Ira: "My, what a precocious little voter!" I got to shake his hand and give him our congratulations as well, and told him his victory was the one bright spot in the election results.

All sorts of friends showed up to the cafe, in a perfectly synchronized way so that we got to share our table with four different families, without anyone having to find seating elsewhere or wait a turn. Almost all the menfolk are bike buddies with Seymour, so he got to arrange a ride for later this weekend. My favorite omelet was on the menu. Lots of kiddies for our kiddies to play with.

Then we went to the store to get all the food I decided to buy instead of prepare. There I had either a pre-migraine aura or a symptom of incipient pre-eclampsia--flashing colored lights took over my entire field of vision and made it most distracting to try to select the proper crackers for our cheese (so much so that I ended up with sesame crackers instead of plain water crackers--oh well). The lights went away after about ten minutes but left me feeling kind of woozy. (And yes, I did contact my doctor's office, but the doctor on call has yet to call back.)

To home, where we had 90 minutes for both Seymour and me to shower and prep the house. Thankfully Badger, Rook, and Moomin thought the party was an hour earlier than we did, and arrived just in time to be put in charge of all the decorations. Whew! Heroes!

Then Ep agreed to pick up all the Indian food I'd forgotten about retrieving from the restaurant. She also brought a scrumptious chocolate cake, the twin of the one she'd made for Clyde's birthday on Friday. She did all this schlepping even though the rest of her family was sick, and she was the only one who could attend the party. Bless her.

And the party itself was melllllow good fun. The kids mostly stayed in the bouncy slide house. Seymour took pity on my being lumbering and ill, and watched Leelo pretty much the entire time. Iz is now self-contained. We eventually sang Happy Birthday to Leelo, who at the time didn't really seem to care much, but later kept singing the song to himself. MB showed up even though she's deeply entrenched in the aftermath of moving, and her Sophie2 demonstrated the same delight as Leelo with the bouncy house--I don't think she came out of it for more than a minute the entire time--plus she took turns with Leelo in coming up to Seymour to get tickles through the bouncy house net, and said "Hi, Squid!" when prompted. Seeing how much she and Leelo are improving makes my heart go pit-a-pat.

When the party was over (after only three hours, strangely), I spent an hour and the last of my energy reserves in a cleaning blast, then had a bath and went to sleep around 7:30. I woke to a completely clean house and kitchen, courtesy of my partner. A truly wonderful day. Rah!

11.05.2004

Wanna Make a Bet?

Leelo's party is tomorrow. Normally I would make some sort of coloring book or activity book to hand out to partygoers, but this pregnancy carpal tunnel situation is so bad that it hurts to hold a hairbrush, let alone a pen. So intead, you are all getting minimally illustrated CDs of Leelo's favorite songs. And yes, they're pretty much all the same songs you got last year for Iz's party, but these are the songs Leelo sings and asks for right now, and the specific mix makes him one happy (if runny-nosed and completely loopy) little boy.

Plus, now I have a cold. Which, under normal circumstances, means I crawl into my bed and hide. Not gonna happen. Sigh.

To distract you from my pathetic mewling, you could always try placing a wager on the thirdling's arrival. Click on the picture of my big fat belly at right to put in your marker.

11.04.2004

Big Fat Ugly Pregnant Lady

Note: I tried to publish this twice already today, but Blogger kept barfing.

Although I am not ready to be done because my house is a wreck and we still have to get through Leelo's birthday party this weekend, I am soooooo ready to be done.

For some reason, the people from whom we purchased our home installed floor-to-ceiling mirrors on our bedroom closet doors. I accidentally got a full-length view of my naked bulbous body yesterday, and screamed out loud. Gaaaaah!

My nose is a giant blob. My complexion looks like someone tried to attack me with a fine-gauge cheese grater, or a rasp. My hands have suddenly inflated, meaning that the rings I could easily take off two weeks ago were removed only after a ten-minute soak in cold water, an application of oil, and a lot of painful tugging. Most of my shirts and pants no longer meet in the front. My cervix, apparently, is already open, not because I'm dilating, really, but according to my OB "because you've already had a lot of kids."

Bah.

Anyhow, if anyone wants to start making bets on arrival times, I suspect Jo would be more than willing to act as bookie. I am going to bet on the day before Thanksgiving, Nov. 24, seven days before the actual due date of Dec. 1. My rationale being that Iz was 13 days early and Leelo was 10 days early.

Anyhow. Off to coffee.

BTW: things are getting fiery in the comments for yesterday's Suspira entry. Check it out.

11.03.2004

At Least...

Ira Ruskin won
. Although Iz will be bittersweetly happy because this means he'll not be coming back to the cafe any time soon. She really wanted to meet him.

Suspira

Sigh. I know that a state's showing up on the electoral map as red doesn't mean that everyone in that state voted for those fuckers, but JESUS CHRIST. I can't believe that people are so scared that they're willing to sacrifice their children's future, especially that of their girl-children. I guess, like I've been told and suspected many a time, our little Californian island of liberal daydreams is not connected to most of the rest of the country.

Anyhow. A bit of levity on this otherwise depressing morning:

Iz: "Mommy, why is it so funny that you're a nun for Halloween when you're pregnant?"

Me: "Well, Iz, nuns are supposed to be celibate. So they usually don't get pregnant, because they're not supposed to have sex."

Iz: (not knowing how the word is spelled), "That must be why they call them 'nones!'"

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