Tuesday, January 21, 2014

end of maternity leave

so true...except now I have added scrubs back into my wardrobe (ie. work pjs)

We all survived... I am back at work! Maternity leave is over. And probably my last maternity leave ever. I had an extremely successful weekend back at work. I was afraid I would have forgotten everything having had 3 months off. But I didn't. It was like riding a bike. I even remembered my passwords! Matt did wonderfully well with the kids, of course. Daytime daddy fun days while I slept, and waking up with Henry all by himself throughout the night while I was working. People at work asked me if I was sad to be back, or missed my kids. Honestly... I was just fine. I was happy to be back at work. An excuse to leave the house, have adult conversation, feel like I am contributing a little more to the community....not to mention a full paycheck will be nice. I also enjoy my job as a nurse, so that's a good feeling. I knew Matt had it under control- with some help from grandparents too. I am not really cut out to be a stay at home mom. That job is much harder than going to work. So now our lives feel a little more balanced and back to normal. It will be more chaotic and I will miss spending family time on the weekends, but we are back to reality now.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

sleep and lack there of.

Is it ok that all of my posts in 2014 are about coffee? Yeah, that's just how life is right now. I feel like I could drink coffee all day long, and still want more. The lack of sleep for matt, henry and I sucks. We are reminded of why we don't care for this baby stage, and how eager we are to start sleep training. We are trying to rack our brains as to what exactly we did with Cora because it worked beautifully.

The huge difference is that when Cora was born I had Matt quit his job to help with her. She was so difficult! Soon after her birth I graduated college, took maternity leave and matt was on summer break from school. So we had her first 3 months with both of us at home to support one another. I eventually went back to work and matt went back to school but we had each other. He was such an incredible stay-at-home and school-fulltime dad, we all loved it and I believe Cora thrived with our routines and lower stress levels.

Now, I am on maternity leave but matt works and goes to school fulltime. He isn't around to help me out this time around during the week. Which was inevitable...most people work, but it is more challenging for all of us. Matt also has a ton on his plate- so I feel for him as well. I go back to work in about a week... so things will only get trickier. It is imperative that Henry starts sleeping! Henry doesn't understand for some reason though when I tell him this.

But why does he insist on getting up every 2 hours at night?! Perhaps he is going through a growth spurt? Is it his 2 month shots? He maybe is just that hungry? Maybe he is hot? cold? Maybe he hates the swaddle? Maybe his belly hurts, too much gas? not enough gas? ahhh... being a parent is exhausting! So my "sleep training" google searches have started, I am scouring my stack of baby-sleeping reference books, and reading through my previous posts on cora's spud months of development. There must be a solution. Or maybe he just will grow out of it.

If my sleep deprived memory serves me right,

with Cora:
0-3 months: sleep was struggle, she could not be put down, she fought the swaddle every nap and night, screamed at us at all hours. She slept on our chests or bouncy chair. Matt and I took "shifts"- matt was up through the whole night with her while I slept, and I had her in the morning while he slept.

3-4 months: transitioned to an inclined mattress in her crib, slept maybe a 5 hour stretch? Started a modified babywise/cry it out method

4 months: stopped breastfeeding, started on rice cereal...slept a 7-8 hour stretch at night still swaddled, using cry it out method.

5 months: started sleeping 11-13 hr stretch at night with no swaddle

5 months- 20 months (now): sleeps beautifully about 13 hrs every night. she goes to bed laughing with us and wakes up sweetly talking to her animal friends.

with Henry:
0-2 months: sleep was not such a struggle, swaddled. Nap about 1-2 hours throughout day/night. Able to be put down flat in his bassinet. However cried a lot with gas/belly pains and constantly walking/burping/jiggling.

2 months- 2.5 months (ie. now): stopped breastfeeding, only formula. sleeps for a 3-5 hour stretch, then cries/feeds every 2 hours throughout night.

I guess we need to be patient. It's no wonder that we started thoroughly enjoying Cora when she was 4 months old- no more silent reflux, no breastfeeding, no sleep deprivation, smiling and laughing babe.... surprise, surprise. Things will get easier. Until then, more coffee.

Monday, January 6, 2014

mom of two, in 2014.

Hello 2014! Finally I feel like a mom of two. The kids and I got all winter-geared-up... wait... have you guys seen this clip from portlandia? Hilarious.

Anyways... I felt like that, we were all geared up, cora in the bob stroller, henry in the boba carrier and we walked to starbucks. It was like heaven to me, regardless of the 27 degree weather...we did it. The kids and I... alone... the three of us... and coffee.
Thank goodness for iphone photos and instagram, it's about the only way I have been able to document our lives in the past several months. No time for blogging, no time to process our new lives, and very little time to sleep. It has been a whirlwind. I have less than 2 weeks left of maternity leave, and it feels like a whole lifetime has just flown by.