Apparently I’m Not a New Englander…

February 8, 2013 at 11:31 am | Posted in Around Boston, Pregnancy Fun Time | 4 Comments
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As I sit here watching the weather report (Read: emotionally preparing for impending doom), seeing the first signs of Blizzard Nemo (Bugging Andrew to come home early – pretty please – this is a dangerous fish!) and reading friends’ Facebook statuses about the joy of snowstorms (Bring it on?  No thank you – please keep it away!), I’ve come to realize something: I can’t be a New Englander! 

Despite our reputation for a chilly demeanor, I think there’s also a certain degree of machismo around winter weather in the Northeast, something like “stormchismo.”  We buy out the region’s supply of bread, milk, bottled water and, for some reason, Pop Tarts (ick); we stock up on flashlights and batteries (why did I buy 24 AAA batteries at Home Depot?  When will I ever use 24 AAA batteries???); we watch the weather reports and poke fun at those folks who worry with choruses of “We live in New England – get used to it!” and “Finally, a little snow!”

I'd probably be at home worrying...

I’d probably be at home worrying…

But not me.  I’m angsty about this storm, I’m fearful that we will lose power, and I’m already dreading the cleanup and dealing with the 24”+ inches of snow that will surely remain with us for days or weeks to come.  What gives? 

Sure, I could blame this on my pregnancy-induced proclivity to worry, but we all know I was a worrier before getting preggers and I’ll be a worrier after, too (less than 30 days left until we meet Baby L-ski!  Huzzah!).  That said, I used to love being home watching the snow, snuggled up with a cocoa and blanket.  And even though I’ve been in New England for most of my life, I was born and raised in Colorado – weather like this is something I’ve always known – no excuse there.  And it’s not like I have to commute in this – my boss is delightfully flexible about letting me WFH (that’s “work from home,” for those not in the know) during inclement weather. 

So what’s my excuse?  What’s the problem?  Is there hope for me or am I doomed to be a lesser Masshole?

And is it time to panic yet? 

Practical Pregnancy Advice

December 19, 2012 at 10:20 am | Posted in Family, Pregnancy Fun Time | 4 Comments
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There’s a LOT of advice out there for those “in the family way” – from the best position to sleep in (on your left side, apparently) to what not to eat (while still eating almost everything in sight) – you could Google your every move and still not find all the info available.  But even with the overwhelming amount of advice out there, there are some very practical things I wish someone had shared with me before I found out the hard way.  For example:

The Wet Badge of Pregnancy: When leaning over to wash your hands, reach for something, etc., be sure to wipe off the counter area that your belly will touch before you reach out (because your belly will touch it!).  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gotten a wet line across my midsection and had to walk around with water (or tomato sauce…) cutting across my protruding belly.  Not attractive, especially at work when you’re trying to appear professional.  (And yes, “trying” is the operative word here).

Pregnancy Weight Gain

Strangers Know Best!  Or so they think.  And they’re not afraid to tell you.  Everything.  Last week I was in line at the grocery and a TOTAL STRANGER approached me to let me know that “claims” that cocoa butter lotion like Palmer’s helps with stretch marks is a BALD-FACED LIE perpetuated by corporate America.  True story.  I didn’t even have any lotion in my cart!  Her recommendation?  Gotu Kola supplements.

Ohhh-kay.  First of all, lady, I certainly don’t want to discuss anything about my pregnancy or the evils of corporate America in the middle of a grocery store with some strange gal who lacks boundaries.  And Gotu Kola supplements?  We’re in Stop & Shop!  I’m exhausted, my back is killing me, my feet hurt, and even grocery shopping feels like a herculean effort.  The last thing I’m going to do is follow a random stranger’s advice, hunt all over the greater Boston area to find a supplement that my doctor hasn’t approved that may or may not help with stretch marks.

So ladies, when some wackadoo approaches you in the grocery or any other public place – and trust me, a stranger will approach you – do what I do and pretend you don’t speak English, or you’re about to yak.  Works (almost) every time.

And speaking of stretch marks…

Stretch Marks are Horrifying!  No one, NO ONE, tells you this, but it’s true, and it’s also true that it is okay to think that.  Yes, they’re natural.  Yes, they’re unavoidable for those who are susceptible to them.  And yes, in the grand scheme of things, they’re NO BIG DEAL.  But this blog is about being honest, and honestly, my stretch marks startle me every time I catch a glimpse of them.  It looks like my baby is trying to claw her way out – like she’s either auditioning for the next Alien film or she’s so miserable in there she’ll do anything to get out!

Clearly this is not the case.  Obviously the red gashes have nothing to do with Baby L-ski’s state, other than to indicate that she’s growing (thankfully) and I need to make more room for her!  But I’m super self-conscious about them, even when I’m alone.  And it’s okay to feel that way, dagnabbit!

Worrying About How Much I Worry… Should I be Worried?  Around the middle of my second trimester, I started thinking.  Okay, okay, it was more than just thinking; I started worrying, particularly about silly things.  For example, a few weeks ago I was up all night worrying that both our cars were too small to have a baby and a dog, and that there was no way we would be able to fit everything for both of them in our little sedans should we need to travel for a weekend.  I was up all night long considering what our next vehicle should be, when we could swing getting a new one financially, and if it should be Andrew’s or mine that we replace.

In the morning I was exhausted and cranky, and shared my concerns with the hubs.  His response?  “It’s going to be okay.  We will figure it out, and if we have to travel before we get a new car, we can always just rent one.  And next time you think you’re going to worry all night long, just wake me up and we’ll talk it through together.”  He was absolutely right and totally logical, and that made me worry.  Why was I worrying so much?  Was something wrong with me?  Should I worry about how much I worry?

The short answer is: Sarah, don’t worry about it.  Worrying (to a certain extent) is, apparently, totally normal.  So as long as your worries don’t interfere with your life or become debilitating, you probably don’t need to worry about them – even though it’s natural to worry.

And those, my friends, are some of the nuggets of truth I wish someone had shared with me early on in my pregnancy.  I may be taking my factinis virgin these days, but I’m still serving ‘em up!

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