crocodile tears

I've tried to avoid regaling people with constant references to pregnancy and parenthood. I think it's a bit boring. And I don't want to be one of those folks who have a child and suddenly are completely absorbed into that child -- personality and all. I told Martin this week that I really, truly, honestly don't want to be a mother who talks about her child in such rapturous detail that everyone's eyes glaze over. (If I do that in the future, please, someone correct me in love!)

However, it is rather a big deal. No stomach-pun intended. "Nine months" is a short period of time, with all sorts of things that I've never experienced -- never even imagined -- and then comes baby Asparagus.

Overall, things have been pretty easy and "normal" for me. But there are things unavoidable and a whole new range of emotions is one of them. Now Martin would insist that I am a "softie" -- and sure, I have my sentimental sides -- but recently I have caught myself in tears at the most unbelievable things. So for the sake of confession and possibly a laugh, here is an incomplete list of things that can make a pregnant chick cry.
  • Para Olympic sledge hockey
  • Olympic mogul skiing
  • News footage of a deadly avalanche
  • Sound of Music
  • A reno project
  • An emergency baby delivery show
  • Super Nanny
  • Swedish "parenting" class
  • Church
  • Daytime television (including Ghost Whisperer. Gack.)
  • Thwarted plans
I guess that's embarrassing enough. In some ways it's rather freeing, too. Perhaps my tears were before trapped in some deep, repressed place and now I am just free to be a "sensitive woman". I should also write as a caveat that Martin is not miserable -- really -- he swears it hasn't "been that bad." More amusing than anything.


park it

A cutely amusing commercial Martin found on our desktop, with neither of us knowing how it got there. It pushed the humour button regardless. Martin and I have had some funny instances with parallel parking, especially since living in the countryside. When we get into the "big city" (actually a rather smallish city of around 100,000) the parallel parking fun begins. Funny how marriages are proven on the most unlikely of battlefields.


the land of nod

This morning finished rereading East of Eden. I put it down with a sigh of relief and contentment, and went to blow my nose. I couldn't help but cry a little at the end. (Okay, I also cried a little throughout the book, too -- I am blaming it on my "emotions" these days. That and what wonderful characters John Steinbeck creates.)

This is a book I will come back to again as it only gets better each time, one of the yearly indulgent re-reads I do, like the Chronicles of Narnia (which incidentally, I hope to try reading in Swedish this year.)

This time I marked little thoughts and parts of the book's dialogue. Although the snippets rarely have the same impact taken out of their context and emotion at the time of reading, they are worth sharing:

"You are one of those rare people who can separate your observation from your preconception. You see what it is, where most people see what they expect."
(I really want to be one of these rarities. But how do I know what I expect to see and how it colours my observation? In reference to race and nationality it's a little clearer to me, but it's worth thinking over in depth.)

"You can't make a race horse out of a pig."
"No, but you can make a very fast pig."
(What more is there to say? I love the earthiness: a complex truth broken down to simple language.)

"An unbelieved truth can hurt a man much more than a lie. It takes great courage to back truth unacceptable to our times. There is a punishment for it, and usually it's crucifixion. I haven't the courage for that."

(I wish for the courage on a daily basis. I suppose the way we choose to live our lives is a fraction of backing truth unacceptable to our times. But too often I find myself hedging with carefully worded sentences or slimy political correctness when possibly the most refreshing and freeing thing would be that unacceptable truth.)


to love

Lovely things that delight me:
  • Letter writing at the kitchen window, with fresh bread, real butter, winter sunshine and a perfectly hot cup of tea.
  • A new shag carpet under bare toes.
  • A well-designed, well-constructed laundry rack.
  • The early morning pale just as the sun rises: a white-blue morning sky with a hint of gray at the edges. The same as my husband's winter-morning eyes.
  • A letter in the mailbox, and a surprise package from a generous friend.
  • A tidy house, neatly made beds, the smell of clean, warmed by a good fire and sunshine.
  • A walk that truly felt as though Father Christmas had come to break the spell of the White Witch: the earth spitting up melting snow, the trees shedding their great snowy weight with mighty showers and thuds and plops, narrowly missing faces and heads, the birds singing madly.
  • Long friendship reconstructed over tea cups and table.
  • A firm handshake and conversations in a second language.
  • Gentle assurance from the one I love.
  • Thoughtfulness and generousity at unexpected moments.
  • Things lent, things borrowed.
  • Food cooked, food shared.
  • Gift-giving and prayer-praying.
  • A neighbour who looks out his window and cares what transpires there.
  • The softness of a two-week old baby.
  • A willing, attentive ear.
  • Spontaneity, a warm welcome, "fredags mös", good conversation.
  • Unexpected invitations.
  • Sweet sincerity.
  • The wonder, humor, and intimacy of a first pregnancy.
  • "Face-to-face" conversations on Skype.
  • A friend with whom I can be honest and vulnerable.
  • Waking up from a horror-dream.
  • Things that are lime-green.