Acquire a used jogging stroller so that I have no use not to get back to C25K, which was so good for my mental health when I was doing it: in progress. I’ve sent inquiries to three or four Craigslist posts and it looks like I can get a decent one for under $100.
Call the doctor, tell him you’re crazy, ask for pills. In process.
Step two: begin self care tactics. In process
I’ve got Charlie very tentatively signed up for a Mother’s Day Out program, just one day a week. They’re holding the spot for us until we come for a look on Monday, but the program is pretty reputable. I have a few friends who used to work for our local DHS and said it’s one of the best ones and has a long standing reputation.
Apparently I was damn lucky because they’re always full. They must have just had someone age up or drop out or something. It made me nervous because a friend of mine said that she had tried to get a spot and they were full so I was freaked out she would go after my tentative spot, but the director has us in her calendar for Monday with a note that we want the Tuesday spot, so surely she won’t give it away. I told her I was getting shot records and everything ready.
That being said, I’m pretty nervous about it. It’s just one day a week, and just five hours a day, but Charlie and I have never been apart that much, and even when we get close to that number she’s always with her dad. I think she’s going to like it because of the other kids, but I’m afraid she’ll not nap there well because she won’t have any nursing time before hand. She will nap for her dad without me there, but that’s at home.
All in all, I’m pretty sure it’ll be harder for me than for her, but I think we both need this, really badly. Part of me feels really selfish and like a lazy bad mom who can’t hack it, but the other part of me feels relieved and Chief is firmly in the “you need this and so does she” camp.
So I guess we’re doing this. Wish me luck.
I know that most of my posts lately have been about moving and Charlie, but frankly, I need to talk about me for a minute.
The truth of the matter is that mentally, I’m not doing well. The night before we moved I had a panic attack. Chief and I talked about it before bed and we’ve made a 360 on our decision to try for another. This was my idea-it’s what I wanted. I do not feel ready anymore. Emotionally or financially, and those are two big and important factors. Frankly I don’t know that I’ll ever feel ready. We may be one and done, and that would be okay. But at the very least. I don’t really want to try again for quite a while. Maybe not until Charlie’s in school. Maybe not ever.
But making the decision to go back on birth control sort of sent me into a tailspin. It feels like giving up, which is of course what we’re doing because it’s what I want, but for some reason it made me panic anyway. Maybe because the last time I came off birth control it took me three years to get pregnant, and if we don’t try again until I’m around 32 that puts me having another kid at 35, which is not idea for me for a large amount of reasons. So while Chief slept next to me I paced the floor with what felt like a tightening band around my chest, barely able to take a breath. In all, I got about three hours of sleep before the move the next day.
This has not become unusual. I’m not reacting well to any form of stress. Logistically I know that we’re going to be okay financially because the GI Bill money is coming and I have THREE part time jobs now, but having the other house is weighing on me big time. I worry about it constantly and wonder why we made this decision. It’s almost ready to be put back on the market and I know we can always rent it and we probably will, but no amount of logic and reason helps me. I have a spreadsheet that I adjust daily, sometimes twice daily, that shows we have a sizable excess each month. But this does not soothe me.
So what do I do? I panic, and I worry, and I eat. And I take things out on my husband. Like today, my friend owns a vintage furniture store that we were supposed to go to to look for a new sewing desk for me. She was going to trade it for some pieces that we no longer wanted so there would be no money lost on either side. But the cable guy had to come and fix the cable they just installed last week. He was here for almost four hours. Then it was Charlie’s nap time. About an hour into Charlie’s nap, Chief had to go to the doctor because his foot is still bothering him from the unfortunate auger incident a few weeks ago, and I swear to god, that man cannot walk without stomping and he woke her up. He claims he didn’t, but he did. Charlie is down to one nap a day so one hour is not enough. I flew off the handle a bit and threw the baby monitor down and said “Awesome, you fucking woke her up and now you’re leaving. Thanks a lot.” Not my finest moment. But guys, all I wanted out of today was to leave my house with my husband and my child. He said “you guys can still go after I go to work” but that’s not the point. If I go with Charlie then I have to worry about containing her all by myself. I just wanted one day where that’s not the case.
Anyway, after the stomping incident I tried to nurse her back to sleep but right now she’s just sitting in her crib playing with her blanket and her lovey. I’m taking a minute and am grateful that she’s not crying, because then I would feel the need to get her out of there, and right now I just need a minute. I just need a minute.
I need a fucking break is what I need. As I was nursing her I thought that what I wanted was a three day trip by train, somewhere, anywhere, by myself. I want the magical ability to go somewhere and not worry about what’s happening at home. I want to order room service on someone else’s dime and lay in a bed with pay per view and not be woken until i wake myself. I want to be able to just check out for a little bit. Realistically, I know that I don’t get this luxury anymore. That being a mom means you’re never checked out, you’re always thinking and worrying about your child, even when you’re on vacation, which makes me feel even worse that all I WANT is to not have to worry about another human for a few days, much less the one I created and love.
And the other thing is, I don’t think that being a mom means that you have to be constantly panicked and at people’s throats because you’re so freaked out 90% of the time.
So today, I did the bravest thing I’ve done in a long time and made an appointment with my OB to talk about getting back on the pill and to talk about my anxiety problems. Unfortunately they can’t get me in until October 10th. I sat there on the phone thinking “When I was pregnant I could always get in, what gives?” and then the mean voice in my head said “The readily available appointments are for the healthy women who can get pregnant and need to have their babies checked on-not for the crazy moms like you who can’t get it together.”
I shit you not. I’m a piece of work.
I just want to be back on the pill and probably something to help me cope. I never thought I would want to be back on the pill this badly, but the last thing that I need right now is another kid. I cannot handle another kid. I am not ready for one. I may not be the kind of person who will ever be ready for one. And I feel bad that all i wanted so desperately was another hour with the kid that I have asleep. Just an hour of peace. The kid that I adore more than life-who I would do anything for. I love her so much, but I need a break from her and everyone. I just need to be by myself, and not in a house full of boxes to unpack with a mountain of computer work staring me in the face and a head full of worries about how I’m going to pay for everything and whether or not I’ll ever have another child, and if the answer is no then is my husband going to hate me because he always wanted two kids?
I need October 10th to get here, and damnit my dad is getting married two days before that and if I ever needed anxiety meds, I need them for that wedding.
Guys. GUYS. This is such a victory.
I had to cut the whole milk with some 2% but she has started drinking it finally. She ate half of a gouda prosciutto roll up before being done with it (don’t worry, it didn’t go to waste) and has done a hard pass on feta cheese, but she is eating some granola which is at least fairly calorie rich. After her nap we’re going to grab a pizza because we’re still very much in moving mode and the kitchen is pretty much closed.
BUT SHE’S DRINKING MILK! Now for that iron supplement to arrive (and be taken not with milk, sigh).
I just spent a small fortune on foods to fatten up my baby and aid in the iron taking process:
- Sliced, smoked munster cheese to be wrapped up with thinly sliced prosciutto (if she doesn’t like this I won’t be THAT sad because I’ll love it). Nice and fatty.
- Full fat peanut butter for mixing into hot cereals, plus I’m hoping to find some good recipes to bake some sort of peanut butter bites with oats or something
- Whole organic milk
- Stonyfield baby yogurt. We’ve tried yogurt before and her feelings are mixed, but still worth a shot, right?
- 4% fat cottage cheese (this is the fattiest kind they make)
- Bagels and cream cheese for us to share
- Avocado to give that avocado smoothie thing a shot (I think I’ll have to order the blackstrap molasses-they didn’t have any)
- Feta cheese crumbles, full fat. I’m determined to make this baby like cheese. She really only likes cheese DIP so far and occasionally will pick at a grilled cheese sandwich, but that’s it.
- Orange juice to take her iron supplement with
- 12 pie pumpkins (this isn’t for Charlie, but they were on sale for $1.00 each and around Thanksgiving they’ll shoot up to about $5.00 each, so I’m going to roast them and puree them and freeze it until Thanksgiving and save ALL THE MONEY).
- A new straw cup because she put her mouth on it before I could stop her, so yeah. It’s ours now.
I’m sure I’ve forgotten something, but all of this rang up to a whopping $70.00 so it was time to back away from the panicked-mother induced shopping.
Ho hum. The pediatrician called me personally to talk about Charlie’s iron levels today at lunch. They were at 10.9 at her 12 month appointment so we were just going to watch them because 11-14 is considered normal. At her 15 month appointment last week they were at 9.9. This coupled with her low weight has the pediatrician worried, and, therefore, also has momma worried.
We have to start iron supplementation ASAP-3 ml a day of Novaferrum. The ped said she recommended mixing it in orange juice but it would also be okay to put it in with her oatmeal and fruit, but just to try and make sure she gets some vitamin c with it to help with absorption and no dairy products for a few hours around the time of the dosage. She also said she recommended doing 3, 1 ml doses a day instead of trying to do the whole 3 ml at once because that’s a lot. I have so many concerns:
1. When I was researching the Mayo Clinic says that you shouldn’t have dairy with iron supplements BUT ALSO wheat bread or cereals, eggs, leafy greens….a lot of the stuff that my kid eats. My doc didn’t mention these others so maybe she doesn’t consider them to be as much an issue as the milk, because if Charlie is taking iron all throughout the day that basically means she can never eat dairy food, bread, cereal, salads, eggs….a lot of good healthy food.
2. We were supposed to be trying to get her to drink more whole milk so help her weight gain. Hoooow am I going to do that if she can’t drink milk . I want her to gain weight in a healthy way so I am going to have to seriously research how to get a kid who won’t/can’t drink milk, who also doesn’t like fatty meats to gain weight.
3. She eats so much iron rich food-WHY is she anemic? This is the doc’s concern too. Charlie’s whole diet is basically fruit, BEANS-SO MANY BEANS (very good amount of iron), broccoli, cereals, oatmeal, breast milk, and chicken. Most of that food has a decent amount of iron in it. We did not expect it go down. The doctor wants to recheck a month after we start supplementing to see if it’s going up, otherwise we’ll have to do more invasive tests to understand what’s going on. From my research, this could be celiac disease, pernicious anemia Thalassemia….scary things.
4. Right now my most immediate and biggest concern is how I’m going to get charlie to take this stuff. I’m hoping the novaferrum is better than the enfamil stuff we tried before because that stuff smelled so awful and stained and tasted so bad. We could smell it for days afterwards. I’m going to add the new stuff to juice like recommended as a first attempt. my preference would be that she take the whole 3 ml in the morning so that I don’t have to limit what she eats for lunch and dinner so much. I predict a future filled with constant worry over whether she gets her full daily dose in.
5. Her constipation issues. We’ve been dealing with them a little again recently, admittedly her diet hasn’t been as spectacular as normal because of the moving, but we’re getting back on track. I’m so afraid iron is just going to throw it all out of whack again and then we’re back on the suppository and miralax train.
So like I said, we’re going back in a month to see if the iron levels have gone back up, but the pediatrician also wants to check her weight again. The weight thing…I’m not trying to brush it off, but I’m not as worried as I maybe should be, and that’s because Charlie has ALWAYS been a slow gainer. The reason they seem so worried is that the time before we were in for her fifteen month appointment she weighed over 19 pounds and at her 15 month one she only weight 18 lbs 2 oz, BUT at that other appointment it was a sick baby visit and she was weighed with clothes and shoes on. Shoes with actual soles. At her twelve month appointment she was 17 lbs even, so if we had never had to go between 12 and 15 months there would never be a 19 lb weigh in on the chart and it would just look like she gained a little more than a pound in 3 months, which for my kid seems pretty dang good. So I feel like a bad mom for not freaking about that as much, though I am still and always trying to find fatty yet healthy foods that my child will eat (and now trying to balance them in with her rigorous iron supplementation schedule). But, on the other hand, the fact of the matter is that she is very small. She’s almost off the chart on small as far as weight goes but still above average on height, so it’s not even like she’s small all over. She’s a skinny baby, and I think that’s probably the one time in your life that the doctor doesn’t want you to be thin. And it’s not like I do either, but guys, she eats constantly. I never tell her she can’t eat. If she’s hungry she gets food, but she wants to eat fruits and veggies and super healthy things, low fat things. I have tried and tried to get her to eat cheese and hamburger meat and most of the time it’s just a big old no.
The thing that really is getting me though is that the pediatrician sounded worried. Like genuinely worried. Not like panicky or judging, just concerned. Anytime the doctor sounds worried, that is sort of a red flag, you know? She’s normally pretty upbeat and has been very nonchalant about milestones and whether or not Charlie hits them right on target, so hearing her sound so concerned on the phone has me thinking that something could really be wrong with my kid.
So that’s Monday. Any insight on this is so greatly appreciated. I’m about to start making her avocado smoothies to see if that would help. I found a recipe that is basically one whole avocado (minus pit and peel), cover with whole milk in the blender, add a few tablespoons of honey (i’m going to do blackstrap molasses because iron) and blend. But really, I’m open to ways to get my baby to eat fat. Throw it at me.
Charlie HATES the doctor. Hates it. She has fun running around the waiting room, but the minute we enter the exam rooms? It’s all over. Screaming, crying, clawing at my shirt. She won’t let them listen to her heart. They try, but usually can’t hear very well over the blood curdling screams. I have to restrain her for them to look at her ears, and even when the doctor crosses the room to shine the light into her eyes she panics and freaks out.
The doctor assures me that developmentally, this is normal. It’s okay, it’s expected….but Charlie is one of her more difficult cases. She says she’s not her most difficult patient, but probably top five. She didn’t say this to make me feel bad and I don’t feel bad. I can’t change it, and as long as it’s normal then I’m not worried about it. But I hate doing it. The last appointment I made Chief come to to help out and she didn’t even have to get shots then. Well today, she had to get three shots and have her iron checked (a little low, which sucks because the iron supplements stink to high heaven).
Usually I handle the shots really well. I mean it sucks to see your kid so scared and freaked out but I know it’s for her own good, and for the good of society. This set of nurses though does it a little differently. They basically have Charlie straddle my lap so that I can pin her arms against my chest. It felt awful to have my poor baby trying to get away from me because of the needles. These nurses are also a lot slower at doing them than the nurses at the other doctors office. They’re much nicer than the old set of nurses we dealt with (who are a huge part of why we left that doctor) but man, with shots I want some rapid fire needle sticking. Those other ladies could get three shots done in 15 seconds-not kidding. I think it took at least a minute today, which doesn’t sound bad, but when you’re having to strong arm a toddler who has already been sobbing for almost a half an hour it sucks.
Then one of the nurses who was very grandmotherly looked at the look on my face and said “This hurts you a lot more than it hurts her” and I had a really hard time holding it together. They also said that the trio of shots she got today are heavy hitters and she is likely to feel bad and probably run a mild fever tomorrow, which is excellent timing since we’re moving and the Captain is coming to watch her. I’m hoping that won’t be the case. It hasn’t been with any of her other shots, but with our luck it will be.
Oh, also, did I mention we’re moving tomorrow. Back to it.