Still Breathing!

M is now 18 months old, isn’t that crazy?

We are still without any set daycare during the week, which totally sucks, but in an effort to at least give her some sense of routine I enrolled her in a toddler movement class once a week. It’s pretty adorable and it’s been a lot of fun to watch her grow into quite the little daredevil.

To be completely honest, I don’t know how people even have time to have a second child. Huge kudos to the moms and dads with multiples right out of the gate and the ones who seem to have kids one right after another while holding down careers and relationships. Man, I salute you. I think M is going to have to wait a little bit longer to be a big sister mostly because I feel like I have just started to find myself again as a person.

And where did my sex drive even go? Is it going to return? Like, ever?

WHO HAS TIME for any of that when a toddler is around?

No seriously, asking for a friend.

The Husband and I were able to go to Portland to go visit his brother and SIL over the weekend before Memorial Day, without M! She stayed with the in-laws Friday night to Monday morning, and by all accounts had a total blast. My folks went over for dinner on Saturday night and so she was super spoiled by having all four grandparents doting on her. That was definitely the longest I’ve gone without her, and I hate to admit it, but it was pretty great knowing that I really didn’t have to worry if she was ok.

One final note…

It is insane to me that today, June 2nd, marks 4 years since I had a “missed miscarriage” and the ultrasound in urgent care revealed no heartbeat. I do wonder pretty often what M’s big brother or sister would have been like, but I also know that M is the amazing Rainbow that I was meant to have. I really do look forward to giving her the chance to be a big sister because I can already tell she’s going to like the role.

Hello Strangers!

Oh good lord, I just fell off the face of the blogosphere, didn’t I?

I can assure you that nothing of real interest has happened so far in 2017. M is changing every second of every day, it’s kind of crazy to look at pictures from just a month or so before and notice how much she’s changed. Yep, my little Rainbow child is a whopping 16 months old. Time has sure flown, hasn’t it?

My birthday was in March. The husband and I were fortunate enough to be able to get away for a long weekend without M to a beautiful place on the coast just an hour away. We both love doing touristy stuff locally, and that part of the state really is a lot different than the suburban be-tech-or-perish town we live in. There was no cell or wifi connection in a lot of the areas! *gasp* It was nice to get to reconnect, though we kept going,”M would totally love this” during several parts of the trip, particularly when we stopped to visit a local goat farm to see the baby goats and buy fresh goat cheese. Yeah, she would have loved dem baby goats.

I turned 35, bringing my already reluctant-to-bring-a-child-to-term uterus into the dreaded “geriatric” realm. Ugh. Isn’t that just super insulting terminology? I did my one and only round of the Depo shot last year and opted not to go in for my next one in December. We are currently in the “not not” trying to conceive stage. There are three very fun family and friend weddings happening this summer, one a month starting in June, with the last one in mid-August, so I told the husband half-jokingly that we can start trying in earnest after that, ha!

There are a few things that I feel need to be almost in place before this “geriatric” uterus can bring another life into the world (in no particular order):

1. M needs to be potty-trained, or getting really close to it. I don’t know if I can deal with two littles in diapers. I know people deal with it all the time, but I just don’t see myself as one of those people.

2. M needs to be in a forward-facing carseat when her sibling is born. Again, I know the absolute minimum is that she needs to be two years old, and I’d like to keep her rear-facing until she’s 2.5. But I’d like her to be forward-facing so that when she’s in the back with her little sibling, she can tell us what’s going on with baby. Plus I like the idea of her just watching out for him or her.

3. M needs to be in at least a half-day, minimum two-day or three-day a week daycare or preschool situation. Ugh. This piece has been the most frustrating. She’s on a few waitlists right now and luckily the Husband’s work has been gracious with the amount of backup care days we’ve gotten, but nothing is becoming permanent yet. I seriously need her to be at some form of “school” part of the day so that I’d actually have time for all the doctor’s appointments that I’m sure I’ll need to go through again.

To be completely honest, I don’t know how realistic any of that, especially #1 (ha) actually is, but I think it’s doable. There I go, making vague plans again, hopefully this doesn’t all just blow up in my face.

My Rainbow Baby Is One!

Hi Ladies!
Quick update while the kiddo and husband are asleep…

Whoa, so November 19th, M turned one!

What? I know! It’s so crazy!

She’s a beautiful, adorable kid, and seems to be whip smart, with a fun sense of humor. Just a walking, super social,signing bit of adorable craziness.

We had a small party for her, just her grandparents, the husband’s aunt, uncle and cousin (who just happened to be in town), and we had Italian food. We had her try cream cheese frosting and carrot cake for the first time, which went over pretty well after some initial hesitation. Since she seems to love purple and owls, I found some cool decorations and balloons at our local party store, and she seemed delighted to see them hanging from the ceiling of my mother-in-law’s house.

I made up the excuse that I didn’t want a huge party for her first birthday, or even for her second or third, because she wouldn’t remember it, but in reality I didn’t want one because part of me was still worried that she wouldn’t celebrate her first birthday.

What? Come again?

Yeah, my child is now 13 months old as of a few days ago, perfectly healthy and wonderful in every way, and yet part of my brain is not convinced that she’s here. I didn’t even tell the husband this because it sounds completely bonkers, I guess my losses have really screwed with my brain.

It’s crazy to think that if my uterus had been more cooperative and the polyps had not been there, M would have a 3 year old brother or sister now. I’d like to think that things went the way they did because the universe wanted me to have such an awesome daughter, but I also can’t help but wonder what her brother or sister would have been like. A friend of mine told me that feelings like this don’t really go away, but for my Rainbow baby girl’s sake, I’d like them to at least get muted.

Birth Control Madness

Hey ladies!

First a quick update on my Rainbow baby:

So M is one of those amazing babies that seems to really like sleep. She fights nap time, but will usually end up taking two huge post-nursing naps during the day and then crash for the night around 8ish. I love the fact that she usually sleeps about 9-12 hours now, though I still find myself sneaking into her room from time to time to peek in and subtly check her breathing.

M is an insanely fast crawler now at 10 months! She started crawling at six months and is now a super speed racer. She went to six classes of Sign Language class with The Husband, and we try to sign with her as much as we can. She definitely tries to make her needs known, and her big brown eyes are so expressive that it is really just the cutest thing ever. She does sign “milk” and “diaper” now, which is pretty awesome, though I think the “milk” sign is mostly used when she’s generally thirsty and doesn’t always mean she wants the boob (though 95% of the time its true, lol). She thinks the signs for “poop” and “fart” are hilarious, and will burst into giggles when we sign them. She stands on her own for upwards of up to two minutes these days and seems to be stalled at the number three in terms of unassisted steps.

We started her on solids at six months old and she loves food! It’s hilarious because she still only has two teeth, but she uses them to gnash and gnaw the best she can. No allergies as of yet, but she’s not fond of pureed bananas or fava beans. Other than those two random foods, she is pretty game for anything her father and I can put in front of her. We’ve been trying to expose her to a variety of foods so she doesn’t become a picky eater, so we’ll see if that tactic actually works.

So yeah, motherhood with my little Rainbow is fantastic. Exhausting, frustrating and angering sometimes, but always fantastic.

Did I mention that I’m exhausted?

That’s why I decided that we would not be trying for M’s sibling until at least June or July of next year. By then, she’ll be around 18 months old and in a routine of twice a week daycare so I’ll actually be able to coordinate any office visits/surgeries/procedures that might be needed to get the fertility ball rolling again. Sure, I’ll be 35, a fact that everyone always brings up when they inquire about a sibling for her, but my problem has never been egg quality. I’m hoping it won’t take as long as it did for this pregnancy to stick around for the long haul, but even if it does, I think I’m more emotionally prepared for it this time around. For the time being, I started the depo shot for birth control since the Pill was driving me a little crazy and I’m still breastfeeding. It’s been two or so weeks since I started Depo and I feel pretty good. I also really like the Depo shot because if I decide to start ttc earlier than next summer, I can just cancel my office visit and not get the shot.

Birthdays and Sibling Talk

Hi Ladies!

Sorry I haven’t been around, I’ve been reading and commenting when I can, and I hope you all know that I think about you and your struggles and triumphs even if I don’t comment.

The transition back to work as a massage therapist and my new life as a stay-at-home mom has been relatively smooth. I feel really lucky that I am at a workplace that allows scheduling flexibility so that I can work weekends and still have time to spend with my little family. I’m grateful that my little Rainbow is such a good kid, and that my parents and in laws adore her and are willing to watch her whenever I schedule myself to work during the weekday. I know we are going to be saving a lot of money in this first year by not having to send her to daycare and that’s a pretty awesome feeling.

March 6th, was my 34th birthday and my first as a mom to my awesome little Rainbow baby. On Saturday, the husband and I hosted a gathering at a local microbrew pub in our downtown while my mother-in-law watched M. This was the first time in a while that I had actually hosted a big party, and it was a smashing success. I deal with bouts of crippling social anxiety on occasion, and was nervous that my friends would not show up and that, among other things, my husband and I would be sitting by ourselves at the long table that we had reserved for 20 or so other people. But my friends showed up like they said they would and it was a perfect night of good food, good beer and amazing friendship. I feel blessed and honored to know such great people, and I need to remember to keep this night in mind when my social anxiety kicks in.

On Sunday, I treated myself and the husband to a hot tub and cold plunge room at work, which was relaxing and really necessary, while my mom watched M in the morning. Then he went home and I got a 90 minute massage and a facial. That night, we indulged at a famous local steakhouse and I had a delicious cocktail. On Monday, the husband had actually decided to take the day off for my birthday, which was very sweet of him, and so I had an hour hot tub and cold plunge session by myself, followed by an hour massage. We capped off the day by going to go see ‘Zootopia’, which was fantastic!

In other news…

M is nearly four months old now, and talk of a sibling has already come about. I seriously have no idea when we’re going to give M a little brother or sister. I would like to, but right now just having the one is so time consuming, I don’t know how we’d even have time to ttc again, you know? I think we’re going to have to go the IUI route again, and I’d bet that I would have to get more uterine polyps cleared out, so setting aside time to have surgery will probably have to wait until M is actually in daycare or even school a few times a week. I would like her to also be mostly potty trained when her new brother or sister does come along, so we’ll probably hold off until she’s at least 18 months to start trying again. The point is, it’s all up in the air right now. I’m trying to enjoy being a mom and I know that I am incredibly lucky that modern science worked for us.

If it takes a Village…stop treating the mother like the idiot

Hi Ladies!
Sorry I’ve been so absent lately, motherhood has been a crazy mess of fun, sleeplessness and love. The Husband went back to work on January 4th, and I’ve been trying to embrace my new and still somewhat daunting role as a full-time stay at home mom. I am so lucky that my job as a massage therapist is flexible enough that I can work in the evenings when The Husband comes home or on the weekends. I am also grateful that my mother-in-law and dad are going to be able to watch M for a few hours on some days when I want to take an extra shift.

That being said, I am incredibly frustrated and angry at my dad right now. He has said things to me that have made me question my ability to safely care for my daughter. My little one is an extremely squirmy, very wiggly child, and is on the move. She seems to be determined to get the neck strength to be more mobile and I wouldn’t be surprised if she was an early crawler. Since bringing her home, he has been extremely judgmental of pretty much everything that I do, especially when it comes to how I hold, interact with or even burp her.

I like to help her ‘practice’ sitting up, carefully guarding her head to prevent it from pitching forward or backwards. I hold her in a way that her pediatrician told me to so that she can get the feeling of sitting up. He has a serious problem with this. He also doesn’t like the way I keep her face up on the floor of my house when she is being extra wriggly, possibly due to his belief that babies need to be held ALL THE TIME. I know he thinks I’m not careful enough with her, as evidenced by him constantly going,”watch her head watch her head” whenever I am holding her or handing him off to anyone. About a week ago, I accidentally allowed her head to pitch forward while handing her off to him, and he reacted as if he had seen me shake or hit her. It was a complete accident on my part, and she was fine, but he lashed out at me and treated me like I was an incompetent, negligent mother.

Tonight though, was the worst. After a nice feed with some of my expressed breastmilk, I sat her on my lap, with my hand under her chin, and gently burped her by patting and rubbing her back. FUCK. You should have seen his reaction. He acted, once again, as if I had just struck her. Luckily, my mom was there and told him to relax, and that from his angle he couldn’t see that her head was actually supported and that I was just burping her in a method that he wasn’t used to. Still, it didn’t prevent him from being a fucking condescending asshole about it, glaring at me all angrily and treating me once again like an incompetent, negligent or even abusive mother.

I honestly don’t know what to do. I want my daughter to know and love her grandpa, but I might need to limit his time with her if he continues to stress me out like this.

A Birth Story, Part 2 of 2…

It took a few days for the both of us to recover from the c-section. The night of the 19th was pretty tough. I remember not being able to feel much of anything from the face down for a couple hours, which made initial breastfeeding super tough since I couldn’t even tell where my hands were, much less where my daughter’s mouth was. Most of the time that I was in the hospital after the surgery was pretty crappy. Everything felt incredibly itchy since I was coming off the drugs and I was in a lot of pain from the surgery. Moira was whisked away in the early hours to the NICU because she was not latching on well and her blood sugars were low. They put her on an IV with glucose and her tiny left arm was bundled up. The NICU nurses had to prick her tiny heels after every feeding to check her sugars. Luckily, the NICU wasn’t that far from my room, so the Husband was able to wheel me over pretty often so that I could bond with her and attempt to breastfeed.

Nursing has gone decently so far, despite the rough start.
Lactation consultants in the hospital are the absolute worst. As I was trying to nurse my daughter for the first few days, most would barge in, put a cold hand on my newborn daughter and grab at my breast. I hated getting lectured on how to feed my daughter properly and got frazzled whenever I saw a new person come in to give their opinion.

Every consultant had different ways to do it, but almost every one had an unparalleled level of condescension that I haven’t seen in a medical professional in…well, EVER. UGH. One in particular didn’t even watch me breastfeed, but just told me that I needed to use the breast pump every two hours or my milk wasn’t going to come in. WHAT? Yeah, the husband and I told the NICU nurses that and they all said,”we’re just going to pretend like she didn’t say that”. Luckily, this was on day three, so that evening my milk came in like crazy and it wasn’t just the yellow colostrum.

Moira also had a slight case of jaundice, so she got put under these special photo lights for a day. It was distressing to have her under those lights because she could only be out of them for a half an hour at a time, so I couldn’t just sit in the NICU and hold her. I think the combination of seeing her under these lights and being on a tiny IV was the most upsetting for me, but I was grateful that it was only for a few days of her life and that her issues weren’t actually that serious.

On Monday, November 23rd, we were both discharged from the hospital.