Thursday, January 28, 2010

Week 8

Today as I curled up into bed for a much-needed nap, I struggled to get comfortable--stretching out makes my stomach feel icky, curling up too tight doesn't feel great, either--and I thought, "Week six is sick. Oh wait. I'm at week eight. Well, week eight ain't great. Hm...I think I've heard that before...."

Until now it's been hard to tell I'm pregnant. I'm still not showing, no real weight gain, and only a slight bit of gagginess. But this week has been harder. My stomach has hurt more, foods have seemed less appealing to me (though I've been more hungry), and the fatigue I've felt for several weeks has not let up. Add in a fussy, teething son and a husband trying to get his bearings at a new job and it's made for a hard week. Oh, yeah, and being pregnant makes me crabby. Bah humbug.

But, apart from that, I'd say this pregnancy is going well. I kind of expected to be showing a little by this time, but not yet! I have gained 2.5 pounds, but I'm thinking that might be more attributed to moving to a new town and going out to eat, going to potlucks, receiving food from friends, etc. There's a lot of eating that goes on around here!

We've decided on an insurance plan finally! We thought we were going to have to go with a plan that required we pay 20% of all costs. No copays, instead we pay 20% of each dr. visit, 20% of each sonogram, 20% of the hospital bills, anesthesiologist, any NICU drs who might need to be present at the birth (as they were with Caleb). Yeah, we saw all those bills that Caleb accrued. Twenty percent is not just ugly; it's impossible!

Last week we found a company who would accept my pre-existing pregnancy. The policy is a little more expensive, but not as much as we'd have to pay in bills with the first policy. So I think we've made a good decision. Now I'm just hoping we get approved quickly so we can find a doctor here. I don't think I need to go to another appointment for at least two weeks, so there's time. If all else fails, there's a nurse at our church who does sonograms, and we might ask her if we could at least get a sonogram and check the basics out. Make sure Newbie2 is still happy in his little floaty world!

This week the little guy has fingers and toes and is about the size of a kidney bean. And we love him!

Monday, January 25, 2010

14 Months

Caleb is just about 14 months old, and has been an Arkansan for a little over a week. Many people have asked about his adjustment, and it's really hard to say. The doctor had told me that he wouldn't really notice much, but I think he knows something is different.

The separation anxiety that seemed to last so long--and he finally grew out of a couple months ago--has returned in full force. Caleb's blood-curdling screams can be heard throughout the church nursery and beyond. I'm told he quiets down within a few minutes and wants to be held most of the rest of the time, perhaps finally venturing to play. It's sad to hear that my little boy is having such trouble, but I know that the workers are loving and caring to him, and I'm thankful for the small number of children so I know he gets the attention he needs. When he's with me--at home or out--he's very clingy, and I've held him more in the last week than I have in a long time.

Caleb has also been very resistant to naptime. I'm a fan of leaving him in his crib to fall asleep on his own--which has worked fine in the past--but lately a successful naptime has required lots of wrestling a wiggly boy, lots of screams, lots of rocking and shushing, and eventually a peaceful babe in my arms. Jon has had better luck, and he's in charge of naptime whenever available.

To top it off, Caleb is teething big-time. His fourth bottom tooth is s-l-o-w-l-y coming in. What I thought would arrive by Christmas might actually make an appearance in the next week. Maybe. And what are those big bumps in the back of his mouth? Is my boy getting molars? And based on his crabbiness, I'd say he might be getting them all at once. I can't get a good look at the top set, but he's definitely got two coming in on the bottom. For Caleb that means waking up in the night and some short-tempered-ness. One night we had him on both Tylenol and Motrin at once, a first for us.

However, despite the dismal picture I've painted in the previous paragraphs, most of the time Caleb is his happy self, talking up a storm and ready to face any challenge. He loves the puppy that lives in the yard behind us. The minute we go outside he starts calling out, "Puppy! Puppy!" and makes a bee-line for the fence. "Outside" is now becoming familiar to him, and he also has the patience (and understanding) to wait for me to get his shoes and jacket before leaving the house. He's a pro walker now, though he doesn't navigate steps very well. When he comes to a step (even just a slight one) he turns to me, holds up his hand, and waits until I've got a good grip on him. When he's past the obstacle, he slips his hand out of mine and is off on his own. I'm trying to teach him to hold my hand as we walk, but he's just so excited!

Caleb has shifted from "Mama" and "Dada" to "Mommy" and "Daddy." I personally had wanted to be called "Mama," but can't resist the little voice behind me in the van.

"Yes, Caleb?"
"Bo wheega ba bbbbbbb peesh dat."

It's a highly intelligent conversation. And it makes me happy.

Speaking of names, though, I'm not quite sure Caleb has figured out exactly which one of his parents is Mommy and which is Daddy. For the most part he gets it right (like our conversations in the car), but at other times it's fairly interchangeable.

He has enjoyed all the boxes to unpack here in our new house. He's also enjoying finding new places to stash things. His large magnets on the fridge are rarely on the fridge; sometimes they move to the dishwasher, but most times they are in the bottom of a trash can (along with other treasures found throughout the day) or spread out through the house. I could account for 5 of the 8 earlier today. I just hope I haven't thrown any away!

So all in all Caleb is definitely dealing with some adjustments, whether from the move or teething or both, but he is also still a happy and healthy boy. When you drop your kids off in the nursery on Sunday, I'd appreciate it if you'd say a little prayer for Caleb and the workers with him.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Newbie2's First Appointment

We got to see our first glimpse of little Newbie2 today! And "little" is an understatement! We thought we were almost 8 weeks along, and come to find out we're not quite 6 weeks! Newbie2 is only 2mm long. That's teeny tiny! But it was still big enough to see a heartbeat. Gosh, what an amazing sight. A HEART in a 2mm baby!! For whatever reason, the sono was done internally this time--a first for me, and really not that pleasant. No, I would not choose that if I had the choice next time.

But everything looks good. The nurse was a little concerned and wanted to test my progesterone levels, but it was just because she doesn't usually see patients so early in pregnancy and it made her nervous.

We're moving in two days, so I really wanted to see Dr. K and tell her bye. I was disappointed to find out I was only going to see the nurse, but when I explained, she hunted down the doctor. Dr. K came in and gave me a hug and said she would miss seeing the next baby. She commented on how big Caleb was now, and I tried unsuccessfully to express my appreciation for her. Seriously, it's strange the connection I feel to her, and probably every woman feels toward the doctor who brought their child into the world. Yeah, I had a lot to do with it, and it wouldn't have happened at all without a God in control, but the day after Caleb was born, I felt like Dr. K was my sister who had brought about a miracle.

Yeah, I'm sure she feels the same way about me.

Poor OBs with moms fawning all over them. What a weird field. Science + pregnancy hormones = mom fans for life. It explains why every OB office has a bulletin board with photos of kids plastering it. I've always wondered if the OB ever cared that much (and kind of think they don't), but moms feel such a connection that they're sure their doctor would want to see the progress of the child they brought into the world. Just like I felt it was important to bring Caleb to this appointment. Ridiculous? Yes.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Moment of Weakness and general update

Well yesterday I caved. It had been a week since weaning Caleb. I was in some serious pain, and Caleb had been out of sorts all day. He wouldn't go to sleep, and I was planning on trying to get some milk out somehow that afternoon, so after a bit of deliberation, I decided to let Caleb nurse. He didn't get upset (like he sometimes does when he knows he's about to eat), and when I "closed up shop" after only a couple minutes, he didn't seem to mind. I was feeling a lot more comfortable and he seemed a little calmer. So...hopefully no harm done!

Whether weaning is related or not, Caleb has been acting differently this weekend. Very short naps and refusal to eat some foods that he normally likes. The poor guy has been going on not much sleep, and then he's kind of a mess by the end of the day!

But, in other news, he's still such a joy. He makes me smile all the time, and is certainly working on his sense of humor. He does things now because he knows I think they're funny. He's also doing his best to master the spoon, get on and off of his tractor, climb, and even run. He loves to put things in and take things out, which is most unhelpful while packing moving boxes! I've found a carrot in the toaster, the monitor gets hidden in all sorts of nooks and crannies, cheerios in my guitar, and yet none of Caleb's books are back in their book box. Hm...

And that's about as much update as I've got for tonight! Be praying for our little boy as he's shuffled around this week, and then as he transitions to a new home on Friday.

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Nursing, Weaning, and smelling slightly of Cabbage...

When Caleb turned 1 year, it was assumed that I would wean (or had already weaned) him. However, I had not. I was pretty content with the way things were, and wanted Caleb to instigate the weaning process.

However, I realized two things:
1) Caleb is an easy-going fella. If I offered, he nursed. If I didn't offer, he was fine. I could see this "letting him decide" method taking a long time.
2) Jon has been expressing a desire for the two of us to go away overnight sometime, something we can't do until Caleb is weaned.

It was really #2 that decided it for me. Caleb has had a whole year of good-for-you breast milk, and it would be okay if he didn't have it any more. And if my husband (who has more say in our relationship that our child) gives a reasonable request, then I'm happy to honor it.

So, we began the process of weaning. I chose to drop a feeding a week, replacing it with whole milk. Caleb did great through it all! He has transitioned very well. Jon has been getting to spend some of those special moments with Caleb, which both have really enjoyed. And I've enjoyed getting to stay in bed a little longer in the mornings...or at least getting in the shower while Jon gave Caleb his milk.

I have to admit, though, that the first few days I was glued to the monitor, listening to the quiet coos of my baby just waking up. We're on day five now, so I think it's safe for me to start going in and enjoying the morning routine again.

So, day five. It's not just Caleb who has to adjust. I've had some milk machines pumpin' out the good stuff for over a year now. Four to three feedings was painful for a day or two. The others were really not bad. Except this last one. Day five of no feedings and I've finally succumbed to the cabbage leaves remedy. Evidently cold cabbage leaves relieve pain not just because they're cool, but also because they have a chemical element that helps dry milk up. What a wonderful world. It's too soon to report if it works, yet.

So, there we are. Caleb is weaned. I'm learning to let my little boy grow up. I smell slightly of cabbage. And Jon and I are working on that weekend getaway. :)