Monday, September 29, 2008
Our Kryptonian daughter is rendered powerless by the green glowing rock attached to her back. If not for this rock, she'd be zooming around the house.
I'm sure you can come up with a better caption for these pictures. If so, please do share.
K has been on a bili blanket for the last four days (24 hours a day) to help her body break down bilirubin so that her little liver doesn't have to do all the work. She's doing a lot better, I think her jaundice is gone. In a sense, it's a shame that that means the bili blanket will likely be gone today as well. No more night-light.
The delivery didn't go like I'd expected, and every day I'm reminded of what I COULD be doing if it had been natural, but can't do because of the surgery. What kills most is not being able to pick up my toddler when she falls down.
Not many people know me here, most that do didn't know me before, so there's very little celebration or "OOOH, can I see?!?" This may seem like a small thing, but for some reason at 4 am when I'm trying to fall asleep, it draws tears.
My devos yesterday helped me to see some good in the alone-ness, the helplessness. I was reminded that these times can cause me to cling to God, as there's little other support for me. So I did that, for the first time in a long time, and it was SOOOO good. Being spiritually fed for me usually resembles my infant when she tries to nurse. I root around frantically, and then after 10 seconds of frantic searching, give up as "I've done everything I could and I got nothing." Watching K reminded me -- God's there with what we need. He wants to feed me, but I'm not willing to latch. I just have to sit in his arms and be still, he'll help me find what I need, and he'll help me "latch on." Trying to get it myself just doesn't work. Thankfully, K is learning that lesson quickly when it comes to her food. I learn a little slower.
Despite the new outlook, I'm still sad. I think I'd have out-right post partum depression if my mom were not here to help out, cheer me on, and celebrate K (and E)'s little moments with me, reminding me of the precious now. K is sleeping remarkably well for a 9-day-old, which is also helping, I think.
That's the raw me. I do cherish my little ones. The next posts will be about them. I just needed to be "real" for a second.
Thursday, September 25, 2008
My sister-in-law's experience, on the other side of the world, was exactly what I pictured MY birth experience to be when I was admitted on Saturday early morning, as far as length, ease of delivery, natural birth, etc. The last time I was in labor I had a relatively easy time of it. Things didn't get painful until I was in transition. This is, it appears, just how her labor went. I was a little jealous to hear about THAT part of her experience, as I remembered just how wonderful and magical it was to be able to hold little E after she was born, and how my body worked miracles over the next week reparing itself while sustaining me with happy endorphins and adreniline and mommy-hormones. My birth experience this time robbed me of so much that she got to feel. I'm still hurting a little (emotionally as well as physically) from the experience.
Then again, I wouldn't want their experience. They delivered in a foreign hospital where they didn't speak the language. Things were strange, things could not be explained because of language barriers, and customs were different. My brother barely got to meet his new son in the first 24 hours of his son's life. Culturally, it was very hard on them. I am so very grateful that things went well for them otherwise and so very excited to see my beautiful new nephew! Welcome to the world, little tyke!
Monday, September 22, 2008
K in L's arms for the first time.
I hate c-sections.
Kimia followed orders, I will be in the hospital watchin the Heroes season premier tonight.
Also, to answer questions: her middle name is Esther. She was 19 inches long.
Sunday, September 21, 2008
She was 6 lbs 12 oz, just under 38 weeks, Apgars = 6 then 8 (then eventually 10). Not bad given all she'd gone through! She's eating well.
K--(prounouced KEE-me-ya) is Lingala (African trade language) for "Peace." Our hope for our daughter is that she know and display the peace that comes from above.
Pictures to come.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Here are some pics for photo-hungry friends.
At the REALLY COOL sculpture garden/nature preserve in town. This place quickly has become my favorite hang out spot. I have a "member plus one" membership, so if you're in town and want to come with me, let me know!
E shops at the Children's Museum.
E works at a "construction site" in the museum.
S & E pick raspberries. OR, to be more accurate, S picks raspberries, E eats raspberries. (Division of labor is important.) This is our back yard.
This is in our living room, not around town, I know. But this is me, FULL TERM!!! 37 weeks! WAHOO!! Come on baby, come!
Saturday, September 06, 2008
She thought it was great. She giggled.
A week or so ago, my "one friend" in town posted about how she felt that, after a prolonged period of "emerging adulthood," she'd finally become an adult. Her family (like ours) now has stable income, is no longer tied to grad school life, and (unlike our family) even owns a house.
Yesterday it hit that, I too, have emerged. The culture around me is different, and it's not just the Northern air. I'm now recognized as being in a different subgroup of society. Quite frankly, I'm going through a little bit of culture-shock.
This is the first time that I've been introduced to large groups of people and find my primary title to be "mom." This is not helped by the fact that I am 8 months pregnant. Even without E around, I'm given this title. Last time we moved, I fit very comfortably into the grad school community, even though I wasn't in grad school. I made friends with a bunch of people that were single (or newly married) 20 or 30 somethings. We drank coffee together, found artsy sorts of activities around town to do together, and discussed an eclectic range of things (but usually not kids).
I've met a lot of people in my new sub-group over the last few weeks. And I've discovered that for moms, one doesn't chit-chat about the weather as an ice breaker, one chit-chats about one's kids. This makes sense. It's just... culture shock.
Maybe I'm being a little harsh on my next assesment, but it also seems that one makes friends with other women in the area because one has kids. Or that (at the least) women at this age bond over kids. I'm not sure how I feel about this. E has always been a shining light in my life, but not the center of my universe. She enriches my world, but I'd like to avoid having her direct it. I don't really want to be friends with people just to talk about and compare our kids. I'd like to be friends with people to enrich my life by hearing about who they are (and maybe to get a few good recipes). I'm hoping that, just as talking about the weather fades from the focus of conversation once you get to know someone, so too will talk about children fade and other topics emerge as I get to know new friends here.
I've found having guys around helps. I don't know why, but if S is in the conversation (usually with other men as well), then conversation sways to more interesting topics. I find out things like that this woman was an archeological scuba diver before she became a midwestern stay-at-home mom. Or we'll discuss important topics like politics and the quality of various pizza joints in the area. I acknowledge that at least part of this deeper conversation comes because, in these situations, I'm not the sole care taker in charge of E. S is also keeping an eye on her.
I'm struggling a bit as I emerge into full-time mommyhood. I know I love to bake and knit and I love my daughter (and bragging about her) so I should fit into this subcategory easily, but I'm not finding it easy to define myself as a soccer-mom type. I want a wide variety of friends -- single, married, students, career-adults, retirees, artsy, sporty, nerdy, eclectic, etc. It is then, it seems, that my life is most enriched by the lives of my friends. Oh, that I still had more of my friends who knew me before my "mom" days!
I am sure I will adjust. These things just take time. Until then, I am thankful for the friends that are emerging, even if conversation is centered around kids for the first few meetings.
Next Friday I engage in my first "play date" with a mom down the street. She's a friend of a college friend, and only lives five (or so) doors away. A chance to meet another adult while having our kids entertain each other! We'll see how it goes. ... "Play date." What a new term.
Thursday, September 04, 2008
This year I don't. Our T.V. exists, but even with a huge antenna, it gets zero stations. And I'm not willing to pay for cable.
There was only one silver lining, that I could find, to all the pre-term labor I've been having. The triage rooms have cable. Each time I went into the hospital, I caught snippits of what was going on in the world. I got to see portions of the olympics, some news stuff, etc.
Now we're past that stage (THANKFULLY!). My doc says that if I go into labor, even though it'd be early, they'd let nature take its course. So, I don't have to rush into the hospital every time I have "regular" contractions.
Of course, this means no more T.V. I'm not sad about this, I don't really like watching TV much. That said, I do have two T.V. shows that I was addicted to last year, and a part of me kind of hopes I end up being in the hospital for their season openings this year. One of these shows opens on the 18th of this month, the other on the 22nd. I am "full term" on the 22nd, so either date would be relatively safe to deliver.
So, do we have a deal, li'l Mc? You can come on the 17th, 18th, 21st, or 22nd. You could even come on the 23rd or 19th, but please make sure that the water breaks BUT no painful contractions occur the evening before you come. No hard labor until after the show is over. Thanks.
Tuesday, September 02, 2008
With S waking up earlier and earlier (and thus E waking up earlier and earlier, forcing ME out of bed), and knowing what sleeplessness awaits me, I'm in the mood for a good coffee shop.
Not just a joint to get my caffeine fix, but a sort of "sit and lounge with us for a while" place. Preferably with high chairs, and an extra bonus if it's got a children's play area -- you know, chalk board, etc, so that I can sit and read a news paper (we have no T.V. so I feel very out of it) while E plays and ? sits at my feet and sleeps.
Basically, I want my old work to have a branch here. Just for me. Good coffee, good socializing, a little bit of "Cheers" atmosphere.
But I can't even find the "sell out" version in town. Despite the fact that our friend is turning his breakfast nook INTO the "sell out" store, and I SHOULD be over this bias by now, I just can't bring myself to ... drinking... coffee... there. No Seattle stores for me! Give me a good Minnesotan chain or no chain at all!!! (Actually, I prefer no chain at all... if you can give me a good coffee shop with people who know what they're doing, and a good atmosphere.)
The only one I've found is at S's workplace. Convenient for college students, not set up for me to lounge with my two babies.
So, if you're from this town, if you know anything at ALL about local shops, let me know: where can I get my "fix"?