Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Thank You, Thank You!

Update on the nursing strike--Otis is fine.  He has sucked on a frozen washcloth and been fine.  When he really pitched a fit last night after a hot sticky day, we just gave him a bottle and he fell asleep.  I am not going to fret about it. 

I just want to say thank you to everyone who commented--it made me feel so much better knowing I wasn't the only one to go through it and that it was a small setback and not the end of our nursing!  Isn't it funny how you can get yourself so worked up thinking the worst case scenario?? 

I really don't know what I'd do without a computer.  My first thought when this happened was to write a blog post.  And I posted in a mom's group on Facebook.  And I went to some websites people had recommended.  It's amazing how a few hours later I had some feedback and felt so much better!  Thank you.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Help With Nursing Please.

Otis is refusing to nurse lately.  He acts hungry, will suck for about two seconds and then get frustrated and stop.  On both sides.  Not all the time, but it's been a few times in the past couple days.  I finally break down and give him a bottle and he'll suck down 8oz. 

He is just five months and is teething, so I don't know if that's what it is, but it is really frustrating me!  I do not want to give him formula.  If I pump I don't get very much.  I want to nurse him for seven more months at least!!  What do I do? 

Please help, I am hating every bottle I feed him, knowing I have milk flowing from me.  He just isn't taking it.

Monday, May 23, 2011

83 Years Old.

My grandpa just passed away last week, on Ingrid's birthday actually.  He was sick for awhile and couldn't move, eat, bathe, get dressed, etc, so his passing was not a shock.  He wanted to go.  We wanted him to move on, be in a better place.  The memorial service is on Wednesday and I had to try to explain to Ingrid where we were going and why.  That is a pretty hard concept to tell a three year old!

His name was Laverne, I think that is so funny!  But for some reason people called him Pete.  He had huge ears.  He raised six kids in a small house and on a small salary and they all turned out great.  He and my grandma would have had their 63rd wedding anniversary next month. 

My sister was talking about remembering his big wet kisses and it got me thinking of what memories I have of him.  I don't remember the sloppy kisses.  I do remember him walking around in just shorts with socks pulled up to his knees and no shirt on.  He had chicken legs, just like my kids.  He had a very strict rule about no walking on the inside of a circle of chairs around a campfire.  Always walk on the outside, otherwise you might fall in.  This was driven into our heads from a very early age, and when Brendan was introduced to everyone I think he was yelled at a few times for not following it!

Grandpa had twenty something great grandkids, and I'm so glad to say he met both my kids.  Otis is named after his dad, so it was important for me to make sure he met the Bub.  I am so sad they won't remember him, but maybe Ingrid will have vague memories.  The original Otis, my great grandpa, died when I was really young but I do have some memories of him.  We have pictures.  They'll know who Laverne was.  Who knows, maybe my first grandson will be named after him!

Hope you're in a better place, Grandpa.  I hope your mom is with you and you're not in pain.  I hope you see us all on Wednesday and let the sun shine down on us.  I'll miss you.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Tummy Time is Bullsh*t.

I just thought I'd let you all know that I have done about ten minutes total of tummy time with Otis in the past five months.  My doctor said I had to do fifteen minutes a day with him, all the books say you have to do it with them, moms talk all about tummy time.  And I just ignored everyone and didn't do it.  Just never got around to it. 

Do you think my son has a jelly neck and can't hold up his head?  Is he going to walk around with his head drooping on his chest forever?  Have I done something detrimental to him? 


We were at the children's museum last week and they have a little baby area.  I put Otis down on his belly in front of the mirror and up popped his little head, strong as can be.  He just stared at himself in the mirror, drooled all over, and cooed.  Just like any other baby at five months.  And then he rolled right over back to his back and went about his day.

I put him in the Moby and hold him up on my chest and do all sorts of other things where he has to hold his head up so why would I put him on the floor and listen to him scream for fifteen minutes a day? 

I'm not saying no one should ever do tummy time with their kid or judging you if you do it.  I'm just sick of so much worrying!!  It's so hard to be a mom and then you have doctors and books telling you what to do and telling you bad things will happen if you don't do them.  I wish we could turn off all the outside noise and follow our motherly instincts and just live.  And enjoy our happy children instead of worrying about all the terrors in the world. 

Wow, how did this go from tummy time to that?  Whatever, it's early rambling but there it is.  I think tummy time is bullshit. 

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Five Years

Tomorrow is Brendan's and my five year anniversary.  FIVE YEARS!  So much has happened in five years!  It got me thinking about our journey so far and how we've finally made it to a more stable place. 

We moved in together after five months of dating.  He started grad school, I quit school and started nannying full time.  My parents got cancer and a divorce.  We went to Europe and got engaged.

We moved to another apartment to save money for a house.  We got married.  I got pregnant.  I lost my jobs and was down to working one day a week while he was finishing up his PhD. 

We moved in with his parents.  I had Ingrid.  We had NO MONEY.  We lived with his parents.  With a newborn.  And three huge dogs.

Brendan got a fellowship and we moved to Michigan.  We didn't know anyone there, we didn't know the area, we had to find an apartment online.  We started to play catch up with our finances.  We never did catch up.

We moved again to a better neighborhood.  I got pregnant about four seconds later.  Ingrid was in a bit of an upheaval.   I ended up in the hospital for three weeks before having a preemie.  Brendan was looking for jobs this whole time and not finding anything.  We had a baby in the NICU and our only income coming to an end. 

Brendan got a job!  We moved back to Milwaukee!  We are around friends and family again!  We have enough money to pay off credit cards!  To save for a house!  To buy a new car!  Both kids are happy and healthy! 

Big sigh of relief.  Things are settling.  We are looking for houses, figuring out schools for Ingrid, saving for our future.  We are finally there.  Where we've been looking toward for so long--we're stable, we're happy, we can plan things knowing we'll be here in the future.  Yay Team Liddle!!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Another Post About the Second Kid

I'm still enjoying the fact that I'm way more laid back about Otis.  Every day I realize how things change and we go with the flow and change what we need to and I just don't stress.  His "bed time" which I use loosely, is ever changing.  I usually get him ready and then bundle him up in a blanket and either nurse him to sleep or he hangs out in my arms for awhile and eventually falls asleep while I'm snuggled on the couch.  Then when I'm ready for bed I bring him in with me. 

With Ingrid I would rock her and feed her and she would take forever to fall asleep and I would get so irritated because the day had been super long and I just wanted to relax finally.  I would put her in bed and listen to her cry and sigh and go back in.  It was stressful. 

Naptimes are similar.  I put Otis in the Moby and go about our way in the morning, either cleaning the house or doing laundry or walking to the park.  Whatever the case, Otis falls asleep almost instantly and will sleep for an hour or so.  I never pay attention to how long he's been sleeping.  This happens a couple times a day, he sleeps here and there in the Moby or in my arms while I try to rest in the afternoon.  I don't pay attention to how many naps he gets, or how long they are.  I don't worry about how much sleep he's getting or not getting, I just go by his personality.  If he seems like he needs to sleep, I put him in the Moby and walk around. 

With Ingrid I would try to put her down for her naps at the same time every day, I was stuck at home for nap time.  I would freak out if she didn't fall asleep right away or sleep for long enough or especially if she didn't sleep at all.  Worry worry worry.  Is that inevitable in the life of a first time mom?? 

Otis is also just fed whenever.  I don't know if it's been one hour, three hours, four hours.  I just hear him get fussy, try to figure out which side he should be on, and nurse him.  And again, I follow his moods and he lets me know when he needs to eat. 

With Ingrid I bottle fed and therefore was so concerned with how many ounces she was consuming, I knew in x-amount of hours I had to feed her.  And oh man, just having to travel with bottles and formula and water, it was so much extra work.  I'm so glad to be breast feeding this time around!

It sounds like I am regretting what I did with Ingrid, and that's not really true.  Sure I wish I had known I could've nursed  her with my meds, and yes I wish I had known about babywearing sooner than six months old.  But I did the best I could, and believe it or not, I still consider myself to have been a laid back first time mom.  I'm just realizing how much I've learned in the past three years and how much my parenting style has changed and how much better this works for me.

What have you done differently with baby number 2 or 3? 

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

What's My Job Description?

Here's a question for any stay at home moms out there:  How much help do you get from your partner?  I know Brendan is a great help and is always willing to help, but I feel like his job is going to work and making the money and my job is everything else.  And it's never ending.

My days start at 4am, when Otis wakes up for his first nursing of the day.  Back to sleep until 6ish when Ingrid gets up.  Coffee, breakfast, clean up the kitchen from Brendan's hasty rush out the door, clean up the living room from Brendan being up later than me and leaving mugs/blankets/laptops all over the place.  I deal with Ingrid, then I deal with Otis, then I maybe deal with myself.  Maybe.  The laundry gets done, the groceries are purchased, the meals planned, the floors swept, the baby worn so he naps, the kids fed, the cat box cleaned, the bills payed.  Then it's dinner, bedtime for Ingrid (which has recently become a knock down, drag out brawl every night...and can only be done by Mama) a brief pause when Otis is happy and will be content with Brendan, and then bedtime for Otis at 9pm, also done by Mama.  And then I pass out. 

I'm not complaining about my job, because I love it.  I love being home, not having to bring the kids to daycare, being able to go for long walks to the park, staying in my pjs until 10am.  But I could still use some help.  Like I said, the mister is willing to help but doesn't do it on his own usually.  I can ask for help and get it, but for example, I never come home to a fresh load of laundry all nicely folded, or a swept floor or cleaned kitchen.  And his excuse is "I had both kids."  It is SO frustrating.

He works hard, he has stress at his job and worries about providing for us, and I appreciate that.  But I don't get paid and my job goes for way longer than 9 hours a day.  And I work weekends and holidays.  And Mama is tired!  I just want help.  I have thought about hiring someone to come in and clean once every two weeks or so--but that's ridiculous!  We should be able to get things done around here as a team and I feel like I'm alone in everything house related.  Like that's my job as a SAHM, and I should just deal with it. 

Anyway, any tips on getting the help without it becoming a huge deal?  Without fighting or arguing all the time?  Much appreciated, thanks ladies!