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Adventures in Newborn Land

Little Miss Forgetful

Newbornland-

Well the title of my blog  just proves the fact of just how forgetful I really am!   I swore there was a “Little Miss” book called “Little Miss Forgetful”, but when I went to search it online, I just found a “Mr. Forgetful.”   I guess I forgot that “Little Miss Forgetful” didn’t exist!  Hee hee…

Greetings from Newborn Land!  I am happy to say we have survived almost 16 weeks!  Woo hoo!   Things are (dare I even SAY it) going really, really well.   We went through a bit of a rough patch around week 13 when Morgan went through a growth spurt and my milk supply couldn’t keep up – but after a lactation consultation and help from Milkalicious – again, I love that organization, we are back on track.

The scary thing to me lately is just how forgetful and absent-minded I am.  With two kids and all the endless baby/kid gear, it never fails that I get out the door and forget the ONE thing I need.   Just for an example, in the past month I have had these adventures:

Not One More Penny!
I get both kids loaded up in the car to make our first trip to the dentist for Emma.   I miss the exit even though my Garmin is telling me exactly where to go because my 3 year old will not stop talking in the back seat.  We end up 15 minutes late (which totally stresses me out), I unload the kids and get ready to rush in.  I can’t find my keys in the abyss of my diaper bag (even though I have told myself a million times how that won’t happen if I designate one spot in the oh so convenient separate pockets.)     I have to dump my entire bag out and finally find my keys.  I literally am saying to myself “breathe Jen, breathe.”    Then we  get in to the dentist and I realize I forgot my wallet at home in my other purse!!  Luckily I have my credit card # memorized and that is OK with them, so we are all set. That is until we go to leave the parking structure (of course I forgot to validate my ticket) and I owe $2.00.  I am pleading with the attendant to understand my situation and she just stares at me.  I am able to locate $1.30 from my diaper bag, console and under my seat. She finally lets me go as I tell her, “I seriously do not have ONE MORE PENNY!!!”   Geesh!

This is FUN!
I locate the video monitor I need for Morgan.  They only have it at one Babies R Us in Foothill Ranch which is about  25 minutes away from us.  I have a gift card for BRU, therefore I am thrilled to offset the ridiculous expense of this monitor.   Again, I get both kids loaded up.  Not an easy process.   Morgan starts to cry when we are backing out of the driveway.  I do the lean back and return the binky about 10 times.   By the time we hit the freeway, she is SCREAMING.  Is there anything worse than a baby screaming in the car??  Emma is yelling “Morgan is scaring me!”  It is total chaos.   We make it (barely) to BRU.   I unload the stroller, she is still screaming, so we rush to that mother’s room to nurse.   You know it’s bad when people are staring at you in BRU as you walk by with a screaming baby.   We get to the nursing room and Emma is bored so she entertains herself by rolling around and jumping off on the couch in there.     I think of how many kids have been on that couch and I get so grossed out.    I have to put it out of my head.   Then she yells, “this is fun!”  just as I am thinking just how NOT fun it is.   Gotta love kids.   When Morgan is fed and happy, we go to pay for the monitor and guess what I forgot?  Yep, the gift card is at home in my office.

A Grassy Beach Towel and Flats: The Must Have Look This Fall!
I have to get three pairs of pants altered at the alterations place by my house.  It’s a little hole in the wall, so I wait until my mom can come to watch the girls so I can run there solo.  I go get the jeans, get the shoes I want to wear with them so the hem is right, then I remember I am wearing one pair I want altered so  I go to get a skirt to wear home.   When I get there I realize I forgot the skirt even though I made a special trip to get it.    I end up (and I am not kidding) finding a beach towel with grass stuck to it in my trunk from a recent park trip, and I wear the beach towel out of the place with my flats and normal top.  I figure there is  no way am I making ANOTHER trip there!    Especially since I had the luxury of going by myself.    Can you imagine what I looked like walking across the parking lot wearing flats and a grassy beach towel around my waist?   Again, got to keep your sense of humor!

And that is only the tip of the ice berg.   Want to know the one thing I always do?  Count both kids when I get in the car.   Got a chatty 3 year old? Check?  Is the baby there? Check.    I figure as long as I have both kids, I can pretty much forget anything else, and  I am doing OK!

Oh, to (somewhat) sleep again…

Newbornland-

Greetings from Newborn Land!  We have made it to 11 weeks and I am happy to say I am actually feeling human again!   She has now started sleeping for those longer stretches at night (HOORAY!)   Somehow getting more sleep makes everything feel SO much more manageable.   

For those of you that missed my last post, Morgan has severe reflux, and the first two months were spent trying to help my miserable sleepless baby.   But we have turned a corner!!!

First off, THANK YOU to all the moms who wrote to me to share their experiences with reflux.   It was really heartwarming to see how many people cared enough to take the time to write me and share tips on things to try to help.  I am really grateful and it was such a reminder to me of the bond we all share as mothers.       

So we had our breakthrough about three weeks ago.  Let me just say I do not like having my baby on medication, but with her night-time choking episodes, we have no choice.   She was on Zantac for 5 weeks, with no big improvement in her symptoms.   She was still  miserable, crying all the time, spitting up a lot and not sleeping. 

Thanks to a lot of moms I talked to that have been through this, I pushed to stop the Zantac and try Prevacid.   After one week,  she made dramatic improvement.  It  has been life changing for us.    Before the Prevacid she would wake at 2am and be so miserable after feeding, she would pretty much be up grunting and fussing the rest of the night until she would konk out again around 5 or 6am.  Which meant I was pretty much up every night from 2am on.  In the early AM I would  then be greeted by a bright-eyed, bushy-tailed 3 year old ready to start the day!   No such thing as “sleep when the baby sleeps” when you have other kids!   

She is just doing so much better overall, it is absolutely thrilling. Since she is feeling better, I am finally getting to know her sweet little personality.  She will sit and look at me and smile and coo and try to “talk” and kick her legs.   It is just the cutest, I am enjoying every second.     

It was a really helpless feeling to see my baby so miserable and uncomfortable.  If anyone else has a baby with reflux, or a doctor that is labeling your baby “colicky,” I highly recommend the book “Colic Solved.”   It is a really straight-forward, informational book all about reflux and has been really helpful in this journey.

So now that baby Morgan is getting “easier,”  my strong-willed, test my every last ounce of patience 3-year-old is another story!  Just kidding (but not really…)   No one said this parenting gig was easy!!! 

Thanks for listening!  More to come from our Adventures in Newborn Land!

xo Jen

I Survived the 1st 7 Weeks. Barely.

I am happy to say I survived the first 7 weeks of life with a newborn.  I forgot how HARD it is in the beginning, nature is kind that way.  I am so sleep deprived I am on the fast train to looneyville! Even putting sentences together is a task these days.  It is like one big foggy day runs into the next.   Some days are better than others.

Man oh man, did we have a rough start!  I really thought…oh second time around will be so my EASIER…I know what I am doing this time, I won’t stress as much, I am so much more relaxed, blah, blah, blah.   No such luck!

First off, most importantly, we have a healthy, beautiful baby girl.   I don’t want to sound ungrateful, because believe me, I am incredibly grateful.  I was secretly a little worried before she arrived. I wondered if I would be able to love her as much as I love my first?   It was hard to imagine.  Then she arrived and it was love at first sight.  And sometimes overwhelming, the intensity of the love.

I had a doozy of a time health-wise after her delivery.   The recovery from my c-section was as I expected. No complications or anything, but basically the first two weeks were pretty painful for me.  Then, come week two, I start getting these intense abdominal pains that put me to the floor.  Turns out I have (had) six kidney stones.  I couldn’t believe I was having to deal with kidney stones with a two week old and a c-section recovery!  I was sitting in the Urgent Care for 3 hours thinking “Seriously.  Is this a joke??”

Baby-wise we have had a bit of a rough time as well.  Morgan has severe reflux, which Emma didn’t have, so it has been a whole new ball game I was not at all prepared for.   Very early on, we had three SUPER scary incidents where she choked on her spit up during the night.  For a few seconds (that felt like eternity)  her face turned red and she made no noise like she couldn’t breathe.    Thankfully she was able to cough it up and was OK, but it scared the daylights out of me.   I essentially did not sleep at all the first month as I was so scared of her choking again in her sleep. I still *sleep* with both ears and one eye open.

Because of the choking and her other symptoms, we got referred to a GI pediatric specialist at CHOC and have her on two medications, Zantac and Reglan.   It has been really frustrating as I don’t feel like the medications are really helping that much.  To anyone who has gone through this, if you have any insight for me, please comment below or email me if you prefer (jennifer@tinyoranges.com.)

She is better in the sense that she hasn’t choked again since the second week, although we have not had her sleeping flat on her back since then, so I don’t know whether to attribute it to that or the medication.    She still spits up all the time, and when she is awake, the poor thing seems pretty miserable a lot.  She grimaces and turns red and is gassy and fussy and just seems really uncomfortable.

I don’t want to jinx it, but she’s been a tad less fussy the last few days. I am hoping, hoping we are turning the corner.  It has been so fun to finally get to see her little personality when she is awake but not crying!

Having a newborn and another child is a whole other post.  My goodness, it is not easy!  Takes the word “multi-tasking” to a whole new level!  I worship all of you who have paved the way before me.  There are some great times/moments when I think “I’ve got this down, we are doing pretty good!”  Then there are other times/moments when both kids are crying/whining/needing something and it makes me want to burst into tears myself, then grab a bottle of chardonnay and lock myself in my room. Those times usually result in a call to my husband at work with the ever-important question, “WHEN ARE YOU COMING HOME?????”

However, even through the hard times, I am definitely appreciating all those little newborn things more this time…the little coos, the expressions, the first smiles, the smell of their hair, the soft skin.   I sit and stare at her a lot.   I am biased, but I just think she is perfection.  Spit up, gas, fussiness and all :-) .

On another positive note, Emma has SHOCKED me with how well she has adjusted.  She is the first grandchild on both sides and it has been just her for 3 full years, so I was prepared for some acting out or a little jealousy.   She has been remarkable.   The loving gestures she shows Morgan bring tears to my eyes.   She probably kisses her about 100 times a day, wants to change every diaper with me, and is on “binky” duty if she fusses and spits it out.    I know this could change at any time, but for now, things on this front are very good.

Each day seems to get a little easier, or rather, we are sort of finding a groove.   All babies grow out of reflux, so I know that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.  More to come from our adventures in newborn land, fow now the baby is crying (shocker!) I have to run!  Thanks for listening to my saga!!! xoxox Jen

Meet Our New Family Member!

Hello! Greetings from Newborn Land!   I am typing this with my little one snuggled in my Sleepy Wrap (LOVE this product!) trying to multi-task through minor sleep deprivation.   Please excuse me if this post is short, but I wanted to share some pictures of our new little bundle of joy!

Morgan was born on July 2nd, 2009 at 8:47am, weighing in at 7 pounds, 3 ounces and 20 inches long.   She is healthy and all went great.  I have been recovering from the c-section and each day gets a little better.

It has been a period of tremendous joy, excitement and exhaustion! We are slowly adjusting to the endless hours of nursing, rocking and trying to remember to eat.  I remember before Emma was born moms would tell me how it was hard to find time to fit in a shower in the early days.  I always thought people were being dramatic, as I couldn’t fathom how it could be that hard to find the time to shower.   Then I had a newborn and I totally GOT IT! 

So, here I am writing this at 2pm in my pajamas, NOT showered and I have not had lunch!  The nice thing is that I know that someday I will shower and eat again, so I am trying to enjoy this period of time when they are so little and can snuggle up against you and sleep curled up like a little love bug.  

More to come from our Adventures in Newborn Land, in the meantime, I hope everyone is having a great summer!   

If you have any fun activities or events or summer ideas to share with me, please drop me an email to jennifer@tinyoranges.com.

xoxo 
Jen