Happy Day – Friday April 29th

My nephew is here! Weston John Mulroy was born at 9:59 am this morning and he’s perfect. My sister in law was schedule to be induced today, but Wes had other plans and started knocking around at 2:30 am. He’s beautiful, 7 pounds 4 ounces and has a head full of hair. I’ve never loved someone so much who I haven’t even met! Here’s my open letter to my darling boy:


Dear Little Wes,


Welcome to the world! You’ve got two of the coolest people I know as parents, and I want you to know when you get older and want presents that they won’t buy you, you can always come to me and Unkie Tom. Then, when you’re older than that and get arrested or crash your Dad’s car, you can call us for that too.


I love you so much, you are such a blessing to our family. Thank you for arriving healthy and strong. I’ll see you soon and kiss your feet and maybe bite off a toe or two (Don’t be greedy! You have 10!).


Love love,
Auntie Hez

If Its and Buts Were Cherries and Nuts…etc – Monday April 25th

To tell you the truth the Super Happy Fun Time Challenge isn’t going that great. I’ve certainly read a lot and exercised and done many things I’ve been putting off, but the rest of the list has been seriously neglected. I have a lot of excuses, but they’re not very interesting. I just have to keep at it and start over tomorrow. Who knew that eight little tasks would feel so out of reach?


Actually I have concentrated really hard on not complaining. I’m still at the ‘be aware of how much you complain and try to complain less then that’ stage. It’s very very hard but has improved my mood! I used to think that it was really important to vent, to get things off my chest. I’ve gone to therapy on and off for years. But therapy and out-bursts of wild complaining are not the same. My complaining can take on a life of it’s own because I’m good at telling a story (or…at least I think I am…) so I like to ensnare people with a funny anecdote. The next thing they know they’re listening to a 15 minute lecture about whatever wrong I have suffered recently. A polite laugh is like pouring gasoline all over a tire fire. Sometimes I can even hear my own voice, whining and strained, but I can’t stop.


It turns out there’s a trick: don’t complain in the first place. Keep your mouth shut, leave work at the office, smile when you want to scowl, fake it til you make it. It’s all true. I feel like I have made the most important discovery of my generation. Older generations, of course, already knew that complaining was like soul-poisen. But I grew up smack dab on the middle of the stand-up comedy era, when complaining was greatly admired if it could be made hilarious. I’m not saying that my complaining is hilarious…I would describe it more accurately as tedious…but I think my comedic role models may have been a bad influence on me.


Complaining also takes up a lot of conversational space that might otherwise be filled with witty banter. Or informed discussions. It’s so easy to fall back on a little whimpering, especially when you’re feeling too tired to read the news and usually feel to self-absorbed to be a very good listener. Maybe the spring time has revived something in me, maybe it’s just my heart healing a little more every day, but I just don’t feel like a sad sack anymore. Or not all the time anyway. I am getting so much better at identifying a problem and taking action.


Don’t get too excited. It’s only been a week. This blog can be an albatross around my neck when it comes to making sweeping proclamations about personal change. Nothing makes me cower quit like some one calling me out in my real life for something I wrote on my blog. I remember being in high school, and sitting in the chapel listening to a lecture by a published author. He asked if we had any questions and I tried to will myself to raise my arm and ask the thing that had always haunted my dreams of being a writer. When He finally called on me, I asked: “Aren’t you afraid of what people will say once you actually publish your writing?” He looked at me like I had a thick accent, or was inexplicably disfigured.


“Well,” he replied, “that’s what you have to do when you’re a writer.”


Oh yea. Good point. You can’t be a writer without people reading. So you have to suck up your fears and wild insecurities and just be relieved that anyone will read what you write, even if they remind you that you’re on Weight Watchers when you’re out to dinner. Or ask how your running is going when you haven’t stepped on the treadmill for four days.


When I write about hard things I always use “you”, it’s like I’m too intimidated to say I have to do something. Instead I pretend it’s some universal -ism that I’m bestowing upon my audience. “My dear people! Listen to my clever statements and bask in their wisdom and cleverness!” There are a few things I still have to work on once I get this complaining thing resolved.

Still Laughing – Thursday April 21st

Every week I’m newly stunned at how much time has passed since Tommy Jr died. Whole chunks are missing- months have passed unaccounted for. I remember August and December because we had great travel adventures. The rest is a blur.


If it wasn’t for how easily I can laugh now, I would think that everything had happened two weeks ago. I do remember how long it took me to feel like I had my own skin on again, and how rattled I was when people expected me to act normal again when I was so far from feeling like myself. And I remember accepting that I had to find a different normal, and accepting that most people just could not understand the pain that weighed on my heart…even when I was able to smile and laugh again.


I still want to tell people all the time that I am a mother, that I have a son…but I don’t want to burden people with the story. Like when people who know me through work say, “Weren’t you pregnant last time I saw you” I usually just say “Yes, but it’s a sad story.” I’m not afraid of talking about it, I just feel bad. It’s like I’m forcing people to bite off more than they can chew. My heart, though, is a mother’s heart.


This is turning out to be a sadder post than I intended. I just wanted to say that my trying to try has paid off. I’m less scared about the future, I’m more hopeful. And I realized that part of being an adult is suffering and not losing sight of the wonder and joy of life. Tragedy does not cancel out happiness. If you had told me 10 years ago that I would have a beautiful baby die and that I would survive, I wouldn’t have believe it was possible. I wouldn’t have believed that any of it was possible. But here I am. It’s spring again, Tom and I are alive, our hearts can ache but it won’t stop us from laughing.

Day 1 Wrap Up- Tuesday April 19th

So far I’m really enjoying my 30 day challenge. Granted, day one of almost anything is enjoyable so I’m trying not to caw with pride. Here is the list and how I did:


1. Be in bed every night before 11 pm.
Easy. I made this vague enough so that if I end up reading in bed until the wee hours of the night I will still consider myself successful. Last night I went to bed at 10:50 pm. I intended to go to sleep right away but ended up finishing my book. So I’d say I was asleep by 1:45 am. Good effort.


2. Be physically active for at least 30 minutes a day (can be non-consecutive if necessary).
Also easy. Ran two miles then did this awful/awesome rock climbing-type machine at the gym.


3. Follow Weight Watchers program with renewed obsession. Feel free to talk about it non-stop and hope that friends and family will forgive me or successfully tune me out.
Great! I love Weight Watchers.


4. Write something every day.
Does the first draft of this blog post count?


5. Read something every day.
See #1.


6. Avoid casual complaining, gossiping and snarkiness.
This is HARD but very very fulfilling. I wasn’t very successful, but it’s a long time habit and will take some time to break. Even making myself aware of my casual complaining helps I think. But this will be the toughest on the list.


7. Complete something I’ve been avoiding.
Also easy. All it takes is accomplishing one small goal which snow balls into self-confidence.


8. Meditate for 5 minutes.
I failed. It’s ok, I’ll try again.


The only problem with this challenge is that if I skip a couple of steps it’s easy to say “forget the whole thing” so I’m going to try hard and fight against that impulse. It’s like the lazy person’s way out of doing something difficult. Stay tuned for Day 2 Wrap Up (I know…I’m a day behind already…)

The 30 Day Super Happy Fun Time Challenge! – Monday April 18th

Welcome to day one of my 30 Day Super Happy Fun Time Challenge! The rules are simple: I do each thing on my list once a day for 30 days. The idea behind the challenge is also simple: occupy my frantic brain with action to combat the stagnant feelings of waiting and lack of control. If you’d like to join the challenge, post your own set of rules in the comments here. We can keep tabs on each other.


Without further ado…The List:


1. Be in bed every night before 11 pm.

2. Be physically active for at least 30 minutes a day (can be non-consecutive if necessary).

3. Follow Weight Watchers program with renewed obsession. Feel free to talk about it non-stop and hope that friends and family will forgive me or successfully tune me out.

4. Write something every day.

5. Read something every day.

6. Avoid casual complaining, gossiping and snarkiness.

7. Complete something I’ve been avoiding.

8. Meditate for 5 minutes.

That’s it. Eight little things that I already know make me a little happier. Starting Monday I hope to update my blog with my progress…or set backs. This is much easier than training for a marathon, and I think the benefits will be great.


Wish me luck!

For Now – Friday April 15th

Well it seems like I’m not pregnant this time. That’s ok. It’s unsettling that the psychic was wrong (she said I’d be pregnant by May) but I suppose I just have to admit that psychics are for entertainment purposes only.


One super cool thing that happened is that my insurance company rejected a claim from a recent doctor’s visit. It was one of the doctors I was interviewing to star in the upcoming production of Heather Gets Pregnant Again. While I liked the guy, there were too many doctors in his practice so I went with some one else. My pals at Blue Cross Blue Shield patiently explained that after a review of my records, they didn’t think the procedures preformed were necessary so would I kindly pay them $655.


I could appeal if I want, all I have to do is send in every medical record generated since my last conception. I asked what business insurance adjusters had deciding what procedures were necessary, but halfway through the woman’s bland corpor-answer I tuned her out. I don’t care. I’m not going to pay the bill anyway, so what’s the point in arguing about it. If they want to pay a collection agency to come after me I would take great pleasure in making sure they spend $1000 in man hours to try and recover my $655.


Passive resistance is all I’ve ever really been capable of.


In the meantime, it’s back to Weight Watchers. I can take this next month to lose a little more weight before my dear friend’s wedding in Jamaica. I can focus on adoring my soon-to-be-born nephew. I can take Ramona on her physical-therapist-sanctioned half hour walks. I’m still waiting, but I’ll live a little too.

Update from the Motorcity- Monday April 11th

I’m in Detroit right now for work. Michigan has noticeably beautiful light. It’s the kind of light that makes you wish you had brought your camera, even when you pass a gas station or a really big parking garage.


I haven’t written for a while. In part its because I’m suffering very badly from insomnia and most my brain power is devoted to one of two mantras: 1. I’m so tired or 2. Why can’t I just fall asleep? But apart from my insomnia, I just don’t have a lot of mental energy right now. My first nephew is going to be born soon, my son’s birthday is right around the corner, I still don’t know if I’m pregnant, and I don’t know what to hope for anymore. In short: I’m still waiting.


Maybe the world is divided between people who wait and people who live. As if the people who live are impervious to waiting…like instead of just waiting they go and do…while I’m at home just waiting. Sometimes I think I’m so used to the waiting that I don’t even notice when the thing actually happens.


Ugh. See why I haven’t written? It seems so interesting in my head, but once it come though my finger tips its just a bunch of boring sentimental drivel.


2ww – Monday April 4th

No offense to Einstein, but I don’t think a genius was necessary to discover that time is relative. I mean, I know he did that math equation- I couldn’t have done that- but the concept is obvious. Admitting it can be hard though, especially when you know the only thing that will help you in most situations is time. The slow, tortuous kind.


The two week wait. If you’re tried to get pregnant before or you read fertility/baby blogs you’re already familiar with the 2ww. It’s a long long two weeks. It’s a span of time that crawls by, dividing your hours into little dog-crap-bags of minutes. It’s the time between when you last ovulated and when you get your period. Or don’t get your period, and instead get a little pink plus sign in a bed of white plastic that takes your breath away.


The two week wait is when everything is a sign: I can smell the printer ink in our office, I knew Tom ate french fries in the car five hours before he picked me up, I’m suddenly not interested in drinking. I go to Whole Foods and buy all natural shampoo and conditioner and a ton of fruit….just in case.


Also relative to time: money disasters. When I was in my early 20′s my money disasters were things like $50 parking ticket and the unexpected $120 heating bill. I remember having to call my brother to loan me money to get my car out of impound- it’s was $180 and there was no way I could pay it. In my late 20′s the disasters got more expensive: $500 at the emergency vet, $650 to get my car fixed. Tom and I got a credit card with a $500 balance to help keep our head above water. When my 30′s burst onto the scene they brought much scarier bills. $2000 to the IRS, $2400 for dog surgery. Our credit limit got higher but I’m more paranoid about using it.


I almost bought a stress meter the other day. I saw it in a magazine; it measures the temperature of your finger and I guess that means something about your stress level. I imagined keeping it in my pocket and using it obsessively until I because so overwhelmed by the stress that my stress was putting me through that my head exploded. So I decided not to buy it. Plus when I really thought about it I realized that your body is actually it’s own stress meter so it’s sort of stupid.


Has it been two weeks yet?

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