Friday, September 14, 2012

'Cause Momma's memory is not so good

Some of my favorite posts are the ones that tell the story of our average, every day lives. 

I don't know why they appeal to me so strongly; there is something about the extraordinary in the ordinary that captures my attention.

On that note, I have always had a special place in my heart for this post, which I wrote when Leah was about a month old.  It's a very honest picture of what life is like with a newborn.

So, in honor of honesty, here is my "do-do" list for Thursday, September 13th.  And, for the record, I had to look up what day it is, because I'm truly that out of the loop.

Hours of sleep: 5ish (as in, sleep 1 hour, feed a baby.  Sleep 2 hours, feed a baby.  Sleep 1 hour, repeat.)

*Fed the baby and put him back to bed
*Got up with the big girl
*Took her potty, pantied and dressed her
*Made oatmeal and raisins for breakfast
*Ran upstairs to check on a crying baby, who was (thankfully) being changed by his daddy
*Dressed a baby
*Started a load of laundry
*Ate breakfast while nursing a baby
*Cleaned up the big girl's breakfast
*Took her potty, and changed her pants when she'd already peed
*Put away a folded load of laundry from yesterday
*Got myself dressed
*Nursed a baby
*Took the big girl potty
*Found a spider in the diaper bag and freaked out
*Thanked hubby for killing the spider
*Kissed my husband for getting big girl shoe'd and in the car
*Errand to Target, baby sleeping, mission accomplished
*Took the big girl potty
*Errand to Joann's Fabric, baby woke up and cried
*Left Joann's without purchasing anything due to crying babe
*Drove home
*Took the big girl potty
*Washed her new Halloween cup, purchased at Target, and got her some juice
*Nursed the baby
*Prepared lunch: left-over fettuccini, pineapple and goldfish
*Reheated a bowl for myself, ate it while nursing a baby
*Cleaned up the girl's lunch
*Heated milk
*Put clean sheets from the dryer on Leah's bed (Baby had to cry a bit during this one)
*Read to and rocked the big girl while nursing a baby
*Put the big girl down for her nap
*Chopped onions and peeled potatoes, started the crockpot for dinner
*Started a new load of laundry
*Nursed the baby
*Napped on the couch with the baby *STILL BLISS*
*Nursed the baby
*Changed his diaper
*Took a big girl potty
*Folded laundry and started a new load
*Took the big girl potty
*Watched as Leah played outside
*Nursed the baby
*Let Leah watch TV AND I also put the baby down so that I could cook bacon for our dinner, 'cause you really can't do that while holding a baby.
*Let the bacon burn a little because I had to nurse the baby while it was cooking...ooops.
*Chopped green onions and finished off the Potato-Bacon soup for dinner
*Continued to let Leah watch TV so all of this could be accomplished
*Cleaned up a potty accident because I was busy doing other things and didn't take the big girl potty in time
*Changed Leah's drawers
*Kissed my hubby when he came home
*Ate dinner while nursing a baby
*Gave the baby a bath in the sink while Daddy gave Leah a bath in the tub
*Diapered and jammied a baby
*Washed half(ish) of the dishes before being interrupted and having to abandon it
*Nursed a baby, and then again.  And again (gotta love the cluster feeding)
*Said good bye to my husband, who was spending the evening installing new floors in our new house
*Checked a few e-mails for church
*Wrote half of this post and had to finish it the next day because I had to nurse a baby again
*Barely got my own teeth brushed, pajamas on, vitamins and medicine taken, etc before putting the baby to bed.  Yes, this did involve nursing.  We do a LOT of that around here. 

And, since new mom's aren't famous for their powers of retention, that's life with a two week old.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Two weeks

I'm still adjusting - slowly - to the fact that I'm a mom of two. 

One was pretty awesome.  One felt like we got incredibly lucky, beyond what we could have ever deserved.  One also felt like we were two naiive kids wandering into this thing called parenthood.

Two feels like a family.

As in, we knew exactly what we were getting into, and we chose to do it again anyway

Two weeks in, we're pretty enamoured of this little guy. 

He has gained almost a pound, weighing in at 8lbs 4 oz.  Which, if you think about it, is actually more because he left the hospital somewhere in the high 6 lb range.  All that nursing is paying off!

He is a champion sleeper.  I'd wager he is only awake for a total of about 6 hours a day. 

He's also a champion eater, my sweet little guy.  He nurses darn near every hour to hour and a half, and he cluster feeds on top of that.  I am up a lot at night, but it's only because he eats so frequently.  He nurses and falls immediately back to sleep (assuming he was ever really awake to begin with.  I wish I could say the same). 

Is generally a content little dude.  His goal in life is to fall asleep while nursing and have me hold him until he wakes up.  You can imagine how well that's working in a house with a two and a half year old... so he gets a little grumpy when I can't accommodate him.  He's also not a fan of having his diaper or clothes changed; other than that, he's quite sweet and happy. 

He opens and closes his hands after watching me do it.  I love this mimickery.  He also turns his head toward me when I kiss him.  *LOVE* those baby mouth kisses. 

I'm surprised by how mello I am about the baby thing this time around.  It probably has to do with the fact that I've already managed to keep one alive, and she's turned out pretty well to boot.  The things I agonized over the first time don't phase me.  I don't need to run to the internet or a book to double check that I'm not totally damaging my child. 

I'm actually pretty confident in my own mommyhood this time through, and that's a nice feeling.  I know what works for me and for my family, and I'm not terrified it's the wrong thing.  I still have worries, but I'm sleeping much more soundly this time around - literally, as last time my worries kept me awake the better part of the night.  I rather like it, and I hope it keeps up. 

And in the mean time, I'm pretty thrilled about getting to see this little face every day...

Monday, September 10, 2012

Two and a half

Somebody is two and a half!

There are so many things I want to remember about my sweet little pumpkin at two and a half.  Just a few of them are:

The way she adds syllables to words.  She's got a southern accent on certain words, like milk, which she pronounces mee-lk.  Good = goo-ould.  I'm not totally sure where it comes from; I know she is perfectly capable of saying these words correctly, she's just in a phase right now.  It's pretty hillarious.

How she has become so much more physically capable over the past few months.  This summer, her physical development really blossomed.  She can run, kick a soccer ball, jump, pedal her bike, climb the really big climbing wall at the park (the one that is even over Daddy's head), go down the BIG KID slide all by herself, and so much more.  We've obviously seen the verbal and cognitive development all along, but it has been so neat to watch as she develops coordination and physical skills.

Puts her clothes on by herself (okay, so mostly she tries to).  Can actually do socks and shoes on her own, and is 50/50 with pants (sometimes they're on backwards, sometimes two legs are in the same hole).  She's getting quite independent about the whole getting dressed process.

That she prefers older kids to kids her own age.  She's never been in love with kids her own age, preferring to play by herself.  Now, she seeks out the older kids - typically five or above - and tries to play with them.  When we go to the park, she inevitably finds an older kids to tag along with, and usually, they are more than happy to play with her too.

How sweet she is to her baby brother.  I can't say she's totally thrilled with me, and I can't say the adjustment has been flawless, but boy oh boy, she loves this tiny one. 

The way her imagination is taking off.  It is so much fun to watch the crazy stories and things she comes up with.  The other day in the car, we had a whole conversation about where the car's butt is.  Ultimately, she decided that we would have to buy it one at the butt store, and make sure to get it some big girl panties, too. 

She is outgrowing her 2T clothing very rapidly (like, I need to go to the store and get some fall clothes in a bigger size, STAT!), and wears size 7 shoes. 

Has become a true wild woman, complete with climbing all over furniture and tables and running through the house with the volume turned all the way up... not my favorite pass time, I'm not gonna lie.  (Please, someone tell me they all go through this - and that it doesn't last forever?)

The girl loves to sing.  It may possibly be because we always make up silly songs about everything and anything, but so does she.  And they're kind of a hoot.

Is still a fantastic sleeper.  I worried that when we transitioned her into her big girl bed, she might lose that.  Usually she falls asleep within about 30 minutes of being put down, and remains asleep (or at least in bed) until someone comes to get her.  The girl will hang out without any protesting, happy as a clam, in her bed for slightly obscene amounts of time.  She has only ever once gotten out of bed without one of us coming to get her, and that was while we were in the hospital because she was missing mommy.

Is very vocal about what she "needs."  As in, "I need to rock a little longer" or "I need another kiss."  (See also: "I need this!" while grabbing something she's not supposed to have with lightning hands.)

Sleeps with exactly 904 teddies and assorted toys in her bed, and insists on having the comforter on her, even when it is 86 degrees in her room.

Has awesome hair that curls in all the wrong places, and refuses to lie down and behave no matter how many times it is brushed.  I still just love the fact that she has hair to begin with.

Has gone backward on the potty training issue since becoming a big sis.  She's currently on the two strike plan, and then it's back to diapers.  Unfortunately, Mommy can't spend the entire day setting pee pee timers and changing wet pants, so the whole potty training thing has gotten de-railed a bit. 

Two and a half is definitely her most challenging age so far.  Along with all of those smarts and independence comes some very defiant behavior, and she's sharp and articulate enough to throw things back in our faces in ways she absolutely shouldn't be able to yet. 

There is no doubt, though, that she is one loved little girl.  We couldn't be more proud of this kid we've raised, and it is impossible to think that two and a half years ago, she was as little and tiny as Logan is now. 

What an incredible journey she's had so far - we can't wait for what comes next!

Monday, September 3, 2012

War Wounds: a post-natal PSA

We talk a lot after the birth of a baby about the joy and happiness that event brings.  And rightly so, because there is a lot of that to go around.

What we don't talk about is the other stuff that goes along with having that baby. And, my dear internet peeps?  The other stuff is a doozy (I'd substitute a word there, but I hope someday my kids will read this, and I don't want them thinking I used foul language.  But really, the word I'd like starts with a B.)

So for the sake of documentation, and just in case we have any fans of 16 and Pregnant out there who think childbirth is all fun and games (until somebody loses a vagina), here's a little look-sy at the Truth behind having a baby. 

We'll start with the easy stuff...

  • TDAP vaccine.  The T makes your muscles a little sore and your two and a half year old ask why you're wearing a bandaid.
  • Loss of skin from the tape they used to attach my catheter (oh yes, I'll talk about the catheter too.  You've been warned).  Seriously, I have like three little scabs on my inner thigh - because that's a tough part of your body - where that darn tape came off.  It actually bled.
  • Bruise and incision point from first IV.
  • Bruise in two locations along my spine from first and second Epidural point.  Oh yeah, and also two local anesthetic shots to go along with.
  • Mystery pain in my abdomen where the epidural didn't cover.  Why it hurts now, I have no idea.  But it feels like an ongoing cramp right in that same section.
  • Bloating of the entire body.  Yup, because they didn't get my catheter in all the way during labor, but they kept pumping me full of fluid anyway.  Turns out, all that fluid has to go somewhere.  After Logan was born, I kept saying, "I can't keep my eyes open!"  I thought it was because I was exhausted, but I literally couldn't keep my eyes open because my face had swollen so dramatically.
  • Trouble going #1, because after they had taken the first catheter out, I was so swollen that I couldn't pee.  At 3 a.m. with absolutely no medication, they had to re-catheterize me, which was about as fun as it sounds.  (If you need a visual, picture a straw and then just start shoving...)
  • A very messy undercarriage.  I'm not completely sure what happened down there, but I know it involves stitches and the fact that even my hemorrhoids have hemorrhoids.
  • Bruises and a VERY sore stomach from where the nurse all but jumped on me trying to get my uterus to contract after delivery.  I bled a very, very long time due to the fact that my uterus was "overtired" and wouldn't contract on its own.  As it turns out, it was also due to the fact that there was so much fluid in my bladder that it was occupying the space my uterus should have been contracting into.  Good times.
  • Not one, not two or three but four incision points from the failed attempts at putting a second IV in.  And a blood draw from my hand.  I mentioned this was 36 hours after being discharged from the hospital, right? 
  • A return trip to the hospital after running a fever of almost 102.  Diagnosis?  A urinary tract infection and endometritis, an infection in my uterus.  (You did read all that crap they did to me, right?)  Logan, Casey and I stayed another 24 hours as I got a round of IV antibiotics to address all the fun we had during my "natural" labor.
And that, kids, is what it's really like to have a baby.  I mean, you know, probably not for everyone, but certainly for some of us. 

I'm writing it now because even as I'm writing it, it's starting to fade.  With my beautiful son sleeping peacefully on my chest, it's tough to imagine anything not worth going through to get him here.  The joy of having a baby truly is overwhelming, because it cancels out all that other stuff.  Which, in my case, is really saying something.  And there is zero doubt in my mind that, given the chance, I'll do all this again.

But I may well elect to have the c-section next time around, though.  :)

Saturday, September 1, 2012

We won the big sister lottery

So, you guys?  I know everyone thinks their kids are awesome.  And since we all blog, we get to brag about just how awesome our kids are. 

Besides, it's only natural.  Part of that Mommy code; if we weren't all convinced our kids were awesome, we probably shouldn't be having them in the first place.

So in that spirit, I tell you honestly.  My kid?  She's like some kind of super awesome from another planet. 

Besides that whole cuter than words meeting in the delivery room (which I have every intention of posting, because it's like my new favorite video), this girl is THE.BEST big sister.

We've been home from the hospital since yesterday, and this kid has done nothing but attach herself to me and her baby brother.  She is honestly happiest when she gets a job, and will do anything and everything that mommy asks of her. 

The love this little girl radiates for her baby brother is amazing.  I hear her talking to him: "Whatsa matter, honey?  Can I help you?"  "I love you, Baby Peanut."  "Is that my Baby Logan?  Can I hold him?"  "Is he eating his dinner from Mommy's boobie?!  That's so silly!" (This one has been quite a conversation starter in our house for several months as we tried to prepare her for it... I mean really.  What a crazy concept to explain!)

She reads to him, she "cooks" for him, she puts blankets on him, she helps Mommy change his diapers.  She worries about whether he is too cold or too hot.  She finds those tiny socks that get away.  She would spend her days hugging and kissing him, if it wasn't just a touch too much for the little guy. 

But she's about as sweet as can be to her mommy, too.  She's just my little sidekick, and is so helpful in worrying about me.  She brings me water and helps me do laundry and asks how I'm feeling.  I can't help but feel abundantly blessed when I watch the way this little sweet, empathetic, kind and caring person is emerging every day. 

Seriously.  Could she be more awesome? 

I changed my font at