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Sunday, December 7

Peace on Earth… or at least in my Little World

My life is the harmonious synchronizations of feedings, diapers, playtime and many, many hours clocked just staring at or smelling the baby. And frankly, I have little interest in making it more than that at this time. Already my itty bitty wee son is growing out of his second stage of clothes… all too quickly for me…. and I refuse to miss a minute of it. However, in the interest of keeping my own journal log of my time here in Japan, it was sincerely time for an update.

The first thing I need to talk about was my wonderful saint of a mom. Not that it was hard to convince her to come all the way to Japan to be with her daughter and new grandchild, but I am so very blessed that she could and did make the journey. She was here for two and a half weeks. It simply wasn’t long enough. I can’t tell you how many times I would have cracked with initial breastfeeding and health problems if she hadn’t been here. Don’t get me wrong in thinking that I dismiss all the hard work that Kimono Hubby did, but we all need our mommies some times. She sat up with me through those many midnight feedings so KH could get his sleep and continue to earn us a buck or two. She cooked all of our meals. Cleaned my house. Did our laundry. And kissed my head and told me it was all okay when I cried because I just didn’t think I was doing good enough in my mothering efforts for my little man. Those first days… I questioned everything I did. I just want the perfect start for him. So particularly when the breastfeeding failed, I beat myself up pretty hard. I’m over it now, but it was thanks to the never-ending patience of my mom that I got there as quick as I did. We may not have done much while she was here, only doctor’s appointments, one small shopping trip to the base and one small shopping trip into the town of Kamakura, but it meant the world just to have her here for every second. She helped ease me back into the real world… back into driving… with my little baby… oh, the horror and fear I felt at that one at first. When she left, I avoided the room she slept in for several days just because it hurt so much to not see her things there. This living overseas far from home… a true blessing and a curse.

Since mom left, the munchkin and I do get out quite a bit. We run errands, go out for lunches with friends and are easing back into our work with Ikebana International. We still visit the hospital frequently. So frequently in face that the nurses at our most frequented desk no longer ask for my ID. The OB/GYN and Urology desks are co-located. Wouldn’t you know that only a month after our son arrives and we are finally cleared to not go back to the hospital for a whole month, I would end up in the ER late one night with yet another kidney stone. The ER doctor actually laughed when he reviewed my chart and noted that I was there for the same thing, at the very same time the year before, and saw that same ER doctor. Well, aren’t I just the damned luckiest? Pftt. Now I’m facing yet another surgical removal in a week unless I can pass the monster in the next week. Folks, it’s looking like surgery. Double pftt. The good thing is that I am on a virtually constant Percocet haze. The bad thing is that I am on a virtually constant Percocet haze. Yes, I’m sick of the drugs that I have now been taking for two months, since the munchkin’s birth, and they have reverted to giving me migraines if I don’t take them. I can’t wait to be drug free and stone free in the next weeks!

But we did have a good Thanksgiving day! Since my due date was only a week and a half before, we had made plans early to have dinner at our friend’s house. I guess I could have cooked since the babes was almost two months old, but I was pretty happy with the decision to stick with someone else doing the 14 hour cooking marathon. I made my family’s stuffing and KH’s family’s stuffing and brought it with us. Yes, both are very different. Mine is the traditional bread and sage kind of thing and his is a Portuguese stuffing. It kind of disgusts me to make it (well… only one ingredient does… ground gizzards… gag), but it is mighty tasty.

Now we are preparing for the next holiday, Christmas. The Japanese have had their usual gaudy decorations up since the middle of November now. They just don’t get it, but I love that about them. Their interpretation will actually be quite missed when we move back to the states and only get that boring green and red blahness. I kid. Unfortunately, I am way behind my usual Christmas pace at this time of year and have had to resort to ordering some gifts online instead of spending hours scouring Japanese streets looking for the perfect gift to send back home. We did decorate our own tiny tree with its usual Japanese garishness and put up our Christmas tenugi (printed Japanese towels) and Christmas obi (wrap for kimono wearing used as decoration). Life is as it should be.

And now I am off for my favorite daily activity… staring at the baby while he coos back to me. It may not be news to you, but it’s simply the world to me.