Sleep is overrated

I’m never sleeping again. Sleep paralysis is spectacularly not fun. It hasn’t happened in years, and never at night before (only naps), but it did last night. 
I was sleeping, and woke up. I had to pee, so I was going to get up, only I didn’t. I thought to myself, “you need to pee, why aren’t you getting up?” (Yes, I talk to myself in the second person a lot, hush.) Then I realized I couldn’t get up, or move at all. Previously I never knew what was happening, and assumed I was dreaming I was awake but wasn’t actually awake. Since I read about sleep paralysis recently and realized that’s what I had experienced, this time I knew I was awake and what was going on. Unfortunately, having read about it, I started panicking that I was going to hallucinate and it would be scary, which apparently triggered exactly that. It’s common, based on what I’ve read, to hallucinate that there’s something/one in the room with you. That usually takes the form of people (like robbers or something), or something more supernatural (which is where they think the idea of a succubus comes from). Turns out I’m a nerd even in my sleep, so for me it was a formless black cloud that was sort of smoky, sort of like black scribbles, which was my brain’s interpretation of the blood beast from the Sword of Truth books. I was still aware enough of what was going on to think that I needed to try to get Christopher’s attention so he could break the effect, so I decided to try to scream. My logic was if I tried hard enough maybe I could make a small noise actually get out. But attempting to scream just set off the panic worse. (From googling since, you should try to just talk normally, which is more likely to successfully to bypass the paralysis.) I did eventually break out of it and wake up fully, thankfully, and I don’t think it took long. But any amount of time is too long. So yeah, not sleeping again. (Though it’s interesting that I didn’t have any feeling of not being able to breathe this time. In the past it’s always manifested as being unable to breathe. Sometimes for no apparent reason, sometimes because there was a tornado (one of my major fears) outside sucking all the air out. But this time breathing wasn’t an issue.)
Okay, I did actually go back to sleep. But I refuse to lay on my back (I’ve never had it happen not on my back, and Google confirms that’s a factor). And I wound up sleeping holding Lil’s hand. I was thinking maybe I could wake her up if she’s close enough (my breathing would get erratic at least), and then she could in turn wake me up. I have no idea if that’s sound logic, but it helped me anyway.


Cruisin’ Thoughts

We went on a 5 day cruise this past week. Baby’s first cruise, and first real vacation! (The trip to Denver in September was for work, so we don’t really count that as a vacation.)  She seemed to genuinely enjoy all the new sights, and didn’t have any issues sleeping or anything, so I count it a success.

We had zero internet/phone access while we were gone (wifi is like 75 cents a minute, and international rates on a cell phones are ridiculous too), which is simultaneously nice (Christopher couldn’t work, even to answer emails!), and frustrating (I’m used to being in touch with my peoples!). I started out just saving all my thoughts in order to text my best friend when we got back, but it sort of grew out of control. So I figured it made more sense to just post it here. That way she can read what I initially intended to send to her, and I’ll have some record of our trip, albeit a disjointed and pretty random record. There aren’t a ton of pictures on my phone, and I haven’t uploaded the camera ones onto the computer yet, so this won’t have many. I’ll try really hard to remember to add more later. But anyway, here are my thoughts from the cruise.

It’s gonna drive me nuts not to be able to text, so I’ll save all my random thoughts for when we get back. Though seriously, my mind just went totally blank. His fat (ha ha ha I had) at least three things I wanted to send you already. Oh well, they’ll come to me. Pretty sure one of them was purple. Reckon what that’s supposed to mean. 
-How am I supposed to wake up without my phone? AND Christopher took the baby out of the room. Which was nice for sleeping in a bit, but my whole wake up routine revolves around playing on my phone and getting baby cuddles. Now what? Other than adding to this, apparently.
-We started listening to The Martian (the one they made that Matt Damon movie out of) audiobook on the way here. It’s really, really good. But it’s driving me nuts to read half a book, then wait a week to finish it. What happens next!? I mean, pretty sure it has a happy ending, so he’ll get rescued somehow or another, but I want to know!
-My mom bought me some potato chips that were “spicy crawtater” flavored. So now Lils is our spicy little crawtater. Because reasons.
-Showers on a cruise are always interesting. Good water pressure, which is nice, but trying to shave in a small shower that’s constantly moving is a bit difficult. Also, the demands on the hot water are such that the temperature is pretty much always changing, so you have to be prepared to scoot quickly out of the flow when it goes from comfortable to scalding or freezing with no warning.
-The ice cream (available 24/7) is literally just above us. Quick elevator ride and I can has ice cream any time I want. This is not a good thing, really. But nom!
-The Buglett has her first toof! It says a lot about how chill she is that we were never sure she was cutting a tooth until it was clearly through. She is ridiculously laid back, even about that. But it’s in! Bottom left, just a little sharp ridge right now. I wonder how long they take to get all the way up. (Update- Apparently not long. It’s only been a couple of days and you can already see it sticking up if you look closely when she smiles.)
-I’ve seen a thing online that says something like “I’m in sweats while my baby is over here looking like a baby Gap model.” Yeah, except it’s my Ravenclaw pants and Boo “don’t blink” hoodie. But damn the Lils looks cute! (Also, I packed her more clothes than she can wear in the timeframe, but didn’t pack me enough. We had to pay to have some laundry done midway through. Though in my defense I’m not likely to have a blowout and get poo all over my clothes.)
-Weirdly, I think I’m less happy on vacation than at home. The being with Christopher more part is great. But the lack of anything important to do is killing me. Maybe just because I’m in one of my moods, but really, I wish I could somehow simultaneously be on a cruise and deep clean my house. Go figure. Gonna make a concerted effort to not feel that way. Maybe if I wash the bottles tonight instead of Christopher doing it for me. (Update- Overall happier on vacation because of time with family. But a little more structure, doing something other than laying around, is really more my kind of vacation.)
-This Zika virus is freaking me the eff out. A virus whose only real effect is to cause birth defects? And it’s spreading? Wtf. I live in a humid ass mosquito heaven too! Not that I’m definitely going to be pregnant again. But if I am, seriously, another reason to worry? And the women in the affected countries already- they’re mostly poor countries, where there will be poorer health care and limited access to contraception (oh, and they’re largely Catholic, awesome). This could get nasty. It makes me really sad and scared.
-I think the crawtater actually has two toofies. The bottom left is for sure, but I really think the right is coming through now. Poor kiddo. She’s a bit out of sorts tonight. I was assuming it was just overstimulation, or being tired of not being in her nice, familiar home. But cutting teeth could be making her grumpy too. 
-Oh my gods I need the Internet. I haven’t looked at a pretty cookie or cupcake or sugar flower in days!
-This one article I read about something like secrets of a happy mom (or some such nonsense) said to always get up before your kids, you’ll always feel better about your day. Um, no. Not even close. I agree that you need to take some time to prepare for the day, get things cleaned up, laid out, etc. But I do that stuff the night before, after she goes to bed. I love being up late; mornings are pure evil. If I set my alarm for 6 every day (per the article’s recommendation) I would literally wind up depressed. I never go to bed as early as I mean to, and knowing that I can’t sleep in just messes with me. Any time I’ve had a job that required getting up pretty early, I started struggling emotionally. You’d think having a baby would screw with that (and I was worried it would), but for now she isn’t totally consistent on wake ups. She almost never is up before 8, usually it’s between 8 and 9. But more importantly, there’s those days every couple weeks when she sleeps late, past 11, even till 1 on a couple of notable occasions. And somehow that hope that it might be a late day keeps me from being unhappy when I realize I’m still up and I’m likely to get only 5 or 6 hours of (interrupted) sleep. It doesn’t really make sense, but it works for me. (I’m trying really hard to just enjoy her sleeping in while it lasts and not dread it changing. I will not be happy if she turns into a 5 am waker!) So all that to say, those articles are way too one size fits all. Getting up before my kid is the opposite of a secret to happiness for me.
-Oh, did the dishes (bottles and pump parts), feel a bit better. So I just need to find some more cleaning to do tomorrow and hopefully I’ll be at 100%. Also, I was legit sad because apparently the base pedicure price on board doesn’t include the usual massage (which is some bullshit right there, plus could they not be bothered to mention that ahead of time? I’d have gone ahead and upgraded if I’d known), so my pedicure kind of sucked. And that shit isn’t cheap on a cruise. But my mom said she’d rub my feet. Which makes me sound super spoiled, but it’s just that I was sad and that made her sad and it’s really sweet and I appreciate it. So that’s something to look forward to (I’ve been pumping in her room at night because there’s only one plug per room (wtf?) so I can’t pump while the white noise machine is on once Lils goes to sleep, so we’ve agreed I shall have clean footsies (which my phone thinks should be tootsies or footsore or basically anything but what I actually typed) tomorrow night and that makes me happy even if I am spoiled). 
-I colored a pretty picture. Remind me to send you a picture of it. Though it makes me mildly annoyed that adult coloring has gotten so big. I am not just jumping on a bandwagon, people! I’ve been coloring for a long time now. I hate looking trendy. Feeling that way a little about Star Wars, even more annoyingly. Seriously, I’ve got the 100 plus no-longer-canon books to back me up. I’ve liked Star Wars since way before the current resurgence in popularity, even if I am too young to be part of the original fan group.


-The Lils kinda sorta went swimming for the first time! By which I mean we got her in her swimsuit, took her to the pool, decided it was way too cold, then dunked her piggies in the hot tub and called it a day. She was supremely unconcerned. 
-Christopher got me a massage! He realized I was way disproportionately sad (hormones maybe? I was really weirdly emotional about it) about the pedicure situation yesterday, so he booked me a massage today. It was delightful. So yeah, you could say I’m spoiled. But I prefer to say I’m loved. Spoiled means you take things for granted and don’t appreciate them properly. I absolutely appreciate things. Pretty privileged though. 
-Speaking of, what do you think all these cruise employees think of us? They’re almost all non-Americans. My understanding is we’re basically too spoiled/lazy to make good employees in this kind of setting. How entitled and privileged are we that we are on a cruise with our 7 month old (she costs as much as an adult) and brought along my mom just so we could have a nanny with us and not have to actually take care of the kid all the time? And we do things like spa treatments and gambling (which we actually won at, up $70, woohoo, but is generally nothing more than throwing money away). The amount of food that’s wasted… yeah, Americans are a bit spoiled, in the true, non-appreciative sense of the word. (It’s been a bit and I think I need to clarify this a bit. There are definitely (far too many) Americans living in poverty who could never afford a cruise, and who certainly aren’t wasting any food. I was referring more to the “typical” American, as we’re viewed by the rest of the world. I’m not sure what percent of the population really fit the stereotype, but a whole lot of them are on cruise ships.) 
-Cookie/cake decorating has broken my brain. When I see lovely flowers here in Mexico my first thought is making them out of gum paste (or fondant or modeling chocolate or whatever) to use for decorating. And I keep catching myself staring at the stained glass thinking about how best to achieve that effect on a cookie. I need to bake! Next vacation I want a kitchen available. 😁
-I need to have a word with Christopher about tightening lids to the point I can’t get them open. The man doesn’t know his own strength. 
-The stateroom is super dark with the lights out, so we’ve been sleeping with the mushroom nightlight (portable nightlights are a spectacular invention) on so I can see the Lils to check on her, feed her, etc. This means I’m not turning off a light before bed. Somehow losing that little ritual of getting ready, settling down, and switching off the light before falling asleep is really bothering me. Such a little thing, but it’s what I’ve done every night pretty much my whole life. It’s strange.
-Last night Lils did her usual wake up hungry routine (she is a baby after all), but afterwards she didn’t want to go back to sleep. Lately she’s been sleeping on her side more, so I decided to try rolling her on to her side. She fell asleep just comically fast. It was seriously like flipping a switch. One second she was wide eyed and awake, the next her eyes were shut and she was passed out. She even started snoring. Tried it again just now (I’m up pumping, because we have a Dr. Seuss breakfast to be at in a bit, but no point having her up before she has to be), and it worked again. It’s not like it’ll just put her to sleep any old time, but it’s a handy trick for when she’s starting to wake up at night!
-This cruise had a Dr. Seuss theme, and today was the Green Eggs and Ham breakfast. The Lils wore her just obnoxiously adorable Thing 2 dress (my mom wore a Thing 1 shirt- it’s been pointed out that me in Thing 2 and Lils in a not-from-the-book Thing 3 would actually be better, but it works). She didn’t really care any more than she has about any other meal (lots to see, food to try, but overall a bit overstimulating), but it was fun. She did really seem to enjoy the yogurt I gave her. She had more than she has before. Now she’s passed the eff out on my chest. Big day already, and it’s only 10:30!
-When did this kid start running hot? She was always cold, for so long. But right now she’s visibly sweating (even that’s cute-she has adorable little beads of sweat across the bridge of her nose) even though I’m a little chilly. And she hasn’t worn socks this whole trip, with no cold piggy problems, and it’s not like it’s hot inside. I knew she was generally warmer of late, but I don’t know when she really made that switch.
-She’s started putting things in her mouth and letting go with her hands. It makes her look like a little puppy and it cracks me up. She seems to find it pretty amusing too.
-It’s funny how things change with a kid that you don’t expect. We’ve never bought the (are you kidding me ridiculously overpriced) pictures on a cruise. We did try to take some last time, since I was pregnant, but they sucked. But we’re getting at least two ($23 a pop for 8×10, seriously) this time because it’s Lil’s first cruise and she’s adorable even though there’s not one picture that’s truly flattering to all of us. Priorities change, and it’s a little weird.
-I have got to stop calling her Lily Rae! Christopher said if I don’t stop he’s going to start. If that happens it’ll all be downhill and that’ll be her name. And once she’s old enough to tell people her name, it’ll really be stuck. I just love the cadence of it. If we didn’t live in the South I’d just go with it, but I can’t bring myself to do it. 
-It’s such a tease to be in sight of land (not sure what it is, kinda looks like a little archipelago on the map) but not actually able to get phone service yet. So close!
-I have this weird obsession with milk while on vacation. At home I let it go to waste way too often. On vacation I’m downing it every chance I get. Cruises are great because there’s pretty much always “free” milk available. And this time we had a mini-fridge (only available for medical reasons- we had to have it for Lil’s milk) so I’ve kept several cartons on hand at all times. 
-Dreamed that we got home and I found out I was 30 weeks pregnant. Ack. I was partially worried that I hadn’t gained enough weight to have noticed (like I wouldn’t have noticed movement yet?). It was in basically real time, and I couldn’t pass for more than maybe late first tri right now even if I was trying, so it would be a legitimate concern. But I was mostly worried about the Zika virus. Having just been in Central America, it would be a possibility. I’m not aware of having been bitten by any mosquitos (and I don’t think I was in an affected area), but I’m not allergic. So I don’t get the itchy bumps and thus basically ignore mosquitos. Add to that the fact that Zika doesn’t cause symptoms most of the time (80% is what I heard), and it wasn’t entirely unreasonable to freak out about it in the dream. However, pretty sure if I were to find out I was 30 weeks pregnant right now I’d have a whole lot of bigger things to freak out about.
-We bought a fancy expensive mattress back before Lils was born. Excellent purchase- I highly recommend investing in a good quality mattress if possible. There is the one drawback though. I used to look forward to going on vacation and staying in a nice hotel partially because of the big, comfy beds. Now I look forward to getting home instead. Still, it’s nice to have some positives to vacation bring over, which is an otherwise sad time.
-We’re long since off the boat, and are back in Memphis for the night. I still feel like I’m rocking though. I don’t remember it usually lasting this long!
-Is there a word that’s more than just remembering but not quite a flashback? I don’t know. A flashback is a particular thing and is more intense than I mean. Anyway, hearing about babies born with microcephaly really brought me back to going to the anatomy scan with River and finding out there was something wrong. I’d sort of forgotten (repressed?) that feeling. Not such a great memory there. 
That’s all, so like I said not the most coherent record of baby’s first vacation. But it’s interesting to me anyway. Few pictures of adorableness to wrap things up.