Never Trust Tiffany

Two weeks before the anticipated arrival of our second amazing live-in tiny human (Tiny 2, for short) seems like an appropriate time to really dive back into the details of Tiny 1’s arrival, so, you know. I’m back! Hi there.

A brief refresher: on the evening of August 7th, 2015, I was approaching 0:40-3-18.5. That’s 40 second contractions, every 3 minutes, going on 18.5 hours of labor. I returned to the hospital still walking and talking through contractions and ready to pick up a hundred dollar bill, should the opportunity arise, and although the epidural was still an option, I opted out. I was further along than anyone expected, and Nurse Tiffany assured me that I would have a tiny human in my arms in an hour or two. The epidural would only slow things down, in Nurse Tiffany’s ample experience, and I was already so close.

Some advice for expectant mothers everywhere: never trust Tiffany. She’s a liar. Or maybe she’s just a really bad judge of time. In either case, one or two hours will probably be six or seven. Maybe eight. Nine? Maybe you lost track, just like Tiffany. In any case, our amazing live-in tiny human finally made her debut in the wee hours of August 8th, 2015.

Some more advice for expectant mothers everywhere:

  • Don’t look down. Although I was academically aware of the comparative size of the tiny human head versus its exit route, and I knew that unfused skull bones allow for a certain degree of head-smooshing during labor, I did not expect to see something that looked like an overripe avocado/potato but with more hair and more wrinkles. “What is that,” I wondered, and then I silently made peace with the fact that something had gone horribly wrong. No one had mentioned that all tiny humans go through an overripe avocado/potato phase as they make their way into the world.
  • If you make the mistake of looking down once, don’t do it again. When you’re an hour into “crowning,” which sounded a lot like a momentary thing (and definitely nothing at all like a two hour thing) when the midwife described it during your group prenatal appointments, you really don’t need to the visual reminder that your tiny human is exactly where it was an hour ago.
  • Ask your delivery team to refrain from asking such questions as “so, mama, how are we feeling about an epise today?” Because really every part of that question felt like an insult. Was I actually a mama yet? Well, I might have been, if not for the 100th percentile head on my otherwise reasonably proportioned tiny human, but I wasn’t there yet! How are we feeling? Well, when I have a full-blown tiny human wedged into a rather delicate part of my anatomy, there is no we. There is only me, currently giving birth, and everyone else, and nobody else gets to have feelings. An epise? What is this, a day at the spa? I’ll have one of those, I guess, and a cucumber eye mask while you’re at it.
  • Ask your delivery team to refrain from such phrases as “oh boy, I’ve never seen that before.” If they do, ask them to reorder the part where they explain that the umbilical cord was wrapped around your daughter’s neck- not once or twice or three times but four times- and then inform you that she is, in fact, alive and well.
  • Don’t be surprised if your first moments with your tiny human aren’t quite as eloquent, or as sanitary, as it looks in the movies. I’m sure some new mamas do gaze at their new tiny humans and whisper “well hey, little friend, I’m your mama, and this is your daddy, and we’re going to take care of you forever” and then stroke their cheeks and kiss their noses. I, on the other hand, squeaked “hi!” nineteen times and then the sticky, overripe avocado/potato pooped on me. You’ll probably fall somewhere in between.
  • Don’t be surprised if you lose all track of time. I was squeaking my nineteenth “hi!” to our brand-new amazing live-in tiny human just a few days ago, after all, but when I woke up this morning our nearly-two year old amazing live-in toddler had confiscated my blanket and pillow and was jumping on the bed bellowing “ALL DONE SLEEPING PLEASE!” Which is, by the way, a concise and accurate summary of our household sleeping habits over the past two years.
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The Part Where I Eat Waffles and Strawberries and Bananas and Whipped Cream and a Little Bit of Bacon and then Throw Up in the Shower

While the midwife was giving me the green light on the waffles, my mother was making her way to the hospital. Traffic and timing demanded that I wait, so I headed to the lobby. I took a seat in the waiting area, trying to look like I wasn’t in rapidly escalating labor. A woman wrangling three kids noticed immediately. She seemed alarmed that I was 12 days overdue. You should have them cut it out of you, she suggested helpfully. What are you having? I told her I was having a girl. Oh, she said. You should have them cut her out of you.

My mother called to rescue me.

I made my way out to the car. I was starting to feel a little bit angry. Angry that I was rounding 0:40-3-8 and leaving the hospital. Angry that I had to walk to the car. Angry that I could walk to the car, because if I couldn’t, they would let me stay. Angry that I had to wait for my waffle, because I was so clearly in labor and women in labor deserve an immediate waffle. Angry that I couldn’t even finish my waffle- I always finish my waffle, and my bacon, and then some eggs. Angry that I had to wait to use the restroom.

When I finally made it to the restroom, I was trapped by long contractions sandwiching my actual goals. Contraction, pull myself together and pee. Contraction, pull myself together and wash my hands. Contraction, pull myself together and dry them. If you haven’t noticed, labor- and, you know, all of pregnancy and the first few weeks postpartum- is rather undignified.

I decided that perhaps home would be a better place to continue laboring. At the very least, I wouldn’t have to wait to use the restroom. My mother dropped me off and walked to the store to pick up some stomach-settling pretzels, and I got in the shower. I had heard that showers are a girl’s best friend during labor.

I heard wrong. I knew it was a mistake the moment I stepped in, but I had turned the shower on and stepped in and that seemed like too much effort for nothing, so I stayed. I swayed back and forth and made figure eights with my hips and tried all of the tactics I remembered my midwife telling me about, but I couldn’t stop thinking that something was terribly wrong. Something finally twinged in the back of my mouth and I thought to myself, huh, I haven’t felt that since the last time I threw up. And then I realized what was happening. My ¼ waffle was making its reprise, along with the strawberries and blueberries and whipped cream. 9I threw up right there in the shower, because the toilet two steps away was two too many steps away and shower-vomit seemed easier to deal with than floor-vomit. I surveyed the damage and wondered if maybe the strawberries had multiplied in my stomach. I didn’t remember eating that many strawberries.

My poor mother arrived to find me curled up on my bed- I would have been in my bed, but maneuvering blankets was well beyond my capabilities- and mumbling something about the shower. She probably thought she had cleaned up my vomit for the last time sometime around middle school, but alas. That’s what you get for trying to support your grown daughter as she makes you a granddaughter, I suppose.

I heaved myself out of bed to throw up again, this time in the toilet. I’m really getting the hang of this, I thought proudly, and then I threw up again. When I had emptied myself of waffles and strawberries and bananas and whipped cream and bacon and felt somewhat better, I tried to replace my meal with Gatorade. I succeeded in downing perhaps a third of a bottle, which seemed like adequate nutrition for the whole birth thing.

I lumbered around the living room, pausing to lean on the table or the couch whenever a contraction came along. The midwife who send me home to labor had given me some last-minute pain management techniques, and my mother gamely followed my orders. First we tried the smoosh-the-hips-together tactic. That made things much worse almost immediately. The sock-full-of-tennis-balls trick was similarly counterproductive, and hanging off a doorknob in a deep squat was simply not happening, given the absence of prerequisite arm strength.

In the end, I only needed two things: absolute silence, and absolutely no one touching me in any way. So my mother sat in silence while I waddled around the room, and when my father arrived he sat in silence too. I initiated whispered conversations in between contractions and became agitated when my parents, not feeling the contractions themselves, didn’t stop talking mid-sentence- mid-word, ideally- when each began. At some point I became convinced that our piano-playing neighbors, who had long since vacated the apartment upstairs, had bequeathed their piano to our new neighbors. Our new neighbors were playing it for the first time. Now. While I was having a baby. Must they ruin everything? “The old neighbors left their piano for the new neighbors,” I said, but I used a lot more expletives. My parents didn’t hear any piano, because our old neighbors didn’t actually leave their piano for the new neighbors, but they had grown accustomed to my angry outbursts and didn’t question me.

So I waddled in agitated silence and my parents sat in excited silence and finally, around 0:40-3-18, I gave up. The midwife had explained when I should only come in after an hour of unwalkable, untalkable contractions. Or if my water broke. Or, she had added as an afterthought, if I got tired. Some women just get tired faster, she said, and that’s ok.

I could still walk and talk through contractions- I didn’t, for the most part, but I could– and my water was still irritatingly intact, but I was done. I was just one of those women who get tired faster. I swallowed my pride and called the midwife.

Wait, no. I swallowed my pride and my mother called the midwife from the another room, which satisfied my desire for absolute silence and humored my entirely rational fear of using the phone for such basic tasks as “ordering a pizza” and “asking the hospital if I could please come have a baby now.”

So my ever-obliging mother called the hospital. The midwife who sent me home invited us back, even though I met precisely none of her criteria. My mother, verging on late for her evening shift, left for work. I can only assume she was completely focused on her patients and not at all distracted by the imminent arrival of her granddaughter.

My father followed his GPS to the hospital and pretended to listen as I aggressively and intermittently growled directions between contractions. He delivered me to the midwife, who was waiting at the curb with a wheelchair. She was surprised to see that I was still walking and talking through contractions. I silently dared her to throw a hundred dollar bill on the ground and watch me pick it up, but alas. She did not. We walked up to labor and delivery, and my father headed off to find parking and something to eat. I had requested moral support until things got real, and it was clearly going to be a while.

My amazing live-in husband arrived- from right down the hall, where he had been working all day- as I was checking in. Someone asked if I was still planning on a drug-free birth, and I almost laughed. That was never my plan. My plan was to see whether the pain grew more intense than my long-cultivated fear of long needles to the spine, or, more simply put, my plan was to wing it.

At 0:40-3-18.5, a long needle to the spine sounded reasonable. I was obviously not progressing, since I could still walk and talk and I would have picked up a hundred dollar bill. I might even have picked up a single dollar bill. The tiny human was taking her time. Might as well get comfy, right? Bring on the epidural.

Before they placed the epidural, though, they had to go through such formalities as “making sure the tiny human isn’t in distress” and “making sure the tiny human isn’t coming out, like, right now.” The tiny human wasn’t in distress, but I was further along than they had expected. More than 9 centimeters. Nurse Tiffany looked at me in alarm. “Why are you so calm?” she asked. “How are you OK?” I wasn’t OK, exactly- I was just dealing with pain how I usually deal with pain. You know, by continuing to walk and talk and pretend like nothing is happening in hopes that maybe it will go away.

The long needle to the spine was back in question. There was still time to do it, Tiffany explained, but in her experience the epidural usually slowed things down. I had made it so far on my own, and I was so close, she reminded me, and I would probably have a tiny human in my arms in an hour or two if I opted out. Then again, she argued with herself, the pain. There’s that.

I opted out. I had made it so far on my own, and I was so close, and I would probably have a tiny human in my arms in an hour. Two hours, max. How much worse could it get?

So I sent the anesthesiologist away and began part three of my birth story: Never Trust Tiffany.

Spoiler alert: if that part where I said “9 centimeters” made you feel uncomfortable, you probably shouldn’t read the next post.

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Is This Food Poisoning or am I in Labor?

My amazing live-in husband is not a punctual man. If we need to leave at noon to meet friends for lunch, he gets home at ten past. I do some quick calculations in my head, check traffic, and assure our friends that we’ll arrive within the realm of fashionable lateness. Then my dear husband announces that he just wants to go for a quick run. Twenty minutes, tops, and a shower- we’ll be out the door in half an hour, he promises cheerfully.

An hour later, my blood pressure is still rising and he’s in the kitchen. Just a quick snack- we’ll be out the door in a few minutes.

So you can see where our amazing live-in tiny human gets it.

She arrived on August 8th, just 288 short hours after we expected her. My due date came and went without even a single real contraction, and she continued to bang merrily on my ribs and my bladder and sometimes both, at the same time. I began a desperate series of Google queries, including “craving hospital cafeteria taco bowl- could this be early labor?” (no, you idiot) and “is this food poisoning or am I in labor?” (food poisoning, most likely, given the taco bowl) and “if I just push real hard on my belly will the baby pop out?” (probably not).

Once it became clear that our tiny human might need a tiny nudge, we scheduled an induction. We chose the afternoon of August 7th, a Friday, two days short of the two weeks overdue allowed by the hospital. Since we weren’t doing labor the old-fashioned way, we were able to do some serious planning and fancy footwork. My amazing live-in husband, who works at the same hospital where I would release the tiny human, would go to work as usual on Friday morning. My amazing mother would meet me for lunch at a diner near the hospital, where I would enjoy a healthy pre-labor waffle complete with whipped cream, strawberries and bananas. Bacon would make an appearance. My mother and I would head to labor and delivery to start the induction, and my husband would make his way over at the end of his shift. Induction can take a long time, after all, particularly for a first-time mother and particularly when the tiny human shows no desire to leave her happy place. Our tiny human would make her appearance sometime over the weekend. My husband, already scheduled for a rare weekend off, wouldn’t have to start paternity leave until Monday.

Ah, the best laid plans.

At 11pm on August 6th, 13 hours before my scheduled induction, I woke up to a new and fun sensation. I knew what it was immediately: it was our tiny human, messing with our plans. I tried to remember what the midwife told us.

“If you wake up with gentle contractions, go back to sleep- you’ll need energy for the real thing.” Perhaps I had already slept through these alleged gentle contractions. Perhaps the midwife had never gone through labor and didn’t realize that a “gentle” clenching of the uterus is not a real thing. Perhaps a person who wakes up to the intrusive sound of her amazing live-in husband scratching his nose just isn’t built to sleep through contractions. Whatever the case, I wasn’t going back to bed.

“Don’t come in until you have contractions that last one minute and come every five minutes for at least one hour. Just remember: 1-5-1.” This one I could handle. I had downloaded an app for this very purpose. I opened it and tracked a few contractions- they were only 30 seconds long and seven or eight minutes apart. Damn. I tracked contractions for eight more hours. By the time my amazing live-in husband was ready to leave for work, they were lasting only forty or fifty seconds but coming every three minutes. Had been for four hours. No one ever told me what to do with 0:40-3-4, so I caught a ride in with the husband. I figured I’d pop into labor and delivery and see if 0:40-3-4 was kind of like 1-5-1. If they wouldn’t admit me, I’d hang out in the library until my mother arrived for lunch. The library seemed like a perfectly reasonable place to labor.

When I arrived at labor and delivery, they monitored me for twenty minutes and checked my progress. I was verging on 0:40-3-6 by now, and had dilated further than at my last prenatal visit, but they weren’t convinced. My contractions weren’t intense enough, they explained. This was probably just early labor. They gave me two options. I was almost two weeks overdue and I was scheduled for an induction later that day anyways, so they could keep me and start pitocin early.  Alternatively, I could go home and see if things progressed naturally. Legend has it that pitocin-induced contractions are the only thing worse than regular old contractions, and I wasn’t particularly enjoying those, so I opted to go home.

The midwife who discharged me gave me a few helpful guidelines regarding my imminent return to the hospital. I was close enough to 1-5-1, but she wanted me to wait until I couldn’t walk or talk through contractions for a full hour. She talked me through a mental exercise: Imagine you’re walking along and you see a hundred dollar bill. Hey! A hundred dollar bill! And no one’s around. What do you do?

Um, I said. I take it?

Exactly, she said triumphantly. You’re not in real labor until you can’t even think about bending down to pick up that hundred dollar bill.

I was to come back when I couldn’t walk or talk through contractions for a full hour, and when I would ignore a hundred dollar bill just lying there on the ground. Now, the problem with both of those parameters is that they are completely subjective. Some women can’t walk or talk through a stubbed toe. I, on the other hand, can walk and talk through a surprising amount of pain, and I share nearly half a million dollars in debt with my amazing live-in husband. I will never ignore a hundred dollar bill just lying there on the ground. So I did what any patient would do: I spoke up and requested a more clear set of instructions.

Wait, no. I smiled and nodded, and then I left without any real understanding of when I should come back.

Before I left, though, I asked if there was anything in particular I should do to prepare. “You should eat something,” she said. I perked up. “Something light, just enough to keep your energy up. We won’t let you eat when you come back.”

The problem, again, is that “light” is entirely subjective. This time I did speak up. “What about waffles? With bananas and strawberries and whipped cream? Are waffles with bananas and strawberries and whipped cream light? And what about bacon? Is bacon light?” She okayed the waffles and bananas and strawberries and whipped cream, and the bacon.

So I left the hospital for part two of my birth story: I Eat Waffles and Strawberries and Bananas and Whipped Cream and a Little Bit of Bacon and then Throw Up in the Shower.

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Our Amazing Live-In Tiny Human is Cooler than Your Amazing Live-In Tiny Human

Our amazing live-in tiny human was due to arrive on July 27th. She showed up on August 8th, instead, because she does whatever she wants and she does it whenever she darned well pleases. She was a civilized 7 pounds 13 ounces, with an uncivilized 100th percentile head. She had a brilliant fauxhawk and the start of a glorious mullet and/or rat-tail. She was a talented sleeper from the start, enjoying naps of up to five hours punctuated by periods of aggressive alertness and occasional rage. She quickly learned to center her rage upon the usual suspects- hunger, a dirty diaper, the dreaded carseat, and the hours of 9-11pm- and we’ve managed to keep her healthy and mostly happy for more than two months.

She’s a nifty little creature, our tiny human. Despite her very recent arrival and a general inability to use her words, we know a lot about her. For instance:

  • She’s a surprisingly efficient eater, given that she spends most nursing sessions thrashing about, making velociraptor noises, and trying to shove her entire fist in her mouth
  • She’s a rogue pee-er and pooper, relieving herself an average of 2.3 times over the course of each diaper change and occasionally in her tiny bathtub
  • She once pooped with such force that the changing pad under her was spared while the wall, nearly a foot away, bore the brunt of the explosion
  • She once cried so hard that she pooped, which startled her so much that she stopped crying
  • She considers wraps, slings, and structured baby carriers to be a personal affront, preferring to be held by human arms at all times
  • She can distinguish between a human chest and a cushioned non-human surface even in the deepest of slumbers
  • She thrashes her head from side to side as she sleeps. In fact, she thrashes her head so aggressively that she’s balding in a U shape that accentuates her fauxhawk and her mullet
  • She likes to let her most recent feeding curdle a while before releasing the entire volume directly down my shirt
  • She occasionally wakes up with a piercing eagle cry because she’s pulling her own hair with her own tiny claw hand
  • She’s gained four pounds, mostly in her already considerable jowls
  • She hasn’t quite mastered tummy time, preferring instead to nap or, alternatively, panic
  • She already mastered her first word, “ooooughhh,” and repeats it fervently to whoever or whatever happens to be closest to her face
  • She flirts easily and indiscriminately, making eyes and cooing at the old lady in the frozen food section one minute and the owl pillows on the couch the next
  • She sweats so much that beads drip down her face when she eats and soak through her clothes during carseat ragefests
  • She once spent the better part of a day crying whenever I had the audacity to stop stroking her fauxhawk
  • She occasionally tries to smother herself with blankets and often tries to poke her own eyes out with her tiny claw hands

Well, I think that’s everything. The salient points, anyway. Readers, say hello to our amazing live-in tiny human!

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On May 16th, Nothing Significant Happened

On May 16th, my amazing live-in husband became a doctor.* Now, if he had his way, we would all just go about our lives and pretend like nothing significant happened. Nothing to see here. No reason to celebrate. Nothing for him or his loved ones to be insanely proud of. I mean, it’s not like he worked hard for almost half a decade to achieve an enormous life goal. And it’s not like he was rewarded for his efforts with his top choice of residency, or anything like that.

That’s not really how the rest of us see it, though. The way we see it, something significant happened. There’s everything to see here. There’s a reason to celebrate. There’s something for us to be insanely proud of. I mean, he worked hard for almost half a decade to achieve an enormous life goal. And he was rewarded for his efforts with his top choice of residency, where- not so incidentally- we might, on occasion, be able to wave at each other down the hallway.

So. On May 16th, my amazing live-in husband paraded about in a stunning Christmas-themed red robe with green chevron. He was awarded a diploma and draped with a doctoral hood as he walked across the graduation stage. He recited the Hippocratic oath with his peers, and he became a doctor. So we all celebrated. We allowed him to nix the fancy meal out and instead celebrated in his desired fashion, with takeout sandwiches in our apartment. Much of the focus was on the sandwiches, on the handicapped-cat-friendly changes we had made to the apartment, and on our tiny niece, who recently took her first steps and was directing some of those steps towards our mildly alarmed cats. That is, I think, exactly what he wanted. A day where we could all bask in that proud feeling- you know, that feeling where someone you love with your entire being takes the last steps** in a journey you’ve been watching for years and is finally, finally, recognized for it- and a day where he could sit back and pretend we were all there for the sandwiches, the cats, and the tiny niece.

* Yes, I could probably stop specifying the “live-in” nature of our relationship. But I am a creature of habit, and I think “amazing live-in husband” has a nice ring to it. So does “amazing live-in infant daughter.”

** You know, the last steps before the first steps of a three-year residency.

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OMG, What Do I Eat?

When I first realized that I might actually be incubating a tiny human, I panicked. Not about my general lack of experience with tiny humans, of course- I’ll make up for that with enthusiasm. Tiny humans love enthusiasm. And not about our general lack of time or money- that I took in stride. No, I panicked about food. OMG, I thought. What do I eat?

You may remember that my diet is primarily cheese-based, with such exotic meals as “Pizza Rolls” and “Lunchables” making an appearance on a slightly more than justifiable basis. So while a regular 29 year old incubator might worry about the three cocktails she had the week before she found out, I worried about my Pizza Rolls.

So I turned to all the usual resources- my OB/GYN, my nearly-doctor husband, my nurse mother, my medical friends and textbooks. And by that I mean I turned to Google. Google told me that my diet could remain relatively unchanged. No soft cheeses- fine. I prefer the hard child-cheeses anyways. Mozzarella, cheddar, jalapeno jack. All safe. No deli meats- fine. I’ll stick with hamburgers. No large mercury-laden fish- fine. I do enjoy a good spicy tuna roll, but I can cope. Less than 200mg of caffeine a day- I consulted my most recent can of DC. 45mg- phew. I almost never hit 5 a day, so…

And so it was decided. My diet would remain the same, but I would add all those things that tiny humans like and need- more vegetables. More fruits. Leaner meats and wholer grains. I was going to incubate the healthiest tiny human ever.

As it turned out, though, the tiny human had other ideas. The tiny human wanted other things. The tiny human wanted a cheesesteak, specifically, and the tiny human wanted it now.

When the first craving hit, I was at work. I immediately abandoned my pipets and searched Yelp for the finest cheesesteak-serving establishment within a few blocks of the medical campus. I called the first one I found- closed for renovations. I called the second- closed for no reason at all. I called the third- busy signal, for 5 minutes straight. The universe was conspiring against me and the tiny human controlling me.

I scrounged up some cash and headed to the med school cafeteria. Their full menu had been removed from the wall. A set of paper plates described the day’s specials- no cheesesteak. “Can you make me a cheesesteak?” I asked, hopefully. That’s a Thursday special, the grill chef told me. I can make you a hamburger. It was Monday, and the tiny human was not in the mood for a cheesesteak shaped into a patty. The tiny human required a cheesesteak-shaped cheesesteak.

And so I walked. I walked a mile and a half for that cheesesteak. I always thought cravings were fake- a justification for hungry incubators to eat whatever they darned well please. Now I understand.

So my diet has changed, but not for the better. The tiny human demands steak- less frequently, now that I’ve probably stored enough iron away for the next few decades, but often enough. The tiny human demands ramen noodles. Not real ramen, prepared by actual chefs with all the fixings- no, the tiny human rejects all the fixings. Not angel hair whole wheat pasta, Ramen’s healthier cousin- the tiny human will not be tricked. The tiny human demands authentic Maruchan Chicken Flavored Ramen.

The tiny human also demands grapes, but rejects most other healthy food items. The tiny human will tolerate apples and bananas, but don’t even bother showing it spinach. God help you if it’s cooked spinach- the tiny human does not tolerate cooked vegetables. The tiny human occasionally tolerates crunchy vegetables, like raw peppers and carrots, but only on certain days and only if you catch it in a good mood. The tiny human does enjoy the idea and the smell of healthy meals during hours of preparation, but rejects those same healthy meals once fully cooked and served artfully on a plate.

The tiny human has, in essence, turned my diet into the diet of a six year old suddenly given the freedom to choose. At any other time in my life, I would embrace such a change. Now, during incubation, it only brings guilt and shame- after all, I can’t even eat healthy to start my tiny human off on the right foot. What kind of mother will I be? The kind who eats like a 6 year old and takes prenatal vitamins to compensate, I suppose. We all just do what we can, right?

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Incubating a Tiny Human

Hi there! How are you? It’s been a while. The last I remember, I was telling you about the Saga of the Million Dollar Kittens. Then I left, right in the middle of the story, for more than a year. Sorry about that.

So, Mini broke. Since then, some things have happened:

  • After a heartbreaking and exhausting two months, Mini became ¾ cat and never looked back
  • Bear, feeling a bit jealous of Mini’s medical attention during her transition from four-legger to tripod, actively tried to die
  • I learned how to inject subcutaneous fluids into a kitten (also, how to syringe feed said kitten)
  • My amazing live-in fiancé and I finished off our second and third years of medical school, respectively, and began our PhD work and fourth year of medical school, respectively
  • With the help of my ever-supportive parents, I folded and assembled approximately 900 Kusudama flowers and paper-punched approximately 400 more
  • I decided that the proper way to study for the Monster was to rewrite the entire book, literally
  • My ever-supportive mother sewed 200 napkins from fabrics I selected with such grown-up themes as “farmland animals,” “adorable aliens,” and “tiny monsters”
  • I polished off the Monster and my amazing live-in fiancé crushed the two steps of Step 2
  • My ever-supportive future sister-in-law and mother-in-law put together a shower that was the perfect prequel to the wedding two small children decided to throw
  • My amazing live-in fiancé morphed into my amazing live-in husband at the wedding two small children decided to throw
  • My amazing live-in husband and I road-tripped the West Coast and finished off his residency applications in between volcano-biking and sipping mai tai’s on Maui

I want to tell you about all of those things, and a million stories in between. I’ll probably institute some form of throw-back Thursday, where I regale you weekly with tales of foibles past.

First I want to tell you the newest of foibles, the one where my amazing live-in husband and I decided that this would be an appropriate time to start incubating a tiny human- you know, for arrival in late July, just weeks after my qualifying exams and his residency orientation. We are, obviously, good at things.

So, there it is: I am incubating a tiny human!

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