Baby Shower

Last Sunday, family and friends from the Bay Area, Boston and every corner of NYC braved the wintry winds to come to Ditmas. Organized by Alaina, Jenny and Nissa, the celebration was held at Cafe Madeline, a neighborhood favorite just down the street from our home. Coffee and tea were served, platters of pastries and cookies were consumed, and beautifully wrapped gifts were opened. JP thought that he would stop by towards the end but ended up getting roped into presents. He said that hearing so many women shrieking over dresses and diapers was something out of his nightmares. He provided the comic relief to us all and was gracious enough to look excited by the various gifts, even when he had no idea what their function was. Later in the afternoon, our group headed to Sycamore to meet up with the male contingent of our group and hoist a beer (or old fashioned) in honor of the baby. It was a beautiful day, made all the more special with the presence of my mother (who swallowed her superstitious misgivings about celebrating babies before they're born). The one thing missing was my sister, who was at home in California, along with the baby we were all celebrating. I can't wait to be reunited with them both in a few short months (or sooner...).

Tunnel Vision: Giving Into The Nesting Impulse

JP and I got our crib last night. This baby thing might actually be happening (cue all parents reading this to roll their eyes and think that I have no idea what I am getting myself into). The baby accoutrements seem to be all I can think about these days. My mom says that I am nesting "big time." I asked JP if this was true and he said, "Of course, you haven't talked about anything other than baby stuff for the last 20 minutes." I oscillate between guilt for boring everyone with the minutae of prepping for a baby, and defiance, because now, for the first time, I am acting just like any other pregnant woman in the third trimester. I never thought that hormones would overtake logic without an actual physical pregnancy under my belt, but my brain has officially become baby crazed and I can talk co-sleepers vs. cribs, swaddlers vs. slings with the best of them. I figure that this is probably my psyche's way of bridging the divide that pregnancy usually covers. Pregnant women are forced to confront the baby through their own physical changes over the course of 9 months, but I don't have that. What I do have however, is an obsession with retail therapy and a voracious appetite for a bargain. These impulses have now overtaken any logical component and I am happily spending my days searching for baby tubs on Craigslist, and sifting through second hand stores in Brooklyn for the perfect onesie.

When I say that hormones don't play a role in this nesting phase, I am not exactly truthful. In reality, I have given my body over to science yet again, in a bid to breastfeed. I originally wanted to try it for the bonding experience, to combat an unrealistic fear that otherwise my baby might not have any more bond with me than with anyone who holds her bottle. After researching the various formula options however, my desire to breastfeed was additionally fueled by the desire to not give my baby powdered cows milk that has been doctored with an unappetizing range of additives. Since my diagnosis, I have overhauled my diet to incorporate more raw foods and green veggies. My body just runs better that way. So why wouldn't I take the same care with my baby's diet if at all possible? After hitting a bunch of dead ends, I finally found a doctor with experience in inducing lactation. She is located outside of the city (I was shocked at my inability to find anyone with similar experience in New York) and once my oncologists agreed to the protocol, I was on board to do whatever it took. I am now on a regimen of birth control pills and a drug called domperidone (sounds more festive than it is) which is taken 4 times a day. My life literally revolves around this pill schedule but that's fine since it is the first time since we found out that we're expecting that I am able to physically participate in an activity related to the baby. And now that the baby is the size of 4 navel oranges (thanks for the analogy MyPregnancy.com!) and due in less than 2 months, I am finally allowing the reality of it all to sink in. In her most recent sonogram photos, her face is really defined and the technician can even see her hair! She's real, and therefore all of my crazed mom and nesting instincts have a purpose. Even if part of that purpose is to drive JP up the wall.