the further adventures of

Mike Pirnat

a leaf on the wind

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Hitting the Bottle

Huzzah! Our little munchkin is so eager for milk that she doesn't care where she gets it. She'll even accept a bottle from her dad! Yep, our first experiment with me feeding Claire from a bottle went smashingly, my little angel gulping away happily in my arms, with nary a complaint--except a loud peep at the end to demand more. I'm excited because, even though it means my baby maintenance duties expand a bit, it means that feeding has become a team sport, and that I can assuage a lot of my pent-up guilt at not being able to really help out when the kid's looking for a meal.

Hopefully this continues to go smoothly... It's nice, after the past few nights have been so rough and sleepless, to have a little victory.

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The Story of Fourteen and Thirty-Two

Originally uploaded by mikepirnat.
I threw out a couple of numbers in the original announcement that seemed somewhat off, and a few curious folks wanted to know what the scoop was. So, finally, I'm stealing a few minutes to explain the mysterious, divergent numbers.

Thirty-two hours is the time that elapsed between Liz's water breaking on Sunday the Ninth and the baby arriving on Monday the Tenth. The short version is that, once we got to the hospital, the on-call doc didn't want to get things revved up right away (probably she didn't want to have to come in for late night activities on a Sunday), so we got delayed a bit by the JV squad, and by late Sunday night the contractions had stopped (probably because of the level of "comfort" afforded by being planted in a hospital bed for twelve hours and told not to go anywhere).

Our regular OB, however, was eager to get the show on the road (trying to head off chances of infection), so the induction process was started at Eight AM on Monday, and we had a lovely, screaming baby by Ten o'clock that night--thus the fourteen hour measurement, and my use of phrases like "once it got rolling for real."

One other temporal measurement of mild interest is twenty-five minutes, the time that elapsed between the 6.5 and almost-10 centimeter measurements, during which the opportunity for Liz to have any painkillers whatsoever vanished.

Yes, that's right--Liz pushed out our whopper of a little girl, in a furious and intense labor, without any happy drugs.

Have I mentioned that I'm in awe of my wife?

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Claire: The Soundtrack

We had been encouraged, by our doula as well as by the hospital, to prepare some mix CDs for our birth adventure--for the drive to the hospital, for the hour or so after the baby had been delivered, and for the drive home. Finally, a parenting task that I knew was right up my alley!

About a week out from the big day, I put together four discs (two short ones timed, roughly, to the distance between our house and the hospital assuming a moderate amount of traffic and red light interferences). It was a surprisingly emotional task (then again, I am a big ol' wuss), and I'm quite pleased with the smoothly-flowing results (with seamless and carefully crafted DJ edits because harsh segues won't cut it for any kid of mine):

Now You're In the World

One: En Route
  1. "Prelude" - VNV Nation
  2. "In Your Eyes" - Peter Gabriel
  3. "Speed of Sound" - Coldplay
  4. "I'll Fall with Your Knife" - Peter Murphy
  5. "Airships" - VNV Nation
Two: Post-Delivery
  1. "Your Song" - Craig Armstrong
  2. "Heaven & Hell Part 1: Movement 3" - Vangelis
  3. "It Is Accomplished" - Peter Gabriel
  4. "Concerning Hobbits" - Howard Shore
  5. "Funeral/Rebuilding Serenity/Prep for Flight" - David Newman
  6. "Passacaglia" - Bear McCreary
  7. "Voices (Cello Version)" - Yoko Kanno
  8. "Everloving" - Moby
  9. "Avril 14th" - Aphex Twin
  10. "Over the Rainbow" - Israel Kamakawiwo'ole
  11. "Here Comes the Sun" - The Beatles
  12. "Love Song" - The Cure
  13. "Solitude" - VNV Nation
  14. "Imagine" - John Lennon
  15. "Halcyon + On + On" - Orbital
  16. "Deja Blue" - Yoko Kanno
Three: Hanging Out
  1. "MLK" - U2
  2. "Celestial Soda Pop" - Ray Lynch
  3. "Blinking Lights (For You)" - Eels
  4. "Moments in Love (12" Mix)" - The Art of Noise
  5. "Dream in an Open Place" - Vangelis
  6. "The Grey Havens" - Howard Shore
  7. "As It Fades" - VNV Nation
  8. "A Warm Place" - Nine Inch Nails
  9. "Knee 5" - Philip Glass
  10. "Love Song for My Mom" - Moby
  11. "To Sheila" - Smashing Pumpkins
  12. "Wish You Were Here" - Pink Floyd
  13. "Stairway to Heaven" - Led Zeppelin
  14. "Let It Be" - The Beatles
  15. "Kingdom Come" - Coldplay
  16. "The Ballad of Serenity (Big Damn Movie Acoustic Version)" - David Newman
Four: Coming Home
  1. "Battlestar Galactica Main Title (UK Version)" - Bear McCreary
  2. "Now We Are Free" - Hans Zimmer & Lisa Gerrard
  3. "I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)" - The Proclaimers
  4. "Love You 'Till the End" - The Pogues
  5. "Clocks" - Coldplay
  6. "Breathe Me" - Sia
  7. "Rainbow Connection" - The Muppets

I considered jotting down why I'd chosen each track and its placement, or the significance of particular selections, but decided against that in the interest of keeping the Internet that much less banal. I am of course willing to be persuaded otherwise if anyone is really that morbidly curious.

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Being Dad

Snuggle Buddies
Originally uploaded by mikepirnat. pretty great. It's safe to say that I'm hopelessly head-over-heels nuts about my daughter.

There are lots of great photos from the past couple of days as we've adjusted to life with Claire (and Claire has adjusted to life with us), but I only had time to upload this and a couple others: another shot of the two of us snuggling, and--more importantly--the cats' curiosity beginning to win out over their fear.

Clearly, I need a new LiveJournal icon...

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What The--?!?

I Are Curiosity!
Originally uploaded by mikepirnat.
We're home!

The cats are astoundingly curious, not even interested in their favorite toys. Valentine in particular is hypnotically fascinated by the wriggling little pink thing that keeps making soft kitten noises. Julia is suddenly developing a whole new vocabulary of her own, emitting tiny, questioning tones nearly identical to those of her new sister.

For now, it's time to rest, and settle into our new routine, and then we'll see what life has in store for us.

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Where the River Meets the Sea

Where the River Meets the Sea
Originally uploaded by mikepirnat.
Since I can't hit LiveJournal from inside the hospital's China-style firewall, cross-posting from Flickr will have to suffice. Here's a shot of Claire on Tuesday morning, just twelve hours old and starting to figure out who this Mom person is.

I have no doubt that she'll eventually start wondering who the dork with the funny camera thing glued to his face is, and how she can extract money from him to fuel her trips to the mall.

The theme song for today is re-appropriated from a reading we used at our wedding; the most important bits of it are:

“Do you love me, John?” she asked. “You know I love you, darling,” he replied. “I love you more than tongue can tell. You are the light of my life, my sun, moon and stars. You are my everything. Without you I have no reason for being.”

“How much do I love you? Count the stars in the sky. Measure the waters of the oceans with a teaspoon. Number the grains of sand on the sea shore. Impossible, you say?”

“Yes, and it is just as impossible for me to say how much I love you.”

“My love for you is higher than the heavens, deeper than Hades, and broader than the earth. It has no limits, no bounds. Everything must have an ending except my love for you.”

Yeah. That about sums it up.

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Hello, Claire

Hello, Claire
Originally uploaded by mikepirnat.

After a 32-hour adventure, we welcomed Claire Margaret Pirnat into the world at 9:57 PM on Monday, September 10. She's nine pounds, six ounces, and nineteen inches long. Labor itself was a brisk 14 hours once it got rolling for real.

Mom and baby are doing well and getting to know one another. Meanwhile, Dad is busy taking photos when not completely overwhelmed with joy.

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A few minutes ago, I was bored. How quickly things can change!

It's hard to believe this will be my last post as a non-parent. Woo-hoo!

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