My blogroll is growing exponentially each day. The bad news, I suppose, is that this is starting to qualify as an addiction. The flipside is it's replacing an even worse one- the evil, evil TV. My two favorite new discoveries are Left Coast Mama and TranceJen. Left Cost Mama is the grooviest because she assures me that I'm not a bad mom for using baby crack, and her name is Gwen- one of my favorite names. Jen is just fabulous, and is referencing her seizure problems with an honesty and matter-of-fact wry humor that touches me. I kept planning on introducing my birth defect in a similar no big deal way, and finding that it rarely comes up.
It's incredible how little this strange, strange body affects my life. My right arm is the length of my other elbow, and has a pincher-like weirdness at the end. It's quite functional and is pretty much a cosmetic issue. The pain in my ass right now is positioning Molly on my left breast for nursing. I found out after I got pregnant that it was most likely caused by Amniotic Band Syndrome, where a little strip of the amniotic sac breaks away and wraps around a limb. This is, of course, both extremely rare and not genetic.
I didn't know that when we conceived, though, and got pregnant before having the genetic tests done that I'd wanted. I was awake nights terrified that the baby would inherit this and having the most intense conflict about that worry. Did wanting desperately for her to be "normal" undermine my own sense of self? It brought up all the childhood memories of alienation that were buried and laid it all out for me to re-examine. When a friend's baby was born with this same condition and I looked into it, I realized ABS is the most likely explanation. Shortly after that, I had my first ultrasounsd with a nurse friend. She said "one hand's by her face, here, and the other is down her by her side." I cried when she said "other hand" and had her show me. At only 12 weeks or so, I could count ten fuzzy little suggestions of fingers if I looked very close- which, of course, I did- over and over. Interestingly enough, I was much more intent on looking and re-looking at the It's-A-Girl ultrasounds- I just couldn't believe I was having the girl I wanted, and was sure it was a mistake- not that a boy would've been a bad thing, just not my preference.
Well. On a much lighter note, I have invented wearing the baby ON a sling rather than in it. Her newborn Snugli is an evil cage to Molly, but if I sit her on top of it looking out, I can have a typing hand free:) Don't worry- paranoid me has the funky hand wrapped securely around the precious bundle. She's a happy Mollybird and is on the verge of finding her thumb. That means I'm on the verge of having a talk with the grandparents about how we feel this is a natural and preferable soother to a pacifier.