hi!

It’s been quite awhile since I posted last. To soften that blow, I give you, our Easter Family Photo. We tried. We really did. And yes, we are going for a theme here. Nothing this kid loves better than a family photo!

10734057_10155352222765459_625847354172732_n

But holy shit, how time is flying. It’s not that I am avoiding posting, or can’t find the time to blog – it’s that I don’t even think about it anymore. Life got really busy, really fast! I’ll give y’all a month-by-month run down:

January: First family trip to Mexico. As you can see, she hated it.

10425885_10155061450360459_8935919950473868873_n

February: I travelled to Montreal, and we started sleep-training. For the first time that month since she was born, we went to bed at the same time in the same bed. We also resumed watching movies together and eating warm dinners together, accompanied by a glass of wine. In short, living the life. Here’s a shot of her snuggling with gramma. The g-parents came in for a visit which was nice, however she screamed all through our early dinner out.

10998871_10155154002020459_7458711118121366752_n

March: I travelled to California for work, and for the first time ever, experience the deep, soul-throttling ache of missing the baby. I was tired, maybe a little bit hungover, and kept seeing young’uns with their parents and my heart physically hurt. I got home before too much chaos ensued emotionally, but came down with terrible food poisoning or a stomach flu or something. I was a barfy mess by the time I walked through the door. FUN! In other news, the baby started on food for the first time. Here we go, baby led weaning! The kid loves her some food. Look at that yogurt/banana covered little face. Also, we lost our minds and bought a new house. No, we weren’t looking. It happened spontaneously after going for a walk and stumbling into an open house. 2 days later we had a signed deal. Simply unheard of in this insane market. Upside, we will now have more space for this kid (and me!) to stretch our legs. I also travelled to Ottawa, with a freshly pregnant and very nauseous member of my team. I don’t miss those days with my poor, sick wife!

IMG_0976

April: Well, here we are in April! Life is just trucking along. I travelled to Vancouver for work and facetiming with this kid didn’t go so well. She was baffled by the whole thing, frankly.

IMG_0946

Aaaaaaand then we sold the house before it went to market because the universe is smiling upon us. Aaaaaaand then one of my best old friends came to visit from Calgary and little N and he loved each other and it made my cold, black heart feel nice and warm.

So now we are all up to date. There’s going to be a small period of calm before we get ready and move. Work is going wonderfully and full of exciting things. The missus is doing better now that the baby is sleeping more and we can spend more time together. Everything, in short, is coming up roses. Happy spring!

Planes, planes and more planes.

TGIS.

As in, Thank Goodness It’s Sunday. I got to enjoy, for work, over a 7 day period (with a few days at home): 8 planes, 5 cities, 5 rental cars, 3 hotel rooms, 2 important meetings, 1 healthy serving of grass-fed butter, 1 delightful sea-wall run and 1 children’s Christmas concert en francais. I saw Ottawa, Vancouver, Victoria, Edmonton and Calgary. We conquered, from a business standpoint, and were only bested by the weather once (damn you, 18 hour Ottawa journey. For reference, it’s a 4 hour drive from Toronto).

So while this was the view I got to enjoy so, SO very often,

IMG_2125

I have to say, I have a newfound appreciation for how good it is to come home.

Additional to that, I think the process of becoming a parent has softened my cold, black heart. In Calgary, I had the opportunity to see some dear friends that moved out there a few years ago, and whom I see about 2x a year, depending on our mutual travel schedules. L and I become buddies at work over 10 years ago, the fastest of fast friends, and I don’t know that I’ve ever in my life felt this kind of kinship with a person who isn’t blood family. He just welcomed me into his life with big, warm open arms, and he and his wife have more or less adopted us into their herd. They feel like home, and for some reason, this trip really solidified things. Their 7 year old daughter emailed me a few times leading up to the short visit, asking if we could have a dance party and expressing sincere hope that I would attend her christmas concert. Afterwards, I spent a good half hour telling knock-knock jokes with her and her 4 year-old brother. Finally, we sat around the table with wine, cheese, veg and a serious heart-to-heart on what their next step in life should be. I left feeling exhilarated by the visit, genuine empathy for their challenging cross-roads, but mostly aching for more time together.

Guys, this is like… seriously serious. These intense feelings! When did I become so full of love? When? I promised the 7-year old I’d be back to visit and she said “I need you to tell me WHEN!” so I texted the wife the next day and told her we need to go over the summer, and then told L and his missus we’d be there too, as a means of sharing my intentions with the universe so I could put the plans into practice.

Maybe its the holidays, maybe it’s welcoming Norah into our lives, maybe it’s that I’m too tired for anything but the best people in the world, but I really think life is too short to spend time apart from the people who know and love you and make you feel like a million bucks with their warmth, humour and genuine… well, genuine everything.

I didn’t intend this to be a love letter to my friends in Calgary, but it turned out that way.

Random thought of the day

I think it’s time for my next tattoo(s).

Well, I think it’s time to settle on what I want and then think about it for 6 months and see if I still want it (this is the wife’s rule of thumb). I didn’t do this with the last tats though. I woke up one day and decided I wanted two swallows on my shoulder blades and then a month later, swallows were tatted and there they are. And I love them dearly.

I’ve been thinking a lot about nautical stars, because I love them, and I love the wife’s nautical stars that start on her shoulder and wind their way over her delt almost onto her bicep. As for placement, right now I’m angling towards ribcage (ouch) or low chest. Something that can be easily concealed in a professional setting but also potentially peek through in a tank top. I got two swallows to signify the journey T and I have had, and I’m thinking something along the lines of three nautical stars which will represent our new little tiny family.

If you had told my 20 year old self that I’d be inking up good over a decade later to represent marriage and family, she would have spit beer in your face from laughter and gone to smoke something in defiance. Oh, how times have changed.

This is really hard.

Norah turned two months on Wednesday. It’s amazing how quickly and dreadfully slowly time flies! Here’s a picture of her looking like she’s about to bust out the Chicken Dance. IMG_1928

So uhhh… here’s the thing. I feel guilty even saying it, but the next time some poor benevolent soul tells me to enjoy these moments, because they are fleeting, I am likely to unleash the rage of a person who is but a former shell of themselves and wondering if they will ever sleep again. Because I want to fast-forward to a time when it is easier. I don’t really enjoy these moments much. Why? Well, since you asked:

  • This adorable little bundle is awfully hard to get to sleep. After she’s fed, burped and swaddled, I’ll walk around with her for a half hour before she finally closes her eyes. Then I will hold and rock her for another half hour before I dare lay her down. On the bed. In the nursery. The bassinet was a non-starter nor the crib. During the day, pretty much the only way she will sleep is in the carrier. So we wear her.
  • We are trying to train this out of her but you can’t do it a ton because eventually you need to force sleep so the whole day doesn’t go down the drain. Because the more tired they are, the less likely they are to sleep.
  • What this means is the wife and I haven’t slept together at the same time in the same room since the night before she was born.
  • Also, car rides! Well, that has gone entirely to shit. She flips out the second we put her in the car seat and usually screams the whole time. Stroller walks? Forget it.
  • I’m exhausted by life. I wake up, if I’m lucky I can get a workout in before work, then make breakfast and coffee for T, then go to work. Then come home and make dinner. Sometimes we eat at the same time, sometimes we trade off. Then the hour long process of getting her down starts. Usually this means there are unwashed dishes and the kitchen is a mess. I’m not a person who can deal with household mess very well so the degradation of our physical environment due to all the baby clutter and lack of time to clean just stares at me every day. Then she finally goes down around 9-10 and I chill with her, sometimes snooze next to her, until 11:30-12 when I wake up the missus and trade off. And sleep until 6. Repeat, repeat, repeat. There’s no break, there’s no chance to get caught up on sleep, there’s just this, day in and day out. Life doesn’t give you a mulligan when you have a young baby at home.

I’ve got the non-gestational partner blues, for sure. Because there’s no area of my life that I can let go. I’ve tried. Work has to be done. We have to be fed. The baby has to sleep. I actually rely on fitness for mental health and physical wellbeing. Theres no wiggle room left. T has been amazing at helping out wherever she can, wherever the baby will allow – as in, she cleans when she can, she helps prep dinner when she can, she bears the absolute lion’s share of Norah care.. she’s an amazing woman through and through and struggling in her own, different way.

People keep saying this will get better. I’m sure it will. I know it will, but right now, for the last 9 weeks, it has been a fucking challenging slog and I am exhausted. Boo hoo hoo.

So I’ve been thinking….

I’m upset about Ferguson. 1 out of 11,000 grand jury verdicts fails to return an indictment and yet this one, the biggest one, the most powerful one, didn’t.

I’m upset because I don’t know how to talk about this with people who are so far away from understanding what is problematic about everything, mainly people who are (yes, this is a terrible generalization but I’m not smart or well-rested enough these days to further distill) hetero, white, suburban. People who haven’t spent much time thinking critically about race, or white privilege, or… any of it.

I also recognize this isn’t my story to tell. All I can do is be an ally and try to do better, be a better white person, lead by example, challenge my peers, challenge assumptions, help agitate for change. That’s all I can do. Rage in my way against this crushing injustice. I’m upset about Ferguson.

When I read the news about the lack of indictment, it was 11:30pm and the wife and I were about to trade off shifts. Instead of going to bed, however, I lingered in the doorway and panicked all over T about how we were going to talk about this with our daughter. Suddenly this is all taking on a much greater meaning, because we have a tiny peanut who will soon be a tiny person needing guidance navigating everything this wonderfully diverse city has to offer. We have to talk about race, injustice and prejudice. Canadians are horrible at it. We just pretend it doesn’t exist here, cover our ears and hum “lalalalala” until the dialogue shifts, and further perpetuate the problem. As a mother, I have to do better than my parents did. She has to learn early on. I don’t want to be part of the problem.

I’m just so very upset about Ferguson.

p.s. this is an excellent perspective on things from the Times this weekend.
http://parenting.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/11/25/talking-about-racism-with-white-kids/?module=BlogPost-Title&version=Blog%20Main&contentCollection=U.S.&action=Click&pgtype=Blogs&region=Body

Book recommendation?

Guys, do you all have any recommendations for books about queer families? Like, essays, non fiction, etc etc? Feeling thoughtful and would love to have a good read for all these late nights I find myself suddenly having. Trying to save the good fiction for our upcoming warm weather vacation in 65 days. Not that I’m counting.

Also, Moose has suddenly developed tears. What the effing eff am I supposed to do NOW? Tiny baby with tiny crocodile tears? *implodes*

I just need to vent

1. I’m tired.
2. We have no heat.
3. We have no hot water.
4. The above replacements are on day three of installation and we probably still have one day to go. Dude was here until midnight working last night.
5. My baby appears to hate me.
6. Witching hour? Try Witching 5 Hours.
7. It’s cold out.
8. I keep getting random Charlie horse type muscle cramps. I woke up last Saturday to a very angry quad and now my calf is mad.
9. Have I mentioned I’m tired?

That’s all. I love my wife, my daughter, my job and all the good fortune and greatness in life, but all the stuff up there makes me feel whiny, so whine (and wine… Or scotch) I will.

P.S. This kid hates tummy time. HATES. are we ruining her forever by avoiding it at all costs? She’s been moving her head and neck with vim and vigour since the day she was born…..

So, we have a 1 month old!

I don’t think Moose fully understood the assignment re: photo shoot, but here it is anyways.

photo

Hard to believe the little peanut is no longer a “neo-nate” and now is a proper infant. It’s also hard to believe a month has passed since she was born, because it feels like 10 months. Everyone around us tells us the same thing: blink and you’ll miss it. Well, let me tell you people, now that we have more waking hours in the day than we’ve ever had, I’d like to blink a little. These moms are TIRED. I’m not trying to pass time unnecessarily but I wouldn’t mind a light fast-forward to the time when she sleeps in slightly longer chunks!

In non-Moose related news, I’m still working out as much as possible. What this means for me are sad little runs in the morning and Crossfit when I can squeeze it in. I’ve noticed that with my reduced sleep I’m less able to recover. TIred muscles stay tired longer, and this sad old body doesn’t want to exercise 6x a week. I’m taking more rest days than I used to. I know, I know, we have a newborn, etc etc, I’m just very cognizant of my personal connection between being active, eating well and feeling sane. That being said, my biceps are still smarting from Sunday, so that’s a different kind of crazy-making.

On that note, it’s time for coffee #2. I’ve tried to ask the missus to help me install an IV drip, but she isn’t biting.

Halloween

This will probably be a short post because the baby is soon gonna need my attention so my sweet wife can eat her dinner, but I really just wanted to brag about how we didn’t miss one of my bff’s annual Halloween throw down, newborn notwithstanding. On top of that, we even threw together a costume. Can anyone guess what we went as?

IMG_1513.JPG

Norah was included in the costume. We also took this picture to pretend as if we had actually dressed her up, when in fact, it’s her going-out warm clothes option.

IMG_1496.JPG

We are trucking along over here. I only had one total meltdown this week and I figure the wife actually had none! I’m told it gets easier after six weeks and I’m actually starting to believe them!