self-indulgent navel-gazing


Canada asked for an updated belly shot. I’m not thrilled with the state of the belly right now, but I am seriously hoping that today’s picture will be the last of the pregnancy belly shots, so I’m complying. (I am *very* much hoping that I don’t have to post a 40 week shot…or, gods forbid, a 41 week shot. Ugh.)

First, just for kicks, here’s the very first pregnancy belly picture I took, at 6 1/2 weeks. (Remember that this is after about a year of Weight Watchers, having gotten back down to my goal weight.):

And here are my pictures from today, at 39 weeks:

Can you see what happened in that last picture? Everything below my belly button completely flattened out. It’s totally bizarre. I think that’s where H. has been hanging out for the past couple months, and when he dropped (and oh, he’s continuing to drop, ow), he left this big weird vacant flat spot. It’s really not the most attractive thing I’ve seen. Anybody else get a weird flat-spot belly at the end?

So yeah. Here’s hoping these are the last belly pictures, and that the next pictures I post on here will be of H. himself.

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And the hormones are probably contributing to my increased sappiness lately. But this was awesome, and I’m going to share it.

I have this friend who I dated in college. Hanging out with him was my first attempt at an open relationship, and it was great–we never really did the girlfriend/boyfriend thing, but we hung out for a few years and had a great time. All kinds of Big Heavy Life-Changing things happened while we were hanging out, and we went through some intensely awful and intensely wonderful times together. He drove me out to SF when I moved there for grad school, and his first kid was born shortly after I got to SF–GB and I are his daughter’s goddess-parents (or, alternately, her Fairy Godparents). (I can’t believe my goddessdaughter is 14 already–that is just freaky.) We go through phases where we talk/email more or less often, but even when we go months (or years) without much contact, we always pick right up where we left off. He’s one of those people who really feels like a soulmate, in a weird, deep way.

Anyway. He emailed today to ask if H. was here yet, and I assured him that H’s arrival is imminent (I hope). He responded with this comment about H.:

“He’s just so damn improbable, he’s bound to have some significant impact in the world. Kudos on doing this, even though it goes against your long time ‘I’ll never have kids’ position.”

Okay, I’ll admit to the sappiness; it made me cry. And here’s to the old friends who remind me who I’ve been and still support the person I’m becoming.

= good news, in this case.

I’m still hanging on here, and H. is still staying put like he should. Many thanks to everyone who’s called, texted, emailed, chatted, and Facebook-messaged me to make sure things are still going okay. You all rock. I appreciate the check-ins! (Though I hope we don’t have to keep up this level of anxiety and uncertainty for another 4 weeks…But we’ll see how things go.)

Thanks, too, to everyone who’s commented and sent good happy non-anxiety vibes on my anxiety posts lately. I really kind of feel like 8 months off my anxiety meds is starting to catch up with me…Guess it’s good it took this long, really. Anyway, thanks for all the good wishes and reassurances. They’re very much appreciated.

I’ll keep y’all posted, of course…

(Tonight the water filter snapped off the kitchen faucet, which is not an especially big deal, though at the rate I’m going through water I’m hoping there’s enough in the fridge to get me to tomorrow. Anyway. I wanted to put up a blog post titled “My water broke” to tell you about my faucet, but GB says that is just Not Right. Though the idea kind of cracked me up. It’s nice that I can entertain myself, I guess.)

Well–more accurately, we have three names. Uh, technically, four.

GB is nothing if not a little pretzel of enigma/mystery/constant surprise.  Still, this afternoon, when I said, “We should figure out a name for the kid, eventually,” I didn’t expect much.

I certainly didn’t expect him to say, “I think he should have a middle name, and it should be [Xxx]. H. [Xxx] Buzz-Bob. Do you like it? Okay, then we’re set.”

So, just like that, we have a name! The last-name issue is settled (Buzz-Bob), and apparently my son *is* going to have a middle name, which makes me happy. (I was fine with the No MIddle Name thing, but I’m happier with this decision.) And I love the middle name GB suggested. It’s a one-syllable name that sounds like an initial, and it happens to also tie in to a particular animal GB and I are quite fond of (and that he’s actually got tattooed on his arm).

So yeah. I love it. It feels right, and it feels complete.

(But, H.? Just because we have the perfect name for you all ready to go doesn’t mean you should show up early, okay? Another 6 weeks is just fine.)

 As seen absolutely everywhere, twice. I remember seeing this a month or so ago on a lot of sociology blogs. I have *serious* reservations about this meme. I’m just not sure that these questions are the greatest indicators of “class.” But whatever. I haven’t blogged in awhile, so here’s this, for now. With my reservations.

1. Father went to college
2. Father finished college
3. Mother went to college
4. Mother finished college
5. Have any relative who is an attorney, physician, or professor
6. Were the same or higher class than your high school teachers.
7. Had more than 50 books in your childhood home.
8. Had more than 500 books in your childhood home.
9. Were read children’s books by a parent
10. Had lessons of any kind before you turned 18
11. Had more than two kinds of lessons before you turned 18
12. The people in the media who dress and talk like me are portrayed
13. Had a credit card with your name on it before you turned 18
14. Your parents (or a trust) paid for the majority of your college costs My dad was a professor at the State college I went to…so I got free tuition, but I also got scholarships. And, of course, I had to go to the local state U., which was fine, but I didnt’ have much of a choice in that. So i’m going with “no” here.
15. Your parents (or a trust) paid for all of your college costs
16. Went to a private high school
17. Went to summer camp
18. Had a private tutor before you turned 18
19. Family vacations involved staying at hotels
20. Your clothing was all bought new before you turned 18
21. Your parents bought you a car that was not a hand-me-down from them
22. There was original art in your house when you were a child
23. You and your family lived in a single-family house
24. Your parent(s) owned their own house or apartment before you left home
25. You had your own room as a child
27. Participated in a SAT/ACT prep course
28. Had your own TV in your room in high school
29. Owned a mutual fund or IRA in high school or college
30. Flew anywhere on a commercial airline before you turned 16
31. Went on a cruise with your family
32. Went on more than one cruise with your family
33. Your parents took you to museums and art galleries as you grew up
34. You were unaware of how much heating bills were for your family

Well, I’m not sure if it could be called “productive” at all, but I wrote *something* today. On Maggiemay’s advice (that I just write *something*), I wrote the acknowledgements for my dissertation.

I looked at the acknowledgements from a bunch of other dissertations in my department, for inspiration. And I learned a few things.

  • I’ve made it through six years of this PhD program with virtually no academic friends. I have two, actually. My friend Margie (who isn’t blogging lately, sadly), who is actually in my field (and subfield) but at another school–we did our Masters’ together, and she was my only friend there. And my friend Super-Smart Israeli (let’s call her A., because I suck at pseudonyms lately), who has been my one friend in my department (and is, coincidentally, also pregnant and due two weeks before me).  But that’s it. There’s one or two other people in my department who I greet warmly when I see them and who, I think, actually like me. But otherwise? Not so much. (Did I tell y’all about getting wildly and overtly snubbed by the members of my subfield at my school’s reception at the Big Damn Conference? No? Yeah. I got seriously cold-shouldered. Brrrr.) Which is okay, but I see all these other people thanking dozens of their colleagues in their acknowledgements, and I just don’t see that so much.
  • I even have performance anxiety about writing my freaking acknowledgements. I have a problem.
  • I really haven’t worked with many faculty at my school. I thanked my committee. For faculty, that’s about it.
  • The easiest part, by far, was thanking friends and family for moral support. I could have gone on for pages.
  • I got all choked up and teary when I wrote the two sentences thanking GB. Hormones? Yeah, I got ’em.*

Yeah, so, like I said. Not sure if that was productive. But it was something. Maybe tomorrow I’ll actually write something….?

*Speaking of hormones and weepiness: I’ve been listening lately (because I am pregnant, hormonal, depressed, and weepy) to the mix that GB made me for my birthday last year. It’s a sappy weeper, I’ll tell ya. But this one song, by Iron and Wine, “Naked As We Came“? Holy crap. “One of us will die inside these arms…” Goddamn. I can’t even listen to it. I am so sappy lately.

The (Ex)Advisor finally wrote me back! Amazing! After only six weeks and three emails! Let’s consider the email, shall we?

Hi Luckybuzz, (so far so good)

…..I’ll write the [longshot fellowship] letter. (No mention of the sure-thing fellowship letter, which will still require recommendations…not sure if this needs to be followed up or not, now.)

…[Things are crazy at new U. because we’re] in the middle of searching for a junior professor in [Not Our Field]. When things calm down, I plan to read what you’ve sent and send comments. (Aha! So he’s not just sitting there hating my chapters. Instead, he has yet to look at my chapters. I suspected as much, but this confirmation is good, actually. My (Ex)Advisor is heavily motivated by guilt. If he’s had the chapters for two months by the time he reads them, I’m hoping he’ll be guilt-ridden and kinder than the chapters warrant.)

No problem at all about my demotion to committee member. (I know he means this in a non-snarky way, but it made me laugh anyway.)

I hope you’re doing well. How’s pregnancy treating you? Are you writing? (Ex)Advisor

See, the (Ex)Advisor is a nice guy. He really is. But how about that last little guilt-poke? Am I writing? I’m not, actually. I’m completely, totally, utterly stuck. I’ve had no feedback on anything I’ve written. Nothing. I wrote one chapter last year, and he gave me helpful comments and told me to not use it as a chapter. Since then? No feedback. From any of my committee members. Which, in a way, is good–because at least they’re not telling me how much I suck (yet). But it’s making the going-on seem kind of hard. Mostly because, like my idol Maggie May, I really, really need other people to convince me I’m worthy. Or even okay.

So. Today I pulled more sources (I use the term *very* loosely) into my notes for this next chapter.  And…that’s about all I’ve done. Maybe tomorrow I will actually write something. Then again, maybe tomorrow will be the day that monkeys finally fly out of my butt.

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