Wednesday, November 30, 2011

What a Ride

I don't know about the rest of you but DANG- its already been quite a day- overall in a good way.
I had a fantastic talk with Bek on the phone which was a big treat. I tried taking a quick shower but Ben wasn't having it so once I got at least my hair washed and some conditioner in it I jumped out and grabbed Ben and we took a shower together. (I'm sure he'll love reading this when he's older!) lol
After I got him dressed and feed him he slept for just a couple minutes only to wake up so upset and screaming. After a good 15 minutes I had to just walk away for a minute, I mean it was 11:45 and I was starving so I put some soup on the stove and that's when Ben went into the height of crying. I picked him up and gave him some boob and just talked to him to let him know Mommy will always be here, I'm not ingoring him, I never ignore him but love him greatly and am only trying to get some food in my belly so I can feed him and sometimes Mommy needs to shower and eat and go the bathroom even explaining as simple and best I could that giving into basic functions don't equal Mommy not caring. Of course I'm sure all he understands is Mom is here and Mom isn't here and where the CRAP is she???

He just looked up at me with his kind eyes and I asked him how he liked Earth like so far? He smiled. I asked him if he remembered Heavenly Father and Great Grandma and Grandpas and all other ancestors? He looked at me in a way almost to say, "you have no idea."
Ya- its weird, 12 weeks. Baby Benjamin is 12 weeks old. It's hard to believe. Life definately moves faster with children.

He's still having a difficult time shaking colic. I recognize he IS better than what he was a month ago but for Ben it hasn't been a simple peak at 6 weeks and descend.... It's been a steep, unforgiving climb that got SO bad I had toes amputated-off toes and was on constant oxygen tanks- kind of peak and I wish I could say once he reached the summit he was ready to come down...nah he's to switch-back between elevations for the last few weeks, always keeping mom on her toes...the ones that were left that is! ;)

But colic aside Ben is wonderful! He came out so observant and doesn't let up on checking everything out. I've said it once I'll say it again I'm so excited and curious as to what vocation he will go into later.
Yesterday I gathered up all his new born clothes and replaced them with the 3-6 month old stuff. It was sad. Seeing how his tiny new born outfit Tom and I picked out for him to wear home from the hospital and how we thought it was gonna be small for him but it was hanging off him for weeks and now...the pants are major high-waters! lol so in the storage bin they went and saving for next baby boy.
Tom and I are still waiting on the switch to him working full time at RV Kuhn's, he's started training a bit but he hasn't been given a date. It's a little ...weird (lack of better word) he works in production doing tons of large print projects and they want to move him to an assistant job which is so different and not neccessarily what he wants to do. Production has a lot less responsibility and answering to people, heck I totally feel the same! But the change(s) will mean some big changes for our family too so I'm excited.
He loves his dad. He loves his mommy too but he loves his daddy! Tom works almost everyday including random Sunday evenings when Apple has manitory updates. Actually Thanksgiving day was his first full day off since he requested time off when his mom came and for Ben's blessing. Tom denies it when he hears me mentioning it to anyone but he has made several comments lately how he's excited for Baby Aurora to get here too! NOT so excited he's wanting to make that happen NOW but let's just say I called it when Ben was born that I KNEW/KNOW it will be Tom who will be the one pressuring for another baby...and sooner than later I suspect too.
It's interesting I had yet another woman ask me how I'm getting along through the newborn stage after church on Sunday....the only thing I said was "that's a loaded question." Then she proceeded to tell me how she "hated" the newborn stage and didn't want to hold her first for the first 2 weeks and refused to tell her baby she loved him, etc. I didn't say anything, just listened. Me being me totally jumps to judgmental conclusions but I don't really know so I'll just say- that has NOT been my experience. Even with colic I love having a small baby to hold AND the baby prefers me cause I'm the mommy, not aunt, or mommy's friend but Mommy! It's so awesome.
I REALLY want to have a family photo done. (Charlotte- yours looks so nice!) I'm not sure what I have left to sale to make that happen but I think its important Tom and I try to make it happen soon PLUS Ben's acne is gone (even though I've been breaking out).
Just an FYI my first blog post for my new blog (still keeping this one) is almost ready. I'll be emailing you all when its ready. Basically, its a blog of me analyzing my favorite music...we'll see how it goes.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Highs and Lows

At present Baby Ben is putting himself to sleep. I’ve had him do this since he was born. Tom’s at an Apple training thing from 6:30pm till…whenever. I’m not asleep though I really should make myself. The last couple weeks have been totally all over the place, I’ve enjoyed sweet high moments and endured some hair-pulling lows, as I’m sure we ALL have, right?

The Good News: Ben has been coming out of colic HAL-O-LUUU-YAH! It started the Tuesday after his blessing on the 8th. I came home from work and he was so calm stayed that way through Saturday it was like my baby woke up and was content and only fussed when he was hungry or tired but stopped the whole “just cause” crying. Then…last Sunday it was a whole different story and it was a BIG lesson learned that “coming down from colic” doesn’t mean completely over for EVER! It took a few days but for the most part he is back to calm(er) baby.

He’s so smiley now and coos especially in the early morning when he’s also the most happy even if I’m not ready to wake up but he’s so cute it’s hard to think about sleeping through these tiny moments and missing it. But I have to admit when he frowns its the MOST CUTE. I know that sounds terrible but gosh it really is so cute! Its hard to get a picture of it cause we all know the cute frown is proceeded by a big cry!

Sleeping: He goes down almost the same time every night 7:30-8:00pm after I give him a really warm bath and wrap him up. He continues to wake up the same times almost on the dot since he was born too: 1:30, 3:30, 5:45, 7:45 and then we are either up or sometimes I can get him to stay somewhat quiet while I sleep another hour or two. When he does wake up for a feeding I grab him or Tom (though I try to let him sleep) and I nurse in bed. I try to put him back into his crib after he eats but it’s hard to stay awake to put him back without it causing me to have a hard time falling back to sleep, you know? Like this past week I ended up not able to fall back asleep from his 3:30 feeding until after 6:30…it SUCKED! -That happened two nights in a row. Needless to say, by the third night I didn’t care enough to put him back in his crib. It’s also amazingly annoying how that happens- your brain, your body, everything is sooo tired so why in the CRAP can’t I pass out upon hitting the pillow again? Strange.

For the most part I have been good at putting him back in his crib more and more. I’m not sure when I should hope to expect Baby Ben to start having fewer interruptions or even dream for the day he’ll start sleeping all the way through the night? I just hope its sooner than later.

HE’S GETTING SO BIG! The last check-up he had was October 31st and he weighed 10 lbs 2 oz and was in the 25% percent tile. Now I think he’s 12 lbs??? Whatever it is its TOO big. With only the exception of colic I wish he could stay small and exactly how he is for much longer, it’s just so sweet having a little bebe.

Music: I always told myself I would be diligent at having classical music playing all the time when I had kids and it’s ONE thing that HAS gone according to plan! I just know that research has shown over and over again the link between classical music listening and math/science skills and comprehension! Now, Tom’s genes are already math and science prone and yet mine are NOT even with the amount of music I studied and listened to BUTTTT I have just always concluded how scary the further lack of skills I’d have if I hadn’t had music be such a big part of my life! Anyway, Ben is so interesting to watch when I have the classical station or cd playing. Though I can’t REALLY know I DO like to think he is taking it all in and dissecting each measure! 

The Bad News: I miss my husband. He works a LOT. This last week he had two 14 hr days in a row. He works every Saturday, and has mandatory update trainings at least 2 Sunday evenings a month. He had 2 days off last month. I honestly think about and mourn for Military/Army/Navy/etc. wives every time he has a marathon work day/week. I feel SO happy and relieved that as much as I gripe and self-pity about missing him he STILL comes home every day, half dead from exhaustion but ALIVE!

 I am also incredibly, ridiculously, and SINCERELY lucky and spoiled. When he comes home there is no Nintendo, Wii, computer gaming, cable or whatever he runs to. Of course my husband needs cave time yet his cave time is a short email-check and done. Instead, like last night he called on his way home to offer to do whatever I asked or needed when he got home, and again, this after a very long week for him!!  

I kinda hope we never get any of those devices! Though there are more days than not I wish we had some basic cable- I love some kind of SOUND going on in the house and I have exhausted our movie collection and possibly the public library’s too! And the time that Dave Ramsey is on is when Ben is sleeping so I have to hear it on my iPod when I work.

DANELLE for sending me bottles! It’s been such a huge help!!! Though I know it is “law” that a place of work provide a “safe place” for a woman to pump milk- that place doesn’t really exist in a sporting goods store. Lol I mean there are manager offices each store has several managers for different departments and they all share the same office so how totally Not cool would that be if I played the “law card” and asked for their “safe place” to pump, pushing out the men/women??? Nah, I’ll stick with a bathroom stall, not so classy and yes I am very careful to not touch ANYTHING but I feel fine.

On a Final Note: HAPPY Thanksgiving to everyone! Gosh I thought the first year together with Tom through the holidays was awesome, but that got shattered by our first married holidays together and now it’s topped with our baby’s first holidays! It really is such a sweet and wonderful time. We are in good health, we have steady income, we live in the most beautiful spot on earth, we live in the most FREE land anywhere, and I am so blessed with the endless support of my husband, my family and the greatest friends a person could ask for! I love you all!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Time it was and what a time it was, it was

Firstly, I love my baby.

Secondly, this is a typical Jessica blog so I’ll just tell ya right now, it won’t be short (I simply don’t have it in me to tell ANY story or update in a paragraph or two) so if you need to use the restroom or get a coke- now is that time.
Baby Ben’s blessing story starts back on Halloween when he had his 2 month check-up including 4 immunizations, 3 shots and one oral. He screamed, oh gosh he whimpered and I thought I was gonna lose it like I did when he got the "big cut" but I was braver. For the rest of the day he was very sleepy and not his usual crying, Mr. Fussy self but I was just fine with it. The Doctor recommended to try Zantac twice day thinking it may or may not help with his colic. The next day was my first day back to merchandising- I was stupid enough to think I wouldn’t need to take my pump and experienced what it means to be so full I’m heavily leaking with ice-berg hard boobs, thus I HAD to pause and run over to Ash’s to feed him where I found he had been sleeping the whole morning and afternoon…two days in a row?? Weird. Anyway, I finished work which went fine especially since I didn’t sweat like I did when I was 40lbs heavier! I got home, Ben woke up, he was looking so calm I whipped out my camera and took a couple of photos only to stop and ask him if he was feeling okay, feeling his overly warm forehead when he whimpered again and then threw up a pools’ amount of milk. I was shocked and worried. Then I cried like I did when got circumcised! Luckily, he wasn’t sick too long. His fever broke the next morning though his diarrhea lasted much longer (Bek you were right, after I got off the phone with you about what to expect from baby diarrhea he had it). Here is the photo right before he threw up.
Tom’s mom, Tamaralynn flew in Friday night and stayed with us until this morning. I have to say I really REALLY lucked-out in the in-law department. Tamara is very sweet, passive and doesn’t intrude or judge (or maybe she’s just super good at hiding it ;) She was very sweet with Ben. I feel lucky Ben has TWO grandmas who love him and are interested in his life!
Saturday was a marathon day, starting with Ben struggling the whole night before with gas. As much as I want to be martyr-ish about my lack of sleep, I still feel terrible about HIS restlessness and I just think his pain has to be worse than my annoyance. Anyway, I was up with him from 12:30am-8:30am and then once I was sure Tamara was up Tom and I came out of the room and started a big breakfast including French toast made from French bread, bacon (it was on a super sale and it was a special occasion so I got it, not that I’m against bacon, nooo its just so expensive!) Also, we made orange juice that I like to puree in the blender to give it a yummy froth, over-easy eggs for Tamara, scrambled for Tom and I ate my typical cheesy-eggs with salsa.
We left the apartment around 11am and drove down town parked free at the Institute building near PSU (Ben crying, screaming the entire 20 min drive) and walked over to the Saturday Market so Tamara could experience Portlandia. We walked over to Voodoo Donuts, but the line was in its typical hour wait so we kept walking (Voodoo Donuts is a big hit in Pdx, it’s been talked about in several Food magazines and on Food Network.  I’ve personally never had one for obvious reasons but I have yet to hear a single review where someone wasn’t underwhelmed. Then we stopped into Safeway to grab a quick something where we saw a Portland Trail Blazer. I couldn’t tell you which one but the man was HUGE. I’m talkin the tallest man, wholly moley!
Then we got back to the car, changed Ben, feed him, put him back in his car set and he cried, screamed the entire drive again until he got to Multnomah Falls. Tamara REALLY wanted to visit the beautiful waterfall and this was the waterfall Tom took me to when we were dating and he admitted later he was testing me out to see how I would handle the heights b/c he wanted to propose on the bridge, knowing how much I LOVE water and waterfalls but I had a mini freak-out while we were there so he decided that wouldn’t be a good idea.
{side note: not sure everyone knows this but I HATE heights, I HATE them. Spiders make me shiver and I get scared, scream and want nothing to touch me including my clothing when I see them but heights? I get dizzy, my legs get wobbly and I feel like I’m gonna black-out.}
Well I was 100% planning on letting Tom and Tamara just do the hike up to the top on their own while I took a nap in the car but truth be told I had gotten super chilled from walking around Pdx in the rain that I thought it would be good for me to get some exercise to warm up by just walking to the bridge and yes, all the while being super attentive momma bear making sure Ben’s head, ears, legs, feet, hands, BODY was well covered and warm as it was very chilly!
IF you fell you wouldn’t just get hurt, it would be a complete miracle if you didn’t die and I’m NOT exaggerating about this- I was mortified seeing parents going with small children, there’s NO FREAKIN WAY I will do that with my kids- it would be like ASKING for my kids to die!
By the 3rd switch-back I was huffing and puffing. Tom was VERY aware so we stopped at a turn and strapped Baby Ben to him. I had a very mini freak-out when Tom took him because I was horrified that if Tom fell he’d die with ALL my family! So ya, I totally teared-up and Tom reassured me he was going to be extra safe! I didn’t think too much about the heights as we were hiking cause I was focusing MORE on breathing, I mean it was totally the most exercise I had since before Ben was born. We kept on with Tom walking on the outside and giving me encouragement.
By the 6th switch-back I started to really get scared and then dizzy and then I had to stop and just squat down facing the mountain as I cried and tried not to completely have a full on panic attack in front of my mother-in-law and anyone else who walked by. For me, it’s not the fear of how high up you are but it’s a fear of falling (it should be called Fear of Falling and not Heights) and it goes from fearing you’re gonna fall to feeling it’s inevitable so I might as well get it over with and just jump, and there’s a physical sensation that absolutely puts me in the “height” of panicking which is a feeling of a pulling from my chest as if someone is grabbing my shirt and pulling me down. It’s terrifying to say the least. I wasn’t sure what to do cause I was scared either direction I turned either uphill or down. Like, I felt if I started walking down I would actually be more scared from looking down and by looking up would help me so I kept going. It wasn’t long until we were at the top. I didn’t go to the look-out bridge, I didn’t need to- I had already had one panic attack and besides I HAD reached the top!
It took over an hour to climb up and about 45 minutes to walk down. Ben slept the whole way and yep…cried just about the whole way home (an hour). Tom’s mom took us out for sushi. Tom LOVES sushi. I feel blah about it. I mean Dax took us out to Sushi a few times and I really have had just about all kinds but to me #1.) Its rice and I don’t eat it sooo there’s no point. #2.) It all really does taste the same no matter whats in it. Kinda like Mexican food that way- it ALL is the same ingredients and no matter how "authentic" it is it always tastes kinda boring to me which leads me to #3.) Its kinda bland. I’d rather have something with basil and garlic and onion! Mhmm
Saturday I picked up some gas drops for Ben, having tried …4(?) attempts to pick up some Mylicon for Ben at Babies R Us (we have a gift card) but it was always  sold out but there was a ton of the Babies’s R Us brand and I thought well its worth trying. That night I ended up giving him 3 doses -10pm, 2:30am, 5:50am obviously I couldn’t tell a bit of difference!
Sunday, I stressed, I had stressed since he was born about how the crap to time everything just right so he wouldn’t scream through his blessing. I had people tell me, "whatever happens will happen!" I asked Tom to PLEASE make sure the microphone was on before he started so no one would miss it. And before hand I feed Ben, changed his pants, his clothes and feed him again right before we went into Sacrament meeting, knowing he had only had just micro naps (his typical daily routine). I ran into friends before S.M., met my sister-in-law in the Mother’s lounge and another guest, came out to find a ton more friends and family packed in the lobby! It was sooo sweet to feel the support of so many including one of my bosses from the office, Vica! I’m DIEING to know what she thought about her first Mormon Sacrament Meeting experience!
Tom said that when he took Ben up he didn’t even look once at the men around him that he was only aware of Ben J His blessing consisted of being blessed a strong missionary, of being able to go to the Temple with a worthy bride, that he will be a good example to his family and peers, he will be patient, and have a love for people. I really love the patience and love of others!
After S.M. I had lots of people, one after another come up, visitors and ward members alike it reminded me of our reception -trying SO hard to make sure we acknowledged everyone but not being able to....its frustrating, I just don’t want anyone to feel I didn’t care about them enough to talk to them!!!

I was SO sleep deprived and frazzled I completely forgot about family pictures afterwards and remembered AFTER we had gotten home, quickly changed then drove to my parents' in Salem for dinner! Ben slept for about 7 minutes during that 40 car ride and then didn’t nap for more than 5 minutes at my parents’.

Dinner was wonderful. My mom and dad knocked themselves out deep-cleaning the house and providing a very filling meal.
Ben’s cousins were very sweet. Madison and Seth asked so many times to hold him even right after they had ;) and the triplets were so curious about the small baby!
Ben….I was so sure he was gonna pass-out on the way home but he didn’t. I tried to sleep but I kept opening my eyes to check on him to find him just staring at me almost like he was watching to see when I would fall asleep. lol He even had a hard time falling asleep last night. I’m sure the amount of being passed around in conjunction with his colic temperament equaled an overly simulated baybay.

So this morning Tom’s mom left and for the most part Baby Ben has had some nice naps. I SWORE I was gonna nap with him but earlier I just watched him sleep deeply and I just fell in love with him again and ya he’s woken up and just cried and fussed until the next nap but I love him just the same.
Post Script:
It’s now been a week of him taking Zantac- I can’t say its realllllyyyy helped, it’s hard to gauge cause I think he’s come down like 10% in the crying all day sooo its like, it is really the meds or a coincidence? Or is he finally coming out of colic slowly? Or something else??? Not sure but I do recognize there has been a slight difference and I’ll take it!!! Last night his gas, while there was still a lot, seemed to have been less sooo maybe that other stuff is working or maybe he just had less? The battle continues!

Thanks for reading!