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Itchy Baby

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I am the itchiest person on earth, so I wasn’t surprised that my boys turned out to itchy as well. I have had hives daily (some days, all day) since I was 12. I saw several doctors who took a stab at a diagnosis (I have dermographism which explains some of it) or cause or make any sense out of it and finally, we all gave up. It doesn’t bother me terribly, though it does look awful and people often make comments, such as, “What happened to your neck??” or “Did you hurt yourself?” I don’t take antihistamines because it makes the reaction look much redder and thus appear more painful and thus induce more comments, but as I said it doesn’t bother me all that much. It did get me out of gym class for many years.

So no big surprise that both my boys have been Babies of Rashes. Adam had terrible eczema as a baby, especially on his face. Thankfully, much of it has cleared up, though occasionally he’ll get a spot on his arms, legs or back.

Peter, on the other hand, is taking rashes to a whole new level. At his doctor’s appointment today, she declared the rash on his arms and chest to be eczema (it looks much different than Adam’s but that’s how babies trick you) but his diaper rash had her stumped. It isn’t TERRIBLE. But it is persistent and not where you would think it would be. I think she was stalling for time when she asked if I was changing his diaper (“No, not at all. We keep him in it until it falls off.”). Finally, she wrote me a prescription, which she vaguely described as cream. When I looked at the prescription later, I saw that she had ordered a compound made of pretty much every diaper rash ointment that doctor’s usually dole out, presumably to try everything so something might work.

Passing on my ability to stump doctors with disturbing skin ailments to my children. It’s what motherhood is all about.

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A Thank You

You know those efficient,organized and capable people that are also so sweet and thoughtful that you have to love them despite the fact that their ridiculous goodness makes the rest of us look bad? That’s Carla. Her to-do lists are so inspiring that when she crosses off another task, I feel like I’ve accomplished something. Her boundless energy makes me want to drink whatever coffee she’s drinking. Her review of a onesie was so compelling that it made me, for the first time ever, actually yearn for a onesie.

So imagine my delight when I received a package in the mail, ripped it open and slapped this beauty on  my baby:

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And that’s not all! I think we can all agree that handmade is the bestmade and so sweet is this gift, words can’t do it justice. Instead:

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Thank you, Carla!

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An Easy Baby

Every mother of a newborn frequently faces the question “Is he a good baby?” When Adam was a baby, I assured everyone he was a good baby because, really, who says, “No, he’s a terrible baby.”

But Adam wasn’t an easy baby. As a newborn, he gave us the impression that he didn’t quite trust us to care for him, even though he didn’t have a moment of hunger nor did he lack for cuddles. He had trouble latching and while I had adequate milk for him, he had to work for it and ended up nursing in small amounts and frequently. He slept terribly at night and napped for 37 minute spurts during the day and didn’t sleep longer than three or four hours until he was nearly 18 months. He needed to be bounced and rocked constantly. I remember thinking that he never seemed happy like other babies I knew. His baby experience wasn’t as awful as a sick or colicky baby. But it was like caring for a cantankerous old man.

Peter is a “good baby”. He doesn’t cry when he’s hungry. Instead, he pokes out his tongue for a surprisingly long time before he’ll give a few good sqauwks. He latched so naturally without help and my body is producing enough milk to feed triplets. Peter smiles and coos when I swaddle him, stares off into space for a few moments before falling asleep in his bed for three and four hour stretches.

I was delighted with Adam’s babyhood. His smiles were rare but wonderful. Our rough start with nursing made the fact that we nursed until he was 17 months a triumphant marathon. Adam’s needs were so specific and demanding but once we understood each other, he was wonderfully predictable.

But thank goodness for an “easy baby.”

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It’s a good thing he’s cute…

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… because nothing is getting done around here. Baby 2.0 who will now be known as “Peter” (as you may have guessed Adam is not really “Adam” for the usual blogging/privacy reasons), is a baby who likes to be held. Does he ever. He also likes to eat. A LOT. Between his first doctor’s appointment on a Thursday to his next appointment the following Monday, the boy gained more than a pound. 

And don’t get me started on the diaper changes. Goodness.

Thankfully, Adam is being as helpful and patient as a two year old can be. He finds Peter mildly amusing and accepts that he needs to be glued to Mama much of the time and is flexible enough that both Mama AND Peter can come over and devote all our attention to being the train signals for his train set.

All in all, I am so thankful for two healthy children. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

 

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41 Weeks

So, yeah.

I was admitted to the hospital on Monday night after having regular contractions for about four hours and I was 5 cm. Nothing happened overnight and despite having contractions since then but nothing regular or consistent, I haven’t been back.

I’m going in tomorrow morning to see if I’m “ready” to be induced. HAHAHAHAHAHA!

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A Big Boy

So the week before Baby 2.0’s (now past) due date, Adam decided to fully embrace toddlerhood and use the word “no” for the sheer delight in refusal. Right now, it’s limited to when and what he’ll eat, helping to clean up a mess he’s made and sitting in restaurants. He’s come around with a bit of coaxing or a selection of choices or plain old-fashioned ignoring the behaviour on our part.

My patience is wearing thin, especially at the end of the day, hearing “no” to the instruction “go to sleep” is beyond what I’m willing to entertain. Since he was a baby, we’ve had so many problems getting Adam to sleep, stay asleep and not wake up at 4:00 a.m. that when he started sleeping through the night, I didn’t care HOW he got that way. We’ve held him, rocked him and most recently, we’ve both sat with him and held his hand while he fell asleep. He had never been alone while falling asleep and would panic if we weren’t there (but doesn’t panic in the middle of the night, oddly).

Lately, his bedtime interest lies more in entertaining himself than trying to fall asleep. Two nights ago, I figured that he can entertain himself whether we’re there or not so we told him very nicely that we would come back when he was ready to sleep. We went in and out a million times but he did go to sleep. Last night when he called out, I just called back “go to sleep”. AND HE DID.

This may seem pretty obvious to most parents but as a baby, Adam was a tenacious character. The “he’ll stop crying five minutes after you leave” never panned out. The “he’ll cry a little less each night because he’ll self-soothe” was the biggest parenting myth I’ve ever run into. I used to think that other babies must give up really easily or have very short attention spans because DUDE, Adam could hang onto something for a long time. Any progress we made with sleep happened when he was good and ready.

And apparently, he’s ready to fall asleep without us. He uses a pacifier and holds a second one in his hand, but last night and for today’s nap, I left the room and he fell asleep in a reasonable amount of time. Granted, the first thing he pointed out this morning with a hint of judgment and slight feelings of betrayal  was that Thomas and I did not flank his bed last night. I tried to point out what a GREAT JOB he had done, without laying on too much of the “what a big boy” angle because I think he suspects being a big boy means doing things he’d rather not do.

At any rate, long may it last, Big Boy.

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40 Weeks

Sigh.

When I was pregnant with Adam, my labour started with contractions that were different than I had felt previously. I knew what was going on. They started at 10:00 a.m., we left for the hospital at 1:00, arrived at 2:00 and he was born at 7:48 that evening.

This baby – not so much. I’ve had a few nights of painful contractions that are irregular and go nowhere (clearly). I lose sleep and wake up sore. My parents are convinced that I have no idea when to go to the hospital (their conviction that I am a moron in all areas of my life is nothing if not consistent) and have made me so paranoid that I went to the hospital last week because I was feeling sick.

Whenever I have these painful and irregular contractions, I’m stuck between my own good judgment that I should wait to see where it’s going and the thought of living with my parents’ I-Told-You-So-ing on yet one more topic for the REST OF MY LIFE.

Anyhoo, 40 weeks, no baby.

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