Monday, September 30, 2013

You've been warned

This post is both NSFW (depending on where you work) and strange, but at least I'm telling you in advance, right?

After a great deal of Eli being troublesome to get to sleep (gone are the days when his mom joked that I brought tranquilizers in my purse), I've reached a somewhat startling conclusion.

Getting a baby to sleep is not unlike trying to get a woman to orgasm.

You can do the same things you've done in the past, successfully, and one day it just up and doesn't work.

It's frequently a matter of guesswork, and always requires paying constant attention to practically nonexistent signs.

If you change it up at the wrong moment, you're doomed, and there is no hope.

The atmosphere has to be set just right.

It takes a certain though always varying amount of prep work and build up to reach the critical moment.

If I sound like a burnt out wife or nanny, rest assured I'm not. But it's worth writing down what goes through my head when I'm singing Hush Little Baby for the thirteenth time at one nap.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

This is just irritating

To the Christians who feel like being in America persecutes their way of life and their faith:

Try coming out as gay.
Come out as bi.
As poly.
As pagan.
As atheist.
As Muslim.
As kinky.
As any other "alternative" category you can dream up (no matter how the dreams may frighten you).

Watch your family reject you, or, at best, grit their teeth behind a smile. Know what it's like to live with the knowledge that people are always hoping and waiting for you to change.

A dear married, gay friend shared recently that her dad, who was formerly supportive of her, is starting to question himself. He's starting to wonder if maybe he was wrong about his only daughter, and she really is living a terrible, sinful life. V and I photographed this friend's wedding, and we have a picture of him dancing with her. It blew my mind. (Nothing compared to a later wedding we shot, with both brides' extended families in existence - wow!)

Watch yourself monitor your speech every day, in every situation. Run through the mental gymnastics of audience, timing, appropriateness, stress level, consequences, before saying
"My wife and I."
"Actually, we don't go to church."
"I love both of these people."
"I appreciate your concern, but the bruises aren't from abuse."
"I believe just as strongly, but in a different God."
"Last week, at the gay day at the park."

Is it worth it?
Will three or four words sever a relationship?
What you say is irrevocable. The wrong phrase - or email, or text, or glance at a computer screen, or novel - can lead to questions, accusations, consequences.
They might change your life for the worse.

You're better, being your true self. You're living an honest life.
That doesn't mean it's always easy.

Growing up

Baby Eli turned one yesterday, and celebrated by having a grumpy attitude and pouting at me. He's usually such a happy kid, too - no fair!

Kali, who's almost 2 1/2, is in preschool now, two or three days per week, and, according to her mom, loving it. Her sisters are a month into kindergarten.

Patrick and Lilly turn 5 next week. They were still 1 when I met them.

It's hard, being away from the kids I left. I love Eli, but those five in particular - Kali, Laura, Danielle, Patrick, and Lilly - are something special. We keep trying to plan a trip back, but failing. I don't like it. I need to see them soon.

I'm growing up too, I suppose, which is strange. I'm trying to discipline myself to write more. I have the free time, but I can never figure out what to say or how to do it. I'm trying to keep the house cleaner, since I have by far the easiest workload. I'm trying to figure out what I want to do with my life, if there is something I want to pursue.

Growing up is a challenge. I'm sure all my kids would agree.

Friday, September 6, 2013

New phrase

I've been trying a new personal phrase on for size.

"I don't want kids."

It's not something I've ever said. Ever. And I don't know that it's true, or if it is, I doubt it will remain true forever.

But every time I think something longing about a baby, or wish I had one, my brain says, "Eh, I don't think I want kids." And strangely, I don't really argue with it.

Most of this is precipitated by the fact that my depression has been flaring up lately, and so the thoughts of having to go off my medicine while pregnant, combined with the depressive thoughts of what a terrible person I am and what an inept parent I'll be, make it simpler to just forget about having kids.

I've never actually 'claimed' that thought, if you will. But now that I am, I'm finding it relaxing. It's almost like I can go, "Oh, okay, then no worries."

Will I have kids? Probably. This is me we're talking about; never having children would probably be the equivalent of never eating again. So am I lying to myself? It doesn't feel like it. If it becomes a statement that I flinch at, or try to rebut, I'll stop thinking it.

I have to admit, though: this doesn't apply to pregnant women. I still think they're adorable, and I will still grin every time I see one.

How long will this last? Who knows. But it's a fascinating thought experiment for the moment.