Saturday, June 18, 2011

Dear Baby . Your Daddy

NOTE: I wrote this around 37 weeks of pregnancy. I never posted it, but I think now's the perfect time to do so -- on our 6 year anniversary. 

Dear Jenaleigh,

Your mommy and daddy love each other. We are seriously head over heels. It's important for you to know this, because it's part of God's plan for marriage! We want you to see how great being married can be. We'll try not to be too mushy around you, but expect to see some cuddling, hugging, and a little kissing going on every once in a while!

Do you want to know why I love your daddy? Well, there are lots of reasons, so I thought I'd make one of my famous lists (keep in mind some of these on the list are more important than others!)
  • He makes me laugh. Not just little giggles, but he knows how to get me rolling when he wants to!
  • He can cook. (Two words for you -- Homemade. Pasta.)
  • He puts others before himself. You'll find this one out quickly. When I was in the hospital for 3 weeks he sacrificed so much -- sleeping on a yucky pull out, using scratchy hospital towels (he wanted me to have the good ones he brought from home), eating boring meals, and answering phone call after phone call from people who wanted to know how I was doing (even though after the first day nothing was going on!) Even now that we're at home, he's doing the chores, working full time, cooking when he needs to, and waiting on my every need. 
  • He's a great musician. This is what first attracted me to him! He can sure break out some improv on the trumpet and his sweet voice combined with guitar playing makes me melt! I'm sure he'll sing you tons of lullabies!
  • He is an idea man. He comes up with so many creative ideas! So, when you see that look in his eyes, you better just sit back and listen to the stream of thoughts that are about to come.
  • He feeds the dogs every single day. He's been doing that since we moved here to Hardin. It's not the most fun task to go outside in the morning (especially when it was freezing) and give the dogs food and water, but he does it (without complaining, I might add!)
  • He loves you. You should see his eyes when he starts talking about you! Or that sweet smile of excitement he gets when he puts his hand on my belly and feels you movin' and groovin' in there!
  • He's not afraid of the truth. It can be scary to stand up for what's right and to proclaim God's Word day in and day out. But, your daddy does it!
  • He wants to go to Heaven and wants to take you and me with him.
Those are just a few reasons why I love your Daddy. There are SOOO many more, which in time, you'll come to see and understand. I know you'll love him just as much as I do!


I Better Think Twice...

I better think twice before I speak... Wasn't it yesterday that I was saying how I actually missed holding her throughout the night? Well, someone must have heard me say that, because Critter was up much of the night. We gave her a suppository before bed, because she was still constipated. I thought that she would sleep soundly after catching some relief, but alas, no, she squirmed and cooed and grunted every time I put her down. She got about 2 hours total of sound sleep, which she's making up for right now on my chest.

Poor Critter. I really want to get this reflux under control. AND FAST!

Friday, June 17, 2011

A Numbers Game

5. Five weeks ago, our lives forever changed. Sure, people told me that it would. Sure, people said that our hearts would explode with love. But, I just didn't "get it" until it happened. My love for her continues to multiply daily, if that's possible. I'm so thankful that God gave her to us and I'm looking forward to every day that we have together!

8 lbs 2 oz. This was Critter's weight on Monday. What a victory! And I really can tell that she's gained ... she feels so heavy and she's finally starting to fit into her 0-3 month old clothes. Does this mean she's no longer a newborn? Sadness! Slow down, time!

7-9 x's. 12 oz. The number of times a day I pump and the amount I get daily. I promised that I'd do a post on the feeding situation, but I don't have the motivation to do it right now. She's getting about half of her nutrition from breastmilk and half from formula. I'm taking Fenugreek to try to boost my supply with a goal of her getting off formula ASAP.

$26. The cost of  1 can of Alimentum, the formula we're supplementing her with. The doctor seems to think she's got a milk protein sensitivity, so that means I've cut out all dairy products from my diet (butter, milk, cream, etc..) and she's got to be on this fancy formula. Have we noticed an improvement in her reflux and constipation? Not really. But it can take up to two weeks, so we're hoping that it will get better soon!

2-3. She'll sleep 2-3 hours straight at a time, at night in the bassinet, however many times those slumbers are full of wiggles, cries, and grunts, as the reflux and constipation take their toll. {Which means I sleep with my hand on her many times for comfort -- and NO, I will not let her cry it out right now. First of all, that is NOT recommended for newborns, and secondly, she's in pain due to her reflux; what type of bad mommy would I be to let my little girl HURT and then not comfort her? So, please, all you who mean well, please stop telling me I'm spoiling her! Thanks! ;-) } So, Daniel and I have modified the "shifts". We're no longer having to stay up with her in the nursery, I get up to feed her, pump, and then rock her back to sleep for another two hours. It usually goes something like this:
9:30 -- Asleep in bassinet
11:30 -- Feeding time! After she eats, I pump while she's in her Rock 'N Play. I then pick her up to rock her to sleep if she's awake, and then it's back to bed...
12:30 -- Asleep in bassinet
3:00 -- Feeding time!
4:00 -- Asleep in bassinet (Daddy's shift starts...)

I'm so thankful that the sleep situation has gotten better. And, I hate to admit it, but I really miss all the snuggle time we had when I was staying up with her. So, I'm making up for it right now... she's on my chest snoring.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Where to Begin?

I'm not sure where to even begin! First of all, we're making progress with sleep (although it hasn't been easy). Last night Jenaleigh slept from 11:15-1:30 in the pack 'n play in our room (although the last hour of that sleep I had to keep my hand on her belly to keep her from crying) and then again from 2:30-4:00 (again, sleeping with my hand on her stomach.) It's not a ton of sleep, but it's better than none! I'm so proud of my little Critter!

Secondly, we've hit some breastfeeding road bumps! I plan on doing a post dedicated entirely to this, but in a brief: we had horrible pain, followed by thrush, followed by pumping to heal, which led to a decision to keep pumping and give breastfeeding an indefinite break.

Thirdly, it looks like we've got a reflux baby on our hands. Jenaleigh has started spitting up really bad (including an hour after almost every feeding). In addition to that, she has other symptoms such as: sudden crying (this is new to this week -- she's started having outbursts of crying where you can tell she's in real pain), arching neck/back during and after feedings, poor sleeping, waking herself up often, choking/gagging sounds, frequent hiccups, etc...

The doc prescribed Zantac, so she started that... I've heard that it isn't always very effective, so hopefully if it doesn't help, the doc will prescribe prevacid or nexium or something a little stronger...

The doctor also said if it hasn't gotten better by Monday then I'd have to cut all dairy products out of my diet and start purchasing a formula that doesn't have the milk protein in it (which happens to be $25 for a 96 oz can! YIKES!) for supplementation. I'll do whatever it takes to have a healthy happy baby!

And, lastly, we go in Monday for a weight check, so think "big numbers" for us! She'll be exactly one month old. Time is flying by! I'm learning more and more to treasure the time I have with her as a little bitty baby. I know someday she won't want to cuddle and snuggle, so I better get it all in while I can! (Wow, this makes me cry just thinking about it!)

Sunday, June 5, 2011

A Breakthrough (Sort of...)

Jenaleigh's napping on her own (yes, without being held!). However, it's only during the day time in her rock 'n play, which I'm not 100% comfortable about leaving her in unsupervised (ie. when I'm sleeping). So, for now, her daytime naps will afford me some time to clean (both the house and my self!) At least we're making some progress! Now, if we could only get her to sleep at night in either her pack 'n play or crib -- then, we'd be GOLDEN!

She changes so much every single day! For example, for the first two weeks of her life she loved laying on her tummy on my chest. Now, she'll do that about 50% of the time I'm holding her, but she prefers positions where she can look into my eyes if she wakes. Also, we can tell she's hit a growth spurt (not only by the increased feedings, but also because she feels heavier)!

In her Rock 'N Play! 
I'll leave you with possibly the cutest picture ever taken...

Thursday, June 2, 2011


One of the ways I stay awake during my shift with baby is to eat. Keep in mind she's laying on my chest. Guess where the crumbs go? Yes, her hair...