Tuesday, October 25, 2011

5 Weeks

Avery is doing so great, here are some new things she is doing . .
she has been more active lately, usually staying up for 1.5 to 2 hours after eating
she loves staring at the ceiling fans
she is really making lots more noises lately

Avery's firsts . . . .
first overnight at grandma and grandpa's
first time sleeping in her crib
wore a 0-3 month outfit

Lessons learned
read What to Expect in the First Year, before the baby is born (at least the newborn and 1 month section)
occasionally she will put herself back to sleep, so give her a minute or two to whimper before going in her room to check on her

I am not sure what size she is, her next doctor's appointment is Nov 2.  I will post then, but I bet by the time we have that appointment she will be 22 inches long and 9.5 to 10 pounds.

She is now wearing some smaller 0-3 month onesies and sleepers.  She will be finishing up the last of the newborn diapers (in the next few days) and then moving to size 1 diapers.

She is eating 5-6 times a day and 4 ounces during the day and 5 ounces at her two night time feedings.

She is less gassy, but still spits up a lot.  I am just glad she isn't in pain as often after eating.  I think her digestive system must have matured a lot in the last two weeks.

We moved her to her crib.  It was successful!!!  The first night she fought sleep for two and one half hours, but then slept for 5 hours straight.  The second night she fought sleep for 1 hour but then slept just under 5 hours.  After her initial 5 hours each night we fed her and then she slept 3- 4 hours.

It has been so nice.  Though I will say I struggle with sleeping when she is in the other room.  Not so much due to missing her, but just listening hard to make sure she is fine.  I need to remember that my girl has some lungs on her and I will absolutely hear it through the monitor if she is crying.

It has been nice though, as both Ray and I actually get to sleep in our bed together!  It's an amazing change from just a week ago.

She likes the hokey pokey but not patty cake.
She hates wearing hats, which is too bad, because I have a ton of them!

I feel like she sleeps a lot during the day, does anyone know the normal amount an infant should sleep during the day?  When I try to keep her up, she gets MAD!

Avery in her bear coat, it was cold but sunny out, so we went for a walk, but bundled up first!

 She is milk drunk here, she gets this way after most feedings!
 Grandpa reading the Sunday comics to her, a new tradition he just started. 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

1 Month!

This has been a great week . . we are starting to figure things out and get more comfortable with parenthood.

Avery is doing so great, here are some new things she is doing . .
making all kinds of crazy funny faces
she is now really focusing on things, specifically faces
she can follow things with her eyes
her neck is just getting stronger and stronger and she is really holding it up a lot
she loves to hold her head up to look up at you while she is burping, it is soooo cute
she hated the baby sling carrier thing, but loves the Baby Go one

Avery's firsts . . . .
first bath
first book read to her (Are You My Mother?)
first birthday party attended, Jace

Lessons learned
not all cries are for food, and so babies just always suck on their hands, hungry or not
do not shake the bottle to mix the formula, stir it, less air and gas for the baby
there is an "I'm bored" cry

I am not sure what size she is, her next doctor's appointment is Nov 2.  I will post then, but I bet by the time we have that appointment she will be 22 inches long and 9.5 to 10 pounds.

She is still wearing newborn clothes and diapers, but is going to be out of those soon.

As for eating, Jean (my stepmom) took her on Friday (because I had the flu) and only fed her every four hours.  Ray and I had been feeding her every 2 to 3 hours.  The reason for the excessive feedings is due to us thinking every cry was a hungry one.  She now that we have finally figured that out, she is eating every 4 hours (4 ounces each time).  It is AMAZING!!!!!!  Eating less often also helps with her gas issues a little bit.

Also, as of last Monday I stopped pumping.  I was having a hard time finding the time to pump, so my supply went down, I got plugged milk ducts (seriously painful) and I was just over it.  I know that sounds awful, but she had taken to formula and it just wasn't worth it anymore.  Also I got the flu, so that really sealed the deal.  I also realized during this past month that pumping at work would not be an option.  I was so naive as to how much time it would take.  My advice to anyone planning on BFing, be prepared, this is soooo hard.  I don't know that I would have made it any longer if I had prepared, but I know I would have been less frustrated if I knew what to expect.  I have so much respect for moms who can get over the initial difficulties I couldn't, but I also respect the moms who tried and it just didn't work for them/baby.

She is still spitting up but nothing abnormal.  She isn't having the same stomach pains she used to though.  The only times we know that she is gassy is when she will wake up from sleeping to poop or fart and then go back to sleep.  It is so funny, we never know if she is waking up because she isn't tired or if it is to poop/fart.When she farts it is loud too, it cracks me up that something so little can fart so loud and so often!

As for sleep, we typically feed her at 9:00pm, which leaves us feeding her at about 1 and 5.  She sleeps pretty well in the times in between there.  She will have periods of time where she whimpers and fusses a bit, but nothing awful.  We are so grateful for this and I feel like a new person with this improvement.  She still sleeps quite a bit during the day, especially in the morning.

Our next challenge pertaining to sleep is getting her to sleep in her crib.  This could be a huge undertaking as she has never slept anywhere but on us or in her boppy.  During the day, she is a bit more flexible and will sleep in her bouncer or swing, but never her pack n play or crib.  We are going to start trying this on Friday, wish us luck!

Also we learned that she loves it when you sing to her.  She does not like it when we change her clothes.  And in the last week she has gotten a strawberry on the right side of her abdomen near her ribs.

What kinds of things do you do with your baby during playtime?


Thursday, October 13, 2011

Fellow blogger needs support

Please take a moment and go here to offer your thoughts and support to a blog friend of mine. 

I have been following her blog for over a year now and I have followed her journey to become a mom.  She has tried everything and finally her prayers were answered 20 weeks ago when she got pregnant through IVF. 

She was pregnant with boy/girl twins, until yesterday.  Her son died during birth and her daughter shortly after.  I cannot imagine how she must be feeling, but I know she would appreciate any kind words you may have, as well as prayers for her and her family.

My heart is breaking for her, it was such a sudden thing and I just can't stop thinking of her, what a truly devastating thing.  It's so unfair.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

My dog ate my baby's belly button

We are pretty sure that my dog sobe ate avery's belly button that fell off this morning.  Sobe and I saw the piece of belly button on the floor at the same time and she got to it first. Ray tried to get it out of her mouth but it was too late.

We weren't planning on saving it but it's still gross.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

2 Weeks Old

Today is Avery's 2 week birthday!  She has changed and grown a lot in just two weeks.  In some ways it has gone by so fast and in some ways it seems like forever ago I was pregnant.

Avery is now 8 pounds.  So she is 10 ounces more than her birth weight.  The doctor was shocked because in one week she gained 15 ounces!!!  We knew she would have gained a decent amount since she is eating like crazy.

She is eating between 9 and 11 times a day and eating about 2-3 ounces per feeding.  She is eating 60% bre.astmilk (pumped) and 40% formula.  After thinking it through we decided to stop nursing but continue to pump so she could get the milk for the time I am on leave.  At that point I will reevaluate, but I am pretty sure she will go to a formula only baby.  I wish we could have mastered nursing, but I just don't have it in me to fight through all of our obstacles.  I am just happy I tried and that she will be getting milk for about 6 weeks.

Overall Avery is such a great happy baby.  She loves to cuddle and absolutely prefers to sleep on daddy and I.  She likes car rides and stroller rides.  She has gotten better at not freaking out when we change her diaper.  She still loves her paci! 

Our dog Sobe, has been so funny with Avery.  If Avery is crying Sobe will go and stand near her and lick her.She is very protective and if one of the cats gets too close, she will go stand near Avery until they walk away.  We knew Sobe would be great with Avery when she gets older, but didn't expect this!

Avery is still not sleeping more than 2 hours at a time, but she is getting better at night at actually sleeping.

Avery's only real "issue" is her gassiness.  She can get really upset for up to two hours after a feeding.  We work really hard to burp her well and have Dr. Brown's bottles, but she still sometimes gets uncomfortable and I feel so bad for her. 

As for my recovery, I am doing well.  I have a lot more energy and at 9 days I was at my pre pregnancy weight, so that went well.  My biggest side effect is my hormones.  I cry at least twice a day.  Sometimes it is because I am overwhelmed, sometimes because I am overly tired.  Sometimes they are happy tears, and sometimes they are guilty tears.  The guilty tears come from feeling bad that I don't know how to help her when she is upset and they also are from times when I don't feel like I love her as much as I think I should.  I do love her and I am so grateful to have her, but I didn't immediately fall in love or anything, my love is more of something that is evolving each day.

I am looking forward to going to the zoo this weekend.  We are going with friends and going during their Halloween celebration.  Avery is going to be a strawberry!!!

Best moment of the week was seeing Ray with her.  It's so cool to see your husband as such a great father!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

An Update on Bre.ast Feeding

So far BFing is not going so well. 

Starting back at the hospital, Avery came out and was put on my chest with her little tongue going crazy.  She all ready had a sucking reflex and went straight to the bre.ast.  I thought oh, this will be so easy!

Well it turns out she had an awful latch and just that one feeding caused damage and blistering.  It doesn't help that I am so pale (I guess that makes you more susceptible to damage and bleeding from BFing).

The next few days in the hospital I only BFed.  She would struggle with latching and I didn't know what was right and wrong, so she continued to damage me.

On Wednesday afternoon, a Lactation Consultant came to see us and spent an hour with Ray and I showing us what we need to do.  She gave me a ni.ppple gaurd, which helped with the pain alot.  She also showed me how to pump.

Once we got home, I continued to exclusively BF.  But on Friday night Avery was starving and my milk hadn't come in.  Saturday morning when we tried to feed, she sucked so hard for the milk that wasn't there, the ni.pple guards filled up with blood and I was in crazy pain.

So that is when I had my meltdown and we gave her formula.  Once I stopped sobbing, I realized that I was no longer 100% responsible for health and weight and it was the biggest weight lifted off of my shoulders.  I enjoyed being the one who could take care of her and I liked the bonding of feeding her, but wow, that is a lot of responsibility and stress.

For one week, we only feed her via bottle.  During the day it was bre.astmilk and at night it was formula (adding the formula was our plan to begin doing at one month anyways).  She took to the bottle no problem and was so happy to eat! 

But I wanted to give BFing one last ditch effort, so we went to see our hospital's Lactation Consultant.  It is one of the things I love about our hospital, they have an entire department for BFing and if you delivered there you can use them for free!

So we went to see her and she was the same one we had in the hospital and loved!!!  We worked on the latch and learning what was right and wrong.  Avery will go for bre.ast, even thought she has been on the bottle, which is great, but she will go from a great latch to causing damage very quickly.

The whole experience was very frustrating for her and somewhat overwhelming for me.  I really do want to nurse (not exclusively though).  But I am not sure if I am up for this. 

And because of how quickly Avery goes from good latch to bad latch, even the lactation consultant recommended using the ni.pple guard.

Lately, my hormones have been crazy and I am dreading Ray going back to work, so do I have the strength/will power to make this work . . . .I don't know.

I have so much new respect for those who do BF.  It is hard, tiring, and stressful (at least in the beginning).

The good news is that she got weighted at the appointment and is now 7 pounds 10 ounces (as of September 30th), this is 4 ounces above her birth weight!