Sunday, February 22, 2009

The crawl

There is so much going on that the desire to blog consumes me and the actualization of that desire is delusional.

Work is a clusterfuck horror-show right now. We've been experiencing chaotic institutional change and threats that are imagined, perceived, and alarmingly real. Obviously, the details are too ripe to post here, but take my word for it: SNAFU of the highest order. "Fight-flight" and the power-charge you get from an emergent challenge take you far for about 5 weeks. I've been working all day, coming home and powering up the laptop until well after bedtime.

At the beginning, I was even in good spirits about it - it's been like a slow code and I do miss the old days of hanging blood, cracking ribs, and pushing epinephrine. But now, my brain is turning to mush and my psyche is pretty badly dinged up. I keep my wits about me, literally. Keeping my team laughing is probably my central purpose at this point, but every day brings another detail that is essentially no laughing matter. If you had told me a few months ago what would be going on right now, I would have laughed, slapped your ass, and told you to shove off. Needless to say, I have needed to put a lot more time and energy into work. But more than hours, the shit there is practically always on my mind. It's a veil over my head and I'm distracted by it all the time. Entire 8 or 10 hour work days go by without me having the mental where-with-all to call home. (Not the literal, physical "home" we live in [no one is there during the work day], but the day care or the cell phone that katy carries around when she takes my "home/heart" out into the world.)

Katy is holding down the fort of sanity right now. Trouble is, she is physically compromised due to the fig-sized fetus that we planted inside of her several weeks ago. We have been trying to keep it a little mum, but now that Mackenzie knows about it, the cat is pretty much out of the bag. Always in the form of a question, she knows all and tells the world as much:

Mac 7 weeks ago: "Why are you toasting? Why are you saying congratulations to katy? Why? what's going on?"
Mac 4 weeks ago: "Where is Katy? Why is katy home? Why is katy sleeping? Why does Katy's belly hurt her?"
Mac 1 week ago: "You have a baby in there?" "You're having a baby?" "The baby makes you sick?" "You are having a baby grow in your belly?" "Katy has a baby?" "What's the baby's name?"

We will hopefully hear the baby's heartbeat on Tuesday. And then we will welcome the unadulterated sigh of celebratory planning.

As eluded to above, Katy has been feeling craptastic. Puking, dry heaves, queasy and everything like that. She is falling asleep on the couch at about 7 or 8pm daily. Then she wakes up, and heads to bed between 9 and 10pm beckoning me to accompany her.

Aside from being puky, she is physically warm- a veritable incubator. When i crawl into bed next to her, the temperature is shocking. It is so unusual for her to be throwing this much heat, that I sometimes imagine a hatted, southpaw fetus, spitting fluid and getting ready for the big show.

Today, after a wicked work week capped off by a very fun but kind of crazed-paced Saturday, it rained. It rained the kind of cold rain that should be snow. The kind of cold rain you expect in February. Rain that is 2 or 3 degrees too warm to ice over busy highways. Two years ago, rain like that on a Sunday would have put my wife and me under covers watching movies in bed all day.

Today we had the 1.5 year old to entertain. We putzed and played and grew a tiny bit bored and at some point threw our swimsuits on under our sweats and headed out to the pool. That's right, we belong to a pool. I know what you're thinking, "but we've never heard you speak of 'the pool' before???" When I was pregnant with JB (and even before that) we swam quite a bit- we went to the pool a few times a week to swim laps. And then the pregnancy progressed, and then the c-section, and then all the breastfeeding, and then the baby was too little, and then katy went back to work, and then I went back to work, and then all the ear infections, and don't forget about the laziness... you get the picture.

For some people this is a no brainer - "Quit the pool!!! JUST STOP SENDING YOUR 40 BUCKS EVERY MONTH!!!" But for us this gets all wrapped up in why we're not more active, and not wanting to give up on fitness and being "ready" to work out if the opportunity presents itself. It's hard to stop spending money on the gamble that you might wake up one day and want to suddenly be a better, healthier person.

So we take JB for the first time to the pool that there is no way for him to know he is a member of. It's not the first time he's been in water or a pool, but there is a unique feature of our pool. The kiddie-pool shallow part is a ramp. You walk into it like you are walking into the ocean. Allow me to explain with a visual image that is not really drawn to scale:

The Dark Blue is the regular, larger part of one of the pools (it is longer and wider than it appears here). That pool is 4 to 7 feet deep and the red lines indicate swim lanes. The Yellow is the beginning of the ramp and has water only barely covering your toes. The Green part is 5-7 feet of water that is less than a foot deep, and the Aqua area gradually goes to 2-ish feet as you round the corner and head into the bigger pool. The point of all of this is that JB gets to walk into and around in water that is waist and chest high and doesn't have to be carried all around to explore pool/swimming options.

He started hesitant, but quickly grew to enjoy himself. At first, he wouldn't walk into the water but wanted to be carried. After he realized that he could safely navigate the shallow water, he wanted to explore. Several times he walked right into water that was higher than his mouth or fell completely into water that was a foot deep. We were right there to buoy him up and he came out of the drink every time coughing and sputtering a little, but also laughing.

Watching him in this environment might have been my favorite hour of parenting so far. It was relaxing and simplistic; exciting and mellow. It doesn't hurt that I like the water so much myself. Just being in shallow water with my wife and son made me so happy. For a split second, I wished we had the camera to take photos or video, but I quickly tossed that notion aside. "" I told myself. There was no way to really document these feelings anyway.

JB was beside himself with what can only be described as excited joy. When he ventured out a little bit alone with me, I would point out katy to him. From a distance, he would flail about ecstatic when he caught a glimpse of her. When she had him and his eyes re-located me, he would excitedly slap his chest like a gorilla. But mostly we were all three together. We passed him back and forth, log-tossed him a little. Put him on a kick-board, let him hang on to our floating toes... He put his face in the water, tried to imitate me blowing bubbles, he got on his belly to "swim", he got on his back and "kicked", he held onto my neck and rode on my back as I took him into the bigger pool. By the end, he was walking in an out pretty independently. Then, he was jumping from a seated position and then standing position into my arms off the side of the pool. I couldn't have been prouder if he suddenly counted to 100. It was nothing but fun. And I guess if we needed to quantify it, totally worth the year and 1/2 of membership dues that we obligingly paid despite not using the facilities.

1 comment:

amber said...

yaaaaay!!!! CONGRATS!!!!! i'm so excited for you!!!!