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I’ve worked in an ER for 4.5 months and now I think I’m a doctor.

10 Dec

Lo and behold! The thing that has made me Most Miserable the last few months, I have diagnosed myself:

<a href=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Piriformis_syndrome”&gt; Piriformis Syndrome! </a>

Basically, I have a pain in the butt.  Quite often it translates into some wretched sciatica that shoots down to about my knee or so but now that I’ve started focusing more on core work, it has retreated largely to the glute area.  I consider this to be a GOOD thing–if it’s just a muscle thing then it’s not a back thing.  Woohoo! The fact that after all the extra strengthening/stretching it’s retreated to mostly just the glute region lends me to buy into the piriformis idea.  That and I’ve never wanted to accept the idea I have a bulging disc or something like that.

Which all goes to say that it’s been killing me lately.  It used to shoot down my leg and now it’s mostly just in the glute and sometimes shoots down the back of my leg to my knee–usually when I’m trying to sleep, it seems–but it just is really bothering the bejesus out of me most days the last week or so.  Good, non-butt pain thoughts appreciated!  I have started googling specific stretches for piriformis syndrome and have also started working on my foam roller several times a day.  Hopefully, I can get rid of this soon or at least make it less annoying.

/And…that above bit is from 11/23 (shows you how well I’ve been doing updating) and I’m glad to report that the stretches/exercises have relieved about 91% of the pain!  For some reason it bothers me a lot driving in the van…something about how the seat hits the back of my leg really seems to set it off if I have to drive for longer than 10-15 minutes but I feel pretty confident I can get it to go away entirely.

Everything here is going swimmingly.  Eli is doing well and is as smart as a whip, which usually is really enjoyable but sometimes, the questions, you know? Constant questions. How does this work, why does this do that, etc. The other day driving home from soccer I had to field in depth questions about (1) evolution (how did a bird get to be a bird? did it just show up on the earth as a bird? what do you mean it used to be something else?) and then also (2) urban planning (how did they know to put houses here? did they put the electric poles up around the houses that were already here or were the poles first? what about the streets? how do they decide how long to make the blocks?)  I often say at work that I enjoy training people because it really reinforces that I know what I know but having an extremely inquisitive five year-old? Really points out HOW MUCH I REALLY AM GUESSING.  I answer a fair amount of questions with “let’s look that up when we get home” or “why don’t we google that?” (and I can hear my dad laughing from here but now I know THAT YOU JUST WEREN’T SURE) and then I also answer a good bit with “Let’s ask your dad about that one” because Andy will tell him.  Andy is really amazing at giving very complex explanations in a way that really holds Eli’s attention.  It’s kind of amazing and also funny that Andy didn’t decide to teach–he’s so good at explaining stuff in a way that people can comprehend.

Mr. Ben is doing just as well.  He is still a constant chatterbox and comprehending more day by day. He’s starting saying his own version of “cracker” and is getting fairly good at getting his point across to us. He still loves nothing more than to be outside and we take him on a lot of walks.  He looooooves animals and particularly dogs. We are watching our friends’ dog for the next week starting tomorrow so I’ll get a chance to see how he actually does with one in the house (no, I am not ready for one yet). Ben’s been catching his quota of daycare illnesses over the last few weeks–a respiratory bug, then a weird stomach bug that mostly killed his appetite and made for some NASTY diapers but left his mood intact, now another mild cold that is hard to tell if it’s a cold or teething–he’s drooling up a storm (soaking shirts, that’s how bad it’s been) but also has a super runny nose (clear). His mood has been mostly fine, if a little tired.  At this count, he has 11 teeth and usually will eat most of what you put in front of him although he’s definitely showing himself all around to be more particular than Eli was (or at least that I remember).

Both of them hit some kind of growth spurt two weeks ago because we had this weird 5 or 6 day stint where they were both eating nonstop–and I do mean pretty much nonstop, and Eli kept complaining that his legs and arms hurt–then all of the sudden their clothes didn’t fit.  For Ben, this isn’t as much of a problem–we have all of Eli’s hand me downs and so it’s fairly easy to size up.  For Eli, all of his 5T shirts suddenly hung above his wrists and his pants are fitting perfectly–which means he has about another week or two left in them. I’ve never seen him do such a noticeable spurt–really, in the course of a week, ALL of Eli’s shirts were really short on him–and I was not prepared. He went to school for a week with cold wrists and an easily exposed belly until today I got to the store to get him some 6/7 shirts and larger jeans. He had worn his 5T stuff for about the last 8 or 9 months so now that he has outgrown that, his wardrobe has significantly shrunk.  I gotta get on that.

We are gearing up for Christmas.  Is there nothing more fun than the holidays with little kids?  We have a gate around the Christmas tree because of Ben and his liking of smacking down ornaments but other than that, the house is festive. Andy ended up picking up an OT shift on Thanksgiving night so we had dinner early that day so he could go to work on time. We weren’t going to do the elf this year but Eli somehow remembered him and started asking about him when we were unpacking all of the Christmas stuff.  We went to cut a tree weekend before last and Will went with us.  It was a fun day, we went to the tree farm and they cut it down, then we all went for lunch and Will came over while we did ornaments and tree decorating and all that. He was also here on Thanksgiving and we had a great time.  At some point since he moved out he watched all of the Doctor Who series and I’m only on the 3rd season (of the new ones that started in 2006) so he watched some with me. It was nice to spend some time with him.

I’ve got a little bit of online shopping left then I have to hit the sack.  Good night!

 

 

Growing up is hard to do. (from Sept. 6th)

6 Sep

I would like to point out that I originally wrote this on Sept. 6th but was advised to hold off on posting it…I finally got the OK tonight.

 

Now I’m just playing with the design of the blog.  The problem is that I don’t want to pay for anything so I can only use the free blog designs and it doesn’t let me customize it like I want.  So cheap!  If I thought that more than 10 (and that’s being generous) people looked at this with any regularity, maybe, buuuutttt no.

What a long week.  Will’s birthday (and my dad’s! for which I will definitely NOT be winning daughter of the year because I forgot to call and REST ASSURED I am still beating myself up over that) was yesterday and just what a weird, depressing day. We had paid for Will’s last quarter in school since he had “forgotten” to apply for financial aid.  The fact that there was no aid wasn’t a big deal in itself, it was more that we wanted him to show he was invested in school and actually contribute some of his own resources to the effort. He paid for the first quarter himself and did reasonably well, so when we found out he had not applied for aid in time of course, we offered to pay for it.

In all honesty, I’m not really sure where we screwed up.  The quarter ended with nary a word from Will.  He’s had a part-time job at the popcorn place for a few months now but he had told me that business wasn’t great during the week so he had quite a few hours cut.  We didn’t bug him about grades.  I knew he was doing his music stuff (a large part making music for My Little Pony fansites, some not, but he’s never shown me the stuff that’s not Pony related) for the VAST majority of his time.  I knew the quarter had ended several weeks ago and there was no mention of grades.  Since maintaining good grades was a requirement of us continuing to fund his studies, I started bugging him about it a week ago.  And then five days ago.  And then four days ago.  And then I told him I knew the next quarter was starting soon and if he expected us to pay for the next one, we really needed to know how he was doing since he said he “wasn’t sure”.  He also said that he still “had not heard” from financial aid but he had put the application in.  I’m familiar with that process and it’s pretty cut and dried.

So two nights ago, he left for work (two hours before they closed and I commented on what a weird schedule that was) and said he would give me a printout of his grades when he got home.  Later that night, he texted Andy that he didn’t know his grades but knew they were bad and he had also gotten fired.  He said he was going to stay at his friend’s house while he sorted things out.  I was up early the next morning and he was in bed.  He slept until noon, he didn’t answer Andy’s many phone calls and texts, and Andy had to draw a line.  Will moved to his friend’s house for the time being.

I really love that kid but I think he’s got a bit of growing up to do.  It’s so hard because it goes against every parental (even step-parental) bone to give your kid the boot but he’s got some lessons to learn and he’s not going to learn them if we bail him out constantly.  He said he was fired because he “was five minutes late, twice”.  I responded that he knew they weren’t doing well and trying to cut hours, so why would he give them a reason to fire him?  He said, “Well, I’ve been late a bunch of times and they never did anything, so they’re just trying to get rid of me now.”

Let’s all bang ourselves against the head together, shall we?

I think the silver lining for me is that I have been that foolish.  I have bombed out of school and made really, really terrible decisions that have landed me in all sorts of really, really terrible places.  I’m fairly certain my parents were terrified at several points that I was going to end up in a gutter (or maybe not a gutter, but not achieving my potential, whatever that might be).  They forced me to tough it out and it really opened my eyes and taught me that I have to work for what I want.  I know I turned out okay (I THINK)  and I have confidence that Will will be okay, as well.  It’s just so horrible to have to force this upon a kid. Agggh.

Father’s Day 2013

16 Jun

We had a great day today.  I got to go for a 4 mile run this morning while Andy looked after the boys.  I asked if he didn’t want me to stay home so he could have some time off on Father’s Day and he remarked, “Why?  You need to run.  I’ll spend Father’s Day being a father.” Oh, so awesome!  I got home and they had had a fun morning in pjs and watching cartoons.  During afternoon naptime, I packed up the car and coolers and we went to Carkeek Park for a picnic.  Even Will went!

We took the little gas grill and good thing since the place was packed.  We found a nice open spot on the lawn and camped out.  Eli lasted about 10 minutes at the spot before he wanted to go play at the playground and the salmon slide.  We could see most of it from our spot and we let him go on his own.  He ended up meeting a nice 6 year old girl and they played together for the afternoon.  He was getting really too hard to watch–I would have had to follow them constantly since the salmon slide is on the other side of the bathrooms and they are blocked from our view so Andy and I decided to give him a little free reign.

He and the little girl had wandered off uphill into the woods at one point but I saw them and told them in no way, shape, or form is Eli to go into the woods (there are drop offs and lots of different trails to get lost on).  Eli and the girl agreed, we set a boundary, and let them go on their own.  I did sneak up a few times to see where they were and they were always within the area we set for them.  Eli and I have had a lot of talks about strangers and how to stay safe so we thought it would be good to give him a little freedom (although I did sneak up a few times, he’s still FOUR).  He did really well with it.  I feel like four is too young for a lot of stuff but he is a pretty responsible four and I felt like it was okay to let him out of my sight for a little bit at a time.  It made me nervous but I didn’t want him to think I needed to watch him like a hawk.  So good.  I feel like I did well today in the “teaching your kid to be independent” department.

I was uploading pictures from today and found a few pictures from Decemberish from my phone I never uploaded as well as a few videos.  So I put those up so the flickr will be a bit out of sync with everything else.

Everybody is doing well.  It seems Will likely has a job at a specialty popcorn store in Ballard so he will be PT there and taking 3 classes in school.  HOPEFULLY I will get a job so we will actually be able to pay for Ben’s childcare since he’s supposed to start in August.

The main thing going on right now is the wedding planning.  I AM REALLY HOPING ANDY TOLD YOU, SUE AND ROBERT.  It’s not going to be much of anything, I emailed the JOP and asked for Thursday, July 25th so they should call me in the next few days to schedule it.  We were going to have a small reception here the next day but I’m wondering how well that will work with how many people might come.  We can do 15-20 in the house, no problem.  Any more than that and well, problem.  Our main goal is to keep it small since things are tight and really, we have two kids now so it’s not like this is a big surprise.  We’ve felt married for years now.  I’m still EXCITED to actually get married but I’m just not really a wedding sort of gal.  We’ve thrown about ideas for what kind of party to have, we were thinking a Hawaiian themed party (because if I had a lot of money we’d get married in Kauai) and we could dig a big pit and roast a pig.  Guests would have to bring Hawaiian themed sides/drinks/desserts and I think it would be a lot of fun.

So it’s getting worked out.  We have to get married before August 7th since that’s when our license expires (and we lose our $64, ahhh, romance is not dead) so as long as the judge okays the 25th, I’ll be sending out invitations for the party shortly.  We are saying that anyone who wants to come to the courthouse is of course welcome but really we want people there for the party.  I have so much planning and pinteresting to do!

Ok, it’s pretty late for the night and I am dead tired.  Stick a fork in me, I’m done.  Those videos are taking forever to upload so I will try to get them up tomorrow.

The days are long and the computer is far away

1 May

But luckily I’ve been doing well recording/uploading video (maybe not the most exciting video ever):

Eli and Ben hanging out

Teeth!

Eli at soccer class

Ben loves the bath

I finished the woodworking class tonight with a poorly assembled toolbox.  I think I would have had it finished much more nicely had he not made us assemble it to drill the pilot holes (I had everything looking pretty nice at that point), take it apart and put glue on it, then put the screws in.  Once the glue was on it there wasn’t a long time before you couldn’t make adjustments to make it even anymore and so it’s a little off.  Oh well, that’s why we have sanders, right?  Right.

Eli is starting to make some good friends at Small Faces and the awesome part of that is that they all live within two blocks of us–today Mariana (mom) picked up her daughter (Sadie) and Eli at Small Faces and Eli went over there to play for two hours then I walked less than a block and picked him up.  Saturday evening we have a birthday party at a kid’s house around the block and next week Sadie is coming over here.  He’s having a big week–play dates, tomorrow a zoo field trip with Berry Patch, Friday a Children’s Theatre field trip with Small Faces, and Lolly and Pop will also be in town tomorrow!  To say he is excited about this week is an understatement.

Ben is great.  He’s gotten into the solid foods idea and now will routinely eat two jars of food and also a full bottle after that.  I really should get it together and make huge batches of solid food or he’s going to bankrupt us.  He’s not yet crawling but he’s almost there.  He just needs to figure out how to push over his leg and he’ll be there.  He sits and then reaches sideways as if to crawl but can’t seem to get that leg out of the way and behind him.  Not too long now, I think.  He’s nine months today–I can’t believe he’s already nine months!  Andy and I realized this morning that Eli is closer to 5 than 4–where does the time go?  My little boys are getting so big.  But hey, that just means we can start going on road trips and vacations!  I’m pretty excited about that.

Will is doing well in school and has been doing a lot of work for us in lieu of a paying job.  He mows weekly, weeds, cleans, etc.  It’s been really helpful although I doubt he’s too happy about it.  I asked him the other day if he was really looking hard for a job on a scale of one to ten and he said “three” so there you go.  Hopefully he will take more classes next quarter.

We bought a bike for me the other day since my back continues to give me a lot of trouble.  This is the third day in a row that it hasn’t really bothered me at all and I am EXCITED.  I ran today but stopped at two miles and did my PT exercises and that was it.  I really wanted to run longer but I was afraid to overdo it.  Also, I need to alternate with the bike so my exercise isn’t always impact.  We got a <a href=”http://www.rei.com/product/774425/novara-afterburner-single-speed-trailer-bike”&gt; trailer bike </a> for Eli so he can go on longer rides with me.  We did NOT pay that for the bike, I bought it off Craigslist for way, way cheaper.  We are also going to get a <a href=”http://www.rei.com/product/798372/burley-bee-bike-trailer”&gt; trailer </a> so Ben can ride along and I am currently haggling (or waiting to hear back about my haggle) from someone on Craigslist about that.

Ok, it’s late and I’m tired.  All for now!

Video

Learning to talk

7 Apr

Practicing our words and sounds:

One day I will tell him the story of Narcissus:

Making the most with what we have:

What’s going on lately:

After many months of no teeth, Ben got the bottom two on March 16th.  Andy was conveniently out of town for the weekend fencing so the teething fun was all mine!  Luckily Ben didn’t really have any problems that a dose of motrin couldn’t fix.   He is sleeping on his belly in the bed most of the time lately although he seems to have completely lost the ability to roll front to back.  He’s getting better at rolling back to front but then he’s just stuck like a bug on it’s back.  He’ll figure it out again sooner or later.

We are giving him more solid foods.  He’s very different from Eli in that Eli would gobble up pretty much anything you put in front of him and would often try to grab the spoon in order to feed himself faster.  Sharron (the woman who used to watch Eli) came over last week to sit Ben so I could go to a training.  She fed him some solid food for lunch and her description is pretty apt:  “It’s like watching grass grow”.  He’s a sloooooow eater, easily distracted, and just doesn’t really seem to crazy about foods in general.  The only ones he really seems to like so far are oatmeal with fruit, green beans, and prunes.  If I am patient and wait wait wait for him to get about halfway through a jar, then he seems to perk up and will usually finish the rest at normal speed.  It’s probably about a 30 minute ordeal for one jar.

We went to Vancouver, WA this weekend (it’s sort of like Bossier for Shreveport–right across the Columbia River) to stay with June and Kristen since they were having a party for Jordan who turned one.  Andy stayed here to get some handyman stuff done around the house without having to worry about noise and naptimes and interruptions from a 4 year old who really wants to “help”.  I took the boys for the first road trip in the van and it went great.  Both boys were absolute champs in the car.  We had to stop once on the way down to give Ben a bottle and a change at a rest stop but the rest was super easy.  We had a very fun weekend and it was fun to see them again.  It was funny to see that Ben at 8 months is taller than Jordan (12 months) and Nicholas (17 months).  I really am beginning to thing he’s going to be taller than Eli.

It’s going to be a while before any crawling.  He’s now doing that big pushup with straight arms–once he figures out how to get his knees under him at the same time then it won’t be long at all.  If he’s like Eli, he’ll take his time.  His head is looking a LOT better.  It’s veeeery hard to see the flat spot now because it is so much smaller and even the front of his head has rounded out a lot which I hadn’t really noticed before.  He’s got quite an attractive nogging now.  He goes in for a check up in two weeks so hopefully they will give us some idea of how much longer.  Hopefully they will let him not wear it during the day but only for naps and overnight.  It’s so funny when we take it off–we forget what he looks like without it.  He’s a cute kid!

He continues to be one mellow guy, content to sit back and observe everything, very much like his brother as a baby.  When he’s upset he will general crab talk at you and only really cries when he is hurt or he’s really hungry.  Even then usually Eli can sing to him and he’ll forget his pain/hunger in order to laugh at big brother.  Eli is showing more interest in Ben but not yet at the point where he allows Ben to touch his toys (“He’ll drool on them and give me his germs” says the kid who licks walls in stores because he knows it makes me mad).  However, if Ben is hurt or really upset, he is there in a flash and will hug, kiss, and sing to him until he calms down.  Heart. Exploding.  Gah.

He sleeps great which I love.  He usually sleeps 7-7:30 until 6:30 then he gets a bottle and he’ll go back down for another hour or two.  I put Eli’s breakfast and milk in the fridge the night before.  When he wakes up he gets himself dressed then will come wake me up to show me he’s all dressed.  Then he gets his LeapPad and sits in the recliner playing games on it while he eats his breakfast.  I get to sleep in another 45 minutes or so!  Hurray!  I know it’s not going to last long–I doubt I’ll be able to get that extra hour or two from Ben for much longer but it is nice for now.  Also, Eli likes feeling like a big boy since he gets himself up and ready.

Eli is the friendliest kid ever.  He makes friends wherever he goes.  We were in the dig pit at the Portland Children’s Museum this morning and in 5 minutes he had several playmates.  He says hello to everyone on the street when we walk to and from school and is interested in everything.  The new task before him is learning to tie his shoes.  He’s excited to have new soccer shoes but gets frustrated trying to tie them.  We’re taking it slow.  He wants a Power Ranger action figure and it costs about $10.  So for the last three weeks he has been emptying the silverware, putting up his laundry, and dusting all the furniture for an allowance.  Occasionally he will suggest extra chores he can do for extra money.  He’s got $7.64 saved up now.  He’s learning about money and he’s (hopefully) learning that you have to earn it and not just expect it to be handed to you.  I offered to pay the rest once he saved up $6 but he declined and said he wanted to pay for all of it himself.

I’m doing well.  My back continues to be an issue but I’m going to PT for it.  They don’t want to do a MRI unless it’s still hurting in a month and frankly, I’d rather not do a MRI at all.  If something is messed up, I don’t want to know.  It’s not as if they can really fix it.  I’ll be fine sticking with PT. I did the Big Climb a few weeks ago (1,311 stairs, tallest building in Seattle) and it was fine.  I didn’t really train at all and my time was 18 minutes and change.  I have Beat the Bridge in May (5 miles) and I’m trying to find other stuff to do although I’m supposed to be cutting down on running because it makes my back achy and also causes sciatica which I HATE.  I ran three miles the other day and it was a lot less painful than usual so I think the PT is helping.

When did I become 90?  When did I start talking about my aching back and sciatica?  Goodness.

We’ve gone gluten free and I LOVE it.  No heartburn, I sleep well.  Andy says since we’ve gone gluten free he noticed a big improvement in his ADD symptoms even when he’s not on meds.  We are switching Eli too and he’s loved everything we’ve given him so far except I wish they’d make a gluten free Goldfish or Cheddar Bunny.  There’s a company that makes EXCELLENT gf breads, muffins, cookies, waffles, bagels, pasta, etc.  so you really don’t miss out on anything.  Eli’s not showing any ADD signs but since his dad has it, I decided I’d rather go ahead and do what I can do with his diet.  It’s fine if he gets it, I’m not being judgy or anything, I just don’t want him to have to experience the negative attention first and THEN I make changes in his diet to improve things.  I don’t want him to think there’s something wrong with him.  I’d rather be able to do behaviorally what I can and if he ends up showing symptoms anyway, we’re not starting from ground zero of how to address it (I prefer medication only as a last last LAST resort).  Again, who knows if he’ll have it but gluten free is a pretty easy thing to do up here so what’s it going to hurt?

Andy is doing well.  He’s fencing a lot more.  He’s growing a mustache  and looks like a throwback from the 70s.  He won’t shave it off until he wins a fencing medal.  Needless to say, I’m letting him go twice a week now.  Next to Eli, Andy is about Ben’s favorite person ever.  I really hope Ben turns out to be a Daddy’s boy.  Of course Eli loves Andy but he’s much more attached to me, probably because he’s with me most of the time.  I really hope Ben is a total Daddy’s kid and worships him.  He would love that.

Will is doing okay.  As usual, we don’t know much.  He’s in school and says his grades are good.  He is also continuing to make and post a lot of fanfiction and music on the Brony websites.  He quit his job the other day with no notice to us.  Just got fed up with his boss and quit.  So it’s been a little rough here this week but any other details will have to come from Andy or Will.

Wow, sorry to end on a bit of a downer.  I’m about to put up some more pictures on flickr so check that out, okay?  As always, I will try to post more often on this but TWO KIDS + COMPUTER DOWNSTAIRS = MOM TOO TIRED TO WALK ALL THAT WAY AFTER THEY GO TO SLEEP.

 

 

Video catch up

5 Oct

Uhh…have I not posted a video since APRIL?  Or at the least I’ve missed categorizing it as such.  Going to just post these several and go back and edit as needed….

Rock star or something…close

Mr. Alligator (I could swear I posted this already but it’s not showing up)

Will’s SYSO performance

Ben smiling at 6 weeks (on command!)

9 Days

16 Aug

I had good intentions to post before this but things get away from you.  Everything here is going really well. My parents leave today to return home after a long stay and they will be sorely missed by all of us.

Ben has turned out to be a pretty delightful little guy. I am happy to say that my hospital experience this time around was really wonderful. We changed hospitals for this delivery since neither of us were happy where we were before and it was a great decision. Physically, my recovery has been ahundred times easier and that’s with a preschooler!  I think a lot of it was that (1) the hospital got us in/out quickly–we checked in at 7 AM Wednesday morning and we were home by 4 PM the next day.

And now it’s five days later.  Time gets away from you!  In any case, the labor was great.  And when I say great, I mean GREAT.  Since I didn’t have a long stay prior to Ben’s delivery, I wasn’t exhausted to start as I was last time.  Also, the “been there done that”-ednness of the situation helped quite a lot, I’m sure.  I think the MAIN thing that helped with this experience over last time really boils down to one BIG thing that I realized with this labor and delivery and here it is:

MY EPIDURAL WITH ELI DID NOT WORK.

I never realized that.  I knew it took the edge off the contractions but I could still feel a lot.  The staff this time kept remarking I must have a high pain tolerance (I don’t think I do) but the epidural this time vs. last time were like night and day.  Or like work and didn’t work.  Judging by this one, I would say the one with Eli wore off about an hour before I delivered him.  I wasn’t stoic about being in pain either–I pretty much sobbed and begged for help throughout the last hour or two with Eli because I hurt so much.  Although things progressed very quickly with Ben (I went from a 3 to an 8 in about 45 minutes and was pushing within an hour and a half), nothing ever hurt.  The contractions prior to the epidural hurt as much as I remember.  But the pushing part and the actual delivery?  Totally pain free!  I remember when they said that they could see his head and he’s almost here and I just looked at Andy, totally shocked about what was happening because I felt stinking great!  Then he was here and I was on cloud nine–although I was trying not to think about it too much, I had a little corner of my mind that was really dreading L&D this whole time and now it was over!

If I think about it too much, I get pretty mad at the staff of the previous hospital for never asking me about my pain level or checking things out with me once it was pretty clear that I was in a lot of pain.  Maybe they couldn’t have redone my epidural but even the knowledge that it wasn’t working would have been helpful to me since I kind of thought after that that I must be pretty wimpy to have lost it like that during delivery since I never really hear of other people just completely breaking down like that.  In any case, it’s all over and done so no point in dwelling on it.

We’re giving breastfeeding a go again and although it’s going better than it did with Eli, it’s not going great.  There were supply issues and concern over Ben’s 1 week weight gain that have been resolved by pretty much 24/7 constant nursing, then pumping, then bottle feeding.  During that period there have also been blisters, searing latch pain, and now the main problem is that my supply is fine but his latch is bad so he’s not actually transferring any milk, even after nursing for an hour or so.  We’ve had one lactation consultant come to the house, four follow up phone calls with her, and now I’m going to a group tomorrow where another consultant is supposed to help me fix his latch.  If they can’t fix it during group, we have to have the first consultant come back to the house for an individual meeting.  During all of this I have to nurse on demand, then once Ben’s done feeding I have to pump and then give him a bottle since he’s always hungry after he nurses.

Needless to say, I’m pretty pooped.  I’m getting plenty of sleep thanks to Andy and he’s been as great as ever about taking his fair share (and then some) of baby duty to allow me rest so even though it’s been hard, I feel pretty good about things.  We had a long talk and agreed I will give this a go until we get to a month and then if things aren’t going better with nursing (mostly meaning I’m not hurting all the time AND having to pump constantly) then I will decide whether or not to quit.  I think if I give things a month then I will feel like I gave it a fair shot and will be making an educated decision.  I would like for it to work out but I’m also ready to just enjoy my baby already and all of this kind of interferes with that!  It’ll work out one way or another, I have one awesome kid who was formula fed as proof of that.

Eli is adjusting pretty well.  The first day home was rough but now he mostly seems back to normal.  At least it seems that way–3 1/2 is such a rough age behavior-wise as it is, it’s hard to say if any acting out is baby related or just general 3 1/2 related stuff.  He certainly doesn’t ever seem to have a problem with Ben and usually will ask to hold him or he’ll come give him a kiss.  He likes helping me out when I’m nursing (mostly–every once in a while I get an “I’m busy!” when I ask him to grab something for me but they don’t happen too often) and he takes great pride in being a champion back patter for burping Ben.  He likes tickling Ben’s toes and stroking his cheek and thinks it’s pretty darn cool that now he is a big brother just like Bubba.

Will got home from his OC summer tour a few days ago and seems about the same although much tanner and thin.  We’re working on fattening him back up a little.  He plans to go to the community college to enroll in their 2 yr UW transfer program and go back to work PT at the lab as soon as he can.  That’s about all I know about Will, you’ll have to check with Andy for the details.  It seems like he had a really great time on tour–we took him to Azteca his first night back and let him stuff himself silly and I think that was appreciated.

I did put up new pictures last week.  I am going to try to get better about those.  Andy is home with me until Friday then he works 4 days through the weekend so I’ll have my first dose of Eli and Ben from Saturday-Monday  (I’m picking up the extra Friday at Berry Patch because I’m scared!) and then he’s off with us through Labor Day when Eli starts Small Faces.  I’m so thankful he’s been able to be home with me, it has made a HUGE HUGE difference in how well I have been able to adjust to this both mentally and physically.

I’ll be happy once we are out of the newborn stage.  Ben is super cute and a sweetie but man, I do not ever miss the whole “will he or won’t he and if he does, how long?” stage of newborn sleep.  He’s been great so far, a decent enough fellow to take mostly longish naps of 2-4 hours in duration with some curveball one hour naps here and there for interest.  We’re working on transitioning him out of his nocturnal nature into a day creature like the rest of us and we’ll get there eventually.  Again, having been through this once makes it all easier to bear since I know eventually he will sleep longer and the rest of my life won’t revolve around sleep deprivation and feedings.  I remind myself frequently that this will pass all too quickly and since Ben is it for us, I try to enjoy all the newborn things since I’ll never have one again.  Still won’t miss the sleep stuff, though 🙂

Only three more weeks until I can start running!  So excited!