Monday, December 17, 2012

Nearly a year

It has been nearly a year since Sage was born.  A Crazy year - the most difficult of my life, but good.  I am writing this post with toothache.  Things really turned around for us after two important happenings.    Firstly I had an infected tooth pulled.  I got out of the dentists chair - and immediately felt much better, sort of more myself (it began the end of the post partem issues).  Secondly I managed to hire the Most wonderful au pair.  This enabled me to get back to work, and also let me have some help in the house and Sage really took off developmentally soon after her arrival.
Shortly before I took Sage away from the daycare I had heard the owner singing a little song to her in which every other line went something like "Silly Silly Silly Sage". The owner told me proudly "That's the special song I have been singing to Sage since the day she arrived".  My heart sank!
But the great news is that the year has been so rewarding.  I never understood what people say about it all going so fast, but it does.  It goes so fast, that I feel I want to do it all over again.  Sage is practically walking already.  She wants to eat everything I eat, and loves going out and meeting new people.  My life is just the same as it ever was,  Just Lots better, busier and more fulfilled.  And I want another one... I just can't curb my hunger!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

She's growing too fast

We had an non essential visit to the doc last week because our daycare twice dared to suggest that Sage  be (bulked up with formula - (((for when she's one))).  Needless to say the doc found her to be of perfect weight 50th percentile - and 95th for height, a massive 28 inches long.  Needless to say we are now searching for a new daycare!

Tonight we hit a milestone. in actual fact i have not been that good at feeding sage.  I still haven't successfully made any baby food.  My blender is somehow not up to the task - and the baby bullet has such awful reviews on the web i couldn't bring myself to oder it.  We sort of started the baby lead weening ( because it sounded like the easiest thing for the mother to do) - but never got much further than Sage gnawing on celery sticks.  In the last 3 weeks two small teeth have appeared.  Thankfully I have not been bitten yet! (Hopefully she learned that bitting was not acceptable when I screamed at her for doing so Before the teeth arrived!).

Tonight was the first time she turned down the breast in order to have some of MY supper.  She ended up insisting on eating some artichoke, red beans, goat yogurt, and trout - in that order!   At the same time as my being sad about this I am happy.  Can't believe we've made it this far!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

UK's NHS

Prompted by my mother's concern over whom Sage will go to should I "pop off my perch." We have spent the last weeks visiting with all our UK cousins, and this has been wonderful.  We have been so busy meeting people that many a time when Sage should have been napping, she was busy flirting with a new relative.

Consequently she came down with a cough.  I tried to ignore it, but on Sunday evening I realized we would have to make a visit to the emergency room.  Somehow I managed to talk my way into having the receptionist think that it was just a clerical error that we were not registered with a UK doctor.  After that we were seen in less than 10 minutes (for free).  I was worried we would be given a load of antibiotics - but no - the sensible doctor, checked everywhere and declared "Of course she sounds awful, she has a cough, what do you expect!  No antibiotics, its a virus, she will be fine!"

Now that she is sleeping more, she is definitely getting better.  On our train ride home - I was worried about breastfeeding in public.  As it happened we were seated opposite a very glamourous mother with a baby only 3 days older than Sage.  She had no qualms about whipping out her tit in front of all the men in the carriage.  She just looked at me and said "he's hungry."  Needless to say I felt hugely relieved, and it was only a matter f minutes until I was doing the same!

What I then found out had me feeling a little jealous.  It transpired that after her son was born, she found it difficult to breast feed, so they Readmitted her and the baby into hospital, until they had comfortably got the hand of feeding.

I was reminded of how I pleaded with the doc in the emergency room when Sage was 4 days old to readmit us to labour and delivery (because I was losing my mind, and had not slept since her birth - we were also having feeding problems).  He said this was not possible - and then I had to skillfully dodge questions to prevent myself being admitted without my baby to a mental health ward.  Things would have been so different for us, had I been given the care I would have been given as a matter of routine on the NHS.

There are days I wish I still lived in the UK.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

A Fabulous day

It's hot where we live, and for once I was feeling well.  With no plans till late afternoon, I decided we should hang out at I.ke.a.   We love that place.  Loads of comfy sofas, great cafeteria, air-conditioning, and some remarkably cheap kiddy toys and a spacious bathroom pictured- where there is even a breastfeeding chair.  The only down side was that close to $300 sort of got spent on all sorts of urgent luxuries!

Even more exciting, Sage showed me for the first time that she could sit up, and hold her own bottle,  while I stuffed down some lunch.
video
When we got home, we played with our new toy - it was either one dollar or two - I forget.  Anyway I wish we had bought more - because it is fab - and I would love to be able to give them as gifts, and replace once we lose it.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

hungry for another

When I was 5 years old  a fortune teller read my hand and declared that someday I would have a two children, a little boy and a little girl.  I distinctly remember feeling quite upset that there would ONLY be two - because I wanted THREE!

Although I was sick through my entire pregnancy and life since the birth has not been at all easy.  I Still want another baby.  I don't really understand my hunger - but it is there and very real.  I am not sure if it would be possible to cope if I had a second and got sick again.

However none of this takes away from the pleasure of finding out that although I haven't had a period in 17 weeks (I did have one at 5 weeks when I briefly stopped the milking).  Today I ovulated!! - well I got the BIG smiley face on the stick.  Yay!!!!  Now if I just could get my hands on some seed!  Hmm.   And I realize there will be no support for me should I really decide to have a second baby - so i will have to say "it was a complete accident - don't know How it happened".  (because thats how everyone at my work seems to get pregnant, and everyone is extremely supportive).  

But I will have to wait a bit longer.  Perhaps until I feel well again.  At the moment I am battling awful aches and pains in my hands and feet - mostly upon rising - but the doctors keep needing to run more tests.  For the last 3 months it has been getting steadily worse.  But for today there is hope - I am ovulating - and that bring me immense pleasure!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Oh No - could it really be true ?

We have worked hard to encourage Sage to be vocal.  My mother insisted that I recite old english nursery rhymes to her every morning.  At daycare they sing to her.  And for many months she had been making those cute little baby sounds.  But today, a week before she turns 6 months, I heard something unmistakably - which I tried to ignore and refused to believe - until this evening  I could deny it no longer.  A word which has barely been spoken in our house.  DADA...... Dada ... Bad Bada.  How could this be!  I keep repeating MaMa Mama or Bebe Bebe - but all she wants to say is DaDA - and she does't have one!  Hope I haven't screwed up her life too badly!   The good news is she doesn't look too sad when she says it!  At the moment I am laughing - but who knows - soon I could cry!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Things get better!

It amazes me how fast the weeks have flown by.  Sage is now 21 weeks old.  She loves getting out and about and meeting people.  She always laughs when I sing Pop goes the weasel.  Lately she has taken to eating her favorite Winnie the Pooh book - sticking it in her mouth, clamping down hard - and pulling it out at great speed.  She often does the same with my tit which causes me to yell obscenities.  She is usually very amiable, except for when she is overtired or we are overdue to a visit to the chiropractor.  She completely ignores our dog - except for when she unexpectedly decides to pull out his ears.  Fortunately he is most obliging!  Many thanks to Abby for reminding me it has been months since I last posted!


Saturday, March 3, 2012

The most difficult weeks of my life.

(This post was written 3 weeks ago).  It has been 7 weeks since Sage was born.  Seven of the darkest most difficult weeks of my life.  Don't get me wrong, Sage is simply the best thing ever to have happened - to have arrived in my life, but I never thought I would be taxed and tested in ways like this.

After Sage flew out of me in the hospital, I was in shock - immense, engrossing, fulfilling happiness, and shock.  Shock that she had arrived so easily, that she was so beautiful, that I loved her so intensely, shocked that she was So perfect.  I could not believe my good fortune.  While Sage slept I stared at her in awe and gratitude.

While Sage slept, endless nurses and tecks came to visit, a whole whirlwind of life I could have done without seemed to envelop me.  Firstly I found I could not pee - and spent hours trying to - only just avoiding being catheterized.  I won't mention either the stool softener which seemed to make my anus as tight as a ball of fire!

Then there was the argument which seemed to involve half the hospital staff (I exaggerate of course) but it did include the hospital administrator - because I had declined a number of the routine procedures for baby (such as erithromiacin in the eyes - and the hep B vaccine etc).  At one point they decided they would go ahead without my consent - until that is - my hard headed doula spoke up for me.  She reminded them that I had all my paperwork in order - and of course they could go ahead against my wishes, but that there would naturally be legal consequences!  It was then that I realized why it had been the right thing to hire her.

Breastfeeding did not come easily.  A nurse told me she had the perfect latch.  When Sage came off the nipple I had two big blisters - that are still evident today.  Eventually someone suggested I use a pump.  This was when I met the lovely nurse who looked to be about 8 months pregnant - with a baby which she later told me was to be born dead.  I heard her whole story - I felt so guilty to have such a perfect baby, and know that hers would not make it.

Between stuffing down vast quantities of the absolutely fabulous food they served at my hospital, and staring at my baby, I realized it was nearly time to be discharged and I had still not slept.  In fact I didn't sleep for 5 more days.  It took a trip to the emergency room, where I was badly treated, because for some reason they thought I was a suicide case - or that I might have harmed the baby.  I was not allowed to use the bathroom - or drink any water.  People treated me like I was crazy - In fact I was.  By the time I was discharged I was so dehydrated and tired I couldn't recognize my friend who had come to pick me up - or give directions to my house - which is only a matter of minutes away.

Later we found out I had a severe case of thrush - baby too.  Somehow everything seemed to go wrong.  I got home and had to call people out for the washing machine, garbage disposal, replace the boiler, car etc.  The lovely colleague who was staying with me to help - who I have known for years , and absolutely love - turned out to have what I could only describe as early stage alzheimers.  She was No help at all.

Suddenly because of the thrush, I lost my taste - nothing tasted good.  It was three prescriptions before they managed to give me the right drug.  My nipples were So painful - and it was days before someone  suggested I could have a bra to hold the milking apparatus.

Later I would have to battle through more insomnia, and resultant confusion, psychosis, paranoia - and we won't forget a horrendous week of mastitis.  I will make a special post about mastitis later.  As I am writing this now I realize I don't want to remember how awful things were.  And sadly I actually don't remember a lot of the wonderful and amazing people who came to visit me and deliver tremendous kindness and gorgeous gifts during this time.  I think I should wait till a time this nightmare is further away - in a past that can never come back to remember to recount exactly what happened.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Introducing; Sage, Alice: born Christmas Eve

They say that if it's hard to get pregnant, and the pregnancy is tough - then the birth should be real easy! So I figured that in my case, Baby should literally Fly out of me - and that is strangely exactly how it happened.

My due date was somewhat before Christmas - but to make things easy (I mean who is really going to care what date she is due) I boldly informed all who asked that she was due on Christmas Eve.  And it seems that little ears were listening to me, as this was exactly the day she chose to be born.

For months I had been having tons of Braxton hicks - some extremely painful - especially when I had by accident eaten foods containing MSG.  But I was out to supper a few days before the birth and noticed a VERY SLIGHT pressure in my back (about the only place Not to have caused me trouble during the pregnancy!

I went swimming the next day - and found some relief.  That Night I felt one VERY odd and different feeling Braxton Hicks.  I immediately retired to my whirlpool, and forgot about it!

On getting out of the tub - I had another odd feeling Braxton hicks - followed by another 3 min later.  Things continued like this for the next few hours, and I slowly came to the I realization that these were probably that my contractions.  They were only 20 - 40 seconds long and were consistently from the beginning about 3 minutes apart.  At some point I decided to call the doula because I was in tons of pain.  I had decided to have her drive me right away to the hospital.  Her response was "Mam your going to have to learn to just deal with the pain because things are going to get a lot worse. You will have a long day and night ahead of you and you will need all your strength.  Your contractions will lengthen and intensify - if you can't deal with it now I really don't know what to suggest"  I could have killed her!

I asked her to come to the house.  When she arrived she suggested a few positions to lie in that seemed to help me get some relaxation between the contractions - like on my side with top leg bent.  I wished I had asked her to come sooner - Until that is, I requested her take me to the hospital (because I knew at this point I was desperate for an epidural - and there would be No possibility of having it while I was still at home.  It was at this point she had the BRIGHT idea that I try to write some thank you cards or that I take a shower.  I could have killed her AGAIN.

She then informed me that I could be no more that 3 centimeters dilated - and the hospital might even send me home.  I insisted we go - and finally she drove me there.  (I was convinced that I would shit in her car - I did't say anything - but secretly thought it would serve her right if i did!).  Sadly I kept that little number for later!

While she parked the car I informed the hospital that instead of the natural childbirth room - I wanted a room with ALL the latest gismos AND EPIDURAL.  When the doula heard what I had done she had a small fit and said "think of all the money you paid me - and now your asking for an epidural"  I said "yes because NOW I want it"

I let them check my cervix, and to everyone's surprise - except for mine - despite very short contractions I was 7.5 centimeters dilated - from this point forward - with the acknowledgment that something really was happening - and my mother prescribing me a homeopathic remedy (over the phone from England) the pain seemed much more bare able.  No-one mentioned an epidural.  I saw them get the baby nurse and table ready - so i figured that something might be going to happen.  I dared not think what!

For a quite some time I was scared to push - because I felt like I would do a Shit all over everyone - until the midwife told me "actually having a baby does feel rather like you are doing a big shit - Don't worry I promise you you won't do a shit - just push it out." She was lying of course, but this encouraged me somewhat and I started to push.

Not long after, the doula started calling out to my baby "Sage Sage come on out".  I remember yelling back at her "how dare you encourage her to come any quicker - this is as fast as i want to go - I don't want to go ANY Faster".

Every now and again the nurse would tell me how well I was doing - I was really surprised and pleased by this - as the doula did not seem able to say One encouraging word!

With one big push my water broke - in fact it exploded all over the nurse,  midwife and doula - I was secretly delighted that I stained the doula's white sweater.  Contrary to what I had heard, the pain was no worse now.  Another few pushes and I felt the baby tear me.  Again the pain was bad, but it had already reached the maximum intensity beyond which it did not pass.

Before I knew it, baby was out - the cord wrapped around her head.  I had always joked with my friends - that my baby was a wimp because she didn't move much - well now we find out why - because the cord was so short.

From the moment I saw her with all her hair - I was in complete shock and disbelief.  It was the biggest shock of my life - I couldn't believe that she had actually come out of me.  She looked up at me, and I was in heaven.  Apparently I kept saying "I just thought I was just doing a really Big Shit" Over and Over.

Then I remembered what had been my secret fear all along - about giving birth.  A long time ago I had dated a hot dude - which a HUGE "little man".  In fact he was So Huge - that really his um, Hmm "little man" was too big for me to use.  Of course I realized that He must have been much smaller that a babies' head - so I was worried that if I couldn't HMM HMM - I would"t be able to push the baby out!

Of course I decided to share this little story with everyone in the room, baby on my stomach - after announcing Again how I thought I really was just doing a Huge Shit and had No Idea I was having baby- I thing Everyone, including the midwife And DOULA and baby nurse and tech, burst into laughter.

To be continued...