Archive | June 2013

Bloodletting

Orphaned Ox Joins the Family 6

Orphaned Ox Joins the Family 6 (Photo credit: ShellyS)

It has been a rough week for one little Miss P.  First she was diagnosed with roseola.  That cleared up fairly quickly once I took her to the doctor and spent the (uninsured) money and found out what it was and that there was nothing to be done but wait it out.

Then we went to the mall and when I was putting her stroller back in the trunk I noticed there was a small spider in the cupholder.  I banged it on the pavement until it went away.  It wasn’t until later that evening that I noticed she had two spider bites on her hand.  They were swollen and red.  Luckily, some hydrocortisone and a good night’s sleep cleared those up.

Over the weekend we went shopping and when we got home my husband got her out of the car seat to take her into the house.  I grabbed our purchases and followed them to the back door.  He had opened the door but the two of them were out in the backyard and she was crawling through the grass.  I went in to unload the bags and he brought her in a few minutes later saying she started kicking so he thought she wanted to be picked up.

He went to change her diaper and found three huge insect bites on one of her legs – one on the front of her calf and the other two on the back of her thigh right near where her diaper sits.  They were big and red and angry.  I put some cream on them and they’ve since gone down but aren’t completely gone.

And today?  Today took the cake.  I playfully whooshed her into her crib and she kept the momentum going and fell forward. smacking the upper part of her mouth on the crib rail.  She started to cry and I picked her up to comfort her, and that’s when I noticed her hand was covered in blood.  She had just put it in her mouth, and her top gums were bleeding.

Seeing her bleed was awful.  I cleaned her up, gave her some Tylenol and a teething ring and waited until she got calmed down. Then I nursed her and she napped for an hour.

Life is rough!

Hey Jealousy!

English:

English: (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My mother and I never had a great relationship.  She is an alcoholic and a drug addict, and I wish I say she is a recovering alcoholic and a recovering drug addict, but she’s not.  I suspect she is on another bender.  I haven’t heard from her since February.  I changed my phone number when I renewed my cell contract in April so I don’t know if I will ever hear from her again.

I am a Daddy’s girl, in the strictest sense of the phrase.  My father is my confidante, and my first love.  We are so close that he was in the delivery room when I had my daughter.  Luckily, he and my husband get along famously so there wasn’t any weirdness about it.

My mother always had an issue with my relationship with my father.  She was prom queen, cheerleader, the pictures of her as a teenager would make you weep, she was so beautiful.  She was also incredibly insecure.  When she met my father he was dating her best friend.  Three months later she ran off to Mexico with him to get married, 2 days after her 17th birthday.

She was jealous of how close my father and I were.  I’ve read articles about the nature of mother/daughter relationships, the competition between wife and daughter.  I didn’t know it was a competition between us.  If I had I would have gladly stepped out of the way to make her happy.  I was so desperate for her love and her approval, two things I never got from her.

My husband adores our daughter.  He loves spending time with her.  He loves teaching her.  He loves being around her.

And I love that about him.

I love standing in the kitchen making dinner and listening to the two of them laugh and play.  I love watching them with their heads together as he reads her a story or points out a squirrel scurrying through the backyard.

I WILL have a better relationship with my daughter than I had with my mother.  I AM NOT in competition with my daughter for her father’s affections.

She will have the mother and father that she needs.

 

Coming Around

Fetus at 38 weeks after fertilization 3D Pregn...

Fetus at 38 weeks after fertilization 3D Pregnancy (Image from gestational age of 40 weeks). Retrieved 2007-08-28. A rotatable 3D version of this photo is available here, and a sketch is available here. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There have been times over the past few months where I’ve said “No more babies – ever. I’m done.”  And I meant it.

I loved being pregnant (despite the GD and borderline high blood pressure) and childbirth was fairly easy (thank God for epidurals).  My daughter is amazing and I love her more than anything.

But the thing is?  Babies are HARD!  They are demanding, and they have weird sleep patterns (if they sleep at all), and you sort of lose your whole life when you have one.  Why on Earth would I want to have another?

Lately I have started looking at my daughter in a new way.  She’s not just smart and funny and sweet and cute, she’s also helpful and giving and loving.  I look at the curve of her cheek as she sleeps, the way her eyes light up when she laughs, the way she studies her baby dolls and I think – wow, she would make a terrific big sister.

I can see her sitting on the couch, cradling a newborn in her lap (with parental help, of course).  I can see her with a sibling.

So I think I might be ready again.  It’s a scary proposition, as we don’t have insurance right now.  My husband got laid off last month and the new job he found doesn’t offer benefits.  We’ve applied to get Miss P on the state health plan.  In the meantime my husband has interviewed for another job that does offer benefits (not to mention a much higher salary) and we are optimistic that he will get it.

I’m also not getting any younger.  I turn 42 next spring.  I never thought I’d be having babies this late in my life.  My husband also mentioned the other day that he’s not getting any younger (he turns 55 next January) and would like to have another baby sooner rather than later.

Depending on the insurance situation, I think I’ll be ready to start trying again in the fall.  I’d like to lose some weight first, and I’m hoping to time the pregnancy (insert God’s laughter here) so that the baby is born in late summer/early fall, like Miss P.  She’d be 2 by then and I think that’s the perfect interval between siblings.

I’m both scared and excited just thinking about it.

 

A Catch in the Throat

walking baby tux

walking baby tux (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On Saturday we were spending a quiet morning together. Breakfast was finished, my husband was working on his computer and Miss P was playing on the livingroom floor.

I had just finished the breakfast dishes when I spied little miss heading for her father’s lap. I grabbed a teething biscuit as I started towards her.

By this time she had pulled herself up into a standing position, holding his chair with one hand and babbling happily.  I walked over and placed the teething biscuit (her first) in her outstretched hand.  While she was distracted, I grabbed the hand she was using to grip the chair and walked her into the living room, about 10 steps away.

Normally she would pull away and drop to the floor to crawl.  I guess she was distracted by the cookie because she didn’t do that.  She walked like she’s been doing it forever.

She walked.

She’s just growing up so damn fast.  She gets to be more fun the older she gets, but I’m not ready for dating and driving and college and grandkids just yet.  Couldn’t she slow down just a little bit?

Just One Of Those Days

Helen Island, Helen Reef, Palau. Original desc...

Helen Island, Helen Reef, Palau. “a classic desert island ” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I was going to say that I hope I don’t offend anyone with this post, but to be honest, I don’t really care whether I offend some internet stranger.  This is real life.

There will be days as a mom when you will want to throw in the towel.  You will want to run away from home, pack your bags and move to Tahiti, or to a deserted island where you can finish a cup of yogurt all by yourself or use the bathroom without a (screaming) audience.

You will want to be alone.

This mothering shit is HARD.  Like, master class in frustration hard. Calculus when you are drunk hard.  Driving a straight line with a rabid squirrel in your underpants hard.

Today was one of those days for me.

After a long night with virtually no sleep, the little princess didn’t want to nap and I was desperate for one.  After an hour of trying to force her to nap (and getting 10 minutes of sleep out of her, none for me) I was about to lose my mind.  I didn’t hurt her, but I did do some yelling at the sky, cabinet door slamming and beating a dish towel against the countertop.  I’m not proud of how I acted, but I can at least control myself better than MY mother ever could.

My husband’s new job is pretty flexible so he arrived home just after noon and offered to let me take a nap.  I went into the bedroom, put my head on the pillow, and instantly wanted that sweet little warm body curled up next to mine while I slept.

I could move to Tahiti to get away from her, but I’d have to take her with me.  I cannot live without that kid.

More Mommy Guilt

books

books (Photo credit: brody4)

On Thursdays, we go to story time at the library.  They have one specifically for babies, and it is a lot of fun.  We’ve been going for a few months now, though the program shut down from the end of March until the end of May.  This was our second week back.

Today there was a new kid in the program, a little boy.  When I asked him mom how old he was she said “he is 10 months today” and I blinked and said “Wow!  She just turned 10 months old yesterday.”  Turns out he was born the day after her.

As we were talking he began to crawl across the rug.  “This is new.  He just started doing it yesterday.”

“What, the crawling?” She nodded.  I bit my lip.  Miss P has been crawling for almost 4 months now.

I know my daughter is advanced for her age.  I don’t like to rub people’s faces in this.  I certainly didn’t want to do it to this woman, and any talk of P’s exploits around the house, particularly yesterday’s incident where she stood up by herself and played with a bunch of hangers in a basket.  She wasn’t holding on to anything or anyone, just standing there waving hangers around.

For her part, the mom didn’t seem at all concerned.  I mean, the kid is hitting milestones within the proper time frame.  I just didn’t want to make her feel like there was something wrong with him.

I suspect the issue was my problem, and not hers.

My 10 Month Miracle

English: Miracle Carousel 1960

English: Miracle Carousel 1960 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today Miss P turns 10 months old.  In just 2 months she’ll be a year old and I cannot believe how fast time has gone by.

This past weekend we went to my dad’s for a quick trip.  We haven’t been there since January, and the difference was remarkable!  In January I would lay her on the play mat in the sitting room and she would play happily while I helped cook meals and clean up.

This time?  Keeping her from breaking some object older than me was the name of the game.  My grandparents have a house full of breakables that are older than my dad and they aren’t childproofed at all.  Not that I expect them to be, it just turned out to be quite a challenge.

My grandmother remarked that she was proud of how I’ve slimmed down.  This was as I was diving to keep the baby from climbing face first of the couch.  My dad said “and that’s how she does it!”

One morning I was in the living room with little miss, letting her crawl around and explore.  She had discovered something and was dragging it towards me as she crawled, and as I watched her coming toward me it struck me what a miracle she is.  My body housed this amazing creature for 10 months and then pushed her out into the world where she could grow and learn.  Just incredible.

At 10 months old, Miss P is vibrant and active.  She has a voice and a mind of her own.  She has an insatiable curiosity about the world around her, and she is convinced that I should never be out of her line of sight.

As much as I didn’t like the newborn time, I am grateful that I got to experience it and I cherish every late night feeding and bathtime screech.  However, I’m having more fun with her now than I ever thought possible.  Every day is a miracle, getting to watch her grow and learn and discover.  It is an amazing thing, watching a child grow.

She’s not walking yet, but I think she’s right on the verge.

I can’t wait to see what the next 10 months bring.