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Let's Panic: The Book!

Order your copy today!

How to Endure and Possibly Triumph Over the Adorable Tyrant
who Will Ruin Your Body, Destroy Your Life, Liquefy Your Brain,
and Finally Turn You
into a Worthwhile
Human Being.

Written by Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy

Some Books
I'm In...

Sleep Is
For The Weak

Chicago Review Press

Home - Middle Row

Let's Panic

The site that inspired the book!

At LET'S PANIC ABOUT BABIES, Eden Kennedy and I share our hard-won wisdom and tell you exactly what to think and feel and do, whether you're about to have a baby or already did and don't know what to do with it.

Lets-Panic.com → 

Wednesday
Feb162005

Don’t rub me like a Jedi knight.

The above is a statement uttered by Henry. I was going to provide the anecdote that would put it in context, but the hell with it. You might think you can figure out why he would say such a thing but you won’t be able to figure it out. Henry is an enigma wrapped in a riddle, side-by-side with a conundrum, across the way from a bugaboo.

In other news, my son is covered in rashes. This is not new. For lo these many months he has been bedecked with eczema and bespeckled with hives. As he himself put it, he is "itchy, itchy Ichabod." I haven’t done much about it because—well, I blame the liquor. Whoops! Actually I am sober 89% of the time, and we’ve done everything we can to figure out what the problem is, and everyone’s conclusion is that there’s no real problem. Except he’s all scratchy and hive-y. The hives bloom and then fade of their own twisted accord, with no apparent connection to anything he’s eaten or done or said or thought. One doctor posited that it might be a reaction to our wool rug, so we no longer let him lounge pantsless on said rug. We apply medicinal salves and unguents on a regular basis, and we dose him with Benadryl. Our detergents are everything-free. No longer do we enjoy bubbles in our bath—instead we add soothing but decidedly un-festive baking soda, or as Henry calls it, “baby soda.” After the bath, instead of rubbing him like a Jedi knight, we pat him softly like a Sith lord.

Then he spent the weekend with my in-laws, and returned with smooth, rash-free skin for the first time in, oh, since he was born. My in-laws denied doing anything special for him. So the only reasonable conclusion is that his skin benefited from their lack of squalor. That a weekend in the suburbs meant a blessed reprieve from the dust mites and chiggers that usually gnaw on his infant flesh as he slumbers. In other words, we live in filth. Which I guess means I should vacuum or clean or whatever, but I’m so tired! And self-absorbed! Oh—and drunk.

Sunday
Feb132005

Only two reasons why I married the right person.

1. Because my husband, not usually one to pay any attention to silly holidays, gave me a Valentine’s Day gift of chocolates that were in a box made of chocolate, causing me to eat every single chocolate and then the box--and then, smeared with choco-leavings, whoop and yawp as I tore ass up and down the length of our apartment for the next six hours.

2. Because later in the day he grabbed the pink-and-white ribbon that had festooned the box, wrapped it around his head, cried out, “I’m Pretty Rambo!” and then pretended to machine-gun the living room. “I’m so pretty!”

It was quite funny. Especially if you’ve just eaten 37 chocolates.

Saturday
Jan292005

Welcome to Finslippy. I'm Mrs. Brady.

Of course I'm all for being mentioned in the (vaguely damning) New York Times article, but um, Mr. Hochman? It's BRADLEY.

It could have been worse. I could have been Alison Brady.

Okay, carry on.

Friday
Jan282005

The two-year-old: Complicated. Lovable. But most of all, psychotic.

8:30 p.m. Thursday. Henry is being tucked in for the night.

Henry: [scratching his ankle] I have an itch.

Me: [Applying hydrocortisone cream to the poor kid’s rashy leg.] How’s that?

Henry: You made it feel better.

Me: Well, I’m glad!

Henry: Thank you for the cream.

Me: [startled] You’re welcome, Henry.

Henry: Thank you for making my rash feel better. I love my Mommy. [Puts a hand out to touch my cheek.] You’re soft.

Me: Who are you and what did you do with my son?

8:30 a.m., Friday. Henry and I are eating oatmeal.

Henry: [sounding eerily like an air horn, if an air horn could speak] No, not this bowl!

Me: You want another bowl?

Henry: [weeping] No!

Me: [sipping my tea calmly while Henry glares at me through his tears of rage]

Henry: Don’t drink your tea!

Me: But I like my tea.

Henry: No--don’t like it!

Me: I’m going to go sit over there now. [I move to the couch. Wouldn’t you?]

Henry: Don’t sit over there! Stand up!

Me: [My resolve falling apart because he’s making his oatmeal soggier with his tears, I stand] Do you want me to sit with you?

Henry: Don’t stand up!

Me: [beginning to sit]

Henry: Don’t sit! Don’t stand!

Me: Ookay.

Henry: DON’T SAY OKAY!