Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Feeling Defeated

I don’t even know where it started...maybe with how little success I’m having getting Elena into her crib…maybe it’s that I’m feeling exhausted with having to breastfeed every 2 hours (or less) & being concerned I’m just not producing enough to satisfy Elena...maybe it's what I perceive as criticism from family members…I don’t know…I do know that these are “Fun Problems” & I’ll take them over the myriad of other problems I could be having…I’m left feeling so defeated & tired though…
Oh, breastfeeding…I am so very grateful that I am able to…the closeness & bonding time it allows me to share with Elena is priceless…the way she stares up into my eyes as she nurses is so precious…the convenience of not having to mix formula, wash bottles, heat bottles works well for my lazy ass & saving the expense on formula is such a blessing right now with money being so tight…I worry that I’m just not good enough…what I mean is that my milk isn’t good enough…Elena nurses about every 2 hours but usually it’s more like every hour & a half…rationally, I know she’s fine…she’s growing well, man is this kid growing!! She’s getting heavier & more roly-poly & it seems like she grows longer (taller?) everyday!! She’s already grown out of some of her size 6 months clothes!!! A drawback with her nursing so often is that it limits us for going out…though she takes a bottle well from other people, she will not take one from me…so if I go out alone, which most often I do, we have to either A) make sure there’s a place to nurse her while we’re out or B) not stray too far from home as we can only be gone for an hour & a half tops…that’s very limiting & a little isolating…there’s not as many places to nurse while we’re out as I thought there’d be.
Then there’s the crib issue…I was so na├»ve to think that I’d just be able to put Elena in it & she’d just take to sleeping in it without any problem…for every nap I lay her into the crib & she wakes within minutes & won’t be soothed to stay…the longest she’s made it (asleep) was 20 minutes…She doesn’t cry or get upset or anything & I’ve left her in there awake for 15-20 minutes hoping she’d fall asleep or at least become comfortable being there. I’ve tried a dozen techniques of placing her down…I’ve tried staying in the room, I’ve tried leaving right away…I’ve tried using a heating pad to warm her place before putting her down…I’ve waited until she’s deep asleep before putting her down…I’ve tried laying a t-shirt of mine down hoping the scent would trick her…I’ve tried running a fan for white noise like we have at night…nothing works! I’m at my wits end & ready to give up but know it’ll just get harder...
Then I’m questioning why I’m even putting so much pressure on us both to use the crib! A big part of me feels like I’m only doing it because everyone (my family) seems to think I should…I mean, Elena is sleeping just fine in my bed!! She naps really well in my bed & sleeps 8-10 hours through the night!! Why mess with that? It’s not like I have a partner that shares my bed & we have to worry about our relationship or intimacy or whatever…I know I always said I wouldn’t co-sleep but can’t I change my mind? The night before last (the 1st (& only) night I put Elena in her crib at night) as I watched her sleep through the bars of the crib while I lay in my bed, it made me really sad…really, really sad. When I read about the negatives of co-sleeping, all that’s listed is the detriments to a couple or safety issues…well I don’t need to worry about the couple issues & I have been very diligent in making Elena’s sleep space safe…the benefits, however, seem to be plentiful…so am I just using these as an excuse to take the easy route? I don’t think so…
Everything I’ve done for Elena so far, every decision I’ve made, I’ve done research & asked advice but bottom line, I’ve trusted my gut…when I’ve considered stopping breastfeeding, my gut says, “NO!!!” When I think about keeping Elena in my bed, my gut says, “Yes”. I know that’s not a popular choice but I feel it’s the best choice for us.
I even feel better already having put it all out there! What do you all think?

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Soundtrack to My Life

I’ve always felt like the songs on my iPod are the soundtrack to my life…okay, not all the songs. I mean Epic by Faith No More or In One Ear by Cage the Elephant don’t have much meaning other than they’re a good freakin’ songs…but a lot of the songs on my playlist have deep sentimental meaning for me.
Since Elena was born, I’ve been reevaluating my Favourites Playlist. I’ve realized that a lot of songs just aren’t the sentiment my heart is singing now…like Boulevard of Broken Dreams by Green Day, Desperado by The Eagles, Gloomy Sunday by Billie Holiday, One by Three Dog Night, Possibility by Lykke Li just to name a few…I still love these songs…they’re just more gloomy for my current state of mind. I’d rather listen to Good Mother by Jann Arden, I’m On My Way by The Proclaimers, On The Radio by Regina Spektor, Ordinary Day by Great Big Sea or ‘S Wonderful by Ella Fitzgerald…these are better examples of songs that reflect the joy in my heart.
One year ago today marked the beginning of this fabulous life I now live. One year ago I wrote this post to my one viable Follie…the next day, one year ago today, sperm was sent to meet egg & my life began to change forever. Elena began this very day last year. There was one song that I listened to repeatedly during that time…the lyrics spoke what my heart felt. The song? More Than Life by Whitley…this verse particularly:
“To touch something real,
Will help your wounds heal,
Like the sun on your face,
The dreams of starry nights.

And we are homeward bound,
And I, I want this more than life…”
I listen to it now & it still makes me cry…I’ll never hear that song without feeling all the hope, fear & excitement of last year. This day last year, I dreamed & prayed that today I would be holding my child in my arms, kissing her beautiful face, reveling in her precious smile & that is exactly what I’m doing today.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Three Months

Elena turned 3 months old yesterday & what better way to spend the day than at the Choice Mom’s event in Toronto! It was such a great day! Meeting Mikki Morrissette was such an honour & connecting with other Choice Mom’s was amazing. I even met Lisa Rebecca from “The Clock Finally Started Ticking” & her beautiful daughter Scarlett. I thought Elena had big blue eyes! Scarlet has stunningly large blue eyes! It was such a great day…I also found out about a monthly support group for Choice Moms in Toronto so am looking forward to joining that!

Elena is still growing in leaps & bounds…she changes every day & is really developing her personality. It’s pretty clear she’s going to have a temper, just like me. My Mom thinks this is justice, lol! If I don’t feed her soon enough or pick her up when she wants me to, she screams bloody murder. She’s having to deal with a lot of frustration now…because she’s learning it’s possible to do things, she gets frustrated when she can’t. Like rolling over…she knows she can, she’s done it by accident…but she can’t quite figure out that she’s getting her arm in the way when she tries. Also, since she now like to bring EVERYTHING to her mouth, she gets very frustrated with her mobile toys since she can’t pull them to her. Elena is very interested in the TV now. She loves colourful vibrant shows. My Mom has a large screen HD TV & Elena loves watching it, especially Nascar which make her Grandma proud!

I got my hair all chopped off recently…while I was pregnant, my hair became so thick & luscious…it is now falling out like crazy! It’s driving me crazy & is one of the few things I miss about being pregnant. I had it cut short so that Elena doesn’t keep grabbing handfuls of hair. I don’t really like it but it serves the purpose for now…& it’ll grow back.

Another Choice Kid was born!! Welcome to the world, Haven!

Lastly, here’s a photo of Elena…I finally caught a smile!!!