Friday, July 29, 2016

Bennett at 3 months

Bennett turned 3 months old on Monday!

He's becoming such a fun baby, and laid back.  Laid back mainly because he's a second child.  That's what I think anyways.

He can do raspberries, and is such a drooler!  He soaks the front of his shirt.  He loves to talk, and while we were in Albuquerque his first full on belly laugh came out.  So now we spend lots of time trying to get him to laugh because it is such an amazing and beautiful noise.  He is starting to put himself on a schedule which is so amazing to me, because it seems so early for him to be on any type of "schedule".  For about a week now he's been sleeping from about 9pm to about 6am.  Even better when he does wake up he just wakes up and talks.  I'll hear him playing and talking in his crib.  He doesn't even cry.  Usually if he does cry it's because he is super tired.  He definitely has moments when he fights sleep and that's when his cries are the worst.  Thankfully when I find the right rock position he'll usually easily fall asleep.  He has an amazing smile and his face I feel is changing again.  When he is awake he is constantly moving.  He loves to kick his legs and flare his arms.  If we're holding him he likes to be upright to be looking around.  He does really good in the car and usually if he is upset the movement of the car calms him down.  Helena loves reading to him and tickle his toes and kiss his head.  She'll take his arm when he is laying down and "stretch" him.  He really enjoys laying on the play mat but doesn't really like sitting in the bumpo.  He's in size 3 month clothes although some brands are too tight.  And size 2 diapers.  Overall he's just so much fun.

Earlier this week I had decided to stop pumping.  I'm pumping so little but pumping every 3 hours.  Living my life in 3 hour increments has been exhausting.  And every time I try and get Bennett to latch he just screams.  It's been emotional and hard.  I know he can do it, but I feel too much time has passed for him to relatch.  I feel I'm ending the journey on a high note though, which is giving me closure.  He did latch yesterday, even if just for a few moments.  I tried and stepped out of what I normally do.  I took him into the bed with me, and basically laid over him and he did latch.  It's been a rough few days as I keep going back and forth between still pumping and trying to breastfeed, and stopping.  I desperately wanted that relationship with my son, but I'm thankful for the short journey that we did have.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Week in ABQ

my mom taking care of Bennett while I pump

hanging out

at the aquarium

The kiddos and I traveled to ABQ last week.  My good friend Tina and her family traveled to ABQ from Florida to meet her sister-in-laws baby...Bennett and Olivia are a little more than a month apart!  So I took the opportunity to go up and see her and her family.  I was so super anxious about this trip.  Little people need so much stuff!  Overall the kids did great, and thankfully Bennett does wonderfully in the car!  I wish I had taken more pictures.  As I didn't really take any until the last day.
Here's a run down of our week.
Once we arrived on Monday we went to dinner with parents to Padilla's.
Tuesday morning we met my friend Sarah and her daughter Clover at the park for a super short play date!  We then met my friend Emily at Chick-fil-A!  It was "dress like a cow day" and Helena was super entertained.  When the cow came out she wanted to say hi, as it got closer she wanted nothing to do with it.  As it got away again she wanted to give it kisses!  I was super thankful as my mom took over caring for Bennett Monday night, but Tuesday I was still exhausted.  So I took a nap Tuesday afternoon and slept until dinner time!
Wednesday morning we met the Witty family for a good breakfast and Cinnamon Sugar and Spice Cafe, we then all hung out and there vacation rental house.  Max was so good playing with Helena it was precious.  Then Cammie came over with her little one month old Olivia.  The babies slept opposite times!  Wednesday evening all of my aunts came over for a pizza dinner and to meet Bennett.  He slept the whole time, it was his only real nap during this trip.  After about 2 hours I finally woke him up.
Thursday I met my cousin Kari for breakfast at Jimmy's Cafe, we then hung out at her place.  Thursday evening I drove to my family friend Chris' cigar shop for a gathering after his father's funeral.  Chris is my age and he lost his mom, Mary about 5 years ago.  Mary was a good family friend, and she grew up with my mom and all of her sisters in Santa Fe. His dad, David suddenly passed away the week before and it was important to me to pay my respects since I was in town.  I obviously didn't want to take the kids to the funeral, but I was happy to go see Chris afterwards give him a hug and tell him how sorry I am.
Friday morning my parents joined us for a fun adventure to the Albuquerque Aquarium.  Helena loved saying over and over "go see more fishies".  She loved that fishies were everywhere, and now askes daily to go see the fishies!
After the aquarium we headed back home.
Overall the trip was great.  By the end both kids were pretty cranky, I think from just being on the go non-stop and constantly leaving the house.

4th of July weekend

how cute is this onsie?  courtesy of Grandma Sweat, of course!

hanging out outside

super cute 4th of July dress!


she loves her grandma

My in-laws were in town for the 4th of July, and I'm just so appreciative that they have made the drive to come see us.  It truly means so much.
We had a great time.  On the 4th of July we drove up to Cloudcroft a small mountain town about 30 minutes away and at least 10 degrees cooler!  We checked out the Apple Barn Store, had lunch, and walked around the town.  It was a lot of fun.
I love seeing how my in-laws interact with Helena and Bennett.  They both love the attention!  Helena had a lot of naked time playing outside with the little pool and water toys!  We tried to watch the big fireworks show from our house on the 4th, but we couldn't see it.  I was sad Helena didn't get the experience, so we did fireworks in the driveway the next day.  She loved the sparklers.
Right now on repeat is Helena asking "what's that?" "what's that?" and "what's that noise?" "what's that noise?"  over and over and over again.  And it was nice to have other people respond!


 I've been meaning to write more about my birth experiences lately since I'm fully recovered from Bennett's birth.  Comparing is hard because every birth is so different.  And what happened for me obviously can't be duplicated.  But I write for me and because I want to remember.
I feel like both of my births were pretty classic textbook births.  Helena was a planned c-section.  Check into hospital go to room for surgery get baby.  Bennett was induced on his due date.  Start pitocin, contractions start, break water, get to 10 centimeters, push baby out.  Truly that's about it.  Of course there are a LOT more details, but that's the condensed version.
My main motivation for deciding on a VBAC was to have that instant skin on skin and to not have the struggles with breastfeeding that I did with my first.  With a c-section your milk is delayed and I didn't want that.  There were of course other reasons, but those were the two big main ones.
I feel like the big thing that isn't talked about at ALL is the recovery from a vaginal birth.  I had the idea that it would be easy.  There is a lot of talk about the hard recovery from a cs because it is a major abdominal surgery, but nobody talks about the hard recovery from a vaginal birth.  You hear about women tearing; having a 2nd degree tear all the way to a 4th degree tear.  But what does that mean post baby?!  It's weird that with a cs all the talk is about healing and your scar healing, well with a vaginal birth you birthed your baby out of your vagina!  Simply put, no the recovery is not any less.  I was "lucky" I only had a 2nd degree tear inside (supposedly those heal easier than an external tear).  I still bleed for 5 weeks and couldn't pee like normal until about 6 weeks.  For about the first 3 weeks by the end of the day I was in tears going to the bathroom.  I desperately wanted to just go to the bathroom like normal.  After about a week I found laying on my side in the afternoons helped tremendously.  The other big difference is not really having the ability to "hold it" now that I've had a baby vaginally.  I loved having that immediate skin to skin connect with Bennett.  And being present with him the whole time and having my arms to myself.  I was able to hold him and talk to him right away.  I hated being separated from Helena while I got stitched back up.  I definitely liked that my recovery from my VBAC was quicker than my CS, but I gotta be honest, I liked the predictability aspect of a scheduled CS.  I think if I were to have a third baby (no more baby plans, FYI) I would go for another VBAC.  For me there was something super powerful about delivering Bennett.  Now that it is over talking about Bennett's birth is something I love to talk about and share.  And I love to hear other versions as well.  During one of our post-partum meetings I asked my doula to share her version of Bennett's birth story.  And I probably ask Chris to share his version every few weeks or so.