March for Babies

Thursday, September 07, 2006

How Are We?

Lisa wrote:

Hey Blue,
I read your archives over the last few days and just wanted to tell you how much
I enjoyed reading your blog. Especially the parts about you and your husband's
relationship. I imagine you don't have much time to post now. But I have a few
How is Azure doing?
Is she at daycare?
How are you doing?
Is your husband helping out more now?
I am a mom to a 6 month old who works full time myself.
Take care!

Well, thanks Lisa! Let me see if I can address some of these questions.

You are correct. The posting time is minimal but I will try.

How is Azure doing?
Azure is doing really well. She is up to 9lb 14oz and 21-1/2 inches long. She is eating six or seven 3oz bottles per day. She is getting some fresh milk, some frozen milk and some Neosure (preemie formula). She is smiling and “talking” more and more.
She is still struggling with the pooping thing, but I think I have figured out her schedule. She will poop two or three times within a two-day period and then go about five days before she fills her pants again. (I have gotten quite used to saying “fills her pants” as my mother detests the word poop and refuses to use it and hates it when I use it, etc.) The doctors seem to think this is just fine as long as her stools are soft. I have been told that “swamp green pudding” is nothing to worry about, which is good, because that is what we get most of the time.
If we feed her at around 11pm we can pretty much sleep through the night. I have been screwing this up lately however because I have been so tired we go to bed early which means she will wake up around 3:30am wanting a bottle. Our latest doctor’s appointment found her right on target for 3 months adjusted. We are thrilled!
On the not so good side, she has been having apnea alarms a lot lately. Over the summer she would have some here and there but the reports from the monitor downloads all said they were “not significant” or “not real”. Then, the download on 8/16 showed the apneas were real and one was very significant (22 seconds between breaths) and paired with a Brady (slow heart rate). They asked if she had turned blue. Um. No. I did not even know about it, and you are asking about something that happened two weeks ago. Now I look like an asshole. Since we found out about those apneas being real it has been ringing off all the time! (“all the time” would be once a day instead of once per 7-10 days) We have never taken her health for granted and always jump at the sound of the monitor even though the majority of the alarms are for the leads coming off. However, this has brought on a new heightened awareness and anxiety. I am now tracking poops and apneas to see if there might be a pattern. Is she pushing too hard and then wearing herself out? Maybe. It also might be related to the reflux. If she has milk stuck in her throat then she cannot breathe very well and that could set it off. We have upped her dosage of Reglan to see if this will fix the problem. I am keeping my fingers crossed.

Is she at daycare?
Azure is not at daycare. Her immune system is just not strong enough to be around other kids right now. Once we get her through next winter (her first full RSV season) then she should be strong enough to go. For now, we have a nanny who comes to our house two days per week and the other three days I take her to my mom’s house since she lives very near my office. We are working on making it so that I do not have to work anymore but for now finances require two incomes. I hope that next spring things will be set for me to stay at home with her. Of course, the irony is that next spring will also be the time she will most likely be able to go to a regular daycare.

How are you doing?
Wow. Thanks for asking. Most people ask about Azure but not T or me. I am tired and stressed and a bit overwhelmed at times. I have found myself tearing up at the drop of a hat. I think it is a matter of never having any downtime. I get up, get Azure and myself ready in the morning, go to work, and then it is right back to Azure until bedtime. Every.Day. I love my daughter, to the point of tears. I miss her intensely when I am at work. I prefer to hold her when I am at home rather than put her in the swing or bouncy seat, trying to make up for the time I have been away from her. BUT, it is getting to me. The constant pressure of things to do and fulfilling her needs and getting bottles cleaned and ready for the next day and taking a shower and remembering to pay the bills. This working mother thing ain’t for sissies.
I am still waiting on that missing period. I know they may not be so regular, but good grief can the cramping go away? How about the hormonal eating? I feel like a bomb gaining pressure increasingly every day and at some point I am going to explode and it will not be pretty. If all the PMS stuff would go away I would be more than happy to go on about my life and not worry about it. Blehck.
Reading this it sounds like I am heading for a major breakdown. It is really not that bad. I just need an outlet. Some time for myself to take a deep breath and not have any responsibilities on my shoulders for a few minutes a day. Right now, that comes in the car on the way to and from work, so I am listening to Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban on audiobook. Then I will listen to The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian. My commute is only about 20 minutes and it is a straight shot from one place to the other. I wish it were longer.
I am still pumping but instead of taking it month by month, I am now taking it session by session. I am a grumpy about it. I find myself asking whether or not it is worth it and I know the answer is “YES”. I also find myself wishing I could breast feed and I know that it would be a difficult transition to make and I would only be doing it for my own selfish reasons. I want that closeness with her, but I do not believe the dream of it would be the reality. She chomps rather than sucks and she is used to the speed of the nipples now and my struggling supply would not suffice. It is not worth putting either of us through that at this point. This is just one more thing that I wish had turned out differently. (You know, along with not having infertility and not having a micro-preemie and not having to work while my baby was in the hospital for 3-1/2 months.)

Is your husband helping out more now?
T is pitching in, in his own way. He does everything else around the house like cooking, cleaning, shopping and making sure that I have what I need to take care of Azure. The actual care is still my responsibility. We did have a major breakthrough yesterday though. I had a dentist appointment scheduled after work. The nanny usually leaves at 6pm but I would not be home by then. T relieved her and watched Azure, alone, by himself for an hour and a half. This was his first time doing this. I wish I could say it had been easy for him but she was fuzzy the whole time. (It turned out later she was working on another major poop.) The good news is that she did not alarm for him and once the poop happened and she had a bottle she calmed right down again. I hope this builds his confidence a bit. I think the more comfortable he gets with her the more he will take care of her and relieve me a bit. I sound pouty and I guess I am. I am envious of the time he gets to go down to the basement and play his GT4 game while I am still upstairs calculating medicine and feeding times and when can she eat so that I can eat and possibly pump before bedtime. On the other hand, I do not begrudge him that time with his game. I just want some time of my own.
I spoke to the nanny and she agreed to work a couple Friday or Saturday nights so that we can have a “Date Night”. We REALLY need some time together as a couple to reconnect.

*sigh* That was probably more than you expected. I guess I just had to get it all out while I was at it since I do not tend to write very often these days. The simple answer is we are mostly good. The tough parts are there but we are working on them and hopefully they will pass into memories sooner rather than later.


Tiffany said...

Wow!! I found your blog today and have been reading since A was born! Good thing I don't have a busy job. You are so strong for what you have been through - my baby is 16 months old and wow - I still cannot imagine going through what you have been through but you what you have to do. I know many people probably give you advice but try to keep breastfeeding - I know how hard it is. I finally gave up after only three months and I wish that I had kept it up longer. My biggest reason for giving up was my milk supply. After I gave up breastfeeding I did learn of an herb, fenugreek, that really helps. A friend of mine took it and her milk supply increased big time. Something else when my daughter was breastfeeding she would only poop once a week and that was after I gave her a the suppository. Then after I put her on formula she would not go at all. Finally I had to take about a month and very slowly ween her off breastmilk and onto formual. Being a mom is tough and hard work especially with all of the other stuff you have to deal with. It is ok to feel overwhelmed, tired, etc... Don't ever feel guilty if you have to ask T to take A for a half an hour while you go an take a nice bath - you need it! Keep posting - I love it!

Anonymous said...

It will get better - everything you feel is normal - whether with a preemie or a full-term baby, the feelings of being overwhelmed are normal. Your circumstances are harder than mine, but I share the overwhelming feelings. I guess all part of being a mom. I don't know that it really ever gets easier (mine is 20 months), but I can definitely say it gets better.
One day at a time.
Take care!

Erica said...

Blue, you're doing great. I know it SUCKS being a working mom (I am too) and I feel that way often...but it does get better. Just hang in there. I'm glad to hear that you'll have some Date Nights in your future!

ThreeBees said...

You are doing awesome! I remember those times of really wanting just some "downtime" to relax and having no time at all. All I can say is it gets better and as Azures naps change and you begin to put her down for the night earlier (and be assured that she'll stay asleep) you can jet an hour or two of just you or you and T time before you head to bed.

And I am sure as T gets more time with her and more confidence, you'll be able to get a little you time. . . just keep encouraging him!

Thinking of you and Azure as always!

justdawn said...

Now THAT'S an update:) I am glad that aside from a few minor issues, Azure is thriving and happy...and it sounds like you are adjusting to new motherhood as well as any of the rest of us do:)

I have enjoyed reading through your archives...what a blessing Azure is!!!

Stacy said...

I am so glad to read your update and know that Azure is doing well. It is so hard to do it all. I am trying, mothering, house stuff, etc. Hang in there.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the update. I hope it gets easier for you guys. That's great that you were able to find a doable childcare situation. (If you can) try to let your husband watch her more. It's really not fair that men get more free time than us. I calculated my husband has at least 3 free hours a day while I have 1 -- the precious hour after my son goes to bed and before I can't hold my head up anymore.