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I am not one of those happy-go-lucky first time preggos oooohing and aaaaahing over Babies R Us catalogs and the latest trend in diaper clutches on etsy.  I am not racing out to register for shower gifts.  I am not really thinking of names.

Honestly, I’m not all that excited right now.

(Yup, she said it.  Unsubscribe! Fast!)

It might be the hormones.  I had basically non-functional ovaries for the better part of a decade, so any normal amount of estrogen/progesterone is too much for me, let alone the onslaught that is first trimester pregnancy.

It might be the part where I’ve been sick as shit for the last 6 weeks.  Not that I don’t love puking my guts out like every girl who has ever had a whiskey bender, but I don’t really care for it every day.  I also don’t like not getting work done, not getting out of my bed, and not having a clean house.  The constant puking plus my hell bent need to have a drug free tree hugging pregnancy (meaning no anti-nausea drugs) is not the best selling point on why having babies is the coolest thing on the planet.

It might be the part where we tried (and by tried I mean didn’t actively try but gave up any and all forms of birth control with a … well, it’ll happen if it’s going to happen approach) for five years.  Yea, FIVE.  The first 4.5 of those years, I was actively emotionally involved in the process.  I would chart my cycle as it progressed (or largely didn’t, thanks, busted f’in ovaries) and I would regularly hide in the bathroom waiting for those little lines to appear.  And they didn’t.  Ever.  Not once.  Somewhere in that last 6 months (or more, I don’t really remember) I became kind of disenfranchised with the whole endeavor.  It wasn’t working.  It was never going to work.  I didn’t even know if I wanted it to work anymore.

It might be that I had started planning our lives without the prospect of kids.  Or that I just decided what grad school program was the right one.  Or that the admissions committee just finally agreed with me.  It might be that a decade ago That Boy and I agreed that if we ever had babies, one of us would be taking care of them … limiting severely my ability to do um, anything, for the next however many years.

It might be all of it.  It might be none.  It might be that I’m some kind of perverse heartless creature incapable of love and living in a cloud of baby making remorse.  It could be the least popular thing I’ve ever written.

Yea.  That last one is probably true.



1. I am no longer capable of composing cogent posts, so you’re stuck with bullet pointed lists about crap that goes on here.  Aren’t you lucky?

2. I’m still sick and tired.  I hear it ‘goes away eventually’, but I feel like this may be lies propagated by the right to keep people from realizing how terrible they’re going to feel until it’s ‘too late’ to throw one’s self down the stairs effectively anymore.

3. Please don’t send me hate mail for that last one.  Joke, loves.  Joke.

4. Everything is still a mess and it’s adding to both my stress and anxiety levels exponentially.  I get stressed when things are a disaster, and now, because I’m less than inclined to do anything about it I start getting anxious that That Boy is going to begin thinking I’ve lost all motivation and become the world’s laziest bum.  I feel guilty about coming across as lazy because my Type A, first born, overachieving self cannot handle that perception and then I start getting anxious all over again.  Dear Valium, why can’t you be safe for babies?!

5. I’m also vacillating wildly between thinking this whole thing is awesome (we did (not) try for FIVE years to make it happen) and thinking it’s the end of the entire world.  I hear this is because hormones are eating my rational brain as we speak.  This, I do not like one bit.  I am not an emotional girl.  I cry twice a year, approximately.  I cannot have my rational brain eaten by sob inducing hormones and still maintain my reputation as a cold hearted badass.  Oy.

6. The campaign is still going.  I can’t say it’s going well or not going well, really, because I haven’t been there.  I feel like crap and I’m distracted and I just plain don’t want to be there.  Promises, be damned.  I hear I have a good excuse.  I cannot wander around knocking on doors for hours in the hot sun, because the entire time I will be plotting ways to kill an ice cream truck driver and steal his rocket pops.

7. I kicked Britt’s ass in Biggest Loser Part Deux.  The last month of which I was unknowingly incubating a person.  This makes me kind of a big deal.  I’ve also lost 10 more pounds since I found out I was preggo, 2 of which were in the last 2 weeks.  Thank you very kindly, Mr. and/or Ms. Parasite for your lovely addition to my metabolism.  The making it so I feel like I’m in the hull of a round bottomed boat in the middle of a hurricane without my SeaBands also helps.

8. This wee human wants me to eat gluten.  I’m trying not to indulge it.  Except the other day when I met Britt at Shish and attempted to eat my body weight in pita.  Nom nom nom nom.  That’s certainly not very Gluten Free Ann Arbor of me, but well … mostly I needed a transitory reason to say “Gluten Free Ann Arbor” again and piss off that stupid Yahoo group that thinks it owns those 4 words.  Ha.  Sorry.

9. My back hurts.

10. Oh, and while I’m thinking about it … I got into GRAD SCHOOL!  Yes!  Both programs!  Sweet!  Now, the part where I tell them I can go for a semester and then need to take a hundred years off to care for an infant.  Shit.  World, your timing is impeccable.


We are not friends, you and I.

Is it really necessary for me to fill out 198 pages of fill-in-the-blank gobblty gook to get into your precious school?  I mean, ok, you need some demographic information and the low down on my grades, but … I graduated from YOUR college in 2006 (damn, that was kind of awhile ago …).  Can’t you find this shit somewhere in your massive computer system?  Can’t you just type my little name into the Banner system and Voila! all of the information you’ll ever need will appear?  Why must I waste my time filling it out by hand for you?  Shouldn’t there be an express lane for your own alums?

Pretty please?

And, what the hell is up with this recommendation process?  It’s bad enough I have to get on my knees (by email) and beg professors who haven’t heard my name in at least 4 years to write glowing letters about how much of a badass I am (or was …), but you also want them to fill out a separate form in addition, plus put the two in separate envelopes, plus follow special instructions to sign the envelope seals in a special way?!  These are sociology professors, people.  They are not naturally inclined to intense order.

And, why can’t they mail those forms to you?  Why can’t I send them little stamps along with the envelopes I supplied so they can just drop it in the mail, which is frickin’ annoying that it would require stamps anyway because your office is literally 100 yards from their offices, but whatever … why can’t I do that?  Why must I physically GO to them and PICK them up so I can put them all in one envelope per your instructions?  Do the people that sort your mail not read well?  Can they not organize things by category?  I promise I would label everything clearly enough that trained monkeys could figure it out.

And, can we talk about personal statements for a second?  Do you really need two of them?  Are you going to get pissed when mine goes something like, “Hey, I like making no money and hanging out with poor people.  I won’t feed you any BS reasons why I want to “save the world” like all the other bourgeois applicants.  It’s the right thing to do.  Let me in.  Thanks.” ?  Is that going to offend your elitist academic sensibilities?  Do you think I really need 5 pages worth of space to write a bunch of fru-fru BS I don’t believe and you can’t possibly think is legit after reading 129 other peoples’?

To be clear, I don’t.

I could write all of it on a sticky note.  Em likes poor people because she is one.  Em likes people that wander off occasionally and get lost because she does.  Em likes listening because she’s a talker.  Em likes those who struggle because she knows she isn’t perfect.  Em likes loving the unloveable because she used to think she was.  Em wants to do this not because it’s cool or popular or a great advancement of her career or financial security (ha! what is that exactly?!), but because it’s the right frickin’ thing to do.  (and because third person is sooooo much fun!)

G-d is love.  Whoever lives in love, lives in G-d and G-d in him.  1 John 4:16

How’s that for a personal statement, graduate admissions committee?

Now, hows about you just let me into your stinkin’ program and we skip all this intermediary nonsense?  Mmmk?  Please?


I’m a nerd.  Check.

I have a nerdy job.  Check.

The people I work with at my job are nerds.  Check.

Seriously, it’s like nerd-palooza.

This weekend was a work travel weekend.  I was gone Thursday through Saturday.  I ate garbage while I was gone (lots more than necessary for sure).  I didn’t sleep much.  My mind went 1,928 miles per hour at all times trying to keep up with the activities and the children and the logistics of traveling with a herd of high school kids and one (and 2 half) grown ups.  It was crazy.

I loved it.

For real.  I always love it.  There are moments that aren’t that rad.  There are terse conversations with 16 year olds about how they will be doing what I want them to do.  There are times I have to repeat myself 18 times to get something done.  There are hustled moments and stress and the most intense belly laughter on the planet.  There are smiles and pouting faces (which I care much less about than they would think …) and conversations that change outlooks and futures.

Repeat: I love it.

This weekend, the children and I hung out on the floor in a hallway between rounds flipping through a college coursebook and trying to play “Let’s Plan Em’s Future” by picking graduate school programs.  I cannot choose a program.  There are too many options (and not all of them are that cool), too many offerings, too many disgruntled conversations that include other grown ups saying things like “Well, what program has the most employability?” or “Where are the most likely salary increases going to be?”


I don’t give two shits about the paycheck.  I don’t care if there are 187 jobs available after I graduate or 2.  I have a job.  A job that I adore.  A job that pays pittance in cash but millions in satisfaction.  I am indeed a grown up, though, so my mind circles the practical aspects as I flip pages just as much as the passionate ones.

The kids’ first question: “Which one would be the most fun?” Next: “Which is most interesting?”

They know how to plan a life.  Cynical old crustypants people would likely call them immature or underdeveloped in their analysis of which graduate school is best for their been-in-school-way-too-long coach.  They don’t focus on paychecks or pension plans.  They want to love what they do.

So do I.

And I thank them for reminding me of that.


Past Tense