Archive for February, 2008

Old Habits

I finally figured out what C. is doing with his daytime sleep.  Before he was born, he’d have an active day or two – really active, with much grinding of head in pelvis – and then he’d have a quiet ‘rest’ day.  That’s exactly what he’s doing now; one day of practically no sleep, and the next day he’s catching up on Zz’s.  Which is nice on the Zz’s day, but pretty hellish the rest of the time.

On the plus side – and I mean very plus – he does seem to have decided that nighttime (beginning anytime between 9 and 12:30) is for sleeping, and I get almost no grief from him about eating and going back to sleep.  Occasionally he can’t get comfortable and grouses until I pick him up, but for the most part he’s all business.  It’s at least something I can start to count on a bit, even if it doesn’t add up to much more sleep than I’ve been getting up to this point.

Now if I could only convince MM that “morning” begins when the sun comes up, and not a minute sooner…


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Pics to go with the post

MM and C., right after we got back from the hospital.  She has her Big Sister t-shirt that Auntie H. bought.

C., back when he used to sleep.  This is about week #3, I think.

Still in the papasan chair (actually, he still is sleeping there.  It works).  Week #6-ish.

Having some floor time.

Where we’re at these days.  He likes to make this face while staring at a point just over my shoulder, thus making me paranoid that someone is there with a knife or something.

My girl, the electrician.  She looks a lot like M.’s sister, I., here.

M. with her picture of Totoro.  Note the bags under her eyes and the darkness out the back door.  She wakes up too damned early.

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It occurs to me…

I haven’t really updated on the kids much lately.  No pics or anything!  But I’m a bit inspired by Kim‘s wonderful news about the arrival of her own 2.0, so I thought I’d do a quick post on MM and C.

MM will be 3 at the end of May.  I’m kind of counting the days.  Right now she’s in a very two year-old place – discovering that with responsibility (ie: “Go over to the drawer and get a zebra diaper, okay?”) comes independence (ie: internal thoughts like, “Dude, I can totally go over to the drawer and get whatever I want out.  What other drawers can I open, and what other things can I take out?”).  So we’re having to figure out, largely by experimentation, where the boundaries are drawn (getting diapers and wet wipes, fine.  Getting knives and other implements of destruction, not fine).  Needless to say, the experimentation is pretty hit and miss, and this tends to result in a lot of frustration for the both of us.  I wind up snapping at her more than I should/like, and she winds up storming off to her room in frustration.

This actually worked to my advantage yesterday, however; I told her she could watch one TV show before her nap, but that she first had to put away her toys.  She stormed off to her room in a snit, got into bed, pulled up the covers, and put herself down for a nap.  It was a good moment.

C. is growing like a weed, mainly based on his eating schedule.  I don’t want to jinx anything by getting too optimistic, but he seems to maybe, sort-of, possibly be transitioning to an  actual eating/sleeping schedule, rather than his current buffet-style system.  We’ll see what happens, but I’m starting to feel cautiously hopeful that he won’t be eating every 1 1/2 to 2 hours until he graduates from high school.  Or, if he does, that he’ll at least start feeding himself.  I have great plans to be sitting ready with a spoonful of rice cereal at midnight on April 18, the day he turns 4 months old.  I know there’s “debate” among pediatricians about when it’s appropriate to start solid food, but, frankly, I think he’d take the stuff now if I could only get past my respect for authority and just give it to him.  General consensus – and I tend to agree – is that once he’s getting solid food, he’ll probably be a much better sleeper.

That said, he does seem to have figured out that nighttime is sleeptime.  He just has a bad habit of getting congested – or, at least, feeling congested – in the middle of the night, and it takes me awhile to get him to the point where he gets over the very little congestion he actually has.  There’s nothing there that I can suction out; just a little snot waaaaay back in his nose that bugs him if he notices it when he’s sleeping at night.  If I let him nurse, he breathes normally, falls asleep, and that’s that – but I tend to forget this at 3 in the morning, and so we’re usually up for at least an hour while my brain comes back online.

(Think I’m kidding?  I’m not.  Happens every night, and every night I forget that nursing him will do the trick.  I’m running on fumes here).

But, knock on wood, they’re both good and we’re all looking forward to the arrival of Spring and the departure of flu – once those two things happen, we’re breaking out of This Island Sofa and spreading our wings.

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I’m afraid I’ve been quiet the crap poster just lately. I keep meaning to write, but it seems like everything has been conspiring to whip my ass:

  • C. had his 2nd month appointment, complete with 4 (count ’em, 4) immunizations!! I don’t remember MM having 4 in one go, and it was two on each leg. For the rest of the day he squealed in pain every time I held him, and he ran a fever until last night. He’s fine now, but it screwed with our feeding schedule and now he’s back to every 2 hours (he was starting to make moves in the direction of 3-4 hours…). So, AGH!
  • MM is going stir crazy, and she’s taking me with her. Or maybe it’s me who’s taking her along for the ride. Either way, we’ve been doing too much TV watching (even for me, and that’s really saying something) and staring at each other. Happily, right now she’s playing on her own, but I chalk that up to the much-needed trip to the library and park that she took with my too-generous-for-her-own-good SIL. I didn’t get much of a break, since C. has been needy ever since the shots, but I know that MM enjoyed being away from me for awhile.
  • I have a conference coming up in less than 3 weeks – the big one in my field – and I only have part of an outline prepared. It’s hard to write on 3 hours of sleep/day.
  • Because, seriously, I live with crazy sleepless people. I’ve decided that MM’s comic book villain name should be Insomniac, and her little henchman can be Insatiable. She’s been consistently waking up at 5:30 for weeks now, and it’s killing me (not least because C’s usually sleeping then – and sleeps for another two hours or so. Time when I could be sleeping, too, but no.
  • Really, it’s all about the (lack of) sleep. I’m such a nice person when I’m even moderately well-rested. I’m such a horrible b**ch when I’m not. I’d bug M. about it more, but ultimately there’s little he can do. He doesn’t breastfeed, C. doesn’t like taking breastmilk from a bottle, and anyway M.’s got a stupid amount of stuff going on at a job he doesn’t like, and night school on top of that. What am I going to do – make it worse?

So, things are kind of hectic and they’re keeping me offline. Happily, C.’s appointment went well (12 lbs! Or, as the doctor said when I told him he’s still eating every two hours, “He doesn’t need to do that anymore.” Um, yeah. I’ll tell him you said that). And this will all pass. And it will get warmer. And I’ll probably even write my conference paper, which is only 20 minutes long anyway and that’s barely enough time to get started before it’s done.

But that’s where I’ve been.

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Just popping in

I’m sorry I’ve been AWOL for a bit – things have just been (predictably) crazy around here and computer time is at a premium.  So, another bullet points update:

  • We registered MM for preschool in the Fall!!  It’s only two mornings a week, but she’s so starved for human contact and play outside the confines of our small home that she’ll do fine, I think.  Unfortunately, we had to drag her out of the place literally kicking and screaming yesterday, since the toys and the prospect of other kids was just too tempting.  Poor kid.  Since it’s the preschool my SIL and brother send their daughter to, we can hopefully get together sometime to take the girls over to the playground, at least.
  • After talking it over with M., I’ve decided to see what kind of progress I can make on the dissertation by the end of the summer before giving it up completely.  I posted asking for advice from other ABD parents on a board I frequent, and most people said that they couldn’t have written their dissertations without outside childcare.  Now, M. and I are ::thisclose:: to paying off our car loan, and I’ve been looking forward to putting that money towards paying off our remaining credit card debt for a long time.  If we were to get childcare, it would mean postponing that indefinitely, and I just don’t want to do that.  But, on the other hand, I don’t want to give up my dissertation just yet, either.  Happily, one person commented and said that, for her part, she’d done the whole thing without childcare and with two kids who were roughly the same ages as mine when she was in the thick of it.  It was a very encouraging post, with a lot of emphasis on “don’t beat yourself up for what you’re not doing right now,” which helped a lot.  I do know, in my rational mind, that very little is going to get done while C. is nursing every two freaking hours, nighttime included, and while MM is waking up at 5 am every day, but I guess there’s a reasonable expectation that this state of affairs won’t last forever.  God willing.  So, we’ll see where things are this summer; if no progress has been made, I’m out.  If I’ve made some tangible progress, I’ll keep going.
  • Speaking of sleep, or lack thereof, well, we just don’t get any around here anymore.  Not quite sure what to do about this.  The toddler seems to have decided that 5 am is a good time to kick off the day, while the infant shows few signs of giving up his every-2-hours feeding schedule.  He’s nearly 2 months old – isn’t it about time he stretched out the time between eating already???

And that’s the long and short of it right now.  It’s still too cold to get us outside right now, and I’m still very wary of the flu that’s going around, so we’ve been cooped up in the house for what seems like an eternity.  I feel too tired to do anything constructive or interesting with MM, so she’s bored, I’m frustrated, and C.’s, well, hungry.  Things aren’t bad, they’re just kind of trying.

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Bullet points update

Seriously, does it even qualify as a blog post if you just use bullet points??  Or could this be the new wave of Mommyblogging?  You know, for when all you have to work with is two functioning brain cells?

  • So, we just got an infusion of new video content, since Mommy has officially seen Totoro, Toy Story, and Toy Story 2 too many times.
  • Mommy is seriously considering quitting her dissertation-in-progress.  She hasn’t decided anything yet, and is having angst about the whole thing, but it occurs to her that she would probably be a much happier person and mother if she chucked the whole thing.  Stay tuned…
  • M. is so stressed right now that he uncharacteristically sniped at someone on the way home from work the other day.  Apparently a lot of people piled on to the elevator ahead of him, but cleared some room for him and his scooter.  Seeing this, a transit worker shouted out “Usually we let the handicapped people board first,” which apparently rubbed M. the wrong way and he retorted, “It would be nice if the handicapped could speak for themselves.”  And a couple of other snarky things.  He hates being ‘spoken for’ by others, almost as much as he hates people touching him just because he sits at their hand level (or, as he puts it, “Don’t touch the cripple”).
  • C. gave me the gift of four hours of sleep yesterday evening, and I blew it all talking with M. until 1 am.  Stupid, stupid Mommy.
  • He’s giving me the same gift as I type, and what am I doing??

Anyway, there’s probably more but that’s all my brain has right this minute.  Oh, except to say that I loved the first episode of Season 2 Torchwood.  It’s all about the Spike!Love, of course, but the music was fabulous, the unspoken angst hung heavy in the air, and that last parting shot about John/Spike having found…um, someone, and the look on Jack’s face were priceless.

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C. wound up catching The Cold; so far he’s okay.  A little congested, but nothing that I can get at with the suction bulb.  But that also means he’s not leaking from every orifice.  He’s crabby, though.  Temperature’s holding it’s own right now.  Otherwise, he’s getting fatter by the day and is generally doing his usual nighttime routine.  Average nightly sleep right now: between 4-5 hours.  Not too bad.

My brain, however, is fried.  I’m hoping some of it will return to me once C. starts sleeping through the night, but until then I’m running on fumes.

MM is bored.  It’s winter, there’s an infant, apparently there’s a strain of flu out there that the vaccine didn’t target, so I’m keeping us inside a lot.  Unless Daddy brings it home with him, we’re not getting it.  So we’re kind of climbing the walls.  Toy Story and Toy Story 2 have joined Totoro on the list of movies she’ll watch.  The TV is raising my kid.

Was thrilled about the Giant’s win yesterday.  We (by which I mean my parents and whoever watches football with them) don’t like Tom Brady AT ALL, and We think that Eli Manning has really been getting beaten up by the press this last season, so We were very excited by that last pass.

More later – right now the toddler is raising herself, with the aid of the TV, and C. has gotten quiet.  Too quiet. 😉

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