Category Archives: Motherhood

The Baby Cage

Last week, I gave in and bought Henry a baby cage…

It is actually a little fenced hexagon, but I can’t help but think of it as a little cage for my baby.  We put squishy tiles on the floor, decked it out with a baby gym, and placed it near the sliding glass doors.  Comfy, fun, and sunny.

I decided to buy the baby cage because every time I sit on the floor with Henry, Dana the dog wants to play with us.  She nuzzles her wet doggy nose in my face and paws me with her too-long nails.  I don’t think she’d ever hurt Henry on purpose, but she weighs 45 pounds to Henry’s 15 pounds.  Not a fair fight.

I like that Henry has a place to play on the floor.  He wiggles and coos at the ceiling.  Plus, he’s recently gotten very good at rolling over from his back to his belly… and then screaming in frustration because he can’t flip back over.

I just wonder, how long will Henry tolerate his baby cage?  And when he needs more room to roam, what do we do about the dog?

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Bon Voyage! How to Travel with Baby

Henry, my husband, and I are preparing to take a trip across the country.  Oh, boy!  The anxiety is filling me, just thinking about it…

I’ve scavenged the web looking for sites to give me advice on travelling with at little one.  Here’s what I’ve found:

The Baby Center gives advice on travelling with a newborn to eight-month-old.

The TSA has info on plane travel with babies, including videos.

This is another fun site dedicated to travelling with children.  They even have packing lists!

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Motherhood is…

Motherhood is…
Catching my husband’s cold and putting my faith in my breastmilk. That it will protect my baby from this mucous mess. It is washing my hands feverishly every five minutes to slay the wicked germs crawling all over my skin. It is realizing, with a little squeaky cough and a sniffle, my baby’s got it, too. My heart aches with the unfairness of it all. He must be thinking, ” So this is life, huh?”

Motherhood is…
Rocking my crying fifteen pound bundle as he kicks and wiggles in his discomfort. I rock, stand and bounce, although I haven’t even the energy to pick up a toothbrush. I lie down, still jiggling my sick munchkin. He falls asleep tucked in the crook of my elbow, his head on my arm. I stifle my coughs and my sneezes. He burrows deeper into the cave-like cradle of my arms. My limbs begin to fall asleep. I realize I have to pee. But it can all wait. The world is on hold. My discomfort disrobed, for the love of my babe.

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Taking one for the team or Thank you breastmilk

Spencer came down with a cold on Monday.  By Thursday, he was completely couch-bound, the “wig wag” of Dana’s dog tail on his leg, too painful to tolerate.  On Friday night, it was my turn…

We’re both terrified of Henry getting sick.  Spencer didn’t touch the baby or get even close to him for two days.  For me, that’s not an option.

Thank goodness for the grace and wisdom of mother nature, because miraculously, Henry hasn’t gotten sick…yet.  When I get sick before Henry, my body makes the antibodies for whatever virus I have, and prepares them in an elixir that contains everything a baby needs nutritionally for the first six months of life.  Thank you, breastmilk, for keeping my baby healthy to the chagrin of the germs floating in the air.

 

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What is it I’m forgetting? Oh, yeah…Sleep…

So, sleep training was a FAIL.  We plan to try again this Friday.

The night has been going like this:

7:00 pm Put Henry to bed

10:30 pm Henry wakes up and sleeps beside me in my bed…

The rest of the night is restless.  Henry wiggles his little body while I rest my drowzy head on my arm, my neck aching from the strain.  Every few hours I feed him when he starts to cry.  I know I must sleep at some point because I am startled awake several times during the night with the fear that I’ve steamrolled him.

7:00 am We wake up.  I see my smiling happy, “morning-person” baby.  Somehow, this little grin, gives me the energy to get through the day.

Tomorrow night, I swear, will be the last night of this sleepless insanity.

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Fur Babies

Before Henry was born, my two cats and dog were my babies.  My animals and I would snuggle under the covers.  I’d take Dana dog to the dog park every day.  I’d roll around with them on the floor.  I even took pride in grooming them.  Mostly, I was more forgiving of their…um, shortcomings.

For years, we’ve had to feed them all in separate rooms…four times a day.  Cleo, the cat, eats her meals in my bedroom.  Yesterday morning, I awoke to the sound of Cleo puking on the bedroom floor.  I was startled, however, by the awful smell.  Surely, Cleo’s vomit couldn’t smell to awful?  I noticed the laundry basket was on its side.  I thought, “No, way.  My little princess couldn’t have…”  A sniff confirmed the truth.  Cleo had left a sock incrusted pile of poop in my laundry basket.  Hiss!

Here’s Cleo playing in a shopping bag (not said laundry basket.)

So, I cleaned up the poop and the barf, started the washing machine, got ready to jump back into bed.  But guess what?  Ote, cat number two, had done a number two on my pillow…

I change umpteen diapers a day, pick up Dana dog poop, scoop the litter box…but this is just more crap than a mama can handle!

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Mommy Group Mean Girls

This morning, Henry napped while I made turkey chili (yummy).  I was so proud of myself for being productive, set the slow cooker to low, and anticipated coming home from afternoon activities to a house smelling like… apparently nothing, because the crockpot wasn’t turned on. But I digress…

We started our afternoon fun with a trip to Cuddle Club at the Walnut Creek Library.  Mommies sang songs and we read a Rosemary Wells story to our babies.  I saw my friend, Meg, who is cheerful and always decked out in pearl earrings, despite wearing cozy jeans and a winter vest.  We shared anecdotes about our babes and sleep secrets (Henry is waking up every thirty minutes…ugh!  Explains my slow cooker malfunction and extreme pride in getting ANYTHING done today). Overall, a nice gathering with some mommies.

Our next stop was Day One Center, on Main St. for a Musical Play class.  When I arrived at Day One, mommies were busy chatting with one another.  They seemed friendly…

All of the mommies sat around in a circle on the floor, some with babies on the floor, some cuddling, some nursing.  And they all continued their chat with each other, seemingly unaware that a new couple, Henry and I, had joined the group.  Maybe they were busy, maybe they were as exhausted and delirious as I was, maybe they were just…mean girls, disguised as mothers!

Since nobody noticed me, I was free to unabashedly eavesdrop on their conversations.  Ashton’s mom was dressed in a DRESS and Tiffany earrings said over and over again, “I’ve GOT to BUY that!” Emma’s mom, in her skinny jeans, full make-up, and impeccable blow-out, raved about her daughter’s new jeans and sweater… to which Asher’s mom proffered her usual retort.  At least half of the mothers let their babies flail on the floor as they engaged in adult conversation with WAY too much enthusiasm, talking with their hands, showing off their gigantic, gaudy wedding rings.  Finally, the teacher arrived…yes, Henry and I sat, enjoying each others’ company
for fifteen minutes (despite my attempts to enter conversation…the tried and true, “Your baby is so cute! How old is he/she?” failed to produce any interaction).

When the teacher sang songs with the group, the mommies did participate, but many of them seemed reluctant.  When we did the “freeze dance,” mommies danced awkwardly and didn’t let loose like my giggle machine and me.  They seemed irked that they had to engage in this juvenile activity.  “Why are you here?” I wanted to scream!  When only three of the fifteen mommies played airplane with their babies on the floor, I noticed the mommies who weren’t participating, roll their eyes at each other!

After forty-five minutes of play, we sang the goodbye song.  I changed Henry’s diaper and left.  Now, I can’t help but wonder if I should go back next week.  Maybe the mothers were just so excited to see the familiar faces of the veterans, that I was forgotten.  It may be that next time we go to class, we will be welcomed, exchange banter about our children’s poopy diapers, our husbands, our dogs…  It seems like this is the way things go with women’s groups.  The newbies are hazed, by a seemingly unintentional slight.  Maybe these women are just mean girls…but no matter what, if I continue to see them that way, this group will not be fun for me or Henry.  I suppose I just have to go back next week to either confirm my suspicions or get to know some new friends…

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