Friday, January 20, 2012

Breastfeeding is hard

I know that some people have problems with not having enough milk. Fortunately, I am not one of those people. In fact, I seem to suffer from the opposite problem.

For the past few days, Evan has been fussy after eating. At first I thought it could be reflux and I would keep him vertical after eating and we put an incline pillow in his bed for him to lay on. It kinda helped. A little bit. But he was still grunting and seemed to be in pain. And gassy.

So, I googled and think that at least part of the problem is that I have forceful letdowns (i.e. a lot of milk at once) and Evan gulps (and kinda chokes) and ends up swallowing a bunch of air. I think also, that since I do have so much milk, he may be getting more foremilk than hindmilk. Foremilk has more proteins in it and can cause gassiness and stomach irritation because it's more difficult to digest than the more fatty hindmilk.

So for now, before changing my diet (I need cream in my coffee and have been craving grilled cheese and dairy would be the first thing to go), I'm attempting to curb the flow of milk by nursing on only one side per feeding. This causes a slight problem in that by the time Evan's ready to eat again, the other side is really painful and completely full of milk. I'm hoping that within a couple days my body will figure it out.

And I'm hoping that as Evan's body continues to develop, it will be better able to process the milk. I have to remember that his body has only been doing this whole digesting thing for 3 weeks now.

By the way, happy three week birthday, Evan!

Ghost Wiley

Joshua has decided that Evan's name is actually Ghost Wiley. Or maybe he meant Ghost Riley, but since i like Wiley better, that's what I'm going with. I have no idea where it came from.

I went through a whole slew of nicknames with Joshua before settling on Bubsy. I don't know if Ghost Wiley will stick (I think I'll actually shorten it to just Wiley), but it's cute.  And it was picked by Joshua. So I'm gonna give it a go.

Friday, January 13, 2012

The Evan Story

Evan Michael Crocker was born on Friday, December 30, 2011 at 4:18 am.  He weighed 6 pounds, 15 ounces, and was 18-3/4 inches long.
Joshua was born when I was 36 weeks, 3 days pregnant, and while I know that every pregnancy is different, by the time I hit 38 weeks with this baby, I was feeling rather anxious.  I think part of my anxiety was knowing that it WOULD be different.  With Joshua, I didn't have to time contractions and there was no question as to when I would have to go to the hospital since my water broke, I wasn't in labor, and was scheduled to go in at a particular time.  I think the question of when to go to the hospital caused a bit of extra anxiety due to the fact that my sister, who lives a 6 hour drive away, was going to drop everything to get to the hospital for this baby's birth.  I didn't want to call her and have to tell her to turn around if it was false labor, and I didn't want to wait to call and have her miss it!

(If you'd like to read Joshua's birth story, go here:

So, when the baby didn't come before Christmas, I just decided to take it easy and get through the holiday without the baby.  I had the time off work and Joshua was home during his school's winter break closure.

Mid-morning of the 29th I lost my mucus plug.  Now, according to everything you read, labor could start soon or it could be another 2 weeks.  I let my sister know and she went out and rented a car so that she would be ready.  In retrospect, I should have just told her to come then since apparently, for me, losing my mucus plug means my water will break within the next 24 hours. That night, I went to bed as usual.

I woke up around 1am on the 30th with some discomfort but not enough to get me out of bed. Then at approximately 1:40, Joshua called from down the hall.  I got up to tuck him in and that's when I knew my water had broken. I got Joshua situated and woke Brian to tell him that this was happening tonight.  At this point, I was having some contractions, but still wasn't sure about what to do.  I texted and then called my sister who jumped in her car despite it being 2 in the morning.  Brian called the doctor's office.  By the time the on-call doctor called us back (about 10 minutes later), my contractions had become painful and were right on top of each other; I even had to pause in my conversation with the doctor in order to get through a contraction.

The doctor said that since the contractions sounded intense and because my labor with Joshua had been pretty quick, that we should "mosey" down to the hospital. Brian called Anina to come over and I called my mom to let her know we were heading to the hospital. Anina arrived at our house around 2:45 and we headed out the door, pausing multiple times for contractions. 

When we got to the hospital a few minutes after 3am, I had a contraction in the lobby area, had a contraction in the elevator on the way to the second floor, and had a contraction in the waiting area of the maternity center. It was crazy! I was assigned a nurse who was told that she'd better come sooner than later as my contractions were right on top of each other. 

We got into our room and the monitors went onto my belly. The nurse began filling in the admittance information with Brian having to answer the questions because I was contracting the whole time. I was checked and found to be at 4cm dilated.  We knew the baby's head was already really low from having been checked a couple weeks before.  The nurse, Jodee, said that I'd probably go pretty fast since the baby's head was pressing on my cervix.  And believe me, I felt that head and all the pressure that came with it with every contraction.

I had tested negative for group B strep, but I opted to have an IV lock put in just in case I decided I wanted some pain killers.  The nurse who took my blood and put in the IV did a great job considering the contractions were only a few seconds apart and I had a hard time being still through them.

The nurses wanted a good few minutes of monitoring the baby before they'd remove the monitors, but with every contraction I'd move in such a way that they'd lose the baby and had to find him again.

At around 3:45am, I started saying that I couldn't do it anymore. Brian asked me if I wanted fentanyl (the narcotic pain killer).  My first response was, "I don't know" but when he asked me again right around 4am, I said, "sure, I'll take the fentanyl."  I had really wanted to not take any pain killers, but with all the pressure and with the contractions being within seconds of each other, I thought anything to help me get through it would be a good thing.  So, Brian told the nurse, who had me get on the bed and when she checked me, found that I was complete at 10cm. There was no time for any pain killers - this baby was ready to be born!

At that point, someone must have gone to call the doctor. The nurses were all hurrying around getting things prepped for the birth.  No one had thought that I'd go from 4 to 10 in less than an hour! Brian was telling me not to push, nurses were telling me to blow the candle, so I blew and I tried not to push.  Jodee was sitting on the bed and I felt the head and there was nothing I could do to stop it from coming out.  And then I was told, "his head is out and you need to push."  I told them that I couldn't push right then.  I think that was because, 1: I was so tired, 2: I wasn't feeling a contraction, and 3: the doctor wasn't there yet. And then I had a nurse at my side lifting my head and chest and telling me that I had to push and that, yes, I could do it. So I gave a push and out slid the rest of the baby.  And a couple minutes later, in walked the doctor.

After the most intense 2 and a half hours, my precious baby boy was placed on my belly and we shared skin to skin time with him nursing for quite some time.  Eventually, Brian cut the cord and the nurse removed him from me to get him cleaned up.

While he was getting cleaned up, Brian and I got our wrist bands and were finally able to sign all the admittance paperwork.

We were finally left alone to rest and a short while later I heard the pitter patter of 3 year old feet coming down the hallway of my room.  There was Joshua, in his jammies and winter jacket, to see me and to meet the baby.  A little while after that both my mom and sister showed up. (Sorry, Tor, that it all went so quickly.  I really did want for you to be there.)

Though I felt ready to leave right away, they wouldn't let me :) so I had to stay. We finally decided on Evan as the first name that afternoon but he still had no middle name.  That evening, Brian picked up pizza and a cake and we had a birthday party for Evan.  I stayed the night at the hospital and Brian went home with Joshua.  The next day we discussed middle names via text message. It wasn't until I HAD to fill out the birth certificate in order for them to let me leave on the 31st that I finally conceded to the middle name.  (I love it now that it's his name, but I was a hard sell on Michael.  I think that was because I wanted something a little more unique, especially since Joshua has such an awesome middle name - Pierce.)  I checked out in the afternoon of the 31st and we spent New Year's Eve at home.

I'm gonna try to get some photos uploaded to this post later today. Or maybe tomorrow.  Check back for them.

Monday, January 9, 2012

The magic of Christmas

Last year, Christmas was fun.  This year, though, I'd have to say it was magical.  Two-year-olds enjoy it, but three-year-olds really get into it and understand it.  Joshua understood that Santa was going to come and bring gifts and fill his stocking.  He understood that reindeer, led by Rudolph, pull Santa's sleigh through the sky. He had so much fun picking out the Christmas tree and decorating it and the house. He loved driving around and looking at the lights on the houses around town.

Christmas through the eyes of a child is really Christmas.

Being as pregnant as I was, we didn't do as much as I wanted, but we did enjoy building a gingerbread house, making ornaments, baking and decorating cookies, and decorating the house inside and out.

We went up to Crest Ranch Christmas Tree Farm in Bonny Doon on December 7th to find our tree. I noticed one and Joshua liked it.  We thought we'd look around a little more, but Joshua had made up his mind that that was the tree we'd be getting and wouldn't walk away from it.  So, that was it.  And it was beautiful.  We put a whole bunch of lights on it, and Joshua decorated the bottom half with his ornaments and shatterproof balls, while Brian and I got the top half. We put garland and candy canes and tinsel on it and went way over the top and it was the best tree ever.

Brian and Joshua also put up lights and a snowman and penguins and candy canes on the exterior of the house.  Joshua had a great time taking the noses and scarves off the snowman and penguins. Over and over again.

We found a house around the block that had a pretty awesome light display that included a radio broadcast of music to which the lights were timed.  We had to go by and sit in front of that house every day for 10 minutes or so.

Christmas Eve, we had some friends over for dinner and then Joshua opened a gift of Scooby-Doo Christmas jammies, put out some cookies and milk for Santa and went to bed, no problem.

Christmas morning Joshua woke up around 8 (!!) and went into the living room to see what Santa had brought for him.  First thing he said was, "I told you!" when he saw his kitchen in the living room. He played with the kitchen for quite awhile, then moved onto some of the other things Santa brought which included a couple coloring books, Hungry Hungry Hippos, a Scooby-Doo DVD, some markers, some scissors, and some candy. I made breakfast while this was going on, which included Grandma's cinnamon rolls - the most delicious cinnamon rolls I've ever eaten.

After breakfast, we took our time opening presents.  At the beginning, we had to open and play with each toy for about 10 or 15 minutes before moving on. By the end, Joshua was moving quickly through the gifts, looking for more that were for him. This worked out fine though as we were a bit overwhelmed by the amount of presents, and so he had new things to play with for days.

After presents, we enjoyed naptime and then I made some dinner, which was rather semi-homemade and included a ham, stove top stuffing, costco mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, jarred gravy, and brown and serve rolls.  While not homemade, it was delicious.

And that was our Christmas.  So fun and so sad that it was over.

We took down the Christmas tree and the decorations on the 2nd. And now when we see lights or decorations on a house, Joshua notes that, "it's not Christmastime anymore." He's already planning on what to ask Santa for next year.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Due date!

Noticed my ticker and today is Evan's due date! He is 8 days old today.  Yay!

A good night

So, I plan to write about Christmas and Evan's birth, but thought I'd start with today and then go back, hopefully on Monday, to write about those things.

Last night was a pretty good night. I picked Joshua up from school and was told that he didn't nap - he had better things to do.  And I could tell that he was tired.  So, we came home and put on a Dora and waited for Anina to bring dinner over. We ate, got jammies on, and watched one more Dora before Joshua picked out books to read for bedtime. Brian got home in time for the end of book time and then Joshua and I listened to music and snuggled before kissing goodnight. He called twice but then was quiet.

I fed Evan at 10 and we too went to bed. And then he didn't wake till 1 at which time he ate and went right back to sleep until 4. And then he was a little fussy and didn't go back to sleep till almost 5, slept till 6, ate, and then slept till 8.

I remember Joshua crying a lot. A LOT. Like, for hours. And not sleeping. Joshua's lack of sleep put me in a total funk of sleep deprivation.  But, so far, Evan is different.  Everyone said he would be, and I just hoped for a better sleeper than Joshua. I can only hope that this keeps up.