Writing and editing

What is it about needing a break from everything when you have been away for a full month? I have been meaning to post so that my poor grade 3 remora readers aren’t subjected to angry vegan missives for weeks on end. Every once in a while something will happen and I think to mysefl, “Ah, yes – gotta blog about that.” But then the day passes like the day before and I’m in bed before I can put a few thoughts together.

This past week, I actually avoided my website like a late homework assignment. Which is pretty sad considering I’m the frustrated teacher as well as the delinquent student in this case. I’ve been catching up on my New Yorker reading since I have been home – and trying to wrap my head around the business in Egypt and Libya. And this is totally a silly lame excuse, but sometimes blogging is so writing-lite. Like Japan is underwater and radioactive, and I want to write about going to the park.

Incidentally, here is a picture from the park that David took. You can really see his front teeth while he is on the swing. Good stuff.

But anyway, I am steeling myself to go back to work soon, which is terrifying on many levels. Mostly because there is no job to go back to. I feel pretty floaty about the whole thing. I am so busy everyday, but I accomplish next to nothing. There is such a strong ambivalence. I desperately want some time to do things that don’t involve wiping someone’s bum and then I have moments of thinking he is only this age once. I have regretted working too long at a lot of jobs, but I can’t imagine that I will regret spending more time with him. But then there is the question of my sanity, as Tova pointed out to me a couple weeks ago. My grasp on reality is on a bit of a slippery slope currently, and although I’m not positive – I believe an extracurricular activity might help provide some grip.

The longest amount of time I have been away from Holden was his first night when I was in a hospital bed and he was down the hall in the NICU. He is nine months old – so I’m pretty sure that can change. And I have help. I am almost sure my mother would take him until next Christmas if given the opportunity.

Giving birth is a big whirlwind, particularly when you have a c-section. I just sort-of gave birth and ended up in my room. Holden was tucked under my arm and David and Mercedes went out for pizza. I didn’t really notice the train of nurses and doctors coming by. I felt nervous to be alone with the baby, but a nurse showed me how to feed him lying down and we just lay there cozy as the sun went down.

During the night (David was back at this point of course) a doctor came to my bed and told me that he had to take the baby because he seemed to have fluid in his lungs, and although Holden looked great, he had very little oxygen in his system. So, I politely told the doctor, no – he couldn’t take the baby from me. We could think about it some more and talk later. And the doctor said, Umm – the baby will have to go to the NICU And I said, Ummm. No. He is better off with me. And the doctor said, You don’t have a choice. And then I cried and the doctor told me not to cry and got me some kleenex and then took Holden out from the crook of my arm. He told me that the nurse would be in early the next morning at 6a to take out my catheter and help me walk to the NICU.

The nurse was 2 hours late. 2 hours.

Catheter came out at 8a, I popped out of bed (not really) and she led me a few steps towards the door. Then she turned to me and said, “Great! that is all you can do for now – let’s get you back to bed.”  Bahhhh! Holden was 10 feet down the hall – he might as well have been on the other side of the world.

When you have a baby there is certain knowingness about looking at them You just feel compelled to stare at your baby. Somehow that looking is a way of getting to know them, fixing them in your mind – how did they manage to arrange themselves, fully formed, inside you? Not seeing your baby right after birth is really disturbing. Even seeing them wrapped up in blankets is a bit crummy. You have a compulsion to examine them.

And I think I still feel that way. Luckily, I get to do that all day.

Practice Notes:

Last week I had the Laghu vajrasana walking down the stairs thing where you have to turn around and go down backwards clutching on to your burning thighs as you think to yourself, “Why the fuck do I do this?” At the end of this week, David gave me Kapo. I feel good, elated high from the backbending – which means next week it will kick my bum. Ok. closer to my made-up goal of Yogi nidrasana by June 16th. Really, having those goals is pointless because beyond Yogi nidrasana is endless misery. I should really make my goal getting a good well paying job so I can help support my family. Sadly, that doesn’t seem as appealing. Again the sanity thing.

Next post: Cab drivers in Ottawa as told to me by David.

David: Have you seen your stats lately?

Stan: (distracted) Huh? Ummm, no.

David: You are getting, like 700 hits a day.  You suddenly spiked. Let’s see here…..

Stan: (my model baby? c-section ashtanga? greatest blog writer in the universe award?)

David:…Oh – It is remoras. Yep. Looks like over 50% of your google traffic comes from searching remoras.

Stan: Oh.

David: And 8% come from Snow White  bird searches. And uh… let’s see: Oh, just 7% from ashtanga.

Stan: Oh.

Anyone need help on building a remora website?

We took a guided tour through Tulum. Our tour guide was great. He walked slowly, which I like. He ambled from shady spot to shady spot (“I’ll stop here for the baby.”) pointing out areas of reconstruction and showing us pictures of the architecture based on solar and lunar positions.

David: Have you seen Apocalypto?

Tour Guide: Yes. Yes. So, anyway…

D: How much of it was true?

TG: (wearily) Well it is Hollywood, maybe 50%.

Stan: I wonder if they did human sacrifice here?

TG: There was no human sacrifice at Tulum because…..

S: Is this where the movie was filmed??

D: Yeah, it was about this region.

TG: …and every September 15 and March 15 the sun would……

S: I didn’t know Apocalypto was about the Yucatan.

D: Right here.

TG: ……this beautiful lagoon over here……

S: Was the human sacrifice part in the movie, the Toltecs then?

D: I don’t know, maybe.

TG: ….and then the snake Kukulkan….

S: I wonder how real that movie was?

D: Apocalypto was a good movie. A great chase movie

S: I want to see it again. Mel Gibson, who would have thought?

Must be hard to give tours to morons.

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categories: Ashtanga yoga, baby

Ok. So, I know that the birth was only 3 months ago, but I am an ashtangi – and it is my god-given right as an ashtanga practitioner to talk about the downward trajectory of my practice. All the time.

There are good reasons not to practice before 6 weeks, but the A-type in me thought I would do some standing and a few seated postures. Because of the c-section my bandhas were AWOL and I tore up both hamstrings. I was sort-of hoping that it wouldn’t be too bad and they would heal. But they don’t really seem to be healing and I am limping through my primary with a hunchback, barely touching my toes. Le sigh. And, of course, because I practice ashtanga I  have zero patience for the process and I think that the rest of my life I’m going to be wincing in pain every time I fold forward.

David gave me pasasana to mark three months last week. Twists used to be my specialty, but I’m finding it hard to find my wrists and usually end up clutching desperately on with my  sweaty fingers. I am placeholding on my mat. But then doing yoga to get better at yoga is dumbass. At least that is what David tells me all the time (except he doesn’t say dumbass).

My body has roughly taken on my pre-pregnancy shape. Clothes fit – just a little differently. My body is organized for breastfeeding not jumping around like a crazy lady in and out of poses. There is a softness. I have wrinkles on my belly and some pretty funny muffin-top. Wrinkly belly muffin-top! Honestly, this whole giving birth thing is a lesson in humility. As if being covered in baby drool and poo and having to whip out my boob in public weren’t enough to contend with – there is also wrinkly belly muffin-top. Pregnancy might be beautiful (although I would argue it is more funny and adorable then beautiful) but motherhood certainly isn’t.

But then, having a baby to eliminate muffin-top is dumbass.

Oh dear blog readers, there are some incredible opportunities for learning in this entry.

Speaking of my blog. I was going through some stats to see if I could stalk y’all and I found the number one google search that led people to this blog was a picture of a remora from this illustrious entry. I realize there are a bunch of frustrated grade three students trying to complete their Ocean Animal reports out there – but I’ve decided not to care. Henceforth, I’m blogging only about remoras. Remora remora remora. Google that suckas! Here is a snap of the cutest remora in history.

OK. OK. Here is one for your grade three research report.

The Remora Game – player 1 attaches on to the player 2 shoulder with his mouth and makes yukky sucking sounds, while player 2 squeals.

Walking in Mysore:

D: Let’s play the remora game.

S: No, I hate that game.

D: It’s a good game!

S: How about we play it where I am the remora and you are the fish.

D: No. It doesn’t work that way.

S: Why not?

D: Because you are the big fish. The remora eats off the big fish.

S: (sad face) Maybe it is a big remora and a small fish.

D: That’s a different game. That’s the shark game.


S: I’m not really the big fish.

D: Yes you are.

S: It doesn’t count. I just have a baby fish.

D: Do you really think it is going to be a fish?

S: I’d be disappointed if it was a fish, I think.


S: I guess I am the big fish. But only until June.

D: Well, I think you are beautiful.

But then we went home and found this game: