Monday, December 30, 2013

Mother's Milk -- A Restaurant Review by Casper

I'll state off the bat that I have mixed feelings about this place. On one hand the food is AMAZING and you cannot beat the price on the all you can eat special. Additionally they offer (off menu) "free refills" to regulars if you ask (I usually just scream really loudly after I finish my first course). Unfortunately I feel that something has to be said about the service. At times it can take five whole minutes to get a table and after that you'll often wait up to 30 seconds for your meal to arrive. A baby could starve to death in that amount of time! I myself have almost wasted away to nothing on many occasions. I have spoken at length to the proprietor about these issues and she never seems to take my concerns seriously. I'd stop going there all together but the place is so convenient (open 24 hours!) and honestly the ambiance cannot be beat (I think you dudes know what I'm talking about *nudgenudge* *winkwink*).

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Casper, Month 1

Hey Casper -- You’re 1 month old! 

My thoughts on our first month together are a bit jumbled and unformed and I suspect you won’t allow me enough writing time to mold them into a cohesive essay so enjoy this mishmash of unorganized mama babble.

I cannot believe that all of that time when I was pregnant it was you who was inside of me. Some moms say they know their babies before they are born but I had no idea and now I’m consumed with getting to know you and it is so much fun. That said, I know that no matter how new and special you seem to your mom and dad you are probably very much like every other 1 month old baby and so this blog entry might be very boring to everyone who is not me. C'est la vie.

I am, so far, lucky to have such a happy sleepy baby but when the world gets to be too much and you scream and scream your dad discovered a little baby hypnotizing tool: the white noise of the bathroom vent. You love the bathroom vent so much that I’m a bit worried that you think it might be your mother. Jealousy aside, having such a reliable baby charming device right in our home is both a godsend and a hilarious party trick. Stepping over the threshold into “Casper’s Calm Down Room” (as your dad calls it) takes you from inconsolable screamer to passed out drunk almost immediately. Unfortunately the powers of the vent are contained to the bathroom and leaving, even when you seem completely zonked, often returns the maddest baby in the world to my arms. This has resulted in many nights spent hanging out perched on the toilet considering if moving your bassinet into the bathroom would make me a bad parent.

You were born with long sharp nails and since we’ve been told to put off cutting them until you’re one month old this has been a month of scratches and what we have come to call “hand jail.” I used to see onesies with little attached mittens and think they were made to keep baby fingers warm, I now know that the little cuffs are meant to keep baby and mom from being stabbed to death.

Your dad and I have so many nicknames for you: Stretcherson, Mr. Grumpenstein, Big Pooper, etc -- a name for ever one of your faces. Your granddad is trying hard to make you a Cas and one of dad’s friends is pushing to call you Whit. It’s all in love, everyone wants to have a special name just for you, we’ll see if any of them stick.

When you’re in a good mood and looking around the room you want very badly to hold your head up. For a one month old you’re doing a pretty good job of picking up your huge noggin, we wonder if your womb position helped you build a little extra neck muscle.

Both sets of grandparents are in love with you. “Of course they are!” says everyone - but your dad and I expected a more laid back performance. Our brothers already have kids so you’re not the first grandchild and all of our parents don’t really seem that into babies. Throughout my pregnancy everyone was very calm and unimpressed with having a new grand baby… but after you were born everything changed. Grandmom Gruetzmacher can hardly hold back from grabbing you out of my arms. Grandpa Horst has already promised you a pony (you have proof in writing here so if no pony shows up feel free to cite this blog post). We receive constant complaints that we’re not uploading enough pictures to the CasperVision photostream.

Your cousins are smitten with you too. Dalanie and Zayden have visited you on FaceTime at least once a week. Zayden, especially seems to be in love -- he’s only 4 so he shows his love by yelling at you through the phone, singing Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer and mooning you.

I remain sad that you’ll be growing up even though I know 3 months and 6 months and 1 year will bring so many exciting new things. I can’t help feeling like you’re perfect right now and I want to keep you like this forever (yes, even with the 4am feedings, the occasional inconsolable hours and the poopy diapers). When I was little I found it so annoying when adults would talk about how fast time was moving when it seemed like the wait for the end of the school day or Christmas or summer vacation was taking eons but parenthood has made time fly for me too. How has it been a whole month since you were born? How can we slow down time so we can spend endless days cooing at each other on the couch while watching the snow fall?

Friday, November 29, 2013

Welcome Baby Casper

Baby and I spent the last nine weeks of my pregnancy bopping between lying upside down, having needles poked into my feet and failing an ECV attempt. The specialist trying to perform the baby flip first examined the little dude via ultrasound. But after confirming that his little face was still staring up at my own sadly declared that she didn’t think there was much chance of getting this particular baby head down. We were resigned to the scheduled c-section. 

I wasn’t thrilled about picking the boy’s birthday for him but otherwise I was glad to be done with the (apparently futile) baby turning ridiculousness and move on to the baby having. With the fetus eviction scheduled for November 21st I embraced the project management beauty of a planned delivery. I scheduled my last day of work for Nov 15th. My parents rescheduled their visit so they could be here when we returned from the hospital. My husband scheduled a last fancy dinner out as DINKs for a couple of days pre-surgery.

In birth class and maternity books and all over the internet pregnant ladies are reassured that the way labor and delivery is portrayed in Hollywood is completely unrealistic. Labor takes a long time. Babies are pretty much never born in cabs. Almost no one has their water break spontaneously. All of this is doubly true for first time moms -- the message is clear. You won’t be surprised. You will have plenty of time.

My water broke around 12:30 pm on Nov 16th 2013 -- I was 38 weeks and 3 days pregnant. This was no trickle down my leg. At no point did I optimistically wonder if maybe I was just peeing myself (this suddenly being a more favorable option than the idea of having a baby that afternoon). Luckily I was at home and not actually living out some awful sitcom plot. I was chatting with my husband while organizing a few nursery items when I felt a pop, a gush and a pool installing itself in the gusset of my panties.

I rang the doctor from my perch on the toilet where amniotic fluid had gotten into an established pattern of gush, replenish, gush. I had tried to stop the flow with a pad but that had lasted all of 5 minutes before my pants were soaked through.

When I dialed my doctor I somehow wound up connected to a doctor’s office in Pennsylvania. Odd. I tried a second time. PA. A third. Very annoyed woman in Pennsylvania. This is when panic started to set in -- how was I dialing a New York City 212 number that I'd dialed myriads of times and ending up connected to another state? After 15 mins of looking up alternative numbers for my doctor and trying to call other doctors in the practice all of which continued to result in the twilight zone Pennsylvania experience the annoyed but ultimately nice lady on the other end of the line figured out that the doctor’s call service was forwarding incorrectly. By this time I was (obviously) crying and my husband had already called a cab but the Pennsylvania lady was finally able to get us a working number and the on call doctor (not my personal doctor, but my favorite of the others in her practice -- a spunky lady who always referred to fetuses as "munchkins") called me back while we were enroute to the hospital.

Initially the doctor wanted to wait a few hours before they performed the c-section since I’d eaten breakfast 2 hours before my water broke and surgery is safer on an empty stomach (due to reduced risk of my vomiting all over myself). But once at the hospital an ultrasound confirmed that the baby was footling breech with a heel resting on my cervix. This position made it possible that he might stick a toe out into the pool of the real world as soon as my cervix dilated enough. The baby extraction would have to happen ASAP. I was told not to get up from bed, Geoff was handed some scrubs and we waited for the doctor to arrive.  

Things were going great: I was cracking jokes with the nurses, laughing at my pathetic little contractions (easy to do when you know you won’t be sticking around for the big ones). I was generally in a jolly mode right up until they walked me into surgery. Everyone who has a c-section notes that the operating room is scary medical experiment time compared to the floral wall paper and cheery baby welcoming posters of the rest of Labor and Delivery. The transition to fluorescent light bouncing off of gleaming white tile and metal instruments is jarring.

I had expected the insertion of the spinal to be pretty painful so when the time came I steeled myself but surprisingly it didn’t hurt much at all. I barely felt the needle though I did feel a weird rush afterwards like a hot tidal wave filling up my body. It wasn’t painful but it wasn’t pleasant. Once I was numbed up they brought my husband in and sat him on a stool by my head. They did not strap my arms down to the table which was a nice surprise. I could feel some movement below the wall of the sheet but no pain and once I got Geoff to talk to me was mostly distracted enough to not obsess over the fact that my insides were being exposed to the world.

When Geoff tried to peek over the curtain to watch the surgery he was chastised and told to sit back down which was surprising since we’d heard of many other daddies watching the procedure.

At one point during the surgery the doctor called out calmly, “cord times 2” -- indicating that the umbilical cord was wrapped around the baby’s neck two times. This accounts for his position -- with the placenta at the top of my uterus and the cord wrapped around the baby twice there was simply not enough slack for him to get his head down (insert “just enough rope to hang yourself” joke here). My husband later admitted to being confused by this announcement -- assuming it meant that somehow the baby had two umbilical cords and possibly also two belly buttons, he assured me that he has already committed to loving him anyhow.

Casper Whitney Gruetzmacher was born on November 16th 2013 at 4:04 pm, he weighed 6lbs 9.8oz and was 19 inches long.

He screamed like crazy on his way out and all through being checked out by the pediatrician. We were later informed that the doctor had nicked his thigh when making the c-section incision -- the whole hospital seemed very worried about dad and I possibly freaking out about this but the actual injury was no worse than a paper cut and neither of us felt a need to get worked up. The doctor claimed he had a full head of blond hair -- this must have been a mistake because his hair is shockingly dark for a child born to two blond parents. We expect it to lighten up as he ages but who knows. Geoff was able to go over and hold him within a few minutes of birth and he brought him around so I could nuzzle his little cheeks and say hello while being sewn back up.

I spent 3 hours in the recovery room waiting for enough feeling to return to my bottom half that I could lift up my butt (this was the very scientific test they used… ). The nurses brought the baby in and tried to help me nurse but while Casper was doing his part (opening his mouth wide, making sucking movements, etc) I was still numb from the chest down and we couldn’t get him to latch on while I was lying down. The hospital was very pro-nursing and assured me he wouldn’t be given formula and would be plenty hungry when I regained feeling.

Those nurses were not lying -- once we got into our room around 8pm; Casper nursed like a little sucker fish and was quickly full of colostrum. Shortly thereafter I was full of sushi (nothing tastes better than formerly forbidden fruit eaten after 10 hours on an empty stomach).

At this point everything felt unreal. I had so little time to process the birth (I mean, besides the preceding 9 months…) that even sitting in my hospital room with the baby next to me I was still working through the shock of my water breaking -- never mind the whole getting cut open and having an actual baby that is actually mine for life thing.

The c-section was much less painful than I’d feared. The pain meds did their job and I was up and walking to breast feeding class the next morning at 9:30am. Recovery overall has gone great. We came home on Tuesday November 19th after a small bit of last minute hospital drama about Casper having lost 9.8% of his body weight. We were asked to supplement at home with a crazy contraption involving a small tube taped to my boob feeding formula while he nursed. Casper declared war on the tube from the start arching his back, screaming and refusing to latch so after 3 attempts, a good cry and a long chat with a friend who happens to be a lactation consultant we gave up until our pediatrician appointment the next morning. Luckily my milk must have come in overnight because by the time we went to the doctor the boy was already up 5 ounces and we were told to ditch the silly supplementing. Breast feeding and baby life in general has been mostly smooth sailing since -- we feel very lucky.

Here comes the schmoopy part; get ready. I love him so much. I was never really worried about loving him but it’s also true that when asked on the first day of birth class what I was most excited about my honest response was, “having a 6 month old.” I’ve never been that into newborns -- they seem so needy and floppy and boring. But the hormones kicked in and I find myself sad that Casper will get bigger. That he won’t always be the perfect little compact baby that fits right on my chest (squishing himself back into his womb pose, legs crossed, knees bent, pushed over to my right side, gazing up into my eyes). Sometimes when his little grunt-y cries wake me up at 3am I feel a little jolt of excitement that soon he’ll be awake and I’ll get to hold him. He is my baby.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

From Fetus to Baby

I started his blog entry last week when baby was scheduled for be born on 11/21 (that’s today!) but he surprised us by demanding to come out on Saturday (11/16). I’ll be updating with that story soon.

Dear Baby,

Your dad and I joke around about if it’s possible to anthropomorphize you with statements like, “The baby likes pudding!” or “The baby is mad and showing his anger by kicking me in the cervix.” On the one hand you are human and you surely have little fetus wants and feelings but I have no way of knowing what they might be. Your kicking could be happy or sad or indifferent. Right now I know very little about you beyond the normal baby stuff -- you won’t know how to use a toilet, you can’t dress yourself, you need someone to feed you every few hours, you will need a lot of help with pretty much everything. But I’ve made some guesses based on your in womb behavior and documented them here. I can’t wait to see how right or wrong I am.

Things I knew about you before you were born:

  • You will not turn over. Maybe you can’t. Maybe you don’t know where the womb exit is located. Maybe sitting on your butt is just so comfortable. Maybe you didn’t know about turning over. Hopefully you’re not panicking (though an apology when you get here would be nice I’m not counting on one).  It’s cool, we’re gonna get you out. 
  • You hang out on my right side so much that sometimes I can push my hand down hard into the left side of my belly and it just sinks into the squishy flesh where no baby parts live. 
  • You push your head up against the top of my uterus so vigorously that all 3 of the the ultrasound techs that we’ve seen in the past 3 weeks can never get a picture of your face.  
  • You’re sitting in a position called “stargazer breech” though the breech part keeps changing -- some days you’re squatting on your heels, others you have your legs crossed, yesterday you had one foot dangling down. We saw one tech two weeks in a row and she didn’t recognize Geoff or I but as soon as she put the probe on my belly and saw you staring up at the top of my womb she exclaimed, “Oh! I remember you!”
  • You will be born on or before 11/21/2013 but c-section because pushing you out butt first with your head tilted back is likely to injure you.
  • You’ve been putting on the pounds in the last 2 weeks -- there’s some guessing here but the ultrasounds tech estimates a 1.25lb weight gain in 14 days that’s over a 20% increase in body weight! I think we might know who was demanding chocolate pudding this week -- I thank you for storing the calories yourself.

Assumptions I made about you:

  • You will have little to no hair -- this is just because your dad and I were both hairless babies and so we assume you will be the same but on one ultrasound the tech pointed out some hair so we may be wrong.

Things I hope for you:

  • I hope your neck is ok. Everyone says it probably is but you’re also holding your head weird and it worries me just a little bit. Apparently your cousin Zayden also had a hyperextended neck and while he was born with a mass in his neck it turned out to just be muscle trauma from the birth canal and he’s more than fine now.
  • I hope you will like nursing and not be too much of a pain about it -- I know I’ve done nothing to earn an easy baby since you made pregnancy such a breeze (though I think my body deserves a little bit of credit there) but hope doesn’t care about what it’s due. 
  • On that same note I hope you inherit your dad and I’s love for sleep. We could all have such lovely naps together; don’t ruin this. 
  • I hope you will look a little like me and a little like your dad. I would love it if you had something super obvious from me -- I’d recommend my dimple over, say, my not so great eye sight.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Bottoms Up Kid.

As a child it was common knowledge in my family that my brother had been born breech (aka butt first). This is not the kind of information you should share with an older sister who enjoys nothing more than little brother tormenting and who is very much not in need of additional material. I used the fact that Kurt has been born butt first (a much more embarrassing description than “breech”) as the source of many joke for years.

Some classics:

“You were born butt first which mom and dad should have seen as a warning about what a little ass you were going to be!” *ZING*
“Everyone says that you were born butt first but the truth is that your face was so ugly that the doctors just thought it was a butt” (This can segue so easily into calling your brother butt-face for the rest of his life or until you are sent to your room).

I found out 7 weeks ago that my own baby is happily hanging out breech -- not a major concern at 29 weeks… “He’ll flip,” they all said. At 33 weeks I could still feel his big old head (husband’s gene for head size having been a concern from the beginning) nuzzled up under my right ribcage just as close as he can get his mouth to the boob while still in the uterus -- here’s hoping that at the very least this bodes well for nursing.

Karma, perhaps? It’s probably a case of “too little too late” but if karma cares I’m happy to apologize to my brother (who, it should be noted, seems fine and who, also, is a pretty attractive dude whose face is almost never confused with his butt.).

I’d really rather not have a c-section for the obvious reasons (fear of knives, desire to keep organs internal, lack of interest in picking up crying baby while recovering from a flesh wound. THE USUAL) but vaginal delivery of a breech baby for a first time mom is not a very safe option for the baby. If he stays butt down both my doctor and I agree that he's coming out Alien style. So I started researching baby flipping techniques. It turns out they are mostly hilarious.

The big suggestion you’ll find online is something called the “breech tilt” this is fancy language for “lie upside down and try not to pass out.” I did this by stacking a bunch of pillows on the floor, positioning myself backwards on the couch and having my husband slowly lower me and my giant belly into a headstand. It turns out that as hilarious as lying upside down sounds the actual experience sucks. The official recommendation is to do this for 20 minutes at a time 3 times per day but obviously that is impossible. Not only do I need to avoid the headstands right after eating but I can only execute them when my husband is around to assist and after one 20 min session I need at least 24 hours to convince myself that another one won’t make blood rush out my ears. Also, lying there is super boring (despite what you see in this picture enjoying the Daily Show is very difficult). ALSO this all seems like crazy voodoo and every uncomfortable minute spent on my head made me feel more and more like a sucker who just might be part of some elaborate Candid Camera plot.

After one week of lying on my head everyday I came down with a head cold. Related? Probably not, but this killed any commitment I had to the experience. I switched over to holding a bag of frozen corn on the top of my stomach in the hopes that the fetus, like most of us, hates cold and/or corn on his head. I find it hard to believe that cold can actually lower the temperature in the womb but surprisingly the fetus squirmed and kicked like crazy. However, no effort was made to lower his noggin towards my pelvis.

Other suggestions include “place a paper towel tube [at the bottom of your belly] and have family members speak through it or play Beethoven.” Little known fact: the only music fetuses' like is Beethoven.  My husband stuck his iPhone with REM on repeat into the waist of my maternity leggings. No noticeable fetal reaction was felt.

Yoga instructors and other hippies will tell you to go to an acupuncturist or a chiropractor both of whom might have mystical techniques for flipping babies. If you’re a huge skeptic like myself considering this will rip your brain out. First you’ll go to various acupuncturist websites as recommended by the local parenting listserv and observe that 1. No one in the alternative medicine field crossed over into the world of Web 2.0 and 2. In addition to various needle poking services the proprietors would also like you to purchase some magic nuts from Brazil that will solve all of your life problems. (I am not making this up). You will close your browser and let yourself have a Coke, empty calories be damned.

At my 35 weeks appointment the doctor was no longer amused with the little one’s antics and we had to have “the talk.” The one that starts with her hand in my vagina and the words “Yep, that’s a foot.” and ends with “Let’s just check my schedule and see when I have free time to slice open your abdomen and pull your pain in the ass child out by his toes.” (Nov 21) She also recommended I go ahead and give the acupuncture a try since there was some evidence that it could work.  She offered no opinion on chiropractic services or magic nuts from Brazil.

Because I am, possibly, a huge racist who loves cliches I very much wanted my acupuncturist to be an old Chinese man -- ideally with a Chinatown basement office and, perhaps, a long hair growing out of a facial mole. Alas, everyone recommended by my yoga teachers and my doctor was, instead, some version of a patchouli scented white lady. Obviously. My expectations dashed I made an appointment for Monday morning.

The acupuncture technique used for flipping breech babies is called moxibustion. I researched it before my appointment so I was prepared for possibly some needles in my feet and some smoke blowing around my toes.  Though Wikipedia did mention that some practitioners found smoke insufficient and instead burned your toes until they scarred so… that sounded great.

The appointment was fine. A middle aged European woman asked me a lot of question about previous injuries and my pregnancy (seemingly sad to hear that I had no real tales to tell having had a delightfully boring life, medical complaint speaking). She put some needles in my feet, calves, arms and collar bone. I asked her what they were for but her explanation made no sense so I stopped asking questions because I felt bad. After the needles were placed she made me lie under a space blanket like I just ran a marathon and left me in the dark to whisper to my baby and whatever Chinese gods were present that yes, this seemed like some crazy voodoo but if baby would just flip over we could return to our regularly scheduled skeptical existence.

The acupuncturist returned to burn some yellow dried weeds on the edge of both of my pinky toes which were, thankfully protected by a coating of some black cream that seemed to mostly block the heat from reaching my skin. She used some fancy looking incense to light the dried weed on fire repeating this over and over again until I could feel the heat 3 times. I observed that each additional pile of ash made the spot on my toe look more and more like a really ugly toe mole -- hot tip if you’re interested in dressing up like a wart covered witch or an authentic looking old Chinese medicine man (the weed itself could for sure be fashioned to look like a mole hair).

And that was it. “If he doesn’t flip please come back on Thursday or Friday and give me another $150. “ (not a direct quote).

2 days later at my 36 week ultrasound his head is still pushed against my ribcage -- on close inspection you can see that his neck is tilted back and his little face is literally smushed up against the top wall of my uterus as if he’s trying to push himself out in the wrong direction.

The next step (besides, possibly another acupuncture appointment and/or a visit to the chiropractor) is something called an External cephalic version which is basically just the doctor pushing on the baby’s butt from outside of my tummy in the hopes that he’ll somersault himself over into the head down position. This procedure has a pretty good success rate (over 50%) but they won’t do it with a baby whose head is tilted up…. so we’re hoping the womb dweller decides to look down sometime before the procedure next Wednesday. Stay tuned.

Sunday, August 25, 2013


What has pregnancy been like so far?


So easy that I worry about some karmic pregnancy due that must be paid through a designated amount of pain and, since I’ve had it easy so far, the last 3 months and the (*gulp*) birth are bound to be as awful as possible.

I have had no morning sickness though I do have the occasional urge to throw up when I contemplate the enormity of birth and parenting. So far everything has stayed down save a few tears.

I’m sleeping pretty well even with the frequent bathroom trips -- so well in fact that I have caught myself starting to doze while perched on the commode sometime around 3am. Once I drag myself back to bed I’m on the express train to dreamland faster than I ever was pre-pregnancy.

I have had a few bouts of the drowsies -- mostly in the beginning, all were met with copious couch time, which was fine -- I have Netflix streaming and an iPad, the couch and I get along great.

My ankles are still as (un)svelte as ever, my belly bares no dark line, I’ve had no fainting spells, no aversions to smells, no midnight cravings, no achy joints. I know I am getting away with something and that if ever a blogpost needed a “jinx” label here it is.

Honestly, this is exactly how I would have predicted pregnancy would go for me (had I the cajones to tempt fate like that). Perhaps it was the years of battles struggling to fit birthing hips into skinny jeans that cemented my internal belief that I would be spared the months of agony that many women seem to slog through only to be rewarded with a screaming infant.

There has been one challenge of pregnancy over the past few months -- weight gain. I could have also predicted this outcome -- my birthing hips love nothing more than to become even more birthing. Staying this side of chubby has been a battle I’ve fought (mostly successfully) for years and I always knew that pregnancy would be the enemy’s secret weapon.

When I started to seriously think about getting pregnant I entertained the idea of tracking calories through the entire pregnancy to maintain a sense of control and, hopefully, avoid packing on too many pounds. Once I actually became pregnant this idea seemed absurd. In addition to the fact that doing this would make me look insane (which I might have sort of enjoyed) it would have also meant continuing to feel guilty for eating things, and I desperately wanted a break.

Things seemed great at the start -- up through month 3 I gained 0 pounds.

At month 4 the doctor said, “The weight was going to show up sometime.”

At month 5, “Ok, now you’ve caught up to normal weight gain.”

At month 6, “So let’s talk about your diet.”

Looking on the bright side there have, possibly, been enough tears shed over the past few days to bring me down at least a pound in “water weight”. But I fear upcoming conversations like “Does the grocery store near your apartment have any ice cream left or did you eat it all?” “Did you feel that earthquake when you walked in?” and “MOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!”

The main problem is that I have only two eating modes:
  1. Eat the things I want which includes copious veggies and fruit padded with extra servings of ice cream and empty carbs. (Heavy on the copious -- I could managed to gain weight on an all raw veggie diet.) 
  2. Eat as little as possible. 
As a result, all of my successful weight management in the past 10 years has been at the hands of 1200 calories per day and a spreadsheet. When you dip down to 1200 two things are almost always true:
  1. You will lose weight 
  2. Choices make themselves -- You probably can’t afford to eat whatever it is you would like to eat right now so put it down. 
It turns out that neither of my modes is particularly well suited for pregnancy.

I am loathe to make excuses about weight gain. Years of dieting have taught me that excuses rarely lead to solutions and you’re better off being hard on yourself. That said I do not know where this weight is coming from and I don’t really see it on my body (Extreme denial? Perhaps.). Additionally, if I’m going to be putting on mass poundage I would like to be eating a lot more pizza slices, hamburgers, chocolate cake and milkshakes -- as things stand I seem to be gaining primarily due to bigger than average servings of pasta with kale. I’m sort of torn between really going to town on all of my dream foods (you only gestate once?) and getting serious about monitoring my food intake. But, ever the good little student, I can’t bring myself to disappoint my doctor with Big Mac rebellion -- defeated, I have taken up calorie tracking yet again.

Practical German Sense of Responsibility: 1
Hedonism : 0