Wednesday, June 8, 2011


let's be real for a moment, shall we? i feel inclined to do so, though i am not sure why.

oh yeah, i am. this here blog entry is brought to you by maggie, who for the THIRD TIME IN TWENTY FOUR HOURS peed all over everything when i was changing her diaper.

and then smiled about it. if i didn't know better, i'd swear she planned it.

no, she didn't. she just...reacts.  perhaps the air is a little cold. perhaps she's like me and doesn't realize she has to pee until she's in the middle of doing something interesting.  perhaps she just, you know, pees and i've gotten the unfortunate end of that lucky draw several times now.

thank heavens i keep putting down those waterproof pads on the changing table, and thank heavens i have gotten extra good at pulling her clothes WAY up before changing her, because otherwise there'd be even more laundry.


so i started shred on monday. monday was a rough day for lots of reasons including the fact that maggie didn't want to sleep in her bed for more than 10 minutes at a time.  she goes through these phases periodically, and lo they bring forth the frustration.  this is especially true when both mommy and daddy want to do said workout together.

(we have since reassessed, and each do it at a different time. it's just easier and doens't tempt the fates, which i don't believe in except someone still needs to explain to me why it is that the minute i think about doing something that is actually productive [i.e. eat dinner, grade, work out, etc.] that requires two hands and a sleeping baby, she wakes up? yeah. there's something to that.)


things that you learn as a new mom when you begin intense interval training, or mainly just jumping jacks.  don't laugh and jump at the same time, or you'll be given a surprising and horrifying reminder of why you should pee before your workout and why you should have done your kegels more often.


horrible.  hasn't repeated itself but wow.  bless my husband, who didn't even really seem bothered by it.


a day in the life of my life, the wednesday edition:

(maggie's back to a waking up at 3 am thing. i don't know what's going on.  she's going 6 hours, which was always ever her normal stretch, so it's not terribly different.  we just got teased with 8 hour stretches, or 6 hour stretches that began later, so it seemed so much more doable.)

she wakes up at 3, eats an entire bottle like she's never eaten before in her life (which is now 4 ounces, which is new as she had toyed with 4 ounces but was fairly consistently taking 3 or 3.5 until this week), and goes right back to sleep. sometimes, like last night, she takes a little bit longer to get back to sleep if i have to change her diaper (which i did last night because it was wet and she's fighting a diaper rash).  she went back down at 4:15 last night (this morning?).

but now that she's back to waking up at 3, i take the middle of the night shift and elbow musicboy when it's time for her to eat again (which is anywhere from 6 to 7am--and i elbow him because he doesn't hear her crying. he can sleep through it.). this morning it was 7:15ish.  i then roll over, put a pillow over my head (as i cannot sleep through anything, apparently), and try to sleep for a little bit longer.

at 8:00, musicboy's cell phone alarm goes off to tell him to wake up.  i find this somewhat laughable, but if there's no alarm, it's a cinch that maggie will sleep 9 hours and we'll both not wake up until he's late for work.  i rolled over and snoozed it, and saw through bleary eyes that musicboy was standing in the doorway.

he said good morning. i think i grunted something unintelligible at him that sort of sounded like good morning.  baby girl was dressed and looking pretty content, but i knew he was coming in to get me so that i could take her and so that he could get ready for work.

i was not ready.  call me a bad mom if you want, but i was not ready to face the day.

about a minute and a half later, i was up and in her room. i took her and we rocked, and she went to sleep a few minutes later.  she was down for her first nap by 8:15.

i did my lesson for my church class, which is tonight, while she was sleeping. musicboy left for work at about 8:40, and just when i was finishing (i am so grateful for this time, that i was able to do it and get it done. it's a huge blessing), and just about the time i was considering doing something else, she woke up.

it was 9:00 am.

i tried to get her back to sleep, but there was for whatever reason little hope of that.  in previous days, she would sleep quite well in the mornings, but that seems to have gone by the wayside.  i bounced her with her pacifier in her mouth, feeling like it was tired fussing that we were experiencing.  she settled down, which is a good indication that it WAS tired (as this is a girl who DOES NOT give up when hungry). she fell asleep for a few minutes on my chest, and woke up right about 10 for a bottle, right at 3 hours. 

10am--3rd bottle.  she fell asleep during it, but woke up when i changed her diaper.  she peed all over everything.  we came downstairs with a pile of laundry now to add to the pile she'd created overnight and in the past few days. she sat in her bouncy chair and i put together some breakfast for myself.  i didn't get a chance to eat it, though, because she was ready to go to sleep and told me so. i swaddled her and she started to go to sleep. we moved upstairs, where she cried when i put her down. she settled with a pacifier and some shushing, and then went to sleep.

it was around 11:00 or 11:15.

i checked my email, started this blog entry, and was writing the part about how she seems to know when i want to do something productive (i'd been thinking about grading) when she woke up.

it was around 11:50.  she needed to burp, so we did that, but she was not settling down.  i was frustrated, as her tired cry and her hungry cry are sometimes really similar, and we'd just gone through the fussing thing that ended up being tired. the reality is that if she was taking longer naps, this wouldn't be such a problem.

i didn't know what she wanted. she was more fussy than normal, and i was on the verge of tears myself.  this is where my frustration usually bites me in the butt. i woke up somewhat frustrated that she's tossed out any routine we once had, not because it inconveniences me at all but because i think i'm not doing what i should be doing for her.  it sounds stupid, but every time we seem to have one, and i can finally breathe and see that she's thriving and doing well, it changes. i can't keep up, and when i feel like i can't keep up, i forget that the best thing to do is just LISTEN TO HER.

yeah.  it's hard for me, as it's all new. every new phase, every time she tosses out the schedule and creates a new one, it's new and different and i am in adjustment phase again.  and i know she should be sleeping and i know she should be taking naps and so i wonder why it's so easy for her to go to sleep but not so easy to STAY asleep, especially when she's so obviously tired.

anyways.  i was frustrated and feeling it, though sending forth prayers that i would know what to do rather than articulating my frustration in words to maggie.  previously, i might have said something in a frustrated tone. this time, i just said it matter of factly: "i don't know what you want."

that was progress, now that i think about it. i worked really hard not to be frustrated with her. 

we came downstairs and i tried to soothe her with bouncing again. she wasn't having it.  i realized this was the hungry cry, and gave her a bottle.

12 pm.  TWO HOURS between feedings. that's crazytown.  i start to seriously wonder if she needs to be eating more ounces.  i consider upping the ounces for the next feeding, or even for this feeding if she still seems hungry.

she blocks my plan with a need for another diaper change.  that will make the 5th or 6th today, and the third time she's pooped.  we're going through diapers and wipes like crazy.  luckily, her diaper rash seems to be retreating fast.  diligence pays off.  i have to believe climbing the stairs 75 times a day also will pay off someday.

she's happy and smiling and relatively content, though sucking her hands a lot just after she eats.  she spits up a little, but nothing alarming and nothing to indicate she's been overfed.  i try to see if she's still hungry, but she seems to just want to suck.

i decide that, regardless of the weird naptimes, we're going to make the most of activity time.  we read a book that we got at the library yesterday. i got it because it has HUGE illustrations that are on incredibly brightly colored pages, which at this point maggie is supposed to like. she sat through the whole thing totally content.  since she was facing away from me while on my lap, i'm not sure if she was looking at the book the whole time, but she seemed happy with it.  educational activity: check.

we talked a little too.  she smiled, though not as much as normal, but i attribute that to my relative stoicism and amped-ness over the not knowing what's going on with her.  i can tell it's going to take me some time to just let it go.

i decide to put her in the moby wrap, which we just got, when she's relatively calm and content.  she seems to like it, but i want to try to train her to wear it any time, and in the back of my mind, i am thinking that she might sleep some and better if she was on my chest.

(this is an effort to let it go, realizing it's more important for her to sleep than where she sleeps, and sometimes you have to choose your battles.)

the wrapping and baby placing goes pretty well (it's only our third or fourth time, and i'm still trying to figure out the kinks).  we start the laundry and rinse some bottles, all while she's strapped to my chest. she's quiet and content, and i can tell that she's getting sleepy.  she starts to get fussy, as is normal when the "i'm tired" switch gets flipped, so i grab her pacifier and hold it in her mouth (she's terrible about chucking it across the room, even when she wants it) while we bounce and walk across the living room.

i turn on the cosby show to distract me, as i have no idea how long i'll be bouncing.  i grab some spongebob fruit snacks and some water, as i'm pretty sure i'll be on the couch until musicboy gets home in an hour. 

we sit, as she seems to be going to sleep. she fusses, and i'm not sure if it's the moby that she doesn't like or if this is the traditional "i'm fighting sleep, man, don't make me!" last bit of fussing.

it turns out to be the latter, as she's out in a few minutes.

it's 1:15 or 1:20. i start blogging again and read a response from someone on facebook, where i had expressed a wish for some sort of light to switch on when they're going through a growth spurt. i have my suspicions that this is a growth spurt, simply because the sheer volume of ounces she's eating went up exponentially yesterday, and she's more fussy than normal.  of course, i attribute most things to a growth spurt.  i wish i knew.

i REALLY really wish i knew. 

my friend's reply confirmed to me what i thought: when they start shortening the length of time they're content between feedings, it's time to up the ounces some.  i decide that maybe we'll try 4.5 next time. worst case is that she won't eat it. while formula is expensive, i'd rather have a content baby that can sleep long stretches.

1:36.  my neck is hurting from being craned to the side so we adjust. much better.  i'm really looking forward to musicboy being home.  it's just psychologically easier with two around.  logistically, it's also easier to pee with two around.  i consider putting her down, as she's DEEP in sleep.  i'm weighing the potential pitfalls (she's asleep here, and she might wake up if i take her upstairs.  she's not swaddled, which might make her wake up quicker) against the potential benefits (i'm certain she'll sleep better in her bed, and if she doesn't, we can always go back to the chest thing (though with some fussing inbetween which might wake her up).  i'd like for her to not get used to sleeping long stretches on me--she'd been doing so well.  i'd be able to pee. [are you seeing a theme?]).  i decide to try.

1:55. she's up. she sneezed, it woke her up, then she laid in her crib and looked around for a few minutes until she started to cry.  i just watched her.  i find these moments rather amazing, watching her looking around and learning things.  i brought her downstairs.

2:20.  musicboy comes home.  baby girl is getting fussy and tired again.  i don't know what i am, but it's pretty clear that i'm not on top of my game either.  days like these take it out of me, but i'm not sure why. maybe it's starting the workouts again, maybe it's the 3am wakeups again, maybe it's the frustration at not knowing how to help her sleep, maybe it's (again) the need to understand the complexities of babies who don't understand themselves, maybe it's my control freak nature and the need to have some sort of routine (and maybe it's the idea that you CAN have a consistent routine with a 9 week old baby), maybe it's changing 75 diapers a day, maybe it's the inability to see, on days like these, that this IS actually her routine.  i don't know.  i'm not worried--that's new. i don't think there's anything whatsoever wrong with her.  i know she's fine.  i know this happens periodically. i know it must be normal, since she's absolutely fine and healthy and happy. 

if it's another growth spurt, i reiterate my opinion that they suck.  if it's not, and it's one of these developmental deals, they suck too.

but what i'm learning is that those growth spurts are also for the moms.  steep learning curves, every day.  we're making it, we're climbing them, but they're tough.  don't let anybody tell you anything different.

1 comment:

  1. Blast. I keep leaving the page where I've started typing a response. Oh well.

    My mom was happy to see your post about doing modified jumping jacks too. "Having babies jacks you up," she said. So it's definitely not just you.

    I remember one time I was babysitting for these crazy people across the's a long story. But it ended with me trying my hardest to get a giant baby, I think he was six months but he was bigger than some one year olds, it was ridiculous, to just stop screaming. He was colicky, there was no formula to be found, and the mother had left the house drunk with no contact info available (yeah, told you it was a long story). It was 1 in the morning, one of the parents was supposed to have been home hours before, and I wanted to just cover my ears and run out of the house. I finally called my mom. She came over, I don't even remember what she did, but she did something to soothe the baby, then stayed there so that I could sleep until the parents came back. I was so grateful for her being there. And I realized then, and I realize it now- you never get a break from being a mom. Even when your kids are grown. Even when they live across the country, they will still fly home during the summer and beg you to do their laundry and make them roast and let their dog out because they're sleeping in. I have thought over and over of all that my mom does, and sacrifices, for me. And I think, man, being a mom has got to be the hardest thing to do.

    But then I think of how much I love her for it, and how I know she'll be blessed for all that she's done, and I'm so grateful that I'll have the opportunity to do the same. That one day I'll have kids who know that I loved them enough to hold them when they wouldn't stop wailing or when they're sick and vomiting at three in the morning. Enough to take over for a baby when they're sixteen and tired and don't really know what they're doing. Moms are basically the best thing ever and I'm thrilled to have the privilege of being one some day.

    The end.