Thursday, April 21, 2011

The lopsided cow

image via

It has come to my attention (actually, it came to my attention several months ago, but whatevs) that the milk factory attached to my chest does not produce equally on both sides. I knew this would be the case, because I'm sure I read about it in one of the 3 books I read before the owlet was born. But I didn't know they would be this unequal.

For example. I am sitting here pumping (literally. I am.) and on one side I have managed to pump just over 4 ounces. The other side? Is barely closing in on 2.

WHY DON'T THEY TELL US THIS WHEN WE GET PREGNANT? Why didn't my doctor say, "by the way, your boobs? They won't produce the same amount. You'll be able to feed your owlet just fine, but he might get frustrated when he's eating on one side because it comes out slowly, and only a few ounces. " What she did say: "you might have one side that produces a little less than the other, and that's ok, just make sure to still nurse or pump on that side." It would have been nice to know that my boobs are now not only two different sizes, but that they produce very different amounts.

Which is awesome when the owlet only eats on one side before he gets full, and then I walk around really feeling lopsided. Not cool, owlet. Not cool.

The funny thing is, the side that produced LESS would always seem to leak MORE in the middle of the night, like when I was carrying the owlet, or rocking him, or he was sleeping on me. WTF is up with that? Shouldn't the side that produces MORE be leaking?

Actually, I'd rather neither side leak, and save some of that precious milk for the owlet, rather than feeding my shirt or the bed. But whatevs.

Thankfully, the leaking has stopped. The two different boob sizes and milk amounts, however, have not.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

An Unwelcome Guest

A visitor came to our house tonight, one that I know will come back again and again, but one that I never want to have to deal with. The guest? Fear.

During the owlet's bath tonight, he flipped over off of his little sling thing into the tub. At first he just sort of pushed himself up, and then he coughed and kicked and sputtered, and I grabbed him and patted his back and managed to hold it together so that he wouldn't freak out, even though inside I was freaking out.

It all happened so fast, one second he was sort of leaning, the next second he's coughing and sitting up in my arms. It scares me to no end to think about what would have happened if I hadn't been right there. If something had gotten my attention, like the dog tried to do last night during bath time. It made me think about all the things that I WON'T be there to protect him from. Things that are years and years away yet nonetheless drive a fear in me that makes me want to rethink that whole bubble boy idea.

I want to protect him from every possible harm. I know that I can't. I guess all that I can do is prepare him for what might come, and hope that I've done my best.

But for now? We're going to sign up for Infant Aquatics.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

In the dark of the night

His cry pierces the night and wakes me from my slumber. I lie in bed and wait to see if it's a sleep cry or if he actually needs me.

It turns into a real cry, so up I get and in I go, to soothe him and help him fall back to sleep.

In the dim of the nightlight, rocking him back and forth, his eyes find mine, and he smiles ever so slightly. He is comforted in knowing that I am there.

As we rock, his lullabies slowly lull me to sleep, while he grabs everything he can, tapping me on the chest, fighting falling back to sleep.

Slowly, he rubs his eyes and yawns, and I know that sleep is coming.

He tucks his head into the crook of my arm and sighs his sleepy sigh.

I wait, knowing that moving him too soon will mean we will start the whole process over again.

So I watch him, loving this moment. Knowing that before too long, he won't need me to fall asleep, he won't need me to rock him. He won't fit so easily on my lap in our rocking chair.

As much as I hate being woken in the night, I love these little moments. Where it's just him and me, cuddling on the chair, waiting for sleep.

And the next time he wakes me from my precious sleep, I will remember how much I love these moments, and how they will be gone far too quickly.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

the only thing constant is change

You may have noticed that things have been a little quiet over on the blogosphere for a bit there. Well, first of all, we moved. That was like 2 months ago now. I really need to do a post about moving with a 5 month old, but lemme sum up. It. Sucked. Also, I GOT A NEW JOB! But then I learned that I hated it and that it was almost even more stressful than the other job I was desperate to leave. So that's no fun. What was the job you ask? A program assistant at a historic park here in Denver. Sounds fun, right? WRONG. Well, sort of wrong. Basically what it means is that I help with field trips and run birthday parties. Except that it also means that I run around completely insane for an hour setting things up, then yell myself hoarse for 2 hours trying to get kids to pay attention and learn about the pioneer days and then I run around for another hour to clean everything up. On the weekends when I have 2 back to back groups, I also have to find time between the 2 to pump, eat lunch, go to the bathroom and set up for the other group. In case you couldn't guess, this job was not for me. So, I just gave my week's notice. I have 2 more days left of that job. But that's ok because... I GOT ANOTHER NEW JOB! It's actually one I really wanted but didn't get a little while back which made me take that other job that I don't like. What is this job? (Wow, you're so polite asking me these questions!) It's a shelver at a library. Yup. But not just any library. It's a really cool, new way of thinking library. And I think I'm really going to like it. At least I hope I do. So I start there in two weeks. And I leave my current therapy job in about a month. A job I've been at for 4 years. A job I've both loved and hated. And a job I've come to dread going to, but a job that I am comfortable in, even if half the time I feel like I have no clue what I'm doing. I hope to come back to this work someday, and in fact, I have some ideas percolating about a way to keep me doing therapy, only, less intensely. More to come on that later. (Intrigued? good.) So the tides, they are a changing. A new job means more time with the owlet. It also means less money, but I don't know that I care right now. (ask me again in a few months though). It also, hopefully means less stress. And now that this is in place, the hubs can start looking for something else too. Something that means he doesn't have to work at night, and so that we can spend time together again as a family. Ahh, time together as a family. Wouldn't that be splendid? I've missed it so much over the last few months.

Monday, April 11, 2011

it is time

Friends, I write this with a heavy heart. But I think it is time to let the owlet....

cry. it. out. at least for a little bit. Because seriously. I cannot get up every hour and a half anymore. I just can't. I don't know if it's teething (because I've thought he's been teething for oh, 5 months.) or if it's separation anxiety. Or if he's just trying to mess with me because he loves seeing a bleary eyed barely functioning mommy all day. (like how he likes to see me pick up his binky that he drops on the floor a million times.) I do know that he CAN sleep through the night. Because he has. For one wonderfully blissful week, he slept from 8-6. All on his own. One morning I actually had to wake him up. And then, this. Back to worse than he was that first week we brought him home. THAT was understandable. THIS is hairpulloutable.

I don't know that I have the strength to do this, mind. Last night I tried to let him CIO. For all of a minute. But then he started shrieking like his life was ending, and seriously. Who can even sleep with that going on? Never mind being worried that my neighbors are going to call the cops on me because I must be committing some horrible crime against my child with the way he's screaming.

When I finally went to him 2 minutes later and decided to change what he was swaddled in, all hell broke loose. I couldn't even put him back down on the bed to reswaddle without being met with those horrific cries.

So, can I do this tonight? Probably early on. The 9:00, 10:30 and 11ish times should be fairly easy. Right? It's the 2:30 or 3:00 ones. Where I am just so. bloody. tired. That I can't stand it anymore and into bed with me he goes.

Who's sleep training who here?

Wish us luck. I could be in for a long night. But then, what else is new?



So, we tried. Really hard. He cried. Really hard. For about 20 minutes. The hubs and I sat there on the couch listening to these wails, and we reminded each other that we are not bad parents. That he needs to learn to self-soothe. That he was fed, and dry and clean and safe. And then, he. fell. asleep. For almost 2 hours! (success? I don't know). The hubs shushed him and rocked him and let him fuss a little bit around 10:00, and then, he slept until 3:30! There's my old owlet!

But then, well, then I was just too darn tired and it was too darn late, and in to bed with me he came.

Ahh well. There's always tomorrow.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

I have problems

The owlet is going to start speaking soon. Like anyday now, right? Ok, not really since he's barely 7 months. But soon, he will start parroting everything the hubs and I say. Which is a bad thing. Because I do not always say such good things. Or say things the right way. I will be the parent at parent teacher conferences burying my head in my hands when the owlet's teacher tells me that she is worried about his speech because he says things like "choose" instead of "shoes."

Other things I say that are wrong (or inappropriate):

"Diagonalley" instead of, obvs, diagonally. (Like in Harry Potter and the Chamber, when he takes the floo powder and says Diagon Alley too quickly and it comes out like that.) ((I should also add that I can relate most anything back to Harry Potter. This may also turn out to be a problem in the future.))
"shicken." pretty self-explanatory, no?
"Where the cuss is my cussing coat?" Said in a perfect british accent, and taken from one of my most favorite movies ever. Except I don't say cuss, I say the actual words. Maybe I should start saying cuss?
"peekza." also self-explanatory. right? ok. it's pizza.

For some reason my mind is blanking, but I know there's more. Add to the fact that I also occasionally slip back into a Boston accent, and this poor kid is just going to have a rough start.

I have also discovered that I talk about myself in the 3rd person too much when I talk to him. "Mommy will be right back." "Mommy is going to make you some peaches." "Mommy really needs you to go to sleep now or she is going to rip out her hair." I know this is pretty common (it IS common, right?) the problem comes when I almost slip into this same talk when talking to my clients. Today one of my client says, "hey, who painted that picture?" And I almost said, in that higher pitched "parentese" that all parents seems to slip into, "mommy painted that picture!" It happened about a trillion more times that session. (or 5. But who's counting?) Either way, not cool.

So, dear owlet. I am sorry, already. That your daddy and I probably swear more than we should (sorry parents, we do.) And that I can relate everything to Harry Potter or the Gilmore Girls or Friends, and that your daddy has seen every single episode of The Simpsons, and can reference it at will. And that we say the wrong words all the time. But we love you, and we won't make fun of you when you say things wrong. Although you need to learn right now that it's "aUnts, not ants." Mommy's from New England, and that's how we say it. People will probably look at you like you're crazy, but when they do you can tell them that your aUnts are not bugs. :)