So much for making time to write…

When E came into existence I always thought that her nap times would be the perfect time for me to sit down and actually attempt to write up something that makes sense. Now, I’m having trouble even just getting myself to write. I would much rather nap or play video games. Mostly nap.

Meh. I’m here now. Typing. Staring at my screen. Trying to think of what has happened in the last month and a half since I last posted.

E is 7 months now and still a teensy little thing…at least according to the growth charts. At her 6 month check up (5.75kg), the doctor was concerned that she wasn’t gaining enough weight so we started giving her solids twice a day (she’s been eating one a day since 4 months because, again, the doctor was concerned about weight gain). We’ve also stopped supplementing those feedings with milk and just try to shove her face with the sloppy, gelatinous goodness until she wants no more. Interesting fact about E that we figured out when we started doing this:

She’s a beast.

We don’t really have much of anything else to compare her to but she devours food like nobody’s business. I would say she eats the equivalent to her two jars of baby food per sitting. That’s 258ml or 8.66oz. Now that I’ve actually looked at the numbers, it really doesn’t seem like it’s a whole. We give her a 9oz bottle of formula before bed and she downs that but I always thought that solids took up more room.

But enough about food. Let’s talk about sleep. We did a week of sleep training over Christmas break so both D and I would be around for naps and overnights. Getting her to nap was always the hardest and it took 40 minutes for E to calm down the first day. By the fourth day, she was a pro at settling herself. We even transitioned her to two naps. She also stopped waking up in the middle of the night to feed. Except, then she had a growth spurt. And then she re-discovered rolling over which threw everything out of whack. She started doing it with naps – rolling back to front. And she’s not overly fond of sleeping on her stomach. Last week, it took much longer than I’d care to admit to get her to nap. Friday, however, was a day of happiness in the regards of rolling in the crib: she fell asleep on her stomach! Her stomach!!! She cried and fussed a little during the first nap after she rolled over but she fell asleep. Her second nap, she rolled and fell asleep immediately. It’s been hit and miss over the weekend but I was am stupidly happy at the possibility of not having to go in there what seems like every five seconds to flip her.

Oh, and I’m pretty sure at least one tooth is about to sprout which can’t be helping with the sleeping thing. Last night, E was super gassy and this morning her gums look all swollen and white and drool just seeps out of the sides of her mouth. Well, I hope the swollen and white gums are just symptom of teething. I’m having difficulty getting her to open her mouth so I can check. We’ll find out soon enough.

On a different subject, I believe I mentioned in a previous post about visiting my grandmother Thanksgiving weekend. Sadly, she passed away this month. We drove out and spent the night so we could attend the funeral. E was about the only thing that could cheer up my mom. I’ve found that babies have that effect.

And now I’m doubting whether I used “effect” correctly and whether or not I should have used “affect.” I think that’s a sign that I should stop writing.

Until next time!

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All work and no sleep makes cranky parents

It’s been a while since I’ve had a chance to get on the computer. E is five months now and she went/is going through a sleep regression which makes getting her to bed fairly difficult. We should have already started sleep training but there’s been a lot of adjustments in her small little world the last little while that we didn’t want to change too much at once.

At E’s four month check up her height was in the 30th percentile but her weight was only in the 6th so the doctor suggested starting her up on solid foods early. One feeding a day we give her boob, then solids, then boob again. Going through the foods available, trying to figure out what her immature gut can digest without giving her gas is a process for us and for her. Add to this, we went to visit family in Quebec for ten days. First flight, different time zone, new people, different bed every few nights…she did well considering but she was already starting to sleep regress before we even left so, yeah, the trip proved interesting.

We’ve been home for a week now and she’s still been tough to handle. There are some nights where she will sleep a solid five to six hours first and then wake up every hour after that. During the day, she starts crying whenever we put her in her crib to nap. D and I are so exhausted from the night that we’ve been letting her have her way and we cuddle her to sleep. I know she needs to nap in her crib but sleepy parents. D gets a week off for Christmas. We’re going to start sleep training then. Until that painstaking moment, we have to deal with E somehow.

Speaking of which…no time for editing. Baby cuddles call.

25 minutes later: she’s out cold, lying next to me on our bed. About fifteen of those minutes were spent trying to get her to stop crying in her crib. Only random keyboard smashing can portray my frustration in text but I’m on my phone and it just doesn’t feel the same.

When not falling over is an accomplishment

Indoor soccer season has started up and I am severely out of shape. The last game I played was in January so even if you don’t count the whole “I pushed a tiny human out of my vagina” thing I would be hard pressed to do anything useful on the field.

I love playing soccer but there is one thing I can’t abide in myself is crappy play. By no means am I the greatest player of all time; I’m decent. Not terrible. Not fabulous. Decent. I grew up playing in divisions one and two and that is where my women’s team sits as well. However, I am probably harder on myself than anyone else. I know what I am capable of and judge myself based off that – baby be damned.

So far, we’ve had two practices.

The first practice I spent cursing at myself. My pace was down, my touch was off, my balance is screwy, and my shot was crap. Yes, I understood the reasons why and that it made sense but that didn’t make me any less upset.

The second practice? Well, I didn’t last long because apparently I pulled my quad giving E a bath. Talent, right? Of course, I then tried to push myself past it and made things worse to the point where just passing the ball was excruciating.

I want to play. But I suck.

I want to play but I hurt myself stupidly.

My team’s first game is this Thursday. Even without being hurt I had decided I was going to play. D has a game that night as well and E has been a pain to put to bed for the last week so, I’m on baby duty. My next game is a week after and dear lord…

I am going to get owned.

One Weekend, Two Ways, Three Adults, and Four Generations

This past weekend was Thanksgiving for us Canadian folk. I never could figure out why we adopted the American tradition and then change the date. My guess is that when loyalists made their up North, they wanted to have a little bit of home but didn’t want to be completely copying the country they left so they made Thanksgiving in October.

Regardless, it provided D, E, myself, and my mother a long weekend to drive the four hours to visit my grandmother.

Now, four hours isn’t a bad drive but it was the first road trip we have ever taken with our very own infant to take care of. I wasn’t overly concerned at the prospect of travelling with her except for the fact that I get motion sickness and hoped she didn’t. As it turns out, she doesn’t. Or she does and the fact that she slept for almost the entire duration of the trip (both ways) would hide it from us knowing. With my luck, I will think I’m in the clear of a vomit-y ride and she will throw up all over me…but that’s something to look forward to.

She handled being in a hotel room pretty well too. We thought for sure it would mess with her sleep schedule and screw us over when we got home. Fortunately for us, she slept…not great but better than we expected. She woke up both nights at 4am completely alert with happy squeals and gurgles. It took us a while to get her back to sleep which made us both tired but it could have been a heck of a lot worse.

Before this past weekend, it had been well over decade since I’ve seen my grandmother and my mom was eager for a picture of the four generations together. Couple that with the fact that my mom doesn’t drive and therefore wanted to see her own mom.

Truth is, grandma isn’t doing too well. A few months back she had, what was described to me as, a mini-stroke. It’s affected her motor skills severely and it probably didn’t help her previously fading mental faculties. She lives in a government aided care facility (which do not always provide the most lavish of living situations) and is pretty much confined to her bed on wheels. When we saw her, she thought my mom was my aunt and thought I was another one of my aunts. She did, however, seem to understand that the tiny little baby in my arms was related to her and she started crying. “A baby. Another baby! I’m so happy,” she repeated. D and I weren’t entirely what she would remember when we left but we were informed that the baby being there was something ingrained in her mind.

It was weird seeing my grandmother in such a way especially seeing how it had been years since I had seen her. The change between my memory and her current state is drastic. But, we have that picture of the four of us to remind E (and myself) of those that came before and that is something to be thankful for.

That and the hotel’s waffle maker.

Uncle Who? Aunt Wassat?

 

This really isn’t going to be a “mom” post so much. Although, it is directly affected by my being a mom and it’s been bugging the hell out of me.

Family dynamic explanation time as something has been bothering the hell out of me and it keeps on getting worse as more things come to light.

My parents had three kids. My sister is the oldest, ,my brother the awkward middle child, and I was the “oops” years after my brother. We were close as much as we could be considering our age differences. My sister would take me to do all these fun things that my parents didn’t want to do and would let me sleep at her place when she moved out. We are each other’s sounding boards when it comes to the rest of our family.

Before we moved out, my brother and I fought continuously over the typical things that siblings fought over. Now, please keep in mind that in this instance the fighting would be full-fledged. I was a feisty tomboy who thought she could take on anyone including my much heavier, elder brother. My poor mother when she tried to separate us… He moved out long before I did but when I did move out, he let me move in with him for minimal rent – in a sixth floor condo. My parents voiced their concern that the window panes would shatter too easily and one of us would be thrown out by the other. It didn’t happen. Honestly, we got along extraordinarily well.

All three of us (until the last few weeks) live in the same city.

E is getting close to the 3 month mark and neither of my siblings have met her.

I am not on speaking terms with my brother. His number has been blocked on my phone for well over a year. Sadly, this still leaves him access to my voicemail where he told me during my pregnancy to put my unborn child up for adoption…among other colourful messages. I’m not going to get into it but, needless to say, I do not want E to meet him. Ever. Not talking to him and not allowing him near my daughter is a tough decision but a necessary one.

That’s one sibling accounted for and I’ll take the hit on that one.

Things are a little bit more complicated with my sister. She was with her common-law husband for a long time – I barely remember the time before he was in the picture. Due to circumstances, they never got married or had children. He passed away a few years ago. It was difficult telling her I was pregnant and she didn’t take the news very well.

I haven’t seen her since Christmas.

She’s told my parents she doesn’t want to participate in family festivities this Christmas.

It’s not like she hasn’t had the opportunity to visit me. She’s visited my parents (who live five minutes away driving) at least three times since E was born and she drives right past my place on her way home.

Seeing E just isn’t something she wants to do

We still talk regularly but I don’t want to broach the subject. She really wanted/wants kids and having her baby sister have a baby before she does was a big blow to her and it’s not something I want to force on her. My mom tried once and the end result was not pretty. Although, to be fair, my mom lacks anything even resembling tact and my parents are more upset about my sister’s behaviour than I am…which may or may not bode well for me.

But still….dlfrlktirejtrgnkldrwejtgpjtl;akje;lkjrol;tr COME ON! This is ridiculous.

So, yeah. I have two siblings who may never meet their niece /rant

There are a few things you don’t want your children to be early achievers in

Teething is one of them.

It was Wednesday evening last week and D and I were watching TV (Battlestar Galactica in case you were interested) when E started fussing up a storm. This was completely out of character because, so far, we had been spoiled with a calm and collected child. We knew that would change someday but we weren’t expecting it to come so soon.

We tried the typical things to calm a fussy baby. She would settle for a bit and go right back into it. Sadly, her whines eventually graduated to a full out reverberating wail which we had only heard her first day of life and when she got her shots. Now, the only breaks we had was when she had to stop for breath. For two hours. She cried herself to sleep on my shoulder. The phrase “cried herself to sleep” is not something I want to ever have to say when it comes to my daughter.

They really need to publish a PSA of warning signs to give us all a heads up of the impending disaster that is teething. We had only guessed with E when she started sucking on her hands and trying to eat the play mat but she was happy with her tongue on random things – a habit which I hope ends when she’s older. “She’s only two months old,” we told ourselves, “There’s no way. We’ve got months until she starts teething.”

How wrong we were. And how much we wish we weren’t.

Teething aids are catered to the older infants. By my research, most babies don’t start until the 4 – 6 months range and the majority of the things to help ease their discomfort are listed “3 months and up” (and that’s on the generous side). What about those early achievers who dare defy the world? D rushed out and bought Baby Tylenol last week. Even with that, he had to ask the Pharmacist to calculate the proper dosage for E because the box’s instructions start with 3 month olds.

E’s been giving one dose of Tylenol every night since Wednesday. I don’t even like taking pain killers so this is bugging me a fair bit but can we really just have her cry it out every single night?

If there are any recommendations for a teething 2 month old, I will gladly hear them. And if they will work, I will write you a pretty poem and seal it with a kiss.

The days before my freedom was taken away in a haze of drug induced euphoria…

Alright. So, the title of this post may be a little misleading. I am not disappointed. I am not hating my new life. Do I miss my old one? Yes, but that does mean I regret my new one.

My life before pregnancy was pretty simple. I worked in catering with a mixture of day and night shifts, played soccer twice a week and spent a large portion of my free time chilling on the couch with my husband, watching television or playing video games. At one point we had two TVs set up next to each other each connected to our respective X-Box (I think I’ve said we were geeks before, right?). My work schedule was sporadic but it worked for us and with what was happening in our life.

We were not trying. I was not ready for children even with the not so subtle hints from D that he wanted them. They were in my eventual plans but at the time, they scared the crap out of me. They still do but that ship has sailed. We were not trying – I just failed at using a calendar.

Needless to say, when I found out I was pregnant I was not thrilled. I wasn’t upset either – more frantic and frightened. D was kind and tried to hide his excitement because he knew how I felt but I could see how happy he was. Or I am just saying this in hindsight and assume I noticed it. It’s just as likely as I was too involved in my own thoughts to see much of anything aside from the two blue lines. The days and weeks kept on coming as they had before; the only difference was that there was a tiny parasite growing inside me.

I did not have a normal pregnancy. Please, don’t take that to mean I had a multitude of complications. It’s quite the opposite, really. Before I was pregnant, I had heard all these horror stories of how poorly things could go and I prepared myself for the worst. In reality, it was boring. I didn’t have morning sickness, I didn’t have food cravings, I didn’t have, I didn’t have gestational diabetes, I wasn’t huge, I didn’t get swollen ankles…the list of things that didn’t happen to me goes on. The list of things that did affect me? I had headaches.

Boring pregnancy.

We told people at Christmas – starting with our parents. D’s parents were ecstatic and threw out the “I knew it!” a lot. They also thought they “knew it” a month before I even was pregnant when I got sick from contaminated water. I’m not entirely sure how my parents reacted as I told them in such a way as to avoid drama with the rest of my family. Long story there but not mine to tell.

It did become difficult, however, to work in catering as I entered the third trimester. Not impossible. Just difficult. Fortunately for me, most of those hardships only existed as a result of my bosses trying to limit the things I was allowed to do. I was able to do more than most physically before I told them but by the end I wasn’t even allowed to lift a 5 pound chair a foot off the ground.

For me, this boring pregnancy led into a boring birth.

It still hurt, though.