Saturday, August 27, 2011


I have had a headache, an upset stomach and mild but unrelenting kidney pain for several days. 

Angelfish has a body-wracking cough.  I give her nebulizer treatments at bedtime, and during bad nights like last night, around 2 a.m.  The looks of betrayal when I hold her little arms down when all she wants to do is getthemaskoffgetitoffgetitoffnow are brutal. Also, as a result, I'm not sleeping well.

Hurricane Irene is due here eventually.  My street always floods in a storm.  The best I can pray for is that we don't lose power (for very long anyway) and that the flood waters don't destroy my car or basement. 

They cancelled Bullshark's flight home from where he touched down in CONUS. He was due in tonight.  I have no idea when he'll get home now.  He's at airport trying to work that out. Oh, and he just got a call from his father saying his mom is in the hospital. Yeah, ok... I think Bullshark is having a shittier day than I am. 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Tie breaker?

Ambivalent: strong, simultaneous & contradictory attitudes or feelings.

We have talked about whether we want to try for a third child.  We haven't done any medical procedures to prevent a third.  Because we're ambivalent.  In the early years, we always assumed we'd have at least three kids.  We didn't know how challenging it would be to bring #2 into the world.  Or that it would take six years.  Or that the timing would come as such a challenge, but in the end it all worked out fine.  Angelfish was a long-awaited, long-wanted wonderful surprise of a pregnancy.  I was anxious throughout, considering my history, but now we have this amazing wonderfully squishy baby. We consider ourselves so blessed to have been given two happy, healthy kids -- a boy and a girl, no less -- wouldn't it be just the height of selfish to ask for more than that?  Plus, the expense.  We're barely keeping our heads above water.  We've been married for over 12 years. It would be nice to, someday, not constantly feel like we're barely making it every month.  A third child would push that "someday" off even farther into the future.  And college saving? The kids are gonna need some scholarships or something as it is. Retirement savings? What's that?  So maybe our ambivalence was really just a way of postponing what would be the inevitable decision... our family was fine at four.

So imagine my surprise when I popped positive on a pregnancy test today.

I hadn't planned on mentioning it here for a while.  Bullshark is overseas after all. I was hemming and hawing as to whether I should tell him over email or wait til he got home.  I had made telling him about prior pregnancies sort of an event... a special occasion.  These ended badly.  So, with Angelfish, I told him without ceremony.  But it was at least in person.  Then in his email tonight, out of the blue, he said:

Not to get too personal, but did your aunt flow come? or are we expecting a tie breaker in 10 months?

Yeah.  So I took that as a sign, caught him on instant message before went to bed, and told him.

I know I should be overjoyed, but I'm still kind of reeling.  I had only just begun to figure out what it meant to be a working mother of two, and honestly still faced some ambivalence over "selfishly" returning to a job that makes me happy instead of being home with my children.  I wanted to dote on my squishy baby and watch her grow into toddlerhood.  I hadn't planned on doing that with a demanding infant in tow.  I am kicking myself for not being more proactive about birth control.  I only just got my damn period back! I should have known, though.  My kidneys have been hurting.  Last time that happened was here.  Also, I thought my rack looked awesome because I finally started wearing normal (not nursing) bras.  But I guess its not that. 

I'm sure I'll eventually get to the "OMG I am so happy" place.  Congratulations are, of course, completely appropriate.  But I don't feel the "squeeeeeee" ... not yet anyway.

And also, because of my history, I feel like a really bad person right now for not being overjoyed.  Like, if anything happens, I will beat myself up mercilessly because I somehow caused it by my ambivalence.  Which, intellectually, I know is bullshit.  But... well, now you know what its like to live in my crazy ass head.     

(I know that this is insensitive to women who have fertility issues and had challenging pregnancies.  I know the me who struggled for so long to get & stay pregnant with Angelfish would be so angry reading this post.  But it is where I am now.  And I remind myself that I am not responsible for how other people feel.)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

MILP #217

Attorney At Large debuts as a regular host of the roundup with a bang.  A glorious, geeky bang.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Beach day

My sister suggested bringing the kids to a quiet little beach I had never heard of.  It was a short walk from the parking lot to the sand.  There was a lifeguard on duty.  The sea was calm, and there was no undertow or indeed any current to speak of.  Overcast skies, but I was still vigilant about sunscreen.  The weather was not overly hot or humid, and of course we had that glorious shore breeze.  There were maybe 20 families there with little kids there, and spread out enough that we weren't assaulted by other kids' sand fights and running. 

I had bought a small tent years ago when Clownfish was a baby and I was glad that my super-organized husband had hung it in the garage where I was able to find it for Angelfish.  The tent protected her from the sand and the sun and gave her a place to take two naps relatively undisturbed.  Angelfish fights sleep in the cutest way.  She settles in on her tummy and sucks her thumb for thirty seconds, then pops it out and cries, then pops it in and sucks, rinse repeat between three and seven times... until the thumb finally remains in place and she drifts off to sleep.

Admission wasn't cheap -- $20 for a weekday pass -- but giving my son a day to run around with his cousins, to swim and pretend to be a shark, to build castles with moats, to collect rocks because "Papa would want them," all without having to worry about being the "big brother" for a few hours?


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Money can't buy me love

Just did our back to school shopping for Clownfish. New sneakers & new shoes (on sale), two new pairs of uniform pants, other assorted uniform necessities, lunchbox, and assorted school supplies.  The benefit of the uniforms is that I don't have to get a whole wardrobe, etc., but they do charge an arm and a leg for a single pair of pants.  Oh, and I have to go get them shortened.   Grand total came in at around $225 (not including alterations... maybe Bullshark can do them?).  This is probably less than some families and more than others.  But dropping that much in the span of a few hours, plus $60 on gas for the car, just made me say ouch.

Monday, August 15, 2011

This Angelfish post will self-destruct

Laughter. Maniacal laughter, but laughter all the same.

(Oh, that's Clownfish saying silly things trying to get her to laugh.)

(Sorry you missed the video.)

MILP #216: Fear and Loathing

The Weekly MILP (Moms In the Legal Profession) Roundup is hosted on a rotating basis between PT-LawMom, Butterflyfish, Attorney Work Product and Attorney at Large blogs. We originally rounded up just the moms in law school, but then discovered that those women eventually graduate. Who knew? So now all the moms in the legal field (heh) are represented. We aim for Sunday posts.

Did you notice a change there?  Attorney at Large?  Yes, she has joined our rotation full time, and we're happy to have her. She'll have the roundup on Sunday.  Then Ptlawmom, then Atty Work Product.  If this all seems too much to keep up with, don't worry.  As usual, if you check any one of us, we'll set you right.

This week, I blogged about my fear of spiders.  So I thought I'd see if any of the other MILPs blogged about fears and loathings... or things that mildly annoy them.  Yes, I skipped some folks -- ya'll just were too positive to meet the theme this week, not matter how I stretched it.  

There are some new (to my roundup, anyway) MILPs on this list.  Ch-ch-ch-ch-check them out.

Here we go.

Also, not in the theme, but since she's new, I thought I'd include Today & Tomorrow, who is all in for 1L to begin, and, since its too awesome not to link, huge congrats to Reluctant Grownup, who has a new job and a place to raise her family.

If you’d like to have your blog added to the MILP blogroll for weekly review or would like us to consider a specific post, drop the hostess(es) an email or leave a comment at any of our sites. Expecting moms in law school and attorneys are welcome.
FYI: I am no longer doing the hat tip to the Legal Underground because neither he nor his cohorts and successors are doing the law school round up any longer. We are the only game in town now, beeotches. People doing round up knock offs gonna be hat tipping US.

Sunday, August 14, 2011


I am pretty terrified of spiders. I think Ron from Harry Potter is completely and utterly rational in this regard. While Bullshark was deployed, I adopted a live and let live approach to any little spiders that found their way into the house.  Until I started killing them occasionally.  Only if they were small and unsuspecting and slowish and I was sure I would be successful the first time.

Now, I have a very large problem.  There are (at least) three very very big spiders who live outside my house.  During the early evening, they weave very very large and intricate webs between my roof gutter and front yard lamp and in front of my front door.  So, if I come home after dark, my path is blocked by enormous spiders hovering in the center of enormous webs.

This has happened four times.  Each time, I elected to have the kids stand back while I used an ISWBD (improvised spider web breaking device--junk mail, usually) to break a few key strands so we could move past without getting covered in sticky web attached to angry huge spiders.  This has taken no small amount of skill -- night time, after all. The spiders move their webs every time, and the only warning you get (if you're looking for it) is the hovering spider himself, marking the center of the web.

But then I leave them alone. Because they are far far far too big for me to kill.  UGH. As I type this, I keep getting that icky feeling that I have spider webs on me or spiders crawling on my skin.

Last night, after we made it safely inside, and the biggest spider by the door started repairing his web, I decided to take action.  I found a can of ant killer in the basement.  I sprayed the spider through the screen door. He fell to the ground, stunned more by the liquid than any poison.  Then he climbed back up and went back to work.

Great.  Now I've pissed them off.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Maybe there's a reason they say you can't go home?

New tag: working girl-3rd year.  This starts my third year year as a lawyer, and I've still never represented a client.  Or defended or taken a deposition.  Or drafted a will or a contract.  Instead, I work behind the scenes.  I get to legal research and writing for a living.  It makes me happy that, as a result, I can talk intelligently about a wide variety of legal issues and areas of law.  And I'm very happy doing it this way.  For now.

For various personal reasons (see for example, Angelfish), I applied to return to the place that I worked for my first year out of law school.  They agreed to take me back, but, again, they can only commit to a one year term.  I am much more anxious about going back than I thought I would be.  They'll expect a lot of me -- I should know what I'm doing, after all.  And I'm afraid that I'm going to blow my hard-earned reputation by screwing something huge up. 

Also, again, because of the nature of the job, I am looking toward the next horizon -- fall 2012.  I'm banking on my experience and references and applying for jobs that I would never have been considered for just out of law school. 

We'll see how it goes.

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

MILP oversights

I just discovered yet another MILP blog that I haven't included in my roundup, ever.  I have given up using bloglines and other readers because I kept missing posts. 

If you're a MILP, please check the MILP blogroll to the right. If you're not there, and wish to be, comment please.

This has been a Butterflyfish Blog special report. We apologize for the inconvenience and now return you to your regularly scheduled blogging.

MILP #215

Proto Atty had it. Here Sunday.

In other news, I rearranged the labels on my blog this morning.  Yeah, that wasn't on the list of things to do. But you know, coping mechanisms take weird forms.  Anyway, there was a temporary post, which may have spammed your feeds. Sorry about that.

Monday, August 08, 2011

Without him, I feel his arms around me....

Bullshark is heading overseas for the rest of the month.  Naval reserve stuff.  Bad news is, I'm flying solo with the kids, etc. for the rest of August.  Good news is, the timing could not have been better because I'm unemployed until September. I had hoped by writing this, I would shake off the complete and utter denial I am experiencing right now.

Don't think it worked.

Ok, so I'll list the things I need to do before he returns.

Things to do:

Every morning, water the garden, check for veggies to pick, make lots of salads.
Every morning, go for a walk! Seriously, no fucking excuses.  Pack the baby into a stroller and get your fat ass out there. (Oh yeah, the professional pics taken at the race were not flattering.)
Go to the dentist (long overdue filling for me, annual check up for Clownfish).
Make an appointment to see a kidney doctor.  The stones are lurking, but couldn't be dealt with during pregnancy.
Finally finish the bar application for State 2. Passed the damn exam in 2009 and haven't gotten admitted yet. 
Make a doctor appointment about Angelfish's lungs... could be nothing, but she gets frequent coughs.
Start on Angelfish's baby album. She's seven months old. It is time.
Hey, haven't you been meaning to print the old blog posts about Clownfish?  For like, years now?
Oh, there was that list of books you've been meaning to read...?
Plan Clownfish's birthday.
You've got at least two softball games and you have to arrange for childcare at the field.
Visit all of those friends and family you've been politely putting off until August. Its August now.  The calendar is starting to fill up... and you haven't even started calling those doctors.
. . .

Ok, now I'm just freaking myself out.

Edited to add:  Clownfish's school uniform, school shoes, school sneakers, back to school shopping....

I think I'll go have some wine. Bullshark should be done packing soon, I hope.

(Anyone recognize the post title?)

Sunday, August 07, 2011

The first 5k are the hardest

I "ran" my first 5k today. That's 3.1 miles.  "Ran" because I walked a lot of it, probably more than was strictly necessary.  It was pouring, pouring rain.  It started with a slog down an unpaved road with 5-inch deep puddles, then up a decent sized hill, and then through residential neighborhoods with lots of turns around corners and up and down side roads.  Needless to say, I lost the field pretty early and found myself running alone.  I had real difficulty finding a good pace and my asthma was acting up after that first hill.  I got discouraged for a while and walked for a good bit.  Somewhere between mile two and three, I was able to jog with consistency and actually had a good pace going, but my last place finish was already secured by that point.  Toward the end, they had a guy in a truck following me, because all of the other people along the route who were giving directions had gone back to the finish line already.  There was a 10 mile race too, so everyone was still there when I crossed the finish line.  

My goal was to finish, and I did.  In 166th place, and about 10 minutes behind the next slowest runner. 

Oh well, I have a time to beat for the next one.

Things I learned:

I had not trained nearly enough.
The beginners typically do not come out for runs when the weather is shitty. 
Nor do cheering fans.
Asthma f**king sucks.
Jimmy Eat World "The Middle" is the best song on my running mix.  I played it three times because it was totally responsible for me finally finding a solid pace. 
Running in the rain sucks a lot less than running in the heat.
Hot showers feel goooooooood.

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Debt ceiling

The 17 year old Chrysler (mentioned here) finally died for good. Between a catastrophic failure (kachunk, pshhhhhh, flap flap, flap, and then everything stopped at once) and the "do not resuscitate" order I entered last time we dropped a grand on the thing, it was time.
Of course, we need two cars -- Bullshark and I work in opposite directions and run very different hours. Now we now have TWO car payments, both 100% financed because we have zero savings thanks to law school.  Between those payments and daycare... seriously, exorbitant daycare costs that are about to skyrocket when Angelfish starts full time in September.  Daycare costs are so high, it sometimes feels like it would pay for me NOT to work.  Then I look at the other bills, knowing that I contribute toward paying them, and I realize that its not an option for me to stay home. Why? Mortgage/taxes, Clownfish's tuition (whole year must be paid between July and December, so payments are pretty high right now), student loans....  Plus we have other debt.  Old debt that we've been working hard to pay down, plus debt acquired in law school.

Raising the family debt ceiling sucked.  But now we have a sweet little commuter car (Hyundai Accent) that can get up to 40 miles per gallon.  We'll probably come out ahead... eventually.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

This Angelfish post will self destruct

Angelfish does yoga poses.  Please ignore my super excited mommy voice.  You have been warned.  Really. Turn down the speakers.

(Video is gone. Sorry you missed it. She has several of those Carter's monkey outfits. The video involved her shaking her monkey butt and chunky thighs.)

Kind of loving my time at home

We used to place stuffed toys at the edge of the blanket on the floor to get Clownfish to crawl forward. He'd pull the blanket so the toy would move toward him instead.  Angelfish, on the other hand, has achieved forward momentum in her crawling efforts.  Her first order of business was to attempt to remove Clownfish's slipper. I think she was going for his toes. Vicious baby on the loose.  You're on notice.

Monday, August 01, 2011