Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The Door Incident

Last night after dinner Steve and I decided to go for a walk. So after rounding up and strapping down the kids we headed out, me pushing the double stroller. It was hot hot hot outside, making the double stroller extra work to push. I was sweating and tired.

While walking we decided to stop at Booster Juice for a smoothie.

Walking up to the door we were discussing what kind of smoothie we should get.

We got to the door of Booster Juice and Steve opened it, walked through it and then let it close behind him... leaving me standing just outside with the big double stroller. I stared/glared through the glass door at him thinking he would quickly realize his mistake and turn around, apologizing.

He didn't.

I watched him walk through the store, up to the counter to order.

There happened to be a group of 6 men standing just inside the door who all saw what happened and when they realized Steve wasn't going to come open the door, one of them jumped off his stool and opened the door for me.

I thanked him - which made Steve turn around and realize what had just happened.

He laughed sheepishly and said, "Oh I thought you were going to just wait outside."

Outside? In the sweltering heat? With two babies? When it's cool and air conditioned inside?


I could have made a big deal about it but I didn't. It wouldn't have done me any good. I did let him know that it wasn't very nice of him but he totally brushed me off.

How I really feel about it? It made me feel really bad. It hurt my heart. I'm the mother of his two babies and I work hard to keep every one happy and cared for and it's hard, hard work. And I'm tired everyday but I keep doing what needs to be done to raise two happy healthy kids and a maintain a decent marriage. And I do try to care for my marriage. I'm always trying to think of ways to show him that I love him despite being exhausted and not always wanting to put in that extra effort.

Him letting the door close in my face made me feel really unappreciated, uncared for and unloved. Like I don't matter. I don't want to feel taken for granted.

I would also like my kids to grow up seeing that their parents love and respect each other - something I did not get to experience.

I know he has it in him. When I met him and for the first few years of our marriage, he was a doting husband. He would fall all over himself for me. Now, not so much. Am I to blame? Maybe a bit, I know I can be a naggy bitch sometimes.

I know it was probably just an absent minded man thing and I should let it go - and I will. I know that I'm over analyzing it and that may be due to hormones and fatigue. I know it wouldn't have felt as bad if I wasn't pushing our two kids in a double stroller after a long day of looking after them, or if he had realized his mistake and apologized instead of making up some bullshit excuse.
There's no point in discussing it with him because he's not a discusser. So instead I will analyze it to death in my head. Make a mountain out of it until it eats me up and I have a meltdown. Write about it to death in a blog post. And then maybe wait until my hormones shift and I can laugh it off like he did...

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

What it's like

Ever wonder what it would be like to juggle life with a newborn and a toddler?

Here... let me give you a glimpse of what it's like...

Things were running fairly smoothly today. Early this afternoon the baby was napping and the toddler was getting antsy so I thought it would be a good time to take her outside with me. I would water the grass and catch a couple of rays and she could play with her outside toys. I left the baby in his swing close to the open window and door.

It went great, for a while. Then perhaps I was enjoying the sun's warm rays on my face just a little too much. Perhaps I dared to close my eyes and turn my face towards the blue sky for just a few seconds too long. For when I turned back to reality I found this...

I thought, "oh crap, she's going to get the bum of her pants dirty!"
But before I could do anything about it, I heard crying coming from the open window. I quickly popped into the house to check on the boy and found him like this:
As I was attempting to calm him, I heard something at the front door. I turned to find this dark figure looming in the door way:
A mud soaked toddler was about to race through my (somewhat clean) house while my newborn baby screamed his lungs out. I managed to get her back outside where I could strip her down while juggling the baby in my arms...
A short while later as I was patting myself on the back for getting her in the tub and getting her cleaned and changed and then managing to also get him like this:
I was faced with this:
And sadly, it was far to early in the day to have one of these...

Sunday, July 11, 2010

2 weeks

We had our two week post partum appointment last week.

I felt so good when I walked out of the midwife's office after it was over. It was a really positive appointment that made me feel really good and really... ok.

Lincoln, who was back up to his birth weight at one week old - gained an additional 1lb1oz in his second week, bringing him up to a whopping 9lb14oz. And how did he get there? From breastfeeding! I did that! I feel really proud considering the hell I went through with Ruby and her BFing issues. He's a little rockstar breastfeeder! In fact, my midwife suggested that I maybe start pumping off a little of my extra milk and start giving him a bottle once a day. She said that if I wait too long to introduce a bottle that I may have a struggle getting him to take the bottle at all. This will also give me a tiny little bit of freedom should I need it (oh I need it). She assures me that it will not turn him off BFing, he will not have "nipple confusion" and that he will continue to be a breastfed baby. (I realize there are lots of strong opinions on this and just to be clear - I'm not interested in hearing any negative ones - it's right for me, it's right for us and that's all I care about.)

She also said that he is a really good candidate for a soother since he just wants to suck and suck and suck and sometimes he just wants to hang off my boob and his mouth pools with milk but he's not swallowing it and he chokes. He just wants something in his mouth.

Also - gripe water is totally ok when he has a tummy ache.

All these things seemed to be controversial and I never thought I would hear the midwife not only ok'ing them but actually suggesting them. And all these things are going to help me and make my life a little bit easier - and I'm feeling pretty good about all of it.

I feel like I've gained (regained?) some confidence in myself and that feels really, really good.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

10 days

He's 10 days old now.

I've thought about writing a post so many times in those 10 days but my moods swing so dramatically that whatever I wrote, I knew I would hate myself for it a few hours later and either delete it or write another post reneging it.

The first week was the worst. I was so fucking emotional I was crying all. the. time. I was certain there was NO WAY I was going to survive this.

I was stressed over Ruby and how I've "ruined" her life. I cried every time I looked at her, overwhelmed with guilt.

I was embarrassed of myself for how I acted while I was in labour. I cried and screamed in pain and I begged to die. When it was time to push I at first refused because I said that I just couldn't. I begged the midwife and/or nurse to get him out another way, any other way. I felt ashamed acting so out of control and it ate me up a bit.

I was uncomfortable with breastfeeding. Remember I pumped for 6 months with Ruby because she refused to breastfeed. Lincoln is a champ in that department but he sucked so hard it hurt (I cracked and bled). And I felt trapped by it - sitting on the couch feeding him for hours and hours in a day. Not to mention the wild emotions that were released when I was in the actual act of doing it. I also felt shy about doing it. My boobs are bigger than Lincoln's head and I found it extremely difficult to be discreet which really bothered me.

I felt pain and immense fatigue from the birth. I was so tired and shaky and had zero appetite. So even though I was hungry and knew I should eat - I couldn't. And that made things worse. I was soooo weak.

I thought/imagined that Steve was disgusted with me. Both my appearance and my emotionalism.

Ruby acted like a demon. She was already going through a "phase" when Lincoln came into the world but I managed to blame myself for bringing a new baby into the house for her behavior. I felt like a horrible mother because I was actually incapable of dealing with her. Her whining and crying and often rotten behavior almost put me over the top.

I was overcome with fear and anxiety of how in the hell I'm going to look after both Ruby and Lincoln when Steve goes back to work later this week.

After a particularly tearful visit to the midwive's office, one midwife said she would refer to me to post partum mental health.

Later that day the midwife who delivered Lincoln called and talked to me about the birth and explained that it really was normal and I did and said nothing that I need to be ashamed of.

I let Ruby go to my mom's house over night when Lincoln was a week old. Of course I felt like I was pawning her off and hated myself for it but the next morning I felt refreshed and more clear.

And in the past few days I feel like things are improving. My body is healing. I'm getting the hang of Lincoln. I bought a breastfeeding cover. I'm not quite as sleep deprived feeling. I'm working on helping Ruby through her phase. The guilt is fading. I'm able to do a little more.

I feel incredibly lucky to have such a good baby. Lincoln is kickass good. He's not fussy. He doesn't cry (unless he's really, really hungry). And a few times I have had to wake HIM to feed him in the night. Sometimes I only have to get up with him once or twice in the night. (I didn't want to write this paragraph because as soon as I hit "publish" he will turn into a sleep depriving demon, I just know it)

I probably won't need the mental health appointment. I can probably work through this.

And yet still... at around 5 or 6pm each day I am usually in fairly rough shape. The tiredness hits and so does the depression. The tears are easy to fall. It usually lasts until I go to bed. But I know that when I wake up the next day (or sometime in the night) I will likely feel better.

I just have to keep on keeping on and hope things keep improving - however slowly.