JOURNAL NO. 34
July 1982 - January 1983
Age 25

"Here we go again with the morning sickness, the heartburn,
the fat clothes, the leg cramps ..."







 

Saturday evening
July 24, 1982

Jamie is scrambling around on the living room floor  ...  stalking CeCe's kittens, fingering our new furniture, pulling albums out from under the stereo. It's been hot and muggy again today, so she's only wearing a diaper and a pair of plastic pants; her hair is damp with perspiration, clinging wetly to the sides of her face. Between the heat and the new tooth coming in, she's been almost unbearably cranky today. I try to keep her happy and entertained with the new toys I bought her yesterday, games of peek-a-boo, bottles of cold water or juice ... but nothing amuses her for very long, and soon she's whimpering (and then crying) again.

Her conjunctivitis has cleared up nicely. All that remains is a bit of redness under her eyes. The drops really did the trick.

You can see her tooth now, whenever she "allows" you to look inside her mouth ... a little tiny bud of white, nestled in the puffy pink gums. I can't get over how quickly things have begun to happen with Jamie. One day she sat up by herself for the first time, and within two weeks she was getting into a sitting position all by herself, then crawling, then getting this first tooth ... it's like someone pushed the Fast Forward button ...

A new journal. That old familiar feeling of excitement, curiosity, speculation ... what will occur in my life while I'm keeping this journal? What changes will take place? What will Jay be like by the time I finish this notebook?





Look closely and you can almost see that first little tooth
1982







Monday 8 a.m.
July 26, 1982

Couldn't sleep this morning, so I decided to get up and get my housework finished early. It's going to be hot and sunny again today, and I'd like to get some sun this afternoon.

Our living room looks SO nice with the new sofa and chairs ... I can't get over the change. It makes the whole house look neater and prettier. I was getting so disgusted with the old stuff: it was embarrassing to invite anyone over & have them see the big gaping holes in the upholstery. I always felt like I had to apologize for my furniture, ridiculous as that may sound.

Yesterday was nice. Dad and his girlfriend Valerie were supposed to come out for a visit, but late in the afternoon when it became apparent they weren't going to show, Jay and I went with Ray to do some shopping. We went to Payless and Fred Meyer in Bellevue, then to Albertsons. We bought a ton of groceries, as well as a lot of other things ... a folding gate to put on the kitchen door so Jamie can't crawl outside, suntan lotion, magazines, etc. I bought myself two new eyeshadows, an eyelash curler and a big package of typing paper. At the grocery store I picked out 20 jars of baby food for Jay, including some different varieties of strained meats and vegetables, which she's never had before, and now her shelf in the kitchen is well-stocked.

I'm going to start doing some of the cooking around here. I drew up a tentative menu plan and then picked out all the ingredients while we were grocery shopping. Tonight I'm going to make chicken parmagiana and some sort of baked potatoes; later this week I'll make sausage spaghetti and another "Impossible" taco pie. Ray is humoring me in my culinary efforts, but I get the feeling he doesn't believe I'm really serious.

Anyway, about yesterday: shopping is usually a huge pain, but it was fun doing something as a "family" and it made even grocery shopping enjoyable. Jay can ride in the shopping cart, now that she's sitting up, and she THOROUGHLY enjoyed being pushed all over the place. There's so much to look at in the grocery store! All those brightly colored packages, bottles, cans, boxes ... other shoppers to stare at ... banners and signs hanging all over the store ...

My period is now one week late, but I'm fairly sure that I'm not preg. I've got that familiar, achy feeling that usually heralds my monthly yuck, and I expect it to start any minute.



 






Wednesday 9:30 p.m.
July 28, 1982

Ray is laying in bed reading a comic book; Jay konked out for the last time about half an hour ago. "Dynasty" is on in a few minutes, and even though I'm dead-tired and I have to be up early in the morning (Peg is treating me to a haircut tomorrow), I'm fighting back the yawns and forcing myself to stay up. The storyline of the show is a continuing one, and rather complicated, and if I miss an episode I'm lost.

Judy and I had planned to take the kids to a park today for a picnic, but it was surprisingly cloudy and cool today so we had to change our plans at the last minute. We ate lunch at McDonald's (Jay had a couple of french fries and part of a Chicken McNugget) and then we went and browsed around K-Mart. I bought Jay a pair of navy blue canvas Mary Janes, with little white anchors on them, and a cheap toy telephone. I wanted to have fun today but for some reason my mind was a million miles away. Judy seemed to sense this, and she dropped Jamie and I off at home at 2:30 and took Billy home.

I came close to telling her I may be pregnant, but something stopped me.



 






Thursday 2:30 p.m.
July 29, 1982

Hungry -- ravenous, in fact -- but I'm fighting it. I'm going to stop eating, dammit!! I'm not just "a little bit overweight" ... I'm FAT , and I look DISGUSTING. I'm tired of feeling dumpy and unattractive, and I'm gonna do something about it. I'm going to stop eating for a couple of days, to start out, and hopefully that will help break me out of my pattern of munching all day long. It's not easy, though. I've been thinking about food for hours, and it's taking every ounce of willpower I can muster to keep my face out of the refrigerator.

I'm tired of wearing nothing but loose, floppy overblouses and men's work shirts. I'm tired of living in terror that I'll run into an old acquaintance & that they'll be appalled and revolted by the new, expanded Terri. I'm tired of being FAT.



 






Friday morning
July 30, 1982

Rainy, hazy day ... very nice, for a change. I plan to get some little "indoor jobs" done today -- writing some letters, cleaning out a few drawers, washing down the kitchen cupboards. If I keep myself real busy I won't have time to dwell on food.

I ate dinner, in spite of my good intentions  --  fish & chips (deep fried, of course) and a salad. But at least that was the only meal I ate all day, and I skipped the chocolate chip cookies and the peanut butter before bed. Some days I can eat as many as four HUGE meals, plus snacks in between. Maybe if I start cutting back on the amount of food I eat (no snacking, no second helpings, only one regular full meal a day) it will give me the headstart I need without starving myself to death.

I've got a couple of goals. Since I have no idea how much I weigh right now -- we don't have a bathroom scale -- I can only guess approx. how much I need to lose. I'm going to go for a 30 lb. weight loss. That's my first goal. Peg and Don have a scale at their house, so I can check my progress there when we visit. The other goal is that I lose this weight by Christmas.



 






Monday afternoon
August 2, 1982

Ray's little sister Barbara was here all weekend -- she just left about an hour ago, so this is the first time I've been alone in a couple of days. My diet has sorta gone by the wayside, temporarily, because I've got much more pressing problems on my mind. My period is now two weeks late, and I'm becoming convinced that I'm pregnant again. I've confided in Judy about this, which has helped ease a bit of the internal pressure. On Saturday night Ray flatly said he "doesn't want another kid," period, and nothing more has been said about it. When he said that I just died inside. Until then I'd secretly been a little thrilled about the idea of another baby, but Ray's lack of enthusiasm has squashed any positive feelings I may have had before. Now I'm scared to death.



 





Tuesday morning
August 3, 1982

Sitting on the sofa in my nightgown, waiting for my coffee to brew, watching an old "My Three Sons" rerun. We're in the middle of a streak of mediocre summer weather ... gray, cloudy, rainy in the mornings ... it feels more like fall than summer. Jamie is crawling happily around the kitchen in her nightgown, trying to catch up with CeCe. She loves coming up behind the two adult cats, grabbing them around the waist and laying down on them. Sammi and CeCe hate it, and they run like crazy any time they see the baby coming. CeCe's kittens are five weeks old now and they have the run of the living room, but for some reason Jay doesn't pursue them as relentlessly as she does the big cats. Maybe she thinks the kittens are just toys, so they're not as interesting a target?

I need to write some more about my most pressing worry ... possibly (probably) being pregnant again. Ray and I still aren't talking about it at all: in fact, we're carefully avoiding any mention of it, pretending things are the same as always. It might make him feel temporarily "safe" not to discuss it, but it's just making it worse for me.  If I am pregnant, the baby was conceived roughly one month ago. I spent some time this morning with my charts & calendars and came up with a probable due date: March 25, 1983. But so much for facts and figures. Facts and figures aren't helping me decide what to do, and they aren't doing anything to ease my mind.



 





Wednesday morning
August 4, 1982

Well. Here we go again with the morning sickness, the heartburn, the fat clothes, the leg cramps ...

What will my life be like one year from right now? I'll have a 20 month old and a 5 month old. Right now Jamie is relatively easy to take care of, and our life together is pleasant and relaxed, but with TWO children ... my life will never be "relaxed" or "easy" again.

Enough wallowing for one morning. I've got to take a shower and get this house in order. Tonight Ray's Grandpa and Grandma P. are coming in from Tucson, and we're going over to the folks' house to greet them. Don Jr. and Judy will be there too, and I'm looking forward to the evening about as much as a hole in the head.



 






Thursday afternoon
August 5, 1982

Well, last night's dinner turned out better than I thought it would, although it was still tense and awkward at moments. There was a definite wall between Judy and I. Don Jr. was fairly friendly towards Ray and I, and nothing was said about (our argument) Tuesday, but still we were all more reserved around each other than usual. I wanted to draw Judy to one side and make sure all was forgiven & forgotten, but she was so cool towards me that I lost my nerve. I imagine this will take some time. As far as she's concerned, I insulted her husband by hanging up on him the other night, and even though I don't feel I did anything wrong, I know I've got to apologize anyway if I want to preserve our budding friendship.

Ray's grandparents (Bev and Henry) arrived last night, safe and sound, and it was good to see them. We introduced them to their great-granddaughter, and it was love at first sight all around.

(I KNOW I must be pregnant ... I've been sitting here all day long, doodling possible names! Kimberley, Lindsay, Casey, Jeremy ... )

My thirteen year old sister Debby is staying with us until next Monday.



 






August 9, 1982
Monday evening

I took my in-home pregnancy test this morning and it was positive!  No surprise.



 





August 10, 1982
Tuesday 6 p.m.

Jamie is in her high chair a few feet away from me, chewing on a piece of toast; Ray is napping on the sofa. Children outside are playing in the street, screaming and laughing, but inside our house it is quiet. I've been trying all day long to write a few letters -- Melinda, Sheryl, Karen, Debbie -- but there is so much on my mind that I can't think, if that makes sense. I'm dead tired practically all day long. Today it was all I could do to wash the dishes and get myself and Jamie cleaned and dressed. I'm moving around in slow motion, trying not to think about the fact that there is another baby growing inside of me. I watch my soap operas, play with Jay, look out the window, eat, watch for the mailman ... anything to avoid thinking about it.

Judy is my friend again, anyway. She called this morning just to chat, just like "the old days" of last month, and I'm relieved and pleased to have her to confide in once again. I told her about the results of my test. She cheered me up immeasurably by telling me she's off the Pill (as of last Saturday) and that she & Don Jr. are trying to make another baby themselves!! I don't know why, but that just made me feel better.



 






August 11, 1982
Wednesday morning

Feeling crummy. I drank a little wine last night, and now, this morning, my head and stomach HURT. I made a pot of coffee but I can't bring myself to drink any of it.

Last night I told Ray that Judy is trying to get pregnant, and in a roundabout way that brought us around to the subject of our own "predicament." I told him that I would like to have this baby, and if that he would agree to it I wouldn't have any more children after this one. (I'm not sure that's true, but it sounded like good bargaining material.) He just said he "has to think about it." That wasn't a definite yes, but it wasn't a no, either.

I don't care. I have decided to go ahead and have this baby. I've been trying to find the good in all of this ... and there is plenty. A new life.  Someone new and special to love.  A little brother or sister for Jay.  That's the best part, probably. A little brother or sister to grow up with, the way Dickie and I did. I was always so glad to have my little brother around. We fought like cats and dogs a lot of the time, but basically we were good friends and very special to each other. There was always someone to play with when you had a kid brother. Maybe I'm doing something wonderful for Jay by giving her her dearest friend ... ?

Nothing is coming out the way I want it to. I have to much I need to say, but everything I write sounds clumsy and half-hearted. Please forgive me. It's just strange to be feeling all these things again so soon.



 






August 12, 1982
Thursday morning

I've got everything I need for a pleasant day alone with my daughter ... a fresh pot of coffee, a rainy morning outside, light housework to keep me busy ... and still I feel vaguely uneasy and worried. My life has slipped out of control. I can't relax and enjoy anything, because just beneath the surface are the constant, nagging worries. (Rounding up $21 for Avon before tomorrow ... Mr. Wright from Rainier Bank ... Djer from The Journal American ...)

I had a weird dream last night. I dreamed that I had a baby boy, and I gave him to Prince Charles and Princess Diana to raise as their own. The baby's name was David Matthew Something Edward. I hated to give him up, but the Princess was so grateful to me that I went to McDonald's and bought a round of Filet O'Fish sandwiches to celebrate the adoption.

At this point I don't really care if the baby is a boy or a girl. There's no definite preference in either direction. I really wanted to have a girl the first time, and that's what I got.



 






August 13, 1982
Friday morning

Almost noon and I'm still in my bathrobe. My energy level is at its lowest these days. Early pregnancy has always been like this for me. I haven't been having much trouble with morning sickness yet, but I'm just so damned TIRED all the time.

Raining HARD. I hope no one decides to "surprise" me with a visit this morning ... "I VANT TO BE ALONE."



 






August 15, 1982
Sunday morning

Sunny morning. Ray is still in bed, enjoying his day to sleep late. Jay is crawling around the house in her jammies, screaming at the top of her lungs - "BA-BA-BA-BA-BAAAA!!!" I've just poured my first cup of coffee, and now I'm sitting, curled up in the easy chair, plotting my day. We have to go over to Peg & Don's this afternoon for dinner ... Ray's Great-Great-Aunt Helene is fixing barbecued ribs. We've been spending a LOT of time with Ray's folks the past couple of weeks, ever since his grandparents and his two aunts arrived from Tucson. Friday night we had a family dinner at Sheryl & Jeff's. They cooked barbecued hamburgers, but I was feeling queasy and just nibbled on a few appetizers. Then last night there was a big family gathering at Nancy Tuff's apartment (in the cabana). Nancy's divorce from Bob is final, and she'll be moving to the East Coast soon so she threw the party last night as a "farewell gift" to the family. Ray went swimming in the pool, and later he beat me in two games of ping pong. I had one hot dog (plain) and munched on some carrot sticks, but once again my appetite was nonexistent.

Something important happened last night. Two things, really. Ray and I talked things over and decided to go ahead and have this baby. It was during the car ride to the party at Nancy's. I reiterated my promise that this would be "the last baby," and Ray said, "Well, I guess we'll go ahead and have it." He didn't seem depressed about it -- just resigned to his fate, I think. I felt immense relief, because now I know what we're going to do and I can begin making some plans. There's a lot of time between now and March 28, but a million things have to be done before then. More on that later.

The other important thing that happened is that we made "the big announcement" to the in-laws and all our family friends at the party. They seemed genuinely pleased -- for the most part. My mother-in-law got downright misty about it. She held my hand and smilingly assured me that raising two small children at the same time CAN be done. At this point that's just the sort of thing I need to hear! Don Sr. gave me a hug and started right in with offers of help ... he'll buy the paint if Ray paints the spare bedroom, which will be Baby #2's room next spring.

Judy, on the other hand, was unnaturally chilly and scrupulously avoided me. Her behavior has been really weird lately. I think all this baby business is making us feel competitive towards each other. Last night the focus of attention was on me. Does she feel threatened by that? I hope not, because all that attention is going to be see-sawing back & forth between us for the next year or so, once she gets pregnant too. Even more so if Sheryl gets pregnant too after her wedding next January. We'll have to split the attention three ways! Which won't be easy but certainly is not insurmountable.



 





Monday night
August 16, 1982

Incredibly listless, lethargic. I didn't do a thing today. When am I going to snap out of this?? I'm not depressed ... I just don't have the energy to do anything.

(Tues: babysat my Avon lady's two children, Joshua & Matthew G. today - gave me an inkling of what I can expect a year from now)



 






Wednesday afternoon
August 18, 1982

Feeling 100% better today. It's a gorgeous, sunny afternoon ... it's been hot all day but a constant breeze has been blowing, making it balmy & pleasant. I sat in my lawnchair in the front yard for three hours, reading science fiction and listening to my soaps through the open living room window; got a nice bit of color on my face, arms and chest. I put Jay in her playpen, in the shade of the cherry tree, and she enjoyed playing with her toys and watching cars passing by on the street in front of our house.

 

Viewing the world from her little "prison"
1982

Tonight at 7:00, Don Jr. and Judy are bringing the great-aunts and the grandparents over to our place for what will probably be a "farewell visit." Dora & Helene return to Tucson tomorrow, Bev and Henry go back on Friday. Ray's elderly relatives from Tucson have become very dear to me; I'm going to miss them when they go home. Ray's Aunt Helene and his Grandma and Grandpa, especially, have been very kind to Jamie and me, and I feel like they are truly family to us, as well as to Ray. Aunt Dora is very sweet, too, but I didn't get much of a chance to talk to her, and for some reason it seems better that way. She strikes me as being very proper and dignified, and knowing me and my big mouth I would probably manage to say something to make her disapprove of me.

Judy and I are back on friendly terms again. She just called to chat. Every time I think there's something wrong with our friendship, it turns out to be my imagination running on overdrive again.



 






Friday afternoon
August 20, 1982

Things are beginning to fall into place in my life ... a lot of little things, a couple of "big" things, all put together. I feel happy. I'm even beginning to feel good about being pregnant, thanks in large part to Ray. Lately he has really been making an effort to be a good husband and father. He has been doing things for Jamie and I without being asked - last night he bought me a brand-new vacuum cleaner, and in a couple of days I get a new washing machine - but even more than that, his attitude has been changing, to the point where Jay and I seem to have become true priorities in his life. We really seem to be important to him.



 






Saturday night 7 p.m.
August 21, 1982

Burned out. Ray and I stayed up very late last night (along with our new neighbor, Rick), listening to records, drinking beer, talking. Today was another hot sticky day and all I did was lounge around on the sofa and recover. Jamie has a nasty, painful diaper rash and she's been screaming all day. Ray will be home shortly. We were planning to take Jamie down to Dave's Place for a little while, but it's getting late and she's so cranky. Hungry. Hope we have some KFC for dinner tonight!

8:30 p.m.

We decided not to go anywhere tonight after all, which is just as well. I've got Jay settled down in her crib with a bottle, and Ray has run over to KFC to pick up some chicken. The sun has gone down and it's pleasantly cool. I'm really tired but I feel quite a lot better than I did earlier, except for a stomach ache I can't seem to get rid of.

I'm having trouble with constipation lately, particularly in the mornings. Due to my pregnancy? I never had it with Jamie, but they say each pregnancy is different.

Ray's older sister Patty arrived from Tucson this evening. She and her husband John (he arrives later this week) are staying with Peg & Don Sr. for a few days, as did the grandfolks & the aunts when they were here earlier this month. We were supposed to go over and see her tonight, but Ray called and told her that we're tired and that we'll be over first thing tomorrow. I don't know Patty very well, but Ray is very fond of her and he's looking forward to seeing her. Jamie will be meeting her Aunt Patty & Uncle John for the first time this weekend.



 






Monday 6 p.m.
August 23, 1982

Our annual August heatwave has begun. It reached 83 degrees today and the weatherman predicts at least another week of similar temperatures. Feeling cranky and on the verge of tears for no particular reason. Wish the damned refrigerator was working so I could at least have something to drink. I HATE this stupid weather.

8:00 p.m.

A little better. The sun is down and the house is gradually cooling off. Ray has gone to Athens Pizza to get our dinner (a pepperoni grinder & salad for me), but I don't have much of an appetite. Feeling too wrung out to eat. I spent two hours sitting in the sun today while Jamie crawled around in her playpen in the shade. Once she grabbed the netting of the pen and pulled herself up to a standing position for a couple of seconds, for the first time! Later in the afternoon we both took a ninety-minute nap. When I woke up I felt groggy and cranky, and the feeling has lingered all evening. "Private Benjamin" on TV. Jamie is crying in her crib in the next room, angry with me for putting her to bed.



 









Wednesday afternoon
August 25, 1982

Yesterday I managed to scrape together the energy to completely clean the house, but today I'm back to feeling listless and lazy. Hot, muggy. Sure wish we could get a break in the heat. Spending the day indoors in front of the fan, watching soaps, feeling decadent. Jamie is my best little friend. She stays close to me all day long, and I never feel lonely, thanks to her. The simplest things amuse her. I just handed her a roll of masking tape and an empty plastic box, and she's been happily playing with them for half an hour now.

 

"Jamie is my best little friend."
1982






Thursday afternoon
August 26, 1982

Jamie began pulling herself to a standing position this morning! I was laying on the sofa, and she grasped the edge of the couch with both hands and just STOOD UP. I was so thrilled! She did it several more times after that, smiling hugely each time. I can tell she's proud of herself.



 






Friday morning
August 27, 1982

Cloudy and overcast: it was yesterday, too. Maybe this is the beginning of the end of summer. I'm not sorry to see the hot weather go, but I will be sorry to see the end of a very pleasant, enjoyable summer. This has been the nicest summer I've had in a long, long time. Last year was OK, but most of the time I was too frazzled and overwhelmed with wedding & baby plans to truly relax and enjoy myself. This summer there has been nothing major to deal with ... just a lot of long, lazy, happy days spent with my baby daughter. Jamie and I got to know each other this summer: the bonding process is complete. Now I feel closer to her than I've ever felt to another person, I think, and I will always remember Summer '82 as the time I fell in love with my daughter.



 






Sunday night
August 29, 1982

Very happy. Rainy, dark evening ... bathrobe ... "East of Eden" on TV. Ray has gone to pick up some dinner (spaghetti from Pizza Hut). Today is our first wedding anniversary. Ray took me to see "ET" this afternoon -- BEST movie I've ever seen. Tired, hungry, happy.



 






September 1, 1982
Wednesday morning

September is here! And that means that fall -- glorious, beautiful fall, the best time of the whole year -- is right around the corner.

Watching a "Love Boat" re-run, drinking a glass of ice water, keeping an eye on Boo, planning my day. I don't have much housework to do. The house is neat and orderly and sunny ... tomatoes are ripening on the windowsill, anniversary cards taped to the refrigerator, baskets of clean clothes sitting on top of the dryer. The entire day stretches out before me.

We had barbecued salmon at Peg & Don's last night.



 






September 2, 1982
9 p.m.

Just had a strong precognitive feeling: this baby will be a boy, and his name will be Casey! I just looked down the hallway and "saw" him toddling along behind a two year old version of Jamie.



 






September 4, 1982
Saturday

Ray is off at some party with his drinking buddies; I'm spending Saturday night with my daughter, a box of extra-crispy fried chicken, a six-pack of 7Up and the TV. Feeling guilty because we were supposed to go to Sheryl's for yet another family dinner but I backed out at the last minute; I'm tired from a late night last night w/Ray. Staying home feels just right. I don't even mind the fact that Ray went to this party without me.



 






Tuesday noon
September 14, 1982 (arf arf)

Falling into my usual "writing slump." Holding a pen feels strangely uncomfortable. Most of the things I do write these days - letters and such - are typewritten. I'm getting miserably out of practice, writing by hand AND writing creatively. I haven't written a poem in three years, do you realize that??  The world thanks you for that.

Some things about Jamie:

She has four teeth ... two on top, two on the bottom. I can't believe how quickly they all "sprouted" ... BOOM BOOM BOOM BOOM, one right after the other. She can eat practically anything these days. This morning I gave her a small bowl of Trix (no milk), and she chomped it all down in minutes. When Ray takes us down to Dave's Place, Jamie sits on my lap and munches soda crackers and pickle slices. In the past couple of weeks she's sampled orange wedges, white chicken meat, chow mein, Hershey's chocolate, part of a Hostess cherry pie, dinner rolls, baked potato, tortillas, even pizza! ...

Standing up is easy for her now. She grasps the edge of the furniture and pulls herself right up. If I'm sitting or laying on the floor she'll clamber up on me by holding onto my clothing. Once she's standing up, she can lean against the furniture and free both hands for a few seconds, long enough to toy with the buttons on the sofa or pull the news papers down off the chair. During the past couple of days I've seen her attempt a new trick: squatting down to pick something up off the floor and then stand up again, holding the sofa with one hand for support.

   

Everything changes once they learn to stand up  ...
1982


Jamie's favorite toys include: her "baby," a yarn doll that Great-Great Aunt Helene made for her. The doll has bright yellow pigtails and a reversible face -- eyes wide open on one side, closed on the other. I pack this doll in Jamie's diaper bag anytime we go anywhere. She also likes the big clear plastic ball with spinning butterflies inside, which her Daddy bought her last week. When you roll the ball across the floor, the butterflies look like they're dancing. In the bathtub Jamie's favorite toy is her pink squeaky bird. During naptime she sleeps with her musical teddy bear and the fuzzy pink elf that Judy gave her.

I keep all of Jamie's toys in a yellow laundry basket, here in the living room. She likes to crawl over to her basket, turn it on its side so the toys spill out onto the floor, and sift through the contents. One by one each toy is carefully examined, tasted, shaken and eventually thrown off to one side in favor of something new. When she reaches the bottom, the basket itself is examined and tasted, and then Jamie climbs right inside of it!

Aside from her toys, though, there are lots of things around the house that Jamie LOVES to play with. Mommy's purse is #1 on the list. My makeup is another.



 






September 18, 1982
Saturday morning

Cool, sunny morning. We seem to be having one last blast of summer heat before the cold stuff sets in for winter; yesterday it was in the 70's, with more of the same expected today. Hot coffee in my favorite blue mug ... sitting in front of the stereo in my bathrobe, listening to KEZX, taping good songs. Living room curtains are thrown wide open, revealing blue sky and leaves still green. Ray is working today. Jamie is crawling around the house in her jammies, chattering in her singsong fashion, investigating the album covers I've thrown on the floor. (Now she has clambered over to the stool where I'm sitting, standing beside me trying to grab my pen, saying "Mom-mom?" with a questioning look in her eyes. I ignore her for too long, and she becomes insistent: "MOM-MOM!"  So I stop and smile at her. Satisfied, she slithers back down to the floor and crawls away from me, towards the kitchen. Sometimes a smile from Mom is all it takes, I guess.)

Dad was married last Thursday night at Uncle Paul and Aunt Elva's house in Kent. Ray and I took Jamie to the wedding, and she was good as gold throughout the entire evening. During the ceremony, which was very short and simple, her Daddy stood holding her near the back door, stuffing crackers in her mouth to insure her silence, ready to duck out into the hallway if she began to squawk. There was really no need to worry. Jamie didn't let out so much as a peep, and I was very relieved and proud of her. I sat next to Grandma Vert and held her hand during the ceremony. It was strange watching my father marry Valerie. After so many years of confirmed bachelorhood, I don't think anyone really expected him to ever marry again. Valerie took us all by surprise. Now she's my stepmother, and although I admittedly feel some small twinge of resentment -- I'm not Daddy's #1 girl anymore -- I'm glad that he has found someone he can care for.

We had a power failure last night. Ray had just come home about 10:30 and we were sitting in the living room watching TV (Jay was long in bed), when the lights blinked once, and then blacked out entirely. The whole neighborhood went dark. It was an eerie feeling because suddenly everything was so quiet. No sound at all. We lit some emergency candles that I made last spring, and sat together on the sofa watching them burn & talking. The power was out for about 90 minutes altogether. When it came back on I was relieved, but also a little sad ... without the usual distraction of the TV or the stereo, there was nothing for Ray and I to do but talk to each other, and it was sorta nice. We don't get a lot of opportunities like that.

I still don't feel pregnant. I've had occasional bouts of nausea and constipation, and I'm tired all the time, but emotionally I just don't feel pregnant at all. I hardly think about it, and when I do it doesn't even seem real.



 






Sunday night
September 19, 1982

I'm bleeding ... and worried about it.



 






Friday morning
September 14, 1982

I've had a basically crummy week. The bleeding the other night seems to have been a one-time occurrence. I was changing my clothes on Sunday evening when I noticed the blood, but since I felt no pain or discomfort - and since there has been no further bleeding - I've been trying not to worry. Didn't I read somewhere that a little bleeding is normal? I'm sure it's nothing serious. I refuse to spend this pregnancy the way I did the first time, worrying incessantly (and needlessly).

Around 4 a.m. on Tuesday morning I woke up feeling INCREDIBLY nauseous. It felt nothing like morning sickness: it was more like food poisoning. I spent the entire day in the bathroom, racked by waves and waves of sickness, until I thought I was just going to turn inside out. Sounds delightful, doesn't it? Ray was uncharacteristically thoughtful and he stayed home from work to play nursemaid. I never would have made it through the day otherwise. Toward the end of the day I was able to keep a few soda crackers and some ginger ale down: the next day I felt normal again. Now I think it was probably a particularly nasty sort of stomach flu, the 24 hour variety, because the next day Ray had it.

Ray came home late from the tavern last night, drunk and surly, and we had our usual argument when he wanted to have sex and (because he was drunk and anything but appealing), I didn't. It even ended the same way it always does: he stormed out of the bedroom to go sleep on the couch, whining about how I don't "want" him anymore. God. Does every married couple argue about the same dumb, boring things over and over again? I don't mind a good rousing argument once in awhile, but arguing with Ray is no fun since he never hears (or understands) anything I say, and since we have a repertoire of about three basic arguments that are all getting very old and lame.  Money, sex and what to watch on TV.

Rainy morning. I'm tired, but Rick from next door was pounding on my bedroom window at 7 a.m. (he's collecting books for a school fundraising drive) and I couldn't go back to sleep again once I was up. Now I'm drinking coffee and half-listening to Phil Donahue and the lovely sound of rain on the roof. Jamie is crawling around the living room in her yellow nightgown, full of pep and energy. How do babies do it? I'm not going to feel a speck of pep or energy until I've had at least two cups of coffee, and even then I could never hope to match her. Already this morning she has torn her bedroom apart, ripped up a couple of my new magazines, eaten half a dead bug, crawled behind the fireplace and stuffed a handful of soot in her mouth, had a minor tantrum because I wouldn't let her have any of my coffee, followed me into the bathroom while I rinsed out her plastic pants, checked our bedroom to see if Daddy is here (he isn't), cruised all around the living room by holding onto the furniture, played a game of pattycake, and is now tucked back into her crib with a bottle.

Names I'm favoring for the baby at the moment: Casey Edward for a boy, Kelsey or Lindsay for a girl. (Maybe Kimberley ... ?)

I wonder if this baby will be anything at all like Jamie, or whether they'll be completely different in looks and personality. I've been giving it a little more thought the last day or two. Sometimes I even allow myself to imagine Jamie and her little brother or sister together ... playing on the living room floor, sitting side by side in the backseat of the car, taking baths together in the "big" bathtub, helping me decorate the Christmas tree when they're a little bit older ... two little girls? Or a little girl and her baby brother?

Who are you going to be, Baby?

Kelsey? Kelsey Lee? Kelsey Dawn?



 






Saturday afternoon 2:40 p.m.
September 25, 1982

Rainy afternoon. Ray left me the car this morning -- I hope this will become a regular thing!! -- and in a little while Jay and I will drive down to Dave's Place and meet him when he gets off work. I feel good today, but I don't know why, really. Maybe it's because the house looks nice, and as soon as I take the rollers out of my hair I'll look nice, too. Or maybe it's because it's raining and it feels just the teeniest, tiniest bit like autumn today. Or maybe it's because I'm beginning to come to terms with being pregnant again.



 






Wednesday 12:45 p.m.
September 29, 1982

The whole house smells like pine. I dumped a little Pine Sol into a pan of boiling water, and now the place smells clean and fresh. Yesterday I did a gigantic days' housework and so today things are neat and orderly. Carol G. is bringing her two little boys over this afternoon (Matthew, 11 mos. and Joshua, 2) and I'm going to babysit them while Carol does some shopping. Ray bowls tonight, and Jamie and I are going with him.




Fall 1982 is ...

"Southern Cross" by Crosby, Stills and Nash ... wearing maternity clothes again ... four cats (Sammi is gone now) ... green grapes and apples ... pink fingernail polish ... the first autumn leaves, on the Harlan's tree next door ... Silver Kane's "amazing transformation" on All My Children (gee, what a SURPRISE) ... Sealed Sunshine ... soda crackers in the morning ... the Western Kraft picnic, and a fuzzy white teddy bear for the new baby ... "Mom-Mom" ... Christmas catalogs beginning to arrive in the mail ... Jamie sprouting her first tooth ... "Grandpa Ted" ... Carol G.'s whiny voice on the phone ... raisin bran ... "Growing Up Rich" by Ann Bernays ... torn up magazines ... Pepsi Free ... peanuts ... baking my first apple pie ... Katy Elizabeth Stepp ... the football strike and the Tylenol scare ... my new dress, paisley and lace ... Dr. Pepper ... windstorms ... denim overalls ... library books ...



 






Thursday 7:30 p.m.
September 30, 1982

AAAGGGGHHHH!!!!!! Why is it that every time I get off the phone from talking to my mother-in-law, I feel like I've been sucking on dill pickles??? SHE DRIVES ME OUTTA MY MIND!!!!!!



 






Saturday afternoon
October 2, 1982

The end of a rainy, sleepy afternoon, spent reading, playing with Jamie, listening to soft music, munching on soda crackers. Jamie just woke from her nap, and after cuddling on my lap for a few minutes - she's so warm and soft and sweet when she first wakes up, all sleepy and confused - she has now begun her daily ritual of cruising around the living room furniture. (She just pulled the abalone shell off the end time for the billionth time today.) I've got her dressed in a brown and white striped pullover and chocolate-brown overalls with white buttons shaped like bunnies. Her hair is mussed and her feet are bare. (Now she's playing with the knobs on the TV.)

"Nothing she does is phony."
1982



There are two things I especially love about babies. One is that the simplest of things can make them happy. The sight of a favorite toy or blanky, a funny noise, standing up for the first time, spotting Mommy's face across the room -- the slightest thing is enough to make her face light up into a big smile. The other thing I love about babies is that they are so genuine about their feelings. There isn't a trace of artifice in Jamie right now. Nothing she does is phony. If she likes something, she says so: if she dislikes something, you know it. She isn't concerned with tact or discretion yet.

HEY! Thunder and lightning - wow! And it isn't even raining at the moment. For that matter, it isn't even dark yet - the sky is just heavy with clouds, still and gray. Ray and I were supposed to go to a party at Randy & Marcie W.'s tonight, but I made up my mind that I wasn't going to go when I first got out of bed this morning. Sheryl's candle party last night kept me out later than usual, and I feel burned out. I want to stay home with a fire in the fireplace and some good munchies and something decent on TV (the two hour season premiere of "Love Boat" or a movie with Victoria Principal, something about an affair?). Ray will probably go to the party anyway, but I really don't care if he does.

8 p.m.

Ray was home for all of fifteen minutes, blithely preparing to go to this party.  I got really mad and called him a "moron" and he slammed out the door. (ASSHOLE.) I was angry because I wanted him to stay home and spend Saturday night with Jamie and me, but he prefers to go drink beer with the same ten people he drinks beer with every single fucking day of his life. Lately his drinking and staying out late have gotten worse. Jamie's lucky if she gets to spend 15 minutes every day with her Daddy (like today). And I'm lucky if I have Ray's attention for even an hour each day. When he is home with us, he's fuzzy around the edges from seven or eight or fourteen beers. There is seldom - if ever - a time when I feel I have his whole, sober, undivided attention, when he's REALLY LISTENING to what I'm saying, or when we actually communicate with each other about something important.

8:30 p.m.

... But you know, I haven't been very easy to live with myself, this past couple weeks or so. I'm grouchy, surly and irritable. Because I'm pregnant?



 






Monday morning
October 4, 1982

Ray never came home Saturday night. I stayed up late watching my movie, eating Chinese food and enjoying my fire, hoping Ray would come home early enough to join me, but he never did. It was 7:30 Sunday morning when he finally came crawling in, his arms full of Egg McMuffins and Sunday papers ... his attempt at an apology, I suppose. I was furious but not altogether surprised. Lately he's been really "itchy." When he's forced to stay home he's restless and agitated, and he's spending more time than ever at the tavern. I don't understand it. Are Jamie and I so irritating that he can't bear to be around us?

He spent all day yesterday in bed, naturally. I elected not to waste a sunny Sunday stuck in this house, so I bundled Jamie up and popped her into the car and we went shopping. It felt good to get out. We went to Bonanza 88 and Albertsons so I could buy a few little things ... a birthday card for my Dad, a "welcome baby" card for Beth & Wayne Stepp, some gluestick and a couple of new magazines, plus some Desitin ointment and three new pairs of plastic pants for Pumpkin.

When we got home, my mother was there, waiting for us. She brought a sack of clothes for Jamie from Aunt Jody, mostly overalls, pullovers and sweatshirt jackets, ALL of which Jay can wear right now. Mom also brought Jamie a new pair of pajamas - soft pink.








Monday

Today is another sunny autumn day. I've already showered and washed my hair, and after I've picked up the house and put on my face, I'd like to take Jame out for a stroll. It's been quite a while since we've gone for a walk together, and today is a perfect day for it. Later this afternoon I'm going to bake a couple of apple pies! Don't tell anybody, but this will be my first time!



"As I push her stroller along in the autumn sunshine  ...  I feel a surge of warm, protective
maternal love for my little cub."
1982







SCENES FROM TODAY

  • I am standing in the middle of the living room, absent-mindedly watching something on TV, hands stuck in my pockets. Jamie crawls up behind me, grabs my pant leg and pulls herself to her feet. She barely comes up to the middle of my thigh. I reach down and pat her little head; she looks up at me and smiles, fingers of one hand in her mouth, other hand tightly clutching my leg. I notice then that she is gradually losing that "new baby wobbliness." She is steadier, more sure of her movements.


  • Jamie is napping. I fix myself a fresh cup of coffee, nestle into my armchair and begin putting on my makeup. For a change I put a little extra pink on my cheeks, and a darker shade of lipstick than I usually wear. It makes me look more "alive." As I put on my eye makeup I plan the rest of my day ... what Jamie will wear today, what I'll fix for our lunch, when I'll bake my pies. The coffee tastes strong and good. Today I am glad to be Terri P., glad that I'm a housewife and Mommy, glad that I have things to do.


  • Mommy and Jamie are going for a walk around the neighborhood. The day is clear, sunny and a little cool; the leaves haven't yet begun to change color. Jamie is wearing a bright red hooded sweater, and she clutches one of her Daddy's white handkerchiefs as we roll along. We pass houses, cars, trees, barking dogs, occasional people on the street. Jamie sings, chuckles, hoots, clucks, jabbers. Once in awhile she twists around in her stroller seat to look up at me, and we smile at each other. As I push her stroller along in the autumn sunshine I watch the top of her little head - watch the little feet kicking happily and the pudgy little hands waving in the air - and I feel a surge of warm, protective maternal love for my little cub.



 






Wednesday morning
October 6, 1982

RAIN. Buckets of it. We were hit by a storm last night, which is supposed to be with us for the remainder of the week. Autumn is certainly here.

I'm not positive, but I think I may have felt the baby move last night, twice. It was such a slight, barely discernible feeling that I well may have imagined it, but then again I've been this route before and I do know what the sensation is like. It's not impossible, I suppose, to feel life at three and a half months if you know what to "look" for.

Jay's lunch today: baked fish sticks (2), steamed carrots, cheese chunks, all eaten with fingers.

Jay has another cold, this time mostly a runny nose. We were going to go bowling with Ray tonight, but now I'm thinking about staying home. I've got my cookbooks to work on, and this morning I began compiling my new pregnancy diary, so I have some projects to work on. Lately I've been turning into a real homebody again. Is it the time of the year, or the weather, or being pregnant ... ? Or all three? I like nothing better than a quiet evening at home with my family, with a fire in the fireplace and something good for dinner. I'd rather be here than anyplace else in the world.

Jamie is napping. I've got some fish sticks baking in the oven for her lunch ... they'll be something new for her. I wonder if she'll like them? The house is messy but I don't particularly care ... I've got all day to pick it up. My regular soaps have been preempted today for the baseball playoffs, so I'm going to watch a movie instead, "Marriage of A Young Stockbroker." Sure hope no one comes over today (MERCI B. from next door). I want to be alone with Jamie and enjoy the rainstorm.

New things Jamie does:

- She can get down from the sofa or from our bed by slithering over the edge slowly, head-first.

- When she's standing up & leaning against the sofa or endtable, she gets so absorbed in whatever she's doing that she completely forgets about holding onto anything! That means she's standing up by herself, for ten seconds or so, until she realizes what's happening and slumps back down to the floor.

Afternoon:

JAMIE STOOD UP BY HERSELF FOR THE VERY FIRST TIME DAY!  (without holding onto anything)



 





Sunday early
October 10, 1982

Sunny, cold morning ... I'll bet there was frost on the ground, earlier. Ray is still in bed - I don't expect him up for HOURS yet - but Jay woke me with her usual 8 a.m. call so our day has begun. I've turned up the thermostat and made a huge pot of coffee, and before I do anything else I'm going to enjoy a cup or two and scribble a few words.

I feel pretty good today. Ray took Jamie and I to the tavern for a couple hours yesterday afternoon, but I only drank two beers. We left early to do some grocery shopping at Alberstsons and then came home for a family evening ... Ray built a big crackling fire and made tacos for dinner, and we went to bed at 9:00. So no hangover today. Sundays are often a "recovery day" for us, but this particular Sunday I feel alert and rested and ready to get a few things done.

Ray never came home on Friday night. When he finally came straggling in the next morning, I got the usual cock & bull story about the car "breaking down." As always I was livid, and as always my rage was brief and in no time at all I was cooking him breakfast. I can never stay mad at him. Dad said I should kick him out the next time he pulls one of his all-nighters, and maybe I should. I'm probably allowing him to get away with murder by greeting him with scrambled eggs when he comes wandering in at 6 a.m.  Maybe if I locked him out and made him stay someplace else for a few days, he'd see how much pain his thoughtlessness causes us. Jamie needs her Daddy, and I need my husband, and not just for a few minutes in the evening, either.

I can feel my tummy beginning to stretch and "balloon," just the littlest bit, where the baby is growing. I spend a lot of time these days "listening" to my interior, hoping to feel even the slightest movement or flutter, but I'm beginning to think I imagined it last week. That was one of the nicest things about being pregnant with Jamie -- feeling her move inside of me. There's no other sensation like it in the world, and I can't wait to start feeling this baby moving.



 






Monday morning
October 11, 1982

YIKES. The house looks horrible ... three days' worth of dirty dishes, newspapers, Jamie's toys, my cookbook materials, garbage, miscellaneous junk strewn all over the place ... how can such a small family make such a big mess in one weekend??

Ray's mother invited us to dinner yesterday, and although Ray objected at first we ended up going anyway and having a fairly decent time. Don Sr. was unusually mellow and everyone was relaxed and cordial. We had a big roast beef dinner. I put Jamie in the highchair and she fed herself a slice of beef, a handful of green beans, a piece of tomato and some wheat bread. She seemed to get a big kick out of eating at the table with all the "big folks," not to mention the pleasure she gets out of feeding herself.



 






Tuesday morning
October 12, 1982

What a weird bunch of dreams I had last night. I woke up exhausted. This morning I can't recall much of what I dreamed, but it was all a huge jumble of people and places anyway and didn't make a lot of sense. At one point I dreamed I was at a shopping mall looking for a maternity dress, without success.

Dad and Valerie are supposed to come for a visit today. I spent most of the day yesterday getting the house back into shape, so things are neat and orderly this morning. Fog. The house is warm, and Jamie is crawling around with nothing on (it helps clear up her diaper rash). No morning sickness today ... guess I must be past the twelve week mark. I've got to find myself a new o.b. and schedule an appointment ASAP.

Beginning to think about how nice it might be to have another daughter. Lindsay? Kelsey? Kimberley? Two little girls. Wouldn't that be lovely? I can see Ray and I taking "the girls" to the zoo. One little girl is riding on Daddy's shoulders, the other is skipping along, holding Mommy's hand and a big cotton candy in the other hand. Both girls have long brown hair tied with ribbons, and they're both wearing bright colors and tennis shoes ...

A secret confession, just between you and me: I wish someone would give me a baby shower this time. I didn't have one last time I was pregnant. I didn't even have a wedding shower. But how does one go about tactfully suggesting such a thing? And to whom?? Mom? Judy? Peg? That's like asking somebody to throw you a birthday party ... it just can't be done without looking greedy, even though it's not the idea of getting presents that appeals to me, it's the whole idea of having a real shower.


CLOTHES:

2 prs. maternity pants (one denim, one ? another shade of blue?)
2-3 matching maternity tops
Jumper or dress
Bra
Winter coat
Shoes

BABY:

Crib
Dresser/Chest of drawers
Plastic pants
Port-a-crib? Bassinet?
Umbrella stroller?
Nurser set (Playtex)
Undershirts
Bathtub ("Tubby")

TO DO:

Clean and paint bedroom!!!!!
Find new o.b.
Put of shelves
Fix closet

Light fixture


Evening:

I made an appointment with Dr. Heffron for Thursday at 4:00. I didn't want to go to Pheifer again, and Heffron WAS the one who delivered Jamie. Pheifer was so cold & uncommunicative. Heffron at least answered my questions and gave me his full attention during my appointments with him.

Now for some reason I feel nervous. Why? I'm beginning to think about all the things that could go wrong. (This could be an ectopic pregnancy. I could miscarry. Etc.) I'm feeling nervous also because this appointment truly heralds the pregnancy, as far as I'm concerned. This is the beginning. This means I'm committed. No way to go but forward. Leg cramps, maternity clothes, leaky breasts, indigestion, numb fingers, sleepless nights ... LABOR, delivery, discomfort following birth ... all of this is now unavoidable. Gulp.



 






Wednesday morning
October 13, 1982

This is a special day for Ray and I ... it marks the two year anniversary of the night we got together. Two whole years! In a way, this anniversary is more meaningful than our wedding anniversary, even, because from Oct. 13, 1980 on, we were never apart. I spent the night here with Ray that night and never went home again afterwards. Instantly this house became my house, and Ray became the one and only man in my life. The two years that have followed have been the nicest, most special years of my life.

This is also a special day for me for another reason. Four years ago today Scott W. and I began our relationship. I look back on the two years following THAT day as tense, conflict-ridden and tumultuous. What a different way of life that was. But isn't it interesting that the two most important love relationships of my life both began on October 13th??

Sunny fall morning. Jamie is in a good mood today. She's already had her breakfast bottle and chewed on a piece of kippered beef, and now she's running around in her p.j. top and bare bottom. The diaper rash has nearly vanished. (It was really bad two weeks ago - open blisters and sores all over the diaper area.) She stands up, without holding onto anything, for 10-15 seconds now. Sometimes I hand her a toy while she's standing up, and she's steady enough to take it and fondle it for a few seconds before plopping down on her bottom. ("Boom!") She refuses to be helped to a standing position by anyone else, insisting on doing it herself. She doesn't have much interest in walking yet. Chris, the little neighbor girl, likes to hold Jamie's arms above her head and "walk" her around the living room, but Jamie HATES this and her legs immediately turn into wet spaghetti noodles. Sometimes I hold my arms out to her and speak to her softly, coaxingly, urging her to take a step or two in my direction, but she's just not interested yet and I'm not going to push it.

I had to get something out of the spare room the other day, and I was struck by what a MESS the room is. Junk is piled nearly to the ceiling, the curtains are hanging askew, the light fixture is missing completely, and everything is FILTHY. How in the world are we going to turn that pig-sty into a baby's bedroom??



 






Thursday night 9:30 p.m.
October 14, 1982

I saw Dr. Heffron today at 4:00. Ray couldn't take me, so Peg came and gave me a ride to the doctor's office, and then she sat in the waiting room with Jay while I had my exam. The usual blood and urine tests, weigh-in, pelvic exam, etc. ... all of which are very familiar to me now. To nobody's surprise, I am indeed pregnant; I'm in my 16th week, although Dr. Heffron thinks my uterus is a little "small" and it may be only 14 weeks. Hard to tell at this point. Everything checked out OK. I weigh 158 at the moment, and my blood count is low again so it's back to the iron pills. Otherwise all is fine. I heard the baby's heartbeat for the first time! (Hello, Baby!) When the nurse ran the ultrasound device across my tummy and I once again heard that funny, far-away, "under water" sound of a tiny heartbeat deep inside of me, I felt an unexpected rush of joy. "This baby just became real for me this minute," I said to the nurse. And it was true!

(I place my hand on my tummy and press my fingertips into the flesh. It occurs to me that the baby is only a few inches from my fingertips, separated only by skin and tissue; yet whenever I think about the baby, he/she seems to be in some far-away place, miles away, waiting to be born. It's hard to believe that the baby is sitting right here in this chair with me, sharing my lunch, going everywhere I go, never apart from me. My child. My second child. A son? A second daughter? Jamie's little brother or sister?)



 






Tuesday morning 9 a.m.
October 19, 1982

The world is blanketed in frost this morning, but the sun is shining and the leaves are gold and everything is spectacularly beautiful. Is it any wonder I love autumn so? Every day is more gorgeous than the last.

Had a good weekend, by the way. Carol babysat for us on Friday night so Ray and I could go have a few beers at the tavern. On Saturday, Ray, Jamie and I went shopping. I got a new bra, a pair of tennis shoes, some warm socks and a beautiful, rose-colored maternity sweater that I love. On Sunday we drove out to Don & Judy's for the day.

Dad and Valerie are supposed to come for a visit today and take Jamie and I out to lunch. Guess I should wash my hair in preparation.



 






Wednesday noon
October 20, 1982

When Dad and Valerie were out for a visit yesterday we took the movie camera outside and shot a few minutes' worth of Jamie and I sitting on the front lawn. I was wearing my new rose sweater and Jamie wore a bright pink T-shirt and pants; the sun was shining, and it should all turn out quite colorfully.

I just trimmed Jamie's bangs and I did a pretty rotten job of it. She wiggled and squirmed the whole time so I really made a mess of things. Ray will kill me when he sees it!

 






JAMIE'S VOCABULARY AT 20 MONTHS:

Daddy, Mom-Mom, Hi, Boom


MY FAVORITE NEW SHOWS OF THE '82-'83 SEASON:

  • "Square Pegs," Monday 8 p.m. CBS

  • "Cheers," Thursday 9 p.m. NBC
  • "Tucker's Witch," Wednesday 10 p.m. NBC
  • "Newhart"
  • "The Powers of Matthew Star"










Tuesday morning
October what? the 26th?

Jamie and I are enjoying our morning banana and coffee, respectively. Windy today. For the past three or four days, the sound of leaves rustling in the trees has been constant background music. Yesterday I carved two jack o'lanterns, a small one and a very large one, and now they're sitting on the kitchen table, glaring at me. I feel pretty good today. There is nothing of pressing concern on my mind ... just a series of comfortable fall days spent playing with Jamie, clipping recipes for my cookbook, waiting to feel the baby move, enjoying an improved relationship with Ray. He seems to have curbed the desire to LIVE down at the tavern, and Jay and I have been seeing a lot more of him as a result.

I spend a lot of time "listening" to my body, waiting for movements from the baby, but I have yet to feel anything definite.

I have a dresser for the baby: Ray and Don Jr. helped my Grandma Vert move some furniture last Sunday, as a favor to me, and she gave us a six-drawer dresser. We also got a single bed for Jamie to use when she outgrows her crib someday, and a coffee table.

Today I favor the name Kimberley for a girl, but I'm at a complete loss for a boy's name. Ray would like to somehow honor his Grandpa P. I would like to somehow honor my Grandpa Vert, (Paul), or maybe my brother (Richard). But I don't see how we can recognize one side of the family without slighting the other, unless we burden our poor little son with a hopeless jumble of strange and unwieldy names. That's one reason why I favor the idea of a brand-new, non-family name -- something that neither honors nor slights anyone. Something uniquely Baby's own.



 




Thursday 11 a.m.
October 28, 1982

Whew. Back to normal today. Yesterday I schlepped around in my bathrobe all day, with the drapes closed tight and a cold glass of water by my side at all times. Ray bowled last night but I was too wiped out to go with him. I got a good night's sleep, though, and this morning I feel 100% better. The house is a mess, and Jamie and I both need a good shampoo, so I'll be busy today. I'm beginning to get the "nesting instinct" again ... I want to clean and sort and organize EVERYTHING. I felt the same way while I was pregnant with Jamie, and I expect the feeling will intensify as this pregnancy progresses.



 






Friday afternoon
October 29, 1982

Sunny afternoon. This has been an unbelievably pretty day, but once again I was feeling weak and wrung-out from a late night last night, and I spent most of the day on the sofa with the drapes closed. What a waste of a nice autumn day. I should have taken Jay for a stroll. Last night was fun, though -- Kurt & Wendy W., Cathie W. and Scott C. all came over and we had a good time partying moderately and talking. (Scott, Ray and I stayed up until 3 a.m.!!) I don't think I got any sleep at all. No wonder I feel like a zombie today.

I definitely felt the baby moving today. At last! There was no mistaking it for anything else ... a faint but definite twitching, deep inside of me. I wonder how big the baby is right now. Maybe I'll look it up in one of my pregnancy manuals.

Jamie added a new word to her vocabulary today - "Ba Ba," for bottle. Now I'm trying to get her to say "blanky," or something similar, since the orange afghan my Grandma Vert crocheted for her seems to have become her security blanket.

Grandma Vert is getting married tomorrow at 2 p.m.

Mike Myers and Ann T. are getting married November 6 -- Ann is expecting a baby next spring.

Judy's period hasn't started and she thinks this may be "it" - she may be pregnant at last. Hoping so. Her baby would be born next July. Another P. grandchild in ‘83!

Jesse Taylor?








NOTES:

Grandma and Ted's wedding was simple and lovely; after the ceremony, Ray, Jamie and I had dinner at Dad and Valerie's house (hot dogs, chili and a Huskies game on TV).

We had a grand total of 12 trick or treaters on Hallowe'en night. Jamie had her first Tootsie Pop that night -- ate the whole thing, clear down to the stick.



 






Monday night
November 1, 1982

Cold autumn evening. Fire burning, dinner cooking, Ray bustling around in the kitchen while I sit on the living room floor watching "Square Pegs," "Private Benjamin," "M*A*S*H," "The New Bob Newhart Show." We're having Hamburger Helper tonight. Ray worked two hours' overtime so dinner is late.

Jamie got up onto the sofa by herself today! I also noticed that she's finally sprouted that sixth tooth. She can take a few steps while holding onto my finger, and occasionally takes one or two all by herself.



 






Tuesday morning
November 2, 1982

I can hardly believe this -- I just saw a Christmas commercial on TV!!! (For tree ornaments at Pay ‘N Save.) On the second day of NOVEMBER?!?

I had an idea this morning. Besides making my own Christmas gift tags (construction paper, glitter, paint), I'm also going to make small framed watercolors for the little ones on my list. Kelli, Ben, Billy and Jay. Something cute and decorative for their bedrooms.



 






Wednesday 2 p.m.
November 3, 1982

Beginning to feel like winter. Steel-gray sky, icy cold, no wind at all. Inside the house is warm ... Jamie is wearing only a diaper. We're going to watch Ray bowl tonight so I'm waiting until the last minute to dress her. Her diaper rash is back, and it's worse than ever ... huge bumps all over her bottom. I'm almost too embarrassed to take her tonight, because the lady in the nursery may change her and see the rash.

I have to find $40 before TOMORROW. Eeek. And I can't tell Ray about it or he'll flip ... it's for more candles that I ordered.

There's gotta be an easier way to wash a baby's hair. I felt like I was traumatizing Jamie for life when I had to dunk her head into the kitchen sink. She doesn't like shampooing in the bathtub, either. When it comes time to rinse out the shampoo, she screams in honest terror, and I HATE it. I HATE hurting or scaring her. Now that her hair is longer, though, it really does need to be shampooed at least a couple times a week.

Ben and Lori H. next door had their baby last week, a boy born prematurely with a harelip. The baby's name is Charles.

POSSIBLE BOY NAMES: Jeremy, Jesse, Taylor, Tyler, Kyle, Casey

Who is this baby going to be? (Another GIRL might be nice ... all those nice little girl-baby clothes stored in Jay's closet, things she's outgrown already ...) (... But maybe Ray would like to have a son? ... )

Kelsey? Lindsay? Kimberley? Casey? Kasey? __________?

What color eyes will this baby have? What kind of hair?
Who does this baby look like?
Who is Judy going to have?
Who is Ann Myers going to have?



 






Friday morning
November 5, 1982

Blustery, stormy morning. Jamie and I had cinnamon toast for breakfast; now she's playing in her bedroom, while I'm curled up on the sofa drinking my coffee and watching the storm. I would probably be in a good mood if it weren't for the forty dollars I owe Carol G. for Avon. She's going to drop by later this afternoon, and I just don't have it to give her. I don't know what to do. (Hide when she knocks on the door, maybe?!?)

I could feel the baby moving for a long time last night as I lay in bed. As I'm entering my fifth month now, I can feel the thickening around my middle. It's definitely there. I lifted some heavy garbage cans earlier this week and it left me feeling stiff and sore around my legs and tummy. I guess I'd better not do any more lifting if I don't have to. Jamie is beginning to seem awfully heavy to me, but I can't exactly avoid lifting her.

Jamie is getting kind of rough with me, physically. Lately there's been a lot of biting, pinching and hitting on her part.

7:30 p.m.

Carol was great. She wasn't at all upset about the money; in fact, she couldn't have been nicer. And I've been worried about it all week, like a dummy ...

I wish Ray would come home. Jamie is in bed (although she's not sleeping - I can hear her jabbering in the next room) and I'm lonely. I wish he would come home and build us a big fire and cook us something good for dinner and watch TV with me. I want to tell him about Jamie's rash and the special ointment Carol gave me for it; I want to tell him about calling the piano movers today - they charge $108 an hour - and about how Rick came over to use the phone this afternoon, and about how glad I am we're skipping Mike & Ann's wedding tomorrow. I want to talk about our daughter, and about food, and about Western Kraft and Dave's Place and the animals and money ... all the things we always talk about. I want his comfortable companionship.

HEY! HE'S HOME !



 






Saturday morning 10:30 am
November 6, 1982

Isn't that funny how Ray came pulling into the driveway, just as I was writing about him? That doesn't happen very often. We had a lovely, stay-at-home evening, just the two of us. There was a big fire in the fireplace and Ray made a bowl of popcorn. Jamie got our of bed for awhile and played with her Daddy, and finally we all went to bed early and got a good nights' sleep. This morning I feel rested, refreshed and happy. Ray is still in bed asleep, but Jamie and I have been up for an hour now. She just took a nose-dive off the sofa into a basket of toys; it didn't hurt her, but it scared the pants off her and I both.

Ray has a Huskies game on TV this afternoon -- maybe we'll take Jame down to Dave's and watch it there. I haven't been out of the house in a few days and it might be nice to go somewhere.



 






Tuesday morning
November 9, 1982

Jamie is ELEVEN MONTHS OLD today! Wow! Hard to believe it's been almost a full year since we brought our little pink bundle home from the hospital and began our lives together as a family. She is such an important part of us. This has been the richest, fullest year of our lives because of our little daughter, and I love her more deeply with each passing day. Ray feels the same, I'm sure.

Ray took us to Dave's on Saturday, as I hoped he would. We watched the last half of the football game and drank a couple of pitchers, while Jamie stood on a chair at our table and munched on pickles and crackers.

We're up early this morning. Ray left for work at 6:45, and Jay and I were up to see him go. It's a frosty, bitterly cold morning, one of the final days of autumn, I suppose. The sun is shining on the frozen trees. It will be a gorgeous day. I have very little housework to do, so this might be my chance to take Jamie strolling. She might enjoy the fresh air. We spend so much of our time inside this house.



 






Friday morning
November 12, 1982

Yesterday while I was taking an afternoon nap, the baby gave me one good, solid thump I could actually feel from the outside, with my hand on my tummy. It was strong it startled me! There really is a person in there! I can't get over it. Even though I've already been down this road once, the wonder and the miracle of it remain fresh and amazing.

This will be a routinely busy day. I've got four big loads of laundry to dry, a pile of dishes to wash and a whole house that needs to be picked up and vacuumed. I'm beginning to get that restless, frantic feeling that there's too much to do before the baby is born and not enough time to do it all. Our closets and drawers are a mess, and of course that back bedroom is the worst of all. I feel overrun by JUNK, and I want to sort through everything we own and toss out HALF of it. Another person is due to join our family this spring, and we need to make room for him! I keep telling myself there's plenty of time - another four months, at least - but when the nesting instinct hits me, I can't keep from panicking ...

There is a small chance I may get my piano this weekend. Grandma is in a hurry to move it out of her house, and if Ray can round up a truck and a couple of people to help, we may have it here on Sunday. I'm really excited at the prospect but am trying not to get my hopes up too high. I've been let down before.

10:40 p.m.

I'm having some trouble. About half an hour ago I suddenly got a terrible charleyhorse in my left hip and the left side of my abdomen, and the pain just keeps getting worse. I can feel the baby flip-flopping heavily inside of me, and I'm scared that something bad is happening. (OUCH. Damn it, it HURTS.) Naturally, Ray is out boozing it up somewhere, and I haven't the faintest idea how to reach him.



 






Saturday morning 9 a.m.
November 13, 1982

The next morning, and - thank Heaven - the pain is gone. As a matter of fact it stopped just as suddenly as it had begun, right around midnight. On the other hand, the baby continues his lively and constant acrobatics inside of me. I suppose that it's simply because this will be an active baby, and there's nothing to worry about. I should probably expect my interior to be Baby's Gymnasium for the next five months.

Ray didn't come home at all last night. I stayed up until 1 a.m. waiting for him, but when he didn't show up I went to bed. I was tired, but even so I barely got three hours' sleep: I was worried and angry and kept getting out of bed to check for him. He finally called this morning at 7 a.m. from Mike Ross' apartment, sounding like death several times warmed over; he croaked out an apology and promised to come home as soon as he could get the car. I was real nice about the whole thing, considering, and even now I'm not really mad. It's been a while since he's pulled an all-nighter, and I sort of felt one coming. It's as though he needs to get it out of his system. I just talked to Grandma on the phone and she said that Grandpa used to do the same thing, during the early years of their marriage. About once every three months he would stay out all night without calling, and it was usually when she was pregnant, she said! I don't know why but that made me feel better.

When Ray gets home he'll probably go to bed for the rest of the day. I was hoping we could make our weekly trip to Dave's Place with Jamie, but that's probably out of the question now.

3 p.m.

Can you believe it? Ray still isn't home. I am so depressed.

(He finally showed up around 6 p.m., weak, sick and tired. I was unspeakably disgusted with him and gave him the cold shoulder for a while. Then I realized that he was seriously sick, not just burned out - fever, laryngitis - I softened enough to put him to bed.)



 






Tuesday morning
November 16, 1982
Grandma's birthday

Ray, Jamie and I are all down with bad colds today. Ray has had laryngitis for several days, and this is the second day in a row he's stayed home from work. I have a sore throat and that awful headachy feeling I get with a cold. Jamie has had a runny nose for about a week, and this morning she has some chest congestion. I've got the two of them in bed, with Vicks rubbed on their chests and the thermostat cranked up higher than normal. As for myself, I plan to just stay warm, take an occasional aspirin and do some light housework. Wish I could stay in bed but a mother's work is never done.

Yesterday I had my 20-week appointment with Dr. Heffron. He used the ultrasound and we watched the baby moving around inside of me. It was SO incredible!!!! I saw the baby wiggling its hands and moving its head. Dr. H gave me a "Polaroid" picture of the baby for me to keep.



 






Wednesday 9 a.m.
November 17, 1982

Ray went back to work this morning. I feel quite a lot better today myself, but Jamie is still awfully stuffed up and coughing. I'll continue to keep her warm and quiet and give her lots of fluids, but if she's no better by tonight I'll have to find her a new doctor. (Dr. Van P.'s office requested last month that we "seek professional care elsewhere" because we didn't pay our bills.)

Evening:

Ray went bowling without us this evening. Jamie's temperature is normal and some of the congestion in her chest seems to have cleared, but I just thought it would be wise not to drag her out tonight. She and I played quietly for three hours this evening, and she had my undivided attention throughout. She liked that. I gave her a light "dinner" of peanut butter crackers, cheese and banana slices, but she only ate the banana and threw everything else on the floor. I put a crushed baby aspirin in her apple juice and I think that may have helped. She was in a good mood all evening and the cold didn't seem to be bothering her at all, except when I had to wipe her nose or take her temperature (she HATES that). Now she's in bed and the house seems sooo quiet! She went down without a peep. I let her take a bottle to bed again, even though I know I shouldn't be encouraging the habit. She fell asleep within minutes.

I've got a gigantic baked potato sitting in the oven, for my dinner. In fact it's probably the hugest potato I've ever seen ... a whole meal in itself.



 







Thursday 11 a.m.
November 18, 1982

My sore throat has turned into full-blown laryngitis. I can barely croak a single word. I'd love to snuggle into bed with a stack of new magazines and a mustard poultice on my chest, but as usual that's out of the question. It occurs to me that I'm actually LOOKING FORWARD to being in the hospital with a new baby next spring ... at least I'll finally be able to stay in bed as much as I like, for a few days at least!

The name of choice today is Melissa. But Melissa what? If I could come up with a really dynamite middle name, Melissa could well be "it" for a girl. I like it because it sounds pretty and feminine; all the Melissas I have known have been very feminine.

BUT. Poor little baby, if you're a boy ... your mother just can't come up with ANYTHING that suits her! I'm tired of Jesse. Casey is nice, but I'm afraid people may think it's wimpy. Jeremy has already been used by a million other people ... although "Jamie and Jeremy" sound cute together. Taylor or Tyler? I like them both but no one else will. I like Kyle. Kyle Edward? Kyle Taylor? (too many "L's"?) I guess that Kyle remains a possibility ... the only trouble is that it doesn't have that special ring to it, that "zing" that grabs me. This might be my last child so he deserves a really terrific name.

I need some maternity pants. My regular jeans are agony to wear, and I can't very well go around wearing my bathrobe all day. I'd also like another maternity top, something pretty to wear during the holidays.



 






Friday 7:30 a.m.
November 19, 1982

This cold is miserable. I feel cruddy all over. Fortunately I got a decent nights' sleep and my throat isn't sore anymore; instead, I've moved on to a stuffy head and chest, and I'm working on a wracking cough. Ray got up for work at 6:30, and on a whim I decided to get up with him. Jamie stayed up with me for about 45 minutes, but now I've got her tucked back into her crib; I can hear her coughing in her bedroom. Poor little Puss. I wish there were something I could do to relieve her discomfort, but at this point it's simply a matter of letting the cold run its course.

I'm drinking a cup of coffee with milk and watching "Good Morning America" ... trying to decide whether to stay up and get my day under way or go back to bed for a couple of hours. Frankly, bed sounds very tempting, but it would seem like a waste of a morning. If I stay up I could get my shower and the dishes over with early, and then have the rest of the day to do as I please. I've got half a dozen "projects" in the works, and it might be fun and relaxing to devote one whole day to them.

I read an article in "American Baby" magazine about a condition called lactose intolerance, the inability to break down and digest milk sugar. Shortly after consuming milk or milk products, a person with lactose intolerance will experience "bloating, cramping, gas and/or diarrhea." This sounds just like the problem I've been having recently. I drink one or two glasses of milk with dinner, and then I'm up and down all night with what I THOUGHT was indigestion. Lately the problem seemed to be getting worse: I was spending half the night in the bathroom. Even a small dish of ice cream or pudding for dessert would trigger it. I was beginning to think maybe it was a reaction to my vitamins, but then I read this article and every word spoke directly to me! For the last two nights I've avoided milk products at night, and there's been no pain or trouble of any kind. I must ask Dr. Heffron about this when I see him next month, and in the meantime I'll continue skipping the milk at dinner. It won't be easy, because I dearly love my milk, but I would rather get a good nights' sleep.

Melissa Leigh. She will probably be Melissa Leigh. What do you think?


THINGS I HATE!

Cooked lettuce! Emptying ice cube trays. Unexpected company! Dr. Burton White. Pizza. Disconnection notices. Bare walls.

WINTER 1982 IS:

Coffee and cocoa, mixed ... a new piano ... names for the baby (Melissa? Kimberley? Kyle? Casey?) ... "Square Pegs" ...



 






Monday 6 p.m.
November 22, 1982

Waiting for Ray to come home -- Oops! He just drove in! -- I'll write in a minute.

Now he's in the kitchen making dinner (pork chops, bleccch) and I'm enjoying the nice, relaxed feeling I always get when I've just put Jamie down for the night. We had a long, happy, typical day together, and I do feel a little twinge when I close her door and walk away, but it's nice to just sit back and totally relax for the first time all day. No curious little pixie to be watching every second.

BABY ... WHO ARE YOU GOING TO BE?
WHEN WILL YOU BE JOINING OUR FAMILY?
WILL YOU BE IN GOOD HEALTH WHEN YOU ARRIVE?
WILL YOUR BIG SISTER LOVE & ACCEPT YOU?



 






December 1, 1982
Wednesday morning

The first day of December ... traditionally one of my favorite days of the year, because it heralds the beginning of a very special month! Jamie will be one year old in a week, I will be (gasp) 25 in two weeks ... and then there's CHRISTMAS. I've been looking forward to this holiday season all year, more so than in recent years past. This Christmas will be a lot of fun because Jamie will be sharing it with us, and not in a passive way, like last year. I just know she's going to be right in the middle of everything! (Trimming the tree, wrapping and unwrapping gifts, family dinners.)

The cold and laryngitis have finally gone away. Jamie is back to normal as well. She has a 2:00 doctor appointment with Dr. Van P. (they agreed to take us back as patients, after I wrote them a letter asking them to reconsider "for Jamie's sake"). I don't expect her to get any shots today, but she'll be weighed and measured and I can ask the doctor a few questions. (Should she continue on formula, or is it time for regular cow's milk? Should she be eating more solid foods? She has abruptly stopped taking her morning nap: is she getting enough sleep? Should I be trying to wean her off the bottle?)

A lot of things have happened in the last ten days or so. Thanksgiving 1982 has come and gone, for one thing ... we had a traditional turkey dinner with all the trimmings at Mom's house. Jamie sat at the table (in her highchair) with the rest of the family and polished off a huge plateful of mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing, Jell-O salad, cranberries, broccoli and candied sweet potatoes ... THEN she went to work on a gigantic turkey drumstick!! Her second cousins Ben and Kelli St. John (ages 2 and 5) played with her and kept her entertained most of the afternoon. Jamie loves being around other children. Kelli is turning into quite a young lady, and Ben is astonishingly bright and verbal, speaking in complete and complex sentences already. It made me hope that Jamie is speaking as well in another year.

The first turkey drumstick!
November 1982

Another important change: I finally got my piano! Ray, Don Jr. and Scott C. moved it from Grandma's house last weekend. It's beautiful and I love it, something very dear from my childhood, now a part of my adult life. I've played it every day. Of course I'm rusty from years of non-practice, but still it's surprising how much is coming back to me. All of my old favorites, Clementi and Mozart and Bach, and that full little book of children's' songs (will I be playing them for Jamie someday?) ... it's so much fun to be hearing them all again.



Getting acquainted with Mommy's "new" piano
1982



 





Thursday afternoon
December 2, 1982

Feeling sleepy and happy today ... yesterday was a hectic day, and now I'm trying to recoup my energies.



 






Friday morning
December 3, 1982

Ummm ... let's try that again. I really must have been "sleepy" if all I could manage to scribble was one incoherent sentence! I feel a whole lot better today. Outside it's cold, raining and blustery -- it stormed all night long and shows no sign of letting up -- but inside the house smells like bacon and eggs and toast. Jamie and I just finished a nice hot breakfast, and now I'm sitting back with my coffee, watching the storm outside and waiting for the Baby to give me a kick and let me know he's awake. Jamie has a pretty pink nightgown on, a gift from the Harlans next door, and her hair is pulled into two tiny pigtails ... the very picture of sweetness and femininity, were it not for the sticky toast crumbs and apricot jam spread all over her face ... !

She has finally learned to get back DOWN off the sofa ... now she clambers up and down on the furniture, like a little monkey, all day long.

Noon:

There is a stack of dirty dishes a mile high in the kitchen, and the living room is littered with Jamie's toys ... why don't I have the energy to get started on my cleaning?! Outside, the storm continues to rage. I wonder if we'll have snow this year? A nice heavy snowstorm this afternoon would be so lovely ... I could sit beside the living room window and drink tea and watch the snow fall. I love the way the world feels after a good snow. It still doesn't really "feel" like December yet ... I think I need a dose of Christmas to lift my spirits today. Snow is highly unlikely, so maybe I'll play my Christmas tapes while I clean the kitchen. And maybe I'll do some holiday decorating this afternoon ... get out the Christmas carolers and the snow people and the kissing angels. That should help pick me up.

Ray and I discussed names for the baby last night, and we've narrowed the possibilities to two choices for a girl and two choices for a boy. Ray doesn't like Jeremy ("Sounds like a girls name") or Casey ("It sounds kinda funny ... like Casper the Ghost"); he still prefers Jesse over everything else, but he thought Kyle was "OK," so those are the two boys names. Jesse Taylor or Kyle Edward, most likely. For a girl the choices are Melissa, which Ray prefers, or Kimberley, which I have a secret preference for. He dismissed Lindsay and Kelsey without comment. I'm still working on middle names. Melissa Leigh? Kimberley Dawn?

The baby kicks regularly and solidly now, particularly when I'm laying in bed. I don't think I'll ever become indifferent to the sensation; every time I feel that little person wiggling around inside of me, it is a thrill. A miracle. I could sit with my hands pressed against my belly and feel those little thumps and bumps all day long: it is my very favorite part of being pregnant.


"She has finally learned to get back DOWN off the sofa ... now she clambers up and down on the furniture,
like a little monkey, all day long."
1982

 








Tuesday morning
December 7, 1982

Ray and I are extremely low on money this month, and I'm beginning to get my annual case of Christmas shopping jitters. This year I've been buying Avon products, a few each month, so I've got gifts for several people on our list already; unfortunately there is still a LOT left to do, and I don't know where the money will come from. I go through this same thing every year, though, and I always manage somehow. I don't want money troubles to ruin the holidays, so I'm trying very hard not to worry about it.







JAMIE POLEN  -   ONE YEAR

Jamie P. is almost one whole year old ... I just can't believe it! Just yesterday Ray and I were bringing her home from the hospital ... six pounds of sweet pink baby girl ... our daughter. She was so tiny and so perfect. I will never forget the way she looked, and the way she smelled (that warm, funny, new-baby smell), the way it felt to hold her in my arms. Just yesterday, it seems, she was sleeping in the little wicker basket on the sofa, and Ray and I were standing there watching her - our firstborn, product of our love - our little Jamie.

In two days it will be one year since she joined our family. We're planning a small cake and ice cream celebration here that evening, with the grandparents and a couple the aunts. We'll dress her up in her new red velvet dress and we'll open presents, and Jay will sit in her highchair and rub birthday cake in her hair, and we'll take pictures. A nice little party, suitable for a young lady's first birthday. But here in my heart the celebration has already begun ... a quieter, more private celebration of remembrance and reflection ... a mother's celebration ...

The most surprising thing I've learned during my first year of motherhood is that babies don't stay babies very long. One minute you're marveling at the first little smile, and in the blink of an eye you're watching them take their first wobbly steps. Just as you're getting used to one developmental phase, they're zipping into the next. It takes your breath away. Part of you wants to hold them back somehow, while the bigger part of you knows you can't. That first step leads to another, and another, and nothing you do can stop the progression once it's begun. It makes you feel a little sad, watching them walk away from you, all on their own: but at the same time you feel pride and joy and wonder at the miracle of it. It's such a miracle, watching your baby turning into a real live person, right before your very eyes.

This past year has been one of discovery, growth, quiet excitement, sharing, challenge and innumerable rewards, for all of us. I've become so close to this little human being. It has been my life's greatest joy to be her mother.

Jamie at age one: a busy, happy little perpetual motion machine, a chatterbox, an explorer, an innovator, a great manipulator, a flirt, a con artist, a tease, a charmer. She is never still for a moment; there is simply too much to do. Drawers must be pulled open and emptied, magazines crumpled, toilet paper unrolled and shredded, knobs twiddled and knickknacks rearranged ... everything must be investigated, tasted, dropped, rattled, fingered, poked, pushed, pulled, hidden, found again ... To Jamie an ordinary ball-point pen or a hair comb is as fascinating as any new toy. She would rather play with the gift wrap and ribbons than the gift itself! She loves things that make noise, things that rattle or clang or jingle. She loves knobs and dials, or anything she can turn. She likes "big peoples' things" - my pens and makeup, Daddy's cigarette lighter, eyeglasses, jewelry, coffee cups - things that are mostly off-limits to her, unfortunately!

She is extremely forthright about her feelings. There is no pretense: when she is happy, she is very, very happy - and she lets you know it. Likewise, when she's unhappy, you hear about it. Loud and clear! She is beginning to learn a few primitive manipulative tricks -- dropping things from her highchair, just to get me to pick them up -- but at this point her emotions are still pure and undiluted. She'll be playing with some toy or another on the living room floor, quietly content, and suddenly she'll just SHUDDER in complete happiness, or else she'll suddenly EXPLODE into a riotous, joyful babble. Or she'll be distracted by her play, look up suddenly and realize I've left the room, and howl in protest. She is usually very up or very down, not much middle ground (unless it's the preoccupied, speculative mood she's in when she's exploring something).

She is never very far away from me. If I'm sitting at the kitchen table (as I am now), she'll play in the dining area or on the kitchen floor directly behind me. She'll make brief forays into the living room or down the hallway, but soon she'll be back at my side, "touching base" with me again. She goes from room to room with me, following at my heels while I shower and make beds and vacuum. She watches everything I do with great interest, and expects me to watch her with equal interest. She loves an audience, particularly a responsive one - which is what I usually am of course, applauding her steps, laughing at her clowning, commenting on virtually everything she does - much to her delight. I think she's a ham. She certainly has her mother's flair for the dramatic, anyway! She knows how to get a reaction, and she'll do whatever it takes to make me respond to her. Fortunately she doesn't have to work too hard at it, because I would rather be doing something with my little daughter than just about anything else in the world. I like to think that giving her my time and attention has been one of the most important gifts I've given her this last year.

I still think Jamie was the prettiest baby I've ever seen, and is now the prettiest little girl. She has huge brown eyes and lots of thick brown hair that curls softly at the nape of her neck and a big dimpled smile, which she flashes easily & often.

She walks everywhere, even though it takes her twice as long to get from Point A to Point B as it would if she just crawled ... she obviously prefers to walk. Her steps are still a little wobbly and she takes a lot of falls, but then she just gets right back up and tries again. She is determined and unwavering in her resolve once she's made up her mind to do something; walking is no exception. She practices diligently and I expect that soon the wobbliness will disappear.

She still chatters incessantly, in that garbled Oriental dialect of hers. Her favorite word is "ba-ba," which originally meant bottle but now seems to have taken on several meanings, including "mother," "blanket" and "I want." She understands most of what I say to her, and she can follow simple instructions. ("Give that to Mama," "Where's your bottle?") She has started pointing at things that interest her; she initiates games of peekaboo; she can (clumsily) clap her hands, use a spoon, drink from my cup and pull her socks off her feet. She loves her little white shoes, and she's very possessive of them: she might let you hold them. Sometimes. Or maybe not. She has begun to imitate a few of the things that I do ... if I hand her a comb she'll "comb" her hair, and she makes little blowing noises to imitate smoking. (Oh great.) If I smack my lips noisily, she'll copy me. She likes to wrap herself up in scarves and ribbons, and she LOVES being told that she's a "pretty girl"!





Jamie Lynn on her first birthday
December 9, 1982





Jamie's birthday:

We celebrated Jamie's birthday, as planned, with cake, ice cream, party hats, gifts and grandparents. Barbara baked Jamie a chocolate cake with white icing and Ray brought home vanilla ice cream: Jamie dove into it head-first.









The Christmas tree:

Ray and I put the Christmas tree up on Sunday evening, after Jamie was in bed. I strung the lights and garlands and hung all the old familiar decorations, and when I finished the results were quite nice. Around 10 p.m. I heard Jay thrashing around in her crib, so I wrapped her up in her blanky and brought her out to the living room to see the tree. For about two minutes she didn't even NOTICE the tree: she was far more interested in the taco her Daddy was eating. Then she suddenly caught sight of it. If I live to be two thousand years old, I'll never forget the look on my little daughter's face when she saw that bright, pretty Christmas tree. Her eyes grew as big and round as dinner plates, her mouth dropped wide open, and her whole expression was one of wonder, rapture, awe ... all the magic of Christmas in my daughter's eyes.


With her Daddy in front of our Christmas tree
December 1982

 






Wednesday
December 15, 1982

This is my 25th birthday. Jamie just gobbled down a whole maple bar and half a banana for her breakfast: now she's paddling around the moderately-untidy living room in her pink nightgown, maple cream smeared around her mouth, her hair sticking out wildly in all directions. I'm sitting at the kitchen table with my coffee, thinking about taking a shower and picking up the house. Although it's my birthday, this day will be much like any other: dishes must be washed, clean laundry must be folded, order must be made of chaos. Dark, heavy clouds are laying overhead, threatening another storm like the one we had yesterday. The Christmas tree stands in the corner by the front door; I have the lights turned on this morning, as a special "birthday treat" for myself. I also went ahead and opened the birthday gifts Judy left her for me yesterday: a little basket filled with bath oil and soap, and a box of pretty stationery. Opening my presents made it seem a little more like my birthday and a little less like any other day.

I want to go bowling with Ray tonight but I'm not sure if we'll take Jay with us. My doctor's appointment tomorrow has been cancelled (Dr. Heffron will be in surgery: his nurse phoned to tell me), so I can have a couple of birthday Bloody Marys tonight and stay home tomorrow and recuperate. When Jamie goes to bowling with us she plays in the supervised nursery with the other children for most of the evening -- it is one of the few opportunities she has to be with children her own age -- so I'll probably take her along tonight. Next year she'll have a built-in playmate in her little sister or brother, but in the meantime I need to encourage opportunities for playtime with other children. Besides that, I just love taking her out with me. I love showing her off!

Is 25 "old"? I'm halfway through my twenties already and I'm trying not to feel depressed about it, but I still haven't gotten used to the fact that I'm one of the GROWN-UPS now.




 






Thursday morning
December 16, 1982

The next morning. My birthday turned out to be no big deal at all, just as I knew it would ... in fact, it was depressing as hell. No cards, no phone calls from either of my parents, nothing. Ray came home and gave me a plastic mirror -- unwrapped, still in the brown "Bonanza 88" bag with the price sticker on it. At bowling I drank two Bloody Mary Specials and sat very quietly reading the newspaper and feeling sad. The car died twice on the way home, in pouring rain, so Ray was in a foul mood by the time we got home after ten. He made bacon and tomato sandwiches for a late dinner, and it was midnight before we finally crawled into bed. I was exhausted and thankful the day was over. Thank goodness we only have one birthday a year: I don't think I could stand any more "special days" like that.

The house is an incredible mess today. I gave myself the day off yesterday and didn't lift a finger, so there's twice as much to do today. Naturally I don't have an ounce of energy. I'm on my fourth cup of coffee but it's noon already and I still haven't done anything except get Jamie and I dressed. It makes me wonder what I'll do next year when I have wake up with no energy and TWO children. I'm probably going to have to undergo a radical change of lifestyle -- eating right and exercising and stuff like that, to make me feel more energetic and alive.

"Endomorph - Lover of life. Someone who values his freedom and who takes things one day at a time. Strong believer in the maxim 'Eat, drink and be merry.' Less active sexually: tends to value other comforts and pleasures more. Tendency towards rounded bodies, fat."



 






Friday 4:30 p.m.
December 17, 1982

Last night turned out to be a nightmare of an evening: Ray was taken to jail for failure to appear in court (for a traffic violation), while I sat helplessly and watched the police officer take him away. It was horrible. Then he couldn't get anyone to bail him out, and I was forced to call Peg & Don for help. They raised the $150 bail and Ray got out shortly after midnight, but the whole episode was so depressing. I'm hoping he'll come home soon because I barely got to say three words to him last night.  He had just walked in the door when the cop showed up and whisked him away, and when he finally got out of jail and got home, we both tumbled exhausted into bed. I want to know if he's OK, and to reassure him that I love him and that I'll stick by him, no matter what. He had his obligatory one phone call while he was at the jail, and he called me. He sounded so forlorn, it broke my heart. I'm just glad the folks came through for us like they did: if they hadn't, Ray would have had to stay there all night. He felt sort of embarrassed turning to them, but Peg & Don were so nice and so concerned that I wish we'd just called them in the first place. The way they rallied to our aid amazed me. I put them down so often, especially Big Don, who can be difficult to get along with at times, but last night really went a long way towards changing my opinion of them. They really care about us.

I've been dead tired all day. I stayed up waiting for Ray last night, and drank a beer while I waited. Then I had to get up this morning at 7 a.m. - early for me - because of a 9 a.m. doctor's appointment. Lack of sleep and taut nerves combined have made me even more tired than usual. I feel like taking a hot bath and eating a good supper and sitting in front of a blazing fire with Ray this evening, and then going to bed early and getting a full night's sleep. I've discovered a new little treat for myself that is helping to perk me up a bit: hot coffee mixed with instant cocoa and crushed peppermint. I'm on my second mugful right now, and it tastes wonderfully Christmasey.

Peg took me to my doctors appointment this morning. While I was being examined she sat out in the waiting room with Jamie again. I had a very routine checkup: we listened to the baby's heartbeat, and Dr. Heffron checked the size of my tummy, and that was about it. The nurse gave me some samples of Mylanta for heartburn, and Dr. H recommended a milk substitute called "fresh acidophilus," which I may be able to tolerate better than regular milk. I bought some on the way home and it doesn't taste any different from regular lowfat milk, except for a slight after taste. Hopefully it will eliminate the discomfort, gas and diarrhea I get when I drink regular milk. Everything seemed to check out fine, and Baby continues to develop right on schedule. In another three months or so, I should be the mother of two.

Jamie and I took a three hour nap this afternoon, from 11 to 2. While I was sleeping I had a most disturbing dream, that I was being forced to have an abortion. It was sort of like a C-section because there was a huge incision in my abdomen. I couldn't feel the baby moving anymore and I was hysterical. What a relief to wake up and feel the familiar thump, thump, thump. My baby is in there, alive and well and growing, and I have a feeling that he/she will be born just as healthy and beautiful as Jamie was. I seem to have a talent for producing exceptional children! I feel very optimistic and positive about this pregnancy right now, weird dreams notwithstanding.

Derrick? Ryan? Andy?



 






Saturday morning
December 18, 1982

Ray was just as depressed when he got home last night (at 9:30) as I knew he would be. He kept crying and saying that he felt like "a piece of shit." I did my best to console and reassure him but nothing worked. Finally, in desperation, I got Jamie out of bed, wrapped her in her blanket and said "I know what will cheer you up, Daddy." And I handed him his sleepy daughter. He held her and hugged her and wept into her hair, but in a few minutes he seemed to be feeling better. Holding a warm cuddly baby has that affect on some people! He began fixing us hot dogs and beans for a late supper, and then he held Jay on his lap while he ate, allowing her to poke her fingers into his plate and feeding her little pieces of hot dog. By the time we went to bed he was still feeling blue, but at least he knows that Jamie and I love him.

Now he's still sleeping. I have just showered and fixed myself another mug of my "mocha coffee." I LOVE the stuff! I owe Carol G. $37 and I expect she'll be dropping by any minute to collect. As usual I don't have the money, and I'm dreading her knock on the door. MONEY. We never have any, and all our problems seem to revolve around that fact. I spend most of my time avoiding phone calls and collectors, opening past-due notices, making excuses, scraping together pennies from the bottom of my purse, plotting who to borrow from next ... it's so depressing. Last night I watched a young nurse from Walla Walla win the first million dollar Washington State lottery. Why couldn't that be me?? The things we could do with a million dollars ... buy a house and a couple of new cars, new furniture, travel, pay off all our debts, get ourselves into a secure financial position for life ... sigh. I could have as many children as I want. Ray could quit working at Western Kraft. I could go back to school and pursue a writing career! It would be so fantastic to rid ourselves of ALL our debts and to start over again, fresh.



 








Monday morning
December 20, 1982

My usual Monday morning routine: sitting behind closed curtains in a darkened house until the diaper service man gets here ... we're way behind on our payments and I'm avoiding meeting him face to face. For that matter I'm still avoiding Carol, too. All of this "avoiding" is giving me a big know in the pit of my stomach.

We had a fairly nice weekend. Ray was still in a blue mood, so I did everything I could to raise his spirits. On Saturday afternoon he took Jamie and I down to Dave's Place for a few beers. While we were sitting there, we decided to have an impromptu "eggnog party" at home that evening with Kurt & Wendie. So we scurried around the grocery and liquor stores and came home to hurriedly clean up the house. Kurt and Wendie and Wendie's sister Cathie came over, and we spent the evening in front of the fireplace, listening to the stereo, munching on peanuts and talking. It was fun and relaxing.

Yesterday -- Sunday -- Dad and Valerie stopped by for a visit in the morning. They brought me some drawing paper and a set of watercolor pens as a belated birthday present. In the afternoon Ray, Jamie and I went over to the folks' house for a big fried chicken dinner, again to belatedly celebrate my birthday. Sheryl gave me a gorgeous long white nightgown. We were home by 7:00 with an armful of Sunday papers and some cold chicken for late-night munching.

I keep having the strangest dream: I dream that Ray isn't Jamie's father, that her real father is my old high school boyfriend, Scott S., and that I married Scott a few years ago and am still legally married to him. The dream is disturbing and irritating, and I'm always relieved to wake up. I don't know why on earth I keep dreaming about Scott S.. I have no feelings for him anymore, just memories. I mean, he was a very nice guy, and we were together for 2-1/2 years, but still  ... ?

I wish I could stop worrying about finances long enough to just sit back and enjoy this week. This is the season I've been waiting for all year, and now I'm too tense to appreciate it. This should be a happy time -- Christmas music on the stereo, wrapping gifts, opening Christmas cards, feeling festive and energetic and buoyant -- and instead here I am lurking behind closed curtains, afraid to answer the door. This is ridiculous. Maybe once the diaper man has come and gone and I've had the dreaded confrontation with Carol I'll feel better.

Evening:

HO HO HO! DECK THE HALLS! JOY TO THE WORLD! MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! I got ninety dollars in the mail today ... throw open those curtains!! Turn on that Christmas music!! Plug that telephone back in!! Terri P. is out of hiding, and Christmas is four days away, and all is right with the world!

Baby is thumping me like CRAZY. Does she sense my excitement?



 






Tuesday morning
December 21, 1982

Now this is more like it ... I just got out of bed and the sun is shining, the house is neat and beautiful, and the day stretches out before me, long and luxurious. I have very little work that needs to be done, and lots of time to spend with my daughter and with myself, gearing up for the hectic days ahead. I'm not avoiding ANYONE today and it feels wonderful. The curtains are thrown wide open, revealing a gorgeous winter morning, and I'm happy.

I had a horrendous cramp in my right leg last night. Guess that means I'll be getting them from now on, off and on, until Baby is born, just as I did when I was pregnant with Jamie. It would probably be wise to start taking calcium lactate again.

Casey is back "on" as a possibility for a boy's name. The other night when Wendie and Cathie were here, we spent most of the evening pouring through a baby name book, discussing possibilities and laughing at some of the more outrageous choices. (How about "Sven" ???) Both Wendie and Cathie like "Casey" a lot, which has rekindled my interest in it. Casey P. It sounds good. Don Jr. and Judy plan to use "Edward" as a middle name, so I suppose I'll have to come up with something different, unless I can convince Judy to let me use it. Wendie also liked Tyler and Kyle.



 






Thursday noon
December 23, 1982

The last couple of days have been up and down emotionally. On Tuesday night, Ray came home late and we got into a blistering argument, ending with him slamming out the door, leaving me in tears. I'm not even sure what the fight was about. One minute we were talking calmly, and the next minute we were hurling ugly names at each other. When he stormed out of the house I felt completely desolate. I sat in darkness, watching Christmas specials on TV and crying. All the meaning seemed to drain out of the holidays. How could I feel any "peace on earth" when there was no peace in my own home? When Ray finally came home, two hours later, we had both calmed down a little. We talked. Things began taking on some sense of proportion again. We both resolved two things: first, that Christmas is a family time, and that means Ray, Jamie and me. WE are the family. WE are what counts. Secondly, we agreed to stop trying to please everybody and to concentrate on our own little family. It's unrealistic for us to expect everybody to be happy. This applies to little things -- this year Ray won't give his Christmas bonus turkey to his mother, like he always does ... I'm not going to invite his parents here to our house early-early on Christmas morning because I DON'T WANT TO: I want that time to be private family time   ...  and to bigger things -- no more feeling guilty because we can't afford the extravagant presents that Ray's sisters and parents buy for everyone. If this means being self-centered, then that's what we'll do. Christmas begins at home -- OUR home -- and that's the way we'll approach it from now on.

Jay and I went bowling with Ray last night, and it really picked up our spirits.



 

Christmas 1982
Jamie on Christmas morning with her new car; Mommy and Jamie after Christmas dinner at the
in-laws' (Mommy is pregnant with Kacie)







Tuesday morning 8:30 a.m.
December 28, 1982

Early ... and cold. The world is so frosted over that at first I mistook it for snow. Ray left a pot of coffee for me, and I'm baking some caramel rolls to go with it. Jamie is still sleeping (in new red flannel jammies, complete with a "trap-door" in the rear ... a Christmas gift from my dad!), but Baby apparently is wide awake and ready to begin another day of thumping and bumping. I've been very tired the past couple of days. I'm hoping that getting an early start this morning -- breakfast, a shower, maybe some light exercise -- will give me a little more pep and energy. I've got SO MUCH TO DO to prepare for Baby, and this suffocating feeling that time is running out. What if he makes an early arrival?? I have nothing ready. The back bedroom is still piled floor to ceiling with junk. The baby clothes are still packed away in boxes. There is nothing for the baby to sleep in, no new nipples for bottles, no new plastic pants, NOTHING. All I've got is one unopened can of Enfamil, half a box of "newborn" disposable diapers, a receiving blanket and a white teddy bear. I've got to get started NOW if I want to be prepared.

Christmas 1982 is now a memory. It wasn't the most wonderful Christmas on record, but it had its moments, good and bad. There were lows: getting up early Christmas Eve morning with a horrendous hangover  ... Jamie feeling fussy and cranky at Dad's house, refusing to touch any of the toys he gave her ... Jamie bonking her head on the coffee table at Grandma St. John's and getting a huge goose egg ... Ray not giving me anything for Christmas (I concealed my disappointment, but I was really hurt: he didn't even give me a card) ... the rushed, indifferent way that everyone opened presents at the in-laws' house Christmas morning -- no one paid any attention to what anyone else was opening, and when they were through with their own gifts they just left the room!  I ended up sitting there all by myself, unwrapping my gifts alone. And there were highs: Jamie's delighted reaction to the musical bear my brother gave her ... a relaxed and pleasant Christmas Eve at Grandma St. John's  --  Ray and I refrained from drinking, so we felt good the next morning ... my brother saying "I love you" as we were leaving Grandma's house ... a wonderful turkey dinner at Peg & Don's on Christmas afternoon. Jamie got toys and clothes and books and puppets and you-name-it. Her favorites, beside the musical bear, include a little yellow chair from Grandma St. John, a "shape-sorter" toy, a potty chair and a little pink toddler car from her grandparents, and (of course) the empty boxes her gifts came in! She got four pairs of pajamas, a warm winter coat (fuzzy blue) from my mom, three sweatsuits, all in pink, some play clothes, socks, bibs, and a pretty two-piece outfit that she'll wear when we get our picture taken together tomorrow at Sears.

Peg and Don gave me a pair of maternity jeans (now I have two pairs -- how nice!) and a maternity T-shirt which unfortunately is huge, even on me. I don't have the nerve to say so, though. Barbara gave me a maternity smock which is also too big on me, but it's comfortable so I've been wearing it anyway. Sheryl gave me a beautiful gold bracelet, so delicate & fine that it looks like a golden thread on my wrist, and a box of pretty stationery. Other gifts I really like are a set of matching photo albums from Mom, bright colored sofa cushions from Grandma St. John, a pearl necklace and matching earrings and stickpin from Dick and Ann, scented candles and a big box of typing paper from Dad and Valerie, a new purse and makeup bag in my stocking at Peg and Don's, and some knick-knacky things for my kitchen from various people -- a trivet that says "Terri's Kitchen," a set of hanging measuring cups, a wall calendar that Judy made for me.



 





Saturday evening
January 1, 1983

My final entry in this journal; New Years Day 1983. Ray is watching bowl games at The Sit ‘N Bull -- I sent him off earlier today with my blessing. The house was a horrendous mess, and I wanted him out of my way while I attempted to restore order. Debby stayed with us for three days this week and she helped make most of the mess. She spent most of her time raiding the refrigerator, playing my records, using my makeup, calling her friends on the phone and chain-smoking cigarettes, but still I thoroughly enjoyed her company. So did Jamie. Ray and I drove her home last night, and then we stopped at Dave's Place for a few beers. We weren't able to get a babysitter so Jamie accompanied us. There were only six or seven people at Dave's, so I let her toddle around ... she loves the jukebox and all the bright, pretty video game machines. The tavern was so lifeless, though, that we eventually left at 8:30 and came home. Ray went back out and picked up some Chinese food for our dinner. After Jamie went to bed, Ray and I sat on the living room floor and pigged out on chicken chow mein, egg rolls, fried rice, barbecued pork, almond chicken and prawns. We were both in bed asleep when midnight rolled around. Not the most exciting New Years Eve in history, but we both seem to be getting more domestic in our old age .. !

Something important happened a few nights ago -- Wednesday night, in fact, the night of the last total lunar eclipse until 1986. Ray & Debby & I had stayed up late, talking and listening to music, and Ray and I decided to go outside and watch the eclipse. It began at 3 a.m. It was a clear, cold, frosty night, and the view from our backyard was unobstructed and awesome. Ray and I stood by the picnic table with our arms around each other and watched the shadow of our world begin to darken the surface of the moon. Just at that moment, Baby gave a mighty thump inside me, and at precisely the same moment Baby's name finally crystallized in my heart: I knew then with all surety that this child is Casey / Kasey P. !! The past few days have only reinforced the feeling. Everything just "clicked" at that moment, and the name that has been in the back of my mind all along suddenly seemed right. It has sounded better and better with each passing day. Ray likes it, Debby likes it, Judy, Dad and Mom all like it too. It's an attractive name, suitable for either a boy or a girl, slightly different without being too far-out. It sounds good with "Jamie" and it goes well with P.. Kasey-with-a-"K" for a girl conjures up the image of another little daughter, similar to Jamie in most ways but different in some other way ... maybe darker or lighter coloring, a rounder face, curlier hair? Casey-with-a-"C" for a boy brings to mind the two handsome Caseys I went to school with -- sturdy, athletic, good-looking, friendly. We even have middle names chosen -- Edward for a boy, after Ray's Grandpa and Ray himself, and Pauline for a girl, after my Great-Grandma Pauline Lamb DeGrasse and my Grandpa Paul Vert.

Before I close, I should think about predictions or resolutions for the New Year. Here are a few of the things I'd like to see happen in 1983:

1. I give birth to a healthy, beautiful Casey/Kasey with minimum pain and fuss, right on schedule.
2. We survive the first early months with a newborn and come out of it as a stronger, happier family.
3. Judy and Patty both give birth to healthy sons.
4. Jamie begins talking to me!
5. Ray spends decreasing amounts of time at Dave's & The Chili Pepper.
6. We either repair the washer or buy a new one.
7. I seriously begin taking off the lard once Casey/Kasey arrives, even if only a little bit at a time.
8. I get my hair cut and maybe permed.
9. I stop making promises I don't intend to keep.
10. Donna finds out Chuck is John's father; Erica finds out Silver & Kent slept together; Tom & Brooke get together; Jenny and Greg, Angie and Jesse get married; Phoebe finds out about Opal & Langley; Cliff finds out about Nina and Steve; Amanda finds out Kirk is Kim's father; Kirk and Rae get married.
11. I make one good new friend.
12. I write three new poems.
13. Both back bedrooms get painted, the bathroom gets tiled, the rug is shampooed and the drapes are cleaned.
14. Take steps toward organizing babysitting co-op.
15. Portrait of two kids together, late summer?
16. Pregnancy Diary #2 gets finished.
17. Scrapbook for Casey/Kasey, like Jamie's.
18. I get a new coat, flat shoes, new jeans, crib for Casey/Kasey, big photo albums.
19. Better marriage: more intimacy, more conversation, more time spent together, more trust, less drinking.
20. Health, happiness, love, peace, comfort, routine, stability, laughter.




SILLY SONGS I SING TO JAY:

How I love my pretty Jamie,
My sweet & precious pretty Jamie,
How I love my pretty Jamie,
Honest to goodness I do!
She's my baby, I'm her mother,
And I love her like no other,
Someday she'll have a baby brother!
Honest to goodness, I do!
(I got this from an old Debby Reynolds movie.)

Jamie Doodle went to town
Riding on her mo-ther,
Stuck a feather in her cap
And said "I want a brother!"
Jamie Doodle keep it up
Jamie Doodle Poh-len.,
Mind the music & the step
And with your Dad go bowlin'!


Belly belly
Sweet as jelly
Juicy as a water-melly!


I love Jamie, yes I do!
I love Jay -- you'll love her too!
I love Jamie every day!
I love Jamie every way!




FAVORITE SONGS DURING THIS JOURNAL:

Hurts So Good - John Cougar
Jack & Diane - John Cougar
You Should Hear How She Talks About You - Melissa Manchester
Southern Cross - Crosby, Stills & Nash
The Bramble & The Rose - Reilley & Maloney
Africa - Toto
Gloria - Laura Branigan

 

 





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