Category Archives: General

New Palm Life

Well, I did it. I didn’t do it in two hours flat like my sister, but I had my shit pretty much together in a week. I gave notice at the cleaners, I saw the people who were good to me and gave mad hugs. I bought a ticket to LA.

The flight was surprisingly not bad. Jaime was happy with her bottle. I’m really glad she’s back to the breast milk. I know how much healthier it is.

Sondra picked me up at Los Angeles airport. First thing we did was go straight to the best burger in the universe. Yep. You guessed it. In n Out. I’ve been hearing about this place from my west coast friends like its freakin heroine without the side effects and addiction and poverty and disease. You get the picture.

Well, turns out, they were right. I’m gonna be very happy here.

In other news: Sondra’s homie is letting her stay there. There isn’t room for me too, but there’s an apartment in the same complex. It’s pretty nice. There’s a pool. a POOL, man! Ah. Yes. And she also said they need a cleaning guy at this dental implant place where she’s a secretary. So bam. The set up is complete and I’m gonna be making pretty good money here compared to my last cleaning gig. It’s in Beverly Hills, so they have a decent budget.

That’s all for now, I’m too excited. Gonna go swim. And my friends back home are in a blizzard!

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Post-Partum

Anyway, long story short, Sondra came back with me to live in San Antonio. I got a place, and it was walking distance from my job so I was able to come back and help.

One day, in the midst of my cleaning gig, I got a weird feeling. I called my boss and he is a decent guy. He said he’d fill in for me.

When I got home, Sondra was sitting on the floor and crying. First thing I did was check on the baby and luckily she was fine, just sleeping in her crib.

“What’s wrong, sistuh?” I brought her a box of tissues.

“I’m not sure,” she said. “I’m so sad.”

I didn’t know at the time that postpartum depression is a thing. But now I do.

She admitted a lot to me over hot cocoa with little marshmallows (thats what happens when siblings live together for the first time since childhood- they re-buy all the special snacks they used to have over Saturday morning cartoons). It turns out she’s been crying almost every day. She would wait til Jaime was taking a nap, or at least tried to. Then she would wonder why she felt that way, when she had a beautiful, healthy daughter. And an awesome brother (hint hint that’s me) helping.

I tried to lay it out for her why its normal:

  • You just had a baby! THat’s a major life change.
  • You are planning on giving your baby to me to take care of while you study.
  • You’re living to a new city. That means not a huge group of friends yet.

So we made up a plan. First, she would not go back to school in the fall. She would stay in San Antonio with me for a few more months. I offered to move back with her to New Orleans, but she said it didn’t make sense since neither one of us wanted to live there in the long run, and it would be easier to raise a kid here. I think a lot of the fear was that she wouldn’t be able to breastfeed for a whole year.

Also we signed her up, right there on the spot, for some Mommy and Me music classes. And she promised me she would tell me about how she is feeling.

 

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Play Station to Play Groups

I promised you a story of my journey, and now you’re gonna get it.

I used to be know-it-all about all things gaming. I spend all my time playing games, talking about games, and watching videos about games. I read everything I could about coding, and even started my own little code-generation business.

Then, things changed. My sister got pregnant.

You would think this would be a source of great joy. It is, now! And how. Not so much back then.

Sondra went to Tulane for school, but dropped out to party. She got pretty deep into drugs and we didn’t hear from her for a while. One year, she missed Christmas. It wasn’t just that she chose not to come home. That wouldn’t be a big deal. What happened was that I paid for her ticket using the money I was making in my coding biz, and then she just didn’t show. She didn’t use the ticket, she didn’t call or anything.

I was freaked. We were very close growing up, even if we’d grown apart, I still wanted her to be safe.

“Why don’t you take it?”

I went out to New Orleans and tracked her down. She was fine, and actually sober! But she was pregnant. She didn’t know know how to tell us, because she knew she wasn’t ready to be a mother. She also wasn’t ready to let the child go.

We talked about it for hours and hours. I thought the best plan would be to ask our mother to raise the child, but she wouldn’t have it. “Not after what I went through,” she said, meaning a rocky relationship between them. “Why don’t you take it?”

Amazingly enough, during all those hours of talking, weighing open adoption or closed adoption, and ways she could pay for childcare while going to school, it hadn’t occurred to me that I could take that on. Me! A dude! Someone who knew ask much about mothering as about brain surgery. Which is to say, nothing at all.

And yet.

 

to be continued…

 

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