Cottonhead

There is fuzz in my brain.  No, not the police, just cotton.  Thick lumps of it, blocking any attempt at coherent thought.  Do you know how many “drafts” I have saved in this blog?  Unpublished drafts of things I started and then never got around to finishing because I either could not figure out what I was going to say or because I was interrupted and when I went back I could not catch the train of thought?  Lots of them.  Lots and lots.  Sometimes what I was writing seemed like something I wanted to say, then when I went back I realized it was just stupid, so I deleted it.

We are looking for a new apartment.  I really want to move.  I really want to move before the baby comes.  But I also am not thrilled at the prospect of looking for apartments.  Yuck.  I hate the ads. So many of them are bogus crap.  Craigslist is wonderful in many ways, but the crap ads are annoying.  I flag them, but they still show up. I wish there were some way for Craigslist to improve that feature of its ads.

Well this is my mindless blurb for the day.  I really have nothing more to say.  So I’m going to work on the long list of things I need to complete.  Maybe my writing projects won’t go as slowly as usual, but I doubt it since my brain seems filled with pregnancy cotton this morning again.  Whee.

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Beached Whale

I’m just stuck, energetically, physically, mentally.  I think it’s pregnancy, but I’m not totally sure.  There have been so many changes in the last six months that could be attributable to this logjam.  However, I have experienced major changes before and not felt so inept and unable.  It’s weird having been a person with a quick mind and quick body turning into someone who has difficulty thinking of words and can’t just leap out of bed or a chair.  I feel like a beached whale, stuck here on shore, lying in the salt surf, seeing what was all around me, yet unable to do anything about it.

We recently took a trip back to Portland. While there, we ran around hither and thither, visiting and seeing family and friends.  In the past such a visit would have been delightful to me.  If there had been a free moment, I would have wanted to fill it.  This time, I was exhausted a third of the way into the trip.  A couple of times I just ran into a physical wall in the middle of the day.  I had to say Enough is enough! and go lie on the bed and take a nap.  Pregnancy was definitely the culprit there.

The first trimester of this pregnancy was a nightmare.  I suffered severe perinatal depression without knowing such a thing existed.  My boyfriend thought I was an alien, and wasn’t very supportive as a result.  I still looked like my normal self, but I was not the same person.  I overreacted to the smallest things.  I would sob and sob and sob for hours.  My brain completely fogged up.  I finally realized I was experiencing something physical, so I decided to do some research.  In the process I found Brooke Sheilds’s book on her experience with postpartum depression and discovered that a pregnant woman or one who has just given birth who has gone through an enormous amount of stress prior to the pregnancy is much more likely to suffer from depression.  Considering the level of stress in the years leading up to being pregnant, coupled with the stress of moving across the country, moving in with my new boyfriend, getting pregnant, moving away from Milla for the first time ever in her life, and I was a perfect candidate for peri or post natal depression.

Based on this information, I did further research and discovered that the leading expert on peri and post natal depression was based in New York, not far from where we live.  Her name is Dr. Margaret Spinelli.  She was conducting a study to determine whether counseling a pregnant woman to improve her interpersonal relationships would improve her depression and reduce the likelihood of it occurring after pregnancy.  I had a consultation with Dr. Spinelli and she admitted me into the study.  Since going, my moods have improved dramatically.  It also seemed to help just to know that I wasn’t actually going nuts but suffering from a physical response to being pregnant under stress, and to understand that the troubles in my relationship were making things worse.

I’m still waiting for my boyfriend to understand that my emotional reactions to most things are normal for a pregnant woman, and especially a woman with perinatal depression, but I feel better understanding that how I feel comes from a diagnosable source, one that will go away when my hormones settle down, and if they don’t, there is medication available to assist me.  Considering the level of improvement I’ve experienced without drugs, I am genuinely hoping to avoid that route completely.  I also make sure to keep my sugar intake to a minimum and exercise, because I definitely feel worse when I eat sugar or don’t exercise.

Even without perinatal depression, the physical demands of pregnancy aren’t much fun.  I did not like being pregnant with Milla.  This pregnancy is no exception.  When I was pregnant with Milla I would hear about women who said they never felt better that when they were pregnant.  My response to that was they must have felt pretty crappy the rest of their life!  I like having a clear brain.  I like having a lithe body.  I can’t wait to have the little baby out here so I can get off this beach and back into the ocean.

Library Thieves

When I signed on to edit books for this small publishing company, the owner convinced me to buy Adobe Indesign.  Because the bundled software with 3 programs gave me way more bang for my buck, I bought that rather than just the individual program.  As part of this bundle, I got Photoshop C4, a program I had long been interested in.  Unfortunately, I have no experience with even the Elements program, so I was pretty useless when it came to trying even basic photo editing with the thing.  I’m like an infant with a space ship.  I went online to find instructions, but mostly ran into those useless advertising sites trying to get me to download “free” teasers that I could replace with a full instruction program if I wanted to pay for it.  Um. No.

I decided then that I would go to the library and look at their instruction manuals.  If I found one that was really good, I would go buy one somewhere.  Well, guess what?  Every single copy of every single instruction manual at the New York Public Library that I looked at was missing.  Some jackasses out there are ruining it for the rest of us.  Gee, thanks.  I called the library and discussed with a helper person.  He confirmed that this is indeed a problem.  He helped me do a more advanced search to sort and ensure certain books were available, but all of them had 15 or 20 holds on them.  I’m thinking maybe Amazon used might be the way to go.

In Som Ni A

I hate not being able to sleep. For most of my adult life, I have manifested stress as insomnia.  It’s worse when I have something pending the following day, like an early appointment, or even work.  Sometimes though, when there is really no reason to have to get up early (or at all for that matter), I will awaken in the middle of the night or too early in the morning and not be able to go back to sleep.  Then when I do, the second sleep is usually too sound, or I have to wake up in the middle of its too-soundness, and end up feeling like a slug all the next day.

Last night’s insomnia was the result of being just too warm. We had a houseguest who slept in Milla’s room, so Milla slept with us.  In addition, we kept the bedroom door closed.  I wakened at 2:57 a.m. broiling like a roast chicken.  I opened the windows, but then couldn’t sleep because even with the earplugs I never sleep without, I could hear the noisy street (I have mentioned how much I hate this apartment, haven’t I?).  I also had to get up and go to the bathroom twice.  Then the brain started worrying about money, and arguing with the student loan lenders I had to send a letter too, and wondering how we are going to make the sublet request go through, and forget it.  Sleep wasn’t happening.

I was finally able to stop the brain from spinning on each of my worrywart topics, but even after changing to new earplugs, the windows were too loud.  After lying there uncomfortably, I finally opened the bedroom door and closed the windows.  That seemed to do the trick and I fell back asleep.  I woke again once to go to the bathroom (pregnant woman’s bane), but was able to fall back asleep.  Damn, I hate insomnia.

Where is the Damn Sun?

Would I feel any differently this morning if it were sunny and nice instead of rainy and crappy?  Oregon was rainy and shitty the entire time we were there until the last day.  It had been sunny until the day before we arrived.  Now it is sunny again since we have left.  It was pouring in NY the day we left and the days up until we left.  It is pouring now.  Am I going to get any summer anywhere?

It is difficult for me to discern whether the weather has an impact on my mood when the weather rarely changes from shit.  We have had a handful of sunny days since January, and I remember feeling optimistic on those days.  Hawaii was a boring place to live, but it was so sunny and nice most of the time.  I rarely felt down like I do here most of the time.  But of course, hormones could be playing a part as well, and the constant wondering what each day will bring in my relationship.  I used to bounce back pretty easily after an argument with the boyfriend, but not really anymore.  Now I just wonder when the next one will come.  I can just hear all the preachers out there who will comment and tell me just to leave him, but I would like to ask them how they would like to be single and pregnant in a city with no friends.  It is so easy to armchair quarterback, especially someone else’s relationship.  And then of course there is this weather, this abominable, interminable, shitty-ass weather.  I wish to fuck it would get sunny already.

Traveling is Exhausting

Traveling is exhausting.  I find it difficult to adjust quickly to time changes and whatnot, especially when I’m not sure how much of an adjustment I want to make.  Lately I have been awakening at east coast time (5 am where I’m at) and going to bed at west coast time (11 pm to midnight).  I keep hitting these walls in the middle of the afternoon and taking longer and longer naps.  This is exactly what happened to me when we moved east and I had to adjust there, only I got completely screwed up, taking horribly long naps and going to bed much too late.  It took having a regular job, going to bed at the same time and getting up at the same time, to force my body to figure things out.  Then I go and screw it up by coming home for a visit, and a long enough visit to make a difference.

Several mornings I have wanted to write on this blog when I wakened too early, but I was just too tired to rouse myself enough to do it.  So I would lie there and compose in my head.  That’s a useful enterprise.  Then when I got up we had to start on our marathon running around sessions and I didn’t write a word.

Not surprisingly, the prior two paragraphs were the only one I wrote.  I was interrupted to go and do something and five days later, I’m finally sitting down to finish what I started to say.  This is how it has been since we got here.  We have gone from one place to another to another ever since we got here.  Tomorrow we leave.  Today we don’t have any specific plans except to pack, only Dan hasn’t see one of his best friends since we arrived, and he is hoping to connect with her today.  I hope that’s all we do besides eat and pack.  I’m tired.