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!