Confessions of a Mom-to-be

I don’t really like kids very much.  The idea of being a parent does not fill me with excitement, anticipation and exuberance.   Usually I have a low child-tolerance (except for the exceptional ones like Nikki’s girls).  Babies don’t give me a thrill either.  I view them as instruments of excrescences and noise, sometimes both together.  Usually if I hold one, it ends up crying.  But then I guess usually if babies aren’t quiet, they are crying so maybe I have a 50-50 chance anyway.

I never really enjoyed babysitting (but, then, does anyone really?) and have had to work up my skills at cooing and gooing at infants; mostly if I think of how I talk to my cat I’m ok. (ah, Owwie woves his mommy, doesn’t he? what a cutey boy).

Why have a child?  Certainly, the need to pass my genes along isn’t really essential to the very fiber of my being. If we had not conceived, I would not have sought any kind of medical intervention to help me do so. I do not see pregnancy as an absolute essential experience or any kind of validation of my so-called womanhood.  It was annoying to not be pregnant when we were trying mainly because I didn’t want to end up being heavily pregnant during the summer-time, which is how it worked out anyway, so I guess I will be spending most of my summer in a kiddie pool to stay cool. The ‘pregnancy glow’ is attributable to an increase of hormones and skin oil, which makes more sense to me than being in the throes of creating a wonderful new being and isn’t that so wonderful. 

No, I will confess the reasons here in black and white and you can judge me for the selfish beast I really am.  Having a child is really all about my own personal development, to which there are several parts:

Part A:  What if in 10 years I regret not having a child?  There is no going back once it is too late.  Also, while there is no safe bet that a child will be there to warm your lonely old age, it is a better possibility than the nursing assistants at the nursing home, even if they only end up coming to visit you once a week or something. Ingrates. My kids will probably be living abroad when I am elderly; I hope so because I am going to go live with them, like it or not. heh, heh.

Part B:  Being a parent seems to me one of the few ways in which you are required to go outside yourself to a greater degree than almost anything else, unless you happen to be channeling Mother Theresa.  It seems to me that it requires a kind of personal growth, development and challenge that can’t be met in exactly the same way elsewhere.  Sure, it would have been much easier and more comfortable to keep going as we were, just the two of us, the way it has been for 11 years. We had just gotten to the point where we could indulge in little material luxuries that we had not felt comfortable in purchasing before (yeah, I’m talking buying a certain CD if you felt like it or going out to eat three times in a week instead of once or twice).  But then, life isn’t really about material stuff so I guess this little adventure fits in with that philosophy.

Anyway, so that is why we decided to try to have kids. Hopefully someday we’ll get to bring in a little Asian baby but for now old-fashioned procreation was the way we went.  And you don’t have to tell me that I will be madly in love with my child and that I will adore being a parent because I know I will.  But I’m not all bright-eyed and bushy -tailed and thinking that it is not going to have it’s own particular miseries but since those are what make you grow, I guess I have to say, ‘bring it on, baby’.

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A Day at Wittenberg or, Michele’s Big Day Out and What She learned during it

Last summer we had a Korean exchange student stay with us for 3 weeks before she started her exchange year at Wittenberg U near Dayton, OH.  As it turns out, her semester is just about over and she will be leaving before she has a chance to come visit us again, which I am kind of bummed about because I was not a very good host last summer, being too busy to spit, and I wanted to make it up to her.

This weekend her dance club was having a recital so I went up early in the afternoon and we went out for an early dinner at a Korean restaurant she knew of beforehand.

A:  Somi and the Case of the Horrible Roommate

Somi changed roommates mid-year since her first roommate went back home. As it turns out Roommate #2 is something of a bitch. She started out the semester by bringing her then-boyfriend in for sleep-overs.  Somi asked her politely to not do that any more since it made her uncomfortable, as it would any reasonably normal human being.  So Roommate #2 stopped for 2 weeks before she got a new boyfriend who she then started ‘sneaking’ in when she thought Somi was asleep. When Somi asked her RA what she should do, the RA told her that Roommate #2 had had to change roommates mid-year because she and her first roommate weren’t ‘getting along’, that Somi should just try to talk to her again and that there wasn’t really anything the RA could do to help her.  Now, I am not so naive as to think people did not have sleepovers at Taylor nor do I think Korean college students are any less sexed up than American ones. BUT, I think the other parties were/are at least more discreet in their pursuit of the sexy time. 

It is just plain mean for this girl to take advantage of Somi’s innate dislike of making a scene to satisfy her sexual urges or need for night-long cuddle sessions or whatever it is that is motivating her. Not to mention that her clothes and other possessions formed  a sea of flotsam in the room and that when Somi pushes back the piles (seriously, piles. I have never seen such a mess in my life, seriously), the Roommate throws a fit because she ‘can’t find what she’s looking for’.   Somi reports she is glad there is only 1 week left for her to stay here.

Her summary of US college life: party culture and rampant sex.  And this is the lesson she has learned about Americans.  Swell.  

Combine that with all the loser Western men who live and teach in Korea because they can’t hold a job here and have no problem in dating their students who are half their age and you just really can form a great view of American culture, can’t you?

B:  The Dance Recital

I have never been to a college dance recital before.  I wavered back and forth between boredom and thinking how young all the girls looked with their stiff, gawky aping of gracefulness and their unsullied optimism about life in general.  Mid-west OH is maybe not the best place to look for high quality caliberof dance.

One performance piece was a dialogue + dance that was introduced as having ‘adult content and language’ before the whole show went on. Well, living where I live and hearing the music (and I use that term loosely) that blasts from the cars that go by, I just assumed that this meant some kind of rap/dance performance with lots of profanity, since that has been a topic in the news recently.  Hee! I was ever so wrong. It was a dialogue/dance about young women’s sexuality and I was very surprised how conservative it was as it was a lament for virginity lost before sex and their sexuality was really understood and a cry for commitment as opposed to the hook-up culture that seems to be so popular on campuses these days. I didn’t think there were any girls that age who thought that way anymore and one usually thinks of the arts community at a college as being much more liberal than the other parts.

The ‘adult language’ included the word ‘hymen’. That does not seem so much adult as technical to me. 

Anyway, it made me feel quite kindly toward them whilst wondering at the same time if their feelings of guilt and longing for purity were not really the viewpoints thrust upon them by a patriarchal, archaic society and wouldn’t they be much happier if they shook off the chains of the artifial and puritanical constructs that bind them along with moldly ideals of monogamy and sanctity since that is apparently what most college cultures these days seem to be advocating, if the news articles are any guide to college life.

Personally, I hope they cling to their ideals of wanting to be valued for being more than just a vagina on legs and seek for more than just being a biologically-driven creature willing to give it up to any jerk with a penis.  There’re more than enough guys willing to press their advantage as much as possible and maybe the ideals of prizing virginity stem just as much from a female sense of self-preservation than any male-derived concept of protecting their possessions.  Certainly females have more to lose biologically speaking through a frequently-met variety of partners while on the male side it works to their advantage, spreading out their genetic material to as many repositories as they can or, ‘sowing their wild oats’ (which is somehow a term of indulgence and affection and little thought is given to the ‘fields’ that those oats are sown in).  But all that is a far bigger topic than I will address tonight before bedtime, that is for sure. 

Anyway, it was a fascinating look at one segment of women’s college life, altho I do not know if it was representative.

And beware of being a poor, innocent Korean girl who’s roommate has to have a bedmate.

Poor Little Royal Boy

Poor Prince Harry. What’s a boy to do when he’s not allowed to do what he wants to do?  Why he just takes his marbles and goes home. Never mind that he might be endangering the lives of others around him through his very presence. He is, apparently, willing to not only sacrifice himself but his mates and all those who might have to come rescue him.

 I guess he missed the day at Sandhurst where they taught them that, in the Army, you do what you are told to do when you are told to do it without any whinging.  What’s this British Army like, anyway, if you are allowed to quit instead of sucking it up and doing your job?

Their bagpipes are pretty cool, though. Brandon wants MANY, MANY CDs of bagpipes to add to his collection so if you think of it, pick one up for him. 

Push-ups and other Pregnancy PT Perils

So over the weekend we were discussing push-ups and the doing thereof and how many push-ups  the various party members could do and how many were required to pass the Navy physical fitness test.  Of course, Brandon can do 8 million blindfolded with one hand tied behind his back without breaking a sweat. My uncle said he at one time could do 100 in a row and Rachel did 30 or so with, I am sure, effortless aplomb at her last test. 

Now, I hate push-ups. Hate them.  When we did HwaRangDo, we did only 10 or 15 at most and I did them but i hated doing them.  I can do tricep push-ups pretty easily but the bicep ones are just death.

Anyway, so my uncle decided on a whim to see how many he could whip out now and did about 8.  I didn’t have a go at the time but today I decided to see how many I could do.  And guess what?  Push-ups when pregnant are EVEN HARDER than push-ups not pregnant. Your belly just wants to stay veerrry close to the ground and it is a huge effort to make it be not near the ground. So, I did 10. Not very good ones and probably I would not have passed any kind of Navy test with them but I did them and learned one thing to enjoy whilst I gestate and that is that I have a great excuse to not do push-ups now.  Can’t do sit-ups either but those aren’t as bad.

So the next time you do some push-ups, do some extra for the pregnant girl who won’t be doing any any time soon.  And I’ll just eat an extra chocolate chip cookie for you.

Darwin in action

Some apparently not-so-brilliant birds decided to build a nest in my Boston fern, which I hung up out on the porch before I left last weekend.  I guess it is not the birds fault since no one was home last weekend but I doubt its little birdie babies will survive unless we start using the front door instead. But since even using the front door we would have to pass the fern to get to the cars, it might still scare momma and poppa bird each time.

Dumb birds. Now I’m going to worry about it.

Pics

from my trip to VA

A good reason to go

This is a good reason for us to FIND A CHURCH already. sheesh.

Oh, AND, when Troy went to church on Sunday, Jeff asked him where I was and instead of telling Jeff that I was supporting my brother in another state, Troy just said I ‘wasn’t able to make it’, thereby giving the impression that I was home in bed!  Which was TOTALLY FALSE. (I wasn’t home in bed, I was in VA in bed :P)  Anyway, so I am NOT a pagan, just a semi-pagan. (actually, I think I was out worshipping the sun on the beach at church-time last Sunday, so, yeah, maybe I was a pagan, as I was accused of being by JeffC)

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