May 29, 2001

Twenty Years

Twenty years ago today, I gave birth for the first time.
Today is also my son's birthday; he seems to think the day is all about him but since this is my journal, here it can be all about me.

There are some birth photographs around somewhere; I won't post them, at least not this year. I don't remember if video cameras were common (or even invented) in 1981 but I also don't know that I'd have allowed the birth to be filmed. Still photos were enough.

I was lucky - I really have no birth horror stories to tell. (And if I did, I hope I wouldn't tell them here!)

We knew it was a boy, because we asked during the ultrasound test. We both wanted a boy.
He, for his own (probably hormonal) reasons, and me for my psychological ones. I knew I'd be a good mother for a boy.

Mark was a nice, healthy eight and a half pounds; not overly big like Hubby, who was eleven pounds at birth! (I myself was a dainty seven-eleven!)

They wiped him off, checked a few things, and then placed him on my belly. I looked at the red, wriggling, squalling eight pounds of baby and wondered what do I do with him!

I soon found out.. nurse, diaper, nurse, rock, nurse, hold, and nurse. Oh, and repeat.

Mark was a rather high-strung baby. He detested lying on his back, especially when being subjected to a sponge bath. If he was interrupted during the first ten or fifteen minutes of nursing, he would shriek until the breast reappeared in his mouth. He would not settle down easily, and required my presence at all times when awake. He's still high strung, but manifests it in other ways.

In 1981 I was in hospital for a week - two days before the birth and four after. In 1984, when Rob was born, it was three days in total. I understand that now some mothers barely stay 24 hours. I'm not sure if that's a good thing.

This is me, twenty years ago, a few hours after becoming a mother. The blank look on my face is real; I think it's called "pregnancy brain".

How did I get into this mess?

This is Hubby, holding his firstborn. Twenty years later, Hubby has much less hair - and so does Mark, as he insists on keeping it short.

Why is his face so puffy and his head so pointed?

1981         2001: My son the telemarketer!
    Before...         ...and After!

Being super compulsive about my stats, I usually follow up a referral that I haven't seen before. That's what led me, yesterday, to this journal:

Linque Du Jour:   Water Lilly Alley ("WLA")

The referral must have come from the Smart and Lazy webring link. Given that recommendation, and the photo of the bridge at twilight on the front page, I decided to look around.

My first impression (because of the journal name and the tasteful photo) was that the author of this journal was a woman.


That impression was quickly dispelled by the first entry I read (the current one at the time, May 24) in which the author referred to himself as "Mr. WLA". Even so, I reread a couple of times to make sure it wasn't a reference to someone else.

The entry concerned a questionable product known as "China Shrink Cream". I'll leave you to read it yourself, but only if you're over 18... (AND MAKE SURE TO COME BACK HERE AFTER, CAN YOU HEAR ME???)


Sufficiently intrigued by that, I rummaged around for a bio page, and found this:
23 useless things to know about myself
In which I learned that the author is not only male, but in the neighbourhood of fifty years old. And a grandfather.
Clearly not the kind that has settled down with pipe and rocking chair.

I also checked out the very first entry, from January, 2000. Under the "a bit about myself" heading, I found a nine paragraph essay about a truck.

I read it.

Maybe that says more about me than the author, I don't know. It was well-written. It had conflict and suspense. And even a happy ending.

Anyone who can get me to read nine paragraphs about a truck deserves my name on their notify list! Glad to have found you, Mr. WLA!

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