Twitter

Breast feeding

One day I might have the energy to write about my breastfeeding experience, but since I’d probably rather it faded into obscurity, here are three links that I do want to keep in case someone else finds them useful. You’ll see a pattern…

 

(425) 297-6657

Last year kicked my ass with the biggest learning curve I have ever experienced: how to manage life with an often sick baby, a senior job, a marriage, friendships and everything else that happened in between.

Between Easter and Christmas at least 1 – and usually 2 – of the 3 of us had some kind of illness. Edie was hospitalised 3 times, most dreadfully in December for 5 days with a mystery virus.

However, we did make it through. And there were small moments. Small lessons. Small and important lessons, particularly for me to remember as we head in to what could be another winter of illness (and this time I’m pregnant).

  1. Ask for help. For us this usually meant support from family and friends who brought food over for dinner or texted advice at strange hours or my boss who often understood when I caught up on work from home at strange hours.
  2. Be organised. Do not leave buying the birthday present to the morning of the party or anything similar. Buy it / book it / organise it as soon as you know you need to and then when something goes awry, you’re already sorted.
  3. Stock up. Have mountains of paracetamol for you and pamol for the baby. Have lemons, baby wipes, hand sanitiser, toilet paper, washing liquid, coffee, tissues, nappies, formula, etc so you don’t have to go anywhere when you can’t decide what hurts more – your throat or the way the baby is crying.
  4. Take the moments of personhood wherever you can and wherever they come.  And sometimes they will come at strange times. Drink a fresh, hot cup of coffee in a small sliver of winter sunlight; have a lunchtime express pedicure; take a long shower while someone else is on watch.
  5. Keep swimming. Summer finally did arrive and does arrive and WILL arrive. You can do this because you have to, because you have no choice and because you can’t think of anything else or anywhere you’d rather be.

Wish us luck!

4078820028

Hi Mumma!This time 23 weeks ago we were in a hospital room and I was still pregnant. Within hours we would hold the most amazing person we’ve ever met and are lucky enough to know. At the time I didn’t know what was about to happen to us, other than as a sort of academic / theoretical idea of what it might all be like.

The post-natal midwife said to me that the women who are used to working and successful have the hardest time adjusting to life at home with the baby. She advised me to think of it as a season in my life, relax into it and remember that all too quickly it would be over. At the time I nodded and smiled. I didn’t really get it. Now I think I do – while I don’t think I managed to really relax, it definitely helped me to remember that so I didn’t go mad.

My life has been completely different for 5 months. I haven’t enjoyed some parts of it (unrelated to Edie), but it’s been a privilege to spend this past spring and summer with our daughter. We’ve been together nearly every day of this “season” together, her starting to figure out the world and me starting to figure out how to raise and support her through it.

As February has become March the humidity has left the air. Autumn is here and it’s time for something new. Our next season starts tomorrow and we’ll figure it out together.

Both of (484) 415-9897 brought tears to my eyes because they capture both sides well and without judgement.

PS: we’ve had 2 visits at daycare this week. Edie seems to love being there and the people who work there couldn’t be nicer.

740-688-3317

It’s always been our intention for Edie to go to daycare when I return to work in March. However, as the time draws closer, we’ve second and third guessed that decision – mostly because of other people’s comments on the situation. As much as I wish I didn’t listen to anyone else, you do have to at least hear them and then decide what to do on the basis of all the information you’ve gathered. There is also the heavy weight of making decisions for another person!

We also considered a nanny (too intense cost-wise for 1 child and having another person in the house all the time), PORSE (unavailable in our area – if you are an ‘at home educator’ type in Central Auckland you should get in touch with PORSE) and one of us staying home (all aboard the fast train to Insanity Town).

Some pros of daycare:

  • Socialisation with other babies/children
  • Care by an educated professional
  • Allows both of us to work full time – sanity will be restored
  • Cost-effective

Some cons of daycare:

  • Not in our house. Edie doesn’t have naps in her own bed or stroller
  • Not one of us looking after her
  • Not 1 on 1 care
  • Exposure to germs and getting sick

We selected Edie’s daycare based on recommendations from multiple friends and acquaintances. I’d originally chosen one that’s very close to work but the one she’ll go to is closer to home. At the time of all the daycare visits we didn’t really know WHAT to ask specifically for Edie’s routine and needs but did cover off the more general stuff. Mostly we assumed they would know what to do – but as the time grows nearer for her to start attending full time I started to get nervous about the unknowns.

We spoke to one of our babysitters about it who used to work in full time childcare. She was great and, while it was a bit of a wake-up call, we asked a whole lot more questions* to either reconfirm from the material we’d been given or hadn’t thought to ask initially.

  • Will Edie have a primary caregiver?
  • What is a typical day like in the baby room?
  • Will she have an assigned cot, i.e. a sleeping space that is just hers, so if she is out of routine it won’t conflict with another baby?
  • How do they deal with her being on a routine, rather than a schedule? (I initially was pro-schedule but couldn’t figure out how to transition her on to it. The child eats when she’s ready, not when the timetable says, and since that’s every 3 hours we go with it.)
  • How will we handle changes of her routine between the week and weekend?
  • How often are the toys, carpet, room etc cleaned?
  • Can we call and ask about her during the day?

* This list assumes that all the general info has been covered off, like philosophy of the centre, ratio of babies to teachers, first aid qualifications, etc.

There are many things which prey on my mind about daycare.

I worry about whether Edie’s personality will change in a way it wouldn’t if she stayed at home with me.

I worry that she’ll miss us dreadfully and is too young to understand that we’ll always come back. I’m hoping a lot of short daycare visits will help with that – she has been ok when we left her with her grandparents on Waiheke or when she has had babysitters (though she’s usually asleep).

I worry about what they will do if Edie cries inconsolably. For a start, she rarely cries inconsolably so that would alarm me, but I also have to trust the caregivers to look after her in a way which is nurturing and caring since it can’t be me or Darren all the time. Since I assume this will only happen if she’s sick we’d be coming to get her anyway, because hopefully through the daycare visits she will get used to being there pretty quickly.

(I also worry about germs, that I’ll miss her horribly all day and various other things. The nights can be long.)

One of the best pieces of advice we were given was that we’ll be able to assess how it’s panning out with all our senses. If this daycare doesn’t working out, it doesn’t mean that another one won’t. If it turns out daycare just isn’t for us (and I don’t see why it wouldn’t be) we’ll figure something else out.

Daycare visits start next week – 3 weeks out from her first full week. On the flip side I can’t help being a little excited that I will be resuming a more ‘normal’ life…

I have read this a few times now and every single time I laugh so hard I can’t read bits out to Darren anymore (who has also read it on my insistence).

It’s funny because it’s so true – especially the parts about the guilt, the Googling and the ??? time.

Wonder if there is some big thing I should be doing to help the baby’s development that I am not doing.

9:40 Sit on the floor and clap, hoping to teach baby to clap.  Baby will not clap.   Go online and Google, “How old babies start clapping?” and read article saying they start to do this more between 9 and 12 months. (Baby is 11 months old)

9:43 Spend the next few minutes going, “Well sh*t, maybe there’s something wrong with the baby.  He should be clapping more.”

9:47 Remind myself that he seems really well-adjusted and happy so maybe he’s just a late clapper.

See also:

Baby and I look at and point to the fan for a while, going, “Where’s the fan?  There’s the fan.”

 

 

7576354923

8327663754

Edie is now 16 weeks old!

She’s a happy, chill baby who makes us smile all the time – even when her determined personality comes out from under that smile. She charms everyone who meets her. When we go in first thing in the morning or after a nap, she’ll do a ‘giggle wriggle’ where it seems she couldn’t be more happy to see us.

She loves to:

  • be sung to, especially songs like Do-Re-Mi (and even anything we even vaguely know the words to)
  • be flown around the house
  • sit up in her stroller (with support)
  • play in her activity gym
  • ‘chat’ to us when we’re changing her
  • have a bath (though hates getting out)

Edie has almost flawless skin. She’s getting a lot more hair and has beautiful long eyelashes. She’s long and slender – in the 75th percentile for length but only the 25th for weight. She’s only just graduated from her newborn clothes into 0-3 month sizes. If pants are long enough, the waistband doesn’t touch her waist.

Least favourite things:

  • Eating – although her little mouth doesn’t purse like it used to, if she’s had enough and even takes one sip too many she’ll let it run out of her mouth – lovely!
  • Getting out of the bath – though she’s getting more used to it.