October 11th, 2009

planet

told the parents

Well, mom and dad know.

They were visiting this weekend. They come down twice a year or so, it's a three hour drive so they stayed the night. Marc and I talked about it and we weren't quite ready to share the news... I didn't want to make the whole weekend about OHMIGOD BABIES and there's plenty of time to let them in on this little secret, yes?

Unfortunately that little plan didn't make it past lunch. They showed up and marc had gone to the store to get sandwich stuff. I'd already eaten a salad and some chicken nuggets because I can't eat deli meat. I let mom and dad in, and they met the guinea pigs and that was fun. We talked a little about flying. Then Marc arrived and we made sandwiches and sat at the table.

Even though I'd had a salad I felt like eating with the group... well I felt like eating, period. So I made a half peanut butter sandwich and the conversation kept going. Except mom kept asking questions. "Are you sure you already ate? Sorry we were late."

"You're not eating much, are you okay?"

"Are you sure you're okay?"

I started sort of vibrating and wasn't sure if I was about to laugh. I tried not to make eye contact. Then finally I cracked like a witness in a court drama who admits to everything, stood up from the table, burst into tears and was speechless. Mom just says, "YOU'RE PREGNANT!"

Well wtf. She said later that something had been wrong the moment they walked into the door, my shoulders were way too tense.

Her second question was whether I'd told my sister yet, and I said no, but admitted I kind of wanted to call her. She said, "PLEASE call her! We're spending next weekend with them and it will kill me to keep this a secret." Oh what the hell. So I called sis and put her on speaker phone.

Now you might remember that my sister and I got engaged on the same night. Yes. Marc and I announced that we were getting married, the parents were thrilled, we were the object of the moment, then my now brother-in-law proposed an hour later. He said he'd been planning that night out for weeks and we were not derailing anything.

So today when I called my sister I started off saying, "Is there anything you need to tell us? Any news?" Because honestly I was a little scared or worried or just curious about the idea of her getting pregnant the same day as me. She said there was nothing, and sounded kind of annoyed because she was working a volunteer booth at the mall and needed to get back to work. She said she could barely hear us. So I was like, "Okay well just so you know I'm pregnant." Suddenly she heard us just fine. She was so excited. I told her, "But it's EARLY okay, five weeks, I'm not sure that even counts as me being pregnant" and she just screamed "YES YOU ARE!"

I told both mom and my sister about all the worrying I'd done all week and they all agreed: stop reading the internet. Do not google weird symptoms. Do not take every random ache as life-threatening hemorrhage. And call if I'm worried, or sad, or scared, keep people in the loop, it's okay. I felt ten million times better. Even if I have a miscarriage now, for some reason the idea doesn't terrify me as much, I'll tell them and it'll be okay, they're here to help.

So anyway, no one knows I'm pregnant! Except for:
  1. Marc & I
  2. My doctor
  3. My flight school's chief instructor
  4. Mom and dad
  5. My sister
  6. All of you
  7. Some guys at a bar who marc accidentally told when he got a little tipsy last night, he says he's sorry and he's sure they were barely listening
  8. Anyone who was at the Topeka mall today around 2... my sister says she's sorry but those people barely know her or me so surely they'll forget

I think we are doing a very good job of keeping it down-low, yes?
planet

dear twitter: here's what DMs are for...

Gotta rant about Twitter again. I really have a love-hate relationship with it, and direct messages (DMs) contribute to that in every sense. For you outsiders, the gist is that we all update our twitter status thingies all the time but if you only want to talk to one person, you send her a direct message. Often, that message is e-mailed or sent via text message straight to his phone, depending on preferences. I've got DMs going to my phone, because it's darn handy when you're trying to hunt down a random tweetup and you're far from a computer. It's also nice that I get that heads-up when someone really needs my attention.

The issue is that I have to unfollow a dozen or so people every week because they're "social media gurus" using Twitter for abnormal reasons, and they feel they have the right to abuse the DM system. You're only supposed to send me a direct message if it's something important I need to know about. Also, we sometimes use them to take a public conversation offline, or exchange private information like phone numbers.

The worst is when I follow someone who looks fairly normal and innocent, but they've got an automatic system set up so as soon as I follow them an automatic DM gets sent to my phone saying something like "Thanks for following! Don't forget to check out my website at..." Yes, seriously, this happens... and I have no idea why people think it's a good idea. There's a "website" bit on your profile people can see quite clearly, so if I'm wondering where someone's website is I know where to look. Also, I do not need to be thanked for a follow, I did not add you to my list to be nice to you or do you favors. I added you to my list for completely self-centered reasons: I could learn something cool, I could be entertained, I could find something to pass along to my followers that would make me sound interesting. But if you're a DM a-hole the cost-benefit equation is just not going to work out here. So good-bye.

Along those same lines I do not like being DMed to be thanked for a retweet. I retweeted it to make myself sound more interesting, or as a favor to my followers. I don't care how it makes you feel. It's not about you. Don't make my phone light up for it.

And I should never get a DM that would make a personally reasonable tweet... you've got a new website project, blog entry, contest... tweet it. That's the point.

I think there are a hundred rants just like this on the great internet, reaching out to people who misuse twitter and take the fun out of it for us normal people. I just wanted to add my voice to the crowd. It just might get through to somebody.