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Showing posts from January, 2011

Welcome, Nux Gallica!

Welcome to the world, Nux Gallica. Here she is with her grandmother the day after her birth.

I shimmied up a storm before the night of the full moon, dancing to "Winter Sun" by Esperanza Spalding. Then Mr. G marched me around the mall to get those contractions going, and that afternoon I was in labor. When we got to the hospital I was not dilated and they were going to send me home, so I did some dancing motions in the hallway, and an hour later I was at 4.8 cm.

After that, things slowed down. I labored for 15 hours before taking the drugs they offered. Then I finally broke down and asked for an epidural, which I had hoped to avoid. 24 hours after my labor began, after three hours of pushing, finding out at the last minute that the opening of my pelvis is narrow, my baby was born healthy and whole.

I held her to my body the moment she was out, and she screamed so loud. When they took her away to clean and weigh her and give her a shot, she cried until she heard her father…

I'm Not Sorry

This is a post from the beginning of my pregnancy, which I am re-posting now to remind myself and everyone else working on a big project--whether physical or mental--to keep on rockin' it as best you can, and don't feel bad about letting the unimportant stuff slide.

I am continuing to detox and clean house to prepare for Baby G. It's slow going (as is my writing), because this pregnancy business is really draining my energy. But you know what? I'm not sorry. Because one of the things I'm throwing in the trash this spring cleaning season is unnecessary guilt. 
And I invite you all, procreators, procrastinators, and all others, to join me! Let's start with our blogs. There are three categories which seem to comprise the bulk of the posts I see in my blogroll:

1.) useful, informative, or thought-provoking advice for writing or living well;
2.) amusing or touching vignettes that provide fun or profound diversions;
and 3.) posts bemoaning how hard it is to blog or …

About Mommy and Daddy: How are you characterized?

The other day, Mr. G and I sat down in the nursery to fill out the "About Mommy and Daddy" pages in our soon-to-be-born daughter's baby book. This simple action became an enlightening moment for me when I saw the striking difference between the way my husband wrote about himself and the way I did. It suddenly became clear to me how much the narratives of my loved ones affect the way I view and feel about myself, and then how much my self-characterization determines the way I write and the way I feel about my writing.

typography self-portrait by Stacy Benson
I have often said that as a writer, I used to be much less confident about sharing my writing. Allowing others to read first drafts felt like baring the ugliest parts of my body and soul for criticism, and even gentle suggestions made me feel ashamed of myself for weeks. Sometime after college, all of that changed. Now, I separate my writing from my sense of self. My writing comes from me, but it is not me. Now, I welc…

The Fun of No

comic by Natalie Dee
 We all know how affirming, exciting, and pleasing it can be to say "yes" to life's many possibilities. But "no" can also be joyful. We are all familiar with the rebellious "no," the angry "no," the fearful "no," and the cranky "no." But lately I have discovered the happy, freeing version of "no." The trick is not feeling guilty or lame about opting out of many unnecessary things when you have a more important focus. In that case, saying "no" to all kinds of external pressures can be liberating and fun. Having a baby is a great time to learn the joy of "no."

As in...

Working until the moment labor begins: No, thanks.

I started maternity leave one week before my due date, even though I know that most first babies are born late. First of all, you never know. The baby might have decided to come early, and when this week came along and I was still working and the dishwasher br…

2011 Resolutions

Happy 2011! For a minute there I thought I was going to have a 1/1/11 baby. It was a false alarm, but what a dramatic start to the year. Baby is still wrapped up, but she will be coming into our lives any day this month.

This New Year's Eve was a lot different than the last! In 2010, we had a huge house party with a dress code of "formal, yet in poor taste." I was skinny and long-haired and tipsy. We partied until well after midnight and had several guests spend the night.

This year, I still dressed up in a silly fashion, but instead of a party, we had a low-key dinner with another expectant couple and called it a night around 10:00 p.m. We feasted on some delicious homemade, home-harvested and hunted recipes by gardener Molly and her bow-hunting husband. (Even the Baked Chef was highly impressed with the venison sausage roll, squash and pepper pastry, and homemade bread!) I had my hair cut in a new style, and I squeezed my 9-months-pregnant belly into a dress I had cinc…