Monday, March 31, 2008

PCOS rant

For many years I have supposedly had "Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome". Basically it is a hormonal imbalance that causes irregular periods/ovulation, increased weight, difficulty losing weight, increased facial hair, and a few other weird things. I have been unwilling to admit that this is really my problem. I worked very hard to lose 50 pounds for 2 years in weight watchers, thus telling myself that the PCOS was not an issue. I got my periods back with the weight loss, so then I attributed the irregular menstruation to the fact I had allowed myself to pack on so much weight. I then became pregnant, by some miracle. So I figured the PCOS had disappeared or had never existed. Then I was diagnosed with low progesterone during the pregnancy and risked miscarriage. Darn! I thought I had escaped the PCOS stuff. I never thought about the breastfeeding part. I figured it wouldn't happen to me, I had heard rumors in the medical community that women with PCOS had trouble breastfeeding, but to me? Never. Then Will came. I am so frustrated that I can't keep up with his demand. I feel like a failure. And the half formula, half breastfeeding thing is so annoying! I have all the hassles of bottles and formula mixing and the hassle of breastmilk leaking, sore boobs, etc. I have tried fenugreek and that helps a little, but I must say that when the La Leche League says that PCOS women may have to supplement with formula you know it is very serious and real. ( A lot of women call them the Nipple Nazi's because they are so against any bottle feeding) It is hard as a woman to admit that you can't easily get pregnant, you can't deliver naturally, and then after those hurdles you can't even breastfeed properly! I have been able to overcome so many problems in my life that it really frustrates me when I can't. I guess I just need to be happy that I live in the age of formula and Will is still getting a decent amount of breastmilk at each feeding. Breastfeeding is so much easier, the 25 seconds to heat the bottle at 3 am is the longest 25 seconds of your life.

And then there were two......

Jason wanted a artistic picture of Will laying on a branch. I found it quite frightening.

Today was my first day of just William and myself by ourselves. It went fine, although the baby tub hasn't been emptied yet and the dishes are still in the sink. However, interestingly, I am finding the time to post about the fact this hasn't been done... Hmm. He is sleeping at the moment and I was trying to fill out some of his baby book. We walked to the post office and Starbucks this morning after his bath. It was drizzling when I got outside but since I had already hauled all the stuff down the stairs I figured I might as well cover the baby and get a little wet. He has been extremely gassy lately and I am not sure if it is his formula, my milk, or the fact that he gulps tons of air while he eats. I burp him all the time and this always results in very manly, full sized burps so I feel like I am getting much of the air he swallows back out. Who knows. Hopefully, as he grows, he will stop gulping so much. This morning at 9am I think we may have had an actual smile. I had just fed him, and burped him, and he looked up directly at me and smiled. It was lovely. All the fatigue was suddenly very worth it. I will try and get a picture as soon as I can capture one.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Cherry Blossom Festival

Jefferson Memorial across the tidal basin
Washington Monument
Molly with Washington Monument and Cherry Blossoms
Will and Molly ride the metro
Will enjoys a burp outside the Federal Mint
New Family
A young american looks toward the future in DC

Today we braved the crowds and went to the peak day of the cherry blossoms. There are over 2,000 cherry trees around the Tidal Basin. They were very pretty, but I am not sure I will go on the peak weekend next year. Will did very well though and got lots of compliments.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

3 Weeks

Will turned 3 weeks old yesterday. It seems like he has been here longer than that already. (In a good way) He is thriving, we weighed him today and he is now 8 lbs, 15oz. We took Aunt Molly to her favorite restaraunt, Cracker Barrel, today. For those of you who are reading from the Northwest, you may not know what this is. It is all southern, all the time. Catfish, grits, collard greens, fried okra, all in all a southern feast. Half of the place is a store specializing in novelties such as John Deere toothpick holders and hokey ceramic things such as hands praying that glow. They also carry a large assortment of musical, animated animals. Seniors love this place. Florida is full of them. Molly and I have taken a few roadtrips over the years and always stopped at one daily. Where else can you find Grand Ole Opry Cd's? Anyway, Will enjoyed a trip there today, and let me eat for about 5 minutes before crying. He got lots of attention from people. He has been very gassy tonight and quite fussy, so it may be a long night. But it will also be his first, so I consider myself very lucky.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Stupid Cat.....Cute Baby

I realized late last night that the collar the vet had placed on Maggie wasn't preventing her from messing with her stitches. I realized that she has been licking them and they now looked infected at the bottom section. Great. So this morning Jason had to take her back to the vet. They put a larger, rigid collar on her and now she is quite comical as she does not realize that she needs more clearance around her head. The collar is clear plastic so she doesn't seem to see that the collar is causing her not to be able to squeeze through her normal spaces. We now have to wash her sutures daily, give her oral antibiotics, and apply antibiotic ointment. Arrgh. Will however is doing well. He received a baby shower in a box today from our best friends in Florida, Dave and Laura. They will always be considered his surrogate aunt and uncle, and if we could live next to anyone the rest of our lives, it would be them. Although we would all get nothing done except play round after round of scrabble and rummikub. Laura sent me an adorable memory book, and many other goodies. So now I have no excuse not to make Will a great album. Molly and I walked to Whole Foods and got milk today and went to lunch at the diner. We also stopped at Starbucks and I tried to nurse in public with a non nursing bra. Not easy. So when we got home I did laundry. Jason spent this evening exercising the baby, I think he wants him to be sitting by the end of the month. It is quite funny to see him making the baby practice all kinds of motions. Tonight he did various swim strokes,raking leaves, and drying dishes. Preparing him for his future chores I guess. Molly and I went to Nordstrom Rack tonight and found a few more sleepers for Will since he still doesn't fit in most clothes. I am going to weigh him this week though so we hope he won't be in newborn much longer.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Sunday, March 23, 2008

You say goodbye, I say hello....

Yesterday was a sad day here. Grandma left. We took my Mom to the airport last night, and we were very sad to see her go. Will slept 5 hours last night though, so that was nice. This morning we returned to the airport and picked up Aunt Molly. She has been getting acquainted with the baby and familiar with all that parenthood entails. I think she will wait awhile to join the club. Will held his head up a lot today. Jason has been joking that he will have the baby holding his own bottle by 3 weeks and lo and behold- he did it! Granted it was almost empty, but still very impressive for 2.5 weeks. We also let Maggie out today to roam a bit and she seemed much happier. Her stitches come out friday. Happy Easter to everyone!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Tales from the boob

Will is overstimulated by his Stim-mobile
Will sleeping in his actual crib with Auntie Bridget's blanket.

Last night I realized why so many women stop breastfeeding. It was 2:30, Will had gone to sleep for the night at midnight. He woke up hungry and yet wouldn't latch once again. For about 15 min we struggled together and then he finally latched for 5 minutes. Then refused to latch again for an additional 10. I never did get him to feed well. I finally handed him over to Jason who gave him his supplement bottle and put him back to sleep. When he does this I completely understand how women that are not totally gung-ho on nursing end up stopping. Thankfully the sun rose again and today we are back to normal.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The most exciting and exhausting 2 weeks of my life.

Will is officially 2 weeks old today. He went in for his 2 week check and had gained 15 ounces since last Thursday!! Amazing what supplementing with a little formula can do. I am still disappointed that I am unable to give him all the milk he needs but I guess it has to do with the same hormonal stuff that made me take 6 years to get pregnant. He is doing great though at going back and forth from breast to bottle. I am pumping as well, so hopefully all my hard work will pay off. He now has a clogged tear duct so is by far less adorable with a goopey eye. My mom is leaving on Saturday and I fear what I will do after that. Thankfully, Molly arrives on Sunday morning, so I won't have to go it alone for another week. I went to the Dr today and he said I am healing well. He gave me some medication to boost my milk, but after reading some of the side effects, I am not sure I want to take it. I left the baby with my mom while Jason and I went to the OB and it seemed very strange not to have him with us. It's amazing how quickly it becomes normal to have him around. I will post some new pictures tomorrow.

Monday, March 17, 2008

What costs 3,000 bucks and takes 4.5 hours?

Removing a piece of thread from a cats digestive tract. While we were at the hospital Maggie got a hold of a spool of thread and ate approximately 8 feet of it. When we arrived home the thread was cut and the spool was on the floor. Soon we figured out what had happened because she started to pass it, all in one long string. We kept cutting it off and she kept putting more out. We cut off about 4 feet. She then proceeded to get sicker and sicker, vomiting, not eating or drinking and looking pretty rough. We took her to the vet and he found that it was actually tied around her tongue! He recommended surgery to remove the rest. He gave us a quote of 1,200 dollars. Do we have 1200 dollars you ask? No. Especially right now. But after 4.5 hours of surgery and 6 inches of her small intestine being removed, one night of intensive care and 2 days in the vet hospital, she is home and frisky as ever. The bill swelled to almost 3 thousand because of all the complications. She better live now darn it! I told her she can never have a potty accident again and she has to let Will carry her around and dress her in costumes when he grows up. She looks quite pitiful though in her collar and with a huge line of stitches up her belly. This month has to be one of the roughest in my life.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Whole Story (for those who would like to know)

So, I am ready to write, and I have a few moments between feeds. Tuesday the 3rd we arrived at the hospital at 4:30pm. They brought us to a room, hooked me up and a Dr came in to apply the cervidil. Within an hour I started having mild contractions, however not long after the baby started having heart decels. At first I was thinking, maybe it's picking up my pulse, but it was definitely the babies. It went down to the 90's and low 100's from the 140's. Quite scary. So they came in and pulled the cervidil. The contractions slowed and his heart rate returned to normal. I slept a little and one of the Dr.s came in to say that they were moving me to labor and delivery at 5 am to start the pitocin, etc. Wednesday morning at 5 they started that and I started having mild contractions immediately. At 8am they broke my water and I spent the next few hours sitting in a constantly filling puddle. The contractions were still manageable, but they kept turning up the pitocin so they were definitely getting harder to deal with. The Dr on call switched at noon, so Dr Glass came in and checked me and said I was 4cm, 90%, and the baby was still up at -2. I asked for the epidural at about 3pm. That was the greatest thing I have ever had in my life. It hurt putting it in, but it was SOOOOO worth it. It was like laboring on a beach, not a care in the world! I stayed sitting up and tried to maintain positions that would not hinder the labor. At 5, Dr Glass was going off so she checked before she left and said I was now at 6-7, so I felt very encouraged. She figured the baby would be born in the next couple of hours. THEN, Dr Goodman came in, very gruff, yelling at nurses at the station, and basically immediately making me fear him. He checked me and said that Dr Glass was cracked. He said I was "maybe a 5" and that the baby was still too high. The contractions were still too far apart for him and I was on the max of pitocin. He said he would give me another hour and then check again, but if I was no different then we would have to think of other options! EEEK! So after that stress I was no different in on hour. He came in, checked and said it was now a c- section. I asked him if I could labor a little longer , and he said and I Quote, " Listen, you can labor till the cows come home, but your not gonna get this baby out." So that was that. I was scared to say anything else and my options were gone. I also was worried about subjecting the baby to many more hours of very strong contractions. We went to the OR, got prepped, and then they got me on the table. They draped, topped off the epidural, and let Jason in. I lay there thinking, "Ok, I hate this, but soon I will have my baby." They started cutting and in a few minutes I heard a good strong cry. They took him over to the table and started drying him. I couldn't see him, but I could hear them working with him. They all laughed because he was peeing everywhere. Then the pediatrician called Jason over quietly. I heard Neonatologist. Then they quickly brought him over and kind of showed him to me. I couldn't really get a good look at him. They said he had an abdominal mass and need to be checked by the neonatologist right away. I sent Jason with him and they left. Then Dr Goodman, while sewing me up started to question me about my ultrasounds and why they hadn't seen the mass. As if I knew! I then became very nauseated and threw up in my hair while laying down. Very tricky. In recovery they brought the baby back so I could see it and they told me he would need to be in the NICU over night for observation and tests. I tried to feed him in recovery and attempted to grasp all that was happening. Jason stayed with me and they took the baby after about 40min. Jason went in to the NICU over night to check on him, and let me know how he was doing. The next morning I was told that he would have an ultrasound at 10am. At 9 am I wanted to get up and see him, but I still had a foley in and IV's. The next Dr on call came in then, a Dr Ashkin. I was crying, which I considered perfectly acceptable considering the circumstances. He questioned me as to why I was crying, if I had a history of depression. I explained that I think it was perfectly natural to be upset when you can't see your baby and there is a medical issue. He says, "Well, okay but if this doesn't clear up in week, call the office and we will start you on something" Like I had a rash or something!!! So irritating. I knew that I would be fine once I was with the baby. And for the most part I have been. More Later.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

One Week

As you can see Will is sleeping. This is basically all he does. He eats, then burps, then sleeps. In two hours I force him to wake up by undressing him, he latches on for 1 minute, and then falls asleep again. This is why I am having a lot of problems getting good milk production going. He is such a good baby, but seems to be willing to happily starve to death. He was down to 7 pounds 5 oz on Monday, he left the hospital at 7,6. Otherwise, he is doing very well. He woke up last night for about 1 hour and looked around a lot. We decided he looks kimd of like Frank Sinatra with his eyes open. Jason's brother Jeremy came to see William, so that was nice. He had facinating tales of his recent trip. I stupidly went out on tuesday night to dinner, and was so exhausted afterward that I was in tears. I really need to protect myself and realize that I did just have a baby and major surgery. Today I am staying home and resting as much as possible. I have to go out to get my staples removed at 2 but I will force myself to take a nap after. Jason is doing such a great job as a dad. He is holding him all the time, when my Mom isn't. I don't fear Will getting a flat spot on his head, because he is never laying on it! My Mom is having a great time being a grandma. She is singing all the old songs from when I was little, even though some are slightly non-PC nowadays. Songs such as "Mammys Little Baby" seem slightly wrong in today's society, but he may not remember them, so I let her do it. All in all, I have never had such highs and lows in one week. But all the pain, and emotional turmoil is completely worth it when you see him grin in his sleep or he sighs his sweet little sighs after a good burp.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

The first day at home.....

The first day at home has been filled with feeding, sleeping, and changing diapers, as all first days should be. He is a perfect little miracle and we are falling madly in love with him. The cousins came over and Alessandra was thrilled with this new guy. Gabriella was some what interested, but basically more interested in learning to walk. Solon and Andrea brought lunch which was lovely. They were impressed with the newest little Simmons. Jason's brother is coming tomorrow so that will be great to have another visitor. My mom got in last night and I got 2 naps today of about an hour and a half, so that felt great! I am still very sore, but it helps to have something else to focus on. I will write up the story tomorrow hopefully of the birth, though as each day goes, it seems less traumatic.

Jason is adjusting
perfectly to fatherhood.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

William Olen Simmons is in the building!

I can't even begin to explain all the ups and downs of the last 5 days. But, William is here, healthy, and sleeping at the moment. I will post pictures now and the story tomorrow. I ended up with a c-section and Will was born with a small mass (you can see it in the scale picture) so I am very sore and we are both very tired. But enjoy seeing our little yellow tinged bundle of joy.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

"The Time Has Come!" the Walrus said.....

We are headed out right now for the induction. We are both nervous and excited. I had one last lovely lunch out at Red Lobster and now am on clear liquids till the delivery. Wish us luck and we will post pictures as soon as we get back home!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

False Alarm

This morning, very early (1 am ) I had some very sharp pain on the front wall of my belly. I happen to know that is where my placenta is. The baby wasn't really moving much last night, but I didn't really worry too much. The pain went away, then at 5 am I woke up and tried to get the baby to respond to anything, and he wouldn't. He literally felt limp in there. It scared me to death and, of course is even scarier at 5am. I drank some OJ and got 4 little movements in 1/2 an hour. That was not enough for me. I didn't feel like I should call the Dr yet, since technically he did move, so at 9 I called the Dr and she asked that I come in to the hospital to check everything again. I was more than willing to do that. So Jason and I got up, grabbed the bags and went to the hospital. I am so happy that it ended up being a dry run because we had the camera bag, but no camera! And I forgot my pillows and my medications. Next time we will be more prepared. Everything was fine of course, just my paranoia. I know to much about what can go wrong. I wish I could just forget all the awful things I know and go into this blindly. Ignorance is bliss. So now we are back on for Tuesday at 4:30pm. By wednesday night we should have a baby. I can't wait till he is out and I can SEE that he is breathing and FEEL his pulse. I think my insurance company will be much happier too!