So about three months ago, I had a baby. It was a boy. His name is Milam (pronounced my-lum). I visited my midwife the day before his birth because I knew the time was near. He was fully cooked, and so was I. Sure enough, I was three centimeters dilated which meant his birthday was coming soon. Chris’s parents came up to watch Eloise while we were at the birth house in Tennessee. I would have had him at home, but my midwife stopped delivering babies in Alabama because it is illegal and she  almost went to jail one too many…

I have been thinking about birth a lot lately. It’s probably because I am about to give birth, and every time I try to look at the floor, I can’t see it because my belly is in the way. The computer I am typing on right now is balancing on my belly as well. I can feel Milam rolling around in my womb, punching my organs, and bringing on an uncomfortable but not painful tightness called Braxton Hicks contractions. Birth is all around me. Literally. All around my middle. But I woke up this morning wondering if birth was a…

Let me just state for the record: being pregnant and having a toddler is hard. More like HARD. More like I-am-not-sure-how-I-am-still-alive-right-now-HARD. And I know I am not alone in this sentiment. There have been many mothers before me and will be many after who lovingly and graciously endure this season of life. They drag themselves out of pregnant-comasleep to the sounds of am 18 month old ripping off her diaper and smearing its contents all over her crib at 2am. They look in the mirror and laughed as they carry a 20 month old in one arm, her babydoll collection…

There have been changes afoot in the Bethea house. More than usual, even. Which is why I haven’t sat down to write anything since July. In reality, I haven’t sat down since July for any reason. But change is a-comin’ and that is worth writing about. Some things have not changed: Yes, I am still growing our second baby in my uterus. This one happens to be a boy. No, that baby boy doesn’t make me want to vomit anymore. Yes, we still live in a really small town and the only time I leave the house is to go…

Written July 13, 2011 Disgusting. I am disgusting. Only 6 weeks pregnant, and already I hate my life. For the past week, my activity schedule has been horribly similar to someone Oprah has to bring in a team for to cut out of her house. I lay around on the sofa and watch TV for most of the day. This is not because I love TV. We don’t even have cable. It’s because if I stand up or move around a whole lot, I feel like I am going to be sick. If my stomach gets empty or close to…

Written June 27, 2011 You could make an eternally long list of the things Chris and I are horrible at as a couple. 1. Stock Car Racing 2. Corporate Accounting 3. Break Dancing 4. Marine Biology Identification 5. Making Weapons in Prison 6. Butchery Etc. Etc. Etc…. But at the very top of that long list in big, bold letters would be the thing we are the very worst at. BIRTH CONTROL. Because somehow for the second time in our three short years of marriage, I am accidentally pregnant. AGAIN. How does that even happen? How do two reasonably smart,…

I had a very interesting dream last night. I dreamed that I was in a traveling company of some musical and we had been going from city to city performing. Along the way, in one of the fabulous hotels we were staying at, I happened to meet the actor Ryan Gosling (you know, that guy from The Notebook) and he put a large iguana on my head. He told me it was his special pet and he needed me to take care of it, and then he left. I stood there for a little while, but then I decided that…

A quiet war had been raging in the Bethea household for a few months. Under the roof of a seemingly normal mid-century ranch style, on a peaceful tree-lined street, an epic battle had been waging where blood was spilled, tears were shed, and the sanity of one young mother hung in balance like a spider on Jonathan Edwards’ fireplace mantel. Someone has replaced my pink little ball of sleeping baby with a speed addict after a venti triple shot. And I wanted vengeance. I guess it all started around Christmas time. The holidays were busy for everyone, so when Eloise…

Every day, something reminds me why I hate living in the Bible Belt. Church signs are usually the culprit. Classics include: “Jesus always answers his knee-mail”. “Fight truth decay- read your Bible!” “The best vitamin for a Christian is B1” “Thanksgiving? Come in and let’s talk Turkey. ~God” (Since when does God speak Poultry to people?) or my personal favorite: “No dropped calls on the GloryLine Express” (Yep, this is one I really saw with my own eyes. I have no idea what it means.) Or sometimes my hatred will spring forth at Bible Belt usage of the phrase “I’m…

I am going to go ahead and declare it to the world…. I am having a quarter life crisis. I joked that this may happen, back when I slept a full 8 hours a night (hasn’t happened since before Christmas), when I was still on maternity leave, and when my boobs were still enormous. Basically, for the first three months of Eloise’s life, I felt like a less tragic version of Anna Nicole Smith (before OldGuy died). My maternity leave was what I imagine her love affair with OldGuy was like. It was blissful, but I knew it  was going…