Friday, December 31, 2010

Ever Stable

Hi it's still Mr. Curry. Ever is in a holding pattern so to speak right now. She can't be without oxygen but her breathing has improved and she's nursing again. She's been about the same for two days now so we're waiting for her to start improving again. We wanted to thank everyone for the thoughts and support. We're going to be at the hospital into next week. I'll try to check back in this weekend.
Happy New Year from the Kaiser fourth floor Pediatric Ward! We'll be toasting our vending machine coffee to hopefully a healthier New Year.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Ever really sick

It's Mr. Curry. Just wanted to give a quick update. Ever has RSV. We took her to the ER Monday morning and she was quickly admitted to the hospital. Yesterday was horrible and scary. Today was better. The doctors think she "turned a corner" today. So we are feeling relief, with our breaths held. We're probably going to be in the hospital through the weekend and possibly beyond. I'll be home randomly over the next few days and try to give brief updates.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

i've looked at love from both sides now

A hormonally charged Christmas, a Christmas with four children and one husband and two large shedding hairy flea-flurried dogs, with one grandma and one cousin and her husband and their little boy, with a sick Ever Elizabeth and a very tired and very grateful mom and dad. The older my children got, the more glasses of champagne I had toward the end of the day, as the kids dispersed to family or friends or visiting their biological dad; now I am full circle, back to abstaining from all alcohol, can't have eggnog because of Ever's tummy- or chocolate!- and so all the binging and indulgence was put aside for nurturing and refining. Although Mr. Curry had a few jack and cokes.

Christmas Eve Mr. Curry and I stayed up till past 1am wrapping presents, taking turns holding Ever as she snuffled and sneezed and snorted through her congestion, getting sentimental and morbid, reflecting on those we have lost and those lost to themselves, until finally I said We have to talk about something happy! And Mr. Curry agreed, and we sat in silence for a few minutes. Mr. Curry glanced at me, I glanced at him. We couldn't think of anything, we laughed. Ridiculous. We are so lucky, and so surrounded with and full of love; perhaps this puts into high relief those we have loved who are not, those we love... our minds wander to the lost and the hurting, like Mr. Curry's friend R. whose young sister died last month, and whose mother just had a stroke, and who spent Christmas Eve drunk and fighting with his wife, until he called Mr. Curry, slurring into the phone and taking him away from our gathering to try to encourage and support his friend.

Having babies does this to me, and to Mr. Curry- while we are intensely falling in love with our new, helpless and beautiful baby, we are more keenly aware of the other side of love, of pain, of suffering, not only far away and in mysterious homes, but in our own home, our families, our friends. I sit with Ever breathing noisily on my bare chest and the image crosses my mind of an infant left to cry in her crib, and I am seized in the chest and the throat with grief. It's unbearable, the things that happen to us feeling, sentient beings. And yet, there it is, to be borne. In the face of reality, we love harder and more pure, refine our daily lives, look to be better, more present, patient and teaching parents to our children, to love each other. Sometimes the love I feel is painful. It's so intense and bright and so soon after the birth of a baby, rides on the crest of an unstable wave, an anxious and yearning wave. As time goes by my body will adjust and settle and I will love from a better place, a place of more faith and trust and peace. The very act of loving makes us incredibly a newborn. We cry and we desire and we feel safe or afraid, loved or abandoned, and there is no one on this planet who will not hurt us if we love them, because that is the nature of life. To accept, to amend, to cleave, to better ourselves- this is my marriage and my parenting, full of flaws and then amendment and healing, and it is more than enough. I wish the same for every person. For all of us to be loved.

There arose such a splatter....

Later Christmas day, all we did was laugh. I changed Ever's poopy diaper on the couch with a blanket underneath her. As I slid a clean diaper under her butt, a bright yellow stream of poop shot out over the diaper and onto the back of Ever's outfit, the blanket, and my pants. Mr. Curry handed me the wipes and we began mopping up. Ever lay naked on top of her poopy outfit, and I picked her up and handed her to Mr. Curry. He stood holding Ever under her naked butt and across her chest, and I looked up at him as he began to say something about a clean outfit for her when her tiny cheeks opened and to my horror a long glow in the dark stream of poop shot like a cannon out of her butt and flew across the carpet ( splat splat splat ) onto the cardboard boxes ( splat SPLAT! ) across my pants and the couch and finally, in a few grunted last shots, over the front of Mr. Curry's shirt. We stood there, dumbfounded and silent for a brief moment before busting up laughing. Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Baby Sick

Ever Elizabeth 3 weeks old, Lola Moon 8 years

Ever has a cold, congested. We are using the bulb sucker and she is snuffling and snorting breathing through her tiny baby nostrils. Her temperature is normal. I'm worried because at her last baby checkup, the doctor scared me silly about pertussis, to the point where I received the vaccine right there and then, in hopes of protecting Ever from getting it. Apparently there is a huge outbreak in San Diego and it's been very bad for infants. It starts out, the papers in the doctor's office said, with a runny nose and cough. Exactly like the common cold. And then apparently progresses rapidly to 'serious'. Any advice? Comments? Information?

thank goodness we got our tree up before Ever was's been a total joy to have it all this time home

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Handing Over the Baton

Ever smiles a lot, and we kiss her A LOT

Lola, Ever and I trekked to Starbucks this morning. I stood in line and realized that both of my daughters were clean and dressed beautifully, Lola with a chic brown newsboy cap on and red Converse, and that I looked like I went naked into a closet filled with dog hair and ill fitting clothes, twirled around three times until something stuck to my body, and then pulled on uggs. My hair was disheveled and tied into a Napoleon Dynamite style side pony that was supposed to be a regular pony but somehow went sideways during the morning. I'm falling apart and chubby with stretchy stomach skin and puffy, dark eyes, and my daughter's are radiant, gorgeous and slim. The official baton handing over has begun. My dears, take my youth, take my beauty, take my composure and sure opinions about the world, take my pretty skin and slim thighs, just keep giving me your love and trust, and I will consider it the best trade I've ever made.

oh dear. is this real life?

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


A few nights ago, I left Ever and Lola alone in the bedroom for a few minutes while I took my vitamins. When I came back in, I found Ever nursing on Lola's top lip. Lola had kissed her when she was fussing, and Ever latched on...and Lola sat there, patient as a mother, and let herself become a human pacifier. The next morning, we found that Lola had a purple bruise on her top lip.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Wolfgang and Ever

Wolfgang on baby duty

Ever is, so far, an 'easy' baby, meaning that she's not colicky or generally miserable most of the time, is able to be soothed, nurses well, and cries only to communicate a need, which when met, ends the crying. Obligatory poop information: We are highly concerned with the color of her poop. Yellow is good. Green, according to my chart, means either a virus or lactose intolerance. I cut out all 'obvious' dairy, such as milk and cheese, but still some creeps in, and her poop was green, then yellow again, then green again twice, and now is yellow again. .....? I've taken her temperature a few days and it's normal. On that note, you'll be delighted to hear ( what? you aren't? ) that Ever grunts exactly like a little billy goat when she is pooping. It's really funny. She also has the habit of knocking herself out immediately after pooping. Grunt, grunt, baa-baaa, snooooze. She also has been spitting up some, twice enough to have to change her outfit. That seems really strange to me for a breastfed baby. The doctor said CSection babies spit up more because they aren't compressed through the birthing canal and their lungs are not aspirated. So they have more ick in their lungs. But Ever is over two weeks. We will see at her appointment.
Since we are speaking of butts, Ever's is getting adorably chubby. What is cuter that a chubby baby butt?

We took all four kids out for the first time on Saturday night, to Mr. Curry's uncle's huge Christmas party. It was an awesome, full feeling to have our entire family in one car. Milestone.

I wasn't going to give Ever a pacifier until she was at least one month, but she is such a mouthy baby, and my breasts are getting so sore, that I did anyway. I am loving these BPA free, really cheap and cute pacifiers, minus the predictable fact that although we have FOUR, we can only find ONE.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Two Weeks

Thank you for taking these adorable pictures of me, Daddy :)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Mr. Curry and Ever

13 days old on Daddy's chest

Mr. Curry is so in love and so paranoid about her safety, but in the sweetest way, not fearful but just incredibly protective. He holds in her in the bath while I sponge clean her head and bits, and she looks so fragile and beautiful it makes our hearts ache. Did you know that in the animal kingdom, human babies are born the most vulnerable, the least able to protect or care for themselves at all? Our heads can't be too big or birth would be impossible. Last night's dinner of breakfast for dinner ( eggs with spinach, french toast and sausage ) went over much better in her stomach than the before mentioned beans. I've cut out dairy, chocolate, beans and caffeine. I had to do the same for Lola when she was a nursing infant. Ever is a champion nurser, although she does tend toward a small latch, so I have to reopen her mouth and have her do it again because...ouch.

The anxiety is much better. Thank god for zoloft. My anxiety is chemical, it's not the result of negative thoughts, but the incredible churning chemical muck that happens inside of me like a diver's feet of the springboard, an overabundance of cortisol and adrenaline and depletion of seratonin, a process that I've tried to stop with high dose fish oil and exercise and self help, but that when in it's extremes, only responds to medication. Medium anxiety responds to the other measures, but this panic and clenched muscles and nightmarish feeling that leaves my muscles pulled and my heart skipping beats and my body jerking...that needs stronger muscle. And my children need ME, their mother, not the fearful, shaky and terrorized person I am when in the grips.

Mr. Curry.... is the love of my life. To see him move from reading Lola Harry Potter the other night to holding Ever while I shower is incredible for me. To have his eyes and voice and hands steadying me when I am lost is one of the biggest blessings of my life.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Dakota and Ever

Dakota is 16. Ever is 11 days old in these pictures. So...when she is 16...he'll be 32. Wow.

The above is the face she makes when someone is doing something to her, like kissing her or touching her feet, and she's deciding what to think about it. Hmmmmmmm I think this might be good....

Dakota says our dog Wolfgang is depressed because he realizes he is no longer the cutest thing in the house anymore.

My mom says Ever looks just like me when I was a baby. Ever has Mr. Curry's hair line and growth patterns exactly. And his chin. She looks like Dakota in the head shape and neck, and sometimes reminds me a heck of a lot of Lola. When she smiles, I see Ian.

(Last night I tried a bean burrito for dinner. Won't be doing that again. Ever no likey.)

6:30 Wake
7:30 Both kids off to school with separate friends giving rides
8:00-9:30 Sleep on couch with Ever
9:45 MIL visits, brings dinner foods! and decaf!
11:00 Mr. Curry home, we leave to run errand and take long drive
12:20 Pick up Lola, hit McDonalds for a treat
3:00 Lola leaves on playdate, Dakota at friends, Ian at Moms
3:00-3:30 Mr. Curry and I change Ever, change her again, and one last (squirt) time
3:30 then we leave to Xmas shop at Target with baby gift card my Uncle sent, I get pretzel and slurpie! Yay!
5:00 back at home, Lola arrives home, we turn on Xmas music, Mr. Curry
starts dinner, I try to tidy and fold laundry while nursing Ever off and on
and hold on to my peaceful heart.


Monday, December 13, 2010

Lola and Ever

11 Days Old

Mr. Curry pulled Lola's twin sized mattress out and placed it next to our Queen sized mattress, which sits on the mattress support but has no headboard or bedrails. We squeezed ( Mr. Curry is we ) in painting the room a medium-dark blue before Ever was born, and with all the incredible cozy fluffy blankets and pillows, the beds next to the blue walls, the television propped at the end of the bed on my old white wicker trunk, we have our own nest. Ever sleeps next to me away from the cloud of blankets on the other side of me, I only use one blanket for her safety, and a small pillow. She wakes through the night to nurse and falls back asleep. After one night where I never fully woke and changed her and she pooped up to her fuzzy duckling hair, I make sure to get up at least once and change her halfway through the night. We fall asleep with Harry Potter playing on DVD as a soother for all of us. Harry Potter, especially the first few, is very comforting. Lola is the one sleeping to the side of me, while Mr. Curry sleeps on her twin sized mattress on the floor. In a few days or so, we will transition her to the mattress on the floor.

No baby has ever been kissed and cooed over more. All the kids are wonderful with her and love her completely. I took Ever for our first solo outing to Starbucks the other day and she did wonderfully. Mr. Curry gave me a set of 'rules' for helping with the anxiety and one of them is to get out of the house every day, to walk Ever in her stroller or take a trip with Mr. Curry and the kids after school pickup to the grocery store.

Lola really struggled after seeing me in the hospital. We did not prepare her for what I would look like if I had a CSection, we just completely dropped the ball on that, and she left crying her eyes out the first time she saw me, my face extremely swollen from the three bags of fluid pumped in me to keep my blood pressure stable, the large IV on top my hand pumping morphine, the tubes in my arms, the tape, the hospital ID tags, and even the strange smell of me as all the anesthesia seeped from my pores. For the first few days we were home she was terribly anxious and sad. I did the best I could, Mr. Curry did better, and we used all the tools we could think of- play, exercise, attention, thought direction. My mom reminded me to use silliness and laughter to help Lola reverse that feeling, and her advice was spot on. We are keeping her busy and she has gotten much better the last few days, back to her old self, until this morning she saw a Full House episode where the littlest girl was afraid of her dad dying in an earthquake. Lola called me from her school to remind me about a form I needed to sign, and when she couldn't get ahold of me ( I was getting wipes at Target ) began crying in the office. They called Mr. Curry and he talked to Lola for ten minutes, but couldn't get her to stop crying. Finally I got a hold of Lola and spent quite a while talking to her about how feelings aren't reality, to replace the negative thoughts in her head immediately with true, good ones, etc etc. I hate that she has this problem, inherited from me. Anxiety is much more common in women and tends to run in families. It certainly has in mine.

Lola is an amazing big sister. She picks out outfits for Ever, brings her the pacifier, rocks her seat when Ever begins fussing, holds her, talks to her, sings to her, draws her. I am so proud of Lola's enormous heart and sensitive spirit.

Mr. Curry is jack of all trades right now, working and then arriving home anywhere from 12-2 or 3pm, to go shopping and get me and the kids out of the house, then do housework, make dinner, and hold his baby girl. He is an amazing and loving Dad and has been 100% supportive of me as I work through this hormonal and chemical cocktail. His face, voice and hands steady me like nothing else.

Ever is sleeping in her swing right now. She's an angel.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Post Partum Anxiety

Hello my friends. I am not able to post as I had expected. I have developed postpartum anxiety. I have had to increase my zoloft to 100 which I had so much hoped not to do. I talked to Ever's pediatrician at her follow up visit and she agrees zoloft is the safest drug for breastfeeding moms but still who wants to take a drug when they are nursing their beautiful baby. I am praying and hoping for it to work and am not sure how long to expect to wait. I think I feel maybe 20% better than I did a few days ago. This alternate world that my chemical makeup is forcing me to live in is horrible. I am afraid all day. Of everything and nothing. I tremble and do my breathing excercises. Mr. Curry is my rock. I am doing the best I can for my children. That is the focus of my world right now, to hold it together for my kids. I love my baby girl so much and hate having to spend my time wrapped in this horrible feeling. I can barely write these words. Thank you all for your loving comments on Ever in the last post. She is an angel and all the kids are wonderful with her.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Ever Elizabeth: Two Days Old

Hi everyone, my friends, my awesome support team through this pregnancy: this is our girl. Our Ever. She is sleeping in her car seat as I type, while Lola sits on the floor next to her watching TV. She is my first baby born with hair :) And blue eyes, so far, and a face so sweet and wonderful that I have kissed her a thousand million times already. She turns her face to me and starts blinking and opening her mouth to nurse with a tiny grin now, when I kiss her, because she's a genius obviously, and has already put together that Mommy kissing her and saying Mommy's here means booby is coming. Everything is surreal from hormones, drugs and lack of sleep, but I am madly in love and falling harder every second. It's like the largest roller coaster ride in the world. To love someone this much is a sweet agony of the heart. Tonight, Mr. Curry is cooking pork chops, mashed potatoes, green beans and french bread, and then we will eat Nutter Butters for dessert. I will walk and nurse Ever while Mr. Curry and I watch some TV, and then the night will open with it's mysterious doors that are known only to parents of the very small. I love you all and thank you for your words of encouragement. Look at her!!!! xoxoxoxo

Friday, December 3, 2010

Would you like to meet Ever Elizabeth Ethridge Curry?

Well.... you have to wait one more day. Maggie is recovering and Ever is the most beautiful thing we have ever seen. My admirable wife will be home tommorrow and give everybody a proper introduction. But Ever is healthy, beautiful and has already made a grown man cry. Pictures tommorrow I promise.
(A very sleep deprived) Mr. Curry
P.S. I really hate Hello Kitty. This blog does not endorse or appreciate Hello Kitty on their birth card.
P.S.S. She's so beautiful and perfect I can't stand it.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Coming Attractions

one more day of my big belly
ps no this is not me

The Horse Head Warning - one of the cutest, most perfect short posts ever. I literally went HA! at the end
I always wish I had said the exactly right zinger to a jerkface. Read this story, where Stacey did exactly that. Another HA!! * Gaze with wonder at the beautiful, detailed artwork of nature by Tiffany Bozic. * Look at the new, free online edition of Covet Magazine. I really like this! * ' Seeing the world one drawing at a time '- the tagline of this awesome site, Urban Sketchers * Their patterns and products are totally my bag, baby: Rickshaw Designs

A true gentleman, published novelist and poet Collin Kelley has my respect big time. At my request, he sent me his beautiful novel, Conquering Venus which can be found for sale on Amazon here, for me to review here....and I never did. Life gets in the way, but I made an agreement and didn't follow through, which isn't like me, and I'm embarrassed about it. Meanwhile, Collin has never given me a hard time about it, has continued to be supportive and kind in his comments on Flux, and has proved that gentlemen still exist. What a fine fellow. Please go visit his blog here, and look at the bundle package he's offering for his novels. He's hard at work on getting out the sequel to Conquering Venus! Collin's writing is enchanting and Conquering Venus was a wonderful read, a love story that takes place in Paris, complete with mystery, beautiful metaphor, and intoxicating setting.

I'm going to finish a few loose ends now, then take a nap, pick up the kids from school, and I'll be back later. I am SO EXCITED to meet my baby! The Doc said I probably will be in the hospital until Saturday morning, but I'm going to try to get Mr. Curry to do a quick update either Thursday evening or Friday day to say hi and let you all know she was born. Love you guys!!
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