Saturday, May 29, 2010

Baby's 2nd ultrasound

Or his 20th if you count all the ultrasounds while I was pregnant.

Thursday I got a call in the afternoon from daycare. Michael was not having a good day and was running a slight (99.2) fever. His morning had been off and I figured that it was due to that and 99.2 didn't sound like too much of a fever so I waited until I got through my afternoon meetings and picked him up a little early.

He seemed fine but his fever got a little higher later in the evening. He didn't really have any other symptoms. I sent my husband out for some new generic tylenol to give him. I think the highest his fever ever got was about 101 and he was tired and a little fussy, but really not too bad.

We decided for DH to stay home with him Friday and I would take off around noon and come home. I told my secretary what was going on and she has 3 kids that were notorious for being sick, so she has a lot of experience and kinda gave me hell for not having taken him to the dr yet. She said with the hundreds of sicknesses she has dealt with, the fever is always better in the morning, comes back in the afternoon and climbs in the evening and then you can't get anyone, and with this being a holiday weekend I had better get him seen now. Well, seeing how this is our first illness and she is a "pro" at children's illnesses, I took her advice and made an appointment for him.

The pediatrician couldn't really find anything and just thinks it's a respiratory virus and told us that we were doing fine and unless things got worse not to worry about it. Keep doing what we are doing. Totally didn't need to pay $25 and disrupt the poor kid's nap to hear that, but the reassurance is nice.

However, the pediatrician took a look at his testicles (this is a normal part of the exam, I guess) and thought he might have a hernia or a hydrocele. So they set us up an ultrasound to check.

Now, don't think, "Wow, it's good you went in anyhow since he was able to catch this!" I'm kinda pissed because this was there at his 2 month appointment and he didn't say anything about it. It's probably more pronounced than it was then, but not much. And we were scheduled to take him in for his 4 month check up next Friday anyhow.

And M wasn't really in a good mood since he hadn't gotten his naps that day and waiting around for another 45mins for a ultrasound was on the limits of his patience. And he wasn't too wild about the u/s either... can't blame him, I don't like getting my junk poked by a u/s wand either, but it was a lot easier than his cardiac echo. Luckily I have picked up a few tricks since then and I used his blanket to trap his arms and keep him still, à la escape proof swaddle. I feel like I'm being mean when I swaddle him like that, but he really finds it comforting.

Anyhow, it looks like a hydrocele. His pediatrician is setting up a pediatric urology appointment. I don't think they are normally too much of a problem and go away on their own within a year. And, of course, I already googled "hydrocele and infertility" and didn't really see anything too scary yet.

And since I'm posting about the kid again (I don't really do anything else these days do I), tomorrow is he will be 4 months. Wow, longest 4 months of my life. Greatest 4 months of my life. And most stressful. He seems to be a trooper about this first fever. Daycare is going much better and he is eating very well. He was a whopping 20lbs at the ped's office yesterday! The smallest clothes he wears now are 12 months and he wears some 18-24 month stuff! He has also started "sucking his thumb"... I use the quotes because he hasn't really figured it out completely yet, but I figure it's only a matter of time since both me and DH were huge thumb suckers.

Anyhow, I got some pic this morning. A little warm still, but not too sick to have some fun in his super booster.


Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Remembering

Muffy died a year ago today.

This last year has been tough. Loosing someone is hard, even when it's 'just' a pet. I can't tell you how many times I've thought of her and cried. Every time I found one of her hairs (on something I know couldn't have come from the new cats) I would get weepy. And I find myself very sad about how much of her I have forgotten. It's inevitable, and forgetting has probably helped to dull the pain of loss, but it's still sad knowing that I will loose more and more of all that I have left of her.

One thing I do remember is the day we got Muffy. She was a kitten from one of my sister's cat's (Tinker) litter. My sister brought her over and we were sitting on the couch and my sister would drag her finger along the fabric and Muffy would chase after it. She was MY little grey kitten.

But years later I would get annoyed at my dad for calling her the "brown cat." Muffy wasn't brown, she was grey. Then one day I looked at her, really looked at her, and she was kinda brown and not really grey at all like she was when she was a kitten.

Isn't it funny how we tend to remember something one way and not notice when it changes? Sometimes it takes an old picture to remind us exactly how much has changed.

In the months following Muffy's death, I reread my Yesterday post hundreds of times. Several times a day at first, then just a few, then a couple of times a week, then a month.... So I clicked on it and read it again the other day, after not having read it in a very long time. I looked at the pictures... Muffy looked so skinny and frail and, well, just awful. And she was, but it was hard to look at those pictures, because that's not how I remember her. I remember a plump, 10lb cat, with shimmering fur.

So today I went through some old photos. Here is the cat I remember.




Sunday, May 23, 2010

The calm after the storm

The inlaws visited this weekend.

First, just let me say that my inlaws are wonderful, kind, generous, good people. My MIL is a saint and FIL is a kind hearted man. So I hate it that I don't really like visiting with them. That probably doesn't say good things about me.

Part of the problem is that DH's family always travels in a herd. We never get to just visit with his parents. There are always a couple of aunts and Grandma too... if not the entire family. That just makes things much harder and particularly when working with a baby. I said something to DH about being not looking forward to the visit because of this, and the next day plans changed and only his parents were coming up for Sat and then just an aunt and Grandma on Sunday. I don't know if he said something to them or not, but I felt better about this.

Another reason I was not looking forward to the visit was because of previous visits with DH's parents since Michael was born. The herd came in when Michael was a couple of weeks old. M kept getting upset and I could tell he was hungry (all the kid did those days was eat) and MIL wouldn't give me the kid to comfort and feed. I usually try to keep him from getting too upset and I kept trying to get him from her and she just wouldn't take the hint. He was crying and she kept saying, "Oh, do you need Grandma?" and "You need a bottle." Finally, FIL in his billowing voice said, "No, he needs Mama!"

Oh, and a another thing... MIL is kinda deaf. She needs hearing aids very badly and won't get them. BIL and SIL have been pressing her for years to get some. And she won't tell you when she didn't hear something and acts like she understood you... so I never really know how much she is hearing when I talk. And it's harder with the baby, because I don't want to yell for her to hear me and wake or scare the baby... and I'm having bad sinus problems right now, so my voice gets horse pretty badly if I talk too much or too loudly. All kinda a recipe for disaster.

Saturday things were fine with MIL until M got fussy. I finally got her to hand him over and then he calmed and I was staring at him trying to assess if he was really fine or needed something and MIL is literally wrapping her hands around trying to pull him out of mine. Not cool. He's my baby, I'll hand him over when I feel like it. I basically ignored her and she eventually quit.

I know she doesn't get to see him a lot, but I kinda feel like I don't get to see him that much either... most week nights he's only awake for an hour or so before he's down for the nights. Also, he is pretty clingy and kinda a high maintenance baby. His cousin is probably one of the easiest going babies around and she can just take him and run off with him whenever she wants, but it's not that way with M.

I think she may have got the hint and was a little better after that.

Another thing that seemed to be a bit of an issue this weekend was the breastfeeding. I don't like feeling like I have to hide to nurse in my own house. I decided that when he got hungry this weekend that I would just take him into his room and partially close the door so that I am not completely cut off from what ever else is going on. At one point DH and FIL had left to look at something and M got fussy and I decided try to nurse him in the living room with MIL there. I think it weirded out MIL and she walked out on the deck until I got up with him (and I nurse very discretely, fyi). Then later when everyone was back I'd finished feeding M in his room and he fell asleep so I walked back out into the living room holding him and sat down on the empty couch. In typical M fashion, he wiggled in his sleep to find my breast and I obliged and VERY discretely pulled it out and gave it to him and he slept and comfort nursed for a long while. In my opinion, if you want to talk about the beauty of a mother nursing her child, this a wonderful example. Nothing is sweeter than when he's asleep on the breast... it's just the most perfect time. And it just looks like I'm holding my baby. But MIL quickly got up and when out on the deck. FIL just kept in his chair across the room from me. I would have tried to have a conversation with her about it, but she can't hear. Who knows what she would have picked up only catching every couple of words of that conversation.

Oh well...

Sunday we got a surprise when an extra aunt and uncle showed up for lunch. Should have expected that.

M napped really well and to their disappointment didn't come up until they were almost ready to leave. But, on the bright side for us, he is finally getting a more consistent daytime schedule.

And just an update on a few other things about M: He had the best day ever at daycare the other day. He ate well, napped well, was in a good mood. And he appeared to be cutting his first tooth at the same time. It seems to be coming up slowly, but he's managing well. He's also started squealing. It's pretty funny when he does it, but a little hard to deal with in church. He has also discovered his tongue and likes sticking it out a lot, which I am just eating up right now. He's also standing really well when supported right now. DH has been working on it with him and it's paying off, his little legs are strong. He's going to sleep with out needing a swaddle most of the time and I can even put him down awake and he will soothe himself asleep and that takes a lot of pressure off of me to nurse him into a coma to sleep.

So it was quite a weekend between loads of family and M showing off his news skills.

And how am I doing? Fine :)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

If you ask me about my kid

I'm going to tell you probably more than you wanted to know.

When people ask, "How's it going?" You are supposed to give a nice, light-hearted answer and keep the truth to yourself.

For myself, I will cheerfully say whatever pleasantry fits, but ask my about my kid and I'll give you more than you wanted. Probably because I get pretty stressed about kid stuff... I mean after all, he is my world, the smallest details of his life keep me awake at night.

So that gets us to the daycare issue again. He seems to be doing better. Somedays are not as good as others. A step forward, a step back... I think we are taking more forward than backward.

Our only real problem right now is the eating. It's very difficult to say what is or isn't enough these days... it depends on so much. How much did he eat at home? How much at daycare? Is something else bothering him and affecting his appetite (like allergies)? How hungry did he seem at pick up? How did he nurse at home? If they are offering him bottles all day long, he is only drinking a couple of ounces out of every bottle, maybe that really is all he needs? Can it be alright for him to take 16oz one day and 9 the next? Could it be alright for him to take 9 everyday?

According to the girls there, all the children tend to have a favorite caregiver. His favorite is apparently Jenn. I actually think he likes her because she is new and he just hates everyone that was there when we started out. There is another new girl that just started too, maybe he'll like her too.

So things seem to be going better, but I can never really tell. I'm always left uneasy about the situation. I don't expect that I will ever feel like I don't have to worry about the situation, but it will be nice to worry less.

I'm still not sure if moving him will actually help. He likes some of the workers. And they apparently spend A LOT of time holding him (and I believe them on this)... if he went to an in home provider would he get as much attention? I can't see how someone watching 4 children by herself could spend more time with just him than the several girls that work at our current center. If is just taking him a long time to adjust will make things worse by moving him for no benefit?

And things do seem to be getting better. Seem.

Anyhow, so "former boss" (he still works here but is getting ready to retire) casually asks me how Michael is doing the other day and I tell him the whole story. Then I say, "I don't know what to do, short of quitting." Then he says, "Well, maybe we should offer daycare here."

Yes, maybe we should. Damn I wish he was still in charge.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

One year ago...

you were conceived.


And we have the bill to prove it.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Almost unremarkable

I don't have time to write a long post. Today started like everyday lately. Up at 1am to feed. I got spit up on several times today too. Definitely not glamorous, but it is exactly what I've always wanted and I'm glad for it everyday.

In fact, it was almost a pretty unremarkable day. My Mother's day came about 3 months ago. But what was remarkable is that today is the day my baby laughed for the first time. And it was at me. And it was a big, wonderful laugh. Life doesn't get much better than that.

Happy Mother's Day to all the new moms, to the pregnant moms, and to all the women that have put the time and effort in and have yet to hold their babies. Bless you.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Cooling off

I'm really making an effort to let go of things easier and not to waste my time on drama. So I have tried to look past some of the daycare BS and cool down a little.

Because it's not all bad.

I do really like the girls that actually take care of Michael. They really do give him a lot of attention. They listen to me when I try to tell them how to help them, but I can't say everything I need to to each of them.

I decided to bring in one of his kiddopotomus swaddles Thursday morning and it really helped him to nap better. I hadn't taken it in before because it's fleece and it gets hot in the baby house in the afternoon. I have always provided an Aden and Anis muslin blanket for swaddling, but I think they swaddle funny there and I don't think he likes it as well. So today I went ahead and ordered some cotton kiddopotmoius swaddles.

I'm hoping that better napping will help improve the feeding situation. Sometimes breastfed babies "reverse cycle" and start consuming all their calories at night and don't eat during the day. He doesn't seem to be doing that just yet (although I think we are on the edge), and I kinda hope he doesn't start, because I really need sleep and don't want to be up every couple hours at night again... that is so hard to do.

Right now, I'm worried that switching his daycare will not actually make a difference in the feeding issue and will require him to have to adjust to a new schedule again as he is just getting better adjusted to this one. I just hate the thought of putting him through that if I don't need to.

Since I can't do anything right now I think I need to just sit back and see if things get better over the next couple of weeks... if they do I probably shouldn't make things worse by switching him... if they don't I know what I have to do.

And although I hate the director that doesn't really affect his care and isn't as important as other factors.

I think I must sound crazy... yesterday I couldn't bear the thought of keeping him there another day and today I don't want to move him out. I'm obviously still having doubts about both of my options, but the best thing right now is probably to wait and see and continue to try to get things better for him.

Anyhow, this is on my fridge now


His little hand prints are kinda blob-y because he likes to keep them in fists.

They do crafts with the babies. It's kinda comical that the babies do crafts, but I love it. I wouldn't have even thought to do something like this with him on my own. How cool is it that there is stuff that my kid "made" on my fridge? Today he "worked" on a "Peek-a-boo Board" and apparently a "very special surprise" (probably a Mother's Day craft). Yeah, it's definitely not all bad.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Daycare problems

I don't like my daycare.

I like the care workers.

I think they take good care of him in most respects.

I think he is safe there.

I do not like the day care director.

I think they can could do better in certain areas.

So what's going on is that I feel like I was kinda ambushed last night because the daycare director was at the baby house and had a talk with me about Michael's routine and schedule at pick up last night. It wasn't a bad talk and I'm not 100% sure she was there so that she could personally talk with me about this stuff or not (vs. just filling in), but things didn't feel right.

Michael doesn't nap well during the day there. I have offered up several suggestions to help them, I'm not sure if they are implementing them or not. All I know is that I usually pick up a very tired and hungry baby and take him home and nurse him and he's usually out for the night by 5:30.

Some days he gets better naps and I was hoping that the situation there would improve, but it is still difficult and not showing the signs of improvement I thought it should have by now.

I don't think he eats enough during the day. When I'm nursing, he eats enough that I feel thoroughly drained by the end of the day. At work I pump about 20oz a day and he's usually only eating 10-13oz a day (and spitting up a lot of it). I think he should be eating 15+oz per day to be closer to what he eats when breastfed. We weighed him last night and in the last 12 days he has gained no weight. He weighs 18.5 lbs and does not need to gain weight at a half pound per week like he was before daycare, but that doesn't mean that he should stop gaining weight altogether.

So after the talk with the director last night and weighing him, I came up with a sheet about helping him to nap (signs that he's tired, our routine, etc) and pacifier use (I think they are overusing the pacifier when the should be offering him a bottle).

I called the director and told her I'd come up with this list to help them and she was a total bitch to me. She let me know that I should call his pediatrician but she's sure it's not a problem since he is so large and that they don't have time to go over the list with me and I should just drop it off and they'll read it later and that there are 7 other children to take care of and they can't stop taking care of them and only my child. B.I.T.C.H.

I told her that I wanted to go over the list in person and made myself 100% available either during the day or at night. And told her my list is supposed to help them... you know, so he cries less and is easier to care for... I don't know why she is so resistive to him crying less and being easier to take care of, except that she's a bitch. So now I'm waiting on her to call me back with a time.

I did put in a call to the pediatrician. I know Michael is large but that doesn't mean that he shouldn't still gain weight. The point of my calling was to "intervene" now before we have a REAL problem so that he get's back into an appropriate growth rate and the care he gets there is not holding back his development.

Anyhow, I've been feeling it for awhile, we need to find another daycare. I really think we could work through all of this, but her attitude is just not inline with what it should be for a person providing child care.

My only fear is that I could end up with a worse situation if I switch him somewhere else. The devil you know vs. the one you don't. Plus I could only find 2 infant openings when I was looking before he was born, it's hard finding infant spots around here.

My secretary recommended her children's former sitter (they are older now and don't need one). Her sitter is going on vacation at the end of the month but told me to call her back on June 7th. She is cheaper, nearly as close by, cloth diapered my secretary's kids so that shouldn't be an issue, and comes highly recommended. Dear God, please let this work out. I can put up with the current B.S. until then, I think.

Monday, May 3, 2010

So much in my head...

but nothing to blog about.

I'm to that point where I have a thousand thoughts and posts and really no time to blog (bad Amanda, get back to work). But instead I will post a messy melange of thoughts and ask for your forgiveness.

- My house is a mess.

- I felt guilty and called my parents this weekend and told them they could visit for Mother's Day if they wanted. I will regret that.

- I need to clean my house now before my mother shows up and starts making snide comments about my baseboards being dusty.

- My left ovary was hurting for the last couple of days. I haven't really felt anything out of my ovaries in about a year, so it's a weird feeling.

- I wonder if engorged breasts feel anything like breast implants?

- I think too much fenugreek makes me dizzy. I get dizzy when I let down milk.

- Michael rolls over at home for us but not at daycare, causing them to write that he needs improvement on being on his belly or rolling over on his activity slip every day.

- Michael truly "petted" Ambrosia this weekend. It was amazing to watch him grasp her fur and open and close his hand... I think he is really starting to connect what he is touching with what he is seeing.

- Since Michael turned 3 months and is out of the "4th trimester" now, I wonder if I should be worried about spoiling him? I like spoiling him.

- My husband is the best guy in the world. He cleans my breast pump stuff at night, makes dinner, cleans the dishes, helps with the laundry, loads my car, picks grapes for my lunch every night, and he has done ALL of the grocery shopping since Michael was born. Could I be more spoiled?

- Speaking of my husband, he is turning 30 in a couple of days and I don't have a gift for him... I am the worst wife. And forget a party.

- And it's May and I want to dwell on the significance of this month and how much our lives changed last year, but I can't bring myself to do it because that's all I would do if I let myself. And every rose that blooms just reminds me more.