Friday, November 10, 2006

It figures

We were a bit late to piano yesterday and there was a fender-bender in the school parking lot so it was a little tight getting out. Then at the next major intersection it took us about five light changes to get through. That was highly unusual. But we still had time to make it. Then we got stuck in traffic on campus. Maybe there was some event? To kill time, I turned on the radio and it was playing the Alanis Morrisette song Ironic, where the chorus goes: "It rains on your wedding day/ It’s a free ride, when you've already paid/ It's the good advice, that you just didn't take/ Who would of thought? It figures." And one of verses says, "It's a traffic jam when you're already late." By the end we were really late and I had lots of time to reminisce about the last time Alanis Morrisette hit the nail on the head.

It was 1997, Rees was just over 24-hours old, and we were home from the hospital for the first night. Things were not going well. Rees was upset, he wouldn't nurse, he wouldn’t sleep, and I was a wreck: in pain, exhausted, emotionally volatile. A nurse called to check to see if we needed a home visit or if we could wait until tomorrow. When I broke down in tears on the phone, she concluded that we did indeed need a home visit and said she'd be over in an hour.

Things were in chaos. There was laundry, milk, and dirty diapers strewn across the floor. There were two sleepless parents and a screaming, hungry baby that I wanted to just put back where he'd come from. How could anything ever be okay again? Then, miraculously, it all changed. I remember when the nurse arrived, the sun was coming in the window and shining on the bed where a sleeping baby lay in a nightgown that made him look like an angel. Greg had thoughtfully put on some soothing Mozart that drifted in from the other room. All was superficially well as we chatted with the nurse.

Rees woke up and she declared him healthy. She looked me over and declared me a wreck but gave me amazing reassurance. To this day I feel she saved my life. And then, as she and Greg and I were summing up, the Mozart CD ended and the next CD, one left in the changer pre-baby, came on. There was a pause and then the most horrible, caustic voice I had ever heard in my life screeched, "Do I stress you out?" It was Alanis Morrisette, someone whose edgy voice and music we had enjoyed a mere 48-hours before. The nurse looked up, startled, "What was that?" Greg, eyes wide, jumped up to turn it off. Adrenaline surged through the room. Alanis, the answer is, "Yes!" Haven’t been able to listen to that CD since.

3 comments:

Jennifer K. said...

So I'm a new fan of yours! I read your article in the most recent issue of "Mothering" magazine and had to come to your blog to get more! (Your article was outstanding!) When my 7 m.o. son is napping, (which isn't much these days), I am in the process of reading all of your archived blogs and I must say I really appreciate your insightful and thoughtful blogging. While some of the issues don't quite yet apply (like internet gaming), I know those days will soon arrive and it sure does give me a head start in thinking about how to approach these topics. I really admire how you handled the internet gaming issue and how eloquently you relayed that experience, with humor, in your writing. Your blog is so refreshing and it's nice to see another mom who I can really relate to in many ways. I'll be checking in regularly to read your new postings, so keep 'em coming!
P.S. I think Alanis has stressed us all out at some point!

Anonymous said...

Hey!! I'm a not-so-new fan, and I was thrilled to see your article and to discover that you have a blog.

Earlier this year R wrote down a list of all of her friends (for no apparent reason), and Rees was still at the top. That made me smile.

R points out that your magazine bio is wrong because Rees is really 9. Her brother said, "Kadin is 5? He can't be 5 -- I remember when he was a baby!" I thought that was pretty precious coming from a 7-year-old....

I'm glad to see that Boulder is treating you well -- we miss you back East, though!

--Katy (of the R-R-R playgroup)

jeninco said...

Thanks, jennifer k., for the positive feedback. Sounds like you are really enjoying your journey into motherhood. What ever did moms do before the internet?

I accidently typed "ennoying" instead of "enjoying." Wow, isn't that the truth? Motherhood is often just as annoying as it is enjoyable!

And Katy, good to hear from you and R again!! Yes, Rees just turned 9 last month, so he WAS 8 when I wrote the byline. Such is the pace of the publishing world. These kids are sticklers for details aren't they? Too smart. I tried to email you the other day to tell you about the article, but your email has changed. Glad to hear you are all well, and I miss you all too.

Jenny