dating, IUI, pregnancy, single mom by choice, SMC, trying to conceive, ttc, writing

hawaii

Thanks for all the good wishes–I am much, much better. I worked from home for the past two days and today I plan to go in to the office. Woke early due to lingering jet lag, with rain pattering against the windows. First morning light is a dim gray/blue and the forecast is rain through the end of the week.

I hit the ground running on Monday. Went to an IUI class at UCSF which I really should have attended when I started doing IUIs but no one recommended until now. I already knew almost everything we learned, but it was mildly interesting to hear it all again. I stayed afterward to learn how to give myself an injection. It seemed like a really big deal until I did it, and then it was no big deal. My math tells me the next IUI will happen around 12/19.

That evening, I met Dr. Hawaii for happy hour. This was a big deal because I’ve “known” him since January when he emailed me on a dating site–my initial pushback email was, “my computer is telling me you live 3,000 miles away…” He said, “I know, I know, but we have so much in common…” Because of his profession, his photos were kind of obscured, tough to see what he really looked like, so he offered to become facebook friends in order to see each others’ regular photos, and lives, and everything that FB shows. This is not typically advisable, dating friends! But, in this case, it’s been a great way to passively get to know him, watching as he posted photos of his friends, family, beautiful surroundings. He started liking and commenting on my posts and vice versa until he felt like a real friend.

Because I initially thought I’d never meet him I told him about the baby project in about the third email. So he has always known.

He came to town as a side trip from his parents’ house in Nevada City (where he grew up), and we organized to meet at a bar in my neighborhood. I walked up to him at the bar and touched his back and he stood and gave me a kiss on the cheek and a hug and it was the most surreal sensation to feel like I already knew him, like we go way back. He said he had the same feeling.

He was exactly who I thought and hoped he’d be: easygoing, funny, confident. He is a naturopathic doctor so took great interest in my recent health drama and looked up the effects on alcohol on taking Cipro, concluding I’d better not drink. After chatting for a while, we decided to get dinner and walked up the street.

Along the way, he asked me about the baby project. I told him the basics, we talked about it enough to acknowledge it, that it’s ongoing, and then we arrived at the restaurant.

At dinner, he mentioned that he just got a companion pass on Hawaiian Airlines–meaning he can fly free anytime–which could actually make this possible. I had the distinct feeling that there was no one I would rather be with at that moment. (Lots of times I go on dates and think, “I’d rather be with the guy at the end of the bar,” etc.) He is, as my therapist would say, “in my ballpark.”

He walked me home under a full moon. Kissed me good night at my doorstep. Said he’d have to come back soon, I said, please do. He said, You could be pregnant by then. I asked, Would that stop you? He said, No.

Then I went inside, and he disappeared into the moonlit night.

Advertisements
dating, family

sweetness

After sweating it out all night, I woke up yesterday morning feeling almost back to normal. My niece found me around 7:30am in front of the linen closet wearing only a long, silky blue blanket, and she thought I might be wearing an elegant ball gown. My sister thought I might have lost my mind but I was trying to change the soaking sheets, which she did for me before I even finished talking to my niece about the gown.

It struck me over the weekend how each of us expresses love in different ways. We often expect to receive it the same way we give it, and yet this is never a cookie cutter equation.

My middle sister kicked into high Florence Nightingale gear: she tracked my medication schedule, fluid intake, temperature, rearranged my blankets according to whether I was hot or cold. She typed out a text to my doctor friend as I dictated, mumbling under the blankets with my eyes closed. She brought my favorite kind of Gatorade (purple). I was practically catatonic and needed and appreciated all of it.

My mom, of course, kicked into high Mom gear, pushing hard early to go to the ER (it was definitely the right decision).

My youngest sister did reiki and, once I was eating, made me life-giving smoothies.

My dad spent much of two days driving me to doctors and waiting, totally without complaint despite the number of hours involved, and took solidarity naps while I slept on.

When my niece asked around the table, “What are you thankful for today?” My brother in law said he was thankful that I was feeling so much better, bringing a tear to my eye.

My niece shows love by giving you a surprise zerbert in the small of your back, under your shirt, while you’re sitting at the table. She always has an enthusiastic plan for something we can do together. She asked every day if I was feeling better.

Her younger sister, my little niece, is pure love at 13 months, saying “ahhhh!’ after sipping a pretend bottle of water or going “woo! woo!” when she sees a dog, or standing at the windowsill looking at birds and then nearly losing her balance because she’s so emphatically doing the sign for bird. My favorite was when I said, “What does the bear say?” and she said, softly with mischief in her eye, “Raw!”

When we said good bye, the baby was waving frantically with a beaming smile. (Can you guys please move to California?)

Littlest sister and I drove 2.5 hrs to Philly and she listened patiently as I talked through my growing suspense about the Moroccan now that I was better and about to return home. We talked through the alternatives. I couldn’t believe this sweet, mild-mannered guy was capable of such a malicious disappearance. I couldn’t reconcile it, couldn’t handle the zero information. I needed closure.

I sat with my phone for a long time at the aiport, about to do something but not sure what. Suddenly, at about the time they probably announced “final boarding call,” I hit his number, and he answered. It was a stupid time to call–I had to show my boarding pass, walk through blowing heaters in the jetway and then pass through an army of wailing babies. But he sounded glad to hear from me, wanted to know how my Thanksgiving was (I told him and he was horrified). I told him I was surprised not to hear from him, wondered if something had happened. He said he’d been working on his immigration paperwork, is really stressed for lots of reasons about it, and just wasn’t feeling optimistic about his “overall situation.” Which maybe means he can’t stay.

That’s all I needed to know. Stressful time for him on pretty much every level, and he’s not super available as a result. He started to offer to pick me up when my flight lands (relief–he didn’t go through a personality reversal!). But I declined and it turns out he leaves town tomorrow for a while so let’s just leave it there for now. We both sounded full of melancholy as we signed off. I sincerely wished him good luck.

It hurt my heart, the sweetness of it.

All of it.

 

dating, family

Thanksgiving in the ER

As I finished writing the previous post, I realized that I had gotten chilled under the cool air of the ceiling fan and moved into my bedroom under a blanket, but I couldn’t warm up. Soon, I developed a fever. Aches. Hives across my midsection. Not sure what was happening, I headed to urgent care with my dad.

They diagnosed a probable allergy to the antibiotic I was taking–apparently it’s relatively common. They switched me to a different antibiotic. I returned home relieved that maybe I’d feel better for Thanksgiving once the allergy settled down.

But I woke on Thanksgiving feeling way worse. High fever (my sister’s thermometer was reading 101-103), vomiting, chills, could barely get out of bed. One sister came in at intervals to take my temperature and make me drink, the other did reiki on me while I slept. By around 2:30 I was doing no better so my parents took me to the ER.

I got admitted and my parents spent 6 hours patiently waiting while I went through a bunch of tests. They ate bad cafeteria food instead of the bountiful family dinner we had planned…but I could tell they didn’t want to be anywhere else as long as I was so sick. As unexpected and unfortunate as the whole ordeal was, it made me so grateful for my family. And for good health which is so easy to take for granted when we have it.

They gave me fluids, anti-nausea medication, and a new antibiotic via IV and ended up doing a pelvic exam, ultrasound, and cat scan due to some tenderness in my abdomen, but they didn’t find anything beyond a “complicated UTI.” So eventually they discharged me, I paid my $200 copay (totally worth it), and we headed home. (The irony was not lost on me that I had a pelvic exam and ultrasound on my “month off.”)

Today, I am so weak. My temperature vacillates between freezing shivers and sweating through my clothes. I am on my 5th outfit of the day. I’ve taken 3-4 naps and just about as many baths. The hives look like welts. I ate some food today but not too much. I’m certainly on the upswing but my body is still saying WTF.

All of this provides some perspective on my previous post–I had poison running through my veins for 5 days. My outlook was certainly clouded. I’m still emerging from the clouds and glad to be moving in the right direction. And I am so fortunate that this happened while I was with a team of caretakers who love me! Thank you, family!

For those of you tracking the Moroccan, I have still heard nothing and it’s been a week so I’m not expecting to. Unless he also ended up in the hospital with no access to his phone, I totally misjudged that guy.

In better news, Dr. Hawaii just texted to set something up for Monday–let’s hope I get myself home in one piece!

biological clock, dating, running, single mom by choice, SMC, trying to conceive, ttc

may i be kind

At a time when we gather to celebrate gratitude, I entered this week not feeling particularly grateful and in fact feeling low-grade frustration and even bitterness. And fighting it–judging myself for it (“I shouldn’t be feeling this”), pushing it away, rejecting what is. Easing up on work and spending time with family mean that difficult emotions held below the surface finally rise to the top. The lurkers come out into the light, ready to arm wrestle.

At the end of my last work day before the holiday, the tension was broken by a series of gchats, emails, and phone calls from key single girlfriends who finally got me to cry, to make all the sad lists of things not working, to say it out loud. I got back mountains of love and reminders to be kind to myself, to lean into it, to feel these feelings. You are courageous, you’re doing your best, don’t beat yourself up. Uncanny how aligned was their wise advice from across the world, my far-flung friends, always ready to send reinforcements across the airwaves. (love you!)

So what’s the state of the union? The conference went fine but I had to go to the doctor for a UTI two days after arriving, followed by this mysterious digestive issue of a few weeks ago that has returned. Even while feeling run down and unwell, I was still in go-go-go mode. At these types of events, there isn’t one minute for you. Every minute is spent preparing for the next focus group, event, meeting, presentation. I ran on the treadmill at the gym once and felt so zapped of energy I only did two miles and some of it walking. This rarely happens to me.

Unexpectedly, I also was getting waning attention from the Moroccan. We were texting for the first couple of days after I arrived but I noticed that it didn’t have the momentum or intensity that it had. His last text to me was “Il pleut des cordes ici” (it’s raining cats and dogs here). That night, my last “bonne nuit” went unanswered and I left it there. That was five days ago. Loin des yeux, loin du coeur.

And, the big one: I’m still not pregnant as I approach the end of the year, the beginning of the year I’ll turn 40, the anniversary of my decision, after six tries and record-setting emotional highs and lows. Sometimes I’m so patient and fine with this journey and other times, when I’m disconnected and pulled in a million directions, I start to feel resentful. A good barometer is whether I am able to be happy for others in their ecstatic pregnancy news and lately the answer is: not really.

Spending time with my nieces (who are 4 and 1) reminds me over and over that, to quote the Rolling Stones, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.” It happens 85 times a day as they go through the struggles of not being allowed to munch on the remote control or have more dessert. It starts on Day 1. We have a lifetime to practice being at peace with what is. And it TAKES a lifetime of practice.

I didn’t want to write this earlier because it was such a dark tangle. What good does it do to barf up a neg bomb? How do I redeem this post with some kind of positive conclusion?

I know, you’re saying–you don’t have to. Don’t impose a happy ending, tacked on, disguising it in witty word play. Just be honest.

Well here’s the truth: I am back to being my own kindest friend. When I find myself being critical or judgmental, I think of Tara, “May I be kind.”

Remember the sick baby of my previous post, the one in the hospital who needed me to hold her and give her an abundance of love? I think the baby was me.

Uncategorized

8 mins of writing

I’m on the flight to Philly with 8 minutes before my laptop battery is out of juice, so this will be a stream of consciousness post as long as I manage to hit “Publish” before the last second.

I don’t know quite exactly how to write about the last 48 hours except to say that despite lack of sleep, frenetic prepping for the trip, and tons of errands, I left SF rested and peaceful feeling on top of everything.

The Moroccan insisted on driving me to the airport at the crack of dawn. We left later than I meant to and then flew threw the streets of the Mission as the sun rose in pink streaks across the Eastern sky.

I’ve spent a lot of time with him over the past couple of days. Again, leaving feels better than it did in the past, gives me a chance to be me and do my thing.

In “Wild” she talks about how on the trail, being alone became almost a place where she could go. A place she needed to go. That resonates with me right now. The impulse to merge with him is there but so is my self-awareness of what is truly good for me.

I woke from a dream where I was holding a tiny, sick baby in the hospital–not mine, someone else’s baby who needed holding–and giving her so much love…to find him sleeping next to me.

My therapist says I’m doing “a very good job of dating mindfully.”

I’ll be at a conference w/ limited time so I’ll check back in around the weekend. Love to everyone I’m flying over today xo

dating, single mom by choice, SMC, trying to conceive, ttc

date 3

On Friday, I was an emotional cyclone of excitement and disappointment. In the evening, I was supposed to make food to bring to two events over the weekend but instead collapsed on the couch to watch episodes of The West Wing (my “new” show). I was done.

Saturday was quite packed, including a spin class and brunch in Palo Alto with dear A and a gathering of friends in honor of a soon-to-arrive baby (but not a baby shower). Both were relaxing at the time but required a lot of driving, parking, and running late. I accidentally left my cell phone in the car approximately 85 times over the course of the day…it was that kind of day.

The Moroccan offered to make me dinner at his place, which is the kind of invitation I would rarely turn down–so much new information on date 3: his place, his things, his cooking. Plus, I figured that in the name of ‘taking things slow,’ it’s easier to leave than to kick someone out. And, finally, I love to be cooked for and couldn’t wait to see him again. Running late, I flew out the door with cookies for dessert and a bottle of wine (I let him know the “detox” was over).

Having just moved over to Oakland the previous week, he had described his new living situation as a house owned by a musician friend in his late 50s who is also an antique dealer–so the house is filled with tons of junky art and statues and random stuff. The picture this conjured in my mind was a little worrying. He also mentioned that the friend is rarely in town as he comes through on business but has a house in Oregon with his Jamaican wife, so that part sounded good–the house to ourselves.

I pulled up to the address in Rockridge to find a sweet little bungalow a block off of College Ave. The front door was open so I walked in, seeing right away that the collection of art was indeed kitschy but more orderly than in my imagination, and the house is really cute. Just beyond the living room was the dining room table perfectly set for two. As I walked into the kitchen, he was pulling two plates of fish, rice, and roasted vegetables out of the oven. He gave me a kiss hello and we sat down to eat and everything was delicious and thoughtfully prepared.

After dinner, I asked for a tour of the house and we got as far as his bedroom and stayed there until the next morning.

As far as I can tell, his only possessions are two guitars and several tall stacks of books. He played his guitar for me and sang songs in French, Arabic, and English, and I was in a smiling reverie the whole time. He’s really talented and said things like, “and here’s where you’ll come in on the violin…” We had good talks and he divulged some personal history which started with, “Well, here’s a surprise…” and I realized that I can use this opening when it’s time to tell him my own. Which I’m thinking might be tomorrow night.

If I feel like it. I’m trying to feel my way here… I don’t want to do it wrong and yet I probably can’t do it wrong. He’s been open with me, saying that he wants to get off on the right foot. I’ve always felt the right moment would reveal itself, poised between not to early and not too late.

In the morning, he made me breakfast and then walked me to my car, good-naturedly insisting on seeing me for the next three nights before I leave town and/or to cancel my plans and hike with him. But the leaving felt good, knowing wisely as I do that the coming back together is sweeter and I’m less likely to lose myself in the process.

I need a new nickname for him, given that he’s no longer the one-dimensional caricature of someone I texted for a month from an online dating site. He now has at least three dimensions, maybe more. I’ll work on it.

I got the opposite of a guy-atus, and the timing couldn’t have been better.

dating, donor sperm, fertility, IUI, meditation, outdoors, ovulation, pregnancy, pregnancy loss, running, single mom by choice, SMC, trying to conceive, ttc, two week wait

going with the flow

Second dates are a huge tossup. They are the swing states. Remember when my most recent second date was a big No from the moment I saw him? Last night, I was texting the Moroccan from outside Jupiter to say I had arrived and asking where he was (it’s a big place) and I got his response “sur la terrasse” and was finishing an email to KC about hiking the Lost Coast when he walked up. And he was a big Yes.

I noticed after my last post that I described him as a “mysterious man of mystery,” so something in my unconscious and sleepy mind’s description of him revealed a perceived double mystery and wanted to know more. I said that I was feeling “go with the flow” on this one, not wildly excited but with a pleasant feeling. Last night, my heart skipped when I saw him. He gave me a big smile and a hug and walked me back to the table where he’d been waiting.

On the whole BART ride over, and really the whole previous two days, I was feeling AF was imminent, and I was starting to wish she’d just show up already so I could at least have a beer with my pizza. But she was still MIA, so I settled on hot tea given that we were technically outside and under a not very hot heat lamp.

To describe him: he’s tall, maybe 6’2″, dark, and…handsome. He has a gentle voice and a big smile. Speaks English flawlessly with only the tiniest errors in pronunciation and many Americanisms like “taking one for the team” (to explain his drinking beer when I wasn’t–I told him I was detoxing), and telling me about a friend from Idaho who was always teased with, “Who da ho?” and she’d have to answer, “I da ho.” He came to the US on an internship for Hilton and has worked seasonal jobs all over the country (including Mackinac Island, twice), was married to an American for a while in Salt Lake City (thus the green card), and when they split he was ready to move to SF, which he has always bookmarked as where he wanted to end up. He got here eight months ago, waits tables and works on his computer science degree, saying that all his previous jobs/cities were fun in the moment, and now he’s ready to stop being seasonal and build a future.

He’s solicitous, kind of mini-waiting on me as he confirms I’m happy with the table choice, the menu, the heat lamp, serving me my salad. He congratulated me on Obama (I congratulated him back even though he couldn’t vote). He wants to go running but doesn’t know where to go. He’s been researching meditation groups and exploring places around the Bay Area. He drives a ’97 Honda Civic. He plays guitar and jams with friends at his favorite bar in North Beach.

I felt myself leaning further and further forward in my chair as if I were eventually going to pounce on him. He paid the bill while I was in the ladies room (no AF still). We stepped outside and I assumed I would take BART home but he offered to drive me, claiming to be meeting up with friends later in the city. Whether or not this was true, I accepted. On the way to his car it was really freezing and he put his arm around me. In the car, he put on nice acoustic guitar music, blasted the heat, and then kissed me. It was the kiss I have dreamed of. We made out for a while, parked under a streetlamp on the Berkeley campus. He said he enjoys every minute with me.

I did not expect my going with the flow to take me to such a sweet and unexpected place! He drove me home. He tried, gently, jokingly, all possible angles, as guys will, to get me to invite him in, knowing that I wouldn’t but that I wanted to. I left him there and walked in to my building, feeling powerful, and where anxiety might rush in (what happens next? what if…? etc.), I instead remembered that, for now, I’m just looking for a guy to hang out with, and found one, and felt glad and grateful. I’ll see him again over the weekend.

Went to bed and woke up at 7 to use the bathroom, feeling AF had landed. And there she was. Going with the flow ends in flow.

Quoting from a poster photographed next to Obama at the Chicago campaign office, “The definition of hope is you still believe even when it’s hard.”

And it IS hard, made harder by the fact that I now have to skip a month while I’m out of town. Yes, I can make a case for it being a good idea–I haven’t taken a month off yet in 6 tries including 1 chemical pregnancy and 1 miscarriage. Yes, I’m about to start a medicated cycle and need to take a class first on how to give myself a shot (a class that isn’t offered in time for this cycle anyway). Yes, the next 6 weeks are stressful with work deadlines and holiday travel. I just can’t believe it will be Christmas before I can try again. It’s getting old. I’m coming up on the anniversary of my trip to the Grand Canyon where I shook hands with the universe. Even my dear readers seem tired. This isn’t how any of it was supposed to turn out.

But this is my story, this is my flow, this is my lazy river. This is it, this is where I am today. What can I do but keep floating along and trying and hoping and believing and enjoying my precious time on this earth, greeting all of its surprises with equanimity, all the disappointments and all the loveliness…

I will be Buddha in a kayak, breathing it all in.

dating, donor sperm, IUI, outdoors, ovulation, running, single mom by choice, SMC, trying to conceive, ttc, two week wait

fantasyland

1. We Barack-ed it!!!!!!!!!! Go America!

2. I worked until 9:45pm tonight. It wasn’t awesome but it had to be done. Thankfully, I had the presence of mind to pack running clothes this morning, so I was able to go out around 6 down the Embarcadero and around the ball park, pitch black. The air was cool and my body felt strong. Afterward, I picked up California rolls and fresh fruit and went back to the office for more number crunching.

3. Working late pushes my buttons because I enter this terrible vortex of space where it’s just me and the sound of the janitor’s vacuum cleaner and I keep plowing through work with intensity punctuated by facebook checks and pretty soon am resenting the hell out of all of it. But, tonight, I got shit done. The run really helped.

4. I’m reading a book called Wild which is about a young woman who hikes the Pacific Coast Trail which runs from Mexico to Canada. Just reading about the outdoors makes me long for it with some desperation. Why am I leaving my cubicle at 9:45 when I should be sleeping under the stars? Did I make a wrong turn somewhere?

5. Next thought is: sure, I could become a park ranger in Yosemite or hike the PCT but wouldn’t I become unbearably lonely? I must have people. Specifically my people and my people are everywhere but I’m afraid that in the wilderness there just wouldn’t be enough of them and I would long for the city even worse than I long for the wilderness now.

6. Next thought after that is: maybe there’s a compromise where I could have access to both. My fantasy situation moment: I have a little cottage in Marin. I think it’s the same one of my imagination where Annie Lamott was living when she wrote Operating Instructions. The sun is coming up and I’m sitting on a little deck drinking coffee and most likely there’s a baby sleeping inside and I’m a writer with a flexible schedule, nowhere to commute to, and enough money to feel serene. Everything is dewy and clear and fragrant. The city is 23 minutes away.

7. I have no idea why I’m making this a numbered list.

8. Tomorrow night I have a second date with the Moroccan. I met him over the weekend for lunch in North Beach, sitting outside in the warm sunshine. I did a pretty spectacular job of being in the moment and truly enjoying myself. Look: I’m out for lunch on a beautiful Saturday with a mysterious and attentive international man of mystery. Tomorrow night, I’ll meet him in Berkeley for dinner and live music–he’s a musician too. I feel go with the flow about it.

9. I emailed a bit with Dr. Hawaii and was getting really excited about his visit and then he suggested “lunch or early happy hour,” which disappointed me, thinking that’s what I say to someone I don’t really want to make time for, until I reminded myself that we have never met. I have a fully formed idea of him and we haven’t as much as spoken on the phone. Not to mention that if he’d suggested a late-night drink I would have been offended. So, I’d say his suggestion is appropriate. I have another fantasy which is us living together in Hawaii in a spa. That’s it: we live in the spa and lay around in sarongs drinking tea and looking out at the most gorgeous view imaginable.

10. According to my spreadsheets, my most average period is due tomorrow, and I really can’t tell you what’s going on in there because I don’t know. If AF is on her way (picturing her flying in like Mary Poppins with an umbrella and a suitcase), I hope she is at least a few days late, pushing my next cycle further out. Otherwise, my next ovulation is going to fall smack in the middle of a 10 day trip to the east coast. And guess what I’m not going to do? Ship McPiercy out for a rendez-vous.

11. I just finished a bag of gluten-free crispy snacks called margherita pizza flavored “Plentils.”

12. Stay tuned because any of these fantasies might deploy at any moment.

13. <yawn> good night

breakup, outdoors, running

liebster award

As promised, it’s time to answer some questions that came from K on Return to Go, thanks again for my Liebster Blog Award nomination! Upon some Googling, I’ve discovered is sort of the chain mail of blogs, bringing more views to blogs with under 200 readers. I was REALLY into chain mail as a little girl (i.e. add your name/address to the bottom and send a letter or book to the girl on the top), so this is kinda fun.

Image

Here are the rules I found after poking around:
1. Each person/blogger tells eleven facts about themselves/answers the questions the other blogger posted.
2. Answer the eleven questions the tagger (blogger who nominated me) has posted, and then give eleven questions for the people you tagged.
3. Choose eleven people to tag and link to them in the post
4. Alert them to your tagging
6. Thank the blogger who nominated you

Questions from Return to Go with answers from me:

What is the last book you finished?

I just had to check my bedstand and my iPad to remember, because I’ve been in the middle of several books for a while. The last book I finished was Traveling Mercies, by Anne Lamott. I have mentioned before how I adore her writing–she’s a single mom, a recovering addict, a Christian, and famous writer, living in Marin. Her sense of humor and ability to make herself vulnerable in an endearing way make her writing irresistible. A recent quote from her facebook page:

I am still optimistic that Obama will win, mostly because of the current polls in Ohio and Iowa, but GOD, I hate this. I am not remotely well enough for this election. Also, I don’t think a steady diet of msnbc, Nate Silver, and candy corn is an optimal program for my hysterical princess self.

I avoided Traveling Mercies for a while because it’s on faith, and she’s Christian, and I thought it would be too churchy. But it was just the same as her other books–honest, raw, sweet. Today, I bought Wild by Cheryl Strayed, to learn about her wild times on the Pacific Coast Trail, which will likely push me further in the direction of becoming a park ranger.

2. If you were going to join the cast of any reality TV show, which would it be?

I had to really think about this one, since I can’t stand most reality shows and also don’t have a TV. I remember being fascinated by What Not to Wear–I’ve always loved the idea of someone with expertise in fashion going into my closet and forcing me to throw away unflattering pieces that I’ve had since high school and then telling me how to think about buying clothes for my specific coloring and figure. The hosts of the show were pretty much insufferable assholes but the skills would be practical! Till then, I’ll keep going to clothing swaps.

Would you prefer an old house that has been renovated or a brand-spanking new house?

I’m going to go with the new house, since I’ve lived in a 100-year-old apartment building for seven years and it’s impossible to get anything truly clean. I want shiny surfaces again!

What is the last movie you watched?

True fact: I barely watch movies when not in a relationship. Last movie was probably City of God, which I re-watched upon return from Brazil.

Do you live in a rural, urban, or suburban area and would you move to another given the choice?

Urban. Urban. Urban. With proximity to nature. I’m good!

Why did you breakup with the last BF/GF you dated before you met your current partner?

He wanted to travel the world while I wanted to have a baby. We were moving in opposite directions, although I believe that breakups are rarely for one reason–we just weren’t a match.

Have you ever been in a protest?

Many. One memorable one was when we went to war with Iraq, which would have been 2002? No one would go protest with me, so I joined the marchers in the streets on my own. Some people complained to me later that all it did was disrupt traffic, but what are you supposed to do when you feel so strongly that something is going horribly wrong? Raise your hand quietly and wait to be called on?

When was the last time you did something for the first time and what was it?

Today I ran to the top of Twin Peaks for the first time, discovering a rocky hilltop park with sweeping vistas and a grand staircase connecting two dead ends, neither of which I knew existed (within a mile of where I live–this city never gets boring).

If someone rented a billboard for you, what would you put on it?

Vote for Obama! And stop texting while driving. And breathe, and tell your people you love them, and enjoy the moment. (but written more succinctly, probably as a Buddhist quote)

What’s the best meal you have had so far in 2012?

That would be Zaza Bistro in Rio. We went two different nights and I can’t do justice to the meals and will just say go here for inspiration.

Where was your last vacation?

Brazil!

* * *

And now, to nominate 5 bloggers that I follow! Here they are. Please answer the questions above in your blog. Most of you are anonymous so I’ll just list the blog names here w/o your names. Enjoy, and thank you!

Candlelight and Pacifiers

All My Pretty Ones

Belonging Matters

Single Lesbian Mama

Grasping at Conception

From Beans to Rainbow Baby

Single Motherhood by Choice

Amy’s New Adventure

So Easy Homemade

Pedantic Princess

Bucket List Publications

Questions for you:

1. What would you do with a free afternoon all to yourself?

2. What is one of your guilty pleasures?

3. Who is someone you miss?

4. What is your favorite thing about your life?

5. What is your favorite post on your blog?

6. If you were on a reality show, which one would it be and why? (had to recycle that one)

7. What’s the next big item you want to check off your bucket list?

8. What’s the most coincidental thing that’s happened to you recently?

9. What was a life-changing moment in your life thus far?

10. What is the last book you read?

11. What is your biggest pet peeve?