Archive for June, 2009

Mommy body

I was aware that my body would not magically regain its pre-pregnancy shape after I gave birth, despite me wishing it to.  However,  I was not prepared for how drastically different my body would be.  It is two months later and I still have roughly 15 lbs of my pregnancy weight to lose (I gained 45).  I am sick to death of all those women in the mommy forums saying how they gained only 10 lbs during pregnancy and are now wearing their old bikinis from college because breast feeding helped them lose so much weight!  Are you kidding me with this?  I know for some women that this is probably true, but there seems to be an inordinate number of them in those chat rooms.  All I can think is that someone is lying….hmmmm…..

As for me, I refuse to lie about pregnancy, birth or motherhood.  I felt duped by the cult of misinformation surrounding those three topics and I would like my friends and family to be more well-informed than I.  So here’s the low down: I swelled up everywhere.  I gained water weight at such an alarming rate that  I know have stretch marks all over my body, not just my tummy.  My legs, arms, hips, and butt swelled so fast that I now have reminders of that lovely, bloated time in my pregnancy.  And while the weight is coming off (I have ankles again, thank God!), the stretch marks remain.

I’m also not going to pretend that things are in the places they were before.  My breasts are larger than ever and now that I’m breast feeding they are beginning to feel the effects of gravity.  It makes me sad to see my absolute need for a bra.  It also solidifies my place among mothers.  My hips also scream motherhood, as they were once considered curvaceous and now may just be called…wide!  I do realize that a baby made its way out through them, and yes, it is probably a blessing that God endowed me with such motherly proportions, yet I still sigh when I see the growing distance between my waist and my ever widening hips.  Once upon a time, my figure was described as “hourglass”, and these days I am beginning to look like an exact replica of one (not the slender, Day’s of our lives ones, but the bulbous ones that sit on chic mantle pieces).

To top it all off I am in the middle of the “wedding years”, in which nearly all of my friends, cousins, college roommates, co-workers, etc are getting married.  On top of these are the endless bridal showers, bachelorette parties, engagement parties, not to mention the usual spring/summer events of graduations and parental celebrations. The problem with all of this is that my old pre-pregnancy clothes don’t fit yet and I refuse to wear my maternity dresses any longer, so I’m being forced to purchase nearly an entirely new wardrobe of event attire.  To add insult to injury, my hourglass figure now makes this even more difficult than it was before.  Plus I have to consider any breast feeding that may need to happen.  So all of my dressy clothes have to be somewhat stretchy.  Ugh! Not easy to find


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Gummed Up

As if the life of a two month old was not frustrating enough, C seems to be teething?!?!  He had been fussy for about a week before I even thought to look in his mouth.  I mean, he’s two months old and far too young for teeth to be debuting.  Or so I thought.  Yet, there on his gums, as if to spite me, were two very red, very angry looking tooth buds.  Poor baby!  Once this realization dawned, his Nana ran out immediately to get him some baby Orajel, hoping that at last we had found the solution to his fussy behavior.  How upset she was when she returned from the store with only the extra diapers she had bought on a whim and none of the necessities she had gone in search of.  Back to the store, this time with C’s auntie in tow, just to make sure Nana returned with ALL her purchases.

At last Nana returns and we look at the instructions for the baby Orajel.  It seems pretty straightforward…except it does not have any directions for two month olds!  “Under fourth months ask physician for instructions”  What?!?  It’s Saturday!  I may as well not have a physician with all the luck I would have tracking one down on a weekend.  Now what? Do I risk it and just put a small amount on his gums without the recommended referral?  Or do I try to find someone to direct me?

Since I am a first time mom, and thus obliged to be nervous, I call my pediatrician’s office.  I remember her mentioning something about a nurses’ hot-line.  Ok, so I call.  Yes, the office is closed. Yes, I know no one is there to answer my call.  No, this is not an emergency.  No, I don’t want to leave a message, I want an answer now!  Oh wait! I’m out of options!  Go back, go back!….But no, no reset button.

OK…maybe the almighty Internet can help me.  “Nurses free hot-line”  and Google! Nearly all the results are Canadian!  Damn Canucks and their free socialized medicine.  Thoughts race through my mind: Should I try to call one of the numbers anyways? Will I have to prove I’m Canadian? Should I look up a fake address to give them?  Will they now I’m calling from the US?  How long would it take just to fly to Vancouver?  Why oh why was I born in America? I would have gladly traded my allegiance at that moment if it would just stop my baby from crying.  Since citizenship changes take more than mere minutes, I’ll try something else.  I’ll Google my pediatrician.  Hey! She has a website!  Hurrah!  Ok, background info…oh look, she has kids too….office hours….FAQs, perfect! If I have a question when the office is closed, call and select the first emergency option. Huh?

I don’t know about you, but I’m hesitant to label things an emergency.  Teething, while painful for both baby and parent, does not seem to qualify as an emergency.  Well, hell! I’ll just call and do as directed…..miracle of miracles! The nurses hot-line is connected!  YES! Finally some medical advice.  The nurse seems very surprised that my two month old is teething.  I want to scream.  But I don’t.  OK, yes, he’s young, I get it.  What about the orajel? Let’s just get down to it!  OH, don’t use the orajel.  awesome…..Use baby Tylenol.  Which is at home, and not at Nana’s house.  ARGH!!!!  Is this yet one more thing for the already over-full diaper bag?  Should I just get a diaper suitcase?

Finally the voice of reason speaks up, Papa says just use the orajel.  Fine, I will go against the nurse’s advice.  And low and behold, it worked.  Baby stopped crying, mommy took a much needed nap, and days later he lives (despite the damn nurse’s advice).

To round out this story, we went to the pediatrician’s for his two month checkup and I proudly informed her I had diagnosed C as teething.  Imagine her surprise that a two month old would be teething.  Imagine my surprise when she informed me that it wasn’t actually the teeth that were causing the problem.  No, it was only his tooth buds, the teeth are not ready to come out yet…dear Lord, help me!

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2 months today

Well, my son (C) hit the two month mark today!  Hurrah! I managed not to kill him.  What a relief!

I thought perhaps I would start chronicling motherhood, posting about things other parents may be going through, went through, etc.  Perhaps it will become a place to gather or give advice; a place to commiserate or complain; a place for common joys and sorrows.  Perhaps it will merely be a way for me to chronicle the life of my first born and my own personal journey in motherhood.

Without going into the details of the first two months of life, I’ll just begin with his two month checkup.  Little  C was born 6 lb 12 oz and left the hospital at 6 lb 6 oz.  As of today he weighed in at an even 11 lb!  I can’t believe that he’s put on nearly 5 lbs in two months.  If that were not amazing enough, he’s gone from his birth length of 19 inches to just over 23!  Unbelievable.  He’s quickly out growing all of his 3 month footie pajamas, so I had an inkling that he was much longer than I realized.  But I had no idea he’d be nearly two feet long! And as excited as I am that he is healthy and growing, I can see the future laid out in front of me as he continues to stretch out at an alarming rate.  I can see shoes and pants discarded after mere months of wear, fridges emptied in a single day, mattresses growing longer and longer.  I’ll try not to skip too far ahead.  Instead, I’ll just begin to put away his 3 month clothes one at a time, but not until he’s stretched them as far as possible.  Perhaps the strength  of the fabric will keep his little legs in check for just a bit longer.

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