Academic Leigh Speaking

A professor, four kids, and a crash course in work/life balance

Some Thoughts July 28, 2014

1. I did quit Facebook. If you’ve looked for me there, I didn’t unfriend you, I just got exhausted the last few weeks of my pregnancy, and I didn’t enjoy looking through the posts. I also became sensitive to people’s expectation of seeing a baby picture soon. I was really glad to have signed off when we got the breech news, because I needed to process that on my own. I do miss seeing pictures of my friends’ kids, reading updates on academia, and keeping up, but I haven’t missed it too much.

2. We’re selling the house in Albuquerque. I’m looking forward to not worrying about it anymore, and I hope we can sell it quickly. However, this has been a niggling stress, and when I thought baby would come early, I was totally fine with Patrick needing to make a trip out to tie up loose ends and meet the realtor, etc. Now though, that’s coming up quick. I’m glad I asked my folks to make another trip here before I even knew that we’d have complications.

3. One of the reasons I went with the doctor’s advice was that I liked how he practiced medicine. He called me to discuss my options, he told me to call him back when I had decided, and he called me again to let me know when the surgery was scheduled and to answer any questions I had. I only talked to his office staff as a way of letting him know that I needed to talk to him. They did not call me to report his findings. It was, for a large medical community, the most contact I’ve had with a doctor in years. I felt reassured that things that were important to me (baby staying with us the whole time, leaving as soon as possible, getting sewn up right) were being heard and respected.

4. Today Seamus was sneezing all over the house. I told him to use his chicken wing. He said he was! I said, “That’s a floppy wing!” He laughed. Then Porter sneezed, and by reflex, threw his arm in front of his face. I said, “Look! Porter used his chicken wing, just like you!” Seamus was delighted! He ran to tell Patrick that Porter can use his chicken wing, and he said, “I think he’ll be the smartest of all of us!” What? There are some super cute moments with the boys and Porter. However, their actions unrelated to the baby leave something to be desired. They’re a little on edge, but it’s starting to even out with good sleep, family games (we played Arthur Goes to the Library yesterday), lots of reading, and some reassurance that we still notice their good behavior that isn’t related to the baby.

5. I’m exceptionally grateful for the support we’ve had from family and friends. This hasn’t been an easy complication for me (obviously, complications are by definition, not easy), but I feel so well taken care of by our support network, from my friends who call and text from far away to send good wishes and support, from our friends who drop off a meal, from our family and friends who take the big boys for an hour or two of big boy fun. In the hospital, it was so meaningful to have support from the moment we got there to the moment we left. Thank you! I’ll write some notes soon, but just know that I’ve really appreciated the love.

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