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Last night I got to go out with destinationtoast and she let me harangue her for like half an hour about Fury Road and just why it was so amazing! I HAD MORE TO SAY. I had to stop because the performance we actually went to see had started. She is the most patient friend. <3 Also she is way more plugged into fandom than me right now so has the most interesting things to say about wattpad (I'd never heard of it!) and Tumblr gossip and so on.

I've loved fandom for ages, but lately I have loved fandom, not so much the things people have been fans of! Fury Road is the first thing in ages that has grabbed my mind and not let go. I can't remember the last time I wanted to go see a movie in the theatre again AND AGAIN. And I don't have time, but I want to so badly!

She also asked me about how the kids were doing. Rocket is having this unbelievable word explosion and it's wonderful. He is my adorable squishy jellybean. The Junebug is….

So, as a mother who wants my child to be self-reliant and have initiative and not be swayed too much by other people and be resilient and not a wilting flower overwhelmed by other people's opinions and to have thoughts of his own, I am delighted, because this is all proceeding apace.

As a mother who wants him to WASH HIS FUCKING HANDS AFTER WIPING POOP OFF HIS BUTT BEFORE RUNNING THEM THROUGH HIS HAIR, and wants him to use the potty - or do ANYTHING at this point - without being yelled at, and wants him to respond to very serious corrections about how he needs to not hurt me or his brother or do some incredibly dangerous thing, with alarm or maybe even remorse, instead of laughing his ass off and calling me a poopyhead; as that kind of mother, I AM GONNA BEAT HIM UNTIL CANDY FALLS OUT.

No, no. I will not do that. I will power through this phase with the power of whining on the internet! And with gin. Oh god.

I mean, it's not all bad! This very morning he saw toys lying on the floor and announced that he was going to put them away so no one would trip on them and then he did so! I mean - parental dancing of joy! He is a good kid. But he is in a phase where he is not at all, not even a little bit, interested in pleasing me or following instructions. If I ask Rocket to throw something away for me he drops his toys and comes to grab the thing and toddles over to the trash can, because he is so delighted to be included and then he gets clapped for and cheered. The Junebug just wants me to stop making noises come out of my mouth. Like, literally, I will be trying to get him to bed and he will go all annoyed "Stop that." Kid, you & me both, but I CANNOT.
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To celebrate the end of nursing (the end of nursing!) I have been trying to buy some new bras.

Did you know it's a quest, trying to get a bra? It's a quest. The Size F Cup Geas has been laid on me. I'm searching.

I got a painfully expensive bra from Figleaves, which does not fit and I will have to painfully expensively return, but the thing is: it does not fit, and it is not comfortable, but when I put it on, holy shit my boobs looked good. !!! I had forgotten they could do that!!! They haven't done it in years! If this bra can do it, maybe one that actually fits could do it even better!!

I asked people on Twitter if they actually hand wash their bras like every single brassiere washing instruction set implores you to do. Because who has the motherfucking time, oh my god.
Of the 16 of us who I know about:

3 said yes they do hand wash their bras, and I'd like to know more about their system and their time management. Frankly that was more than I expected.

2 hand wash their nice bras only, and machine wash the rest.

8 of us machine wash only, with most specifying that we use a lingerie bag and hang the bras up to dry rather than putting them in the dryer. I will go further and say that that happens except when someone doesn't notice the lingerie bag and tosses it in the dryer with the rest. I wish bra manufacturers would face reality.

3 of us just said "lol no."

This is a really good article that captures the ambivalence of the end of breastfeeding, for me. E and I were talking about how hard and awful it was in the very beginning, when the Junebug was learning to breastfeed. The nipple shields. The pain, and the never sleeping, and the terror when he lost weight. Looking back, I can't believe we kept going. How did I do that? Couldn't have done it without Mr. E. I remember there was one bit where I had to hold the Junebug's head with one hand and my boob in position with the other hand but while his head was desperately trying to suck, his little hand, under its own control apparently like Doc Ock's tentacles, was trying to rip the nipple out of his mouth. And succeeding! So Mr. E had to hold his hand still so that he could nurse, till he got better control over his hands. It was ridiculous. And now I'm done breastfeeding. Forever, barring unforeseen circumstances.

Wow, do I have a lot of feelings about that.

Some of them just involve how nice it is to be able to sleep on my stomach again.

Also I want to goddamn know why we as a people have decided that we can only have non-underwire bras in large sizes if they are nursing bras. I used to wear underwire bras, but I switched to wireless because most nursing bras are, and OH MY GOD THE COMFORT. Why do we even have these wires?? I don't want them!
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First of all I'd like to apologize for the amount I've been tweeting about menstruation, and for the fact that I'm about to blog about it.

Here's the thing, though: it's the end of an era. In 2011 I bought a pack of pads from Costco. I remember sitting in my car in the parking lot crying, because I had joined Costco on the grounds that it would be good for buying diapers, and a year later, there I was, at Costco, buying pads instead of diapers because in a year I had failed to come up with any need for diapers and instead I needed pads because it turned out that once again I had failed to get pregnant.

And of course, since I was at Costco, I bought one package and it contained enough pads to absorb all great Neptune's ocean. So it lasted me until I did get pregnant with the Junebug. And it lasted me between when my period came back and when I got pregnant with Rocket. And it has lasted me until now. This will be the first time that I have bought menstrual supplies since 2011. I have one pad left from that package. It is the package that has seen me through my childbearing. And now it's over.

(Costco is great for diapers, by the way, but it's even better for wipes. Not only are they cheap, they're the best wipes I've ever found.)


Feb. 1st, 2015 03:40 pm
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So now I'm forty.

And I got this unexpected nice thing out of it. See, I'm not twenty anymore. And I don't look twenty. And in recent years I would see myself in the mirror, or in a window unexpectedly, or in a photograph, and recoil. Are those my eye bags? Is that really my double chin? My smile lines? My potbelly? Fuck, this can't be. This mirror is lying. And I would try to, I don't know, straighten my shoulders or whatever…change the angle of my head so I couldn't see a wrinkle, and pretend that this made me look okay. But Christ. I looked terrible all the time. It made me sad.

And for some reason, when I turned forty, some switch flipped in my head. I look in the mirror now and I don't feel the need to pretend that I don't see what I see. Cause I'm not seeing a decayed twenty-year-old. I'm just seeing a perfectly normal forty-year-old. And that's perfectly fine.

I think I've stopped bemoaning how old I am for a young person, and am enjoying how young I am for an old person.


Jun. 17th, 2012 09:11 pm
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This week I tried a different experiment. From last Sunday to yesterday, I tried not to worry.

Because I've been worrying a lot lately, and I can't seem to just stop. But I can put it off. I can say to myself "Now's not a good time to worry about ______, I have to be doing this other thing." So this week I tried to leverage that to, for a whole week, Not Worry about:

  • whether my relationship is inevitably headed towards married heterosexual 2.5 kids suburban nightmarish mutual hatred then divorce given that we already have the married and the 1 kid
  • how we are going to make sure the baby gets proper nutrition as we transition him off of nursing
  • whether the baby is getting enough attention & time with us
  • whether we are reading to the baby enough
  • whether the baby has the right kind of toys or whether it will damage his little psyche to be playing with empty contact lens solution bottles in the bath instead of rubber duckies
  • what I am going to do about my parents when they start getting old and sick
  • how I am supposed to find time to do career networking and extracurricular activities
  • whether Mr. E and I are taking each other for granted
  • is it better to be doing lower-status/skills work on high-profile projects or high-skills work on non-billable stuff like marketing, when my company has a track record of laying off/firing the people who find themselves working on non-billable stuff and therefore not being directly and obviously profitable
  • is there anything I can even do about that when I don't get to pick my assignments
  • how much responsibility can I take on given how much I can't stay late
  • how much time I will end up needing to take off this year
  • how am I ever going to find time to do all the extra work required for licensure
  • the friends I never get to see
  • factory farming and how I am contributing to it
  • the death of bookstores
  • whether democracy is an nonviable long-term system
  • how much money I am spending these days
  • how we need to stop cursing in front of the baby

Results of the experiment:

  • The first two to four days went really well. I think I felt more relaxed and happier. It was easy to say to myself, as these worries came up, "I'm not worrying about this now. All these problems will still be here next week, and I can worry about them then," and make myself think of other things. As a nice bonus, when I'm not indulging in unproductive worrying, I can actually do something about the things I'm worried about, so I got some work done on my licensure requirements towards the beginning of the week.
  • The end of the week was filled with anxiety and tension. It became more like "I'm not supposed to be worrying! Aargh! STOP WORRYING!" And one of my normal strategies for dealing with worry is to talk to Mr. E about my fears and whether or not they are reasonable, but I couldn't do that this week because I was meant to be Not Worrying. So that sucked and contributed to feeling awful.
  • All those problems continue to exist and be available for me to worry about this week, except that like I said I did get to do some useful time management and licensure stuff early in the week, plus I bought the baby a toy boat to play with in the bath. (Making the spending money problem worse, I suppose, but not by much.)

    Maybe I need to start with one- or two-day Not Worrying sessions and work up to longer. Maybe I also need to start scheduling brainstorming sessions in which I can think about solutions to the problems. Worry is probably useful in that it alerts me to things I need to keep track of in my life and maybe do something about, but once the conscious brain has been alerted to the issues, it may be time for it to justify its massive glucose wages and get off its lazy lobes and do some work.
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And on another note, I have recently been privileged to see, up close and personal, an didactically clear example of why exactly it is so profitable for various industries to keep us in a constant state of insecurity. Since about my eighth month of pregnancy - and much more strongly since giving birth - I have felt ugly*. It makes a shocking difference to my level of happiness. I mean, I am noticeably unhappy about it every day, all day. Even though whether or not I am ugly affects most of my daily life not at all. I can't seem to shake it**.

And, as a consequence, I'm spending money. I'm not exactly going on shopping sprees - except for nursing tops, I guess, but it turns out I didn't used to own any of those, so I kind of had to - but when I buy things I need, I'm buying pricier ones. I bought fancy jeans to replace the ones that wore out. When I had to buy sunglasses, I bought fancy ones. I bought a pretty watch. Because when I'm feeling ugly, it's more worth money to me that at least my clothes can look nice.

*Please don't comment to tell me about whether or not I actually look ugly; it's not a rational thing, you can't help. I appreciate it if you were gonna. I was considering turning off comments but I'm interested in people's thoughts on insecurity/spending.

**I'm not unhappy all day every day! But I can tell that I'm slightly unhappier than I would be otherwise, because I keep thinking about it.


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