Sunday, September 30, 2007

One Month Photo Shoot!

Tomorrow Ardyn is one month. I have learned lots of things in my first month of motherhood. First of all, if the burp rag isn't within reach, she will spit up, even if she hasn't spit up in two days. If you move her diaper out from under her and don't put the next one immediately under her, she will pee. Up to her armpits. If you take the sheets off the bed to wash and decide to sit there and breastfeed her, she will have her first ever scientifically astounding "escape poo" and you will feel mustard yellow baby poop running down your side and your thigh and onto the $45 waterproof mattress pad that you bought to cover your new $1200 King sized Sealy Posturpedic... "in case your water broke on it" and you realize that not only is this irony at it's finest... but that you literally came THIS CLOSE to washing the mattress pad along with the sheets, at which point the bed would have been temptingly naked and perhaps soiled beyond belief... not to mention your "warranty voided." (that was today's lesson.)

I also learned that the second you tell someone she slept through the night, she will go back to eating every 3 hours. The second you decide that you could take a little nap with her and it's probably okay for her to cuddle up with that soft blankie, you wake up to her with the entire blanket pulled up over her head and feel HORRIBLE and guilty and like the worst mother on the face of the earth.

And the number one lesson that I have learned, despite everything we talked about and everything I thought... Just like every single good mother I know, While she may physically and legally be HALF mine, Responsibility wise she is easily 85-90% mine. No matter how much your husband promised and tried to do "his half," What you are really getting is like 10%. If you are lucky, 20%. Even at his best, he seems to be giving 20% and thinking that he's giving 50%. How DOES this happen? As soon as the first two weeks of novelty wore off, I am the mom that can't poop, can't eat, forgets to brush her teeth, never puts on clothes, and has ten thousand hald washed loads of laundry in the basement because she can't spend enough time down there to get anything pre-treated (poop!), washed, dried, and folded. Yeah. That's me. Please don't come visit me. At least once a day, as I am sitting on the couch in my underwear (literally) with my boob in my daughter's mouth, my hair in the messiest ponytail ever (it looks like I put it in a ponytail four days ago... all the time!) and the TV remote and burp cloth poised within reach... I think to myself "If some poor soul decides to drop by and come to my front door right now, I would be so embarrassed for them." Ahhhh.

I discovered that even though I really want to poop, (okay, I don't, but I don't have a choice, due to the Colace I take daily to avoid aggravating the post-partum hemorrhoid) as soon as I have to, it's like the entire planet clears of life, and I am forced to do everything with her either screaming in another room because she got put down (translation=end of the freaking world) or with her riding shotgun in the sling while I try not to cry as the undercarriage feels like it's going to rip apart again. (really it's not that bad anymore... thanks Colace!) Maybe they will send me a free lifetime supply.

And if I want to eat, I have to put her in the sling so that I can make something, and so that I can eat. I am hoping that she will soon become more independent, as she gets older and better at entertaining herself and enjoying toys. I have tried putting her down and letting her cry, but she gets to the point of serious meltdown. Then she will be even MORE attached to me the rest of the day, in case I try to put her down again. there are certain times of day that she is more independent. Anytime before about 1pm. She wakes up happy. She stays happy while I eat breakfast (if I remember) and also will sit in the bouncy seat while I take a shower or bath, and usually lets me dry my hair. That's my favorite time of day. She smiles and coos and is all around just fun. Silly faces. Doesn't mind if I put her down and do some laundry, or pick up around the house, and if I put her in the sling she will really hang out with me.

Nights and afternoons aren't bad, she just has more frequent feedings, more frequent meltdowns, and wants to be held constantly, even when she's sleeping. The "hold me while I am sleeping" has gotten worse in the past couple of days. I think it's the result of her recent growth spurt. Luckily there seems to be more milk now, so her clustered feedings are back to happening at night.

Tonight I (again) had to tell Evan that I really could use a second to myself. Just a little bit. Why can't he hold her just because... and why do I constantly have to ASK him to hold her, when initially he was constantly offering or asking to hold her? Argh. Why is it that he can disappear to the basement for HOURS and I can't even poop for 5 minutes by myself? Argh. I wonder how he would feel to have to ask someone else's permission to go to the bathroom. Tonight my concern is being able to get her to sleep long enough for me to get the sheets and mattress protector finished washing and drying, and make the bed, before we go to sleep for the night.

On top of all this, the stupid town has to have a boil order so that it's even more difficult to do dishes and sterilize pacifiers and breast pump parts. That's another thing... I have been trying to pump once a day so that I can get a stock of milk frozen, and start Evan giving her one bottle a day... to get her accustomed to it. But the most annoying thing is that I can't even PUMP without holding her. So now I use my 8 octopus arms to hold her body, her head, the breast she's feeding from... AND the breast pump and the other breast... while I am pumping. So she eats and I pump simultaneously. Of course the past 3 days I haven't pumped as she is still using up everything in the morning as a result of her growth spurt and increasing my supply. Otherwise I was washing the pump in super hot soapy water, and then sterilizing it for extra long because of the boil order. And we didn't even KNOW there was a boil order until we tried to brush our teeth one morning and the water came out yellow. Then when Evan went to Casey's he saw a sign for boil order. I hate that there's no way to notify us, unless we listen to the local AM radio (riiiiight. We are so into AM radio around here.)

So tomorrow we take Ardyn for her hearing test (FINALLY the hospital got their machine fixed) and to weigh her. I wish my hotsling was going to be here tomorrow instead of Tuesday. Then I could wear her to the hospital instead of lugging the carseat. I guess I could wear the ring sling... but she spit up on it twice today and I haven't even begun to think of washing it let alone figuring out how to get it back into ring format again! Jeez!

I'm hoping that Evan will hold her more this week, so that I can do fun things like go to the bathroom and load the dishwasher. Or even better, maybe I can paint my toenails! And since she's one month, I can instruct him to give her a bottle if she gets hungry during my toenail painting. Although I am sure I could breastfeed and paint my toenails at the same time, LOL.

As I type this I am watching what appears to be an all night marathon of LA Ink, and Pixie is crying because she has to have her tonsils out and can't deal with taking a week off work. Um. Yeah. A week off work is a real shame. I am trying to figure out how I am going to get out of work forever. LOL. Although I am out until mid December.

So this entire weekend, we have tried to go out to eat. Evan seems to be anti-"wife leaving the house to have fun" although he would choke me if he thought that I thought that. It's just that he wants to always go get food and bring it here and doesn't ever want to take Ardyn and I out to eat. Last weekend we were supposed to go out on Saturday with my parents but my dad was sick. Friday night he promised we would go out to eat but he didn't get home till almost 8 and by then Ardyn and I were both so tired that we were doing a tandem nap and nurse session in bed. We ended up not going anywhere. Again. Last night we had plans to go to Peru and get Ardyn's first photos taken... and then I had a book to pick up that I had ordered, wanted foundation from Bare Escentials that I had run out of, and wanted to get another sleep bra (nursing) from Target- followed by supper.

Of course, after a 1 hour turned 2.5 hour photo session (ack) and Evan acting like we needed to leave and go home instead of picking up the book that I had ordered almost two weeks ago and getting foundation that I needed... I convinced him that we would be fine. He seems to think that there is too much of a risk of her getting upset in public. So we are quarantined to home. We meaning Ardyn and her milk supply... not Ardyn's dad. So when we left the mall, I breastfed her in the car, and I requested that we eat at Applebees while Evan tried to convince me that we needed to go through a drive through at Arby's or Steak and Shake (fancy!) and then sat in the front seat cranky and complaining of a headache. I also had a headache, but since I now need to fit that Martyr Mother Profile, and since it's easier to shut my mouth and listen to him complain... I gave him my last two Ibuprofen from the diaper bag and we went to the Arby's drive through as Ardyn screamed from her car seat and I sat in the backseat with her and tried to console her. So my headache kept getting worse as she screamed and before we even got to Arby's she was asleep. And Applebee's was already behind us and it was ANOTHER night of failed attempt to go out to eat.

Well, she's now asleep (finally!) and lying down without me holding her (Finally!) and so I think I will sneak down and dry the mattress pad..... Be right Back....

Okay... so now I am making myself a list of things that I need to accomplish, and will show it to Evan to see if there is anything he can do, or if he can watch her while I accomplish something... and this will hopefully help me to get more things done with the few minutes I do have. Since I am tired enough that my brain has stopped functioning.

So tomorrow is one month. And all of the above is happening. And you know what... it is still worth it. And you wanna know why?

Ardyn with Mom
Best gift ever
Sweet Little Girl

Yep... that's why. See the rest of the photo shoot HERE.

Saturday, September 29, 2007


Friday Fiver:

1. Do you dance?
In private. At some weddings (Evan won't dance with me. We only danced once at our own wedding reception.) Whether or not I am a good dancer (more likely not) I still like to dance. Alot. When I was in my early 20's we used to go out in groups and dance at the bar. Evan hated to dance so I would dance with all the other guys I was friends with. Josh. Chris. Even Tim and Shad. The Wyanet Crew. Josh was my dance partner. We had tons of fun. I haven't danced really since the wedding reception when I danced with the girls, and with Clint and Cody, who played me Gin and Juice by the Gourds, and Cody played me Brass Monkey because I LOOOOOVE the Beastie Boys and that was a song that he remembers me listening to back in the day when I used to let him cruise around with me.

2. Would you consider yourself religious?
Yes. I was raised Lutheran. I have my own beliefs and enjoy Neal Donald Walsh's Concepts... although I don't "follow" anyone or any organized religion. I know what I believe. Evan is not religious and this used to be a big hot spot for us, but now we usually talk about religion only in forms of the controversy, etc.

3. Do you talk about politics?
Honestly, this is an area that Evan wants to talk about more than I do. I feel completely uneducated about lots of political issues. I don't feel like any politicians can be trusted, so I have issues with taking sides. I do have a soft spot for Barack Obama. I am reading his first book now. I just identify with him. He's as much of a real person as I have seen in politics for a long time and I really respect that. He's very well spoken and well versed and I enjoy listening to him.

4. When is the last time you asked for forgiveness?
Wow. Probably while pregnant. Although I think I asked my midwife and the nurses to forgive me after labor, for my evil behavior.

5. Friday fill-in:
I’m holding out for a Dairy Queen Lime Slushy (Arctic Rush or whatever they call them.)


So tonight I just about had a heart attack. I was placing an order on the Chadwick's Website and it's all quiet and I am sitting here watching the news at 1am, baby is sleeping... all is silent, dog sleeping next to me on the couch... and I hear this LOUD voice... when I place my order they tried to get me to complete some "special offer" and they had sound with someone announcing the offer to me out loud, and my laptop's volume was turned all the way up from a voicemail I listened to several hours ago. Damn! Why do they have to do that?

Yesterday I got my birthday money from my mom, for some clothes, so I did some shopping recently. I got a pantsuit for $24.99 and a corduroy jacket for $24.99 from Chadwicks, and ordered several nursing shirts and washable breast pads from Motherwear today. I placed my Motherwear order just after 10am today and it shipped after lunch via UPS! Holy crap that's impressive. So Two Thumbs up to Motherwear and Hotslings for their fast shipping! Wow! I got three v-neck t-shirts with double front nursing layers... two of them long sleeved, and a grey hoodie, and a pinkish colored sweatshirt top with a white t-shirt attached underneath, and 5-pair of contoured washable breast pads, and a little pink zippered carry case that separates wet and dry breast pads. I right now use one set of pads a day, that translates to a box a month, and after a year of breastfeeding that is $120 worth of disposable pads and 720 disposable pads in a landfill because of me. That doesn't seem right. So for less than $20, I can have 5 pair of washable pads and hopefully if they do the job, I will do my part for the environment and also save some cash. I have heard mixed results about the washable pads, especially when it comes to how bad you leak and if they show under your shirt or cause you to leak through. I don't leak much, and sometimes not at all, so I hope they work for me.

I should totally be in bed, but I am tryin to get some laundry done. Tomorrow we have an appointment at Sears Portrait Studio for Ardyn's first pictures, she will be 1 month on Monday... so it's time we get this done. Problem is most of her clothes are still wayyyy too big... so it looks like they will mostly be naked baby pictures... and I think we will take her blue dress and maybe a onesie and her one pair of jeans... and her new pink shoes. I don't know. Wish me luck that she is happy during picture time and not fussy and screaming. She was pretty good today, but she did eat alot... but luckily she slept for longer stretches. I have discovered that it is better if I wake her up when It's about the time she will get up on her own soon (make sense?) because she's better off waking up when she's still happy and eating just before she's starving, than waking up pissed off and then eating. I can always tell when she's close to waking up, so now I am trying to just go get her and feed her awake... it seems to make a huge difference in her attitude.

Today we went to a friend's yard sale in Sheffield. Their townwide sales are tomorrow. I got an entire garbage bag full of girls clothes for $17. There was some cute stuff, my favorites were the basics. Lots of colored turtleneck onesies, long sleeved and very clean. There were plenty of summer clothes too, but they were all not the right size for when she will be wearing summer clothes. Mom held her while I looked through the stacks of clothes. I bought quite a few cute onesies that were mostly solid colored or stripes. I have discovered that onesies and pants are my favorite outfits for comfort and cuteness and they will be great for play once she reaches that age.

Tonight Evan made us Steak Stir Fry at my request for more veggies in our diet. It was delicious and I loved every bite. We ended up having our first family meal... as the second half of my supper I ate while breastfeeding... so all three of us were at the dining room table. That made us laugh.

Here's hoping for better sleep tonight, as she was awake from 3:30am till 6am today. That was rough! And she slept till 9 and then till 1pm, but I got up with her at 9, fed her, and by 10 when she went back to sleep, I got up and got stuff accomplished so that we could make the yard sale in decent time. I took a shower and talked to work. My extra 30-day leave was approved, so I don't have to go back to work until mid December. YAY! Well, it's off to dreamland for me, it's almost 1:30am. Sweet Dreams!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Growth Spurt!

Ardyn is back to the eating every hour or two. Ack. Must be having a growth spurt and trying to build my milk supply. So that means lots of waking up in the night to change diapers and feed her, and plenty of feeding during the day. Today when I put a shirt on I regretted it because I spent the entire day feeding her. I did get in a couple of naps, but it's hard because she only naps for 20 minutes to an hour now, because she keeps waking up to eat.

Tonight I watched the Season Premiere of Grey's Anatomy and I Tivo'd My Name is Earl. Evan and I took a walk with Ardyn in the stroller tonight. Of course all night she did nothing but eat pretty constantly. I reheated some Corned Beef Casserole that my mom brought over last week and we had frozen. In the time that it took me to eat it, She had an intense meltdown, but I can't hold her and eat something that is so hot, I needed two hands, and she was NOT cooperating. It's too bad a baby doesn't understand that parents need to eat too. She did the curdling screaming cry while I shoveled in my food. Eventually she gave up, which surprised me, because it was pretty intense. But I had to eat something, it was 10:15 for god's sakes! So I fed her straight from 9 until 10pm, alternating sides, and from 10:30 till 11, alternating sides again. FINALLY I was able to change her diaper, put her in the sleep sack and swaddle her, and feed her a bit more and she finally went to sleep. Whew. I did some reading on kellymom and LaLeche League, and another website.... all about growth spurts. Sounds like I am doing all that I am supposed to be, and explains why I am so thirsty today, and why by 1pm I was so starving.

I am trying to work on doing something while breastfeeding that feels like it's for me. Since I can't reach my toes to paint them with a kid on my boob (ha ha) I am trying to perfect the one handed book reading skill. Turning the page one handed is not easy for me, but I am doing okay. Today I just ready some breastfeeding books and magazines. I also got some magazines read while we waited for the bathtub to fill. Speaking of which, we had a major diaper blowout this morning. Our first major blowout. I had changed her like 4 times overnight, but in her last sleeping stretch, I heard her poop, and when I went to change her, it had escaped her diaper and gone UP her back, and while changing her she got it between her toes and on her leg. LOL. Luckily we were "getting up" for the day and it didn't happen at like 4am.... so after wiping her down with wipes, we filled the tub and scrubbed her clean.

Tonight I also watched an episode of Throwdown on Food network, that Evan had Tivo'd and wanted me to watch. It was a macaroni and cheese throwdown where he took on Delilah (best macaroni and cheese in the USA.) It made me want macaroni and cheese, but we didn't have any. Bummer.

I bought a hotsling yesterday and will buy some more nursing shirts from Motherwear. Mom gave me birthday money! I have my ring sling, but I don't like how she sways back and forth and isn't tight to my body. It makes me a little nervous to do anything and I feel like I am holding one hand on her all the time. Plus she is lying down too much and I can't correct it. I could probably tighten it up a bit but it's such a pain to have to adjust. I do love the carrier that Amy bought us for the baby shower, and I have used it once, but she is still a bit small for it. She can stay in it but her head flops a bit too much when she falls asleep... and that's pretty much immediately. I like that the hotsling is like my ring sling but has stretch to it and no ring. If it arrives and I don't like it, I can always return it. I ordered a cool black and white pattern that looks like this.... What is awesome is that it shipped today. Immediately. I am so used to being frustrated by Target lately, and the 3-4 days it takes to ship something. Especially when they take forever for it to arrive, and their tracking system is all messed up and doesn't show when it will actually be delivered, so I have to login to target, copy the tracking number, go to the UPS website, and track the stupid package for the real lowdown on where it is and when it will get here. It is so refreshing to have something ship immediately and arrive in a respectable and flattering amount of time.

Well, here's to hoping that she sleeps longer stretches tonight after all that feeding.... but something tells me that's just wishful thinking. Wish me luck! And patience. And sanity!

Hopefully I can tear myself away from repeats of scrubs and go to BED!! It's almost like I hate to lie down because I know my sleep will be SO short it's almost like I feel better just staying awake. Crazy.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007


Tonight I am really tired. I should be in bed right now! Soon. Soon.

We connected the co-sleeper to the bed tonight. Last night we made the migration to co-sleeper, and it worked well. The only thing I didn't like (and it isn't the co-sleeper's fault) is that she is a scooter and she can almost roll herself onto her stomach (because the mattress is so firm in it) and she can scoot herself so that her face is pressed up against the side. So until the sleep positioner arrives, I put her foam contour pillow into the co-sleeper and use it as a sleep positioner, since it is so firm. It keeps her on her side and prevents her from blocking her nose and mouth. She slept fairly well. She didn't get to sleep till just after 1 and I didn't get to sleep till almost 2am... but we did okay.

Today was busy. We got ready to go and Ardyn wore her first pair of shoes today! They are so cute and soft and she LOVED them. As soon as I put one on, here eyes got big and wide and she looked at me like "what are those?!" and then when I stood her up and her feet made contact with a surface, she was like "WHOA!" and stood up tall and looked wide-eyed at me. Shoes!

We were scheduled to visit Grandma Johnson today but when we got to her house she wasn't home. We left a note and then went off to visit Aunt Liz in Mineral instead, followed by Grandma Deb and Great Grandparents on the Rodgers side. It was nice to be at mom's, as always. She holds Ardyn unless I am feeding or changing her, and I have TWO FREE ARMS! Yay! By the time we got done with all our afternoon and evening visits, it was after 7 when we got home. Evan and I ordered Casey's pizza and Evan cleaned the dog kennels, then took the dogs for an R-I-D-E (we have to spell it or they go CRAZY) and put the seat down in the back of the explorer so they would have the entire back to roam in. They loved it.

I watched the pilot episode of "Dirty Sexy Money" and actually really enjoyed it. I boycotted the Grey's Anatomy Spin-Off because I just didn't feel like getting attached to another show and honestly I wasn't all that thrilled with the episode that we saw last year (that was Technically a Grey's episode.) Besides that I sat down to get an order together from Motherwear and discovered that the $30 shirt that I bought when I was pregnant, that didn't work out, had to be returned in 60 days, and because I bought it the beginning of July when I was pregnant, and couldn't really TELL if it would fit when I wasn't pregnant, It's now too late to return it. Ugh. So I emailed them and let them know what happened and asked them to make an exception and allow me to exchange it and place another $100 order. I wonder what they will say. I have never washed or worn it, it's in the plastic and I have my receipt. Bummer.

My back hurts tonight, and it may be because I am tired.

I need to do my face treatment and get to bed! Take Care!

Best Actress in a Mini-Series

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Bubbles and Bathing Beauties

Tuesday. This morning was a little rough. Ardyn was up till 1:30 last night. We had her last feeding around 11, and swaddled her all up and lay down to sleep like every night, but she was fussy and not happy. I was getting more tired each second that I lay there in bed, and she seemed to be getting LESS tired. I tried cuddling with her and even that didn't help. I was so glad when she fell asleep!

She spent part of her morning happy, but a larger part of it fussy. I could get her to sleep, but only if I was holding her. I rocked her to sleep around noon, and put her in her crib, where she slept for about 12 minutes. I got the new co-sleeper about 70% setup... and then she was awake again. Then she fussed for a while and eventually I went and lay down in bed and tried her in the co-sleeper. That didn't work. I ended up cuddling with her and around 1pm she started to get sleepy and I was ready for a nap. Every time she would fall asleep, when I would try to move her she would wake up. Argh. At 1:20 she was officially asleep. I moved her to the co-sleeper, and she slept... and so did I, for exactly 21 minutes. Then she woke up to poop. Fabulous. I was so frustrated! Then I changed her diaper and transferred her to the bouncy seat while I filled the bathtub. I took a bath and Evan handed her in to me. She LOVED the bathtub with mom! (several photos of the tub bath on Flickr- my friends and family can see them.) She was thrilled. It was a nice experience, and she smiled and looked at me all wide eyed. She wasn't used to that feeling of weightlessness and the water being that deep. She cried when we took her out, she liked it so much. I handed her out to Evan and he dried and diapered her while I finished bathing myself. I think we will do that more often, if Evan is home and she has had her dirty diaper beforehand. I'd like to TRY To avoid her pooping on me and in the tub.

I am incredibly happy with the co-sleeper already, and we haven't even gotten to use it overnight yet. She napped from 3:30-5:45 and is napping again in the co-sleeper. One thing I have noticed is that she scoots. She scoots until her face is pressed into the side, and always the side against the bed. The other side is mesh... but the side she decides to plant her face against is the side against the bed. So tonight I bought a Sassy sleep positioner on eBay for half the price of a new one. By the time I paid shipping, it ended up being exactly the same as a new one, but still cheaper because once you add shipping to a new one it's about $13.00, and I paid less than $10. It's got excellent reviews, because it converts from a back positioner to a side positioner, and Ardyn is definitely a side sleeper. And a scooter. I hope it gets here soon. I have bought from the same seller in the past, and that is where I got the auto mirror that I can't get to work. Strange coincidence, no? Since I just bought a new auto mirror? LOL.

I like that the co-sleeper is so small, and it's the perfect size and height to fit against our bed. It's just super nice and very well made. It's like a miniature version of a pack n play- except it doesn't get "deep" like a play-yard. The fourth side can either stay down to attach to the bed, or be "up" to be used like a free-standing bassinet. It has pouches on each end and a storage area underneath. It folds up into it's own bag just like a pack-n-play (which we also have) and comes with a special sized sheet.

After out late afternoon bath (finally!) Ardyn and I just put clean pajamas on.

Here's a question for you.... How come on the biggest loser, the men get to wear shirts but the women have to wear shorts and sports bras? I think that's incredibly unfair. I know they make the men take off their shirts when they weigh, but why not let the women wear shirts until they weigh in and then let them take theirs off? Strange. And why the spandex shorts? Annoying.

Well, I'll be back tomorrow!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Visit to Grandma's

So, do you want to see something that you can't hardly stop watching? Something that you can barely peel yourself away from? Check out Blogger Play. Totally awesome. It reminds me of Flickr's Explore.

Well, today was Monday. Cleaning People came today. I love coming home to a clean house! Ardyn and I went to visit my mom (grandma Deb) this afternoon, and saw Grandpa Dave too. We pretty much relaxed all afternoon. She ate and slept, and Grandma held her. We took pictures of her in the family's antique cradle crib. It's so stinkin cute and tiny. I slept in it when I was little... and it's been in the family for a while now. I always forget how small and cute it is until I see it again. My mom took an old couch throw and made a bumper, and bought some flannel and made little sheets. Ardyn loved the busy bold flowers on the bumper. There are lots more pictures on Flickr, including some of the whole crib. Grandpa Dave was excited to finally catch Ardyn awake, he was pretty sure that she didn't ever "do" anything.

Tomorrow the mini co-sleeper should be here. I can't freaking wait! As she is getting older and stronger, and getting better coordination of her head, hands, and feet... she is getting a little more dangerous sleeping where she is. I will be so happy when the co-sleeper arrives. It might be a tough couple of nights getting her to sleep in it, but last night she was awake four times. She usually only wakes up once or twice, but nowadays whenever she has to poo, she wakes up. Then it's like she figures since she sees the boobs in bed with her, she might as well eat too... and I don't really blame her. As soon as she cries in the middle of the night, my milk starts to letdown, so I might as well feed her when she is awake.

What I really love about breastfeeding (besides all the bazillion things like I don't have to buy or mix formula... no heating up bottles... just whip out the milk and she is happy and satisfied (it's like a magic superpower) is the fact that now that my supply is regulated, I know when she is hungry before she even wakes up. I can feel my milk come in and then I can prepare myself to feed her soon. It's like "Oh, I just need to finish up this load of laundry" or whatever, because I know she will be waking up and hungry soon. It's amazing. Even if she is awake and someone else is holding her, I can predict that she will be getting cranky... because my milk comes in and I just know that it's time for her to eat. It eliminates the looking at the clock to see when she eats and try to estimate when she might be hungry again... and she doesn't have to get fussy for me to know that she's hungry. I just watch for feeding cues and feel for my milk to come in.

Last night the two of us went to Wal-Mart late, to buy some prunes and other things. Sunday night I discovered that I had a dreaded "H" that burst (imagine my surprise) thanks to pushing out a baby and then dealing with the postpartum poo. Ack. So I did what any independent, intelligent adult would do. I called my mom! Onwards with the Colace and Prunes for the next couple of weeks, hoping that everything heals okay. You other moms out there know exactly what I'm talkin about!

We ended up getting a mirror for the backseat. I bought one almost identical to it on eBay but when we tried to put it in the car before she was born, the lights and music didn't work. Bah! So there was one for $21, and I put batteries in it today and we tried it out fully on the trip to Grandma's, and she loved it, and I loved being able to see her and what she was doing, if she was sleeping, awake, with or without pacifier, etc. The coolest is that it comes with a remote that attaches to your visor and starts and stops the music and/or lights. I can't wait to try the lights out at night. Sweet! And it's rainforest so it plays the same tunes and sounds that her swing and crib soother do. Neat-o!

Well, that's all for now. More later!

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Everything seems to be falling back into place

Well, it's been an interesting weekend. Yesterday afternoon went well, Ardyn wasn't fussy... and she slept! We went for a short walk and it was so nice to enjoy the outdoors! Last night she was fussy for a while, but went to bed around 11:30. She was up several times in the night but wasn't too bad. Then we slept till 11am which was fabulous and I really needed. Last night the best part was that after she went to sleep I got to read a magazine! Really! It made me feel like Meagan and not just mom. Thank God.

Today she was fabulous. She only had one small meltdown all day, and that was this morning when she had waited for me to shower and dry my hair, and I wanted to finish getting ready and she wasn't having it.

This afternoon we spent the day at Evan's parents, We got our picture taken by the tractor, since they were farming today and that's where Evan was. Ardyn and I relaxed (that was nice) and I read the paper, and magazines, and watched a little HBO. She ate and ate and slept and slept. It was a good day. We came home tonight and while Evan showered, Ardyn sat in her bouncy seat in the bathroom, since she loves the noise of the shower. I was able to pick up the kitchen, dining room, bathroom, and living room in the time that Evan got cleaned up. That was also nice. Now Ardyn is napping again and I plan on running the dishwasher and making myself something to eat.

The gas drops seem to be helping her and preventing unnecessary meltdowns.

Have a great night!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

The Family Fork

Well, it's Saturday. It could be Thursday for all I know. I haven't left the house since MONDAY! Holy crap! Pretty much this week has been a little stressful. Not the entire week, but by the end of it.... It seemed like a huge long week. Ardyn is much fussier this week than the first two. Instead of almost never crying, she's having her fair share of fussy times. I have dealt with much worse babies, but much worse babies I could at least get away from. Of course now I get to feel that postpartum guilt that comes with wanting to get away but knowing that I can't get away and then feeling guilty that I could even think about getting away and its like a vicious cycle. I know that she's always happy when eating. I know that she's happy 39% of the time if you are holding her. And I know that if you put her down, she's happy 20% of the time. This week it became excessively harder to get dressed. It became excessively harder to eat a meal. It became excessively harder to pee. Only a mom can tell you what it's like to hold one a baby, trying to shush her, and peeing at the same time.

Yesterday and Today she seemed to have more meltdowns than usual. Last night my stomach was hurting me and I looked like the walking dead, and this was after a two hour nap from 4-6pm. The best part of my week was when my mom came over last night and helped. She held Ardyn while I took all the maternity clothes out of my closet and folded them. Then I fed her and mom hung up all of my regular clothes from out of totes. Then mom held her again while I hung all those clothes in the closet, and cleaned out the bottom of my closet, revealing three things that have been missing since 1991. Okay, not really, just since about 3-4 months into my pregnancy. Most important was the discovery of my pre-maternity underwear, neatly packed in ziplocs and in a large garbage bag. Second important was the finding of my FAVORITE maternity shirt, that went missing about 4 months into pregnancy never to be found again. And it was in a GYM BAG in the bottom of my closet. Yeah. What's up with that? As if I went to the gym while 4 months pregnant and accidentally left my shirt in there. What? So anyway. It's found and now I don't need it. Next time.

Mom also brought over supper last night, which was fabulous. She watched the baby and took her into a far away room while we ate supper (as she screamed every 3 minutes) and then we cleaned up our mess, washed mom's dishes, and unloaded and reloaded the dishwasher (FINALLY!)

I was sad to see mom go but it was time for us all to go to bed. Then of course when the baby finally fell asleep around midnight or 12:30, I couldn't sleep because I was so stretched thin, worn out, pissed off, and mentally unstable. I ended up curling up on the couch next to Evan and sobbing until I couldn't breathe. Nothing like that to freak out your husband. Ugh. And even though I know he doesn't completely understand... it still felt good to get it out. And good to let him know that sometimes I feel completely alone. Like someone grabbed my arm and drug me on a sinking ship and said "here you go... now you are captain! " and when I started to buck up and look around, I realized that the ship is sinking and there are no crew. Just helpless passengers all looking to me for their every need. I'm not saying I want to get off the ship (although it may cross my mind from time to time that at least 1 hour of time on land might help me get my bearings) But I am saying that I need at least one passenger to be like co-captain. One passenger to go back to where we were two weeks ago and take the initiative to be a decision maker. So eventually, around 1:30, I was able to lay down and try to sleep. Then we were up at 3:30, 4:30-5am, and then 7:30, 8:30, and 9:30 when we got up for the day and the meltdowns began again. I enjoy the hour or two, first thing in the morning, before she gets cranky. She eats, she smiles, she coos, she looks at me adoringly... and then the fun begins.

Today she had various meltdowns until 11am when she had her first "nothing will make me happy" meltdown while we tried to eat some brunch. Then after I fed her again and got her calmed down, she fell asleep, and we ALL fell asleep, for what seemed like an extremely short-lived nap, that probably lasted about an hour. She woke up in meltdown mode with gas, and that continued for another 2 hours, during which I was lucky enough to get a long bubble bath and shave... and Evan walked her and shushed her and tried to keep her calm. If the crying got to me I would just put my ears underwater and pretend that I was Meagan instead of mom. When the bath was over, I felt like a much more sane person. Just 45 minutes to not be the sole caretaker does wonders. But it's like a game of Hot Potato, she got tossed my way to feed her and then Evan disappeared. Luckily she was calm after eating, and lay on her pillow sucking a pacifier and swaddled to high hell (Happiest Baby on the Block you know?) while she watched me get dressed and dry my hair. She loves the hairdryer.

The one thing that has been keeping me motivated the past two days is the plan of going "out to supper" tonight. We invited my parents to grab BBQ uptown or go to Mineral to the Wagon Wheel. I was so excited to be going somewhere with someone... and then mom called this afternoon and dad isn't feeling well and they don't want to get the baby sick... so now we have no plans. Evan and I were going to go by ourselves but he is worried that the baby will have a meltdown while we try to eat, so once again I am doomed to the house while he takes off on his merry way. He tells me to "take Ardyn and go do something" and I take that as an invitation to deal with an "out in public meltdown" without his support. While that sounds like an entirely good time to me, I decided that I would be better off blogging and eating two pieces of marble cake with kick ass frosting that mom brought over. It has been in her freezer since the baby shower. Yum.

I considered (and really still am considering) taking Ardyn for a walk in the stroller but I don't look forward to the drama of putting her in her car seat, especially when she hasn't been in it since Monday... and the drama of a meltdown 5 or 10 blocks from home where all I can do is walk back the way I came while she screams her head off. Everywhere I look I see sinking ships. Now that's positive, isn't it?

On a side note, something I loved about growing up with my parents? Whenever there was cake... there was a fork in the pan. Yep. A community fork. Instead of dishing out the cake onto a plate, we would take the lid off the pan, remove the community fork, eat the piece or piece-and-a-half of cake that we wanted, and put the fork back for the next person. Instead of a clean cut mark between the pieces of the cake that were in the pan, it was a jagged little cut made by the tines of the family fork. Some folks may think that is germy and gross, but we loved it (well, dad and liz and I did, I don't know about mom.) That's how we did things. And in the spirit of that, I am totally leaving my fork in this cake container, for later.

Thursday, September 20, 2007


Ardyn seems to be in it for the long haul today. Last night she was fussy enough to not enjoy her massage much. We kinda had to cut it short. I fed her double and then sent her off to bed all swaddled, but she kept me up for an extra hour, so we finally got to sleep around midnight, and then she did the "fussy fussy" thing until about 3:30 when I shipped her off to Evan so I could sleep a little. It was like she would fuss in her sleep. The kind where you can shhh her and give her your finger or a pacifier and she would go right back to sleep.... but she wakes you up every 15 minutes or so doing that, so you feel like you never slept at all. I can't wait till the co-sleeper arrives. Target finally shipped it today. I am hoping for Monday, since it is coming from California.

Evan took her from 3:30 till about 6:30... and they watched TV together and she did the sleep and fuss thing for him the whole time. At 6:30 I changed her and fed her and then she slept pretty good till about 9:30, when She and I got up for good and I changed her and fed her double. Then she stayed wide awake until 2pm, which is unheard of for her. Around 1pm I did her her to sleep only by doing chores with her in the sling... and she fussed a bit but did okay. I got some laundry loads changed and towels folded, and the kitchen tidied and a shower taken. She sat in the bouncy seat while I took a shower and was pleased as punch... but as soon as I got half dressed she was SO over the seat. So I ran around today (okay still) in my capri pants and nursing bra. I would have had to dig for a shirt through totes of my "old" clothes and Evan was trying to sleep since he was up all night till 6:30, so I didn't want to bother him, and Ardyn was getting cranky in the bouncy seat, so I just gave up and wore bottoms only.

I spent most of the morning trying to put her down... in various locations from crib to bouncy seat to couch to swing.... but she was happy until you put her down, then she went from a little fussy, to a lot fussy, to pissed in about 5 minutes time. So finally at 2:30 I got her to sleep (after about 4 feedings in a row) and she slept IN HER CRIB for about 30 minutes. During that time I started the dishwasher, talked to HR from work about benefits (I owe them like $420 a month until I go back to work, or I lose mine and Ardyn's benefits/insurance) and I even paid the cable bill, cell phone bill, power bill, etc. I also joined UPromise to start Ardyn's college fund and invited her uncle, aunt and grandparents to join and help save for her also.

I got three of the four corners of the coffee table cleared off (that's all I ever get done are those three corners. The fourth one just keeps getting messier.) and Ardyn woke up and I went and got her from the crib. She fell asleep again almost as soon as I held her. Sneaky.

Thank GOD that my mom is coming over tomorrow night and we start operation closet reform. Two weeks of trying to get dressed out of totes has caused a major disaster in our bedroom,and at this point I have really just given up even trying to GET dressed. We will virtually empty the closet and my dresser, packing away all maternity clothes and re-establishing locations for my "real" clothes. I can't wait. I need my mom or I wouldn't be able to accomplish this. It's overwhelming to me. Even if someone took Ardyn for a while, I still wouldn't do it. I need my mom. Sometimes, you just need your mom. She can look at this logically when for me it's all emotional and monumental and overwhelming. She can fold neatly and hang straightly when I can't even get a shirt on my back by 4:10 pm on a Thursday. Thank God for moms.

My next project is to clean the little cupboard in the office. It's a serious disaster. It hasn't been organized since before we remodeled. Yeah. Summer of 2005 we remodeled. Ack. It's the place where I used to be INCREDIBLY anal about. It's where batteries, lightbulbs, cleaning supplies, extension cords, paper towels, my foot fixer, my bubble spa mat, toolboxes, and nails, screws, and other hardware reside. I used to have clearly labeled totes and everything was super organized. Problem is, I wasn't the only one IN that closet. Whenever SOMEONE Else would need a tool or some duct tape or an extension cord, they rifled through and screwed up the organization until it got CRAZY messy in there. It really got out of hand during the remodeling where more than one person (both of who were not me) needed access to screwdrivers, extension cords, masking tape, lightbulbs, etc. and NO ONE could put anything back right. So now it's a giant knot made up of swiffer refills, comet cleanser, air freshener, extension cords, and shoe polish. It's bad. And on top of that tangle, it's coated in DUST and PLASTER and DEBRIS from the remodeling and everything falling and sifting into the closet. No one knows what might be in there. And it gets worse with every passing month. It is going to take my total concentration and something like 46 hours for me to get that straightened out. And then I am going to shoot anyone who fucks it up.

My mother-in-law bought us this really cool natural home cleaning kit that is by "Our Home." Evan has a cousin that sells the stuff. It's pretty cool, and I look forward to being able to USE it, but right now all the containers and concentrates are living on the northeast corner of my dining room table along with that tablecloth that I can't fit into the linen closet. I need to get "that closet" cleaned and organized so that I can find a home for all those cleaning supplies and so that I can actually get them OUT again when I need them. Problem is, although I want to trythese products, I am not going to throw out the pledge citrus oil and the comet and the soft scrub, and the Murphy's Oil Soap. SO it's like now I will have DOUBLE cleaning supplies. What a mess. Chaos I tell you.

So we are supposed to be walking this afternoon or tonight, and this afternoon has officially "gone" so I am hoping that we still get to go tonight. Please please please. When Evan gets back from Wal-Mart (bread, milk, you know the drill) I will have to sweet talk him because money says he will try to get out of it.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Scrub a Dub Dub.... Babys poop in the tub....

Yesterday and today were lazy days. I took baths or showered but put pajamas on instead of clothes. We took nice long naps, especially today from about 12:30 till 2:30. A family nap! It was so nice. Last night and today I worked on laundry too. Put fresh sheets on the bed. Cleared off the dining room table. Things like that. Ardyn has a daily meltdown now, but they usually last about 15-30 minutes. I can always resolve it by feeding her, but I try not to go to that first... but the longer I try to make her feel better, the more pissed she gets. I try the 5 S's, but they only work for a small amount of time. Feeding her is the instant satisfaction, even if she only actually eats for 5-10 minutes before she falls asleep. It's good to have boobs full of milk. LOL. Otherwise she is still sleeping for about 6 hours at night, and then for another 3-4 more hours. Her meltdowns usually start in the evening. I just keep giving her massages before bed and that always seems to do the trick and she goes to sleep.

Tomorrow we are planning on starting daily walks with the baby and dogs. I have been looking forward to that, but the one walk that I took left me pretty tired, although she was only like a week old then. Hopefully it will be better now that I have been recovered more and am getting more rest and sleep. The last time I felt pretty good until I walked across town, then I was sore and tired. But I was operating on a serious lack of sleep then and I wasn't healed. We will start with a short walk and stay on our side of town, and build towards the walks we used to take that went around town and took 45 minutes to an hour. The dogs need the exercise.

Today I was going to let Ardyn take a bath with me, having Evan hand her in when I was finished getting cleaned, but at the last minute I had a vision of her pooping on me. Usually when I give her her bath, she has just had a dirty and wet diaper so I am golden... but today I just had a feeling it was about time for a dirty diaper. So I got out of the tub and then we filled her little tub and after I got her whole body washed and was ready to do her hair, she pooped in the tub. All over the little fabric hammock. Damn. So she shivered on her towel (in front of the heater) while I rinsed her tub out and we started over. That wasn't her favorite bathing experience. Or mine. But I was really glad that I had the foresight to not put her in the tub to poop on me. ha ha.

I had something earlier today that I wanted to blog about, and it WASN'T baby related, but the baby took up the rest of the day, and my brainpower, until I could get to the computer, and of course, I have forgotten it. Let's see if I ever remember it.

I didn't win the mini co-sleeper on eBay. It went for $91 plus $30 shipping. Okay. This is a USED mini co-sleeper, all of them on there are usually used, but it retails for $130 at Target. So you are saving almost NOTHING to buy it used. It's insanity. I have been bidding on them for a week and it has really started to piss me off. Well Target had 15% off baby gear again so I just bit the bullet and ordered it. Evan agrees that it's a good investment. I figure if I don't like it, I can always return it to Target (with the receipt. Bastards) or hey, sell it on eBay for almost the same amount I paid for it. (Idiots) Of course I ordered it yesterday morning, and Target always royally pisses me off with the length of time it takes them to ship something. It's like "are they MAKING it in their toy shop?" Jeez. They are preparing your order to ship for the longest time. It's annoying. So I check my email like 3 times today hoping to see it shipped. Nope. As a matter of fact, I still haven't seen part of the order that I placed about a week and a half ago. As a matter of fact, I probably should have ordered it elsewhere online. Oh well. Too late now. They are "preparing my order for shipping."

Have a nice night.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Is today Tuesday?

Yesterday was an eventful day. After a night of excellent rest, I found myself energized. By 10:30 I had already showered and dressed myself, and fed Ardyn. Then we hung out for a while till Evan got around to video-taping Ardyn's morning bath. It was good fun. After her bath I got her dressed (which is still a struggle as everything is too big on her so we have to try on outfits.)

Ardyn and I checked email, went through paperwork, wrote out about 5 more Thank You Cards, and I loaded the dishwasher and tidied up in the kitchen.

Evan and I decided that it was the day to go to Peru. We have a huge box of 160 Huggies that we want to exchange for pampers. Plus the Huggies are size 2 and we want to buy more Newborn size diapers. Because everyone said "If you are having a big baby don't buy more than one pack of newborn diapers" I bought mostly size 1 and about 3 packs of size 2 Pampers, and now we had this 6lb baby and only one package of 40 diapers, which we went through in the first week. Ugh. So we get all loaded up. We take Evan's SUV and go deposit the money that I have, and then to the post office to spend $36 on 80 cent stamps to mail the 45 baby announcements. While I was sticking stamps on the envelopes in the post office, Ardyn and Evan went around the block and paid the water and trash bill. Then we headed for Peru. Of course the second we got to Princeton, Evan remembered that we forgot to transfer the stroller from my car to his, so we turned around and went back home and grabbed the stroller, and of course, we forgot the giant box of huggies too. So off again we went to Peru. We went to Berger's first because I wanted to find a newborn sized outfit that Ardyn could hopefully wear to the orchard that would match her pumpkin hat. Fall colored clothing is scarce in the baby department, but Evan found a soft fuzzy hoodie with bear ears on the hood, and a pair of cute Osh Kosh jeans that were the smallest pair we had seen yet. We also grabbed a couple of pair of purple cotton pants in newborn size. Then we also bought a sweater for Evan and a sweater for me that were coordinating and matched Ardyn too, hoping that we could get a family picture taken... perhaps even at the orchard. At the end of Bergner's Ardyn was getting hungry and so we went to Target, where I fed her in the backseat while we sat in the parking lot.

Of course we get inside and to the service desk, and immediately get shit for not "having a receipt" and when we explain that the diapers were a gift she asks if "we registered at Target" and when I say "Yes I did, but I didn't register for the wrong diapers." Duh. That's the dumbest policy. If it was on your registry, than you can return it. Well if I registered for it, chances are that I won't WANT to return it. It's the stuff I didn't register for that I want to return. Duh. So anyway, she proceeds to tell us that they don't carry those diapers. I think my eyes narrowed and I must have tensed into launch position, because she decided to look it up a different way and then proudly announced that 160 diapers were $13.57- Uh. No. Not on this planet. I told her to keep the box and we went to the diapers, where I saw an endcap advertising a "sale price" of $26 for the exact same box of Huggies. So I grabbed the barcode and took it to the front. Then the girl called a supervisor. Then I asked her why I couldn't just exchange the diapers for something of equal value, like newborn sized diapers. She said that without a receipt, they will give me the lowest price the diapers have ever been. I said "I have a hard time believing that you ever sold that box of diapers for less than half of the sale price." and then I mentioned that although I know store policy isn't their fault, It's very upsetting to have spent THOUSANDS of dollars in baby gear and all the baby furniture for the nursery, and the swing, stroller, car seat, high chair, etc.... all from Target.... and not be able to exchange an unopened $26 box of diapers for another size. Which they will promptly put back on the shelf and sell for $26 to someone else and be out nothing. So we took the diapers home with us. I hate how huggies fit in the crotch. It makes the baby bowlegged. There is too much diaper between the legs.

So anyway, we went through Target and then headed for Evan's parents. We made a stop at the Wendy's drive-thru for a snack, and then on to his parents, were I fed the baby twice and changed her diaper in their new Rainforest Pack n Play. We ate supper from the grill and everyone held the baby, and before you know it I was exhausted and had a headache. We came home and I gave Ardyn another massage, and Evan videoed some of it. Then I fed her and we went to sleep at 10:30. She slept till about 5:30 this morning when she needed a diaper change, and I fed her, and then she slept till almost 10am and then ate again. Today we are being kinda lazy. I ate Hummus with Garlic and Pita Chips, and a tomato sandwich on toast with mayonnaise. Yum.

Off to shower....

Monday, September 17, 2007

She Slept Through the Night!!

Whoa! What a fabulous night we had! after our 10-10:30 ish massage session, Ardyn was a limp little noodle, all soft skinned and relaxed. I fed her on both sides and she went to sleep by 11:30. I ran around and got ready for bed, took my medicine, filled up my water mug, etc. Then I lay down next to her... and woke up at 8:40 this morning! No shit! I was all like "What? We didn't wake up to eat or change her diaper? At least once?" Sweet! That was the first full night's sleep I have had since BEFORE getting pregnant, considering that I always have to get up to pee in the night... but last night I slept like a rock. I never even changed positions once. Never looked at the clock once! Of course the milk supply was overfull this morning. Let-down was practically impossible, I could tell as soon as I bumped a breast that it was going to be a pain. I put the Gerber heat/cool packs in the microwave and put them on for about 5 minutes, and held one to the top of my breast while she avidly tried to nurse and get the milk to come out. It didn't take as long as I thought it might but I was almost crying for the breast pump to relieve some pressure. Once she got things flowing on one side, the other side was a piece of cake. And I got smart enough to start her on the side she prefers, so her frustration level was minimal. She ate big on both sides and we changed her diaper (which was miraculously just wet) and then she went into the bouncy seat so that I can take my first tub bath. I need to soak a bit, and so I am soaking in clean water (no shampoo,etc.) I look forward to it!

Looks like we need to make a routine out of late night infant massage! And of course, this as I am bidding up to $100 on a co-sleeper. Ha!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Money! Massage!

Tonight I watched parts of a CNBC Special on McDonalds... called "Big Mac: The McDonald's Empire." It was interesting. It discussed everything from the history to the current and future of McDonalds. What I really found interesting was that a McDonald's manager (one who oversees several franchise stores, like 6 or so) can make up to $100 thousand a year.

Ardyn has been sleeping most of the day. She has been nursing really well, but I think that yesterday and overnight last night she wasn't feeling well. I could tell by her diapers, which were the wrong color, and by her gassy and bubbly tummy, that she wasn't right. She wanted to be held and nursed all night. It was hard because I didn't get hardly any sleep. 3 hours by 8am as a matter of fact. And most of the time I was holding her and sleeping at the same time, because she didn't want to be put down. It was bad enough that I broke down and gave her a pacifier, because I couldn't nurse her every second, and she was just pacifying herself more than eating. I am really hoping that I won't regret giving her the pacifier at two weeks old. There is so much conflicting advice as far as breastfeeding goes... some say no pacifiers or bottles for the first month, but my lactation consultant and others have said that if things are going well with breastfeeding, there are no reasons why you can't start at two weeks. I am being especially careful to feed her regularly and not to let the pacifier get in the way of feeding cues. She didn't have a pacifier all night, and all day today until about 5pm, when I gave it to her while she was swinging so that she would be soothed, and it worked. She has had it on and off tonight. Hopefully she will still sleep some tonight, but she has been sleeping most of the day and evening. She was awake from about 10:30am till about 1:30pm.

Instead of participating in infant massage class today, we went as "observers" and we learned more today than in the previous day, since she was sleeping and not screaming. I just think that yesterday she wasn't feeling well at all and the last thing she wanted was to be undressed, laid down, and massaged in the middle of a crowd. Today we were given an infant massage handbook (by Vimala McClure) as a thank you for attending all three days of class. Ardyn slept from the second I put her in the car seat and we left home, all the way until we left class. Instead of using the carseat and stroller to take her inside, I took her out of the seat and carried her, and she slept on my chest the entire class. She was so calm and relaxed and I was so relieved that she wanted to sleep. Tonight I am just worried that she will be awake all night as a result of her sleepy day. I don't think I can take that as I haven't had a nap yet today myself. this morning I was about ready to call for backup (evan has a cold/sinus problems and was in no mood to play backup) when she finally had a breakthrough and got some gas out and then ate and slept for an extra two hours... which allowed me to get two hours of uninterrupted rest.

Also preventing me from sleeping well is the sleeping situation. I hate the bassinet. I thought it would be great, but it's impossible to get her out of it unless you are also awake and out of bed. And she isn't too keen on sleeping in it for long stretches. She will sleep for more time if she is in bed with us, and we have a contour foam pillow (firm) that she sleeps on between our heads... we turn it lengthwise like a nursing nest and the contours keep her firmly in place and give the illusion of being held or cuddled.... and that seems to allow everyone a more restful sleep... but I still worry about our covers near her and about her escaping as she gets stronger pushing off with her legs. I wish I would have bought a mini co-sleeper instead of the bassinet and pack n play at the auction. The prices were great, so it isn't a big deal, but every night I wish I had the co-sleeper. I want her to have that sleeping close to us feeling without me worrying about her constant safety, and I want to be able to get her easily for middle of the night breastfeedings. I know that before long she will be in her own crib, but right now its really annoying to have to get up to feed her, and to get up to put her back down, and then have her fuss and have to get her out of the bassinet like 4 times in a row until she wants to sleep. The annoying part is that the bassinet is at the same level as the bed, but the sides make it impossible to lift her out unless you are standing up. And she can't SEE me from the bassinet and that makes her more fussy than if she can see me while she falls back to sleep. Ack. So I have been bidding on co-sleepers on eBay, and I think there is a good chance that I will win one tonight. I am paying just about $40 short of retail, and that includes shipping, and leg extensions, so while that isn't a steal, it is an okay deal, especially for one that was barely used. I hope that it works. If it doesn't, I guess that I can just re-list it on eBay as they seem to have an excellent resale value.

Luckily my first Disability paycheck came today (FINALLY!) and so I can pay for the co-sleeper, some infant massage butter from, and the water bill. And a few other bills too. Tonight while Ardyn was napping I finished up all 50 of the baby announcements, adhering photos to the backs, stuffing and sealing envelopes, and preparing them for mailing tomorrow (now that I can afford the postage hopefully!) I also wrote a Thank You note to my midwife and a FMLA extension letter to my employer. AND I cut out birth announcements from the paper, laminated them with contact paper, and put them in the baby book. Evan wrote his version of the birth story in the book and I filled out more pages and stuck more pictures inside. I also cleaned off the coffee table, which was a disaster. Ardyn is awake now, she has been for over an hour now, so I have hope that by midnight she might be ready for "bed." The pacifier is helping her to be soothed and relaxed without being held, and is helping her to get gas bubbles out. Problem is she is pissed off without it, when before she could be reasonably happy for quite a while. The pacifier might just be the devil.

At about 10pm I did some serious infant massage with her. I got her entire body done with the exception of her face before she got super hungry. I fed her on both sides and then did her back massage a little more thoroughly. She really enjoyed it. I turned the cable TV onto the soundscapes channel, that plays relaxation music, and I think that the process relaxed us both. Of course, now it's almost 11:30 and she is STILL awake and not showing many signs of sleep. Hopefully this changes!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

One Wipe Left....

If you take your photos to the one hour, and it takes them more like 2-3 hours to get them done, should they charge you one hour prices? I think not.

Last night I worked in photoshop to get a little photo collage completed for the back of the handmade birth announcements. I decided to leave some color photos, pink namely, and add pink accents in the collage. It was super cute on screen, Evan approved. I sent them to the one hour and picked them up today. And hated them. So it's like... do I spend another $10 in photo processing to get the pictures just right, or send them out hating them. Yeah. So tonight I took all the color out and changed the accent color on the wording, etc to Plum, to match the announcements. And sent 50 more of them to the 1-hour, which is experiencing high volume of orders. So I can't pick them up till after 11 tomorrow, which is fine, but it's like... How are you gonna charge me the same fee to do these in three hours as you charge me to do them in one? See? Doesn't make much sense, does it?

Now it's gonna all come down to having the $$ for stamps to mail all these. I am STILL waiting for some kind of check, be it short-term or long-term disability kicking in.... and we are living off Evan's salary... which can be done but isn't any fun. LOL.

Today Ardyn and I went to Infant Massage session number 2... and she HATED it. She cried the entire time. Except the moments when I was breastfeeding her. Again. Before we left home she ate twice, big, on both sides. She was completely satisfied. When we got there, as soon as her clothes came off she started in and was hungry. I can't believe she was hungry, I believe more likely that she was not happy and wanted to suckle to be soothed. Sometimes I think being the milk provider can have a downside! LOL. Of course even after "eating" she was still royally pissed and something told me that unless I nursed her the entire time she was going to use all of her lung power. I swear that all the people there probably think I never feed her or that I have no milk in there. Little faker. Of course it ended up that I had to leave the room because she was screaming over the instructors trying to talk and I felt so embarrased. Of course the second we hit the hallway she was pleased as punch and even SMILED at me. Argh.

Then she screamed her usual "don't strap me in the car seat scream" and made it convincing with tears and everything. She cried all the way to the elevator, and the second we got on it, she stopped and fell asleep all the way to the car, to Wal-mart, in Wal-mart, on the way home, and until Evan took her out of the seat. I fed her twice more, and then we ordered supper from the new BBQ place here in town. It was AWESOME. It's called "Main Street BBQ" and it's in the old cafe. I had pulled pork... which came with fries, hush puppies, and two sides... which I chose potato salad and deep fried pickles. Yum! Evan had a brisket basket. It was all totally awesome. Then we took a "family nap" for about 2 hours, where we all snoozed like crazy... and then Ardyn and I woke up, and I fed her, and changed her, and fed her again...

I think she really just wasn't feeling well today and the last thing that she wanted was an infant massage class and to have all her clothes taken off. She wanted to cuddle and nurse all day long. Hopefully tomorrow will be better. Evan decided to stay home and mow today but he thinks he is going with tomorrow. I hope he does. She might do better if he is massaging her and not me.... then maybe she won't think about nursing.

I actually decided to turn the heat on tonight. It was 66 in here, which is totally too cold. Everything is shut up again today, because it is just too cool outside... strange because this week it should be hot again. Ardyn and I put our pajamas on early... and have settled in for a night of relaxing. She's sleeping in the sling as I type, and making constant little whimpering sounds.

I need to work on laundry tonight. Another hamper full. And I have about 5 more Thank You cards to write as baby gifts are still trickling in. More postage. Ah. Of course the announcements are "supposedly" going to cost me 81 cents each instead of 40, because the envelopes are 6x6 square. Ack. I am not looking forward to that expense. That's $40.50 just to mail them... not to mention the $$ I have in cardstock, ink, ribbon, stamps, and now in photo processing. Ack. I am still hoping that the lady at the post office in princeton who told me 81 cents each is off her rocker and that I will go to the PO with my envelopes and find that it's actually 40 cents.

Well, we have a poopy diaper to change now. Speaking of which... today when I got to massage class, she had a dirty diaper and I opened the diaper bag to discover that I had ONE Wipe. Yeah. Classy. I had forgotten to refill after our last outing that used them up. So tonight I refilled. Mom brains.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Infant Massage Classes... and more.

I am looking forward to a nice relaxing weekend! This week has been nice. Thursday we had our first Dr. appointment. They weighed her in at 7lbs 9ounces. This contradicts her weight earlier in the week at 7lbs 12 ounces, but the earlier weight was the same scale as her discharge weight, and it was an electronic scale, so I am going to say that she could easily be 7lbs 12 ounces. When we got to the Dr. Office, they had paperwork for me to fill out, but I was a little perturbed about that because I had gone to the office almost two months before she was born and filled out all the same paperwork for them... and they didn't have them all in the computer and so I had to start over. But it was minimal. And Ardyn was sleeping in the car seat in her stroller, right up until the second we got called back.... when she started crying because she had to poo.

The appointment was pretty uneventful... after I changed her they looked into her eyes and ears and mouth. Dr. was performing a c-section so we saw the nurse practitioner and she was incredibly nice and Ardyn really seemed to like her. What I liked the best... when she got done checking Ardyn, and she noticed that Ardyn was hungry, she told me that I was more than welcome to stay in the exam room and nurse her before we left, and she put a "Do Not Disturb" sign on the door. That was incredibly nice, and that meant that we got to leave the office with a happy baby whose tummy was full of milk.

Actually, I really have been surprised at how astute other people (women especially) are to knowing when she is hungry, and how people seem to not even flinch at the fact that I need to breastfeed. I fed Ardyn first away from home and hospital while at Evan's grandma's last Saturday. She did well. Then I fed her in OB on Tuesday while at the hospital visiting... and At Anya's house that night.

Today we went to our first of three Infant Massage classes... and I nursed her there in front of all the other moms and kids, and in front of the 15 ladies who were there becoming certified in infant massage. It was held at the hospital and the woman who teaches the class is from Masachussets. She also has an impressive career and mothering history, with 5 children (some of whom are adopted) and is a La Leche League Leader and lactation counselor, and was the president of the Motherwear catalog for 20 years.

I love Motherwear. Before having Ardyn I spent about $100 and 4 nursing camisoles, a pair of nursing capri pajamas, and a 3/4 sleeve black shirt. I have already been wearing them as staples. Today it was so nice to have on a tank top that lifted from right under the bust so that I could nurse without being all exposed during class.

Ardyn did really well, and we were massaging legs and feet today, but when I got to her second leg and foot, she was fussy and sucking her hands wasn't pacifying her anymore, and another mom with a new baby had already breastfed, so I was like... here goes. And she latched right on and sucked away for a long time. No one seemed to even begin to mind. Tomorrow there will probably be some dads at class... so I don't know how that will be if she needs to eat again. I do the football hold, and not many other moms apparently use that, but it is so much nicer in my opinion. I can have an entire hand free if I want, and her little body fits between my hand and elbow... I wonder how that will work when she gets bigger! LOL.

So the Infant Massage was very cool. I have been giving her a little lotion massage each day, usually after her bath or perhaps before bed. But this was wayyy better. We got some wonderful massage oil for babies in a tiny bottle, and we learned actual massage strokes that feel good to give, so I can't even imagine how well they feel to receive. She did seem to relax and enjoy... even more than with a little lotion massage that she was getting before. Tomorrow we work on bellies and backs, and Sunday we move the arms, hands and face. We got a taste of bellies today, but the babies were fussy and so we decided to continue tomorrow. Ardyn loved the Belly massage, and I think that it will help well to get gas bubbles out. Right now she likes to nurse when she has gas bubbles... although that doesn't happen really often. Actually she likes to nurse to soothe just about anything. It soothes me too.

I really am surprised at how easy nursing is for us. I really expected tons of difficulty, especially from what you read and hear about. It was pretty easy from the beginning, I only had one night of difficulty.... I think I was just made to nurse. I know she was. When my milk came in I wasn't even engorged. She is doing wonderfully and regulating my milk supply. She tends to feed often and well in the late evenings, and last night she slept for SIX hours straight! At 10 days old! YAY! We didn't get to sleep till 1:30, but she slept clear till 8am, ate again and slept clear till noon. I got up for good at 11am, and was able to shower and dress and do my hair and make-up before she got up.

Last night my sister came over and we went to Wal-Mart. I took back some huggies (we use Pampers) that someone bought us, and grabbed a few things that we needed. Liz and I sifted through newborn clothes and picked out two little sweatsuits... one purple and one pink and grey. She has nothing to wear because everything 0-3 is still so big on her. Even the newborn pants from the sweatsuits are too big in the waist, but once you put the hoodie on it holds her drawers up. She looks so cute in it! I was holding her up today and she is now starting to try to put her feet down and put weight on them. It's totally cute. I held her up and for a few seconds she straightened up her legs and looked at us and I said "look Daddy, Ardyn's going jogging!"

It's funny because people are like "I bet you are going to get so much scrapbooking done!" and I am like.... nope. I can't put the baby down! She's too cute! I need to cuddle with her. ALL the time! LOL. Tonight after I fed her, I tried to lay her down and she just wanted to cuddle. I held her for a while and then transferred her to the swing. After about 15 minutes she was fussy so I moved her into the sling and went about putting away clean laundry and picking up here and there, and as soon as I put her in the sling she was happy and within 10 minutes she was asleep and like a limp noodle. I sat down to watch a little TV and blog and check my email, and took her out of the sling after a bit. She is sleeping next to me on the couch. We took a LONG nap this afternoon too, after massage class. from about 3:30 till 6:30 when Evan got home from work. I hope that she still sleeps through the night some... but I am not tired yet.

We have taken so many pictures of her, that just the photos from the day we got home through yesterday won't fit on one CD. Insanity! How do you scrapbook that?! How can you scrapbook when you take pictures so fast and she keeps growing and doing cute things and you can't barely keep up? I guess I will have to quit my job so I can scrapbook. LOL. But I have been filling out her baby journal, a little each day or so, as events happen.

I guess I should attempt to wake her up a bit and feed her soon. Everyone take care!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Weekly Recap!

So let's do a little recap of the last week or so.

Monday- Labor is started by the midwife who breaks my water, labor ensues, Ardyn is born
Tuesday- in the hospital, Grandparents come to Visit, we have a really long night ahead of us
Wednesday- we sleep till almost noon recovering from the night before. We go home from the hospital in the afternoon and have visitors at home, as well as super delivered by Ardyn's Great Grandma Mona.
Thursday- We are mostly relaxed at home. Ardyn gets a bath, mom gets a shower. Grandma Susan and Great Grandma Marie visit. Grandma Deb brings by all of Ardyn's pink and purple girly clothes, all washed and ready to wear. Anya comes over and brings us baked spaghetti pizza. Yum!
Friday- Mom (that's me!) puts away Ardyn's clothes. We do our first load of baby laundry. I take another fabulous shower. My mom and sister come over and spend the evening. We order Chinese. We take pictures. Evan helps us get Ardyn in her car seat and stroller for an evening walk, and the first try-out of the travel system. We get to the street in the front yard and a pickup truck with a sprayer in the back of it comes roaring around the corner fogging and spraying for mosquitoes. We run for cover and just miss contaminating the new baby. Walk over. Mom very upset and disappointed.
Saturday- Ardyn gets a bath and puts on her pretty blue dress. Mom puts on her old jeans (yeah!) and they are big enough to pull off without unbuttoning them. Double Yeah! We drive to Princeton where Ardyn and I participate in the hospital float in the Homestead Festival parade because we were both born at Perry (dad was too, but he's content to watch the parade.) It's super warm and so we sit under a green umbrella to keep Ardyn in the shade. After the parade we go to Evan's Aunt Patti's house to see family. We have a short stay. Ardyn is hungry and hot and tired. Mom is hot and tired. We head to Wal-mart for a quick trip inside to grab pads and prenatal vitamins (all the new mom essentials) and realize that Ardyn's eye, which she poked earlier in the week, is getting worse, and the crusty eye is now becoming the green eye. We call the hospital and get told we need to take her to the ER. Not cool. Mom and Dad both start to worry. Ardyn's eye is matted shut. Mom keeps wiping it with a cool cotton round. Mom calls the ED to talk to a nurse she knows. The nurse calls Dr. Mestan (one of Ardyn's Dr.'s) and he calls mom's cell phone. We need antibiotic ointment. Pharmacy's are all closed and we end up discovering that Wal-Mart pharmacy is open till 7pm. We drive to ED to get the prescription called in. We drive BACK across town and BACK to Wal-Mart to get the prescription. Mom sits in the chair waiting for the meds, and bites off all her nails in anxiety. Baby's first prescription. She buys a temporal artery thermometer just in case, and when she gets back out to the car, Dad is missing! Oh wait, he is in the back seat with Ardyn because he is worried. Mom gets in the backseat. Dad drives towards home. Mom's boob touches the side of the car seat and she is shocked to learn that her boobs are 300 degrees, full of milk, and hard as a rock. Mom and Dad and Ardyn get home and Grandma Deb holds Ardyn while mom pumps to relieve pressure. Ardyn nurses. Dad puts the Chicken Casserole into the oven that Grandma Deb brought, and Grandma Deb and Grandpa Dave go to the Wyanet VFW Chicken Fry. They come back later for a nice relaxed visit. Mom and dad get to load the dishwasher, clean up the kitchen, and do some laundry together while Ardyn sleeps with her grandparents.
Sunday- why can't I remember Sunday? It must have been a quiet day. Oh wait.. I remember. Mom and Ardyn get cleaned up to go on their first outing together. Mary Win Walter-Norris (a Princeton Resident and wonderful Artist who is in her 90's) is doing a book signing of a book she illustrated that is being re-published. It's called "My Go To Bed Book" and is a childrens book. I used to work for Mary Win in her 7th Generation Family Garden. She is a wonderful and talented lady, and I want Ardyn to go get a book signed. With dad's help we get all packed up. Mom is nervous to drive with Ardyn by herself. We get to Princeton and there is a car show so we have to park a ways away. Mom gets out stroller, diaper bag, car seat and baby and we walk to the bookstore on main street. Green River Books. Mom and Ardyn Maneuver the stroller inside and wait in line. Another older couple gets in line behind us and I overhear them say that the book is SOLD OUT and that they bought theirs yesterday. My post-partum hormones take over and I almost cry. I am so pissed off and upset! This was such hard work to get here, and the signing is from 1pm-5pm, and by 1:30 there are already no books left? I am so so so upset. Only in Princeton would they have a book signing and NO BOOKS. Stupid. I curse Green River Books up one side and down the other. This was on the front page of the newspaper for God's sakes. How could they not order enough books!? God I was so pissed. I wanted to march up to the counter and complain but I was afraid I would bawl hormonally. I was very upset that they didn't put a sign on the door that said they were sold out, instead we had to wait in line until we overheard it... and I could have gotten all the way to Mary Win and had no book to sign. ARGH. So Ardyn and I went home and I called Grandma Deb to tell her how upset I was. She understood. When we got home, Dad was sympathetic. Then Dad cleaned the dog kennel and Ardyn and I sat on the swing and rocked outside. It was so nice outside.
Monday- Mom and Ardyn go to Grandma Deb's in the afternoon while the cleaning people come. Ardyn Nurses and then goes to Grandma Deb while mom looks through magazines. That night Uncle Kyle visits and mom works on daycare paperwork. We had a long night as Ardyn decided to be awake from 2:30 till 7am. Daddy was a big help and mom was able to sleep between nursing.
Tuesday- Mom and Ardyn get cleaned up. They go to their daycare and turn in the registration fee and completed paperwork for the baby. Then we went to the hospital to visit Angie Reidner, who delivered Ardyn. She is delighted to see us and gets to hold Ardyn and then Ardyn poops. We go on to OB where we change diapers, get held by nurses, and Ardyn nurses in the waterbirth room, which is where it all started! We weigh Ardyn. She weighed 7lbs 5 ounces at discharge last Wed. and now she is 7lbs 12 ounces! Go breastmilk go! We go to HR to add Ardyn to my insurance. We visit Technology Services. We drive to McDonald's to get mom something to eat and see Dad on Main Street. We chat with him on the cell phone, eat a double cheeseburger with fries, and drive home. We get the stroller out and go for a walk to Anya's. We see Trish on the way and stop to chat. We hash out our labor and deliveries. Was Anya's house always this far away? Whew! We spend the evening with Anya and Ava. They give Ardyn a stuffed puppy and a soft pink blanket. Anya makes us Shepherd's Pie for supper and daddy comes to pick us up since we are to tired to walk home. Ardyn nurses and mom and dad enjoy a delicious supper.
Wednesday- Mom and Ardyn sleep from 10:30pm (Monday) till 3am (Tuesday). Dad and Mom change Ardyn and she eats again. We all get snuggled in and Ardyn poops. Mom changes Ardyn's diaper and "THE CORD FELL OFF!!" Mom is sooo excited and she can see what a cute little belly button Ardyn will have! YAY! Mom and Dad and Ardyn go back to sleep again, until 11am. Ardyn and mom cuddle and Ardyn coos and smiles and sucks her hands. We change diapers, put on a sleeper, and nurse again. Then we cuddle. Dad wants to sleep more so mom and Ardyn get out the ring sling for the first time to practice babywearing. Ardyn looks squished but is pleased as punch. This is just like in the womb! All curled up and rocked to sleep my mom's movements, Ardyn snoozes in the sling while mom blogs.

More to come soon! Stay with us! LOL.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Ardyn's Photos are All Posted!

All of Ardyn's Photos to date have FINALLY been posted to Flickr. It took me HOURS! Seriously. Ardyn slept for a long time tonight, and instead of napping (as I SHOULD have been doing) I was posting the pictures... so now, that I am ready to go to bed... Money says she will be up and I will be regretting this! But they are all so cute.... I just couldn't help it.... They needed to get posted!

SO go check them out
and don't disappoint me....

Labor Day Labor Story....

So, as you can imagine... What a WEEK!

On Monday I went in to the hospital to have my water broke. I started at 6cm dilated at 8am when they broke my water. By noon I was at a 7. By 2pm I was starting hard labor at an 8. I tried to labor in the waterbirth tub, and did well for about 45 minutes until I felt like I needed to pee, and I wanted to get out. Then Contractions seemed harder but I really felt the need to be UP and moving, although that didn't last long. By 5pm they had tried to get me back into the tub, I had been on the birthing ball, and in the hallway walking (okay, being drug by my midwife because I was at the point of deciding that I wasn't sure I had made a good decision in trying labor at all, let alone natural labor.) I couldn't stand being in the tub anymore. I was so freaking HOT and they had half my body covered with washcloths that they were soaking in ice water. Yeah. I was naked as much as I could be, I was much more comfortable that way, and cooler (although not really cool at all.) By 4pm I was asking for pain meds. But I had been 8cm dilated and in hard labor for 2.5 hours, and in labor for 8.5 hours, with only 3 hours of sleep the night before (excitement and worry will do that to a person!) So by 5pm I was DEMANDING drugs, and my midwife was talking me out of it the best she could because she know I had a plan for a natural birth. While she was doing my job I was becoming more scared, exhausted, and in pain every single minute, until I was begging and whining and PLEADING for drugs. It was at that point that I couldn't find any movement that would help me through a contraction and got back into bed. Contractions were 2-3 minutes apart since before hard labor started, and I was just so tired. My midwife told me that if they checked me and I hadn't progressed, I could have something for pain. I was not really progressing so between 5-6pm they gave me some Stadol (sp?) which they told me I wouldn't really feel like it was helping, but that it would be helping me relax and let do between contractions. I don't remember feeling any relief from pain, but I think I could ALMOST doze off between contractions, or at least be out of it, but as they got stronger I was begging and pleading for an epidural. By about 6-6:30 I was at a 9, and they were trying to get me to push, but I didn't want to push. At that time I was whining and complaining and begging them to let me stop, and saying crazy things like I didn't want a baby, and I had changed my mind, and I couldn't do it. My poor midwife probably wanted to kill me at this point. Finally at 7:30 (ish) They tried to give me pitocin and I recall basically trying to get out of bed and leaving and REFUSING to have any pitocin without an epidural first. Contractions were so hard at that point that I couldn't stand them, and I may have said things like "I want to die" and such... and then I had to wait for them to call in the Anesthetician and wait for stat bloodwork. I remember how difficult that wait was. It was a pretty bad hour or so. They moved me to a different delivery room, but even now I don't remember how I got there. Did I walk? Good lord I will have to ask Evan! I must have walked, because I think they made me put on a hospital gown, and I remember getting into the bed in the other room and ripping it off, and since I had an IV and couldn't get it off, I tore it off by the snaps on the shoulders and threw it on the floor. So the hardest was trying to make it through contractions every 2 minutes, dilated to 9cm, while sitting up and hunched over a table on the edge of the bed, while the epidural was put in. That was the only time that Evan wasn't with me, he had to leave the room because he couldn't handle the epi being done to me, and I was so happy to have it I could have cared less what they had to do to me. I had about 5 contractions during the epidural insertion, and each time I would be coached not to move at all, which was almost impossible, but I did pretty well. The epidural felt WONDERFUL but I learned very soon that the dose I got was like a starter dose that wears off, because my midwife didn't want them to start and intravenous drip... I think that I subconsciously knew that I was being given Pit at that point, but the contractions were so hard and fast that I couldn't even think. I did lots of begging and pleading for it to stop, and lots of "I can't do this" and "she won't fit." They coached me to push but I still didn't want to. Eventually it didn't matter what I wanted because my body was pushing as a reaction to where she was and the pitocin. It was horrible. By about 10:30pm they had finally started to believe that maybe she wouldn't come out, and called the OB to come check me. She said the head was stuck, and they started to prep me for a c-section, which I was begging for by then. I had a catheter, and I remember being talked to about the risks, and basically moaning "I don't care" between contractions. As they called in the OR staff, I was begging her to turn off the Pit. As she did, by about 4 contractions later, the pain started to subside a little bit more, and the pushing feelings increased, and I was a teeny tiny bit more relaxed as I could feel when I needed to push and was trying to hold back because I was headed for a c-section. Then the midwife wanted to check me once more and said that I was complete and her head was down all the way and that she was coming out normally and I wouldn't need a C-section, to which I told her "no!" and then refused to push. Eventually I started to push because there wasn't much else I could do-she refused me any more epidural (which had worn off) unless I agreed to push- and even though I was sure I was going to die or split in half, she was born at 11:36pm and when she finally came out it was the greatest relief of my life. I really thought that she wouldn't fit. I remember the midwife and Evan telling me she had so much hair as they kept being able to see the top of her head, and me saying I didn't care and still denying that it was going to happen.

Evan and I were both pretty overwhelmed by everything, I remember then putting her up on my belly and feeling completely amazed that she had actually come out! Of course she was beautiful, and the first thing I said was that she was cuter than I had been as a baby. Evan was in love with her instantly, and I was pretty impressed, although I think I was still kinda in denial that she was even really there. We spent the next 45 minutes breastfeeding and waiting for the placenta. I had a small tear that required no stitches, and I watched from the delivery table while Evan took tons of pictures and helped the nurse clean her, weigh her, bathe her, and check all her vitals. She screamed like crazy the whole time. Then Evan called our parents and Ardyn's aunt and uncle. I think it was especially real to me when the nurse said "what's her name?" and I got to spell it out.

At about 1am I realized that I was SO hungry as I hadn't eaten in over 12 hours, so a nurse made me some toast with butter and grape jelly. I was shoving it into my mouth as they were trying to take the IV out of my hand. I had 6 attempts at an IV while at am 8, and it wasn't pleasant because they had to keep stopping for contractions. I am pretty bruised up in the arms and backs of my hands. But that was all worth it! We got back to our hospital room at almost 2am, and while I tried to pee after they removed my catheter, Evan discovered our first poopy diaper and we changed it together. I think we breastfed for a while and around 3:30 the nurses took her and I got almost 2 hours of sleep that night. The next day our parents came. I felt great during the day, but that night I was feeling pretty sore and my tailbone was killing me. It ended up that we had a really rough night and Ardyn ate every 45 minutes, and had an hour long fit that started at exactly 11:36pm, the time of her birth. Just before 1am I sent her with the nurses to have her PKU Test (heel stick) and they kept her for almost 3 hours while Evan lie awake and rubbed my back to try to help me sleep. I could hear her crying and although there were other babies there, I knew it was her, and it was keeping me awake. I just wanted to go get her!

The next day we slept most of the morning away, as did Ardyn, we were all exhausted from the long night before. That afternoon we came home!
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