Sunday, March 28, 2010

Screamy McScreamersons

Just in case we may have given folks the wrong idea with all of the adorable pictures we've been posting, I thought I'd correct the record and include a photo here of what our little dude looks like much of the time he's awake :)

OK, so maybe that's a little bit of an exaggeration...but really, there is a lot of crying. As he gets older he's spending more time awake than when he first came home, but that also means that he's crying more. He definitely has some quiet, active awake time, but a lot of his awake time is spent fussing for various reasons (which Joey and I aren't always able to discern). Even with all of the crying, though, we're enjoying getting to know this little man.

In the last couple of weeks we've taken him out and about a bit--he's been to Target, Men's Warehouse (yay, daddy got new suits!), the Produce Station, Busch's, the Breastfeeding Center of Ann Arbor, and a few other places. He tends to do pretty well when we're out. We've been experimenting with having him in the stroller and in a sling on my chest. [NOTE: yes, there was recently a recall of a number of slings that were associated with some infant deaths over the years--scary! Our sling is meant to be worn so that the baby is upright, not laying sideways nestled inside of the sling like those that caused suffocation. Oscar's head is always out of the sling on my shoulder and his upright position means that his chin is not pulled to his chest causing airway restriction.]

We're currently working on nighttime routines. We've been going to bed fairly late--like 1am--and with Joey going back to work soon we're trying to slowly move our bedtime to an earlier hour. We're also trying to transition Oscar over to his cosleeper by our bed since he's been unable to sleep anywhere but with us lately (something I was very much against originally, but when you have a newborn you go into survival mode and do whatever it takes. We're paranoid and so have made sure that our sleeping arrangements are as safe as humanly possible thusfar.)

The little guy tricked us into thinking he had a sleeping routine by spending a few days in a row waking only at around 4am and 7am, which was awesome. Then he scrapped it as soon as my body got used to that pattern and has been spending lots more time awake at night lately. I'm trying to maintain my daytime naps thanks to my loving husband who takes over during this time so that the hours spent up at night are bearable. We just continue to remind ourselves that this is temporary and focus on enjoying this time with him since we know he'll be getting to the next phase before we know it. He's been healthy, is gaining tons of weight (as you can probably tell from the photos), and aside from some bouts of yucky diaper rash has been doing wonderfully.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

First Week Home

Not that we necessarily expected any different, but newborns are HARD. Nanny/daycare/nephew experience is no match for bringing home your own tiny bean and attempting to decipher his various cries while maintaining your own sanity. That being said, though, I'd have to say that we're all adjusting pretty darn well. While we're not getting tons of sleep at night, we have yet to experience total and complete sleep deprivation (thanks mostly to my wonderful husband who has been helping out like a complete champ so that we both get cat naps and sleep time during the day and night).

We had a few difficulties at first, mainly stemming from some questionable jaundice (he's actually fine, no phototherapy necessary and it's clearing up just as it should), and my fear about his not getting enough to eat. Apparently pooping regularly is key for getting rid of the bilirubin in his system to clear up jaundice, and since he's a snacker who likes to eat in 5 min. intervals and then fall fast asleep we weren't sure he was getting enough milk. Diaper changes were fun, also, as we had never had to experience a brand new cicumcision before. Sooo, when we first got home we were struggling with vaseline in diapers, trying to supplement his feedings with supply that I was pumping (something he hated since we did it with a small syringe in his mouth), and fiercely monitoring his skin color and poo amount.

He was weighing in at 7 lbs 7 oz (having lost 7 oz since birth) at his first doc's appt., and had a borderline jaundice level. Then, a matter of days later at his 2nd doc's appt. we discovered that he had a spectacular weight gain of 8 oz to bring him up to a full 8 lbs and his color was so good the doc didn't even bother to measure the level. At this point we were told that he was not only just fine, but looked great and we should relax and stop with the supplementing and tracking and just let him tell us when he needed to eat (whew! much easier...). Now we're both more relaxed and able to settle into being home and enjoying his company without so much worry.

He's already been out and about a couple of times, having come with us to the Breastfeeding Center of A2 when I got nursing bras, he's visited my dad's house briefly, and today we ran some errands with him that included hitting up the hardware store and the Produce Station. We've gone on a few walks since the weather's nice, and it's amazing how fabulous it feels to get out even for a few minutes. I've also set up a private lacation consultation this week for myself, just to ease my mind about breastfeeding a bit and get some helpful tips. So, fingers crossed I'm not totally jinxing myself here (I'm knocking on wood like crazy), but things have been good and I'm hoping that they'll stay that way for a little while :)

Saturday, March 13, 2010


Our little dude is here! :) I had actually taken almost-39 week photos (cute ones, too) and planned on getting them posted here and I guess I took a little too long. I'll still try to get them up at some point, but for now I figured that it's much more appropriate to show off our little guy.

Oscar Joseph Wallace showed up exactly one week early, on March 8 at 5:34 pm. He was born on a Monday, and that Sunday evening I had actually gotten together for one last family dinner with my dad, Barb, Molly, and Jason prior to having a new baby around. Good timing on that, I guess. I'll post a somewhat brief and condensed version of the birth story here, but if anyone is interested I'm happy to share the less condensed version if asked. (I know I only have 2 photos posted here, I promise to post more...the computer I'm using for this post only has these 2 photos currently uploaded to it.)

So, at around 12:30am on March 8 I woke up to use the bathroom and noticed some cramping. After a short time I realized that the cramping wasn't constant, but coming in brief and somewhat regular intervals. I woke Joey up, and around 2 or 3am we decided that this probably was the real thing and we might want to try to get some rest but also make sure we had everything together. By around 5am it was intense, and we made sure that the house was closed up and Lucy had been taken out and given food, etc., and we went to the hospital. When I arrived I was checked out in triage and being about 4cm dilated and in labor they admitted me. The rest is kind of a blur, but basically things got more and more painful throughout the day. Everyone was incredibly supportive of my trying a natural birth, and I tried tons of things to both help things progress as well as help the pain: walking the halls, various positions in the room, and finally the jacuzzi shower. Unfortunately, at around the 13th hour of labor I pushed for the epidural, realizing that I was no longer coping and had nothing left for pushing. I continued to labor down (in much less pain) for a couple of hours, until we decided to see if we could get things going. I pushed for 2.5 hours until I thought that there was no way I could possibly do any more, and then our little guy finally showed up.

I'm in recovery mode now, feeling like this little 7lb 14oz person was really a Mack truck that ran me over. Things are definitely on the mend, though, and I'm feeling better every day. We're in the craziness of newborn-land now, and so I apologize if anyone out there has contacted me and I haven't responded. Hopefully as we get used to things I'll be back on top of emails and get more photos posted. Anyhow, back to Oscar now...I think I hear him grunting and getting ready to wake up :)