Tuesday, October 31, 2006


I thought about writing an entire post about what it was like to watch Zac, sitting in front of the television last night, diaperless, pooping out an incredibly firm, greenish-colored pile of turds. With dawning horror, I watched as he lifted up a buttcheek, reached out to grab some shit off the top of the pile and was mere seconds away from putting it in his mouth before I stopped him, shrieking, "Zac, Zac, Zac, Noooooooo. Don't do that!......It's ok. It's ok. Stop crying. Momma didn't mean to yell at you, you just can't eat your own poop - or anyone else's poop. Just never eat poop, ok?"

It was Precious Moments figurine waiting to happen.

I wanted to blog about this, but then I read an - I'll call it an article for lack of better word - yesterday that made me reevaluate my decision to participate in "mommyblogging". The author of the work asserts that:

"Earlier I suggested that the typical mommyblogger may be too attached to the money to quit now, but that’s only partially true. In reality, I think it’s the attention mommybloggers crave and they’re so firmly addicted to it that they’ll sacrifice their child’s privacy and well being if it will help them reach Internet Prom Queen status a little quicker. Let me just stress that point a little because it seems a lot of you are missing it; your children have a right to privacy. They have a right to have stories of their own to tell, if and when they decide to tell them. "

It's a sad state of affairs that I don' t generate any revenue from this site. There are no ads here, which isn't a judgement on any other blogger of web designer that utilizes blog ads. It just hasn't really been something that I've considered important, although I reserve the right to totally and completely change my mind at my own whim - and to potentially fund a trip to the Bahamas.

The larger issue here is whether or not children are guaranteed an inalienable right to privacy. They can't assert their own rights, but rights are meant to protect the very individuals that specifically can't assert their own will. We don't assign our children the right to even have a will of their own until they reach certain developmental milestones - like say college graduation. Certainly, no lawsuits have ever been filed by the tween set demanding monetary compensation for emotional damages wrought at the tender age of 3 when Mommy told the grocery checkout cashier that you like to poop in the bathtub.

Writers have been writing about their children for hundreds of years: the embarassing, the touching, the funny moments that only parents remember because their children are too young to create their own memories. Blogging is a whole other animal, though. "Mommyblogging" explodes the size differential between an embarassing story told to a casual acquaintance and a story published on the internet. Almost every day I document something that Zac did or said (or tried to point and grunt at). Have I doomed Zac to a horrendous pubescent period full of bullying and cruel taunts of "Shiteater!"? The author of the article seems to think so. She argues that mommybloggers are irresponsible in our writing because none of us, in her mind, have considered the Big Picture involving the consequences of our actions on our children.

I hope for the sake of humanity, the "Big Picture," as she says, doesn't start and end at junior high school. She writes that, "The enemas, the boogers, all the cute little stories that you realize are just a part of growing up will turn into weapons in which to humiliate and objectify your children." It's interesting that she assumes a child will be humiliated by his peers when they find out he had his rectal temperature taken or once used an Oreo to cover his entire face in cookie crumbles. Hell yes, Zac and I will need to have a talk about my confessional blog about Motherhood before someone stumbles on it (like his English teacher or the freakishly large 13 year-old with a chip on his shoulder), but what junior high school student will really care about Zac's ringworm and the allergice reaction on my face that caused a burning ring of fire? Not any that I can think of.

All I can say is that in my version of the Big Picture, my blog will be a small portion of my son's history. As he gets older, he will have his own stories to tell as he moves further and further toward establishing his own identity and personality. When he's an adult, I hope that he can look back on this writing and see me as a falliable, caring woman that struggled with depression and weight loss, made mistakes as a human, a woman, and a Mom, and loved him, every day, as much as I possibly could.

For now, the shit stories will continue.

Monday, October 30, 2006


I always knew that I was special:

According to the website: How Many of There are Me there is no one else in America with my first and last name. There are 0 people with my first name (thanks Mom and Dad!) and 224,976 people that I share a last name with. I wish I knew about this website in college when a lot of drunk women kept asking me if a famous movie star was my Dad (he's not). Nor do I have any 1980's rockstars, guitar makers, or ceramic potters in the immediately family. So stop asking.

There is one other person that has the last name as me, that includes an extra "n" in her name. There are 16 people that were fortunate enough to spell my first name with an "i" instead of the non-vowel known as "y" that populates my first name.

Personally, though, I love the y in my name. I guess now I have definitive proof that that different is sometimes better.


I was tagged by Caroline in the City, who asked for me to write about five truths in my life. The only problem with this assignment is that I have very few absolute "truths". The things that I think are constants tend to shift with time and my perspective on them. So, I'll write what is true at this moment and be content with that.

1) Zac was in a foul mood this morning because I couldn't play with him and get ready for work simultaneously. If I could have one superpower, it would be the ability to blow dry my hair/brush my teeth/ make oatmeal/ put together a bottle or do any other assortment of tasks while magically giving Zac what he needs to stop tantrums in their tracks at 7:15am. For those of you that suggest that I just walk away and let him find something to entertain himself, well, I've been trying. He's patient enough to throw a pretty decent tantrum. By the time I dropped him off at daycare, I was in a foul mood: angry at him, at myself for being angry with him, and frustrated in general.

2) I'm considered selfish by my family members. That knowledge affects my decisions and actions on a daily basis.

3) Diet Coke tastes better out of a bottle than it does out of a can. American Diet Coke even tastes better than the sickly sweet French version, "Coca Lite".

4) I left Peace Corps, on my own terms, after they threatened to investigate a potential medical fraud claim. I saw a therapist in college my senior year and didn't disclose that in my "Health Screening Questionnaire". I went three times to go and talk to a graduate student who really didn't help much, so I didn't really consider it "therapy" as much as "a waste of time". After keeping me in a hospital for seven days, I was told that my depression was a known condition that I had willingly try to hide from the U.S. Government. They said that if I left, they would not pursue the investigation and I could apply for a Workers' Compensation claim that would cover my medical expenses and treatment for depression. I left on November 9, 2003. I still dream in Mongolian and in my dreams I can see the village where I lived for over a year.

5) This time of year is always hard for me because of #4. I dated a man in Mongolia, another Peace Corps Volunteer. He called me this weekend and we laughed. He's coming to Dallas soon and I would like to drive up to see him. I haven't seen him since I left Peace Corps. He's married now and I have a child. We are still the same people, though. I guess not all that much really changes.

I now tag the IPJ (who would see that food CAN BE art if he checked out my new Flickr photos), My New Shoes (because I think she's great as well), Aunt Jen, Pamyllia, and Blakken

Saturday, October 28, 2006


Things that I've learned over the past week:

1) Never, ever, under any circumstances beyond self-flaggelation, take a laxative after spending the evening drinking beer. You will wake up every two hours with the worst pain you have ever felt outside of child birth and spend the rest of the next day pooping.

2) It's not that I thought that I couldn't cry anymore (after all, I sobbed when I ripped the passenger side mirror off my car in my parking garage), it's just that I thought I was more numb than I actually am. I've been on Z*oloft for three years now (since I returned from Mongolia). I cried almost everyday when I was pregnant. Immediately following Zac's birth, I cried at least three times a day until the horrendous hormonal change and intense fear tapered off, then the tears only came once or twice a month. Lately, I haven't cried at all, even when I've wanted to (don't ask - sometimes I just want to get it out, ya know?).

3) Within ten minutes of sitting across from my new therapist, I was sobbing in his office.

4) Literally sobbing and apologizing, then crying some more because I'm apologizing for having emotions in front of a stranger, which is ridiculous. If anything, I think that I should start releasing more of my emotions in front of strangers. At least they can't fight back.

5) If I was being "sensitive to myself", I would say that, "Therapy allows me the emotional space to cry," which makes me want to vomit alittle. Now I know why I don't say things like that. I prefer to say, "Therapists make me cry," because it puts the blame on them.

6) Leaving my apartment for four days to go and stay with my parents, without planning ahead or even thinking that I would be gone that long, makes my apartment stink up with a combination of banana peels, rotten diapers and soured milk. I opened the door and understood where the phrase, "the smell of death," came from. I can replicate that smell with four days of neglect.

7) Zac turns a frightening shade of green when he has an upset stomach and his temperature reaches 104 degrees. It also turns out that an oral thermometer can go up my kid's bumhole when an after-hours nurse forces me to put it there. My Mom just kept saying, "I'm going to have to buy another thermometer."

Friday, October 27, 2006


Much more to say about the day (and about my annoying tendency to rhyme unintentionally). Nevertheless, I'm rushing out the door. I just wanted to you all to go over and say hello to R.

R. is the one that took me to the gala and managed to leave with my cell phone. He's the tall, cute guy over there on my Flickr page. He just started a blog and I want to encourage him on this endeavor (because he says that I forced him to)

I don't think that there are enough male bloggers in the world. Plus the guy is a single parent to four teenaged kids, so you know that he's going to have some interesting stories! There are only so many ways that I can sound interesting while begging Zac to walk. Really, there are times when I even bore myself.

So, what are you waiting for? Go over and show him some love because we all know that I haven't been able to recently.

Thursday, October 26, 2006


Do you remember this photo?That's me...in the hotel room before my baby shower, hugely pregnant at seven months. I look big enough to kick the ass (well, ok, at least sit on and injure) anyone that crossed my path. Walking around Lowe*s to get supplies for Zac's nursery was an event that caused me to reconsider A) whether I should go out in public or not and B) whether I should use an electric wheelchair in stores larger than some industrialized nations. '

Looking at this picture makes me remember why I was so miserable my last trimester.

It's shocking to think that I want another child.

Fortunately, I get to experience pregnancy and child birth vicariously with one of these women that attended my baby shower:

She's expecting and I'm glad that I'm not that big anymore.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


So, it wasn't that I meant to write about how much I like reading blogs in the morning and then not write on my blog in the morning...it's just that....well, I didn't feel good. I woke up with a migraine and an intensely seriously need to vacate my bowels.

Let me back up. Remember when I said that Zac had ringworm - ON HIS BUTT?! Well, last Saturday, I started getting a ring-of-fire rash on my cheek. It itched and I scratched it. Until it itched some more and started oozing. Then I freaked out because, "OMG - I have ringworm ON MY FACE!" As Dee told me via e-mail, "I know your son's butt is cute and all, but you need to stop rubbing your face on your child's ass." Yuck. That's all I have to say to that. Well, that and: yuckyuckyuckyuckyuck.

So I went to the doctor to show her the said flesh-eating rash. Good news, it's not ringworm. Bad news - it is an allergic reaction to hair dye, which has been exascerbated by stress. My doc was actually all very concerned about my stress level. I've been having cramps in my lower abdomen area, which in all pratical purposes is my uterus. It feels like my uterus is cramping into a hard ball and then uncramping. Again and again.

The kind doc, that looked like she was maybe two years older than me, had me lay down and then proceeded to press on my various parts of my belly. Did it hurt under the ribcages? Nope, didn't hurt there. By my belly button? Nope, not there either. Right above my pubic bone? DING - DING - DING. That's the sweet spot that made me cry out in a discomforting, "Ugggggh...stop pushing there!"

I was given a cup and told to go pee in it.

That felt very, very familiar.

Good news - I'm not pregnant and I don't have a urinary tract infection.

Bad news - the source of my cramps might be digestive and she prescribed me laxatives that would make a large elephant crap himself for days. I spent the morning pooping and holding my head. Then pooping some more. If that doesn't make the pain away, I'm supposed to get an ex-ray (edited to note: apparently even my x-rays get their hearts broken and they become ex-rays. They, much like me, probably aren't having much sex either) and a very large bucket...

Tuesday, October 24, 2006


A joke from a Mom's Calendar on my desk at work:

"What a Northern Mom says:

If you can't say something nice about someone then don't say anything at all!"

"What a Southern Mom says:

Her hair is such a ratted mess, bless her heart"

You may have had to experience life in the South to fully appreciate this humor, but let me tell you, I laughed at loud. The joke reminded me of the time when I bought new strappy sandals for wearing to work. I showed them to my boss' boss, a fashionista in her own, Texas-way, who said so sweetly with a drawl, "Why NSP...those are very cute new shoes that you have there. Now all you need to do is get those toenails done and you will be fit for show"

Literally, the words, "fit for show" were thrown in my direction in response to my UNPAINTED toenails.

I love Texas.


Every morning, I come into work, put my bag down, put my lunch and snacks in the refrigerator (yes, I am a six year-old who needs snacks throughout the day to stay reasonably sane), and turn on my computer. From there, I heat up my oatmeal and log-on. I go to my blog first (to see if I have any new comments. Did I mention that I'm obsessive about comments?) then I click on the links on my blogroll to catch up with the lives of other bloggers that I've come to know and depend on.

Without fail, I always check the bloggers that I know update every night. The Sarcastic Journalist, Officially a Mom, and Woulda Coulda Shoulda are perfect examples of that. They complete my morning with their regularity because the Good Lord knows that nothing else is regular about me or my blogging. After reading them for awhile and checking the blogs of my college friends: Wildflower, My New Shoes, Voluable Brat, Horn Dog, and Stone's Throw (and a couple of secret blogs thrown in for spice) to see if they've updated, I start to compose my own blog entry.

Some days, I've been thinking about something to say since the afternoon or night before. Just storing up, thinking about what I'm going to blog about.

Mornings like this, though, I've got nothing.

Sometimes I write only because I want to provide the same satisfaction that I get when I read other people's blog (even if they are only talking about writing on their blog). Later on in the day, when my isolation at work starts to get under my skin and I'm looking around for someone, anyone to talk to, I'll toy with the idea of posting again. Those posts would all sound something like, "HHHHEEEELLLLLPPP! I'm going insane! I want to throw my stupid computer across the room and curl up in a ball under my desk!" (At this point, you should be thankful that I resist mid-afternoon blogging).

So, that's all I've got this morning. Just wanted you all to know that I am thinking about you as you sit down in front of your computers with your coffee, Exotic Chai Tea, Diet Coke, water, or English muffin. Hope you are having a great day!

Monday, October 23, 2006


Right after I had Zac, I had this period of mourning for the person (I thought I had) left behind when I held my infant in my arms. I thought that I would never drink beer with abandon again. Never watch a stripper grind against a pole while Def Leppard's song, "Pour Some Sugar on Me" was blaring through the club's loud speakers again. Never spend way too much money on herbal supplements and think about 'colon cleansing' again. I thought that I needed to give up a part (if not all) of myself to be the mother that Zac needed me to be.

I've learned that isn't the case.

I still drink. The strippers and Def Leppard are absent, although that's really for the best most days. The bottle of phylum husks currently on my kitchen counter indicates that I've not completely weaned myself away from spending money on the regulatory functions of my digestive system. Sometimes I even like to pretend that I have the same energy as the 24 year-old woman I was before I learned about Peanut.

When I enter this delusional state, it starts to seem like a good idea to go for a road trip on Saturday, even when I spent all Friday night hunched over wondering if I need to poop or if my uterus is going to explode in a blaze of glory all over my couch (I still haven't figured out where the cramping is coming from). Even my headache and utter fatigue didn't deter me from waking up so very, very early on Saturday morning with Zac, who now thinks that sleeping beyond 7:15am is some kind of mortal sin, and packing for the journey.

I went up to Austin to for-the-love-of-God get away from Houston and meet John Farmer, who told me that I should use his full name in this post, and Carolyn. John Farmer and I walked around the state capital, which is filled with portraits of many, many old white men and large groups of children learning about the state seal. Then we went to the Austin Museum of Art and a restaurant across the street for an early dinner. I was so tired from the three hour drive up to Austin that I seriously considered asking John Farmer to find something else to do for two hours while I slunk back into my car for a nap. I didn't do that though and I was barely able to control the cramping emanating from my lower half and the yawns coming out of my mouth as we made our way to 6th street for a beer.

I called Carolyn and she joined John Farmer and I at a bar called the Dizzy Rooster that boosts a sign above the cash register proclaiming, "Dance on the bar at YOUR OWN RISK!" Normally, that would be my kind of place. After a week of intense stress, though, (from the crazy ex-wife) insomnia (from my own insanity), and a hotter-than-expected day in Austin, I was done. I wanted to go home to my bed in Houston and curl up with a stuffed animal I named Sick Dog. I wanted to be anywhere, but in that bar, trying to talk over the loud music.

Carolyn took me to her house and, for all of the Leonard Cohen fans out there, fed me "tea and oranges that came all the way from China" and exuded a grace and tranquility with her actions, her home, and her life that caused me almost instantly fall into a deep sleep in her guest bedroom. Let it not be said that I'm the best houseguest ever.

I don't mourn the person I left behind when I became "Momma" to a child that wakes up in the middle of the night just to hang out with me. I mourn sleep more. Self-identity be damned, I want a pillow and blankie please.

Thursday, October 19, 2006


Dear Zac,

You are 15 1/2 months old now. You are funny, creative, inquisitive, and so amazingly good and throwing a ball that we only give you foam ones to play with because we are afraid for our lives if we give you anything heavier. Please start walking soon. Mommy's getting tired and you are getting so big. Walking is fun! Everyone I know loves to walk - even that kid at Weight Watchers last night that stole your bottle of milk and made you cry. He loves to walk. I think you would like it too. At least then you could chase after milk theives faster.


Dear FR,

I've been thinking a lot about what you commented yesterday regarding "intuition" being used as an excuse to justify racism. As I commented back, I thought about that when I was writing the post and wasn't sure how to address it then. Thank you for calling me out on it and making me reevaluate my words.

The only concrete thing that kept coming to my mind when I mulled over what you had written was that only 20% of violent incidents are commited by strangers. 80% of victims report that they had some kind of relationship with their attacker as: neighbors, coworkers, former bosses, lovers, partners, friends, contract workers, child care providers, doctors, lawyers, priests, pastors, rabbis, clerics, or some combination of all of these. That's a huge statistic. Of course, it's the 20% of cases that get the most media attention. "Senseless," "unthinkable," "abhorrent" acts of violence will keep Americans glued to their tv screens and constantly refreshing their MSN browser. It's the large amount of personal, intimate violence that we can easily dismiss by saying, "There is nothing like that going on in MY family," with the certainty that only people in denial can really muster.

In those cases, I do think it's important to listen to your intuition. If someone that you have to interact with (on a date, when you drop off your kid to daycare, at the dentist's office, when a former coworker gets fired) creeps you out, then it is most likely something more than "nothing". It is valid in those circumstances to listen to what you are feeling.

However, people do need to evaluate their own internalized racism and the legacy of oppression for any kind of difference when thinking about fear out in the public realm. It is racist for a white woman to be afraid to walk next to a black man simply because of his race. Just as it is racist to not board a plane because "suspicious looking Arabs" were planing to board. Wasn't it Jesse Jackson (God help us all!) that said if someone came up behind him at an ATM, he always hoped that it wasn't a young, black man? That shit is totally crazy. The media blows all of these cases up to such huge proportions, that it leads to the (incorrect) assumption that violence is only committed by non-whites living under the 130% of the poverty limit.

So, that's all I've got for now. It's not much. I miss you and your blog. Please keep writing (maybe sharing it) and commenting on here. Please also tell Sebastian to write on his blog. I miss his work as well.

Much love back,
Dear self,

Next time you want to convince yourself that you look good in a tank top, please remember the pictures from the gala and try to save yourself the embarassment.

Dear blog readers,

I've made my pictures on Flickr' private and taken them down in other forums. I tried to invite everyone that I could to become a "contact" as a friend or family member, but I'm sure I missed some people. I'll be uploaded some new pictures of Zac later on tonight that I want to share. If you want to be added, please e-mail me at notsopregnantintexas@yahoo.com and tell me a little bit about yourself.

Thanks for reading and giving me an outlet for sharing my thoughts.

With fondness,

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


Who needs reflection and contemplation when jumping to fast conclusions and rash action is waaaaaay more fun? I mean, really. I'm not saying that I'm not upset by having a crazy ex-wife invade my privacy and feeling of safety for myself and Zac, I'm just saying that I feel more centered about it now. I see the changes that I made as part of a larger life decision to live more cautiously and not open myself and my family up to the possibility of violence, as much as I had been.

I was given a book by the Director of Victim Services at my organization called, "The Gift of Fear," by Gavin de Becker. The basic premise is that we all hold the most powerful tool to recognize, react, and respond to danger: our intuition. His book tries to give his readers the confidence to listen to their intuition, gut feelings, premonitions, or whatever else you want to call it. de Becker reasons that it's all the same thing. It's your subconciousness that tells your consciousness, "Listen to me and we have a chance of getting out of this situation. Ignore me and we might be ok, it might turn out to be just fine, but I'm sending out warning flags that maybe it won't be."

There is a story early on in the book that shook me. A woman named Kelly was coming home from the grocery store when her bag split, causing her groceries to roll down the stairs of her apartment building. A man picked up her fallen cans and told her that he would help carry the groceries the rest of the way. Kelly couldn't understand at the time, but something told her that it wasn't right for the man to be in the stairway of her apartment. He seemed like a nice, middle-class, friendly guy, though. He asked to take the bag of groceries so she could open the door to ther apartment. She was now actively worried, but thought that the man was just trying to be a good samaritan, and he chided her about letting her "pride and vanity" rule her life, by not accepting his offer for help.

He raped her for three hours inside her apartment.

After he was finished, he got up, got dressed, closed her bedroom window, and told her that he was going to leave if she laid still. He left the room and she could hear him moving around the kitchen. She knew that she was going to die if she stayed in her bedroom. She ran out her front door and into a neighbor's apartment. She couldn't explain how she knew that he was going to kill her. She said, "It was just a feeling".

De Becker argues that it was more than that. Why would the rapist need to close the window after the attack if he was really going to let her live? Why would he be looking for something in the kitchen if he was planning on leaving? He says that Kelly recognized that there was a disconnect between his words and his actions. Leaving the situation immediately saved her life because she listened.

It's hard for me to look back on my dating (mis)adventures and not see how I fit into this pattern. I've let manipulators tell me that I should trust them, when they haven't earned the trust. I've gone out with men that I didn't feel good about because I couldn't think of a good enough reason why I should tell them no. I've even continued a date that I wanted to end because I believed someone when they told me that they wouldn't say or do a behavior that offended me (or made me worry, or gave me a bad feeling, or made me want to jump out of a speeding car at 60 mph).

There are so many times, not even recently, but throughout my life, that I've said yes when I wanted to say no. My reasons are ridiculous. They're something along the lines of: "I don't want to be called/thought of as a bitch. I am being paranoid. Nothing is wrong. I need to open up and learn to trust people more. I'll just do it this once and then tell him no next time. She's a friend and she needs me, I should do this for her, even though it makes me uncomfortable. If you tell her no now, she'll never invite you again to hang out with her."

All the things I tell myself to minimize (if not diminish and demolish) my internal warning system. Identifying as a woman does affect me as well. I can't let fear rule my life and my decisions, but I need to get my head out my ass. The leading cause of death for women at their place of work is homicide. Each year, more women are admitted to the emergency room for attacks by someone they know than rapes, muggings, and car accidents - combined.

So, it's not just about the crazy ex-wife, it's about me learning how to listen to what I'm saying.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006


I'm going to take a couple of days to step back and re-evaluate parts of my life that I'm sharing on the internet and the ramifications from that.

I had two phone calls and an e-mail from someone that could potential hurt Zac or I and I can't let that happen. Protecting my family is of utmost importance. A case worker at HPD has been notified. That's the good thing about working where I work with the people that I work with.

I'll be back on in a couple of days. Your thoughts and support would be appreciated.

Sunday, October 15, 2006


The gala was....well....not what I had expected. I guess I was secretly hoping for the wonderful, magical evening where you meet a lot of interesting, funny, engaging people on a sweet buzz of white wine and champagne. I wanted to be beautiful - transformed into some kind of socialite that devotes herself to looking good and volunteering for "causes".

In reality, it was a work event that I attended with an ex-boyfriend in a dress that kept showing my not-so-discrete unmentionables. Magical it was not. At one point in the evening, I sat down on one of the few chairs next to R. (I had very cute shoes that My New Shoes helped me pick out during her trip to Houston. The irony didn't escape either of us). My boss came up behind me in a whirl of organza and designer shoes and hissed, "DON'T SIT TOO LONG! Those chairs ARE NOT for staff members." So I got up. I told R. to get up and we ate more food.

Yup, I will say that there was some great, great food at the event. I tried everything - twice. R. drank a bit of wine, but not too much. I think he had a bit of fun, but not too much. Even when I was introducing him to people, and I put my hand on his back or turned to him, he managed to stay exactly six inches apart from me. It was like there was an invisible barrier around me that he refused to penetrate. It frustrated the hell out of me. I just wanted to pull him close, shake him up a bit and demand: "Act normal towards me! At least pretend that you like to be around me in front of all of my work colleagues!! Some of these people knew that we were dating!"

It's not his fault. It's mine. I asked him for a favor because I didn't want to go alone. If I had known what a "work event" the gala would be I wouldn't have been so concerned about needing a date. He and I are still working on being friends and we talked after the event. I drove to his house because he accidentally left with my cell phone in his suit pocket. I made a fool out of myself. I didn't want to be alone. We talked and joked about the bad hair and stupid outfits that we saw and the food that we ate.

I haven't heard from him since that night. I would still like to be friends with him.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006


October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and shelters, crisis hot-lines, and womens' centers around the country are speaking out on behalf of victim-survivors that are swallowed by silence and shame. Tomorrow my organization is hosting a fundraiser (the said 'gala' that I've mentioned before) to raise money for legal representation of victims for family law litigation and batterers intervention and prevention counseling groups.

The Texas Council on Family Violence just posted the stories of the women, children, and abusers that were killed in 2005 as a result of domestic violence on their webpage. Please go and check it out. Each victim deserves to have their name remembered and their silence broken.

The speaker at the event is Debra Sanchez, who watched her daughter, Leza Marie Maddalone, 31, shot to death in a bank parking lot by her estranged ex-boyfriend, Bruce Glen Milner. TCFV reports that, "According to the Brazoria County police officers, Leza's two children witnessed the shooting." Mrs. Sanchez now has custody of her two grandchildren. Lawyers at my organization helped prosecute and convict Milner for Leza's murder.

But there are many, many other stories.

Like the murder of Irene Torres Belding, 42. Irene and her two children were shot and killed in their home by Irene's husband, John Francis Belding, 42, in an apparent murder-suicide. According to police, Belding shot his family in a bedroom and then killed himself. He left a suicide note saying he was sorry. The couple's children were six and seven.

Martha Lopez, 24, was killed when her husband, Elias Martinez, 29, slit her throat while she slept. According to police, Martiez first claimed that his wife had committed suicide, but later confessed to killing Martha. Police believed Martinez killed Martha because she was going to leave him and file for divorce. The couple's 2 year-old son was in the room and may have witnessed his mother's death.

'Family Violence' is no longer nameless.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006


I'm having one of those mornings (days, weeks, months) where I'm not exactly sure where I lost my mind, but I'm pretty sure that I'll find it around here somewhere. Zac is driving me absolutely, completely ape-shit crazy.


Granted, the boy has more medical problems right now that I have external appendages. I know that that's part of his problem, but is it all of it? I took him to the doctor on Wednesday when the green slime coming out of his right ear reached mammoth proportions. Really, when something starts running down your neck, it's time to get it looked at. The doc had told us before that ear drainage was normal when you have tubes, but again, it was green, it looked like boogers, and it was threatening his collar bone. She prescribed amoxicillan (our favorite antibiotic of choice around these parts) and Ciprodex ear drops. (That's 2 medications - try to see if you can keep count!)

Then on Friday, he went to an Ear-Nose-and-Throat Doc that acted like discussing anything outside of the ENT region of the body was a waste of his time. This includes: possible side effects to medication, whether or not my child was scared, and whether or not I was going to kick his ass. They suctioned his ear out by first making him wait 45 minutes in a tiled room with many sharp objects that his Momma and Gram wouldn't let him touch and then wrapped him in a sheet and had two nurses hold him down. There was sheer terror in his eyes and I almost started crying for him. The vacuum-cleaner apparatus they used to suction out the mucus made a noise so loud that I thought the ENT Doc was planning on mining for brain tissue while he was there. With a wave of his magic pen, we left with another prescription for an antibiotic that did something other than, "piss in the wind", in his opinion.

Then Saturday rolls around and Zac's eye puffs up so much that I'm not really sure he could see out of it. Remember all that housecleaning I said I did BEFORE MNS' visit? Remember that I said I swept all the leaves off my patio. Well, Mr. I'm-Going-Through-Extreme-Separation-Anxiety, wanted to see and hear me the entire time while he was eating his dinner. The mosquitos came and bit his face and eye after feasting on my legs.

I called the nurse, she whispered something about West Nile and before I knew it, we had scheduled another appointment for Saturday afternoon. At that appointment, they found ringworm on his butt (funny story: MNS touched the rash saying, "Ewww...what's that?" Note to self: Never touch itchy rashes on someone else's kid) and ordered around of clotrimazole for his hinny and a prescription ointment for his eye.

Did anyone manage to catch all of those medications (even the hidden ones that I've forgotten the names of)?


He's on FIVE medications right now.

He didn't sleep last night.

I want to cry on an almost hourly basis.

He cries everytime I put him down because I can't get ready to go to work and hold him at the same time. He cries everytime I can't play peekaboo with him because I have to make dinner, or take out the trash, or do laundry, or, or, or, or, or...He cries when instead of picking him up when he has his arms outstretched for me, I walk over him to answer the phone. He cries when I can't fix whatever is wrong with him because I.JUST.CAN'T.FIX.IT.

Friday, October 06, 2006


Some people do spring cleaning. Right on the cusp of spring, people around the world suddenly feel the need to sweep out their closets for the first time, get rid of the debris around their fence, and welcome the change of the season with wide arms. The feeling can be euphoriant; freer, lighter - emerging with a clearer sense of purpose.

Spring in Houston has the opposite effect on the population of southeast Texas. You can feel the heat and humidity creeping into the air and with a sinking feeling, you begin to prepare for hibernation under the air conditioner. Let me just say that the Houston Livestock and Rodeo Show in April is the world's largest INDOOR rodeo. Even traditional outdoor activies are moved inside for eight months out of the year.

Record high temperatures aside this past week, October is the silver lining out on the horizon for Houston weather. I swept the patio free of dirt and swept all of the leaves out of the storage area, cleaned all of the first floor windows (inside and out), and managed to get all of the laundry off the rug in the living room. This morning it was 68 degrees out, with a slight breeze. Of course, the high temperature of the day made it up to 91 degrees, but MNS didn't seem to mind too much.

Did I mention that MNS came to visit Zac and I??? I didn't? I've been too consumed with stupid assholes saying stupid things to me? Well, that is my mistake.

MNS's visit spurred the cleaning frenzy. She's my first out-of-state, non-family visitor (hi Aunt Jen!!!) and I was more excited than I wanted to admit. So, I cleaned.

Of course, the beautiful weather outside meant that MNS and I were able to take Zac to a park close to my parents' house where Zac squinted and hammed up for the camera, as witnessed below:

Heeheehee, I'm so cute, especially when eating an apple

But, then again, I also got in front of the camera to get some lovin' (although I think he just wanted the apple):

And there was swinging. Much, much swinging to be had at the park (by now, I feel that if you haven't noticed the amazing tie-dyed onesie that Mr. Zac is sporting under the jean overralls, then I should bring it to your attention):

I'm such a big boy. I know.

And we all basked in the attention of Aunt L., who made this weekend special and wonderful:

Baby feet! I'm holding baby feet and you all can't have any!!!!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006


I wanted to say thank you to everyone that consistently gives me love and support, both on and off this blog. It means a lot and it helps me say, almost on a daily basis, "No. I don't deserve that. I deserve more," which isn't easy for a people-pleaser like myself.

Ever since I can remember, I've wanted to make people happy. If members of my family were fighting, I wanted them to talk it out - I would be the go-between if I wasn't the direct cause or source of the anger. I'll avoid head-on confrontation with most people and absolutely run from anything that I deem 'threatening' or even vaguely annoying (like going to the dentist).

I think I even followed the career path that I have so I could make people happy, which makes me happy, or at least content most days. Being in non-profits is like saying to someone, "I know that what I have is a little more than I can reasonably be thankful for. Here - have some of mine, some of me, I'll give it to you because I think you deserve more than you currently have." And you do that day after day because making people happier, healthier, safer, richer, and less discriminated against is what the non-profit world is about.

It's hard for me to turn that off when it comes to romantic relationships. Someone said to me recently, "I deserve for you to come closer to me. I deserve to touch your stomach (the stomach that held the baby. The stomach that will never be the same. The stomach that I don't let ANYONE touch because it's too personal and sensitive)." I answered, "No, you don't deserve that." Then he said, "I, then, at least deserve a kiss," and I said, "No, you don't deserve that either."

While he left he threw back a parting insult in my general direction: "You don't need to ask me to go. I'd rather go on my own accord than deal with an asshole like you. Now I know why all the other guys ran too."

All because I have my own definition of what someone "deserves" to do with my body. According to my definition, you deserve to respect, cherish, and be patient with my body and the person attached to it because in return, I will love you wholly and unconditionally.

Until then, get the fuck off me, and you can thank everyone that reads this blog for the confidence to say that.


Well, the polls have closed for this morning and 99% of all men that I've dated in the past year think that I'm confusing. I know this because - well - the bastards told me so!

Let's review the reasons that I'm a bad potential mate, shall we? All of the excuses are listed in italics under the reasons.

1) I don't know what I want/ I'm high-maintenance

- I claim to want to date casually, yet then I start to "get serious"
- I claim to want to date seriously, then I go out on dates with more than one person
- I always need to be told that I'm pretty, smart, funny, and enjoyable to be around (show me the person - I'll leave gender aside for the moment - I mean the person that doesn't like to hear that!)

2) I have forgotten what it's like to be in a "real relationship"

- Single motherhood has made me bitter towards men (this is a personal favorite of mine because they seem to forget that I'm raising a little man. I have more daily contact with a baby jo-jo than I know what to do with! Bitter towards men? Hell, you can't be bitter while wiping poop from the underside of a pair of balls. You just can't. I dare you to try.)

- I have a martyr complex and think that I should do everything by myself (ok, that one is true)

- I have too much baggage from being left by the FOB (I always feel that I should mention that I left the FOB and not the other way around. He just abadoned any and all thought of being a father)

3) I'm too young/ I've never been married

- You can't know how much it sucks to be married until you've done it once (or twice in some circumstances) (This is for some reason considered a negative trait of mine. I don't get it).

- I've never lived with someone (true again)

So, just in case you are all wondering what is going on, I had a talk with R. last night. The romance had started to fade from our dating relationship and I felt less than desirable and adored. He and I had agreed to go slow, see where things went, hang out, get to know each other - all of those things that people tell each other when they don't want to be alone, but they don't want to commit to each other.

I saw where it went and I liked spending time with him. I actually wanted to spend MORE time with him, providing that he could start doing the little things for me that he used to do. I shouldn't have to ask someone I'm dating if they find me attractive or if they like spending time with me. I don't care how non-communicative (which R. isn't) a person is, I'm a firm believer that for a relationship to work, you need to TELL or SHOW the person on a regular basis that they rock your casbah.

Maybe I am high-maintenance.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006


Number games:

When I graduated high school, I weighed 160lbs. I remember that distinctly because S. Zugschwerdt (real last name, although probably not spelled right. T. can you help me out here?) weighed 130lbs and I remember thinking how nice it would be to weigh that.

In college, I went up to 165-170 by eating four enormous meals a day, working out every morning, six days a week, and most afternoons, 3-4 days a week. Rock solid was how I looked by April every year.

In England, I rode my bicycle around Oxford, which is deceptively large for such a small country. I consumed warm beer and not much else, dropping my weight down to 155 or so. That summer I lived in Houston, rode my bike to work in 100+ degree heat, waiting tables at Red Lobster, and going 8-10 hours without eating.

Senior year of college, I made up for the weight loss and bounced back to 185.

I stayed at 180 for my first year of Peace Corps in Mongolia. I hated weighing that much and remembering wondering if J. would notice the stretch marks forming and spreading on my butt.

Then I hit a deep depression that involved a lot of running (for 30-45 minutes every day, I could only dream to be that lucky again to be seriously depressed and actually WANT to run) and not enough food. I constantly worried about not having enough food or water for myself and my cat, Buddy, who was killed during my trip to America in late summer. In the hospital in D.C., I stepped on the scale in the dining room (don't ask me why there was a scale there, it seemed weird for me to considering what floor I was on) and I weighed 155 and fit into a size 10.

In New Hampshire, I drank large amounts of freshly brewed light beer, fried foods, and pizza and went up to 182, which is what I weighed on the Planned Parenthood scale the day that I got the prescription for the birth control pill (which (ha!) ultimately failed).

Then I got pregnant and I don't talk about those weights or how big I actually got. I saw the number on the scale once and then never again. I'm embarassed and ashamed when I think back to then. I had Zac in July of 2005 and lost 40lbs my first week post-partum. Aunt Jen put it nicely when she said that I looked "squishy", like if she were to poke me with a pin, water would squirt out of the hole.

When I started Weight Watchers in April 2006, I weighed 197. I didn't fit into most of my size 16 clothes and I couldn't imagine being anything other than a lactating woman that still couldn't bend over. I threw away all my "skinny" clothes, including most of what I wore in New Hampshire (although clearly I wasn't that skinny then. I just didn't have the flap of extra skin around my belly button and the enormous breasts). Everything I owned was a size 16-18.

This morning, I stepped on the scale and it read 180, exactly. It was a little mind boggling because I don't feel like I've been doing that much differently lately, just trying not to binge. I was tempted to abuse my body after my conversations with J. the past couple of days but I've done well staying focusing and not eating hard foods (dental problems, not eating ones).

Throughout most of my teenaged and adult life, my life has been dictated by these numbers. I can't believe that I'm actually going to post them because I work so hard to hide what I actually weigh and coyly avoid discussing metrics of size and shape. This is Weight Watchers has given me - it's given me the confidence to say: I've lost 17 pounds and I feel better about myself at this weight. I have a long way to go, but I'm getting there.

Monday, October 02, 2006



DeepSeaDiver J. wants to be friends. I just had a minor emotional outburst in his direction over IM. Now I feel like crap and a bad friend. He got off IM faster than I can finish going pee. It was fast, that's all I'll say.

Then I got an e-mail from my friendly free dating site, telling me that I have new matches for October. New matches? Well, sign me up and click the link, I always say! What did I see, but DeepSeaDiver J. staring back at me. He changed his handle and put up new pictures, although he said that he had given up internet dating after me. Turns out, he is back on the cybermarket, in more ways than one. I e-mailed his account there, and he quickly read and deleted the message (it's great when sites tell you the progress of an e-mail being read, discarded, ignored, or replied. If only people had small tickertapes running across their foreheads that registered the same emotions during a conversation. Dating would be so much easier).

Erasing all traces of me and my company.

Sunday, October 01, 2006


There is something refreshing and renewing about the start of a new month. I've felt this way, particularly, since I've started doing my monthly budgeting and keeping track of my receipts. More specifically, though, I feel like it's one giant, "do-over" pass. Like, "Well, I fucked up that month. Let's see if this one goes any better." Learn from my mistakes, pick up the pieces, and move on.

Well, many of you know that I stopped writing about my romantic life ever since a couple of noteable individuals started reading my blog (one had the address and the other looked it up on his own). As much as I've tried to keep my first name out of this site, it still creeps in and Google can find it. So be it, right? There isn't much that I can do about it, except for start up a whole new site and that takes more time and energy than I can seem to muster right about now.

Last month was quite a doozy in the relationship department. DeepSeaDiver J. stopped seeing each other about two months ago. He was treating me like a mistress to his ex-wife. He didn't want to tell her that he was dating anyone, so he tried hiding any traces of me. I could only come over after she had picked up the kids (which was dependent upon how late she felt like staying at work), J. always introduced me as a 'friend' to his kids and would lock the door of the room that I was in if he thought there was any way that she might just "pop over", which she frequently did.

I wasn't standing for that. I cared for him, but I also care about my self-respect. He once got out of his car before pulling into a local restaurant, just to make sure that the Honda minivan in the parking lot didn't belong to his ex. That's how strongly he felt about avoiding any confrontation with her about his relationship with me.

He went back off-shore and we decided to stay friends. Friends that care about each other. The kind of friendship that can never really work. I met R. right around that time. He was good, kind, always available for me, attractive, and intelligent. He works as a computer programmer and is a single Dad to four pre-teen and teenaged kids. He has raised them by himself, 100%, for the past six years. R. knew about J., yet J. didn't know about R. (because he didn't need to, because we had no commitment to each other, because it was none of his business).

A little while ago, J. came into town for one night. He drove over from Louisiana to see his kids, to see me, to talk. It was a Sunday, but it was only one night, so I drove Zac and I over to his house (it should have been my first sign that he wasn't willing to come to my apartment). I told him that I had been dating R. and wondering where things were going to go with him. It was obvious that we still had feelings for each other. We talked and I stayed. Then he left and I never heard from him.

He said that he didn't make his mind up until after I had left for work the next morning, but in my heart, I knew that he used me. He was upset that I had found someone else to be with, so he used my body for what he could and then went back onto his boat off the Gulf of Mexico (and he no longer reads this blog).

I've never been a port girl before and I never will be again. I feel disgusting and cheap. Hurt and used. He actually thanked me for "my company".

I spent the weekend at R.'s house, still trying to recover from the three permanent fillings that were drilled into my mouth on Friday. I've never taken so much pain medication in my life as I have over these past two weeks. Everything hurts. That's what I leave behind from September and welcome October with a deep, cleansing breath.