Sunday, February 19, 2012

17 weeks

Hi baby,

Today, I took you for a hike (well, more like a long walk, because I'm not sure how much I'm supposed to be exerting myself). I am excited for you to be around so much nature as you grow up, even though you will likely hate it initially. I saw so many kids today throwing temper tantrums, crying, and being bored that I'm just going to assume that walking and nature are like, THE WORST until you're older. As in, twelve.

At night, I lie in bed and read, and feel you moving around. Sometimes, if I place my hand below my pelvic brim, I can feel you through the abdominal wall. And when I wake up, you're usually curled up on the side that I've been lying, and my uterus feels a little lopsided. I am imagining you wriggling into weird corners of my body. I am so, so relieved that I can feel you.

I am sad that your dad is missing all of this, but he'll be home soon, and will be surprised at all the growing that you're doing.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

16 weeks

Hi baby,

Today, you're 16 weeks old, and I've been spending the last one intermittently prodding and cupping my hands over you, hoping to feel you move around. Because, quite honestly, my biggest fear right now is that I'm talking to someone who has ceased to exist, but my body doesn't know yet. It has made it very hard to completely throw myself into excitement over you, even though other people who find out are doing more than my share. Baby, I hope that you're in there, and are just getting pissed off at being disturbed, and bidding your time for kicking revenge on my organs from the inside.

When your dad and I found out about you, we looked up information on what you might look like, since you would mostly be invisible to us for the next 8 months excepting quarterly ultrasounds. This site said that you were about the size of a sesame seed, so we temporarily named you Goma-chan in utero. I hope you don't mind, because this nickname will probably come up repeatedly throughout your life, which you will probably hate and then grow to think of with a begrudging affection.

We have decided that we don't want to know your gender. Your dad (having been educated in the process of decision analysis), says things like "how would this change what we do?" I have mostly been grappling with a growing dread of receiving clothing that proclaims you are "Daddy's Princess!" in sparkly magenta.

Whitney, 1963-2012

There's been some incredible tributes written about Whitney Houston already, and I cannot compete with them here. I just know that her songs paved my childhood, and I am sorry that she is gone. Here is her national televised debut on the Merv Griffin show in 1983 (she was 19 years old):

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Jay Smooth, "How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Discussing Race"

We tend to deal with race and prejudice with this all or nothing, good person versus bad person binary in which either you are racist, or you are not the belief that you must be perfect in order to be good is an obstacle to being as good as you can be.

The problem with that all-or-nothing binary is it causes us to look at racism and prejudice as if they are akin to having tonsils...if someone says, "I think you may have a little unconscious prejudice," you say, "No! My prejudice was removed in 2005!" So we need to move away from the tonsils paradigm of race discourse towards the dental hygiene paradigm of race discourse.