Wednesday, December 28, 2005

He's a growing boy

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Kirk loves his exer-saucer. He's so strong. He about 80% able to sit up on his own. And he loves laying on his side. He has just discovered the crib toy attached to the slats on his crib. And he is realizing that his feet are always there, not just when he's on the changing table.

It's kind of strange comparing him to his tiny new cousin. Kirk was that small. But I don't remember him seeming quite *that* fragile. He was always strong, he just happened to also be tiny. And he was little because he was early, not because he was just little. Is it revisionist memory? But Mr. b and my sister both agree that Kirk didn't seem so frail, even when hooked up to all his hospital wires. Maybe our opinions will change when the poor little guy gets a chance to put on some weight. I'm sure he'll fill out eventually. Or else Kirk is just always going to be the bigger cousin!

Diablo and Jon: I'm so very sorry about George. How heartbreaking for you to go through another loss so soon. Like I said in my message last night, let me know if there is anything we can do. I hope Larry is coping with the loss of his buddy. Who knows, maybe he'll stop being such a douchepacker now that he's a solo kitty! I know that Sally the Squeakers Squirrel certainly came out of her shell when her oppressor, poor Mister Smoe died.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

I'm a mom

I'm playing hooky today and went to get my hair chopped off. (It's being donated to Locks of Love. That strikes me as very Jo from Little Women.) I mentioned I'm shedding like a beast due to the postpartum hair loss thing. So when I went to pay, the receptionist asked, "Are you a student? No wait, you're a mom." Huh? Explain to me how those are mutually exclusive.

Kirk wasn't confused about his new mommy. I didn't know if he'd think I looked weird or something. No worries. But when I was holding him up on my shoulder, he kept trying to grab my hair. But it's not there anymore. Then he was confused!

Monday, December 19, 2005

Celebrity Babysitters!

Imagine my surprise when I'm paging through my current issue of Entertainment Weekly and I suddenly see an interview with Diablo! Fan-frickin-tastic!

Diablo and Jon stayed with Kirk on Friday night so I could go with Mr. b to his annual work holiday party. They rule. They even brought Kirk a present! (An awesome AC/DC long-sleeve T and hat set, very kick ass.) Once again we a) didn't have money to pay the babysitter (although that was waved off as nonsense because, see above about ruling) and b) didn't have any kind of snacks and beverages in the house. We really need to get this babysitter thing figured out. At least while we're still using suckers, I mean friends, we don't have to worry as much.

The holiday party was a lot of fun but Mr. b manages college kids. And I don't have a helluva lot in common with those kids anymore. I found that after a couple of hours of dancing, a little wine and some snacks, I was ready to go. Sure, one of us had to get some sleep because while we had a sitter for the night, someone had to get up with Kirk in the morning. But I also didn't mind the excuse. It was fun to see everyone but I just don't need to stay out until after bartime. Or even until bartime!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

It's a rich man's world

I just wrote out checks for all the hospital bills. They'll go in the mail and I'll be done. And then they won't send me hateful reminders any more. It was really annoying that everything was billed separately--Kirk's hospital stay and my hospital stay and our regular doctor and his neonatal physician and my breast pump. It would have been so much easier if they had been consolidated. Then I would have just made payments. I mean, I could have paid off one bill, and then the next, and then the next. But "the next" would never have been happy with that arrangement. So finally I decided to just increase my bank account's line of credit and pay them all off at once.

I thought we had done a pretty good job of saving for while I was on leave. I had paid off some bills and saved up enough for a mortgage payment. But I hadn't calculated for the adjustment time when you go back to work. Like all the insurance premiums that weren't taken out of my checks, because I was on unpaid leave, were deducted all at once. And I have no paid time off left so I loose money taking Kirk to his well baby appointments and whatnot. All that has kicked my ass. Especially since I'm just now starting to get back on track and it's the effing holidays and you spend so much more money this time of year. Shitballs.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Oral Fixation

Kirk is totally teething. They still haven't busted through, but they're there alright. The 2 bottom front teeth. He loves chewing. If he's playing with my hand, he'll grab my finger or knuckle and start just gnawing away. He chomps on his toys. He constantly has his own fingers in his mouth. Oh, he still doesn't suck his thumb. He still hasn't settled on a particular digit, specific hand, or even constant number of fingers. He jams anywhere from one to four in there and starts mawing. He even chews on his forearm, especially when propped against my shoulder or when he's down for Tummy Time. This evening, while Mr. b was changing his pants and getting him ready for bed, I noticed a strange red splotch on Kirk's right arm. He totally gave himself a hickey!

Wednesday, December 14, 2005


This Sunday was my first choir concert of the season and almost my whole family came. There was a very full house, in a church that seats a thousand, and many of the attendees were kids and babies. I could still pick out the sound of my own son from many aisles behind me, over the rest of the noise. Just like the penguins in that penguin movie!

When I got done singing, I greeted my posse. Kirk was wearing only one sock. Mr. b has no idea when the other one got lost but we didn't find it anywhere. So that's the end of the cute brown socks he got as a gift from his little buddy Henry's mom! My dad sagely predicted that it is only the first of many mysteriously lost socks.

Kirk was sick with a cold Mr. b shared. So was I but I could at least sing through it. (Mr. b works with college kids. They get sick as often as pre-schoolers.) Monday was the first time, of what will undoubtedly be many days, I took off work to stay home with a sick kid. Auntie G told Mr. b that she always kinda liked sick days because then O was all cuddly. That's how Kirk was. He wouldn't even sleep on his own. I held him for 2 hours for his afternoon nap.

We went out for some dinner after picking up Kirk from Auntie Daycare yesterday. Kirk had just had a formula bottle before we left but became noticably thirsty while we were eating. So, we ordered some apple juice from the bar for him. That was the very first time he's ever added to our restaurant bill.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Baby Boom

Saturday night I went to a holiday party by myself. It was kind of weird. I mean, Mr. b and I have always had pretty much the same friends so we could always go to shows and parties and stuff together, hang out apart during the event, and then go home together. But we didn't manage to get a babysitter. Planning for a babysitter is turning out to be really hard. I don't want to just always call Grandma. I mean, she has a long way to drive and I don't want to put much stress on her because of the MS and I just don't want to take her for granted. But there's so much crap going on this month and there's no way we're going to manage to find sitters for every single event. So, since Mr. b had been out the night before, it was my turn.

Holiday parties 5 years from now are going to be a rather different matter. At that one rather small gathering, there was the husband who had just been at birth class all that day and his wife was too exhausted to come to the party. There was another couple who had scored Grandma-sitter at the last minute and are now expecting their second. There was the husband who announced his wife wasn't attending due to morning (evening) sickness! Squeeee! And, not to be left out, the wife that declared she and her husband were going to start trying in the summer.

I guess it makes sense that we're now in the phase of our lives when everyone starts to procreate. A couple of years ago we attended like 500 weddings. It's just a bit odd because Mr. b and I were married for such a long time before we got around to having a kid. We were the only married couple in our group of friends for years and years. So it was an adjustment to just no longer be the only marrieds. Now that everyone else is catching up, and then getting knocked up in a traditionally timely manner, we're just not ahead of the curve any longer. Although I do still hear from certain girlfriends that I broke the seal, so to speak, and they figure if I could do it, I who was always vocally terrified of being preggers, then they could do it, too.

Friday, December 09, 2005

New babies are small

Kirk's new cousin Lukas was born yesterday morning! (Kirk and Luke. I know.) He was 1 week late which means that he had an extra 4 weeks of womb time on Kirk. And he was still only 3 ounces bigger than Kirk was--5# 7oz! So tiny. It's only been 5 months and I still couldn't believe that Kirk was ever that tiny. Tinier! Holding Lukas last night, he just weighed nothing in my arms. Kirk is now a Big Boy. Automatic graduation. Crazy.

I got home from the hospital and pulled out all of Kirk's preemie and under-7-pounds clothes. I didn't think they'd ever get used again. I mean, even their doctor was estimating Lukas would be at least 7 pounds. Of course I won't be able to pass along the cute sailor outfit Morrigan got Kirk, since it's way too summery for December in Minnesota.

I made my SIL give me the full labor story. It was interesting to hear the slight similarities and major differences between our experiences. She was also tensing her thighs during the contractions but she wasn't ever able to break free of doing that. They gave her a different initial drug than they gave me. She didn't have an IV in at first, which is why they gave me the Nubain. But after the pill they gave her didn't help, they gave her a shot of morphine in the ass. Which also didn't work. So she ended up with an epidural, which took 2 tries to get in. And it's a damn good thing she had that because when they went to do the episiotomy, Lukas shot out, tearing her. She said it took almost an hour to stitch her back up. Yikes. I am very pleased to have had the episiotomy now. Sure, I can still feel a difference where I was cut whenever we start having sex. But the other option would have been tearing. No thanks.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005


One year ago today I peed on a stick and found out I was pregnant. Hard to believe.

Last night we had our very first non-family member babysitter. And it was the first time someone other than Mommy or Daddy put Kirk down to sleep for the night. Mr. b was more nervous about leaving than I was, I think. Our friend's fiancée babysat for us. I'm glad it was a friend, instead of a 13 year old, for our first time out. Apparently Kirk was a good boy (show off) and didn't even fight going to bed. She even gave him cereal--which I totally gave her a pass on! It was just a great experience and I'm so thrilled she was willing to do it. She wouldn't even accept payment, which unfortunately means we still don't know how much to pay babysitters....

Of course being out for fancy dinner with Mr. b's business associates means I went to bed in a wine haze. And then Kirk woke up at 4:00am. Sigh. But it's nice being able to drink wine again. I had a glass with Thanksgiving dinner and it was the first time since early last December that I had anything alcoholic at all. I am a total lightweight now. Which I guess means I'm a cheap date!

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Peter, Peter, Pumpkin Eater

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Kirk ate this pumpkin. Well, not all of it obviously. But his first non-cereal food was puree of this very pumpkin he helped his daddy pick out back in October. I was processing the pumpkin for my own cooking plans (pumpkin cream pasta sauce tonight--delicious!) and figured we might as well see if he liked it. Plain pumpkin is very bland so there were no taste issues. Kirk ate it up yum. I filled up an ice cube tray (thanks for the tip, womba) with some of the puree as well so that Kirk can have pumpkin later in the year, too. I'm officially convinced. Making your own baby food is easy. Now I just need to get my own blender since I'm borrowing one from Mr. b's aunt for my pumpkin projects. In the meantime, I have tons of commercially prepared foods, all three stages. My co-worker gave me everything her son never got around to eating in each phase.

Kirk's poops are changing. Oh, he's still only going every 2 or 3 days. But he's starting to poop out actual turds. Mr. b didn't believe me the first time but he saw the baby duke with his own eyes today. I'm sure it's because of the change in Kirk's diet. But I'm concerned about constipation and so now I need to make sure he gets enough juice and water. There's certainly fiber in homemade pumpkin sauce!

All this eating while sitting up is making a lot more dirty laundry. Kirk actually needs bibs now and the ones he wears are rarely re-usable without being washed again. He likes putting his fingers in his mouth when there's still food in there, then putting his slimey fingers all over his pants and head. And his spit-ups are more interestingly colored than just formula and milk spits.

Friday, December 02, 2005

Body Image

I just noticed that the tips of my nipples are really dry and cracked. When I brought it up to Mr. b he said he noticed that about a week before. They seriously look like they should hurt but they don't at all. Did I really have calluses from the limited amount of breast feeding that my little crappy nurser did? Apparently. For about a week after Kirk had his last boobie feeding I could still squeeze out a couple of drops of milk. I tried the other night and got nothing. So that means I'm officially out of the "if you are pregnant, may become pregnant, or are nursing" side-effect category. I think my boobs feel different, too. I asked Mr. b about that and he said that they'll "never" be the same again. Great. Just what I was looking to hear, buddy. I'm not sure if they'll go back down to pre-pregnancy teeny weeny size. None of my old bras fit yet. What I really need to do is go in for a proper bra fitting. I've never had one in my life.

And then I need to start seriously working on the pregnancy weight. I went up 2 pants sizes and 1 shirt size when I was buying back-to-work clothes. I honestly don't care about clothing sizes though. I just want to be fit again. And I don't feel like I am anymore. I know the middle of the holiday season is probably the worst time of year to try to combat unnecessary weight though. I just need to start doing daily sit-ups to try to take care of the below-belly-button pudge that remains of my preggo belly. And figure out the best time of day to get back to riding my stationary bike. Now that Kirk is big enough for his exer-saucer, which he loves, I can have him hang out in there next to me while I ride. Mommy needs some aerobic activity. I know it's vain but I don't want to be like the rest of my extended family that all totally porked out after having babies. Sure, some of them were already solidly on that path pre-kids. But I still don't want to go that way.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Chow Time

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Since I had a long weekend due to Thanksgiving, I decided it was time to introduce Kirk to twice-daily cereal chow. So he's now eating some in the middle of the day as well as before bedtime. He is a messy man. He thinks that cereal time is an interactive sport. I warned my sister when I brought her a box of rice cereal and some spoons this morning. Should be interesting to hear her report when I pick him up. But she noticed that he's definitely already used to having more food in the middle of the day now. Yesterday, since I forgot to bring her her own box, Kirk sucked down way more formula bottle than normal. He's also got even more variety to his diet. I gave him some baby oatmeal a couple of times this weekend and he liked it as well as the rice. And he notices zero difference between apple juice and white grape juice. But hooboy does it all help to increase the stinkiness of his poops!

I have to wonder if all this new influx of calories is helping with his development. He's still not fond of Tummy Time but he's doing so much better at it. He really lifts himself up high. He bats at toys in front of him and looks up. And rolls over on to his back. My sister just called to report that he had done that again. Apparently Kirk is as shocked by the sudden change of scenery as he is proud of himself. When he rolled over the first time (without help or being propped on a small pillow) this weekend Mr. b and I erupted into cheers and applause. What a good boy.

Friday, November 25, 2005


I am thankful for not being pregnant. Sure, I still haven't had a "real" period, like before I was pregnant, but I definitely know for sure that I'm not pregnant now. I have to wonder at what point that monthly feeling of relief will end. Two years? More? I mean, now that Mr. b and I have admitted to each other that we do want Kirk to have a sibling at some point, when is "at some point"? I can't imagine being pregnant again already. I would be beyond depressed. And I think I would feel guilty. I have so many friends that have been trying for a while, sometimes a long while, or have had to result to extreme measures. So if I went and got knocked up again, already, so easily, as an accident, I would feel bad. I know it was only for a short time, owing to how quickly I did get knocked up after going off the pill, but I remember that feeling of disappointment when I got my period. It's strange to contrast that with the relief I now feel. So this year, I am thankful for my husband and my son and for not having a bun in the oven.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Feet & Cetera

I finally clipped Kirk's toenails tonight. I can't believe how long they had gotten. I felt like such a bad mom for letting that happen. I had to really struggle to hold his foot still long enough to get at each nail. When I do his fingernails, I wait for him to fall asleep so he's not busy wiggling. But he's typically either wearing socks or footie pajamas so that's not really an option for his toes. Naturally he had a short snooze not long after I finished fighting to get his claws clipped.

His feet seem to already be on the stinky and clammy path. Poor buddy. Mr. b's brother has gross feet like that. Hopefully they won't end up that bad.

At least we don't have to deal with getting his dumb foot cast. That's what we called his bent foot when he was first born. It was the least of our worries those first few weeks. When I finally got around to trying to set up a consultation with a pediatric orthopedist, her assistant needed to figure out how urgent this issue was. I emailed her a more current picture for comparison and woo hoo! His foot is officially just fine!

We also don't have to worry about his belly button anymore. It was looking all weird for a while there. It was dark brown and sticking out really, really far. I had thought it meant he was going to be an outie but it was really out there. Doc had said it was a common thing, an umbilical hemorrage. She said it would get worse before it got better. But it must have already been at "worse" because it's just kept on getting better. It's still dark, but at least it's on its way to being a proper innie.

Of course Kirk totally has a flat head. He managed to avoid the squished skull by being so little when he got borned. But between babies sleeping on their backs and him hating on Tummy Time, he totally has a flat head. Apparently his cousin had a flat head, too. My SIL swears she can still see where it was. But everyone else thinks it rounded out quite nicely. And Doc said Kirk's would normalize soon enough.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

The Idiot Box

I'm finding that my television viewing habits are changing now that I'm a working mother. It's not even that I'm watching more child-safe programming, though I can definitely feel that coming. (Thankfully both Mr. b and I have always been fans of cartoons and kids shows in general. We've forever been the weird old people sans children at movies like Sponge Bob.) My appointment TV is lessening. And the shows that I still need/want to watch, I watch less carefully. I can remember when Auntie G first had O. She had tons and tons of appointment shows. But suddenly she stopped watching, even the ones she was most addicted to. I didn't understand why she didn't just tape them and watch after O went to bed. Now it makes sense. There just isn't time. And it just doesn't matter as much. I've already dropped Desperate Housewives from my rotation. It's on at 8 o'clock. That's when I'm either getting Kirk ready for bed or putting him down. And even though I'm still completely hung up on Lost, also on at 8, I find that the TWoP recaps are good enough to fill me in on the details I've missed. We'll see if the trend continues this January when 24 and all the Skiffy shows restart....

Monday, November 14, 2005

Hair Police

The shedding is in full swing. I think it started about 2 weeks ago. It wasn't entirely sudden, but it wasn't gradual either. It's certainly not at Chernobyl levels or anything, but it is alarming how much hair is in the drain after a shower. I'm cleaning off my brush head twice a week. It's a good thing I was warned about the post-partum hair loss, that's for sure. And it started at about 4 months, just like thinga told me. I wonder how long it lasts?

I was a shedder before I got pregnant, and I continued to shed a bit during the pregnancy. But this has gotten ridiculous. I find my hair on everything. The other day Mr. b called out from changing Kirk's pants to say that there was a hair on his butt!

I think I need to chop off my hair. It is continuing to grow at an extremely fast pace and is so long it almost covers my nipples. I like having short hair during the winter because then it doesn't get caught up in my collar and hat. (Conversely, I like long hair in the summer because then I can put it up and keep it off my neck.) Kirk is so good at grabbing now that I'm constantly having to pry great handfuls of my hair out of his hands. It really starts to hurt if he's pulling too hard!

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Beautiful Dreamer

Last night as I was getting ready to go to Mr. b's gig, Kirk woke up shrieking. It was the strangest thing. He had only gone down about a half hour before and suddenly he sounded like he was in pain or terror or something. Like he had a nightmare. My brother and sister-in-law were over to stay with him while we were out and so they fetched me stuff--bottle, pacifier--as I calmed him down. My SIL thought that maybe it was just a dream period. That he's now old enough to notice that he's having a dream in the first place. I buy that. Dreams are trippy. That'll freak your shit out if you don't know what's going on.

Incidentally, my SIL is now more pregnant than I was when I had Kirk. That kind of freaks my shit out.

I sometimes feel bad that Kirk has to sleep by himself. That he doesn't have anyone to cuddle with or keep him warm. I've shared a bed with Mr. b for over 12 years. It always seems lonely to me when I'm sleeping by myself. And yet, we're no longer of a culture where siblings share even a room, much less a bed. So he'll go on sleeping all by himself until he grows up and meets his mate.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Dinner and a show

Kirk gets really super fussy when he's eating cereal. I'm not sure if it's because it's new. Or because we tipped his highchair to a slightly more upright, and less low-rider, angle. Or because he doesn't like the taste of rice cereal. Or the texture. Or it's so much harder than bottle. Or whatever. But he gets all bent. Yet if you distract him while he's eating, then he's fine. So feeding him has turned into a two person activity. One of us spoons in the chow and the other shakes a rattle off to the side and sings and just generally makes a lot of noise. Kirk will then eat really well!

We were joking the other day that he's a vegetarian. Because he's only had milk, formula, rice cereal, and apple juice in his life. Could he be considered a vegan? I know milk's a dairy product and all but it comes from a willing supplier. I always thought that vegans were all about "slavery of animals" and that kind of crap. Eh. Whatever. Mr. b will have Kirk eating ham paste before the year is out.

I've started prepping our own meals the night before. Like last night we had the lasagna that I had built on Wednesday night. There's just not enough time to cook when I first get home!

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Dairy Queen

Doc wasn't kidding when she said the normal birth control pills would dry my milk right up. I was down to nursing Kirk only once a day by this week. On Tuesday, I didn't nurse him at all. It felt very weird to have him at the boob again last night. Like it had been an exceedingly long time. I'm skipping today again and we'll do boob tomorrow. I can't imagine that there'll be much of anything being produced for much longer.

The thing is, there's not even really much time for nursing. I only have a few short hours to spend with my baby when I get home from work. And frankly, I'd rather play with him than just sit, reading a magazine or watching reruns of Stargate, while he toys with nursing. Besides, feeding Kirk rice cereal takes a while, too. So really, I'm just swapping out one lengthy feeding option for a new one.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005


Kirk got his 4-month shots on Friday. He screamed louder and cried longer than last time. He was totally bitchy all weekend long. He did the same sleep-constantly-and-eat-tons that he did last time. Which means that while we could have relaxed, productive days because he's sleeping and not demanding to be played with, we had to get up several times at night. Even this week so far, despite his improved disposition, he's still getting up twice a night. Which sucks.

Kirk is now 24 inches long, an even two feet. He weighs 15# 7.5 oz. Mr. b was hoping he'd hit 17 pounds because that's how much he weighed at his 4-month appointment. Doc swore that Kirk will stop hating Tummy Time as much from now on and doesn't think he's teething yet, though my sister is still convinced that he is. Doc also discovered a mysterious burn/scratch/owie mark on my poor baby's ankle. For the life of me, I have no idea what caused it. My best guess is that he got a rope burn type thing when he was flailing and must have gotten his leg caught on something? I don't know. It was just horrible for that split second when she was sizing us up to see if we were those seemingly normal people that do horrible things to their kids. I know she didn't really think that, but she had to go there since she's a doctor.

We got the go ahead to start Kirk on rice cereal and also apple juice. He's been doing very good with the whole eating-cereal-from-a-spoon thing, especially considering he's never done it before. In his life. He definitely keeps getting better with each attempt. He's not so sure about apple juice though. Doc said to give him half juice, half water. Kirk makes this hilarious face when he tastes it. Everything about it is wrong to his experience. It's the wrong temperature, it's the wrong consistency, it's the wrong flavor. But he doesn't *hate* it. He's just got to get used to it.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Miscellaneous Ponderings

Today is Kirk's 4 month birthday. Or, as Mr. b puts it, he is now a 4-month-year-old. When do people stop telling their kid's age by weeks and switch over to months only? Kirk is 17 and a half weeks old. I kept track this long because I read somewhere that the main SIDS window is 4-16 weeks. I am glad to be out of it finally and safely. It was hard to suppress the paranoia since Kirk had troubles with breathing which started his long stay at the hospital when he was born. I also had read that the current SIDS theory was something to do with lack of development. So as long as he was constantly adding to his bag of tricks, I felt better. But realistically, I will be worrying about my son's safety and well-being for the rest of my life. I just need to avoid giving myself a heart attack from it, unlike my dad's mom.

Kirk does a great job with grabbing stuff. He does it purposely and with each hand. He can grasp more than just soft things like fabric and hair and has moved on to the plastic rings on his favorite toy. I feel like he is somewhat favoring his left hand. When can you tell a child's handedness? Mr. b is left handed. I am both handed. (No really. I switch hands when I put on eye make-up and stuff like that.) All the men in Mr. b's family are lefties. My uncle is. I have a vague memory of my baby brother favoring his left but not so much that he's not "right handed" now after school and whatnot. Is handedness genetic?

Kirk has been putting more and more stuff directly towards his mouth. I know that a baby's tongue is his tricorder. But he seems to be trying to chew and not just explore. He still doesn't suck his thumb or finger; he is turning out to be a knuckle sucker. My sister says that she thinks he's got teeth forming. His gums do seem to have a slight shape in the front. I hope teething isn't too bad.

We think Kirk is ready for his first go at solid foods. Or rather, baby rice cereal mush. Funny that that counts as "solid". We've been waiting to double check with Doc at his 4-month appointment on Friday. Kirk sometimes just seems like he's not interested in bottle, even though he's clearly hungry. He sort of gnaws on the nipple. But maybe that's just the tooth thing? It'll be interesting to find out just how much nastier his poops are when he's not just ingesting liquids. People keep warning us about that. Good thing he only poops every couple of days.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Trick or Treat

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It makes sense that a pirate and a witch would spawn a Sith lord.
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Kirk wore his dinosaur costume the day before Halloween.
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We had so many hand-me-downs to bring home from Texas that they had to give us another piece of luggage to check! This mirror has really helped make Tummy Time be slightly more tolerable.
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Besides his black cat pajamas and My First Halloween shirt, Kirk was also wearing his Little Devil outfit all throughout October.
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It's the tail that makes it.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

No visit from Aunt Flo

I just talked to Doc about my pills. I'm switching to my old ones when this current pack runs out this weekend. I had been trying to hold off because apparently regular birth control pills dry up your milk. There was no mention in any of the preggo and baby lit about how to quit nursing. Everything is so focused on starting nursing. I would have no idea how to step down gradually. I mean, I've been trying to wean however seems logical to me. But I'm just winging it. Since Kirk has always been such a crappy nurser, and I'm back to work, this seems like as good a time as any to quit. As much as I like nursing him when he's doing it right, it's just been such a fight to keep it up. Half the time he'd rather have a bottle. And when he does want some boob, like when I first get home from work, I'm so starving that I'm sitting there with him, wishing he'd hurry up so I could have some dinner. And if he gets up in the middle of the night, it sure goes a lot faster to just give him a bottle and then let us both get back to sleep. Not that I'm trying to justify this. I made the decision several weeks ago and have just been waiting patiently for the end of this pill pack.

I'm also sick of not knowing if I should be paranoid about getting pregnant again. I have never been this terrified of getting knocked up before in my life. I know what it entails now. I'm not ready to do it again. But abortion would not be an option for me. I don't think any woman could possibly terminate a pregnancy (excepting extenuating circumstances of course) after already giving birth. I know first hand that it's a life in there. So for my choice, it would be, "Holy crap, I'm having another kid already. This sucks ass. I'm just getting to know my baby." I was very glad when Doc reiterated that she's never had a patient get pregnant while on the nursing mother version of the pill. I asked her if I was supposed to get my period and she said that most of the time you just spot irregularly or have nothing at all. I've had nothing at all for 6 weeks, and just spotting prior. Apparently that will continue for the first month or so after I switch to my normal pills. So no need to freak out any time soon. Thank the gods.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

It's good to be back home again.

Kirk did even better on the return flight on Monday. It was an afternoon so I was worried that he might be up and fussy. He was talking really loudly when we first boarded (much to our amusement but I suspect strangers don't find it nearly as cute) but quieted down after lift off. He fell asleep for the remainder of the flight. Unfortunately, it was a much smaller plane so we didn't have a seat between us to lay him on and everything was much more cramped and uncomfortable.

I even changed a diaper on the plane! Kirk pooped in the airport just as the plane was boarding. We got on right away and I went straight to the tiny bathroom. Then I discovered I had forgotten to refill the diaper bag butt wipes container. There was one left so I just had to use airplane bathroom paper towels for the majority of the poo and save the wipe for the final cleansing pass.

Kirk was extra bitchy in the car on the way home from the airport. Not that I blamed him. But the second we walked in the door, he quieted down. I pulled him out of his seat and he started grinning. He saw his best friend, Mr. Ceiling Fan, and he starting smiling and laughing. He *knew* he was home. He was in a fantastic mood for the rest of the night. Then in the morning he was all smiles still. My sister said that yesterday was the most fun she's ever had with him. He was talking and smiling and giggling and just generally sunny and great the whole day. He's obviously happy to be home and back to his regular routine.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Deep in the Heart of Texas

Basically my in-laws flew us down to Houston for the priveledge of babysitting. So Kirk, along with his cousins, stayed with Grandma and Grandpa while Mr. b, his brother, his brother's wife, and I all went to NASA for the day on Saturday. Of course we bought Kirk a "My Little Rocket Scientist" onesie and a rubber duckie in a space shuttle! Then we went out for very expensive dinner on the Kemah boardwalk. By this time, with the cool breeze coming in off Galveston Bay, my boobs hurt. Stiff nipples are extremely unpleasant when you're a nursing mother. And we had been gone so long that Grandma was putting Kirk to bed. I had to pump when we finally got back. It was the first time we had been out so late that Kirk was already asleep for the night.

There was another unfortunate first while we were down there. Sunday morning we were laying in bed, catching up on our Kirk time missed out on the previous night. Then Mr. b totally clocked the baby in the head with his elbow. The howling shriek of pain was unlike anything I've ever heard. It was even worse than when he got shots. I've been expecting something like this for a while now. Kirk gets his flailyness from his father. I can attest, through much personal experience, that it hurts like a bitch when you're on the receiving end of one of Mr. b's limbs. Of course he felt so awful I couldn't rub it in much. I did reiterate that that was why I don't let him sleep with the baby, however.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Leavin' on a jet plane

We flew to Texas this morning. Kirk did a great job. We got shepherded through security because of having a baby with us. He had still been asleep until that jostling. I was trying to keep from feeding him until we were taking off so he'd have sucking and swallowing to help with his ears popping. He was too hungry though so I nursed him in public for the first time. The gate on the opposite side of the terminal was closed so I just went and sat in the back so I wasn't too conspicuous. When we were boarding the plane I kept wondering if we were getting dirty looks from our fellow passengers. "Oh crap, sure hope I don't have to sit next to the baby." A co-worker had suggested giving him some Tylenol while on the taxi-way so I had it in the diaper bag but decided against using it. I gave Kirk a bottle as we started lifting off and by the time we reached cruising altitude, he was passed out again. He slept on the seat in-between us for pretty much the entire flight. He started waking as we were on our descent so I gave him his pacifier. He only fussed a little bit as we were going down. My ears always hurt more on the way down, too. One of the ladies sitting in front of us said that she was really impressed with how well he did. It was quite an eventful day.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Auntie Daycare

I really dislike driving. I hate driving during rush hour. Sometimes I like to blame it on my high school friends, who didn't bother to get their licenses and so were driven around by little ol' me. My sister lives across town but thankfully I've found a decent opposite-of-commuter-traffic route to take on the mornings when I drop off Kirk. There is no such route in the afternoons. And while I know that my sister is charging us a ridiculously low rate, holy crap we're going through gasoline like never before.

I'm sure at some point the inconvenience will outweigh the advantages and we'll have to find a closer daycare. But right now, I can't even imagine that. Kirk loves his auntie and his cousins and is loved in return. There is nothing better than that for childcare. My sister spoils her nephew--because she can--and also takes requests. For instance, I've asked her to make sure that he gets some Tummy Time everyday. She takes him with when running errands or picking up her girls from school, so it's more like regular life than institutional care.

We can also totally fuck with the schedule. Mr. b works different hours from week to week, day to day. My sister has no problem with us dropping off and picking up at different times. We also have to work around her soccer coaching schedule and so sometimes she'll just drop Kirk off with us. You can't get that kind of service from a fancy daycare center! Or at least, not one that's in my price range.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

I'm so tired right now I feel insane. Kirk had a very sleepy day yesterday. Even his cousins effing with him wasn't enough to keep him awake. And he went to bed at 8:30, about an hour earlier than his current average. So, as I was expecting, he woke up at 3:00. He fell back to sleep but could I? No. Of course not. I'm so exhausted my legs ache from lack of sleep. I guess Kirk just didn't want me to take his sleeping throught the night for granted.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Rule of Acquisition 59

Even more annoying than unsolicited advice about pregnancy is advice about breast feeding. Once again, people seem to forget that every human and every situation is unique. Instead of just sharing their experience, they demand you try it their way. And the strangest thing is, it's not just women! No amount of explaining how difficult it was to get Kirk to do even the little bit of nursing that he is doing will get these Nipple Nazis (I stole that one from womba) off your case. Thankfully, since I've been back to work, I'm finally encountering women that didn't even bother to nurse. Or those that were fully weaned by the time they finished their leave.

Naturally, now that I'm planning to quit nursing him by the end of the month, Kirk is finally latching on without the shield. Figures.

Even more annoying than unwanted advice about breast feeding is advice about baby care. Once again, the individual nature of the situation is ignored. We went to a wedding on Friday. Kirk was a hit in his Darth Vader suit. And there was this old Eastern European man at the table next to us that kept harassing Mr. b and I about holding Kirk's head. Even though Kirk can hold his head up on his own. This old guy dogged us all night long about how we weren't giving him enough support. He was convinced Kirk was going to snap his neck or bash his head against something. What, since he was always being held by someone, I have no idea. The crank wouldn't be swayed by logical arguments, about how the baby's age doesn't matter only his development, how our doctor isn't concerned. He was right and we were wrong. Tellingly, however, when his wife was holding Kirk, and not supporting his head because he doesn't need it, he didn't say anything.

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Look close, there's Diablo and Jon!

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

What an incredible smell you've discovered!

When Kirk was in the Level II nursery we had to use this foam hand cleanser before even setting foot in the place. It had a very particular, though not unpleasant, smell which I came to associate with my new baby. When we went to visit the nurses the other night, Mr. b started playing with the foam since it was right there. Smell really is so evocative. As soon as the scent hit my nose I was right back to that awful first week when we couldn't even take our son out of the nursery.

Currently I associate the smell of Dreft--and dried on spit up--with Kirk. I bought a box when I was washing all his clothes in preparation for his arrival. I'm still using the same box and don't plan to buy another one. If he was sensitive to regular laundry detergent we would have noticed by now. It's not like I wash my own stuff in Dreft. But I know that I'll still think of babies whenever I smell Dreft-washed clothing.

I had refrained from wearing perfume while I was on leave. I wanted Kirk to be able to learn the smell of his mommy, not Chanel No 5. I didn't know if he would be confused or repulsed or something when I started wearing it again but so far he doesn't seem to care at all.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

I am now An Expert

Last night was our birth class reunion. Hardly anyone showed up. We were one of 3 only. Which is too bad because it was a lot of fun to see their babies and hear their birth stories. We also learned that we need to be hardasses about Tummy Time. Kirk hates it--HATES it--so we've been slacking off. But it affects other development, like fine motor skills, and not just head/neck control, which he's great at, so we have to force him. And deal with the crying.

Kirk is finally noticing other babies so he had a great time flirting with the two baby girls.

Since we were at the hospital anyway we stopped up at the Level II nursery. They finished the remodel (everything was all tore up while we were "living there"). Luckily, one of the two nurses that we connected with most was on duty. I figured that they didn't get a chance to see their "graduates" that often. She was thrilled to get to see Kirk and happy that he's doing so great.

Teacher was just finishing up with her latest birth class as we were leaving. (And my brother and sister-in-law are in her Wednesday class!) Suddenly we were the night's Guest Speakers. It was very interesting to see the fear, excitement, exhaustion, everything on the faces of all these pregnant women and their menfolk. It's amazing to remember just how terrified I was of giving birth. I felt very cool and confident, holding my sleeping son and giving the extremely short version of his birth story. It was an awesome feeling.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Some Random Observations

Baby Yawns are contagious to mommies. However, Mommy Yawns are not contagious to babies.

Oftentimes, when I have Kirk up on my shoulder to pound out a burp, I'll burp instead.

It's very strange, and kind of neat, when my stomach growls and at the same time Kirk's stomach growls and our bellies are pressed up against each other because he's nursing.

All my life I've always enjoyed having "conversations" with my cats. She'll meow and I'll meow back. She'll mrrup and I'll mrrup back. It's even more fun to do with a baby. He'll ling loo and I'll ling loo back. He'll aheai and I'll aheai back.

Friday, October 07, 2005

1 week down....

My sister mentioned that Kirk smiles broadly when he sees her. I was hit with intense jealousy when I heard that. It's not like I want him to hate going to his auntie's. I certainly don't want him to pitch screaming fits when I drop him off. But it made me sad to hear. Because that means that Mr. b and I are no longer his only primary caregivers. My sister is, too. I'm not home with him all day. There are huge chunks of his life from this point forward that I won't witness firsthand. And that's rather heartbreaking to me.

I had to return the breast pump yesterday. I've got a line on a Craig's List buy but today I had to use the handpump. There are "sick lounges" here I can use for pumping. But holy god hand pumping sucks. And I don't get emptied out as completely so now I'm really feeling full.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

One Day at a Time

There is definitely some fuckery involved with being a One Car Family when Auntie Daycare is across town and the person that drops off the kid is different than the one that picks him up. Normally it won't be a big deal because Mr. b just rides his bike to/from where the car is. But it's been like Ferenginar here for the past two days.

It's very odd getting to work after I've already been up for 3 or 4 hours. But I'm glad to have time with my Peepers Pie in the morning. So far he either wakes up in the middle of the night to eat, or sleeps until 5am and then eats. I'm fine with either way frankly. The nights he doesn't sleep through he is regularly sleeping for at least 5 and half or 6 hours. So I'm certainly not dying of sleep deprivation or anything.

Monday, October 03, 2005

A Case of the Mondays

Both Mr. b and I went to drop off Kirk this morning. We were glad we could both do it on this first morning. Kirk's little cousins were so thrilled to finally have him there! I got some tears in my eyes while walking out. But mostly I've been trying to be stoic, like Bree in Desperate Housewives or Zoe in Serenity. I called my sister about Noon and the little man was napping. He had had a good morning and was already very taken with his younger cousin, A2. (A1 is in first grade so he won't get to see as much of her.)

It'll be interesting to see how he reacts this afternoon. Will he be pissed when he realizes he was left for the day? Will he be happy to see his Mommy and Daddy? I think he *knew* something was up last night. He was crabbier than he has ever been before bed. Even worse than his first night in the crib.

I pumped this morning but my boobs are already feeling full. Which is pretty ridiculous considering that Kirk has actually gotten worse at nursing. But he does just enough to keep the milk production going. I had weaned myself down to pumping only once a day. But I would still nurse a bit during business hours so this is my first try at no relief all day. I'm going to have to return the electric pump (can't afford it and insurance won't continue to pay for it) and so I guess I'll just bring the hand pump to work.

Sitting in a desk chair all day hurts my ass. I guess I'm really not used to cubicle life anymore.

Friday, September 30, 2005

The End

I'm pretty depressed. And not just because of Serenity. (How could Joss do that? And after we waited so long!) Today was my last day of leave. Sure, I have the weekend. But it's a weekend. I don't work weekends normally. I have to go back on Monday. I have to leave my precious peepers with my sister all day starting Monday. I already ache. I miss him in advance. It's like the first time I left the hospital when he was still in the Level II nursery. I could physically feel the distance between us. But I suppose it's just another milestone of a modern parent. Monday I will officially become a Working Mother.

This feels rather like going back to school after summer break. There's the anticipation, both good and bad. I'll get to see my friends again. I've had three months off. It's Fall. I've gone shopping for back-to-work clothes. But I always looked forward to school. I'm not entirely sure I'm looking forward to going back to work. I wish I could go back only part time for a while. Unfortunately, we are flat broke. So alas, my time is over.

I miss him already.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005


A work crew finally hooked us up again this morning. I'm so glad our frontier time is over. (Knitting by candle light is so Little House.) Living without electricity made me think a lot about what it would be like to have a baby as a pioneer. Midnight feedings alone would have been so much more difficult. Sometimes just using a nightlight hasn't been enough. And what would you do for a baby that didn't nurse well? Presumably there were glass bottles but what material was used for nipples? And even before that, what about the apnea that Kirk had when first born? Surely Dr. Quinn would have saved him but then what do you do about the jaundice? I guess since it was July I would have just let him sit out in the sun a lot. But clearly that wouldn't work if he had been born in the winter. It trips me out to realize that my son likely would have contributed to a high infant mortality rate if he hadn't been born in 2005 in the United States of America. I can't imagine what I would do without him.

Getting electricity back gave me a chance to catch up on my reading. And I discovered the sad news about Jon and Diablo's dear Agnes of Dog. I'm so sorry guys. She was such a good girl and you can take comfort in the fact that you gave her a wonderful life. I know I felt completely ripped off that Tron was taken from us after only 6 months but at least he was loved during that time. So was Agnes.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Where's my electricity dammit?!

Kirk seems to be sleeping through the night. But I don't know if I can believe it yet. The first time was on Wednesday. Our power was out after the big storm and he was in his car seat on the bed next to me. Was it a fluke due to the extreme darkness? Or maybe because he wasn't laying flat? Thursday we were the only ones in the neighborhood that still didn't have power. But a kind neighbor ran an extention cord over and so, since we could plug in the monitor, we put Kirk in his crib. He woke up every 2 hours. I think it was because he was cold. We need electricity to run the thermostat to turn on the gas heater. We had gas. Hell, we had water and sewer and phone and cable, the last discovered when we had power for the TV. But Minnesota in late September gets cold at night. I eventually just brought Kirk into bed with us. Friday I came up to stay with my parents. They have heat and electricity here. Kirk sleeps in a suitcase when we stay here because it fits perfectly as a makeshift bassinette. And he slept through the night. We stayed here Saturday because we still didn't have electricity, and he slept through the night. We're still here because we still don't have electricity and so far, it looks like he's going to sleep through the night. But I can't take it anymore. Being displaced is stressful. We're going home tomorrow even if there's still no power. We'll just have to put the baby in the bed with us. I just hope that the new sleeping pattern continues and is not a result of his schedule being affected by the storm and refugee status.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

8 Years

Yesterday was our anniversary. Mr. b and I finally got married in 1997 after living together for 4 and a half years. My mom stayed with the little man so we could go out. It was strange hanging out together without him along. We tried a couple of not-particularly-kid-friendly restaurants (Mr. b figures if there's a changing table in the Men's Room, you're safe to bring a baby there. One of them was owned by our landlord in the early 90s. We had been in there dozens of times to pay rent but of course could never have afforded to eat there.) and just went for a drive.

Baby lit is always warning that parents need to talk about something other than their kids when they get time alone together. We just don't have that problem. Sure, we'll share something that Kirk did, but it's more like just a recap of what happened that day. Mr. b and I are into mostly the same stuff so we easily talk about TV and sci fi and books and history and music and movies and everything in the world.

I was gone from Kirk longer than I have been yet while we were out on our "date". And I started tearing up as we pulled into the alley coming home, in anticipation of going back to work in less than 2 weeks.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Sally the Squeakers Squirrel has taken over the bassinette. She just *knows* that Kirk is done with it. I guess it's obvious since he's only been in it a couple of times over the past week, and it's always been during the day when I need to set him somewhere when he's awake. (Squeakers only once tried to go in the bassinette while Kirk was in it; she aborted mid-jump when she saw that it was inhabited.) I yelled at her and evicted her yesterday morning when I busted her in there. This morning Mr. b and I decided that she can have it back since Kirk really is at the borderline of being able to use it anymore anyway. It'll force us to use his swing and stuff instead.

She also really loves the new bedtime rules for Kirk. It means she gets her humans back all to herself, at night at least!

Saturday, September 17, 2005

One of the tough parts about aclimating Kirk to a proper bedtime is that we have to get used to it, too. Both Mr. b and I had developed our own crutches to get him to sleep. Mr. b would put him in his car seat and have him out with him while writing songs or playing video games. And I would bring the little man in to bed with me after Mr. b went to work in the morning. We can't use those tricks anymore. It's also weird to simply have him be in a different room. He's been everywhere we go for his whole life so far. We'd just drag his bassinette from room to room. Baby monitors are nice but definitely a change. They're both ultra sensitive and not good enough. I can hear Kirk fussing in his crib with extreme clarity but not his quiet breathing. And for a mom of a baby who was taken away at the hospital due to apnea (and he has a rather asthmatic daddy) hearing breathing is of paramount importance. I have to force myself to relax and try to sleep instead of straining to hear the inhaling and exhaling over the monitor.

One year ago today we closed on our house. It's hard to believe it's already been that long and that it went by so fast. We have a baby, dammit!

Friday, September 16, 2005

We've begun the process of training the little man to sleep in his crib. And to sleep at night, not during the day. Might as well get them both done at once since we're being hard asses anyway! We're trying to create a routine, like putting his pajamas on in the evening and putting a little outfit on him in the morning. Bedtime is generally around 10 o'clock. All nighttime feedings are done in low light, all business with no talk. He does demand to have the low light kept on; the night light wasn't strong enough for him.

So far the most wailing happened during the first try. I had already gone to bed to get some sleep during Mr. b's shift. I could hear Kirk screaming. But it was only a little heartbreaking. It was mostly hilarious. Because it was not a hunger cry, or a pain cry, or even his shriek when he refuses to nurse. It was very plainly a howl of rage. He was pissed! And his bitching cries were so rhythmic you could have used them as a metronome.

Hopefully most of the kinks will be worked out by the time I have to go back to work.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Recently, a friend asked how expensive it is having a baby. It really isn't. Yet. I mean, sure, I'm not even close to exclusive breast feeding. But I think claiming that's "free" is a fallacy anyway. You eat so much to make milk. Mommy Food costs money you know! Regardless, you can buy both formula and diapers at either the grocery store or Target. And since you're spending a lot of money at those two places anyways, you don't really notice adding the extra items. We were very lucky and didn't have to buy any major furniture or baby equipment or anything. Or clothes even. Although we're already starting to get suckered in to impulse buys for the baby. Last trip to Target we bought some of the Halloween clothes they had out on the endcap!

The water bill hasn't even gone up. I thought it would be jacked up since I'm doing constant laundry. Between crusty pajama tops from my boobs leaking at night to spit-up caked necklines of onesies, I'm doing a load almost every day. But they're small. The electricity bill did go up though. I don't think it was from air conditioning since I didn't have it cranked to the preferred preggo temperature of "arctic blast". I'm betting it's from all those small loads in the washer and dryer.

Rockin' out
Super Baby

Sunday, September 11, 2005

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I love this little man. I love him so much it makes my eyes tear up when I think about it.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Mr. b loves babies. He always has. He's a baby person. He holds babies of customers that come into his cafe. He starts conversations with parents in stores. He always notices other babies in restaurants. And he's convinced that Kirk is literally the cutest baby ever. I don't need to compare him to other babies to know that! Mr. b even wants to see if he can get Kirk some commercial gigs. Why not? Hey, if he can pay for his own hospital bills, that would be great!

I continue to not notice other babies. I just don't care. I'm not a baby person and never have been. Sure, I notice parents with car seats next to them in restaurants. But I have no desire to peek in and check out the baby. I just don't care. Obviously I'll be excited when my nephew is born in a few months. And it's great fun meeting my friend's babies. But strangers? Don't matter at all.

I've never been much of a baby person. I played with Barbies, not baby dolls. My sister reminded me recently that I used to pawn off babysitting jobs on her. That's not entirely accurate. I would pawn off babysitting jobs. Toddlers were just fine. Kids were great. I did not do diapers. In fact, I never once changed a poopy diaper in my entire life before my son was born.

Bald spots

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Apparently there has been much ado about an article in the NY Times about men who lose desire for their wives after witnessing childbirth. (Newsweek mentions this blog and this one.) Synchronicity. I was going insane earlier this week. I felt like I didn't have a husband. In my estimation, the only relationships that work are if you are 1) best friends, 2) good roommates, and 3) great lovers. I was missing that third element. We'd only Done It twice since Kirk was born and the second time was only because I forced the issue. Mr. b and I finally sat down and talked about it the other night. It turns out that he really was still completely squicked out about me "down there". He thought there were going to be huge chunks of bloody tissue falling out or something. Even though he knew perfectly well that was not the case. He also didn't know that I was so gung ho about getting back to regular sex. Heck, even Doc warned that nursing reduces your libido. Well, that's just not the case for me. And not getting any was making me crazy. Thankfully we got all our issues out in the open and Kirk was a good boy and slept quietly so we could have almost normal sex. Finally.

We're going to take a picture of the little man next to this guitar every month so we have a visual of his growth.
1 month
2 months
And for good measure, here he is in his swing wearing the hat I knitted for him.

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Baking Rant

"Just make bars instead." Bah! Would you say that to *anybody* 4 hours before you're supposed to arrive? Much less a mother of a sick infant with a sick husband? Bite me. Yeah, like I'm going to dig up a new recipe, go to the store for the ingredients, and then start baking. What would you do if I had already finished making something? I know you're trying to be nice by bringing my sister a surprise birthday cake. But she specifically requested that I make a dessert. Because she loves my dessert inventions and knows that I love coming up with them. [/Rant]

The little peepers has been mostly sleeping this past 24 hours since his vaccination ordeal. My dad said that he and mom kind of looked forward to our shots days because they knew we'd be knocked out and they could get a good night's sleep! It didn't work out like that for me since the little man kept waking up for a small amount of food every hour and a half or so. He has a very slight fever so I have added infant Tylenol to my repertoire of baby medications I now know how to administer.

Friday, September 02, 2005

I was thinking that maybe, if we were lucky, Kirk could be up to 9 pounds. He weighs 10# 13 oz! Well no wonder the 0-3 month clothes are starting to be too small. He's 20.75 inches long and his head circumference is up to 15in. Yay for brain growth! Doc thinks he may be an early crawler because he's so strong on his stomach. She also suggested saline drops for his nose to help with some of the congestion. I just tried some and they totally seemed to work.

Of course I felt awful dripping them in when he was already screaming bloody murder. He's definitely got the side effect "irritability" from his shots today. He did good with them. He cried of course (anecdotally, I've heard that a baby's first real tears come at the 2 month shots; he certainly had wet eyes afterwards) but calmed down right away. And then slept so very soundly until just about an hour ago. And now he's demanding constant holding. Poor little man.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

After seeing Kirk next to a friend's one month old yesterday (he was also early and under 6 pounds at birth), you really get a feel for just how much of a difference one month can make. Not just size wise, although I'm now even more curious to find out what he weighs at tomorrow's check up. But developmentally there are so many things that Kirk is working on already. He's got decent head and neck control, although he's still a bit floppy. He can see you across the room and is definitely working on depth perception (which is funny to watch because he goes all cross eyed). He has officially discovered his hands and likes looking at them. But he still hasn't figured out that he can suck on a finger or thumb if he opens the fist he regularly brings to his mouth. He associates smiles with people he loves, happiness and pleasure. He makes more sophisticated tongue movements, doing a sort of proto-clicking when he's hungry. It's fascinating.

I guess I got my period. It was hard to tell. It's been so long and then there was the lochia flow after birth. It was really light, too. Just spotting mostly. I realized that I was on the last week of the pill pack so that's what was going on. Using a tampon felt very weird, although I don't know if that was due to it not really being quite heavy enough to justify using a tampon or not. Regardless, I'm glad to know I'm not pregnant again. Even though I'm now totally open to the idea of having another one--not any time soon thank you very much!

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Things that bother parents but not babies:
Spit up
Dry skin
Head flopping down in the car seat

Ways babies are like Roman Emperors:
Wake up to a boob in their mouth
Have people dress them
Have people bathe them
Eat until they are so full it comes back up
Pee and poop whenever and where ever they want
People attend to every whim

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Now that I'm finally feeling better (unfortunately Kirk is still stuck in the snot factory phase of the cold) I need to start eating better and getting more exercise. I know the average for loosing baby weight is one year but it won't happen if I don't help. Ever since I had him all I've been craving is meat and dairy products. The fattier and greasier the better. I'm not a fast food person and yet I want cheeseburgers all the time. I am a fruit and vegetable person and I can barely remember to eat any, much less 5 a day. I'm sure it has to do with milk production, and I'm certainly using more calories producing, but I can't use that excuse for much longer.

Kirk continues to be a crappy nurser. He still won't latch on without the shield. In fact, in some ways, I think he's getting worse. If he's extra hungry he won't latch on even with the shield. Instead he'll shriek like I'm hurting him. I have to give him a couple of ounces from a bottle first. Maybe it would have been different if he hadn't been so small and early. He lost weight when I tried doing mostly exclusive nursing and we've been supplementing with bottles ever since. I can see it more rationally now that my brain has calmed down from the post partum craziness. I know that it'll be easier on all of us if I quit with the boobies. And I don't really want to have to try to juggle pumping at work when I go back. Mr. b and several friends have all said that they would have given up long ago if it had been them. I just honestly like nursing, dammit!

Saturday, August 27, 2005

It seemed to me like it would be a good idea to draw up a hot bath and hold the baby in there with me. Get the bathroom all steamed up so some of his congestion would loosen. Mr. b jumped on the plan. He has had bad asthma since he was very young and said that his parents used to do that with him all the time. I started with a hot shower to steam up the bathroom. Then I held the naked little man while his daddy blocked the stream with his body. Then I started filling up the tub, sat down in it and gently floated the good baby in the warm water. He was totally fine with all this. It was one of the neatest family activities yet. And now he's sneezing so the steam must have helped at least a little bit.

I would never presume to ask people that don't have kids when they're going to start trying. That's offensive and I hated it when people did that to me. But I do get extremely excited now when I find out that friends are going off the pill. This is just such an amazing thing that I want everyone to have the priveledge of experiencing the incredible, primal love of being a parent. It really is awesome.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Man. Getting sick when you have an infant really sucks ass. Besides being pretty much incapable of avoiding sharing your germs, you're getting up every few hours for feedings so you never get enough sleep to speed your own recovery. I feel so bad when I have to blow my nose one handed while holding him in place at my boob with the other hand. But that's better than dripping snot on his head. And the poor little man is so confused; Mommy doesn't sound right with this Kathleen Turner voice.

He's doing fine with his version of the cold. He's not sick enough for me to call the doctor (no fever) but I feel bad for him. I think he's swallowing most of his phelgm and so his last poo was all green and farm smelly. I keep jamming the aspirator in his mouth to try to suck out his snot but it's mostly too far down his throat. At least he's still eating good.

His typical feeding routine is to do at least 10 minutes on a boob. Then I'll change his pants to wake him back up for Boob Two. After that, he'll usually eat another 4 ounces from a bottle. I typically give him 2 of pumped milk and then 2 of formula. This whole round takes an hour or an hour and a half, depending on how good he nurses. In the hospital we had work so hard just to force 30cc down his throat at a time. He's definitely growing. I've had to pull out some onesies that are now too small. Of course they're all the newborn and premie sizes but it's still nice to have proof of his increasing size since we haven't been doing weight checks anymore.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

I have to give a great big shout out to the lovely and talented, and soon to be rich and famous, Diablo Cody for taking me out for a mani-pedi today. Thanks dollface! Every new mother should be so lucky. It was so relaxing.

I've been getting tense in my shoulders and neck and I think it's from sitting crooked while nursing. I need to sit with my hips square and level.

Last night Mr. b and I went to the drive-in with the little man and it was the perfect way to see a movie with a baby. It also gave us a couple more good Firsts: nursing in the car and Mr. b changing a diaper in his lap. We've been collecting Firsts like diaper change on the scuzzy table in a public restroom, bottle feeding in a restaurant, hotel stay, trip out of state. Of course I was previously counting Firsts like shower while Kirk is awake in his bassinet outside the bathroom. And unfortunately, I think that we have First Cold going on now. If Mommy gets a sore throat, there's pretty much no way that Baby can avoid it.

Monday, August 22, 2005

I often wonder how my sister manages to raise 2 girls by herself. It's frickin' hard! Then again, if you're on your own, you know that you don't have anyone else to count on. I think it would be harder if your mate was all 50s and didn't help out at all. Then there would be someone around that *could* give you a break, but doesn't. I know it was much more difficult for me last week when for several nights in a row, I had the baby all night without any assistance from Mr. b for various reasons. When he's been gone, then I know I'm on my own and I can get in the right mindset. Somehow I just call up the strength to care for the little man and the serenity to do it with a smile.

At least on one of those days last week we finally had post partum sex. We both wanted to wait until the All Clear from Doc because of the episiotomy. And I wanted to get started on my no-siblings-for-Kirk pills. I even bought my first ever bottle of vag lube. But then it was all Mr. b. He was still squicked out from watching me give birth and get cut. We both thought it felt different than before. But now the seal is broken. We'll get better.

Good kitty
"I sleep in a drawer!"

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

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This is my new favorite picture. It perfectly captures how much I love being Kirk's mom.

Talking with my sister last week, I think I figured out why breast feeding is so important to me. As she put it, it's the only thing that only I can do for my child. Other people can give him a bottle, or change his diaper, or bathe him, change his outfit, play with him. Only I can feed him directly from my own body, food that I make specifically for him. And it's time I can spend with him that no one can take away.

That's why I've come to enjoy mornings with him so much as well. We've fallen into a bit of a schedule that won't work at all when I go back to work but for now, it's great. Typically, Mr. b will stay up with the little man until somewhere between 1 and 4 in the morning, sleeping if the baby lets him, depending on when he has to go to work. Then I get the next shift. Kirk will do another chunk of sleeping at around 7 or 8 in the morning and I just bring him in to bed with me then. We can get another couple of cuddly hours of shut eye that way.

I was very against the idea of the family bed. But now I think it may be more difficult for me than for the baby when we start putting him down in his crib instead of the bassinet. And I will greatly miss my mornings with him when my leave is done.

Monday, August 15, 2005

While I was pregnant, I longed to sleep on my back or stomach. Obviously, that was forbidden or unobtainable. I've quite enjoyed being able to lay flat on my back again. But even though I was previously a stomach sleeper, it's just not satisfying to me anymore. At first, it felt weird because my abdominal muscles were still all pushed off to the sides. Now, it's just plain uncomfortable because of the fullness in my tits.

There's a marked difference in the consistency of baby poop depending on if it's breast milk or formula. Breast milk poo is runny with little seeds in it. Formula poo is more like creamy peanut butter. And yes, it's smelly even though I'm his mommy. It just doesn't bother me.

This little man has had a couple of spectacular spit ups. At first I was winning. I was trying Kirk out on naked nipple after he acted like he wanted more even though he had just finished eating on that side through the shield. He opened his mouth and out it came, all over my nipple and boob. It was quite warm. But Mr. b has that topped. And not just because he seems to be the one that gets spit up all over his shirts. He was playing with Kirk while laying down and held him up with his arms stretched straight up. Kirk spit up not just on his daddy's face. He got some in his mouth!! Hi-larious. And of course as I'm typing about spit up he just did some in his bassinet.

Car seat

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

I give up. Every time I think that Kirk's making improvments in eating or sleeping they don't stick. He still won't suckle without the shield. If I even try to give him a naked nipple he'll just shake his head frantically. And the whole sleeping when it's dark thing was a fluke, too. Last night he decided to stay awake until 1am. He's sleeping now of course. I just don't know what to do. Sure, he's sleeping for longer chunks, but it's in the morning. He wants to eat every couple of hours during the night so it doesn't really matter that he goes back to sleep. I have no idea how I'll be able to go back to work if this keeps up.

And we still haven't mastered feeding our own damn selves. As Shogunmoon mentioned, we need people to cook for us. We're also still relying heavily on restaurants, fast food, and people bringing us food. Sure, I can cook if Mr. b is around to watch the baby. But right now I just had a burnt grilled cheese sandwich because I wasn't able to give it my full attention.

At least I was able to bring Kirk in to work yesterday for the obligatory meet-the-coworkers visit. That was really weighing heavily on me.

Monday, August 08, 2005

My MIL was staying with us since Friday. She was such an incredible help. Kirk happened to be going through a growth spurt/developmental leap and was eating every 2 hours since early Friday morning. (He had a weight check before she arrived and was up to 6# 14.5 oz--I guarantee he's well beyond 7 now.) It's very frustrating to be feeding him that often. I think using the shield has helped to prevent extreme nipple soreness, but it had definitely caught up with me by Saturday night.

I was a wreck. I find that I now only become a big crying mess when I'm over-tired. I had been up with Kirk all night, feeding him constantly, and I hadn't gotten a nap in during the day because we went to see Dukes of Hazzard, which ruled. MIL was already planning on taking the baby all night so we could go to our friend's birthday party. Mr. b thought I should stay home and just sleep. But I needed to see people. Desperately. And spending a couple hours with friends, going home and going straight to bed (after pumping of course), and getting a real live full night's sleep was amazing. My body didn't know how to react to that much rest! I told her it was the best present she could have given me.

And then Kirk started sleeping at night. Sure, he still gets up to eat several times, but he goes back to sleep. That makes all the difference in the world. He's going slightly longer between meals now, too, closer to 4 hours at a time. His eyes are focusing better and getting lighter than that dark infant color. You can just tell there's been leap. I'm so glad that MIL was able to be here to witness it.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Last night was another bad one. Kirk likes being awake from about 2am until about 5am no matter what we try. And we've tried it all by now. I made the mistake of staying up until about midnight so that meant I was operating on 2 hours of sleep. Letting him fuss by himself in his bassinet didn't work. Nursing him repeatedly put him to sleep but he wouldn't stay that way. Cuddling him didn't trick him into sleeping either. And all this was in the dark as I'm trying to convince him that dark=sleepy time. By 6am I was insane. I was literally crying like a baby. Completely inconsolable. I just wanted someone to comfort me, hold me. Mr. b packed up the baby and left me to cry myself to sleep. I felt much better, but starving and with a crying hangover, when I got up about noon.

The upside of such a terrible night is that I was frustrated with the constant nursing and I tried my bare nipple. Kirk latched on and suckled without the shield! Since then I've offered him no-shield each feeding and he'll take it about half the time. It's a good thing, too, because I've begun to worry about my milk supply. I haven't been as diligent with kangaroo time as I should have been and my boobs don't feel nearly as full as they used to. I'm getting less when I pump after each feeding, too. Maybe that's just because he's draining me more completely.

I've resigned myself to the fact that I probably won't produce enough to keep breastfeeding for much longer. I'm pretty sure I'll have to give up when I go back to work. I mean, for as long as possible I'll try to nurse him when I come home but I just have a feeling my supply will not keep up with his demand. I guess 3 months is better than nothing.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

It's official: I am both a nerd and a new mom. I just cried over Data's daughter dying. "Thank you for my life."

I think that Tron's soul got a do-over. That's why Kirk came early and is small. He's just continuing the Policy of Tiny-ness.

Monday, August 01, 2005

I was thinking that I was done with the baby blues. I hadn't cried for absolutely no reason in quite some time. Sure, I still tear up at heartwarming and heartbreaking stories. But I think that has more to do with being related to my overly sentimental dad.

Then today after my post partum doctor's visit, Kirk had a weight check. He's lost an ounce. What?! He eats constantly. Sure, he's begun doing this new thing where he'll get all frantic when first put up to the boob. But after he crabs for a few minutes, he'll latch on and begin nursing. I know he's getting food because he's gone to the opposite extreme and is now pooping almost every diaper change. Doc was totally unconcerned, said to try to "top him off" with a bottle after each feeding, and bring him in for another weight check on Friday.

So I went home and told Mr. b the news. He freaked out. And I started crying. I felt like it was my fault. Like I was somehow doing something wrong and that's why he hasn't gained any weight. Like if I changed something or was better in some way there wouldn't be a problem and he'd be packing it on and we wouldn't have to worry.

And now we're blasting through all the milk I had in the fridge and will probably go back to supplementing with formula since I can't pump constantly. There go my plans to start freezing it.

The Kirk Shelf
Remote Control

Saturday, July 30, 2005

I think we're finally getting the hang of the new schedule. Everything reset when we switched to (mostly) exclusive breast feeding. The Worst Night Yet was on Monday; we were fighting at 3am. We found that we both retain our sanity if we get 3-4 solid hours of sleep in a row. We can then grab naps whenever they come. It's amazing just how little sleep you actually need to function. So now we take shifts. Typically Mr. b will stay up until about 1am and then I'll get up for the second half of the night (especially if he has to go to work in the morning). Apparently my own parents did the exact same thing with me.

Kirk really has a great temperament. He's a very chill baby. But he likes keeping late hours. And he demands being held most of the time when he's awake in the middle of the night. I've started to figure out how to trick him in to napping if he's cuddled up close to Mommy. And so obviously I've had to learn how to safely sleep with him. Then I have dreams about nursing him and I can't figure out if he just ate or what. We were keeping a feeding and diaper changing log, to track how long he'd spend at each breast, how much mommy juice in a bottle he'd take, and how many wet and poopy diapers he was having. But we both spontaneously quit that today. Hopefully I'll be able to mentally estimate when he last ate and whatnot.

I know that "Breast is Best" and all that logical reasoning for nursing your child. And it does make sense. But for some reason it's just massively important to me that this works. When I was having more difficulties I just felt like I'd somehow be a failure as a mother if I couldn't do it. Which is obviously crap and completely untrue. But I'm now pretty sure this is going to work out. I could tell a difference in how full my boobs felt when Kirk started being able to nurse through the shield. They didn't hurt, but they clearly contained a quantity of liquid. He's certainly getting enough to eat. And I'm definitely getting plenty of milk when I pump, too. I'm going to try to start freezing it. I've got a bunch in the fridge ready to go already.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

It seems that despite my quickly reduced stomach size, my old pants still don't fit. My ass is considerably huger. Considering that I already had ghetto booty to begin with, that's going to make it even more difficult to find things that fit. Big hips and small waist are just not what clothing makers have in mind.

I'm trying to be hyper observant of Kirk's behavior. I can tell when he's actually hungry and not just fussy based on how he moves his mouth and head. And I've been looking for all the little development markers that he's supposed to hit. He does the newborn reflexes like hug-the-tree when startled. He laughs in his sleep. And he's just beginning to notice his hands. The other day I caught him following his finger movements like a hippie on acid watching trails.

He makes all kinds of funny noises. Our favorite is when he sounds like a tauntaun. I love watching his face when he sleeps. I always think of Delenn watching Sheridan.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Today I went out with Kirk by myself for the first time. We've always gone out with Mr. b before. We've been out to eat, and shop, and even saw Batman. I took the little man in for a weight check with Doc. He's holding steady (6# 4 oz) and she thinks he looks great. He's plenty hydrated and she said not to worry about his not pooping since we started the breast feeding project; he's just got an efficient gut. Boy can he fart though!

I also went out by myself for the first time today. Granted it was just to the grocery store but still. While driving there I realized I was extremely exhausted and I remembered Auntie G telling me to be careful while driving on limited sleep during these first few months. She wasn't kidding!

My lochia flow had gone to clear but yesterday it switched to light red again. I must need to slow down. But I'm certainly not doing much. Hell, I haven't even managed to take a shower in a couple of days. Maybe I'll get to it later tonight. I'm just annoyed that I have to continue wearing the damn panty liners. I understand now why people say that this makes up for the lack of a period for 9 months.

Mr. b thinks I look Norwegian walking around topless all the time. It must be the braids. I know why so many women get their hair cut short after they have a kid. It really gets in the way when you're trying to nurse. I keep it back constantly. Well, that also helps to hide the fact that I don't have time or energy to shower and wash my hair anymore!

Bath time
Dancin' fool

Friday, July 22, 2005

Breast feeding is hard. During the whole pregnancy Mr. b enjoyed pointing out when TV and movies portray it incorrectly. So his latest bitch is about how in Blue Lagoon Brooke Sheilds couldn't have nursed her inbred baby so easily.

A lactation nurse came to help me out yesterday. We found out that Kirk has gained almost a pound on his birth weight--he's up to 6-3.5! Awesome! That means that we are switching to agressive and exclusive breast feeding. Mommy is still requesting that Daddy do a bottle feeding in the middle of the night for her own sanity however. The nurse said that everything that Kirk is doing (or not doing, heh) is typical and she got me started using a nipple shield. It's very strange navigating this weird boob condom while trying to get the boy to open his mouth but it seems to be working. He just eats a lot more frequently now.

To keep up/increase my milk production I have to try to keep pumping whenever possible. So far if my nip is leaking while I'm feeding him on the other boob, then I'll pump. We're also doing "kangaroo care" which is just naked baby (he gets to keep his diaper on) against my chest. It's super cuddly and warm. I don't know where the name came from. And I don't know why the skin contact triggers milk production. Mr. b is mildly skeptical and wonders, "Do your boobs smell the baby?"

So I'm spending even more time topless. Which I like because frankly I've always wished that women could go topless in this society. I just have to remember to put a shirt on when I get the mail or take out the trash.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

I'm really surprised at how quickly my stomach has gone down. I'm betting regular pants would fit me, if I'd bother to unpack them and try them on. Maternity things are certainly too big, except for the two low rider transitional pairs I bought in the fifth month. This weekend a friend told me that if she didn't know, she'd never guess that I just had a baby. I wouldn't go that far! I know that the attempt to nurse and the constant pumping has helped. I sure am hungry all the time. I could actually feel my uterus retracting while I was still in the hospital. It felt kind of like that undefinable tummy ache that you get with the flu. Now I just want to know when my stomach muscles have moved back into their normal place and I can start doing sit-ups.

And have sex! Dangit, this sex restriction is no fun. I'm not allowed to "put anything in [my] vagina for 6 weeks." The nurse explained that means tampons and then she circled the No Sexual Intercourse section of my discharge paperwork. Both Mr. b and I keep having sex dreams and are starting a sex countdown.

The psychadelic jaundice box
Sleeping little beauty

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Labor and Delivery

I need to get this down before it fades any further. I always thought women were bullshitting or promoting a conspiracy of disinformation when they said that you forget the pain of childbirth. But it's totally true! I can intellectually remember it hurting like a sumbitch, not thinking that it would ever end, being too tired to go on. And yet, it's like it happened a lifetime ago.

When I came home on Friday the 1st I took a nap. I dreamt about breathing to a count of 3. When I woke up at about 5:00pm, my contractions were suddenly extremely regular. But Mr. b wasn't home from work yet. I paced and danced and paced and danced and stretched and moved and took each one as they came. Mr. b got home about 6:30pm and I attacked him with an impatient, "I've been waiting for you!" He thought I was making it up. Even after timing the contractions (2 and a half minutes apart, about 40 seconds each), he still didn't think it was real. I wanted to go to the hospital. Obviously we didn't have a labor bag packed yet so Mr. b got that together and we got to the hospital about 8:00pm. The contractions were intensifying already.

Once I was registered and in a room, they had to put me on an IV right away. I hadn't yet had the strep (of the butt, frenchtoast(tm)) test and so they gave me antibiotics just in case. I wasn't too amused about not being able to be on my feet but they had to have me on a fetal monitor since it was early. I was already dilated to 3cm and 100% effaced. Mr. b asked the nurse if that meant I'd be having the baby. She chuckled and said yes. Then he believed it was really happening.

I dilated 1-2 cm every hour after that and the contractions got steadily more and more painful. For a while they were more bearable because I figured out how to relax through them (think of Kira Nerys) but that didn't last. I felt poop starting to slip out as I was starting to wonder how much more of this I could take. The nurse helped me to the toilet and asked if I wanted some Nubain to take the edge off. They could just add it to my IV. I said yes very quickly. That made it so both Mr. b and I could doze off in between contractions. I was dilated to 7 or 8cm at that point and just entering transition. There was a lot of "bloody show" this whole time but my water still hadn't broken. When the nurse checked me again it broke and came gushing out, very warm, and startled her. I was almost fully dilated, just a small edge remaining, but Doc hadn't arrived yet. It must have been about 2:00am at this point.

Then the urge to push came. I was told to fight it because of that tiny amount of cervix still not dilated. That was impossible. How do you fight an animal urge that basic? I had a vague recollection of Teacher talking about animals panting while delivering so I switched my breathing to that and clung to the edges of the bed. It was probably only 5 or 10 minutes but it was the longest time of my life. Finally Doc arrived, they tranformed the bed to traditional pushing position, legs in stirrups and whatnot. I had wanted to try squatting but was way beyond caring or fighting. It's not like we had a birth plan. We were supposed to write that out at the next Ob appointment.

Pushing really does feel just like the urge to take a giant dump. Only you have to push harder than anything you've ever done in your life. I kept shouting during each push and they kept telling me that I was wasting my energy. But I felt better yelling. Mr. b said that he could tell a difference when I didn't groan and I tried to be quiet. Doc said they needed to do an episiotomy and I cried, "I'm sorry, I'll push harder." She let me try 2 more pushes and then said the baby wasn't coming fast enough and his heart rate was slowing down so she cut me. Mr. b says that was the hardest thing to watch. When I finally felt too exhausted to push anymore, the nurse put my hand down to feel baby's head crowning. It was squishy and weird. But I somehow managed to find the energy to get his head out. Two more much smaller pushes and his body wriggled out. They put him on my chest and Mr. b cut his cord and then they went to weigh him and do the Apgar test.

I was for some reason really concerned about the placenta and asked Doc what I was supposed to do next. She said she'd let me know when to push. It was a very short time later and I barely had to push at all to expel the afterbirth. Then Doc had to sew me up and Mr. b held our son. It was all extremely surreal. And I was suddenly so hungry.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

My life is almost entirely centered around my tits right now. Perhaps even more so than when Diablo was stripping full time. "Did you boob him?" is Mr. b's way of inquiring how the latest nursing attempt went. I'm milking myself after each feeding because we need to have bottled boob for the little man. I'm fascinated watching the milk come out of my nipples. It comes out of more than just one spot! There are lots of tiny holes. I don't know why I thought it was just one in the center. And sometimes it spurts out in a fine jet.

But wee Kirk has gained weight! Yay! A whole 2 ounces in fact. We had a home visit from a nurse on Sunday and he was up to 5# 1oz. Mr. b and I are hoping for birth weight at today's clinic check-up. It'll probably depend on if he poops. The home visit nurse had to "stimulate his rectum" (slide a vaseline coated thermometer in and out of his butt) because he hadn't pooped in 36 hours. Later that day I changed the most massively poopy diaper I've ever seen in my life.

Some random observations:
Apparently duckies and froggies are gender neutral animals.
Puppies are for boys and kitties are for girls.
Mr. b and I both now refer to ourselves as "Mommy" and "Daddy" in the third person.
Kirk is the cutest baby of all time.

Friday, July 08, 2005

Free at last!

We're finally home! I was so happy when the neonatologist told me we could leave that I started to cry. Mr. b was waiting in the room because he gets bored while I try to nurse and so he was going to just meet me in the nursery after a half hour and give the little man his bottle. He was so surprised when I came back pushing Captain Baby in a hospital cart instead. We still have to try to hit specific feeding marks (minimum of 35cc every 3 hours) and of course he still doesn't quite have the whole breast feeding thing mastered. But we're home!

Every time the nurses would talk about early babies as premies I kept thinking about those horrible extra small Cabbage Patch Kids they were making after the Cabbage Patch craze started to wane.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

It's so frustrating not being able to bring our son home. Yesterday he had his Darth Vader arm (that's what Mr. b and I called his IV) removed and they took him off the heat monitoring. So he was on track to go home today. But then this morning we found out his billirubin levels were too high so he's now in the phototherapy bin like some kind of home grown weed. And it'll be a minimum of 24 hours for this jaundice treatment. It was a bad morning for both Mr. b and I.

Emotionally, I've been mostly okay. I've definitely done some crying, and clearly the separation is adding to the normal post-partum blues. I've decided that the reward for going through pregnancy and childbirth is not necessarily the child; it's breast feeding. The view of my baby's face nestled against my skin is amazing. Sure, he hasn't really figured the nursing thing out yet since he was early. But it's already darling. I thought it would be weird to be food. But logically, the Mommy Juice is tailor made so I definitely wanted to try it. I hope he figures it out better soon. Pumping all the time is tiring. But he takes a bottle pretty well. He does best when Daddy feeds him--or Grandpa.

Nose to nose