Two Thousand Sixty-Seven
From the Boy Who Brought You "Fuckles"


Everyone -- okay, well, not EVERYONE, but enough people for it to feel that way -- keeps telling me how lucky I am to have the new baby to look forward to. How thankful I must be! What a wonderful thing! What timing, in the midst of so much sadness, to have something so purely joyful and happy to focus on.

The problem is: I don't feel any of those stupid things

The oh-shit moment of general pre-baby non-readiness has morphed into full-on crazy anxiety about the reality of what's coming. Three children. Three! As in, the two I already have, plus ONE MORE.


Obviously, I'm feeling a bit over-pummeled in general right now. I'm trying to grieve for my father, support my mother, adjust to an entirely new diagnosis for my son, juggle a full work load and the four-frillion mundane details of everyday life that we all have going on a regular basis, plus, you know, GESTATE.

There are probably even more people than that phantom "everyone" I mentioned telling me to be gentle on myself, to cut myself some slack, that there is no right way to navigate losing a parent, especially just weeks away from becoming one yourself, either for the first or the third or the Duggareenth time.

However, for anyone thinking they might want to use me as a compass, I should admit that I'm operating at an emotional level just north of basketcase

I keep changing the text-message chime on my phone, hoping to find one that doesn't immediately cause an involuntary shudder of dread; then I go ahead and ignore the majority of messages I get anyway. Watching Noah's attentional difficulties interfere with karate class bring me to tears; I re-read his kindergarten IEP and evaluation results with a sense of relief and yet also know exactly what pages the worst parts are on; then Ezra keeps asking "Where's PopPop?" for some reason; no less than 15 minutes later I'm ready to abandon both of the little monsters in the produce aisle of the grocery store. 

I've typed out and deleted more paragraphs as part of this entry than I can count. The whining! Oh, it's not any more tolerable from myself than it is from my children, who seriously: going to be left to be raised by the organic mangoes if they don't knock it off, so help me God. 

The stress has -- unsurprisingly, I suppose -- taken a toll on my thus-far near-embarassingly "easy" pregnancy. I've lost weight, I'm back to my first-trimester habit of hovering over the toilet bowl shortly after dinner each night, I'm plagued by long and almost-daily stretches of false labor pains, I have a cold I cannot shake, I am constantly light-headed and tired and scatterbrained and sleeping poorly at night thanks to the baby's pointy, elbowriffic gymnastics. 

There's nothing wrong -- my blood pressure is fine, the contractions are meaningless, my doctor is completely unconcerned with barely 10 pounds net gained in 33 weeks and simply reminds me to drink more water and "take it easy," blissfully unaware with how close he comes to getting kicked in the shins whenever he says that.

And I know. Welcome to the third trimester of pregnancy, which is BY EVOLUTIONARY DESIGN, made to be deliberately miserable so you'll want the baby to come out at the end.

But. I don't. Not really. Not yet. 

I admitted this all to Jason yesterday, when we were out having lunch and I once again fretted about the logistics of LEAVING THE HOUSE OUTNUMBERED BY CHILDREN. I admitted that I think about the baby and only feel...dread. Fear. Not happy or grateful or joyful. More like...pangs of ohshitwhathaveIdonetomylife. Proactive disgust at all the messy postpartum business of lochia and leaky boobs and spit-up and all the sleep-deprived gruntwork involved in newborn care, and the fear that I have officially pushed myself past my mothering limit, and am doomed to lose my temper at SOMEBODY, ONE OF THEM, ALL OF THEM, every day for the next 20 years. 

"That's awful, isn't it?" I said.

Jason looked at me from across the table and frowned like a sad little Precious Moments figurine. "Yeah, it is." 

I thought about suggesting that this was not the most helpful reply he could have come up with (RESPOND TO MY HIDEOUS HONESTY WITH LIES NEXT TIME, OKAY?), but I noticed Noah was picking kind of roughly at a tiny little freckle that recently appeared near his thumb. 

"Stop that," I scolded. "You're going to hurt yourself. It's just a freckle. Look, I have them too."

"I don't like fuckles!" he wailed. "I don't want any fuckles!"

Ezra raised his hands over his head and joined in. "FUCKLES!"

I covered my face and tried to not laugh. At which point the waitress -- who had been standing there for God-knows-how long -- cleared her throat and awkwardly asked who got the pancakes with bacon and who got the pancakes with eggs.



Whine away - you deserve it!


Soup. Let me bring you soup. And that pedicure we keep talking about. And let's add a massage. I won't text you or email you or call you or anything that causes your phone to make noise. Just know that I'm here. Always.


Also, I'm pretty sure your not lucky.

Angie @ Musings of a Violet Monkey

I'm sorry you are having trouble with the all things 'little one' right now... and no, I don't think you're an awful person for saying so.

Fuckles! I have fuckles, too. :)



I'm with Noah, I hate the fuckles. Also, I haven't been able to say anything for weeks now because everything I type seems stupid and meaningless and Dummy McDummerson and the Dumbasses, but... But... I still got nothin'. I'm so sorry for everything.


The NUMBER ONE platitude I got after my son died, and especially after I got pregnant again, was "At least you can have more kids!" People, even when they're trying to be nice, suck ass sometimes.

I'm sorry. I'm glad you have stuff like fuckles to ease the suck for a little while.

Life of a Doctor's Wife

Sending you big, ineffectual Internet-stranger hugs. And thinking of you all.


Hmmm, am debating what to say right now. Just because I know it's all been said already. I hope that things start to mellow out very soon.

Wishing lots of Chipotle burritos and ice cream for you today.

Duggareenth may be my new favorite word by the way.


My son has a way of being unintentionally and inappropriately hilarious when I'm in the middle of yelling at him for no good reason, too. Now you'll have that times 3!

Your feelings are normal and plus you're allowed to feel however you want anyway. This is hard and you will figure it out. Love to you and your boys.

Jessica V

OMG Fuckles! I just snorted soda on my computer. My kindergartener just spent a week learning about the -uck family of words (cluck, muck, truck, etc.). You can imagine the conversations we had to have at home about the Uck-with-an-F word that Mommy uses too often but should NEVER be said in school. Even if it did fit nicely into that week's spelling lesson. ;-) Hugs to you and yours.


I felt the same way when I was due with number four. And I had not just lost a parent. Although, I was looking at a homeless stretch between the sale of one house and possession of the next. Please, take any and all advantage of people so you can take care of yourself. It will turn out ok. It will not be easy but it will get easiER. Wish I was closer so I could watch the boys while you had some time alone.


Aww, Amy. It's completely understandable that you are feeling have a lot on your plate. You're human, you have to be able to whine a little, you're aren't a robot. Things will be better and fall right into place. What is important is you don't rush through getting through this hard time in life. You'll easily be able to handle Baby #3 and fall into a rhythm. Sending you lots of warm wishes and hugs. Just try to breathe and know things will be ok.

Jen L.

Duggareenth IS a pretty phenomenal word.

You are not're human. You need to grieve for your dad. And bringing a baby into the world, whether it's your first or 30th time, IS scary. Raising children IS challenging. Sometimes we all need a little breakdown and, by damn, I've never seen someone as entitled to one as you are right now. I'm sorry things are so tough. Don't know what else to say, except that I hope it gets better soon.


PS - Please don't think I'm creepy because we've never met and I offered to watch your boys. I'm just used to having a houseful of my own and others.


Dude, I don't know how you cope. You are fucking superwoman. After my dad died I did not have energy for anything but hysterical weeping. I am so impressed by you - and if your anxiety over everything is being focused on OMFG three kids WTF that is so okay. The entire internet knows you will do so freaking great with three but nobody in their right mind thinks you're crazy for freaking out about it. *LE HUGS*


Fuckles, indeed. I'm sorry, I wish I could bring you soup and do something at least remotely useful to help you out <3 I'm glad there was a moment of levity in your, and "fuckles" definitely made *me* snort entirely inelegantly. That, and "Duggareenth". You should probably get your own page in the dictionary. Just sayin'.


Seriously, people suck sometimes. And I've figured out that they will try ANYTHING to try to make you feel better because it makes them feel better. It is a rare person (and most of them live on the internet) who can just say "death fucking sucks" and not try to impose their feelings on you.


"Just north of basketcase" is exactly how I functioned after my first son died while I was pregnant with my second son.
You will get through this, Amy. Just take it one second at a time.


Sometimes, you have to say,"to fuckle with it all."

You are totally normal.

After I had my 2nd kid, I cried like a banshee in the hospital because I felt like I was cheating on my first kid.

After I got home, I called a seasoned parenting vet of a friend to ask how i got 2 kids in a car.

You will fuckle the freak out, and you will adjust.


We are all awful sometimes. I think it is because life is truly awful sometimes too. Everything you said was valid, this time and probably the last time too. Doesn't mean you won't love your new person overwhelmingly to feel overwhelmed by their coming.

I so hope you can find some peace. I'm so sorry for your loss.


I work in Rockville and would be super happy to bring you by some soup or ice cream or a burrito or a trashy magazine or a teddy bear or whatever might make you feel at all better. I don't want to be all stalker-y about saying I want to come to your house, just wanting to be helpful in some way. "I'm sorry" feels really hollow.


If it makes you feel any better, due to my two year old's insanely grumpy/whiny/not sleeping phase which he timed just weeks before the birth of our second, my main emotion was dread as well. And it was only my second baby! He's now 8 weeks old and I didn't know I could be this happy.

So, you are TOTALLY justified in being a little freaked. But, from what I can tell, you're such an awesome mom that another scrumptious baby won't break your stride.


"Duggareenth time" is really funny. so is "fuckles".


One of my biggest pet peeves is when I have a problem and tell it to someone and then they tell me their problem like, "Hey, I did that too! While carrying an 800 pound boulder!!" and I so don't mean this like that.. more in a comeraderie way, so please take it like that and not like it sounds because I so know. My mother died of cancer - she was 53, I was 26 - and 6 months later, I had twins who were 9 weeks premature. I had a 3 year old already and I was GRIEVING and they were sick and oh my hell, I just couldn't even believe what had become of my life simply because antibiotics and birth control don't mix. I was an awful, awful person who seriously found that the thing to be most grateful for (other than the obvious that they were alive and healthy kid #1 and all) was that they were in the hospital for 6 weeks being watched and monitored by people who were not me because I just wanted to go back to bed and weep and be completely fucking miserable, thank you very much. And also, make sure my father was still carrying on through what turned out to be a two year process of stunned grief, weird illness and ugh.. awfulness. It's all been 9 years ago but I remember those days and feel guilty and shudder at the things I know I was thinking then (run away! ruunn!!!). The reason I typed all that though, is to let you know that it, of course, gets better... grief is a process and you'll go through it whether you want to or not, so there's no point trying to avoid it. You will trudge through.. take the just keep swimming approach on the days that you need to.. and pick up your camera, even when you don't feel like it. Thinking of you and hoping that you are able to take it as easy as possible under (all) the circumstances.


Oh Amy, I can't even imagine all that you are going through and trying to manage right now. I'm really hoping that this doesn't come out the wrong way but with your laundry list of worries, can you cut back on work a bit? Can you let your siblings shoulder some of the weight of supporting your mother? My year has sucked so far but yours has sucked much worse. The one thing that I regret is that I didn't allow myself to fully grieve and heal from a miscarriage and losing my grandmother within a month an a half. It's been hard. Very hard. You just keep on keepin' on because that is what you have to do. Can you get away for a day/weekend (with or without Jason) and just be? Lots of hugs your way.


It's okay to feel miserable, Amy. You don't have to pretend that a new baby is going to take away all of the sadness and anxiety of your daily life. Grief is a process that has to happen, and it's not linear, either. Some days, you will feel joy and thankfulness. You can ride the waves, and it's all perfectly okay.

Maxine Dangerous

*big squishy hug*

Just Shireen

Oh fuckles, indeed.


Oh damnit...that's why I thought maybe I should have not sent you that email this morning. Just tell me to shut up next time...but seriously, the offer still stands. Love you guys. xoxoxoxo

Laura in PA

"Duggareenth"--that's a good one.

I can only imagine that the kind of overwhelmed you're feeling is a perfectly normal response to everything you have going on right now. Put me on the list with "everyone" telling you to take it easy on yourself. You're going to love that new baby and it's going to be fine. Not every moment, of course, but generally fine.

cindy w

That sense of dread and impending doom when you think about your new baby, rather than joy or happiness or excitement or whatever? Yes. That. OMG I am so there with you. My due date feels like this looming deadline and I seem to feel more anxious about it with each passing day.

Although, when I confessed this to my mom (who is awesome), she said, "Don't worry, babe. We're gonna make some joy around that baby when she gets here." Which was really nice to hear. So, just know when Baby #3 shows up for you, there WILL be joy and happiness and all that sappy stuff around him. Even if you don't feel it right now.


I don't get how a baby is supposed to make up for losing your dad anymore than having a dad makes up for losing a baby. I guess there is a right way and a wrong way to grieve, I don't know. I'm sure there are plenty of opinions on the subject. But I think once the raw emotions of the past couple of weeks start to fade (and it will) and the arrival of the new baby gets closer, your dread will turn to joy. And having that precious boy nuzzle your neck will erase all your fears and doubts. But that's just my opinion. :)


I remember my sister preparing herself for her 3rd son and despite having nearly none of the emotional upheaval you are dealing with (she does have a "challenging" son)she felt much the same way. She just needed another month, maybe two, to get things in order so having a 3rd child wouldn't be so overwhelming... Unfortunately the universe didn't have some kind of delayed birth plan & my 3rd nephew came kicking & screaming into this world right on time. The most amazing thing happened when she brought the newest member home - the other 2 boys changed. They became helpers and protectors and fights over eating noodles were quieter (they didn't go away - noodles are the devils food after all). It was all temporary, but it gave her the weeks she needed to get grounded. I hope you'll have an easier transition as well, it can happen.


By all means, whine away.

Also: This week I'd been feeling particularly anxious and stressed out, and I sat down for my weekly reading of your Pregnancy Calendar, and week 23 was a week that feeling anxious and crazy was one of the listed symptoms. I said, "See, husband! It's normal! Amalah says so." And he totally accepted it. And I felt better.

So, thank you for that.


I read your posts and I always think the same thing - I can't possibly think of the right words to say. Please just know that although we're strangers, you're in my thoughts.


Ah honey. I felt dread and fear with my second pregnancy (rough 1st, from childbirth to infancy), and my dad hadn't just died.

Mother-hug and you are a wonderful, wonderful mother to the children you have. You will be a great mother to this one too. You have 6+ weeks before you have to start though, so give yourself a break until then.


We're always taught to be nice. Nice girls do this, nice girls don't do that. Play nice!

But sometimes life's not nice, it's sucky and hard.

And it's really ok to feel crappy, angry, down, grumpy, whatever. Add pregnancy hormones in there? Whew, what a rollercoaster ride. No wonder you're sick.

Probably by the time I actually post this, a million other people have said the same thing. Just count me in. Ditto, yeah what she said up there too.


First, "Duggareenth"is the most amazing modifier I've heard since "cromulent." Second, you are fully entitled to any amount of whining you want right now. I can't even imagine experiencing any one of those events without whining (and the gestating part I know from experience, being just a few weeks behind). Big, internetty hugs from an internet stranger.


"duggareenth"!!!!! You may have made me pee myself a little. I swear I'm going over to and posting that RIGHT NOW.

PS, I'm sure your kids are especially trying right now, as everyone is stressed. Remember that there are those of us in perfectly normal situations who are ready to offer our children to the cantaloupe people most days, too. Like last night at the Kroger. Not me, of course, just, uh, someone I know. Right.


You can lost your dad, are coming to terms with newly diagnosed issues for Noah and are very pregnant. I saw you at the mall yesterday. I wanted to say how truly sorry i was about your father but I also wanted to give you and your family some alone time. After my mom died I loved to go to the mall just to avoid the phone calls and conerned looks of people that i made me feel more normal. BTW I thought you looked great and the perfect picture of pregnancy health. Best of luck in the next few weeks....


I don't know, I always kinda liked my fuckles. And I was kinda sad that neither of my kids has a single fuckle.

I'm sorry Amy. I've typed a thousand other things and erased them all, but that's really all I can say. You know what they tell you to do when you're swimming and you get tired? Don't tread water. Just float. So, just float for a while. Rest.


See, if you had asked me instead of Jason I would have said "actually, that sounds normal."

Of course you're feeling incredibly stressed right now; I wouldn't expect anyone to feel any differently. I'm not a well meaning platitudes type person so I'm just going to tell you to go outside and enjoy this beautiful weather with your boys (and maybe get some ice cream :). 


Just wanted to say I'm grateful that you are still sharing your life with us, even when it's not puppies and rainbows and sunshine...I think the only thing we can do in times of grief and chaos is to grab ahold of people in our life and say, "I"M NOT OK!!!"...and ask those people not to "fix" you, but just to hug you and say it's ok. It's ok to feel dread and anxiety and sadness and's what makes us human. You will get through it, even if you feel like you're drowning right now. We are all rooting for you.

Amelia Sprout

Bitch, whine, complain, use your blog to vent. It is completely and totally understandable. I would be a complete fucking mess if I was in your place. You are holding it together incredibly well, no matter how it feels. However, I will suggest that if you can, go get that pedicure with Jodi. Just take a little time, just for you. I know it may not feel like you have the time to, but try if you can.
Tons of virtual hugs in your general direction.


I shall now incorporate the word Duggareenth into my daily existence. Brilliant!


We survived three. Er, I mean, so far we have survived three. Two are in college now. I ain't gonna lie, it was rough at times. But they love each other a whole lot and they did a great job taking care of each other. More hands to take care of the livestock is always a good thing.


This shitstorm of awfulness is very fuckled up, if you ask me. Which you didn't, so it's probably annoying assvice that you don't need. Whatever. Here are some non-creepy stranger hugs from internetland to make you feel, I dunno, less shitty.


PLEASE! Hire more help!!! You need more hands, more adult bodies at a time like this!

Miss Grace

I'm sorry Amy.


I'm expecting my third in June. I haven't had all the other crap you've had to deal with and I'm still freaking the F out all the time. I want to not be pregnant anymore, but I am NOT ready to have a newborn again. I regularly wonder what the hell we were thinking getting into this. And I don't feel that giddy excitement I did the last two times. I feel terror. And then I feel guilt about said terror/lack of excitement. Only I've gained more weight this time (I'm only 5 lbs from delivery weight with my older two)... with 9 weeks to go and I started at the same place every time. So I also feel like a gross cow and am afraid I will take my body images out on the baby, who I'm already not feeling terribly exctied about. I don't have any words of wisdom, just wanted you to know that you're not the only one thinking "WTF did we do thinking we could parent a third?!?" And like I said, I haven't had all the other crap you've had thrown in your face this pregnancy.


Even Super Heros get to complain. Why shouldnt Supermom?You have your hands full and there is nothing wrong with venting imo. It's healthy. All i can say is keep goin and keep hanging on. It will get better eventually. There is support everywhere you just have to look for it. I'll email you a hug and a well deserved pat on the back!!


You don't have to be excited. You don't have to hide and cover the real disengagement you are feeling and pretend it isn't there.

I hope that you have the energy to accept at least some of the kindnesses (but not the cliches) that are being offered to you.

Keep your head down, conserve your strength to the amount you are able, and know that total strangers are crying with you and pulling for you.

The chick with a dead husband so I ain't just spouting off here.

Carla Hinkle

I will now use "fuckles" on a daily basis.

I think you have the operating attitude for 3 kids exactly right already. My 3rd is 15 months and I go through much of the day figuring out how I'm going to wrangle everyone from here to there; just when I'm about to go south of basketcase, something happens and I have to laugh.

Not much to say except hang in there.


It's okay to be feeling all of that. Don't be so hard on yourself. Complain away! What's a blog for if not to vent, anyway?! You're going through a lot right now. Nobody expects you to be Mary Sunshine. (Why would we want to read a bunch of Pollyanna bullshit anyway?)

I also have lots of fuckles. :)


Had you considered acupuncture? With the stress you're going through it might really help you feel better *physically* and perhaps feel a little relaxed, also.


Wait, so you're not Super Woman and Mary Poppins all rolled into one? I'm SO LET DOWN!

Amy, I wish there were something I could do to make this all a bit easier. But, alas, there isn't. You have a lot on your plate right now...a scary amount even. But much of the fear is temporary in anticipation of the changes to come and the changes that have recently passed. It will all even out eventually...and rather soon-ish.

Be sad, cope as best you can. Whine if you want to. We're here for you.

bethany actually

Vent away! Whine all you like! I'm sorry things suck right now. And I'm with Kate, rather than "Yes, that sounds awful," I'd have said, "Actually that sounds totally normal to me." Even without grieving for your dad and worrying about your mom, going from 2 to 3 kids is, as a friend of mine said, going from offense to defense. It's likely to be hard.

But it will also bring you more joy and love and more things like "fuckles." So it will probably balance out in the end. In the meantime, know that a lot of people are praying for you and cheering you on out here in blogland, ready to read those whiny posts whenever you need to write them. Bring 'em on! We can take it.


Losing a parent sucks so fuckl-ing bad! I lost my mom at the ripe old age of 22 and what I have figured out after facing my father's dementia 10 years later is that losing a parent sucks no matter what the timing.

Let yourself grieve. But, when someone supports you after your wallowing for weeks on end by kicking your ass out of bed to get on living your life, let them.

You being sad about the prospect of the new bundle is a product of grief. Allow yourself to grieve.

Hang in there, it gets better. You'll stop trying to pick up the phone to call your dad and believe it or not there will come a time when you actually stop reaching for the phone to call with something silly.

Keep talking about your feeling, whether you think they are right or not, they are your feelings.

Hang in there.


I don't see how anything you could write about the fucked up situation you're in right now could even begin to qualify as whining.

Write it out. There are a couple thousand strangers here who care for you about as much as one can without having actually met a person, and we're here to listen.


Well, honestly, if they didn't say awesome thing a la "fuckles!" once a day, I think we'd all have produce foster children.
Some days, my toddler is the funniest person I know.


My brother-in-law died in a fire two days before my first son was born.

For whatever, horrible, awful reason - people thought it would help me deal by talking to me about the "circle of life" It came to the point that I very nearly punched someone in the face at the funeral.

It's just damn hard. God damn hard.

Michelle B.

Thank you for being you and sharing that all with us. And so sorry that people say stuff just to say stuff and that you have to hear it - hopefully in looking back, it will all just sound like, "We like you, we really like you."

It's all hard/impossible/screwed up and you get to deal with it all at once - which at least gives you a pass on ever having to say 'no' to chocolate again (or something like that).

You've always been someone I look forward to reading, whatever it is that you have to say, because it is real and it is not whining. Fuckles and all!


Oh Amy. Just give yourself some time to adjust to the million things being thrown at you right now. You can do it. You're an amazing mom already to two wonderful kids. It WILL be ok.


I imagine punching people in the face or catching fire when I’m told to “be happy”, “it’s going to be ok”, "that's just the way life is", or "things could always be worse", so in no way am I telling you those things. I also don’t like being told, “it’s ok to be sad/angry”. Don’t tell me how to fucking feel you fuck face!

So I wish you your version of what makes you feel like you through all of this. Mine is my weenie dog and the Foo Fighters.

Lauren E. E.

I feel exactly the same way at 29 weeks with baby #2 and I'm not in the middle of grieving the loss of my father. I feel dread and fear and that I'm completely overwhelmed as it is, how will I ever take on more? You are not a bad person. And I'm not either. Hugs to you. Lots of them.


I hear that mangoes actually make great parents. Better than wolves, so, you know. Sending readerish hugs to you and your family and hoping that this too gets better.


It just sucks. That's all there is to it.

My uncle died just a few days after my baby cousin was born, and my aunt said the best thing she did was cry in the shower - away from everyone giving her pity and sympathy. You just have to do what feels right for you in the moment.

Kia kaha, kia mana, kia arohanui


It just sucks. That's all there is to it.

My uncle died just a few days after my baby cousin was born, and my aunt said the best thing she did was cry in the shower - away from everyone giving her pity and sympathy. You just have to do what feels right for you in the moment.

Kia kaha, kia mana, kia arohanui


Wish I had some help to offer, but everything I type just seems either trite or jerky. I"m sorry, and I'm thinking about you. That seems to be all I can offer at this moment.


Birth and death are the two biggest deals ever and you're having to handle both at the same time. The fact that you are still functioning at all (you're grocery shopping for pete's sake!!) makes you Superwoman in my book. Don't be too hard on yourself.

Also, fuckles is the best thing I've every heard. Noah is a cool guy :-)


I'm getting ready to go to the store. Upon arrival I shall yell 'FUCKLES!!!!!' And you shall know it and smile.....


I have two boys too - a 5 year old and one who will be 2 next week, and I'm 31 weeks pregnant with #3. I am having the same feelings of WTF almost constantly.. I really have no idea how I'm going to handle three kids. I'm also stressing about this fall when I'm home with a 2 year old and a newborn, and the oldest heads off to kindergarten. The two boys entertain each other, but I'm not sure how to handle things with the two youngest. Number three is really scary to me!


I remember being pregnant with my third child, lying on the couch exhausted, crying, and wondering what I had just gotten myself into. Seven years later I can honestly say that it was the best thing we've ever done. I can't imagine life without that little boy and neither will you very soon. You're a GREAT mom.


Fuckfluffle and now Fuckles. You're just taunting me now with awesome words I can't use in front of my mother in law. Grah.

You can bitch and whine and moan all day every day even without throwing in some cool new verbiage for me to enjoy, but I do appreciate you going the extra mile.

And, honestly, imagine the advice you'd give a mother of two writing to you under your circumstances: You'd be impressed she could operate a keyboard still, right? You will continue to rock and be amazing - in the big picture, long run sort of way - even and especially if you forgive yourself for not feeling whatever you think you should be.


I have three. I had 3 under 4. I did not spend my last pregnancy in a cloud of maternal bliss. Instead I stayed up every single night worrying. I spent a small fortune on sitters during the gestation and after he was born because I was afraid that I would snap. I worried everyday, I still worry everyday how I'll handle it and he's almost two. It was really happy but also really overwhelming. It still is. But it gets a little bit easier, less infant squalling with hungeras the two year old screams to get his needs met while four year old tells you she hates you and more three little people curled up on the couch reading together. Life happens, fuckles and tears, tears and fuckles.
Everyone has awful moments. Parents have awful moments. Parenting is fun but its also filled with shit moments that are thankless, exhuasting and hard.Also so gross. I wish more people would talk about those, instead of all the soft focus my life is perfectly, perfectly whole and meaningful now that I have these children bullshit we all feed each other that make us feel guilty for perfectly normal and understandable feelings.
Amy, you are amazing. You are. You make me laugh, you make me cry, you make parenting feel less lonely. You are brave and you are honest. You've helped me on some of my lower days.One thing you are not though, is awful. You're just human and that is alright.


You are not awful, you just feel that way. I am so sorry for the loss and the sick and the tired. One foot in front of the other slowly you will get through it.
thanks for making us laugh through your pain, I think you are quite exceptional. Really I do. Another total stranger who wishes she was not so far away, so she could bring you toast and tea.
PS I have some fuckles too. I don't care for mine either, they are random and they irritate me. Not enough to be cute (like sprinkle of them) just spread hither and yon.


I, too, enjoyed your coining of the term "Dugareenth".

And, really, you could do worse than organic mangoes to foster parent the little boogers, so you've got that going for you.


And that's why you have children - for "fuckles" in the midst of a truly horrible, no good very bad days and days.



I read all of your posts, and I don't comment nearly enough.

I hate that you are hurting. I wish there was something, anything I could do.

I can only repeat what has already been typed; you are amazing, and you are doing a fantastic job.



I have three. I started popping them out when I was 22, and had one every 2 years until I hit 26. Eh, it'll be ok. Mostly. Still will suck ass a whole lot, but it eventually evens out enough that you can deal.

I panicked about grocery shopping. HOW was I going to take all three? That was the scariest thing. How did I do it? No clue. I've blocked so much out, I guess.

Mine are older now, 13, 11, and 9. I still wonder wtf have I done, from time to time. BUT... yeah, I'd still do it all over again.

You've been dealt a pile of shit these last few months. Don't be so hard on yourself.

Laura Beth

Amy. I am not a mother, but I can't imagine NOT feeling the way you do about baby number 3. It's not awful - it's normal. NORMAL. You're going to handle it the way you've handled everything else that life has thrown at you, and if you aren't Mary Fuckles Sunshine about it every minute, well then, thank heavens, because I would have to drive to DC so I could punch you in the face. We (your blog readers) love you and we understand.



Can you take a week or two off of work? And just do nothing (at least during day-time hours when the kids are at school/daycare)?
This is probably no comfort to you at all, but the "Duggareenth time" made me giggle (as did fuckles).
Feel good, take care of yourself.


I think that just north of basket case is a truly admirable place to be with all of what you're going through. A miserable place to be, but admirable.
(Better than curled up in the fetal position deep in the bottom of the basket, yes?)
Wishing and hoping for some peace and comfort for you very soon.

Katy E.

I'm so sorry. Please don't e-punch me for saying what I'm about to say but you need to hear it... Please, please, please take good care of yourself. Losing your sweet Daddy mere weeks before the onslaught of newborn deliciousness and hormonal house of horrors is the perfect storm for a super-gnarly case of post-partum depression. Be aware and remind your husband and those around you to be aware and strong-arm you into a therapist's office if need be. Please accept any and all help that could possibly be sent your way by way of meals, house cleaning, babysitting whatnot. You need it. Also, remember, it's ok to find joy in the birth of your newest son WHILE ALSO grieving the loss of your Daddy... It's fine. And you will find your way.


pure brilliance like "duggareenth" is like a diamond that was produced from millions of pounds of pressure and it is remarkable ---just like you in all of your horrible raw honesty.


Duggareenth is just an awesome word.

We're all thinking about you, and we know you're doing the best you can.

Fuckle them all!


My best friend lost her mom to pancreatic cancer just 2.5 weeks after giving birth to her second child. Her seemingly-healthy mid 50's mom died only 3 months after her diagnosis. She couldn't even really be there for her mom those last few weeks the way she wanted to be because she was huge and tired and pushing a baby out and breastfeeding endlessly, and up all night etc. And her daughters are only 16 months apart to begin with so her 1st was still a baby, really. Add to the pile post-partum hormones, she went through hell and back. It took her a little longer to fully bond with her baby because she was so emotionally spent to begin with. BUT there are no lasting effects. They have a great bond. I don't know how she got through it all but I imagine you just do, somehow. I can't imagine much helps except time which feels like a cop-out answer.

I just wanted to share this story with you because when the trifecta of trying to live life, give birth and grieve death all come together, it can get crazy fast. My friend made it through, perhaps not unscathed, but through nonetheless. If you ever want to talk with her I can put you two in touch.


C @ Kid Things


Man, that is so my new word.

I have 3 kids. It sucks. Really. Sorry I can't be more encouraging. But they've just outnumbered me and they know it. At least with 2, I have 2 hands, so it kind of works out. With 3, unless I want to hold onto 1 with a foot, we're all just screwed.


A neighbor once said that with the third child you can't go man-on-man any more--you need to move to a zone defense. You will be able to do it. It won't be easy, but lesser people than you have done a fine job with three children. Many teams have won with a zone defense. Just keep putting one foot in front of the other, just keep on keeping on, and a little joy will burst through eventually. Just like the fuckles. I am so sorry for you, but as a Loyal Reader, I believe you will be able to do it.
Also, of course, I do not advocate losing one's temper with children, but the child who has never been scolded will be poorly prepared for the real world.


Life is a series of fuckles; they are in our minds, in our hearts, or near our thumbs. They never go away, no matter how much we wished they would. They make us who we are. We assimilate our fuckles and learn how to cope with them, even when we thought we never could. He will, you will, and I will.


You know, for every person who says something like you're lucky to have the new baby to look forward to, is at least one -- probably more like 10 -- who is afraid to say anything because they might say the "wrong thing."

Please keep in mind that they were *trying* to say something nice (and yes, having a new baby to look forward to IS something nice, it just doesn't erase or make up for the hurt of losing a loved one). Because they care.

I've always been of the opinion that it's better to say *something* than to say nothing and have people thing you don't care.

These people who made the "lucky" comments? They care. They want to say something nice. They may have missed the mark, but that wasn't their intention.

This is a good time to take advantage of your friends' offers to help, babysit, come over and just be with you -- whatever they offer that sounds good. If you just want to be alone, let them come over and play with the boys while you take a bath, or go to your room to cry or go to the mall and feel anonymous.

There is no right or wrong way to grieve, nor is there a right or wrong length of time.

My 3 kids were spaced about like yours (I think), and while I don't remember feeling doomed or scared about adding the 3rd one, I think your feelings are normal and I'm the weird one (or maybe I'm just losing my memory). Noah may have his challenges, but he's enough older now to have a better understanding of how to help mom or how to keep Ezra entertained for a minute or two. It won't be easy, but I don't doubt for a second that you'll be able to handle it, and a year from now will be answering questions from frantic OMG-I'm-about-to-have-my-3rd-kid letter writers at AlphaMom with the same level of reassurance.


A friend sent me a card right before my mom lost her battle with cancer. It said "It will all be all right in the end. If it's not all right, it's not the end." At first the saying made me laugh bitterly, but slowly it came to help me get through the days of dealing with my then-barely-one daughter and contemplating mothering without my own mom to talk to about all of it. I don't know why I am posting this when I know that there's really nothing that helps the feeling of holding your sides as you heave as if you can hold yourself together. I guess just so you know that it's not the end. You'll be okay, and dare I say, great, one day.

Hope Sypert

Christ on a cracker Amy, of course you feel this way.

And there isn't a day that goes by I don't worry abt more kids + turning into rage-o-mom.


Also, fuckles is my new favorite word.


You're going to be fine. Eventually. It's a bit shit in the middle of the misery though.

Hehehe, fuckles...

x to you all five




If it's any consolation, I found the transition from one kid to two much more challenging than two to three. Maybe because the oldest one was actually wiping his own butt by the time that the third one arrived? Not sure exactly. Somehow it all works out. Big hugs.


You know, with everything that's going on right now, I think being anything other than just north of basketcase would be bizarre.

Three isn't so bad. My third is currently 3 months old. You have not ruined your life at all. It won't be long before you can't even imagine what life would be like without him.


I'm sorry that things are so difficult.

But fuckles is my new fave word and kids could have worse parents than the organic mangoes.


I am totally local enough to say that we (your loving fans) should throw you a Sarah-Jessica-Parker-Sex-in-The-City-Episode in Paris where her fans threw her a party..

Only, at yours, we will all just sit around NOT touching you or your belly, listening,(you said sick of touching) and showering you with whatever-the-heck food item you wish... Oh, yeah, and we could corral the external kids.. there's a cafe kid place near you.. Just say the word! :)

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