Category Archives: kids

Things You Don’t Say To Your Dad


There are certain phrases you really never think you’ll use in conversation with your father. Dirty Sanchez would be one.

About a month ago, I took the boy to meet my dad at the Archery Club, so he could practice. The girl insisted that we go in too, because she wanted to see Pap. By which she meant “see Pap and have him give me chips and pop”. Anyway, we were sitting at the bar while my dad was working on the boy’s bow, and I noticed the menu. It was typical bar food: fries, burgers, nachos, Dirty Sanchez, cheese sticks.

Wait, WHAT????

After I got done choking on a chip, I regained my composure (mostly) and asked, “Um…Dad…ah……what’s a Dirty Sanchez?”

“A hot dog”, he answered.

“Oh. Does it have…um…chili on it or something?”

“No, it’s just a hot dog.”

“Just a plain hot dog? It doesn’t have, say, brown mustard?”

“No! I am trying to get this done – why do you keep asking me this stuff? It’s just a big hot dog!”

At that point, I just shut the hell up and finished my chips.

Then about a week ago, we were in the car and mr b, being a giant asshat who doesn’t pay attention to what he says in front of the kids (see: the Great What’s a Rim Job Debacle of Ought Seven) , and he throws out Dirty Sanchez. And as I am giving him the Are You Fucking Kidding Me Evil Eye, the kids pipe up from the back seat, “Dirty Sanchez! We had those!”

I let mr b choke for a while before I explained that it was just a big hot dog. He deserves it for saying Dirty Sanchez in front of the kids.



REMINDER: My March of Dimes Giveaway/Raffle for Maddie is down to the last few days! Join in!


Ever since I was a child, I have hated to ask for things. Even the smallest things. When people hear I’m an only child, they often say, “Oh I bet you were spoiled.” I won’t go off on all the reasons why this pisses me off – but basically, it has to do with a) judging me based on something that means nothing, b) way to be rude, asshole, c) you don’t know me so shut the fuck up, d) god, I’m so sick of stereotyping, and e) not knowing the meaning of spoiled. It’s the “e” that relates to what I have to say today.

I had a good life. I had toys and clothes and things and stuff. But to me, having things does not mean you’re spoiled. Not wanting for things (and believe me, I wanted) doesn’t mean you’re spoiled. To me, being spoiled is demanding things and getting them. And I never demanded. I rarely even asked.

I would want something and hope and wish and dream and occasionally hint, but I hated to ask. I can remember being very young (maybe 5 or 6) and picking up my grandma at work (Montgomery Wards “Buffeteria”) and dying for a donut from the donut case. I would hope that my Grammy or Gramps would read my mind and offer me one. I would look longingly at that case. And even though I knew they would give me a dozen if they knew I wanted it, I would never, ever ask. Not once.

I don’t know why asking for things was so hard for me. I can remember – as an older child – not wanting to inconvenience anyone, or worrying that giving me what I wanted would cause someone financial problems. But I felt this way even before I knew anything about finances and inconveniences, so it’s just something in my personality, I suppose.

And I imagine you are saying, well, it’s hard to ask for stuff. No, It’s not hard for me. It’s painful. I feel sick. I cry involuntarily. I hate myself. It’s like a little piece of me shrivels up and dies every time I have to ask for something.

I hate asking for things, I hate asking for help, and I hate depending on people for anything. And yet, depend on people, I do.

Three days a week, I drop my kids off at my parents in the morning, and they get them off to school and daycare. My girlfriend brings the boy home from afternoon band practice. Two of my friends often stop by to pick up the boy in the mornings when I am home, so I don’t have to drag the girl out. My aunt takes the kids to the gym when I can’t. If I have to work late, I call my dad or aunt. I hate it. I hate it with a passion, but I have to do it.

Every year, my company changes hours in the summers. We work an extra hour on Mondays-Thursdays and work ½ days on Fridays. So in the summers, I have to have my dad and aunt get the kids from daycare every day. Last year, my girlfriend pitched in, too. I hated it.

And when I say I hate it, I don’t mean to imply that I don’t appreciate the help – I do. I don’t know how to repay these people who I depend on. But God I hate depending on them.

Mr b and I rarely go out, because I hate to ask anyone to babysit. We don’t know any teens that sit, so it falls on family. And my family does enough. The thought of asking a friend makes my heart race and makes me feel sick to my stomach. So we don’t go.

So this week, I am extra stressed out.

First off, the daycare won’t be open Friday, meaning that I either have to ask my dad to keep the girl (I didn’t have to because he already told me he won’t be around). Everyone else works, so I am stuck. Sure, I didn’t have to ask anyone to watch her, but I have to ask my work to either take the day off or work from home. I don’t want to take the day off, since I need to hang on to my vacation days, but at the same time, I worry that working from home will be perceived as taking advantage of the company (and I would never, ever want to do that because I love Awesome Company). I hate it.

And then Friday night mr b and I have tickets to see Buddy Guy. Which means I have to ask someone to keep the kids. I hate it.

And summer hours are coming up and I will have to ask/depend on other people to get the kids for me almost every day. I hate it.

And kindergarten registration is next week and – of course – is during working hours (which – IMG I am so sick of the assumption that there is a mom at home to take care of stuff), which means asking to work from home that day, too. I hate it.

And then there’s pre-school “graduation” coming up. And a doctor’s appointment for the boy. And several kid-related events in the summer. And vacations. All requiring asking for days off/working from home/help with childcare/etc. I hate it.

And then finally the boy came home with his summer band practice schedule yesterday and when I saw that there will be mandatory practice all summer, Monday through Thursday from 8:00 – 10:30 am, I cried. I actually broke down and cried. Because, again, with the responsibility.

I need help. And I hate it.



Don’t forget – the iTunes contest is still going on

I was reading this article yesterday and I was struck by a part of it. Many women complain about their husbands not doing enough when it comes to the house and kids (and most are justified), and I do it as much as anyone. But this one paragraph got me:

“Here’s my take,” says Barry Schwartz, author of Paradox of Choice. “There’s been a lot of attention paid to the amount of work women do in the household. But it’s not really equal. I think what hasn’t been focused on is the emotional and mental work — namely, who makes the decisions. This is incredibly important: Even if the husband’s around, and shares the kid workload, who’s making the decisions about playdates, schools? The overwhelming, crushing responsibility of it all still lies with the mother. It’s a false sense of being equals.”

Exactly!! Someone finally put into words what I haven’t been able to.

I do bitch about mr b not doing enough, and often times I am right. But I also know that my housekeeping skill, etc could use some improving too, and then I feel guilty about complaining about his. Or sometimes, I’ll think about the things he does do and I’ll realize that maybe he’s not as bad as I implied with my complaints. And yet, I still feel undeniably right about them.

And this guy hit the nail on the head. It’s not the actual work. OK, it is the actual work sometimes, but more than that, it’s the implication and the responsibility that wears me out the most. It may not be physical exertion, but it is exhausting nonetheless.

Because of our schedules, mr b leaves earlier and gets home later. We work the same hours, but his drive is slightly longer. And to be honest, he likes to stop for coffee in the mornings (which I understand, but even those few minutes of his time would make the mornings easier). So because of this, I am the one that is responsible for getting the kids up and ready in the morning. I am the one responsible for dropping them at my parents or school or the bus stop or daycare. And because I am the one who gets home before day care close, it’s my responsibility to pick them up. If I have to work late and can‘t make it, it’s my responsibility to find an alternative.

When we get home, they are hungry, so it’s my responsibility to make dinner. Often times this involves cleaning up first – I’m responsible for that too, then.

And while I know he can’t get home as early as I do every day – but sometimes he can, and does he ever call me and say, I’ll get the kids? I’ll let you guess. And while I can’t say for sure, I would be willing to bet that when the end of his workday is near, he never feels the stress of “I have to get home” or “I can’t be late.” I sometimes wonders if he takes his time, or decides he has one more thing to do, or one more call to make simply to avoid the responsibility. His drive is “Yay, day’s over” and mine is “Goddammit, this traffic is going to make me late! Move, motherfuckers!”

And I realize that because of out work schedules, there isn’t much that can be done about this, but it sure would be nice if when he got home, he would pick up some slack – clean up after dinner, give the girl a bath. Something, anything that he clearly feels is my job. I would appreciate it if when he walked in the door and saw me knee deep in cleaning or cooking or whatever, that he would ask what he could do, instead of heading straight for the couch or the computer, while telling me how exhausted he is. I would appreciate it if he would call me and let me know he’s going to be late. I would appreciate it if he would make a point of listening for his phone on the way home, since my rushed schedule doesn’t allow for me to add a trip to the store when I realize we are out of paper towels (and seriously – I know it’s not very green, but for me – trying to cook or clean or live without paper towels is like trying to be a crackhead WITHOUT CRACK). When I ask him to get the girl bathed or wake up the boy in the morning to get in the shower, he does it, but not without a big SIGH, leaving me feeling like I have to say thanks for something that is his responsibility as much as mine.

And even when it’s not about actual physical work, responsibility can be a daunting thing.

I know when pre-school tuition is due. I know how much it is. I know when the boy need lunch money. I know when the book fair is. I know when it’s gym day. I know when it’s “wear purple” day. I know when report cards are coming. I know what library books are due and when. I buy birthday and Christmas presents, for the kids and for everyone else. I send cards. I know when the sheets were washed last. I know when holiday parties are. I make treat bags. I make sure we have lunch fixins. I go to birthday parties. I plan birthday parties. I know when the dentist and doctor’s appointment are. I know what size clothes the kids wear. And what size shoes. I know what vaccinations they have had and still need. I plan the vacations.

I am responsible. And it is exhausting.

Monday, Already?


Where the hell did the weekend go? I swear, this weekend was so busy that it flew by.

Friday night, I had the Burgh Moms (& dads) dinner, which was tons of fun, as always. Except for the part where we had to wait almost an hour to be seated for our seven o’clock reservation. Now I thought the whole purpose of a reservation system was to avoid waiting for a table. But I’m all wild and crazy like that. I finally went up to complain (probably embarrassing the other Burgh Moms in the process, but they know by now what to expect from me – I own my inner [OK, outer] bitch), and upon asking when in the name of holy blue fuck we’d begetting our table, since we had been waiting 40 minutes, the hostess with the leastest sighed and rolled her eyes at me and said, well, it was a large party request. To which I replied, “exactly. Thus the reservation. Jeez. But once we were finally seated, it was all good times. The food was very good and the beer was awesome. Appropriately, I had a beer called Beelzebub. The company was interesting and fun and funny, of course, and I love them. Even if they are all a part of some vast conspiracy and using a smaller font on their blogs every day. It’s the only explanation for my difficulty reading of late. Because I can not possibly need reading glasses, dammit!!

It wasn’t until 10:15 pm that I set out for the hour-long drive home. But not before I stopped for gas. And then got a call from mr b reminding me that I promised to stop at the store and get home some distilled water for his apnea machine. Needless to say, it was midnight before I got to bed. I didn’t even rink any of the growler I brought home, which should tell you how tired I was.


Saturday, I had to get up at 5:30 to get ready to go to a makeup event at Macy’s. I had to pick up Hedge and Rapunzel in time to drive to the North Hills and check in before 8:00. It was a fun day, though. They gave us a Panera breakfast and lots of free makeup and perfume goodies. Who doesn’t love that? Then we had a delicious lunch at Aladdin’s before heading home so we could get ready to head back out to Hedge’s son Squidward’s birthday party.

It was a skating party and since, in my mind, I can still do all the things I did when I was 13, I got me some wheels. Did you ever notice how in your head you can do just about everything? I can totally – in my mind, of course – still do back handsprings on the beam, and two and a half reverse pike with a full twist from the 3 meter springboard. In real life, however, I would probably break 14 bones and drown. But by God, I was going to roller-skate!

I actually did pretty well, though. I am steady on my feet wheels, can go pretty fast, etc. I can’t skate backwards anymore, though. I don’t even remember how. But one thing I could do as a kid that I can’t do now is not give a shit if I plow into someone. So when I saw a kid in my peripheral vision careening out of control toward me, I tried to get out of the way so as not to fall on him and perhaps kill him. The good news is that I did not, in fact, smash a child. The bad news is that I was going really fast at the time and I stumbled. Remember physics class?

A body in motion tends to stay in motion unless acted on by an outside force

Well, consider me that body. The “outside force” would be the skating rink floor. But I didn’t just fall. I went down in a flying, rolling, skidding, America’s Funniest Home Videos extravaganza of a fall. It was spectacular! Seriously. I wish I had a video to post since I have no shame. But I’m sure you can imagine it. It looked pretty much like you would expect a fat, middle-aged lady* flying through the air and rolling 10 feet across a wood floor to look.

But I had fun, even if one part of knee hurts even when my clothes touch it, and another part of my knee has no feeling whatsoever. I’ll try just about anything. I don’t know if that makes me brave or stupid.

*Also – “lady?” HAHAHAHAHAHA


And then Sunday, we had a birthday p[arty at a neighbor’s house and when walked home, carrying some birthday cake, the wind picked up and MY CAKE BLEW AWAY!

That sucked.

WTF? I’m an only child!


OK – so let’s get it out of the way right now – you know I love my kids, right? I love them more than anything in the whole universe. I love them more than I ever imagined I could love anything – they are wonderful and sweet and beautiful and perfect. You got that?

OK, good.

These kids are driving me out of my fucking mind.

I am sure a lot of it has to do with the fact that I am an only child and have never experienced it firsthand, but Oh. My. God. the fucking fighting is making me insane! I know they love each other, but Lordy, in between those sweet moments, I want to kill someone.

And considering that this is all new, fresh hell for me, their dad needs to calm the fuck down. You would think that with 6 sisters, he would be used to it, but no – none if it ever interrupted his football game before, so he’s evil and it makes everyone else more tense and stressed. That’s pleasant.



Dear jogger,
Contrary to what you clearly believe, briefly interrupting your run in order to comply with basic safety laws will not, in fact, result in your immediate death. Not doing so, however, just might
Love Gina

Dear pedestrians,
While I realize that auto traffic must yield to pedestrians, I feel the need t point out that this law refers to pedestrians already in the crosswalk. This does not mean that it’s a particularly wise idea to fail to look both ways and step into the street, assuming that this law will protect you from speeding traffic like some sort of super shield. Because if you step directly out in front of me and I kill you – sure – I’ll feel bad. Really bad. But you’ll be dead nonetheless. If you see that jogger – let her know.
Love Gina

Dear flag-shirt-wearing jackass driver,
If you put as much though into things like traffic laws and stop signs as you clearly did to the application of those 16 “W” stickers, perhaps you’ll increase your life expectancy. Because if you continue to drive like that, you’ll either die in a fiery crash or some bitch with PMS and a liberal streak will beat you to death.
Love, Gina

Dear parker,
It’s a pull-in space! And you’re driving a Chevette. Are you seriously having that much of a problem?
Love Gina

Dear Boy,
You are waaaaay too young to be turning into your father. Please pick your underwear up off the bathroom floor. If you take up snoring, you’re outta here.
Love Mom

Dear Girl,
If you are going to get out of bed and wander the house in the wee hours of the morning, you really need to let someone know. Because I had a heart attack, died, came back to life and spontaneously combusted this morning when I found you missing from your bed. I’m too old for that.
Love, Mom

Dear mr b,
Just because you don’t hear it, smell it or see it, does not mean that it does not exist. Recall, if you will, that you are deaf, blind and have a seriously fucked up sense of smell. And the next time you resort to the age-old, good old boy, misogynistic, bullshit explanation that “[I;m] crazy”, I will be forced to kill you.
Love, Gina
PS. Smoking is ugly.

Dear Bass Thumper,
The volume and tone of the bass is clearly inversely proportional to intelligence. Since my skeletal system is vibrating, you must be a serious mental midget. If you weren’t so obviously disturbed, I might beat your woofers with a club. You know, if I had money for lawyers and damages. And a club.
Love, Gina

Dear Spider,
Get out!
I hate you,

Dear Dog,
You have very few jobs in this house. And while, admittedly, you are doing a fine job of “Barking Your Fool Head Off”, you are failing miserably at “Spiders.” Shape up.
Love, Gina

Dear Cat,
See Dog. Also – spring weather is not a license to jackassery. The “Let Me In…Psych!” game is getting old. I’ll let it slide if you get cracking on those spiders!
Love, Mom

Dear Polling place worker,
Seriously? You are seriously that stupid?? Ok, then.
Love, Gina

Dear Litterer,
You are an asshole. But on Earth Day? Super Mega Giant Asshole of Assholery.
Love, Gina


The weather is finally coming around and yesterday the kids asked me if we could go biking this weekend. Sigh.

Don’t get me wrong – I like to go biking, I do. But here’s how it usually goes:

Me: Yay, fun! We’re biking!

Boy: It’s hot.

Me: It’s beautiful!

Boy: Mom, I’m tired.

Me: You’re fine! Let’s have fun!

Girl: I want a snack.

Me: Just wait until we stop and take a break.

Boy: This is hard!

Me: But it’s fun!

Girl: Snack?

Boy: I’m tired.

Girl: A bug!

Me: It’s no big deal – he won’t bother you.

Girl: It’s a bee!

Boy: Bee!

Girl: BEE!!!

Me: (under breath) #$&&*@ bee. (out loud) He’s gone now.

Girl: Is it breaktime yet?

Me: Fine, here’s a snack.

Boy: Do we have chips?

Girl: Yeah – chips!

Me: No chips. We’ll get chips later.

Boy: I don’t like these.

Me: C’mon, lets bike.

Boy: It’s hot

Girl: I’m not hot.

Boy: That’s because you’re riding in that wagon thing. Youre not working.

Me: Shut it. I’m the one doing all the work, so deal. (thinking) Oh My God, this cart is so freaking heavy. I’m dying. But it’s fun, by God.

Girl: I like these, mom.

Boy: Hey! She’s eating my snack!

Me: You said you didn’t like it!

Boy: Well maybe I do.

Me: Oh please.

Boy: Can we go back now?

Girl: Can we go back now?

Me: We are never going biking again

Now, repeat this every weekend and you have biking with my family.

But this season is different because the girl can ride her own bike. And I know that she will pedal 10 feet and then be too tired to go any further, adding to my misery.

So I want one of these:

It’s a Caboose Trailer Bike by Morgan Cycle, and it will let her pedal, but we’ll be able to keep on going if she gets tired (because I actually DO like biking).

5 Minutes for Mom is giving one away – go check it out.

How To…


How to feel old:

Watch American Idol on “Songs from the Year You Were Born” Night. Nothing makes you feel like an old geezer quite like being reminded that some of these people (All but one of whom are chronological adults. And several of whom are married) were just being born while you were out drinking and smoking and having sex. Well, expect for that one guy. You may have only been ten when he was born. You know, if you were telling your age (which everybody knows anyway).

How to be a diva. Or perhaps, Mrs. Howell:

How to be the next Mickey Hart*:

*OK, clearly, I don’t know many drummers and I narrowed it down from Phil Collins (who makes me want to stab myself), Rick Allen (who only has one arm and who wants to wish that on their kid?) and Tommy Lee (and speaking of things one doesn’t want to wish on their kid: Pam Anderson, Hepatitis and crabs)

How to crack you mother up (and simultaneously make her feel guilty for her vocabulary):

“Bean – why is the dog barking? Can you look and see if someone is coming”

“OK, Mom. Stop barking! There’s no one coming, you jackass

How to put your foot in your mouth while watching a commercial for Moment of Truth:

“Asking a question like ‘have you ever regretted marring your spouse is unfair.”


“Because it’s a rock/hard place question. No one wants to admit it, but everyone has thought that at some point in their marriage”

I haven’t”

Jeez – next you’ll be telling me that not everyone has plotted their spouse’s death. And set up their BFF as an alibi (Hi, Hedge!)

(For the record, I think he’s lying. I know I’m a bitch.)

How to be the world’s worst photographer:
Take Easter photo with “Cops” on in the background…

Because nothing says, “Jesus Lives” quite like a televised drunk driving arrest.

How to look insane:

Chocolate Bunnies Everywhere Fear for Their Lives


Today is my first day back in the office after a busy and somewhat stressful weekend. I can always gauge how stressful my weekend was by the feeling I get when I walk through the office door. Most Mondays are the “ewwww, work” variety – that means it was a pretty normal weekend – some fun, some relaxing, with a touch of sibling annoyance and husband pain mixed in. but after weekend like this one, I walk through the office door and my blood pressure actually goes down. Because even though I have to work and even though I have to deal with a pain in the ass coworker and even though I have my fat ass crammed into pantyhose, by God, I will not hear, “He’s touching my stuff!”, “I just wanna see it!”, “Stop it!”, “You’re mean!”, “I’m telling!”, “Go AWAY!”, or “STOP TOUCHING ME!!!!!!” SO, yay, work!

Plus, when I got in this morning, I saw a package on the front counter for me and who doesn’t like a surprise mystery package, assuming it’s not filed with dog shit and snakes? And it was most certainly not filled with dog shit and snakes, but with two cool cds and some delicious-smelling chocolate soap. YAY!! But I have to say:

Dear Stacy,
You rock. Especially the part where you put the note in telling me not to eat the soap. Because I read it at the last minute and was very near shoving it all into my big, gaping piehole. Love and kisses,


Friday I worked from home and we had an extra child in the house – our nephew, Dil (great nephew actually, but I didn’t say that since it makes me sound as old as dirt, when in actuality, though I am as old as dirt, it’s mr b who is three days older than turpentine and can say he has a great nephew. Also – did anyone get the turpentine reference? If so, I will love you forever)

Anyway, having an extra child in the house can be both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because it keeps the kids busy having someone else to play with. A curse because – hello – it’s an extra kid in the house. The girl was thrilled to have him there, since they are close in age and she adores him. The boy, I figured would ignore the presence of another rugrat and play wii or something. But no, even though he won’t play with his sister and probably wouldn’t play with Dil if were actually his brother, he thought it was great fun playing with him on Friday, much to the dismay of the girl, who wanted Dil to herself. I suspect this added to the boy’s enjoyment. At one point, they were playing light sabers and she was pissed off at being left out and she kept telling them “it’s time for another game now”. When that didn’t work, she came over tot where I was working asked me for a pencil. I gave it to her and went on working. Then she asked for some paper. Again, I gave it to her and went back to working. Then she asked if I could write something for her. I was distracted since I was working, but I took the paper and pencil and asked her what she needed me to write. The answer? “This game is over. Mom said.”


Saturday and Easter were pretty uneventful, but busy. There was shopping and cooking and ironing and cleaning and visiting and chocolate and wine. And I made this salad, which you should go home and make right now because it is fantastic.

Then yesterday, I had to work from home again, since school and daycare were closed. And as with Friday, there was lots of “He’s touching my stuff!”, “I just wanna see it!”, “Stop it!”, “You’re mean!”, “I’m telling!”, “Go AWAY!”, or “STOP TOUCHING ME!!!!!!” So, by the time the girl started screaming bloody murder, I pretty much was all boy who cried wolf-ed out and I responded with a frustrated, “What?!? What is it now?” And then I saw her clutching her face and staggering around the room. Turns out she had sprayed perfume in her face and eyes. I grabbed her and threw her I the tub and started spraying and rinsing her eyes as best as I could, with he fighting and kicking and screaming. And you know how hard it is to open your eyes when they are burning, so I’m not sure how effective it was. I also tried to wash the perfume off her face since she reeked. I had her in the tub, rinsing her eyes for about 15 minutes, then got her out and called the doctor. They said she would probably be fine, but to call poison control. They also thought she would be fine, but damn did she give me scare. Herself too. The poor thing was in pain and crying and she couldn’t open her eyes for a good while. And her face got red and blotchy from the perfume, with her left eye, especially swelled up and looked like a red plum. Good times.

I intend to heal myself psychologically by gnawing the head off a chocolate bunny and celebrating my few hours of quiet and data management.

Pregnancy Tests (no – I’m not – don’t get excited)

I was just getting ready to post a long whiny pity party about how I have nothing to say, don’t know what to write about, I’m so miserable, blahblahblah, when I read her post on taking pregnancy tests. So I’ll share the rather non-exciting stories instead (anything’s better that whining).

With the boy, it took forever to get pregnant. Wait. Did I say forever? Because what I meant was a couple months. But they felt like forever. I simply expected it to happen as soon as we made the decision to try. Since I had very irregular cycles, it made the whole process difficult. I was never sure when I was ovulating or when my period was due. This meant I took pregnancy tests all the time. No time or place was sacred. I took them at home. In the morning. At night. In the bathroom at work. I had no limits whatsoever. I was, in a word, insane.

I had no idea the difficulties that other people had conceiving. To me, if it didn’t happen right away then there was something wrong. I was completely obsessed with imaginary symptoms. I was feeling a little nauseous – take a test. I was spotting – was that implantation bleeding? Take a test. I think my boobs hurt – take a test. Thank goodness it wasn’t the rabbit test, because there wouldn’t be a bunny alive today.

Finally, one morning before work, I decided to take yet another test. I was so used to them at this point, that I didn’t hover over it anxiously anymore. I went about my morning, getting something to drink and feeding the dog and cat. And when I came back into the bathroom, there it was. The positive test. Finally, after all this time (not) I was pregnant. Mr b’s very romantic reaction was to yell, “Get down with your bad self, mama!” I took the day off work and stayed home to celebrate.

With the girl, it was quite the opposite. When the boy was about three and a half, we decided to start thinking about having another. I went off the pill and we started “letting nature take it’s course”. We weren’t actively trying, but figured if it happened, it happened. Besides, it was so fast last time (I finally had a clue), that it would be no problem this time, right? Wrong. For 18 months we did it this way, until we decided to start counting. My cycles were regular now and I learned all about the signs of ovulation. We did everything we read about to increase our chances, to no avail.

I saw my doctor and she told us to give it a little longer, so we kept trying. More temperature taking and cervical mucous checking and counting and trying and praying. More negative tests (though I didn’t obsessively take them like last time – just once a month, unless my period beat me to the punch. I thought I was pregnant a million times, though. After having a child and being on the pill, my body changed. My menstrual symptoms changed. I would feel nauseous, my boobs would hurt, I’d have what felt like the weird early pregnancy cramping. I’d be sure I was pregnant until I found out I wasn’t.

After about a year of trying this way, I was starting to get really discouraged. I worried that my weight was the problem. I worried that my advanced age of 34 was the problem. I worried that it would never happen. I made an appointment to see my doctor and discuss options. The week of the appointment, I started getting sick. That day, I woke up with the flu – the knock you down and stomp on your head I can’t breathe and have a fever and I’m aching and kill me now flu. I dragged myself in to work because I was NOT missing my appointment and if I was driving all that way, I may as well hole up in my office.

At the time, my GP was right upstairs from my office, so I decided to stop up and get checked out. She was getting ready to write me a prescription when she said, “Wait a minute – you’ve been trying to get pregnant, right?” I said yes, but don’t worry, I wasn’t. It was the only month in almost three years that I didn’t have nay symptoms. I was definitely not pregnant, I lamented. But being a rational person, she decided to test my urine just in case before she gave me any drugs. Her face when she walked back in the room told me that it was the best flu I ever had. I went back to my office and the second I walked in, my friend Flip took one look at me and mentally compared me to the ass-dragging death creature that had walked out 25 minutes before and said, “You’re pregnant!”

The results: