How I Found the Porcelain Thrones*, and They Redeemed Me*

*Eventually.

Long ago when I was young, when families dined out or had guests over, it was considered appropriate for younger girls and boys to drink non-alcoholic versions of adult drinks so that they could fit in.

These would be made in real cocktail glasses, with a maraschino cherry or a twist of lime or lemon–so that they would look real.

Older children–older preteens and young teens–were pressured to drink real cocktails. I remember feeling very embarrassed by the adults teasing me ungently about how I didn’t like the taste of alcohol. I was considered immature.

By age thirteen, high school, I had finally learned to sip at anything with Creme de Menthe, and at Tom and John Collinses.

When I was fourteen, my parents decided to farm us kids out to neighbors while they went to Guatemala for two weeks. The minute we kids heard, we gathered secretly together in a mutual spirit of cooperation rarely seen since we had long ago gathered to plan the murder of our mother.

“Okay, here’s how we’ll do it: We’ll each take turns getting the house. No big parties, no big messes.”

On the days I held possession, my frieind Vicky and I sampled everything in the liquor cabinet. We thought if we did it evenly across all bottles, no one would notice.

Typical of me, I spilled Creme de Menthe on a nightgown on one of these days, and, also typical of me, carelessly tossed the gown in the clothes hamper.

Where my mother discovered it, still reeking of minty alcohol, upon returning from Guatemala. Oops!

I Dont Know What Makes You So Dumb
My first college year, my roommate Beryl and I would start out every Friday by jointly downing a half-gallon bottle of Rhine wine. Then we went looking for a party, where we’d suck back as many free mixed drinks as we could get the guys to push on us.

That’s what college weekends were supposed to be: FUN!!

(We were lucky nothing worse happened than aggressive jerkwads being aggressive jerkwads.)

My second semester, I transferred to another school where waterfalls cascaded down the stairwells every weekend night, caused by the massive drunken waterfights at the all-night parties.

I continued my harmless practice of sucking back countless mixed drinks of all varieties with no ill effects. Hangovers? What were they? I had no idea. I’d awaken the same as if I’d had a full night’s sleep.

One night, I’d been inhaling screwdrivers. Someone asked me if I’d ever had a rum and coke. As soon as I tasted that delicious rum sweetness, I was hooked, and immediately switched allegiance. Down went a total of what I recall as four rum and cokes.

The next thing I knew, it was not-quite-morning and I was in my bed.

I was feeling the way a person would who had projectile-vomited all over her friend’s bathroom the night before and now realized she would have to clean it. After it had dried on.

My stomach gave another heave at the thought.

Attractive Cartoon Giraffe Puking Prettily

Delicately, I slid myself over the side of the bed. Gingerly, I raised my body from the horizontal.

I skied my sock-shod feet gently to my pal Buddy’s bathroom. When I had experimentally lifted foot from floor, I had found that the rules of gravity were no longer in effect. My socks and the floor, however, were apparently magnetic.

Shading my eyes in preparation, I turned on the light.

Oh, I most sincerely hope that none of you ever have to behold the horror:

Twin toilets, twin sinks. Both soiled, sullied, and woefully besmirched by my most unprecious bodily fluids.  And unfluids.

We shall speak no more of it.

My eyes are actually tearing as I type this.

One and a half hours later, I stood up, the hellish job complete. I was proud I had managed not to vomit again.

However, by now, my first hangover was in full flower. I could no longer raise my head completely, nor entirely open my eyes.

I had to feel my way along the walls and furniture, and count the doorframes, in order to find my way back to my own bed and to the sweet, sweet release of sleep.

***

“Babe! Babe! Wake up!” somebody was shaking me violently.

“Whuh? Wha’ d’you wan’?”

“Babe! You’ve got to wake up!”

It was my good friend Buddy. He was the one who had gotten me into my bed the night before.

“You were sick in our bathroom last night, Babe!”

“Oh. That. I know. A’ready cleaned it.”

***

“Babe. I don’t know how to tell you this.
I don’t know whose bathroom you cleaned, but it wasn’t ours.”

Woman Feeling the Horror

ADDENDUM

Please. Let us pause for a moment of sympathy for the me back then who had to get out of bed again, now with full-blown hangover, and clean that second bathroom.

This time, trying not to ups while thinking of the someone else’s gacksplat she had spent an hour and a half touching without gloves earlier that night.

It did take one more pukefest and hangover (a story that would only be funny if video existed), plus my first and last alcoholic blackout (very scary–I may have had sex with someone I had zero attraction to) to get me to see the light.

From that point on, I stuck to a one drink maximum. It helped to know that having an alcoholic mother and brother combined with my special luck would make bucking the odds unlikely.

Today, my kidneys do their part in encouraging a half-glass maximum.

Kidneys Toasting Your Health

They’re only looking out for my best interests, the dears.

***

Oh, I am hopeless. Here’s the second hangover story:

I’m working in a bar as a short-order cook. After work, hanging out with some roofers I sorta’ know–great guys–who’ve been coming in for a while. They find out I’ve never tasted a White Russian. They order me one. I’ve never tasted a Tootsie Roll. … A Pink Lady… A total of six different mixed drinks. Bike home. Walk through the front door, say to my bud K.

“I had SUCH a great time after work today, hangin’ out with the NICEST guys!”

She tells me I then fell right on my face, straight-bodied, as does a tree in the forest.

I awaken at 3AM, panicked, tangled in a bedsheet, with something alien on my head. I reach up, and feel…rubber bands! Little rubber bands all over my head, everywhere!

I have long hair to mid-back at the time. Someone has taken separate strands of hair and tiny rubber bands and for some reason combined them into this… I look like the Flying Spaghetti Monster after a perm! What the feck?

Many hours later, when I was lucid and less hungover, and K. was awake, she explained that while I was barfing my guts out, and she was holding my head up out of the puke pail, she needed both hands for that. But my hair was falling into my barf. K. grabbed whatever was to hand to tie bits of my hair out of the way as well as she could manage while balancing my big barfing melon. (Thank you, K!)

Goose Puking Im Never Drinking Again


 

Mimsy and Babs: The Case of the Cloche Contretemps


Of the famous inseparable pair, meet Mimsy–or I believe this is she, judging by the helplessly overbalanced elegant tilt of her head, and how her smile looms large (something certainly does) beneath that adorable feathered cloche.

Mimsy and The Cloche

Mimsy and A Very Stylish Cloche She Obtained Somewhere

These letters appeared as comments and replies on the blog Dot Knows.

The first letter of Babs was posted in response to the following photo by Elizabeth Turner, a.k.a. Liz, a.k.a. Elle, a.k.a. who knows what else.

(One assumes it is Ms. Turner’s various malfeasances which have forced these and perhaps numerous other name changes, but–no matter. Let us move on, much as one imagines has Ms. Turner on so many occasions.)

ElleTurner Mimsy & Babs Moths On Clover

‘Six Spot’ Burnet Moths Demonstrating Their Addition Skills (photo by ©Elizabeth Turner/elleturner4)

Dearest Mimsy,

I spotted two moths today today on a clover, and do you know, rather than gasping and hurriedly backing away, I actually dropped down for a closer look!

Honestly, Mimsy, I know you’ll find this beyond belief, but their tails were touching, and the two together made a really rather attractive picture! No–  truly!

They had these lovely little spotted wings–  What color?  Oh, orange on black–  and their little thingies–  you know, their antenna-thingies–  were poking out in opposite directions quite like those marvelous ebony feathers jutting out on that cloche Yvette wore the other night–You know the one!

Mimsy, these simple creatures made me feel altogether blessed, if you will, as if they were designed purposely to make me feel utter delight. The oddest thing.

But then they separated, and the horrid things flew right toward me! Naturally, I screamed bloody murder. Raymond, thank Gawd, killed the bloody things instantly.

Thank the Lord for strapping young men, eh, Mimsy?

Yours fondly, as always,

Babs


 

So Babs…if I may be as bold!,

I lay this at your feet…

The carnage and horror that was unveiled to your little Mimsy is more than she can bear…

For hours now Mimsy has lain silent and traumatised from the wicked terrors that she beheld in the usually pleasant field behind her house. Spotted wings draped over pretty grasses, delicate antennae stuck in spider webs, and that final horror of what you describe as ‘marvellous ebony feathers’ now looking nothing like dear Yvette’s cloche…

You know how much your Mimsy wanted a cloche of that nature. How could you allow such wanton destruction of what you call ‘horrid things’!

Damn that fine strapping young man… Forgive my harsh words, but that is what you, Babs, have driven me to!

I, your little Mimsy, am distraught and need something for my nerves…  perhaps a little tipple. I am away now to recover.

Think long and hard, my once-dear Babs, about the course of action you set that strapping young man onto, and look for forgiveness.

I finish now having come to the end!

Yours, once fondly,

Mimsy


 

Mimsy! My dear!

Had I but known you had taken up an interest in Naturalism (how perfectly apropos, given your rather rural and, let us say, less-than-fashionable location), I would have ended my tale at its penultimate reflections, rather than reveal the final outcome.

Please forgive me, my soft-hearted darling!

How you can feel any fondness for creatures that literally fly in the face of reason…  Well, it literally flies in the face of reason, m’dear!

However, out of my deepest regard for you and our long friendship, I will order Raymond to practice the same catch-and-release mode with critters that creep and leap as he does now with those that swim in the deep.

Will you forgive me, Mimsy? Do come over to dinner so that you can show that you do.

We’re having a lovely steak tartare, preceded by a stellar paté, accompanied by the most amazing blood soup you have ever feasted upon. And Raymond has added a special treat for the tartare: Andean condor eggs! Imagine!

Fondly,

Your Friend,

Babs


 

Dear Babs…  Just a little dearer than you were yesterday what with the note of conciliation in your message,

I feel I must conform to the correct way of doing things and apologise for this response’s tardiness…

You see, here in the less-than-fashionable location that I find myself in–namely Old Blighty–we have to sleep at different times to you. Thus, the delay.

No matter; I am here now; rest your heaving breast!

I can feel forgiveness forming, though it is not yet fully complete, and I fear I must take a little while to steady myself.

Though even now the thought of Raymond and Andean Condor eggs served on a platter quite makes my saliva glands tremble! (Yes, I do mean both at once!)

Thus I believe that, dear little six spot burnet’s slaughter notwithstanding, I shall come to a place where I will be able to accept your offer though there are, of course, many a thing to organise for the coming days in order for the transition from here to there to be fulfilled.

Stellar pate sounds extraordinary and I look forward to the experience.

I must beg you, my once favourite dewdrop, to tell that chap Raymond that it is his utmost duty to perfect the Catch and Release system popularised by the Victorians with high haste and when I arrive I shall expect a demonstration.

Now, what with the rurality and less than fashionality that I live having been plunged into darkness (aka night) I must away to my fluffy feathered place to enjoy a full night of rejuvenating kip.

I look forward to a swift response from your dear-ish self.

With a little affection and possibly a wink,

Mimsy


 

Oh, Mimsy,

The warmth of your response is truly.

All is being made ready for your arrival: Raymond is catching all possible creeping creatures, and shall release them into your quarters the moment your dainty foot crosses the threshold. A Naturalist’s dream, surely!

I am so glad your generosity of spirit has allowed us to put this ugly incident behind us.

Fond

-ishly,

Your friend,

Babs


 

Dear Babs,

Yes, the ugly incident is behind and we must plough forward.

Raymond, the dear little pickled egg (has he received treatment yet?), sounds a dream but:

could I please have some grasses for my sleeping quarters so that the dear little insects may have a home of their own as well, and not just have to hunker down on the drapes and hangings that I am sure will be in place for my stay?

I can send a list that will contain suitable wildflowers too and, before you put this plan into action,

may I beg that you use the very best compost on my bedroom floor…  can’t have an inferior mulch for my beloved flora and insect life!

I must make haste now for it is imbibing on a Friday night time and I cannot use a computer during these times.
Preparations are coming on nicely.

I will let you know of any other requirements for my stay and also furnish you with my itinerary.

Much moderate feeling to you my pal, buddy and cheap hostelry owner,

Yours Mimsy


 

Dearest Mimsy,

With my fulsome laughter at your Raymond line still sounding, I cede victory, and hereby doff my cloche to you.

–Babs,

Yours In War,

Yours In Abject Surrender,

And Looking Quite Spiffy All In White


 

Dear Spiffy in White one…

I, in turn, must say that I have cried tears of laughter whilst trying to read what you have written to my partner who could make no sense of me at these times!

Bravo Babs…..a fun fight and a darned good duel

Yours in purple and Blue!

Mimsy

PS…cloche accepted.


 

Dear Mimsy,

It WAS fun!! A most-worthy opponent–I was well o’er-matched (and minded only a little– tsk!).

Yours in Precious Purity,

Babs

P.S. Never in my dreams did I expect you would accept the cloche (esp., m’dear, given that darling boffo but beefy noggin of yours–

you MUST know a cloche will appear on it much as would a pearl balanced on an egg?).

Now what shall I wear with my silk sheath to Raymond’s wife’s funeral next week?

(At least, we’re shooting for next week. Oh! Oh, Mimsy! Did you hear that–what I just said? Ha ha ha! Rather precious, that one, what?! Ha ha ha!)


 

Babs,

PS…Of course I would accept the cloche–but how could you mention my boffo and beefy noggin? And the painting of the picture of the egg and pearl?

NO-ONE, I repeat NO-ONE knows of these incapacities as I have used photos of other people on my profile and now it is all over the blogosphere! Mimsy is unmasked and I fear we are back where we started to boot!

I have contacted Raymond’s wife.

I will leave now with cloche all a quiver!

Mimsy


 

Mimsy,

I fear you have trod that one step beyond from which there is no turning back. (Give me a moment please, to fan myself for dramatic grammatic pause–that opening sentence rather wrung it out of me.)

To contact Raymond’s wife, Mimsy: Really! When I said never a word to Lady Agatha and Llewellyn Smythe-Dudley-Brown either about the other–

nor mentioned to them besides someone’s regretful two-bags-full “wool-gathering” incident in the barn.

Small wonder your cloche is quivering. I would not but be surprised the shudders of shame would take several months until achieving a state of quietus.

Thanks to your unforgivable action, it appears this missive will form my half of our final goodbye.

I would add that it is with tears of sadness that I type these words, but in truth it is tears of laughter that roll down my face,

for I have posted a faithful rendition of the egg/pearl painting on Imgur, with a few appropriate starting captions, your name included.

I am confident that the new google revenge porn quashing algorithms will fail to recognize that monstrously-oversized ovoid as any portion of an actual human.

Farewell Forever, Friend No More!

Babs

P.S. You left your pink cashmere sweater here last week. I donated it to a thrift store, assuming you left it because you couldn’t possibly have wanted to wear it again with the neck all stretched out the way it was–

YOU know why.


 

Babs,

My recollection is that you were in the room (holding the scarab and the kookaburra) with Lady Agatha, Llewellyn Smythe-Dudley-Brown and myself

(Raymond was busying himself with his wife I believe) and you were in full control of your faculties when you said

“Ok my hearties, just one more time!”

I would have left had you not beguiled me into that fateful “one more time”.

So don’t you talk to me about not mentioning anything to them and pretending you yourself were not there, Babsybaggage!

You can hurt me no longer with threats and promises of posting things I no longer am able to control. (Yes it is growing larger with every week these days!).

That sweater was yours (HA!);

I purloined it just after the kookaburra expired and you were at your weakest, with your snivelling and whining and your back being turned!

So, rub that into your temples and consider that Babs! Consider that!

You will never more know my name which I shall change by deed poll forthwith.

Once your affectionate friend but no darned longer,

Whimsy
 
The Duchess of Whimsy
 
GLADENDUM
 
My forever thanks to Liz for being the most fantastic persnickety partner (caring about nature–imagine!) of whom one could ever dream. I went out on a limb with the first Babs comment on her photo, and was so delighted when she out Wodehouse‘d me with her first Mimsy reply. I’ve been so busy with stressful nonsense lately, and this little diversion has helped a lot. Thank you, Liz!
:)


 

An Autocidal Life, Part 9: In Which Babe’s Babe Borrows Blood Baddies

A new grandma, almost killing her new grandson!? The brand new babe’s father, cheering her on?

Yes–That’s in THIS post :)

Murderous Grandma Matroishka Doll

But She Looks So Harmless!

(If you missed the beginning of our exciting and sometimes-gross-but-still-riveting story, here it is.)
 
He Got More Than Just Her Eyes
 

Where Babe’s babe almost dies.
 

First, let me introduce you to “before” Justin. Here he is at two days old:
 

Just in Lap 1 Babe had been dangerously food-allergic; she wanted to be extremely cautious with Justin. He was to be breast-fed only.
 
When Justin was exactly fourteen days old, and Joe’s parents came to visit, this was emphasized to them by Babe. Just before Babe herself, foolishly, stepped out of the house for her first breath of freedom in two weeks.

Little White Girl Thinking Duh

You Left Your MOTHER-In-Law In Charge With Your Brand New Baby!? :o

Joe’s mother disliked Babe (as did Joe, unknown then to Babe). With Joe’s blessing–and with Joe’s dad Bruno proudly filming–Brunhilde fed Justin his very first bottle of formula.
 
Later, after a frantic race to intensive care, the pediatrician told Babe: “He was an hour from death.”
 

Newborn White Baby in NICU Iincubator
 

Justin was highly milk-allergic. Thankfully, once IV fluids were given, and the last of the formula cleared his system, he perked up.
 
Then, the hospital, just like Joe and his parents, ignored Babe’s instructions: They gave Justin more milk formula AGAIN.
 

South Park Those B-stards
 

Why would they do this? Were they morons?
 
Yes. Yes, they were.
 
They did it because they assumed BABE was a moron, and her family were morons, too.
 
The hospital doctors made the usual assumption specialists make of laypeople:
 
“They is dum.” And, in this case:
“There’s no milk allergy–That dim mother-in-law gave that dim baby a dim dirty bottle!”
 
But, when Justin got sick AGAIN, the dim doctors learned their lesson, didn’t they?
 
No. Remember who the morons really were:
 
Those super smarties gave Justin SOY formula next.
 

Keep Calm and Kill Those Bastards  

And they did that even though Babe was right there at the NICU, her recently-preggers Behemoth-boobs a mere room away. Plus, stockpiled in the NICU fridge, a truckload of Babe-certified boob-juice from her additional 12-14 ounces per each two-hour pumping session.
 
Thanks to the doctors at the hospital Cedars Sinai, just like Brunhilde and Joe, deciding they knew better than Babe, it was proven again that her fears were justified: Justin was highly soy-allergic, too.
 
By this time, little Justin’s system was just overwhelmed. Besides getting weak and deydrated from the soy, he got a horrendous rash from head to toe that looked exactly like a very bad case of acne.
 

Neonatal Lupus Baby
 

The pediatrician suspected neonatal lupus. She consulted a neonatal lupus specialist from Children’s Hospital, who agreed.
 
(ASNIDE: ‘Fess up: How many of you were thrown, even if only for a sec, by that “She”? Because when we see “pediatrician”, most of us are programmed to think doctor=male… :| )
 
A positive ANA test (remember that, from seventeen posts back in this neverending series?) lent support to the lupus diagnosis. The lupus specialist reported this back to Babe’s pediatrician, who shared this with Babe.
 
Yet, when Babe spoke directly with the specialist afterward, he pooh-poohed neonatal lupus to Babe.
 
Remember THAT? That lupus bible’s advice about keeping us ladies in the dark?
 

Frumpy Old Mushroom Women

But That Is the Old-Fashioned Way!

Modern Mushroom Women

Today’s Chic Mushroom Women Know Better.

Neonatal lupus is usually no big. It’s when a baby doesn’t have lupus, but has lupus symptoms because of time spent sharing mom’s blood.
 

Not all babies of lupus moms show symptoms–just as with adults, it is theorized that physical or emotional stress can bring these on. The symptoms almost always go away as the baby’s own blood supply gets going.  

Justin was okay, once Cedars got done messing with him. He went home after five days. He was pale, and weak, and sort of despairing-looking, as if he had barely survived some awful experience. Which he had.  

Meet “after” Justin:

Shell-Shocked Justin

Shell-Shocked Justin, Not Quite 3 Weeks Old

In addition to multiple “finger stick” blood draws each day from his heels (Babe counted up to thirteen stab marks in one heel before she stopped, crying), Cedars had administered a spinal tap, without anesthesia.

Babe heard his terrified screaming during that test through two sets of double doors and down a long hallway.
   

MAD.ENDUM 1
 
These posts are…difficult. They mean I must review the time of my marriage.
 
When I walked in and saw the unholy triumvirate smiling down at tiny Justin with that bottle of formula jammed in his mouth;
 
And Brunhilde looking up at me with the smuggest, most self-satisfied smile on her face;
 
And Joe giving a quick mini-version of the same;
 
I am not a skilled enough writer. I don’t have the words to encompass what I felt. Those two cared more for victory over me than they cared about the little human being held by Brunhilde.
 
Afterward, when I held Justin, he was logy [draggy, tired]. Later, my always-hungry always-crying boy wouldn’t feed, and he wasn’t crying properly: His usual ear-piercing screams were now the sounds of a weak, sick cat. He even refused water. THAT is when I called the doctor and told her what was happening.
 
I began with his cat-crying. She said “Get him in here NOW!! Don’t wait to call an ambulance–run lights if you can!”
 
My in-laws had come to stay for a week “to see the new baby”. Yet, instead of coming to see that baby in the NICU, they and Joe didn’t visit Justin until the evening of his third full day there. Joe denied this later, and I’m betting would still deny it today, but the hospital has the sign-in records that show the truth.
 
I, of course, was there every day, all day, and most of each night, holding and singing and talking to Justin whenever they would let me, and bouncing and rocking him so he wouldn’t cry.
 
I hated my f#cking in-laws and husband for not giving a sh#t about him. But they were simply being like most people today. Why go out of their way? I was doing that. Why should they?
 

MAD.ENDUM 2
 
Justin’s NICU release records reflect that the sole cause of all his troubles was an intestinal infection caused by inadequate bottle cleaning.
 
Thus, blame falls on non-medical folks’ incompetence, which follows medical prejudice, and lets Cedars off the hook for their threatening his life with their milk and soy almost-fiascos.
 

WRONG.ENDUM
 
Below is the ending that the LAST post in this series should have had. I accidentally had it appended to the draft for this side journey. Oops. After a coupla’ days, I’m actually gonna wipe it offa’ here and paste it onto there and just pretend like it was always there. Y’all will just forget this ever happened. :roll:
 
He Told Her So
 
Where Babe’s doctor feels smug.
 
Babe’s lupus doctor was disturbingly unsympathetic about her severe arthritis pain, which was very different from his warm, sympathetic office manner on every visit before she’d told him she was pregnant. Dr. R. was clearly still irked with her for ignoring his advice–or rather, his orders. He took obvious pleasure in actually saying the words: “I told you so.” Babe had to go back on the drugs. She would have to stop breast-feeding her baby.
 
She was ashamed that most of what she felt was relief.
 
Study Questions: Would you have stayed on the drugs through the pregnancy?

 

An Autocidal Life, Part 8: In Which Babe Plus Babe Equals Trouble


A new mom, forced down on her knees!? A new baby, shoved under a bed!? A new grandma, accused of almost killing her new grandson!?

Oh, wait: That last one is in the NEXT post :)

(If you missed the beginning of our exciting and sometimes-gross-but-still-riveting story, here it is.)

A Helpful Baby Doctor

Where Babe does not let nature take its course.

By 1987, Babe and Joe had been trying to get pregnant for two years. Babe had no problem getting pregnant. Staying pregnant was another thing.

Her body had no rhythm: Flows from 5 to 9 days long, 26 to 42 days between them, periods two days after ovulating…

Scared Hands-Up Twin Egg in Frying Pan

Poor Little Eggy. (This One Would Have Been Twins :| :| ). No Time To Grab On!

Babe’s OB prescribed an ovulation regulator. But the day Babe was supposed to swallow the first pill, she knew she was pregnant again. She phoned her OB.

“Bob, I’m two days pregnant. If I take this pill, it will abort the fetus, right? Isn’t there anything we can do to keep this one?”.

“Babe, how can you possibly know you’re pregnant by two days?”

 

A Little Pregnant Test Stick

We Women Have Our Ways…

 

Though not entirely convinced, Bob said there was something experimental they could try: A progesterone suppository.

That two-day-old egg is 27 years old now.

Study Questions:

Wouldn’t that old an egg be rotten by now?
How DID Babe know? Does the toilet paper turn blue or pink THAT soon!? ;)

 

Rotten Egg by Nagel Porcelain

Does This Egg Look Rotten To You?

 

Off the Lupus Drugs and On to Adventure!

Where Babe lets nature take its course.

Babe’s rheumatologist was not happy with her.

He had strongly advised her never to have children (the lupus bible points to a disastrous life for lupus moms), and here she was, pregnant.

Now, he was telling her that she should continue her lupus drugs through her pregnancy.

“No way!” said Babe. “You don’t know what those drugs will do to my baby!”
My Mom Fights Like a Girl
Dr. R.’s mood changed from unhappy to really irked. Her previously-sympathetic diagnostic savior turned stiff with resentment at a patient refusing to follow his advice.

To be fair, Dr. R. truly cared about all of his patients. He was probably very concerned for Babe. But some of his sudden transformation still seemed like it stemmed from ego.

It’s Learning to Crawl Time—for Mom!

Where Babe gains an excellent perspective for baby-proofing.

Even off the drugs, Babe’s lupus almost entirely disappeared while she was pregnant. (Some lupus moms have the opposite occur.) However, because she kept having vaginal bleeding, both Dr. R. and Bob, Babe’s OB, sent her out on disability early to be cautious. A small price to pay for her first wonderful son, Justin.

 

Justin At 3 Months At Zoo With 'Mom

Justin, 3 Mos., Happy At Zoo With Mom

 

Part of the story of Justin’s birth is told elsewhere. But that other post doesn’t say how Babe kept calling “Give me back my baby” (he didn’t breathe for a very long time–the doctor was trying to fix that);

or how they put Justin on his tummy on Babe’s tummy at last and she was finally happy when she put her hands on his little back;

or how he pushed himself straight up on his arms and looked right at her, with his eyes wide open, and then all around the delivery room;

or how, a week after having Justin, Babe couldn’t walk.

Oh, she could walk. Just not for the first hour or two after she woke. The arthritis pain was so severe and the morning stiffness so bad that she was forced to crawl to her baby like a baby herself.

 

Crawling Like a Baby

How Babes With Lupus Crawl

 

Fresh Prince Carlton Crawl Races Across Floor Animated Gif

Don’t Feel TOO Bad For Me–Some of Us Get Pretty Good At It!


 

Even after she could walk upright, walking was slow and painful for the first half of the day. Everything was painful.

Study Questions:
Who thinks Babe should NOT have gotten pregnant?

Child Abuse

Where Babe jams her new baby in a dresser drawer.

Babe moved Justin from his crib to one of the drawers under the captain’s bed (open, of course). When he woke, all she had to do was reach down and grab him.

Pawing Through File Drawer Animated Gif

I Know I Put That Baby Here Somewhere…

She was scared that her stiff fingers might make her drop him, but she learned to lift with her wrists. When this became too iffy, Babe kept Justin in the bed beside her.

Changing his diapers was really challenging. Babe could soon no longer unpeel tapes. For the worst times, Babe fastened and unfastened Justin’s Huggies tapes with her teeth.

It didn’t help that little Justin had 24-hour colic. (Some of us are just Luck Magnets.)

 

Colicky Baby Screaming

I’m Sure Justin Wasn’t Feeling Very Lucky, Either

 

If he wasn’t feeding or moving, he was crying.

In the early mornings, Babe would stay abed and let him nurse to bursting until she could move.

Later she would try to rock him to calm his fussiness. The pain in her hip while rocking was brutal. Justin was happier (and he was worth it), but Babe was miserable.

Each afternoon, when Babe was finally able to really move, she would walk or jog him in a front carrier up and down the driveway. (Her neighbors thought she was insane.)

 

Sleeping Baby in Front Carrier

Sleeping. HAH!!

 

Study Questions:
Where was Joe through all of this?
How the heck did Babe clean up Justin’s backside during the times her fingers were really stiff? (Don’t ask!)

CAN’T DEFENDUM

The next post will reveal the cause of Justin’s fussiness. He did not sleep through the night until over a year old.

Joe did not do one night feeding. None. There was a night I begged him to get up and just carry the baby to me because I was in so much pain. He refused. He said he was too tired and he had to get up for work the next day, whereas I did not.


 

Tic-Tac-Toe Affection, and Apologies


“XXOO”

I’ve been thinking: We all throw those X’s around, but those are kisses. I guess it’s because just O’s would look like nothing, literally.

Zero Dollars

“Gamma loves you THIS much!”

But I’m not a smoochies kind of person.

I’m not really much of a hugs kind of person except for my good friends, with whom I now have learned to feel comfortable exchanging a warm hug of greeting and goodbye.

Awkward Hug

Thank Goodness I No Longer Look Like This!

Better Hug Approach

This is MUCH Better! Almost Touching!

I’ve even advanced to hugs of spontaneous delight–such a non-Aspie I’m becoming in my old age!

Two Asian Women Doing An Alternate Fist Bump

This IS How You Hug–Right?

So, anyhow, I’m still Aspie enough that I feel odd throwing all these kisses around (although they look like hugs to me–like arms crossed, which could be the arms of two friends in an embrace).

And I’d only give one hug, which would mean I’m putting just one O. How bad would THAT look?:

“Bye, friend, here’s what I think of you:
NOTHING!”

Cookie Say Hi

Do You Know What This Illustration Has To Do With The Text Above? :twisted: Nothing.

What’s a weird kid to do?

I’m just going to have to come up with my own keyboard-created emoji that indicates “warmth”.

The closest I’ve gotten is one I didn’t invent, but have been using. It’s pretty indicative of my non-virtual personality, but it doesn’t get the “hug” concept across, so I’ve still got to work on that.

}:-)>

MAILS.END.UM

All that X and O stuff was the actual end of an email to a friend–one who shall remain nameless.

(HERE, Hsiu–she HAS a name, I’m just not putting it HERE. :roll: )

This friend suggested I make it into a post.

AMENDS.UM

This is the same friend, and the same email, which included the rant about our WordPress Overlords and the new editor.

I owe that friend an apology, because in my last post, I claimed she’d suggested I post the rant, but I now realize she meant only the eks-eks stuff.

Apology Squirrel

She is far nicer than I. I think she would think that posting my rant, rather than gently bringing my points to the attention of our Overlords, was a low-down mean-spirited thing to do.

I believe now she might be right.

I was going to go into a long spew about why, but let’s skip all that:

WordPress Overlords? You apologized to me once for abysmal treatment.
I now apologize to you for, not abysmal treatment, but possibly not-nice treatment.

My Bad Frowny Sign

*** EDIT Monday, June 8 ***

In the comments, MoSY didn’t understand why I was apologizing. Paul said he was confused because he didn’t know to what abysmal treatment I referred–what had the WP folks DONE to me? I started thinking back to the “happiness” engineers had done, as best as I recall it, and…felt like taking back my apology:

(1) My blog wasn’t working fully due to one bug, AND Iphone access to my blog wasn’t working fully, due to another–one which affected all owners of the Iphone 5c, by the way.
:|

(2) When I reported each bug? I received this in response: 0. A hug. So after a week or so of silence, I re-reported them. Same. And more of the same: 000 (It looks like lots of hugs–so why did I not feel the love?)
:/

(3) Oh–I was also locked out of the normal method used to report bugs, so there was that bug, too, which made this all a teensy bit trickier. It was actually TWO bugs: One flavor in Windows on the T100 (notebook/tablet), and another on the Iphone.
o_O

(4) Too, I was locked out of the method used to READ any response they might give, which I had also reported to them by my back-door means–asking them, because of that, to please reply using email. Again, two flavors of this.
:(

(5) Yet, guess HOW our happy engineers replied? That’s right: Using the usual method that their own bugs prevented me from seeing.
:o

(6) When I didn’t respond to their message that I couldn’t see? They closed out the bug report due to my non-response.
>:(

(7) When I lambasted them, ungently, and understandably, for their handling of my issue to that point? Rather than an apology, I received a profoundly rude response. Back when I had I.T. staff reporting to me, that response would have earmarked someone for firing unless their dog had just died.
:evil:

ADDENDUM

I just had to include this kissy photo I found when googling “reluctant hug”, ’cause I loved it:

Mom Kissing Reluctant Daughter


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