Thursday, August 23, 2012

Appreciation

This may start out as a rant, but I promise it gets better. Ranting is like cleaning your room- you have to get all the junk out from where you've kicked it under the bed and make the room un-recognizably messy before you can organize it into piles that will eventually get put away. 

It's pretty messy under my emotional bed...  

Truth: I've been feeling a little down lately. I feel fortunate (and surprised) to say that I haven't felt down since Whit's birth-- only the last few days. As I wrote in Whit's One Month post he is a very serious child. He seems like he's still figuring out this world, and hasn't decided if he likes it or not. On top of his complacent demeanor, here's a little-shared fact of parenting: BREASTFEEDING SUCKS. (Pun intended.) The American Academy of Pediatrics and my own midwives would cringe to hear me admit that I HATE BREASTFEEDING. I'm sore, all my clothes (and most things around our house) have gotten dirty, I can't give Ben a proper hug, and Whit has a negative reaction to it because of his acid reflux. It takes a long time for him to begin, and when he does he wriggles, cries, and basically seems to be in torture. I feel like I'm causing my baby pain, and I KNOW I'm in pain, which adds up to a very, very emotional and unpleasant 30 minutes ever 3 hours. I've been waiting every week, every day, every feeding for things to get better. I try to look on the bright side. Things get easier with time, right? Well, after a month of things NOT getting better, I'm actually in tears half the times that I feed him!

In a typical role reversal, I, the mommy, am now pretty jealous of Ben, the daddy. I feel like I have Whit when he's crying and when we both hate breastfeeding, Ben gets Whit when he's sleeping, burping, or at least generally calm. I have worked so hard to create a nice atmosphere for him and tried to become a good mother (which I think I am, so no pity comments, please), but the "most intimate and bonding times" are the worst of my day. I give him all the tenderness and patience I have, but inwardly I'm in screaming down to my tippy toes.

I am just waiting for the time when he smiles on his own and can give me a hug. And didn't all the parenting websites I subscribed to say that my voice would be his favorite sound, and I would be his favorite person? Then why does he seem to hate being around me? When will he smile just because I- his mothering goddess- just walked in the room? I guess that will come later, too, but for now I get no recognition from this little person that my efforts are doing any good, which feels so terrible! I know I'm a good mom and there is no way I could love Whit any more, I just wish he could show that he loves me back. And me front :)

But then...

I heard this morning that a close friend delivered the two remaining of the triplets she was pregnant with. They were all three stillborn in the last couple of weeks. Her first child, a girl, was stillborn 5 months before I had Eleanor. My friend was a tremendous help and blessing to me during that time. She helped me feel like I was not alone and process how I was feeling. Now she has lost three more, and I can't begin to understand her pain. Learning of her loss reminds me of my own, and I can't imagine going through that experience three more times. 

I had a plot near Eleanor's picked out for Dragon the entire time I was pregnant, and even now that I have him I recognize that SIDS and other conditions could take him from me at any time. But those are just fears, and I need to recognize the difference between fears and reality. The reality is that Whit was born safely and healthy and is here with me now. Today. In my arms AT THIS MOMENT. He may be crying and arching his back in discomfort, BUT HE'S HERE AND HE'S MINE. I watch his skin turn from deep purple back to white as he transitions from screaming to sleeping and I appreciate every time I've been peed on, having to wear itchy nursing pads, doing tons of laundry, changing two poopy diapers in as many minutes, rocking him more awake than back to sleep at 5 am, and every other "joy" of parenthood. 

So just one question... how selfish am I?!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Whit is One-Month Old!

Whit's one-month ped appointment was actually a week ago... He is one month, but about 5 weeks old. How does that work? 7 days in a week, 4 weeks in a month, but that's only 28 days and most months are 30-31 days, so it takess28 days to pass 4 weeks but another 1/2 week to make it to the 18th of the next month... and now my head hurts. Oh well... I think I'll stop counting weeks now and just go with months. That makes things easier.

My baby's a month old! 


Whit is... 
-8 lbs. 9 oz. 
-21.5 inches long
-Sleeping in his own room
-Sleeps for a 6-hour session, then a 3 or 4-hour session at night
-Now wearing size 1 diapers 
-Now wearing 0-3 mo. clothing
-Covered in baby acne
-on Zantac for acid reflux (which barely helps. He writhes and grunts all.the.time.)
-LOVES tummy time (esp. for well-observed naps) 
-Starting to get used to baths


Mommy & Daddy...
-Are getting more sleep!
-Carry him in the BabyBjorn as much as possible
-Do about 2 loads of baby laundry a week
-Narrate his day with different versions of "Call Me Maybe" 
(Hey, I just changed you, but now your poooooopy. Here's a new diaper, so stay clean for me.")
-Take Whit to Sacrament Meeting
-Always have a camera (AKA iPad or phone) nearby for cute pix and videos
-Both love Whit more than imagined and make a pretty good parenting team so far :) 



So far Whit is a pretty serious child. He has great eye contact and, when awake and not crying, will stare right at you or right past you. (Is he looking at the angels that surround us?) He cries when he doesn't feel settled, which is often at least a wimper due to the acid reflux. We joke that he has to "work something out." He likes to nurse at specific times, be held in certain positions, sleep in specific ways, cries as soon as he has a wet diaper, and hates the first time he gets the pacifier but eventually doesn't want to let it go, and other peculiarities that make me think he means BUSINESS! Seriously... don't mess with this kid's schedule. Which is nice, but I worry that he has a regimented temperament and won't be easily satisfied, happy, or creative in life. I want a happy child! I know that at a month old he is still just trying to figure this crazy world out and it is much too soon to peg him in one way, but I'm a Mom... I want what's best for him :)


Sunday, August 19, 2012

Rock Climbing Pilot Mountain

We have heard about Pilot Mountain often since we moved to Greensboro.


"You like camping? You should check out Pilot Mountain!"
"You hike? Have you been to Pilot Mountain?" 


After hearing that it had a plethora of climbing routes we have been eager to go, but we've always had obstacles. This past week Ben's mom was in town with us so we took advantage of the third person babysitter to FINALLY get some climbing in!




It was hard for me to climb while pregnant because I'd either feel too sick or weak to climb or belay, or my stomach was too big, so it felt GREAT getting back out! I was pretty terrified to go so high on my first time back in a while, but there is no other feeling of accomplishment! (Maybe natural child birth...)


Ben's mom got on the wall, too!


We even exposed Whit to rock climbing! 

In this picture he's looking back at Ben like, "Are you sure it's ok, Daddy?"

"I'm sure, Son."


3 weeks isn't too early, right? :) 




It was so fun, and there are tons of other routes we want to try! But we need to bring at least 1 other adult so someone can always be watching Whit. So... whose up for a trip?!?!






Thursday, August 16, 2012

Rookie Parents: The First 4 Weeks

* The second night home we made a 2:00 am purchase of a mamaRoo Bouncer from Amazon after Whit wanted to be rocked to sleep after a feeding.


It's taken 4 weeks for him to get used to it enough to sit for a few mins without crying. 



* We went to the pediatrician 3 times in 2 weeks. Once was an emergency sick call because we noticed a red blurb on the white of one eye. We were told it was a normal, harmless symptom of birth that will go away on it's own after waiting over 2 hours at their office to see the Dr. on duty one Saturday.

* We took him for a walk in the Botanical Gardens park. It was our first outing using his stroller/ car seat combo we were given by friends, and it took Ben, an engineer, a good 10-15 mins to figure out how to set up the stroller!



* When trying to get used to carrying the diaper bag as a purse I took it into a store while Ben had Whit in the car. He drove Whit around a little while because he was fussy with a dirty diaper but I had all the changing tools. Note to self: Leave the diaper bag with the baby!

* Ben and I both huddle over him when we put him to sleep in his crib to make sure his eyes are going to stay closed. Does it really take 2 people to do that?

* The pediatrician told us to wake him up to eat every 3 hours. He is OFTEN so asleep it takes a while of this to wake him up...



* Ben was "geyser" peed on twice while still in the hospital, I have been peed on twice in one day, and we both watched him projectile poop (I didn't know babies did that!) in the middle of a diaper change. We are now VERY careful about how we change him!

* Ben rigged a laundry basket and our mailing scale to keep up with Whit's weight gain. We were waiting eagerly for him to get to 8 lbs so we could officially use our front carrier!


* Ben wears him in the front carrier during his lunch breaks and at night while he does things around the house. Have you ever seen this:

* Newborns are so much fun to play with! I wonder if he'll ever forgive us for these things... 


This is the cutest video ever!!

video