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Archive for the ‘Non-Fiction’ Category

We’re growing! Now let’s get real, part 7

In Non-Fiction, Opinion/Personal, Personal on January 12, 2019 at 1:41 pm

Part 1: Morning Sickness

Part 2: Cravings & Aversions

Part 3: Digestion

Part 4: Body Talk

Part 5: Second Puberty

Part 6: Irrational Fears

Let’s continue the subject of thought patterns and how being smart doesn’t even matter when your body becomes the host for a new human.  We’ve covered the fears, which are greatly affected by the raging hormones in your body.  But how about suddenly becoming the most forgetful person in the entire world?  Because, trust me, it happens.

I am fairly organized.  Being in a management and supervisory position for 3 years has resulted in my organized chaos turning into actual organization.  I am the master of spreadsheets, tracking forms, to-do lists, and prioritizing.  My email not only serves as the majority of my communication, but also am always visible running log of flagged tasks organized by date to keep me on my schedule.  I rock this stuff – BUT

Pregnancy brain…it is not a myth.  It is real.  And it is currently rocking me.

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I have been getting ready for work in the pre-sunrise hours of Kentucky “fall” and “winter” (I use those terms loosely, since the last month has been rain – sunshine – light jacket – no jacket – good god I’m sweating through my sweater – where’d I store my scarves – hello snow) and between finishing my hair and packing my lunch I run out to start my car so it’s nice and toasty for my ~half hour commute.  Four times, I have then been late for work after losing my mind and destroying my living room scouring it for my keys.  My keys, which I had just used 10 minutes prior to warm up my car.  Convinced I had lost them, and taking way too long to remember that if my car was still idling then the keys must be still in the car.

On the regular, I lose my vocabulary.  Luckily, I am surrounded by people that know me well enough to fill in the blanks when it takes me too long to catch back up to my own thoughts.

I have almost ruined more than one dinner by forgetting that it was on the stove or in the oven, even if I am still physically in the kitchen but distracted by some other task I think to start while waiting.  Multi-tasking is absolutely not my thing right now.

Silver lining:  It’s common, and people are quite understanding.  Not only are you dealing with sleep interruptions – body discomfort, tossing and turning, hourly pee breaks, active baby in the wee morning hours kicking around all your organs – but you’re distracted.  Your mind is quickly becoming overwhelmed with the anticipation of meeting your baby, the questions, the concerns, the list of things still left to do before baby get’s here, the plans that need to be made, the uncertainties.  I could keep going, but I think we all get the point that this process is equally as mental as it is physical.  Being distracted and tired is absolutely acceptable and the people around you will generally get that, especially when you are surrounded mostly by other professional women and mothers.  Take the time to unwind, even if you just sit in a quiet room for 30 seconds to take a few deep breaths, and then give it another go.  Things will fall back into place, and even if they don’t fall back into the places they were before pregnancy.  That’s still okay.  Chances are, nothing will be in it’s place for the next 18 years anyways, so this is a good way to get reacquainted with the organized chaos, or chaos in general.

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We’re growing! Now let’s get real, Part 5

In Funny, Non-Fiction, Opinion/Personal, Personal on December 30, 2018 at 11:00 am

Part 1: Morning Sickness

Part 2: Cravings & Aversions

Part 3: Digestion

Part 4: Body Talk

Noxema pads, Lip Smackers, Teen Spirit, and Cucumber Melon Body Mist. The essentials for the late 90’s / early 2000’s teen girl. A “grown up” haircut, hours in front of a mirror before leaving your room, and that lifted weight of teen dreams come true when you wake up to find the Noxema worked and that pesky puberty breakout is healed. Thank god puberty comes early in the life span and only once, right?

Wrong. Welcome to your Second Puberty.

I assumed that the rush of hormones in early first trimester, serving the purpose of sustaining the embryo until the placenta takes over, would pass. My first 3 months of pregnancy was a nightmare. My face erupted into massive breakouts without fail or remedy. It’ll pass, I naively kept repeating in my head. Truth is, is hasn’t passed yet and I’ve just rounded the halfway mark.

The mood swings have subsided – slightly. I’m a quick trigger with feeling annoyed but no more random bursts of tears for a while. I’m a sweaty, hot flashy mess almost constantly. This chilly, rainy Kentucky “winter” weather is prime for my body right now and feels a-maz-ing. But this skin… It’s dry, it’s patchy, it’s itchy, it’s inflamed, and it’s still erupting (albeit on a smaller scale). Thank god my husband loves me because my bed head, no make up mornings are less “naturally adorable” and more “ogre-troll with flesh eating bacteria disease” these days…

Silver Lining: Unfortunately, the hormones are necessary for pregnancy to sustain and baby to grow. I had always heard of the beauty and glow of pregnancy, and felt 100% like a hideous creature. However, I learned the “glow” is actually just the increase in blood flow (check – daily nosebleeds from weeks 14-17) and the hormonal hot flashes (double check check!) and hormonal breakouts are very common during pregnancy. While not enjoyable, it isn’t a major concern to be honest. I changed up my skin care routine a little to address the changes to my skin texture and habits, and this has helped to reduce the issues I’m experiencing. And the further I get in this pregnancy process, the less and less it occurs. Just find a routine that fits your new skin and stick to it, and all will be well.

Some suggestions for pregnancy and nursing safe skin care:

We’re growing! Now let’s get real, Part 4

In Non-Fiction, Personal, Random on December 13, 2018 at 6:18 pm

Part 1: Morning Sickness

Part 2: Cravings & Aversions

Part 3: Digestion

Very early on, there will come a day when you will be prepping for a shower or a nice long bath with a locked bathroom door pretending you can’t hear your husband asking if you know where he left his phone or keys or head, and your normal routine will be stopped in it’s tracks by a chance gaze into the mirror.

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Your Body

No joke – these changes happen in no time. Slightly swollen belly, okay. But the boobs are out of control! Where did they come from, like overnight? And it’s not just the boobs that quadruple in size. The nipples will change – color, size, shape, everything. Every day is like a surprise. Which nip do we have today? Ah, swollen and raw. Nice!  And heaven forbid it’s cold weather – visible nipples through thin fabric is the least of my concerns anymore. These things can penetrate a decently made bra and 2 shirts, but that’s not the worst part. Sore boobs suddenly becoming cold and shriveling, as our body parts do, means even the most delicate, cloud-soft clothing turns into aggressive sandpaper.  Layer up to keep warm?  You may try, but just wait until those hot flashes kick in.  I’ve barely worn a coat outside so far this season just to try to avoid having to double up on deodorant and publicly wipe my brow.

I think the real kicker for me was that even somewhat knowing that these changes were going to occur didn’t protect me, because I believed believe I had more time.  I was able to start noticing these changes as early as 6 weeks.  Literally, a week after finding out I was pregnant, pregnant things started happening.  My body just jumped right in head first to this thing.

Silver Lining:  It’s all prep work.  These boobs suck but tenderness and swelling, and even leaking when that time comes, just means there is a better chance that I will successfully be able to breastfeed my baby as I hope to.

And every body is different.  For example, a lot of women get linea nigra – or that darker pigmented line down the middle of the belly.  It’s completely normal and common, but so far I have no indication of that.  Some people go their entire pregnancy with no stretch marks, but I already have a few.  It’s all prep and battle scars for your body to say “hey, I made a brand new person from scratch like a champ.”

We’re Growing! Now let’s get real, Part 2

In Non-Fiction, Opinion/Personal, Personal on November 3, 2018 at 3:13 pm

Part 1: Morning Sickness

Let’s keep right on track with a similar subject to Part 1 – the biggest changes I’ve noted so far are my eating habits.  Obviously, when you’re trying not to vomit for the better part of your day, eating becomes a task all in itself.  So, how does that work when your gut says no, but your brain says “pickles and milk”?

Cravings and Aversions.

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Now first, let me clarify that I quickly learned that cravings aren’t always the Hollywood depiction of overflowing bowls of ice cream stuffed with pickles or peppers or some other gross combination every night at 3am.  So far, at 12 weeks, my cravings have been more of a minor obsession on some random food item that completely overtook all my thoughts until I ate it but they were all very normal food items.  First it was Wendy’s chili.  Hamburgers (sans veggies, because apparently this baby doesn’t want me eating lettuce for a while), homemade or from a restaurant.  Grapes, grapes, grapes all day every day.  Anything ground beef, but never ever shredded beef or slabs of solid beef.  Ever.  And all those favorites I trusted in pre-pregnancy – chocolate, coffee, big huge salads with spicy dressing – those are all a no go according to Baby now.  I was an avid coffee lover, 2-3 cups per day.  Now, the smell alone is comparable to old urine and enough to turn my stomach.

Sometimes, your cravings and aversions will even play tricks on you.  You’re out in public and a stranger passing by mentions nachos.  From that moment on, all you can think about are those huge nacho platters from Buffalo Wild Wings or an authentic Mexican restaurant.  It literally lingers behind every other thought you have until you have said platter right in front of you.  Here’s where it can get tricky:

  • Sometimes, you dive in a devour every last bit.  Is it successful?  Or within 5 minutes of finishing, do you realize that you overdid yourself and spend the next 4 hours just trying to breath around the mass amounts of nachos floating around in your guts?
  • Sometimes, you get 3 bites in to these nachos you so desperately needed only to find that this wasn’t actually what you wanted.  You might satiate your hungry anyways, but still feel this nagging in the back of your stomach for something that will truly quench that craving.  Or you might re-activate your gag reflex by trying to eat the nachos that you no longer have to have.  Now, you can add those nachos you loved so much at one point in time to the growing list of foods that Baby does not approve of.

Oh, and regardless of how the eating of the nachos goes, whether you finish, eat half, or only get a few bites down – enjoy the next 4 days of constant heartburn that even Jesus can’t get rid of.

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Electronic Drums: A Wife’s Review

In Non-Fiction, Personal on December 29, 2017 at 1:42 am

I married a musician. I was fully aware of this long before the “I do’s”. First it was guitar, then banjo, then electric bass, then upright bass, then back to banjo. Throw in some keyboard occasionally. But then my dear (lucky he’s so cute) husband decides he’s due to truly learn drums. This is fine, I support the arts. Except we live in a 2 bedroom house of small square footage, so even slight noises carry. It’s okay, dear (lucky he’s so cute) husband has a resolution:

Electronic Drums

So he gets them on a pretty amazing deal (kudos) with the promise of headphones and no noise disturbance so my sleep schedule won’t be affected – since I do have to wake up earlier than him on most days and, as is typical, his creative moments tend to hit late at night.

Except even electronic drum play is dependent upon the force with which they are played.

Get electronic drums, they said. It won’t be loud or disturb other areas of your home…

I love my husband.

I support creativity.

I support the arts.

I love my husband.

I’m going to scream if he isn’t done soon.

I love my husband.

I support creativity.

I support the arts.

I love my (soooo lucky he’s so cute) husband. Dammit.

And finally, it’s quiet. And he climbs into bed with (lucky) me.

And So They Met

In Non-Fiction, Personal, Writing on September 1, 2015 at 10:10 pm

How She Met Her Father, Part 4.  See Part 1, Part 2, & Part 3.

Two months had passed since her graduation.  Against all expectation, he had actually shown up.  Late – sneaking in a side door once the ceremony had already begun – and empty handed, but he was there.  Afterwards, waiting out back of the school near the parking lot, sending in his youngest child, her half brother, to get her.  Awkward side hugs, awkward small talk as if they had known each other from years ago.  Since then, her sisters requested visits more often, explaining “Daddy wants to see you, and he’ll meet you at our house.”  Sometimes he was there already, clutching a beer.  Sometimes they would call him once or twice, then have to pick him up from whatever friend’s house where he had started drinking.  Sometimes, though not often, he would already be too drunk to make it at all.

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This is Halloween, Part 3

In Non-Fiction, Opinion/Personal, Personal, Writing on November 1, 2013 at 4:04 pm

Part 1 & Part 2

Now we’ve reached present day.  Yes, I know Halloween was technically yesterday.  However, many places in my state cancelled trick or treating due to inclement weather, and lots of bars and friends are still throwing costume parties this coming weekend, so I think it’s just fine!

So I had my run-ins with Ouija Boards and strange happenings.  You would think one would learn, right?  Apparently not me.  Things like this don’t generally scare me and I find it all very intriguing.  Curiosity killed the cat, they say…

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This is Halloween, Part 2

In Non-Fiction, Random, Writing on October 29, 2013 at 1:45 pm

I started off in Part 1 with stories from my grandmother, before I was even thought of.  There is a mini-story of my own experience when I was a child in which I awoke in the middle of the night, tossing in turning in the large bed next to my mother.  In my tossing and turning, I roll over to face my mother and see a figure.  Of course, even as a child I assume it’s my eyes playing tricks on me.  But my eyes focus and the figure doesn’t go away.  It was lighter than the rest of the room, almost glowing, and was standing next to the bed leaning over my mother.  It was a boy, looking very close to my own age of around 6 or 7.  I stared silently and the figure looked from my mother to me.  At this point, I panicked and pulled the blanket over my face.  I sat for a moment and when I lowered the blanket below my eyes again, everything was gone and the room was completely dark.  But that’s a short story with little detail, despite the fact that to this day I can recall specific details about the boy’s face and hair and expression.  The good stories come much later on.  Skip ahead.  Little Kay grows up, graduates high school, and moves away to college.  That’s when things start to get interesting again….

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This is Halloween, Part 1

In Non-Fiction, Opinion/Personal, Personal, Writing on October 24, 2013 at 10:40 am

I’ve always loved the supernatural: movies, documentaries, reality ghost hunting shows, costumes, all the like that spikes in popularity through the month of October.  So in honor of my love for this area and for my favorite holiday, Halloween, of course, I decided to share a few stories I’ve heard over the years and a few of my own experiences.  For the first story, I feel I should start at the beginning with part of the reason I ended up getting so interested in this area to begin with.  This is a story that happened long before my time that I’ve heard told and retold many times over the years from childhood.

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The Invitation

In "How She Met Her Father" Series, Non-Fiction, Writing on May 23, 2013 at 7:14 pm

 Part 3 of “How She Met Her Father.”  Read Part 1 and Part 2.

She could count the number of times she had seen him on one hand. In almost 18 years, it was that few.  She remembered every time, even though she knew he didn’t.  She remembered every glance, every passing, every time knowing that he had no clue who she was.

She remembered the stories. Her mom’s friend coming to visit almost once a week, bringing toys and playing with her so it could be reported back to him how she was growing up.  Her newfound sisters recounting the plethora of times he polished off a case of beer and cried and voiced his wishes of how he would have liked to know her.  Did this affect her? No. He was the adult here, he made the decision to deny her from the very beginning. That’s not something you can so easily wish away. That’s not something very forgettable when you’re on the receiving end.
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