I don't know how to tell you all just how crazy this life feels

Archive for September, 2012

13 months, 7 days

FrostedBaby is now more consistently getting up on his knees to look on top of the coffee table or to check out the first few steps. He’s now stable enough that he can use his hands to grab things and explore. I’m just waiting for him to get brave and stable enough to try getting onto his feet. He’s still not standing except if a person is holding him, but he’s getting better and better at that.

He’s so funny sometimes. He is capable of going from sitting to crawling on his own, but sometimes he seems to forget that. Like if I have him sitting for some reason and then throw a ball for him, he’ll whine and look at me for help. But if he just decides he wants to do it, he’ll just go ahead and do it without seeming to think or notice. I guess like how he used to roll over no problem but when he got tired, he’d seem to forget how. Or he could move around by himself and did it all day, but if I got too far away, he didn’t realize he could follow me. Now he knows that – I’ll often leave him in the hallway and go into the master bathroom to brush my teeth before we go out and he’ll come and find me now. He’s always very proud of himself too πŸ™‚

This is the next day, so 13 months and 8 days and he started doing something new yesterday after I wrote all that. He started doing this funny crawl where instead of the long “strides” with his arms and legs, he does short, fast little ones and he either goes nowhere or hardly at all. I’m wondering if he started doing it because I’ve been doing little quick shuffly dancey things with my feet because I discovered that that makes him laugh, so that’s his copying me. In any case, he grins big at me when he does it and is very pleased when I laugh. And if I go “deet deet deet deet deet” at him, he does it for me. SO CUTE.

I went out last night with some of the girls from the moms group and had a really good time. I wasn’t sure if I would go because a lot of them are sick but I never get to go to these things (usually because Husband is traveling) and I never get to see any of them anymore because they’re all working and when they’re not, all the playdates and stuff are in the morning when FrostedBaby is napping. Anyway, it was a lot of fun although I ended up coming home a bit earlier than I would have because FrostedBaby woke up and wouldn’t go back down for Husband. He was okay but not going back to sleep and when I came in to the room, his head swiveled to me and then he started crying until I took him. Then he settled right back down after some snuggling and I put him back down awake and there was no trouble. I wish I knew what the solution was beyond me needing to be there to put him back down – Husband wearing a shirt that smells like me so he’ll feel more comfortable?

We are supposed to be going to our neighbour’s son’s second birthday party today, although we don’t really know details. We were outside talking to them a few weeks ago and they mentioned it but either we didn’t get the times or we’ve forgotten. Guess we’ll poke our heads over and see what’s going on after FrostedBaby wakes up from his nap. It’s not a huge deal, but I’d like to be more friendly with our neighbours and that’s a good excuse without it being super awkward, hopefully. I’m terrible at meeting people and especially getting past the small talk stage. I really suck at small talk and I’m afraid it comes across as being unfriendly or standoffish and that’s not what I mean at all.

Okay, FrostedBaby is waking up from his nap so time to figure out what his lunch is going to be. Usually I have it all planned out but today I’m slacking.

 

13 months, 1 day

FrostedBaby has decided that he wants to stand. But the only thing he feels secure enough to use as a prop is me or Husband, and then he has no idea what to do with himself once he’s standing. Sometimes he bounces, sometimes he whines and wants to get back down, sometimes he wants to come closer so we can share a hug (that’s my favourite!). Occasionally I can get him to take some steps but overall he doesn’t seem to get it yet. I guess I should be glad that he’s not pulling himself up on everything and falling all over the place. He’s definitely not a kid that I would describe as having no fear. He’s getting better at controlling and slowing down his falling, but he’s not great at it yet. I stand him up and put him so he’s holding on the couch and standing there and he often turns to me and lets go of the couch and launches himself at me. Silly boy.

I may end up taking this back later, but I’m kind of looking forward to him actually walking. Right now, all he wants to do is crawl around. That really limits what we can do because I can only spend so much time doing things that don’t let him crawl around before he gets antsy and impatient. As long as we keep moving, he’s okay doing other stuff, but what can we do that involves moving all the time? I can’t go shopping (not that I really want to, but I do need some new fall clothes) or do a lot of things of that nature. We go for walks most afternoons if the weather is nice but that’s not really productive in a getting-things-done way. I figure that once he starts walking, we can go places and he can walk and he’ll be happier doing that wherever we are. We could go to the mall and walk and meet up with people. Just with him only being able to crawl, and an army crawl at that (so his whole front is rubbing on the ground), I don’t exactly love the idea of him doing that in a public place on a really dirty floor. I’ve let him do it a few times but I’m not thrilled with it and not at a busy place like a mall. I’m happy to see him moving in that direction since getting out and seeing people is already difficult enough due to his unusual nap timesΒ  (he sleeps from 11-1 and most other babies go down for their naps starting at 1:30-2) and taking forever to eat, now I can only partake in things that let him crawl around or that keep us moving constantly.

He’s started mimicking movements a lot the past week or so. He’s also realized he can make us do stuff if we’re copying him and it’s fun to watch his brain work as he tries to think of things to do. This morning Husband was feeding him breakfast and I was also at the table eating mine and he kept looking at me so I put my hand up to shield my face and then he put his hand up the same way. Adorable!

I’ve been trying to come up with things to do regularly on my own to get out of the house and leave Husband home with FrostedBaby by themselves, which is good for all of us. I had trouble coming up with stuff, but I did sign up for a pottery class with a friend that will be on Tuesday evenings starting in October. Not really my first choice and I’m not sure I’d do it alone, but she suggested it and it sounds interesting and not at all like anything I’ve done so I’m looking forward to it. I’ll probably suck at it, but who knows. What I would really love to find is a social group that meets once a week (preferably Saturday mornings) where I could go and socialize or whatever in a way that is completely unrelated to babies or being a mom. The one thing I can think of that I would want to do and be excited about (because I want it to be something I really enjoy doing) would be going kayaking once a week but it’s the wrong time of year for that plus I don’t have a kayak though that could be rectified fairly easily, I guess. No idea how expensively, but regular renting of one would get expensive pretty quickly. So it’s a work in progress. There’s a Mom’s Night coming up with the group, which will be really nice since I have a lot of trouble making them with Husband’s travel schedule and I haven’t seen a bunch of the moms for a while since a lot of them went back to work.

I went to an event on Thursday night which was a screening of a new “movie” (more like an hour-long documentary) about giving birth and giving women the choice of what type of birth they want (home or hospital) as well as being under the care of an OB not being the only choice. I think that’s a badly worded sentence. Basically, it was stressing that pregnancy and labour is not a medical condition and a lot of women are not getting the births they want in hospitals under the care of OBs because of the medical training to want to use interventions and not wanting to be sued and all that stuff, but a lot of women are not aware of the choices available to them (midwives and doulas) and in some countries midwives are put in jail for assisting at home births, even if nothing goes wrong. Here in Canada we are very fortunate to have more advanced ideas about that type of care, but a lot of people aren’t aware of them (and don’t realize that any treatments are optional) and we have a huge midwife shortage so even if you are aware and want one, you can’t always get one.

Apparently I was really lucky to give birth at the hospital that I did, because if I had gotten into another midwife practice (I talked about it here, but in case it’s been forgotten long story short I was lucky to get into any office because I waited a while and most were full already, but the one I went with had a cancellation) I would have delivered at another hospital (we’re halfway between two hospitals, so distance wouldn’t have been a factor) and that hospital has a really bad reputation for really old-school OBs and very traumatic birth experiences where all the power is taken away from the mom. One person there shared a story of being threatened with CPS being called if she didn’t consent to whatever it was they wanted to do to her while in labour (this is not uncommon, but I would have thought it was a US thing moreso than a Canadian thing, but in any case it’s illegal, but what are you supposed to do if you’re in labour? Ask to speak to their boss?). Another person is a nurse at this hospital and specifically went to a different one to deliver her first child but ended up with an unwanted c-section (she didn’t provide details) that now mean difficulty finding someone who will allow her to do a VBAC and she might have to deliver at this hospital and she said the thought terrifies her. Yikes! The hospital I delivered at I’ve heard mostly good things about, whether under the care of midwives or OBs.

I know that I was so glad that my birth experience was as positive as it was and that was because of being with a midwife. The only parts that I would change if I could were because of the OB they called in. And I’m not talking about the vacuum delivery, that was needed and that’s fine (and I trust that it was needed because it was the call of the MW), but after she came in she took over and did things that I had no say over and I felt less in control of what was happening to me. And I wasn’t exactly in a position to say anything for it – I was in labour! And then after, I was in such shock (not medical shock, but emotionally) that I had no idea what was going on. My husband told me about a power struggle between the OB and the MW after FrostedBaby was born over the eye drops and a few other things, which luckily the MW won since I wanted them delayed and they knew that. I already didn’t get to hold him the second he was born, he came out and they showed him to me and then as I was reaching for him, they whisked him away to check on him and clean him up, which I guess needed to be done but I was really upset by that. Anyway, if I hadn’t had a midwife, I’m 100% sure I would have had a csection because I don’t think the OB would have let me push so long even though everything was okay until the end (when his heartrate was dropping during contractions). I also wonder how much an epidural would have been pushed on me, especially if they were thinking csection in the end. I wonder if I would have gone along with it, because while I didn’t want a csection, if I had to have one I would prefer one with an epidural in because I didn’t want to be knocked out totally and miss his first however long after being born.

I do wonder what would have happened if I had stayed at home to have him, which we were thinking about because I was progressing so rapidly. Would we have had to rush to the hospital at the end? Or maybe I would have been in the big birthing tub (I really wanted that tub, but they didn’t offer to set it up in the hospital room and while they have a jacuzzi there, it’s low and I hated the idea of laying on my back in there and I was afraid I was going to get stuck) and more relaxed and it would have gone faster. Or maybe I would have just done it eventually – I made a lot of progress moving him down right before the OB did her thing with the vacuum. I was fine to keep going, it was just that he was going into distress and they were worried about him.

Anyway… it was an interesting movie and I would love to get involved in spreading the word and making women’s (and men’s) birth experiences better. It’s such an intense and scary and emotional experience and I can see how it can easily go from something you go through and feel empowered from to a terrifying horrible experience very very easily. I know for sure that it would have been a lot scarier if I had been delivering with an OB just for the very fact that they don’t stay in the room with you and you spend so much of the labour by yourself. Maybe the second time around it wouldn’t be as scary because I have some idea of what the whole thing is like, but I was so grateful they were always there. To be able to help other women find a positive experience out of it would be awesome.

(And I’m not saying all OB births are horrible and maybe not all women want that experience of a midwife, but as long as it’s an informed choice that a woman is making, that’s cool. I just think a lot of people go with that because they don’t know any different or that there are alternatives. Just like they don’t always understand the consequences of epidurals slowing down labour and often resulting in a csection – some people want that, but I know a lot of people who wanted the epidural not realizing or being informed of the effects of it).

So many people I know are pregnant right now. Or are having “oh, we’re going to start trying again” conversations and I feel so… unable to take part in them. There’s no point in saying we’re trying because of our history. And I realize a lot of them could have trouble this time around, but the flippancy that people talk about it with bugs me. Or leaves me feeling alone in our uncertainty. It’s not as bad as before when I’d been trying for years and they would probably all end up with babies before me, but it’s an echo of what I was feeling then. I wonder, once we’re done and don’t want any more, if I’ll be able to hear people say stuff like that without feeling any twinges or if it’s something that’s with you forever just because. I know I felt a lot less of those feelings when I was newly pregnant and shortly after he was born and I hadn’t yet started thinking of the next time yet because I was so satisfied with where I was. Not that I’m not satisfied now, but I hope that makes sense.

Anyway, it’s now late and this post got really serious and introspective for some reason. I’m not sure that’s where I was heading originally.

 

12 months, 26 days (I think)

It’s been a bit since I last updated. We’ve been pretty busy and I was really tired for a while there because after the baseball game, FrostedBaby stopped napping so there was very little free time for me and when I had it, I didn’t have the energy to update. I’m not sure what was up with him, but I suspect teeth since his eye teeth finally decided to come in (three of four have broken the gums) and he was pretty miserable and chompy. Luckily he was sleeping well at night and going to bed early, but an overtired whiney kid during the day is hard to take after a while, especially since a lot of those days I had planned appointments and stuff around his nap and when it didn’t happen at the right time, I couldn’t just try again later. I hate when that happens, it makes me feel like I’m not doing a good job or I’m being selfish if I insist on making my appointment instead of staying home to try to get him to sleep. Luckily he’s generally a pretty good baby even when he’s tired.

Last week my Uncle who has been battling colon cancer (and it spread but I can’t remember exactly where to – I know they found it on other organs and stuff, but not sure if it went to his lymph nodes) for the past 3 years died so we had a spur-of-the-moment trip down to Michigan for the funeral. It was bad timing because we had a busy weekend of celebrating my sister’s birthday and seeing a friend we haven’t seen in a while so we were away from home for a couple of days; if I’d known that this was coming I would have stayed home over the weekend and kept things quiet and in our routine in preparation. In the end, he was pretty good. He slept for a few hours in the car on the way down and the way home and kept himself entertained with toys and looking out the window. He really only got fussy on the way down in the last hour or so. He obviously felt nervous about being in the hotel though since he refused to sleep on his own. I’d get him to sleep then I’d try to put him down and he’d wake up and scream but the second I had him in my arms again, he would go right back to sleep. Finally I gave up trying to put him down and brought him into bed with me and he fell asleep instantly. I, on the other hand, barely got any sleep because I didn’t get a chance to unwind or read before I went to bed (I always read to turn my brain off), I HATE being touched while I’m sleeping and he wanted to be touching me, plus I was paranoid that I was going to sleep through him waking up and rolling over or crawling and fall out of bed so I both had to touch him and snapped awake any time he moved.

The next day was the funeral and it was a pretty long day and FrostedBaby wouldn’t nap again, even when I tried laying down with him. The obit had the times listed as “family at 2:00, friends at 5:00” or something along those lines, but it was actually the visitation started at 2 and the service was at 5. We went at 2 and ended up having to hang around for hours, which would be fine for adults but it was difficult with a tired baby. He was really good though, crawled up and down the halls and charmed everyone. It was really nice to see family we haven’t seen in a long time, it was too bad it was under not-so-great circumstances. It was finally time for the service and I nursed FrostedBaby to keep him quiet and he finally fell asleep… right up until people clapped. Seriously, who claps at a funeral?!? Then he was awake and I had to walk up and down the hallway with him for the rest of it to keep him calm. Thank goodness I recently bought a Mo.by wrap because it was on sale. I was still deciding whether to keep it or not since I really wanted one that’s less stretchy and wasn’t sure how it would work with a baby of his weight, but decided that I’d rather have it as an option just in case. All I can say is that it’s already paid for itself just in the convenience over our trip. He was so clingy and separation anxiety-y a lot that it made carrying him a lot easier and I think I walked up and down for a couple of hours and my arms and back weren’t tired at all from it.

There was a dinner after the funeral that had really amazing food and FrostedBaby chowed down on this pasta that they had there. My mom and sister thought it was too spicy, but he loved it. I’ve tried to replicate it since we came home using cream cheese as the sauce base and while it doesn’t taste the same, he seems to like it. It’s so nice that there is more stuff he can eat when we’re out so I don’t need to pack every single thing. I make sure to have stuff with us just in case there’s not enough but I’m using a lot less of it now. Once in a while I don’t mind him having more salt or less healthy food than he eats at home – that’s just life and as long as it’s not every meal, I can’t get too upset about it.

Actually, feeding him while we were away was a lot easier than I’d feared it was going to be. I took down a bunch of cheese plus some of those fruit bar things since those can cross the border, I fed him some fresh fruit and stuff at lunch on the way down that shouldn’t cross but he ate those up while we were still in Canada. The hotel we stay at has a really good breakfast buffet so I was able to give him breakfast and steal some stuff from there for his other meals to combine with eating some of whatever we were eating. I did end up buying a package of cheese and a banana for him for our travel home day, but that was a lot less than I’d expected to have to buy. I also did nurse him a little more than normal, especially on funeral day, but he was happy about that because he was feeling so out of sorts and I think he liked the snuggle time. There was also one night that he woke up a few more times to eat because he didn’t have much dinner, just his snacks and stuff but we didn’t eat until late and he was so exhausted by the time we got back to the hotel that I just put him to bed and dealt with him waking up more.

Since we got back, he slept the whole night without getting up and he’s been napping like crazy. Last night though he was up a couple of times. I think the second time (at 5am) he was actually cold since he didn’t seem all that interested in the eating. I changed him into warmer pajamas, which made him scream and scream and then I tried to nurse him on the second side just to make sure and he screamed and bit me. Ouch! Finally got him calmed down and he nursed and fell asleep so I think he was thinking I was getting him up for the day since I usually only change him then and he wanted to sleep more.Β  No problem, kid! πŸ˜‰

He’s suddenly started putting things into things instead of just taking them out. He has a truck at my parents’ place that’s a flatbed thing and it has animals that ride in there and he’s starting putting them in there, then causing a crash so they go flying and then he puts them back in. And he has one of those shape sorter buckets and he started putting his other toys into it. At one point I said we should clean up all the shapes and he started putting them in the bucket, and then went and got this busy book and tried to put it in there as well, but it wouldn’t fit. It’s really cute πŸ™‚

My sister got him these little balls that have a flashy thing inside that lights up when you hit it, and he was watching us hitting it on the table or floor to turn it on and then he started doing that too, although he can’t hit it hard enough. It’s so neat to see him processing what’s going on and then showing that he’s really paying attention and is putting two and two together.

This post has been sitting here all day since FrostedBaby woke up from his nap, and now I’m going to bed so I’m going to post it before I realize it’s still here in a week from now πŸ˜‰

 

Take me out to the ballgame

We took FrostedBaby to his first baseball game today. It went really well, better than I had expected or had any right to hope.

He fussed a bit on the train going down, which made us worry that it was not going to be a good day. He wanted to crawl on the floor and wasn’t happy that he couldn’t. He was a bit better for a bit once the train started moving and he could look out the window and watch stuff go by, but we resorted to singing If You’re Happy And You Know It, which for some reason always quiets him down and makes him smile (and I’ve invented a whole bunch of verses about animals, which make him laugh) and then I nursed him and snuggled him and he looked like he might nap but the stopping and people getting on and off was too distracting, then he played with the stroller wheels and was laughing like crazy when I was putting his pacifier in his mouth and then taking it out. Why that’s funny, I have no idea, but it occupied him for a while πŸ˜›

We met up with my sister and grabbed some coffee with her at her store and killed some time, then met up with our friend with the tickets and went into the game. We got there just as the game was starting, which was great timing. It also happened to be his lunchtime and for once him taking a long time to eat was great because it occupied him for the first hour. He ate his whole english muffin pizza and a fruit leather.

After he finished eating I put on the carrier wrap that I borrowed from a friend (SO getting one of these!) and walked around with him. We made a loop of the Dome, which takes way less time than you’d expect and he was happy and cuddly although he was obviously getting sleepy so I changed his diaper and then nursed him and he fell asleep for about 30 or 40 minutes.

After he woke up, he was very cheerful and had his snack (cheese and another fruit leather) and then the game was coming to a very uneventful close and we decided to head out early to make sure we got the next train since they only run once an hour and I didn’t want to be waiting around trying to entertain him when it was getting late.

He was good on the way home, playing with the stroller wheels again and talking to people around us, and then eating Cheerios. We got home and he ran around on the floor for a bit, which he was very happy about, and ate a bit of dinner and then he went to bed really easily.

Towards the end of the game, some people behind us asked how old he is and said they couldn’t believe how well-behaved he was and they’d hardly heard a peep from him. Yes, that’s all because of my awesome parenting skills! I know it has nothing to do with anything I’m doing, but it makes me proud that he is so well-behaved and we get lots of comments like that.

It was a really nice day. We had good seats on the aisle (so I could get up and down as much as I needed to without bugging anyone) and there weren’t too many people around us so we could have some space and move around a bit, and we were in the shade so while it was a hot day, it wasn’t bad in the shade and we didn’t need to worry about sunscreen.

I didn’t get to watch as much of the game as I might have liked since I was focused on FrostedBaby, but my attention span is pretty limited anyway and I spend a lot of games people watching anyway. It wasn’t a terribly good game – the Jays played like a bunch of little leaguers. It was sort of exciting for about five seconds when it seemed like the other pitcher might be going for a perfect game, but right after I said I hoped he would because that’s really rare and at least something good would come out of the game, and then we got a hit.

So a very successful day and that makes me excited to do other things with him. Even a few months ago it would not have gone over very well – too much stimulation and excitement and loud noise (it didn’t help that the air show was going on so very loud airplanes were flying over occasionally), but he’s grown up a lot lately and can handle a lot of that stuff better than he used to.