Monday, January 26, 2009

Bath Time

Bath time has a whole new meaning around here. For the past 2 years bath time has meant the time when we struggle with Haiku behind locked doors to get her clean in the bath tub. In the end, I think Joel & I end up just as wet as she is.

Now bath time is much more fun because Anders doesn't fight us the way Haiku sometimes does. And for whatever reason, Haiku is much more interested in it when it doesn't involve her getting wet. I have to say her interest is highly annoying. As you can see from the picture, there's no where for me to be involved in the bath time fun.


Haiku has always loved to play fetch. And Joel loves that about her. I guess his childhood dogs never played fetch. Haiku especially loves to play fetch in the snow while Joel shovels the driveway. (Blessings to the mysterious neighbor who always continues with their snowblower up our part of the sidewalk). Anders & I stay inside and watch from the comforts of the warm inside.

Tonight, the scene was no different. Well, except for what happened with the bright orange log Haiku likes to fetch. I'll let the pictures tell the rest of the story...

Throwing the bright orange log...

Where'd it go?


Dad saves the day.

Sunny G's

On Saturday (while it was still nice out),Joel, Anders, Haiku & I went for a long walk through our neighborhood. We are blessed with awesome bike paths all around our house. It was a cool day--it had been in the 70's earlier in the week--but very bright, which is typical for Colorado. Anders really enjoyed the walk in his umbrella stroller--we just graduated up to this stroller from his car seat stroller. He could actually see where we were going. If it weren't for that bright, bright sun. He finally gave up and fell asleep.

When we got home I remembered that we had these cute sunny g's (as I like to call sun glasses). He actually seemed to like them when I put them on. He's hilarious. We'll have to use them the next time we go for a walk. It could be a while...there's at least 3 inches of snow on the ground right now and more coming down. Ah, Colorado weather.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

What Do You Do?

Recently I had a friend (who doesn't have kids yet) ask me:

"What do you do all day?"

So I tried to explain that most of my day really is spent taking care of Anders. She wasn't so sure I was telling the truth. But really, it does. One example I gave her is that there are times you think a diaper change will take 3 minutes, tops, and then he has a blow out and it requires massive clean up including a bath. 45 minutes later you wonder where your time went.

Then she asked, "doesn't he take naps?" Well, yes, he does--he's a good sleeper. But it's not like you suddenly have 4 extra hours in your day to do whatever you want. You use that time to do the things you can't easily get done while he's awake--shower, clean up the dishes, pick up the house, NAP, etc... It's not necessarily free time to do whatever you want like you used to before kids.

I guess the best way I can explain what I do all day is to give you a list of some of the questions I spend my time thinking about...

Should I change your diaper now or later?
Does this little amount of poop/pee on your outfit require a change of clothes?
Is the water in the bath too hot? too cold?
Do you need to burp or do you have gas?
Was your nap long enough or should I try to get you to go back to sleep?
Are you tired enough to go to bed now or should I keep you up later?
Am I giving you the pacifier too much?
Would you like to lay on your activity mat or play in your exersaucer?
Would you like to read this book or another one?
Am I waiting too long to start solid food or should I start now?
Are you fussing because you have gas or are you getting a tooth?
Your nails are too long, should I try to cut them alone or wait for dad?
Are you too old to be swaddled?
Is your room warm enough for sleeping?
What germs are you picking up in the nursery?
Am I a good mom because I enjoy having a day off from you when I go to work?
When should I start teaching you sign language? Is it too late?
What if I screw it all up?!?!

It's pretty exhausting when you think about it. That's why I've learned the best phrase for parenting:

Fake it 'til you make it.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Laughter is Contagious

Anders typically laughs the best for Joel. Something about that Father/Son relationship. But tonight, he was all giggles for Mom.

Here's a short video of him laughing. But watch out. It's a bit contagious.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

A Thief in the Night

It sneaks into every crevice of my brain. It does not have permission to be there, and yet it lurks, ever so quietly throughout the day and into the night. It trespasses into parts I didn't even know were there. And then it robs me.

It robs me of my own sanity. Of decision making skills. It takes without asking. Like my ability to produce a clear train of thought. It steals my blood pressure gauge, making me unable to control my frustration or emotions. It destroyed my ability to love my friends' kids. It removed the joy of being with Joel. And most frustratingly, it took my ability to see my child for what he is.

Post-partum depression is a nasty thief. The secret destroyer.

In all of the pre-baby classes there are warnings about this nasty sickness, it's signs and symptoms and phone numbers to call for help. But the nastiest part of the illness is that it doesn't allow you to recognize or believe that you have it.

Tricky, like a burglar.

And that's the best way I can think to describe it: A thief. A robber. A burglar prowling around my mind. It's not like you can send the cops into to catch it, either. I'm trapped in my own body fighting, alone.

There have been great supporters--especially Joel. He recognized the problem and sent me for help. And I will be forever grateful. For me, there seems to be a lot of shame associated with PPD. Like you're not a good mom. Or you're not a strong enough person to deal with it yourself. The worst part for a highly "with-it" person like me is the sudden and almost instant inability to cope--I can't make a split-second decision anymore, large groups overwhelm me, there are times that I'm unable to spit out a complete sentence, and sadly, I wasn't so sure about Anders for the first six or so weeks of his life.

It's not that I didn't love him. I just didn't know what to do with him. And that makes the shame and guilt worse. The lies are easy to believe--you'll bond with your baby instantly, you'll just love him to pieces, you'll just want to spend every moment watching him grow...and on and on. And when it wasn't that way for me, I felt desparate and alone.

So why today? Why share my struggle? I guess, why not? It is a burden for me and it is helpful to share it with others. I know that I can't be the only one who has been terrorized by this and I know I won't be the last.

And, I share my story because life is getting better. I feel a bit restoration when I share this with others. I have accepted it for what it is--an illness I must battle until it's gone. I recognize my limitations and the strengths that I still posses. I know that God is good and He is faithful and patient enough to restore me. I love Anders more and more each day and know that he is very forgiving of a mother who isn't quite sure what she's doing.

Most importantly, I have hope that like my Grandmother said, "The best is yet to be."

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Going, Going, Gone...

It was time I got a haircut. The last time I got it cut was in June. I kept meaning to get it cut before Anders was born, but it just didn't happen. And then this fall was well, busy. But, today was the day.

Actually last week was the day, but I couldn't get an appointment until today. I asked Joel to just "hack at it" like Jason Bourne does to Marie in the first Bourne movie--and then her hair turns out super cute--but Joel was a little too over-eager to cut my hair, so I opted for a professional cut.

I was never meant to have long hair, even though I've tried. My hair is too fine and thin to have long--it just gets stringy and I just don't have time to mess with it these days. So, goodbye about 4 inches of hair and hello a new me.

I think it's my first official "mom-type" cut. Welcome to a whole new world. Turning 30 is just 129 days away.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Parenting Books

Joel & I have really enjoyed using The Baby Whisperer by Tracy Hogg as a guide for these first few months of Anders' life. It has helped us establish a good routine and has offered practical advice when we just aren't sure what to do.

A number of friends have recommended it to us and we, in turn, have recommended it to some of our expecting friends.

But, I have come to realize that at 2am, when the baby is screaming and you are at your whit's end: you just make it up as you go anyway.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

No Surprises Here!

Yesterday we took Anders for his four month appointment. He's very healthy and the doctor said he looks great!

Here are his stats:

Weight: 15 pounds, 4 oz (55%)
Head: 16.5 inches (38%)
Height: 27 inches (97%)

No surprises on the height. He's growing like a weed.