Friday, January 30, 2009

One week down, five to go

Times are crazy, and I am ill equipped. My husband is working full time and going to school full time. I am working full time and caring for a child full time. We are about to move. My, I am tired.

I think I misrepresented my husband a bit in my last post. He is quite helpful. It’s just that while I was staying at home, I opted to be Ben’s night time caregiver because I could sleep all day with him and Chris couldn’t. I didn’t want him to have to suffer all night and all day from lack of sleep. The weekends, however, were a different story. And now that I am back at work, we switch off with each other.

I started working again on Monday. My computer login was disabled while I was on leave. Lovely. I actually knew about this ahead of time and asked my supervisor to submit the form necessary to open my login again. She did her part, but apparently the security team took their sweet time about it. So I couldn’t do anything half the day before they activated it for me. And then on Thursday, it happened again. And also today. Annoying, yes.

I found a home day care really close to work, so I can see Ben at lunch and nurse him. The lady seems really nice, and she only has a couple of other children in her care. She has a rocking chair she lets me use to nurse him in. She also gives us a written report every day on when he ate and slept and how much and how his day was. It’s really nice. And for the record, I’m really glad I’m on Prozac right now. I’d been taking the whole day care thing extremely well. I was surprised, but I figured it was easier because I get to see Ben at lunch time. And then I forgot to take my dose on Wednesday, which didn’t affect me until Thursday. I bawled all the way to work and cried at my desk. I could barely function. I had very real ideas of going to pick Ben up and going home with him for good. I felt so horrible. But by lunch time, my Thursday dose kicked in and I felt much better. I hope I don’t have to be on this long term, but I can appreciate being on it now.

Pumping is going fairly well. I still don’t particularly like it, but my milk supply is increasing so it’s getting easier. And I have to pump like crazy. Right now I’m pumping four times a day, twice before lunch and twice after. I’m only supposed to pump twice at work on my two breaks, but I can’t only pump twice. I don’t get nearly enough milk. I’m so surprised at how much Ben eats. That kid can really put it away. But I do also realize that he could also be comfort eating or the sitter offers him a bottle and he takes if even if he’s not really hungry. Either way, I have to have the milk available for him. So far, so good, but I do stress about it. I realize it wouldn’t be the end of the world if he had to have some formula to supplement my milk, but I would just rather not have that happen if I can help it. I’m trying to help it.

Our sleep rollercoaster continues. Ben has much better days after he’s had a lot of sleep, so I’ve been trying to get him to sleep earlier. Getting him to sleep at 8:30 doesn’t seem to be a problem at the moment. But if I want him to stay asleep, I have to go to bed with him, too. He still won’t sleep for long periods of time by himself. I just don’t have it in me to try and get him to sleep in his bed while I’m working. I’ll get so much less sleep that way. So I’m hoping to start helping him to be comfortable sleeping by himself when I stop working. Then I can be there for him when he wakes up in the night and I won’t feel like a zombie the next day, or worse, resent Ben for making me a zombie.

Sorry I don’t update more. I can’t make any promises to update more right now either. In the meantime, you should read this article. I laughed so much, it made Ben start giggling hysterically. And yes, I think butts and poop are funny.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Happy New Year

The longer I wait to blog, the more I have to say, and thus, the harder it is to write. My intrinsic laziness sets in, and I just stare at the blank screen thinking of all the things I want to tell you. And then I get so overwhelmed by the magnitude of it that I just start reading other people's blogs, or I start typing an incoherent stream of consciousness that I don't even want to read back through again. So I'm going to try and compartmentalize all this as much as possible so that you three readers I have left won't leave here with your eyes bleeding.

Let us address the crying baby. He doesn't cry as much anymore, which is so very wonderful. However, he solidly has his days and nights mixed up. There was one week, one blissful, beautiful, delicious week where he slept at night. And because he sleeps besides me, I can nurse him while I sleep. And before you judge me for sleeping with him, I will just tell you that we both actually get sleep this way. And that is why I'm not willing to try and give it up until after I'm not working anymore. Anyway, then he got a cold and he started going to sleep at 4 am again.

Ben is a joy when he first wakes up. He smiles and coos and giggles. And about half an hour to forty five minutes later, he's crabby. He's tired and cranky. This is when he cries. But, he fights the nap. He fights it so hard. And when he does go to sleep? He will wake up again within the hour. The result is the two of us fighting over sleep all day and him not getting enough sleep during the day which makes him overtired when it's time for him to go to bed for the night and then it's really hard to get him to sleep. And I don't mean I put him down for a nap and then he wakes up (because I know he'll wake up if I put him down). I'm holding him in the exact same way he went to sleep, and he'll still wake up.

I asked his doctor how I should go about switching his nights and days back around. He told me that I should limit his naps during the day and when he wakes up at night, don't interact with him other than to feed him or change him and that's it. And also keep the lights off. But don't pick him up or play with him or make eye contact. Well, if he wakes up in the bed, I have to pick him up to go into the living room so we don't keep Chris up. So there goes that. Last night, I was trying really hard not to make eye contact or encourage him to be awake or anything. But I saw him out of the corner of my eye, and he was just smiling ear to ear at me. And how can I resist? I don't want him to think smiling won't get my attention. So I looked at him and smiled back. He started kicking his legs and waving his arms in excitement, and he was giggling like crazy. My word, this kid already knows how to melt his mama. So of course, I played with him. My heart is not made of stone, and apparently neither is my resolve. I'm pretty much going to die when I have to go back to work.

I went to my doctor again today about ppd. The estradiol didn't work as my doctor had hoped. What it did do was decrease my milk supply and give me a period. Yay! So I started taking fenugreek to boost my milk. It finally kicked in last night. It's super sweet. I got 4 oz of milk in 7 minutes today when I usually only get 2 oz in 20. This is going to make pumping and working so so much easier. So even though my doc took me off the estradiol today, I'm definitely sticking with the fenugreek until I get laid off. Now I get to try Prozac. I'm not really thrilled about going on an anti-depressant, but I'm not getting any better on my own. Mostly, I just wish this would all go away. I don't want to deal with it, and I can't tell you how many times I thought about canceling the follow up with my doctor and just not dealing with it. But it's important to me to try and really be there for Ben. He's having such a rough time getting his sleep together, and I'm not going to be able to help him if I'm falling apart. I really really hope the Prozac works.

A happy thing that I have to share is my weight loss. I've lost 38 lbs since I had Ben. I still have 14 lbs until pre-pregnancy weight and, oh, probably 40 lbs until before I started trying to conceive weight, but I'm encouraged. I haven't done anything to lose this weight so far (just breastfeeding and staying hydrated), so I'm really trying to get motivated to start at least walking to get some exercise. But my big excuse right now is the snow. I just don't want to walk around in it. My other excuse not to walk in the snow is that I'm notoriously clumsy and I will slip and fall with my baby hanging on me in his sling. I'm sure even if we didn't have so much snow, I'd still have some sort of lame excuse. But I can still be happy about the weight I have lost and try not to put any back on.

I have other things I want to blog about, but I'm so tired. I'm running on about 4 hours of sleep and I should be sleeping with my baby right now. If anyone has any ideas about how to keep Ben asleep through his sleep cycles during his naps, that would be appreciated. He's not waking up because he's hurting. He always wakes up happy; he just wakes up too early.