Thursday, March 29, 2012

Due Date

So... today is my due date... March 29th. Who would have thought I would still be sitting here wondering when our baby will arrive?  I thought for SURE labour was beginning last night... but they were just irregular contractions. Again.  At this point I just feel like the girl who has cried wolf (labour) far too many times in the last couple of weeks. I basically won't be able to tell people I am in labour now until I am literally ready to push.  Come on little baby, we're waiting for you!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Update on the "big move"

I've been meaning to post pictures of the house and all the little things we're doing to it as we make it home... but I suppose you can add that to the list of things I haven't had the time/energy to do. And probably won't for a while.  But day by day, this place becomes more "ours".   The exciting thing about this house is that it truly is "ours" forever.   I wanted to write about our new home (despite the lack of pictures I have uploaded) because of a conversation I had with Peter just a few short days ago.  I shocked my husband by candidly telling him that I miss Toronto.  And I do.  A lot.  Yes, the girl that pined over this move back "home" for years, misses the city.  But let me clarify...

Yes I miss the city. I miss my friends, I miss our old house, I miss wandering on many of the Toronto streets I have long loved, I miss the restaurants, I miss the shopping, I miss my job,  and some days I just miss the possibilities.  In Toronto I always felt there was an answer to everything if you worked hard enough and kept your eyes open.  And I know the same opportunities are here for me to explore... Toronto was just comfortable to me.

But if you strip all of the superficial stuff away, what I am left with, what we are all left with, is family and loved ones.  And THAT is what brought us here.  A house is not a home. The way you furnish or decorate it doesn't make it a home (not even the new fireplace, book case built ins, and custom curtains I dream of). It's the people in your home and the life you make together there.  We walked through this house on a total Thanksgiving whim. More out of curiosity and long weekend boredom than any true real estate search.  What we found was a house that oozed "family" to us.  Staircases, mouldings, windows, and bedrooms that we instantly, both of us without saying a word to each other, saw our growing family in.  A dining room that I pictured welcoming my children returning from university around. A fireplace that we could hang our family stockings each Christmas. A backyard that we could see our littles ones run in,  and a porch that I could picture drinking wine on as I sat with my husband and watched the river go by.  We saw a house that had a familiar charm and history.  And before we even knew what we were doing, we bought it.

Don't get me wrong, I get carried away when I think about all the possibilities for renos and decorating I could do here. I am addicted to Pinterest and online window shopping.  I love dreaming about all the things  I could make pretty.  But then I sit on that same front porch that made us buy this place with Peter, and I am reminded that we didn't buy this house to kill ourselves with renos and a quick re-sale (like our Toronto home) in a couple of years. That we are not in a rush. We bought this place to grow old together, to give our family a different life, and most importantly to watch our children grow along side our village of loved ones.

So if you hear me saying I miss Toronto... know that it is true.  But also know that I am incredibly happy about this move our little family has made, and the years we have ahead to continue to transform this house into our version of a happy home and our happy life together.

Until then... we are ready for this baby.

No sign of baby

Well, short of castor oil and standing on my head... I've tried it all. Cleaning on my hands and knees, eating very spicy food, sex, massage therapy, aggressive vacuuming, lengthy walks, running in my backyard with Rory, jumping, more cleaning, bath tub shaving cirque de soleil (don't ask), and of course the really lovely membrane sweep offered at my doctor's office at 38 and 39 weeks (worst thing ever). And absolutely NOTHING is making this baby budge.  I am doing all of this while I apparently continue to dilate and have contractions (for two weeks now), and am told at each check up by my doctor "any day". What a BRUTAL tease... I wish I could tell you how many plans I have cancelled or put off because I've thought this kid was coming TODAY.   That's what "any day" means right? It is supposed to mean TODAY!

Anyway, after another long night of what I thought was back labour (that's how things got rolling with Rory), I am accepting that this baby definitely has it's own agenda for birth, and he/she is sticking to it. I will just wait it out from here on in.  I am doing nothing by make my back ache and exhausting myself.  I even went on a 30 minute bike ride yesterday afternoon, much to the shock of most of my family and probably the greater part of the town of Almonte who may have caught a glimpse of it.  Dear God. Enough is enough.

And the odd thing if I really think about it is, as ready as I am to NOT be pregnant... there is a big part of me that is nervous about what is about to happen to our lives.  Is it ok to admit that?  I am nervous about three becoming four and being able to make it great.  I worry about how to do it all, and still be an awesome mom to TWO kids, and make things great for Peter.  I know it's silly... but I find myself doing odd things in the last week or so. Like watching Rory sleep. Or wanting to cuddle with him just a little longer before bed. I think to myself every night "this could be the last time I say good night to Rory that he is a single child".   Silly isn't it.

Anyway, I really do hope the next time you hear from me it will be announcing the birth of our second child. I also really hope the baby pool that Peter's office did is wrong... All of their chosen dates are WELL into April.  God help us all.


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Baby Eviction Notice

Spring is here, the sun is out, the house is unpacked, the nursery is ready, the car seat is ready, my bag is packed, and St. Patrick's Day has come and gone... so where or where is this baby?  

I am SO ready to make this happen.  But this kid clearly is calling their own arrival time... that is for sure.   With Rory there was little of this waiting game.  At 37 weeks we had just gotten the basics together for his arrival. It's a totally different story with this little one. I've been ready for weeks now.  I guess I learned a thing or two the first time around, or just have had more time to nest without a reno ongoing.

Rory is sleeping MUCH better, if you're interested.  The white noise has worked wonders. It was enough to keep me out of his room (read - prevent me from hearing him chatter), and that has resulted in him ending his night-time monologues.  I've been reading a lot more about night talking, and I think maybe that is what SOME of it was. Then... I would go in to 'shush' him and probably actually end up waking him up, prolonging the whole ordeal.  Whatever the case may be, I love our new fan, and Rory also loves his... but we especially love our sleeping and happy toddler.

Rory and I had a great day today! Now that we are getting some sleep and he is happier during the day, combined with the sun being out, I am LOVING all of these moments we're getting together before our world changes.  It's amazing what some sleep can do.    I must say as I round the final corner in this pregnancy... round two is VERY VERY different than round one.  In short, you get zero time to put your feet up. ZERO.  It's less about you. Case in point, today I went for a 30 minute walk, played hockey outside, played "chase" outside,  played soccer outside, bbq'd steak for Peter's dinner, bathed my kid, and chased him in all the moments in between.  Take that 39 weeks pregnant.

Rory is a lot of fun these days. He says new words every day, makes me laugh constantly, and is such a little boy now.  His recent obsession with trucks and trains is pretty awesome. And repetitive.

A few pictures from our day out in the spring sun.  23 degrees if you can believe it.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Back to sleep basics - via mom to mom

An old high school friend dropped in this week for a little visit with her two boys, and we had such a great catch up. Albeit short... and having three kids (and two pregnant bellies) to compete with, I think we managed a nice visit. Lisa is pregnant with her THIRD baby, and is already a mom to two super cute little fellas (Owen 4.5 and Liam 2).  Her calmness is inspiring. My neurosis over being "ready" for two definitely seemed a bit ridiculous after our time together.

Anyway, we obviously got to talking about our current sleeping challenges with Rory, and a few other lovely stages we're hitting as my child approaches the TWO milestone.  I'll be honest, I felt RELIEVED and refreshed with courage about this sleep stuff when she left.  Relieved in the sense that boys definitely are different than little girls at almost every age, and that she went through the exact "stage" we're going through with Rory right now with her boys. And refreshed with courage about Rory's sleep because she reminded me of a few important things that got me thinking.

I've spent a ton of time reading about sleep in the last two years. And fluke or not, I thought we had set Rory up for sleep success early on.  I did and didn't do things purposely to create good sleep routines for all of us...sometimes hard things... and at 21 months I have completely abandoned every single one of them.

My conversation with Lisa reminded me of something important. Sometimes, most of the time, babies and kids are just better left to sort things out on their own. So we're going back to basics. I re-read a sleep book that I used to follow like a text book today.  The book basically sticks to a few key principles -

1.  We are the parents, which means WE are in charge here.
2.  That the golden rule of sleep for babies and kids generally means the LESS parent interference the better.
3.  There are a few important things you can do to help your kid sleep through the night.  (1) Make sure they're tired/have gotten lots of exercise and fresh air during the day, (2) Make sure their room is quiet, (3) have a consistent bed-time routine that relaxes them before bed. (4) Teach/let them learn how to self sooth

In recent weeks, it's number two we're the most guilty of. In an effort to get our child to sleep again, we've being doing it all. I have broken every single rule of "good sleep" out there.  We've being going to Rory multiple times a night,  I have fed him through the night, we have changed the place he was put to bed - so he is waking somewhere different, we've brought him into bed with us, we have gone into his room and slept with him... the list goes on. And on.

So... today I went out and bought two fans. One for our room, and one for Rory's, and we're going back at it the hard way. The hard way, but the only way it's worked for us in the past, and the only way the experts seem to agree it's going to work for us again.  Rory is going to need to figure his sleep schedule out himself, and eventually he WILL do it.  In the meantime, the fans and the white noise will help alleviate some of the anxiety I get when I hear him for hours at night... and hopefully our broken sleep as well.

Wish us luck.

OH! And nursing chair update!!!  As of Friday (cross your fingers) I am going to be the very EXCITED and PROUD new owner of my very own Monte Luca glider.  I got a great tip from my sister in law that Monte often sells their floor models and seconds and was able to get a great deal on one for myself. HOORAY! It should be here by the end of week. Happy nursing days are ahead. I can just feel it. HA.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Nursing my disappointment

I made only a few promises to myself of 'things I would do differently' with our second child. I am too tired to get into the full list, but one of the biggest ones was to better set myself up for nursing success. I was a bit unprepared with Rory... brought on largely by an early delivery, just having moved into our new house, and him being born so small.

Anyway, one of the things I think is essential to nursing success, is a comfortable place to do it. Short of taking our child to the living room multiple times a night, I never had a comfortable chair.  There were many contributing factors to why Rory and I weren't the most successful nursing duo... and a comfortable chair I am counting as one of them.

So... that leads me to my search in this pregnancy for "the" chair. I'll show you the ones I want...

Pottery Barn Kids Comfort Grand Swivel Glider

Or this one... the Monte Luca Glider and Ottoman

I've sat in both of these chairs and believe me when I tell you... they are both SO comfortable. Like chair heaven. Like forget the 9 hours of back labour you just endured, the stitches you were given in places you don't recognize, or the haze that has moved over your brain that won't lift for months and months... because this chair is going to save your life. Yes, they are THAT comfortable.  Almost comfortable enough to make you forget how difficult it can be to have a child attached to your breast for hours a day.

So here's the issue. They are both fucking ridiculously expensive. There I did it. I dropped the f-bomb on my blog for the first time. It's been a long time coming. And it's been that kind of month.

Can we really afford to spend 1000.00 on chair? No. Sadly, we can't.

So... I've been looking for a good alternative. And typical to my desire for instant gratification and to have all my 'to do's' with neat little checks beside them... I ordered a chair and ottoman online that "looked" like it would be comfortable.  Without ever sitting in it. Brilliant.

It arrived today. And after exchanging some words with UPS this afternoon, it actually arrived to MY house.

So, Peter assembled it and invited me to come try it out.  Tears easily welled up in my eyes immediately when I sat in it. I hate it. It's hands down the most uncomfortable chair I've ever sat it.  It will not save my life after back labour. It will not make me forget about stitches or my sore breasts. In fact, it will likely make it all worst. That's how UNCOMFORTABLE this chair is. Why is nothing easy? Or inexpensive?

I am so so so sad to tell you that we packed this baby back into the packaging that took Peter 45 minutes to take off... and it's going back Saturday.

Back to the nursing chair drawing board. 

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Two Epic

Wow, have we had a crazy week or two.  There is absolutely no doubt about it... we have hit the terrible two's in EPIC fashion.  My sweet sweet happy boy, has been nothing short of a total nightmare this last couple of weeks.  Some days it really has been a toss up who has cried harder.

Remember this happy baby?

Well, let me introduce you to my not so happy toddler on the block.

We've so far had four MAJOR tantrums in our house.  The catalyst has been anything from not wanting to wear his mittens while outside, to demanding he get to eat a popsicle for dinner.  If they didn't immediately send me into a panic attack of my own, I would video tape this ridiculousness so if you haven't had children, you can think twice about it. Kidding.  But OH MY GOD.

Rory is definitely going through a major phase of something. He hasn't been sleeping (waking for hours at night, not napping well or for the very first time last week - at all, during the day) and barely eating anything.  Honestly, on Friday I was so beside myself at what was happening with him that I was googling depression in children. Has this move totally ruined my happy child?  Will he ever sleep through the night again?  Will these tantrums ever stop?  Am I possibly going to have a heart attack before I have this baby?

On Friday I actually did things to TRY and make myself go into early labour because I convinced myself it would be easier to have a newborn at home and deal with this (because Peter would be taking time off), than being here alone with Rory. Sad but true.

So... what to do, what to do?  This is VERY much uncharted territory for us.  Rory has NEVER been a difficult baby or child.  But these days, he's writing the book on it.

Peter and I decided to take a major time out this weekend and probably will try to stick to something similar until this new baby arrives. And... knock on wood... so far it has helped. Rory slept through the night last night for the first time in what seems like MONTHS.  Basically, we're trying to limit the stuff I normally schedule into our  lives to the bare minimum, get Rory fresh air and playtime everyday, and selfishly are only doing things that fit into Rory's schedule. Without compromise. We have to get him back to some sort of new normal. Oh... and we've cut all sugar completely out of his diet with the exception of some healthy home-made muffins I am making now.   If the last 24 hours counts, it just might be helping.

I am also going to read this book. Happiest Toddler on the Block, which is basically the sequel to Dr. Karp's Happiest Baby on the Block.

On Friday I took Rory to Fulton's Sugar Shack and pulled him in a sleigh down one of the trails until I realized we were pretty far out into the bush on an un-groomed trail alone for 36 weeks pregnant. (see above where I tell you I did things to cause labour). With that said, the pancakes were super yummy... and since we were pretty much the only people there, Rory got a lot of one on one attention from the staff.

Who... also thought I was insane. And considering how little sleep I've had lately, that isn't far from the truth.