Saturday, June 30, 2007

The End of A Beautiful Relationship

**Warning: Images of Breastfeeding Babies Ahead!!**

I am no longer a nursing mother.

It feels so weird to say that. I've been either pregnant or nursing for going on 6 years. My children have relied on my own body for their nourishment longer than I ever thought was possible.

You might can say that I am having a bit of regret about weaning Jayce completely. I thought I was ready, but maybe I wasn't. Just look at my pro and con list:

-no more night nursing!!!
-no more nursing bras!!!
-no more having a toddler paw at my shirt!!!
-no more having to watch my diet and be paranoid that he's getting something that he has an allergy or intolerance to!

-no more nursing conversations like "Nurse?" "Do you need to nurse now, Jayce?" "Need nurse!" "Let's go cuddle and nurse then" "OKAY!" and later adding "mmmm" "Is mommy's milk good, Jayce?"
-no more ways to get a 2 year old back to sleep fast. Cause we've nightweaned three times before and its never put a stop to the nightwakings.
-no more nursing after a hurt boo-boo or to quell a tantrum.
-no more confidence that Jayce is getting proper nutrition in his diet.
-no more nursing on the couch in the morning while watching The Wiggles on Playhouse Disney.

I'm definitely going to miss it. So, you ask... why on earth did I wean him again? Especially when I believe whole-heartedly in child-led weaning?

I don't know. I was feeling "done". Maybe because I nursed Jaina until she was 26 months as well and I wanted to keep things fair? Naw, that's not a really good reason to do anything. Each child is its own individual and has individual needs.

I had very concrete reasons for weaning Jaina. She asked every 5 minutes and wanted to stay attached for the better part of an hour. I was getting thrush again and couldn't deal with that nightmare. We were leaving for our Weddingmoon shortly and were going to be gone a week, but I didn't want her to associate not nursing with Mommy and Daddy getting married. We wanted to try to have another baby and I pretty much knew that my ovulation would not be regular enough to chart if we had nursing still in the mix. And although I think that tandem nursing can be an awesome continuation of a nursing relationship, I didn't have a desire to try it myself.

None of those reasons apply to Jayce. No kidless vacation this year. No new baby to try for (maybe next summer!).

Weaning has been in my mind for a few months now. I wondered if Jayce would eat better if he didn't nurse so much. I wondered if my diet was effecting him in some way through my breastmilk. I wondered if sleeping through the night would actually come if we weaned completely. (um, its been 6 nights and I'm still waiting on that one!)

The whole weaning process started on Tuesday, June 26th. I got soooo sick that day. I am not sure if it was food poisoning, a virus, or just my temperamental intestinal condition, but whatever it was, it knocked me for a loop. I couldn't keep anything down and just the thought of drinking would make me gag. And for some reason, my milk supply just goes belly up when I get dehydrated. It had happened once before and poor Jayce was so upset trying to nurse on an near-empty breast. So, I didn't nurse him at all on Tuesday, but it wasn't from lack of trying. He'd latch on and then then give up soon after and just ask for juice. On Wednesday, since it had already been almost 24 hours since nursing, I just decided that the opportunity had presented its self and that we were done.

As far as Jayce is concerned, he is handling it pretty well. I mean, he's not jumping for joy or anything, but he's accepted it with few tantrums. During the day he's fine when I tell him "Mommy's milk is all gone!" but its the middle of the night that's really hurting him. He's tired, upset, and just wants to nurse. When I say, "No nurse, Jayce... let's cuddle" he just freaks out. He doesn't want me to hold him, he doesn't want me to sing to him or comfort him in any other way. I just have to put him back in his crib, turn his Wiggles lullaby cd on for him and walk out the door. He calms down by himself in a few minutes and then sleeps the rest of the night.

But its hard. Its so hard. He has a need in the middle of the night that I am refusing to supply. But I also know that breastfeeding a child is a give and take relationship that both parties have to be 100% happy with. Even if I had not taken the plunge and stopped our nursing sessions, there was no way in the world that I would have continued to nurse him at night. Its just too exhausting and overwhelming. I've been doing it for 26 months and that is way long enough, in my opinion.

I feel like "what's done is done" and I just need to move on now. Hopefully we will look back on this time with good memories and not feelings of regret.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Swing Time

There are so many parks in our little town. One of them is even less than 5 minutes from our house. However, in the heat of the summer, there is only one park to go to. The only park that has shady trees!

Although the kids were happy when these pictures were taken, I have to recount a bad experience I had at this park.

Everyone knows there is kind of a "Eastside" vs "Westside" rivalry here in my town. Living on the "Eastside" has come to mean having "old money" and living on the "Westside" means you have new money. So, you may ask... where do people that don't have any money live? Everywhere else. LOL!

Now for the disclaimer... yes, I know that its wrong to judge someone for where they, I'm just stating the general consensus that I've seen many moms to agree with. I could personally care less where someone lives!

So, anyway, I was at the park and walked up to a group of moms that were pushing their kids in the swings. One mom was particularly friendly. The other two were polite, but not too outgoing. When it was found out that my children did NOT attend their children's Eastside preschool, the conversation with me was dropped. At first I thought it was just my imagination, but seriously... all 5 moms in the park got up and walked out with their kids! They didn't leave, though. Instead they congregated by themselves in the picnic shelter part of the park. Except that they weren't eating lunch. Weird.

So, as I'm walking out, the only mom that spoke to me hardly at all decided to invite us to stay for lunch with them. They were having it catered. Who the hell caters lunch in from a restaurant? Sorry, but I don't have any "old money" so I politely refused and went on my merry way.

And I am happy to live in the "Northwest Side", which doesn't even have a side :P

Monday, June 25, 2007

UGH!!! Come on Picasa!

Blogger does NOT like to put my Picasa pictures up. Or Picasa does not like to upload my pictures to blogger! Either way, it makes me mad!

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Jayce's Turn

My Little Pookie Pie
Mommy's Snuggle Puppy
Jaycie the Cuddle Bunny

Yeah, I would have never guessed that I would be calling my son any of that. I thought boys had nicknames of "Sport" and "Little Man" and "Train Wrecker". I never knew that little boys could be so cuddly!

Jayce's favorite thing to do currently is to bring me his blanket (the quilted comforter from his crib set), look up at me with his big hazel eyes and say, "Cuddle? Cuddle?" meaning he wants me to pick him up, sit down on the couch, place him by my side with my arms around him, so he can lay his head against my chest and hold my hand. It just makes me melt! Well, it does the times that I am able to drop everything and do that. Sometimes he picks really inopportune times to want to cuddle.

He's getting so big! And when I say "big" I mean "old". He's not a very big toddler. He's definitely gotten taller, but I would never describe him as tall. As soon as I get back from his Well Baby Check-up in August, I'll let you know his stats.

I'll just look at him on the floor playing trucks and it will strike me that he's a 2 year old little boy now! Not a baby anymore. A "big boy". Soon we'll potty train and move him from his crib. He'll finish weaning (we just started a couple weeks ago) and hopefully stop waking up at night (fingers crossed).

Some of his favorite toys are:

Little Touch Leappad
Jaina's My First Leappad
Jaina's Barbie Laptop
his Geotrax set
his Fisher Price Animal Train
his Thomas pull train

He likes to watch:

James and the Red Balloon (thomas)
Dora the Explorer
Go, Diego, Go!
Blue's Clues

Blue's Clues is his latest obsession. I've learned that he'll latch onto something new every few weeks. He doesn't even watch the whole show. He really just likes the theme song. (Either show with Joe or Steve is fine).

The screaming has gotten better. Much much better. Not the intensity, by any means. When he still lets one loose, you'd better not be around if you value your hearing. But the frequency has improved greatly. He still gets mad, but I've learned that its usually correlated to his lack of sleep. When he gets tired, he screams.

Things he gets into at the new house:

Dishwasher (open, close, turn on, turn off)
Toilets (flush, flush, flush)
Jacuzzi tub (hot water turned on all the way, buttons pushed)
Bathroom sink (uses the stepstool to reach the handles)
Kitchen drawers (open all the way, take stuff out, slam them shut)
Kitchen cabinets (slam, slam, slam)

I will not tell you the nickname Brian has chosen for Jayce. If you are a close friend, I'm sure you've already heard it!

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

My Jaina

So often I just ramble on about activities we do. I seldom stop to write about my kids and what they are going through individually.

Currently, Jaina is 5 years and 3 weeks old. Oh, wow... what can I say about her? She goes from being the light of my life one minute to the source of my pounding headache the next! Aren't all kids like that, though?

She is really struggling with independence. She wants to do things herself like pick out her clothes, help me cook dinner, make decisions on her own. Yet the preschooler in her still wants help with wiping after the potty and someone to lay down with her at night.

Its horrible, but the things that she says that bothers me the most are things that come straight from my mouth. Like if I ask her to pick up her barbies she says, "I said NO! Not right now! Can't you see I'm busy? IN a MINUTE!" Eek. She took the words right out of my mouth.

I really need to watch my tone with her. For some reason, I just don't have much patience for her. I'm really setting a bad example. She even tells me this, "Mom," she asks quietly, "Why didn't you ask me nicely?" Its sad when your 5 year old knows how to talk better than you do.

I love how creative she is, not only with artwork, but with her pretend play. She has so much imagination. She is going to ask Santa for three things this Christmas... a Disney Princess TV, a scooter, and some real fairy wings. And she does mean real fairy wings. So she can fly. And grant wishes. See, to her, Santa is magic. And if Santa is magic, then he can do anything, like teach the elves how to make magic fairy wings for her.

She's also going to marry Mr. Johnny, the donut man that works at the local Krispy Kreme. She's already made him a picture and a card with XOXOXO on it. She tells everyone that she is going to be a donut man's wife when she grows up. He thinks she is adorable :)

Her favorite things right now are 1. Littlest pet shop 2. Barbies 3. Stuffed animals and 4. playing in water (sprinklers or baby pool). I wish I could get her swim lessons this summer, but alas, no time or money.

Well, Jayce is up, so my reflection time is over. I'll talk about him next time :)

Friday, June 08, 2007

I Love to Play in the Dirt

Jaina received a plastic gardening set for her birthday a few weeks ago that she's been dying to try out! (The Powell family ROCKS!) She didn't understand why we had to wait to move into the new house for it. "But Momma!" she said, "We'll plant the seeds now and just take them with us when we move!" I finally talked her into planting some unpopped popcorn kernels (so we could grow a popcorn tree, just like the song says) and that satisfied her until we moved.

We hadn't even been in the new house a week before she remembered her gardening kit. I purchased some marigold 6-packs from Walmart that didn't look completely dead (like everything else they had there) and we got to work. She first put on her "bug shirt" that she made the last week of preschool at Covenant. Then she found her khaki pants so her knees wouldn't get muddy. If only she had a floppy straw hat, her ensamble would have been complete!

As I dug the holes for the plants, she dug the holes for the marigold seeds. Jayce even got in on some of the action by throwing mulch onto the driveway with the metal spade, which he then discovered made a really cool noise when you drag it across concrete. Thanks, Jayce. :)

And our gardening wasn't complete until we watered our plants, heavily I might add, with the new garden hose. Again, Jayce did his part by dumping out the water from the watering can on the hot driveway. It must have been thirsty, too!

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Moving, Part II

And here comes the truck! Brian pulled up not long after I had taken the kids over to the new house. I was pretty impressed with how fast the guys got the fridge, washer, and dryer loaded. And that big huge truck? Well, funny thing is that we filled it up! I guess I do have a lot of crap stored everywhere!

In normal moving fashion, everyone just started piling boxes everywhere. They mainly got put in our garage (and I am sad to say that they are still there a week later and poor Brian can't park in his own garage!) and in our dining room. Now, since we are young and poor and have absolutely no need for a dining room table at the moment, we have decided to make the dining room a PLAYROOM instead :) Boy its been nice being able to just throw random toys back in there and tell them to "stay!"

The first night was a little rough on Jayce. He woke up 4 times and each time, asked to go "bye bye home". I tried to explain that this *was* his new home, but he's only 2, so I doubt he understood. He's since done much better this week. He loves having his own room to play with his trains. And he's loving these hardwood floors to put his cars on!

Two rooms are pretty much "done" aka meaning unpacked and fairly clean.The Master bedroom (which Jaina could not understand why we got such a large bedroom and she didn't) and the kitchen. I'll probably wait to paint and decorate later this summer or this fall when finances are a little less strapped.

Woo Hoo! My kitchen is clean and everything is in its place! I'd be lying if I said it looked that way right this second, though.

Luckily we got all the furniture moved into the garage before it started raining. South Carolina got some much needed rain this past weekend.

Monday, June 04, 2007

We've moved! (part 1)

It all started with a couple of boxes.

That turned into about 50, give or take, boxes. Most friends had advised me that it was never too soon to pack. However, I found that when I went to go pack something, inevitably, I'd need to use it the next day. And come on... everyone that knows me knows that Procrastination is my middle name. So, Brian and I really didn't start packing boxes until 4 days before closing.

We closed simultaneously on both houses Thursday, May 31st at 2:00 PM. Thanks to the wonderfulness that is Dr. McCoy, we started moving boxes immediately after getting home. We took 3 cars and made 3 trips. What we would have done without my mother's truck, I don't know. And since it belonged to my late Grandparents, I'll go ahead and thank them, too! :)

Then Friday came. BIG MOVING DAY! We had some wonderful friends and neighbors that took time after work to help us move. Big props to Rob, Adam, Michael, Matthew, Thad, and Garrett (or G-Money, as my husband likes to call him) for taking pity on us and spending a quality Friday night moving appliances when they could have been at Terry's drinking. I told them that not only did they get good beer and pizza (Double IPA and Papa John's!) but they also are racking up the Karma points in a big way.

I had called around the week before pricing moving trucks. Brian kept insisting that when *he* moved like 10 years ago, that truck rental places did NOT charge by the mile. Well, buddy, times have changed. Penske ended up having the best deal and were the nicest on the phone, so we went with them. I went with Brian to pick it up. We had reserved a 22 ft. However, the lady was nice enough to find us a 26 ft for the same price.

I have since learned how big a 26 ft truck really is. Humongous doesn't even begin to describe it. Gargantuan, maybe. It would have suited us fine if we were moving a mansion or something. Brian just looked at it and said, "Well, I guess we won't have to stack stuff!"

Jaina immediately had to get into the back of the truck and do a little dance for us. It was a huge stage for her to perform on.

Brian did a great job driving that thing. Maybe computers really isn't his calling after all? There was only one little "ooops" when he was backing up into our driveway.

All of our streets are kinda curved, as to allow for water drainage. Not so good when you bottom the truck out and dig a metal part into the street. Whoops! Thank goodness we are moving, right? Wait, did anybody really see us do that?

Brian carefully brainstormed and mentally organized where each piece of furniture was going to go in the truck. Can't you tell?

Well, there goes our bed. Thank goodness we remembered those bed screws so we could put the bed *back together* in the new house. Oh, wait... that didn't happen.

Stay tuned for part 2.