Mum’s Visit

Mum's Visit

The visit went about as well as can be expected, given the circumstances. Though, I will say, I very nearly kicked my mother out of my house. She has some sort of mental disorder (I used to think bipolar, but now I’m not certain) and is horrendously narcissistic. Husband says she is the definition of a narcissist and he isn’t kidding. She made it a point to poke at me and try and get under my skin. I put her in her place, shocking both the husband and her boyfriend, but I did it in a way that she couldn’t turn it around on me… which is definitely a win.

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In the end, she got to see Eva and they were only here for two days total, so it wasn’t that big of a deal. I’m just totally done with visitors for now. My nerves were so frayed that when the husband came home, I was furiously cleaning and grumbling to myself. We started talking and I told him how, before she left, she asked when we were coming up. I spun on my heels to face him and said vehemently, “NEVER!” He lost it. Apparently, I made a face.

Anyway, I didn’t actually say that but I feel it. I’m so over my family. Only Aunt Beth really tried to engage Evangeline or spend actual time with her. My mum and dad just sat around, acting inconvenienced, telling me what to do (as if they have any room to talk!), and just being horrible people to be around. My mum especially, though. I wish she’d go on pills–she’s so much more tolerable on pills! I can hardly stand to share air with her when she’s not, ugh.

I’ve only got three weeks left of maternity leave and one of those weeks the husband will be home with us, as he’s having the surgery on his deviated septum tomorrow. So, I’ll be nursing him back to health and taking care of Eva. I feel like I need a vacation after all the annoying family visits.

At least we have the in-laws… thank God for them! Father-in-law is completely enamored with Eva and has even taken to denying me her when she’s crying. He’ll instead just walk her around and talk to her, holding her high on his shoulder. She loves it, quiets down almost immediately, and dozes off. It’s adorable. I wish the husband had that ability. I left her with him to have a bath and she just screamed. Poor husband!

I still can’t believe the visits are over and it’s soon back to work. I’m also happy about the visits, mostly because it cemented the fact that I’m extremely glad I’m far away from my family and their toxic influences. Of course, my Aunt doesn’t count in this at all. My dad wouldn’t, either, if he hadn’t married Mum 2.0. Seriously.

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Right now I’m just trying to treasure all the time I have with Eva (even though she’s incredibly fussy lately) and try not to think about the shitty stuff. I’ve made a lot of progress in these past few months, not just as a mother, but as a person… so I’m proud of myself. Even my stupid family can’t take that away from me… at least, not anymore!

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Eva has started grabbing and gripping onto things. It’s so fun to watch the gears turn in her head as she tries to utilize her limbs. She’s learning and growing by the day! So hard to believe she’ll be three months on Thursday, yikes. I want to take more photos of her, so hopefully the husband will feel well enough to do that this weekend.

Sigh. I keep looking back and wondering where all the time went. Soon, I’ll be looking back on this thinking the same thing. Time is so fleeting when children are introduced into the mix. I never understood it before, but I do now. Buh.

Aunt Beth’s Visit

Aunt Beth's Visit

My aunt left a few hours ago. It was a nice visit! It’s definitely convenient to have the people visiting you actually staying at your house, haha. Makes getting together a lot more convenient.

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We had a really good time. We hung out with the in-laws a bit, she spent tons of time with Eva, and she even made us dinner last night. It was delicious! I had leftovers of it for lunch today.

It took Evangeline a little bit of time to warm up to her. I’m not used to this, of course. When she was less aware of everything, it didn’t really matter much who held her unless she was hungry! Now she has a bit of stranger awareness, so new people can throw her off. Thanks to Aunt Beth being around all the time during the visit, though, she warmed right up to her.

It’s so funny to see other people holding her. I don’t get to see her at a distance very much, so it just hits me suddenly how adorable she is! She is just too freaking cute. She’s going through a mental leap that’s about to end, so she’s been a bit fussy, but we’ve worked out a tentative nap schedule that seems to keep her pretty happy most of the time.

I’m definitely not used to her nursing less! It always shocks me when she stops and it’s only been fifteen or so minutes. I hate to complain, but it always worries me now due to her being underweight at her last check-up. She’s 12 lbs now, though… so I guess I should stop. I always try to offer nursing to her, though, and only stop when she throws a fit! She’s so independent now. She wants to play on her mat or see the world, not cuddle with mummy.

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I did get her to nap on me last evening while we waited for dinner to be ready, though, so that was nice. She also cuddled in bed with me this morning after the husband woke her up. He stubbed his toe on an empty laundry basket and cursed, which caused her to start crying, haha. I’d just put her down twenty minutes earlier, too.

As of today, I have only four weeks of maternity leave left. I’m anxious about it. We’ve got the daycare lined up (I still have to get the pediatrician paperwork, she’s not back until Thursday) and everything… but I hate leaving her. The thought of it makes me sad. I want to go back to work and restore normalcy… but it just feels like she’s too young! Can’t it wait until she’s one? I don’t know, just mummy guilt, I guess. I was lucky enough to get this time with her.

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I’m just trying to squeeze in every precious moment with her that I can right now! Which is such a vast difference from December, where I was desperate for personal space, haha. I want to play video games again, but I don’t want to squander these last moments I have that’s just us. After February, it’s over; she’ll never be this small again and we’ll never have this time together, alone, again.

My hormones are also going a bit wonky since I’m back on birth control and the whole breastfeeding establishing itself and whatnot. I keep wanting to cry over this. I feel like I’m pregnant again! It’s so ridiculous. This picture of Eva and the husband nearly brought me to ridiculous tears when I opened it in Photoshop!

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Mum arrives tomorrow. That’s our last scheduled visit during maternity leave. Then it’s the husband’s nose surgery and Eva’s weighing appointment. After that… one week until the return to work. Ugh.

It feels like it’s been forever since we left the hospital and yet it feels like time is just passing by far too quickly!

Dad’s Visit & Daycare Woes

Dad's Visit & Daycare Woes

Dad was here this past weekend, amazingly enough! They arrived late Saturday, we ate a quick dinner of delicious Marco’s sandwiches, and they saw Eva for a few minutes before she melted down because it was well past 7. We usually start her bedtime routine around 7 or 7:30 simply because that’s when she wants to start it. She always gets grumpy or tired around that time. She doesn’t usually doze off until around 8 or 9, though.

They stayed until Eva went to bed and then left around 9pm. They claimed they were going to go and sleep, but we found out the next day that they stopped off at the sports bar/restaurant next to their hotel and drank. Which explained why it took them until past noon to come and see us the next day.

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The entire visit was kind of aggravating and extremely disappointing. I had expected dad to come and see Eva and spend all the time he possibly could with her. I understand she’s still small yet, but who knows when he’ll see her next and she’s growing so fast! This is likely the last time they’ll see her when she’s still so tiny and new.

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His wife kept complaining about her aches and pains. She didn’t even come over on Monday, it was just dad. On Sunday, I got some pictures done and everything, but Eva wasn’t very fond of dad’s wife and kept melting down every time she tried to hold her. Husband and I are pretty sure it’s because she’s a smoker or she’s just smart… haha! Eva did fine when dad visited on his own, though. She was my typical happy, smiley baby. She gave him big grins and cooed at him.

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They stayed an extra day and left Tuesday morning due to the snow hitting the East Coast. We met up with the in-laws and had dinner on Monday evening. In total, I think they saw Eva for a total of four hours that day. They didn’t even get out of bed until after noon and we had already been awake six hours! I even offered to take them to tour our workplace and crime labs… nope. Sigh.

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We were up so early taking the husband to his allergy test and ENT appointment. He has surgery schedule for February 13th… so not only will I be caring for a three month old then, I’ll have him to take care of, too! We’re really hoping this solves his breathing issues, as they’ve gotten exceptionally bad as of late.

As disappointed as I am by my dad’s visit, I’m glad Evangeline at least got to meet her grandpa on my side. Dad did one thing completely right, he brought her a Kick ‘n’ Play mat for Christmas. She loves that thing! It’s so adorable watching her on it. Definitely keeps her entertained and lets me get some stuff done.

They brought us a bunch of unnecessary stuff for Christmas. I don’t even know how my dad has money, what with all the spending he does! I would have rather had nothing and seen them spend all their time with Eva, sigh.

As if all of this wasn’t enough, now we’re having issues with the daycare and they’re jacking up their rates by another thousand dollars. So, a year for an infant would be nearly $9,000! That’s insane! We don’t even know if we can get in now, despite what we’ve been told. All of the sudden, “there’s no spots” and “they’re re-enrolling for fall if we want to try for then.” Husband is about to choke someone.

Since bad news travels in pairs, we also found out that the mother-in-law has ulcers in her eye! She’s been having issues and thought maybe she’d gotten something in her eyes and scratched it, but no. She has freaking ulcers. There’s a very high chance of her losing her vision in that eye if they don’t respond to the medication they’ve given her. She’s at the doctor again now to discuss options and get more information. We are all, understandably, worried.

I can’t believe my maternity leave is almost over. Before, I couldn’t wait for it… now, it’s different entirely. I’m going to miss her so much! I love seeing her grins and getting to experience all her new developments. She’s started noticing her hands and feet a lot lately, watching herself move them all around!

I could never be a stay-at-home mum, but I wish there was some sort of happy medium. It just sucks that the first part of my maternity leave sucked. I mean, I loved her, but she was just sort of ‘there’ and when she wasn’t crying, she was sleeping horribly and we were struggling with breastfeeding. As soon as everything starts to even out and get good, I have to go back to work.

Oh, and going back during her four month sleep regression, too. Ugh. I hope it doesn’t hit her, but I’m sure it will. I’m going to be a total zombie!

Progress

Progress

Things have slowly been going better with Evangeline and nursing. I’m basically force feeding her every opportunity that I get! If she doesn’t finish a full feed at the breast, then I pump, and give her what comes out in a bottle. This isn’t something I’ll continue once she “catches up”, as babies will overeat easily. Right now, though, it’s all about packing those calories in so she can grow and her brain can develop properly!

The baby scale definitely helps. She’s gaining several ounces a day so far. I haven’t done any feeding weighs yet. I may or may not, depending on how things go.

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We had our first outing alone yesterday. I took her into work to visit. It was also my first time driving the new car (and driving in general for two months!) After we stopped at work, we continued on to Target, stopped at Petsmart, and then grabbed lunch and headed home. She only fussed a little at work, due to over-stimulation, and then a little bit in Petsmart because she was tired. She slept on the way home and remained asleep in her car seat for almost a full hour and a half nap!

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It was a busy day in general, as the in-laws came up to deliver our futon couch. We went out to eat for father-in-law’s birthday, Eva’s second restaurant outing! By the time we got home, she was more than ready for bed. She was in her bassinet, asleep, by nine. She slept until three, too! Which I was greatful for. Sleep has been fleeting lately.

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I’m officially six weeks away from returning to work. I’m still trying to work on my freezer stash when I can. The ability to leave the house with Eva confidently definitely makes things less bleak. I’ll be happy to return to work and some semblance of normalcy… but I’ll miss her, I can’t lie. I know she’ll enjoy daycare once she’s old enough to socialize properly… but with her being so young, it just seems wrong! At least I was able to go four months with her. I would never even consider staying home–that’s just not my bag. I like money, I like making money, and I like having a part of me that’s not 100% mother.

I remember the stress when the husband was the only one properly working and it was awful! Both my coworkers deal with this, living paycheck to paycheck, I just don’t know how they do it. It’s maddening. We’ll still have weekends and holidays with her. Plus, the vacations we’ll be able to take!

My dad and his wife are supposed to be visiting this weekend. He texted me that they made reservations, so perhaps it’ll actually happen! He hasn’t visited me once in the seven years since I moved here. They were supposed to visit directly after Christmas, but her kids gave them the flu. I really hope he comes down. I don’t even care if it’s just to meet Eva, I want him to visit!

My Aunt Beth (his sister) arrives next weekend, too. We’re both stoked about that, as my Aunt Beth is tons of fun! She was our saving grace during my dad’s wedding in Atlantic City and she visited during my pregnancy, too. It’ll be so fun to introduce her to Eva.

We’ve been doing some deep cleaning, which is nice! I finally got to tackle our bedroom and closet. I purged all of my clothes from my second job. No more black everywhere! I only kept a few pieces I knew I’d make use of. I still have more purging to do, but three bags worth seems good for now. I got rid of some other stuff and some of the husband’s stuff, too.

We need more plastic bins to store things in and another set of plastic drawers to help keep the closet from going into chaos again. I’ve also been eyeing an accent table to put in our little stairway area, so we have a place to put mail and whatnot… but the current depth is 12 inches and most things are 14+ inches. If we redo the railing, we’d have plenty of room… but that requires us to redo all of the railing… which I want to do, but is quite the task for right now.

 

Two Months

Two Months

Evangeline is two months old! It’s still so hard to believe that two months has passed… and yet it feels like an eternity ago that we were in the hospital. She’s getting big so fast. It’s not a joke when they say the time flies by! I’ve only got around six weeks remaining of my maternity leave… and it’s already 2015!

I keep thinking back to last year at this time. We could never have expected how everything would turn out. We were just settling into the house and making it our own. The living room was still that awful brown color that’s strewn throughout the house! It’s just so hard to imagine. I wonder how many years we’ll have in this house…

As I was going through pictures for Eva’s baby book, I ran across some of my pregnancy bump photos. Oh my God! I can hardly believe that was ever me. I’m huge. I know that I was pregnant (obviously) but it feels as if it never happened at all… and yet the memory of all the horribleness (which was about 80% of it) remains; I’m not really thrilled about getting pregnant again. I managed to avoid stretch marks, but my poor belly button will never be the same again!!

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I wouldn’t say that it wasn’t worth it. I’m just saying I’m not overly enthused about going through it all again… especially if I’d need to be induced, ugh. That was just annoying and horrible. I am not someone who can stand being hospitalized for any amount of time. Miserable!

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Watching Eva grow is amazing. As happy as I will be to return to work and sort of get some of my normalcy back… I’ll miss being able to watch every moment pass. I love watching her discover and learn new things. It’s fun being able to experiment and find out what she enjoys and what makes her smile. She’s taken to smiling and grinning at me in the mornings, either in her bassinet or when I’m changing her diaper and getting ready to dress her for the day. It’s adorable.

In celebration of her two months, I decided to break in the Christmas gift my husband got me–the photo studio set. It came with professional lights, four light umbrellas (black and white), and backdrops with a stand! It’s brilliant, honestly. He really hit the mark. He said his inspiration was us not having anywhere appropriate to take bump pictures and having weird shadows in the pictures.

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The pictures turned out great! It took us some time and experimentation… but it was fun. Poor Eva needed to a nursing and nap break in between. The second bit provided goofy grins and smiles, which were definitely welcome!

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I’d bought the dress at Target when I went with the mother-in-law to Target on New Year’s Day. It was on sale and despite being pink, quite cute. I’m glad I grabbed it. Even if she never wears it again, it was worth it for the photos! We’re still experimenting with hair bows. I’m not sure how I feel about them, but they’re almost a necessity for professional looking photos.

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Comparing these to the ones done the day we left the hospital leave me speechless. So much change! Soon, she won’t be so tiny and snuggly… she’ll be independent and strong-willed. I can already see it building inside of her. As much as it saddens me, it’s something I’ll grow proud of in due time. I’d expect nothing less of someone who carries a part of me.

Thinking back to a month ago is hard. I was still struggling, still trying to find my bearings. I was still so upset about my body and the sleepless nights. It’s amazing how things can change. The first few weeks really are the worst. There’s still trials to be had, but at least there’s reward now. Seeing her smile, grin, or just experience the world around her is worth it; watching her eyes follow us as we move about the room makes it somehow less difficult.

We were talking about how much fun it’ll be to see her experience new things when we take her to Key West in October. It seemed like an eternity away last July when we were there. Now it feels like it’s coming far too fast. She’ll nearly be a year old then!