Wednesday, May 25, 2011

month four

Dear Chicken,

You turned 4 months old yesterday. Can you believe it? A third of a year? I'm a day late writing this because Daddy and I have been sick sick. We're not sure if you started this tummy bug or if your vomiting on Saturday morning was just a fluke. It's hard to tell with babies. Regardless, you've been in fine spirits (unlike Daddy and me). Daddy got sick first and was feeling better by last night. I was just kind of hanging in there so this month's pictures were taken by Daddy and edited by me (gotta give Daddy props). I like how in this picture you're giving the zebra the "mom arm."

It's been a very interesting month around here. I finally had surgery to remove my gallbladder. The pain I was having here and there since you were 3 weeks old should stop now. Recovery was a bit harder than I expected but was fairly short-lived. One of the worst parts for me, though, was not being able to take care of you properly. I wasn't supposed to lift you up for 2 weeks. TWO WEEKS?! Can you imagine? Well, that lasted maybe 3 or 4 days. Daddy took good care of you (actually, of both of us). But it was hard for me to hear the two of you upstairs, getting ready for bed, chatting while I was stuck sleeping downstairs. I really enjoy bedtime.

The surgery and my subsequent limited nutrition and hydration really impacted my milk supply. It took some effort but we got it going again. I really wanted to quit breastfeeding multiple times so far but we've kept going. It's not that I dislike it; I just don't LOVE it. I love that it's best for you, though. I guess my point there is sometimes you just need to stick it out even if it's hard or not particularly thrilling as long as the benefits outweigh those things. You'll likely be in situations like that more than once in your life.

This month we did a 5 mile walk for the March of Dimes. You rode in the stroller this time and were a champ, napping off and on. Now that you're here, it's harder for me to think of all the people who lost their babies or had to struggle with them being born too early. We're so lucky you came out perfect and fully-cooked. We're so lucky to have you.

We decided to baptize you the weekend before my surgery. It just happened to be Mother's Day. I think that was a perfect time. I made First Communion on Mother's Day 1985 so it seemed like a fun little tradition to start. I was so proud of you for being so good that day. Everyone loved you. It was fun to see strangers after church come up and talk to you, telling you how cute you looked, and calling you by name. We had brunch at home afterwards and it was great to see so many people hold you and talk to you. These people are some of the folks I love most in the world and it makes me happy to see that they love you already.

Even though we baptized you, I want you to know that when it comes to religion I want you to make your own choices. I don't want you to go into it blindly. We'll try to expose you to a lot of different things and then you can decide for yourself. As long as you're a good person, I don't care what religion you are (if any). If you're not a good person? Well, we'll have to have a come-to-Jesus meetin'.

This past weekend you got to meet your new little friend who happens to be the son of one of my friends (and one of Auntie N's best friends). You and he were so cute together. You just stared at each other and smiled. He reached out and touched your foot and then y'all briefly held hands. It was very cute and we, of course, didn't have a camera. It's so fun to think of getting to watch all you babies grow up.

Because I was sick yesterday, your grandmother was nice enough to take you to your doctor's appointment. You're about 14 1/2 pounds and 24 3/4 inches. That's so long! You're still doing great. You sleep and eat well. You're so happy and chatty. You only really cry if you're hungry. You make it so easy for me to tell what's going on with you.

The month started out kind of boring regarding your milestones but you kicked it into high gear over the last week. First, you finally laughed. It was just a "ha ha" and then a short pause to allow me to realize what just happened and then another "ha ha." Daddy missed it--he was downstairs. You've done it again a few times but never while he's here. Although I love being there for these things, you can give Daddy the privilege of witnessing a "first" first sometime. I won't hold it against you. You've also found your feet. You love hanging on to them and sometimes pulling off your socks. Ms. Doris at daycare worries about your cold toes so we had to get some better socks that are harder for you to remove. And, finally, you rolled over! Just once, from back to front (which is allegedly the harder way). I shockingly had the camcorder rolling so we captured both your milestone and my crazily excited reaction.

This month definitely had its ups and downs for me. Hopefully I'm on the road to recovery regarding all these health issues. I just want to be able to enjoy you without random physical pain. The "ups?" Yeah, they're mostly you. Thanks for bringing so much joy into our lives even if it means it makes Mommy's abs hurt.

Monday, May 16, 2011

chicken soup

Ok, so that's not a very reverent or religious title for a post about the baby's baptism. We baptized the baby on Mother's Day. I figured that would be a good day to do it (I made First Communion on Mother's Day 1985) and gave me a reason to have a little party. Considering it was Mother's Day and people may want to celebrate it in other ways, I was very surprised and honored that we had such a big group of our closest friends and family join us at church and for brunch afterwards.

A few notes about the day...
  1. Chicken wore the dress I wore when I was baptized.

  2. Would you like to see pictures of little cjm 34-ish years ago? Me, too. Unfortunately all the pictures from my baptism were destroyed by the photo processing place. Mom was sad/mad until she realized that the photo place had destroyed all of the wedding photos of another customer. Baptism photos didn't seem like quite as big of a deal to lose after hearing that. Maybe we can photoshop my head onto that chicken neck.

  3. Speaking of her neck, how good is it working to hold up her head? And she totally paid attention during the baptism. And surveyed her crowd. So cute.

  4. She also did really well with the water. And didn't do anything embarrassing during church. No diaper blowouts. No tears.

  5. She did take a brief nap during church. You know, a girl has to be perky for her party.

  6. She also wore her first accessories. The bracelet and ring belonged to her Great GREAT grandmother. Two greats, people. Thank goodness she didn't fling any of it off. Who would be able to find that tiny ring?! And her necklace was a gift (from one of her honorary grandmothers) to commemorate the day.

  7. Brunch is my favorite meal to make. The menu included two items I craved during pregnancy--mimosas (yea!) and Paula Deen's hashbrown casserole (YUM).

It was a really lovely way to spend my first Mother's Day. Big thanks to everyone who shared in the day.

Friday, May 13, 2011

thanks, blogger

So why would they delete my cholecystectomy post? It's gone. Not even in draft... That took a lot of effort from my poor little brain cells yesterday, too. Effort I don't think they can repeat. Short story? Surgery went well, recovering, 2 small incisions (one that looks yucky thru my belly button), loopy/sleepy from drugs, sad to not be able to take care of my daughter. Things are going better today. You know, except for my stolen post...

Thursday, May 12, 2011


When I first started working in this field, I had no idea what that word meant when I ran across it in medical histories. You find it a lot. Now I'd like to go back and see how many women had to have their gallbladder removed shortly after a pregnancy. You know, just out of curiosity.

Had it removed on Tuesday morning. Anesthesia is awesome. That was the second time in about a month that I've woken up and thought, "Yea! I'm alive!" Of course, that was after a few seconds of getting my bearings. I had really good medical folks around me. I especially liked the anesthesiologist. She took extra time explaining things and gave me my IV just because she had a little free time. Great placement, almost no bruising. Apparently everything went well, and I hear that my surgeon said I would not have an outtie during the next pregnancy. (Just for the record, I didn't have one during the last pregnancy and no stitches were required to keep it that way.)

So, yeah. Only 2 small incisions--one in my belly button (which looks freaking awful right now) and one around the middle of my abdomen. Very small. I'm glad I read up on how people feel post-surgery. I assumed I'd be sore and in some pain (yes and yes) but I would have been totally thrown by the right shoulder pain. When they pump you full of air so they can see what they're doing, some of it stays in you and travels to your shoulder apparently. It's oddly been one of the worst parts. I'm very grateful that I didn't have nausea or vomiting. I have no idea how someone could throw up feeling this way. It would make me want to cry and then I'd be in pain from surgery, vomiting, and crying. Whew, so glad I dodged that bullet.

This morning I'm feeling a little better. I feel more of the pain when it's getting close to the time I'm supposed to take my meds. And then they make me drowsy so I'm just all kinds of fun to be around right now. The other unexpected part of this? I knew I wouldn't be able to lift the little Chicken or really take care of her like I normally do but goodness. It's hard to not be able to do that. And I'm now very aware at how often she makes me laugh because I have to do what I can to avoid that and the subsequent discomfort.

Well, I think that's it. Just wanted to jot a little down but it may not be that coherent--yea drugs! (Like baby brain wasn't bad enough...) Thanks for your thoughts, prayers, etc.

Monday, May 09, 2011

easter, an excuse for cute outfits

I'm very slow at posting things these days... So, yeah. Easter. We had a jam-packed weekend of festivities and that meant Miss Chicken could pull out her finery. First up? Easter eve. We celebrated with a very nice dinner out with the in-laws. One gratuitous pic sans baby because look! We're out! At a fancy dinner! Second pic I love because she's smiling at me. Third, well, does it make us slightly less white trash because she's holding wine instead of beer?

Then her actual Easter dress. She was pooped before we even got started with the day. I was only pooped after.

And, no. I don't ever hold her when other people are around. :) Last up, her casual outfit and her Easter basket stuffed toys. And just some fun pics. The quilt she's posing with is her new, super cute Easter quilt from The Brother's MIL. She's awesome.

I'll try to get baptism pics up a little more quickly.