Sometimes….

Sometimes when I hold S or E in my arms, I mourn the babies that never were.  I hold them close and tell them that they are very, very loved and very, very wanted.

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July 17, 2011. Miscarriage #1, Miscarriage #2, The Magnificent Baby E, The Magnificent Baby S. 4 comments.

Warning: I Am Going to Complain Again

I have a raging yeast infection.  My bajingo felt like it was on fire until the Monistat cream had a chance to work its magic.  I think that everything down there is a little swollen and tender anyway (I don’t remember this before, but I chalk any and all new physical weirdness up to pregnancy) so adding the yeast infection to that was awful.

I also projectile vomited again today, this time while changing S’s stinky diaper.  The poor kid.  He is so used to me puking that he doesn’t even seem to notice, and usually just plays with the scale in the bathroom while I do my business.  This morning, I finally managed to haul out his little potty training chair to ralph into while making sure he wasn’t going to roll off the changing table.  Have I mentioned that I am done after this pregnancy?

Today I bought she-beastie a dress.  I am trying to make her feel more real.  She is, like S was, super-active in utero but I still have a mental disconnect from the reality that there is an actual baby in there.  We also need to get working on the nursery, which I suppose will help as well.

I laid down at 6PM while Mr. MC was putting S to bed and woke up at 10:30PM.  I am now just waiting for the Benedryl, my evening antiemetic of choice, to kick in so I can stop the nausea/retching.  Welcome to my Friday night!

Additional Saturday bitching: sciatica started today down my left butt cheek and leg.

I haven’t posted a picture of S in a while, so here you go:

May 7, 2010. Pregnancy #4, The Magnificent Baby S. 1 comment.

Day of Atonement

Today was Yom Kippur.  I am not Jewish, so it holds no religious significance for me.

It was on Yom Kippur, three years ago, that I learned of my first miscarriage and, a few days later, had my first D&C.

The pain has abated and there are days when I don’t think about it, but my heart is still broken.  Even with my happy, healthy son here, I often yearn for what was taken from me: the romance of pregnancy, the optimistic outlook, and, of course, the pregnancy and child that never was.

And then it happened all over again.

But this story, at least this chapter, has a happy ending.  S is 15 months old and is, quite honestly, perfect.  When I imagined being a mom, I didn’t really think about late-night feedings, cracking nipples, and incessant spit-up.  Motherhood now, however, very much resembles what I imagined it would be.  It is indeed the hardest job you will ever love.

So, this chapter, this phase, of this blog comes to an end.  I am too busy trying to balance everything out between my professional life (teaching, publishing, tenure requirements, etc…) and being a mother to S.  I don’t really have the energy at the end of the day to blog about it as I am too busy just, well, living it.

But this story is not over, because, of course, I want another one.  Not now.  But soon.  I need to have my body to myself for a little bit.  I need to figure out how to be the kind of mom and professor that I want to be.  I need to get my mojo back, because it’s been years since I have seen it.  Once I get this all figured out (or admit defeat), I will be back.

And, because everyone loves a cute kid picture, here is Baby S:

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  • September 28, 2009. Another One?, Life With Baby, The Magnificent Baby S, Trying Again. 10 comments.

    The Circle of Life

    I held Baby S for the first time one year ago.  I had a quick labor, about 5.5 hours from water-breaking to the three-push delivery. I lack the words to describe how much I love him.  I am more proud of him than anything else I have done.

    And yet, as I predicted, his birthday and that joy will always be tainted for me.

    Yesterday was Father’s Day and I have no father.  On 27 June 2008, my father committed suicide, five days after my son, his first grandchild, was born.

    Sometimes Baby S looks like my dad when he smiles.

    June 22, 2009. Other Sucky Things, The Magnificent Baby S. 6 comments.

    Oh, I Forgot One

    7) I pee involuntarily when I cough, sneeze, or — most horrifyingly — when I laugh.

    Pee.  In.  My.  Own.  Pants.

    And, yes, I Kegel.

    I heard this doesn’t go away.  My mom told me to buy Depends if I ever get bronchitis.

    But he is just so darn cute that I almost don’t mind!  (Almost.)

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    June 16, 2009. Life With Baby, The Magnificent Baby S, Way Too Much Information. 4 comments.

    Yes, It Was Worth It

    To get to this point in my life, my heart had to break in half.  Twice.

    I had to have a D&C to remove dead embryonic tissue from my uterus.  Twice.

    I spent most of my third pregnancy terrified that it would end without a healthy baby.  When I wasn’t worrying about that, I was throwing up.

    Still.

    I fall more in love with him every day.

    Yes, it was worth it.

    I am even considering doing it all over again eventually, which, although I am still a cynical bitch regarding all things pregnancy, I think is the ultimate gesture of optimism.

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    April 30, 2009. Another One?, Miscarriage #1, Miscarriage #2, Pregnancy #3, The Magnificent Baby S. 5 comments.

    Attack of the Killer Bewbies!!

    My bewbies, apparently, are evil.  E.V.I.L.

    Baby S decided yesterday that he was done with them.  It is really warm here, so I just assumed it was the heat and maybe the closeness of nursing was annoying (even though we hold him in our arms when we give him a bottle, too).  I would lift up my shirt to nurse and he would turn his head and close his mouth, but I thought maybe when it cooled off, he would be more willing.  So, I pumped and he happily drank from a bottle.

    This morning when I went in to nurse him, he took one look at my bewbie and started screaming.  I had no idea what was wrong.   I thought maybe I smelled bad or I had gotten something on me, so I gave up, pumped, and then took a shower and tried again.  Same reaction.  We did not have a biting incident or anything traumatic; my bewbies are just suddenly terrifying.

    This afternoon, post-shower and in a perfectly cool room, I again tried to nurse him but he again turned his head to the side and clamped his mouth shut.  He will happily snuggle with me while he sucks his thumb and he will also happily take a bottle of breastmilk, so this is either the famed “nursing strike” or he just self-weaned.

    If this is it, or was it, I will still pump for another few months to ensure he is still getting breastmilk.  It is easier to just nurse, but if I must pump, I must pump.

    I have two conflicting emotions: one, my feelings are very hurt that my bewbies are suddenly so offensive; second, I am relieved that I don’t have to initiate the weaning process.

    I will try again in a few days, just to see if it really is a “nursing strike,” but my gut tells me that our nursing days are over.

    April 27, 2009. Life With Baby, The Magnificent Baby S. 5 comments.

    Biting the Boob That Feeds You

    The yeast is gone.

    I don’t have mastitis.

    My supply and Baby S’s demand are more or less in sync.

    So, of course, something had to go wrong.

    He has started biting.   Me.

    In.  The.  Nipple.

    When he was getting his first two teeth in, he did this at the end of our feedings when he was trying to soothe his gums.

    A few days ago, he started doing it again and yesterday and today, he has started chomping down right at the beginning of our feedings.  I can not find any new teeth that appear to be breaking through.

    I sternly say “NO” and end the feeding, as is suggested in my breastfeeding book.  He always looks surprised and then confused as to why I flinch in pain.  We wait a while and try again, with the same problem.  I have just started pumping and giving him the milk via bottle.

    Please tell me this is a just a phase?  And it will end soon?  (It’s okay to lie to me.  Go ahead.  I will not care, I promise.)

    It is a good thing he is so freakin’ cute.

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    February 19, 2009. Life With Baby, The Magnificent Baby S. 7 comments.

    Semantic Nitpicking

    “Are you pregnant?”

    I hated this question because I always wanted to clarify what was meant by “pregnant.”  Do I have HCG in my system?  Is there something in my uterus?  Is there something alive in my uterus?  Is there something alive in my uterus that will eventually grow into a healthy baby?

    And, if one were to answer yes to all of the above, how long would it stay that way?

    “Is this your first baby?”

    Yes, Baby S is my first baby.

    “Is this your first pregnancy?”

    No, this was not my first pregnancy.  It was my third.

    If you have ever had a miscarriage, however, you know that being pregnant and having a baby are not the same thing.

    “Is this your first?”

    Well, it depends on whether you mean pregnancy or baby.  When people ask me this, I usually just say “yes” because I assume they mean child.

    “I am very sorry that you lost a baby.”

    I don’t feel like I lost two babies.  I lost two pregnancies.  It was crushing and sad and awful but it is not the same kind of loss as a still-birth or a child that dies very young.  I never got to hold or see my child; the idea of a baby was completely an abstract concept.  I lost the hope, joy, and potential that a baby represents, but I did not lose a baby.

    “You got the baby you were supposed to have.”

    What do you say to this?  I had two embryos die in my uterus, had the insides scraped out, bawled my eyes out, etc…, just so I could arrive at the “right” baby?  Baby S is here, yes, because I had two miscarriages.  The particular sperm/egg combination was unique to that month.  Yet, without knowing why the other pregnancies failed, I do not know how to process the idea that those pregnancies were somehow wrong or “not meant to be.”

    Anyone want to add anything else?

    January 30, 2009. Miscarriage #1, Miscarriage #2, Ramblings, The Magnificent Baby S. 9 comments.

    Please, Please Let Them Stay This Colo(u)r

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    January 13, 2009. The Magnificent Baby S. 4 comments.

    Mah Bewbies and Other Random Things

    Mah bewbies are lopsided and I have had come to terms with it.  Even in their asymmetry, even allowing for the wee yeasties,  they have done a pretty good job.  My goal is to make it to at least a year with this whole breastfeeding thing.  Studies show that in kids that are predisposed to colitis (i.e. Baby S, as both Mr. MC and I have the disease in our family), breastfeeding for at least one year significantly reduces the risk.  They are not sure if it is because of the impact on the immune system or the fact that breastmilk is so easy to digest.  I will do whatever I can to help Baby S not develop this shitty (ha!) disease.

    ***************

    I feel like now, at six months, I am finally getting this whole baby thing down.  Of course, people have already asked me when I am going to try for another.  (Cue maniacal laughter in the background.)  Ummmmm, no time soon.  I would like another one, but I feel like Baby S just got here.  I also do not “do” pregnancy very well, we will have to again contend with my uterus of death, I am up for tenure, etc…, which all make me want to wait.  Why are people so anxious to get knocked up so soon again after their first baby?

    ***************

    I am having wicked, wicked mood swings.  In pre-baby world, I would call it PMS, but I am not sure when my cycles are going to start back up, so I don’t know if this is “pre-” anything.  I feel anxious, cranky, and super-OCD, and then the next day I feel fine, only to have it rear up again a few days later.  This started before Baby S started eating solids, so I do not think that is it.  But what do I know, right?

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    My hair is still falling out.  Thank goodness I have thick hair because otherwise I would most certainly have bald spots.   It is not as bad as it was, but it still sheds more than normal except, conveniently, for the gray hairs at my temple.  Those, I am oh-so-happy to report, are just fine.  I assume that soon new hair will start to grown in?

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    My carpel tunnel syndrome, which I developed in my last trimester but only got really bad after Baby S was born, has taken a turn for the worse.  It was in my left wrist and now has migrated to the right one as well.  My midwife told me it will go away when Baby S is about a year and that it is rarely permanent.  This gives me hope, but I still have to go out and buy another wrist brace.

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    I only gained 11 lbs. when I was pregnant.  I lost it all the first week after Baby S was born and have proceeded to gain it all back while breastfeeding.  This whole “you-will-loose-weight-while-breastfeeding-because-you-burn-extra-calories” theory is a bunch of crap.  I am hungry all the time, I am still almost exclusively breastfeeding, I try to walk as much as the weather will allow, and I am still slowly gaining weight.  Like the lopsided bewbies, I have had to make my peace with it.

    December 17, 2008. Colitis is Fun (Not), Life With Baby, Post-Pregnancy Fun, The Magnificent Baby S. 7 comments.

    Yes, I Have A Lot To Say, But I Am Too Busy Smiling At This:

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    December 10, 2008. Life With Baby, The Magnificent Baby S. 7 comments.

    And Now, Back To Our Regularly Scheduled Level of Anxiety

    For Thanksgiving, we went to visit family in a big(ger) city.  Outside of this city is a kick-ass medical facility where a bunch of kick-ass doctors work.  My kick-ass mother-in-law was able to call in a favor with her kick-ass neighbor, who happens to also be a doctor at this medical facility, and get Baby S an appointment with one of the top pediatric neurologists in the U.S. the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.

    In short, Baby S is going to be fine.  He has a shudder which will go away on its own by the time he is one, if not before.

    Yes, we went out of network and will probably pay a small fortune for the second opinion, but it sure as heck is better than just sitting around for four months wondering if there is a serious problem with my kick-ass baby.

    November 30, 2008. Life With Baby, The Magnificent Baby S, Waiting Around is Not For Sissies. 7 comments.

    Other Shoe Perched Precariously on Ledge

    It’s not bad news.  It’s not good news, either, but I am trying (and mostly failing) to focus on the fact that it is not bad news.

    Baby S had to go and see a pediatric neurologist today.  At his 4-month check up, his pediatrician noticed that he had some shaking when he sat up.  He thought they may have been mild seizures and requested an EEG and pulled some strings to forgo the usual 6-month wait to see the specialist.

    The EEG was normal.  He is not having seizures.  The neurologist confirmed this today.

    Mr. MC and I had both noticed the shakiness, or “trembling” as the doctor called it today, but we assumed it was just muscle fatigue.  The trembling began when he started holding his head up and then moved into his shoulders and arms when he began to hold his torso up.  It is worse when he is tired or has been sitting up for a while.

    The neurologist said it was not muscle fatigue.  He does not know what it is, exactly.  The rest of his neurological exam was normal, so we are to come back in four months and by then it will either have resolved itself or other symptoms will have presented themselves and he will be better able to make a diagnosis.

    I hate to wait.  HATE IT.  I waited so long for this baby, my beautiful baby boy, and now I have to wait to see if there is something wrong with him?

    Fuck, fuck, fuck.

    I want to cry.  I want to hold him and never let go.  I want the doctor to call back and tell me that Baby S will be fine and this is nothing to worry about.  I want my baby to be fine and perfect and healthy.

    Instead, I am going to take a shower and go teach a class.  Baby S is with my mom, who is no doubt showering him with her usual love and affection.  I really want to cancel class, but I think I need to get my mind off of this for a little while.

    Fuck.

    November 10, 2008. Life With Baby, Other Sucky Things, The Magnificent Baby S, Waiting Around is Not For Sissies. 13 comments.

    Yep, MC is Going to Bitch About Yeast Again

    I thought it was gone.  I am on my last day of Diflucan (oral medicine) and have religiously applied Monistat cream to my nipples for 7 days.  I pumped exclusively and carefully washed all the pump parts with hot, soapy water while Baby S dined from bottles with sterilized nipples.  My symptoms went away!  I was optimistic!  Then I started nursing again yesterday and, to quote the ever-annoying Emeril, BAM!, right back to the burning nipples today.

    Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck.

    I blame the stupid NP at the pediatrician’s office two weeks ago who told me Baby S did not need to be treated if he was asymptomatic.  She was wrong.  I knew she was wrong, but she is an NP with years of clinical experience and I followed what she recommended, which was not to treat Baby S for yeast.  Did I mention I knew she was wrong?  My midwife said she was wrong.  The nurse I spoke to this morning said she was wrong.  I should have not been so complacent and insisted on medicine for Baby S, too.  (I just got a call back from the doctor: he says the NP was “not correct” about discontinuing the medication.  So I will not be charged for that visit, right?  She will be reprimanded?  Told not to be such a smug beeyotch next time?  Encouraged to research chronic yeast infections before opening her “I-Have-Years-of-Clinical-Experience-and-You-Don’t” mouth?)

    Oh, and my hair is falling out.  I had, according to Mr. MC and my hairstylist, thick, shiny, gorgeous hair during my pregnancy.  At exactly 3 months post-partum, my hair started falling out.  I knew this was normal, so initially I was not alarmed.  Except that it kept on coming out.  Like a LOT.  Like ALL THE TIME.  It is really thin now, especially around my face.  I know my thyroid is okay, so here’s hoping the book is right and this resolves itself by 6 months, because I shudder to think how awful I would look bald.

    Here is Baby S at 4.5 months, who somehow manages to make thin hair work.

    October 20, 2008. Life With Baby, Other Sucky Things, The Magnificent Baby S. 7 comments.

    Pain in the Boob (Updated)

    The fucking yeast isn’t gone.

    Now, just to add to the fun, I have the beginnings of mastitis.

    Antibiotics can cause an overgrowth of yeast; yeast makes your nipples burn like hell; burning, yeast-infected nipples crack and split; nipples get infected; a course of antibiotics is given to stop the infection.

    Does anyone else see a real problem with this?

    I am taking both the anti-fungal and the anti-biotic simultaneously and swallowing as many pro-biotics as I can.  I am also trying to cut out (or at least down on) sugar, as sugar feeds the nasty little wee-yeasties.

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    Two years ago, I went in for my 10-week ultrasound and discovered I had a blighted ovum.  Today, I am watching my son try to suck on his thumb and blogging about pains in my boobs.  All things considered, life is good.

    UPDATE: And now, due to the anti-biotic, the yeast is back with a vengeance, even though I am still taking the anti-fungal.  Baby S and I are both now back on the topic anti-fungal.  I can’t win, I swear.

    October 10, 2008. Miscarriage #1, Other Sucky Things, The Magnificent Baby S. 3 comments.

    More of the Same

    The yeast is still here.  It is better, but it still burns after I nurse and Baby S is still not himself.  The Nystatin is not very powerful, but is the first anti-fungal that is used.  Now, I think, it might be time to move onto something more powerful.  Baby S continues to grow like a weed and, based on our crappy home scale, is about 16lbs (!!!!).

    I am too tired to post much as I have to entertain relatives this weekend.  Here are some update photos of Baby S for your viewing pleasure:

    October 5, 2008. Other Sucky Things, The Magnificent Baby S. 4 comments.

    It’s Not Just for Baking Bread!

    I hate yeast.

    Really, really, really.

    I thought that I hated yeast in my bajingo, but it is nothing compared to yeast in my nipples and poor Baby S’s mouth. It burns like crazy and makes my poor little guy super gassy and fussy.

    I have to smear anti-fungal goop all over my breasts after every feeding and swab Baby S’s mouth with the stuff several times a day.  We also have to sterilize all his pacifiers and bottles, and I have to wash all my bras and then stick them out in the sun to kill any lingering yeast.

    Oh, and did I mention it makes my nipples burn. like. hell ?

    p.s.  Mr. MC, as you can probably tell, was way more upset about Maggie’s comment than I was.  As far as I am concerned, she can kiss my burning nipples ass.

    September 29, 2008. Life With Baby, Other Sucky Things, The Magnificent Baby S. 4 comments.

    Don’t Worry, Be Happy

    September 5, 2008. The Magnificent Baby S. 6 comments.

    A Moose?

    It turns out, shockingly enough, that if you eat every two hours you gain weight like a champion.

    Baby S was 11 pounds at his 2 month check-up. That is an average weight gain of 1.76 ounces per day over the last six weeks (at least 1 ounce per day is considered a great indicator of health), which is significant. We are still doing “on demand” feedings, so it is no wonder that it took a while for my milk supply to catch up. I had to supplement with between 2 and 6 ounces of formula per day because he would nurse until I was dry and still want more. Poor kid. He is still only in the 12th percentile for weight, but considering that he was 6 lbs. 3 ozs. at birth, he is a big boy now — his pediatrician even called him a moose!?

    August 22, 2008. The Magnificent Baby S. 8 comments.

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