September 2007

It’s hard to sit and sulk when it’s Hair Thursday and it’s my turn! Check out Whoorl’s brilliant (and witty!) advice and leave some of your own!


It’s just been one of those nights.

Originally I was scheduled to work during the day, but earlier this week, I agreed to switch my hours to an overnight. NOT something I wanted to do, so as I headed to work tonight, I was trying to find the silver lining. I didn’t find it. What I did find was an unidentified piece of debris in the road followed by an ominous “thump, thump” noise.

I pulled over immediately, hit the hazards, and hopped out to inspect. Sure enough, flat as a pancake. Sigh.

I called JP, and she came immediately. Thanks to our insurance, we have free roadside assistance. Unfortunately, because I had to be at work so late, all the local repair shops were closed. We contemplated having it towed and letting it sit at the shop overnight, but the flat had occurred in a nice, safe residential neighborhood (silver lining!) and therefore we figured it would be better to leave it where it was and have it towed in the morning. But then I had a brilliant thought! We have a donut spare and all the equipment necessary to change a tire! We could change it so I could limp the last three miles to work, then take it to the shop in the morning. I’d never done it before, but I’d seen it done. I can’t be that hard, right?

So wrong. Actually, the procedure was easy. It was loosening the lug nuts that left me shaking with exhaustion and nursing bruises on my palms. But we did it! And I was so proud! Until we stood back and looked at it. And JP said, “Is it just me, or is the spare also flat?”

No, I’m not kidding. I only wish I was.

At this point, I was an hour and a half late for work, and no closer to mobile. Luckily my boss was really nice about the whole thing, picked me up and promised to take me to the shop tomorrow to pick up the car. JP went home and set the clock for 5am so that she could get up, meet the tow truck, and take the car to the shop before clocking in at 8am.

Over all, it could have been MUCH worse, and I’m thankful it wasn’t. But tonight just sucks. And I don’t want to look for the silver lining anymore. I just want to lay here and sulk while I nurse my sore hands.

I am happier then I even imagined. I love our new condo so much I want to kiss the floors. I never want to leave. At our old apartment, we came up with every excuse in the book to escape. Now we’re talking about becoming hermits.

We’re all unpacked, except for books because we are still shopping for a bookcase. And we still need to hang photos, etc. I’m hoping to do some of that today.

Enough talk, I know what you really want is photos: here are a few, click the flickr link for the full set.

Does this count as fully packed? No? Great, because we get the key to our new condo in 33 hours and the movers arrive in 45 hours and I have started to count down the time until our move in HOURS rather than days or weeks and THIS is what my house looks like. And I have to work two 13-hour shifts between now and when the movers arrive. Which basically means, I think, that I do not have time to sleep until Saturday. I’m off now to go to work. Or have a nervous breakdown. One of the two.

A couple of weeks ago, the witty and ever-so-persuasive Jessica raved about her new obsession. I glossed over the post thinking “YA fiction? eh.” and “Vampires? So not my cup of tea.” I’ve never been a fan of sci fi or fantasy. I like my fiction set in a world I recognize, thank you very much. Even better, I like it based on real people or real events. In fact, when I read her post, I was deep in the world of Tudors, having just finished the The Boleyn Legacy and embarking on my hundredth or so reread of The Other Boleyn Girl.

But when I finished those, I cast around aimlessly, looking for a new book. I read so quickly that it seems like I’m constantly searching for something new. I have a couple of non-fiction titles waiting in the wings, but I was craving fiction. And a little voice in the back of my head kept whispering about Edward and Bella. Thursday was storytime at our local Barnes and Noble, so Henry and I made an appearance (wherein he bounced and screeched during song time and tried to eat the crayons during art time) and then went to the cafe to get a much-needed jolt of caffeine. On the way, I passed a display of books by Stephenie Meyer and I made a snap decision. What the heck? The first book was in paperback an I figured that if I didn’t like it (as I fully expected) I was out only a few minutes of my time and ten dollars. A small price to pay to quiet that nagging voice.

I’m not too big to admit when I’m wrong. And boy was I wrong. I raced through Twilight and New Moon. The storyline is gripping and the setting is so convincing that I never once thought, “But that’s not REAL.” In fact, I admit to stopping a few times and wondering if it might be possible (not probable, you understand, just POSSIBLE) that vampires really do exist. After all, myth and legend generally has some basis in reality, right? Okay, just forget I said that. I’m not crazy, I swear.

Anyway, the books are fantastic. Now I’m torn, because I have in my possession Eclipse, the latest book in the series. (Ahem. There might have been an emergency trip to the bookstore in order to acquire it.) And I’m DYING to know what happens next. But I really don’t want it to be over. (Or, rather, over for now — a fourth book is scheduled for release next fall. A WHOLE YEAR AWAY.) And if my pattern holds true, I’ll be finished with Eclipse by Thursday night. Granted, that’s good timing because The Big Move is Friday, and lord knows I’ll be overwhelmingly busy over the weekend with no time to devote to vampires and star crossed lovers. But…sigh.

Enough procrastinating. I’m off to start reading Eclipse. Slowly.

Yes, you read that correctly. Only 10 days left until the big move. After waiting what seems like an eternity, it doesn’t seem real at all that it’s just around the corner. There are definitely times that I think we’re going to be stuck in this hellhole forever. A small part of me feels bad for calling it a hellhole. I mean, it certainly could be worse. It’s not actually falling down. And we do have running water and electricity. Unfortunately, that’s about all I can say for it. We were never truly happy with this apartment — it was always a stopgap, just a place to crash until we found our “real” place. And it’s served it’s purpose well. But ten months in a cramped, dark basement apartment with plumbing problems is far too long. And it doesn’t help that the bugs seem to have found a secret passage from the great outdoors. Yesterday, JP took a shirt out of the closet, removed the hanger and slipped it over her head. Then she started jumping around screaming while I stood by dumbfounded. Two seconds later, a huge mutant cricket leapt from her sleeve and landed on the floor, where it was promptly trampled by a small dog. And then I had a heart attack and died.

But then I sprung back to life becauseā€¦TEN DAYS. That is not nearly enough time to do all the things I need to do! Namely, pack. So I have spent the last few days running around like a madwoman trying to get ready, which is why I haven’t been updating as frequently as usual.

Luckily I have tomorrow off work (don’t get too jealous — it’s compensation for the 24-hour shift I’m in the middle of right now) so hopefully I will be productive rather than doing what I really want to do: spend the entire day obsessively watching season three of The Office.

UPDATE: The lovely and talented Mir had a close encounter with the same mutant cricket! Check out this post for her story and a link to a photo of the mutant cricket, which is apparently called a “camel cricket”. Ew.

A lesbian couple in Australia is suing the doctor who erroneously implanted two embryos instead of one. The couple were adamant about their desire for a single child, and wanted to take no chance on a multiple pregnancy. (Of course, there is never NO chance of multiples, because it’s always possible an embryo will split spontaneously, resulting in monozygotic — ie identical — twins.)

Anyway, the women originally had agreed to implant two embryos in order to increase their chance of conception, but at the last minute, the biological mother asked the doctor only to implant one. He informed her that there would still be a chance of twins, to which she responded, “Do not even joke about it. I only want one.”

However, the doctor forgot to tell the embryolist — who did the actual transfer — about the change, and he implanted two embryos. The doctor has admitted his mistake but is asking that their award be reduced by 35% because they failed to follow proper procedure when they changed their mind at the last minute after previously signing a consent form for two embryos.

The pregnancy resulted in dizygotic (fraternal) twins, meaning both embryos implanted and were carried to term. The couple in question is now parenting three-year-old twin girls. And they are suing the doctor who screwed up for more than $400,000 to cover the costs of raising one of the girls, including fees for a private school.

Okay, up until this point, I’m with the parents whole-heartedly. The doctor screwed up and he should be held accountable. Had the doctor only implanted one embryo, which subsequently split, they would be responsible for the cost of raising two children. But because this child was the direct result of his negligence, he should be responsible for the cost of (a) termination or (b) raising the child.

But here’s where it becomes a case of two wrongs not making a right: rather than just making that point and leaving it in the hands of the judge, the parents have detailed just how miserable they are due to the fact that they have two children. The non-biological mother testified that her partner has lost some of her capacity to love and that their lives have become so mired in the day-to-day responsibilities of parenting that their relationship has suffered. First of all, ALL parents — whether they have one child or twelve — go through changes in their relationship when they have children. Did they really believe that by having only one child, nothing would change at all? Are they insane? But more importantly, are they even taking into account the fact that someday their daughters are going to read these news articles? What kind of parent testifies before the Supreme Court that not only is their child a mistake, but also that their lives have effectively been ruined by the birth of said child? After intense backlash from the public, the parents have come forward and changed their tune a little — claiming that their children are adored and that they are only suing because of the mistake. And while I don’t doubt that they love their children, I have to wonder how a parent who loves their children could disregard the emotional distress they are undoubtedly setting up in their quest for retribution.

Furthermore, I just can’t get past the idea of a parent suing over the conception of a child. Especially a parent who was so desperate to have a child that they used fertility treatments to conceive. It reminds me of the mother I used to nanny for many years ago. She also used IVF to conceive her children, but unlike this couple it didn’t take on the first try. It took her eight years to conceive her first child and another three years to conceive her twins. She called them her “million dollar babies” because she had spent well over that amount on their conception.

Unfortunately for her, she had only ever planned on more than two children. She told me she would have been happy to conceive twins on the first try, but after giving birth once she was adamant about wanting only one more. When she discovered the second pregnancy was twins, she spent months depressed, until she discovered one of the babies was struggling in utero and there was a question that he would survive. Thankfully, he did and he wound up being perfectly healthy. Was she thankful? Did her near loss make her realize how thankful she was? In a word? No. Her reaction was: “Well…I know you shouldn’t WISH for a death of your child, but I couldn’t help thinking maybe it was for the best. After all, I really only wanted two children. But it just didn’t work out.”

Excuse me? The death of your child didn’t “work out”. Forgive me if I don’t cry for you.

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