Friday, October 23, 2009

I Am Typing This With One Hand...

because the other is cradling my newborn as he nurses! For anyone left reading this much-neglected blog, I'm here to report that rarest of IF outcomes: a genuinely happy ending. Why pregnancies number 4 and 7 produced beautiful boys, while numbers 1, 2,3, 5, & 6 produced doomed 46XY fetuses, I will never know, barring new discoveries in reproductive medicine. For now "miracle" will have to serve as the most scientific explanation. Hallelujah!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Deliverance Not Delivery

A quick update at the 30 week mark:

This pregnancy has continued to be highly stressful. At 27 weeks, I was told that my cervix was 80-90% effaced. My OBs debated an immediate steroid shot, then decided to await the results of a fetal fibronectin test. Oddly, when they reexamined me 24 hours later, my cervix was back to only 50% effaced. Thankfully, the FFn test came back negative, which gave me a nice two-week interval of confidence that I wouldn't go into labor.

Low and behold, at my check up this past week, I once again had a cervix that was 80-90% effaced and the baby was in pelvic station -1, quite a bit lower than you'd expect at only 29+ weeks. Lather, rinse, repeat: negative FFn test and mysterious return to 50% effacement one day later, baby's head up around rib cage again. The conclusion? I have an irritable uterus. Frankly, the old ute is not the only thing that's irritable at this point, but I shall strive to contain myself!

The real good news is that I am all but guaranteed to make it at least as far as 32 weeks, a key milestone and an exceptional degree of reassurance for this anxious recurrent miscarrier.

Meanwhile, the running hypothesis is that the uterine irritability was caused by dehydration secondary to fasting for glucose tolerance tests. Tests plural, because I failed the first one. But, this afternoon, the result came back negative for gestational diabetes. Icing on the cake I will now be allowed to eat! And, for the final frosted flower, my test for Group-B Strep (which was positive in my pregnancy with Turtle) also came back negative. So, it would seem that I am in the clear all round.


Insomnia still going strong. Tonight the babe keeps kicking my bladder with the result that I have to pee every 1/2 hour or so. I don't want the baby out any time soon, I just want the time until 40 weeks to pass fast!

And on the topic of the little one on the outside: at just over three, Turtle is so adorable I want to swoon. Tonight he asked me, "why are teeth white?" We have been talking a lot about how the good things in food leave our bellies and go into our blood to bring our bodies what they need to grow and be strong. (The corollary, of course, is that the unusable parts of food turn into poo--an endlessly fascinating subject as we are deep into potty training.) I asked him if he could think of a drink that's white, and he came up with "milk!" So then we talked about how milk has calcium that goes into our teeth and makes them strong and white. This led to a discussion of bones and skeletons. I showed him my Webster's dictionary diagram of a skeleton and asked him what it looked like. I thought he might say "a person." But he said, "bones!" It really seemed like he got it. Then we took a break from heavy discussion because he wanted to sing, "if you're happy and you know it clap your hands." He is just such good company. I loved his babyhood--all the delicious, soft, warm, chubbinesss of it--but he is turning into such a fascinating little person. It's great fun to watch. And I may turn into a mommy blogger yet, just to capture these memories.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Night Owls

Insomnia, 4 a.m.
Baby's kicking
Together we pace the night
Energy sapped from the day floods in
That cabinet can be set to rights
We crave the crunch of a green apple
There are those thank-you notes to write
Our hearts are pumping hard
And my eyes fill
This blessed night, this blessed life

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


All OK with the FISH results. A huge relief. I simply did not know how we would face, much less make, any decisions and I'm so glad there are none to be made. It's not going to be easy but I am going to try my level best not to spend the rest of this pregnancy vigilantly patrolling for problems.

Tomorrow I go to my new doctor, Dr. Friend, for a check up, but as I can feel some movement I am feeling confident things are OK. Doing the amnio with Dr. Madame capped the decision to switch practitioners. When he finally swanned in after the endless twenty-five minutes with the tech, I said, "you know I'm feeling really apprehensive about whether doing the amnio is the right thing." He replied, "that's to be expected," turned on in his heel, and left. He returned a few minutes later with an ultrasound doc (who manned the machine during the actual procedure). While prepping me for the needle, he proceeded to enjoy professional banter with his fellow M.D., including some jokes about "vaginal rejuvenation." Yo, rejuvenate your mouth, dude. My mother now thinks he must have Asperger's...she has at least the first two letters right!

Saturday, May 16, 2009


I think I have Post Infertility Stress Disorder. I cannot relax in this pregnancy at all. I feel I am constantly bracing for the next disastrous event, anxiety strafing across my consciousness at every corner. I have grown so used to the need to be stoic, to bend without breaking that I'm now chronically emotionally stooped.

If told that there's a 99.5% chance that the baby they're expecting will have a normal complement of chromosomes, most people would rest easy at night. I can't and neither can my husband. We felt compelled to do the amnio even though we felt sick at the thought of the (also vanishingly small) additional risk and unsure what we would do with the information. The first problem, of course, is that we're not expecting a new baby; we're expecting the next catastrophe.

I cried silently through the whole ultrasound. It took the expected 25 minutes and we were directed to notice every finger and toe, each chamber of the heart. The ultrasound tech seemed very rattled by my silent tears, so I gather this is not the standard response of women undergoing amnio. At the end, she gave us two souvenir pictures, the clearest shots we've yet seen of the fetus. My husband asked afterward, "do you think she was Pro-Life?" But I'm sure she was just following procedure.

We are the ones so desperate for life, for normal life, for the country-song happy ending "we'll have a boy for you, we'll have a girl for me." That outcome once seemed not a privilege, but just what would happen to any two people in love.

I cried in that ultrasound with grief for the thought that I could be hurting my precious baby, no matter the number of chromosomes it carries. Despite my firm pro-choice politics, I cried with true moral revulsion at the possibility of terminating a much-wanted life. And I cried at the thought of what it would mean to devote our limited time, energy, and resources to the difficulties of raising a child with special needs. I cried with grief that 6 seemingly endless years of infertility and loss mounted up so quickly in the end, making me old enough to merit this invasive procedure.

I went home and drank the recommended glass of wine and slept for hours. Wish I could sleep till Tuesday when the FISH results should arrive, till October, when the baby is due. Wish I could wake up finally from this nightmare of repeated miscarriage, happy and whole. Wish I felt no need to glance continually back over my shoulder while alternately squinting to scan the horizon ahead.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

FISHing for Trouble?

I seem to live life on the statistical edge. One half of one percent is the percentage of women who have recurrent miscarriage for which no explanation can be found. It's also the risk that the baby I'm currently carrying has Down's Syndrome. My nuchal results were great, but the news has gotten progressively worse. My odds are now 1/190, worse than my age-related risk of 1/287. The odds of miscarriage due to having an amnio are 1/400. What's a five-time miscarrier to do?

I feel absolutely whipsawed by this latest twist of events. What are the chances that fate could be so cruel as to let me hold a pregnancy with a chromosomally abnormal fetus after I've lost FIVE chromosomally normal ones? You might think the odds are slim. But given the improbable bad luck I've already experienced, I find little comfort there.

I'm currently scheduled for an amnio on Friday, but I'm scared and ambivalent. I just don't know how much more I can take...Suffice it to say that this is doing nothing for my efforts to get back into a work writing routine. Somebody stop the bus. I want to get off.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Good Gossip

Turns out that finding a birth practitioner is a lot like looking for a suitable life partner: very hard to find the right fit.

I interviewed a midwife and she was not bad. I found her very down to earth and I liked how reassuring she was about the prospects for my next birth. Turtle came relatively quickly and easily and she thought that a second delivery would be the same only more so. On the other hand, she took multiple phone calls during our half hour interview, then trotted me out the door just on the dot of 30 minutes. Plus, during one of those calls, she seemed to be blaming a new mother a bit for her trouble with nursing. So I left thinking, yeah, she's someone I could work with. But I wasn't in love.

Next I went to meet a woman OB in an all-women practice. We'll call her Doctor Friend because I felt right away that under different circumstances she could be a friend. She won me over right away by snorting in agreement when I said that Zofran really didn't seem to help me. Everyone else has touted it as a sure cure, but she was like, "look, that was developed for chemo. We don't know that much about pregnancy nausea, but there's no reason to think it works exactly them same way as the chemo-induced kind." She said she'd never seen anyone with true hyperemesis helped by Zofran. I just felt vindicated. Everyone else made me feel like an ingrate for not appreciating the wonder drug. There were lots of other good moments and Dr. Friend delivers at the hospital with the lowest C-section rate in the city. So I'm sold.

I did feel a little bit bad about dumping Dr. "I refer to women as 'Pregnant Ladies' and address them as 'Madame.'" But that was before he scared the daylights out of me for no reason, insisting that my anatomy-scan results merited an amnio when in fact the hospital geneticist assured me that there was absolutely no cause for concern. So that'll be it for him, though I still haven't placed the call...

I am eating everything now and going off the pump was no problem. Still very tired, but I guess that's what you get for taking to bed for two months.


Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Damned Mobs of Scribbling Women

Addiction or Adaptation? There's been a lot in the news lately about the "problem" of mothers who spend too much time on line, who have developed what the DSMV is apparently going to call internet addiction. Rachel Mosteller wrote about it on parentingdotcom and the New York times picked up the story.

I do know what they mean. There have certainly been times when I've surfed the web rather than getting down to work. There have indeed been occasions when I've wondered where the hours went. On the other hand, I tend to think I might well have spent quite a few of those hours crying into my shoes if not for the existence of the internet and its ready-made community of women going through just what I was going through at just the same time.

Mosteller quotes experts who advise that one should chart: "what was going on each time you decided to sit down at the computer. Was it right after a fight with your husband? Were you bored? By figuring out the triggers that send you seeking refuge online…you can come up with alternative activities that help you deal." I seriously wonder if there is an activity that could better have "helped me deal" with infertility and loss than writing, reading, and commenting on blogs. I have just one real-life friend who has gone through the level of difficulties I have. We're very close, but frankly, sometimes we like to take a break from ruminating on reproduction and remember the aspects of our friendship that first brought us together. I joined an in-person grief support group for those with pregnancy loss at one point and it was very helpful. But, none of our experiences were as closely matched as the self-selecting community of bloggers. For one thing, none of them went on, as I did, to cap primary infertility with secondary infertility.

Here in the online world, the support is infinitely customizable and instantly available. Primary infertiles can skip the whining of secondaries like myself when it gets to be too much. Those who would give anything just to conceive don't have to read the miscarriage memos. Having a black day? Log on. Feeling sunny? Skip it. There is a flexibility and immediacy to online contact that can't be matched in the real world.

People have been complaining that "America is now wholly given over to a damned mob of scribbling women" since Hawthorne. But I for one am proud to be a cyberscribbler. I don't plan to give it up--especially not at the suggestion of scolds who are themselves posting their warnings on line!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Melissa Ford Has 2,000 Readers Per Day

I am currently averaging about seven readers per day. Many of them were sent my way by Melissa and her great "Lost and Found and Connections Abound" column. The day Melissa featured my blog in LFCA was tremendous. I received an outpouring of support at a very low moment (ultimately false report of diminished ovarian reserve after my 4th miscarriage). I could not believe that she even knew Let's Generate existed. So this is a post to say thank you to Melissa and to encourage all seven of my current readers to check out her forthcoming book, *Navigating the Land of If*. If infertility is one of the world's rockiest emotional coastlines, Melissa has been a lighthouse for many of us.

Now, as to my seven readers, thank you all from the bottom of my heart. From new friends like Hillary to old ones like Thalia, the support of the internet IF community has made a crucial difference to me for 6 years now. (Not that I've blogged that long, but I've been lurking since 2003!) To hear an update from a long-lost friend like Sonya is just fabulous. So you *and* Tertia can recommend #7?! I find this very encouraging. Meanwhile, Bugs is a rock star and I can't believe she sometimes stops by my shop.

To all the people who find me by googling for info on thyroid disease and miscarriage, I can only say that I am humbled to know how many of us are out there. I am now, two miscarriages after the birth of Turtle, a lot less cocky about having solved my infertility puzzle than I was in 2006. But adequate thyroid supplementation certainly can't hurt.

I am to start weaning off the Reglan pump (the anti-nausea meds) today and I am a little bit nervous. Only over the weekend did my complexion finally lose the green cast I've been sporting for months. But, hopefully I'm ready and it will go well.

No regular doctor's appointment this week, but I am going to consult a midwife and another OB. The fabulous OB I used with Turtle has quit practicing OB to focus on Gyn and the new guy is not my cup of tea. (Among other things, he calls me only "Madam"-- like it would be so hard to read my name off the chart.) Back when I couldn't even swallow tea I wasn't in shape to be choosy about my practitioner, but now I'm thinking that maybe I should find someone I'd actually want to deliver with! Anyway, next week is the bog 16-week scan. I will keep you posted.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Well, hello there

Hi. I'm sorry I've been such a terrible blogger. What can I say? Round-the-clock puking does tend to sap the will to live, let alone the urge to write.

But. I am 14 weeks pregnant! We still have a live fetus. And of my seven (seven?!) pregnancies to date, only one prior one--the successful one-- made it to the second trimester. So I am cautiously optimistic--audaciously hopeful--that this pregnancy could be the real deal.

I have very little to report, having just spent two straight months puking in bed. I can tell you that the weather from the window was not good in those months. There were thunder storms in March. And lightening made me puke so I was extra miserable.

Also, there are very few novels out there that include realistic characters and thematic depth, yet convey an upbeat outlook. People either gave me Misery Lit like Rohinton Mistry's A FIne Balance or Harlequin romances. For a long time there was nothing I could eat and nothing I wanted to read. At a low point, I resorted to Laura Ingalls Wilder, *The Long WInter*. That played a big part in getting me through, actually.

In other news, I can say that my body appears to have gotten the memo bout the second trimester and I am feeling much better. It feels miraculous just to sit in the living room; going outside is a wonder. I took to my bed in the winter and lo, spring has sprung.

So, I am rusty, so rusty at posting. And, as I may have mentioned, writing non-fiction is key to my day job (from which I took emergency leave). So I suppose it's good to face my inarticulateness here on the old blog. But sheesh. My very brain feels arthritic.

Well, maybe I will write here more frequently if only to try to limber up. I am still on the anti-nausea meds, but off the home iv. Hope that when I am med free and up to 16 weeks the gears will start to turn again. Anyway, thanks much to the few still hanging in there with me.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Twelve Weeks

sorry for the long silence. Hyperemesis has made posting impossible. But. I am still pregnant! I've only made it this far once before- and that was with Turtle. So I am very hopeful. There will be more silence. A home iv for hydration means I don't get use of my right hand ( except like today between insertions). But I will update when I can.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


I am adrift on a sea of nausea in a rudderless oarless boat. But I am not alone. There is another passenger aboard

Monday, March 02, 2009

Just So

I feel too tired and overwhelmed for eloquence or style. We had a scare yesterday and my dear Dr. Cookie Pie came in to see me on a Sunday. Not only was the scare a false alarm, but we had a good strong heartbeat in an embie measuring 6 weeks, 3 days, exactly to dates. Of my 5 prior losses, 2 had heartbeats at this stage, so I am by no means out of the woods. But guess what, my 1 live birth had a heartbeat at this stage...

I am overwhelmed by hope and fear. And soo tired. All this is hard on Turtle; I am sleeping about 13-14 hours a day. He seems so puzzled that I keep falling asleep again just when he wants to play. And vomiting is of course very upsetting to watch. But if we're home alone together it seems worse to lock him out. So there he is by my side, querying after each retch, "what's that Mommy, what's that?" He summed the whole thing up well when he said, "Yucko, Mama!"

I finally decided to level with him. I told him, "Mommy's body is working very hard to make a baby. Babies are very hard to make, and it might work or it might not. We are going to have to wait a long time to see. But right now my body is trying and that's why I'm so tired and sick." It seemed pretty heavy stuff for a non-yet-three year old. But he actually looked very relieved to get the information. Like, "I *knew* something was going on, thank God someone finally told me." A couple of minutes later he said, confidently yet clearly also anxiously, "my body can't make a baby." And I said, "No, your body can't make a baby, you don't have to worry. Daddy's body can't make a baby. Only mommies' bodies can make babies." He nodded as if to say, "Just, so" and went about his business building a block park to surround his train tracks.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Long Live Greek Yogurt with Honey

I am pretty much never going to stop missing Get-Up Grrl. I still cannot believe she hasn't come roaring back from anonymity with a book contract, but what are you going to do? Her humor got so many of us through dark days, but perhaps her single best piece of advice was more basic: get yourself some Fayeh yogurt. Savor the honey on your tongue. Good for what ails you. Hunger, heartache, or stomach ache. If you have all-day morning sickness (yes I am still pregnant, it would seem) you might want to stock up. Passing on that there piece of advice is my good deed for the day... now I am going to dance with Turtle (but I will *not* twirl or fall down).

Saturday, February 21, 2009

A Mother's Eyes

In some ways, my husband has great vision. Whenever we're in the car, he keeps up a constant running commentary on everything he sees. He'll glance casually out the window and say, "see that line of spray paint? That means they're going to add new electric lines there and that means they're going to build there and given the size of those sewers it's definitely going to be multi-family housing and..." Even if I take the time to look up from my book and peer out intently, I can never so much as glimpse what he's talking about. The man has never had a proper nom de blog and he deserves one. I hereby name him Hawkeye.

Hawkeye, however, cannot really see color. Oh, he's not color blind in the technical sense, only in the practical one. When he dresses Turtle, he sees nothing wrong with matching the lime green shirt with the forest green pants. "How can green not match green?" he'll demand indignantly. To me it's like listening to someone hit a flat when singing the national anthem: too cringe-inducing for words.

Take another example. Once on a long road trip we passed a huge billboard for a china outlet right off the highway. They carried our brand and we'd just broken two plates, so I badgered Hawkeye till he turned around and took the exit. Sure enough, the warehouse had our pattern prominently displayed on a front table. But I immediately realized that there was something off about the colors in the glaze. They weren't so much the beautiful cobalt of my dish set as some kind of muddied off-denim blue. "Never mind," I said, "these are clearly seconds." My husband stifled a sigh at being dragged off route for nothing and reasonably pointed to the sign that said, "all china first quality."

I kept arguing with him about the ineffable color of cobalt until he fetched a salesperson who agreed with him that the dishes on display were the genuine article and that I was either crazy or seeing things or both. I wandered the rest of the store in frustration until by chance, on a completely different display, I saw a vase in the same pattern as our china with our blue glaze, the right blue glaze, and I bore it over to them in triumph. With that, the salesperson agreed to bring out every plate she had from the back room and we went through them one by one. Half way through a pile of 30 plates, we found a single one to match my cobalt.

When we turned the plates over, Hawkeye realized that the logos on the plates were subtly different (a point I myself would never have noticed). The muddy denim plates had the logo written in slightly italicized font. In fact, the objectionable plates turned out to be slight update on my older--far superior--version of the pattern. So we bought the last old-style plate they had in stock. And even though I was still one plate shy of a dozen I crowed to Hawkeye for the rest of the trip about my incredibly refined color vision.

I have never known to what possible end nature could have endowed me and my foremothers with this extraordinary gift of color perception. To spot the ripest berries on the Savannah? But now I know.

The whole point of acute color vision is to allow me to engage in minute scrutiny of my toilet paper, scanning for any trace of blood each and every time I wipe. In the absence of any other scrap of information about the state of this pregnancy (all symptoms having vanished) I am left screening shreds of toilet tissue for hints of embryonic tissue. Thanks to my UTI (yes I have another one) I have at least one opportunity per hour for this joyless performance. So far, we're all clean. But it's gonna be a long 10 days...unless it all ends shortly.

For now, if you're looking for me, you'll know where to find me: crouched over in the bathroom, swiping, squinting, praying.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Trying to Keep from Cracking

Well, I went in to get wanded this morning and the news is decidely mixed. I am 5 weeks 1 day today. There was a visible amniotic sac measuring 4 weeks 5 days and a yolk sac measuring 5 weeks 2 days. Dr. Cookie Pie said the yolk sac had a "hat" ( a tiny white line on the border that indicated early growth of the fetal pole) and that such a line does not develop before 5 weeks 2 days. She said that the am sac measurement was within the margin of error and that I just should not worry. But I feel like I am going to crack from anxiety. I am sitting here pecking at my mobile device and trying not to cry. I just don't know how to keep enduring these losses. Worst of all, I can't go in again until 3/3 because she is away next Friday and Monday. So next scan will be at 6 weeks 5 days (unless I start to bleed first).

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Don't you think that would be a great new name for my blog? As in, I'm on my 3rd pregnancy in the span of 9 months and I still half-expect the arrival of a live baby? Of course, I also half-expect to wake up 6 inches taller and ten pounds thinner. Regular pregnant ladies get to say, "I'm expecting." But we recurrent miscarriers daren't do more than half-expect.

Beta was 300-somethingish. Can't even remember, but double what it was with the blighted ovum at the same gestational date. V. sore boobs, crazy fatigue, no sick yet (knock would, cross fingers, toss salt, etc.). So um, 1st ultrasound to look for sac is Friday and I think I'm just too stupified with fatigue to write anything else.

Thank you for the comments, my loyal old friends on the internet. I go back and forth on whether to tell the world at large about each new pregnancy. Last time I told everyone who so much as said hello to me, but this time, it's just you Nets. SO *thanks* for the support and good wishes.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


You guessed it. I'm back on the blog with number seven on board. In an unusual display of self control, I waited until today, the actual day my period is due, to test. Reward: a nice dark pink second line. By yesterday, I was pretty confident of the facts and cocky enough to enter the day of my last LMP into the handy due-date calculator at Bby Ctr. They actually provide the result by saying "your baby will be born on..." WILL BE BORN? Can I sue them for malpractice if/when this one goes south?

Anyway, feeling good, feeling hopeful. Irrationally exuberant one might say. I blame the hormones--for which I also blame the decision to place a partially open bottle of Fizzy Lizzy into a purse full of library books on the way to the doctor's this afternoon.

Mostly feeling pretty proud of myself for having the sheer guts to try this again. Lucky # 7 (yes, I'm hoping to steal a page from Tertia's book) would be due just before my 37th birthday. Sure would be nice...

Will post Beta when I get it. Cheers!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Snowy Day

You can't always get what you want, and if you try sometimes, you just might find, you don't need what you get. In my head, the perfect snowy day involves snowballs, snowmen, sledding, snow angels, snow shoveling, and maybe after all that some hot chocolate for the little ones. In reality, my perfect snowy day involves a brief brisk walk in the sunshine, followed by a nap for Turtle, a "nap" for mommy and daddy, then a nap for daddy, and then blogging,coffee, and a brownie for mommmy.

I thought I wanted a puppy, but what I really want is a baby. And it turns out that a yipping, nipping, pissing, pooping machine that needs clean-up baths three times a day and walks ten times a day does not begin to fill the baby-shaped hole in my heart. So the puppy, through no fault of her own, has been sent off to foster care at my parents' house (bless their hearts). I've been shocked by the level of resentment/indifference I wound up aiming at the dog. I never understood, until now, the expression "harden you heart." Even strangers on the street melted into puddles at the sight of the puppy. But while I could observe her little doggie merits clinically, I could *not* expereience them emotionally. I felt no rush of nurturing feeling whatsoever. Instead, I felt a regular desire to throttle her.

My negative reaction to the OMD shocked me all the more because I experienced every second of Turtle's infancy as sheer magic. I discovered myself to be remarkably maternal, a delightful surprise given that back before I knew how hard it would be to have a baby, I had thought that I didn't really want one all that much. Yes, I was covered at one time or another in every bodily effluvium known to womankind. Yes I nursed for a cumulative eight hours a day around the clock. Yes my nipples cracked and bled and yes I thought my body would shoot clear to the ceiling from the pain. But my God, I was so grateful to feel it all, after the numbing sorrow of infertility. I just walked around all day with Turtle snugged to my chest in a kind of dreamy blissful stupor. In fact, a friend told me the other day that she and all my other friends found me nauseating in all my dewy joy and that they came to a collective agreement to put up with me only because they knew how hard the road to motherhood had been. So when I told her I was sending away the OMD, she laughed and said, Anne, *finally* you're getting your taste of post-partum (post-canum?!) depression!

All of this is to say, that we are still actively trying for a second child the old-fashioned way. (My repeat FSH levels were an age-appropriate 9.9. Not fab, but definitely not catastrophic either.) But instead of feeling crushed by my latest negative pregnancy test this week, I felt strangely peaceful. Turtle is so adorable, such a big boy. I have a great flexible job*, good childcare, and a marriage making a comeback from parent-shock on the strength of a rock-solid foundation. I want a second kid, I think. But I'm prepared to be philosophical if I don't get what I think I want.

*Tomorrow, for example, I won't be working, but rather cheering wildly at the TV round 11:30 a.m...