Thursday, 31 July 2008

This is not my beautiful wife...

more cat pictures

These are not my cats, this is not my oriental rug, not my green laser pointer either, but it all could be. I'm offically freaked out!

Because I changed the name of the blog I can now also say (to tie in with the title of the post a bit more) that I'm really enjoying the new track by The BPA featuring David Byrne.

Wednesday, 23 July 2008

self starting

Originally uploaded by Crit Chicken
Here's a pic of someone amusing himself, drawing a picture. On its completion he said "can you get this hung in the art gallery, mum? person X got their pictures in the art gallery". All I could do was sigh heavily, as I do at the mention of the names of the "friend"...D has a really good friend, but they're not in the same class this year. His mum and i are going to agitate to have them reunited next year. He claims his new teacher is good, but I haven't met her yet, as D was at his dad's untik today, and the Beloved dropped him at school and my mum picked him up while I was at the physio....

In Erik news, we finally caved and bought him a dummy ("pacifier" for the US readers). It seems to help him sleep when he's overtired or is colicky. One of the clinic nurses had said that sucking can help move gut problems along, but she didn't specifically mention dummies.. Still, if it gets him some sleep and us a break it's OK. I still feel bad about it. I am a dummy nazi. I refer to it as 'the plug', and try to save it for emergencies as a last resort. See, I'm still justifying it. I really hate them. He gets this kind of dead look in his eyes when he's sucking it, just before he passes out. I want him to find his thumb and be done with it. I sucked my thumb for years, and it was great, very comforting. I'd rather have him suck something warm and alive than a piece of silicone. Sigh I guess I'm just lacking in confidence with my parenting right now. It will get better (my latest mantra).

Tuesday, 22 July 2008

It's not all bad...

Originally uploaded by Crit Chicken
I love this photo from the weekend, it reminds me that things are actually going well. Since the colic diagnosis and feeding less things are going much better, Erik is much more settled, and so we are much happier parents. The beloved and D went out and bought me a lot if flowers last week too - lillies, roses, tulips, the house is colourful, if messy. I'm hoping that E will start sleeping in his bassinette a bit more soon so that I have two hands to clean with!

As usual there are more baby photos at Flickr...Oh yeah, and I changed the blog name.

Friday, 18 July 2008

My day

Originally uploaded by Crit Chicken
Well, actually not quite treu of tday, but the last week or so...erik hit 6 weeks with force. he is a screamer. we took him to the clinic where the nurse said 'it sounds like colic, try feeding him a bit less'. needless to say he slept through the visit like a charm and didn't show off his magnificent lung power. I've been feeding him less, though the mammaries aren't impressed, and i'm wondering about the wisdom of it at the 6-8 week appetite increase. the last 2days have been easier - much less screaming, only at cactus hour (now). hoping for continued improvement, and now off to feed!

pls excuse tyops, this is all one handed while holding e in the sling....

Monday, 7 July 2008

Back to my usual shallow posts...

Originally uploaded by Crit Chicken
Here is D'Arcy showing off his light sabre talents. The sabre in question was his 'prize' for sleeping on his own for 3 weeks running, including when the beloved and I disappeared in the middle of the night, leaving my mum to hold down the fort, while we had a baby. I've told him that the regular supply of Pokemon cards is now at an end, and he seems cool with that. I've also told him that there is a new bed in the offing - a loft style thing with a desk underneath and drawer-steps instead of a ladder. I'm hoping that the shop where we saw them still has them. It'll free up some space in his (tiny) bedroom.

Erik is becoming a bit of a screamer, which is trying us somewhat, but as long as we get enough sleep between us we should manage to avoid selling him to the white-slavers. He's eating like a champion and putting on weight. We took him to the baby clinic for a weigh in today and he'd gained something like 700g in 2 weeks. As I was feeding him there the nurse looked at the milk gushing out of me when he pulled away at one point, and said "it's a good thing the last lady who was here can't see that!" she'd had supply problems apparently. Luckily for me and my boys that hasn't been the case. I have photos of D'Arcy at about 5 months where he's almost unrecognisable as the same child, he's so fat!

Thursday, 3 July 2008

Grieving for the unborn child

Other people have blogged about this phenomenon in the past, women in my life - friends and familly - have struggled with it, or discussed it, strangers in the parents' room at the shopping mall have raised it. Now it's my turn, I guess.

The thought really struck me as I was in the shower one morning recently: My days of being pregnant are over. I won't be having any more babies. This makes me very sad. Don't get me wrong here, I love my boys, they bring joy into my life every day. For a long time I thought I would have no children at all, not necessarily because I didn't want to, but because I didn't feel like I was ready, or that my relationship was ready. Then at 31 things changed and we decided to have a child, so D'Arcy arrived in the world. That was it, we said. No more children. One is enough. It was for my (now ex) husband, but after some time I wanted to do it again, only not with him.

It's a funny thing I suppose, but I'm not really cut out to be a mother in some ways. My emotional state is fragile at the best of times, and I don't have endless patience. This last pregnancy at 38 was really tough on me, physically and emotionally, and even before I was pregnant I was saying - this will be the last one. 38 is my upper age limit for child bearing. But almost as soon as Erik was born, I was thinking "hey that wasn't so bad, I could do this again". (His birth was so easy in comparison to D'Arcy's). I am surrounded by older women giving birth. In the mothers' group I went to when D'Arcy was tiny I was the youngest at 31. The oldest woman of the 4 was 37, and she went on to have another child at 39. The others were 36 and 34. In D'Arcy's class at school is a girl who lived in our street when D'Arcy was small. She is 6 weeks older than he is. Her mum had her second baby a week and a half after Erik was born, and she is my age. One of the teachers at school has a surprise pregnancy at 41, and another parent just gave birth at 43. However, I just don't think I'm up for it.

Of course the underlying thing here is that I have sons. I have no daughter. I feel the need to grieve the unborn daughter that will now never be. She even has a name, but I can't tell you because it makes me cry too much. It's the name we would have given Erik, had he been that girl. But he isn't. He's my beautiful boy, my Teeny Little Super Guy. My last child. I don't know why I suddenly want a daughter so much (perhaps because I don't have one?) because when D'Arcy was born, I was relieved that he was a boy, that he didn't have to go through the hell that girls do, especially modern girls. And I didn't have to go through the whole pink/shiny/frilly nightmare that may have been the end of me. Instead I have a gentle, caring, thinking boy. Probably two.

It's true about the strangers in the parents' room. Yesterday we were in there changing and feeding Erik, and struck up the usual conversation with another mother there.

Her: That looks like a new baby
Me: He's 4 weeks today? How old is your daughter?
Her: She's 5 months...they grow so fast don't they? This is my last baby so I feel like I have to hold her as much as I can while I still can. Keep them close.
Me: (surprised look). Definitely.

I am lucky. I have not suffered through miscarriages, or had to terminate pregnancies. I have been able to conceive when I wanted to, reasonably efficiently. Others are not so lucky. I have close friends who have undergone fertility treatment in order to conceive a much wanted child, others unsuccessfully. I get to choose. It's a powerful and important decision, but I get to make it.

New Cardi

Originally uploaded by Crit Chicken
Here is the boy in his wonderful new cardi, as made by Michelle. Astute or regular readers of this blog will know that I used to live next door to Michelle and her mister before I moved to this house. I lost touch with them when she and the mister also moved, to a suburb close by, coincidentally. Even better, I ran across her again when she commented on Ampersand Duck's blog. We always say it's a small town, but it's also a small blogosphere apparently. Thank you for this lovely gift Michelle!

In other news the baby is sleeping right now (finally!), so this is all happening one-handed. Lovely Ampersand Duck went to Garth Nix's book launch and picked up a copy of his latest, Superior Saturday. My association with Garth goes way back - his family were good friends with my best friend's family, so we did stuff with them sometimes, and as an 8 year old I had a HUGE crush on his youngest brother. Thank you Ms Duck!

D'Arcy's wonderful new teacher is leaving at the end of the week, and we don't know who will replace her. We're getting a bit pissed off with the constant personnel changes, particularly for this group of kids, who were initially placed with the first wonderful teacher for very real reasons. So that will be three teachers in three terms, which is too mny in my book.

The beloved is trying to organise getting his aged mother over here, which is proving to be a headache for all kinds of reasons, not least that she has a cataract operation that needs to be scheduled.

My neck hurts like buggery from having to hold Erik in the sling so he'll sleep for a decent amount of time. Only occasionally will he skeep if I put him in the pram, or the bed or the bassinette - and even in the sling he wakes up a bit every 20 mins or so and needs me to walk around to put him back to sleep.

That's about it for now.