What I've Learned In Three Weeks: Enough Time To Form a Habit

Monday, February 27, 2012

Enough Time To Form A Habit (Three Weeks) 

Wearing her Old Navy jeans & Strawberry Shortcake onsie.
Today, my Dad would have been sixty-six years old.  It's hard to believe that he's been gone for over twenty-one years.  He would have loved his new granddaughter.  She seems to have my nose, which is his nose.  Sadly, that means it's a bit crooked and turns to the right. Every day she looks a little like one person or another.  She's very much a mixture of all her DNA.  I can't wait to see what she'll look like when she grows up, even though I'm not in a hurry for her to no longer be small enough to curl up on one arm.

They say that it takes twenty-one days or three weeks to form a habit.  I guess that's true, because after three weeks, living with Firecracker is seeming more natural and common rather than this new, novel thing.  Even the new has worn off on the dogs.  Dory only checks on Firecracker almost every time she comes into the same room with her now, instead of every single time.  What have we learned in three weeks?
  • We are finally establishing at least a bit of a routine.  Every morning we wake up around seven for a bottle, then we're ready to be either bathed or sponged off, and changed into our clean clothes for the day and a fresh diaper.  After that, she likes to hang out in her crib for a while, listening to the radio or iPod, talking to Stuffed Lucy and Dory until she falls asleep again, while I shower.  We read books and just hang out in our room until our next bottle around ten.  We eventually come downstairs and hang out off and on in between bottles, naps, tummy time, etc.  I do housework when I can too.  We have a tendency to get fussy in the evening when it gets close to bedtime, but usually after our 10-11 pm bottle, we're out for the night.
  • She's a very good girl for the most part, but she has a tendency to only poop every four or so days, and by the last day she can be a nightmare, so her pediatrician has her taking an ounce of pear juice every other day.  She LOVES it, and it makes her much more pleasant.
  • Her hair sticks straight up after it's been washed.  I love it that way right now, though it tickles when she's cuddled up against me.
  • B and I have decided that we need a baby carrier.  I think I'll be heading to Target this week to buy a Baby Bjorn.  We don't mind holding her a lot, but it would be nice to be able to do other things as well.

The One With B's Inappropriate Song

Saturday, February 25, 2012


You know that episode of Friends where Ross gets Emma to laugh by singing "Baby Got Back" to her, and they talked about how that's not really a song that's appropriate to sing to a little girl?   Well Houston, we have that beat.

Last night while I was at Walmart buying groceries and honestly having a moment to myself, B was home with a very unhappy baby.  He had swaddled her and and held her close, he bounced her, he tried everything.  Finally he just started watching music videos with her On Demand and of all things, she got quiet when he started watching Cee Lo's "F You" video.  Tell me that's not inappropriate.  At least it was the cleaner version where he said, "F You," rather than the full monty.

When I got home he told me about it, and I had to think a moment and remembered that while I was pregnant, Firecracker and I rocked out to the Gwenyth Paltrow Glee version in the car all the time.  I guess that's why she enjoyed listening to "Sweet Child O' Mine" the other day.

What I've Learned In Two Weeks

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Living With Firecracker: Two Weeks and One Day 

I can't believe that two weeks and a day ago, I was in the OR at Willow Creek having my C-section and meeting Miss Firecracker.  Two weeks.  It seems like it was yesterday, yet hasn't she always been here?  Astonishingly enough, I'm getting enough or close to enough sleep.  Once L finally goes to sleep for the night, she's pretty much out for the night.  In fact, today when I took her to the pediatrician, he told me to start making her wake up at night to take her bottles, because she has lost an ounce and a half since last Monday.

Honestly, I was sure she would have gained back her birth weight by now, because eating is not an issue with our girl.  She loves it and doesn't spit up much at all, really.   We had already started giving her three ounces of formula occasionally, instead of two per feeding, because a few times a day, she just can't seem to get enough to eat.  Now we're going to make her take a bottle every three rather than four hours though, because she reallyisn't getting enough.

After all of this, and because she's having very little problems with gas or spitting up, I'm very glad I decided to bottle feed her rather than breast.  I know that I couldn't keep up with her demand, especially since she has a sixth sense and starts screaming almost every time I try to sit down and eat a meal.

I went into the hospital weighing roughly 150 lbs, having gained between forty and forty-five pounds during my pregnancy.  Between running myself ragged and not getting to eat as regularly as I would like, I'm already down to 127.  I hope to get down to 110, but not via the new mom unintentional anorexia diet.  Even though my appetite without Miss Piggy is nowhere as huge, I still like my food - a lot.

We're still trying to find a routine.  I thought we were about there, but now that we're having to amp up the feeding schedule, we're still going to have to work at it some.  Anything is worth her gaining weight and thriving though.

Things I Love About Firecracker 
  • I love that to calm her, I have to cuddle her close, and that's her preferred method to sleep.  I know that all too soon from now, she won't want me to hold her so closely or for so long.
  • I love that I can hold her little bottom, and remember feeling it before she was born sticking out by my rib cage after Dr. H told us that's what it was.  BTW, I'm very glad my doctor could tell the difference between a head and a butt.
  • I love that I can hold her feet, and that she wraps her toes around my fingers just like when we're holding her her hands.
  • I love (again) when I'm holding her and find her beautiful (still blue) eyes gazing back at me.

What I've Learned In One Week: Presenting The Firecracker

Sunday, February 12, 2012

What I've Learned In One Week:  Presenting The Firecracker

A week ago, I was spending Super Bowl Sunday packing bags, finishing last minute laundry, and attempting to relax before the scheduled big event on Monday morning.  I think I did a fairly decent job of relaxing too, considering the cornucopia of emotions coursing through my veins.  We glanced at the Super Bowl some that night, but didn't pay too much attention to it or the commercials.  I've had to be reminded that the Giants won several times, though I did enjoy listening to Madonna perform the halftime show.

B let me watch Downton Abbey after the Super Bowl for a change.  Usually he asks that I wait to watch when he's not around.  I vaguely remember watching it as well.  Then we went to bed and tried to get some sleep.  We knew it would be difficult to do, but we didn't know exactly how difficult that task would be.

Around two am (three and a half hours before we had to be at the hospital), I got up to go to the bathroom.  It happened so gradually that I didn't know what it was, but I spent the next hour going back and forth to the bathroom because even though we had already scheduled a cesarean, my water was breaking!!!

Lucy sensed something was wrong, woke up B, and had to go outside for a little diarrhea.  Then she laid down on me in bed, trying to take care of me.  By three, I was still in denial about being in labor, because the contractions were so light and sporadic, but got up to shower.  I then proceeded to shave my legs (as best I could), put on makeup, and straighten my hair for the day.  Yeah, I did that while in labor.  Lucy stuck to me like glue during this time.

We decided to leave early for the hospital, which is thankfully just a stone's throw from our house.  We went to the room where they were to prep me and they hooked me up to all the necessary monitors.  Yep, I was in labor, and my engineer husband thought it was "so cool" to be able to watch my contractions and how heavy they were.  I wasn't so impressed.

It seemed like forever (but wasn't really) before the anesthesiologist came in to talk to us, then Dr. Hinton came in to see us.  After that, it went pretty quickly.  The crew at Willow Creek is just awesome and I couldn't have been in better hands.  My spinal was done fairly painlessly, then Dr. H came in, they brought in B, and after a few minutes, they held this wide-eyed screaming, beautiful thing up for me to see.

B went over and cut her cord, then brought her for me to see all cleaned.  She was beautiful, and I had the privilege of watching Daddy fall in love at first sight.  Her screams were even beautiful, though they didn't last long.  Once she was swaddled up and in Daddy's arms, she was good.

The rest of the day is very much a blur.  Actually the next few days have been a blur of sorts.  Firecracker is a very good girl and mostly just cries when she has a reason.  While at the hospital, she would only cry when she was hungry, dirty, wet, or naked.  She has since kept me up all night one night, but we realized that was because she was cold.

Right now, I'm still so enamored with her and grateful for her health that I love hearing her banshee screams.  They're truly a blessing.  Everything about her is.  Monday afternoon or evening, I posted this on Facebook:  "Everyone, thank you for the prayers. Each one was felt and much appreciated. We're so thankful to God for this incredible blessing of a baby girl He has given us."  At the time, I didn't realize just how true this was.

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