Friday, October 16, 2009


Friends!!! Thank you for the comments, seriously. I had two unlurkers! I was beginning to wonder for awhile if everyone was just too busy to read my blog anymore, especially with the sporadic posting. But I can see that this is not the case, so thank you. I'm glad you keep coming back for more. :)

Today is Brent's birthday. Shall I do a 34 post for him?! Likes, dislikes, developmental milestones? He can now change a diaper and flip a pancake at the same time! I called him at work midmorning to wish him a happy birthday. We went out for Thai food for supper, and the boys and I made him a cake and gave him some gifts. So great. It's fun that now we can go out for supper and be our own party because there are five of us (Brent's sister came, also, so we were six). It's strange that he's almost halfway to forty. The old geezer.

I'm exhausted. My dog is getting bigger; he is now big enough to reach up and help himself from the table. The other day he helped himself to half my sandwich. He wasn't that popular that day. Today he only peed on the floor once all day. That's a first! I like him a lot. He is easy (aside from the peeing), he sleeps lots, he chews very little, he's crate trained, he is good with the kids, and he is mellow.

Matthew was retested by his speech pathologist, and she is very excited by how far he has come in one year. I am, too! This time last year he was virtually unintelligible and we spent a ton of time and energy trying and trying and trying to communicate with him. Basic stuff. Food. Emotions. Toileting. Choices. Wow. When I remember the effort it took to decipher a single sentence, I can't believe we lived that way as long as we did! Now he tests appropriate for his age in articulation. Now we have to work on sentence structure and grammar. I would say that in a year of therapy, his intelligibility has improved by at least three years developmentally. And now he is ready for prereading learning, whereas before he was so encumbered by his speech impediments that he couldn't even be bothered to learn his colours or shapes, or count past five. Speaking was so much effort that it took all his mental focus. And the FRUSTRATION! In his little VOICE!! And now he is free of all that. Wowsa! So great. Who knew that $2800 worth of speech therapy could be so valuable?
Tongue in cheek.
But worth it.
So worth it.

I have a doula client due any day now, and another one due the end of November!! :D Superduper excited!!! AND TOTALLY FREAKING NERVOUS!!!!
AND I applied to UBC yesterday. :D :D :D
When I say I'm going to do something, I do it, baby. And not a moment too soon, since my job is rapidly becoming frustratingly insipid. Not the actual job, but the station politics. Who has the energy to wade through so much negativity? Ick. Wednesday I spent 2 hours of my shift doing work and 10 hours of it killing time. Ten dollars an hour to be away from my kids is SOOOOOOO not cutting it anymore. I wish this strike would end so I could transfer to dispatch just for a change and the fact that I would get paid a lot more. No more standby ten dollars an hour. If I'm away from my children, if I'm trained and prepped and ready to go with a stocked ambulance and a headful of knowledge, experience, and passion for medicine in my head, I should get paid my full, decent, regular wage to be there. At work. Whether I'm performing CPR on anyone right that second or not.
I can't believe anymore that I used to do this for 2 dollars an hour, because ten is no longer acceptable to me.
[for those of you who don't know, part time paramedics make 2 or 10 dollars an hour when not actually on an ambulance call helping people. My full wage is $23.74 per hour, and I make that only when actually on a call. Yes, it is ridiculous. Yes, I hate it, no I don't have any other option in BC, write to your MLA about it.]

Have I mentioned that I'm tired of being on strike? Uh huh.

I just finished this book:

by Heather Armstrong, whose blog I am a devoted reader of [thanks, Dana for sending me a link to her blog several months ago!]. She's awesome. She is freaking hilarious! And so real. Her book describes her pregnancy, birth, and postpartum months with her first child, and especially focuses on her postpartum depression, which got so bad she was hospitalized, thankfully, because that is what got her back on track. It reads well, and made me laugh hard enough to make me cry on many occasions, and made me cry in earnest on several other occasions. It's written so that other women will not feel alone in their struggle, and maybe to burst some babylusting bubbles regarding the nitty gritty reality of parenthood. It's very funny. I highly recommend it, whether you are female or not, a parent or not, and a victim of a mood disorder or PPD or not. She is a good writer, has a strong sense of voice and style, and is always authentic. Every word of that book, even on the copyright page, is one hundred percent authentic. Go read it. Now. Do not stop. Do not pass Go. Do not collect $200.

Now I'm reading Spiritual Midwifery by Ina May Gaskin, the midwifery guru of North America. She and her compadres were some pretty severe hippies, let me tell you. Wowsa! I'll write a full review when I'm done, but I wanted to share this one quote;

When a child is born, the entire Universe has to shift and make room. Another entity capable of free will...has been born. In that way, every child's birth is exactly like the birth of a world teacher. Every child born is a living Buddha. Some of them only get to be a living Buddha for a moment, because nobody believes it. Nobody knows it, and they get treated like they're dumb. Babies are not dumb. Just because they don't speak English doesn't mean they're dumb. A newborn infant is just as intelligent as you are. When you're relating with her, you should consider that you are relating with a very intelligent being who just doesn't speak your language yet. And you shouldn't do anything gross to her before she learns to speak with you.

-Stephen Gaskin, Ina May's husband, and spiritual leader of their community

I love that truth that he points out, that babies are intelligent beings, and that every child is a world teacher. So beautiful.

Love to you all! Good night.


Caryn Ouwehand said...

I'm going to read that book.

Deb said...

Happy Birthday, Brent.

I'd read the book, but if I could find the "GO" and collect $200, I might like doing that too!!

Tania Grim said...

Im here. Are you in a book club? I just joined one . I love it!

Jen said...

Way to go, Matthew!!

Caryn Ouwehand said...

Yup, totally just ordered the book off Amazon.

Matt and Colleen said...

Now that I am not longer a lurker I wanted to comment that I have really gotten a lot from your posts about anxiety. I have major anxiety around my kids and it has been helpful to read about how you are dealing. After giving birth to Zoey I had 10 horrible anxiety attacks. It was bizarre, I would fall asleep and would wake up after 40 minutes and be completely freaked out. I was super close to getting medication but thank God they stopped. Hope you are having a great weekend.


Asheya said...

i haven't read spiritual midwifery, but i've been thinking about how intelligent babies are. they are real people. a baby is a person, which i think some people don't realize. and they learn so much, so fast, which i am always reminded of when i see amadeus smile, and when i communicate with him about the potty. and when i hear him imitating in his own baby way the growling noises that elias and eowyn make!

also, on a completely different subject, i can't find your email address and i think it's too late to call you now. are we still getting together in the morning (tues oct 19?) email me if you can asheya at alumni dot sfu dot ca or we will try to connect by phone in the morning.