Thursday, November 29, 2012

Still haven't figured out mornings

I've figured out two things. One is that no matter what other times Silas wakes up during the night, he's pretty consistent about a 4am wake up. This tends to lead to him being fairly agreeable to eating right before I have to go to work, so I'm fairly agreeable to waking up at four and going back to sleep for two hours or so.

The second thing is, I keep thinking that, and then when I actually wake up around 6 to 6:30 (depending on whether my Silas alarm or my actual alarm clock wakes me up) and I want to punch everything. So I have to work on that.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Feeling Cold

Well we've finally started to dip down into the 30's at night. I even turned our heater on the other day. And when it starts to cool down in Florida, I start to worry about my image. Yes, that's right - my image. After all, I like to talk a big game - oh, I say, I know about SNOW and I know about COLD. I've walked to class in negative forty degree windchills! I've walked over snowbanks taller than my dad!

And it was uphill you know. Both ways.

I digress.

Seriously though - I have dealt with really cold temperatures and with a lot of snow, and then when it is 50 degrees during the day in Florida, I want to pull out my winter coat! It's ridiculous. I try to save face by utilizing what I like to call "the double sweatshirt" method. This sneaky method is defined by wearing two sweatshirts - one a lightweight, thin sweatshirt and a second, heavier sweatshirt over that. Then I LOOK like someone wearing just a sweatshirt who is not bothered by the cold, but I have the protection of two sweatshirts.

You know, just in case someone looks at me and judges me for wearing a coat when it is cold outside. I think that's the craziest part of it all; I do this because I don't want other people thinking I'm overly cold. I never said that my brain made sense 100% of the time.

So I spent my morning commute debating whether it's worse to have someone think I am cold or to actually be cold - (and yes, you'd think that should be an easily answered question but here we are), when I noticed a guy jogging down the sidewalk in a pair of shorts and a pair of mittens and nothing else.

Well played almost naked jogging guy. Now I feel even worse about the leggings I put on under my skirt today.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Does anyone else have mornings like this?

So I'm hungry this morning and my loving and patient husband asks me what I'd like while I'm nursing the baby.
I say, I don't know.
He says, would you like a bagel? I can put cream cheese and regular cheese and a tomato on it and heat it up for you.
I say, that doesn't sound appealing.
He says, I'll make you just a bagel and cream cheese if you want.
I say, I really want stuffing. I want to eat stuffing.
He says, we don't have stuffing.
I say, I know. I think that's why I want it.
He says nothing. I eat a reeses peanut butter cup and drink some juice.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving! Don't read this entry during dinner!

It's a given that I'm thankful to have this day off to spend with my son. I started this wonderful day off by putting him into a blue and tan striped onsie that had an owl on it. It wasn't exactly a turkey or a Thanksgiving theme, but it was the closest I had. He had been kind of spit-uppy since waking up, so I put a bib over that, thinking it would preserve his outfit until dinner time.

Oh, how naive of me.

When I put Silas down on the boppy for play time, he started fussing for a few minutes. I was just starting to ask Smiley to pick him up to see if he had to spit up, when Silas answered the question for me by opening his mouth and allowing ALL the spit up to spew forth. Normally he spits up and it's one round and that's it. This time, as I moved to pick him up, he unleashed a second and third wave. It was certainly a new record for him.

The bib stood no chance, the outfit was soaked, the blanket underneath him was soaked and it's only sheer luck of layers that the boppy was not also soaked.

Luckily, Silas seemed unfazed. He didn't cry and he stopped fussing right away, so I guess he's all good now. I'm thankful that it is only spit up at this point, and I am looking forward to his digestive tract continuing to mature so that there will be less spit up. Some day.

And then I'll have a new baby, maybe.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Sleepy, sleepy

So Silas just provided us with three nights in a row of a longer stretch of sleep, followed by me waking up to the alarm for work. It's wonderful, and it sucks.

It's wonderful because Silas is starting to sleep longer, which means that he is transitioning to sleeping through the night despite some cautionary concern that him sleeping next to me meant I was waking up to his every little noise to comfort him - clearly not true, because I'm sleeping like a log when I do sleep (a careful to not squish her baby log, of course).

It's less wonderful when it comes to my own sleep. Previously, my body had kind of decided "eff it, she's not getting more than an hour and a half of sleep, just kick her into REM sleep" and, while the dreams were weird as heck and I still wasn't very awake the next morning, I felt somewhat more rested waking up for work.

This week? Well, my body is starting to think I'm going to get a full night's sleep, and slows down the sleep process. So that I feel somewhat rested when Silas wakes up for his overnight feeding, but still tired enough to go back to sleep. Then my alarm goes off, cutting me out of deep sleep. I don't know how it works for you, but when I am abruptly woken up out of that stage of sleep, I feel like I have the flu; my stomach feels icky, my eyes feel sandy and my mind is just like "eff you and eff the world." Not exactly the response I was looking forward to as Silas started to wean off of night feedings.

But, nonetheless, it's a step in the correct direction and, god help me, now that I've written about it, Silas will probably wake up every hour this night.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Car madness continues!

Yesterday, I saw a car crash happen in the intersection I was waiting to go through. Someone laid onto their horn and the next thing I knew, I heard the unmistakeable crunch of car hitting car and saw a car spin and nearly hit the car in front of me as it ended up with its rear on the sidewalk, airbags fully deployed.

I've never seen airbags deployed in person like that. It was kind of surreal.

I don't know what the other car looked like. I think that a person was trying to make a left turn and misjudged the distance between cars and hit someone going straight. The light was green for them the entire time, so no one was running a red light. Just misjudging speed and distance.

Accidents like those freak me out because it's one thing to proceed cautiously into an intersection when the light first switches, but if it's been green for awhile, I'm not about to worry as much.

In any case, a police officer was right there, so he pulled onto the scene and I was able to go around (it was my lunch break to see Silas!) and I had the hardest time leaving Silas without giving him about a million kisses. Silas, on the other hand, was just all "I'm a baby and I don't understand kisses. Does this mean you're feeding me again soon?"

Monday, November 19, 2012

If I can be real for a moment here

Today at work was the first time I cried since I returned to work. I didn't really cry in any sort of spectacular way; there were just a few tears that welled up and my face turned red, kind of like when Silas winds up to bawl.

I didn't cry when I dropped him off my first day back. I didn't cry a week in, despite feeling like I can barely spend quality time with him due to having to wash bottles and make bottles and prepare my lunch for the next day and then go to sleep at nine to try to wake up somewhat rested for the next day.

But today a woman returned from six months of maternity leave with an adorable picture of her six month old baby, and I cried.

Apparently I can deal with dropping off my baby and going to work like a friggin' adult, but I can't control my jealously. I mean, I know plenty of people who have gotten or have more maternity leave than I did.

I don't know. Hormones might quickly become an old excuse, but I do know that my reactions are not strictly "normal." I just want to do my best by my baby and also, I still really want another baby. And it's 8pm, so I'm going to go start getting ready for bed.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Speaking of The Sebring

The Sebring's backseat is surprisingly roomy for a 2 door coupe style car. For all of you who have seen too many teen movies, I'm not talking about that. I'm talking about breastfeeding, of course.

Having a baby makes the logistics of stopping by the store a little more complicated. For example, many people can say "oh, I need eggnog because it is now eggnog season and I would like some. I will get some on my way home from work." (Disclaimer: most people I know seem to dislike eggnog!)

But add a baby, and if the grocery store doesn't have a drive through lane, you have some decisions to make. Like, if the baby is hungry now, is it worth it to go into the store with him bawling? No. But is it worth it to go home, haul the carseat into the house, feed him, and then haul the carseat back into the car? Also no! (And simply not getting eggnog is out of the question.)

That's how fate found me parking off the the corner of the parking lot and slipping into the backseat to nurse Silas before we went in to pick up a container of eggnog. And it was weird. Which I found weird.

I know that there's this whole thing about nursing in public and some people are comfortable with it and some aren't, and I've surprised myself with how intensely I want to encourage people to be comfortable breastfeeding in public, but that's a discussion for a different day. The main point for now is that I don't mind breastfeeding in public. I have a baby, I have his food, and I don't have to clean up any bottles if he gets hungry while we are out.

For whatever reason, breastfeeding in the car felt a lot weirder than breastfeeding at a table in a restaurant or in Target or outside at a park. I'm not sure why. I think it could have been that people don't expect to see people inside the backseat of a parked car and so I actually felt more conspicuous back there. But I'm not sure. All I know is I felt supremely odd and I did begin to question whether eggnog was worth it.

It was.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

I wish I had taken a picture!

Today during my lunch break I drove over to see Silas, as I do for every lunch break now that I'm back to work. He's being taken care of by Smiley's grandmother, who lives just minutes away from where I work. It is one of the things that allows me to go back to work without having a breakdown.

When I got to her apartment complex, I noticed something. Mainly, every single parking spot was taken. This is not a typical problem. Every day up until now, the parking lot had been more than half empty (and I'm not just being a pessimist)!

For whatever reason, it was full. Overflowing. There were three other cars circling the lot, waiting for a spot. Two of them seemed to be following the same woman to her car. Both were disappointed when the lady kept walking, straight out of the parking lot.

I knew my best bet was to follow her lead, and look for alternative parking. After all, every minute I idled my car was another minute I wasted gas - and missed out on seeing my son, of course! So I turned around in the parking lot and hit the streets, looking for a place to park.

Time was, you used to pass your driver's license test by parallel parking. Not in my time. I can count the number of times I've actually parallel parked in my life. Pulling up to a curb with plenty of space does not count.

I found an open spot on the street along the building. There was a brief moment of hesitation - if I went over one more street, I could most likely pull up to the curb and not have to maneuver my car into a parallel park.

But that would be another street over and even further away from Silas. I guess it's true, that our kids can help bring out the best in us. I steeled my grip on the rust bucket I like to call the Sebring, and pulled into the spot. Even this hardly counted though; I was only pulling in and adjusting behind a car. The space behind me was still empty. I threw the car into park and ran to visit with Silas for a half hour.

Upon my return to the great outdoors, my worst nightmare had occurred - someone had pulled into the spot behind me. I was officially about to un-parallel park.

I don't know if they teach a better way to do this, but did I mention I was in the Sebring? This car has a turning radius of a large van or small bus. I walked around to the back of the car to visually assess the space. My heart was pounding as visions of crumpled bumpers danced into my likely future. I got inside the car and turned it on, closing my eyes in the closest thing to a prayer. Oh so slowly, I angled my wheels and backed up.

As the tense moments went by, I noticed a pattern - I wasn't hitting the curb or the other car! I was doing it! I was getting out of the spot! I backed up a few more inches, although the rearview mirror made me feel as though I was lurching back yards at a time. And then I cut my wheel all the way over and slowly started pulling forward.

Can I just say that the Sebring's idea of a turning radius is nonexistent? I nearly hit the car in front of me, but the important part is that I didn't. And with that, I was out of the spot, freed from one of my best instances of parallel parking ever. I really wish I had taken a picture to prove just how legit this parking job was today.

Maybe next time.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

More Sleep

Either I'm starting to sleep through nighttime feedings or Silas is routinely starting to sleep for 3-4 hours for at least one part of the night. The other day, we went to sleep around 10 and I'm pretty sure we woke up at 3:30, which would be basically a new record and has never been repeated as of yet.

Regardless, I'm starting to slowly feel a bit more rested. I know that Silas will most likely continue to wake up once or twice a night for the foreseeable future, but I feel like, now that I've dealt with the alternative of being up every two hours, I can do anything. As long as I get three hours of uninterrupted sleep, anyhow.

I've noticed on the forums that I go to, a lot of women complain about their husbands, and it makes me grateful for Smiley. He's not perfect and neither am I, but we work together. I think that a lot of times, what women perceive as a problem with their husband is actually a symptom of the fact that (and yes, I'm about to bust out a generalization, so feel free to tell me how your case is different) men are problem-solvers.

The way I see it, having a baby does not mean you suddenly know how to take care of a baby. Sometimes, a person has been around a lot of babies and has had that experience. Other times, the first meconium diaper changed is the first diaper that a person has ever changed. And all the little tricks and tips you might have learned from dealing with younger siblings or babysitting might seem second nature to a new mom, but to a new dad, they don't necessarily have those tools. So when the baby cries, and there's not an effective way to solve the problem, they shrug it off.

So to me, before I would complain about how Smiley handles taking care of a baby, I think it would make more sense to give him the tools to solve the problem. You can do that however works best. I can show him by example how to check to see if a diaper is dirty or how to assess whether Silas is too cold or warm. I can explain the different ways you can help a baby pass gas and explain why a baby that's been cradled in the womb for nine months wants to be held all the time.

And then when Silas cries, I can watch with pride as Smiley picks him up, and, holding him closely, places a finger on Silas's cheek. I can watch as Silas turns his head and snaps viciously at the finger with his rooting reflex, indicating his hunger. And I can watch as Smiley grins with relief and hands me the baby because, well, I am the one breastfeeding.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

One week in

Worked for the week, contributed to society, left my baby with someone else five days this week and I'm still alive. It's going to take a while to get a morning routine that works, but once Silas starts sleeping through the nights better, I think we'll be ok.

I was driving to pick him up after work on Friday and Queen's "Another One Bites the Dust" came on the radio. Music is crazy. I completely relate songs to past memories, and that one is firmly positioned to playing the original Diablo with my dad and sister. Specifically, even, I can picture the dungeon levels and the way that the creatures you'd fight in there had a burning animation when they died.

I also remember that friendly fire was always on in that game. Not like some of the fancier, newfangled games where you could click a button in "options" and then shoot your companions with nary an ill effect. My dad played the sorcerer character and, I'm not going to lie, he was probably a lot better at the game than us. But his chain lightning spell - that could clear out a room. And me, if I wasn't watching where I was going.

You know how parents do that thing where they act like they're playing a game or sport normally but somehow are just about at your skill level? And then you grow up and realize that actually they were just pretending and could have beaten you in any game? Well, my dad was really great about finding a way to play video games with us that weren't overwhelmingly hard on us but (I'm assuming here) that were still entertaining to him.

Growing up we had between four and five computers in our basement, which I just thought was how things worked. It was a pretty foreign concept that a household might have only one computer for everyone, or maybe even no computers at all. My dad's job - a computer programmer - might have skewed things technologically for us. I must have talked about this before, but I really enjoyed LAN gaming with my family to the point that online gaming (save for WoW) is a bit too much of a culture shock for me.

Anyhow, I've been trying to write my NaNo novel but it's not coming along at all. I thought last year was tough with my grandfather's funeral at the beginning of the month but having a baby to care for sort of saps up those little moments I could be writing.

Well, actually, I am writing right this moment, technically. I guess I prefer to update my blog when I have writing time these days. I guess I feel like more people read it and that it means more to me. But there's still a competitive edge in me somewhere that feels like I'll totally get it together and write 50,000 words still.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Fall is officially in the air!

It's been getting kinda chilly at night here! And for the past few days, we have not even broken 70 degrees. As I walked to my car after getting off work today, I was shivering a little in my sandals and it made me think about the other week when Smiley got sick.

Smiley rarely ever gets sick. Certainly, sometimes he has sinus headaches, which can be a form of "being sick" I suppose. But it's not really an infection or a virus; it's just an allergic reaction. I digress.

I remember waking up because Silas wanted to be fed. He wasn't crying, just fussing some, and I reached over to pull him close to me. I was still half asleep myself. As I fed Silas, I noticed that the bed seemed to be vibrating. I realized that Smiley was shaking, somewhat violently.

It took me a few moments to register this; I thought perhaps I was dreaming or imagining things. But no, I reached out towards Smiley and could feel him shaking under the blanket. I woke up more fully, wondering if this was a seizure. I thought about panicking, but decided against it.

Silas finished eating and fell back asleep, perhaps lulled by the vicious amount of shaking. Then, it stopped. For a minute, anyhow. I was now wide awake, though Smiley seemed to be sleeping. My eyes were heavy and tired, but my mind was racing. Why would he be shaking so badly?

After a few minutes, I put my hand on his shoulder to wake him up and ask him if he felt ok.

Sleepily, he said that he was just really cold and could he have another blanket. I got up and got him another blanket, three other blankets in fact, and draped them over him. He was still shivering with an unreal ferocity.

But when I felt his forehead, he didn't feel particularly warm or cold, which was strange to me. I had thought maybe he was getting a fever. But no, he just keep shivering away. I asked him if he wanted anything else and he said no, so I tried to go to sleep.

Maybe ten more minutes went by, and then all of the sudden Smiley sat straight up, pushed off the blankets, went to the bathroom and began throwing up just as violently as he had been shivering. After I stopped staring in surprise, I got up and brought one of the blankets to help keep him warm as he threw up in the sink.

I had been getting up every two hours or so to feed Silas and was dead tired, but now was not the time to complain about it. I rooted through our dresser and came up with some warmer, comfier clothes for him to change in to. I got him some water, and brought him the thermometer.

Remembering that he hadn't felt warm just 15 minutes ago or so, I was shocked to feel how warm he now felt, and stunned to see the thermometer reading out a 103.2 degree fever.

"You don't do anything half-assed," I said as he drank some water and sat on the bed. "I'm this close to freaking out and going to the emergency room."

"So this is what being sick feels like," he replied.

"Yeah, except for I don't remember ever throwing up my insides quite like that. And most people I know would take little sips of water in case it came right back up, instead of drinking the whole cup."

We settled back in bed to try to get back to sleep and I remember being thankful that I was still on maternity leave so that I could bring him to the doctor tomorrow without having to use additional leave time.

After an hour of spotty sleep, Smiley sat back up and sprinted into the bathroom again, throwing up once more. His temperature had gone down though, so I just rubbed his back as he vomited and hoped that whatever he had wasn't contagious because I hate throwing up.

Long story short, it turned out his had a UTI. Now, I don't know about you, but the time I got a UTI, I was sick, certainly, but my fever wasn't that bad and I didn't throw up even once. It was like Smiley's immune system determined there was an infection and decided to just clear everything out or burn it up, and to do so sooner than right away. I have NEVER felt someone shiver so violently and I've lived where it gets pretty darn cold out!

So yes, that is what I thought about while I walked to my car today, shivering softly.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Back at Work

Well, it's Tuesday evening and I'm posting, so that means that I have not died going back to work. Surprisingly to me, I haven't cried once, not even when I left him for the first time since he had been born. Then again, I guess it's not that surprising. I knew I had to do this and so I did it. But I do feel odd when Silas is not around. It feels like a part of me is missing.

I think one of the reasons I hate going back to work is the time involved in preparing Silas to be watched by someone else. If I'm watching him, then I can just feed him whenever, no worries. Now, I have to pump at work and hope I get enough milk for his bottles for the next day. I have to clean bottles so he can drink from them. I have to prepare outfits and blankets in advance. I have to leave twenty minutes earlier than normal and I get home twenty minutes later. That's forty minutes of my day gone, solely so that I can go sit at a desk away from Silas.

Still, we're going one day at a time. Wednesday is Smiley's day off, so I will have my forty minutes back tomorrow as I can just leave Silas at home. I think that in order to get into a habit of preparing bottles at night for the next day, I will prepare some bottles for Smiley to give to Silas tomorrow.

Oh and it's really hard to get up for work. I tried going to bed earlier last week, but have found that regardless of the time - 7:30, 8, 8:30 or 9... no matter when I get into bed, Silas will stay awake until between 10-11 and then he will go to sleep. So I'm going to have to perhaps nap right when I get home from work. Except that Silas wants to nurse then. And again, an hour later. And again, an hour later. I might just spend all Saturday in bed at this rate to try to catch up on sleep.

In fact, I'm almost positive right now that I am rambling worse than I have in some time, and it's only Tuesday. I might be screwed.

Saturday, November 3, 2012


Final day home with Silas tomorrow and then back to work Monday.. Oh I'll keep it together because I've gotta do what needs to be done, but inside my heart is breaking and thanks to the wonder of postpartum hormones and their magical "forget what happened" properties, it hurts more than my unmedicated labor.

We went to a wedding today and it was a very nice ceremony - one of those outdoor weddings where the couple stands in a gazebo overlooking ponds and giant trees and the ceremony was very heartfelt and beautiful.

Of course, the benefit to having a baby is that for now, I don't have to be interesting myself; I can just hold up Silas and be all "look at my baby!" and then people look at him and tell me how wonderful he looks and how he's such a good baby.

Smiley and I are lucky that he is such a good baby. I know that temperament can vary wildly from baby to baby, but Silas is calm and well behaved. I think that it helps that we hold him as much as possible, feed him when he is hungry, and do our best to attend to his needs. But I also know we could do the same with another baby and have different results. So I'm thankful for Silas.

Thursday, November 1, 2012


NaNoWriMo is officially on, and, officially, I have no clue what I'll be writing about. Last year, I was all "oh, I'm going to capitalize on this vampire romance stuff and really write a novel and edit it and it'll be great" and then December happened and then January, February, etc... and I didn't touch that horrible piece of trash. Now it's November again. And Silas is sleeping and judging by the time, I have at least thirty minutes to myself.

I need to learn to jump on these times for noveling this month. We'll see how that goes. First I have to eat my lunch (it's 4pm here) and then I need to stop thinking today is Friday. I'm honestly not sure which one will happen first.