Lather, Rinse, Repeat

I don’t know if I mentioned to you, internet, that we finally got Baby L sleeping through the night. Alone. In her own room. It happened about two weeks ago, while MB wasn’t working and we were no longer willing to wake up 35 times per night to tend to one of the kids (Baby O is not really a problem but between the two of them, it was a little ridiculous). It started out pretty rocky. She hated me. She hated MB. And she cried like she was being murdered. But within two days of us being seriously adamant about her sleeping in her bed, she accepted her fate. She would sleep from 8 pm until around 6 am, usually waking once or twice, at most, and then NOT being a total asshole when we kissed her little forehead and laid her down again.

And that lasted TEN DAYS.

And then she became some sort of mutant baby. She went right back to screaming her head off, sometimes refusing FOR HOURS to nap and waking in the middle of the night and playing the “PUT ME IN YOUR BED” game for at least an hour until one of us gave in for the sake of our eardrums and our sanity, and let her sleep in our room. And two days ago, I almost ran away from home. To some place where no one interrupts your sleep.

With the schedule that MB is currently working, my day is starting earlier in order to be able to get the kids changed, fed and happy. You know, simultaneously. And with enough precision that no one is screaming first thing in the morning. For the most part, I am successful. But only if I time things perfectly. I spend all day just trying to keep the house in the same state it was in when I woke up. That state, you ask? Total disarray. But no more disarray at the end of the day than when I woke up. Because if it were any worse, I would feel like a complete failure. I follow Baby L around, cleaning up the remnants of the mini-tornado that she is, only to have another one created on the other side of the room as I do so. I diaper, feed, chase, rock, diaper, feed, rock, chase, clean, panic. Lather, rinse, repeat. All day. And then I bathe babies. And then I attempt a bedtime routine with Baby L as quickly as possible while Baby O is in his swing. HOPEFULLY resting quietly. Usually NOT. Because if there is ONE time of the day when Baby O is loud and pissed, it is when it is Baby L’s bath/bedtime. Once the fight about the lotioning and the tooth brushing is over, I put Baby L to bed. And usually, this isn’t so bad. Until that 3 am wake up call, which usually is as high-pitched and annoying as a pterodactyl, when I am ripped out of a semi-decent sleep (which is usually taking place on the couch) to calm her and start the process of getting her to sleep all over again. ALL OVER AGAIN.

I usually fail miserably at this.

And then I dump her into the bed with MB because I can’t take any more. And then Baby O wakes up. And I change him. And then I feed him. And then I put HIM back to sleep. And then, if I am lucky, I can sleep for another hour before MB wakes up and leaves for work. Again. Abandoning me with angry, demanding little people who are out for blood. The blood of Mommy.

I’m not complaining, internet. Well, maybe a little. But mostly just because it is really hard NOT to complain when you haven’t slept in your bed in weeks and you can’t remember if you brushed your teeth this morning. Come to think of it, you can’t remember if you brushed your teeth last night either. And when it is hard to tell if your husband is at work…or if he has moved out…

I really still do love being home with the kids. Because, even though they can be monsters, they are MY monsters and I MADE them. And they are beautiful and funny and seriously entertaining and I love them to pieces.

I just wish they came with pause buttons. Or, I like, I could put them on vibrate.

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Sleep or the Lack Thereof

So, Baby O is eight weeks old now. Yeah. I KNOW! I can’t believe he is 8 weeks old either! But its all true, you guys. All true.

So, he’s 8 weeks old and things are moving right along. He has stopped looking like an alien/old man like he did when he was born and now he looks like a little person. He has chubby cheeks and those little creases in his thighs to accentuate all that new chunk! He sleeps well at night. And I don’t have to be holding him which means that I can concentrate on getting Baby L sleeping in her crib and off of my head. Which hasn’t really happened ALL that much lately anyway, because I have been sleeping on the couch for the most part, to be close to Baby O without interrupting the rest of the family. But OMG, you guys, the chaos.

It is no secret that Baby L as been a hot mess in the sleep department since she was born. From birth, she has been difficult. She wants to be ON YOU.  Which was tolerable at 6 weeks. Or three months. Hell, I even could deal with it at 8 months. But it got a little bit out of control. She went, at 7 months, from sleeping all night in her crib (but having a little bit of a problem napping when she needed to), to needing to be in bed with me and MB. (I blame a trip to North Carolina to visit my Father-in-Law for this because he had us sleeping in a room that I am pretty sure had absolutely no insulation at all. In the middle of winter. With a baby. So, naturally, I had to cuddle up with her on our freezing cold air mattress for those three nights to avoid anyone freezing to death. It worked. But sleeping has never been the same.) I got pretty used to our nightly routine of MB bathing her and then putting her down in her room and then, a few hours later, having to try and put her back down after she wakes up, screaming her head off and standing in her crib. Usually, this occurred at about 1 or 2 in the morning, so in my very pregnant and exhausted state, I would usually just give up and bring her into our bedroom where she would sleep on my face for the remainder of the night. I grew used to it. And I sort of liked it. But with a newborn on the way, you guys, there was no effing way I was going to miss out on sleep because of all that newborn stuff and then have to deal with a toddler kicking me in the kidneys during the 4 minutes per night I am actually able to try and get some rest. No.

I had tried to let Baby L “Cry it Out” a few times. But I was terrible at it. Every time I tried to stomach the sound of her maniacal cries at naptime, I would break. I couldn’t stand it. And she would cry FOREVER. (Read: 10 minutes. Because that was all I could take.) But then, just weeks before my due date, I knew I would have to suck it up. And shockingly, it worked. I stood my ground and, within just a few very painful days, Baby L had accepted that she was powerless. Sleep was happening. And it was happening when and BECAUSE I said so. (Yes, I am officially the “because I said so” mom now.) And, by the time I was home from the hospital, Baby L was napping like an angel. But still waking up in the middle of the night and pleading for the return to her spot in the middle of our bed. (Which you know, if you have ever shared a bed with a toddler, means THE WHOLE BED, no matter the size of said bed. Toddlers are like cats in their innate ability to take up entire beds despite their size, for those of you who share a bed with a cat and not a toddler.)

Honestly, I was prepared to just leave well enough alone with the middle of the night stuff. If I weren’t too tired to deal with crying while I was pregnant, I was definitely too tired with a newborn. But two things happened: 1. I began having no choice but to sleep in the living room because Baby O being in our room meant that he would be waking Baby L several times throughout the night and getting HER back to sleep was much more difficult than getting HIM back to sleep and 2. She fell out of the bed one morning when I was feeding Baby O in the living room. We have a tall bed and hardwood floors. She was fine. I was not. (MB was sleeping beside her and had made a fort around her, as always, to prevent this sort of thing, but she is a walker now. So she sometimes stands up in bed and tries to walk around. I always wake up at her slightest movement. Because I am her mom. But dads can’t be trusted to do the same. No offense, dads, you just don’t have “that thing”.) So, needless to say, if I can’t be in two places at once, something was gonna have to give, you guys.

So three nights ago, I started to try to let her CIO at night. And OH. MY. GOD. I hate it. But, she has slept in her crib for three straight nights. And I have slept in bed with my husband and Baby O next to me in his sleeper. And things are starting to look up. You know, I still have to change 400 diapers per day. And the babies like to time their sleep/wake times perfectly so that the only time I actually get a second of peace is around 5 in the morning (which is when I started writing this post…) but Baby O is a good sleeper. And he doesn’t need me to hold him 24 hours per day. Which gives me time to give Baby L the attention she demands. Because that baby DEMANDS it.

And yes, I know I have been a bad blogger. But you might see why, after reading this post. Because everything I write is about sleep or the lack thereof. Because…well…that’s what happens. I promise to write something better. And soon. I think I’m gonna take up drunk blogging.

So,

Milestones are Stupid Bastards

Since Baby L has discovered that, not only does she not hate her walker, but that she can move freely about the house without anyone chasing her and removing her from dangerous spots, she has become a fiend.  But not just for the walker. For standing and cruising and being mobile every way that she possibly can. Like, all the time. Even while sleeping.

I’ve read that it is normal for babies, while going through developmental changes, to have sleep disturbances. And that sometimes, with all the new stuff they are learning, it is difficult for their little minds and bodies to slow down enough to sleep like they had been used to doing. And man, internet, are we learning this or WHAT.

Baby L is a giant asshole when it comes to sleeping troubled sleeper.  She always has been. She wants to be on me. Or near me. And sometimes, she even manages to be curled up AROUND me. And she hates being put to bed. Generally, with a bottle and darkness and nature sounds, she will fall asleep in Daddy’s arms and stay asleep while he puts her, ever so gently, into her crib. Where she will stay for just a few hours before we start the “putting the baby to bed” process all over again. (We, decidedly, meaning me.)

But now, getting her to stop moving and go to sleep, even after the bath and the bottle and the quiet time with Daddy, is more and more like wrestling a tiny alligator. Or possibly even a regular sized alligator. I don’t know, you guys, but it is effing HARD. She fights and screams and can’t seem to stop her legs from just GOING. And really, she is just doing a bunch of kung fu all up on your ass. And it is TOTALLY FUN. And not at ALL uncomfortable with this giant pregnant belly I am currently sporting. And then, once you think the kung fu has finally stopped and she is finally in that place where the squirming has gotten to the point where you think that you might be able to put her into her crib, you attempt the transplantation from arms to bed. And then her giant, blue eyes pop open, looking offended and the kicking starts again. And this time, it might be accompanied by screaming.

So, you have no choice but to start again.

Don’t worry. Even though this process seems like it is very time consuming, the whole process takes about five minutes. But, because you repeat it several times and have to wear protective gear, it can seem like an eternity. But eventually, she will fall asleep. And she will stay that way while you put her little ass into the crib. Where she will stay for an hour or so. And then she will start to grunt. And you will be able to ignore the grunting because you are watching “Hannibal” with your husband and eating ice cream. But then the grunt turns into a whimper. And the whimper into a cry. And, if you wait too long, a full blown scream that will wake the dead. But, if you let it get that far, you have waited too long. And you are starting from the beginning. If you catch her at the grunt, you can place her pacifier into her little mouth and she will roll to her side and start to snore. I mean, usually. But now, she isn’t lying down anymore, guys. She is half-asleep, standing in her crib. Eyes closed. And when you pick her up, she will look surprised that you are even there. And confused about why she has been standing. And she will be, surprisingly easy to settle this time. She will go back to sleep. She will stay in the crib for 3-4 hours until she wakes up, stands in the crib and is ready for play time. PLAY TIME, you guys! At 3 in the morning! What in holy hell is going on?

I have tried to explain to Baby L that, while I know that she is super excited about her budding skillz, this walking thing she is trying to do can ABSOLUTELY wait until the sun comes up. Because, I say, this is when normal people walk around. And, I tell her, I will have no problem chasing her around the living room all morning if she just goes back to sleep now. I bribe her with the coziness of Mommy and Daddy’s bed where she gets all nestled in between the two of us and gets to cuddle with me and pull my hair freely. But it doesn’t work. She tries to stand on my face. And then I eventually bring her into the living room. Because now she will cruise for around for the next 2-3 hours before I try one last bottle and bedtime routine and finally succeed.

This is not a good gift for my first Mother’s Day, Baby L. Not at all. I am trying to be patient with you. But I am going to tell you right now that, if you think that this shit is going to fly in a month when your brother is here, you are sorely mistaken. You need to learn to walk RIGHT NOW and get all this crazy, kung fu ridiculousness out of your system. Thank you.

A Momish Moment

So, I know I’ve made you guys aware that Baby L is going to be ONE in just a matter of mere DAYS (18 to be exact) and that this sort of freaks me out. I mean. Okay, it totally, beyond anything I could describe to you, is FREAKING ME THE EFF OUT, you guys. And maybe because I am an irrational ball of hormones. Or maybe because it is just a BIG FREAKING DEAL. Either way. It is sort of like she decided at 11 months that she would cease this baby business and start doing grown up shit. Like staying up late and walking and all that crap that adults do (minus playing poker and smoking cigars, because those things would just be inappropriate). Okay, so she isn’t really “walking” yet. But she definitely won’t SIT either. She won’t sit, she won’t lie down, she won’t sleep. She needs to be UP. And MOVING.

ALL. THE. TIME.

And, you know, because I am still terrified of bumps and bruises, (and yes, I know that they will happen you guys, but I think we all know that I am insane and full of anxiety about ridiculous and irrational things. I just got over the fear of tripping, falling on my face and knocking out all of my front teeth that has plagued me since I was a little girl. And now that I am thinking about it, it is sort of freaking me out again. Thanks a LOT, internet.) I am constantly nervous. I have been working on it. I have not been piling our hardwood floors with 33 blankets to cushion the blow in case she falls down (anymore). I have just been letting her go. And this has been torture. Because then she inevitably does fall. And she bumps her head on said floor and she screams bloody murder until I put a pink, stuffed bunny in front of her face or give her a goldfish cracker. And for those 10.5 seconds wherein she is crying and looking at me with those big, blue eyes that seem to say, “Mama! How could you let this happen to me?!”, I feel like jumping off a bridge. But then she is noshing on a cracker. Or a bunny.  And she doesn’t even seem to remember that she just almost gave herself a concussion. But I do. And the trauma lingers. You know…for ME.

Yesterday was an especially good day for us. I was, despite my GINORMOUS belly, able to sit on the floor with her while she threw toys around the living room and then darted to retrieve them only to hurl them again (which, by the way, is one of her favorite things to do these days, aside from throwing things on the floor for her PARENTS to retrieve…). I was amazed that she was so content to be sitting with me without needing to try and do cartwheels or headstands or whatever kind of gymnastic maneuver she is normally trying to accomplish. I was pleased that we were playing so nicely. So calmly.

And then I realized that she was holding, in one hand, a plastic (noisy, annoying, ridiculously stupid) toy phone and in the other hand, a half of a dead leaf. And she was chewing. Now, I have never tried to eat a dead leaf so I can’t be sure, but I have this feeling that, even if you have a BUNCH of teeth (as I do), chewing a gross, dry leaf might be a little challenging. And because Baby L only has 8 (at the last count, before she was a piranha) teeth, and they are all in the front, I had a feeling that this could end badly. And sure enough, within seconds of realizing what she had done, I was being puked on. Because, you see, babies CANNOT chew dead leaves. (Just in case any of you were inspired to check this out…Don’t.) After the puke, even though I hadn’t seen the leaf, I assumed that this crisis had been averted and I was all, “Sweet! That wasn’t even chunky because we haven’t even had breakfast yet!” (Before being a mom, if someone puked on me, I would have unfriended them on Facebook. Because that shit is serious, y’all.) It wasn’t until I put her in her chair to have her first meal of the day, that I realized that the leaf was stuck, VISIBLY STUCK,  in the back of her throat, causing her to let out these tiny, annoying coughs every couple of seconds. It was at that moment that I became that crazy lady who has no fear of the gross consequences of sticking my fingers into the orifices of another person. It is at that moment that I become MOM. So, I did it. I stuck two fingers into the mouth of another person and retrieved…a leaf.

For real. Crisis averted. Everyone is alive.

But really, universe? Did you need to give me yet ANOTHER thing to be paranoid about? Really?

 

Waiting for the Wine

So, I don’t know if I told you, internet, but I went ahead and took your advice and we are having a baby shower for Baby O after all. Okay, not really a shower. More like a sprinkle. Or, like, a small get together at our new place wherein people will eat sandwiches and drink beers (they will, obviously have to bring their own beers though, because lets face it, if I’m not drinking, I’m not paying. But you go right on ahead, have yourself a beer or 7.) I didn’t register or anything all “baby shower formal”, we just invited some people over. And we hope that they will bring diapers or gift cards. Or lots of wine for my post-delivery celebration. (Because you know that is really where MY head is. Because you guys have met me…you know I’m just waiting for the wine.) So, that will take place this Saturday.

And I can’t believe I am doing this again.

I feel like we JUST got done having Baby L’s baby shower. (Probably because it was exactly thirteen months ago.) And now, here we are, having another one. And Baby L will be scooting around all OUTSIDE of my body and stuff and we will be surrounded by dinosaur party favors and baby boy onesies. And OH. MY. GOD. In less then three months I am going to have another meatloaf.

I have so many questions about raising two tiny nuggets so close together. Like, will I ever sleep again? Is it worse having TWO tiny ones than one? Will I stop being such a crazy, anal-retentive freak about things being disinfected? Will I stop being so intensely worried about Baby L hurting herself? (I swear to Cheesus, I would have padded this whole house already if I weren’t afraid that MB would then promptly have me committed because he is of this mindset that kids sometimes hurt themselves. WHAT?! MY baby?! No.)  Will I ever get a pedicure or go out to dinner with my husband again? I mean, these things are already issues for us! (Especially my lack of pedicures. I mean, my toes are scary, you guys. And, OBVIOUSLY MB is totally concerned about the state of my toes, above all else.)

As you may be able to tell, the worry is finally starting to kick in a little. I mean, I am still mostly calm. Mostly. I only start really freaking out, like, in the middle of the night when I am awoken because I have to pee for the 750th time during the night and then I start realizing that I have to pee because there is a WHOLE NEW BABY residing in my PELVIS and soon I am going to have to EXPEL him and then he will be on the OUTSIDE and I will have TWO BABIES and then I will go completely INSANE because MB will be at work and OH MY GOD, I thought one was hard, how the hell am I going to have TWO?!

Yeah, I told you guys before, my head is a totally fun place to live. Especially at two in the morning.

I have to keep reminding myself that I am not the first person in the world to ever have two babies so close together. And that people have TWINS every day. And holy SHIT, how do people have twins? And is that worse? And what about triplets? And Octomom? (Not that I consider her a real person. She exists in my mind as some sort of cartoon character or something. It might be her lips.) What the hell do these people do? How do they not accidentally put the roast in the bassinet and the baby in the crock pot? How?! I need to KNOW, internet!

(Deep breath…)

Okay, this was obviously supposed to be a post about how we are having a Baby Sprinkle, not a literary panic attack. Sorry about that, you guys. You know how it is. Being knocked up makes you a little nuts.

Octomom

Octomom: Or maybe THIS is why I can’t take her seriously?

An Open Letter to Baby L at 9 Months (Okay, 10. Sue Me.)

Dear Lilah,

You are WAY past nine months old now. In fact, you are ten months old, as of yesterday. But, as you know, your mother is nothing if she isn’t a total slacker. It isn’t that I don’t enjoy writing letters to you. Really. It is that between you insisting on trying to pound away at my laptop while I am doing so, and the miniscule amount of time I have without you attached to me, I am unable to do a whole lot of anything these days.

You are getting so big. I was at one of my check-up appointments the other day and there was a woman there with a baby who she “claimed” was 8 weeks old and weighed 11 pounds and I could barely remember you being that tiny ( say “claimed” because I swear to Cheesus, that baby was so small. SO SMALL). You are so full of personality now and you really are a little person and not at all like that little meatloaf that you were when we brought you home from the hospital. It is so strange to think you have changed so much. And also to think that, in just a few months, we will have another meatloaf. And this time it will have a tiny penis. Weird. Anyway, you shouldn’t concern yourself with such things. You just concentrate on being super cute and deliberately spitting on everything in a 20 foot radius of you.

You are not a crawler. And not because you can’t, mind you, but because having to crawl to get somewhere really pisses you off. I wonder if I am the only mom out there scratching her head on this one. I have seen you do it and I know that you are capable, but yet, for some reason, you would rather get in baby plank pose, scoot yourself about a foot backwards and then get super angry and start to screech. I am not as worried that you are behind in development as that you are going to be lazy until your brother is born and then take giant leaps when I don’t have the time or the energy to pad the entire house for you to fall all over.

You say things like “mama” and “dada” but I am pretty sure you don’t yet know that you are saying our respective names. Your dad, however, insists that you say “duck” when it is bath time. (You do have a rubber duckie or two that we have in there with you when Daddy bathes you, but I am not sure that I buy that you are yet calling them ducks. Not because I think you are a dummy, but because I haven’t heard this and your dad has a hearing problem. Meaning he hears what he wants to. And this applies to everyone, not just you.)

You love eating. You are indiscriminate completely about food unless I try to give you peas. Peas and carrots? “Sure, Mom! Bring it!” Peas by themselves? “No way, Mom, get that shit out of my face.” You should know that peas are delicious and you should eat them. Don’t listen to your dad when he talks about how gross they are. He doesn’t know what he’s talking about. You especially love strawberries, pears, and green grapes. All three of my favorite fruits. And we have them just about every day for a snack together and it is really amusing for me to watch you master your dexterity and pick up tiny pieces of slimy stuff. Half of the time, most of it ends up in your lap, but I enjoy watching you stuff your face on the off-chance that you make it in there. (You are totally getting good at it, though. At first, I doubted that you had gotten ANY fruit into your mouth, now I only find a couple of slivers in your lap and on the floor…Good work, my love.)

You are still a really weird sleeper. We attempted to do this thing called “sleep training” wherein your father and I would train you about when and how to sleep on your own. What ended up happening was that you ended up training me and your father on how to sleep with you wrapped around our faces. We are about to start this process again because it is really important to me to have you in your own bed/room before your brother gets here and keeps me up all night.  In fairness (to me), it would have been pointless to go full force with sleep training if we were just going to uproot you, which we just did when we moved to this new house. So…yeah. I don’t suck as much as it might seem.

You are also working on getting tooth number 7. And let me tell you, Lilah, teething is a total bitch and you OWE me for this. Like, when you turn 18, you are going to need to buy me a kitten for each tooth that you have. Okay, that’s not a good idea. But I will think of something for you to do. Because this shit is DUMB. (And also makes your sleeping WORSE. Yes. That is possible, it would appear.)

So, again, I am sorry that I was a slack ass during your ninth month, but we had a lot going on. I mean, be for real, we had to move so that we had room for your brother and so that you didn’t catch disobedience and general badness from your cousin. I’m just saying. By the time you read this, you will know exactly what I mean. No need to get too involved.  Either way, your father and I are very proud of you. You crack us up every day and you are so effing cute with your growing front teeth and your chubby, delicious cheeks. We can’t get enough of you. You are the love of my life. Duh.

Love always,

Mom

I’m Not Homicidal, You Guys!

Image representing Woot as depicted in CrunchBase

Image via CrunchBase

I know I have been a little distant. It’s not you, it’s me, internet. There has been a return of the snot over here in the Oopsie household. And it afflicted my spawn and then myself. Making things very messy and unbearable. But things are looking up. Both in the snot department and otherwise.

Here’s an update! Hooray!

On Sleep Training:
Okay, so do you guys remember when I was going insane because my kid wouldn’t sleep? And remember when I said that I desperately wanted to get her sleep trained so that I could sleep alone in my bed with my husband? And remember when I was concerned because I am knocked up and expanding (although, not as rapidly as expected) and soon won’t have ROOM to share a bed with my 8 month old? You do? Oh.

Let me first say that I have gotten my kid MUCH better at going to sleep in her crib at night. And she even naps. Most of the time, IN THE CRIB also…But then let me tell you that, over the course of the last (almost) two months of snuggling with my little nugget every night, I have kind of come to enjoy it. In fact, I actually miss her little baby face-slaps when she isn’t lying beside me. Needless to say, sleep training has worked. But it hasn’t worked all the way. On me, at least. I am pretty sure that if I weren’t so sappy and missing her, she would be sleeping alone all night, every night. But I let her go in the crib until about 3-4 in the morning and then I can’t take it anymore and I need a cuddle. It might be the hormones. Or because, and I hate to admit this, with the new baby coming soon, I am sad that I will no longer to devote all of my attention to my baby girl. But, we all seem to be sleeping better now. And Baby L and I wake every morning, warm and toasty and smiling. And that makes my whole day. (You know, unless she is teething…which she is…again…)

On The Living Situation:
We found a house to rent! This is amazing news. And not just because I am steadily nearing the point of homicide, but because, even though we were looking for a two-bedroom for now, to save on expenses, this house is less expensive than I would have expected AND it has three bedrooms and a GIGANTIC back yard. Woot!

And yes, I know I was just talking about BUYING a house. And believe me, MB and I are ON IT. We just can’t do everything as quickly as we need to with such a short amount of time to prepare for Baby O. So, we signed a year-long lease yesterday and we will save and be as frugal as possible until next year…and then we will re-evaluate and try again. I am actually not as upset about this as I thought I would be. Mostly, I think, because I am just happy to be getting out of this house so that I can finally get a few minutes of peace.

On My Mood:
This pregnancy is pretty boring, you guys. I’m not complaining. But you might be if you got all excited that I was going to get all super bitch like I did when I started this blog. Believe me, super bitch is alive and well. But I am not sure she is even worth blogging about. Because she sort of just gets pissed about no one ever doing the dishes. It is less about puking this time. And I know everyone would rather read about puking than lazy people. I mean…AmIRight?

Anyway, I feel strangely calm. I am terrified of the single income situation and adding in the expense of rent. But I am certain things will work out. I am not sure what has happened to me. Or why my anxiety hasn’t kicked in and caused some sort of mental break, but I am serene. I’m not gonna lie and tell you I don’t want to drink an entire bottle of Pinot by myself. But I can wait. I mean, maybe only until 30 seconds after I give birth. But still…that totally counts. I recently called my husband “an accidental master of the Tao” and I sort of feel like he might be rubbing off on me. I feel confident in our situation. Fat, but confident. And I mean, I guess I can deal with the fat thing…because, let’s face it, this is the last time I will ever have an excuse to gain a bunch of weight and eat copious amounts of cupcakes. So there.

Sleep? What is THAT?

sleep

sleep (Photo credit: Sean MacEntee)

So, MB and I have had this kind of unspoken agreement that I will get up with Baby L should she wake in the middle of the night, since he, after all, has to wake up before 5 am to make it to work on time. This went really well for months because Baby L rarely woke up during the night and I was functioning at approximately 95% (depending on how many glasses of wine I’d had after the wee one went to sleep). Now that Baby L is waking up 3,025 times per night and I am knocked up, cranky and totally exhausted, this arrangement is just pissing me off.

I know that MB has to work. And I know that he is doing so to assure that I don’t have to and that I can, like I had wanted to, stay home with Baby L and not miss any of the cool things she learns to do. (On this list of cool things, however, I did not include “learning how not to nap and then get terribly angry and stay that way for the rest of the day”.) And I genuinely appreciate this. I really do. But, internet, I am freaking tired. And not the normal, I have a baby kind of tired. It is the “I have a baby and I am currently growing another one WAY too soon” tired and I am not sure what to do about it. On the one hand, I feel like waking MB up in the middle of the night by banging on his head with rattles and the like. On the other hand I feel like I should really just respect that this is the path that I chose. I am the full-time SAHM and I am responsible for the baby stuff at night so that my wonderful husband can go to work and function properly in the morning.

And because Baby L has been a crazy, weirdo when it comes to sleeping lately, and she usually (always, at least for a couple of hours a night) ends up in the bed with us, I feel even MORE uncomfortable than I would normally be. With or without this new parasite.

I’ve tried to nap. But I am back on the insomnia train. You know the one, ladies, where the minute you actually have time to sleep, you can’t. Because your body hates you. Either that, or I fall into a deep, delicious slumber and Baby L starts to scream like someone is peeling her skin off. Because not only does my body hate me, it appears that my child also hates me.

I am starting to wonder if I will ever sleep again. I remember wondering this when I was pregnant with Baby L, but…this? This is much, much worse. What is a mama to do?

Broken Condoms…Reloaded (Alternately Titled “Holy Shitballs” Which Seems to be the Common Response)

Seriously, I know the title sounds a little gross. And I also know that I might get some serious weirdos starting to hang around…but I will have to deal with it. Because I am too tired to think of a clever title that fits this post. Because, internet, I’m knocked up again.

And yes. You read that right. I, Broken Condoms lady, reluctant mommy blogger, is knocked up AGAIN. And before you all start dropping like flies with the sheer shock of it all, let me go ahead and clear everything up for you. Please feel free to let me know if I leave anything out…

1. Yes. I was taking birth control pills. And yes, we were also using condoms on the rare occasion that I actually let my husband touch me. Because pregnancy was enough to scare me into wearing a titanium suit around him if I had to. None of this worked, evidently. Hence this post. (Grrr…)

2. How do I feel about this whole mess, you ask? Well, internet, I feel a lot of things. I’ve been keeping this under wraps for awhile so a lot of that emotional shit, I have since come to terms with, but let me try and run you through what I have experienced thus far. First there was denial. I think that when your first child is 5.5 months old and you find out that you are, indeed, expecting again, the first thing that happens in your brain (especially if you have been taking any and every means of preventing this from happening) is that you decide that it can’t be true. It has to be some cruel joke that the Universe is playing on you. Wait, is it April Fools’ Day? You got me, Universe, you really, really got me. But then you start to vomit and you think, “Hey, I must have a stomach bug.” Seriously. I convinced myself for 4 days that the positive home pregnancy test was the Universe playing a joke and that the morning sickness was actually just a stomach bug. After I puked a few more times, though, I just started to have a little breakdown. I kept thinking about all the things I was about to have to do (AGAIN) that drove me so crazy the first time. You know, like the not sleeping (which I am, obviously, currently not doing anyway) and the back pain and the intense need for double cheeseburgers from McDonalds. And then I cried a lot. Daily. For a LONG TIME. I considered options. And I discussed everything with MB (who, by the way, was in support of whatever I decided even though he felt that we, as a couple, are strong enough to do this shit all over again. Curses.) I stared at my daughter for hours and contemplated the birth of our second child and what it would mean for us and our family. I reasoned with myself about eventually wanting to have another child in the next couple of years anyway and how having this baby would make me…well…DONE with childbearing. And that thought gave me solace. But then I cried some more. Because, holy crap, internet, the kids will only be a year apart! And how will I chase a child who will inevitably be starting to walk and carry a newborn around and not sleep all while MB is at work all day?! How will I manage?! But then I stared at my daughter some more. And I thought about how hopeless I felt when I found out I was pregnant with her. And how doubtful of my abilities I was before she was born. And I felt a little bit better. Because dammit, I am a fantastic mom. Am I necessarily ready to be the “mother of two”? No. But was I ready to be a “mother of one”? Hells no.

The acceptance part started after I had to go to the Health Center and get a proof of pregnancy again so I could start the medicaid process (because, though, MB and I are now married, my insurance did not start until January 1st) AGAIN. (Which, if you remember, was pretty much the worst thing EVER for me.) A week later, the crying had stopped, for the most part, and shockingly, the Health Department had my Medicaid set up before I showed up for my appointment. (I didn’t have to make a SINGLE PHONE CALL.) I saw that as a good omen. And then I was all set to hear the heartbeat of the baby (as it was estimated that I was about 14 weeks along at this point) and the PA couldn’t find it on the Doppler. And this might sound crazy. Or horrible. Or whatever…but I was actually relieved. I felt like this might be my “out”. She set me up with an Ultrasound (which was more than three weeks away) and sent me on my way. To panic some more. Needless to say, I started the processes all over again, thinking that it might just be a fluke. Hello, denial.

My ultrasound was yesterday afternoon. I told my sister-in-law in the morning what the situation was and she offered to come with me to the appointment in case MB couldn’t get home from work in time. MB made it home at the speed of light and the three of us trekked downtown and, just like that, I’m gonna have a little boy. Due June 6th, 2013.

3. So, yeah, I know I didn’t answer “how do you feel NOW?” in that monster paragraph up there. The truth is. I feel peaceful. Obviously, fat. And sleepy. And a little scared. But also a little relieved that this whole thing is already almost half-way over and no one could tell I was pregnant (SCORE!). I haven’t gained any weight. I haven’t been nearly as sick as last time. Things have been fairly uneventful. So, do I feel good about the whole thing? Ehhh…I don’t know if GOOD is the right adjective. But I feel okay. I am alive, I am healthy. My baby is healthy. And I still have a wonderful partner and a beautiful daughter to remind me that this is not the end of the world. (Because, in some intense moments, I feel like I could lose it.)

4. I haven’t told EVERYONE in the world yet. By that, I just mean that I haven’t announced the news on Facebook. And I probably won’t do a giant, “We’re pregnant!!!” post. Because the people who matter have either already been told or will be soon enough. I don’t need to tell 200 more of my closest friends. Also, I am still sorting out the fact that I feel sort of ashamed that I let this happen so soon after having Baby L. Yes, I know I did all I could to prevent it, internet. But it feels so…irresponsible. Seriously. I mean, come ON, internet. Who DOES this?

(As I type this, THIS is what is happening on my TV. How can I not be optimistic?!)

http://youtu.be/DkLRXMBFtYo

Anyway, so that’s what’s going on over here. And maybe why I have been sort of distant lately. Please don’t break up with me, internet. I can’t do this alone!

Phases

Parenting is tricky. And not just because you have to learn it all from scratch because every book you can read on the topic will tell you something completely different. But because being a baby is probably pretty hard. But they can’t tell you that. Because they are just babies, you guys. They can’t talk.

The minute you get used to that thing he/she is doing that is so annoying that you think you cannot take it for another moment, it stops. But then this other really annoying thing happens.

Take for instance teething. Teething is uber annoying because it causes the baby a lot of discomfort. And it can look like different things are happening, when really, your baby is just preparing for the ability to bite your fingers off. They pull at their ears. Which makes you think that they might have an ear infection. So you bring them to the doctor and their ears are fine. They could run a low fever. Which makes you think that they have a cold. They could stop sleeping. Because…you know…what is the most annoying symptom of ANYTHING? You guessed it. Not sleeping. And when the baby isn’t sleeping, you aren’t sleeping. And when you aren’t sleeping, you walk around like a mom zombie for days or weeks on end wondering if you’ve just left the toothpaste in the refrigerator. (I may or may not have done that. I can neither confirm nor deny.)

But teething isn’t the only reason that babies don’t sleep. They sometimes don’t sleep if they are too hot. Or too cold. Or in an unfamiliar place. Or there is too much noise. Or not enough noise. Or they are too far from you. Or too close to you. Or they napped too much during the day. Or they are overtired because they didn’t nap enough. Or because it is Tuesday. Or really any other day of the week.

This is currently how Baby L rolls.

I feel exhausted. And achy from trying to sleep with my really tall husband and really tiny baby in a Queen-sized bed. I feel cranky and overwhelmed and then ashamed of myself for feeling cranky and overwhelmed. And then I just feel more exhausted from feeling ashamed of myself. Lather. Rinse. Repeat.

But it did get me thinking about these “phases” that babies go through. And how when she was first born and Baby L only slept about an hour and a half at a time and only on my chest or in a swing and I lived on the couch for 6 weeks. I remember thinking that I might never sleep again. And I might never know the joy of a bed. Or cuddling with MB. But then it ended. And we were on to the next thing.

And then it was reflux. And Baby L was miserable and crying and colicky and driving me absolutely mad trying to find ways to help her. And I remember having tried everything and one day, in the middle of one of the non-sleeping, crying hysterically days she was having, I sat down in the middle of the kitchen floor and sobbed. Because HOLY GOD, when will it all end?! And then it did. And now it seems like it was so long ago, I can barely remember it.

I have to be strong and tell myself every day that, “Yes. You will eventually sleep again. And no, Baby L will not sleep in between you and your husband until she is 37 years old.” And sometimes I have to tell myself these things at 4am when I wake up with a cramp in my side because I have been sleeping in the most awkward position for the last 3 hours and I cannot move my left leg. And sometimes I have to tell myself when MB is at work and I am trying to get Baby L to nap in her crib and all she wants to do is scream or play. But we all do it. We have to. It is survival.

And, this too, shall pass…