Monday, December 19, 2005

Almost Two Down, Three to Go!

My third trimester is only a month away - I can hardly believe that I'm nearly 2/3 through this pregnancy! This last week has been a doozy...

* lactating breasts - check!
* single chin whisker - check!
* constant baby motion - check!

Sigh. I had a coffee the other morning and I swear to God that the baby was jumping up and down on my bladder singing "I LOVE COFFEE! MORE COFFEE MORE COFFEE COFFEE COFFEE COFFEE!!!"

You'd think that would put me off the coffee, but not so much. A morning mapafrapalappachinno is so yummy! Besides, I only have it a few times a week. Just long enough in between mugs to forget the feeling of the monkey catapulting off my already-squished bladder.

Not quite sure about the lactating thing... half of me is really happy to know that I stand such a high chance of being a successful milk bar, but the other half is thinking WTF?!??? I still have MONTHS to go! My midwife nearly clapped her hands with glee handing me some trial nursing pads, me not so much. There's nothing sexier than dripping boobs.

I've also had a rash of reckless behaviour in the past little while. On Jason's birthday I had not one, but TWO raw oysters on the half shell. Last night I even had an eighth of a glass of fine white wine! CALL THE BABY POLICE! RECKLESS MOM-TO-BE ON THE LOOSE!

It seems that this little monkey has a taste for the finer things in life... 16lbs and counting. I thought I had gained more, but apparently my body is just redistributing itself!

Over the weekend, Jason and I saw King Kong, which is a pretty big deal when you consider how few movies we actually see in the theatre. It was fan-freaking-tastic, with non-stop action and some truly heart-breaking scenes. I wasn't the only one crying in a few spots! Three hours with no pee breaks and I still loved it. We also watched March of the Penguins, which I highly recommend.

On the work scene, the dust has settled and people have began their daily routines of resume-manipulation, networking and going for loooong lunches with the core hours seeming to be 10-3. If I decide to come in at all, it's usually spent socializing and surfing. I even brought my knitting in today, but I don't think I have the balls to pull it out! I can't imagine this lasting for another three months without my going insane, but we'll see.

Lastly, on the homefront, we have insulation in place for the downstairs - it's amazing how warm it is!!! The wiring and plumbing is done, thanks to added work efforts of my Dad and a few good friends. Luckily we were able to get a lot at cost through my parents' plumbing company, so that is a huge bonus. So next on the list is getting the subfloor in and the drywall up. Drywall - yikes.

That's all for now! I gotta get home soon and get some more knitting done.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

The Fallout

Well, it's not just another day in the life of a high-tech worker... it's the day after my entire office got laid off, two weeks before Christmas.

The last time this happened to me nearly three years ago, I was at a telecommunications company along with about 90 others in Vancouver. They gave half of us three months notice, and the other half no notice at all. The severance packages were fantastic and the timing was good for me - a bunch of co-workers had recently resigned to begin a startup. I got a call from the startup two days later, asking me if I wanted to come join them. So for four months, I was getting two paychecks, double benefits, and a new and exciting job. Not a bad way to live!

This time is a bit different. The startup company was bought out by a big supercomputer company in 2003. They wanted our product badly to fill in a gap that their business case was lacking. So they acquired us, mismanaged us, and finally gave us the boot. Our product is now their product and our people got the shaft. Most of the people here will be terminated as of March 31, 2006. Some in July, some in December. So instead of severance packages, we get "working notice".

But, such is the vicious cycle of high-tech... startup, buyout, layoff... I feel so cynical to think of it that way, but that's just the way it is. This time there are no huge severance packages, and there is an incentive to leave early to collect some extra cash - up to 50% of your working notice.

Well, for everyone but me. Being 5 months pregnant hardly makes me an attractive candidate for employment, and I think the job search is more stress than I'm willing to take on. And I'm lucky that I don't have to, my higher-ups definitely went to bat for me and managed to get me my maternity leave with benefits, if I stick around until my due date. That's a better severance package than anyone else got! When I return, I am supposed to resign, since there will be no job waiting for me. I'm still not quite sure of the legality of things and find it perplexing to find out how much of a favour these people are doing me.

That means coming here to work each day. The environment is so toxic. Everyone is working on their resumes, searching for new jobs, venting about the company bigwigs, etc. I've been told that I should just "work from home", meaning work on my knitting, renovations, walk the dog, and all while receiving a paycheck. Crazy but true.

Sounds like a great situation, doesn't it?

It's not. I feel guilt coming into a job and getting paid for sitting on my heiny. I feel bad for the people around me that are all competing for the same set of jobs. I hate that people's Christmases have been ruined by this, when I just carry on, business as normal. How can anything be normal? What do they really expect us to accomplish in the next three months?

All I know is that surfing the web, blogging and polishing my resume makes for a really long and boring work day.

Thursday, December 8, 2005


Yesterday in a completely relaxed moment during my massage appointment, I felt the baby move. I just laid there, unable to believe that I finally FELT the baby MOVE!

My RMT noticed my complete silence, I had been chatting her ear off for the last 20 minutes... it took me a few seconds to convey to her what had happened.

It was not a twinge, a pull, or a flutter. It felt like how submerging something in water feels. Sploosh! So weird.

When I got home and told Jason, I felt a little guilty. This is something that only I am going to experience, how can my description of the feeling compare to the actual feeling? Oddly enough, I feel like I am the luckier one in this undertaking.

I know that only I am going to feel the heaviness of this baby growing inside me, the pain in my hips and back, the constant pressure on my bladder. The heartburn, the fatique, the breathlessness... all those things are reserved for me and only me.

But I still feel like we women are blessed.

Later that night, we laid in bed and Jason had his hand on my belly. I figured out that I need to relax completely to discern the feeling of the baby moving from the other movements of my body. After a few minutes, we both felt the baby hit Jason's palm. Very cool.

I hope I still feel so blessed when this baby is kicking me full force in the rib cage, or performing jumping jacks on my bladder. When I'm nearly 4ft around and still only 5ft tall, I hope I still feel good enough to walk the dog, swim and do yoga. I hope the elastic band that I've threaded through the buttonhole and around the button of my jeans doesn't snap today. I hope that I don't accidentally pee myself in the middle of teaching my yoga class next week, or expel gas loudly at the lunchroom table, or anywhere that Bella will not be there to blame.

With each day I find that there are more and more "what if's" and "I hope's" and "maybe's" in pregnancy. I've never been so full of questions and uncertainty in my life, but somehow it feels good.