Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Yoga Means Union

I went to a prenatal yoga class this morning. It felt great and I think I'll go again. I was officially the least pregnant woman there (we went around the room: name, how many weeks, baby #). Being around all those big bellies made me feel normal and comforted in a way I hadn't expected. Towards the end of class the instructor was talking about feeling connected to your baby. It went along the lines of, "this is truly an auspicious time - the only time you are truly one with another person. You are now responsible for two lights: your soul and your babies." She went on to say thing about the changes we are experiencing in our bodies, the most obvious changes, but also the deep profound changes in our lives, minds, and relationships.

I tried to imagine my own mother feeling connected to me. I know that as a baby she did. She still wishes I was a baby. I know because she tells me this all the time. But something happened to her over the past 36 years and because of it we are sooo far from connected. I can't imagine feeling less of a bond with a person I'm supposed to love. This is mostly stemming from a recent melt-down on her part. Yes. Another one.

I found out we are having a girl last Thursday night. I came home and told Tim. The next morning on the way to work I called my mother at 7:42. We had a conversation that lasted 3 minutes and 41 seconds. I said to her, in these words, "You can start telling people. We got the first bit of results. Everything is OK, we're having a girl." The outpouring of babble came and we agreed to talk next week (work, In law's coming to town). Then I called my dad, we waited for dinner that night to tell Tim's parents, then even later on Friday I blogged on Pregnant Peeper.

I get a text from her on Monday morning that reads, "Wish i didnt have to find out things on the blog. Would have been nicer to hear you say it's a graddaughter, i'm happy for you both!" I texted back that we had a conversation Friday morning, remember? Nothing. I've called her 3 times and she won't pick up her phone or call me back. My mother never acts out by ignoring me. So she's in a corner somewhere licking her wounds and surely complaining to her friends to garner some attention, her favorite thing. The best I can figure is that she stopped listening when she heard she could tell people.

How am I related to her? How? How is it that I used to be inside her - completely connected 36 years ago - and now she is a virtual stranger to me?

The more important question is how can avoid this estrangement with my own daughter? Can anyone tell me this? Share a secret? Are you close to your mom? Why or why not? Feel free to leave me some comments...

Friday, December 5, 2008


Discalimer: If you found my blog by accident and are about to flame me I'm telling you up front that you can kiss my ass.

We had the CVS last night. For anyone who isn't familiar with this test it is one of the tests you can do to look for chromosomal aberrations. They collect a little bit of the placenta by putting a needle through the abdominal wall. It does carry some risk - in the hands of the place we went to the miscarriage rate is 1 in 350. That also means that you have a 99.7% chance that everything will be just fine. Nevertheless, I'm parked on the couch and Tim is being very attentive. So far, so good.

Normally they do a basic karyotype to look for trisomies like Downs Syndrome and sex chromosome aneuploidy that causes things like Klinefelter's Syndrome. We met with a genetic counselor (she happens to be our landlord/neighbors sister and she was awesome) before we did the test. We went over our heritage and complete family history. We were already screened for cystic fibrosis and we're clear. The only real risk factors for us are basic statistics and my age, which was the original reason for the recommendation to do CVS in the first place. When a practitioner who knows way more detail and the extent of the risk says, "I was in your shoes X months ago and I did the following" it lends credibility to the recommendation.

We knew from well before we were pregnant (even before TTC) that we intended to be pretty aggressive about perinatal diagnosis. There is a long freaking list of really debilitating chromosomal abnormalities that scare the crap out of me. Since we are pretty dorky, have some knowledge of disease, and both did some molecular biology for our PhD's we know just enough to ask a lot of annoying questions. By way of long discussion with the genetic counselor we learned that you can actually screen for a lot of these things now. It isn't widely available yet but is due to become the standard of care in the next 3-5 years. In the end we decided to do more extensive screening that includes Fragile X and microarray analysis at Baylor COM. It may take up to a month for results to be available. I'll let you know the outcome and whether I think it was worth it 6 and 12 months from now. Some of my friends may still have yet to face this as a choice (e.g. which tests if any).

The bottom line for us is this: if there is the potential for a serious problem and you can learn about it ahead of time how can it then be ignored? We can't so we tested. Judge me as you will.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

It's Just Geography

I haven't kept it a secret - I've been lonely since moving to San Francisco. Combine a tendency to be introverted around strangers with a wickedly busy schedule and you get me: a person who takes a long time to make friends. Overall, there has been a strong inclination in our house to romanticize our time in Florida. Comments about how great it would be to move back are made with the same ease as comments about the weather. We went for a visit last week...we are not moving back any time soon.

It was fantastic to see our friends. Honestly, if we did ever move back that would be the only reason why. I had nearly forgotten what it was like to sit a table with people who truly care and really want the best for me. I feel the same for them. It was nice to be hugged and to hug back. It was nice to sit back, hear the conversations, and know that these people recognize I'm not the life of the party and that's OK. The greatest gift my friends give me is the complete ability to be myself without worry or fear of rejection. I love you guys!!

Finally, we realized that Naples and Tampa have never been "home". Gainesville is a place that exists in our memories's no longer the place I hated then and pine for now. Moving back wouldn't do a thing to restore the life we had there. Our trip home was a quiet, sad one as this realization set in. It's time once again to move on and fully commit to our life here - something that I don't think I had mentally done before.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Can't Sleep

Someone posted a few nights ago about how often her job keeps her awake. Tell me about it...
It's 5:00am and I am up - I couldn't take tossing and turning any more. For a change I don't feel personally responsible for the two cases prominently on my mind. Nevertheless, empathy has gotten the better of me and I feel like these things are happening to my cats. I am so upset and torn up for these families.

I have one geriatric cat who is so sweet and her owners are so fantastic. She has multiple serious illnesses and now she is dying. It happens eventually but I always feel miserable for the family when it does. My cats are all still young so we don't have this immediate concern but when I imagine going through this with them it breaks my heart.

The other case I can't stop thinking about it a one and a half year old indoors only cat who presented in respiratory distress on Monday. She has a pyothorax. It's a terrible prognosis and very expensive to treat. I want so badly to try to help this owner - she reminds me of myself when I was in college. She's responsible with a good head on her shoulders but absolutely no resources. I have looked into every possibility for her...these cases are so tough. It may end with a dead cat whether she pursues treatment or not (the cat will die if we do nothing). I want to try for this young cat but I can't push the client into - the resentment if her cat did die would be beyond the beyond.

So I am awake. I think I'll watch some Colbert Report to take my mind off of it and see if I can drift off to sleep once more...

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

There is hope...

This time 4 years ago I was thinking that I would need to move out of the country soon. I was in Ohio at the time. Everywhere I looked were signs about marriage. You know, the sophomoric stick figures of a man and a woman...there was a war going on but THIS was what Ohioans were thinking about. I was so overwhelmed by disappointment that the USA was so easily distracted and could re-elect such a buffoon. Later, I saw a bumper sticker that read, "Bush 2004: Thanks for not paying attention." That was exactly how I felt.
Tonight I have hope.
It took long enough, but thankfully people were paying attention this time.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

It just kept bleeding

I love my job.

I love it.

There are times and circumstances though that no matter your experience level will leave you shaking, feeling like you might vomit, and sweating like a maniac. It's just part of the experience and happens no matter what kind of practice you are in. Apparently, the head vet at my workplace, who has been in practice over 30 years and has seen everything, has been known to be up in surgery cursing like a sailor.
I had a terrible day in surgery. Let me tell you the story:

This 1yo male neutered hound mix dog was on a walk with his owner. She bent over to pick up his poop like a responsible citizen and accidentally dropped the end of the leash. The dog ran into traffic and was hit by a car. He has pulmonary contusions, degloving injuries to a hind and front foot. The left hind had a compound, open fracture mid tibia/fibula. Owner couldn't afford to go to referral.

I was ER yesterday and was asked to amputate the leg. Why wouldn't I? I love surgery and am trying to get more experience, time, and a reputation for reliability. Besides, I've amputated legs before. All you have to do is dissect and keep the animal from bleeding too much. I made my incision, dissected down to the triangle that holds the femoral artery and vein and started tying them off. Artery? Clamp. Tie. cut. Check. Vein? Clamp. Whoa!!!! WTF!!! Clamp below...still bleeding...swab...clamp below...still bleeding...panic...swab...clamp...bleed...swab...swab...clamp...bleed...etc, etc, for help.
After that bleeder was taken care of the rest of the surgery went smoothly for the dog - pressures stayed up, PCV was fine after the Sx, and he recovered from anesthesia smoothly - no dysphoria, normothermic within minutes.

My confidence, however, is another story entirely. I thanked Scarlett for one, helping and two, not making me feel like an asshole. I am doing fine in that department on my own, thank you very much. She was gracious, as she always is. I cried in front of her (embarrassing) and then I went to the stairwell and did the ugly cry. I haven't cried in years. Even when I wanted to I just couldn't make it happen. Today I just feel worried - about the dog (even though he's fine), about my confidence, about my reputation, about what the people at work think of me....

Friday, October 3, 2008

My uterus is up to something.

Either it's gearing up for the most unbelievable period or it's trying to grow a baby. It doesn't feel like it normally does, but I can't chalk it all up to wishful thinking either. I guess the next couple of days will tell. In the meantime, I am obsessed.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Clomid, here I come

It feels a bit like a concession: I need drugs to get pregnant.

Day one: I haven't noticed anything new or different. I'm sort of gassy but I am eating more vegetables lately in a lame effort to avoid cookies. I'm trying to drink water - a suggestion from my acupuncturist who says that, "clomid dries you out." Okey-dokey.

Day two: Feeling fine

Day three: Two words - vaginal dryness. I can't see how it is that this will help me get pregnant. My vag was on fire after having sex. I also notice that my temps are running about 0.3 degreees higher than they usually do by his point of the cycle.

Day four: woke up to a hot flash of menopausal magnitude. That was uncomfortable.

Day five: same as before

Aftershocks: Can I just mention that waking up soaked in your own sweat just fucking sucks. Otherwise, I am obsessing about my chart, my BBT, when to start using OPKs, and having sex for the next 10 days straight to be 100% certain that we don't miss that stupid fertile window.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

I've been tagged

I've been tagged by Nikki. I'm breaking rule number one, I think, because I don't know how to "link" to her. I think she'll forgive me?

The Rules:
1. Link to the person who tagged you
2. Post the rules to your blog
3. Write 6 random things about yourself
4. Tag 6 people at the end of your post and link to them
5. Let each peron you have tagged know by leaving a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know when your entry is posted.

6 random things about me:
1. My left foot is slightly bigger than my right.
2. My need for "alone time" is astronomical.
3. Cleaning my house gives me a sense of control, however false that sense may be.
4. I don't have a favorite movie.
5. I don't like starlight mints after dinner.
6. Whispering in my ear tickles my butt.

Now I have to tag 6 people:
All in due time

Monday, September 8, 2008

Here and there

I've been out-of-touch lately. Tim's mom thought I was avoiding her on purpose. I wasn't avoiding her or anyone else. I've been busy doing other things - if I occupy myself pretty much all the time I don't have to think about why the frick I am still not pregnant. Sigh. OK, enough self pity. Moving on.
I've been working a ton - the girl who does alot of the ER shifts hurt her back so her shifts have been redistributed. This means that 30% of my schedule for the month of September is comprised of ER. I like doing it because the cases are more challenging and I always learn so much. I hate it because it's hectic and the days are so long. There truly is no time for anything else on those days in particular.
The other thing I've been doing is (re)learning to sew. My mom is actually an excellent seamstress and I used to sew with her when I was a kid. However, if you put a machine and pattern in front of me 2 weeks ago I wouldn't have known what to do. So my friend Moira and I took a class. Then we learned that our new favorite place to be was closing on Sept. 12. I've been cramming in the classes since then. So inspired am I that I actually bought a little starter machine today!
My kitchen project is evolving too. I still have little squares of blue all over the place. I did get the bottom half of the wainscoting painted (a gray called Nightingale) and painted the back of our island with chalkboard paint! I'll paint the cabinets next.
We attended a wedding last weekend for our friends: he is Indian and she is Sri Lankan. I had never been to an indian wedding before and it was really cool. They did a great job of detailing the ceremony so newbies like me could follow along. They used something like two dozen cocnuts and had a fire on the alter. The whole day was long - 10 hours for us and the party was just getting started when we left at 11:30 at night. The best part? We got to wear outfits our friend bought for all of us the last time he went home to India to see his family. My dress was so beautiful (but not the most flattering sadly).

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

All systems 'GO!"

So the reproductive endocrinology black hole did, in fact, swallow me.

I had my consultation last Monday - that was 8 days ago. My RE is a nice guy. He's younger than I expected and he told me funny stories about his Rottie the whole time. He had a new fellow with him and, bless his heart, the guy was trying so hard and worked with complete earnest. So I got thoroughly interviewed twice and examined twice. I'm here to tell you that if there is a life experience not meant to last twice as long, having the ultrasound probe in your vag and pressed against your cervix is the one. Ugh. Nevertheless, I found out that both ovaries are active with about 6 follicles on each side. Righty was the active one last month and is predicted to be the producer again this month. Go righty!

I went for all the bloodwork they ordered on Wednesday (6 days ago). I haven't heard anything about that yet. It was prolactin again and a bunch of other infectious disease related things. I think I'm clean so I hope I'm right about that.

Today was my HSG. They were concerned about my tubes b/c I had an appendectomy a few years back and it was laparoscopic - they make one of the three incisions just cranial to your pubis. Ouch! What I was more afraid of was running into someone I knew when I was in radiology having the procedure done. Who was slated to do my HSG? Peter J - I was at AsiaSF, a transexual drag show, with him a couple months ago. I bought a body shot for him to do off one of the trannies and have the pictures to blackmail him with (there are PG pictures from that night in my FB stuff)! No effing way was he going anywhere near my snatch. So I had a new earnest and hardworking fellow instead. Hooray! My tubes are clear. There was a moment there when I was close to puking - apparently the left tube was resistant and that created some bad pressure. Now the cobwebs are all blown out so the path is clear! All the 6+ tips were spot on. I was glad I had my own socks since I hadn't had my toes done in a few weeks. I am, however, freshly waxed. C'mon. I'm a lady.

This leaves us with no appreciable reason to not be pregnant yet. I'm on to Clomid with my next cycle if this one is a bust (and let's face it, it probably is).

Monday, August 11, 2008

I admit it...I am not the strong one

The past week or so hasn't been so good for me. I've made a list:
1. Tim was away at a physics immersion course in preparation for his upcoming board exam (I've lost count - this is maybe #4 of 8 exams?)
2. I seriously got my ass handed to me at work (see below) with 3 ER shifts in one week. Lots of really sick animals.
3. I am too preoccupied with self-pity for a variety of pathetic "reasons".
4. The events in #3 prompted me to call the "infertility specialist" and make an appointment - it's on August 18th. That's 3 days before my 36th birthday.

Whenever someone shares that they have an appointment or this or that plan I think that they must be so relieved to just be moving forward. Here I am - moving forward - I have been moody, irritable, and depressed ever since I made the appointment. Somehow in my mind it isn't a beacon of hope. It's more of a black hole.

I'm normally pretty good at pulling myself out of a funk. This time? I can't seem to find the trail of breadcrumbs that always has led me out of the funk forest before. No, this one just has plopped on me like a wet blanket that refuses to move. I notice that I am isolating myself (no phone calls, no email replies, not posting) and that isn't going to be helpful. But I feel so bitchy now I can't imagine who would want to be around me - I pity Tim for having to live in the same house with me right now. I can't stand myself at the moment.

Sunday, August 10, 2008


It's that time again folks.

I'm at the point in my cycle when I start looking over my chart several times a day, weighing the timeliness of sex vs. ovulation, scrutinizing my temperature pattern, and considering the possibilities. Sometimes I allow myself to be optimistic and I think "Hey, this might be the cycle." Other times when I am in my most cynical frame of mind I think "Right, like it matters" and I pour a glass of wine. Sometimes these thoughts occur within minutes of each other and the wine gets poured out.
I am temporarily albeit reliably schizophrenic at this stage. I realize how foolish I am to allow myself to feel hopeful and excited like I did when we first started trying (a year and a half ago). That naive fantasy has only been met with one disappointing plastic one-lined stick after another. I drift off in thought and where Tim asks me what's on my mind I don't really know how to tell the truth - it's the same depressing answer day after day. I am obsessed with what my temperature will be in the morning - if it is up there is hope and if it is down I am sunk again. The suspense makes the days go by at a snails pace and I am no good at waiting. At this stage I either want two lines or to get on with shedding the evidence of another month of failure and start again.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Foster kittens

Well, now that the little monkey's are about to go be adopted, here are some pictures of them. Luis Benjamin Leon (or LBL) is going to be adopted by a girl I work with. She is head over heels for him and who can blame her - look at that little fawn tabby! Yolanda is available (hint!) and she's awesome - cuddly with a hint of independence & smart! Her gray & white markings are beautiful!These two could play together for hours...then they sleep as if it might be their last nap. So wonderful. Nothing holds a candle to a kitten. I truly never get sick of them.
Luis Benjamin Leon:
Yolanda (she isn't normally this stoned and out-of-focus looking)

The Pad

My first post about our place was very narrative, but the pictures were not so terrific. Plus, we've added some furniture so I retook the pictures.
First, the entry - I had in mind to get a credenza thing so that we could store scarves and umbrellas. I went to the Alemany flea market the other weekend with my friend Moira and found this beauty for $100. No, I'm totally not kidding and it wasn't stolen.

Tim wants the kitchen to be painted blue. I'm doing my best to accommodate his request, but it's hard to do blues without looking all colonial or like a little toddler lives there. I just don't think it's a good color for an Edwardian house. Nevertheless, here are the colors and the one I'm leaning towards. Any thoughts?

Living Room:

Computer/Guest Room:


Bedroom (still without furniture):

Thursday, July 10, 2008


Tori Amos wrote a whole album about miscarriage. In an attempt to describe the source of the pain and confusion she said in an interview "you have been pregnant, but you are not a mother". I have know women who faced this terrible reality. For these women the pain is so fundamental, so primal that my heart literally aches for them.

I learned today that my friend had a miscarriage in her 13th week.

The ache in my heart is back, but in an unfamiliar way. It is Jules this time, my Jules...OUR Jules. Intellecually, I know how much she is hurting and the feelings that are yet to come. What can I do for her? All I want to do is hug her and make her hot cocoa and rub her back until she falls asleep. Instead I am crying for her (really am) from 3000 miles away. I feel powerless to reach her and assuage her pain even as I feel my own heart breaking for her. One of "us" has died.

Every month I observe rather complacently as one more chance to make a baby passes me by. And sometimes I feel hopeless - it may never happen for us. But to have had another person in my life for 3 months, anticipating meeting them and building a life around them, and then having to say goodbye for no known's more grief than I can tolerate to imagine.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Eff the time difference

The time difference sucks. I called Heather, she was making dinner with Carolina. She called back and I was in a deep nap-sleep. I called back, she's in bed. Sigh. This is how it goes.


Saturday, July 5, 2008

Greener Grass

The other day at work I was going up the steps after filling my water bottle. I was thinking ahead to my 4-day weekend. I thought, "ugh, this day can't be over soon enough. When I'm on my mini vacay, then I'll be happy". Then it occurred to me that I have this thought pretty much all the time: "When X happens, then I'll be happy".

How ridiculous is that?

There is a book called The Precious Present by Spencer Johnson. I need to re-read it. My old college roommate, Rammel (who is still hot and still totally rocks, by the way), gave me this book. It's about appreciating what is happening Right Now. There was a cartoon skit on Sesame Street back in the day about a guy who tried to do everything ahead of time - he got so far ahead that he was sleeping in his clothes for the work days ahead. Zen has even turned pop culture.

Let me first say that my life is pretty awesome.
Nevertheless, I am so bad at this.....I perpetually undermine myself with this undercurrent of restlessly looking to the next thing. Don't get me wrong, this uncanny ability to plan has brought me where I am today and perfectionism has it's place (like not killing the patient). In fact, I am completely wedded to my Franklin Covey planner and am a habitual goal-setter. After all, "failing to plan is a plan to fail." OK, goal-setting is important but c'mon! "X" isn't going to make me happy if I can't ever stop to enjoy "X". Did I mention that I didn't walk for my MS or my PhD and I was so stunned that they let me have a DVM that I hardly remember anything from that day?

The past year has been good for forcing me to be better at this. I mean, I'm in a new city with hardly even one friend - I'm so bored out of my fucking mind most of the time that I actually confuse missing my dear friends with missing Gainesville! I've painted the house, read a hundred books, organized and reorganized, ran a marathon...I ran out of projects so I spend a lot of time just being and petting my cats. Too bad they can't come to the mall to tell me that shirt looks stupid on me.

Anyways, my point is that I know being 10 pounds lighter, paying off my credit cards, or having a baby isn't the key to my happiness. Rather, learning to enjoy the journey is the key. I'm working on it. Knowing is half the battle, right? I'm open to suggestions. If anyone actually reads my blog AND has a suggestion, please share. I fear that I will reach the end of my life with a 'to-do' list and no recollection of having enjoyed anything (except my wedding, the Duran Duran concert, and swimming with the dolphins).

Monday, June 23, 2008


I've always been a great fan of music, especially music with lyrics. My life has a soundtrack that only I know - it's not some great secret it's just that I couldn't write it down like a box set of greatest hits. Rather, I'll hear a song and think back to a very distinct time, place, or instance. Funny how music can do that - define and entire generation or a 10 second event in one persons life. It's transcendent. Now and then a song comes along whose melody haunts you and lyrics define what you have longed to say but couldn't find the words for. There is this song called Jailbird by a guy named Jim White. It took a while for this guy's style to grow on me (mostly, this is because Tim played one of his songs over and over again until I threatened to put my head in the oven). Then about 6 weeks ago we saw him play at the American Music Hall - it was a great show and now I'm a bona fide fan. Back to my new favorite song, you can hear it below. The video is from the movie "Spirit of the Beehive" (I prefer the song with out the video). One stanza in particular speaks to me. It goes like this:
But in time, as sorrow showed it's face,
in kind I learned to ache for grace.
To work and pray to one day be
delivered whole, alive, and free.

Delivered whole, alive, and free. That sums up the quest of my entire life. If I could wish for one thing that would be it. In that peaceful state I could be anyone. Without being a slave to judgment I could be any weight, any degree of coolness, (un)healthy, poor or rich, smart or stupid, a mother or not...everything would be a circumstance and nothing more. I've read books about various religions (conventional and not), and tried and tried again to reconnect with the catholic church, which I grew up in. I don't know where else to search for this kind of spiritual intervention. Is that part of what "grace" is? You can't earn it or ask for it - it's just given to you like a gift. You receive it and are (hopefully) thankful. Once that sea change happens, it's an integral part of you forever. Until that time you wait and yearn...

Friday, June 20, 2008

Show me the money!

I got a raise yesterday. I suppose this means I've passed the probationary period. It's a relief to have the notion that I have a steady job be validated, especially since I've been feeling the bite of impermanence lately.

The other kind of validation that is really nice is that it seems they think I'm doing a good job - coworkers, clients, and patients gave positive feedback! Plus, I feel like when I'm working, I'm REALLY working. For anyone in my field it comes as no surprise that my hours are so long, I take no breaks, and am utterly depleted at the end of the day. There is no time for anything else when I'm working. My friends who are vets are fairly nonplussed when if takes me a couple of days (or a week) to return a phone call - they are in the same boat! However, to any other person it is practically inconceivable that a J.O.B. can be so all-consuming. I'm not trying to win the "I have it worse than you" award - it's just nice to have your hard work and dedication acknowledged. I think everyone feels like that to some extent regardless of the "job".

Finally, I'm excited about what this mean financially. I think we will be able to reach our financial goals for the year! And we might even be able to buy some furniture! I think we will start the 401k program at my work - imagine that! Savings and investments! Perhaps I am working toward the stability I've been craving.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Licensed and stable?

Tim found out this morning that he got his CA medical license. At last! I'm so happy for him - he has been more stressed about this than I've ever seen him in 10 years together. Hopefully, he can relax a little bit. This also translates into at least 3 more years in San Francisco and, I should think, all the stability that comes with permanence.

It's been an interesting few years for us. About three years ago when we were both in our last year of med & vet school the big looming decider was match day in March. I remember clearly how out of sorts I felt then. I'm a planner. I like to know what is likely to happen well in advance. We didn't know where we would live, be licensed, have jobs, etc. It was unnerving for me to be 2 months away from graduation with the full knowledge that we would be going somewhere but having no idea where that was.

Then we were in Jax for a year. That was interesting b/c we knew it was for a year - nothing more, nothing less. We could still go back to Gainesville when we wanted to revisit our old life. Just as we were settled into our home, social life, routine, etc. it was time to leave.

Then came SF. We purged our belongings and prepped for a brand new life. Once we found an apartment there was a host of other things to tackle: call schedules, my travel schedule, CA med and vet boards, me finding (suitable) employment, marathon training, city exploration, trying to make a baby and finding out all sorts of stuff along the way.

I realized something a few weeks ago: we don't have a lease on our apartment, my job contract is "at will", we are up to our ears in high-interest debt, Tim is at the mercy of his program, and we still don't have much in the way of stuff. We still have very little in the way of stability (or at least the kind I seem to recognize as comforting). I can't explain how weird it is for me to live like this. There is a constant undercurrent of anxiety. I could be fired from my job tomorrow (or when/if I get pregnant). We could be told by our landlords that they've decided to rent to a family member so we need to leave. The likelihood that either of these will happen is slim. Nevertheless, I feel like I need to start stashing cash in my mattress and formulating "plan B". Beyond that I don't know what will make me feel like I have finally achieved stability. Will owning a house do it? Finally getting (and staying) pregnant? Positioning myself so that I am indispensable in the work place? Having even the tiniest cash cushion? Having a social network that can act as a safety net (like we had in Gville and I so depserately now miss)? Perhaps I need to go revise my goals to reflect some of this.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Where we live

Our families are probably the ones most interested in this topic. This is the space we occupy.
We moved to San Francisco June 2007 and lived in a temporary apartment for about 6 weeks until after countless hours on Craigslist I found the gem we now live in. Our apartment occupies the first floor of a 1908 Edwardian house. Parking is easy and we actually have our own laundry, which was a huge thing for me! If I told you our rent, anyone would think we were insane for paying that much, but it's the norm here.

I have painted almost the entire apartment. The only room I haven't tackled yet is the kitchen. Tim wants a blue color. Our cabinets and counter tops are a yellowish hue so I haven't found the right color yet.
Moving on, the living room has great windows up front. When we moved in there were no blinds so it was like living in a fishbowl. Plus, we have only one heater vent in the whole house so lots of heat gets lost through our old, single-paned windows. I bought some honey-combed blinds (not cheap) so that was a substantial part of our furniture budget.
Oh yes, there's that. The furniture. We sold everything we owned before we moved here - it was incredibly freeing to not be weighed down by stuff. When we added it up (literally) it wasn't worth moving it all. Tim's mom warned us that it was going to be more expensive to replace everything and she was right. We ran out of money pretty fast. The largest purchases being the bed and the couch. I heart my Crate and Barrel couch. It brings me hours of satisfaction. Nevertheless, we are slowly getting things that we really like.
Some of you may notice an absence of a TV. Yep, sold that too. Before I was employed, we couldn't shoulder the cost of cable anyways. Besides I think cable merely gives the false impression that you might find something worth watching, which never works out to be the case. But I do miss HGTV - it's like crack to me. We have found that we like not having a TV. The color is BJM Copley Gray. I almost cried when I finished because I thought it looked like the inside of a paper bag. Now I love this color.
From there you go into an adjoining room that was meant once to be a dining room, I think. We have the computer (stereo, movie-watching device) in here. We also sprung for a high-end futon for guests to sleep on. It's more comfortable than our bed. The room does close off entirely so the guests can have some privacy, but I have to warn you that the cats HATE closed doors. You can see Beta making use of her incredible "carpet-stay" powers. To the right of the closet door you can see our one heating vent in the floor. Color is BJM Audubon Russet.
On to the bedroom. As I mentioned, the bed was another high $ purchase. For years we have slept on taco mattresses. No more. We love the bed that Joe DeB. has - the best night of sleep. Ever. So when it came time to buy a mattress I didn't even want to eff around. Well, now that is the only thing in the bedroom. All of our clothes are in boxes and bags on the floor of the closet. I have my heart set on the Giselle collection at C&B, but of course it will be about $5000 for that furniture so we are waiting....and waiting. The paint was an interesting experiment. I like a dark bedroom. For one thing, it's cozy and you're sleeping so why not? Secondly, I think it can mysterious and sexy. Thirdly, since we both work overnights sometimes it is good to have a dark room. So I painted the ceiling BJM Branchport Brown and the walls are a gray (with a lavender hue). It reminds me of a color combo used in the late 40's a lot (it will go with the style of furniture I have my eye on) so I plan to decorate with this theme in mind. When it's done the colors will make more sense.

Just off the bedroom, separated by french doors, is a sunroom. We have made this into an office/library. We found the desk on the street (score) and had the bookshelves made special since our textbooks are pretty big and since they fit under the windows the cats LOVE to sit on them and stare at the birds etc. Frances has claimed the spot she is sitting in (on top of the shelf on the far right) as her place. Now we call this "Frances's room". I spent a solid 4 weeks in here studying for CA vet med boards. Luckily, at that time our downstairs neighbor was on vacay. He listens to reggae music only, all the time. I can dig it, but there is no sound barrier so it sounds as if the reggae is in the room with you. That isn't very conducive to study or concentration. When "jamaican mon" is home it renders the entire back half of the house useless. The color is BJM Great Barrington Green. You can see Frances is in her place and Paka is looking on in his tender, gentle manner.
Finally, we do have a view. From the window above, on a clear day, and if you stand on your toes, and the trees aren't moving too much you can see the ocean. You can also see Sutro tower on Twin Peaks, which is visible from anywhere in the bay area (like a homing call). When you leave our house and go into the street you can see the UCSF cathedral, which is beautifully lit in the night, the tops of the Golden Gate bridge, and the north bay beyond all the way to Mt. Tam. when the fog rolls in you can watch it hover just over the water and channel in under the bridge. It really is beautiful. Since we live at the top of the hill you can also watch it roll down the street. It's like living in the clouds!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Why is she blogging?

Since we moved to the west coast it is pretty hard to keep in touch with people on the east coast. For example, here I am...I have the day off tomorrow and my man is working the whole night long. It's the perfect time for a long phone conversation with one of my girls or to catch up with the parents. But it's 12:30 am there. Email is cool, but sometimes it takes so long. And let's face it, some people are better at keeping up than others (I am one of the others). Facebook is good too but still not everyone is on it and it has all these funky applications etc.

So blogging -I'll give this a try. At the very least it will help me organize my thoughts a bit. Besides, I'm a bit curious to see what picture of me emerges from this. I'm going to pick colors, and a playlist, post pictures, and try to summarize my life, my thoughts, etc. Stay tuned...