I made my husband into a metrosexual.

I know today’s post was supposed to be about raising children so they aren’t serial killers, but something happened last night that I feel like has to be addressed. My husband and I were deep into the most recent episode of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills(more on that later) and a commercial came on for the new season of the Rachel Zoe Project. Beau had just got up to grab something from the kitchen so he was walking back to the couch when it came on. After watching the commercial for about 10 seconds, I looked over at him and he was doing a weird excitable shimmy type dance. He looked at me and sheepishly asked, “What? Rachel Zoe is coming back.”

That’s who I’ve turned my husband into. A man who dances at the thought of Rachel Zoe.

He was not always like this. I take full blame for his change in behavior. Let’s rewind 4 years so you know what I started with and the Frankenstein I’ve created.

On our first date, I went to Beau’s house. ( I know, it’s how every episode of Dateline starts.) When I walked in I was stunned at how empty it was.

“Have you just moved in?” I asked.

“No,  I’ve owned the house for 6 years. Why?” he replied.

“Um, no reason…”

I looked around. The man owned 4 pieces of furniture. FOR THE ENTIRE HOUSE. There was a 30-year-old loveseat in the den, the typical bachelor huge-sized flat screen television on the wall in front of it, a kitchen table, and a full size mattress on the floor in his bedroom. That’s it. What he lacked in furniture, he apparently tried to make up for it in picking paint colors. His bedroom was bright yellow, but where the mattress on the floor in the corner had rubbed up against the paint, there was red showing through. ” I painted over it one night after the bar. I didn’t think to use any primer.”  he said sheepishly. The den with the lone loveseat was painted the blue color of Superman’s cape, the empty living room was painted in what I can only affectionately call Calamine Lotion, and the kitchen was neon green. Neon green with dark brown cabinets. Oh, and I forgot to add the best part. The entire house wall-to-wall was still the blue shag carpeting the previous elderly couple had installed. The man didn’t have a stylish bone in his body.

After dating a few weeks, I started on any girl’s favorite rite of passage in a new relationship.

I started dissecting his closet.

The man was 29, but his closet was that of a 74 year old retiree living in Del Boca Vista. Nothing but over sized Tommy Bahama button-down shirts and XL sized Ralph Lauren polo’s.

Beau's spirit animal.
                                    Beau’s spirit animal.

“Are you in some kind of hobo costume contest I’m not aware of?” I asked politely.

“What? No. Why?” he replied a little too defensively

“Because all of these clothes are 3 sizes too large and about 50 years too old for you.”

“Is they were on sale a good enough answer?’

Here is where I made my first mistake, internet. I took him to Nordstrom Rack. He wandered around that place like a detainee experiencing fresh air for the first time. $500 worth of Faconnable later and my little monster was well on his way.

Months passed and we moved into together. He bought us a king sized bed with a proper frame. We re-painted every room in a neutral. (I acquiesced and let him keep the living room Calamine Lotion.) I toned it down with furnishings so it only looked vaguely peach colored. We ripped up all the carpet and replaced it with wood. I painted the cabinets white and he sprung for granite. The house was transformed top to bottom.The one place left was the garage. One day I started digging around in it. Taking up one whole wall were about 6 giant Rubbermaid bins.

“What are those honey?” I asked sweetly, silently sending a prayer that they were disposable since that space would be perfect to house my extensive holiday decoration stash.

“Oh, those? That’s my baseball card collection.”

If this were a book, this is what you would call “foreshadowing.” Because after that exchange I realized quickly I was living with the Rain Man of sports. Not only was ESPN basically the only channel on in the house those first few months, but I started realizing Beau could answer anything related to sports. He could tell you every player on the starting line-up of the 1983 NY Giants or who was the manager of  the 1976 Padres. He could recite every major Tiger Woods has ever won.  This was the summer of the World Cup and Beau casually decided to become a soccer fan. I started waking up in the middle of the night to find the bed empty. I would pad downstairs and catch him yelling “GOAL!” enthusiastically at the TV while our geriatric dalmatian tried to sleep through the excitement.

Fall came, and every Sunday he started seeming to be really upset with me. After a few weekends of this I had finally had enough.

“Are you sick of me already? Did we move into together too soon?” I yelled at him

“What are you talking about? he asked incredulously

“Every Sunday you are in such a bad mood. Am I annoying you more now that we live together?”

“Oh, no baby. I just think I started the wrong guy on my Fantasy team.”

I started going crazy. Between two Fantasy football teams and the MLB playoffs, sports was taking over my life.  While I played a lot of sports in my youth, watching them on TV was a kin to paint drying for me. I explained to Beau that when you move into together you have to start compromising on things. One of these was what we watched on TV. During the commercial breaks of the baseball games I started switching it over to Bravo.

“What is this crap?”

“It’s the Real Housewives of Orange County.”

“What are they fighting about?”

“Shh..honey, just watch. It’s only for a couple of minutes.”

You know how when watching the movie Titanic and the part comes on with the two iceberg lookout men and they are just kind of chilling while the boat heads right for the iceberg? You yell at the TV “Iceberg! ” about 10 seconds before those idiot’s catch on and you wonder if only had they been paying attention earlier, maybe disaster could have been averted?

It all started off so innocently.

Watching Housewives on commercial breaks turned into him letting me watch it through the whole inning. He started asking questions about the ladies and their backgrounds. When commercials for the Real Housewives of Atlanta came on, he started laughing. “I assume your going to make me watch this crap too?” he asked one day. “No we don’t have to, they can be pretty annoying.” I replied. “Well, I wouldn’t mind…” he trailed off.

I'm the idiot that let the boat hit the iceberg because I wasn't paying attention.

This is the point where you spot the iceberg but it’s too late to steer the ship around it.

A year went by and I realized he was now watching every franchise of the Housewives with me. I would come home late and he would greet me at the door excitedly. “Don’t worry. I DVR’d it!”  We got engaged and I guess in the spirit of marriage equality, or just the comfort that comes with the decision to spend the rest of your life with someone, he started leaving Bravo on basically all week. Sundays during the Football season were still off-limits but most nights after work he was getting sucked into the Bravo universe. It quickly progressed past the Housewives.

Flipping Out, Million Dollar Decorators, Most Eligible Dallas, The Millionaire Matchmaker, Bethenny Ever After, Gallery Girls, Million Dollar Listing, Pregnant in Heels, Tabatha Takes Over, It’s a Brad Brad World, and the aforementioned Rachel Zoe Project.

You guys. He’s seen every single episode of these shows. My Frankenstein loves them all.

I know usually when you think of a Metrosexual you think of a man with highly religious grooming habits. Beau couldn’t be further from that. I shave his head for him once every few weeks. He refuses to go to a salon. Getting him to let me tweeze his eyebrows is an art in negotiation with the number of plucks being set before I can even pick up the tweezers. He goes to the gym only a few days a week and if I didn’t buy him facial care products he would wash his entire body with shampoo. So yes, even though his clothes fit him and are age appropriate now, you would never know looking at him that he has these hidden viewing habits.

Well at least one person understands.

Over Christmas, on the flight back from Minneapolis, I could tell Beau was bored. He had finished his book and was fidgeting. “Would you like to watch Sex and the City with me on my iphone?” I asked.  He scoffed at me and closed his eyes. As I made my way through Season Two, I could sense another set of eyes peaking over my shoulder. I handed him an ear bud. He tossed it back in my lap. “I’m not watching that horse face.” he said indignantly. “Babe, we’ve got two hours left on this flight. Shut up and watch.” I responded tersely. He took it reluctantly and put it in his ear. “This show is so stupid…”  An hour passed and in the middle of watching Steve meet Miranda for the first time, the stewardess interrupted.

“Can I get you something to drink? Oh look how cute you both are sharing ear buds! What are you watching? I looked at Beau. I figured honesty was the best policy since we’d never see her again.

“Sex in the City.” I responded ashamedly.

“Oh really?” she replied, “My husband loves that show.”

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My birth plan: Don’t die

When the OB at my last appointment brought up making a birth plan, I quickly cut her off.

” I don’t need one. Just don’t let me die. And if you could not let the baby die either, that would be cool too.”

She looked at me, laughed, and said “I think I can do that.”

Yep that’s my entire birth plan. In this day of home births, placenta eating, and pulling the baby out with your own two hands, I think I’m quite the anomaly to my OB. I just don’t want any part of planning “my birth”. Why? Because most times it goes the exact opposite way you think it will. And honestly? I know ZERO about birthing babies. You know who does? My OB. She went to 14 years of school, birthed 4 of her own, and has delivered countless others. Who the hell am I to tell her the proper amount of time to let the cord to pulsate? What’s that you say? Did I just say “let the cord pulsate?” Why, yes I did. It’s a thing now. Didn’t you hear?  For all of you not pushing a watermelon out your whoo-haa in 6 months I’ll enlighten you to all the new birthing trends. Try not to puke. (But if you do, go in the sink.)

Just say yes to drugs.

I am a big fan of western medicine. BIG FAN. I’m so glad we live in a country with readily available access to pharmaceuticals, CT scans, and laser hair removal. When it comes to birth, I am just as thankful for epidurals. Having to hear my own mother’s story of back labor for 36 hours with no drugs available on the tiny island she lived on, made me want to find an anesthesiologist in college and marry him, just so I knew I wouldn’t have to wait when the time comes. That didn’t happen, and instead I married a man that keeps me in supply of another type of liquid pain reliever, but one that is unfortunately heavily frowned upon for preggos. (see my last post), so you will be sure the second I get to that nurses station to check in my first words after, “No, I am not wearing that hideous gown.” will be “and I want the drugs as soon as possible.”

Here’s how I look at it.

More power to the women who want to go it alone, but personally, I wouldn’t ask to go sans drugs for open heart surgery, so explain to me again why I would want to go through one of nature’s most painful experiences without assistance? I know, I know, women for centuries have been bearing down in rice paddies, delivering, and going right back to work. But guess what? If they could have strung up an IV on one of those water buffalo standing nearby, she would have GLADLY taken it.

Ugh. Enough with the moaning.

Ugh. Enough with the moaning.

It’s like why I can’t stand Downtown Abbey. Why do I have to spend my Sunday’s watching people suffering without antibiotics and electricity? I love living in the 21st century, and I will take full advantage of everything available to me.

You know who coined the term  “natural childbirth” ? An obstetrician named Grantly Dick-Read.

Enough said.

Breastfeeding

I totally plan on trying to breastfeed. Note the use of the word plan. If it works it works, if it doesn’t, no sweat. I’m not going to have my nipples detach (Yes. That happens.) just so this baby can get fed. That’s what they make formula for. I’ll even spring for the organic kind!

I once dated a guy that was breastfed until he was 4.  After he told me that, it explained A LOT about him and his weird co-dependent relationship with his mom. That’s not happening in this house. If breastfeeding works, I’ll hopefully give it a year or until I start getting bit. I feel like teeth are nature’s way of saying, “OK, we’re done here.”

Placenta

My mother-in-law is a sheep breeder. 4 months a year she is elbow deep in sheep uterus and for the other 8 months she’s taking care of pregnant sheep or babies. On top of that, she also birthed three of her own. This woman knows mammalian labor and delivery. When I explained to her that eating placenta is a new trend in birth, she looked at me like she was seriously questioning her son’s decision-making skills.

MIL: “What is the reasoning for this?”

Me: “Well, animals in nature do it for the nutrients.”

MIL: “Are you serious? No, they don’t. They eat it so the hungry pack of lions doesn’t smell it.”

Me: “Really? I have to go inform like half of the internet.”

What to wear

Have you ever google imaged “giving birth”? Don’t. It’s not as gross as you would think, but the one thing that stood out for me is that everyone is naked. I never realized giving birth in the nude is an option. Listen, I love nudity. I’m a boudoir photographer, for gods sakes. But personally? I’m like Tobias on Arrested Development.  I’m basically a never-nude. I just like the feeling of clothing. Sleeping nude, using the bathroom nude, swimming nude all creep me out. So when it comes to giving birth IN FRONT OF A BUNCH OF PEOPLE there is no way I’m going nude. I even asked a fellow mom if they make you wear the hospital gown, because with that open in the back business, I feel like it’s not going to give me enough coverage. Basically if I could, I’d wear a snowsuit with a whole cut in the bottom.

She knows what I'm talking about.

She knows what I’m talking about.

Water birth

In THEORY, I love the idea of giving the birth in water. It’s very Brooke Shields, circa The Blue Lagoon. Relaxing, warm, etc.

I was all about it until about 6 weeks ago.

The worst kept secret of childbirth is that some women, ahem, “poo” on the table while pushing.  I then started connecting the dots. If that is a natural occurrence, then what happens when you are giving birth in a bathtub?

This. THIS is what happens.

This. THIS is what happens.

Tomorrow…

Once the baby comes out, how do you not totally screw it up for 18 years?

If you have to puke in an airplane, puke in the sink.

Since the electronic test blinked “PREGNANT” at me 12 weeks ago (note: don’t take preggo tests at 6 am. You will seriously think you are still dreaming, get back into bed, and then exorcist style rise up out of the covers screaming “HOLY SHIT, WE ARE HAVING A BABY!”) I have been inundated with books and blogs on all of the options there are when it comes to pregnancy, giving birth, and child rearing. I’m going to be addressing these in order over the next week. Let’s start with my current delicate condition.

Pregnancy:

If you need someone to talk about puking with, I’m your girl. I puke just about every day. In the shower, in my bathroom sink, in my kitchen sink and when I’m feeling especially pissy, in my husband’s bathroom sink. I’ve puked on the side of the highway, I’ve puked while driving, I’ve puked in an airplane bathroom(in the sink natch), I’ve even puked in my best friend’s yard.( I kicked some snow over it and prayed her dog would find it first.) Basically the only place I haven’t puked is in a toilet. I find toilets disgusting and thinking about that fact while I’m puking actually makes me puke more so I avoid them like the plague carriers they are.

When the puking first started, I got loads of advice.

” Eat saltines before you even get out of bed in the morning! ”

“Drink ginger tea and eat ginger candies!”

“Take Unisom!”

“Give more BJ’s!”  (Google it, it’s actually a remedy.)

Guess what?

Shockingly and much to my hubby’s chagrin, none of these worked.

Here’s what works for me. I simply don’t eat until noon. That way when I puke it’s liquid. Puking just liquid is much easier and less gross than the alternative. Trust me on this. I heard the nausea was supposed to go away at 12 weeks. We are two weeks past that and now I only puke about once every other day. I will take that as a win. At least the crazy food aversions have subsided.

Oh. My. God.

The food aversions.

Eating during pregnancy is dodging landmines everyday.  And looking way less cute than her.

Are those Toms?

Are those Toms?

Everywhere you look there are people telling you what you should and shouldn’t be eating quite forcefully and condescendingly. “The baby eats everything you eat, so make mindful, healthy choices.” I imagine the baby in my stomach just with a huge open mouth, a la Jaws, facing up at my stomach gulping down all of my poor choices. But here’s the thing they don’t mention in most preggo books… the first 2 months of pregnancy…EVERYTHING SOUNDS REVOLTING. My hormones revved up right around Thanksgiving, so that basically ruined the holiday for me forever. Everything in that bountiful feast makes me disgusted now. My wonderful MIL made the mistake of making stuffing for Christmas. She then had THE NERVE to put the bowl next to me at the table. I actually had to get up and leave the room. Even typing the word stuffing right now makes me have to breath deeply and swallow down the bile. Progesterone is a cruel bitch.

I was a hardcore salad girl pre-pregnancy. After my eggo got preggo, every single vegetable made me gag. Pre-preggo I ate fish a couple times a week. After baby, Finding Nemo makes me dry heave.  The foods that didn’t make me want to run to the sink those first 10 weeks?

McDonald’s french fries,

Spaghettios,

Kraft Mac and Cheese ,

frozen pizza,

and the occasional bowl of Peanut Butter Captain Crunch.

This is me. I imagine the baby is where the Happy Meal box is.

This is me. I imagine the baby is where the Happy Meal box is.

If this kid isn’t born a Cyclops, it will be a miracle.

Those are the foods I ate while my baby was developing it’s most important body parts. If it’s not so good at math, I think we can blame the Red Baron. The weirdest part of it is that they aren’t foods I ever really ate before pregnancy. They are the foods I ate when I was 8. Growing a baby, actually made me regress back to my own childhood. (I at least resisted the urge to watch old Jem episodes on YouTube.) The guilt I felt when cramming those delicious McDonalds fries down my mouth instead of kale was truly crushing, but you have to believe me when I tell you that even seeing a bag of kale in the produce section actually made me have to leave the store dry-heaving to compose myself in the parking lot. Thankfully, since hitting the 2nd trimester my beloved salads have made a comeback and the processed foods have been relinquished to the back of the pantry. Sadly, I think fish won’t be making a comeback until TuPac comes out of hiding , but that’s what gummy fish oil supplements are for, right?

As for all the foods you are strictly told to avoid during pregnancy I pretty much never looked at that  list until last week. I don’t eat meat, so the deli slices don’t apply. Fish we’ve already covered. I’m French and love cheese so that isn’t going anywhere. I just buy the pasteurized kind at the grocery store and not the Brie that just came off the boat at our local overpriced fancy food shop.

Imagine him wearing a beret, smoking a cigarette, and complaining about the trip.

Imagine him wearing a beret, smoking a cigarette, and complaining about the trip.

I’ve never been a big coffee drinker, but I will indulge in the occasional iced tea or small coffee. I figure if I’m not going to get sleep after the baby comes, it can see how that feels now. Alcohol has been the biggest pain in the ass.

Ah likes my wines.

Blame it on my hubby working for a GODDAMNED WINERY.

I posted an article on Facebook about studies now showing that wine during pregnancy isn’t harmful. You’d think I had posted a video of me swinging my Chihuahua around by the tail.  The vitriol!  People have way strong opinions about this. I thought everyone now had the occasional sippy sip when the OB’s back was turned.  Hells no. There were plenty of women like,  “I did not have ONE SIP OF THAT POISON JUICE during my pregnancy, how could you???”

Honestly?

I had to have a glass just to get through all the comments.

Tomorrow…my birth plan!

Get your dehydrators ready.

We be eating some placenta.