Ten Months

Ten Months

Evangeline is ten months old! I can hardly believe it. Time is just flying by… ugh. Soon, she’ll be a year… I can’t deal. It just seems too fast. Aside from the complete lack of sleep we’ve been getting lately, I’ve been really enjoying this part of her development.

IMG_0938

She’s changing so much, so rapidly now! Almost every day, I notice her doing something new or mastering something she used to struggle with. She’s scooting around like a champ now. I’ve caught her a few times up on all fours, but it never lasts long. She doesn’t seem interested in crawling. She’s attempting to pull up at daycare, but when she’s with us, she expects us to help her! She’s also started pointing and reaching for things she desperately wants, which is adorable.

Her words are the following: “mama”, “dada”, “daddy”, and she’s been trying to say kitty lately. Sometimes, she says things and we don’t quite catch them but she won’t repeat them. She babbles, but not as much as some other kids do. She mostly starts so we’ll talk to her and then she just intensely observes us as we speak. If you tell her “no”, she smiles and laughs at you… little butthead.

Breastfeeding is going well. I’m being forced to use my manual pump at work, as there’s something wrong with my expensive automatic one and I can’t figure it out. Only a month and a half left of full-time pumping! I can hardly believe it. I’m going to continue breastfeeding past a year, but definitely cutting back the pump until I’m done entirely.

Solids were going amazingly until Eva got sick. Now she’s being rather difficult about it all. She won’t eat the purees anymore unless they’re chunky, and even then, she eats very little. She’s regressed back into wanting boob and only boob if I’m around. She was doing great with table foods but now even refuses them sometimes. At daycare, it’s touch and go. She refuses to eat chunky purees she used to love but will take table foods, sigh. I’m hoping it’s a phase.

IMG_0931

She’s definitely developing a little personality now. She’s goofy and silly, but also quite fiery. Her temper is going to be a point of contention, I know it. Her emotions seem to be quite intense. She’s also a little stoic sometimes. It’s interesting to watch the facets of who she is going to be take root and develop. I definitely see a mix of us both in her.

We survived the croup plus ear infection, but not without some issue. It was hard without the husband here. I stayed home that Wednesday with her and it was kind of a nightmare. She was angry, the steroid plus the pain just made her an absolute terror! She scratched me and even bit me–several times–while I was nursing her. It was a rough, rough day. Not being able to talk to the husband consistently was wearing on me, too, plus recovering from my mum’s visit. I ended up breaking down crying on the phone with the husband that night. I survived, though, and Evangeline seems to be feeling better… though I think we’re in for another round of teething.

IMG_0953

I needed a break at the end of the week on my own with Evangeline, so on Friday after work, we drove down to the in-laws and stayed with the mother-in-law. It was fun, just us girls hanging out. We went shopping while waiting on the men to get home the next day and I was super excited, because I never, ever get to shop with ladies. I’m always with the hub and he’s not the most enthusiastic shopping partner…

Unfortunately, that started a bit of an issue as the husband was desperate for us to be there when they got back and they got back a lot earlier than planned. This was mostly because the husband drove through the night! He was determined. It was mostly exhaustion and hunger talking. There was a little bit of drama, but at the end of the day, we were just happy to be together again. He held Evangeline for a very long time. She didn’t quite react the way we’d hoped, but she was feeling particularly ill that day. The ear infection and croup were rough on her.

The husband didn’t end up taking the other job he was offered. It was too much time away and not enough pay. He would have been shipped off to Langley, D.C. for an entire month starting out and he’d be unable to go to Key West at the end of October. He’d be there so much that they’d planned on renting out an apartment for him. It was quite the cosmopolitan offer and perhaps at a different point in our life, he’d have taken it, as the opportunities that followed would have been immense… but right now? He told me that his gut said no.

It worked out, though. His current job offered him a 20% raise and a job re-classification, which is unheard of in our organization! I got a 20% raise two years ago, but that was my entire department and our boss fought hard for it. Husband is so vital they don’t want to lose him. I won’t complain about more money!

Seven Months

Seven Months

Evangeline has been on solids now for over a month. She’ll eat anything you put in front of her and seems to really prefer regular foods to purees. Unfortunately, she doesn’t have any teeth, so her ability to eat regular food is pretty limited. Still, I’m thrilled that her palate is so varied! We keep trying to encourage her curiosity as best we can.

In fact, she wants solids so much that she’s constipated herself. The daycare had us send more, as she was quite sad when everyone else was eating and hers were already gone. We did, but now I think it’s a bit too much. She really doesn’t know when to quit! So, I’ll be cutting that back a bit and then sending a little more breastmilk to try and counter it.

IMG_0239

In other news… she’s a whole seven months old now! I can hardly believe it. Even more, she’s sitting up on her own, too. It just sort of “happened” one morning. They’ve been working with her at daycare, but nothing huge–just letting her sit in their bumbo and play with toys. I still keep a boppy around her as she isn’t completely strong with it yet… but I’m amazed. I very nearly started crying when she did it! She’s getting so big, so fast. It’s insane.

We have family pictures scheduled on Friday and I’m so excited now because they’ll be able to get adorable pictures of her sitting!

20150621_131103

She’s also enjoying the pool more now, which is awesome! She kicks her feet when you swim around with her and laughs and giggles. She doesn’t seem to be afraid of it at all, which is great. I’m still waiting until we can get her to blow bubbles in the water. I’m hesitant, because I’m not sure if she’s quite ready for that yet… she’d probably just try to drink it and choke.

We’re keeping busy around here… weekends are still pretty jam-packed with trying to do stuff around the house, spend time with Eva, and whatever else seems to pop up! We had to replace our water heater, which cost around $500 and put a huge damper on Father’s Day… as the gift I had planned cost almost that! I had wanted to have the husband’s Honda fixed up and repainted, sigh. I felt awful that I didn’t have amazing gifts for him… but I’m still planning on getting him something.

He did get a good Father’s day, though. We spent the day at the in-laws pool, with him free to enjoy the sun and everything, as he loves… and then we had Chinese. That’s pretty much a perfect day for him. It would only be better if we’d been in Key West!

Back to Work

Back to Work

This is my final week of maternity leave. It seems like forever ago that I left work, still pregnant, just waiting for Evangeline to arrive. My husband made me stop working due to swelling and my having issues with discomfort/etc. I was off for almost a week before Eva turned up. I wish I’d worked until my induction day, so I’d have had that extra week with her instead.

20150209_140704

I’m not cut out to be a stay-at-home mum, but that doesn’t mean I don’t feel awful about leaving her with strangers; about missing all the little moments; about being away from those big grins and smiles she does in the mornings. I won’t get to lazily play with her hands as she drifts off to sleep next to me on the bed for her afternoon nap. I’ll miss seeing her figure out her motor skills even more than she has already–gripping, grasping, holding something tight. She’s only just begun to try to laugh and I’m going to miss her mastering it.

20150210_115005

It hurts. I hate it. But not working isn’t an option–I’d go insane, my career would effectively be over, and money would be beyond tight. It just isn’t worth it, in the long run. I can provide for her better at work and I’ll be a better mother if I’m not engulfed by the role.

I keep worrying that the daycare isn’t going to be good enough. That they’ll ignore her or mess something up. That they won’t know how to feed her or care of her… or even worse, that they’ll just let her “cry it out.” She’s in that fussy stage of her development, but the thought of her being left to cry hurts my heart.

I’m sure all working mums go through this. It’ll get better. The worst part is knowing I’ll get a max of 3-4 hours a day with her. That sucks.

Next week, at this time, I’ll be at work. A very sobering thought. Maternity leave felt like it was going to go on forever back in those early newborn days… now, just, I don’t know. I think I’m done thinking about it for right now.

20150212_110345

Husband’s surgery went well, but it was a lot more intense than I anticipated. Seeing him in the hospital gown and on the gurney–ugh… I’m glad his dad was able to stay there with him. We waited at the in-laws until it was time to pick him up. He looked so pitiful sitting there… still in his gown. The recovery period took longer because they were having issues with his blood pressure being too high. I had to help him get dressed. He was really out of it. I really didn’t expect it.

The first few days were rough and exhausting, bouncing between taking care of him and Eva. I just felt so bad for him! I even had to feed him. Then, we went for his post-op and got stuck in traffic for four hours! A major accident had shut down the interstate, sigh. We had to take a long way home. I ended up driving for nearly six hours!

20150221_131834

Having him home was nice, though. We got into a routine, he started feeling better… and then it was over. He’s back at work today, after a week and a half off. We took some three month pictures of Eva yesterday, even though it’s a little late. They turned out well, but she refused to smile or grin! All she wanted to do was try and blow raspberries at us. That’s her new favorite thing. The husband also got Eva to fall asleep on him for the first time ever, so he was pretty thrilled.

We went to our weight check during the horrible winter storm (where we got a foot of snow, which I drove in like a champ) and got the “all clear”! Evangeline’s back to where she needs to be, and she’s one looong baby! 96th percentile–yikes.

IMG_9374

I keep trying not to dwell on the bad and instead focus on the positive, which has always been difficult for me. That and not measuring time. I get obsessive about time, it’s downright ridiculous. I’ve even taken to counting down the minutes in a day. Maddening! Eva is going to grow so fast and I don’t want to miss any of it… but providing the best for her is the most important thing. And there’s weekends, and holidays. I have a state job, so I get every bloody holiday off!

Once I go back to work, that’s it, it’s over–this time is over. She’s not a newborn anymore and I’ll never get that time with her back. I’ve taken to treasuring every moment, even the ones where she’s screaming or inconsolable… because once it’s over, it’s over. That’s it. Next thing I know, she’s in Kindergarten, she’s graduating High School, and then she’s just… gone–her own life, her own things… it’s baffling.

IMG_9294

People weren’t lying when they said you have no real concept of time until you have a child.

Same for not realizing how much you can love something. There are no words.

We’ll find a rhythm, a way. Everything will work out.

I’ll make sure it does.

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.

IMG_9078

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.

IMG_9066

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.

IMG_9071

 

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.

IMG_9061

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!

The Longest Wait

My doctor’s appointment on Thursday was disappointing. I’m barely dilated, if even at all! He really had to get up in there, which was immensely uncomfortable. They asked me what the baby weighed at my last ultrasound and I had no idea, because no one had explicitly told me. All they usually say is, “she looks good, everything is healthy.” Which, you know, is great… but details would be nice!

After the exam, we had a minor scare that he’d broken my water. I was sitting in a literal puddle. My husband ran and got the doctor back. He tested it, but it wasn’t amniotic fluid. It was a lot of discharge, mixed with a tiny bit of blood, and possibly some urine (gross!) Being pregnant is truly nasty at times. I’m glad it wasn’t my actual water breaking, as then I’d be confined to a hospital and induced. I really don’t want to be induced!

We spent yesterday out and about for around eight hours. I did a lot of walking and some minor shopping, just enjoying time with the husband and trying to hopefully get things going. We’ve been doing everything we can think of to naturally progress labor along. My next appointment is, again, Thursday… which is also my due date. I’m really hoping I’ve made some progress by then. I’d love to be able to labor at home instead of being confined to the hospital and bed, hooked up to a bunch of monitors. I also have an irrational fear of hemorrhaging out and dying… it’s rare, but it happens, and it happens more often with inducing.

We have pretty much everything ready to go. I’ve been buying small things here and there. We went out for my very early Birthday lunch last weekend (it was delicious!) I haven’t actually gotten a present, but there’s nothing I really want right now. I think the husband has forgotten, because he was being really persistent… which is good. I don’t want to waste money we could be using towards the baby and truly getting her room ready. I’d love to get a bookcase. I’ve started getting things together for my plan to have her simultaneously exposed to both English and French from day one. Husband is in charge of the speaking part of French… he took it for seven years and could have had it as a minor, whereas I am hopeless. ;)

The plaques haven’t worked out, but we’re persisting. We may end up just getting wooden letters and decorating them! I want something on the wall above her crib. Letters or plaques would look great there. I really wish I were more crafty and gifted in that area. Sigh. I’m so jealous of all the other people out there who are! Pinterest is just a website of things I’m incapable of doing probably, haha.

I’m not sure how ready I am to truly be a mother or have an infant, but I definitely know I’ve had enough of being pregnant! Labor is kind of scary, but I’m doing really good with not panicking or anything. I’ve educated myself as best as I can, the husband knows what I want (as does the doctor), but I’m also willing to do whatever we need to. This pregnant gig, though, is getting old. I want my body back! I’m tired of feeling like a turtle on its back and the constant discomfort is just too much. If I gain anymore weight, I think I’ll have a nervous breakdown! The scale is not my friend. I had such high hopes of being active and amazing, but it just didn’t happen. I truly had no idea how uncomfortable I would get. Ugh.

We may go out a bit more today and get some things. We’re putting the closet off until after she’s here. I really want to get a little organization kit and we found a bunch of stuff at Home Depot that’s perfect… but it may be better to wait a bit. The setup we have now works well enough and we still need proper doors. The ones we have now don’t fit after the drywall installation and I still want to buy a bookcase, which costs a bit more than I had anticipated. I’d love to at least have it ordered before she’s here! I need something to set the awesome dragonfly globe my aunt bought for me on.

The husband has declared that tomorrow is my last day at work. I had every intention of working until I went into labor, but husband wants my time to run out in December when people can donate leave to me. So now I get to spend Monday figuring out all of that fun stuff! I have enough SIQ and AWL to ensure I get paid until December 16th… hopefully we can get enough donations to at least make it into the new year. That only give us two and a half months or so without my pay.

I don’t want to not work and lose out, but I’d also rather be here getting stuff done, anyway. I’m benched at work, so all I am right now is a glorified secretary. It’s really pointless and boring. I mean, I’m thankful my job isn’t difficult and the people I work with and for are all understanding, but I hate feeling like I’m not actually contributing. At least if I’m home, I can get stuff done here. We’ll see what happens.