The past few days have been drudgery. I think its the rain. Well, the rain mixed with some whacky hormones thanks to the return of fertility for me. You know how when women breastfeed exclusively they are supposed to have a respite from their periods? Yeah, those women aren't me. I breastfeed exclusively and I got: 6, 9, and 10 weeks, respectively. I had hoped for longer this time around, since I'm nursing TWO CHILDREN!!! But I suspect that having an infant who sleeps 12 hours at night is partly to blame. I calculated out the hours between nursing Amarys to sleep in the evening and nursing Riley for his early morning (read middle of the night) nursing, and I have about 6 to 8 hours between nursings at night.
It's okay, I'll take sleep over no periods, any day.
But PMS so shortly after giving birth plays havoc with my mood balance. I'm double dosing on my fish oil supplements but its still tough going, and the freaking RAIN doesn't help!
Its a bit strange to have my cycles return knowing that we're not planning any more babies, you know? Like a monthly reminder of no more babies. So sad. =(
But it feels right. 98.5% right today (daily fluctuations there). I like the balance of four kids, I like that we all fit in a minivan instead of a 15 passenger van, I like the bookended two older, gap in age, two younger, I like three older boys and one baby girl, and I like the thought that I can focus on raising the ones we have instead of surviving them while I am pregnant and living with a newborn. I mean, its great! We all have a good time and the kids love anticipating and welcoming and falling in love with new babies. But I'm TIRED! Not always the stellar parenting around here some days. If an accident happened we'd be totally happy, but we won't 'plan' for any more. It feels good! I've been giving away maternity clothes and packing up infant stuff Amarys outgrows.
A "fun" side effect of having my period is that my milk supply dips and rises along with my cycle. Tonight by bedtime I had NO milk. Riley complained when I put him to bed that "No milk inside dere!" and Amarys was SO tired but wailing because she was hungry. So I pulled out a bag of frozen breastmilk I had in the freezer and gave it to her in a bottle. She took a few ounces and then watched t.v. with us for awhile (she has a crush on Dr. Reed from Criminal Minds...oops, no that's ME), and then drifted blissfully off to sleep. That was a first, giving a bottle to one of my infants! My babies have been given (or offered: Riley was one of those abject bottle refusal kids) bottles of pumped milk by daddy and gramma and nana and auntie, but not by me. Why would I ever need to do that? But Little Miss Fussy Pants wails so much that sometimes I'll do whatever it takes. I'm sure glad I had that milk in the freezer for just such an occasion of desperation (otherwise she would have gone hungry and we would have shaved a few years off the end of our lives from the screaming). By tomorrow or the next day, my supply will be back up again (judging by my body's behavior through a collective total of 47 months of lactating, and counting). I took a photo. I'll post it if you promise not to use it against me.
She's so sweet. She's been tossing out the smiles more often, she sucks on her fists like they are candy, she holds her head up all bright eyed and smart, and she has more alert hours in the day now. She has also reduced the Fussy Pants and is a lot calmer now. LMFP still lives in my house, she's just screaming less often. Gosh, I love falling in love with a baby. It sure is arresting whenever they smile, babble, kick their legs, look around, sleep, breathe, poop, fart, and grunt =)
I love her, I love her, I love her.....
I bought her a bathing suit. It is so cute. She might look big in the photo (especially next to Mr Teensy, a.k.a. Bennett) but she seems pretty small to us. When you routinely give birth to kids in the 4000-4500 gram range, your definition of small is a bit different than average! Plus my boys gained weight like it was going out of style, but Amarys is more normal as far as following the growth curve.
She's sick. It's so hard when babies are sick so young! She has a runny nose and a cough. No fever.
Speaking of which, I keep meaning to mention that I have been SO blessed this winter as far as illness is concerned; my kids were sick a few times while I was pregnant and I didn't get sick. Then right before I went into labour I had a touch of a fever for ONE day, and felt better almost immediately. Then Riley got a slight fever for a day or two. Then Ayden was killer sick. Then my mom. Then Matthew. Then BRENT, who NEVER gets sick. Fortunately I had lots of antibodies in my milk and Amarys escaped that one altogether. Several times since then colds have run the cycle in my family and I've not gotten sick. This NEVER HAPPENS! And I'm so utterly grateful, since anything that laid me low would mean certain death to the chaotic vortex that is barely contained organization in my house. You know what I'm talking about: mom's out of commission so the baby eats chocolate for breakfast and the dog helps himself to the contents of the diaper pail...
We have been eating pretty routinely at 7 pm around here, because there are just so many little needs that crop up after 4 o'clock. "Me hab to go pee!" "Can I have..." "Mom, I need to read to you for my homework," "Can you help me find..." "Waaaah! Waaaaah!" for diaper changes, nursing, feeling tired, and being lonely. Plus I remember a load of wash that needs to go from the washer to the dryer, someone spills a glass of water on the floor, the dog scrabbles at the back door either to go out or come in, someone drops a bowl and it shatters on the floor, "Me hab to go poop!" The dog is sniffing around the bag of flour on the floor so I surmise I better put it in the cupboard, and then I notice a rotten onion in the cupboard so I pick it up to put in the compost bucket, and then I notice the compost bucket is full so I take it out (or send it out with a small boy) to the backyard and dump it in the bin, then I wash my hands and realize the dishwasher needs emptying and filling to make space on the counter for chopping and prep work....
It's a miracle we eat at all.
Once I was a feminist....now I don't have time to pee....and I spend all my days, all day long (and part of the wee hours of the morning) feeding people. And gosh darn if I don't love it. [and I'm still a feminist. Just a feminist breeder...or in this case, a feminist feeder...]