Saturday, March 31, 2007
I've spent most of my time so far looking at apartments online (we're moving June 1) and researching child care arrangements for next year. I have written a few emails and organized my inbox. I have not read my Lexis printouts or figured out what precisely the topic of my paper is going to be. Would anyone like to research and write a paper for me as a baby gift? You'd get a lovely thank you note.
Thursday, March 29, 2007
Today in Public Land and Resource Law he kicked a few more times and I almost giggled out loud in glee. How can I concentrate on the Organic Administration Act when my son is saying hello? "Happily distracted" effectively sums up my mental state right now- I'm already behind in my reading and I have a massive paper due in a month (and a 3-page outline for that paper which is overdue by 4 weeks), but I don't care a whole heck of a lot. This is why I took all the big important classes this past fall and winter. Happy distraction and corporations law wouldn't have worked out very well.
I actually like my classes a lot this quarter- they're all different from the ones I took earlier this year. One is essentially a legal history class surveying how race has been treated in American law, another looks at the relationship b/w religion and the constitution, there's public land which is a form of property, the only 1L class I enjoyed, and lastly there's my criminal justice and cyber law seminar taught by a prosecutor that is both fantastic and fascinating. It's a lovely quarter, and not nearly as rigorous as prior ones, so I have plenty of time to sit and be happily distracted.
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
I know there are a million studies concerning the superiority of breast milk, and I do believe that it has unique benefits, especially for the immune system. I'm not trying to debunk science, but I think the advantages are often overstated through the use of adjectives in articles that have no numbers. I think that any study which looks at kids 15 years later is flawed in too many ways to prove breastfed babies are intellectually or biologically superior. I found an interesting article that reads, "what's not so thoroughly reported is that some of the research has serious limitations. 'They're the type of studies that CNN loves to quote and doctors love to hate.' says Tom Jaksic, MD, a leading expert on neonatal nutrition at Harvard Medical School, referring to those linking breastfeeding and disease prevention. And like most research, while breastfeeding studies are significant, he explains, they're largely 'population-based,' meaning that babies who are nursed may have parents who are well nourished, well educated, and able to afford quality medical care. 'We try to correct for these things statistically, but we can't completely.' says Nancy Butte, Ph.D. of the Children's Nutrition Research Center at Baylor College of Medicine. Butte has been studying the chemical components of breast milk and formula for more than 20 years. Both she and Dr. Jaksic believe that if they could eliminate statistical variables, they would find that breastfed babies, taken as a group, are only slightly more resistant to illness than formula fed ones. 'It's hard to distinguish between a well-cared-for bottle-fed infant and one who's breast fed.' says Butte." So, once again, I absolutely agree that "breast is best" but I disagree with those who equate formula with malnutrition and a terrible mother.
I suppose my biggest irritation is how offensively judgmental some people are about breastfeeding- even those who haven't had children yet! I am annoyed at my own feelings of defensiveness when I try to explain that I don't want to breastfeed (I haven't decided what I will actually do, but I don't want to). I think this relates to my general anger at how judged women are in relation to procreating- that people feel free to make comments about a woman's weight gain, about her sip of wine, about her diet coke, about wanting an epidural during labor, about planning to use child care, about returning to work in general, and about so many other aspects of mothering. There are so many choices JP and I will make for our baby that will affect his intelligence, immune system, and temperament- formula v. breastfeeding is just one of them, yet I feel it is one of the most debated, judged, and inquired about.
I haven’t gone into my reasons for not wanting to breastfeed. Some of them are admittedly selfish- after 9 months of existing solely for the benefit of my son, I want my body to be mine again, others are based on convenience- I’m returning to school and want the nanny and JP to be able to feed the baby without my having to pump, and the core reason is that my absolute gut reaction to breastfeeding is really really not wanting to do it. I’ve always felt that way- I know its supposed to be the most natural thing in the world, but I am fundamentally uncomfortable with the very idea. I haven’t actually made a decision yet, I am willing to try and will be talking with my midwife more about this at my next visit. Last night I told JP that I wished I was having a baby in 1982 so that I could formula feed without being judged or yelled at (through the internet or in person) or that I had a “valid” physical reason that made breastfeeding impossible. I then realized the absurdity of wishing a physical condition on myself just to avoid feeling judged and defensive. So I decided to blog about it. You can comment with why breastfeeding is best and should be done despite all obstacles or comment with what you chose to do and why. I’ll delete anything overly negative as I read quite enough of that on other websites today.
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
In law school news, apparently my seminar professor home bakes treats for us each week! This quarter rocks.
Monday, March 26, 2007
Sadly, I returned home to find the construction on the road out front burst a water main and the water is now turned off. They "hope" it will be back on tomorrow. I am not happy about this, but in trying to be positive- I will get to order out dinner guilt-free tonight and it will motivate me to go to the gym in the morning because that's the only way I can take a shower. Now I'm off to physical therapy for my headaches. I've had a few sessions and really love my therapist- I think her stretches and exercises have helped a lot. I felt a headache coming on yesterday and did some of the neck/head stretches and it faded and went away. It could have been a fluke, but I felt quite powerful in being able to scare away a headache without Tylenol.
My commercial transactions grade just got posted and its quite respectable- totally compensates for the bloody aftermath of secured transactions fall quarter.
Sunday, March 25, 2007
In an additional effort to take charge of my increasingly unfamiliar body, I've been going to the gym. I walk on the treadmill with a steep incline and do some arm and leg weights. It feels really good to be doing something proactive- since I can't control my middle, I've decided to make sure my legs and arms look good for summer!
In other baby news, I still haven't felt the little guy kick. I don't know if I'm particularly not in tune with my body or if he's just really lazy, but I haven't been able to detect any movement. Everything looked great in the ultrasound last week, so I'm not worried about it- I just really want to feel his presence. I need constant proof of things, and those ultrasound pictures are only going to hold me over for so long.
Friday, March 23, 2007
I was initially nervous about being pregnant in law school because I knew I'd probably be the only one. UC's average student age is fairly young and many come straight from undergrad (like me), so most just aren't in that place in their lives yet. They're also pretty driven and seem to enjoy making law school as hard as possible (law review, moot court, yes please!), so their 2L/3L years aren't as "easy" as mine (relatively speaking). I thought I would feel awkward being huge and pregnant while my classmates are normal sized and going to bar review, but I couldn't have been more wrong. Because I'm the first of my friends to get pregnant, as well as the first cousin/grandchild, I think of everyone as being like me- inexperienced and slightly uncomfortable with this whole growing a baby process. I forgot that my classmates have lives outside the law school (crazy!) and in those lives their friends, spouses, and siblings have experienced pregnancy and babies. Throughout the last quarter people came up and congratulated me and asked how I was feeling, how classes were going, and to let them know if I ever needed any help. They were uniformly wonderful. Even people I didn't know very well, and guys I wouldn't have expected to be so understanding or talkative on the subject, would ask me how I was doing and give anecdotes of their sister, friend's wife, etc. I've decided the vast majority of people in my class know a lot more than I do about this whole process and they've all been so positive about it. I'm sure there are people who think I'm nuts or that this was an accident, but that's always going to be true, and no one has expressed those thoughts to me. Most seem to agree that this is a good time to start a family and are quite excited about a law school baby- I even have a long list of volunteers to baby sit (and I've written down every one of them :)
In all my planning and researching I think I lost sight of the fact that this is just a baby- its not an impediment to my career or something to be dealt with (not that I saw him that way, but I assumed others would) and most people are just genuinely happy for you. I have usually been the one to bring up timing or how great my firm took the news- most people just wanted to know details and share their own baby stories. This is also what happened when I told The Firm- I expected questions about school and how it was going to work out- instead there was lots of congratulatory emails and advice on baby registering, feeding, etc. Most people have or want children- including my classmates and future firm colleagues- and I'm not seen as blazing a crazy new trail by getting pregnant with career plans.
This is just my experience, I can't speak for other schools, but UC is (quite rightly) known for being "rigorous" and driven, so if they can be all warm and cuddly about a baby, I'd imagine most other schools' students would be similar. I'd love to hear other people's experiences- I've noticed that almost all the google searches leading new people to this blog are for "pregnant in law school" or something of the sort, so I'm sure they'd enjoy them too.
Wednesday, March 21, 2007
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
I wouldn't say I hate being pregnant- I'm thrilled about becoming a mother and I can't wait to meet our baby, but I definitely can't say I love it. Its more of a state that I tolerate because I'm the only one of us who can grow a baby. If JP could do it, I would definitely hand it off to him next time. I wanted to write about my thoughts because I almost feel guilty for having them- every website and baby magazine tells me I should be glowing and reveling in my bump (I should also be wearing gauzy shirts with bows over leggings, but that's not happening either). How did any of you feel while pregnant?
Monday, March 19, 2007
I realized on our vacation that I need more maternity clothes. I only have 2 maternity tops that aren't just oversized sweaters and those aren't going to cut it in warmer weather. I did buy a cute jean skirt at Kohl's and I have my pretty new Isabella Oliver clothes, but I need more casual short-sleeved stuff. I feel like I'm constantly buying things, but I guess you have to when you need an entirely new wardrobe all of a sudden. I've gotten to the point now where none of my old stuff fits- not because I've gotten that big, but because my tops are too short and show the stretchy band at the top of my pants. I love shopping, but its not as fun to buy things for a fatter version of yourself- I prefer the post-diet shopping spree.
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
Last night I sat on the couch and watched crappy tv for about 3 hours completely guilt-free. Today I ran a million errands and shopped a little (or a lot...). I love all the clothing styles right now, they're great for a pregnant girl! I got some really cute stuff that is all non-maternity and looks great- lots of empire waist tops and fold-over waisted skirts and pants. I got the free clothes from Isabella Oliver the other day and Love them! We leave for San Francisco tomorrow for 4 days of fun 60-degree weather. It's a celebration of the baby and then end of the GMAT ANd finals (or at least a break from the GMAT and finals- JP may still retake it and I have 4 more rounds of finals until I graduate). I'm pretty sure JP would kill me if I get on my laptop on our vacation, so I'll post when we get back on Sunday. Our ultrasound is Wednesday, so we're looking forward to that too. The whole world just seems like a brighter, happier place without finals!
Monday, March 12, 2007
Securities is in 15 hours. I'm almost done going through all my notes and slides, but have not yet read all the rules or my own, increasingly long and complicated, outline.
Have you ever been so tired it takes a concentrated effort to make your eyes focus on the words on the screen? That's where I am right now...
Sunday, March 11, 2007
But my commercial transactions final is in less than 3 hours and I feel woefully unprepared. Sadly, its the exam I'm the most prepared for. Admin is tomorrow and securities is Tuesday. All I can really say is, "ugh" and this will all be over Tuesday at 5pm.
Friday, March 9, 2007
This is bad timing because I am feeling completely overwhelmed with my finals (that start in less than 48 hours). At least as a 2L I don't have to do all that well. I spent all of last night just hanging out with him, eating dinner, talking, etc. and only thought about how little I knew about admin a few times. Last year I would have been in the library- he would have talked to me on the phone and I wouldn't have been able to see how deeply upset he was or be able to help. I'm glad that I was home and able to be there for him the way he's been there for me, even if the first half-hour was spent with him glaring at his score sheet on the table and me really wanting to open it, but waiting for him to say something. The tight-rope walking dialogue of "you did great" combined with "I know you're disappointed" would not have worked out as well over the phone.
Thursday, March 8, 2007
(Well, he'll be celebrating, I'll still be drowning in admin confusion- or curled up in the fetal position waiting for it to just go away.)
Wednesday, March 7, 2007
hi, my name is baukjen and i'm one of the founders of isabellaoliver.com . someone forwarded your blog entry and it put a smile on our faces that you wrote that you'd buy isabella oliver if you won the lottery! drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and ask for your email to be forwarded to me and let us know your size and address and we'll pop a few pieces from past photoshoots in the post for you. take care and congrats with your pregnancy!You always read that lottery winners are no happier for all their millions (and often much more sad) and it may have put some strain on our marriage, but my not having to pay for clothes makes both of us happy!
So whoever forwarded my blog to Isabella Oliver, thank you so much- and IO, thanks for taking the time to make a random American blogger's week :)
Update: There's a post about me on their company blog!
Tuesday, March 6, 2007
Anyway, this made me think- if we were to be the sole winners of that ridiculous amount of money, what would we do? Would I quit law school? Would JP quit his job? Would he still go to business school? I have friends who insist the only happiness in life is to be independently wealthy- no need for grad school, loans, jobs, etc. But I'm really not sure that much in our life would change. I'd still finish law school- maybe take a year off without the pressure of repaying my loans, but I'm not even sure I'd do that. I pretty much want it over with. I would be free to do any kind of legal work I want, but I think I'd still start at The Firm. I like the people and I could get an idea of what types of law are out there. I can't imagine what I'd do without a job- a purpose to my day. It could be part time ,volunteer legal work, but it has to be something. The biggest changes for me would be the little extras- a new (4-wheel drive) car, a bigger apartment, giving money to my family, a personal chef!, vacations without a strict budget, etc.
I think more would change for JP. He'd definitely leave his job- he has enjoyed it, but the long hours and often tedious work got old a while ago, and it would be nice for him to have time with the baby (and me!). I'm sure he'd still get his MBA, but I don't think he'd actually go into the business world to use it. He's dream in life is to own a cattle ranch (yes, I married a nice boy from upper crust Washington, D.C. and it turns out he's a Republican who voted for Bush and wants to live on a cattle ranch) and I guess now he could do that. The financial freedom would mean a lot more to him- there's so much he wants to do: invent things, start his own company, and ride horses. He loves the stock market and would have lots of fun researching and investing his own millions. I would still prefer it to be in a box under the bed.
I would enjoy being able to give lots of money to our favorite charities and I could buy all the maternity clothes I wanted from Isabella Oliver, but I think I'd still be a lawyer in some capacity. I suppose that means I've chosen the right field...
Monday, March 5, 2007
- My midwife called with the results of the quad-screen and everything looks great! Our risk or Down's Syndrome is 1/6,500; Spina Bifida is 1/5,200; and there is no increased risk of trisomy 18. So yay- and our ultrasound is only 16 days away!
- I'm exhausted. Pretty much all the time. I got less than 8 hours of sleep last night and found myself dozing off in class several times. I kept hearing that the 2nd trimester was so magical and you felt so great, but I am really just as tired as the 1st trimester. The tiredness isn't as sudden or imperative, but it is always there. I'm currently waiting for my stomach to feel less full from lunch so that I can go take a nap (and probably dream about all the work I should be doing).
- A week from today I will be taking my second final, the dreaded administrative law one, and I haven't begun reading through my notes. This is not stopping me from taking my nap, but it is starting to worry me.
- Our weather is finally pretty- still freezing and really windy, but the brilliant blue sky that I love is back.
- Construction update: the people above us are now hammering things and there is a big work crew beneath our window working on a pot hole. I am literally surrounded by hammering, truck noises, and beeping. Really helps the reading of the UCC to have some jack hammering in the background.
- Lilly has discovered the world beyond our apartment. JP used to leave the door open when he took the trash out to the garbage shoot b/c Lilly would never step foot outside our door- it seemed to freak her out. She eventually moved to rolling around on the doormat. Now she takes off sprinting down the corridor (well, maybe more like trotting, she's got a bit of a tummy). She's done this about 4 times and always ends up confused by the turns of the hallway- she'll find a doormat and lay down on it and one of us can scoop her up. I'm not sure how long it will remain easy to retrieve her. And now she stands by the door and meows to go out. Very annoying and of course, I blame JP.
- I told my family about the blog. I have yet to decide if that was a good move or not- the worst thing would be if no one reads it, but I know they might so I have to edit what I write. I don't mind the editing if the writing its useful or entertaining to them, but if its neither, I'll probably wished I remained anonymous. So we'll see- I have a lot more to say about the difference the internet has made in a single generation, but I'll save that for another day I don't want to study.
Off to bed to hopefully awaken with a renewed feeling of purpose and productivity!
Update: Slept for 2.5 hours in spite of construction noise and the very bright sunlight. Feel refreshed but horrified so much of the day is gone. Taking a walk to the White Hen to get a diet coke and then Getting To Work.
Sunday, March 4, 2007
We microwaved ourselves a delicious TJ's meal of mandarin orange chicken, vegetable fried rice, and chicken shu mai and watched "Shut Up & Sing", the documentary on the Dixie Chicks, and then "Hollywoodland". SU&S was excellent and Hollywoodland was mildly entertaining (but definitely better than studying for finals). I highly recommend the Dixie Chicks movie- even if you're not a country music fan. If you're hard-core-Bill-O'Reilly-conservative, you may not like it, but its about so much more than politics.
I was embarassed on behalf of the South while watching it- I remember the whole public outcry after Natalie Maines said, jokingly, at a London concert in 2003, "... and we're ashamed President Bush is from Texas" and thought it was all ridiculous. Every country radio station below the Mason-Dixon line banned their music- they went from having the #1 single ("Traveling Soldier") to not even being on the top 200. One guy interviewed said he supported freedom of speech, "but they don't have to do it in public!" They got death threats, people protested at their tour stops, radio stations organized burning barrels for people to burn their CDs- all this in AMERICA. It was remniscient of a dictatorship- voice dissent and your life is ruined. Ugh. I got re-frustrated watching the movie, but I still really enjoyed it. Its fun to look inside their lives, see them tour, be with their families, struggle and triumph over infertility, etc. I also happen to love their music so it was fun seeing them go through the steps of writing and recording a song. I wish the movie had an epilogue telling viewers the Chicks went on to win FIVE grammy's even though the majority of country stations still refuse to play their songs. It was also interesting seeing the headlines and Bush's approval ratings back in '03. The Chick's manager was telling them "the war couldn't going better" and "Bush's approval ratings are sky high." So much has happened in 4 years. We're still there, its going horribly, and Bush's approval ratings are the lowest in presidential history. Anyway... this started out about construction and turned into a post about politics- and I really have to go study. Or do something that looks more like studying than blog posting.
Friday, March 2, 2007
I'm also trying to decide my policy on pictures- so far the ones I've posted either don't have people in them or I'm too far away and covered up by my coat to really see me. I think I'm okay with posting them- my real concern is being "searchable", I would never want my first name, last name, firm name, etc. to be anywhere on the blog. Anyone who would recognize the picture already knows who I am- there are plenty of identifying remarks, not the least of which is my status as the only pregnant UC law student this year.
Anyway- have any of you let your families know about your blog? What is your policy on pictures?
Thursday, March 1, 2007
At that office I met with the doctor who asked lots of questions and seemed to type more answers than I was saying- I found this quite funny. I'd give a yes or no answer and she'd type for like 3 min. I ended up having a bunch more blood work done (my arms are like little pin cushions) and I have to give a stool sample (ewwwww) and transport it back to the lab (EWWWW). So that'll be fun. The headaches are definitely severe tension headaches- we're trying physical therapy since I can't take the really powerful headache meds while pregnant. Apparently my back pack, laptop bag, and the way I sit at my computer are all contributing factors. I'm a big believer in non-drug treatments (although I never mind a few helpful drugs to go along with the alternative therapy), so I'm looking forward to the PT- I just wish our finals weren't in TEN days. I really don't have time for this. The stomach problems are a whole nother bag of worms and basically we're just testing for things to rule them out. I'm going to have to make an appt with a gastroenterologist next.
And the weather was just crappy- super foggy, grey, rainy, and thunderstormy. And I'm behind in securities again. And I have three finals that I haven't started preparing for. Grades really don't matter after 1L if you have a job and you don't want to clerk, right?