I swear, this baby makes the weirdest faces sometimes:
He has finally started smiling, too. Intentionally, I mean. He's been smiling in his sleep since birth, but the awake grins seem so much cuter.
Hard to believe that Devin's already almost 12 weeks old now. I've been meaning to throw an update on here about it for a while but it has just been one sleep-deprived blur. Hence why I have been working on this little update piece by piece at 4am for a few days when the baby wakes for his early morning feeding and then refuses to go back to sleep unless I'm holding him. I figure I ought to enjoy it while I can, since it won't be too long before he'll be running around and won't want to cuddle anymore.
He was six weeks early, so developmentally he's like a 6-week-old. At birth he was 5lbs 8oz and 18 inches and at his 2 month appointment on April 17th he was 10lbs and 22 inches. I'd estimate he's more like 12lbs now (and still not as big as Eugene was when he was born, which is terrifying). I didn't truly realize how small and skinny he was until he started filling out. Now he's actually above the average size for his developmental age, so he's catching up.
He basically went from this:
Out of all the things I worried about happening to him during my pregnancy, him just coming early didn't occur to me. My mom's side of the family is a bunch of preemies, so you'd think the possibility would have crossed my mind. The early pangs of labor started on Valentine's Day, which was Tuesday, and ramped up the next day such that I couldn't sleep more than a couple minutes at a time between contractions Wednesday night and I still didn't even realize what was going on until my OB at my appointment on Thursday sent us to the hospital. I got there at about 1pm and had him at 12:32am on Friday morning. I had to deliver in the OR because it was right next to the neonatal intensive care unit and the doctors thought they would have to run him immediately in there, but he was robust enough that they let me hold him for a few minutes before they whisked him away. They also told us to expect him to have to stay in the NICU for about three weeks, but he got out in 11 days. We were totally unprepared when he came, so we had to settle on what name we wanted while I was in labor and then had to rush getting a bassinet and preemie-sized clothes and diapers for him before we brought him home. At least we already had his car seat.
Anyway, it all worked out. And Eugene is a super sweet, very enthusiastic dad, even when Devin's trying to hang off of his facial hair.
Current Music: Grunting baby
Craziness. Due date is March 29. I'm totally ready for this morning sickness crap to be over with, like, yesterday.
Current Music: cat snoring
First Peter Steele, now Dio.
What is this, the spring from hell?
I think I'll just listen to "Stargazer" on repeat and snivel for the rest of the evening.
Current Music: Rainbow - Kill the King
|Requiescat in pace, Peter Steele.
Man, this just ruined my whole day. I was happily oblivious to this bit of news until this afternoon when I heard it from my utterly despondent and nigh-hysterical best friend. Type O Negative was our mutual first concert (well, first for me that I hadn't been dragged to by my parents) and their albums, Bloody Kisses
and October Rust
most especially, helped get me through high school.
It feels like I've lost a piece of my youth. At least I got to see them live.
Current Music: Type O Negative - Christian Woman
Sooo, on Friday morning Eugene and I are flying to Russia, where we will spend four weeks. It has been 11 years since Eugene has been back, so it should be nice. His parents have come to visit twice in the interim, but he hasn't seen his brother or two oldest nieces since then, and hasn't met his youngest niece at all. We have layovers in Atlanta and Amsterdam, so it'll take us about 23 hours total to get to St. Petersburg, then another couple hours to Murmansk.
I had to wrestle with one of my doctors for my letters needed to get my medication through customs, since she kept forgetting. I hope it's sufficient, because if they snatch my meds, I'm gonna have to turn around and fly right back home. Definitely can't go a month without. I've been on a clear liquid diet for the past few days to prepare for the flight (no sense tempting fate), but kind of blew that with dinner tonight.
Speaking of blowing: I got into my car yesterday afternoon, only to be assaulted with some heinous stench. What scent could be so hellish? Why, none other than Eau de SOMETHING CRAWLED UP INTO MY CAR AND DIED. How lovely! We took it in to the dealership, but they couldn't get to it until today, giving whatever it was a little extra time to ripen and permeate the interior.
They called to say it was done today, so my mother took me to the dealership. We got all of "We're here to pick up the car with the dead-" out before the receptionist went, "OH, the gold camry! EVERYONE'S talking about you!"
In fact, the initial mechanic that worked on it was about to go home, heard we were there, and decided to stop by to gleefully inform us how my car made him throw up (we also found out he lives just down the street from us - hope he doesn't torch the house). The other mechanic who was writing up our bill told us how they got their "most hardcore guy who never pukes" to clean it out, and he very nearly lost it when he pulled THE FUCKING MAGGOT-INFESTED PRAIRIE DOG out of the air vent it was lodged in with pliers. They agreed it was by far the worst they've ever seen, and they've dealt with things like cats that have had been decaying for weeks. Anyway, turns out whenever the air recycling button is depressed on the A/C, it opens a vent on the blower motor just large enough for a hefty rodent to get in but not back out. I last drove the car a day or two before and there was no smell, so we've probably got the heat to thank for the speedy bloat and decay.
The bill? $508. Maybe they charged for all of the lunches that got regurgitated; I would have. The smell is still really bad, so it's a good thing I've been on a clear liquids diet in preparation for the flight. I did it just in case I get a sudden Crohn's flare up mid-air, but it has really helped with all the dry-heaving whenever I get a whiff. Funny how the more I'm exposed to the scent, the more sensitive to it I get.
At the moment, we have the car halfway in the garage with all the doors open and running with the A/C on max to try to air it out while Eugene goes out every half hour or so to spray febreeze and check on it. He parked his car slanted in the driveway behind it so no one would take the opportunity to steal it, but I'm positive they'd change their mind on that very quickly.
Current Music: Devon Townsend - Triumph
|» Bad Month, Man|
June 3: David Carradine|
June 23: Ed McMahon
June 25: Farrah Fawcett
June 25: Michael Jackson
June 28: Billy Mays
Two days, people, let's try and stay upright.
|» Puts the 'Fun' in 'Fundie'!|
Today I came across something very special:|
Kirk Cameron and Living Waters Publications, part of Cameron's ministry, have 'edited' Origin of Species as a so-called 150th Anniversary Edition.
They have also slapped in an introduction that attempts to use Hitler and "Darwin's racism" to discredit evolution entirely. Now, I'm not sure how either of these things would disprove evolution, but I'm not blessed with hyper-religious wacko logic.
The real kicker is that they want to sell this book to schools: "We want to get one million copies into the hands of students and professors in colleges and universities throughout the U.S. Let's see if they try to ban Darwin's Origin of Species. That would be interesting."
Um, yes. I'm pretty sure "they" will quietly, matter-of-factly ban your 150th Anniversary Edition and that will be that. No muss, no fuss. Unless you've got that extra special, Living Waters brand yearning for Jesus, I guess.
Really, guys, feel free to print those one million copies. You can build your next house out of them after they all sit around for a few years, unsold. Anyone who believes in evolution will just go buy a trustworthy addition while any who thinks evolution is a lie wouldn't be caught dead with a copy of Origin of Species, period, lest it damage their church cred.*
The 50-page introduction is on the site linked above. It's really quite a treasure. I burst my first blood vessel with the writing books ---> evolution of DNA! analogy. I think I shall release my own version of the Bible, edited down the Book of Ezekiel, with 23:20 in gigantic, bold, bright red font. I'm sure all the best universities will be begging for a copy of my fair, thoughtful handling of the Old Testament.
* I'm not religious, though I was raised in a very religious family. Am I the only person who thinks "Let there be light" and "God formed man from the dust of the ground" fits in pretty well with the Big Bang Theory and evolution?
So. My driver's license is officially suspended.|
Fortunately, it's not because of anything I did. Well, on purpose, anyway. Turns out that when you wind up in the ER because of a seizure -- in my case, a tonic-clonic, which is what they're calling grand mals these days -- the hospital is obligated to inform the Department of Health, who in turn have to notify the DMV, and the DMV has to suspend the license pending clearance from a neurologist.
Naturally, it sucks. My dad taught me to drive when I was 7 or 8 and I've been driving around on my own since I was 12, though it bears mentioning that the town I grew up in was tiny, so I never had to contend with a lot of traffic until I was 18. I suppose that it goes without saying that it isn't the legality of a suspended license that gets me so much as the reason. When I drove illegally as a kid, everyone knew I was a competent driver (including the town mayor, who sent his step-daughter over to our place once to notify us that he knew but didn't give a shit as long as I didn't drive like a tard). Since my seizure came out of nowhere and with no warning, I'm basically not considered competent until the source of my seizure or the likelihood of a repeat can be established. That's all well and good, but I can't get in to see a neurologist until the end of March at the earliest, and that just screws me all up as far as work is concerned. In the meantime, I'm stupidly getting all worked up over every headache, bit of spaciness, or instance of forgetfulness for fear that these things could be symptoms of the auras that sometimes proceed seizures.
I feel bad about the situation. Kind of guilty, for lack of a better way of putting it. Eugene and my parents spent their weekend and Monday sitting around and watching me. Mom went back to work yesterday and Eugene went back today, but my father is currently on vacation until the end of the month, which means my mother has been riding him pretty damn hard to, as he put it, "dog [my] heels and make sure [I] don't drop dead" (followed by "I don't want to use the term 'drama queen,' but..."). So Dad's essentially been stuck with babysitting and chauffeur detail. His car got out of the shop today and he took me down there in my car so that he could get his and the only driving I'd have to do would be the mile or so back home, but Mom figured it out after the fact and read us the riot act.
Mom is still not taking this well. She's highly excitable and very emotional and sensitive by nature, so even though she would have been upset anyway, the fact that she had to watch it happen and deal with it alone until responders to the 911 call started arriving made it more difficult for her, I think. A general unfamiliarity with seizures contributes too, of course: she told me that when I finally stopped convulsing, I let out a very long gust of air that she, er, mistook for my death rattle (!!!) and therefore believes the neighbors could probably hear her screaming. Poor Mom. I don't think I could have come up with something to freak her out more than that seizure did if I tried. Every time I have to discuss it with one of my doctors or another friend or relative, I remember the way Mom was shaking and crying and shit in the ambulance or at the hospital and I feel like a giant, mother-tormenting heel.
|» Really, fuck this.|
It has been ungodly warm thus far this month. I'm hoping for a nice stretch of cool weather for my birthday in a few weeks.|
My body likes to give me birthday presents. At least, that's how I think of them. A few years ago it was kidney stones. This year, my body has gotten an early jump on things, judging by THE FUCKING SEIZURE I had Friday evening.
I've certainly never had that particular experience before, and though I don't remember one bit of it, coming around afterward wasn't particularly enjoyable. To top things off, I happened to do it right in front of the worst person possible -- my mother. I think the incident shaved a decade off her lifespan. One minute I could hear her pulling up in the drive way, the next I'm surrounded by firemen and paramedics.
The CT scan and blood work at the hospital came out fine, so they've referred me to a neurologist to do an EEG. Seizure territory is all new to me -- it doesn't run in the family normally. In fact, the only person I've ever known to have had a seizure was one of my uncles, which was caused by his alcoholism. I'm not alcoholic, so...
I did a little googling (I know, probably a bad idea), and came across a page on Crohn's Disease on epilepsy.com. Welp, I've only been diagnosed with Crohn's for a little over two years, but according to the site, "In a review of 263 patients with confirmed CD, the most common neurologic complications seen with a direct relationship to the illness included seizure, stroke, peripheral neuropathy, and myopathy, occurring in 15%." A crescent of ulcerations came up where I bit my tongue during the ordeal, but I'm not sure if that's due to Crohn's or not.
I may be flipping my blinders on here, but I prefer to think that this is just another symptom of Crohn's. I don't much care to consider what else it could be, and I think this is one instance where I'm not afraid to say that I was scared shitless. My mother was very wound up at the hospital afterward and, out of some weird curiosity for her experience, I watched a video about seizures on YouTube afterward. In a way, I really wish I'd been alone when that happened. I know rationally that seizures generally look much worse than they are, but if I'd been in my mother's shoes the other night? I don't think I'd have been much quieter about it.
|» Good times.|
At this very moment, Eugene is sitting a few feet away from me and building me a new computer. Hopefully everything will go smoothly and I won't be crashing so damn much. Four gigs of RAM, Intel Core 2 Duo E8400 CPU, NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GTX, 10000 RPM main hard drive, and 750 gig secondary hard drive. Also got a Logitech G15 keyboard and 24" wide screen LCD monitor. The couple that geeks out together, stays together.|
( In other news, Gigantour '08 was awesomeCollapse )
So that leaves Týr at the Launchpad on May 13th, and we also bought tickets for floor seats at Cirque du Soleil's Saltimbanco on May 14th, which will be at the Santa Ana Star Center. We saw Mystère when we took Eugene's parents to Las Vegas in December and loved it, so I'm pretty excited about seeing this show, too. Chinese poles and tight rope? Yes, please.