"There are notes between notes, you know." -- Sarah Vaughan

Saturday, May 31, 2008

I figured out the baby thing!

Or at least why I was feeling the way I did the other day. It troubled me that I would feel envious of someone else's blessing. I'd like to think I am better than that.

Well after thinking about it some more it occurred to me that this woman works with me. In fact, she reports to me. Part of my apprehension has been "can we afford daycare, nannies etc." My husband is a teacher and musician. I earn some good coin, but I'm a journalist with dreams of singin' like Sassy. Chances are we will not be getting rich and in my childcare search I found one daycare I liked with a monthly pricetag of $1800. We can DO that, but until we sell my house, we have two mortgages. For some people that might mean nothing more than real estate investments, but it makes me uncomfortable to have those two very large debts when I earn the most money in our household and I'm older trying to have kids. Just thinking about it makes my stomach hurt.

But after reflection I figured, if she could afford a child, surely we could, too. I think sometimes my fear of poverty (and I didn't grow up poor or hungry or anything, so don't know why I have this irrational fear) can keep me from taking some risks that might be good for me. Actually if I'm honest, it's a fear of poverty and a fear of having to depend on someone. My husband and I are working through that together. I love him for that, too.

Anyway, did/do any of you have fears about how you would provide for a child?


Mr. SingLikeSassy and I are headed to NYC today as we have tickets to "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof." I love this movie and have long had a crush on Paul Newman (Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid anyone???!) and Liz Taylor was great in this role.

It will be interesting to see how this all-black cast interprets the roles.

I will give you some feedback when I return, but if you've seen it already feel free to share your thoughts about it now. Happy Saturday people!

One more SATC: The Movie reflection... (spoilers!)

Let Steve and Miranda be a lesson to married women everywhere: you cannot neglect your partner and expect everything to just keep being O.K. in your relationship. Like plants, people/relationships need nurturing and tending to; starve a relationship and it will die. Also, Miranda was all prickly and irritated because she had to work and be a mom and do PTA etc., well that's not Steve's fault! It's not like he didn't work etc. Very much playing the martyr. Ugh.

Anyways, I came right home and took care of business with my husband as he had mentioned the night before that it had been a week since...well, since. I got right on that -- literally (teehee)-- as I'm trying to stay married.

I did, however, totally agree with Miranda when she basically told Carrie to be in love but be smart. I would not have sold my apartment, at least not before I had the government papers saying we were legally wed. Why? Because stuff happens, just like it did in this movie. I am fine with selling my house NOW considering we are adding me to the deed of his house, but I told Mr. SingLikeSassy that I was not vacating or selling my property until we were married. 'Cause I sell my stuff to move into his house (which I'm not a fan of living together before marriage anyways) then if for some reason things don't work out, where do me and my cats go? Unh unh, marry me then I will divest.

What did/would you do, jump in with both feet never looking back or take a practical stance?

Sex and The City: The Movie (spoilers!)

I enjoyed the movie as it was better than I expected. Yes, I had low expectations for this movie. Anyways, this is my opinion of the flick, there are spoilers so cover your eyes if you haven't seen it.

I didn't feel there wasn't much growth or change for Charlotte and Samantha. Charlotte finally got -- and stayed -- pregnant which sort of tied up her perfect life too perfectly and her behavior in Mexico rubbed me a little wrong. And while I'm glad she managed not to cheat on him, Samantha left Smith cause she couldn't be in a relationship so at the end of the movie she' s alone. At 50. Good luck with that.

JHud was a throwaway character to appease the black peoples I guess as she was not needed. You never even saw her interacting with the other girls, just Carrie. I just felt like she could have not been there and all the plotlines could have progressed with no problem.

Miranda and Steve was the only storyline that had some depth to it IMO. I'm glad they were able to work their situation out. Miranda is so inflexible sometimes. She better be glad she has good friends and a good man.

And when Carrie ran into Big's arms' in the end I said out loud in the theater "this is bull****!" Too much has gone on for her to forgive him for jilting her on the altar. Though I must say when she beat him in the head with those flowers I teared up and hurt for her in that scene.

What did you think, good, bad, ugly, stupid?

Friday, May 30, 2008

Babies still on the brain

Someone I know told me Thursday that they were pregnant. My first -- and honest -- response was to throw my arms around her in a hug and yell CONGRATS! YAY! But, strangely, after a few minutes I had this funny feeling: envy. I wasn't mad that she was blessed, it was more like I wanted a blessing like the one she had received.

What makes this odd is just a day or so ago I was almost done with the baby thing. Almost. And I know other pregnant people yet I never felt a thing other than happy for them. The only reason I can attribute to my feeling of envy was that she's due about when I would have been due if our IVF cycle had worked.

To that end, I pulled out the paperwork then checked the savings account and told Mr. SingLikeSassy that I want our baby. He said marinate on it over the weekend and then we would pop the contract and check for $22,000 in the mail on Monday.

I'll keep you in the loop as to what we finally decide to do, but have you ever had something like this or similar to this happen to you?

Thursday, May 29, 2008

My concentric circles of moodiness...

I came in the house this evening salty as hell for no good reason. As I cooked dinner I tried to tell my husband some story and he got preoccupied with the trash can, which irritated me, so I decided to play 3-year-old and refused to finish my story cause he wasn't listening to me.

I can't pinpoint or articulate why I had an attitude or why it was stank enough for me to lash out at my husband who then apologized to me for not listening, good man that he is.

I used to date a brother awhile back who I just said anything I wanted to when I wanted to just because. Now, trust me he was no prize, but one thing he said that stuck with me is when you love someone you don't just talk any kind of way to them, you think about it first, consider the impact of what you're saying and whether or not it may hurt the other person in the relationship. Now that lesson was never applied in his case, but in the nearly three years Mr. SingLikeSassy and I have been together I have managed to curb my natural tendency to mouth off and say any old foul thing that came to mind.

I'm glad I mastered the art of this because my husband is kind and softhearted -- which I love about him -- and I don't think you can stay happily married with lots of foolishness between you and your mate. It's the build up of little things, like a constant stream of ugly words, that tear a marriage apart, in my opinion.

So even though I still feel hateful for no good reason, I sucked it up and made nice with my husband because tomorrow when I am not feeling like a wench, I don't want him to still be smarting for some ol' ignant something I said tonight.

When you're feeling inexplicably mad at the world, how do you keep that from touching your mate?

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Family Guy

I watch this show almost every day. Why does this foolishness entertain me? Any other fans out there? What's your favorite episode?

Was blog hopping and ran up on this today...


If you don't have Google reader, get that and add this brother's blog to it 'cause he is good for some knowledge and entertainment.

In fact, if you follow more than one blog, Google reader is your friend. It aggregates all the latest posts in one place and you can sort through them at your leisure.

My love/hate relationship with work

I recently started a new job and on some days I love it, but on others I'm ready to hand in my notice. That's troubling me because usually it takes me about 12 months to get tired of a gig. Now it's less than 12 weeks. I'm thinking it's time to reassess. It doesn't help that Mr. SingLikeSassy says "quit if you're unhappy." I'm not used to having someone to fall back on ... but I need to be working. And I don't quit one job without another, cause my money can't ever be strange. So I'll just buck up.

But have any of you hit a wall in your careers and, if so, how did you get over/around/through/under it?

You're going to the moon!

What did you forget to pack?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Symbols and their significance

About 6 weeks after we got married Mr. SingLikeSassy lost his wedding band. I wasn't really surprised because this is a man who doesn't wear jewelry, hunts for his keys, wallet, iPods and headphones EVERYDAY and relies on my overly observant self to remember where he put his things. I didn't yell or get upset about it at the time because that seemed silly to me: we're still married, ring or no ring, and I got the gub'mint paperwork to prove it.

However, in a conversation some friends and I had this weekend about men not wearing wedding rings, I noticed how adamant at least one woman seemed about her man wearing a wedding band. That reaction is curious to me. I understand the sentimentality and symbolism of the ring, but really, either your husband is married to you or he's not and trust me, if he wants to do something he has no business, a ring will not stop that from happening.

So how about you, must your husband/wife wear a ring and if so, why?

Peace, love and sweat...

I love my husband and we are both in here together doing our own thing, but it's hot as hell even with the windows open and one thing I ain't gon' be is hot. So, Ima need him to go cut the air conditioning on postehaste!

All of the phone numbers have fallen out of your address book...

Whose number do you look for first and why?

Interesting story about multiracial adoptions...

Study of '94 Adoption Law Finds Little Benefit to Blacks

By Darryl Fears
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, May 27, 2008; Page A02

A 1994 federal law that paved the way for more white adults to adopt black children has left many parents ill-equipped for the situation and has not achieved the goals of giving black children an equal chance of being adopted and recruiting more black adoptive parents, a study concludes.

The study, being released today, found that the Multiethnic Placement Act (MEPA) did succeed in increasing the rate of black adoptions, but only by a small margin, and that black children still disproportionately end up in temporary foster homes.

Because the law forbids discussion of race during the adoption process, it prevents social workers from preparing white parents for the challenge of raising black children in a largely white environment, said the report, titled "Finding Families for African American Children: The Role of Race and Law in Adoption From Foster Care." It cited studies showing that dark-complexioned children in white homes tend to struggle with identity issues related to skin color, self-esteem and discrimination that their new parents are often not equipped to handle.

You can read the full story here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/05/26/AR2008052601837.html

My thoughts on this:

I think this is interesting because in my casual research about adoption I've found that many of the black children are special needs. I wonder if that has more of an impact -- people not willing to take on children with emotional or physical problems -- moreso than any race issue.

Also, I have a friend who is a foster mom and she can't afford to adopt her foster kid. She's trying to figure out what to do as she's raised this child for a year now -- he's the best kid -- and she can't imagine him being in the foster care system and how that might affect him.

How about you, would you adopt a child of a different race and/or a special needs child? Would you be a foster parent?

Monday, May 26, 2008

How do you know you want to have children?

I always thought I would be a mom. It wasn't anything I had to think a lot about, it was just the way things were: the sun rose and set and I would have children. I didn't think about WANTING children, I just knew I would have them. It was what I was raised to believe was the regular course of life: go to college, marry some law or med school-bound guy from a solid family, push out some babies and then don my pillbox hat and gloves to stand solidly behind him as he ran a successful campaign for president of the U.S. (Yes, my people are a bit delusional and that will all be revealed in later posts.)

So at 20 I thought I'd be married and have children by 25. That deadline slipped so I moved the ball to 30. Then when I turned 30 with no husband or kids I thought to myself: if I'm not married by 33 I'll just have a kid on my own NEVER thinking I would ever have to exercise that option. Then I turned 34 and my ob/gyn asked me what I planned to do about having children because the clock was ticking. This threw me for a loop as it's one thing to think in your head that you're not on task, but it's another thing for a trained medical professional to tell you that if you don't get on the good foot there may be no babies. It also didn't help that my grandma announced that year that I would never have babies cause I was "old." Thanks Grandma, love you too!

Anyways, I hit a wall that year and had to really face the fact that I may not get married in time to make babies. I started seeing a counselor who helped me learn that I could only control those things I could control. I mourned those unconceived babies and then one day, I was alright with it. I figured God would work it out one way or the other. This was my first inkling that I might not be 100 percent behind motherhood.

Then I met Mr. SingLikeSassy in January 2006. When I met him, I knew he was my husband. Two dates in we were talking about what we wanted for our futures and I mentioned children. My husband told me then that the chances of him producing children were slim to none and explained why. If I didn't know I loved him before then, there was no question that I did after that revelation. The honesty and frankness about something as serious -- and sensitive -- as that, told me who he was at heart. A few months later we were engaged and a few months after that we were married.

Before getting married we agreed that we would do one IVF cycle as we wanted to be sure there would be no regrets later. Because of his health issues, IVF/ICSI is the only way we will be able to make babies. Our doc told us we have less than a one percent chance of conceiving naturally. Which might as well be zero when you think about it. My insurance covered IVF (when all was said and done we spent $700 out-of-pocket) and three months after jumping the broom (we didn't really jump the broom and my mama felt some kinda way about that, but whateva) we started the testing and everything we needed to get started on our first IVF cycle. In February I started taking meds and we had a fairly uneventful cycle that netted some good embryos, but none implanted. I found out one week before my birthday in April that I wasn't pregnant. But, here's the kicker: I never shed one tear about that failed IVF cycle. In fact the first thing I thought was, whew!

Since then I've been torn about whether we just transfer our one little frozen embryo or do another full IVF cycle (my doc seems to think we would be successful a second time and is encouraging us not to give up so easily) or whether to just chalk it up to an L and move on. I feel conflicted because I used to frequent a site for people dealing with infertility and these women KNOW they want babies. They are taking out loans and second mortgages and selling stuff and going to different docs and doing accupuncture and drinking pomegranate juice and basically doing everything humanly possible to produce a child. I'm not feeling like all of that. It's more a matter of financials and practicalities to me: do we dip into our savings during a recession when we have two mortgages to pay to try and make a baby that will cost us more money when he/she gets here as well as change our very comfortable and carefree life? (In the midst of my IVF cycle I changed jobs and my new employer doesn't offer infertility insurance).

In a crazy way, I'm glad we're dealing with infertility because it's forced me to really deal with these issues cause I'm sorry to say it, but if I could just roll around with my husband tonight and get up 6 weeks from now and see a pink line after peeing on a stick, I would not be thinking this hard about parenthood. I wouldn't.

And it doesn't help that Mr. SingLikeSassy is ambivalent. Because he never thought he would have kids, there's no burning desire in him to be a dad. He says. Plus he's a teacher so he gets his kiddie dose everyday.

So to bring it back home: how do you KNOW you want to have children?

OK, so let's get it started here...

As it says at the top, I previously had a blog but it became superficial because my parents were reading it and I didn't feel I could say all I wanted to say. So I begin again and this time I stick with anonymity in hopes I can be more candid.