Monday, August 30, 2010
Friday, August 27, 2010
Thursday, August 26, 2010
***Bare with me while I write about this long-winded summary of what we've been going through over the last few weeks and how it has finally come to a head.***
This whole thing began when I changed doctors when Logan was 2 months old. We checked out a clinic near our home, a place we could get to quickly if need be, and during our consultation, everything seemed fine. At his 2 month appointment, we waited almost 45 minutes to see the doc and then it was another 45 minutes before we got his vaccines because THEY FORGOT ABOUT US. Yeah, first red flag.
Moving on, I have contacted the clinic and taken Logan in for various things. Most recently at the end of July, I called concerned that Logan has had a low-grade fever (at that point) for a month. I did not think that was normal and the PA (Physicians Assistant) assured me it was just teething. At that point he was exactly 17 pounds. Fast forward about 10 days when we take him in for his 6 month well baby check up for some vacs and he weighs 15.2 pounds. He lost almost 2 pounds in less than 2 weeks. I was freaked, but the PA assured me this is not really normal but he seems fine so no biggie. Just bring him back for weight checks every week and they'll keep an eye on him. I gave her a serious side eye. He seems fine so no biggie? What the eff kind of diagnosis is that?! I knew in my heart there was NO WAY this was just teething. But what do I know? I'm not a doctor. I'm trusting these people to dive my son the best care possible and they are seriously sucking at it.
So I took him in last week and he gained 12oz and went in yesterday and he lost 2oz. Between those two visits, Logan's site on his leg where he had been vaccinated nearly a week prior all of a sudden became red and inflamed. Logan was freaking out and very uncomfortable. I called the after-hours line and NO ONE CALLED ME BACK!!! I was livid. There is absolutely no reason why I should not have received a call back. Thankfully, the swelling went down on it's own and after some tylenol, Logan felt better.
Yesterday, I was greeted not very kindly by a nurse, we weight Logan and I asked that she make sure the PA calls me back before the end of the day. At 5:15pm, I still had no call so I called them. No one helped me and the PA had no notes for them. That was it. I was done with them.
This morning, I called a different clinic, one which a few of my friends had recommended with good things to say, and we went in at 4:15. She spend lots of time with us and answered all my questions. I explained the tough time we had been having with the other clinic and this Pediatrician assured me that she would do everything to help. We weighed Logan and he was 16 pounds. I realize that every scale is different, but we are going off this last reading.
Then the pedi checked him out and listened to his heart. She heard a murmur right away and was concerned that no one else had detected it thus far. My heart sank. I knew what a heart murmur was. I had one that was anxiety-induced when I was in college which has since corrected itself and what could happen with Logan's, however we won't know anything until he has some tests done. The pedi is also quite concerned about the fevers. Though low-grade, this is not typical of teething AT ALL! I knew it. I KNEW that was not normal, but I let a stupid PA convince me otherwise.
So we are addressing a few issues. Logan had blood work done tonight at the hospital and it was the most terrible thing I have ever witnessed a little baby go through. I had to hold him while the vampires tried to hit his thin-as-a-thread vein. These will help us out with both the fever issues and possibly the the murmur. Logan's ECHO is scheduled for Monday morning at 9:30am.
I know in my heart that Logan is okay, but I also know that these little things can mean big things which is why we are doing the testing. This is just another test from God. I know that he knows what's best but I would be lying if I did not feel like throwing up from how nervous I am and how much the anticipation of testing is driving me crazy. Any questions? Just ask. Thanks for the thoughts and prayers.
Monday, August 23, 2010
- Swearing, back-talking, disrespect, etc.: mouth washed out with hot sauce or soap
- Doing something dangerous, making plans without permission, spending more than X amount of money without permission, speeding/getting a ticket/traffic warning, etc: Time out in the corner (sometimes naked), letter of apology, lecture and lastly, spanking (bare bottom, bare hand "warm up", then to the paddle, belt, switch for 15-50 (they loose count!) spanks!!!)
Sunday, August 22, 2010
So it's no secret that we need to save every penny we can, where possible. B has been listening to Dave Ramsey, the financial help guy with a nice sense of humor. We have been skimping HUGE at home when it comes to meals, which seems like the worst place to skimp, but lets be honest. Food is expensive and I suck at cooking. However, if I could find a method to shop effectivly for several meal options, I would try to cook healthier and more often for my family. Plus, Logan is on solids now and I want to start getting him to taste real people food (cooked egg yolk, chicken, etc.). I was over on Marital Bless and Leah was talking about a new way they have been cooking and saving money. It's called e-mealz.com. I checked the site out and was instantly intrigued so I read as much as I could and learned that Dave Ramsey himself highly recommends this site. Done deal. I created my membership and printed out last weeks meals and this weeks. Then, I realized, when the hell am I going to make it to the store?
Unless I shop on a Sunday (our only family day of the week) or Mondays I will not make it to the store for the week. Our nights, once we're home from work and getting Logan ready for bed, are just so jam-packed and we're exhausted. Going to the store is the last thing either of us want to do. Our local grocers have a delivery service but I had never tried it before. I went on line super early this morning with my e-mealz.com shopping lists in hand and selected everything I needed, including a few extras not pertaining to the meals. I had never shopped like this before, meaning I have never gathering a list of incrediants needed for specific meals and shopped for them. I know: shocking. Within a half hour (a shopping trip with Logan, waiting for check out, and lugging everything up 3 flights of stairs takes OVER and hour easily) the shopping was done and I spent LESS THAN $100!!! I am so impressed. I just hope that I can be organized over the next few weeks to create each meal and enjoy it. If any of you decided to try this out, let me know how it works for ya!!
Last night, we took Logan to his first concert. We have a local music, food and fun fest going on this weekend and a few of our favorite local bands are playing so last night we took Logan downtown and as you can see from the pictures, he had a great time, as did we!
Thursday, August 19, 2010
So the start of the week was fairly normal. On Monday, Logan and I spent the day with his BFF H. She’s adorable, is she not? Her momma and I have known each other for years, but really only become friends throughout our pregnancy. H is 4 days older than Logan and they are so sweet together. Her momma and I love being able to share what is going on with them, being that they are the same age. It is amazing how they can be at different stages and the same age. For example, H started sitting up a few weeks before Logan and now he is almost a master at it, whereas Logan was rolling over a little sooner than H. Now they catch up with each other. I know that these two will be friends for a very long time, as will her momma and I!
Tuesday I worked, but let’s back up a bit. On SUNDAY, Tulo, our greyhound, began to show signs of diarrhea. Yeah, not fun. So we kept an eye on it. That happens from time to time and he works it out no problem. Sometimes we try and give him some pumpkin or yogurt and that will help. Done deal. Not this time! By Tuesday it was getting worse, then on Wednesday, it was seemed to be letting up. On Monday, he vomited once but that was the only time. Didn’t think much of it. On Wednesday afternoon, I laid down to take a nap while Logan was napping after work and in that time, Tulo have FOUR episodes in our house. While I was on the phone with the vet, he puked alllll over the floor! It was so nasty! The clinic would keep their doors open for us so I loaded Tulo and Logan up and drove to the vet hospital.
There, he was way out of it. He had lost 5 pounds in the last week and a half (I only know this because he was at the vet a week ago for heart guard stuff). Anyway, they did a fecal sample and found that he has clostridium, a bacterial infection of the intestines. Poor guy!! They loaded him up on meds and IV fluids and unloaded my bank account. Over night was not too bad. They did a recheck this morning and he could not even hold down 1oz of water without spitting it up and the diarrhea was continuing so they hospitalized him for the day. What a change that has made! Tulo is feeling so much better!! He got a ton of fluids, as he was very dehydrated, antibiotics, and some other meds to numb any pain he was in. When we went in this morning, his heart was racing, a sign of pain and distress. Tonight, he is home and doing sooo much better! He has eaten a few times and held it down okay which is awesome.
I am sooo tired! I get to sleep in the next three mornings as B does not work and Sunday is my turn to sleep in. I LOVE it!!
If you could see me now and I were to tell you this story, you would first hear me let out a huge, long drawn out, heavy sigh due to pure and utter exhaustion and frustration. And here’s why:
I have a baby. Duh. He doesn’t sleep through the night most nights, he needs to be rocked to sleep, fights sleep with every fiber of his being and has the most blood-curdling cry that if you were to hear it, you’d pick him up too just so that your ears would not start bleeding and you could calm his sweet soul. Ladies and gents (if you’re out there), my child has become manipulative. I know that sounds weird and all you AP (attachment parenting) mommas can just come on over with your torches and burn me at the stake. I don’t care. I am at my wits end. B is at his wits end and it is causing us to go up to fight against each other in the most unloving ways.
How is Logan manipulative? Let me paint a very simple picture for you: Logan is tired, I put him down to bed, he cries, screams, cries, screams until I pick him up. Silence and he falls to sleep after some rocking and snuggles. I LOVE the rocking and snuggles, but I am afraid I have started a terrible habit of rocking him to sleep and getting off of our so-called routine I used to have when he was younger. Folks, the baby was the boss. Get it? And I am demoting him to BABY, not the BOSS.
The last few weeks have been so exhausting. B and I barely get any time together as we are constantly doing something with Logan and I know that he is in teething stage even though those EFFING buggers will not pop through. I am sure if Logan could articulate exactly how he feels right now, he would totally agree with my use of verbage. I began to notice that our friendship was put on the back burner and we’ve been arguing more and acting like children ourselves (it’s your turn to get him!). Yeah, not fun.
Today, I had it. Logan was unbarebly fussy. It was all we could do to barely get laundry and house cleaning done as he just wants to be held and the sleeping issue continued. Sooooooo tonight I gave him a bath, bottle, read a story twice and laid him down. He was okay for a few minutes then began to cry. I told B we were going to let him cry for an entire minute before going in. He went in, soothed him and left. B did this about 4 times over the course of 12 minutes and finally, SILENCE!! He was asleep and we semi let him cry it out! I can’t believe how non-torcherus that was on me. I just didn’t care, I guess you could say. Call me a bad mom, whatever. I can’t be angry with my baby and this is what I had to do to ease that emotion and it worked. I had read and heard stories of mommas who let their babies cry for 45 mintues, all while checking and soothing them without picking them up and I was prepared for that, but no. 12 minutes passed and the last time B came out of the room he was asleep.
Today you are 5 months old. You smile, laugh and have a serious pair of lungs on you. Nopneumothorax is stopping you now! Logan, the depth of our love for you has grown beyond the boundries of what our hearts could have ever imagined possible. Your smile and deep voice stretch our smiles and love for you across the lines on our faces. Nothing in the world comes close to how incredible it is to call you our son and to be your parents.
My most favorite thing is to listen to you in the early mornings talking to yourself. You tell long stories about what I am assuming is your love for us, the dogs, your exersaucer, car rides, bath time, and snuggling. You have a “lovie”, a monkey with a rattle in the head attached to a soft blankie. You grip it with your cubby hands and shove it into your mouth. You’ll yank it out quickly and look at me like, “Look what I can do, Mom!”
You have started eating solids, which is something I am still debating about whether or not this is a good thing, but per the recommendation of your doctor AND your intense interest in watching us eat our food, you have taken to avocado, banana, sweat potato, and squash like a champ. You refuse to swallow a bite of cereal, a true sign that you are indeed my stuborn son. I have begun to freeze small slices of banana to put into a mesh teether-eater and you looooooovvve sucking on that wholesome goodness. And I’m sure the cold, tough texture feels great on those gums.
Speaking of gums, you are in full-blown teething mode and it is painful for all of us. We’re going on 5 days of pure discomfort that just breaks my heart to see you have to go through pain which we all experienced at one time, but can’t even remember. This too shall pass, my son. I am doing my best as your mommy to make you as comfortable as possible, giving you frozen wash cloths to gnaw on, teething rings, a watermellon rind and even my fingers. I invested in some teething tablets which you tried tonight and seemed to relieve your discomfort rather quickly, on top of some tyenol. This road is only beginning and they have not even popped through yet! So your daddy and I are praying that those little buggers will make an appearance any day now. We will all sleep much better, to say the least. (This, dear readers, is why there is no picture yet. Getting a happy face on camera is hard these days)
You are the most playful little man I know. You love standing and have recently discovered how to jump and “dance.” Your jumping has caused you to go wild in your exersaucer and jumparoo, two things you cannot seem to get enough of. You hate laying on your back, even while sleeping. You sleep almost excuslivly on your stomach and you roll yourself into that position easily now. You can push yourself up on your hands almost completely and you are really trying to sit up on your own. Until then, you sit assisted on the floor and are deeply in love with Butte. She lays next to you and licks your feet and you become wildly twitterpated by such a thing.
Strangers have started to pop up on your radar as just that, strangers. You know the moment you are no longer in my arms and someone new is holding you. I have always been a strong believer in allowing you to experience everyone and everything. I am your protector, but I need you to learn to trust others as well. However, the simple fact that you know me as mommy and you know daddy as daddy by our faces and voices melt our hearts. You know who we are better than you could ever communicate. In this new discovery, you have mastered a rather excellent display of the bottom lip. As soon as I catch you in action, I will capture a picture to share.
Logan, you have shown your daddy and I a new way to love. A new way to expeience the world. Everything is fresh and special in your eyes, something we forgot to enjoy a long time ago. This new discovery will only get better as you grow and learn. We will be right by your side every step of the way. We want nothing more than for you to become the person you want to be. We will love you forever.
Ma and Pa
Today was a different kind of day for you. You momma is sick, so daddy has been taking the reins in caring for you. I went to come and came home, slept and then tried to avoid holding you, although that is next to impossible! Especially with those sweet cheeks and gummy smile. You make me melt!
Anyway, you were getting sleepy and daddy needed a break so I held you upright against my chest, a position you have never liked since day one, and within SECONDS you were asleep, gribing my necklace and shirt collar with your chubby hand. You milky breath swelled into my nose and moistened my shirt with the heat from your body. It was a hot day today! You, my dear son, learned the art of snuggling and not once, but twice did you cling to me like the little monkey that you are.
Then, since I am still germy, I gave daddy the job of putting you to bed. Now I had no idea what a feat that would be! I always put you to bed and it just seemed that was how it was. Tonight, Daddy was determined to put you to bed and you were determined to fight him with every ounce of sweat left in you. It was brutle, my son, listening to you scream at the top of your lungs, piercing our ears with your baby scream. I about screamed myself! I was so sad for you and your daddy. Daddy just wanted to do what I do and you wanted nothing to do with it. So I soothed you a few times and eventually, you fell asleep in daddy’s arms. Ugh. What a work out you put yourself through. I have never heard you cry like that and it broke my heart. But, my dear, you do need to learn to let other people put you to sleep.
Most recently, you have learned how to roll both ways and you LOVE sleeping on your belly now, which might explain why you snuggle now. You’re sleeping 9 hours a night, straight without waking up and I am sooo happy about that! You have started solids, but are still not a fan. I am going to wait a few more weeks to try different things.
I love you more than anything, sweet boy.
M & D
June 22, 2010
Ugh. I dunno how to even start this. Our weekend beyond sucked. Like, I cannot even articulate how crapy it was and later, you will see how that pun was totally intentional. Read on.
Saturday I worked and felt fine. We had a steak dinner with friends that was honestly, crapy steak. Cooked way too well. The salad and grilled corn on the cob saved it, however, and the brewed Rasp. Tea was lovely as well. Logan fell asleep and we played Apples to Apples. I kicked ass, but ended up loosing by one card both times. Doh!
Later that night, around 4am, Logan fussed so I fed him and when I got out of bed, my stomach was cramping so badly, I was nearly keeled over. I ignored it long enough to put Logan back to bed and fall asleep until Logan woke up again at 7:15, the latest he has EVER slept! Yet my tummy cramping was still present and I was almost convinced it was because I was hungry.
The steak was so bad I just picked at it and didn’t eat much. B was feeling fisky and so we had some fun.
The tummy cramping did not stop and only got worse until….I let it all out. Over and over and over and over and over (shall I go on?)…again. I was in the bathroom from 7:30am until 10:30am. I became so weak I considered going to the ER. B could not get fluids in my fast enough. The Imodium worked for a little while but I had a few more episodes before the night was over. I was effing miserabe and B had to take care of me and Logan all day. So much for church and lounging around until dinner time with the rents. Ugh.
Sorry if this is serious over-share, but you know, it’s my blog. Now do you get my crapy pun? Hehe
I am still not feeling 100%. It was so hot tonight I decided to swim laps instead of run and I feel great right now!
As far as Celexa goes, I am having little to no side effects. If I’m tired, it’s because I have a 4 month old. I am not noticing any changes yet when it comes to the anxiety itself, but I know it takes time so I am trying to be patient.
As far as Father’s Day goes, I plan to have a re-do this weekend. No more sickness!
Yesterday I decided to take my meds in the morning, rather than at night. I could not risk getting so little sleep while needing to work and care for my family so I was willing to deal with nausea if need be. Surprise surprise I was not nauseaous. I was EFFING TIRED AS HELL! I could not for the life of me hardly keep my head off the desk. It was redic people. When I got home, Logan was anit nap as usual so I did not go to bed until almost 10 because…
I went for a run with our new jogger!
It was way to hot at 7:30 for a run, but it felt great and I am going to do it again tonight!
Today, the medication made me feel like I was on Speed. I could not sit still. I don’t drink caffeen, but I know that if I did, this is how I would feel. It felt like someone shot me up with a crazy amount of adrenaline and now I have mellowed out. At work, I was giggly and goofy, something I am at times, but it was allll dayyyy lonnnnggg! I am tired and getting ready to head to my first counseling appointment. Wish me luck! And pray Logan is a gem…
***Over the next few weeks I am going to be writing a daily post on how I am feeling after taking the drug Celexa to treat my anxiety. It is simply a way to track side effects and progress. There may be other unrelated posts in one day so be sure to check your blogroll/reader/RSS feed! Thanks.***
So far, I have only been on the drug for 6 hours and I can already feel it. Not in the way of helping with the anxiety, but OMG there is something different going on. I took it before I went to bed because my previous experience with Lexapro has taught me that I am quite sensitive to these drugs and last time, I was so nauseated that I could hardly function. Doc recommended I take it at night since it is a 24 hour acting drug, so here I am. Not so nauseated, but VERY effing tired. We were up late last night for B’s birthday watching a movie and I don’t know if it was the drug or something else, but I could hardly fall asleep. Half the time I felt wide awake, like I could go bake something, but my body could feel it so I conceded to stay in bed. I barely got 4 hours of sleep and I have to go to work in an hour.
Other than feeling tired, I am dizzy and my vision is a little wobbly. As in, I am having trouble focusing. Weird. I can’t tell if I am a little nauseated since I have not eaten breakfast and my stomach is empty. We’ll see after I eat something.
Please continue to pray and send encouraging words! When I was driving to the store to pick up my script I was having anxiety about taking anxiety medication!! Wacky, I know. Wish me luck that I don’t pass out at work from sheer exhaustion!!
I never thought there could be such a thing, but I am too strong. After many long talks with B and my mom, it is clear that I am quite the fighter. The fighting, ironicly, has caused me to avoid the issue alltogether, causing this terrible cycle of anxiety. This may make no sense to anyone other than me, but to have it down on paper, so to speak, is the best way for me to face the issue that I am too damn strong.
I hate drawing attention to myself in any way and especially when it comes to me being vulnerable. I want people to care, but I don’t like the attention it gets me. Naturally, when I discovered I would be having a baby, worries I have never even thought of come to mind: will I be a good mom? Will I know what to do? What if I do something wrong? What if I miscarry? What if I eat something harmful or lift something too heavy? What if I trip down the stairs with him in my arms? What if someone hurts him? What if B doesn’t know what to do? It was never ending, and it still is never ending. According to my mom, the worry a parent carries will never end, but it is how one deals with that worry that classifies it as normal parent worry and full blown anxiety.
When I was 29 weeks pregnant, we had a scare. One of my doctors determined that my belly was not measuring 29 weeks, it was measuring 22 weeks. This meant the amnio fluid must be low, oh and after he did an internal exam, determined I was already effacing. I had 11 weeks left people! This baby was not supposed to come yet! With all the worry of “what if” and having to wait an entire day before a more specialized ultrasound, I only remember crying once. Of course I told B how scared I was. We both were petrified at what an early delivery could mean, what a small baby meant. On the outside, though, I told my boss what was going on, calmly with a promise to update as soon as we knew what was going on. I calmly called my parents and in-laws so that we could have a circle of prayer around us. I even let you bloggies know what was going on. Prayer was the only thing, other than my husband, I could lean on. I stayed strong. Once we knew that Logan was doing fine, just measuring about a week behind, I tried not to think anything of it.
One of my biggest fears while pregnant, was that I would die in childbirth and I was very careful as to who I told this fear to. In fact, I think B is the only person who knew I was afraid of dying and leaving B all alone, with or without our baby. It scared the hell out of me. So once my anxiety about pre-term labor went away and I finally went into labor a week late, I did my best not to even let those negative thoughts enter my mind so I could focus on helping my body through labor.
Amazingly, the delivery was perfect…until Logan screamed so hard he popped a hole in his lung. This is where my bottled up anxiety really began. All I kept thinking about was how I had to stay strong and that of course he would be okay. But way deep down, I was petrified that I would lose my sweet boy, that his lung would collapse, he’d stop breathing, and the most tragic thing would happen. Funny thing is, Logan being in the NICU IS the most tragic thing to ever happen to me. My child was in danger, sick, in pain and I could do NOTHING to help him. After his neonatoligist spoke with us and shooed us away to perform the needle aspiration, B and I sat on my bed. I was on a high does of percocet, IB Profin, my legs we still numb, I had no control over my bladder, I had stitches in my vadge and an empty bedside. Our hospital is well known for how baby-friendly it is and highly encourages babies to room in with mom. I was thrilled about this when we took our tour and in that moment, Logan was locked behind secure doors, hooked up to wires and IVs, laying swaddled on a warming bed down the hall and around the corner. No where near me. As we waited for a call that the procedure was over. B and I could hardly swallow the lumps in our throats or eat anything with the giant rock in our stomachs. We held hands, stared into each others eyes and sobbed. We hugged and sobbed until I was too weak to sit up any longer. If you have ever taken percocet before, it kind of makes you feel drunk and for me, my hearing gets fuzzy. Everything in the room sounded muffled and when the phone finally rang, I thought I was dreaming.
I remember thinking that I needed to text all these people back and update my facebook and blog to announce the happy arrival, but I was so scared and worried I could hardly send a text to my three best friends to let them know I was okay, but Logan wasn’t. Who wants to share that kind of news? How do you share that kind of news? I could not even find the words to say my baby is sick. But I stayed strong. I did not cry in front of anyone but B and the occasional nurse who happened to catch me in a moment of weakness. But that is what I thought I was, if I cried or showed any negative emotion. The only time I cried for joy was the moment Logan was laid on my chest. Not once while he was in the NICU did I cry for joy.
I was mad, and still am, that my pastor never called me back or visited us. I called him the first day Logan was in the NICU to come pray over us and he never even called me back. I know I need to let it go, but that simple gesture meant a lot to me. I knew they made hospital visits and I was angry they skipped over me. Thsi gave me anxiety that maybe they didn’t care about me as much as I thought they did. That my 10 year commitment to the church did not mean as much as I thought it would. Hell, 10 years or 1 month SOMEONE should have been there! I was so angry, I couldn’t even cry.
I don’t know exactly where this is going, but it is a start to letting myself feel angry and sad and worried when Logan was in the NICU. I keep thinking that his stay does not mean as much as other babie’s stays. They were sicker, or smaller, or whatever. He just had a hole in his lung and was an entire week late! This is silly, I know. But I feel this way sometimes which is why I don’t talk about it. I am afraid someone will say but oh, he was okay, right? Well then no big deal. TO YOU, it’s no big deal! To me, my son’s life was on the line and in reality, it was not just to me. The doctors had to do what they did to save his life. I just pray that we don’t have to go through something like this again, but I do know that bumps and bruises are normal.
This may come off a little harsh, but bare with me ONLY with an open mind. I don’t mean to offend, I just need to vent…
I don’t get it. Whyyyyyyy do parents co-sleep? The only reason I see where this might be okay is if you are a single parent and/or your spouse is deployed. But I am not here to argue for co-sleeping and those parents.
I keep seeing on message boards and blogs and even a few friends I know of who have allowed their wee one to sleep in their bed. Way back in the day, I took a speech class and a fellow student, a mother, gave a speech about why co-sleeping so so good for parent and child. The moment I learned that parents actually do this, I was horrified of several things:
- rolling onto my babe
- not getting any sleep
- bye bye sex life!
- the battle of transitioning into a crib later on down the road
- weird looks from non-co-sleeping-believers (that would be me…)
…It goes on. I knew from that moment there was no way I was going to allow my child to sleep in our marriage bed. No way. And this, my fellow momma friends, I did not back down on. B supported me. Once we brought Logan home from the hospital and we tried getting him to sleep in the PnP, that was hard enough, hearing all the little sweet sounds he’d make. It was too much for all three of us.
So I did what others may think was too soon: I moved Logan into his crib when he was 4 weeks old and it was the best move we made for Logan sleep wise. He can sleep and nap in his crib comfortably. He can self-sooth himself to sleep. I can lay him down awake and let him fuss until he falls asleep. There has never been any crying, screaming, or headbanging on either of our parts. It was a smooth and perfect transition and I know that if we had waited until he was older, it would have been a lot harder to do.
It is just surprising to me that so many parents co-sleep and are surpirsed when it is very difficult to transition to the crib…
So my advice to all you new mommas, do it sooner rather than later!
The anxiety has gripped me to the point where I have no motivation to get anything done or do anything productive. Thankfully, the nice weather has we wanting to be outside, but only because Logan loves it so much. Without him motivating me to keep him happy, I don’t know what I would be doing.
The funny part is that despite no motivation, I am still doing things. Still running the dishwasher, loading the laundry machine, scrubing the toilets…but I don’t want to. I don’t want to do any of these things, but I feel like I have to, for my family.
B wants me to start exercising again. So I am on the hunt for a good jogging stroller. I am not a jogger, but maybe I’ll become one. If it helps my anxiety, I’ll try anything before seeking meds.
I would prefer to write a post like this in the quite and safety of my own privacy, keeping all things negative only to myself. However, I feel that keeping this to myself won’t help me any, so I might as well put it out there and see if it can help any of you.
If you have been a long time follower, you know I’ve talked about my struggles with anxiety in the past. Over the last eight years, I have accepted the diagnosis and done what I can to keep it at bay. When it first began mid-semester my freshman year in college, I sought help and discovered the anxiety was causing a heart murmur. I was put on meds, went to a therapist, and put on a happy face. For seven months I took that tiny white pill every night before bed, avoided alcohol, and was convinced I was getting better.
I was. One day, I just decided to take the last pill and that was it. Cold turkey. I’ve heard of people doing this and it having negative effects, but I don’t remember feeling badly after doing that.
A few years pass with very mild episodes of panic attacks, nothing that warranted more counseling or meds. Near the end of my first year at a different college (four years since I’d taken any meds) I had a terrible experience with a roommate which affected my academics. I have always been anxious about getting good enough grades, but not for me, for my parents. I never wanted to disappoint them and the anxiety and panic attacks were coming back so much so that I went back to counseling in hopes of avoiding meds. I did and when the semester ended for the summer, I packed up my things and moved out to New Jersey for the summer. I have family out there and I felt a change in scenery and people would do me some good.
That summer has become one of my most favorite summers of my life. I went to the beach, lived with my grandma (who passed away a year and a half after that summer), dated a Harvard boy, and did not worry too much about anything else.
Six months later, I met B and we started dating. I graduated from college, got engaged, married and had a baby. Sounds like the perfect fairytale, right? Well, it is in just about every way possible, but the anxiety is back and worse than I can remember.
Logan is the most incredible little boy and I am so proud to be his mommy. His smile lights up my life and all those little worries wash away, but only for that moment. I put him down, walk away, sleep, go to work—whatever—and it’s back. I am afraid of everything. I’m afraid of someone kidnapping Logan, forgetting to lock the door and having an intruder attack us, tripping down the stairs with Logan in my arms, someone shaking him, being in a car accident….the list goes on and those are the more “tame” fears I have. I have had the same bad dream three times in the last week and it is so hard for me to articulate it to even B that he is unsure of how to take it. Outside of that particular dream, I have been having bad dreams just about every night. I wake up and walk around with this horrible knot in my stomach and my heart in my throat. When I am working or out of the house, I try and push the fears away from me but the moment I am alone with my thoughts, I feel weak and helpless.
The fear has been so griping lately that I am afraid I might need more help, something outside the comfort of my walls and B’s ears. I hate to think this is some form of post-partum depression and I won’t until someone tells me otherwise. But it scares me. I don’t really know what else to do. I pray hard, through tears and smiles as I hold and kiss Logan. It is a surreal feeling. Happy and scared at the same time. Wayyyyy deep down I know that everything is great, that nothing bad will happen, that I just need to relax. But the truth is, anything can happen and that is where my anxiety takes hold of me. I know the likelihood of such things happening is slim to none, but there is no 100% guarantee and without it, I am lost. My fears are not going away the same way they used to. Just say some prayers, if you would, that I find guidance in the next step. I know this time, I can’t just self-talk and visualize these fears away. I need something else.
“Boy do I have a treat for you! A FREE manual to parenting! Honestly, it will tell you eeevvveryhing you need to know when it comes to caring for that new little one of yours. Spit up? Weird poop? Inconsolable crying? Just use the index and you’re on your way!”
Now, wouldn’t that be wonderful, to have a hard copy that says yes do this, no don’t do that, and why they hell would you think of something so crazy! I mean really, parenting is supposed to be easy! OMG, I wish y’all cloud see me smiling and laughing right now. I’ve only been a parent for a little over 3 months now and I am already eating words I voiced months before I became a parent of “I will nevers” and “This is the only ways” and so on…
Well, the other day while eating lunch with a few coworkers, they were asking me how things were going. Three of the four people sitting with me were mothers. The forth person, bless her heart, has been trying to have a baby for next to 4 years now. I pray for her often and have made suggestions to her try certain things BEFORE doing any fertility treatments and I think she is having a hard time taking me seriously since the first time we officially tried to get pregnant, we did. This is one of those things you don’t tell someone who has been trying to have a baby for so long. So I didn’t, but she gets to sit and listen to me talk about how amazing my baby is…
Anyway, I am not sure of the specifics of our conversation at the time, but somewhere in there she started to tell us (the mommas) about this parenting manual she and her hubs have about how they are going to raise the children the have someday. I could hardly contain myself, as I laughed, thinking of all the things I said I would never do and how I would do certain things one way. And now, now that I am that parent, how breaking those so called rules is so easy to do, especially out of sleep-deprived desperation. She was a good sport as we all laughed and said “Good luck with that!”.
It just made me reflect on so many things I would talk about pre-baby. Even regarding our birth. As a first time mom, it was hard for me to take anyone seriously who was trying to tel me to be open-minded about our birth plan, about sleep habits, breast-feeding vs. formula feeding, etc. For example:
- While I was totally aware of my lack of pain tolerance, I was determined to have a pain meds free birth and well, back labor is a bitch so bring on the epi!
- I swore up and down that if I was hungry during labor, I was going to eat. Well, come labor you’re really not hungry anyway and that cherry Popsicle was the best damn Popsicle I had ever had!
- Never was I ever going to let my baby sleep in a swing at night. Well, when it is the only position baby is comfy in and you’re running on 2 hours of sleep, the kid is gonna sleep in the swing!
- People told me to sleep when the baby sleeps and I kept thinking, ha, I won’t be thattired…ha, I have never been so tired in my life!
- I would never take my kid to daycare, and I still haven’t, however I considered it when we were two weeks away from my going back to work and we still had no sitter. We would have paid more for childcare than I would have made working so…not worth it.
- Vaccines. A very loooooooonnnng time ago, even before B and I were married, I believed vaccines caused autism and that has since been totally bunked (and if you disagree with me, sorry). Well, in the last year I went from thinking I would not be vaccinating my babies to feeling strongly about doing so, only on a slower more drawn out schedule. Reasoning here deserves a whole other post all on it’s own.
There’s more, but these are the things I can remember. All I know is that there is no such thing as a parenting manual and even if there was one, it would not work on every baby. It may even work one night and not the next. Babies are so unpredictable and our thoughts and believes, while with good meaning, can become unpredictable too. I love what I am learning as a parent.
So, two days into work now. Things are going surprisingly well. Seriously, I have not cried yet and I think there is something wrong with me! Either that, or I have been so crazy-busy picking loose ends and working on small projects I have not had a whole lot of time to sit and wallow. For me, that is a good thing. I hate drawing attention to myself by crying and I know everyone would be supportive, but I just hate crying in front of others. People are still looking at me with downward eyes, their heads cocked to the side and using a soft voice asking, “So,how are you doing, I mean really?” Really? I’m fine! I am so glad I can say that. I know there will be some days that are worse than others but so far this going back to work business has been okay. Miss M is amazing. I am so glad we have found her to care for Logan. They make a great pair.
Since I quite breast-feeding two weeks ago, I finally am feeling back to normal! My breasts have not felt this great in almost 4 months! It’s amazing. I can lay Logan on my chest to cuddle and I am no longer flinching in discomfort. Also, since the milk has nearly dried up they are going back to my normal size. This, I am very thankful for. I never thought of getting my breasts enlarged, ever, but now that they have been bigger than normal, I will never do something like that. And to all you big busted mommas out there, bless your hearts. I could not deal with the heaviness, back pain, sweat, etc all the time.
Oh yeah, and for all you non-Coloradoans IT EFFING SNOWED LAST NIGHT! In May, it snowed heavy, wet snow. The poor tree buds and flowers are moppy now, looking ever so sad. The ground was too warm for anything to really stick and so it has just been a slushy mess all day. Ugh, where are you spring?! Come back please!
This past week has been unbelievably difficult, and not just because I have been preparing to head back to work on Tuesday. Near the beginning of the week, Logan was in a weird funk, crying all the time, inconsolable, just not himself. After several hours of unhappiness for both of us, I finally gave him some Tylenol (a brand not recalled) and he was fine after 30 minutes. He had a 99 temp for a few days and wa-la is doing much better. Why? Not sure but I am SO glad.
Not to mention that because I have been off work and on maternity leave for nearly 4 months now, “money is tight” is an understatment. More like, money? What’s that?? It effing sucks! In heindsight, we really did not do a very good job planning for the last month of my maternity leave financially. We had the first two and a half months taken care of and even had some helpful perks along the way that really surprised us and helped us out. And somehow, we have some seriously awesome angels as we were able to sell my car to my dad yesterday for cash. Biggest blessing! We can deal with not having 2 cars. We are saving money, helping good ‘ol planet Earth, and one less car on the road is always a good thing. Plus it gives our family more together time. B and I will be taking turns dropping one or the other off at work and taking the car for the day. There might be days when it gets tricky, but for the most part we will be able to make it work until we can buy another car.
The best news, of course, is that our sweet boy is THREE MONTHS OLD today!! I know I say this every time I write a montly post, but I seriously cannot believe it has been 3 months since we welcomed Logan into this world. I love recalling my birth. It was so beautiful and the second I heard his scream, my heart burst out of my chest just like the Grinch. I never knew I could love something or someone instantly with unending, uncontitional love. To think of how far he has come from the NICU has also been amazing! We were told that the pnemo was something that, once healed, would not affect him in anyway but it is hard to trust and believe until he is screaming his head off and not popping another hole in his lung. So what is our little big boy up to?
- Rolls to his side
- Sleeps through the night (9pm-5am)
- Brings objects to mouth, including hands
- Sucks thumb
- Naps and sleeps in his crib (the napping only started this week-night sleeping was at 4 wees in his crib)
- Eats 4-5oz of formula every 2-3 hours
- Recognizes our faces and voices
- Loves standing with support
- Has perfect head and neck control
- Can lift head while on tummy (but still HATES tummy time)
- Still in size 1 diapers, but only when we are out and about as we LOVE using cloth at home
- In mostly 3-6 month clothing, but the kid has NO WAIST and even some 0-3 month pants don’t fit so great but are now too short
- Weighs exactly 12 pounds, almost double his birth weight
- Can reach for objects, toys and loves grabbing my hair
- Learning how to laugh
- Loves smiling and “talking” to us
I am sure there is more, but that is all I can think of for now. Logan is such a joy! He makes me want to be a better person, wife, mother and friend. I try to take him out often so that he can get used to other people holding and interacting with him. In general he has no stranger fear yet, which is good at this point. I am obviously not handing him to an actual stranger. Lol…celebrating this weekend as my very first Mother’s Day is so amazing. There are still moments when I look into his big blue sunflower eyes and think, wow. You are a piece of me and a piece of B. HOW DOES THAT HAPPEN!??!? Well duh, I know how that happens. It is just amazing and if you are a mother and/or expecting you know what I mean. God’s gift of children to us just blows my mind.
What else blows my mind? That on Tuesday morning I will wake up at 5am. I will feed Logan in our green rocking chair in his nursery and stare at him staring up at me. I will smile and coo at him while he drinks and tell him that I love him and that Miss M is going to take great care of him. I will set out his cloths for Miss M to change him into later because we love hanging out in our PJs for most of the morning. (who doesn’t) I will snuggle and hug his little body, kiss his chubby, gummy cheeks, smooth over his soft mop of hair, and quite possibly cry and pray over him before laying him in his crib to enjoy his mobile while I do my hair, make up, and get dressed in clothes that still have the tags on them. They’ve been awaiting my first day of work. I even got new shoes and a necklace. I will eat breakfast, make my lunch and wait. I will hold my sweet little boy while I wait, repeating the above over and over again until that soft knock on the door comes, announcing Miss M’s arrival at 6:30am. I am not crying yet. Is something wrong with me? What if I don’t cry when I leave him? Is something even more wrong with me then? Am I a bad mom for not crying? It does not mean I am not sad. My heart is breaking that I have to go back to work! And yet, at the same time, I am excited to go back to work. I love the people I work with. I love the people who live there. I miss having something to do. That may sound bad, but if you are a working mom, you know what I mean. Miss M has a little boy and gave me peace of mind that leaving Logan will give me a chance to miss him, which I have only really felt less than a hand full of times. I never felt more seperated and missed something so much in my life than when Logan was born, no longer moving inside my belly causing heinus heartburn and then to have him moved to the NICU and not seeing him for 3 hours after his birth. Working will be different. I will be doing things to keep my mind busy and Miss M said I can call as often as I need to. She understands. I love that we have a sitter who is sympathetic to a new mommy. It makes this whole leaving Logan process just a tiny bit easier, though hardly easy at all. So pray for me to have strength to get through the first day, and then the next, and so on as I take on the new title of Working Mother, something which I am sure I will someday be proud of.
I have a few friends who had children before me. One of them never ceased to give me advice I asked for. She has two beautiful little red heads and managed to have the oldest sleeping through the night at 9 weeks and the youngest by 6 weeks. I was baffled! I have met her children on several occasions and these kids are some of the best behaved children I have ever had the privilege to be around. So when I discovered I was becoming a mommy, I called her nearly every week to ask about some weird thing that had been happening, or, of course, just to say hi. She was, and still is, a rock for me both as a girlfriend and as a fellow mommy.
As my pregnancy progressed, I had asked her several times how she managed to get her girls to sleep through the night so soon. She referred to a book she had read that kind of follows the same guidelines as Baby Wise. But I already knew in my research I was not a huge fan of Baby Wise. Sure there are some great suggestions about certain things, but I have never been the kind of person to micromanage anyone, let alone a baby. She kept telling me to get the baby on MY schedule and that the schedule should be one that looks very similar to EAT-PLAY-SLEEP. It is also very similar to the EASY method: EAT-ACTIVITY-SLEEP-ME TIME. I kind of just throw ME time in wherever it happens to end up.
The book, Let The Children Come Along the Infant Way, is something I am still reading, as it is not just a simple sleep aid for your new baby. One of the first chapters is on sleep and my dear friend did not actually send me this book until Logan was about 5 weeks old. I was happy she sent it to me at all. :)
Step One: Don’t let baby fall asleep immediately after a feeding. As a new mom, this is SOOOO HARD to not do because you’re thinking as soon as the baby is asleep, you can sleep to! Since newborns are so sleepy anyway, keeping them awake for even 10 minutes after a feeding is a good start. And then a few days later it will be 20 minutes, and so on. Now that Logan is older, he can stay awake after a feeding for 1-2 hours now depending on the time of day and if he has had a good nap yet. Plus, this special wake time is a great opportunity to interact with baby by reading, singing, and talking to him. Even tummy time is something you can start doing right away. At 2.5 months old, Logan still hates tummy time so don’t feel bad when baby cries.
Step Two: Play time! As I just stated, play time should follow a feeding and the reason for this is so that baby does not associate eating with sleeping. In the long run, this pays off HUGE so that when you are actually putting baby down for the night, you have one less sleep aid to use in getting him to sleep. In fact, the goal is to not need any kind of sleep aid to get baby into sleep mode. He should simply be able to fall asleep without being rocked, bobbed up and down, fed, etc. From experience, this is a lot easier said than done, trust me. Also, this play time step only comes into play during the day, obviously. You want baby to fall asleep after a middle of the night feeding so you can both go back to bed.
Step Three: SLEEP! Of course, what you came here for! As newborns, babies literally sleep all.the.time. It was not until Logan was 3-4 weeks old when he started to stay awake longer. It did not take long for the EAT-PLAY-SLEEP schedule to take affect, however, our night sleeping was still not going so well. We had Logan in the pack n play in our room and I think being able to hear him make all his sleepy baby noises kept us awake. Naturally, he was up every 2 hours for several weeks to eat, as he should be. Any pediatrician will tell you to feed on demand, no matter how often, at least until they are 2 weeks old. Logan had a fluke night with a 5 hour stretch at nearly 3 weeks old and the pediatrician said to just let him sleep. I no longer had to wake him every three hours (but the five hour stretch did not happen again for several more weeks). Once he was 4 weeks old and the only way any of us were getting sleep was to let Logan sleep in his swing, both B and I were beyond exhausted. This also meant one of us was out on the couch and we missed each other. So one night I randomly laid Logan down in his crib and he was fine! He slept great! We slept great! He was still up at his normal times to eat, but even getting him to go back to sleep was easier! Best move I made as a mom at that point.
Then, the night before Easter we were in Denver visiting B’s dad, spending the night. Logan had to sleep in his car seat as we did not set up the pack n play (for whatever reason) and HE SLEPT FOR 6 HOURS! I was still nursing him and when I woke up at 3am (after putting him down at 11pm) and he was still sleeping, I thought I was going to explode, both from engorgement and excitement! I checked on him. Still breathing! So I went back to bed and ignored how uncomfortable I was feeling. He was awake at 5am to eat and then be up for a few hours. It was amazing!
I honestly am not sure HOW Logan managed to start sleeping through the night other than his wake time was becoming longer and his day naps were getting shorter. I think it has just been a natural adjustment for both of us. I really do believe the steps above are what has helped us get here. Since he is older, there are times when I will let him fall asleep after a day feeding if he has already been awake for 2-3 hours. Of course at that point he is tired and during the day, he eats just about every 2-3 hours anyway. So far, this has not affected his night sleeping at all and it does not even happen everyday.
Step 4: Bet time routine. This is my own little step I am going to add. If this is in the book, I have not come across it yet, but one thing I know helps Logan get into sleep mode is doing the same thing before bed time every night. Every other night we give him a bath. It took him a good month to even like his bath and now it is a time for us to just settle down together. Then, every night, I give him a massage with baby lotion, read him a book, feed him. While he is eating I will sing and pray over him. And then even if he is still awake, I lay him down in his crib to sleep and he is out within 10 minutes. Sometimes he fusses and I might go in to give him his paci but if I do that, it is only once and then he is out for good.
Logan sleeps from 9pm-5am just about every night, give or take an half hour or so. This morning he was up at 4am to eat, I fed him and put him back to bed. He slept until 6am! Believe me when I say every baby is different so when you are trying these things out, remember that some things may work for me, but not for you, and vise versa. I had to come to that realization myself that with Logan some suggestions my friend gave me I did not agree with and/or they simply did not work for Logan. He is not a puppet and while small, he will let me know very quickly when he likes or dislikes something. One thing my friend kept telling me was to let him cry it out and I was not about to do that, not with my wee one! Maybe once he is older, but I know neither of us are ready for that. And yes, there is a difference between letting him fuss and letting him cry. I don’t let him cry, but I do let him fuss until he stops or until he starts to cry.
Sorry this post is so long!! If you read the whole thing, congrats! I hope you got some good ideas and if you try this out and any of it works, let me know! Also, does anyone want me to repost my birth story? I know some of you missed out on that when my blog was private so if you do, let me know and I will repost it!