Thursday, April 21, 2011

Day 13: Goals

Ok, I'm being lax about this list. Not intentionally, though. DH and Ninja and I are on a working vacation and loving it. Ninja travelled really well and everyone ogles her because she's adorable and she's wearing fabulous shoes. :)

Goals. The big topic.

I'm at a weird place in my life, I think. Oddly, I've met most of my goals already, at the ripe old age of 31 - and I don't know what else to aim for. I got an honours degree in English literature, followed by a B.Ed. I got a master's degree. I've travelled a lot. I have my sought-after daughter and a great husband. Those were the things I wanted.

I don't really know what to want next. I kinda wish that I'd followed a different career path - as much as I do love teaching, it's a love-hate relationship, but c'est la vie. (If I could live life over again, FWIW, I think I would have gone into fashion marketing, publishing, or naturopathic medicine.)

-visit the Middle East
-learn French or Spanish
-teach my daughter my native tongue (my mother is helping with this)
-teach abroad and enroll my daughter in a foreign preschool for at least a year
-start a real retirement plan
-deck out my house - I would like to live in a stylish space, not outdated traditional country like most of the homes in our area
-have one more baby
-get a permanent half-time contract
-either move into curriculum development or start a Ph.D.
-get laser surgery on my eyes

Can't think of anything more to add. Nothing, other than having another baby (and retiring comfortably and travelling more...), really lights a fire in me. I need new goals but I can't think of what ... what a strange 'problem' to have.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Day 12: What I believe in

Love. God (or at least something bigger than all of us although I'm fuzzy on details). Really great hole-in-the-wall restaurants. The intense bond between Ninja and me. I believe and know that there is nothing my daughter will be unable to do. Spring. High heels that are impossible to wear but that look great on the shelf. Not wearing socks. Unusual and beautiful singing voices (e.g., Norah Jones, Adele). The right to bare arms in the summer. ;) Dancing although I've never really done this. Red. Growing older and wiser. Eating local and organic. Extended breastfeeding. VOTING. Women's rights. Feminism. Children's rights. I believe that bereaved mothers ARE MOTHERS. My professional autonomy. Greatgreatgreat novels like Angela's Ashes. I am growing to believe in myself, much to my own astonishment. What do you believe in?

Sunday, April 17, 2011


Today we celebrated Easter with my family. This is what I think happened. DH and I were sitting on the floor with Ninja and suddenly she took 2 or 3 steps to me which was the most she'd ever done. My bro and SIL missed it but the rest of us cheered her achievement.

This is what I know happened. Suddenly she just started running between DH and me! No walking for this girl! We all applauded and she was beyond thrilled.

I cried; I was so proud of her. I wasn't in a hurry for her to learn how to walk - she will be into EVERYTHING and our house is a disaster from home renovations - but I really wanted it for her because she has been so desperate to walk. She collapses into a tearful heap if we don't 'walk' with her - holding her hands - when she wants to go.

I'm glad the first real steps happened with DH and me and not at daycare. I was nervous that I'd miss it.

She doesn't yet know how to get herself to standing from sitting (without a prop) but, man, when she does...!

This is my best recollection of what happened. My memory is fuzzy on the first few steps because I was so excited.

Funny how memory works: what we forget and what we don't.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Day 11: Favourite TV shows

Well, Stephen Colbert wants to marry me; he just doesn't know it yet. In terms of political satire, I also like Rick Mercer and Jon Stewart.

Other shows: The Bachelor, Desperate Housewives, The Soup, and The Office.

Currently, I'm watching season 3 of Mad Men on Netflix.

Other all-time favourites: M*A*S*H, Titus (most underrated show of all time), All in the Family, Sex and the City, and The Sopranos.

TV is a great escape. I leaned on it a lot to help me fall asleep when the infertility got really bad, especially during IVF #2.

My TV viewing has fallen to the wayside since Ninja arrived in my life and that's fine with me. Research indicates that kids under the age of 2 shouldn't be exposed to TV and so I try to keep the set off when she's around. I don't tune in to kids' shows at all. I'm not some kind of stickler parent (i.e., 'my kid is not allowed in front of the TV!'); it just doesn't occur to me to turn it on for her. I don't think she's missing out on anything. It's better for her to play. Especially with me.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Day 10: Something I'm afraid of

My #1 fear now is living in poverty when I retire. DH is not a saver and so we live paycheque-to-paycheque. We're not hurting right now - we're both working full-time for the time being - but we don't save. I wish we did. DH's mother is below the poverty line - she's ok but there's no $ for extras - and I don't ever want to live like that.

The old fear (does it even need to be stated?) was never having a child. That anxiety is like nothing else I've ever felt and I don't expect anything else to ever match it.

Except, perhaps, for my fear that something bad will happen to Ninja. I can't live without her.

Or (maybe worse), that something bad will happen to me because how could my dear Ninja ever go on without me? She and I are attached at the soul and she can't even stand it when her daddy picks her up from daycare and she comes home and sees I'm not there yet. She sits by the door and cries until I walk in.

Please, God, don't let anything happen to me.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Day 9: A pic of my friends.

Not to write a boo-hoo post but I don't have many friends and that's been pretty standard in my life. When I was a kid/teen I was too nerdy. Big glasses, dorky clothes, nose in a book ... no one was exactly beating down the door for friendship! I'm still a geek although my style has improved considerably.

The friends I do have are fantastic and I wouldn't trade them for anything. One of my best friends is a guy who is considerably older than I am but we link up on a deep level. Another dear friend is a woman my age - we met while travelling and we've always had a deep connection. I have a few 'mommy' friends - great people and my daughter loves hanging out with their kids. Another good friend is a woman my husband has been friends with for most of his life.

Problem is, no one lives in my area (and I'm not a phone person). :( I spend most of my time with my DH and my daughter which is great and wonderful but I'd love to have some close girlfriends who live in this town. I need some more estrogen in the people around me!

Sometimes I watch reruns of Sex and the City and wonder what it would be like to be so tightly woven into a group of women friends.

Btw: I'm a cross between Charlotte (although I've become less prude-ish, if that's a word) and Carrie (although I'm less clingy than Carrie, I think). Which SATC character are you?

Anyway, thanks for reading, my bloggy friends! :)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Day 8: A place I've travelled to

Can't write today. If I do - and I did try - it'll just turns into a b!tchfest. DH and I aren't getting along plus I had a bad day at work and only got to see Ninja for 2 hours tonight. That's the short of it. Blah.

All I want to do is snuggle up with Ninja and go to sleep but she won't co-sleep: if I'm in the room she just roams around the bed for hours and, if she does fall asleep, she wakes up and screams because she doesn't want to be in bed. Sigh.

A place I've travelled to? Bonker-ville.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Day 7: Favourite movies

I didn't grow up watching movies. Where I lived, there was no cinema and people didn't generally rent movies like they do now.

My parents never rented movies. I recall one instance when my mom did and it was The Princess Bride (of which I am fond). My dad says that he and my mom took me to see The Lady and the Tramp when I was a toddler but I don't remember that.

The first movie I saw in a theatre was Clueless. I LOVE that movie: it's clever and funny.

Other movies I enjoy: Amelie, The Red Violin, Happy Gilmore, Spider-Man, The Piano, Ever After, Lars and the Real Girl, Dan in Real Life, Some Like it Hot, Ocean's 11.

I'm not into movies, though. For the most part, I think films are boring and predictable. A movie's gotta be great in order to hold my attention. And by now, with a 14-month-old, we've started (well, I have, anyway) to tune out the screens. Ninja doesn't need to watch TV; I'd prefer her to play.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Day 6: A picture of something that makes me happy

I've shown this picture before, I believe, for Mel's weekly show & tell. (It's not the exact same pic but you get the idea.) It's worth sharing again. 'Tis the season.

The climate where I live is worse than Siberia (literally - I know people from Siberia and they say our weather is colder and snowier than what they're used to in their homeland!).

We all look forward to spring. When the weather finally eases up, as is happening while I write these words, the tulips begin their annual ritual of bursting through the soil. The green shoots don't push aside last year's dead leaves: they grow right through them.

At first, the tender shoots appear choked by the brown leaves. As the green unfurls, the yesterday's leaf shatters into frail bits and returns to the soil. The tulip's stem and leaves bear pale green marks: reminders of their former ensnared status. For a while, the flower is free.

I don't believe in hope anymore but, when I see these flowers, I can't help but feel joyful.

Friday, April 8, 2011

great post

I came across a great post on the Stirrup Queen's blog.

These lines re: infertility were terrific: "Sticks and stones never hurt my bones. Words did, a little. But taking away my womanhood ruined me."

Day 5: My siblings

I don't want to spend too much time on this topic. Primarily because my youngest brother causes my parents nothing but heartaches. He and his wife are estranged from the family - we weren't invited to their wedding - and we've never met his daughter (who's a toddler already). I think of her every day and I've happened across pictures of her. She looks like me.

My 'middle' brother is a good guy. Married with a precious little girl. We don't see them much, though. They're always so busy. I haven't seen my niece since January which is hard.

Both siblings do not have fertility issues. The youngest bro said at one point that his girlfriend, now wife, had a miscarriage when she was still a teenager. That upset me partly because DH and I were already a year or 2 into infertility. My middle brother's wife had 'trouble' conceiving but, as I've gathered, it took them 6 or 7 months to get pregnant. Um, ok. That doesn't count as 'trouble' to me but whatever.

Every day I try to remember to remind myself that both of my siblings will continue to procreate and that I likely will not. I don't want to be surprised anymore.

Yeah, that's about as far as I want to get into that right now.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Day 4: My parents

My parents are good people. My dad is a teacher and my mom works in retail. They live in the country and go to church and they like it that way.

I had an overly-strict (to put it mildly) upbringing - which affects me to this day, to be honest - but I realize that my mom and dad were doing the best with the knowledge they had at the time.

They were raised even stricter than I was - no books, no movies/TV, no dancing, just work - plus both families were definitely on the impoverished side of things. My mom's family moved around a lot, so she never got a chance to make friends, plus she had ten other siblings and an angry and detached father. And not a lot to eat in the house. My dad's family farmed - they started out with less than nothing. My dad was in charge of a lot of things and he had to grow up very quickly. My dad's father was a very angry man (I'll leave it at that).

Both my mom and dad's families were into corporal punishment (and that's, um, putting it lightly, from what I've heard). I did get spanked growing up but that was already better than what had happened to, for instance, my dad.

Fear and guilt have become genetic in our family, I think...

I don't believe in spanking, and I've said that before. I believe that spanking damaged me as a person: it made me fearful. It made me feel rebellious. It made me determined not to get caught. Whereas, if anyone had ever bothered to take the time to reason with me, I would never have done the naughty-thing-du-jour again.

My parents did the best they could with the knowledge they had at hand. I don't criticize them.

Now I am a mother. I'm also going to parent with the knowledge I hold. I think there's an even better way. I'm committed to parenting peacefully and I do not want to spank: when needed, I will find other ways to help my daughter manage her behaviour.

I'm going to do the best I can. I will screw up along the way. I accept that.

And, if my daughter ever has a child, I know she'll likely say this: "My parents are good people. I had a problem with XYZ but I realize that my mom and dad were doing the best with the knowledge they had at the time. Now I am a mother. I'm also going to parent with the knowledge I hold. "

And I'm at peace with that.

(Whoa, I didn't start this post intending to write all this ... but that's the magic of writing-to-discover...)


Oh, PETA, you suck.

Everyone in the IF community - and those who love them - please sign this.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Day 3: My first love

Reading. Long before I started kindergarten, I taught myself how to read. Curled up around a book - that's always been my favourite thing to do.

A few of my favourite books: Angela's Ashes, Beloved, the Georgia Nicolson confessions, You Are My I Love You (picture book), Book Talk (Aidan Chambers), Bitter Milk (Madeleine Grumet), The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, questions i asked my mother, Anne of Green Gables.

I love poetry, newspapers, magazines, and my E-reader. I read my computer screen, people's t-shirts, and street signs. I read words and they read me.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Day 2: Meaning of Your Blog Name

I'm an English major and I love Charles Dickens. Great Expectations is one of my favourite novels. To name an infertility (aka: IF) blog, it seemed natural to marry a Dickens title to IF, no?

I dunno. I wanted a clever title - every other IF blog has a neat moniker. Great and yet IF'fy Expectations was the first thing that popped into my head when I was starting a new post-baby blog. That's it. The End.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Day 1

Hi, I'm One Hit Wonder. My name started as a joke - I heard on the radio the comment that being a one hit wonder would be a great job: write one terrific song, make a ton of money, then fade into obscurity while sitting in a pile of $$. Sounds good to me! Now my name really means something: after years of infertility, I have a gorgeous daughter. I'm truly a one hit wonder.

No recent pic, sorry. I must maintain my anonymous superhero status! However, some of you are on my Facebook and you folks know what I look like.

15 interesting facts:

1) I like bungee jumping
2) I used to have straight hair and then it turned curly
3) I'm a hippie at heart although you probably wouldn't guess so from my appearance
4) I can come off as an airhead/flake but ...
5) ... I have 3 degrees, I am well-read, and I'm politically aware
6) I've never really danced before
7) I am a proponent of gardening but, after the seedlings are in and the ground has been watered, I gradually forget about it all ... and then the weeds set in ...
8) I don't have many girlfriends in real life (and the ones I do have live far away)
9) I live in the buttcrack of Canada where it's cold and snowy 75% of the time
10) I love beautiful clothing and jewelry - especially thrifted!
11) I could live without eating meat
12) Until DH and I decided to start 'trying,' I never really wanted kids and I'm still not a huge fan of babies (although the cliche is true: I adore my own child and obviously I fought hard - and had luck help me out for once - to get her)
13)I am a coffee aficionado
14) I'm so absent-minded that ...
15) ... I nearly forgot to include #15! :)

30-day blog challenge

Okay, I need to get back into the habit of blogging regularly.

I saw the 30-Day blog challenge somewhere and I'm going to do it this month. I promise.

Here's the list:

Day 1-Introduce, recent picture, 15 interesting facts
Day 2-Meaning behind your blog name
Day 3-Your first love
Day 4-Your parents
Day 5-Your siblings
Day 6-A picture of something that makes you happy
Day 7-Favorite movies
Day 8-A place you've traveled to
Day 9-A picture of your friends
Day 10-Something you're afraid of
Day 11-Favorite TV shows
Day 12-What you believe
Day 13-Goals
Day 14-A picture you love
Day 15-Bible verse
Day 16-Dream house
Day 17-Something you're looking forward to
Day 18-Something you regret
Day 19-Something you miss
Day 20-Nicknames
Day 21-Picture of yourself
Day 22-Favorite city
Day 23-Favorite vacation
Day 24-Something you've learned
Day 25-Put your i-Pod on shuffle, first 10 songs
Day 26-Picture of your family
Day 27-Pets
Day 28-Something that stresses you out
Day 29-3 Wishes
Day 30-a picture