My Miserable Pregnancy

by admin in Pregnancy, Updates

Most of my life I had always said I didn’t look forward to being pregnant the way I figured most women did. If I had it my way I would have gone straight from “I’m pregnant!” to the day I came home from the hospital with a brand new baby. Boom. Done. Yay. Having actually experienced it now, I can say that part of that is still true, and a part is not.

I read about women who missed their belly and people warned me that as soon as he was out I would just wish he was back in. Both because it was a lot easier and because I would miss it. I do sometimes get swept away in nostalgia, remembering how tiny my baby must have been that first time I felt him kick or rubbing my belly in the shower. I know that as he grows older he will learn to be more and more independent and I’ll probably mourn those days with increased intensity, those days when he was the most dependent on me, nestled safely in my belly.

When I first found out for sure that I was pregnant I let myself dream of what it would be like to be pregnant and I made plans to really make the most of it. I was going to eat only the best and healthiest foods and my face and arms and love handles would be getting smaller as my belly grew rounder. I would wear long, breezy summer dresses and walk slowly through golden fields. I would lounge by the pool reading baby books and sipping refreshing and non-caffeinated drinks. I would dress in outfits like these that were comfortable but cute in a sweet, feminine way. I would craft every free moment I had and have my nursery all perfect by the time I entered my 3rd trimester so I could spend those last few months just sitting in my glider, staring out the window and waiting for my little baby.

And that is EXACTLY how it happened!!!

Except… NOT!

Reality found me sick, huge, itchy, sweaty, swollen, breathless, streaked with stretch marks, bumbling, scatterbrained, rushing to finish the nursery only days before my due date and rotating between the 3 outfits that would adequately cover my belly and hopefully minimize inappropriate accidents, visually.

So let me just confess to you right now. Yes, being pregnant allowed me the opportunity to feel special and I plan to do it again someday and I’ll miss some things about it but there are things I DEFINITELY WILL NOT MISS ABOUT BEING PREGNANT!!! So here they are in no real particular order.

 

THINGS I DO NOT MISS ABOUT BEING PREGNANT

 

Being a hot, swollen mess

Most of my pregnancy I was forced to deal with the common symptom of swelling, in my feet and ankles especially. It arrived early on and made it impossible to fit any of my shoes except my flip-flops. By the end of the summer they smelled like something awful. The heat of one of the hottest summers ever contributed to the swelling and raised my “comfortable temperature range” by at least 10 degrees. I also spend most of the time sitting or walking around, both of which made it worse. Here is a photo showing my feet just this week compared with one taken during July of last year.

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Itchy Belly

I had a pretty horrid case of PUPPPS during my pregnancy. It causes any place you have stretch marks to become intensely itchy and red. Any itching or contact just aggravated the pain and nothing except some steroid creme from the Dr. brought me any relief. Sweating didn’t help. I can’t believe I’m showing you this, my belly is pretty gross, but here is a badly taken cell phone picture of my cause of torment.

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Throwing Up

One of my first symptoms was nausea. I had not thrown up since I was 14 years old and my mom never had morning sickness so I was sure I wouldn’t get it. It really knocked me over and kept me down until at least a few weeks into my second trimester. During the first couple months I watched a lot of TV while I laid on the couch, feeling nauseous  I watched all the episodes of CW’s 90210 on Netflix. Even today when I hear the theme/intro song I feel sick for a moment. Not joking. I threw up over 20 times and spent most evenings just whining to Steven. My husband is a saint. Lol.

Peeing every 20 minutes

These days I find myself rejoicing every time I go to the bathroom and experience a steady stream of urination that lasts more than 5 seconds and demands relief on a human schedule of frequency.

Rapid Heart-rate

My very first symptom was a rapid heart-rate. I actually noticed this less than a week after conception and it continued for the full first trimester at least. It was scary and I felt like I was constantly aware of my heart beating at a rate that was often in the 90′s or over 100.

Back Pain

This one just comes with the territory, really. It’s also not as though I don’t suffer my share of back pain, carrying a 21 pound baby around haha.

Changing positions required a full ceremony

Oh you want to stand? That will require 2 sturdy pieces of furniture, the full strength of your arms and legs and at least 5 stages of movement. Congratulations you are now standing. Now just try walking to the car, ducking into a car door into the seat, maneuvering around a steering wheel and hoisting yourself out again once you’ve reached your destination. You’re welcome.

Baby Brain

I have a pretty scattered brain already, but add the mystical effects of baby-growing hormones to the mix and I was all but useless.

 

In the months following Miles’ birth I must have remarked over 100 times that I was “so happy I’m not pregnant anymore” that if “feels so good to not be pregnant.” It really did. The fog lifted and I was myself again. Almost like the previous 40 weeks were a dream. Like one day I found out I was pregnant and I awoke 9 months later with a baby. And isn’t that always exactly what I wanted?

The purpose of this blog post was mostly just for me to marvel at the misery I felt during pregnancy. It might sound like complaining, and I certainly did my share of whining during those 9 months, but really I write this with a spirit of joy … primarily because it’s so much better now that I’m not suffering all those things. Sometimes I’ll spot a pregnant lady walking out of a store or something and for half a second (literally half a second) I will be sad and miss being “in the club” but then the memory of the misery comes rushing back and I feel so relieved that I’m not having to feel those things anymore. Having Miles right here and mothering him on the outside is so much better in my opinion. I would take these days of late night feedings and fussiness over PUPPS and swollen feet any day!

Now please pray for me that when and if the time comes for #2, it’s a miracle pregnancy like the one I day dreamed about those first few weeks. :)

Mister Miles | 6 Months

by admin in Milestones, Mister Miles, Updates

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We’ve reached the 6 month mark! Or, more accurately, in true Brittany style, we have surpassed the 6 month mark! Yay!

It’s no surprise that 6 months is a big one. It’s the month he wakes up one morning and magically can sit and crawl, has teeth, eats solids, waves and starts to say “ma-ma.” … Right? Haha. While some things do seem to happen overnight, it’s safe to say we’re hitting those milestones at a perfectly average pace! Right before his 6-month appointment he was really showing all the signs of final teething. His gums were swollen and he was fussy!!! I’ll update you on that during the 7-month post. Ahhh suspense!

We had a crazy mix of weather this month, that is why in the photos at the bottom of this post you will see us playing in the snow as well as wearing shorts in the grass for a picnic. I can’t wait until it’s warm and pretty and spring is blooming and we can take Miles out all the time. I’m so curious to see what the summer will bring and how Miles will grow up. One development Miles is a master of is growing big and strong… and big. He went up in percentile in both weight and height since his last well-visit. Now that he’s learning more control and his balance is improving it’s a little better but it’s still tough to haul him anywhere in his car seat or when he doesn’t want to be set down.

Growth

Here are the stats from the Mister’s 6 month well-visit appointment… Noggin: 17.5″ (67th percentile) Height: 28″ (91th percentile) Weight: 21 lbs. 5 oz. (95th percentile) My child is massive and my shoulders are well aware.

Development

Strength & Mobility In the week or so before his well-visit appointment Miles met the goal to be able to sit unassisted for 10-15 seconds without toppling. Right on schedule and it’s a relief for my muscles. It’s great to see his balance improving! He’s still jumping like crazy in his Jumperoo. He’s now familiar with his tummy-side and his primary means of mobility (if you can call it that) is to stretch and roll and bend to reach the toys he wants. He still rolls very easily from his back to his tummy but gets mad if he didn’t want to and makes me flip him. Hand/Eye Coordination Still grabbing at the hair. He is so strong. I mean it. Death grip. He’s getting to have a little more control and isn’t ripping my face off every time, just every other time. He rakes objects towards him and is learning to do more with toys than just eat them. His favorite things to touch still seem to be fabrics and pillows and stuffed animals. He loves to grab blankets or his shirt (or mine) and just play with them with his fingers. He has also officially found his feet. Or did I say that already? It ranks up there with the pillows as a favorite toy. Food Huge milestone this month! We started solid food! First we started with some ground oatmeal for a couple weeks. After his well-visit appointment we began to explore other fruits and veggies. I’ll save that for his 7-month update. It’s so fun and scary to see my baby growing up and eating from a spoon. His nursing is still pretty frequent but varies from 12-18 feedings a day probably. They are so quick, though, so I don’t mind it so much. I just go with the flow. It’s like he’s in a 6-month long growth spurt! His thighs are the size of a mack truck. Sleep If anything, Miles’ sleep habits have regressed. I admit I still haven’t been pushing the crib sleep and I think that really is finally about to change because he is moving too much in our bed and I worry that it’s waking him up more. He wakes up every 1.5-2.5 hours almost. Sometimes I can get him to sleep again with just a pacifier or to snuggle close a minute so he can feel and hear me breathing but to be honest, it’s just easier to nurse him because it only takes a few minutes then he’s back to a deep slumber and it’s nearly guaranteed that he’ll drift right back off to dreamland. I think I need to tackle the crib thing first before I move onto the nursing thing. I just hate thinking that I can’t just reach over and touch him if I want to. It’s also not fun to get up and walk to the nursery and pick him up to feed him every 2 hours or less. Social He seems to waver back and forth on his stranger danger. Men make him a little more nervous than women. If he’s in a bad mood or tired or something strikes a nerve he’ll still get really sad. Mostly if he starts to get scared or sad we can distract him or talk him through it. I hate it because I worry that I’m projecting my own hyper-anxiety as a child onto him. The fear I felt so often as a child was so real and nothing actually made it better except having my mom or dad back with me again. That makes it hard to think that if I leave and he’s sad he’ll just adjust and be ok. Because when I was little that didn’t work for me. Anyway, that could make for a whole other post, and maybe someday I’ll go on and on about it for you. For now we’ll just leave it at that. If I had to guess right now, I’d say Miles personality is a little shy and reserved. When others are around he’s very quiet and seems to be observing everything. He still doesn’t talk much exactly. He makes groaning, grunting and whining noises the most. We’re going to be working on his consonants this coming month. Memories Taking him out on the outside blanket for some sun on the very first warm day we’ve had this spring. Feeding him his first bites of cereal. The day his hair dried with a flip at the front. Every time he crinkles his nose is a memory I don’t want to lose. I’m trying to capture more video. It’s my favorite way to capture everything I can about a moment. The only problem is that it makes it hard to participate sometimes so I’m trying to find a balance there.

Other Photos

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Mister Miles | 5 Months

by admin in Milestones, Mister Miles, Updates

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I cannot believe my little baby is 5 months old already!!! Month five is a little strange to me because everyone always refers to 1, 2, 3, 4 and 6 months for things, but rarely 5. I can see why, I suppose, I feel like it’s sort of like a bridge to 6 months. He is developing such a little personality! He is definitely an observer, he loves to examine his surroundings and I love seeing those wheels turn in his little mind as he connects everything. He’s also very shy. The “stranger danger” tendencies are still there but I think we might be getting better at dealing with it when we’re around others. Even once he’s comfortable near them or in their arms, he still acts so reserved and shy compared to when we’re with him at home, just the three of us.

In other news, He is SO FREAKING BIG! I won’t lie, it kind of makes me sad because I feel like I got a little cheated on my “small baby” time, it’s also difficult to carry a baby with the control and mobility of a five month old but the weight of some nine month olds! He’s officially in 9 month sized clothes. I have a couple 6 month things I squeeze him into when I just can’t help it or if it’s a brand that runs big.

Growth

I don’t have anything new to report officially since the 4 months well-visit but I’m guessing he’s at least 18 pounds now. Chunker!!!!!

Development

Strength
He is sitting better but still can’t keep straight for long without a little help. He’s been giving himself tummy time lately since he has rolling from his back to his tummy down pat. I can barely lay him down anywhere without him rolling to his side and often his tummy. He’ll often get mad on his tummy but he doesn’t hate it like he used to. The problem is, he can’t seem to remember how he rolled from his tummy to back those first few times. He just acts “stuck” if he’s on his tummy too long. I’ve tried leaving him a bit longer to see if he figures it out but he just gets more frustrated and sad until I roll him back over. I’m hoping this will fix itself.

Grasping
He LOVES to grab at things. I love that the things seeming most interesting to him are the things in which Steven and I are most interested. The PS3 remote, my mouse when we’re sitting at the computer, all water bottles and food things. He also loves to try grabbing our faces. It’s painful but also pretty adorable. He can pass toys from hand to hand. He still loves fabric. One of his favorite things is when I pull the blankets up over him for sleepy time. It doesn’t exactly make him sleepy, but it’s cute.

Sleep
Speaking of sleep. Not much has really changed since his 4 month update. He still hasn’t slept more than 4 hours at a time in the last few months, and that’s a rare case. It’s usually more like 2.5-3 hours, tops. I can’t complain as long as he’s going back to sleep after I feed him, but I am definitely starting to notice it’s affecting me because I can’t get any good quality sleep in there. From what I’ve read I’m pretty sure a large part of it has to do with the co-sleeping. I still haven’t been able to give it up, but I think it’s making him wake up more frequently. We also haven’t started him on any cereal or anything yet, so even though the Dr. said it won’t, I’m secretly hoping it will help him sleep better to be extra full on people food. We’ll see. Naps are about the same. 40-45 minutes each, anywhere from 3-5 naps a day depending.

Stranger Danger
This has been a bit of a struggle. I avoided going out and leaving Miles with anyone but me for fear of him having an episode and I’m not there to calm him down. I vividly remember having separation anxiety most of my child-hood and I can’t get that memory out of my mind. Whether it’s rational or not, the fear is real and I don’t like thinking that my baby has to feel that. I remember how terrified I was of my parents leaving me and never coming back. I’m hoping Miles’ anxiety passes sooner than mine did.

Memories
I still can’t help but love every moment Miles laughs. We also bought him the Fisher Price Rainforest Jumperoo and he loves it so much! It still cracks me up to watch him go to town in that thing. To be honest, I’m finishing this post up when it’s almost Miles’ 6-month mark so I can’t distinguish my memories between the two, so I’ll just leave those for next months’ update. Haha. Gosh, I don’t know how you guys put up with me.

Other Photos

I went a little crazy with the photos this month, so please forgive me.

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This, ladies and gentlemen… is “the sadness” :

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Mister Miles | 4 Months

by admin in Milestones, Mister Miles

Official 4 Month Photo Shoot

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The update

Here I am, writing Miles 4 Month update but it’s almost been 5. Yup. Sounds like I’m right on schedule. Brittany schedule.

I wish I had written this earlier because things are starting to blur together and I’m not sure which things are 4 months and which are 5. I’d say month 4 was predominately about growing. My big boy grew a LOT bigger, as you’ll notice from his 4 months stats below. For the longest time he was eating 12-20 times a day! I know this can happen and babies develop a snacking habit and our pediatrician said I could try to stretch his feedings out but the effort I exerted keeping his fussing down that last hour or so was worse than whipping out my boob every hour and a half to two hours. Haha! He barely got to wear any of his 3-6 months clothes, luckily I squeezed him into a couple favorites for some photos (he was also already wearing most of them during his 3rd month). He’s in the 84th percentile for length and the 92nd percentile for weight! Insane. I think Steven likes to brag about it and I guess I’m happy he’s thriving, but I am a little sad to dress him in his 6 month clothes and he’s just so heavy!!! Carrying his car seat anywhere is a challenge and I can’t really hold and rock him while standing like I used to. I kinda feel like I barely got to spend any time with the “baby” Miles. He’s outgrowing clothes faster than he can wear them and my arms are about to fall off when I have to carry him.

I am absolutely in love with watching him grow bigger and stronger and more aware of the world. His personality is developing like crazy! At our 4-month well-visit, the pediatrician was surprised to see that Miles had a clear stranger awareness already, which I guess doesn’t usually develop until closer to 6 months. This has been a tricky development. Even his grandparents, who may have seen just a couple days before, will set off “the sadness,” as I call it. If you grab him and start trying to talk to him you might be lucky enough to receive a small window of warning in which he will stick his lower lip FARRR out and look around for mommy with his sad eyes. Breaks my heart. I hate it because it usually ends up leaving him so upset I have to take him to another room and nurse him before he’ll calm down. We’ve been working on it though and I think as long as he has his needs met and is approached cautiously, giving him time to adjust and make his own move, we’re good.

Miles had some unexplained fussy days during this month and that, combined with the frequent nursing, led us to suspect teething. The pediatrician said his gums are definitely swollen and she expects them to pop up sometime before the 6 month mark. Still hasn’t happened but I’m waiting.

Growth

Here are his stats from his 4-month well visit appointment: Weight:  17 lb. 10.5 oz. Head Circumference: 17″ Length: 26

Development

Strength
He finally likes tummy time! Well, perhaps “like” is a strong word. He no longer face-plants into the floor and sobs. He’s up to a consistent push-up now and is definitely strong in other ways, too. He can lean pretty hard core in many directions. We’re still waiting for him to really get the whole “sitting” thing. He likes to lean forward too much. His weight, combined with his determination to lean towards anything interesting has me about to expire daily. My back hurts.

Grasping
He has SUCH a grasp! Owww. Haha. He loves to grab fabric and toys and … fabric. He still gets super frustrated with some toys because they won’t come off the places they’re attached or they won’t fit in his mouth or he can’t quite maneuver them (i.e. water bottles and books). I can’t remember exactly what has picked up in the 4 month compared to 5 months so I’ll elaborate on the next update.

Sleep
He’s regressed just a bit. He still sleeps right after most night feedings, but his wakings and number of feedings are unpredictable and that’s tough. His naps are pretty much all over the place, too. If he’s in the car he’ll sometimes sleep an hour and a half, but most naps are 40-45 minutes long and occasionally he’ll just skip one and be fussy for another couple hours. That’s not so fun. He’s just so happy when he’s well-rested! I get about an hour and a half to two hours to eat, shower (what’s that???) and get “work” done. Sigh. But I really do love it. :)

Visual
He recognizes his momma, that’s for sure! And his daddy, too, of course. I think I’ll remove this category after this month because it seems he can spot me from across the room. As well as anything that looks like a toy.

Memories
Miles’ first laughs that are becoming more and more frequent, but never less exciting. It’s been too long now to remember specifics, but I know Steven and I have heard hilarious noises or seen him do such adorable and unexpected things that make us laugh and look at each other with a look that says “Did you SEE that?!?!” I adore my little man.

The very last day of December Steven and I took Miles out into the snow for the first time. There wasn’t much to do except block his face from the cold air and take some photos of his cuteness but I love making memories like that and I love the photos we got, so that is going into my favorite memories for this month.

Other Photos

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Mister Miles | 3 Months

by admin in Milestones, Mister Miles, Updates

 

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I’m a week ahead of myself, but I figure it’s better than months behind!

Life is utterly amazing right now. I’ll probably get a little more into it when I focus on the Mister’s Milestones but we are finally settling into what I am going to call a routine. The days/afternoons are still a tad unpredictable, but the nights. The nights are AMAZING. I’m not sure if I mentioned this yet, but we’ve been co-sleeping exclusively for the last couple weeks. We had tried it a night or two before that but while on vacation to visit my family in the country, we discovered how much better we all were with this method. I know there are mixed opinions about it and I didn’t plan for it to happen, but I feel more and more strongly every night that it is at least right for us, with this baby, at this time.

Steven and I will head to bed around 10 or so. Miles just curls up as close as he can get to me, sucks happily on his pacifier and passes out within moments. I sleep deeply and comfortably and wake up when baby stirs, which is typically anytime between 3-5 a.m. with a few exceptions. After eating he’s back to sleep immediately, with another waking around 6, which is perfect because that’s usually when Steven gets up to get ready for work. Some days he’ll fall right back to sleep, most days he’s awake and super smiley for 30-60 minutes, perfect for daddy to get in some Miles time before leaving to work. Then Miles and I sleep in until around 9. Then we’ll wake up and he’ll feed and we’ll play in bed a bit. I get to stare at his adorable face from my comfy pillow perch. Then it’s diaper change, playtime and up for the day. The days, like I said, are not solid, but he will usually have 3-4 naps that are almost always 45 minute long. I mean exactly 45 minutes. It’e almost eerie. We typically get one good, long 2-3 hour nap in the mid to late afternoon. This is when I’ll try to get the bulk of my housework and “work” work done. If I can even call it that. Motherhood itself is serious work. Lol. Sorry if explaining his schedule is boring, it’s just so miraculous to me these days haha.

His fussiness for no reason has died down a bit. I can usually tell why he’s fussy and more and more it has to do with him getting enough stimulation or needing to get sleep, although he still has his gassy issues now and then. But I’ve been using the bicycle legs trick and it works like a charm! Except on the days when I have a lot of milk products and he’ll have trouble pooping and it seems pretty painful. Then he’ll poop green. Poor sweetie. I’m pretty sure now that he has a sensitivity because one day it was really bad and I even had digestive issues that were super painful and, well, I’ll spare you the details but it was not fun! The exact same day he cried a lot and seemed to be in pain and didn’t poop all day. When he finally did it was green and mucusy. This was at the end of a day where I had two milkshakes. I think that was a pretty good clue. I’m still not certain it’s a cow’s milk protein sensitivity, but it seems likely. We both also had this happen about a week later when I had tacos. With sour cream. He seems ok with me having cheese though? So odd, but we’re dealing. Ahhh how important poop as become.

Development

Strength
He absolutely hates tummy time. I’m able to force him into about two 5-minute sessions a day, if I’m lucky. He doesn’t mind it as much if I prop him on the boppy so I’ll so that the rest of the time so he at least gets something. He’s super strong, my little man. His head and neck support has been pretty great since month 2. I feel safe holding him up under his arms and sitting him up on my lap. He still leans if I try to sit him up independently, but he sure enjoys it. Now what is his new favorite thing to do? Try to STAND. Inside I’m like “No! you’re still a baby! Sit!” haha. He loves it so much and looks extra proud of himself every time. Most of the time he’ll cry if you try to set him down. In fact, I crack up because I’ll let him stand in my lap then my arms will get tired so I’ll try to rest him on my knees in front of me and he’ll start to lean forward so I’m forced to pull him up again. Crazy kid! I’ve also tried the thing where I slowly pull him up from a laying down position and he keeps his head up just fine. He loves that, too. Once I try it he won’t let me lay him back down without trying to sit up again.
We’ve also switched from the cradle hold to the hug hold on the moby wrap. He’s still not quite big enough for the Boba carrier’s usual position (and too tall for the infant variation) but the moby works great for this stage. He can come with me while I do minor tasks and he seems to enjoy it. He’ll get bored after about a half hour and want out of it (mostly I think he gets tired and can’t seem to fall asleep in it?) He looks so freaking adorable all cuddled and propped up in the wrap! We bundled up in it the other day to run our rent check to the office and I tied a scarf around his legs and put his fuzzy bear hat on and we struck out on our mission. He couldn’t decide what to do. It was a little chilly so he’d bury his head in my chest for a moment, but then he wanted to look around so he’d try to  look, but it was also bright and he would squint. Poor boy definitely has my squint. It’s cute on him though.

Grasping
He’s certainly found his hands this month! He’s been shoving his fists in his mouth since day one and I’m fairly certain he’ll be a thumb sucker if he can ever figure out how to get just the thumb in there. Otherwise he just smacks until he gets frustrated and I’ll give him his pacifier. Now his hands have found another purpose. That purpose is to punch mommy’s boob when he’s nursing and scratch my face and bat at his toys. One of his favorites is the dragonfly toy I received at my shower. It is a very popular toy and was from my Amazon registry and had such high ratings. Now I see why! It has so much going on and can keep him busy. I’ll tuck the body into the crib slats and he will bat at it and the last few weeks he’s been able to separate his fingers quite a bit and will grab onto the wings and crunch them and move them back and forth and will grab the rings and pull the toy loose from the crib slat. When I really have to get something done at my computer I’ll put him in the crib with it and listen to him crunch the wings and kick his legs with glee. I think he actually has a genuine fondness for the toy. He’ll stare at it with a smile while he falls asleep and he’ll hold it in his car seat and fall asleep with it. (Not that he really has much choice. I put it in there and it stays, lol, but I can tell he appreciates it).

Sleep
We touched on this already, but things are finally looking pretty great! We might try putting him to bed in his crib at the beginning of the year, but we’ll see. :)

Visual
I read that he’ll be more interested in colorful objects, which has just started happening. He seems to see pretty far away now. He can spot me or Steven and you can tell he recognizes us. He’ll check to see if I’m there when he’s trying to fall asleep sometimes. He still loves lights. This has been fun with the Christmas season and all the lights on the tree.

Memories

Some of our outings will be memorable, like the trip to the office. It’s been really great to focus on getting the apartment clean and the Christmas decorations up. It took me more than a week to make a dent in everything but it has been a great time since. It’s wonderful to wake up and plug in all the lights and get Miles dressed and cozy. Then we’ll play and I’ll give him tummy time in front of the tree. We’ll run errands together in the evening when he takes his long nap, if I need to.

He’s been growing out of his clothes this month. Already moving into 3-6 months. I think there are still some 3 month clothes he never wore. I’m basically rushing to get him to wear them before it’s too late. I try to remember to photograph him in my favorite outfits but it doesn’t always happen. I’m trying to focus on the excitement of a new 3-6 month wardrobe instead of the fact that my baby is growing up and out of his infant clothes.

There are so many tiny memories that I’m sure to treasure, but they’re just the normal every day life. Seeing him grow up and develop his features and personality even more. Evenings when daddy is around, weekends where we can all be together as a family and Steven and I can smile so much our cheeks ache from it.

And here is one of the most amazing memories I’ll have about this month: My bestest friend in the universe had her baby this month! Natalia Marie Docea. She was 7 lbs 6 oz and 19.5″ long. She has the most incredible features and an abundance of dark, feathery hair. Every new photo I see sends my heart fluttering with joy for Lizzy and Mike. Having only recently been enlightened to the wonders of motherhood I love to share this time with her. It’s brought us so close and it’s great to have someone who understands so well our mutual life changes. I seriously can NOT wait for the memories our babies and our families will make together as we share our parallel journeys. :)

Other Photos

Between 2-3 months:

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3-month_monkey-stripes_arm-chair-chubster 3-month_monkey-stripes_arm-chair-bob

3-month_monkey-stripes_looking-back

3-month_monkey-stripes_freddie-fun 3-month_monkey-stripes_firefly-jail 3-month_osk-kosh_wide-eyes

3-months_osh-kosh_elephant-stare 3-month_osk-kosh_wide-angle

3-month_osk-kosh_smile 3-month_osk-kosh_profile 3-month_osk-kosh_classic-miles

3-month_osk-kosh_hat-excitement 3-month_osk-kosh_hat-cuteness

3-month_osk-kosh_eyebrows

3-month_osk-kosh_sleepy-lumberjack 3-month_osk-kosh_lumberjack 3-month_osk-kosh_hard-work

3-months_hoodie-boy_title-image

3-months_hoodie-boy_tongue 3-months_hoodie-boy_mobster 3-months_hoodie-boy_stink-face

3-months_hoodie-boy_eyebrows

3-months_hoodie-boy_profile 3-months_hoodie-boy_smirk 3-months_hoodie-boy_coo

3-months_hoodie-boy

Mister Miles | 2 Month

by admin in Milestones, Mister Miles, Updates

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DSC_3595 coo

I have been behind on posting all these new updates, but I hadn’t been behind with writing them (Until now. Sigh). We had to cancel Miles’ 2 month well visit appointment so I don’t have accurate stats. He did have a quick check up because of his cold so I know his weight from just a few days prior. And even that I can’t quite remember. It was somewhere around 11 pounds! Big boy. I guess that’s update worthy, the fact that Miles had his first cold. It was heartbreaking to hear him coughing and sniffling but it was very easy on him and only lasted a couple days. I don’t think there was really a need to go to the doctor but we’ve reached our health insurance deductible for the year for both Miles and myself, so every visit from here on out is essentially free. We were about to go out of town so Steven suggested we take him just in case. I’m glad we did because I also got to ask about the bad gas he’d been having for the last several weeks. There really wasn’t anything she could tell me besides what I had read online, but it’s always good to hear it from a professional. She also recommended symethicone, which seems to work every once in awhile (Plus, sometimes I forget to try them until it’s too late). She also mentioned that he could be a little colicky. His crying doesn’t last too long, but on the days when it’s bad he’ll cry frequently and there was one night where he was awake for eight hours!!! Mostly I just want my baby to be happy and healthy and not suffer. Oh the torment of parenthood! Lol.

I think one of the biggest thing has just been watching him chunk up this month! I can definitely see him growing out of the “infant” stage. It’s wonderful and terrifying at the same time. It’s nice to see him gaining weight, though, because I’ve struggled with breastfeeding and various other feeding challenges so it’s good to see results. Things are certainly getting better with that. I meant to write a whole post dedicated to my breastfeeding struggles/journey, but as you can see I’m behind on the simple updates already! Someday.

Another big thing lately has been his gassiness, as mentioned earlier. It comes and goes and like everything, it sends me into a tizzy of “what am I doing to hurt my baby?!” But I read an article on Kelley mom here, that helped me realize that’s not likely the case. It also left me more informed about the possible sensitivities he might actually have, like cow’s milk proteins. We’re still working through this more, but you’ll be hearing more from me when I update you about month 3.

Here are some changes and improvements in development somewhere during weeks 5-10

Development

Smiling/Laughing
If you follow my instagram or Facebook posts you’ll see that once he found that smile he just has gone crazy with it! I adore all his many expressions! He sticks his tongue out alot, even when he smiles and he likes to give me surprised looks and shy looks and to punctuate his more insistent vocalizations with raised eyebrows and pursed lips. Haha. He still hasn’t laughed exactly, he just makes louder, more excited cooing and squealing noises. I can’t wait for that first deep giggle or belly laugh.

Neck Muscles
He is really coming along on this one. He started off wanting to see the world and not much has changed. During tummy time (which he really does NOT enjoy, by the way) he can hold his head and shoulders up pretty high and steady. He will only let it fall when he’s really tired or every now and then. Right before his 2 month mark he was awake in the middle of the night and super active, so I put him on his tummy. I turned around to set the “tummy time” timer on my phone and when I turned back he was on his back looking up at me! The look on his face was priceless! He was totally amazed and confused. I’m only sad I missed it. Since then there hasn’t been another roll-over incident, but he tries every time I put him on his tummy. Again, I think it’s because he doesn’t enjoy it because even when I move his arms to “situp” position he moves his right arm back so he can try to kick himself to his back again. Crazy kid.

Vocalization
Things have picked up since last month and it’s hilarious. He’ll let out random squacks now and then which still take us by surprise, and he coos every time we play with him. Laying him on his back in his crib while I make the mobile elephants “dance” is one of his favorite activities and is sure to make him sing about it. His cries have changed a bit, too, I’ve noticed. I think we’ve also just learned to communicate with him better, too. I can tell when he’s bored and wants my attention, versus just plain upset about something, compared to his request for me to fulfill his usual needs.

Visual
He can spot us from a distance now and seems to recognize me and can tell he knows Steven somehow haha. He’s also noticed… his toys! He still seems to prefer the high contrast black and white side of his Freddy the Firefly toy. That toy, by the way, is one of the first he’s cared about and he really loves it! He’ll stare at it while he falls asleep and I’ll put it in his car seat with him when we go out and he’ll fall asleep grasping it.

Response to Sounds
I can tell he hears us but he’s still stubborn about looking at us. Waving our hands at him or showing him a toy is the best bet for getting his attention. I’m beginning to notice a preference for music. If he falls asleep in his swing he will stir when the music turns off. He seems to like Celtic type music. We rented “Brave” and the title music made him smile then he went all drowsy. Haha.

Sleep
He still has unpredictable nights. The gas and crying will keep him up late. I’ve just been prepared to be up till 3 a.m. if need be and that helps me not feel so stressed when he won’t sleep. He’s been doing this crazy thing when daddy holds  him on the couch where he’ll kick and stretch and grunt until he’s practically hanging backwards over Steven’s arm. It looks freaky but he really likes it and will fall asleep that way in the evenings. We call it the daddy hold. I looked it up and all I could find is a possible sign of reflux but I’m not sure.

Memories

In terms of things I’m sure to remember about this month, there was the rollover incident, certainly. I will also always treasure my weekday mornings with him. He is always happiest after his morning feeding and his diaper is fresh. I’ll give him cuddles and kisses, then I’ll carry him into his bedroom and lay him in his crib, wait for him to notice his elephants again and smile at them in greeting, then I’ll pull on them to make them jump and make the mobile twirl around. He’ll just smile and kick with all his might and bat his hands like he’s trying to reach them. I can leave him there and take a moment to check my email at my computer a couple feet away and I can hear him cooing and smiling at them.

This is also prime picture time. He must find my camera and phone curious because he looks directly at it most of the time. I love to photograph him every morning I get the opportunity. I think it’s a fun way to remember some of his best outfits before he outgrows them and it’s a good way to watch his little features become more defined and see him grow up. Although I only like to think about that now and then. I’m working hard to enjoy every single moment I have with him.

More Photos

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2-month_moose-suit_profile 2-month_moose-suit_smiley

2-month_moose-suit_sweetsmile 2-month_moose-suit_lips 2-month_moose-suit_cooing 2-month_moose-suit_firefly

Mister Miles | 1 Month

by admin in Milestones, Mister Miles

 

  

 

  

 

I’ve decided I should continue the update process with some info about Miles every month as he grows older (now that’s enough talk of that). I couldn’t find a survey thing like for pregnancy so I’ve sort of made my own up and I’ll probably add to it as I think of things. I’m roughly basing some of the development on the milestones listfrom babycenter.com. Every time I say “milestones” I giggle because it has the name “Miles” in it.

Growth

Here are his stats from his 1-month well visit appointment: Weight:  8 lb. 14.5 oz. Head Circumference: 14.75″ Length: 22.5″

Development

Smiling
They say this doesn’t usually develop until around 8 weeks, but Steven spotted the first “real” smiles sometime during the middle of the 3rd week! He’s been flashing those precious smiles daily now and it warms my heart every time! Nothing quite like it. His eyes squint up and his nose wrinkles and those crooked lips bare his cute, toothless mouth and I just want to cuddle him up!

Neck Muscles
Here is another area in which Miles is wowing his highly impressionable parents. From day one he has been whipping that head around like Willow Smith! Doc said he could start tummy time right away instead of waiting until his 1 month mark so we’ve been killing it with our workout routine (well, by “we” I mean Miles).

Vocalization Miles is still shy in the conversation department. When he’s quietly laying by himself I will catch a rare coo or squack and I question for a moment if what I heard was a typical grunt or if it was real vocalization and I swell with mommy pride. I tell him way to go for “vocalizing. Like a boss.” I say dumb things like that because I’m a weird nerd and parents are supposed to make a fool of themselves in the pursuit of praising their children. Haha.

Visual
He likes to stare at his momma, which melts me like so many things he does.  He especially loves to stare at me when he’s falling asleep in my arms. He will look at us and smile in response to our smiles and goofy faces and will occasionally track our faces and objects with his eyes, but he’s stubborn so he’ll only look at things if he really wants to. One thing that is infinitely adorable, is sometimes he’ll be looking at me and Steven will try to intercept his gaze and look at him but Miles will look to the side like he’s shy. It’s so funny and cute.

Response to Sounds
He startles at loud noises, but he still doesn’t really turn to look at you when you make noises to get his attention. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s simply stubborn. He seems to know when I’m using my “smile voice” but that’s about it. He also didn’t really respond much to sound when he was in my belly, which I find funny.

Memories

I’ve always been a very nostalgic person by nature, but being a mother has increased my nostalgia in multiples of a million! I miss everything! I’ll recall random memories from the hospital and Miles’ first couple weeks and miss it so badly! It goes way too freaking fast! I hate it and yet I love seeing him grow at the same time. Here are some of my most precious memories, in no particular order (and probably omitting other great ones by accident because I’m just rambling here)

Laying in the bed right after giving birth, I was confined to the bed, but I could watch the flurry of activity around me and try to mentally adjust to what had just happened and what was happening. I was in a glorious fog of amazement and was content to watch Miles with his daddy as they experienced some of Miles’ very first moments together. I was only a few feet away from the nurses and Steven as they performed all their customary procedures on our new squirmy bundle. Steven was amazing with him from the very beginning and I enjoyed watching him slide perfectly into the role of protective father. Watching him gaze down at Miles in wonder gave me a way to admire this new life from a distance. I could see the perfection reflected in his eyes and felt secure knowing he was there with him when I was farther away from my baby than I had been all year.

After the hum of activity finally died down and we had a moment of quiet, Steven sat in the corner with Miles, he was all clean and measured and wrapped tight and resting peacefully in his daddy’s arms. That moment could have lasted an eternity and I would have been totally ok with it.

During recovery in the postpartum room, there were several little chunks of rest (and dare I say, sleep) between nurse and family visits. We had the lights dimmed low or off completely and the TV on, but muted. Steven was asleep on the partner couch and Miles slept soundly in his plastic bassinet between us, wrapped up like a burrito. I would lay on my side, turned towards them and stare into the bassinet through the side while the light from the television danced on the features of my baby’s little face. I didn’t want to close my eyes. Even when I was so tired I had to close my eyes, I would frequently flutter them open for just a moment to remind myself that he was real and nearby. For the first week we didn’t have a bassinet or anything that would allow Miles to sleep in our room. After having him right beside us during our stay in the hospital, I was too anxious to have him in his crib. Plus, our video monitor was having issues and would turn off in the middle of the night. So, for the first week I would frequently bring him into our bed to sleep. It was so sweet to wake up in the morning to see him sleeping peacefully in his Halo sleep-sack  looking like an angel of dawn. Seriously, those sleep sacks look like a little angel gown and when the swaddle part of the sack is splayed they look like wings. Cracks me up! We purchased a pack and play after a few days but there are occasional mornings when Steven leaves for work and I’m too tired to deal with walking back and forth, and I’ll let him sleep in Steven’s spot beside me. It’s still one of my favorite things to see in the morning. I’m so excited and terrified of him growing up. If only it didn’t happen so quickly! Sigh.

The photos at the top of this post were when Miles was 4 weeks and 1 day old.

 

Miles | Birth Story

by admin in Milestones, Mister Miles, Updates

Hello everyone! I’ve been meaning to post Miles’ birth story since, well, since he was born! Life, being the crazy whirlwind of awesomeness that it is now, I haven’t had a chance to really get this post to publishing status until now, although I started writing it a week or two after his birth. Please forgive any confusing run-ons and random insertions of thoughts I had along the way. You’ll also find that it’s pretty detail heavy and doesn’t include as much evidence of the flood of emotions I felt. This is partly because I simply can’t express how amazing it was and is to have a baby and be a mom, but also because it’s already pretty wordy and I just don’t want to forget anything. Also forgive all the Lol’s and Haha’s. That’s just how I am… Lol… Haha…

The Day of Labor

About 4:30 a.m. on September 17 I first woke up to contractions that felt different than the normal Braxton Hicks that I had been experiencing most of my third trimester. They were a little deeper and stronger and felt a little more like cramps. I didn’t want to jump to conclusions, so I waited. I even would sleep through some of them off and on. Then around 5 a.m. I started timing them and ended up timing them all day, much to my own insanity. They were consistent but still 10-12 minutes apart or more. I wan’t sure if I wanted to tell Steven and freak him out if it was nothing, but I decided I was too scared to handle this development on my own, haha. So I was said to Steven, “Babe… I think I might be having real contractions.” Then I explained how they seemed more consistent and felt different. Surprisingly, neither of us really freaked out. He asked if I wanted him to stay home from work and even though I was scared of going through this without him, I knew it could still be hours, if it was even the real deal. So I told him to go and that I would text Beth to see if she would be available to take me to the hospital just in case. We both calmly talked about what we planned to do if I progress to the point that I need to go in and other details like that, then he left for work.

I immediately started giggling because I realized this could really be it!!! And I was feeling more and more excited, and that excitement mostly out-weighed the fear. I calmly began to make sure all the bags were packed up and put in a pile for us to grab when we needed to. I was in the middle of gathering together last minute clothes for the hospital bag when Steven called me during his drive to work. I answered and we both talked about how we were actually feeling relieved and excited more than freaked out. Knowing Steven felt that way, too was really encouraging. I took a shower and shaved my legs and plucked my eyebrows and put my hair in a sock bun because it seemed like a practical choice lol. I called my mom because I needed to ground myself a bit and get some encouragement from someone who had been through the same experience seven times. They were excited but I was so worried that it was not real or that it was still days away. They understood and said they would pack a bag just in case.

I spent the majority of the morning Googling signs of “real labor” even though I had already done that countless times in the months previous. I chatted Lizzy and kept counting my contractions, which were consistently 10 minutes apart, but seeming stronger by the hour. Beth came by to keep me company and it was during my conversations with her that I realized it was getting tougher to talk through the contractions, although I could force it. Sometime in the mid-afternoon once Beth had left and I had eaten a couple hot dogs (brilliant, right? Luckily this wasn’t an issue) I realized they were starting to really hurt. I called Steven to ask if he could leave work a little early, just in case. He made it home and I felt so relieved. We watched TV, I took a bath I kept counting my contractions. About 6 or 7 in the evening they were 5 minutes apart. It was at this time that Steven insisted we take a walk.  A walk sounded awful but he had been telling me to take a walk all day and was pretty insistent. So we walked around the apartment complex. A LONG way. More than I had walked in months probably. Or at least it felt that way. I seriously walked the first 10-20 feet and had a contraction and told him I wanted to walk back already haha, but he was like “just a little bit more” and kept doing that until we’d walked almost every sidewalk there was. I was having contractions every 3-5 minutes apart and every time I would have one I’d make him stop and I’d grip his arm and breathe and moan through them. So cliche of me. After the walk I gave myself a full hour to make sure they were as close as I thought they were (because it was hard to time them while walking). I even slept between contractions and would wake up thinking a long time had passed only to find it had only been three minutes! They stayed 3-5 minutes apart until 9:00 p.m. at which time we decided to call the hospital to let them know we were coming.

The theme of the day was this: During a contraction I would be like “OMG no doubt, this is definitely real labor and what if I have the baby in the next minute” (lol) but then it would end and it’s like my brain would go dumb and be like “Did that actually happen? I don’t know… maybe it’s not for real” ughhhh. Torture. It was also sometime in the mid-afternoon that I decided I was going to opt for the epidural for sure!

Hospital and Birth

So we grabbed everything and headed to the hospital. We had to go to the E.R because the main doors were closed for the night. I stood there after letting the nurse know we were there. She was like “are you in Labor?!?” and I did the whole lean on the pillar during a contraction thing like in the movies and felt dumb but I didn’t care lol. Then they brought in a wheel chair and I was relieved that I didn’t have to try walking there myself. They wheeled me into the elevator and up to the delivery room and had me put on the gown and said they would watch me for an hour to see if I progressed. They checked me and I was 4 cm dilated which was great. If it had been less I would have freaked thinking about how much worse it would get haha. I told them I wanted an epidural but maybe not until I was a 5. Well they had to do all these things because I was choosing to get an epidural, like put in an IV instead of the saline lock. The nurse tried to put it in my left hand but it messed up so they had to do my right hand instead. It was really crazy and kind of annoying because they had like a thousand questions for me and I had to answer between contractions. (Questions I swear I had answered a number of times already) So they would ask and I would stop mid sentence and have to wait and breathe and groan while they stood there waiting. It was awkward… Then I would finish answering them. I didn’t really care about anything at that point except I just wanted not to hurt.

They strapped a zillion monitors to my belly. Ok, just 2. The one meant to monitor the baby’s heartbeat was sort of below my belly and they had to have it really tight so they could hear his heart and it really hurt. I laid on my left side, facing Steven, who was there right at the side of the bed. With each contraction I would grip his hand really hard and shut my eyes really tight and breathe. Barely ten minutes after arriving at the hospital I had a really strong contraction and my water broke. It was the most crazy scary feeling. Then I was like “I think my water just broke!” and so they checked and of course it had (no mistake lol) and the contractions hurt more after that and were more like 2 minutes apart it felt like. I started gripping the rail on the hospital bed instead because I didn’t want to break Steven’s hand. They STILL had a million people coming in with paperwork to sign and questions I had to answer and to draw my blood (which I guess they needed for the epidural).

It took like an hour at least before the anesthesiologist was there to do the epidural because of the paperwork and they had to actually run lab tests on my blood and get the results first. That was the worst part. Between my water breaking and the anesthesiologist showing up. By that time I was 6 cm. They had me sit up to prep me for the epidural and I was just hoping SO bad that they would stick me before I had to have another contraction. And the anesthesiologist had a zillion questions, too. He was super serious, almost rude, but apparently very good at his job so I didn’t really care lol.

As is so typical of me, when I get really nervous or experience a huge life-changing event in my life, I shake uncontrollably. So my legs were quivering violently and I couldn’t make them stop and my muscles were starting to burn and tense up because I couldn’t control it. It was really weird. As the epidural finally kicked in it was like I felt the contractions but they weren’t as bad and then each time the pain just faded and faded until they were just little twinges of pressure and it was the best relief in the friggin universe haha. Then that’s when my parents came in and talked to me and I felt SO MUCH BETTER. It was great. My shaking slowed down and the nurse turned down the lights so Steven and I could get some rest.

We both fell asleep and I woke up to increased pressure during my contractions and they seemed really close together. After maybe 3 or 4 contractions the nurse came in to check me and I was a 10 and ready to push!!! It was so exciting to feel so great and be ready for basically the hardest part lol. Well the Dr. was still on her way but the nurse said she would get everything ready for the actual delivery. it was SO SURREAL! To think that I was about to push my baby out!!!! One moment it’s dark and I’m waking from a nice little nap and it was weird to wake up in barely any pain and have them tell me “you’re ready to birth a child.” lol

All these nurses started wheeling in the baby cart and getting stuff ready for him and other nurses got ready to help me push. The nurse said we would “practice” pushing so I can learn how/where to push and stuff. Well with the next contraction she had me try pushing and 1/2 way through the next contraction she told me to stop because it was going too fast and the Dr. wasn’t there yet. It was SO WEIRD I could feel his head! So I stayed that way through a few more contractions with his head just stuck there, waiting.

Well the Dr. finally showed up and I pushed through a few more contractions. They had put a blanket on my chest so they had steven cut the cord and then they put him on my chest. Thinking back it was such a moment, and I keep reliving it and get really teary-eyed. At the time I think I was in shock a little, plus I tried to keep as much control of myself during the whole thing as possible, it’s just who I am, so I was acting kind of “normal” I even remember thinking “am I acting TOO normal?” It was CRAZY to have him right there in front of me. It was like meeting someone I know but had never seen before. Like a stranger but that I know so well. Because you can’t really imagine what they look like so you’re staring at a face you don’t recognize but inside you  know it’s your baby. I touched his little cone head and said “hi baby” and just kept looking at him, trying to process haha. He just kept sucking on his hands while I held him close. It was amazing.

He didn’t cry even though he was breathing, but they like to hear a good cry I think. So they took him to the table, only a few feet away and Steven followed. They toweled him off and did whatever they do to have him make noises lol. I don’t think he ever really like screamed just made noises like “leave me alone” haha. And I listened and watched as the nurse explained all the stuff they were doing to him and stuff. His apgar was good and after the initial things I got him back to try breastfeeding. It was adorable. I eventually had some issues with breastfeeding but we kind of were able to bond a bit during that first try.

So about an hour later we let my parents in and they got to hold him and my dad and Steven took a bunch of pictures. Then the nurse showed Steven how to bathe him and a few other things. I can’t remember the order of all this very well. I was just laying the bed. For me, it was awesome and crazy and exciting because I just soaked it all in. I LOVED the way Steven was taking to daddy-hood already, touching him and holding him and talking to him and laughing and smiling with joy. It made me SO HAPPY. And there was this whiteboard with info on it like our names and stuff and I kept staring at it where it said the time and weight and stuff and I think it had his name? Because we settled on it pretty soon after we saw him. When he first made his appearance the nurse said “He looks like a Miles” and then a few others agreed and I was already feeling like it fit better. Then later Steven was sitting on the sofa with baby in his lap and I asked him “So… do you like Miles? Do think that’s it?” and the look he gave me, all pure joy and everything… sigh. Then he replied “yeah, I love it” and that was it. It was Miles from that moment on. :)

  

 

  

 

Recovery and Post Partum

After an hour or so to adjust and collect our things we were transferred to the recovery room, where we settled in and tried to get some rest. Our nurse throughout this whole thing so far, the main one, was named Janice and she was FREAKING AWESOME. SO nice and great at her job. She brought me this huge mug of ice water and was so good at explaining things and I will always be thankful for her during this crazy time in my life. Time all kind of ran together. We slept little bits at a time between people coming in to check on me or the baby or to make me feed him or whatever. It was pretty nuts. I spent a lot of that time staring at Miles and trying to process everything. It was definitely surreal. I miss this time a lot when I look back. The nurses were there to take care of us and to help me when I didn’t know what to do and to be there to tell me when to feed him and stuff. I also felt like I was safe and so was baby. I liked laying there in my bed and both the nurses and Steven took such great care of me and basically did everything for me. Lol. Steven was freaking amazing in this way and still is. I love it. I’m so lucky to have him. The next few days were a lot like this, with visitors coming and going and various tests and procedures for both me and baby. On day two we left Miles in the nursery and took a walk around the hospital. This, along with my first shower were the greatest opportunity to solidify my transition from pregnancy to motherhood. It felt incredible to be free of the belly burden and to have more mobility and energy. I held Steven’s hand and let myself bask in the glow of it all.

There are so many things I will remember and there are things I’ll forget (or already have) and that makes me sad, but in the end I feel like everything came together just right and life hasn’t been the same since. Obviously. It’s just amazing. I’ll share a few  more memorable moments during my 1-month update post will that offer a better insight into the avalanche of emotions I felt during the hospital stay. I also plan to share more about my breastfeeding struggles and adjusting to life with a brand new little infant, but I think this narrative is far beyond long enough and I’ll give us something to talk about another day.

Welcome Mister Miles

by admin in Milestones

Miles Jayce Andrew Tarchala 

Born September 18

2:39 a.m. | 8 lbs 9 oz | 21.5″ 

Baby Bump | 38 Weeks

by admin in Weekly Bump Day

I was slacking so much on my updates towards the end that here I am posting it 2 full weeks after having my baby!!! But I already prepped the whole post so I thought I would still post it before I updated the world on the amazing new arrival in our life. :)

Here we are. Exactly a week until my due date. Can’t believe how fast time has gone! So what has the thirty-eighth week of pregnancy been like? It has been heavily influenced by thoughts of labor and birth and brand new baby boy. I finally can say that all my client work has been completed! I finished it all and sent out bills and today I plan to completely clean off my computer desk so when I sit at it I don’t feel scattered and overwhelmed. It is going to be great. I still haven’t really accomplished anything that was on last week’s to-do list. Oops. But I have made tiny little steps of progress in those directions. Another word to characterize this week: Sleep. I think it’s probably primarily due to the fact that I know my work is finally done and I am allowed to sleep. I also know it is common to be tired a lot in your third trimester. I keep waiting for my nesting urge to hit big time like I’ve heard it does, just so I can wrap up the rest of my list, but it’s not coming. Honestly this is a good thing because we kind of want baby to hang in there just a bit longer. I have forced some productivity but even tiny tasks seem so daunting when I’m this tired. Oh, I have also been suffering a delightful bout of allergies. Thank you weather change. For real, though. I’m ok with it, if it means cooler weather and the coming of autumn. Right now I have that lovely “sexy voice” of deep congestion and have used up several boxes of tissue. It makes my brain twice as foggy and encourages my desire to be comfortable and rest constantly.

Let’s talk about a few more exciting things. I made or had a hand in making 3 pies this past week! It makes me feel like I am actually able to celebrate the season, even feeling the way I feel, plus it gets me excited for the uncharted territory of mommy-hood as fall approaches. I also was able to get my car back in working order after the starter went out and had put it out of commission for a couple weeks. I did, unfortunately become the victim of a flat tire the next day, so I had to do without once more, but it is back now and freedom is mine once again! I picked up my framed artwork for the baby room and I’m so excited to hang it! The mats on the old frames I used are a little off-white from the “look” of the room, but I still love it and am anxious to see it all together. Uh-oh. All this talk is making me want to accomplish things! Lol.

Steven and I are both dealing with what I imagine are typical feelings for first-time parents. We’re anxious and excited and feel un-prepared but completely impatient at the same time. Because of this, I will occasionally refrain from alerting daddy-to-be to any new change in my body unless I really feel like he needs to know. I’ll tell him, but usually not until after the fact. For example: “Hey sweetie, so last night I had what felt like some pretty intense Braxton Hicks that were consistently ten minutes apart, but they didn’t get stronger or closer together, so we’re good.” If I had told him at the time I was feeling them, he probably would have freaked out. Lol. This doesn’t mean I’m not scared of having to make the “is this true labor” determination on my own. I almost feel like I am trying to will my body not to go into labor unless Steven is around. But I know the chances of that aren’t very high, so I just try to stay calm when I’m at home during the day (without a car, haha) and remind myself that everything is going to turn out exactly how it should.

The Bump

Baby’s Size| Long like a leek

How far along | 38 weeks

Sleep | Yesterday morning I woke up at 3 a.m. and could not get back to sleep. Steven was awake and unable to sleep either and I felt bad. So I let him get back to sleep while I watched some TV and ate some yogurt as I suffered a rare instance of heartburn and waited until he woke up for work. After he left I started where I left off last week, packing the hospital bag and made another dent in that. Then I sat to watch more TV and fell asleep around 9 and slept until almost 2 p.m.! Such a weird night/day. Other than that I just do what I can to stay in a rhythm of sleep, wake, pee, turn, sleep wake, pee, turn. And I nearly always have a Braxton Hicks contraction every time I get up to pee and I don’t know which one causes the other.

Clothes | HA! I garb myself in anything that will cover my full belly, allow freedom of movement (waddling) and doesn’t smell entirely gross already.

Cravings | Honestly, I haven’t had full on cravings for awhile. That was more of a first and second trimester thing for me. These days I would say my food intake is evenly split between semi-healthy sustenance for meals and indulging in a thing or two that sounds yummy at the time. Things I’ve really enjoyed eating the last week: Pie, Dr. Pepper, Cheese Danishes, apples, yogurt. That’s pretty much in order, too.

Food Aversions |  I find hunger alone to be distasteful.

Symptoms | Well here is a joyous development! I lost my mucus plug last Thursday. You may now go back to pretending you didn’t just read that. I also have had a zillion Braxton Hicks a day, it seems. They do seem to be stronger and at times more painful, but they just end with me having to take a trip to the bathroom or sitting. They scare me sometimes, but at the same time I like it because I feel like it means things are just continuing to progress as they should. I just have a general feeling of “it’s almost time” and little by little I am marking things off the “preliminary signs of labor” list. Ahhh!

Doctor’s Appointment | At last week’s 38 week appointment I was officially a 1 and “soft.” I wish she had been more specific about that, this week I’ll be asking her about my effacement. His head is in a great place and he is measuring just about right (she didn’t tell me the exact measurement but I’m thinking it’s within a centimeter of the typical 38 that would be expected for the week). Everything is looking great. My Dr. pretty much said we’d discuss induction this week, not that she thinks we need to yet, but just to schedule something should I go over my due date. I think she said if I’m more than 5 days overdue we’ll induce? I really really really don’t want to be induced, so I’m praying he comes within a few days of his due date, either way.

Movement | He feels so big! When I feel his butt and foot at the same time I am in wonder at how far apart they are! Sometimes I feel like his foot is coming out my side and couldn’t possibly still be in my uterus. I just like to rub his little body however I can and reassure him that the time will come for him to enter the world and then he’ll have so much space he won’t know what to do with it all.

Belly Button | Outie, obviously. Since it has been for a couple weeks. It feels and looks so weird. It doesn’t “poke” as much as I thought it would, but I guess that’s just how my belly button is.

Gender | Master No-Name Tarchala

Best moment of the week | It was probably when I finished all my client work and realized that when my exhausted body begged me to lay on the couch all morning on Monday, I realized I actually could do that and it was ok.

What I miss | Maneuvering around people and things and just basically walking (up stairs, through hallways, within crowds) and not having to think of every move and every step consciously to avoid bumps, pain and falls.