So, I’m in the third trimester now. I can’t think of a more clever way to say it, because I’m starting to really panic at how little time I have left before Mlle. Peanut arrives. She’s due just after Thanksgiving, but due to how things went last time, my current OB (who I am quite pleased with, having fired someone else and gone to this guy – long story for another time) prefers to schedule the c-section a week early, to make sure that I won’t go into labor.
See, if you’ve already had a c-section, you have to really search to find a doctor and a hospital that will allow you to attempt a “natural” birth, unless you’ve already had a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean). There are good reasons for this, and there are also very expensive legal/liability reasons for this, and that is a can of worms I don’t feel up to opening just now. Suffice it to say, I do not have my heart set on trying to squeeze a watermelon out of my hoo-hah in the first place, so fighting The Man is not really on my list of Shit I Gotta Do. (There is a “To-Do” list, and then there is a “Shit I Gotta Do” list. The latter happens to be longer and rather more urgent, hence the language.)
Add to the holiday madness that will be going down around the same time the fact that my husband is working his butt off on a reaaaally big project at work. A project with a deadline…one day before my due date. Because it’s a programming project, the deadline is actually the launch date, and as everyone in the tech world knows, even though the word “deadline” might indicate the project’s end, in reality it is the day you should expect to not see your bed or family for about 48 hours, as you will be far too busy discovering and fixing the bajillion technical bugs your moron co-workers (or you yourself) have failed to find prior to launch. Plus, of course, all the bugs that you had no idea would be bugs until you went live, and a thousand people logged on simultaneously and are killing every server you have because the company selling you the hardware (or the server space or the internet connection) is staffed by lying jerkwads who clearly didn’t know what you were asking for or what they were talking about and just wanted to make a sale, and now you’re totally screwed because there’s a massive failure on their end. It’s good times. It’s why people jump out of windows and stick their heads in microwaves.
See, I have excellent timing. Yeah, I know that this is the most stressful time in your professional life, but I thought that maybe you’d like to be double-teamed by one of the most stressful events in your personal life AT THE SAME TIME. I’m considerate that way. (And it’s not like he had anything to do with it, or something.)
BUT ANYWAY. I’m staring life with a newborn (and a toddler) in the face, and knowing how cling Messr. Podling was for the first, oh, well, his entire life, I know that it’s going to be at least a month post-partum before I can start thinking straight enough to do anything in advance. I don’t know about other people, but those first few months I was like a shark. Not in the ruthless, efficient way, but in the “just get this one thing done and don’t think about everything else that needs doing and if I stop moving for a second I will keel over and die” sort of way. As such, it means that prepping for a full month of operating below minimum sleep/hygiene/sanity levels so that nobody starves or is buried under a mountain of dishes/laundry/trash.
I know full well that it will be months before I will be coherent enough to write, and weeks (at least) before I can even knit garter stitch, so I’m facing all sorts of knitting projects that I want to finish before I’m too groggy to follow a pattern. Interestingly enough, I’m not feeling as pressured to finish any writing projects, which is actually more of a real issue and not a fake issue that I have convinced myself is important for real life. (Nobody is going to actually suffer that I haven’t knitted multiple hats for this child, or five sweaters for the Podling, or a sweater for myself, or finished all the shawls currently on the needles. Not real physical suffering, anyway.)
As a result, I have been something of a machine lately. (No, keep your lubricant jokes to yourself. Hurr hurr.) I made an adorable cupcake hat and mitts, a newborn-sized jacket (needs buttons still), a larger pinafore-style dress, a baby blanket in blinding neon rainbow granny squares, and I have the yarn for another sweater/romper as well as little ruffled diaper covers and woolen longies (pants) and booties. I’ve knitted the Podling two sweaters, a bulky orange cabled raglan-style pullover that he loves to death, and gray Weasley sweater with a big red and white “V” on the chest that could honestly use another two or three inches in the torso. I have yarn for a third sweater, a hoodie with a kangaroo pouch, and I’m working hard to crank out a sweater for myself – the very first sweater I’ve ever made for myself, and the very first adult sweater I’ve attempted.
I’m making Norah Gaughan’s Tilted Duster out of Cascade 220 Heathers, in a sort of rich medium purple that unimaginative people like me would call “Grape” or “Concord” or “Plum Pudding,” but fortunately the creative minds at Cascade have named this lovely jewel tone the very descriptive label of “2421.” Evokes such a mental picture, doesn’t it? (The picture of this color on Cascade’s official site is a whole lot lighter and flatter than the one I linked to, so it’s no wonder they have their “your computer screen can’t handle the awesomeness of our colors” disclaimer on every freaking page.) I chose a richer purple than the original sweater, which is more of a peaky lavender in comparison. I hadn’t intended to choose purple at all, being much more of a blue/green sort of girl, but sometimes just being able to see the yarn in person and take it home with you immediately supercedes one’s natural color tendencies. Impulse usually does win with me, whether for good or ill. If I have to wait 4-6 weeks to get the rest of my yarn, I’m not nearly as interested in that particular color.
At any rate, I’m blitzing forward on this bad boy. I’ve knitted the upper back and fronts, the collar, and both sleeves. I’m now on the achingly endless “skirt,” or peplum, of this piece, and it’s going to be one of those “long dark tea-time of the soul” situations. 16 inches of anything takes forever to complete, and when it’s 16 inches of 300+ stitches, increasing little by little (a-line looks good, but does unfortunately just get bigger and bigger as you go down), and it’s the last part of your project, it takes EXTRA time. Black holes get involved. DeLoreans and phone booths pop up and you don’t know whether you’re supposed to be returning Soh-craytes and Miss OfArc or heading to the auditorium to give your oral history presentation.
I’m supposed to be giving you pictures of all this stuff, but the USB hub died a very caffinated, hazelnut-flavored death, and the camera cord isn’t long enough to reach the back of the mother-freakin’ computer. This is a change, though; I actually do have pictures (except of my sweater progress) of most of the things I’ve mentioned, and as soon as Messr. Crankyface hits up MicroCenter and picks up a new one, I’ll have run out of excuses for not showing them to you.
As for my writing projects, well…someone issued me a challenge in regard to that, and I am obligated to accept. The consequences are too severe for me to ignore. Now it isn’t just my pride at stake. More on that later.