Monday, July 26, 2010

Is My Baby Slow

I wonder this again today as I read blog posts with babies that are very close to the same age as my Jack.

Other babies are sitting up on their own. Jack does for a few seconds and than topples over.

Other babies are pulling themselves up on their toys or in their cribs. Jack doesn't do this and hasn't even tried yet.

Other babies laugh like crazy. Jack only laughs when he's tickled. He's a very serious (grumpy) baby.

Is my baby slow? I am trying not to compare, but it's really hard. I try practicing things with him like sitting and "walking". I read to him every night. I sing to him. We talk about our day. I point out things when we are driving in the car. He gets socialization.


So hard!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Cereal Face

Jack was given the go-ahead to start cereal on Friday. I was extremely glad for several reasons:

1. I am hoping the cereal will help "coat" his tummy and possibly help with his reflux.

2. Practicing with solid food can help his gag reflex and possibly put off the need for OT.

3. He is starting to exhibit real interest in food and I can already tell milk isn't doing the job anymore of keeping him full.

On Friday evening, I gave him a little rice cereal. I started with about a tablespoon mixed with some breastmilk. I put Jack in his Bumbo with a nice big bib and went to work.

He didn't seem to love it. The cereal wasn't the problem. It was actually his position. He doesn't typically care for the Bumbo in the first place. Add something new into the mix, like a bib and spoon, and it's really not his favorite.

He ate about 2 teaspoons of the cereal, which I thought was great. He didn't gag either! The timing wasn't great though because he was fussy and seemed like he was tired.

Take two. Saturday morning, I tried again. The Bumbo still wasn't doing it. So off we went to Target to buy him an actual highchair. He needed one anyways.

Saturday night, with Jason holding the camera, we went to work. Guess what? He seemed to like it!

He is gradually eating more every day. He is learning to use the spoon. I let him shove his hands in his mouth when he's eating. Playing with their food is good for babies. It gives them the chance to feel it and get used to the texture.

Tonight, he had close to a tablespoon of cereal. Jack is now opening his mouth when he sees the spoon.

It's rice cereal for a while. Dr. D still wants Jack to wait for new foods until he turns 6 months (which is a few days away really). Until now, he seems to be taking to the cereal.

I know some people hate pictures with food all over baby faces, but plllfffffptttt! It's my blog. I can do what I want.

Look momma, I have food in my mouth and on my face!

I can't believe how big my baby is getting. Solid food! My goodness.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Happy Post

Not really. This is going to be a hard post for many to read, but it's my blog so I can write what I want.

Motherhood is hard. I knew this before I got pregnant, but what I didn't realize is how hard it would be. I had unrealistic expectations about how my "new" Mommy life would be.

I need to preface this by saying that I love my son more than life itself. I wouldn't change him or the fact that I have him for anything.

I sometimes miss parts of my old life. These days, I don't have time to read a book, cook dinner during the week or even take a bath. I was a selfish person before having a baby and I am sure I have a lot of that selfishness still in my persona. I literally have no time for myself. Since Jason works swing, I take care of Jack during the week after work. Add in an extremely fussy and unhappy baby, and it's very taxing. My child doesn't nap very well so I can't get anything done. He does sleep at night, but wakes every 90 minutes. I have "windows" of time to get anything done. I have to hold Jack most of his awake time so this is difficult to get anything done.

I sound awful don't I? I wish I had known before having a baby that there was a possibility that my baby wouldn't feel good most days and that he wouldn't nap for more than 30 minutes at a time. He wouldn't like being put down very much and when he is down, it's for a short period of time. It was a huge shock to me to have a baby that isn't on any sort of schedule.

It's not lazy parenting either. Don't try and say that I can put my child on a schedule because HE sets the schedule. He doesn't eat much at a time so he has to eat often. I can't force him to wait longer or drink more at meals. That just isn't happening. And I refuse to let my child cry it out at night to make him sleep longer either. He's waking up for a reason: He's hungry.

I did not expect these things when I got pregnant. Yes, I knew that my sleep and "me" time would be limited. But, I also was kind of hoping that I could have some parts of my old life too. I haven't gotten a massage since well before he was born. I have not gone out with friends at all. Not even to lunch or to see a movie. I am invited, but often times, I can't arrange childcare. I don't have time to garden. I used to have a huge, beautiful vegetable garden every summer. Not this year.

Where is my husband you ask? My husband is working when I am awake. When he's home from work and awake, I am sleeping. Yes, I receive help from him at night. He takes care of Jack so I can get my 7 hours of sleep (which is broken into segments by the way). I can't expect my husband to get up early so I can go galavanting with my friends. That isn't fair to him.

I am not sure what the point of this post is other than I miss some things. I miss being able to sit on the couch on Friday night, eat a leisurely dinner and read gossip magazines. I miss time with my friends. I miss sleeping in on the weekends.

But you know what? I chose this. I knew it wouldn't be easy. I also know it won't last forever. My child will eventually feel better, sleep through the night and maybe sleep past 5:00am so I can sleep in on the weekend.

I love Jack more than anything, but I also love me and I don't feel like I have nurtured myself at all. I need to take care of myself and people tell me this often. I might listen eventually. And when I can arrange a babysitter.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Donuts and Breastfeeding

Sadly this post isn't about the health benefits of donuts or how they help breastfeeding moms. No, this post is about something that I assume is cultural. Explanation to come.

I was getting donuts very early this morning with Jack. As I was being helped by the very nice lady, she asked me if Jack was a boy or a girl. He was in a unisex sleeper so it wasn't obvious he was a boy. I told her and then she asked "Do you breastfeed or give him formula?". I was slightly surprised by her question but this is not the first time someone has asked me.

I am wondering if this is a cultural thing? She was Vietnamese. The other time this question was asked of me, it was from an African man filling my gas tank. I knew he was African because he barely spoke any English and he had an accent.

In this country, are we much more private and less open about how we feed our babies? I don't mind answering people when they ask me (for the record, I still say I am breastfeeding even though I pump and give Jack a tiny bit of formula) but I don't recall ever being asked this by anyone that was born in the United States. Friends and family don't count because I consider them privvy to my personal information.

Although the gas station attendant situation was weird (it was a man asking me and he asked in strange way), I proudly told him yes, I was breastfeeding. He then went on to ask for how long I was planning to?

I think this must be cultural. I haven't done much research, but I assume in other countries, it is very acceptable for women to breastfeed and be open about it. It is extremely rare that I have encountered women out and about with their children where they breastfeed in public. I did it once at the zoo and I didn't see anyone else that day doing it. Maybe this isn't the case in other parts of the world. Maybe women are much more open and not only breastfeed in public, but talk about it as well.

So, donuts and breastfeeding. That was my morning so far. If you have any insight to this, please let me know! I would love to hear your experiences with this type of situation.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Little Bits

It's been a crazy hectic week. Here are some updates/info about the wee one:

* He is now wearing 6 month clothing. I put him in an outfit the other day that I thought for sure would be too big. Surprise! It fit him really well.

* I had to buy Jack new clothes. See above. He doesn't have a whole lot of summer clothes in six months. So, off to Fred Meyer clearance sale I go! It's hard not to buy the whole store out.

* Jack is now only pooping either once a day or once every other day (sorry for the embarrassment little one). I think it's the little amount of formula that he's getting.

* My little guy might need to go see an Occupational Therapist. His gagging is not getting better like it should be. He used to take his pill with no problems. He used to take his gas drops with no problem. This is not the case any more. If we give Jack his pill on a spoon, 50% of the time, he throws it back up on us immediately. We can't put the pill in a bottle because the granules got stuck in all the bottle parts.

This was supposed to be a short post, but oh well. His reflux and gagging is concerning to the pediatrician so if at 6 months he is still gagging severely, he will need to see an OT. She also worries that this is going to effect his eating and introducing new foods. He is extremely sensitive to textures so anything foreign might be tough for him.

* Jack might use his baby pool tomorrow. It's still hotter than Hades here, so the pool is inflated. It's not full of water yet, but that will hopefully come tomorrow.

* We have our family photo shoot next weekend! I am really excited. I hope Jack and Jason cooperate. Jason doesn't like having his picture taken but too damn bad. I want some family pictures.

* We are going to a wedding on the 24th. I have no idea what to dress my kid in. Who thinks of such ridiculous things? I do.

* On the 4th of July, we had friends over for a barbeque. I cooked quite a bit for the day and prepared the house. It's nice to know that I can entertain and take care of a baby at the same time. It makes me feel like I am together and can accomplish things.

That's it for now! I will get some pictures of Jack's first pool adventures if all goes well tomorrow.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Five Months

My baby is five months today! I look at him and realize that I can't even see any "newborn" features in him anymore. He looks so amazingly different from when he was born. If you look at pictures, he doesn't even look like the same baby from 4 months ago.

Our little man is growing like a weed. Just yesterday, he fit into 3 month pants. Today, I put him in a 3 month pant and he was too long for them! Is it possible that he grew overnight?

Jack Jack, Daddy and I love you sooooo much. Not only do we love you, but you have a billion other people that adore you and cherish you. Nana loves you, Papa loves you, all your aunties love you. I have a herd of people that are banging down our door to spend time with you and babysit you.

Here are some things that you are up to these past few days:

* You are doing so well at daycare. Almost every day I pick you up, you are smiling and happy. Of course, there are some days where you had a rough day, but they are far and few between. Karen's boys adore you and love to pat your belly and tell you that they love you. When I drop you off at Karen's in the morning, even though you are sleepy, you give her big smiles.

* You are wearing size 3 diapers now. They are a little bit big, but fit you way better than the size 2's.

* You are wearing 3 months clothes still, but the pants are getting a little short. You have super duper long legs. I think your great-grandfather Stanley had something to do with that.

* You are grabbing at toys like nobody's business. Mostly everything ends up in your mouth, but it's so fun to watch you intentionally grab things. Lately, you love faces. You pat my face and Daddy's face. You touch our lips, our cheeks, rub your little pudgy hand on our forehead and ears. It's the most darling thing ever.

* You aren't sleeping through the night yet, but we are hoping you will soon. Your sleeping does seem to be getting better. You only woke up twice the other night. Most nights you average about 3-4 times a night.

* You drink a little bit of formula now. I am not able to keep up with your appetite so we mix in a little formula into your bottles at night. Just enough to make up for the difference.

* You are rolling over from your back to belly now. You did it for the first time last Friday and now you do it every day like you have been doing it all along.

* Your giggles are awesome! They are still a little elusive and take some coaxing, but if I tickle you on your back or in the folds of your neck, you laugh. It honestly is the best sound in the world. You are such a serious boy! Laugh some more please!

* You aren't sitting up on your own yet, but I am sure you will soon. You can support yourself for a couple of seconds but pretty quickly tip over.

* Sorry for embarrassing you, but your gas seems to be doing a little better. It's hard to get you to take your pill in the morning for your reflux, but it does seem to be helping. Daddy says you don't wake up in the middle of the night in pain much anymore. That is great little bug! We want your tummy and your reflux to be better.

* No solids for you yet, but next month, at 6 months, we are planning to give you a little rice cereal. You tend to gag any time something different touches your mouth so we will be very patient with you.

I could write about you forever little man. You are such a joy and my most special accomplishment. If I could be blessed with 10 babies just like you, we would start trying again.

Look at this little face. So serious and contemplative. I love you Buggy!