Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Spring Break

Woah, has a whole month passed already! Where did March go? Well the best part of it went to our little vacation....Nicaragua! We also stopped in Portland/Salem for a few days on the way down. Auntie Lena got to feel baby's kicks. Haha, we'd be sitting in our meeting (Willamette Native American Advisory Council) with her hand on my tummy waiting. "Awww, so cute" And baby got to listen and dance to powwow music...I love that drumming and singing, I always feel it way down in my core. Francesca and Brook bought baby some hand knitted finger puppets from one of the vendors, a rooster and a cockroach...haha. We'll have fun singing with those. I didn't get any pictures there, but here are the Nica pics.
Ahhh my lovely Nicaragua. I'm so happy that this visit got to work out. I can't believe we went all the way down there for only a week! But I think that's all my prego body can handle right now anyway. Getting back I realized that I should probably start acting pregnant. I feel like I can still do everything like normal, but I'm starting to get cues from my body to sloooow down. But, it was such a nice visit. As soon as we got in we drove straight up to Esteli (the main town up north that was my hub and connection to the rest of the world from where I lived in remote San Lucas), enjoyed our favorite Esteli spots and rested since we had flown all night. It was nice to be greeted so warmly and remembered. The guy at the hotel El Meson still gave me the Peace Corps discount :P The next morning it was out to San Lucas. Maaan, that road is HORRIBLE! bumpy, dusty, narrow, twisty, up and down through the mountains.....we weren't even on a chicken bus, but in our own cush air conditioned little funny looking SUV, and I was still bracing myselft the whole time....I was being paranoid about baby getting bumped around...I shouldn't have been, s/he's a tough baby. Anyway, we made it to San Lucas, and it was just like coming home again. We were all super excited to see each other, then it was just like normal, like I had never left. We stayed with Sandra's family, across the road from her at Marta and Juans because they had a bed that we could use. We sat and caught up for a while over some delish home grown home made coffee (my first time drinking coffee since being pregnant!) then went up and did a quick round of visits up the hill by where I used to live. I didn't really tell anyone that I was coming, except for Sandra last minute...and she told a few people, but not when. So it was fun to see peoples surprise, and then more surprise when they saw my belly. Baby got lots of Nica love. Everyone there says it's a boy. I'm not sure if they were just saying that because they think it's a compliment...that having a boy is better. They would look at EJ like it was a compliment to him. He'd say that it doesn't matter though, a boy or girl, no preference at all, just that we want a healthy baby. The next day was our only full day there so we tried to make the most of it. Went walking around visiting in the morning, went to San Juan real quick to do a few errands and get some groceries to make pizza, then got back home and started dying easter eggs with the kids and making pizza for dinner. I grabbed one of those $1 boxes of egg dying stuff on the way to the airport in Portland, and it was the best $1 spent. Those kids had so much fun, we all did, the whole neighborhood. We did the egg hunt over and over again until those poor boiled eggs couldn't take it anymore, we had to stop them before they crumbled to pieces. And I'm glad they got some good protein that day too. Elgin ate all 4 of his eggs at once! That boy loves eating. The rest of them ate one then brought home the rest to share with their family. Then we made Sandra's favorite, pizza, for dinner. And it was dark already so we just hung out until going to bed. The next morning we took off. It was quick, I wish we had more time there...but seriously I don't think I could have taken another night. Niether of us could sleep neither night. My hip bones hurt so much from having to lie on my side on that plank bed..can't lay on my back or stomach, which can handle the hard bed. I'm not as tough as Nica mama's. So we mostly laid there listening to the roosters crowing, cicadas chirping, and the pig snorting around outside until we heard someone finally get up at 5am and get some coffee going. So we stopped back through Esteli and got massages at the natural medicine center, then continued on to Managua to return the car and catch a flight to Corn Island. The next few days were spent chillin' on the beach. I can't believe we were just in the Caribbean. It was lovely. We'd eat, read, nap, float in the ocean, walk around, talk to baby, hang out teasing each other as usual...it was perfect. We almost got motivated to actually do something like go snorkeling, but, nah, took a nap instead. It was a much needed rest. The only little thing that wasn't cool was that the tops of my feet got so sunburnt! I was so good at making sure I didn't get sunburnt since this Alaskan is so pale now, except the tops of my feet excaped me..haha. I was fine walking around the island barefoot, but it kind of hurt having to wear my flip flops again on the way home. They were even a little swollen, then of course got more swollen on plane. They're fine now, just crispy brown getting ready to peel..ewwww, sorry. Our boat ride from Little Corn back to Big Corn Island (where the flights land) was quite an adventure too.....over-crowded, open skiff, motor dying in the open ocean, huge waves tipping us sideways....but we finally ended up put-putting our way across and it was all fine. A trip to Nicaragua isn't complete without a little something crazy happening though.
The trip home was a bit of a long haul. Starting with the boat ride, a little plane ride back from the island, then 12 hours of flying on a jet to get back home..not including our 8 hour layover (!) in Houston. And of course we got home in the middle of the night and went to work the next morning. Luckily we made it in right before they closed the airport and started canceling flights because of volcano ash from Mt. Redoubts eruptions. Then that first day back we had planned to take my nephews to a show downtown so we were rushing around after work getting coordinated and picking them up. I ended spotting a little bit that day...first time that happened. It was scary. I called the clinic but they were all closed and the receptionist just told me to go to the ER. My homebirth midwife was out of town so I called her back up midwife and talked it through with her. Since I still felt baby moving around we decided I would just try to relax and make sure to get good and rehydrated. It didn't continue, and I still kept feeling baby so felt like I was okay. That sure was humbling though, to realize that I can't just keep doing everything the same. Baby had to tell me "slow down mama." I have to act like I'm pregnant now....
And of course I have 3 site visits planned for work this next month.....but those are short trips...

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