Friday, June 22, 2012

A look back

Lauren had her 6 month well baby checkup yesterday. She's 17 lbs even and 26 and a half inches long. A long lean baby! You wouldn't guess that from her massive (and adorable) rolls. But there you go.

So I decided to look back on my blogs about Anna to find out what size Anna was at 6 months. The hubster was convinced that Lauren is WAY bigger than Anna was. So I looked it up.

Anna was 16 lbs, 5 oz. and 26 and a half inches long.

My breast milk likes to produce consistent babies.

Anyway. So while reading old blogs, I came across this one. For some reason it makes me laugh a little. (Out of sadness for my poor, former self??)

This was me almost 2 years ago. If I only knew...

Okay Mamas. I'm calling on you again.

I have a baby who hates sleep.

Like, HATES sleep.

Right now, she's exhausted. She's actually been showing signs of sleepiness since about 8:15am (It's 9:15am). I've been battling with her to nap since 8:30am. Fighting to go to sleep is a very regular thing for us. In fact, if she's down in 45 minutes, that's a good day. It takes over an hour most times to get her to bed at night.

The frustrating thing is that this is *relatively* new. Up until about 4 months, she slept great. She would nap for a long time and barely needed any help getting to sleep. She slept for long, long stretches at night and didn't wake up frequently at all.

Even after 4 months, until about 5 months, getting her down to sleep wasn't that tough. She wouldn't sleep long at all during naps, but getting her to sleep was relatively easy.

Now - it's a whole new story. Anna will be 7 months this week, and it's a battle to get her to sleep and to stay asleep Every. Single. Time she goes for a nap or to bed at night.

She doesn't want us to hold her (she arches her back and fights and cries), but she doesn't want us to put her down in her crib either. That just wakes her up and she rolls around and plays with anything she can get her hands on (like the side of the crib) and then she starts crying when she realizes we're not there. Once she's asleep for the night, she wakes up frequently, crying and upset. She used to just need her soother and would fall back asleep. Now, sometimes she just needs her soother, but most of the time she needs us to hold her or me to feed her before she'll calm down and go back to sleep.

I've tried putting her down when she's pretty much asleep. I've tried putting one of my shirts in the crib with her so she would know I was still "there". We've tried lowering the crib and putting a breathable bumper on so that she can't see as much, and won't get caught in the sides. I've tried lavender oil and lavender cream. I've tried letting her cry a little bit. I've tried the "pick up/put down" method. I've tried putting my hand on her until she drifts off to sleep. I've tried putting her down earlier (at the very first sign of tiredness), and I've tried waiting until she's definitely sleepy. I've tried giving her more solids during the day. And I've tried giving her more breast milk, too. I've even tried putting her in the swing.

And every time I try something new, I'm consistent with it for several days to a week to get her used to it. (I know consistency is key). (Then again, why be consistent with something that doesn't work after a week of trying?)

I know that one day she'll sort herself out and all will be right in the world again. The only thing is... I'm just about at my breaking point waiting for her to get there.

Maybe it's because I had two late nights out last week (a party and a wedding), which makes the night time wake ups and the nap battles that much worse the next day. Or maybe it's because I've been dealing with some sort of sleep issue with her for 3 months now. All I know for sure is that I'm cranky, I look and feel like crap, I get irritable more often and I'm not that much fun to be around.

Woe is me.

So anyway... if you have any advice to offer, if you went through this too, even if you just want to tell me you love me, I sure could use it right now.

Many thanks, from a VERY tired Mom.

PS: Anna is lucky she's SO freakin' cute.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Just a quickie...

I've only got a quick minute to post today. So I'm going to do the half-assed version of a blog post... The "highlight reel" of blog posts! Weeee!

My toddler:

  • Has somehow managed to make me feel like both a supermom and a failure in the past 24 hours. I was feeling fantastic when I had the house tidied, the baby sleeping and Anna playing happily. Then it all turned on a dime. Anna would only have 2 bites of an apple and a yogurt drink for dinner, screamed for a half an hour when we got water in her eyes in the bath and refused to do anything but watch cartoons before bed.
  • Acts like she's on crack after drinking that yogurt drink. I don't think it's unusually high in sugar - it's not like it's ice cream for pete's sake. But the kid is crazy after having one.
  • Plays independently really well. It's pretty cute to watch her do things like put her teddy bear to "bed" in our strainer with the baby's spit-up blanket. Lucky bear.
  • (She's now walking around proudly, carrying the strainer and bear with a big grin on her face.)
  • Insists on leaving her mark wherever she goes. Her music box is under the kitchen table, her hat is in the dining room, her toys are strewn across the basement floor and her sippy cup is in the bathroom. There is really no point in picking up after her toddler trail. It will only return.

My baby:
  • Is really one of the most easy-going babies I've ever seen. Yet, last night she decided to scream bloody murder at bedtime and wouldn't go to sleep until 2 hours after she normally does. I tried feeding her, changing her, holding her. Nothing worked. So I went out for a drive and had a little cry at the steering wheel.
  • Is currently napping quite happily. Such a sweetie bum.
  • Doesn't appear to like food. (What the what??) She hated rice cereal, avocado, sweet potato and banana. Really??
  • Has fingernails that can scratch the shit out of your face. Even after being freshly clipped, there always seems to be an edge I missed. 
  • Laughs when I clap my hands. Thank goodness, because clapping is really my "A" material. It's all I've got. Well... that, and shaking my keys at her.
And now Anna's yelling that she needs something ("Mommy! I NEED!!") and she insists that I have to come downstairs right now. 

Off I go.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Is it just me?

Lately, I've been noticing a heck of a lot of changes in myself. Changes that I'm finding a bit alarming.

I'm hoping with the highest of hopes that it's not just me. I'm hoping that some of you other Moms out there know what I'm talking about first hand.


Okay, on with the shame spiral!

Is it just me, or...

  • Do you have a lot of grey hairs suddenly? Like - I'm talking a WHOLE lot of salt up in my pepper. When I put my hair in a ponytail, I look like Cruella DeVille. I have this "awesome" patch of grey hair on the side of my head. (And I'm not the only one noticing. My husband, brother and parents have all brought it to my attention as if I hadn't noticed it myself.)
  • Do you catch a glimpse of yourself in the mirror and think "Holy crap! Where did that luggage under my eyes come from??" I've seen pictures of myself where I'm looking like I've been up all night, running a marathon and birthing a child. That's tired. And then I'll think to myself "Wait a minute... I felt rested that day. I got about 7 hours of sleep the night before. In fact, I felt like a new woman! What the hell??"
  • Are your "laundry day" undies creeping into regular rotation more and more? I've got a couple of pairs that require multiple folding they're so large. They should NOT see the light outside my underwear drawer. And yet, I find myself folding them (and folding them and folding them) each time I do laundry. I bought them with the intention of wearing them after giving birth to Anna (over 2 years ago...) and I kept them because I thought "Oh, I'll need them after having our next baby." That was clearly something I just told myself to make me feel better. I really should have said "Oh, I'll need them after having our next baby. And whenever I'm running out of "cute" undies. And on days when I just want to be extra comfortable. And to hold in my excess tummy flub, since they come up to belly-button height." Of course, I tell myself it's all okay because they're "soft pink" in colour. So they're pretty. Really... they are.
  • Do you suddenly bruise easily? I got pinched by my 6 month old and had a disgustingly black/purple/yellow bruise on my arm for a week. Really? She's 6 months old. She's no hulk baby. And yet - I spent a week looking really trashy with my white, white skin and dark bruises all over my arms and legs. Sexy.
  • Do you feel like coffee and wine are the ultimate treats? Screw going to the spa or getting a weekend away. As long as I can start my day with coffee and end it with wine, I'm feeling pampered and luxurious. 
  • Have you given up the fight with the floor food? It's always there. I clean it up - and it returns. The house? It's always dirty. I'm okay with that.
  • Do you look at your husband and think "How on earth are you still raising your eyebrows suggestively at me at the end of the day??" First of all - how is he not tired? And even if he can get past that... the grey hair, the bags under the eyes, the laundry day undies, the bruises and the coffee breath? Really? I still turn you on?? Bless you.
Ah, motherhood. Such a miracle, no?

Thursday, June 7, 2012

What now?

Oh my word, it's been a while since I've written.

(Wait a minute. Did I just say oh my word?? WTF? Am I 90? I must be. That reminds me - Andrew told me the other day that when I use the phrase "dating around" I sound like an old granny. And my brother has pointed out my grey hairs on numerous occasions. It's confirmed. I'm old, folks.)



Back to the point.

Today is Lauren's half birthday. My wee cutie is 6 months old today! How is that possible? I feel like it was just yesterday that I was yelling in agony at my midwife who said I had no time for an epidural. (And then she gave me some extra strength Tylenol to shut me up. And I took them. And they did nothing.) Ah... good times.

Little Lauren just learned to sit up. She's sleeping well (after a bit of a blip when we took away her soother). She's happy as can be. And Anna's doing great too. She just needs those molars to pop through and she'll be good as gold.

Life is good.

For now.

Okay. Yes. I know that's very Debbie Downer of me.

But there's part of me that thinks - every now and again - when is the other shoe going to drop? How long do I get to have such a good, happy life for? Why am I lucky? I haven't done anything to deserve the easy life.

Good friends of mine are going through really, really tough shit right now. Infertility. Marriages breaking up. Health challenges with their children.

Serious effin stuff.

Andrew and I are stressed out about the gorgeous new home we bought. We need to give our heads a shake before someone slaps us.

Yes, I'm sort of making light of the situation. The truth is, we've had our trials and tribulations. Everybody does. But in the end, things are pretty darn good for us. I don't have a LOT to worry about.

My Mom called me today and told me she was sick. I knew she had something going on - bronchitis or something. But my mind instantly started running madly down the street screaming "It's cancer! There's a tumour! It's life threatening!" Why?? Why would I do that to myself? Why would I think the worst?

I guess I'm just waiting for life to catch up with me.

Up until your early 30s, I think most of us feel invincible. All that scary adult stuff won't happen to us or anyone we know.

Until... without notice...

It starts happening.

Suddenly I know single parents. I know people who have to start over. I know people who spend far too much time in hospitals with their children. I know people who have real things to worry about.

And then I catch myself staring at Andrew's face while he sits next to me. Or watching Anna closely as she "reads" her books. Or touching Lauren's cheek and thigh and tummy - just to feel her soft skin. Just to know that they're all real. And they're really mine.

Then I realize that it doesn't matter how I got lucky, but that I appreciate every minute of it while I've got it.

Life. It can be a tricky little bastard at times.

Thankfully I've got something great to keep me grounded.