Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Our small victories...

Since my last couple blogs have mostly been about my frustrations and hardships being a parent, I thought I should write one about the small things that Max and I have accomplished lately. ( Especially since it has just us 2 at home). 1. Max no longer screams bloody murder at bath time. There is still the occasional crying, but we've had a couple of days where he actually seemed to like it:). 2. Just now ( I'm writing this on my iphone as I finish up a 4am feeding) he had a 4 hour stretch of sleep! That has never happened before and was well appreciated by us both:). 3. He had a nap in his crib and woke up peacefully, I found him just chilling in his crib looking around, instead of screaming:). 4. He will now allow for me to put him down without screaming at times. He will play in his bouncer or chill on his nap nanny without crying for 15-20 minutes at a time. Very much a change for him:). 5. The colic has seemed less and less as I almost force him to take naps every day. He's getting slightly better at getting drowsy and drifting off to sleep (even if it is in wierd places: positions) instead of just screaming when he's tired. 6. His nursing is pretty easy now, and he gets down to business quickly instead of spending 30 minutes plus per feeding, he is full and done in 15! I I know these things may seem very small to some people and parents, but for me and Max they are huge victories:) I am now a firm believer that every single baby is different. Some are easy and some need a little xtra time and help to figure out the world. I honestly believe that some parents are blessed with a content baby, which make them feel like awesome parents. And Other parents are blessed with needy babies, who -at times- make them feel like they are the worst parents in the world. I love my little Max so much and would not trade him for anything! Sometimes he makes me so happy and proud that I just want to cry:) I would be lying if I didn't say it has been really tough, and I am sure it will continue to be at times, but at this moment as he sleeps on my chest, I can't help but think how far we have come, and how blessed I really am!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

My so called schedule

So I have a new respecct for single parents. This past week my daily schedule has gotten a little more routine, which I am greatful for, I know things will probably change but so far this is what a day in the life of Max and I looks like.
Wake up is between 6 and 7am. I usually feed him in bed and then get up to change him and head downstairs to get start the coffee and get some breakfast. Max is usually the most happy in the mornings and I can get some good smiles out of him. We play a little, and he sits in his nap nanny while I eat some breakfast. We play a little more, I drink coffee and by 8 or 8:30 he is getting fussy and ready for a morning nap. I usually have to take him to the laundry room, to hear the dryer, and rock him some before he is down. He will sleep about on hour in his nap nanny downstairs. I take this opportuntiy to get dressed, wash my face and brush my teeth. If I have extra time, I will play around on the computer (like right now) or get some things done, like start a load of his laundry, do the dishes, or take the trash out. Once awake, I feed him again, get him dressed for the day and we play again usually in his bouncer, sometimes he'll sit there for 15 mins or so by himself, allowing me to get some more small chores done. I get some lunch for myself, and by 11:30ish he is ready for another nap. This one is harder to get him down for, so I put him in the sling and walk around the house until he falls asleep. Once he is out, I curl up on the recliner with him. Since I can't take hime out of the sling (he will wake up) I take this opportunity to take a nap with him. He sleeps on me in the sling, usually for about 2-3 hours. It is pretty amazing, and this is my longest stretch of sleep at a time (night or day) so I relish this nap time! Around 3ish, he is up. I feed him, play and if the weather is nice we setlle in for a walk around 5. He'll fall asleep in the stroller but wakes up as soon as I get back. If the weather is bad, he takes a short nap only if I am holding him. Once awake, feed again then I try to get some dinner for myself around 6:30. At this time I usually put Max in his swing, which he cries, until I'm done eating and pick him up. Around 7 pm, well play, then bath time and he starts to nod off. I do one more feeding and the spend the next half hour trying to get his tired self to sleep. I usually get him in his crib around 8:30pm. At this point I rush around getting the coffee ready for the morning, doing the dishes and taking a quick shower. I try to be in bed by 9:30. If I am lucky, Max will sleep until midnight, but 11 is more likely. Once he's up, I'll change him, feed him and rock him back to sleep. The whole process usually takes about an hour or more. I have discovered that I have to wait until he is 100% asleep to put him down, or he will wake up, start crying and I will have to start the whole proccess all over again. I know this isn't a great habit to get into, and once he is old enough to self-soothe I will try something else, but at this point, we both just need sleep. So 1am ish he asleep in bed and he sleeps anywhere from 1.5-3 hours from there. Once he's up for the second feeding of the night is where the trouble starts. around 3:30 am ish i'll feed him again, and it's hard to get a good feeding because he drifts off, but then will wake up in a few minutes because he's hungry. Anyway, once fed and asleep again, around 4:30am. I put him down in his crib. I know this won't last because for some reason he will not stay asleep in his crib after the second feeding. I keep putting him down in it, in hopes that he will eventually sleep, but so far no go. He will wake up after 15-30 minutes. I go and get him and bring him into bed with me. I'll cradle him to sleep again and me and him lay down in bed. I'm not a huge fan of having him sleep with me because it's uncomfortable for me and I rarely get any sleep because he makes so many grunts, and moves do much when he sleeps. But again, at this point at least he is asleep and not screaming. He sleeps like this until wake up time around 6-6:30. So that's been my days here lately. . Every once in a while we get out to go somewhere, but I'm really scared I'm gonna mess up our afternoon nap time as I seriously count on that sleep to get me through. Especially since I only get about 4 hours of sleep every night. Max's awake times are sometimes happy and sometimes not. It's so crazy too find time to do something regularly like work our or cook something, because I am never quite sure what Max will do or be like that day. Every day things are now so challenging. Haha yesterday I went pee when Max was asleep on me in the sling! It was a little awkward, but I didn't know what else to do:) I couldn't wake him up and I couldn't hold it either! The majority of my day is spent trying to get Max to sleep, but I feel like he is at least sleeping more now than he did a few weeks ago. I'm starting to think he may have acid reflux as he spits up A LOT! I didn't think it was before because he's gaining weight and has tons of wet and poopy diapers, but spits upat least an ounce every feeding and often will wake up crying, and then just spit up every where. Other times when he spits up it doesn't seem to bother him, but lately it is just so much! I'm gonna ask the doc about it when we go in for his 2 month appointment. Oh, I have started offering him formula for one feeding each day. I am ready to not be breastfeeding anymore. Maybe it's selfish on my part, but I want to get him used to formula so I can have breaks when I need it. Once jeff is home I would love to be able to sleep for a few hours and not worry about Max getting fed. I can tell Max doesn't like the formula and will only take it sometimes. Lately he realises that if he won't take the formula, I'm going to cave and breastfeed him. Obviously I won't let him starve. He's pretty smart there, but I have a very picky eater on my hands, so I'm just gonna try a different formula brand and see from there. I am trying not to wish time away and cherish this time when he's tiny, but I just can't wait until he is old enough to be entertained and actually do something haha. Sometimes I look at him and am just so amazed at how awesomely cute he is! I still can't believe he used to be in my belly!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Past Six Weeks!

Wow, what a crazy past month and a half it has been! They have definitely been the most challenging weeks of my entire life! I am going to try and sum up everything that has gone on, the good and the bad:).
        My mom was able to stay with us for nearly 3 weeks after Max was born, that was a huge help considering I could use all the help I could get! The first few weeks I did a lot of sleeping whenever, tried to get the hand of breastfeeding, and pretty much sat on the couch. Nothing would have gotten done around the house if it wasn't for my mom! Breastfeeding is hard and Max is just now starting to get the hang of it, it is for sure a process that both momma and baby have to learn about. It is actually a very time consuming process that I have wanted to give up on more than once. I am sticking with it as of now and taking things day by day:)
 Hum what else? Max still has very unpredictable sleeping times, but has yet to sleep more than 3 hours at a time ( those few time he did sleep 3 hours was of course during the day ) --PS I am publishing this blog this morning when I wrote it last night, and Max actually slept 3.5 hours at one time! It was awesome!--nights are pretty rough as I rarely get more than 4 hours a night (broken up into hour segments). But I am thankful Max had started taking some naps during the day....
 Max was diagnosed with slight colic so basically he screams more than the average newborn and is pretty much inconsolable at times. Again, it has been rough but I can confidently say things are getting better there as well. He loves the sound of the dryer, do needless to say we spend A LOT of time in the laundry room. I am beginning to sort of understand what he wants a little bit better, so again. Helpful;)
  Humm... It's so hard to remember the past weeks as its all kinda blurring together. About 2 weeks ago Max got a finger nail infection and he had to get the nail drained of pus, it was so sad! Since we had to keep his nail clean and medicated he had to constantly wear a hand mitten (which he always tried to get off). That's all better now though:) Tomorrow Jeff leaves for a few week TDY, Carol is still here but I am going to be so sad to see him go! I know it could be much worse (could be deploying) but 3 weeks is a long time with a newborn. Carol ( Jeffs mom) will be here for another week, so that gives me a bunch of help:) but I could use prayers for the 10 days or so when it's just me and Max:) I am a little nervous about it.
  Everything else is going good, started using clothe diapers when Max got to be about 7lbs and with the use of some homemade fleece inserts they are working pretty well. Oh, I am working on being able to come home to Texas for Thanksgiving because Jeff will be gone for a month during that time. It is a little complicated to figure out because we have to get Max a passport, which is in the works, a government passport and a visa...all before he turn 6 months old. Hopefully we will be able to get it all figured out soon:)
Lets see...We have begun to take daily walks, as that also seems to be a calming effect for Max, plus gets me some exercise:) Oh, we moved Max into his nursery at 5 weeks old and I have to say that I like it better. At first I was a little concerned about him not being right next to me in his bassinet, but it honestly helps me sleep better because I don't wake up to all his little snorts and grunts while he sleeps. The monitor works great:)
I am still working on trying to meet people, and today I am meeting with a possible baby sitter. I think I am just going to need someone to turn to if I need a few hours to myself:)
We still haven't got out and about too much as it is still very hard to predict Max's mood, but we are planning a trip somewhere in February and can't wait to get out and finally see Europe!
 I have learned that no matter how many baby books you read, raising a kid is all about trial and error. I have learned that what works best for me may not be what the baby book says will work, but that's ok. Every baby is so different and every one's situation is so different that I will never again judge someones parenting style. We all just do what we can;) The last 6 weeks have been good and bad days, laughter and tears and joy and frustration.