Sunday, August 29, 2010

Week in Review

Remember I'm taking on some personal projects? I want to share my progress in my new ventures, but in order to not take up too much space on my blog, I'm going to post "Week in Review" Posts" on Saturdays. Here's last week's.

I walked twice last week for 70 minutes each time, wearing Isaac in the wrap and pushing Margaret in a stroller. It's a good start. Other than color guard and that one attempt at cross country in junior high, I've never regularly exercised, so this is something of a miracle. This week I have 3 walks scheduled on the calendar, with the possibility of 2 more if I feel like walking up some hills to visit teach and go to ward playgroup.

I knit a turtle.

I've put a couple of books on request at the library and I'll pick them up this week. I'm looking forward to the one on mobiles and kinetic sculpture.

I got a sunburn yesterday. Yay for vitamin D. Boo for rudolph noses.

I mailed our baby announcements. And I wrote up the thank you notes from the baby shower. And I can play piano while wearing a baby.

Thursday was day 40 of my babymoon, so it's officially over. Isaac no longer looks like a newborn and is chunking up nicely. Margaret, while still jealous of how much Isaac gets to nurse, has adjusted to our new bedtime routine.

And McKay sometimes comes home to find me under a pile of sleeping children. As you see, this was the day I was stuffing envelopes with baby announcements.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Spidey Sense

Yesterday was a hot day. After last week's average high of 74, yesterday's high of 101 was a little much. Most of us here spent the day shirtless and in the evening we took turns in the shower cooling off because my babies tend to be sensitive to heat. When we went to bed, we opened every window in the apartment so that the cool air of the night could pour in.

At a quarter to 2, McKay woke me up.

"Heather! There's a woman in labor! Shh! Listen!"

I turned to the open window and waited. Not long after, I heard a woman's moans and then they stopped.

"That does sound like labor."

McKay told me the moans had woken him up. He first thought it was just someone having sex. But the moans came at regular intervals every 5 minutes or so. Having been there, done that a couple of times before, he realized that these sounds weren't orgasm, they were contractions. Our windows weren't letting only the cool ait from the bay, but the primal birthing sounds from a laboring woman.

McKay and I sat on the edge of the bed listening and talking in hushed tones. We talked about Isaac's birth. It's only been 5 weeks and he's already over 13 pounds and 23 inches long. Did he really fit inside me a month and a half ago? And do you remember the sounds I made in labor? We wondered how long our neighbor's labor would be. Should we applaud and proclaim congratulations when we hear a baby's cry?

After a while, we stopped hearing the sounds. Maybe she had stayed home until she decided to go in to a hospital. Maybe the labor died down and she was able to get some sleep. Maybe they closed their windows. McKay and I continued our conversation and then at 2:37 both of us heard a little cry and we ran to the window to see if there were more. There weren't.

It could have been just a cat, we don't know. We didn't hear anything else and I eventually fell back asleep. But before I did, I whispered some happy birthing thoughts out into the darkness.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Thrush

These nasty little yeast buggers are zealous in their attack and we are still fighting them off, but it is much better than it was a month ago, so I thought I'd share what has worked and what hasn't.

Isaac's Mouth
This us where grapefruit seed extract has worked the best. Isaac's mouth was covered in whiteness, but after a day of swabbing his mouth every couple of hours (10 drops GSE to 1 ounce of water) and his mouth was completely clear! He still gets some whiteness on the sides of his tongue and I'll put some more GSE on it. I think that will stop when I get the thrush out of my nipples.

Isaac's Diaper
Isaac had a thrush diaper rash. I trief swabbing him with the diluted GSE, but it didn't seem to work well. I tried putting him in vinegar also. But what really got results was naked butt time with sunlight and lavender. Two Sundays ago when McKay and Margaret were at church, I was able to sit just outside our door with his rash in the sun. I also put some lavender on his rash. The next day, it was noticeably better. I kept up with the lavender and gave him a couple of hours of naked butt time every day and it's pretty much gone now.

My nipples
I've been taking probiotics and limiting my sugar intake. Along with that, I've been using GSE on my nipples as suggested here. Maybe I'm not consistent enough, but it hasn't gotten rid of the thrush. I gave my nipples some sunlight time on Sunday, but it's hard to find a way to expose them to the sun when we don't have a yard of our own. It'd be really nice for California to have topfree laws because the sunlight worked well. Unfortunately the thrush grew back when I had to stop the sun exposure.

I did make an interesting observation yesterday after my walk. It was the hottest day we've had all summer and with wearing Isaac in the wrap and pushing Margaret up hills, I was a sweaty mess.When I was nursing Margaret down for her nap, I noticed that my thrush had gone down. After she was asleep, Isaac and I took a shower and put new clothes on because I didn't want to be smelly or wear damp clothes because thrush thrives in damp conditions, but I wondered, "Why did my thrush go down?" Maybe the pH of sweat makes the environment too harsh for the yeast to grow? When I googled it, I read about how exercise makes your overall body pH to change, keeping yeast from growing and is helpful for people with constant yeast infections, but that seems more like a longterm solution versus an immediate one. An hour-long walk wouldn't kill off my thrush that quickly, would it? That's why I think my discovery yesterday was more about the sweat than my body pH. But I could be wrong. Still fighting the thrush over here, though.

Margaret
Margaret hasn't shown any signs of thrush, but I've been giving her probiotics as a precaution. I might need to get more strict with her treatment if I can't get rid of this.

So that's what I've been doing. Maybe I need to just take a bath in grapfruit seed extract. That would work. I'm open to new suggestions if you have any!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Sacrament Meeting 1871

I just wanted to send you all to Rixa's blog today where she has posted a illustration that is currently displayed in the Church History Museum. In the picture, you can see two women nursing.

In addition to Rixa's three points (go read her post!), the picture additionally demonstrates that the Church today is ok with displaying pictures of breastfeeding.

This is timely for me because I think I'll be going back to church tomorrow.

"But Heather!" you ask, "Isn't tomorrow only day 36 of your baby moon?!"

Yes, it is. And I'm still bleeding and all that jazz. But tomorrow our ward is having their fifth Sunday lesson and I think that a Sunday in which I have McKay with me for the whole three hours is a good Sunday to test out Isaac's temperament in church. If we can tag team, it'll be easier. Plus our ward does a luncheon on the fifth Sunday, so free food! And the fifth Sunday lesson is fun: all the new people in the ward introduce themselves. I love this ward.

And of course, in sacrament I'll probably breastfeed unless both of my children feel like fasting during those 70 minutes at noon. It's lunchtime so Margaret sometimes needs to nurse a little. And it's always lunchtime for Isaac.

Our ward does have a room labelled "Mother's Lounge" but I've never seen anyone nurse there; it's more of a cry room. It's a glass room in the back of the chapel so the people inside can not only hear, but see the speaker. I usually see dads with fidgety toddlers in there. There's a couch in the women's bathroom, but I'm not a bathroom nurser. So I guess I'll just do it 1871 style. Old school.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Projects

I've been thinking about everything I want to pursue when I have time. When I have time? HA!

I've mentioned the blog Zen Habits a couple of times. Some of the posts have really resonated with me and I think about these three a lot: Kill Your To Do List, The End of Busy, and The Best Goal is No Goal. I've also had the pleasure of reading blogs of people who are going out an living their dreams like The Organic Sister. And there are people I know who use their blogs to talk about improving themselves like Tamsin and Jennie. And maybe my Do Nothing babymoon is getting to me because I've been thinking about the next projects I want to tackle.

Yesterday on my knitting blog, I wrote about why I knit. While some of my knitting is from necessity (diaper covers) I do like knitting as and art and have enjoyed the yarnbombing I've done. I've also looked into other artforms like drawing, painting, sculpture, etc. I have some ideas of things I'd like to try, but I'm still in the "collecting inspiration" stage.

Besides art, there's something else I've wanted to do for years, but I haven't been fit enough to do it. So I'd like to start getting myself ready to do it. What is it? I'm not sure if I want to share right now but it doesn't involve running, so you all can stop entertaining your "I wonder how sweaty she'll be after running a marathon" thoughts.

I've also felt like I should do more pen and paper writing in addition to blogging. It wouldn't hurt to listen to the voice in the back of my head occasionally.

I want to keep up the lactivism. I've been on a little break lately, but I really do enjoy it. That's what this blog is for! :)

Writing this all out makes it seem like I'm tackling the world. I'm not. In fact, there are a few things I've decided that I'm not going to work on. For one, I'm not going to bog myself down with housecleaning. It was depressing for me to realize how often I lament on my blogs and in my journal that my home isn't neat and clean. And what is the product of all that? Just more negative energy and guilt. So I have decided, "To Hell with it all!" As long as my family won't get sick from living in the house and I can find things in a reasonable amount of time, then it's good enough for me. I'll have plenty of opportunities to guilt myself over "a house of order" later.

I'm also not going to get into scrapbooking; I'm not very sentimental. And I'm not going to sew. I already have one expensive hobby; I don't want another. I may or may not try to decorate the house. It depends on if I feel like it. There are still no pictures on our walls because I have to go get new frames and print some pictures out. All of that costs money!

Essentially, I want to do what I want to do. Maybe I'm having my quarterlife crisis, who knows?

Why am I even mentioning this? Well, I'm trying to figure out if I want to blog about my progress in my various endeavors and if I want to blog about them or not. Infiknity, with the tagline, "Where things happen that don't" seems to fit this and since I use that space for my knitted projects, adding art projects/inspiration and such to that blog wouldn't be a huge leap. But then there are you readers who might be interested in seeing them on this blog. And then there's the "Should I make a fitness blog?" question. Making my attempt to get fit public might be more motivating. I've also considered just posting a "Look I did it!" post when I finally do that thing I want to get fit for. But the journey might be interesting. And I could put that all on Infiknity, since I put my WIPs and FOs there: charting my WIP fitness journey could work on that blog. Or I could put it here. Or make a new blog. I know bloggers who make new blogs for various projects and I know bloggers who keep it all in one place. There's also the option of merging Infiknity to this one and having it here: knitting and all. What do you think?

Oh and a random picture to reward you for reading all that:

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Footnote

I wanted to add a little bit to my birth story. There was a part that kind of makes McKay sound pushy and invasive, or at least it sounds like it to me. You see, one of the reasons I don't want extra people at my births is that I want to follow my gut and I don't want people distracting me with their suggestions. And yet there was this:

I wanted to stand up to see if it was a shoulder issue and if changing positions would help. Meanwhile, McKay was telling me to stay in the water for some reason. We actually got into a little quarrel about it. "Stay in the water! "Why?" "Because....(some reason I wasn't paying attention to)" "That doesn't make sense!" "Keep the baby's head in the water." "Why? No." "You catch it in front of you so I don't have to pass it to you." "I'm standing up!"

And he was sort of being pushy. That's exactly the sort of situation I try to avoid.

Underneath my words of frustration at that point, I was having a a metaconversation in my head. All of this was happening when the above was happening. Labor time is really weird.

"Stay in the water? Well aren't you the pushy one? Who is the one with a baby's head sticking out of her? Right. Me. ... some more of the argument happened... oh I can catch it. That's what he wanted. He wanted me to give me a chance to catch the baby myself. Aww... How sweet of him. I love him." Then I stood up, pushed, and had a baby.

During the pregnancy, I had talked about wanting a solo birth and catching the baby myself. A solo birth was obviously not happening, but he wanted me to have a least part of that dream and tried to offer it to me. Unfortunately for him, neither of us had gotten much sleep and I was in the middle of having a baby, so the communication was a little broken.

But he meant well. It was nice of him to remember my wishes.

I know I said this in the birth story, but the two contractions when we were standing against the wall together were definitely a couple of the best contractions. I felt really close to him and loved. He was literally a great support and had my back. I know he does those figuratively for me also. In all my crazy endeavors.

So Happy Anniversary to McKay! Four years today!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

My Intact Journey

A couple of weeks ago, I got a call from a friend who was asking about breastfeeding during pregnancy. It wasn't the first such call I've received; this happens surprisingly often. As the conversation continued, my newly pregnant friend asked me about circumcision. Her first child was a girl, so she had never given thought to it, but with the possibility that this new baby could be a boy, it was now on her radar.

I started, "We probably won't...." then I stopped and changed gears, "We will not circumcise Isaac."

Later I thought about my nervousness in being bold about this issue. You all know my penchant for avoiding hot topics on my blog! I've considered blogging about circumcision before, but because Margaret was a girl, I didn't feel like I could do it. But now I have a boy. A beautiful intact, whole little boy.

Before I was pregnant with Margaret, I knew nothing about circumcision. Circumcision was something everyone did; I didn't know any intact men or boys. I did know that early Christians were told not to circumcise because Christ's atonement fulfilled the law, but because I didn't know any intact men or boys, I assumed that either 1) it was counsel specific to that time, like how women were supposed to wear head coverings or 2) there must be significant evidence to show a benefit to circumcision. I mean, a doctor wouldn't recommend something that was harmful, right?

Then I got pregnant and I started questioning that line of thinking. I also started trying to find people who wouldn't keel over when I mentioned "unassisted" and "childbirth" in the same sentence. And guess what? I found those people. And those people had intact sons. And they were passionate about keeping their boys intact. They were intactivists.

I went to playgroups with those intactivists. Alisa was one of the biggest intactivists and through her rants and her blog, I was led to look further into the research. Point number 2 was debunked. I couldn't find any evidence that circumcision would be beneficial. In my quest to do "only that which I knew was good for my baby," I couldn't say circumcision would be good. In fact, one friend pointed out that while the chance of a baby dying from loss of blood in a circumcision is very small, it's still higher than the chance of a baby dying from staying intact.

There was a sexual aspect, too. The closest analogous structure to the foreskin for me is the clitoral hood. That's an important sexual part of my body. I couldn't take that away from my sons. That's just cruel.

There was also the practical aspect: I was planning a peaceful, intervention-free birth at home. One of the reasons I wanted such a birth was so that I could ease into motherhood and bond with my baby with as little interruption as possible. So it didn't make sense to pick everybody up and head to a doctor to remove a son's foreskin. That whole scenario Did Not Compute.

But what about point number 1? The woman who led the UCAN meetings I attended made up a pamphlet about circumcision and Latter-day Saint teachings (first one under "circumcision pamphlets" on the left sidebar. It quoted modern LDS scripture about circumcision. The part that struck me most was, "that the tradition might be done away." Reading that, it sounded clear to me that God doesn't want us to circumcise our babies. He wants the whole ordeal to be "done away" with or in simpler terms, "Hey everybody! Stop circumcising your boys! I don't want you to do that!" For me, that was the clincher. If I were to circumcise my sons, I would be directly going against God's counsel and I couldn't do that.

Isaac is one month old today and I am already glad we've made the decision to keep him intact. With the thrush came an awful thrush diaper rash. I can't imagine fighting thrush in his diaper along with trying to heal an open wound. I'm sure that would have made his already miserable diaper changes worse. I've been in tears over how I inadvertently caused his thrush and making his early life full of pain; I can't imagine the blubbery mess I'd be if I were to willfully cause pain with a circumcision. That just goes against my mama sense.

Along with the links above, check these out:
Doctors Opposing Circumcision
Intact America
The Case Against Circumcision

This post was about how I decided to keep my sons intact; I'll also be doing a post about a few more social and cultural aspects of circumcision.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Linkage

I thought I'd share some links since I don't have any good ideas for blogging at the moment.

First, from WBW last week:


Here's a knitting comic! It's fun.

From the Unneccesarean: Woman Who Didn't Have a Healthy Baby Reflects on the "Healthy Baby" Trope .
From that post:

There is insurmountable criticism toward those who are vocal advocates. Why do they care, anyway? Why can’t they keep their noses out of someone else’s birth experience?

Because they are changed by it and understand what the big deal is. It’s like your best friend who found Jesus. She wants you to know his love; she wants to find others who know the power of faith because it has changed her outlook on life. Women who are vocal advocates want others to feel that powerful, that amazing, and to know the secret: birth is incredible.


On a more somber note, I'd like to share a post from Kayce, a friend of mine on Twitter. A week ago, she lost her son in a second trimester miscarriage. She brought him home from the hospital and spent the weekend crocheting and knitting and preparing to have a private family funeral for him. She has a post about that here, but as a warning, there are pictures of her son in that post. I think that she has been so strong during this time and that asking to bring him home from the hospital and arranging this funeral was probably beneficial to her in this time. If I ever go through that, I think i would want to do something similar. In addition to all of that, when her milk came in, she decided to pump it and is saving it to donate it. She's my hero. Hugs to you, Kayce!

As for myself, the thrush is back. I wasn't very diligent in keeping it at bay. I'm cracking down on this. It's going to be gone NOW. Go go gadget grapefruit seed extract!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

WFMW: Time Out

I don't normally discuss products; I don't want to commercialize my blog. But if I come across something I like a lot I'll mention it. Full disclosure: I did not receive pay or any other compensation for this review nor does the company even know about my reviewing this.

Time Out is a Freeware application for Mac made by Dejal. It's designed for people who have computer-intensive jobs. You can schedule "time outs" during which the program will darken your computer screen and make it so you can't click or type in other windows. The default time outs are 10 minutes long and occur every hour after 50 minutes of time in. You're supposed to get up, get a drink, gossip at the watercooler, and generally take a break from sitting for the past hour. After the 10 minutes are up, the screen brightens and you can go back to work. There are also micro time outs that, by default, are 15 seconds long and occur every 10 minutes. Those are for giving your eyes a break. You can change the length and frequency of any of the time outs to fit your needs and it also gives you the option of postponing or skipping a time out if you are really in the middle of something.

Where does this fit in for me? I'm not exactly their target audience, but I plan on using Time Out to help me get through the next few weeks of my postpartum time, and here's how:

I still need to spend my time resting because I do not want to bleed off and on for 10 weeks like last time. But I do want to start doing small things around the house. These last few weeks I have done nothing: no dishes, no tidying, and only laundry on the days it was needed last week. I wanted to ease back into life by doing some simple tidying this week.

I'm not on the computer all day (I do knitting and reading and nursing babies to sleep), but I do keep the laptop open all day to be able to chat with McKay when needed. So I use the breaks in Time Out for tidying. I have it set to do a 10 minute break every hour. During the break, I'll tidy for 10 minutes. In theory, in the 9 hours that McKay is away, I could get an hour and a half of cleaning in while still resting most of the time! In reality, it's about half that: I'll postpone or skip breaks if we're eating lunch or someone needs me to help them sleep.

I'll admit: it's a glorified egg timer. But I like it. When I'm no longer in my postpartum healing time, I'll probably use it during naps. I think 10 minutes of cleaning every half hour in a 2 or 3 hour nap sounds reasonable. I can read, knit, or whatever else I like for the 20 minute time ins. And if you have a computer addiction, you could set it to give yourself 50 minute breaks and access to the computer only 10 minutes of the hour. It's really flexible!

So that's what works for me right now. Check out what works for more people here.

works for me wednesday at we are that family

Monday, August 09, 2010

Mountains out of Mole Hills

Over two years ago when I started nursing, the newfound friction on my breasts caused 2 small skin tags to form on one of my areolas. One of those was pulled off soon after it appeared. The other one stayed.

And stayed.

It didn't bother me until recently. To manage tandem nursing, I've started nursing Margaret in new positions we haven't used in a long time- like the football hold. And juggling two kids puts me off balance so she grips me a little tighter. With her teeth. And suddenly the little skin tag was irritated. It got to the point where any bump of my shirt would make it sting.

I came to a realization: I could continue to deal with an irritated skin tag, or I could bite the bullet, grit my teeth, and remove it. At about the size of a poppy seed, it's not something I would need to see a doctor for. I just needed some alcohol, nail clippers, and some gumption.

As I brought the clippers to the tag, I lost my gumption. I couldn't do it. I was going to cut living tissue from its life source and kill it. I have the same moral dilemma when killing spiders: every time I squish one, I imagine its life being snuffed away. And for some reason, I didn't want to snuff the skin tag's life away. Well, I did, but I didn't want to do it. I don't feel this way about earwigs, by the way. Those little buggers need to die.

I enlisted McKay's help, warning him, "I'm going to not want you to do it, and I'm going to complain the whole time, but I promise I'll thank you when it's over. But I'm going to complain the whole time."

So there I was: a blubbering mess- crying even before he got the clippers. It would just be a sting and it would be over, I told myself. Just one sting. If you don't, it'll sting multiple times a day every day and you won't want to nurse from that side. This is a good thing. It'll improve your nursing relationship. It will.

I closed my eyes and waited. It took some time while McKay was being a perfectionist about the ordeal. Suddenly, I felt the sting and yelped. And it was over. McKay apologized for snipping off a little extra skin, I applied lanolin so the little spot on my areola would heal, and I did thank him.

World's biggest wuss: right here.

Friday, August 06, 2010

Day 20

I'm halfway through my 40 day babymoon today. This is going to be hard. It was hard early on because I hurt and didn't feel like it would ever get better. It's hard now because I feel better, but I need to stick to my resolve to not overdo it. I'm at the point where I feel like I can do anything, but walking these hills to the library or park will probably set my healing back a week.

I feel really out of shape and I really want to start getting regular exercise again. Plus I'm so sick of TV, I can't figure out how to get any knitting time in, and I think we're out of quarters for the laundry.

Luckily I've had a couple of visitors this week. That's been nice. And I don't have to do the dishes because McKay has insisted that he will do them for the next couple of weeks.

I have gone out a few ties, and I do have plans to go out others, but I'm trying to limit it. My ward is doing a baby shower for me, so I'll go to that. And then there's LLL later this month and a couple of other errands, but in general, I'm not going anywhere.

I've (surprisingly) been able to nurse Margaret to sleep for her naps. I wasn't sure how it would work without someone to hold Isaac, but I've found a couple tandem nursing positions that work well. She's only getting two hours of nap instead of her regular three because I can't get her back to sleep like I used to, but it's something.

In other news: Isaac's thrush is controlled thanks to grapefruit seed extract. I still have it, though, so we're still fighting it. I've limited my sugar intake and it's making me crazy. I'm always hungry, but I can't eat anything we have. Why do I have to get thrush the week that our CSA box is mostly fruit? Watermelon, cantaloupe, peaches. They're taunting me.

And just when I thought I wouldn't be soaked to the bone in breastmilk, my letdown finally kicked in. I went over 2 weeks thinking, "it's so great to not soak through every shirt I own but still know he's getting enough! He was over 11 pounds last Saturday. Then Wednesday it started happening. Yesterday was worse. I'm never wearing shirts again.

I put ECing on hold this week, but I think I'm going to go back to it. Isaac hates diaper changes. I think it would be easier on him if we just didn't bother with diapers.

I'm looking forward to getting our new carseat. We ordered it a month ago and it's finally been shipped to us. Maybe this weekend?

So that's how we're doing at this point. It's hard to find time to blog, so I haven't done much for WBW. Sorry!

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

No Go BlogHer

I am not going to BlogHer. It's probably not something I will go to for a long time, but this year, my "excuse" is that I had a baby a little over 2 weeks ago and I'm still in my babymoon. And I have a 2 year old. And childcare is just too expensive. Would you believe that some of McKay's coworkers pay up to $1600 or more a month for day care?! That gives me quite the sticker shock!

ANYWAY, my friend MarfMom is having a blog party for those of us who are staying home from BlogHer this week and I thought I'd participate.

When did you start blogging?

It was the fall of 2005. I was starting my second year at BYU and the early posts of this blog are attempts in personal narrative and pathetic fiction. I thought I was cool. I wasn't. I'm still trying to be cool.

Why did you start blogging?

Like I said: I was trying to be cool. I wanted to join the 100 Hour Board and all the cool Board Writers had blogs and secret names so I started this blog and had the top secret name "TopHat" in order to look cool like them. I never did write for the Board, but I wasn't really at BYU long enough for it to be beneficial. I finished my degree in a little over 3 years: not long enough to establish myself as a Board Writer anyway.

What is one thing you are going to do this week that is WAY cooler than going to BlogHer?

Um... Knit? Nurse? Fight thrush? The grapefruit seed extract is working, by the way. Ooh! Today is Wednesday and so we get our CSA box today! I'm really excited about that! I might read a book. I'm expecting some packages in the mail, too. We'll get our new car seat. It's a Radian... ooOOooh!

Share a post that you think says a lot about you or is your favorite.
Well, there're the "popular posts" on the right. Those posts are the ones that keep getting comments months later. A post that says a lot about me? I don't really know. I have one in my post queue that I need to finish that would fit this well, but it's still in the works. I think I'll link to "Out to Eat." It was one of my first posts about nursing in public and I still think about how people make breastfeeding into this special bonding time, when the reality is that it's not always like that. If I were to change things about the post, I'd skip the asterisks and addendums.

So that's my No Go BlogHer Post! And now I'm off to do some more nursing, diapering, and singing Old MacDonald.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

How the Sleep is Going

It had been a while since we had worried much about bedsharing guidelines. At 2, Margaret far past any SIDS worries and at 30 pounds, she can definitely hold her own.

Then we added a newborn to the mix. We went back to making sure pillows and blankets are far enough away from him. We keep tabs on how he sleeps (with the breastfeeding he starts the night on his side) and if he's warm. Maybe it's our room or just being close to us, but Isaac, like Margaret did, tends to get overheated. No pajamas here!

Of course, there's a new rule that didn't apply when we had just Margaret: toddlers are not allowed to sleep next to the baby. I'm used to sleeping by little people and my brain wakes me up if there's a problem, but at the ripe old age of 2, Margaret doesn't have that sense. Right now, Margaret sleeps in between McKay and I while Isaac sleeps on the other side of me. This lets Margaret snuggle with McKay when she needs those snuggles.

There was one night when we made a bed of blankets on the floor at the foot of our bed and Margaret fell asleep there. She thought it was fun. Of course, she climbed back into bed with us a some point in the night. I nurse her twice at night because that's my limit for her right now. Isaac wakes up about twice in the night, too, which is good for him.

Isaac won't sleep well unless someone is touching him. Margaret is like that, too. Often when I nurse her to sleep, she has her leg up on my knee. Because she's older, I can sneak away from her, but Isaac won't allow that. This morning I woke up with his foot touching me. As soon as I moved away, he woke up. In the day, he often falls asleep in my lap, but if I move, he wakes up. This makes knitting difficult. I can read books when he naps as long as I remember to keep them in arm's length.

I'm living on about 7 (nonconsecutive) hours of sleep instead of 8 like I was pre-Isaac. During the first week of his life, it was between 5 and 7 hours. I'm still trying to catch up on that sleep, but I probably can't complain about 7 hours.

Yesterday I was able to nurse Margaret down for a nap. I wasn't sure if I could do it without someone to hold Isaac, but I somehow did. I hope I can do that again today.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

World Breastfeeding Week

Happy World Breastfeeding Week! If you are in the States, LLL has a site which lists some events that are going on this month. Also, the LLL of Salt Lake City is having a breastfeeding cafe. I mention that because when I was in Utah, I went once and it was fun. It was actually a treat: I had flown back into Salt Lake from a trip and when McKay picked Margaret and I up from the airport, he surprised us with going downtown to the cafe!

Unfortunately, I get to start off my breastfeeding week with thrush. Isaac has had it on his tongue for over a week and I didn't recognize it because I assumed it was just milk cheese. Yesterday, I started feeling the stingy feelings in my breasts and I connected the two. I have never dealt with thrush personally until now, so I wasn't good at recognizing the symptoms. Yes, nursing has been uncomfortable, but I figured that was due to the sudden increased usage of my breasts with the new baby. And despite the pain of nursing, it's not as bad as it was during some points of my pregnancy, so it didn't bother me. To be honest, I'm more worried about clearing it up in his mouth than I am about clearing it up for me. Of course, I have to treat both of us in order to beat it, I just worry about him.

And sadly, our attempts to acquire gentian violet last night were thwarted by the fact that our local Whole Foods doesn't carry it. And I'm going to cut out sugar from my diet, which is sad because McKay was planning on making me another carrot cake. Our CSA has given us quite a lot of carrots this summer; I guess we'll just have to freeze them instead.

I feel awful that Isaac has had this for over half his life and I didn't notice. I've read that thrush can be related to gassiness and fussiness and I kind of feel guilty for not doing something about this sooner. He has been gassy in the evenings- but I figured that was usual evening gassiness. It still could be, but now I wonder if it's related.

On the other hand, it's probably a good thing I get to have personal experience with thrush. I'll be able to better help other women when they have the same problem.

Oh well. Happy World Breastfeeding Week!