Monday, March 30, 2009

To cut, or not to cut, that is the question

Well, ladies and gentlemen, there comes a time in every child's life when parents must face that question . . . to cut, or not to cut. And I'm talking about hair. I never thought I'd be faced with this question at only 3 months of age, but Micah's hair is growing wild. Part of me loves the wild mess, and if he was a girl, I'd let it keep growing for quite some time. His hair is already down to the bridge of his nose, and it is kind of touching his shoulders in the back. It is LONG. I had originally hoped to make it to his first birthday before cutting it, and I keep waiting to see if it will fall out, or start curling up (it is definitely curly when wet) but that just hasn't happened yet. So . . . what do you think? Is it time for Micah to get a haircut? Is it crazy to try and wait until 6 months? Or should I let it go a while longer and see what happens?

To help you decide, here are a few pictures of Micah and his hair:





Now, with all of this information on hand, tell me what you think!

Update

I don't exactly have much of an update right now . . . we are still having bedtime challenges. Micah seems to do better when we induce a food coma, so I've been nursing him until I have nothing left, and then supplementing him with a bottle of breast milk when he still seems to want more. It has left me wondering if he is really just hungry . . . perhaps he is not getting enough milk off of me during the day. He is still gaining weight at an unbelievable pace, but yet . . . I think these meltdowns are more than just "normal" baby things. Maybe he is getting enough to stave off the hunger during the day, but when bedtime comes around, the cumulative hunger hits and he melts down. I'm not exactly sure what to do . . . I guess I either have to try supplementing during the day, or working on increasing my supply so he can get another 1/2 ounce or so a feeding (I think that is all it would take).

I did check with the doctor . . . who said he is gaining weight normally and not to worry about it. And yet . . . I know my boy. He doesn't generally cry and get fussy, and when he does, it means something is wrong. Now, if I can just figure out what.

In other news, we are more than halfway through the renovations to my condo, and we should be ready to put it on the market in about 4 weeks. I can't believe how smoothly that is going (and we STILL haven't finished renovations on our house . . . did I mention I still hate my contractor?)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Bedtime still sucks

For lack of a more appropriate and descriptive term, bedtime the past few nights . . . SUCKS. Tonight, Micah was being cute and playful. He started to get sleepy around 7:15, so we bathed him, lotioned him up, and got him ready for bed. He smiled, took his medicine, and eagerly awaited his bedtime "snack." I nursed him, and he began to drift off to sleep. In fact, he was out cold before he finished nursing. I tried to wake him, but he would have none of it! So, I quietly transferred him into the crib, shut off all the lights, waited five minutes, then left the room.

Fast forward about 10 minutes. MASS HYSTERIA began again. I have no idea what woke him up, but he was hysterical. I went upstairs, nursed him some more, and put him back to sleep. I snuck back downstairs. . . . and five minutes later, he was crying. I sent DH upstairs to work his magic. He tried the paci, and then Micah became hysterical again. DH spent the next 10-15 minutes singing to Micah, and he finally crashed again. We placed him back in the crib, and so far, so good (with the exception of 2 more paci insertion trips up the stairs).

I don't really understand it. Our entire trip to California, and ever since he was 8 weeks old, bedtime has been a joy! Since the night we returned home from California, bedtime has not been the same. It doesn't matter that he is relaxed and tired, it still becomes a screaming session every night. Once we get beyond it, everything is fine, but the process is very draining. I wish I understood what is happening that makes Micah so hysterical at bedtime everynight now. I also wish I knew how to fix it.

Still talking . . . but a new message

As you all may recall, my pump and I don't exactly get along. Nevertheless, we've been operating under a truce for the past few months. Generally, I use it as little as possible, and when I do, it works as little as possible, producing only the bare minimum of milk. Many of you may also recall that my breast pump talks to me. For the most part, it has continued to mock me, but it occasionally has had neutral messages for our pumping sessions.

Well, a few weeks ago, my pump stopped articulating well. Seriously . . . I think it was talking, but I couldn't understand it. I slowly realized that it was sick. Not just a passing cold, but perhaps terminally ill. I called up Medela, and after going through their rigmarole, they declared there was nothing wrong with my pump. I insisted that there was, and they agreed to send me out a new motor.

While we were out of town, the new pump arrived. I was supposed to open the box and re-package it with my old pump. UPS, however, in their infinite wisdom, delivered the pump one day . . . and picked it up for return the next day, before I even had a chance to get home and use it! Today, the new pump arrived (for the second time). I swapped out the parts, and here I am, pumping away.

I was excited to meet my new pump. I turned it on tonight, fully expecting a new dialogue. Several of my friends have informed me that their pumps say wonderful things like "you're pretty" and "you go girl" while they pump. I was looking forward to this new conversation, and I eagerly awaited the message from my new pump. As expected, this pump also talks. It has spent the entire time repeating the phrase "Wacko" over and over again. Apparently, Medela sent me another pump in need of a serious attitude adjustment. I was hoping for a nicer pump this go around . . . any tips for improving communication with a pump?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Progress

Well, today Micah woke up a bit late (9:00 am), so I was afraid he'd be off all day. I worked hard to cram in all of his feedings, and he got some naps (but probably not enough). I made sure that we took him upstairs to bed at 7:45, and I nursed him. It was clear he didn't get quite enough to eat, so we gave him another 2 ounces by bottle. He still wasn't ready to fall asleep on his own, so we rocked him to sleep. He was out by 8:25 - the right time, even if he needed a bit more coddling to fall asleep. I'm hoping he'll get better each night, and in a few more days we'll be back to "normal."

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Home again, home again, jiggity jig

Finally . . . home at last! This has been a crazy week, and I'm so glad to be done with the traveling. Poor Micah has had it the roughest - I think he is all confused about the time zone. The past few nights, bedtime has been a bit of a disaster, which has been so frustrating. Since Micah was 8 weeks old, bedtime has been simple - we get ready for bed, we put Micah down, we run in once or twice to reinsert his paci, and he sleeps through the night.

Since Sunday night, however, Micah has been tired and exhausted. I've gotten him ready for bed while he smiles and coos, and I nurse him as he dozes off, and I go to put him to sleep . . . . at which point, he melts down. Shrieking, hollering, yelling, hysterics. For about an hour. The poor guy is just so over-tired, he can't let himself go to sleep. Sunday night was tough, but the crying was minimal - he started to get upset, I made a "swing" out of my lap and swayed him back and forth until he fell asleep. It took close to 1 hour to get him to sleep, but it was relatively painless. Monday night, we were off to a great start. I tried putting him to sleep earlier, but once again, hysteria hit. This time, he was loud and sobbing. I tried the makeshift swing, but no joy. My mom tried rocking him, but no joy. We finally decided to try a food coma . . . I tried nursing him, but there was not much left, and it was not coming out fast enough for him, so we made him a bottle. He took about 1 ounce, and food coma finally took hold! After that, my mom was able to rock him and sing to him, and he drifted off to la-la land and slept through the night.

Tonight, my original plan was to give him his medicine on the plane, to nurse him while we waited for the bags, and then hope he fell asleep in the car on the way home and just put him straight to bed. Well . . . things did not quite work out as I had planned. We left for the airport a bit late, so I was about 1/2 hour late nursing him. That half hour proved to be critical - when we landed 10 minutes early and our bags were waiting for us as we came up to baggage claim, it was about 1/2 hour too early to nurse him again. We decided to head home and do the bedtime routine there. DH was picking us up . . . and it took him another 15 minutes to get to us. By the time we got home, Micah had hit over-tired again. We got him ready for bed, I nursed him . . . . and then the hysteria hit again. He screamed for 1 hour and 40 minutes. DH & I tag-teamed, singing, shaking, rocking. He would calm down, and then he would wake himself up and start screaming again. Around 9:30 I tried nursing him again while DH fixed up a bottle. By the time DH got upstairs with the bottle, Micah was sound asleep. Hopefully, he'll sleep through the night, and tomorrow night will be better.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Three Month Photo

With all the craziness going on, I neglected to post about Micah's 3 month photo shoot. At our second month photo shoot, Micah arrived just in time for his feeding. We had to feed him, change his diaper, and basically waste an hour trying to get him in the right frame of mind. Ultimately, it worked - the February pictures were gorgeous! This month, I decided I could time things better. I knew Micah's eating and sleeping schedule, and I was sure I could get him napping and get out the door in perfect time to wake up happy and content for the photos.

Silly me! Micah was hell bent on NOT napping (not really a shock, since we did decide to take his pictures on Friday the 13th). The feeding timing worked out perfectly, and Micah was finally crashing just in time to go in his carseat and drive to the mall. Except . . . DH was running late. So Micah sat in the carseat ready to sleep, but progressively got pissy that we weren't going anywhere. We finally got out the door, and Micah fell asleep in the car. Unfortunately, because we only had 20 minutes until the photo session, his nap was cut short. Had we left on time, he would have had a nice long nap.

We went inside to take the pictures. Micah looked adorable in his outfit! The only problem . . . he wouldn't smile. In fact, he kept crying any time we removed his paci. We had a hard time getting a good picture of him. In fact, we only were able to get one good picture - but what a winner!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Adventures in Traveling, Part 2

Well, we finally made it back from LA, and Micah finally crashed at 10:30 on Saturday night. He slept until 7:00 am, and the day started off normally. I really thought that we were back on track, and I was so proud of Micah for switching back to East Coast time. Sunday afternoon, we headed back to the airport to fly to Atlanta. We got there in plenty of time, made it on the plane, and all was good.

Once again, Micah was a trooper. He napped well all morning, and he was happy and cooing on the airplane. I nursed him as we took off, and he was content the rest of the flight. We were able to bring his car seat on the plane with us, so he had some place to relax. We landed a bit early in Atlanta, and off we went to baggage claim. Our bags came out immediately, we stood in line to pick up our rental car, and the man driving the bus to the rental car facility was so nice - he helped us with our bags and getting Micah on the bus.

We arrived at the hotel a little after 5. Check-in went smoothly, and I fed Micah again while we unpacked. We then decided to head out for an early dinner. Our initial plan was to eat at a restaurant called Camille's. My mom and I had eaten there together back in the early 90s when I was in college in Atlanta, and we were excited to return there. I called the restaurant to make sure they were open . . . only to discover that the restaurant had closed! We were disappointed, so we headed to Lettuce Souprise You instead. I spent many a day eating there during my college years. It was a nice, quick, filling meal, and we were able to drive around the Emory campus afterwards. We stopped at Publix to get some snacks and water, then came back to the hotel.

Micah was just getting sleepy as I came upstairs. He giggled and smiled as I changed him and put him in his pajamas. I gave him his medicine, and started to nurse him. About halfway through (just as he was beginning to fall asleep) there was a loud knock on the door. It was the concierge with our refrigerator. I had to pull Micah off, and he became hysterical. Unfortunately, it was downhill from there. Micah became over-tired, and we never quite recovered. I tried putting him in the pack-n-play to sleep, and he became hysterical. Every time we calmed him down, something set him off again. I finally sat down on a chair, put my legs on the ottoman, bent my knees up, and made a seat for Micah against my thighs. I moved my legs back and forth just like his swing at home . . . and about 15 minutes later, he was sound asleep. We were able to transfer him to the pack-n-play, and there he sleeps . . . snoring quietly.

Wish us luck! We have 2 days here in Atlanta before we head home on Tuesday. We will be arriving at home just in time for bed. I'm hoping we can get Micah back on a schedule. I am a bit concerned about feeding him, though. A few ounces of the milk I had packed leaked, and I had to nurse him again around 9:00, so I don't think I'll be able to pump as much milk as I had planned to pump before going to sleep. I just hope we have enough to get through tomorrow!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Adventures in Traveling

We had quite a week! On Monday, I was determined to get everything ready for our trip early. No last-minute scrambling and staying up all night because of my procrastination. I made DH promise he would also get everything together, and our goal was to be packed and ready to go by midnight. Although our flight was not until 1:15 the following afternoon, I was concerned about being ready because we had an activity planned for the morning - session #2 of our baby tour program. Our activity for the day was a meeting with a relationship counselor and a photo session with a photographer. I was determined to time everything right so that Micah was wide awake and happy for his pictures (unlike our 3 month photo session disaster . . . but I digress). My plan was to wake up in the morning, be out the door by 10, and have DH pick us up after class so we could go straight to the airport. I figured if I was ready to go by midnight, I could go to sleep after pumping and have a relatively calm and easy morning for a change.

I was so impressed with myself! Before Micah went to bed, I pulled out all of his outfits, folded them, and gathered all of his other items. I also made a list of everything else that needed to be packed, for both of us. Shortly after Micah went to bed, I finished up my laundry. Right before sorting my outfits for packing, I detoured to the bathroom. While I was in there, all of the sudden I felt strange . . . and blood began to GUSH out of my nose and down my throat.

I called to DH, and we tried squeezing my nose, leaning back in a chair, ice on the bridge of my nose . . . everything. I called my mom, and she said I should go to the hospital. Like every mature adult, I realized she was correct. I also knew I had no time to go to the hospital, pack, and still make my trip. So, I decided that I was going to will the bleeding to stop and go about my business. It was a LONG night, but 2 1/2 hours later, I finally got the bleeding to stop. I was exhausted, and took a bit of a nap.

Naturally, it was 2:00 am when I woke up. I still had to pump, and because of the prior drama, I had not done any packing. It was 4:30 am before I finished everything . . . just in time for Micah to begin fussing. I didn't get ANY sleep before he woke up at 6 ready to eat. I ended up finishing the packing, and we got out the door for our class at 10. DH came to pick me up right at 11:15, and off we went to the airport.

The trip out was uneventful . . . except my little guy refused to sleep. Seriously refused to sleep. He was awake for over 11 hours straight. He started to get a bit fussy at times because he was over-tired. He woke up at 7:00 am ET, and he napped 3 times for a total of maybe 20 minutes, and he went to bed at 8:30 PT. Of course, despite my intention to keep him on East Coast time, he decided he preferred California time. I sure hope we have an easy time switching back!

Micah woke up the next day happy. We played, he napped, he was really quite wonderful! We ran around all day, and he was just adorable - not a single peep from him! It turns out, Micah was not the source of my California drama. While we were there, we stayed the first 2 nights with an old family friend of mine. We spent Wednesday shopping, and I left Micah with DH. Then we met a law school friend of mine for lunch, and DH and Micah joined us. After lunch, DH took Micah on a long walk back to my friend's house, and they hung out and relaxed by the pool with her dog.


While DH & Micah spent time together, my friend and I went for a manicure/pedicure. We had just finished and paid, when all of the sudden . . . the blood came gushing again out of nowhere! I knew it meant I had to go see a doctor. The ladies at the shop were great - they were cleaning me off as the blood was gushing - I couldn't believe how helpful they were! While we were deciding which hospital, my friend suddenly remembered that she knew an ENT. Luckily, he was willing to see us. As we drove across town through terrible traffic, the bleeding stopped.

The ENT was wonderful! He was so sweet, and he immediately found the source of the bleed. He decided to irritate the spot so that he could confirm it. Unfortunately, it started gushing again. The ENT was surprised by how much blood. He decided that it was bleeding too much to cauterize, and he numbed my nose so that he could pack it instead. Somehow, the numbing agent slowed down the bleeding, and I was able to get my nosebleed cauterized.

We decided to stay in that evening and make dinner. Micah went to bed right on cue at 7:00 pm, and he didn't make a single peep all night. We had a wonderful dinner (and we made smores sitting by an outdoor fire pit). The next morning, we woke up and headed off to my conference. Well, it took us 2 attempts to leave . . . DH forgot Micah's bottle at the house, so we needed to turn around to pick it back up again.

When we got to the hotel, we were upgraded to a suite! I went to see the exhibits, and took a few meetings. DH also met with another consultant and took care of Micah. It was actually a productive day for me. I think I might have landed another client or two, so the conference was well worth the trip. The suite was perfect for us - it allowed us to put Micah to bed in one room while we watched tv in the other. We had a relaxing evening, then headed back to the airport in the morning.

The trip home was LONG. He was napping when we first arrived at the airport in LA:
We had a 3 hour layover in Denver, which just made the whole trip even longer. Here is Micah playing at the airport in Denver:

Micah was a real trooper - and so good. He was smiling and laughing almost the entire time. He had 2 or 3 periods of fussiness on the last leg of the trip. He was just over-tired, and he needed his medicine, and we were having trouble getting him comfortable. I think he was also sick of being held/confined. We landed at midnight, and Micah was so sweet while we waited for our luggage:

We didn't get home until almost 1:30 am. He slept most of the way home in the car, but woke up as we entered the house. I nursed him again, and he went straight to sleep.

He slept soundly until I finally woke him at 9:45 this morning. I was afraid to wake him earlier since he had been so exhausted. His day has been all screwed up today . . . . . . but he has still been cute and playful when he is awake. Today we tried him sitting in the Bumbo seat:

I tried putting him to bed at 8:30, but he really wouldn't fall asleep. I ended up bringing him back downstairs and he chilled on the playmat and is now currently asleep in the swing. I'll have to figure out how to get him upstairs and figure out if he needs to eat again. I'm hoping we can get him back on schedule by tomorrow. I think I'm going to wake him up by 8:00 am no matter what tomorrow.

Tomorrow I'm off to Atlanta for work! Micah is becoming quite the traveler. My mom is joining me this time - I have 2 days of meetings. I'll update when I can!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

An anniversary

It was one year ago today that I began my lupron shots, signaling the official start to my IVF cycle. I began birth control pills on March 1, but for me, the beginning of the injections was the first "real" start to my IVF. It had been a rough year for me. Last year, I desperately wanted a child, and I feared that I would never be able to get pregnant on my own. I was so sad, I was sick of being crushed by the BFN every month, and I was sick of facing down my needle phobia and injecting my body full of drugs. I was dreading facing another Mother's Day wondering if I would ever be a mother. But, to paraphrase a cycle buddy, my desire to have a child was greater than my needle phobia and my fear of failing.

In my head, we had three tries at IVF. I was terrified of something going wrong, and I was terrified to find out that maybe my body just wasn't capable of carrying a baby. I wanted it to work so badly, and I was afraid of the total devastation that I thought would happen if it failed. I was so emotional. DH & I were talking about adoption because I didn't believe we'd ever get pregnant, and we had discussed both donor sperm and donor eggs if we were told IVF couldn't work because of one or the other of us. I just knew I wanted to be a mom, to raise a human being and offer him or her love and security. I felt like I had so much to offer, and just needed a chance to help guide someone into this world. I guess a part of me feels like there is so much bad in this world, that teaching a human to feel loved and to love, to be good and to do good, has to help tip the balance towards good in this world.

Infertility took a toll on me . . . I am not the same person I was before we went through our struggles. Perhaps I am better or stronger, but perhaps not. Infertility stole a little of the joy from me, and made me fear so much during my pregnancy. Infertility took a lot of the joy out of making a baby. Infertility has me dreading the prospect of TTC again. Infertility made me cry many, many nights, and made me resent so many people for getting pregnant so easily. I still get a twinge when I see that my friends have kids that are older than ours and it reminds me that it was so much harder for me.

But, infertility taught me how to fight. And it taught me how to put on a fake smile and push through the hard times. Infertility taught me how to look for a silver lining, and find joy in other ways when I couldn't achieve joy how I'd planned. Infertility taught me that I can get through anything, and that good things can come out of bad times. I'm not saying it wasn't difficult, and I'm not saying it didn't hurt . . . but I learned I can cope. I learned I can live with disappointment, and I learned that even though at times it started to take over, I could be more than just "infertile."

Now, as I sit here looking at my little guy, I'm overwhelmed. I went through so much, and I am not sure he will ever truly understand all of the joy he brought to my life. I know how lucky I am to have him, and I know that I would not trade an instant of anything I went through if it meant Micah would not be a part of my life.

So, yes, I am an infertility survivor. I am not sure what lies ahead for us when we embark on our journey to conceive #2, and I am filled with dread and worry that there will never be a #2, or that we will have to do IVF again, but I do know that I can face it.

To all you ladies out there dealing with infertility . . . treatments, IVF, IUI, medicines, and losses . . . . hang in there. Fight your fight, and find your path. Wherever your path leads you, you will make it through and you will find happiness on the other end. I cannot promise everyone that we will all get pregnant . . . but I know we can all find our way to happiness.

I am not a religious person . . . I have a strong set of beliefs, and a strong Jewish identity (more in the cultural sense than in the religious sense), but I recently read something posted by a fellow SK poster, and it spoke to me, so I am going to post it here. She said that G-d has 3 answers to our prayers:
  1. Yes
  2. Not yet
  3. I have something better for you.
Perhaps all those months of BFNs are really just "not yet" or "there is something better." I sure hope so.

Friday, March 13, 2009

More Micah Video

Stay tuned for today's installment of Micah video . . . for those of you novices out there, press play (the triangle in the lower left hand corner of each of the videos).

video

video

I wasn't ready for the call.

I've been cranking and complaining for weeks now about how difficult it is to get my work done, and how we need to figure out a childcare solution, and how I wouldn't mind some free time to just get my life back and focus on my work. We have been on the wait list at 3 different daycare centers since June of last year. Today, one of them called and said they have an opening for us, immediately, for Mondays and Fridays.

After all of that . . . I'm feeling incredibly ambivalent about putting him in daycare. I guess I kind of hoped I could make it to 6 months before we had to put him in daycare. And part of me would really prefer to hire a nanny who will watch him in the house so I can come and go as I please and have him right here. But, the nanny option may not be reasonable, and we haven't yet called any of the in-home child care centers. We are talking to a few different people about a possible nanny-share option.

So . . . back to the daycare call. I'm feeling ridiculous! We are only talking about maybe putting him there 3-5 hours on Mondays and Fridays to test the waters and see if that works for us. I should be excited, right? And yet . . . I feel kind of sad. I never intended to be a stay at home mom, but part of me is feeling that no one else will teach him and nurture him like I can. I'm so concerned that putting him in daycare this young will somehow stunt his development. I'm sure every mom goes through this. I've seen so many kids whose parents put them in daycare thrive - I guess it is just harder to process when it is YOUR baby. I hate the thought of him being ignored - what if they don't talk to him or play with him enough? What if he doesn't hear "I love you" enough? Somehow, once they are 6 months old . . . sitting up, playing with stuff, it doesn't seem to bother me as much. But right now . . . he is still so little!

I wish I could do it all!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Oh my goodness, I've become my mother . . . and other ramblings.

Yes, it is true - the other day I unwittingly became my mother. I was sitting with Micah, and he had all this crap around his mouth. I didn't hesitate - in fact, I didn't even think about it - I licked my thumb and used it to wipe the schmutz off his face. I was horrified! I immediately called my mom and confessed, but as of the other day . . . I'm one of "those" moms - and I'm now MY mom.

It is funny how we do what is familiar - I find myself saying things I know my mother said to me. Not the stuff I swore I'd never say, but the comforting things I also remember from my childhood. Some of it I haven't thought of in years, and I never realized it could still buried in the recesses of my mind. But, somehow, the phrases are there . . . and they just naturally roll off of my tongue.

I'm kind of feeling like writing another "things I've learned" post and "things I don't want to forget." So, I think I will.

THINGS I'VE LEARNED:
  • Poop can blow out every end of the diaper . . . simultaneously. Always have a spare outfit in the diaper bag, and lots of wipes.
  • At a minimum, a diaper bag should contain: 3-5 diapers, a change of clothes, desitin (or balmex or butt paste), a receiving blanket (or other blanket for your LO to play on or get wrapped in when needed), plastic bags (preferably the biodegradable ones) for wrapping up dirty diapers when you can't throw them out, extra formula/bottles with water OR a hooter hider if you breastfeed, a bib, an extra pacifier if you have a paci-sucker, a portable changing pad, and wipes. If your child takes medicine (like for acid reflux) always have a dose on hand, just in case! As they get older, snacks and toys should be added to the list. Let me know if you have any other "must" haves!
  • You have to experiment with the swaddle - sometimes babies like them tight, sometimes they like them loose, sometimes they learn to escape. With persistence, you can try to continually outsmart their efforts at becoming the next Houdini.
  • It is so important to get out there and connect with other mommies. Breastfeeding support groups, Mommy & Me classes, story hours, exercise classes . . . whatever you can find. I recommend checking out community centers, libraries, hospital programs, churches/synagogues, and Gymborees to find the right programs for you. Once you connect with one or two people, it is amazing how many more things you will learn - the "hot" spots to take kids, products you should try, places to play, mommy-friendly locations, daycare advice . . . and most of all, other people who are going through the same thing and just *get* it. I learned that many breastfeeding women use dressing rooms in clothing stores to go breastfeed their children. I never would have thought of that! And Nordstrom's apparently has a baby play area - I've heard people spend hours there.
  • Get out of the house. Often, and sometimes alone. It can all be overwhelming when you relegate yourself to the house.
  • Be flexible. Babies are not likely to be scheduled. It is okay if they don't do what you think they "should" be doing . . . like napping in a crib. It is more important to find a system that works for you than to do it the way it is written in a book. Set very loose goals (like making sure there is enough napping so that the baby is not over-tired) and worry less about how you are achieving them.
  • Keep trying new things. Sometimes, repeat old things that didn't work the first time. You just never know.
  • Listen . . . to all kinds of advice . . . but take it all with a grain of salt. Sometimes, what works for some people will not work for you. But sometimes it will. Try what feels right, discard the rest.
  • Try to enjoy the time you have - it is precious, and it does pass so quickly.
  • Trust your instincts . . . you KNOW when there is something wrong, and if you get a crazy idea that you think might work, it just might.
  • Don't be afraid to call for help . . . doctors, friends, support groups, lactation consultants, family. Sometimes you just need a break. Sometimes things that SHOULD be intuitive aren't.
  • If you are breastfeeding, giving a pacifier or a bottle will not destroy your baby or ruin breastfeeding . . . babies are amazingly flexible if you train them to be.
  • If breastfeeding is challenging, you have 2 choices . . . . switch to bottle-feeding (and there is NOTHING wrong with that option) or push through it and it SHOULD get easier. Whatever you pick, the decision will be right for you.
  • Routines are important. . . for bedtime, for napping, etc. Routines are NOT the same as schedules. Start a bedtime routine relatively early. We started around 8 weeks. We have a baby who sleeps through the night and has since 8 weeks. Not all babies WILL sleep through the night, no matter what you do. Just keep trying. For us, I found frequent day feedings (every 2 - 2 1/2 hours) helped. We started regular feeds throughout the day, and then (once he hit his birth weight) started letting him go as long as he wanted during 1 nighttime period. We slowly started doing that for 2 stretches at night.
  • If you have a lot of evening fussiness, and feeding it away doesn't work . . . consider that maybe your baby is tired. That was a totally eye-opening experience for us.
  • It is normal to feel like you are doing a bad job . . . to feel like you don't know how to play with your little one, and to have days when all you want to do is give them to someone else for a little while.
THINGS I DON'T WANT TO FORGET
  • How he sits and stares at himself in the mirror - and laughs and giggles.
  • The way he smiles bigger for me than anyone else.
  • The way his eyes light up when he smiles . . . and the small dimple emerging on his cheek when he laughs.
  • How he kicks and bobs in the swaddle as he slides down his incline sleeper . . . and the ways he can Houdini out of the swaddle.
  • His surprise when he sees something that interests him.
  • The way he smells . . . just sort of fresh and sweet.
  • The cooing sounds that make my heart melt.
  • How he grabs my hands so tightly and holds on.
  • They way he grabs my hair when I'm breastfeeding him.
  • The way he tightly curls his hands up.
  • The way he kicks and fights and shrieks when he is angry or wants something.
  • The worried expression on his face sometimes when he is getting upset.
  • How he snuggles up on me as he is going to bed.
  • How he calms down when I start singing to him.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Fun Day!

Today was a really great day . . . aside from the fact that Micah woke up at 4:00 am and wanted to nurse. I think he got himself a bit worked up with the swaddle, and I sent DH in to take care of it. Somehow, the visit with DH got Micah riled up instead of soothed, and he ended up very awake and upset. I went in and nursed him, and he fell back asleep until 8:00 am. I got up, fed and dressed Micah, then spent the rest of the morning (until 12:30) doing work (with one more break to nurse Micah at 10:00). I don't think I've mentioned this before, but for the past few Tuesdays, I have been taking Micah over to the library. One of the librarians runs a story and song hour, and we've been having fun singing "Peek-a-Boo" and "The Grand Old Duke of York" and "Bouncing Baby." Since I was caught up doing work and on a conference call, DH decided to take Micah over to the public library around 10:30 so he could still enjoy story hour.

Here was the only "blip" in our day. DH was supposed to come back immediately after the story hour so I had time to nurse Micah again and get our stuff together for our class. Today was the first session of a new 6-week program we are starting. Through this program, we will attend 6 different kid-friendly locations, classes and activities in the area to "sample" the available options in our area. Our first session was a sing-along class. The instructor offers a regular 8 week sing-along class for babies 3 months old and up. Needless to say, DH got a bit distracted on the way home, and decided to detour to the bank and the grocery store. It was after 12:30 when he got back, and I had to immediately grab Micah, jump in the car, and go. Naturally, Micah was hungry, so he shrieked and screamed the ENTIRE way to class. I was pretty upset, and felt terrible that he was so hungry because DH didn't get him home in enough time to nurse.

We finally got to class, and I grabbed Micah and raced inside to nurse him quickly. As I put my hand on his cute little bottom . . . I realized that Micah had poop EVERYWHERE. He was shrieking and screaming, and he was a mess. I made it inside, and before I could feed him, I needed to change him . . . from head to toe. Luckily, I had a spare outfit in the diaper bag (of course, it was newborn sized, and Micah is now wearing 0-3 months, so it was a bit small). After finally getting him changed, I nursed him during the beginning of class. Once he was clean and fed, he calmed down and was all smiles! We enjoyed the class, and we are thinking of signing up for the next music class session (a few of our new friends are already attending).

After class, we headed home. I fed Micah again and he took a nice long nap while I did some cleaning. I also changed over Micah's closets/dressers - I took all of the newborn/preemie clothing out, and I pulled all of the 0-3 month stuff out and hung it up. DH had to head out to a meeting, so I bathed Micah, fed him, and put him to bed. Micah had a little trouble staying asleep - he slept about 40 minutes and woke up again - I nursed him a bit more, and he seems to be out for the night.

So, all-in-all, a productive day. Tomorrow, I have more conference calls in the morning (and some work I need to finish tonight) and then I hope to head out to the breastfeeding support group in the afternoon with Micah. Hopefully, each day I'll be able to find a bit more time to get my work done.

Next week, we are off and traveling again (for my work). We are flying out to LA for another conference (and sneaking in a quick visit with some friends). DH may have to fly up to Seattle for the day while we are there. Then we come back home on Friday, and on Sunday I turn around and leave for Atlanta until Tuesday night. I'll be bringing my mom to Atlanta to help out with Micah. Wish us luck! I'm a bit nervous all of this traveling is totally going to disrupt Micah's wonderful sleep schedule.

Happy Purim!

Last night, Micah celebrated his first Purim! For those of you who are not familiar with this holiday, Purim is a Jewish holiday that commemorates our triumph over Haman, who attempted to massacre all of the Jews in Shushan, an ancient city in Persia. Each year, we read the Book of Esther (also known as the Megillah), which tells the story of Esther, and how she went to her husband, King Achashverosh (who did not know she was Jewish) to tell him of Haman's plot and ask him to save her people. The King supported Esther, and ended up sentencing Haman to death for his murderous plot. Purim is a fun holiday - it is celebrated by dressing in costumes (often costumes of the characters from the Megillah) and eating hamentaschen (triangular shaped cookies filled with fruit jelly that represent the hat Haman wore). When the Megillah is recited, participants make noise, boo, and shake groggers (noisemakers) every time the name Haman is mentioned to prevent that terrible name from being heard.

Our synagogue put on quite a show - they took Billy Joel songs and rewrote them to tell the story of Purim. It was a wild event, and Micah was in awe of all the noise, people and costumes. We went over at 6:30 to go to the children's service . . . unfortunately, the woman in charge did a horrible job. At 7:30, we headed over to the main service. Micah lasted about 1/2 hour before the stimulation became a bit much for him. I took him home, fed him, and off to sleep he went!

Here is a picture of Micah at Purim (wearing his kippah that his grammy crocheted):

Don't you just love that he has enough hair to wear a kippah? Oh . . . and I am definitely a bad mother . . . it never occurred to me to get a costume for Micah.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Back to the RE I went!

Yes, I know it is soon, but today I went back to my RE for another appointment. No, we are not about to start trying again. This visit was for Frank. Remember Frank? Cranky Frank, my fibroid? Well, I was told that if I want to try and have another baby, I will probably need surgery to kill Frank. So, I figured I'd go get Frank checked out nice and early, and it would give me time to schedule my surgery when it is convenient for me, and give me plenty of time to heal before we start ttc'ing again.

My RE was great! He wants to set up a saline ultrasound for the end of the month, send DH back for another s/a to see where we are in terms of the MFI. Depending on the u/s, he will either recommend surgery or not, and we'll take it from there.

He said it was a good thing I came in now so we can do this in a leisurely manner. So . . . I guess I'll already be starting with a trip to the magic wand :(. It was kind of surreal to be back there. A lot of the old feelings came rushing back the minute I pulled into the parking lot. It is hard to imagine that 1 year ago today I was on bcps for my IVF.

I guess in a sense, I took my first step today towards TTC #2. Scary!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

My day off

Today was my first "day off" since having Micah. I was SOOO excited to have a day for me, but I was also feeling a little guilty for being so excited at the same time.

Naturally, Micah had a horrible night Friday night. We are struggling with the swaddle . . . he is big enough and strong enough now that he has a tendency to break out of his swaddle and wake himself up . . . but if we don't swaddle him, he can't fall asleep or stay asleep. It's quite a dilemma! Friday night, we tried to leave him unswaddled, but he couldn't fall into a deep sleep. After about 2 hours of running up every 10-20 minutes to adjust him and put in his paci, we decided to swaddle him. Off he went to sleep . . . until about 4:00 am (right as I was trying to fall asleep). Once again, he slid down the incline sleeper, so we had to go in and raise him back up. Of course, once we readjusted him, he was restless and tried to break out of his swaddle. We had another one or two trips in to re-swaddle him and re-insert the paci, but by 4:30, DH was unconscious. At 5:00 in the morning, I was ready to tear my hair out because I still had not had the opportunity to doze off yet and Micah was apparently wide awake. I decided to grab the incline sleeper and try and bring him into bed with us. I left his arms free, and tried to go to sleep.

No such luck - Micah was decidedly awake and unhappy. I thought that perhaps he realized he was hungry once he woke up, so I nursed him. About 5 minutes later, he was sound asleep. It took me another 15-20 mins, but I moved him to the sleeper, and off to sleep I went. Right on cue at 6:00 am (about 10 minutes after I'd FINALLY fallen asleep), Micah woke up again. Since he was in bed with us, I had no luck just popping the pacifier back in and hoping he'd fall back to sleep. So, I nursed him again, this time a full feeding. Unfortunately, after he ate, Micah wanted to play. He was happy and smiling, as long as I was up and talking to him. I, of course, was exhausted - that is my sleepiest time of day, and all I wanted to do was go to sleep. Over the next hour, Micah managed to dirty 2 diapers and keep me grudgingly awake. I woke DH up to take care of one of the diapers, but he could barely function. I finally got Micah back to sleep around 7, dozed off myself around 7:30, and Micah woke up at 7:45, ready to eat again! I tried putting him off for 15 minutes, but finally gave up and nursed him again just before 8:00. It was clear Micah was wide awake, so I brought him to his bedroom, changed ANOTHER dirty diaper, got him dressed, and brought him downstairs. We played and sang and cuddled (and changed another 2 dirty diapers), and around 9:00 he started to get sleepy. I placed him in the swing, and off to sleep he went for about 30 minutes.

In that time, I took my meds, made breakfast, and got together all of the supplies DH needed for the day and walked the dog. At 9:30, I took Micah, played with him, and woke DH to get ready. DH made it downstairs just after 10, and off they went to services. I had just enough time to get myself ready and head out for my day.

I ran up to the framing store to get DH's autograped Peter Max re-framed (a belated Chanukah gift for him). I then went to my condo to meet the contractor to discuss the work we are having done there. Then, I came running back here to meet my friend to go out to celebrate her birthday! We went to the local crepe shop, and we shared strawberry and chocolate crepes . . . YUM! It is a little tradition we have shared for many, many years. After the crepes, I took a brief pumping break, and then we went to see Slumdog Millionaire. It was a wonderful movie! It was the first time I've been able to enjoy a movie since before Micah was born (with all the contractions and UTIs, I couldn't sit still at a movie). After the movie, I headed back home, pumped again, and then got some cuddle time with my Micah. All-in-all, it was a great day, and definitely gave me a bit of freedom.

The pumping didn't go quite as well as I had hoped - Micah ate 11.5 ounces while I was out, and I only managed to pump 7.5 ounces. I have heard that pumping takes time . . . my body might respond better if I developed a consistent pumping schedule for a few weeks, but I guess I'm not ready to risk that. Perhaps when I am ready to give up breastfeeding, I could try that out. In the meantime, I am trying to sneak in an extra pumping session tonight to make up for the "lost" 4 ounces - I'm so afraid of my supply crashing! Tomorrow, DH & I are going to see a show while my mom babysits. I'll have to pump again in there, and I hope that I don't cause supply problems doing all of this. I wish I was more of a "fountain" and could pump a ton every time I sat down. I may need to try renting the hospital grade pump again to see if that helps. In the meantime, I think getting away for a bit was an important step. Micah was so happy to see me when I came home, DH got to have some great bonding time with him, and I had a chance to miss him terribly while I was out recharging and paying attention to me.

Goal for next week - get a manicure and a pedicure. . . . and maybe a massage. And perhaps I should pick one or two days every week when I pump and hand Micah off to someone else.

Friday, March 6, 2009

25 Random Things About Me

Many of you have seen this going around Facebook, but I thought I'd post it on this blog. Once you've been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. If you are reading this and ALSO have a blog, I urge you to post your 25 random things on your blog, too, and then post a comment here so I know to go read your post, too.

1 - I do not use public restrooms unless it is an absolute emergency. I hate germs, and I would rather let my bladder explode than go into a public restroom. Being pregnant made this quite challenging, but I still managed to avoid public restrooms to the maximum extent possible. One time, my aversion to restrooms got me into trouble when a friend who was picking me up from the airport made a wrong turn, and I ended up having to use an awful, disgusting restroom off of the run by the park services. Ewww!!!

2 - I hate mustard - I think it is the most abhorrent substance on earth.

3 - I think fruit and milk should not be mixed. Something about the milk combined with the acidity of the fruit changes the flavor into something . . . awful.

4 - I hate stupidity. I mean REALLY hate stupidity. I am amazed that the world contains so many stupid people.

5 - I hate seeing grammatical errors and spelling errors in e-mail communications to me. I do not understand how people cannot tell the difference between THERE and THEIR, or WHICH and THAT, or WHO and WHOM. I do not understand why people think that the word definitely has an "A" in it. I once broke up with a guy I was dating long-distance because his letters contained too many errors and it made me crazy. I told that story to DH the day we met, and apparently I scared him so much he spent hours composing his first e-mail to me and double-checking his spelling about a dozen times before sending it to me.

6 - I don't sleep. Well, I sleep some, but I rarely sleep more than 4-5 hours a night, and I can go days at a time without sleeping at all. I don't understand people who go to bed at 10:00 pm and sleep until 7 or 8:00 am. I don't think I've ever slept 8 consecutive hours in my life. I once had a 2 week period in which I slept fewer than 5 hours.

7 - I'm a compulsive reader. I cannot just pick up a book and read a chapter, then put it down. If I start a book, I will keep reading it until I'm finished. I will skip plans, fail to do work, and refuse to leave the house. So, I've had to curb my reading in recent years so it doesn't interfere with me being a productive member of society.

8 - I actually don't care what other people think of me. I know I can be abrasive at times, and I generally don't mean to offend people (okay, there are times when I do intentionally try to offend people, but I'm pretty up front about that) and I will apologize if I've done something offensive and it is brought to my attention, but it really doesn't matter to me if someone likes me or not. I am perfectly fine with knowing there are people out there who do not like me.

9 - I like helping people. It doesn't matter the kind of help . . . school work, work projects, medical issues, a crossword puzzle, family problem, volunteer work. I tend to bend over backwards to help people even though I am awful at asking for help.

10 - Family and close friends mean everything to me. I prioritize family over everything else. I would drop everything to be there for any family member in a heartbeat, because I believe that is what you do for family. No questions asked. I love my family, and I'm so lucky to have such supportive parents who would do anything for me, and a brother who also adores me - despite what crap he might sometimes say. For as much as we can drive each other crazy at times, I know that we are always there for each other. I'm also amazed every day by how our family has grown - my brother's 2 adorable girls, and my new extended family - DH's brothers and sisters-in-law and their 4 wonderful children.

11 - I am a horrible procrastinator. I hate that I procrastinate and yet . . . I can't seem to stop myself from doing it. There isn't anything that I do in advance. I leave everything until the last minute - I guess I must work best under pressure. It drives me bonkers that I do that.

12 - I absolutely adore being a mom, and am totally crazy about Micah. But I've also found it challenging because I miss myself and I'm afraid of losing me while trying to be a mommy. I'm hoping to strike a balance and be both myself and a mom.

13 - While many people do not believe this, I actually DO work for a living, even though I work from home. I am an attorney by training, but no longer practice law in the traditional sense. I am now an advocate and a policy advisor, and I work on issues that help improve access to technology for people with disabilities. My clients are all over the country. I provide advice and counseling to several federally-funded national Technical Assistance programs, I work with a number of State Departments of Education, I assist several national disability organizations, I provide advice to technology companies on the accessibility of their products, and I work with companies that manufacture assistive technology.

14 - I never thought I would get married . . . not because I didn't believe it would happen, but because I actually never really thought I would ever want to get married. I told that to DH when I first met him, but he didn't listen to me.

15 - I have an adorable dog, a cocker spaniel/poodle mix. She is the biggest genetic lemon in the history of dogs - there is ALWAYS something wrong with her. I call her my million dollar dog because of the fortune I've spent on her medical bills . . . 4 surgeries and tons of medication, trips to specialists, special diets, etc. I wouldn't trade her for the world - I consider her my first baby, and I have no idea what I would do without her. She has been with me through some rough times in the past 11 years.

16 - I develop obsessions . . . I get fixated on something for months (or years) at a time, and that becomes my all-consuming hobby (or research project). I'll find internet boards with information on the topic, or I keep going to buy more supplies. The past few years, my obsessions have included knitting, crocheting, cake decorating, ttc (and my SK and FF obsession) and now breastfeeding and baby-raising. I love that DH takes an interest in my obsessions, and he will even feed my habit - ask me questions about what I've learned, or buy me more supplies (like an edible image printer). We have determined that we need a separate house for my cake-decorating supplies. And I haven't even baked anything in a few months! Just wait for Micah's first birthday . . . I'm already planning his cake.

17 - I'm allergic to coconut (and coconut oil). This is becoming an extremely inconvenient allergy. I have learned that all baby formula available commercially in the US contains coconut oil, and I break out into a nasty rash (and sometimes develop breathing issues) when I come into contact with the baby formula.

18 - I'm a night owl, always have been. This probably goes hand-in-hand with not sleeping, but I think the best time of day is late at night. I always laugh when people call me at 9 or 10 and say "am I calling too late?"

19 - I think obnoxious things all the time. I have a pretty good censor in my head that prevents about 95% of what I'm thinking from coming out of my mouth. So, if you think I'm obnoxious . . . you wouldn't like me with my censor broken.

20 - I once accidentally flushed my house keys down the toilet. Fourth of July back in 1999. If I could have stuck to my no public restrooms rule, it never would have happened! It was at a Cosi, and they have single stall bathrooms. Everyone was waiting in line and using the different stalls on a first-come, first-serve basis. I ended up in the stall marked "men's" and some drunken idiot saw me coming out, started ranting about how women were taking over the world and even the bathrooms, and he shoved me. I lost my balance, and fell back towards the toilet. As my keys were falling out of the pocket, I leaned back to grab something to steady myself . . . and found the handle to the toilet . . . and accidentally flushed it. It was terrible - I had not yet moved into my new condo, and my car was locked in the building (because my car keys were in the condo) and no one in the building knew me yet. I ended up leaving my friends because they couldn't stop laughing at the situation (which I knew I would also find amusing in about 24 hours) and had to take public transportation and figure out how to get in touch with my parents and have them meet me to pay my fare so I could get OUT of the station and spend the night in a bed at their house.

21 - I'm a sap. I cry at all kinds of cheesey things on tv and in the theatre. It doesn't take much to make me cry.

22 - I have a guilty pleasure . . . I watch cheesey love stories on tv (often on the Lifetime Movie Network). I can't help it - I have to see ALL of the new ones as they come out. And I'll watch them over and over again.

23 - I'm a feminist and I don't think it is a dirty word. I believe that men and women are equal, that men and women are capable of doing the same things (biological functions aside) and that men and women should be paid the same amount for the same work. I do not believe all the crap about how men and women learn differently - I think societal differences influence that. I was offended when some of the feminists started saying that women do not do well in law school because women can't learn competitively. I think PEOPLE learn differently, and some women learn well competitively and some men do, but if you don't, well, don't go to law school. It is a competitive field and adversarial in nature - if you can't take it, find a different career path.

24 - Despite my strong feminist side, I have a domestic side . . . I like to cook and bake, and I like to knit and crochet - I just don't believe I should HAVE to do any of that because I am a woman.

25 - I am not generally a very social person. I can withdraw from interactions for weeks at a time. I can't stand being out all day and then going out at night, too. I need to go home for long periods of time to "recharge." I very much need alone time, and miss it desperately. Facebook and other computer based communications are wonderful for me - I can keep up with people when I don't have the bandwidth without having to interact for long extended periods. Before these things, I would lose track of friends because of all the energy it takes to keep in touch with people.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Picture Time . . .

Well, here is another picture post. I have so many good pictures of Micah from the last week or so that I had to share. My favorite picture, by far, is the last one . . . yesterday morning, we went in to wake Micah up at 9:00 am (yes, that is right. . . . he slept over 12 hours that night, and we had to go IN to wake him up to feed him), and I found him this way . . . on his side, arms broken out of the swaddle, paci in his mouth, and using the incline sleeper as just a pillow. I could see on my video monitor that he had slid down and broken out, but his head looked free of blanket and he was quiet, so I didn't bother to go in and disturb him earlier. It took us another 10 minutes to wake him up! He was quite comfy and cozy. Enjoy.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

The things they don't tell you

At the risk of sounding as if I'm complaining about motherhood, I am about to blog about all the things "they" don't tell you about motherhood. Make no mistake - I LOVE my Micah, and I LOVE being a mommy. Micah is absolutely adorable, and I'm constantly amazed by how he is growing and developing. He has the most wonderful smile - every time I see it light up his face, my heart melts.

So . . . back to the point of my blog - the things they don't tell you about having a baby.

BREASTFEEDING. I've mentioned this a bunch of times, but breastfeeding is not easy. Let's start with the fact that latching should be easy, but it isn't always. Then, factor in issues of supply. Then move on to the demand factor - you have to be the one completely available to your little one 24 hours a day to provide for his/her eating needs. When you are exhausted, or overwhelmed, or sick, YOU still have to be the primary one responsible for feeding your baby. It is an enormous responsibility, and there is very little feedback to reassure you that you are doing it right. Taking time off? Not really an option - even if you step away, you still have to make sure to pump enough to keep the supply up. I think bottle-feeding moms really do have an advantage because they gain far more independence and can much more easily share this responsibility with a spouse.

PLAYING. It sounds strange, but I'm never sure that I am playing with Micah enough . . . or stimulating his brain development sufficiently. Sometimes it is hard to figure out what to do, and I always feel like I am not doing enough. Other times, I just want to sit quietly with him, and I wonder if I'm wasting precious moments when I should be teaching him something. I have no idea whether we are supposed to fill every waking second (when they are not eating) with learning.

IDENTITY. I blogged about this before, but I really feel like I've lost myself a bit. My whole life now revolves around this little tiny life, and sometimes I feel like I've lost me. I'm working hard to find me again and re-establish that balance, but it is much harder than I realized.

INDEPENDENCE. I find it difficult to go out for extended periods of time. Much of this may have to do with the fact I am breastfeeding, but it is difficult to figure out how to leave Micah for long stretches of time. Even figuring out how to pump when I am out is challenging. As a result, I feel like I do not have time to get things done . . . either my work, or even spending time with friends, or getting my nails done. I know that moms are able to balance this when they go back to work, but I guess I am a bit more nervous about testing the waters because we JUST got my supply established the past few weeks, and I'm so afraid of messing it all up. My goal over the next few weeks is to figure out how to give myself some space when I need it - maybe have a few days a week that we bottle feed Micah during the day to give me a bit of a break. I am really ready to be able to take the day off and either let DH have a full day with Micah or ask my parents to babysit. Now that he is sleeping through the night, it would be so easy to let him stay at his Grammy and Goppy's house overnight.

SEX. You hear all the time about how after a baby, there is no time (or sometimes interest) in having sex. What they don't tell you is that getting back to having sex is physically challenging. I mean, think about it. For those of us who have just had a vaginal birth, even the lucky ones have just inflicted some significant trauma on our hoo-has - we have done a fairly good job of tearing and ripping the area to pieces. Once you get beyond the healing, the things we don't think about are scar tissue, tightness, soreness from the healing process, and things not healing up the same way they were before. As most people do, we got the green light to resume normal sexual activity at 6 weeks. Try as we might, that task has been more challenging than we thought. We were quite proud of ourselves - we scheduled plenty of time, we arranged for our privacy (thanks to Micah for cooperating by going to bed early, in his own room, and sleeping through the night), and we "set the mood." And yet . . . things just still don't work correctly for me yet. It has taken us many attempts to even make it work, and . . . shall we say I've lost that loving feeling. I sure hope it comes back :(.

SLEEP. I'll throw a bone to the sleep deprivation factor, although I don't sleep much in the first place. I have to say, I did not think this would affect me at all, and I was amazed by how difficult the first few weeks were. With all of the feeding issues I was having, I really did not get ANY sleep in the beginning. They tell you to nap when the baby is napping, but if you are feeding every 2-3 hours from the START of a feed, and if the feeding takes over 1 hour, and then it takes another 15-20 minutes to pump (factoring in the setup and cleanup) . . . well, you are at 2 hours, and it is time to start over again! I would say I'm lucky - by the 2 week mark, Micah was sleeping 4-6 hours without interruption overnight, and that immediately gave me my normal sleep schedule back, so my sleep deprivation was short-lived.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Belated Post - 2 month appointment

I either forgot to post an update a few weeks ago about Micah's 2 month checkup . . . or I am so confused that I can't find the post! We took him in on February 16 and he weighed 9 lbs 5 ozs!! He is getting so big. We showed the doctor how he rolled over, and he was impressed by how strong our little guy is. He increased his dosage of Zantac, and then my little guy had his shots. Luckily, it was only 2 shots and an oral vaccine. He SHRIEKED so loudly, and he had this horrible sobbing cry - I've never heard him cry so intensely. He has had other shots, but this one seemed to hurt more. I think this nurse was a little rough icon_sad.gif. Right after the shot, I nursed him, and he seemed to calm down almost immediately. He slept most of the day (right through our Baby & Me class), and when he did wake up, he just cranked and cried. I held him close and fed him and rocked him back to sleep. He woke up around 7 pm and he was smiling and happy again, and he ended up sleeping through the night that night. We had a rough day the next day (mostly because we got off our napping schedule), but he bounced back pretty quickly. I hated seeing him hurt, but we were lucky - no real bruising.

Can I bitch?

Okay - I'm going to sound like a horrible person, but I'm a bit pissed about the rudeness of some people. First off, who decides it is a good idea to go visit a newborn baby when they are sick? Yes, I had friends over for brunch today . . . and my friend's husband AND 2 kids were sick. Not the "we just got over a cold" sick, but the full-out dripping green snot and sneezing everywhere kind of sick. Seriously? Did they really need to share their germs with us? After being here 40 minutes, they did offer to leave - as if that would help at that point. Mind you, they have a 2 year old, and about 30 seconds after they got here, she had touched EVERYTHING in the house. I found myself making a mental note of everything she had touched to sanitize later. I felt so rude that I was upset by the germs, but I NEVER would go anywhere like that when I'm sick. Micah is only 3 months old - he really shouldn't be exposed to germs like that! We sprayed everything with Lysol when they left. I really hope Micah & I don't get sick - every time I get sick, I get bronchitis, and the last time Micah got sick, he ended up losing weight, he couldn't eat, and it caused my supply to crash. Ugh!!

While I'm complaining, we recently had family invite themselves to come stay at our house. They managed to show up, disrupt Micah's newly established sleeping schedule, wake us up in the morning, then wake up Micah again during his nap, and while they were at it, they damaged the walls down to our NEWLY REPAINTED basement and they brought fleas with them. Yes, fleas. And yes, I'm sure we did not have fleas before they came. My dog is flea-free, she doesn't really go down to the basement, there are no fleas in our bed or on the sofa or blankets where she sleeps - and there were no fleas in the basement the day before they arrived. I am sure - I was playing with Micah on the couch and on the floor. The day they left, I sat on the couch in the basement and got covered in flea bites. We have since fumigated, but still . . . ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

Oh, and in case you are wondering . . . this blog is anonymous for a reason. We do not have any family or friends IRL who read this, so I'm safe :). So, let it rip - I'm awful and rude, right?

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Micah smiles

More Micah video . . . . I can't help myself!


video

And while I'm at it, a picture of me holding Micah in the Sleepy Wrap: