In this super fast blog, I'd like to share two accomplishments from the last 24 hours:
1) Nursing one child while squatting down to help another put on her shoes, while in public.
2) Making "breaded" honey mustard chicken.
Now that those are said, I can write until William cries again. He was asleep before play group, then woke up there twice. Woke up to get in the car seat and part of the car ride. Then he was crying off an on as I got Natalie lunch, yet kept his eyes close. Now that I'm ready to change and feed him uninterrupted, he's quite. Its nice to have a moment to myself, but at the same time, I know he's sitting in a dirty diaper and I feel like we are always leaving William crying to take care of something else. Maybe it was the same with Natalie, but I don't really remember it.
Had a breast infection scare this morning. I found a really sore, hard spot on my right breast on the underside. No redness or unusually heat, or fever symptoms. So, I had William nurse on that side in a different position, but he was too sleepy to do much and the football hold we were using was just not working well. So, since he went to sleep, I pumped that side and massaged that spot. And just like that it went away! Thank God, because I really didn't want to deal with getting a fever from it or the hassle of going to the doctor, both of which are really a problem because I'd have two kids to take care of.
Things in general are going well around here. We are having a short Indian summer which has made everyone a bit cranky. The weather forecasted nothing above 70, so we took the AC's out last week. Yesterday, it was 83 in the hall. Its not so bad except when I'm nursing. William is a little furnace and wants to be held close. But the heat makes him sleepy and cranky. What happened was he would want to nurse and sleep, but wind up just mouthing the nipple and squirming around. Meanwhile, we'd both get very sweaty. Luckily, we are half way through today and the house is still not that hot yet. Its supposed to be 80 today, but less humid, then 75 tomorrow, then down into the 60's. I'm glad for it. I love the fall. Also, I'm excited for Natalie to start wearing all her pretty new clothes!
Speaking of which, Natalie received most of these clothes at her birthday party Saturday. It was a big success. My parents showed up much earlier than I thought they were going to, so it was a very good thing that I had the baby sitter come on Friday so that I could spend three hours cleaning and preping. It was just a family party, but it went very smoothly. Natalie got up from her nap when the guests arrived and was in a great mood. She loved most of her presents and really got into opening them this year. There were very few moments of crying given all the excitement. Meanwhile, William was held by everyone and slept through pretty much everything. I nursed him while Natalie did gifts. We got lots of great pictures and video of everything, too.
In general, both kids have been a little bit harder to deal with the last few days or so. Natalie is starting to demand attention at inopportune moments and in smart ways. For example, complaining that she has a poopy diaper while I'm nursing. She is also dragging out bed time by trying to play, avoiding cleaning up, not choosing stories, asking for a drink, and asking for kisses for boo boos on her fingers. (Not exactly sure what this one is about. Is it because her fingers or thumb are wet from her chewing / sucking them? Are they sore?) There has also been a lot of drama over bath time. But as often as not, things go smoothly and Natalie behaves awesome. She plays on her own great while I have to be with William. She is sweet to William. I'd say she is eating a little better, especially at dinner.
Meanwhile, William has been crabbier, which is just normal for his age. After 2 weeks babies cry more. And, one book I read said that around week five is a fussy period anyway, which is right where we are. In particular, we've had trouble with keeping him asleep. At night, he makes it about an hour in the crib (though its two hours between start of one feeding to the next). He'd be happy to sleep on me the whole night, but I just worry about it becoming too much of a habit and I want to be able to sleep well myself. Naps are hard too, since he wakes up when moved to his infant seat most of the time. But, we are finding that we can now rock him to sleep for at least a little bit in his seat, just like we did Natalie. With nursing, it seems like he wants to nurse all the time, but part of that is because when I hold him, his face is right near his food source. When we do nurse, we're having trouble latching. I had this same problem with Natalie. He's gaining more control of his body, but not enough. He puts his hands in the way of his mouth or sucks on them, or gets them in the way of me seeing. Or, he moves his head too far up or down. Its frustrating, but knowing that Natalie did all this, too, makes me feel way better. In fact, I think Natalie's day time sleep at least was similar. For a long time, I couldn't count on her taking a nap longer than 20 minutes unless it was on me.
But, William isn't all cranky. He has some nice periods of alertness. I've has some nice times of showing him toys. Yesterday when Mike took Natalie to do the shopping, I sat William on the couch with the Boppy pillow supporting him. I shook some rattles for him. I also pumped his legs (which is a cure for gas pain. He is always farting and often grunting very unhappily about it). He likes to look at the windows. He's also very close to smiling. I've seen him smile while asleep or a few times when I'm trying to get him to latch on. He's started to show some interest in the toys on his toy gym. He bats at them more and it doesn't make him cry. Before it seemed like he was moving his body uncontrollably and he didn't like that it made him hit the toys. Now, he'll make a different sound. Not exactly happy, but not mad either. And, he's great at tummy time. Natalie often would only stay a minute or two on her stomach, but he'll stay a really long time several times a day. It seems like he lifts his head up so far already. Everyone says he looks like he is growing a lot. I feel like he is way bigger than he was a month ago. We tried to weigh him on our home scale, but got different results. We're pretty sure he's 10 lbs something.
Well, I thought this was going to be short because William would wake up, but all this and he hasn't made another peep yet. He's still in his car seat on the kitchen floor.
As far as time for Mike and I is concerned, its pretty limited. I get some of my personal needs taken care of during the day. I'm still able to go on line or read a little or what not during the day. But after we've gotten them both down for the night, its about an hour, maybe two, before I'm falling asleep. We tried to watch a movie last night and I maybe made it 20 minutes. I feel pretty bad that I'm not really being a good wife in the sense of caring for my husband. Hmm, that gives me an idea. I just paused to message the baby sitter. Mike is working from home next Wednesday so I can go to my 6 week postpartum appointment. So if the baby sitter could come that evening to watch Natalie, Mike and I could maybe get a semi date for dinner. That would make me feel a lot better. Mike and I still talk to each other plenty, but we get annoyed a little more easily with each other as we try to balance everything. But one of my biggest guilt factors is I'm not feeling any need really at all for physical intimacy with him. And I'm not saying sex, because I won't even be medically cleared for that for over a week still. I'm just not even really interested in hand holding or hugging. I think its mostly due to be tried and wanting some time and space to myself after a day with the kids. But, I feel guilty that I love getting snuggles from Natalie still. I think my head and body are just in a different place. I'm more focused on being a mother than a wife. And that particularly makes me feel bad because our time together is limited anyway, but super limited when you consider being just the two of us.
Speaking of Mike, he is doing an awesome job supporting me with the two kids. Like me, he gets frustrated over small things. I feel bad that he often misses William being in a good mood and he also gets stuck forcing Natalie to do things she doesn't want to do because he sees her at her crankiest time of day. But, the other night William just wasn't sleeping well and he got up with me and tried to make it better. He took William for a bit and he read Pooh Bear to us. He does a lot with Natalie in the evenings when I have to go nurse William in hopes that he'll go to sleep for a couple hours so we can be alone. There are really only two types of things he does that get on my nerves some of the time. One is that I often want him to respond to things faster than he does. For instance, if Natalie is trying to talk to him or ask him for something and he doesn't seem to hear her, or if William is crying and he finishes what he is going before he goes to get him. That is nothing new though. The other thing is sometimes I want him to make the decisions. For example, the night of Natalie's birthday party my sister and her husband stayed over. We hadn't planned out dinner. They had pizza, but not Natalie and I. We needed a veggie with our dinner, but I was feeding William and we didn't have many choices or much time. I just wanted him to choose, and eventually he did. In some ways, it seems very fair for me to want him to make these kinds of choices sometimes. But, at the same time, he has the stress of working and making these kinds of choices are really my "job." But, when he isn't in charge of these things, then I'm left feeling like he might forget things if I don't help out. Like when he put a bag together to bring Natalie out and I wanted to ask him if he remembered everything and he seemed annoyed with him for asking.
Alright, still no noise from William, but I'm going to end here anyway and maybe use the time (minutes? seconds? I never know and that drives me crazy!) to do something else.