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Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

Time Event
Safely Home For A Few Days Now
I'd gone long enough without posting, some folks were starting to worry. Everything's fine, I just don't have a dozen nurses at my beck and call anymore, and now that I'm home with both my kids, there are not so many spare moments.

Conrad is a jolly baby, as jolly as a baby can be during a developmental period when he sleeps 18 hours a day. We were so lucky with Gareth, who was only difficult about eating and easy about everything else, that we'd braced ourselves for karmic payback and the possibility of a really difficult temperament, or at least a repeat of my misadventures as Dr. Moo Cow. Nope. Straight-up harmonious kid. Whenever I see his little proto-smile, the word "jolly" pops into my head immediately, followed often by vague memories of a Dadaist poem I memorized when I was in my teens and terribly impressed by Dadaism, the one that begins jolifanto bambla o falli bambla. Maybe I'll have to rememorize it. Gareth certainly finds it amusing. For those who have asked: Conrad was born last Monday, at 7 pounds 13 ounces, 20 inches long. Before the tachypnea started up and tests detected the low blood sugar, his Apgar scores were auspiciously high, 8 and 9.

The hospital folk sent us on our way Friday morning, still fretful about my blood pressure but cheery about everything else, for both of us. So far, so good. Gareth is still delighted with his little brother, though he does ask to be picked up constantly. I think he was hoping I'd regain that superpower as soon as Little Brother was born. (Grumble, c-section, grumble grumble.) I'm feeling a little better every day. A lot better would be nicer. I look forward to not needing percocet this much, hopefully sometime soon. (Opiates, feh. I can't believe people take them recreationally. Self-medicating, okay, that I can believe, and a few times in my life I have experienced enough pain to make the idea of a transdermal morphine patch seem attractive, but for fun? Um, no.)

Weirdly, the change that took the biggest mental reframing was the moment when my mother had to go home to Maryland after helping out the whole time I was in the hospital. She and Dan had this almost-sustainable division of labor, where Mom was there for me first and for her grandkids second, and Dan was there for Gareth and Conrad first and me second. We were all cool with that, and we knew how to make it work. When Dan suddenly had to do all the stuff he'd been doing, plus all the stuff my mother had been doing, plus a bunch of the stuff the nurses and hospital staff had been doing, he had trouble getting his head in the game--which is understandable, because that game would kind of suck. Thank goodness for friends bearing casseroles. (And, for those local folks we know in real life who were about to ask, yes, we could definitely use more casseroles.)

Thank you, everybody, for the congratulations and well-wishes. The first few weeks after a birth, the world seems to shrink, first to a hospital room, and then to one's house. Very isolating. It's wonderful to feel connected to the larger world, and to be reminded that the larger world is full of excellent people.

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