Dear All My Pets,

Well, we did it. I had a baby. She’s three months old. And you’re all still here, just like I promised you. I didn’t listen to anyone when they said I should get rid of you, because that’s not how pet ownership works. And magically, since the baby has been here, none of you have bit her, scratched her, sucked the breath out of her, stolen her milk, or any other number of heinous things that people told me you would do.

And I still love you. All eight of you. All five cats and three big dogs of you.

There were some tense moments while I was pregnant, I won’t lie to you. Everyone told me that once the baby came I wouldn’t have time for you. Or that I would love you less. That you would no longer be my babies. But you are still my babies. You’re my fur babies and my first babies.

HOWEVER.

Let’s talk about a few things:

  1. The crib is not yours. I know that it seems like it should be, especially since the baby is not sleeping in it. I know that it seems conveniently cat sized. But it’s not. It’s really not cat sized. It’s tiny human sized, and you’re not allowed to look at her with disdain when I lay her down in it to have tummy time while I get ready in the morning. I’m sure she’s okay with sharing it with you, but let’s remember who that overpriced piece of wood was purchased for.
  2. While I find every chirp, bay, bark, meow, hiss, warble, scratching post scratch, and play fight adorable, maybe you could not do all those things RIGHT when the baby has gone down for a nap? Look at it this way: if she’s napping that’s prime time for me to rub bellies and scratch behind ears. I’m only thinking of you here.
  3. I know the thought of what I’m about to say SEEMS ridiculous, but believe it or not I don’t ACTUALLY want every piece of her clothing to smell like you. I know, it’s madness, but maybe you could think about NOT laying in the laundry basket full of clean baby clothes and blankets as soon as it comes out of the dryer. Just consider it and get back to me.
  4. While she thinks it’s really funny when you come up to her and lick her in the face, I know exactly where that tongue of yours has been, and I do not approve.
  5. As of right now, I have been able to successfully hide from the baby’s grandmother that you chewed the eyeball off the stuffed giraffe that she bought for the baby. I get it, you were concerned about a choking hazard, but here’s a thought: chew the expensive toys we bought for you. Because right now there’s a partially blind giraffe hiding in the closet, looking for justice.
  6. I’m not sure I realized just quite how much you shed before I decided to become a mostly stay at home mom. I know you don’t actually have control over this and I certainly don’t blame you, but it just needs to be stated: that’s a lot of hair.
  7. The mailman is not the enemy. He’s probably bringing me more baby clothes for you to lay on because I have an online shopping problem and a new baby to spend way too much money on.
  8. And finally, on the subject of spending way too much money, BREAST PUMP TUBING DOES NOT GROW ON TREES. THERE IS NOT A BREAST PUMP TUBING TREE IN THE BACK YARD. So until one springs up, please stop searching out the tubes and chewing through them.

If you would just take a moment to consider these points, I would be forever grateful. Even if you don’t, I’ll still love you. I’ll always love you, and I’ll never give you up. When I took you in it was a promise forever. I can’t wait to watch baby girl fall in love with you like I did.

But she’ll love you more if all of her stuffed animals have both eyes.

Love Always,

Momma

FOUR. MONTH. SLEEP. REGRESSION.

I’m just going to say it, the 4MSR can go to hell.

I’m serious. I have had the easiest baby. I have. She’s a pretty good sleeper. She nurses well. She’s good natured. She’s freaking gorgeous (if I do say so myself).

But the 4MSR is bringing me to my knees y’all. Because do you know what happens during the 4MSR? Your baby LITERALLY FORGETS HOW TO SLEEP.

How do you forget that? How? Stupid brain. Stupid brain having to go and change shit on you!

Poor pumpkin. Two nights in a row she hasn’t slept past midnight in her bassinet (we usually get until 3:30 am ish) and then after getting into bed with me she’s up every two hours wanting and also not wanting to nurse. And by that I mean she’ll nurse, but she’s not happy about it and typically kicks me in the stomach the whole time.

So that’s fun.

Tonight she sobbed for over an hour straight as Chief and I took turns consoling her, getting her to sleep, only to lay her back down and have the eyes pop open and the shrieking begin again. She finally wore herself out enough to where she was hiccup crying (which breaks my heart) and I was able to get her to comfort nurse to where she knocked out almost instantly. She was so tired that she didn’t even wake when I swaddled her, and now she’s in her bassinet, GOD WILLING for at least a few hours.

So if some jerk tells you the 4MSR isn’t a big deal, don’t listen to them.

Actually, everyone told me it would suck, and I fully believed it wouldn’t be a big deal because my baby was easy!

So in other words, I was my own jerk this time. I am the worst.

Free Diapers

Before I had Charlie, a couple of bloggers were very kind to me. One sent me diapers that her daughter had outgrown and one sent me a gift card to buy diapers with. As a new mom, I know exactly how expensive these dang things are and will always appreciate those two.

I have some diapers that Charlie couldn’t wear before she outgrew them. I have a couple of newborn size and I have almost an entire pack of Pampers size ones. I don’t want them to go to waste, and I couldn’t deal with the diaper leaks anymore. I want to pay forward what those two bloggers did for me. If you are about to have a baby or just had one and are still using newborns or size ones, then I will happily ship these leftover diapers to you. First person to respond to this post gets them!

Family. Again.

Sometimes when stuff happens with my family I really try not to tell you guys, because I don’t want to be a broken record of “my family is hard on me, feel sorry for me and support me, yadda yadda yadda.” I don’t want you to feel sorry for me, I really don’t. It’s just that you guys, Chief, and the Captain are the only folks I can really vent all this crap to.

Last night I had to have dinner with my sister at my mom’s. My BIL and Chief’s birthdays are one day apart, so we celebrate them all together. I was dreading dreading dreading it. And for good reason. My BIL wanted to hold the baby as soon as we got there. I like him well enough so I was fine with that. And C really liked him it seemed. Then I held C through dinner. K kept saying “I can hold her while I eat!” and my step-dad even backed me up and said “Librarian has experience with this.” I mean, I’m sorry, but it does take some finesse to hold a baby and eat at the same time. It’s only now getting easier since Charlie can hold her head up and I can sit her on my knee and hold her with one arm and eat with the other.

Anyway, halfway through dinner she decided she wanted to nurse. I am 100% on board with there is nothing wrong with breastfeeding anywhere and everywhere. I’m not embarrassed or ashamed. But, when I can, i try to be considerate towards those I know would be uncomfortable. I knew that BFing in front of my BIL might make him feel uncomfortable. I also know how uncomfortable it is to nurse at a table, so I just excused myself and went to the couch. As I was walking away I heard K say “God, I’m so glad she went to another room to do that. No one needs to see that.” 

Then my mother said, in a tone that indicated her disdain “Well, she doesn’t always.”

Like I was doing something dirty. Like I should be ASHAMED of myself.

Let’s get one thing straight: I am DAMN PROUD that I breastfeed. It wasn’t easy to get started, that first week of C’s life before we saw our third and best LC was rough. I am fully in the camp of “Fed is Best.” I don’t have a superiority complex about the way I feed my kid. But I wanted to breastfeed and I managed to make it happen, so I’m proud of that.

And just to be honest, my sister tends to dress in a way that shows a lot of skin. I tend to nurse in a way that shows basically nothing. I wear big, loose, blousy shirts that can cover everything right up to the C’s face, and C covers the nipple. you MIGHT see a centimeter of skin when I nurse.

I just don’t understand that attitude in general of “OH MY GOD A BABY IS EATING GET IT AWAY”, but from a family member? A female family member? That’s just hatefulness.

I had to nurse C at the church picnic the other day. It was outside at a park, there was no place I could go, so I just did it, VERY discretely, and you know what? No one but my mother cared. She could barely even look at me. She was EMBARRASSED by me. I carried on a conversation with several other friends from church and NO. ONE. CARED.

But my sister can wear butt-crack baring, skin tight jeans with a tank top two sizes too small and there’s no problem with that. I just feel very done.

And K STILL acts like she wants to watch Charlie. Seriously? No. She held her for two minutes the other night and C drooled on her hand and she freaked out. Then when C started to fuss she turned to my MOM and asked what was wrong with her. For one thing, how about you ask the child’s MOTHER? So I just took her back. And K kept going on about how much fun they would have “when she comes to my house.” No, sorrynotsorry. Not happening. She also asked when she would be “house trained.” Seriously, her words.

Then she bragged about how she can change a diaper in “two minutes.” And because I had just about had enough, my one hateful comment of the night slipped out. I said “What are you doing for the first minute and a half, staring at the baby?”

I don’t care if she gets an endorsement from the President. I don’t care if William and Kate hire her to be their new nanny. I don’t care I don’t care I don’t care. She is NOT getting her hands on my kid.

I’ve done it again

And by “it”, I mean I’ve gotten myself into a situation of having too many different things to talk about to make one coherent post.

Postpartum Life

It’s been a while since I’ve talked about my body, and I believe in being frank and honest about pregnancy, childbirth, babies, and bodies. So something to celebrate:

I’m back at prepregnancy weight! Go weightwatchers! And if anything my supply has increased rather than taking the dive I was concerned it would take when I started losing. Probably it’s being helped by my much more nutritious diet. I’ve also started adding oats to my morning smoothie, and oats are a breastfeeding super food.

I’m still supplementing with fiber three times a day because after all the bowel problems I had after C was born I’m afraid to stop. Did you know they make fiber gummies now? I put benefiber in my smoothie and then have gummies with lunch and dinner. That on top of my increased fruit and veg intake is keeping things smooth sailing for me, thank goodness.

But while I’m back at prepregnancy weight and even fitting into some prepregnancy clothes, my body is incredibly different. My belly is much saggier, and obviously my breasts are too. I’ve got what my Jewish ex-coworker calls Hadassah arms, although as much as Charlie loves to “fly” I think I’m moving towards Michelle Obama arms real soon (please?).

My beautiful pregnancy curls are quickly leaving. i can’t tell if my hair is falling out or if it’s just returning to it’s normal, thinner, ugly curly-frizzy texture. Either way, bummer. I was hoping to hold on to that glorious pregnancy hair a wee bit longer. Once I’m a bit farther post partum I think I’m going to try a body perm. Big rollers-not tiny scary Shirley Temple ones.

Probably my biggest problem is my back. My upper back is a freaking mess. It hurts pretty constantly. I would imagine this pain is three fold in origin: 1) I carry a baby around all the time 2) I nurse a baby all the time 3) nursing the aformentioned baby comes with the giant bazoongas. I don’t really know what to do about it. Chief is currently in physical therapy for his back and there’s no way we can both be doing it at the same time. SOMEONE has got to watch this baby. I also don’t know that PT would even help honestly. I keep hoping that as I get stronger it’ll get better, but not so far. Somedays it seems to be getting worse.

Charlie

Little C is doing great. I took her to the doctor last week because she had been spitting up really bad, and with her already being on the small side I didn’t want her to not gain weight properly. Of course, as soon as I made the appointment she stopped spitting badly, but I kept it anyway because I wanted to see her weight on the doctors scale. She had gained, though lost in percentile points, but surprisingly the doctor wasn’t worried. He said she had gained enough to convince him she’s getting enough calories and that some babies just stay on the small side, and that’s okay. He said a happy baby is way more important than a big baby.

And Charlie is super happy all the time. Her personality is really starting to shine and that personality is beautiful. I get smiles all day long unless she needs a nap. She giggles and has even straight up laughed a few times. She loves to bounce, she now will let me actually put her down to like, feed myself and stuff, and she’ll nap in her swing for up to two hours at a time.

My local news recently did an anticosleeping story and talked about how dangerous it is because of our modern soft mattresses and pillows and stuff. Every time I see something like that it freaks me out and makes me thing I should transition C out of our bed altogether. She sleeps in her bassinet until about 3:30 am-ish and then when she gets up to nurse I just let her stay in bed with me. I have a guard rail up on my side of the bed so she can’t fall out, and it’s a child one so it’s mesh. I NEVER let her up near my head, she’s always at my breast, and I don’t have any blankets on her. I feel like i’m as safe as can be, and there are so many studies that show how positive cosleeping is. Babies actually respond to the carbon dioxide we breathe out-we act like a breathing pacemaker for them during this crucial time of development. I try to surround myself with a lot of information and knowledge. And the fact of the matter is that C just sleeps better when she’s with me. Today after I was at the law firm I was straight up exhausted so I snuggled up with her and we both took a 3.5 hour nap. It was amazing. I feel SO much better. And I love waking up to see her sweet face nuzzled up to my chest.

C is so long she’s about to outgrow her bassinet, so this weekend we’re transitioning to the pack n play and I am hella nervous about it. Probably it’ll be no big deal and she’ll be just fine, but I’m predicting horrific, up all night crying style problems. Fingers crossed for me, k?

Work

I’m enjoying being at the law firm again. The only problem is the aforementioned back problem. I have to sit and work with my arms pretty constantly at the law firm, as well as carry heavy books up and down stairs and stuff. Right now my workload there is pretty light so I haven’t had to be away from C for longer than four hours, but she’s doing so great at my cousin’s house! She takes a bottle from her really well and they seem to have a genuinely good time together. I’m so grateful that my cousin does this for me.

My at home work is okay too. It’s a bit mind numbing at times, and I couldn’t make myself do it any longer than the 3.5-4 hours a day that I’m doing it now, but it’s fine. And it helps me stay home with my girl, so I’m grateful to have it. I can’t really talk about it that much because I actually had to sign a non disclosure agreement. But again, overall it’s fine.

Family

I started to type this out as part of this post, but it’s so long. SO LONG. So I’ll post two posts today.