Tuesday, August 31, 2004

two feelings: a good one and a very bad.

the good was sitting holding my cousin's 4 1/2 month old son, watching A. crawl around, and getting a flash that yes, this could get even better, that more than one baby would make me feel even more of a mother hen than I do now, that I could hold one and watch the other go, and hoping it would happen. (and today I made our appointment to see the IVF dr in November, ahead of a probable FET start around March).

the bad was when I came home from my cousin's, with A asleep in the back of the car. I came inside to make his food, got a few things put away, got everything ready, checking on him once or twice. after about 10-15 minutes I went out and he was crying. so OK, time to get him out. I opened the car door and it was hot in there. I KNOW you NEVER leave babies in closed cars. but it had been raining. it's winter. I was tired. he was asleep. I just forgot. stupid. idiot. careless. stupid mother. for the 40 or so hours since then I've been feeling a knot in my throat, knowing that it was the dumbest thing I've ever done, afraid to think what might have happened if I'd decided to just lie down for a minute (I wouldn't have, I don't if I can't hear him cry from where I am), if the phone had rung (I would have come outside while talking to check on him), if instead of waking he had just quietly developed heat exhaustion and fainted, or worse. I have never done this. I always open a door or a window.

there's a monster lurking over my shoulder, something so terrible I can't turn and look at it. doing something so outright culpable was like passing a mirror and glimpsing it there.

Monday, August 30, 2004

yet another advantage of having an anonymous blog - you get to vent, without your husband finding out, about the fact that last night you brought the sleeping baby in and forgot to close the door of the new car. and it rained. oh, how it rained.

the carpet may never be the same. but I hope he won't notice. first I trashed the spoiler, now this. new cars and me? not meant to be.

disadvantage of keeping baby on HK time: I'm gradually shifting to Melbourne time, meaning I've been up since 7.30 (5.30HK) am, and will need a nap by 1, but he won't go down for the afternoon until 2.30 at the best. so much of this mothering caper is about fine-tuning routines.

Sunday, August 29, 2004

I couldn't be having more fun if you paid me. knowing that it's only for 10 days makes it all the sweeter. morning: brunch with the mothers' group. then nap. afternoon: shop in Brunswick St for toys and books. evening: a friend's birthday drinks, where many small children were running around and I got to chat to random Melbourne types. the highlight of the day: at 9pm arriving hom and carrying my sleeping baby from the car to his bed.

Saturday, August 28, 2004

oh, and the below post about being all ready?

I got to the airport train station checkin (not the actual airport, thank God) and discovered that the baby wasn't on my e-ticket. no, he had a PAPER ticket. which was in the safe at the apartment.

yes, we made it. there is something to be said for turning up an hour earlier than absolutely necessary.

new research says ovulation can happen more than once a cycle, and that eggs can take several months to fully develop. annoyingly, some of the articles say this has implications for IVF, but doesn't says what implications.

home trip report: yes I'm having fun.

Friday, August 27, 2004

baby crawling and cruising on concerete floors in nonbabyproof house = insane mummy. and guess who forgot the jolly jumper? didn't even think of it. fool. plus of course the baby wants ot pull all the dog's hair out. and yes I saw that typo, you think i have time to fix. I not do.

flight horrid; baby slept, I hardly did. of course. at leaset there wasn't much screaming. waited 1/2 hour on tarmac after landing for quarantine business. ho hum.

now embarking on round of visits to friends.

feeling: disoriented (geddit?). realising that Melbourne is just a big country town. and that it just doesn't know it. and that that's why I like it.

Wednesday, August 25, 2004

thanks to the wonders of Anxious Motherhood, I am now showered, packed, dressed and ready to walk out the door, 3 1/4 hours before my flight. of course the baby will manage to slow me down at the last minute, and I do have to negotiate the taxi-airport train transit with: backpack. baby in carrier. pusher with baby seat. handbag. heavy wheely suitcase. alone, of course; dh is doing important meetings and was relieved when I told him I'd manage - inlaws offered, but really I'm happier just soldiering on without having to be polite all the time. we have seen them every day for the last five days, including this morning - natural as they came all theway to hk to see us - but I'm kind of glad to be alone again.

lesson for the day: any toy can be made twice as interesting and therefore occupy the baby for twice as long if it's withheld for a few seconds, waved around in front of the child, tapped against walls and so on.

I've been thinking about evolution and how foetuses exhibit characteristics in the order in which we evolved them - vestigal tails, fur and so on. is behaviour the same? did we learn to stand up before we learned language? to use the opposable thumb just before we learned to walk? I suppose this is old hat somewhere. haven't got time to look it up.

well, really better go and triple-check the bags again...

I suppose it was a bit much to expect, a nap before a 9-hour flight. 45 minutes lying awake and here I am now, blogging.

and A's woken up.

wish me luck with the - getting to the airport - feeding the baby - getting him to sleep - getting home at some ungodly hour in the am...

Monday, August 23, 2004

I need A. to wake up, and the best way to do that seems to be to start a blog entry...

my thought patterns have definitely changed. example: I'm reading the Doonesbury cartoon about an amputee. I think "wow, losing a leg? would I rather lose a leg or an arm? without a leg I wouldn't have much mobility, so maybe an arm, my left arm preferably. but hang on, how would I look after A. with only one arm? I have to be able to look after my baby." you get the idea.

Saturday, August 21, 2004

judging by the sudden dip on my sitemeter, no one's been able to get here for a month. how vexing. we are very, very vexed.

I have found the source of the urljacking. it was this, in my template:

(modified to kill the code of course)

I did have comments for a while. I suppose this was from then. but why did it suddenly start hijacking my site? bad, bad sparclinux.

actually, when i checked the sparclinux url, it was only registered a month ago. very weird.

script type="text/javascript" src="http://sparclinux.org/blogspeak/blogcount.php?blogid=<$BlogID$>&zone=9&sort=desc&email_req=no&name_req=no&url_req=no&emailalert=no&email=ababybaby@hotmail.com&url=http://www.babybaby.blogspot.com&name=babybaby&bgcolor=003399&fcolor=FFFFFF&link=FFFFCC&words=comments&title=Comments By BlogSpeak&width=350&height=350">

# posted by baby @ 6:54 PM 0 Comments

Thursday, August 19, 2004

an evil site has taken over my url: babybaby.blogspot.com is autoredirecting to sparclinux.org, owned by a domain name mob based in New Orleans. We hates them, yes we does, and we have complained to the gods at Blogger. until they fix it, I guess no one's out there.

but did that ever stop me?

15 years ago or so I played on a lawn with four or five Malamute puppies belonging to a friend of mine. I have always remembered the warmth and happiness of being climbed over by such enthusiastic, warm, cuddly bundles. today I got that feeling again, romping with A.


meanwhile, I'm concerned about suspenseful and waiting to hear that she'll be OK.

# posted by baby @ 9:06 PM 0 Comments
who knows the other better, is better placed to see through the other's facade? B, who has known A since the second he was born? Or A, for for whom B was the world, a puzzle to be solved from birth?

parents fondly imagine they understand their children, having watched them grow. but children spend their lives watching their parents, trying to figure them out, see through them, make sense of them.

(and I thought having a domestic helper might compromise my privacy!)

# posted by baby @ 5:04 PM 0 Comments

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

maybe it's because I've had more of a life lately that I've blogged less. yes, sleeping through is now happening at least every second night - last night I fed him at 10.30 and he woke at 6.47am. the night before, we won't talk about. looking back I am bemused as to how I did anything, let alone move overseas. one day maybe I'll be well enough to work or do something else useful with my life. for now it's enough that I can enjoy playing with my baby more, and sometimes even contemplate missing the afternoon nap, say for when the in-laws visit this week (but only for one day, mind you!)

between inlaws and going back to Australia I'm in for a very social time, unlike my mostly quiet days here with two or three playdates a week to break the routine. yesterday we had our first "swim" in a friend's apt pool. at first he yelled a lot but once he realised I was ignoring the water (after I hoiked him onto my hip and chatted to friend) he started to enjoy it.

he's laughing so much now, and talking. it's like living with a cross between a magpie and R2-D2. sometimes when he sees a goal - the ball, or a bedside table he's not supposed to touch - it amuses him greatly and he crawls at top speed, chortling all the way. he understands several words, I'm sure - "Playschool", "milkies", "all gone", "daddy", "up" - and likes to get his books out and read by himself. all in all, a very satisfactory baby. I feel so much more in control, that I know what to do, as when he woke just now and cried so much I just said "back to bed" and off he went, seeming almost glad to be put back into his quiet space. I hope the trip to Austraia doesn't blow all this, but I think it'll be OK.

I've just fought and won a small battle with the apt manager over safety catches for the kitchen cupboards. the cupboards themselves are a minor problem - what really worries me are the vicious cantilevered hinges that have a gap in them when open, but close like a guillotine. I had to get quite firm that it was a safety issues - they hate marking their precious surfaces - but I think by suggesting that I was also concerned about the other cupboards in the lounge, I scared him into agreeing to at least the kitchen ones.

so quiet now. pretty soon I think I'll have to start doing something useful with A's nap time when I'm not napping. and I don't mean folding washing or cooking. nor work. hmmm. I must be feeling better, all right.

# posted by baby @ 5:44 PM 0 Comments

Sunday, August 15, 2004

getupgrrl has broached something I felt like saying about her situation: the question of how much pregnancy matters. she defers to the leery polyp's elegic post on the topic from the never-been-to-term side of the fence.

I have to admit, I'd been thinking that I wish she knew how little pregnancy matters. yes, it was amazing, and kind of fun, and had many interesting compensations for the difficulties. but compared to the baby, to being a mother - which I do believe she will achieve - it isn't much at all. I wouldn't dare say don't worry about it - just that parenting is in fact as good as you think it will be, that it is worth whatever you have to do for it, even giving up pregnancy.

there will be regrets and grief for pregnancy. but the baby is the prize that means, as Will Self wrote, that you can't wish your life had been otherwise or you might not have that child, that moment. I kind of wish I'd got onto baby-having earlier (despite good reasons why I didn't.) but that would have meant I wouldn't have A, and he's what I want, all I want.

(meanwhile, my baby boy is crying and his daddy is minding him because mummy has Had Enough and it's Sunday.)

# posted by baby @ 2:18 PM 0 Comments

Thursday, August 12, 2004

two days ago getting my "card" printed paid off - I got an email from someone at the hospital mothers' group, inviting me to what she calls a "splinter group" of Australian (mostly) mums with babies aged 3 months to 9 months - A is 9 months today, and among the oldest there. so today we got in a cab and went over and it was fantastic, especially compared to the uncomfortable time I had at the US group.

of course it's a cultural bias, but even this well-heeled mob (sometimes I still wonder what I'm doing as a painted-toenailed, non-working, husband-discussing expat wife) were so much more down to earth, tolerant and amusing. even better, they're doing it again next week. A. had fun, I managed to get him to nap a little and we were still home for lunch and a 2pm nap. perfect. the highlight of the chat was the discovery that ob/gyn worship is indeed a common phenomenon, even if the ob/gyn in question is a fat, ageing Chinese guy. I wonder if anyone's ever investigated the psychology of that? there was also some how-I-met-my-dh discussion and I felt a bit wistful that in fact I met mine online, not in some romantic international revelation that a good friend was really my soulmate. ah well.

the day's final discovery was that A. really needs more toys to keep up with the other babies. sure, their lounge room was the size of this whole apt, but even so, his pile of rattles and blocks is nothing compared to the playgroup-worthy collection on offer today. if I ever host it, we might have to do it in shifts.

just before we left here to go to the playdate, I did something awful to my back, involving shooting pains and cramps and an inability to bend. of course I strapped him on and got in the cab anyway (yes, we've abandoned the baby seat and are using the Baby Bjorn). and it occurred to me later that Will Self may have got something else right - the ability of a self-centred woman in pain (in the book, wanting heroin) to ignore a baby. I thought I couldn't understand addicts' neglect of helpless babies. but for the few minutes when it first hit, I really wasn't hearing A. cry (he was only sooking, not starving to death, it's true, but again, a glimpse.)

# posted by baby @ 4:58 PM 0 Comments

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

nursing my sunburn-induced headache and my baby, I've finished another book-read-while-breastfeeding, Will Self's How the Dead Live. my assessment is that he wrote it under the influence of cocaine - lots of brilliant flashes and cruel glee, a bit of a failure in a) plot and b) understanding how much the reader should be expected to put up with. I had to skip a coupla bits about a child being killed in a traffic accident, and advise you to do the same, should you read it. but the weirdest character by far was something I didn't look up online until I'd finished reading: the lithopedion, or calcified miscarried baby, retained inside the body. it sounds macabre and gives you an indication of Self's sense of humour that he found it so amusing. I find it almost impossible to believe, but apparently they exist.

# posted by baby @ 5:41 PM 0 Comments

Friday, August 06, 2004

in the spirit of recording: just before eight months he got his first teeth. just after, he started to crawl, and said "mum-mum" just before 9 months - today - he stood alone for ten whole seconds. I think it was because he was so fascinated with the fan he was holding that he forgot to fall over. but it's progress.

we have "our song" now. strangely enough it's by a former punk madman, Nick Cave:

But to leave you as you are
And if He felt He had to direct you
Then direct you into my arms

Into my arms oh Lord
Into my arms oh Lord
Into my arms oh Lord
Into my arms

I don't believe in the existence of angels
But looking at you I wonder if that's true
And if I did I would summon them together
And ask them to watch over you
To each light a candle for you
To make bright and clear your path
And to walk like Christ in grace and love
And guide you into my arms

Into my arms oh Lord
Into my arms oh Lord
Into my arms oh Lord
Into my arms

But I believe in love
And I know that you do too
And I believe in some kind of path
That we can walk down me and you
So keep your candle burning
Make a journey bright and pure
That you'll keep returning always and evermore

Into my arms oh Lord
Into my arms oh Lord
Into my arms oh Lord
Into my arms

# posted by baby @ 8:19 PM 0 Comments

Wednesday, August 04, 2004

ah yes. not only do the day flights require me to be at the airport at 6.20 am, there's a transfer in Sydney. one bad things beats two, I guess.

# posted by baby @ 11:10 AM 0 Comments
I keep meaning to write about all the things I really love about him - the way he throws his head back and laughs when I tickle him, the one-two rhythm of his crawl, the way he casts his head down, looks up and crosses his legs over each other when he's flirting with people.

but I am sometimes overtaken by the things I find hard - the way when I'm really tired I find myself bumping into doorframes and keeping my movements small and close in to my body, the 5.30 am wakeup when I can't get back to sleep but he drops off again until nearly 7 (and the running total of lost sleep hours that my mind won't let go of.)

we're booked in for our trip home - I've realised a bit too late that maybe a 7pm flight isn't such a good idea, not when we land at 6.20, meaning 4.20 HK time - and that there will probably be a forced "breakfast" around 3 am. perhaps day flights aren't as bad as all that?

today's a playdate with a woman with an older baby. when I'm feeling OK, this kind of thing is good. when I've had a few bad nights, like today, it seems all too hard and I wonder why I insist on going out at all.

# posted by baby @ 10:58 AM 0 Comments

Sunday, August 01, 2004


# posted by baby @ 1:22 PM 0 Comments

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