Tuesday, July 27, 2010

My Sister's Keeper

I have two sisters. Well, mostly. I have one sister who has publicly announced she will never talk to me again. Someday, I will drag my butt into counseling and deal with this sister. She is punishing me, and she loves to punish. I figure it will always be too fulfilling for her to stop. I probably shouldn't talk about it. Walking down that road produces a dull, ancient ache inside my chest. It can't even be filled with cupcakes. It's that bad.

My other sister looks like me, I have been told. She is funny, and can be the life of the party, when she wants. She takes care of everyone. She has been to hell and back, and doesn't judge anyone. She is younger than I am, but sometimes her life is older. She has more gray hairs than I do. She gives a good hug, and is obsessed with body parts. She likes medical mystery shows. She loves children, and doesn't like to discipline animals. She is fashionable, has quit smoking twice, has witnessed both a traumatic shooting and a best friend suddenly have his life taken by leukemia. She is as screwed up as I am, and you'd be lucky to have either one of us at your side. We are loyal and kind, honest and loving.

She's not great at returning phone calls, so when I got an email this week telling me that she'd had a rough few months and wanted to talk, I was surprised, and honored. I was also nervous, as we have had a few fights in the last few years. I was afraid she'd be tense or angry, and would jump at me. But instead, it was such a beautiful phone call. She's been making personal strides in who she is and how she deals with things.

My sister has been with a man for five years, who has an ex-wife. His ex-wife, over the years, has gone to great lengths to psychologically torture her. She has threatened her physically, followed her in a car taking pictures of her, written her letters so horrible they are hard to get through. She so enjoys this level of abusing another person that when my sister gets a "break" from her, she knows that she will be able to find some sort of court case online, where the ex-wife is suing yet another person.

And this is so hard for me as a protective older sister. I am so angry with this woman, I cannot tell you! I don't know how my sister controls it, doesn't try to seek revenge, blow out her pilot light....something!!! I know it's wrong...somewhere there's a place to find love for her too, right? Oy. I do not know where.

And so in the meantime, I just pray for some sort of divine intervention. I hope for some freedom for my little sister. And I am grateful for that wonderful voice on the phone.

And admittedly, I pray someday for healing for the sister I hurt over. I pray for healing for her own family, for her angry spirit. For her children. It's a helpless sort of prayer, but I believe God hears those too.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Relationship of Night Sleep and Day's Dreams

I'm not sure if I've made this clear, but in the first year of my daughter's life I have had less sleep than any time before. This includes college's late night studying and teenage insomnia. I love sleep now. I can fall asleep anytime, anywhere. I am never fully rested.

Today I met with a male student who is not sure he wants to study with a woman. He's going to take me on a trial lesson (this is the student who would have made 12 total--we shall see). I told him I have taught guys before, and actually have sometimes observed better progress with them than the girls. But it's all about what he wants, so I told him upon leaving that I would not be offended were he to decide he wants a male teacher. After all, I had such a hard time leaving teachers for any reason, and most of them made me feel weird about it, honestly.

I have been thinking about what to do here in Cedar Rapids. How to make my singing work here. Having discussed it with hubby, I think what I'd like to do is a one-woman show next fall, and then hopefully spin that into a new company...a small comic opera. It sounds like it would occupy me, certainly, and I can look at fundraising and getting a grant from Iowa arts. It seems surprisingly possible.

That is, except right now I feel way too tired to do any of it. You know that whole insomnia thing where you count hours? "If I fall asleep now, I'll get 6 hours sleep....if I fall asleep now I'll get 5 1/4 hours sleep...." and so on? I'm doing that with my whole life. It sounds like, "Well, I still have a good 40 years to get this accomplished, how much sleep can I get before starting?

Someday I plan on having a schedule where i don't play late at night with hubby, or snack, or do anything bad for me. I'll actually go to sleep at a decent hour, and then maybe wake up at a decent hour? And maybe if the baby wakes up twice I'll take a nap the next day?


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Romance Isn't Dead

This summer has included a fair amount of "date nights" for hubby and me. It has been nice, considering that Baby S is in a habit of waking up at 5am now (going back to sleep--don't pity me too much) and requiring that I rock her back to sleep.

Date nights have been available due to visiting parents, and have been very sanity-saving. Most of them involve movies, something which young parents don't get to do much (for those of you who've been reading a while, I remind you of the standing-up-while-nursing-baby-during-Avatar blog). We've also gone to a party, and a few dinners.

I've also discovered date nights can come in other forms. Tonight we looked up movie times and then ended up at an old favorite dinner place. I wasn't that hungry, but dinner without the constant "Hunny, she's getting up....sit down. Sweetheart don't touch that. What's in her mouth? Watch your drink!!" soundtrack was very nice. I cheered him on while he played the claw machine and we leisurely ate dessert together. We put our drinks wherever we wanted, not fearing the worst. It was quite nice.

We missed the movie, and needed to pick up something so we went to Wal-Mart, a place I still question morally, as I hate the "death of the small store" that it seems to bring. But it was air conditioned, well-lit and had room to walk around. We occasionally held hands and bought plants on clearance. I complained at some point, "you know, we can do all of this with the baby" but it isn't the same, it's true.

I bought a hair dye, and once we got home hubby helped me rub it into my hair (Bubbe had already put the baby to sleep) and then I rubbed some icy hot into hubby's sore back. Then he started yelling and his whole back turned red and he jumped into the shower while I stood outside in my pajamas and tried to scrub it off of his back. It killed the mood a little, but I think a lot of married dates end similarly :)

The best part of the night was sitting across from him at dinner when he asked me what my dreams were now--what I wanted to do, and how eager I was to have a more grown-up life with the baby in preschool. It was nice to know these are things he still thinks about. And I guess he was surprised at my specific dreams and plans (which I doubt I can fulfill now, but soon, hopefully).

All-in-all, a good date.

And I got a new student today! So that makes 12.

Sunday, July 18, 2010


Aww, I have been looking back at the last 3-4 blog entries and find them to be a little bit of a pity-party. Are you finding that? (you meaning the 3 people who are still reading this thing after my Debbie Downer attitude, SHEESH) I barked a little at hubby today, though he may have deserved it, and felt like I'm on the edge of barking often lately. Partly, this is due to my lack of sleep. Oy. But part of it is adjustable. It's attitude.

So here are 11 things I am grateful for. I was going to go for 10, but heck, who doesn't love a challenge? I suggest you do the same!

1. Faith. I don't know why I am a person who can believe. But I have for 25 years now. Not only that, but I believe in a way that changes me, that fills me up. I am so grateful for this.

2. My husband, who believes in me, needs me and loves me for who I am and doesn't want to change me.

3. My 5 years in New York City, in which I tripled my salary and worked with people I love, and during which I studied with the best, sang with the best and heard the best. I miss and love you, dear city. (even though you tried to destroy me....)

4. My beautiful daughter, whom I assumed I couldn't conceive, feared I would destroy for 9 months and then came out absolutely perfect. Even now she's so amazing I can hardly believe she's mine.

5. My parents, who raised me to believe in my own abilities, be ambitious, and love without reservation.

6. Jenny, a relationship which hardly deserves such a simple description as "friend," more like first and last friend.

7. My intellect. I am grateful for being intelligent enough to love learning and turn a mean phrase, but not so intelligent that I don't say stupid things sometimes.

8. Our home. The fact that I can use the phrase "our home" at all.

9. Money. Even when I have none, I always seem to have enough.

10. Living in a time of air conditioning and indoor plumbing. Thank you God.

11. My voice. I am grateful to be able to express my heart with my voice. I can't ever describe how divine and useful that's been.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Happily Ever After

I don't think I'm at any sort of high point in my faith right now, as I find pretty negative things coming out of my mouth lately. I guess I just don't feel like happy endings are as possible as I used to.

That's a depressing way to start this, isn't it?

I used to write journal entries (back when people wrote with pen and paper) about how determined I was. I would conquer NYC, I would be a great opera singer, I would live in great cities all over the world etc etc. All of that, God willing, would be my destiny. I was sure God had these plans for me. I believed in purpose to even the saddest of situations. I didn't roll my eyes much.

And sadly, though I still am of the bible-reading church-attending folk, I have to really pray about believing in happy endings. When something bad happens, I just think it's bad. I hear these words coming out of my mouth and I'm just not sure how to become someone who believes that God makes happy endings. I am pretty sure I'd give anything to feel like that again.

I am tired tonight, and not sure what to do about Baby S's new addiction to sleeping with us. I am putting off the inevitable, which is that when she wakes up in the middle of the night, I will have to sit up with her until she's asleep, rather than the current plan, which is picking her up and putting her in bed beside me, and rolling back to sleep. This plan, while easy, is just not what I want to be doing when she's, say, TWO. Nip it in the bud. *YAWNNNN* Right. Tomorrow.

A dark cloud rests over us as hubby and I pray to not panic over the loss of his boss, whom we both liked, and the mystery coming replacement. Not to mention the "contract" which they want him to sign, protecting the company from him, and not protecting him from the company. I guess the reason to sign something with no value to the employee is just bullying right? It blows. And it makes a family like us wait on pins and needles for the moment when they fire him for no reason--like they don't like how high his (not so high) salary is, or they decide that they want their sister to do his job instead. The new contract says he can't work in the area for 6 months. Ridiculous. Thanks, greedy corporation. Thanks.

We are generally happy. My husband makes me feel loved. My baby is adorable. My singing students are both fun and getting me by. It's summer and the corn is spectacular. There's a lot to be thankful for.

I poured over the singers' bios from the opera program of Tuesday night. Someday. Someday. Though right now, I certainly don't believe there's any guarantee.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Postcard from Des Moines

Darnit...did I let a whole week get in between me and the last blog?

Well, hubby and I are about four days into our third year of marriage. Last Monday (our Saturday, due to his work schedule) we took a trip to Des Moines, IA, ANNIVERSARY CAPITAL OF THE WORLD! I had done a fair amount of planning work, including finding the hotel, the restaurant, buying tickets to the opera, and timing out the whole two days (oh, and rescheduling my students). Hubby bought me stuff to wear (including a dress that was beautiful but a little too small--soon, though...soon) and came along for the ride.

It took HOURS to get out of the house. Lesson for those of you without little kids: leaving them takes so long, it hardly seems worth it. This may be why parents don't do anything. We left her in the care of my visiting mom, with my mom and I having done two nights of "trial runs", her putting the baby to sleep instead of my nursing her to sleep. They were amazingly successful, and we discovered through this process "baby tv" which is basically music videos of children singing over colorful images and occasional sound effects. My favorite involved classical pieces played in the background while images of babies/toddlers eating donuts (yes, donuts) and smiling played across the screen. Brilliant. And apparently when you're 10 months old, captivating.

The hotel, chosen off of Priceline.com, was average. Clean, but just not romantic in the way I would have hoped. It wasn't really inviting. But the parking was free. We discovered shortly after arriving that the restaurant I'd so painstakingly chosen was closed on Mondays. We drove around town finding place after place (thank you to hubby's work for the Droid) and then discovering things were closed on Mondays. Apparently, Monday is the new Sunday in Des Moines. Finally, we ended up at a cute little (obviously family-run) italian restaurant where I found the food quite tasty. Hubby was disappointed that the ambiance was a little more "cafeteria" then "romantic lounge" but he lived. His lasagna was excellent. My prosecco (italian champagne) was GREAT and the woman at the table who whispered..."Ooooh, she's getting champagne!" as the waitress opened it made it twice as good.

I woke up about 5 times between 5 am and 9am due to intense amounts of milk leaking from my chest. Ahhh, my body was well-accustomed, apparently, to large morning feedings. It was kind of awful, sitting in the hotel chair pumping bags of milk excessively, just to try to lessen the pain of my swollen chest and sleep on sheets that weren't wet. Blech. I still woke up missing her a little.

The second day we met mom and the baby and went to the zoo. Apparently, while satisfying, the Des Moines Zoo is small. Quite small. But this made it more do-able. It was hot, and the baby really only liked parts of it. We all especially enjoyed the "inside" part. The petting zoo wasn't bad either, we got some great shots. The zoo is really something you get excited about at the beginning, and then kind of regret somewhere around 4 when it's desperately hot, you're tired, and the exit is about 15 miles away. We had a much nicer experience :)

That night, I took hubby to his first fully staged opera: Le Nozze Di Figaro. It was pretty decent. Great singers, and very good acting. The orchestra was excellent too. The sets and costumes looked like they'd been recycled a few times, and were not really creative. There was nothing about the show that made me go WOW. More like, "hey, they did a very good job." So when the audience stood up to applaud at the end I rolled my eyes and whispered to hubby "do not get up." He laughed at me and my need to save standing ovations for life-changing performances. But we have to save something for those, right!!???!!

We got back at 2am. I barely remember anything about arriving. It was so late. The best part of the whole thing was just getting away. We never called home! I trusted my mother and I looked forward to a little time without checking to see if the baby was doing something dangerous.

We've made it through two years. Amazing. It really is to me. Three years ago Iwas crying myself a river and jealous of everyone in a relationship. Now I spend my time being mad that he never throws anything away. I guess you just have to choose to win.

Next year, I want to go further than Des Moines. I'm just saying.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Love in the Time of Ezcema

In my last year in NYC, I had a friend, Mary, who was 38 and having her first baby. She had miscarried twice and was paying hundreds of dollars a month for a prescription medication that would aid the healthy carriage of the baby. She had suffered so much in the miscarriages, and I desperately wanted her to successfully have children. I could tell how much she wanted it.

One day I asked her why she wanted to have a baby, and she responded, "because no one will ever love me like my baby."

It was a unique answer, to me. I think I'd heard so many different version, whether self-serving or self-sacrificing, but this "love" answer was just..honest.

I remember during my pregnancy telling hubby that what I wanted in a baby was a chance to expand my own sense of love. (I doubt he listened to that--seems like the kind of thing he would ignore as much as possible) But what I really have noticed is how social we are, starting as babies. The feeling that we're loved is a cure-all when we're babies. When her tooth hurts, she wants me...when she hits her head, she wants me. When she's hungry, she wants me. When she's hot, or tired, or cranky....

And I haven't deserved any of this. I feel like when it comes to motherhood, all I do is respond to her in the only way I can. If she asks for me, I go to her. I just love her, and amazingly she loves me back.

You know that thing you spend your whole life doing? Wishing people would love you? I mean, in Cedar Rapids I long for new friendships. It's a game I've played for years. I move...I long for friendship...but not just normal "friendship" the way people define it. I look for love. Not romantic love, not familial love. I always want people to love being around me, to want to call me, or call me back. It is often painful, as it always has been. And I didn't fall in love until I was 33 years old. I mean...I tried, but everyone was someone who didn't want me, or someone I didn't want. Love has been so hard. Even now, the love I have for my sister, who no longer speaks to me, is love I'd rather not have at all.

But a baby is remarkably different.

It's so strangely easy, her love for me. It isn't like my husband, where there's always a choosing. With my husband, I choose to love him each day, and he chooses me. With the baby it is far simpler. She's a whole person, but when she wakes up tomorrow morning, her first thought will be of me. I can't wrap my head around it.

Baby S teaches me this new part of love. The part that just blindly says "all I know is I need you" and it's surprisingly nice.

Oh, by the way, Mary is now the mother of two healthy boys.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Dear God

Hi there.

Ok, I know, God, that I've had a kind of rough night. And it's late...way past my bedtime. Almost time for the baby to get up and make me waddle out of the bedroom into her nursery half-conscious. I know normally about this time you just hear me praying for her teeth to all come in so I can sleep again.

But this one is a bit bigger. Actually, it's kind of aretraction. you see, four or five years ago, I remember sitting in the Redeemer Presbyterian church in NYC and telling You that I wanted to be with someone so badly that I would give up my voice for it. Ok, that was a lie. i admit to You now, publicly, that I was not ever willing to give that up.

I was so lonely then--and yes, it's true that having now received in my life this husband and baby I feel very different. I feel like all of my body parts are well-appreciated and I have tons of affection and understanding and humor. Just tonight, I laughed and laughed with that little baby as we did Itsy Bitsy Spider and it was better than I imagined when I told you that THING long ago.

But see now it's been a fe w years, and I'm starting to get freaked out that yYou took me a bit too seriously? Because I miss it so much. I miss the feeling of being both completely ME and completely US. I miss, I can't believe I'm saying it...SINGERS. I miss orchestras. I miss rehearsals, and big dresses and getting laughs (oh man I miss that). I miss learning roles. I miss making mistakes in rehearsal. I miss it all. I even think right now I miss the drama. The weird . . . the dysfunctions.

So...can I keep this life but have some of that one? Can you send me a job? See...I'm asking publicly, so that the whole world will know that I knelt down in front of You and begged. It all came from you in the first place. Every blessed moment of being on that blessed stage. And maybe I didn't appreciate it enough right then. Maybe I wasn't humbled enough. But I am not sure if I can be fully in this life without that one. Does it make sense? I want to be grateful for this one. I want to stop putting so much stake in this one. I want a little well-roundedness. Pretty please????

I don't want to think about the house...the diapers...the hubby's job. I want to have a few moments, here and there, when I think about the next role, or the next concert. I was born to do that. Wasn't I? Didn't you send that guy to me to tell me I had gold in my throat? Did that mean you planned to send me to Iowa? I am so confused. I really am.

I want to say that I KNOW theologically, I don't need this. I believe I am part of Your story, and if you never blessed me once, I'd still be whole. But please. Pretty please. Pretty please. Pretty pretty please.


You know who. And yes, I know, you were probably expecting this letter.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


I have had a lot of strange thoughts in the last few days.

I really enjoy teaching. In fact, though I hate to admit it, I feel it's something I'm good at and I feel pretty satisfied by it. But I am so scared that performing is all over for me that it literally makes my chest tight sometimes. I have learned that one can turn on the tv and within moments find the story, the testimony, the journey of a real person who started something late, or came back to their dreams, or revived something they thought was moments from dead. I am better than I was before, after all. And still a believer that it's all about hope.

In less than a week, my husband and I are celebrating our second anniversary. Not so many years yet! It feels like we've been married for years. But we are still learning a lot about each other. And the good news is that, without question, it's much better now than it was the day he proposed. I am constantly growing in my appreciation for him and i feel he's doing the same with me. It seems shocking that someone wants to spend this much time with me. It also seems shocking that someone else's future is my future. Lots of drama at his job this week and I find his drama is my drama. Apparently the local news business is as dramatic as the opera world. Though younger, and with more smoking and less foreign accents.

So...I have planned out our anniversary trip pretty completely, without much help from him. I'm afraid it will somehow not happen if I don't put it together. Maybe he would have...but is there anything wrong with my being the planner? I can't decide. I have learned I don't like waiting for him, it causes arguments. The more proactive I am, the less we seem to argue. So I guess marriage is more about figuring out what works than hoping to negotiate an agreement between two people who do things differently.

Baby S is getting FOUR teeth at the same time. This will make 6. Amazing. She also is starting to get addicted to sleeping in our bed. Which we do not like. So we're trying different techniques to keep her asleep in her crib. Right now she's swaddled within an inch of her life. Fingers crossed.

I'm exhausted, and I have no idea what else to type. Perhaps there will be more to say tomorrow.

Oh yeah, and I'm itching less.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Don't Know Nothin' About No Stinkin' Rashes

Five years ago, I got a rash in New York City. No--not the way most people in NYC probably do. I got a rash on my arm. It was horrible. It kept me up at night, it wept so much fluid that I had to wrap it in bandages. I had no health insurance, so I coated it in layers of gauze, anti-itch lotion and plastic, just to keep it from sticking to my desk at work. I know. Gross. It also appeared on my stomach, my back, and under my chin (a little). I remember having to sing at a concert in a long-sleeve formal dress in mid-summer. I was sweating so profusely, and itching so profoundly that I wanted to cry. I actually blew a competition because I had no stamina from lack of sleep.

After enough pain, I went to two doctors. The first was a dermatologist at the Chelsea Clinton clinic (income based). My 25K a year meant that the appointment cost me about 50 bucks and he prescribed a 75 dollar TOPICAL treatment. I never picked it up. I then went to another clinic in my neighborhood, where my favorite do-gooder Doctor (Doctor Ward) charged me 40 dollars, no questions asked, jumped up on the table behind me, lifted up my shirt and diagnosed me by saying, "Well that's a bitch." Both doctors agreed it was poison sumac. No one will ever know where I got poison sumac. In NYC. Yikes. But this time I got a free shot of cortisone, followed by a bag full of "sample" steroids. Free. I was better in 3 days.

I thought that was the worst rash I would ever have.

Two months ago I started itching...mostly under my breasts, and on my stomach. Then on my leg. I was up at night, trying desperately not to scratch. I had already begun a nightly routine of coating myself with Benadryl and lying in front of a fan. Somewhat helpful. Of course, until I started to sweat--even a little.

After a few weeks, I had a doctor's appointment, and it had begun to go away. So of course she waved it off as Poison Ivy, and mentioned it was going away and I could use some medicated lotion. So--ok.

I went home, and within about two weeks, most of my body was covered in insanely itching redness. Now I had it on my neck, my face, my breasts, my chest, my stomach, my groin, my hips. Unbelievable. Burning, itching, horrifying. I did internet searches, I tried to self-diagnose, self-treat. I took an antihistimine, but hated feeling drowsy. (Plus I cannot tell you how hard it is to wake up and feed your baby after taking drowsiness-inducing medicine. BLECH).

The worst part was that I told myself that this was my fault, for being diabetic. I felt like I had failed. I felt ashamed, and guilty. And there was nothing to tell me that I had done anything to make myself more likely to get a rash. I only knew that there are rashes that diabetics can get.

And so it was, I finally got tortured enough to go into a clinic. I guess I finally went in when vanity got the best of me, and the rash appeared on my eyelid and chin.

At the clinic, I got a fair amount of sympathy, which I really wanted, and then a few diagnoses. Apparently some of the rash was poison ivy, and some was eczema (making me the third in my family to have eczema, I should have known). Stress and humidity, he said. And be careful about pulling weeds (he joked it was an odd thing that women liked to do--weed pulling).

So I am now on my steroid, some Claritin, a prescription topical cream, and of course my trusted insulin. I hate it. But I haven't itched for two hours. Bob's your uncle. And apparently he shines some light on a bunch of misplaced guilt.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Poor, Poor Me.

The last 24 hours have been amazingly difficult. Last night at 10pm, I was ripping up carpet which smelled so strongly of old cat urine that I was gagging, and the dust was so thick it changed the consistency of the carpet fibers. Then I was pulling up carpet tacks, resulting in a cut that has been squirting puss all day today (I know, TMI) and moving furniture. All of this while resenting my husband, since he spent an hour working on the cable while I did this painful physical labor.

I had been working 10 hour days for the past week or so with his parents, so I was already sore and cranky. Then, the best part of last night was showering (ahhhhh) laying in bed with my wet hair (I know it's odd that I love that) and watching the newest episode of Top Chef. Although it was definitely better last season, I still like it. The baby slept a longer night than she has been, and I woke up to her being almost free of diaper rash. Ok, so that was the good paragraph.

This morning my in-laws got on the road, hubby got his lunch packed and said I could just push the final piece of furniture (the couch) out of the living room and into the hall after he left. He said I would not need his help.

uh huh.

So I started pushing the couch after treating the floor for old pet stains. It didn't fit in the hall. My one option? Taking it apart. I go to the phone to find out when the carpet guys are coming, and it's dead. I re-set it. I make a solemn vow to get RID OF THIS DAMN CABLE PHONE LINE as soon as we've paid our next bill. Then I panic. I tried to take apart the couch with a tool which seemed to be working. I'd seen hubby do it. Right? The baby starts screaming. I'm ignoring her, but I know she wants out of the playpen. (after all, it had been a whole 10 minutes). I finally took her out and let her crawl around. I found a socket wrench and started taking apart the couch. A few minutes passed and I realize it's too quiet. I go to find her in the kitchen and Baby S is sitting in front of the wet dog food shovelling it into her mouth with both hands--the dogs looking on, confused.

I took her to the sink and tried to wash out the dog food with her screaming at me. I cleaned her hands. I then went back to the couch. I saw that the light on the modem said I had phone so I called the flooring company. It was staticky, but I screamed through the line, "I HAVE NO PHONE, PLEASE COME ANYWAY." And then called hubby and had a similar screaming, worried conversation. I hung up and went back to trying to wrench the nuts off the sofa. My hands hurt from painting. I started to cry. I was so dirty from sitting on that floor. I called the company again and this time she told me not to worry amidst the static. She'd understood.

I finally got the couch apart, no thanks to the baby, and went to lay down. Hubby came home at lunch to check things out. I did not have phone or internet all day. I was tired, dirty, and didn't get a shower until hubby came home at 7. And so at that point, I kind of let him have it. I told him how insensitive he was not to help with last night's project, and this morning's. I told him he doesn't appreciate me. I told him he is the worst apologizer. Etc. Etc.

And he said, after a bit, that I never thank him for what he does either. I never thank him for going to work, when he doesn't feel like it, so I can be at home with her. He mentioned how much he'd wanted to be here, working on this house, hanging with his parents. He said work sucks right now--the boss who just quit, and everyone trying to be boss in the interim.

He's right. Sometimes I get so caught up in how hard it is to be with Baby S as she dismantles the house that I forget it's hard to be him too...working full time and trying to be a good dad when he gets home.

So that ended my pity party. I must say, thank God for our gorgeous new living room. Why let the pain of it obliterate the blessing? Ahhhhh....the smell of new carpet!