Monday, June 25, 2007

A question (or two) for the gawkers

We went to the mall today. We had a blast. Dante walked as best he could and even stopped to flirt with the ladies here and there. Randy and I, the proud parents, couldn't help but gloat at our little guy. But everytime we go somewhere as a family they follow us: the dirty looks, the glares, the shaking heads. And I'd like to know, what is it that is offending them so much?

Is it because I'm fat?
Is it because Randy and I have tattoos?
Is it because I, a woman, have tattoos?
Is it because Randy and I have tattoos and I'm fat?
Is it because I have multicolor hair?
Is it because we have a child?
Is it because we seem to be a happy family with a happy baby but we don't look like Mr. and Mrs. Betty Crocker?
Was there a hole in my skirt?
Was Randy's fly open?
Did I have a booger hanging out of my nose?
Did Randy have something stuck in his teeth?
Did Dante have a smelly diaper?

Seriously, I'd like to know because as much as we try to ignore it, the whispering and the evil glares get a bit grating at times. I think Randy and I calculated that if we had a nickel for every "for shame" look we got, we could probably afford to buy all of you your own little private island and yacht. What the hell is so fascinating? We're a couple, with a baby. Our baby wears baby clothes, laughs, smiles when we sing to him and play games, and acts very baby-like. If I'm sitting on the floor with him in the bookstore reading Sandra Boynton's "Dogs" and making all the doggie noises to him, why must you call your ENTIRE family over to peek at me through the cooking section? Why, if Randy and Dante are in the trucks aisle at Toys R Us, do I have to hear you, in Spanish, say "Look! Look!". What's the big deal?!?!

Do you think that because we look like this, that we're just supposed to sit in dark corners and worship the devil all the time? (Only on Wednesdays). Do you think that we should swing our baby over our head while chanting in Latin and cursing everyone who lays eyes upon us? (every other Thursday). Do you think that we sacrifice goats in the backyard and use the skins to make tablecloths? (February)

Is it that hard for these gawkers to accept the fact that yes, we're not your average looking mom and dad, BUT we are a GREAT mom and dad to Dante. We love him. He's our everything. I can't stand the looks we get. We were in the Disney store and everyone was so busy staring at us, that no one noticed the perfectly normal looking Dad SMACK his 2 year old daughter in the FACE THREE TIMES because she wanted a doll and started crying when he said no. This BIG man SMACKING his daughter in the FACE phased no one. My tattoos and hair (and fat?) were the big shocker.

I really wish we weren't a society based on outward appearance. I really wish that people were more open minded. Tattoos and funny hair and funny clothes aren't catching. It's a personal choice what we look like and I should garner the same respect as anyone else. Just because we choose to look a certain way does not mean that we are so different on the INSIDE. We share commonalities that no one bothers to care about. We love our son. We love eachother. Whether we have one tattoo or a million, an earring or a bone through our nose, blond hair or purple hair with orange polka dots, it should not matter.

Monday, June 18, 2007

You Say Goodbye, I Say Hello

I cleaned my closet today.

For most people, that sentence would just mean "I cleaned my closet today." For me, it's more of an event; a milestone if you will.

You see, I decided to pack away alot of things that I never thought I'd pack away. Things that I vowed I would never part with, or compromise, or "bow down to the man" and get rid of. But I did. I packed them away in a big suitcase I keep in Randy's closet labeled "Props and Costumes". Though at the time, I would have never dreamed of labeling those things as "props" or "costumes", it seems now appropriate to call them such.

So, into the suitcase they went: corsets, vinyl skirts, mesh outfits, PVC junk, vinyl dresses, latex dresses, my big boots with the fat buckles, veils, tiaras, long fingerless gloves with feathers. All packed away until they are needed. Will they ever be needed? Not by me, I'm sure. So unless our next child is a girl or Dante decides to become a fabulous Drag Queen, I think that the suitcase will be their home for now. I can open it up one day and laugh and remember how much fun I had wearing those boots that hurt the moment I put them on. Or how I sneezed once while wearing that corset and nearly broke a rib. Or how it was next to impossible to bartend with those gloves on but by golly I would wear them if it killed me!

The funny thing is that I thought I would be much sadder than I actually was packing those things away. I mean, don't get me wrong, I did leave some things in my closet which *ahem* Randy and I have found fun to "use", but as far as wearing any of this stuff in public or at clubs anymore I just don't. If and when we go to a club, I dress for comfort and dancing, as we are usually only there for a few hours (or as long as my mom can watch Dante) and I mostly spend my time dancing my ass off. I can't do it anymore in a corset and stilettos. My center of gravity has shifted since giving birth (or maybe my common sense?) and I would much rather be comfortable than Miss Uber Goth 2007.

I think today marked a final goodbye to that which I once was: Mistress Kaos, Kaos, that bitch bartender, that bitch in general, one of the managers of True, and whatever anyone once knew me as. I'm sure some of my ex-friends in NYC have more names for me as I do for them, but what I once was is also what they once were and neither matter anymore. It felt good to put Miz Kaos away into the suitcase. It feels nice to be Alessia. I feels really nice to be Randy's wife. And it feels incredible to be Dante's Mom.

So, hello. Nice to meet you. I'm Alessia.

Monday, June 11, 2007

My 360 Porn

For those of you who know me, you know that "prude" and "easily offended" are not words that really describe my personality. Hell, when you've worked at some of the clubs I've worked at, you have to lose certain inhibitions and realize that yes, sometimes I'm going to have to see a grown man in a diaper getting spanked while sucking on the 9 inch stiletto heel of a she-male named Bitzi. These things don't phase me. It's like watching ants and an anthill. Boring. But I digress. What I really want to talk about is my Xbox 360. I subscribe to Xbox Live, where I can play games with people all over the world. Sometimes I play war games, like Gears of War, where me and a team of others unite to save the world from alien invasion. It's fun and pretty neat to have my headset on, barking commands at some guy in Ireland to "Get my back while I check for ammo over here!". It's a rush to be in this co-op mode; almost as though we are actually in this war for humanity.

There are also other Xbox Live games I play with other people: 3D Golf, Billiards, Texas Hold 'Em, and my current favorite UNO. Yes, yes, I know. Why the hell did Randy and I shell out $500 for an Xbox 360 if we play a card game we can buy for $2.99 at the gas station. I don't know, it's just fun. UNO, not only is Xbox Live enabled, it is also Xbox Webcam enabled which allows for players to see eachother and chat while playing UNO. Fun right? Not really.

You see, the webcam feature, I've noticed, is a perfect tool for the Xbox Live pervert. I can't count how many times I've logged into a game, expecting a friendly card game, but instead am thrown into Porn Central 101. No joke! Tonight, for example, I joined an UNO game and the second I entered the room was met with hoots and hollers and "fuck yea"s. Upon fully entering the room, I saw that Player 3, or the Red Player, had his webcam on. Instead of seeing a friendly face, I was greeted with a penis being deep throated by a woman. Live. Not a picture. Not a cartoon. This guy had his webcam trained on his girlfriend/wife/neighbor/sister/who knows giving him a blow job! Um, I just came in to play UNO dammit! And worst of all, I call UNO and then get a damn draw four card passed to me!

There have been other things I've witnessed while playing UNO. The other day, a woman joined my game and immediately trained her webcam onto her vagina. CLOSE UP. Spread eagle, fingering herself like there was no tomorrow. Um, again, I just came to play some UNO. Then there was the lovely couple who decided to have sex on their webcam while playing UNO. Full on sex. They really went at it. And surprisingly, the didn't miss a hand either. I'm pretty sure they won the game as well. I don't know how I'd feel if my mate came up to me and said "Baby, let's play UNO and make love and share it with the rest of the world". Again, what ever happened to just playing UNO? I've seen more breasts, penises, vagina, and sexual acts playing this damn UNO than I have at any Gomorrah party (NYC people you know what I'm talking about.) Seriously! I don't need to rent porn! I can just go play UNO!

Listen, I have no beef with exhibitionists. I do have a problem when they do it in the public rooms and kids are on there. Remember, this is a video game system. Most of the people I play UNO with are under 18 and/or are parents with their children in the room. Xbox Live has private rooms for more "adult" conversations and I wish these people would take their performances there. But, I guess if they did, what kind of exhibitionists would they be? I don't want to sound like a prude, but I'm a mom now and I certainly wouldn't want Dante to be playing UNO and seeing this. Not because I think the naked body is dirty and sex is dirty, but because there is a time and place for everything. If exhibitionists want to do this sort of thing on Xbox Live, let them in rooms designated for over 18. Or am I wrong here?

I don't know. I just want to play UNO.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Round Two and the Results

Well, I don't want to jinx anything but this method seems to be working. We put Dante to bed last night after his bath and some nursing, around 8:45 pm. I was prepared for 2 hours of screaming and yelling, but believe it or not, he fussed for about half an hour and then was quiet. He didn't scream bloody murder like Round 1, rather he just softly fussed, almost as though he was saying "Aw come on guys, I still want to play". At 9:30 pm, we went in to check on him and there he was, the little prisoner, up against the crib bars snoring away like there was no tomorrow. We laid him down, gave him his lovey and rejoiced in our success.

At 2 am he woke up. I went in, gave him some water, stroked his head, laid him down with his lovey and walked out of the room. He fussed, but once again, was not as vocal as the previous night. At about 2:30 am, I went in to check on him. He had found a pacifier in his crib and was sucking on it, all the while clutching his lovey and snoring away in his prisoner stance. I laid him down, once again, and went back to bed,

He awoke at 8 this morning, fresh faced and ready to go. He was already pointing at my chest and saying "Boo!" by the time I walked in there and thankfully so, as I had skipped the overnight nursing and was again harboring two small planets under my shirt. I nursed him , he enjoyed it, I felt better and now it's time for breakfast.

I wonder what Round 3 tonight will bring. Better? Worse? We can't turn back now.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

The Aftermath

To say it was an easy night would mean that most of you would have to call "bullshit" on me. It was tough. Dante finally fell asleep around 11 pm, that's after about 2 hours of crying and yelling. We did what we were supposed to do: check on him periodically, lay him down with his lovey and walk out of the room. He fell asleep sitting up with his hands on the bars of his crib like a little prisoner and it wrenched my heart into 6 million pieces. We stretched him out on his side, put the puppy lovey in his arms and finally went to bed. And he slept. He slept to the point that at 4 am I woke up on my own to see if he was alive. He was; snoring away like his dad (and me, so I am told).

At about 4:30 am he woke up and since my boobs were the size of small planets and leaking milk all over the place, I broke the "rules" and nursed him. He nursed until about 5 and then, awake as he was, I put him back in his crib and let him go at it again. I lay him down with his lovey, turned on the little music he likes, and went back to bed. Randy was up getting ready for work and I stayed up to read and to listen. He cried and fussed, but certainly not like he did earlier. He quieted down after about half an hour and I peeked in and saw him stading up, leaning his head on the crib rail, and cooing at the big Winnie the Pooh stuffed animal. I went back to bed and must have fallen asleep as I woke up with a start around 7 am and heard nothing. I went in to check on him and there he was, the little prisoner, sitting up, clenching the bars of the crib, face mushed into the bars, snoring away. I lay him on his side, put his lovey in his arms and went back to bed.

He woke at 9 this morning and my fears of him not loving me went right out the window when, as I picked him up out of his crib, he planted a big ol' kiss on me and then proceeded to say "Muh-muh Ba! Ba!" (Which I've taken to mean "Mommy! Bottle!". Sometimes it means "Mommy! Ball!", but since his ball was nowhere in sight, I took it to mean "bottle".) I was right, and we had breakfast and he helped me fold the laundry by taking it all out of the laundry basket and spreading it all over the floor.

At 11:30, he pulled up my shirt and said "Boo" which means "give me some boobs" and I nursed him into his nap.

Tonight, we do it again. Aside from birthing him, this has been the toughest thing in the world. So far. I'm sure that by the time he turns 15 and brings some tramp home (they will ALL be tramps), I'll find some other tough things to deal with.

Self-soothing, loveys, and a side of guilt

Well, after almost 11 months of sleepless nights and a baby who wakes up 2 or 3 times a night, Randy and I decided to teach Dante how to self-soothe and put himself to bed. We watched a program on getting your child to sleep through the night and we decided that tonight was the night to set forth on this perilous adventure. Now, normally our nighttime routine consisted of dinner at 7:30, bath at 8:30, and then Daddy rocks Dante to sleep and then puts him in his crib, whereas Mr. Dante would wake up every 3 or 4 hours throughout the night. Randy was in charge of any fussing pre-midnight (as he has to get up at 5 am for work) and I would take over the night-shift, usually nursing Dante back to sleep in the wee hours of the am.

Tonight, though, we bit the bullet. After regular feeding and bath time, we put Dante to bed AWAKE and gave him his "lovey": a very soft stuffed dog that Randy bought after I gave birth; one of those really soft Gund kind that make you want to snuggle. Well, the second we left the room he began crying. Angry cries. Screaming cries. The cries that say "Why are you abandoning me mommy and daddy?!?!" It was so difficult for me not to run in there and just grab him and hold him and kiss him and tell him I was still here. Oh the pain I felt listening to it. I called my own mom and cried to her that I was a terrible mother for letting my lamb cry. My mom said to me, "Just go in after about 10 minutes, give him some water, tell him you love him, and give him his lovey. He won't hate you. You're not a horrible mother." Thanks mom, but tell me that when my son is not crying 10 feet away and I'm sitting on my ass watching Hell's Kitchen.

Randy and I lay in our bedroom, watching TV. Randy easing my tears and me fighting the urge to comfort my son. I know it's what we have to do. I know that. Doesn't mean I have to like it. We checked on him after 15 minutes or so and gave him water and settled him in with his lovey. He'd cry again and I'd bear it. Eventually his cries became quiet and we hoped he was asleep. WE'd check on him and he'd see us and cry again. This was awful.

Well, it's now been over and hour since we've tried this method. Dante is fussing a bit as I can hear him on the monitor, but he's becoming quieter and I can hear him cooing at the stuffed animal. He is so tired. I hope that he learns to sleep through the night. It will benefit all of us. Right now, my guilt and anxiety is eating away at my stomach. I just want to go in there and tell him it's ok but I know if I do, it will negate everything we're trying to accomplish.

He's quiet now. In a few minutes I'll see if he's asleep, kiss him if he is, and hope he still loves me in the morning.