Thursday, September 16, 2004

I Will Not Die an Unlived Life

A family member is in critical condition, and not expected to pull through... What makes this even sadder is that the person in question has led a very limited life, you might even say, hasn't ever really lived at all. She's a year older than me, and there is nothing that can be done for her. I feel powerless, and very sad at how much she will have missed out on.

That is something I really hope is never my epitaph. And with the PTSD thing, and how much time I have already lost to it, it might apply, though to a lesser degree.

There's a poem by Dawna Markova that seems particularly significant to me today:

I will not die an unlived life.
I will not live in fear
Of falling or catching fire.
I choose to inhabit my days,
To allow my living to open me,
To make me less afraid,
More accessible,
To loosen my heart
Until it becomes a wing,
A torch, a promise.
I choose to risk my significance,
To live so that which came to me as seed
Goes to the next as blossom,
Goes on as fruit.

--Dawna Markova

I will not die an unlived life. Maybe that's my new mantra.

Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Photographic Odyssey

From Mikro's recent train travels...

Riding the rails with Dad:

Nursing on Metro North:

Easily amused with shredded napkin confetti:

And from last month's jaunt to my parents' place:

Swinging Fool:


Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Family Wedding, with Toddler

This past weekend we travelled to the Jersey Shore for a family wedding. It was an extremely long trip involving two different railroads, several cabs and about eight hours round trip, which was an interesting experience with a sixteen and a half month old... He actually travelled quite well. He ate alot of yogurt, drank water, and slept only a tiny fraction of the journey. He flirted with female passengers and waved to his reflection in the train's window. He squealed and clapped at the passing trucks. He was amazingly good.

We stayed at a small inn in Belmar Saturday night, then cabbed over to Bradley Beach at check out (an hour and a half early.) My parents were supposed to call us when they arrived at the BB train station at noon, so we could meet and get a bite to eat before the ceremony. They didn't call, and ate by themselves, which meant Kev and I got nothing whatsoever to eat all day and sat roasting our wedding clothes on the beach until after the ceremony. Mikro had us worried. I lubed him up with SPF 45 sunscreen, and we kept reapplying it, but he looked like he might be getting burned. He's extremely fair, so it was a major concern. Turns out, he was just a little flushed from running around in the heat. We got him to drink alot of water, and his color faded back to normal and he perked right up. He even behaved pretty well through the ceremony, and Kev walked him around the boardwalk nearby when he got fidgety.

My cousin Tom married his beautiful bride Barbara, and both were radiantly happy. The reception was at a nearby restaurnat overlooking the beach. I nursed Mikro out on the porch in relative privacy and he fell asleep, which freed me up to go hang out with the cousins. I hadn't seen most of them in years, and we had a great time catching up and reminiscing. Supposedly we are going to all get together at Thankgiving in NYC at one cousin's place. And another wants to host a huge family reunion in South Jersey (which will be another huge trek for us...) and make it an annual event.

We left at 6 pm Sunday night, riding the NJ train with my parents, who kept Mikro entertained all the way to Penn Station. I wound up nursing Mikro on the Metro North train after we ran out of yogurt. We got home around 10 pm, totally exhausted and pleasantly surprised about how easy it was to travel with the boy.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Mikro at 16 months

I haven't written an entry about Mikro in what seems like ages. Time to do that.

He is just a sweet, loving amazing little boy.

At my parents' place last month, he learned to wave and say "Bye bye". He is just so proud of himself for learning this, that he does it all day long. He also thinks he is quite clever for learning how to clap, and he applauds the TV, claps along with laugh tracks, claps when something makes him laugh, and applauds himself when he does something new and special. He also claps when I ask him if he wants to nurse.

He's starting to point.

He loves clowns and comedians. Favorites are Jay Leno and Ellen De Generes.

He learned how to make his electronic train work, and to throw a ball. He loves pails, and plastic shovels and hammers, which he waves around like magic wands. He has been playing with a VTech electronic toy and pushing all the buttons since he was a month old. I think he may almost be old enough for the Little Touch Leap Pad we got him for his birthday (except that he likes to shred paper...)

He is into everything. He opens cabinets, unrolls the toilet paper, is fascinated with unloading things into piles and then moving them back. He will sit next to a bin of toys and systematically empty it onto the floor, one item at a time. Then, one by one, he moves the toys to his left side. Then, one by one, to the right. Sometimes he'll put a good number back into the bin, but he almost always unloads it again and then leaves everything scattered across the floor. He does this with the contents of my purse if I am silly and forget to close it.

He has an unfortunate fascination with the phone cord, and often unplugs it. This is better than just taking the phone off the hook (another favorite passtime) because at least the extensions will ring. But then, most fun of all is playing back all the messages on the answering machine, and/or deleting them!

We taught him to roll on his belly and scootch off the couch feet first when was only a few months old. He really applies the lesson, and is very safe at getting down from all the places he climbs up to. Now, he has finally started climbing down from the (rather high) family bed. This terrifies me, because who knows what he may get into while we sleep... Time to baby gate the bedroom.

His word collection:

  • Mama

  • Dada

  • Baby (bay bay)

  • Dog (dug)

  • Back (as in throw the ball back to mama, which he does!)

  • Bye Bye

  • Car (cah) (only said a couple of times)

  • Yumi Yumi (yogurt or solid food)

  • Nay nay (nursing)

  • Numi Numi (nursing)

  • Mina Mina Me (nursing)

  • Siss (this, as in look at this, what's this?, etc.)

His favorite phrase is Dub Dub or Dubba Dubba, repeated endlessly, but we haven't figured out what it means, other than that he's in a good mood.

He climbs onto my lap and sits with his back against my chest. I am now his favorite "chair". I sit cross legged, and he always liked to sit cross legged between my legs, but now he just climbs up on me wherever I am and hugs me, or snuggles against me and stays there. He's so affectionate and sweet and loving, and he has an amazing sense of humor. He looks at his board books and giggles at the pictures, turning the pages himself. He starts peekaboo himself now, and will use a blanket, or a book, or any handy object that he finds, or duck behind the furniture or a doorway and pop out.

He loves the water now. At my parents', he played in the sprinkler every day. He would fill his little pail with water and run around jerking it and splasing the water out and laughing like crazy. He also liked to step on the jets coming out the sprinkler and spray me with water.

My mom's miniature collie pup was just the perfect size dog for him, and the perfect partner in crime. They dismantled her kitchen together.

He likes slides, bit he adores swings.

He loves other kids and babies.

He also likes running, although his balance isn't perfect and he falls alot, especially when he gets distracted and stops looking where he's going. He loves stairs, and can go up and down them well, if he is paying attention. If he gets distracted, he will fall, so we try to keep him off the stairs as much as possible.

He drinks soy milk from a cup (which I hold), and eats the occassional bit of vanilla ice cream (his grandparent's favorite way to spoil him rotten). He is fascinated by water bottles, and likes to shake them and roll them around. He will drink from a sports bottle. (He also likes to knaw on the capped bottles when he is teething.) So far he is more interested in throwing, shaking and spilling his sippy cups than drinking from them. He can get a spoon to his mouth, but prefers me feeding him. He loves spoons as toys and teethers.

He still doesn't eat anything texture-y. Just baby food, yogurt, etc. The mushy stuff. He likes to play with anything on our plates, but he won't eat it.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004


How can it possibly be September already? This summer just evaporated. I don't know where it went.

Fall is my favorite season, so I'm looking forward to crisp cool afternoons wandering around the reservoir with Mikro in his stroller and watching the leaves changing.

What I'm not looking forward to so very much is my upcoming 39th birthday (although, having nearly been killed once, I am the first to say that getting older certainly beats the alternative!)

For some reason, it's the blankety-nine birthdays that freak me out, not the ones that end in zero. I really spazzed at 29, but thirty didn't faze me at all. Well, 39 is bugging me, because I am not where I wanted to be at this point in my life in many ways, chief among them: healthwise. I am overweight and out of shape. And yes, in great part it is due to the fact that I live in chronic nerve pain, which makes exercise akin to torture, but really, I could try harder to get rid of some of this poundage, or at least, to not allow it to creep any higher...

So, in lieu of new year's resolutions, which I don't generally make (because I have yet to keep any), I'm making an early birthday wish that this will be the year that I get my shit together, weightwise, PTSD-wise, etc.

I would really like to feel like my life is moving forward like the cycle of the seasons, not mired in a swamp of perpetual doom and gloom.