Thursday, October 25, 2012

Back to the Grind

Yesterday marked my first day back to work. Everyone warned me - "You'll be so emotional", "Take it easy", and "It's okay to cry. We all do."

Perhaps I'm a terrible mother, but I really enjoyed my first day back. My parents are staying with Guy for the next few days, and we won't have to start him at daycare until November 5. I don't feel apprehensive about leaving him with them. Of course, I do miss him. I mean, I've spent the last 12 weeks with him nearly nonstop. But I also am so happy to be doing adult things again, like meetings and going to lunch. Ask me again in a few weeks, and I might not be so happy about the meetings, though.

Even though my apprehension was low, I still found myself peeking at the picture I have of Guy on my desk now. I mean, it's just about the most adorable thing ever:

His legs look completely out of proportion with his body. He kind of looks like a parade float - giant head, tiny body. 

This one is pretty good, too. I'm not sure why I'm a sucker for pictures of him while he's on his tummy, but I am. Something about the concentration on his face, maybe? 

And this is the photo of me right before I left for y first day back at work. You can tell that Guy is just totally scandalized by the indignant way he's napping on Greg. Look at those tiny fists! It's like he's just yelling at me, "How DARE you go back to work? You know what? I think I'll just sleep through your goodbyes. How do you like THEM apples?!"

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

I Guess This is Growing Up

Today Greg made the comment that growing up doesn't seem to be incremental for Guy. Instead, it feels like one day he is a lump and the next day he's walking and talking.

Well, not quite, but close enough. Things seem to be happening exponentially lately. Milestones are coming and going and I've barely got enough time to note them all.

For instance, today I put him down for tummy time. In the last week or two, I've been impressed if he could lift his head to almost 45 degrees. I cheer, clap, and basically act like he just hung the moon anytime he does it. But today, when I put him down his head instantly shot up to a 90 degree angle, and he proceeded to look all around the room, nonchalantly. Like, "Hey, I do this every day." If I thought he hung the moon before, now I clearly think he made it from scratch before he put it up there. I took video, pictures, and spent the next five minutes watching him intermittently snack on his play mat and look up at me

He now weighs in at 11 lbs 14.5 oz - only a pound more and he will have doubled his weight since birth. I think today might have been my last trip to the pediatrician for a weight check only. We were so worried for so long about how well he was gaining weight, that it's such a relief to be able to just focus on having a good time, and letting him eat at his own pace.

He's becoming much more vocal. I feel like less of a madwoman when I'm talking to him now, because occasionally, he'll coo in response. So it feels less one-sided. "Guy, what shall we do now - laundry or dishes?" Coo "Dishes? I guess you're right..." Coo "Okay, fine! I'm going, I'm going!"

Also, he is really beginning to be soothed by presence now. Just today, he woke up from a nap squalling (I often wonder what's going through his mind when this happens. Is he terrified? Uncomfortable? Trying out his lungs? Confused? I think I might try waking up from a night's rest screaming and see how it feels. Maybe it's just the most awesome way to wake up...) and I came over and started talking to him, and he immediately began to settle. Kind of amazing. I feel like it would be a really neat parlor trick, except that it probably wouldn't be.

- Jennifer

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Two Milestones

Yesterday was an historic day. A day for the books. A day to live in infamy.

I slept for SIX hours. In a row.

That's the first time that has happened in 12 weeks. (Actually, if we are being honest, it's probably been more like 4 months, considering how often I had to get up and pee at the end of the pregnancy.)

Guy went 7.5 hours between feedings, and slept at least 7 of it. I admit, I did kind of panic when I realized what had happened. I woke up on my own to a wet shirt - I had leaked milk. This doesn't typically happen to me. Then I realized how hard my breasts were and how tender to the touch. So I finally looked at the clock: 3:30 a.m. I had gone to sleep at 9:30. I immediately got up and went to Guy's room and leaned my face over the crib to check that he was still breathing. Indeed he was. Relieved, I went to the bathroom and back to bed, but he just have smelled my soggy mess, because he woke only minutes later to eat.

And, while I knew it was probably a one-time thing, part of me cried tonight when I was woken after only an hour of sleep. Yes, he only slept 3 hours on his first stretch the very next night, so I only managed a scant hour of rest before our first feeding. I even tried to recreate everything from the night before, to no avail. Oh well, you can't win them all.

Additionally, today during tummy time, Guy managed a roll! It took about 5 minutes of concentration and pumping of arms and legs, but he made it from tummy to back. He then proceeded to get mad, because it wasn't all it was cracked up to be. One minute you're content on your side, and the next you're staring up at the ceiling, and not sure how you got there. So distressing. :-)

The Awakening

I feel that we've started to reach the point where our little Guy is starting to wake up and be more aware of his surroundings. He has started to develop a certain amount of head control, and with that control he's able to look around on his own terms. Once Guy was a couple of weeks old, I came back from a day out or some event and I was annoyed about something. I walked around the house putting my coffee cup and bag down, talking loudly to Jennifer and my mom about whatever it was. As I walked past Guy, his head flopped around and tracked me as I strode past continuing my rant. Jennifer and my mom started laughing and told me what had happened. I was broken out of my moment, and a big grin spread across my face. I tried walking by again and talking, but it was a one time thing.

Nearly two months later, that type of moment happens all the time. The other morning I woke up to Jennifer poking me and asking me to go change the fussing baby's diaper. I threw on my glasses, and stumbled into the nursery. The moment I walked in Guy stopped fussing and a huge grin spread across his face. My face broke out into an uncontrollable grin too.

Guy has started to really track things and follow us anytime he's awake and we're around. When I come home he seems excited to see me, and follows my voice and face. (Sorry Tonks, I'm more excited to see him now even if you do jump up straight into the air with all four legs off the ground and wag your tail.)

Today I was hanging out with Guy on the window seat, and I was trying to take his picture. He was kind of drooling and staring into space, as babies tend to do. Jennifer came up and said, "I bet that I can make him smile." She cooed, and tickled him. His face lit up in no time. I got my shot, she walked away and I thought, "Huh." I tried the same trick, but nope! I guess it's a mommy thing.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Crib Diaries

This is what I like to think is going through Guy's head when he's ready for a nap:

Oh, man am I tired. First, I think I'll wail a little while while Momma tries to quiet me down enough to go to sleep. Then, I'll doze in her arms and look ready to go down. And when she lays me down in the crib, I'll ACT like I'm all for it. I'll wait about five minutes and start crying again. I wonder how many times I can do it before she starts pulling out her hair? I'm guessing at least 6 or so...

I've fallen into the nasty habit of letting Guy sleep in his swing for daytime naps. But I know that when he goes to daycare, there are no swings to sleep in. He will be in a crib, on his back. So, in an effort to get him ready for that, I've started trying to make the transition. Needless to say, it has not been an easy one.

He will generally only sleep for about 15 minutes at a time in the crib during the day. The weird part is that at night he seems completely fine with it. I'm not sure if it's the light, the extra noise, or what, but something is not to his liking.

This kid is starting to get demanding. I mean, he wants his bottled milk and formula warmed now (screaming ensues if it is cold, which - let me tell you - is a JOY), he wants to be rocked or swinging when napping, and he has the audacity to believe that I should change his diaper when it's wet or dirty. GAH. I'm going to start calling him "Your Highness." [Sidebar: Wouldn't it be awesome to send your kid to school with a name like Your Highness? He'd get a total superiority complex, but it would be hilarious to have the teachers talk to him - "Your Highness, please get in the line to go to lunch."]

He's been in the crib for about 20 minutes now, which is a record, but I hear him starting to fuss. I suppose I should go get him before the real crying begins. Oops. Too late.

- Jennifer

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Sleepy Scare and Weighty Decisions

Last night I had the strangest experience.

First of all, you should know that I have temporary amnesia every time I wake up to feed the baby. It never fails. The first ten seconds when I wake up, I can't remember getting back into bed. Part of me wonders if I fell asleep and somehow sleepwalked back to the bed. But after a few seconds, everything starts coming back, and I remember putting Guy to bed, and whatever else followed.

So last night, this amnesia went to new heights. Greg must have rolled over slightly on top of my arm, because at some point, he rolled away. And my amnesia kicked in. Suddenly, I thought I was sitting in the rocking chair, feeding Guy, had fallen asleep, and Guy had just rolled out of my lap and to the floor. I scrabbled desperately for him, and sat up in bed. It took a couple of seconds before I realized where I was, and concluded that I hadn't just grievously injured my baby. My heart pounded for a good few minutes before I could settle down again. Thanks a lot, amnesia.

In other news I go back to work next week (!!), which is a little nerve wracking. But the worst part of it is that I can hardly fit into any if my clothes. So, in an effort to get back to (or close to) my previous shape, I've joined Weight Watchers, which specifically has a plan for nursing mothers. I'm two days in and it's already pretty hard. I've gotten so used to eating pretty much whatever I want. Which would be the problem. I guess my whole life I had looked so forward to being able to indulge during pregnancy, but the diabeetus put a stop to that. So I've gone a little crazy post-partem. Oops.

- Jennifer

Friday, October 12, 2012

Working Mother

It is less than two weeks until I return to work. D-Day is October 24.

Thinking about it makes me nervous, but I'm also starting to feel ready. So for your reading pleasure, here are the pros and cons of me returning to work:


  • Less time with Guy.
  • Possibility missing big milestones (first word, first steps, etc).
  • The laundry will again be relegated to weekends only. Right now I can do it piecemeal, throughout the week. I have a feeling it's going to be a lot harder. 
  • Less time to stay caught up on all my favorite shows, or start Felicity, which I just discovered is on Netflix. 
  • I have to look presentable EVERY. DAY.


  • Two words: Lunch. Break. (I can't tell you how many times my lunch has been whatever I can grab with one hand and shove into my mouth in between feeding, changing, playing with and soothing a baby.)
  • I can visit a liquor store during the day, while on my break, kid-free.
  • I will get guaranteed adult interaction.
  • There will be the wonderful anticipation of picking him up each day, and the big smiles I'll get when he sees me. 
  • There will be fewer clothes changes throughout the day, since I won't be cleaning spit-up, poop or pee off me every few hours.
It's going to be hard going back to work, I don't doubt it, but I'm looking forward to it, too. I'm ready to start figuring out how to handle a child and a full-time job at the same time. (I mean, HOW do you make dinner every night? I see a lot of frozen dinners in our future.)

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Poo Bear

Everyone always told me that I would never talk about poop as much as I would when I had a baby.

And it's so, so true. Tune out here if you don't want to hear a tale of two poops.

For the first few weeks, it was all about how many times he pooped. Was it still black? Or was it green or yellow? Are there seed-like things in it? I found myself incredibly happy when the color changed to the "mustard" yellow that the lactation specialist described was a healthy poop for a newborn on breast milk.

At that age, there was poop all the time. Every feed, I changed his poopy diapers. But then, one day, he only went a couple of times. And the next, he only went once. And then - strangest of all - he went a day without going at all.

I had read that eventually babies stop going so often, and start going once a day or once every few days. After three days, I started to worry, but a regular visit to the pediatrician allowed me to ask. She gave me a sheet that said that breastfed babies can go up to seven days without dropping a single deuce. So, I felt better. And the next morning, he surprised us with an epic bomb that literally bubbled out of his diaper through the leg holes. (Let that image sink in....)

But after that, it was three days, then four, then five. The doctor had told me if he went more than three days, to call her. We had started him on apple juice (half an ounce, twice a day, diluted with water). I had tried taking his temperature rectally (joy of joys). He wasn't upset, and his stomach wasn't distended, so I assumed the constipation wasn't really bothering him. But if I hadn't gone in five days, I know I would feel pretty icky.

So, we visited the pediatrician again. She checked him over and said that he seemed to be okay, but she was as concerned as I was, considering his history of not getting enough nutrition. She told me to try prune juice and dark Karo syrup, and if he hadn't gone by Wednesday (a full 8 days since his last poo-splosion), to go get him x-rayed. She went ahead and wrote the order just in case.

But, glory of all glories, this morning as he nursed for second breakfast, his bottom began a-rattlin'. I think it went on for a good 3-5 minutes, and his eyes were staring widely at the wall while he grunted and nursed his way through the task. (Sidebar: Can you imagine eating or drinking while dropping some kids off at the pool? I mean, it seems counterproductive, but whatever...)

It went up into his armpits. Impressive. I barely got the outfit off of him without getting it all over his face. I was able to wash him off, get him dressed and then rinse out everything that was befouled without much incident. I'm pretty proud of myself, I have to say. And I'm hoping this doesn't become habit. I'd much prefer to clean up a dirty diaper every day than one of these every 7. Yuck.

Now, to make up for all the poo talk, here is an adorable picture I took of him a few weeks ago.

You're welcome.

- Jennifer

Friday, October 5, 2012

"Where Are You, Mom?!"

Guy continues to amaze me with how fast he is changing. The baby who only weeks ago was basically an eating, sleeping, pooping machine has now put some new tricks into his bag. He smiles directly at me. Not just a smile that happens to pass my way while he looks at the ceiling fan or a picture on the wall or some other object that brings him more joy than dear sweet mother, but actually AT ME. It's amazing. I love when those little eyes lock on mine and then a big grin just spreads across his face. Priceless.

He's also becoming more content to play on his own. I'm able to put him in a little bouncy seat that has aquarium noises on it and let him sit there and kick his legs for 20 minutes at a time. I'm amazed at how much I can do with 20 minutes. I even managed to get most of dinner cooked last night.

Unfortunately, along with this awareness comes the ability to understand not only who I am but the importance of having me nearby. Yesterday, as he happily played in his bouncer in the nursery, I popped out to go grab some laundry out of the dryer. Thirty seconds later, I hear him winding up a cry, so I gathered up the laundry fast and furious and went back to the nursery in a hurry. As soon as he saw me come back into view, he started to calm and went back to playing. Woah. It's the first time that's happened.

This means we're probably getting close to the period of stranger anxiety. I'm hoping that the frequent contact with the grandparents will prevent them from feeling like strangers, but I don't think I have much of a choice of who becomes a "stranger" and who doesn't. I've seen the look of exasperation on other mother's faces during this time, and now I get it. As much as I love Guy, I'm with him nearly 24 hours a day, and I'm usually the one holding and caring for him. When I go see my friends, it's a relief to let someone else hold him for a while, and enjoy his smiles and wiggles from afar. But stranger anxiety means that may come to an end, if only for a few weeks or so.

Well, at least I know he loves me. Or something.

- Jennifer

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


Two months also marked a painful milestone: Guy's first round of immunizations. He screamed bloody murder, but I think it hurt me more than him.

He was tired for the rest of the day and wailed anytime there was pressure on his little legs. (Sorry for the blurry iPhone photo, but it's hard to go get the real camera. Ever.)

Luckily, he eventually perked up, and gave me a few smiles to ensure me he still loves me.

According to my dad, we'll never be able to sneak up on him again, now that we've gotten him shots once. That would be why it's Greg's turn next time. :-)

- Jennifer

Monday, October 1, 2012

Two Months - The Age of Head Control

I cannot believe that two months have already flown by with Guy. I'm down to only 3.5 weeks until I return to work, and I'm dreading it. The time with him is so precious, and I've enjoyed every minute. (Okay, maybe there have been a few unenjoyable minutes, but they were few and far between.)

Guy has changed so much since we brought him home. It's hard to imagine that the little peanut that was so tiny I had to tighten the carseat straps to their tightest is now the little boy we see exploring the world with his eyes.

He is so much more alert these days, looking at everything with wide, wondering eyes. He prefers to be facing outward as much as possible, and loves sitting in our laps with his face out to the world. When he's awake and you hold him up on your shoulder, he pushes away with his tiny arms and holds his head up to look around.

The head control is awesome! Of course, he still flops here and there (especially when tired), but for so much of the time now, he is holding his head up and looking around of his own volition. You can even lay him down and pull him up by his hands and his head will often stay in line with his shoulders, instead of flopping backward.

We've also come up with a great many nicknames for him including (but not limited to)

  • Little Guy (yes, obvious, but still cute)
  • Sweetness
  • Pumpkin Head
  • Snuggle Buns
  • Booger Face
  • Puddin Face
  • Tweet (Short for Tweetness)
I'm still waiting for the ones that will stick. Who knows what they'll end up being. I mean, Greg became Cheetah-Poo. Who would have predicted that? 

He smiles so much more now, and every one warms our hearts. I'd do just about anything to make him smile. 

Speaking of smiles, he elicits them right and left, especially from his grandparents. Both sets have been overjoyed with him, and have visited often. I'm thrilled with how involved everyone is. I didn't see my own grandparents that much when I was a kid, as they all lived 2+ hours away. Having Guy's grandparents so close is incredible. There are many days that around 6:00 p.m., one of our phones will ring, and it'll be "Gramps" (Greg's dad, Harvey) calling to ask if he can stop by for some Guy time on his way home. Cheri (AKA Gigi) says she can always tell when Harvey has stopped by, because he comes home in such a better mood. I even have to admit, holding a snuggly Guy is WAY better than Xanax. 

Have I mentioned the farting yet? Oh my gosh do I love baby farts. They're hilarious! They frighten the dog. Just now, asleep in his swing, he farted and the dog woke up from a deep sleep and looked accusingly over in Guy's direction. She's none too thrilled with his bodily functions. 

So, two months has been great. I'm excited for these last few weeks home with him, and terrified of going back to work and being separated from him so long every day. Luckily, the grandmothers have both agreed to watch him for a few days each, so I can start my exile with someone I know in charge of him. That way, if I'm having a truly terrible time, they can always bring him up to see me for a quick fix. Maybe I should rename him Crack. Yeah. THAT wouldn't get him teased AT ALL. 

- Jennifer