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Oct 15 2012

Inside the Mind of a Pregnant Woman Four Days Past Her Due Date

By at 4:19 pm
cirque du soleil acrobats

Cirque du Soleil acrobat, I am not.

The insanity only begins when you no longer recognize it as insanity. That’s the fundamental truth of parenting. And you’d think I’d know it by now. But no. It’s only with a few hours remove that I can look back at myself last night, sitting up in bed at 3 a.m., frantically Googling “leaking amniotic fluid” (note: there is no sign that I am doing anything other than “peeing like a racehorse,” as pregnant women with bladders the sizes of raisins tend to do) and think, GET A FREAKING GRIP.

Insanity, start your engines.

So as you’re aware, I was supposed to have this baby last Thursday. “Estimated due date,” my big pregnant ass.

“You’re STILL HERE?”–that’s a quote from basically Everyone On The Planet. Yes, that’s right–I am still here. I’m here performing a humanitarian mission, testing the capacity of innocent elastic waistbands of maternity pants worldwide. Read the rest of this entry →

Sep 21 2012

What Happens if the Rabbi’s Wife Gives Birth on Yom Kippur?

By at 11:42 am

pregnant woman holding applesMy husband and I started dating when we were 20 and 18. Not too long after that, we had a discussion about the size family we would like to have one day. At the time, he was living in an attic apartment above a family of six kids. He loved watching them interact and play with each other, as well as help each other when needed. So, he said he wanted six kids. This is how the rest of the conversation went:

Me:  No, that’s just too many. Read the rest of this entry →

Jul 31 2012

Where Will This Baby Sleep?

By at 9:35 am

three car seatsOne night, my husband, Heath, and I talked about how the pace of life with two kids would be easier than three. We noted how cramped our bed becomes with two extra little people in it on Sunday mornings. Where would a third go?

I had just read a New York Times article about preserving the environment by having no more kids than would outnumber the parents in order to maintain, instead of increase, the carbon footprint. I thought it was a very solid argument. It helped to justify our satisfaction with two kids. Read the rest of this entry →

May 10 2012

Top Things People Say When Told I’m Having My Fourth (!) Kid

By at 9:38 am

Ain't. Gonna. Happen.

Yes, that’s right, boys and girls! I am thrilled to report that I’m pregnant and we will be having a new Kveller blog subject little girl, all going well (pu pu pu) in October, who will with great fanfare join her older two brothers and sister. I feel unbelievably grateful–having met and married each other late in life, my husband Jon and I are making up for lost time as quickly as we can.

When I told my two boys that we were going to have another baby, they were incredibly excited: “Now we EACH get to have our own baby!” Yes, boys, that’s why we did it, so that now, you will each get to have your own baby. Just think–in some families, kids get hamsters. Read the rest of this entry →

May 4 2012

Week 25: I Am Not a Yoga Goddess

By at 2:02 pm

prenatal yoga classAmong the many things I’ve been learning about my temperament and my body from being pregnant, I’ve discovered that I enjoy yoga. I always knew in theory that yoga was challenging and rewarding, but in practice the classes made me sleepy and at the end I always felt like that hour would have been better spent working up a sweat on a run. But now running doesn’t make me feel very good or accomplished, just crampy and stressed that I may have deprived my future child of oxygen or proper blood flow. So… yoga. Read the rest of this entry →

Jul 12 2011

Strong Women, Late Babies

By at 11:43 am

I come from a family of strong women, and my mother is the strongest woman I know. Holder of a PhD in Jewish education, she has created an utterly loving and functional family of uber-educated, smart, fun and happy Jews. Her students in every context, whether familial or professional, regard her with a combination of awe and fear.

When I was in high school, my mother was principal of a synagogue Hebrew school, and she asked me to fill in at the last minute for a teacher who would be absent. I realized seconds into the class that obviously, the regular teacher had had a nervous breakdown. The class was full of little third grade assholes who cared much more about being smart asses than being smart. I tried teaching them Jewish history, but to no avail. It was like something out of Dangerous Minds, but with braces and Benetton as opposed to gang signs and guns.

At one point, though, my mother walked in to give me a message. The second she appeared at the door, the little jerks ran back to their seats and sat ramrod straight in silence. My mother silently appraised the class and then left.

One jerk raised his hand. “She’s SCARY. Do you know what we call her, Jordana?”

Sitting on the front desk in that affected teacher-but-I’m-still-cool position, I raised my eyebrows. “What?”

He smiled. “The Terminator.” Everyone laughed.

“Do you know what *I* call her?” I said, leaning forward as though to divulge a confidence.

“No! What?” the class responded as one, eager for new dirt.

Taking a breath for dramatic effect, I said, “Mom.” Read the rest of this entry →

Jun 20 2011

Start Spreading the News…:)

By at 10:42 am

My time in New York has been like a trashy romance novel: over the top, ridiculously short, and with an unrealistic plot.

I moved here after living in Los Angeles for more years than I care to count, and I distinctly remember how it felt disembarking from the plane when I arrived. It felt as though I could breath for the first time in years. I didn’t date much, but I felt my beshert was nearby. And indeed he was. I met him 18 months after setting foot in New York and in the slightly over 2 years since then, we have moved apartments 3 times, gotten married, and had a son.

To keep things interesting, we are now leaving New York for a summer abroad in Europe and then relocating to Austin, Texas.

As I start to say my goodbyes, I find myself more emotional than the norm. I have moved several times in my life and never felt sentimental about a city before. I have a list of all the things to do, places to visit, and bodega men to say adios to before we leave, and the list keeps growing. This last weekend I said goodbye to Macy’s and those wonderful old, wooden escalators that I think of as stairways to heaven.

A few days ago I parted ways with the Met. It was just a brief visit as we have spent many hours together already, and I know our paths will cross again. The beauty of the Met always takes my breath away and this was no exception.

Next up was saying farewell to Central Park. It has been the place of so many special moments and memories. It will always remain one of my favorite places. I know I will be back some day and I hope to share stories with my children of the time when the park was mommy’s back yard.

It is easier to bid adieu to friends because we can keep in touch. But I do not foresee myself living in New York again, and friending Central Park on Facebook just isn’t the same. I am saying goodbye to being a New Yorker. This place becomes part of your identity whether you realize it or not, and it is hard to say goodbye to something that has become a part of you.

I could go on and on about all the things I will miss. But I need to focus on looking ahead or risk turning into a pillar of salt. I have waited so long for this moment. To be a wife and mother. To have a partner in all of life’s challenges. To create a home for my family.

As we pack up our belongings, vacate our apartment, and fly off into the sunset, I can feel the romance novel that was New York coming to a close. And as I begin writing an exciting new sequel, I just hope that our summer abroad isn’t compromised by my first trimester morning sickness.

Yes, I am pregnant. Crazy, huh?  It seems like yesterday I had the chemical pregnancy.

And off we go…

Read about Cara’s journey to pregnancy and her chemical pregnancy and loss.

May 20 2011

I Like Kids, Just Not Yours

By at 12:22 pm

Random person: “Oh, you’re pregnant! Is this your first?”

Me: “No, my third.”

Random: “Oh, how sweet. I love kids.”

Me: “That’s nice. I don’t.”

Let me rephrase. I do love kids – two kids. Specifically, my own two kids. I’m sure I’ll love number 3 as well. And, yes, I am fond of my nieces and nephews. And I suppose, if pushed to do so, I could come up with a few other kids I find likeable.

But “love kids” generally? No way in hell.

Just off the top of my head, in fact, I can think of a few kids who I – well, I suppose it’s not kosher to say that I “hate” them. After all, as a mother, I’m supposed to be understanding, empathetic and overflowing with love. But Always-Screamy-Annoying-Girl-At-My-Kids’-Fencing-Class-Who-Lacks-Any-Sense-Of-Manners-Or-Sportsmanship? And Kid-I-Saw-Throw-A-Bag-Of-Cheetos-At-His-Mom’s-Head-In-The-Supermarket? I wildly dislike you both.

“Loving kids” is something people do when they don’t have any. Or, alternatively, people often love kids when they have the absolute bare minimum of contact with them.

Let’s break it down. People who “love kids” – all kids, not just their own – fall into one of two categories. One category, I completely understand. And the other is an inscrutable, admirable mystery to me.

A) Someone who wants more contact with children.

Women who want children “loving kids”? Yes, I get this one. Or how about a grandparent in an assisted living facility who wishes they saw their little grandkids more often? That’s really nice. These people look at the world around them and they see children who are attractive, clean, and smiling. I feel certain that when they think about children, they are contemplating ones who know, and use, the words “thank you” and “please.” Not ones who, like my son, tell you as you’re wondering what all the crap on their bedroom wall is, “Oh, Mommy, don’t clean it. That’s my booger wall. I’m trying to collect as many as I can.” Nice.

Most things tend to look good from a distance. That picture that comes in the picture frame, for example, of the little child with the bonnet gazing off into a field of flowers – that looks pretty good. She’s so cute and pretty you want to leave it in the frame and forget about your own family picture you’d planned on putting in there. Little do you realize that between takes, she’s pulling a total diva act and insisting on sippy cups full of sparkling Martinelli’s apple cider in her trailer.

B)    Nursery school and kindergarten teachers.

Remember how I was discussing horrible, awful jobs a few blog posts ago, like giving pap smears to rats? Well, these jobs aren’t quite at that level, but they are still pretty low on my list. I admire the hell out of these people – in the suburban, peaceful context of my life, these are basically the equivalent of Navy SEALS.

Lest you think I’m indulging in hyperbole, let’s focus on the sheer amount of crap these people have to put up with, each and every weekday.

Show me a mother of a 3-year-old who hasn’t, at least once, breathed a sigh of relief when they’ve dropped off their child at nursery school, and I’ll show you a liar. Now imagine a workplace where, every day, you have to greet 15-20 3-year-olds you’re not related to, and entertain them/keep them from biting each other. For the WHOLE DAY. Note: many will be in a poor mood and will insist on spreading that mood to the other children. Some will carry potent viruses and feel no qualms about projectile vomit. Eventually, the day comes to an end. Oh, and then? Then, you’re subjected to a half hour phone call from Jamie’s mom, who wants to discuss why Jamie is truly a special child and the fact that he has kicked three kids black and blue doesn’t show that he’s a bully, but rather, that he’s misunderstood.

That’s sick. But these people love their jobs. I have met incredible women who have taught my children. These women are more patient than I could ever be, kind and compassionate. Basically, they are a higher life form.

In contrast, I know my limits. I love locally.

May 5 2011

Our Bodies…None of Your Business

By at 1:29 pm

“You’re really starting to look fat!”

In what world, I ask you, is the aforementioned comment okay? You would have thought, “Nowhere,” right? Wrong. Apparently, said comment is completely kosher in the World of the Pregnant Woman.

As I’ve noted numerous times, yes, currently, there is a little girl-in-progress inhabiting my midsection, and I’m delighted about it. And, this being almost 31 weeks into the pregnancy, said midsection is expanding. As it should, by the way–there’s  a human being in there! Kid needs some elbow room!

So I’m not sure whether it’s because I’m usually a small person (5’2), or if people I don’t even know harbor ill-feelings toward me, but I seem to trigger a bizarre case of Tourrette’s in many people I run into in the course of my day. These people feel the need to inform me that I am pregnant, first of all (who knew??), but also to do it in a way that seems to be more about incredulity at my size and less about taking into account that there is a person attached to this belly who may not relish random remarks about her girth.

I remember, back in the long-ago day when I wasn’t pregnant, when the way I looked could go without comment from strangers…and if people did comment, it would be to say something nice. If you’re not pregnant, you probably don’t appreciate this, but maybe you should. If you’re not pregnant, I implore you, take the time to wander through a supermarket, a mall or some other thoroughfare and just think about how people interact with you. Relish the fact that, unless they are saying something complimentary (“You look terrific!”), for the most part, no one is commenting on your body (perhaps construction workers excepted). Oh, also go and buy yourself a nice, normal pair of pants or sundress that doesn’t look like a muu muu. Because you can!

Things are different for us preggos.  In the course of my average day, I get at least four comments about my appearance, from totally random people whose opinions I’m not sure I’d actively solicit in regular life. Now, don’t get me wrong, I get it–I’m a short girl with a big belly. You notice me. You don’t want to go through a revolving door with me. Comprende. Read the rest of this entry →


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