Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween, everybody!

Declan and Aaron are taking a pre-trick-or-treating nap right now, then we'll roll out! I'd like to take Declan by St. Francis first, there are a few residents who wanted to see him in costume.

Then we'll meet up with Holly and Spencer for real trick-or-treating! Oh, Declan still needs a plastic pumpkin to put candy in! I forgot all about that. Well, it's not like he'll actually hold it...

Then we're going (in costume!) to Allyson's for dinner. Unfortunately their town's trick-or-treating was last night, so we won't be handing out candy. I love handing out candy!

Well, better get a move on. I have to get dressed, clean a little, get Declan's dragon costume ready (pictures to come!) and let Bruce out to pee.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Sick With a Capital S

Boy, we have been through the wringer this past week with Declan's ear infection. The Friday after his birthday, we went back to the doctor, and the infection did not seem to be getting better with the amoxicillin, so he was prescribed Sulfamethoxazole. Saturday evening, I noticed some hive-like red dots on his lower back, but blew them off as a heat rash because he was dressed warmly and running around outside. He gets heat rashes easily, no big deal. When I got home from work on Sunday, he was covered in spots. Literally covered, head to toe.

We called the doctor, he said to stop using the Sulfamethoxazole, Declan must be allergic to Sulfas. Okay... so then on Tuesday he was prescribed a new antibiotic, Cefdinir. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this one kicks that infection in the butt. Because during this whole ordeal, Declan has been running high fevers on and off (102-103).

I am so ready to have a healthy kid again!

Grandma emailed me the other day, and a good half of her letter was about the various illnesses that my extended family is dealing with. I don't know if it's being a parent or being an adult or what, but it seems like I'm hyper-aware of every single little bug that's going around. Coworkers mention that their kid has such-and-such symptoms, and I'm like, "Oh, yep, that's what so-and-so had last week, it should be gone in 3 days. Now please go bathe in Purell because I don't want your germs."

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

A Letter To My One-Year-Old

Dear Declan,

You are passed out on the couch right now, snuggled in your Boppy pillow. You have a fever because of an ear infection, on top of a cold, on top of teething. You are a total mess.

But despite all of those things, you've still been a wonderful, joyful little boy today. I took you to St. Francis, the nursing home where I work, to pick up my paycheck and visit with the residents. You smiled so big at all of the old ladies who wanted to kiss on you (showing all five of your teeth!) You toddled down the halls, tried to push wheelchairs, and even played peek-a-boo with Darlene through the legs of her walker. You brought so much happiness to so many people today, baby.

I love to watch you explore new things. You are all boy - if there is something you can knock down / push / pull / rip / roll... you're bound and determined to do it. Now that you're walking it's gotten even worse! When we tell you not to do something, you give us the most mischievous grin. Then you keep doing it, usually. And when we pull you away from it, you scream and growl and kick. But once we distract you with a toy (or food, that always works) you're all smiles again.

You're officially done with "baby stuff". Formula, bottles, baby food, nursing... the only holdover is your pacifier, which I am terrified to take away from you because how else would I get you to sleep without screaming? You're taking two naps a day, but we can get by with one nap if we're out and about. No naps is not a pretty sight, though. We don't like no-nap days. You're eating three meals and two snacks a day, plus a bunch of sippy cups of water and milk. Your favorite foods are the four Ps - Pasta, peas, pickles, and puffs. I could add plums in there, too, you love to gnaw on a whole plum, juice running down your chubby little arms.

You are a daddy's boy, for sure. When Daddy is home, you follow him around the house like a little shadow, mimicking everything he says and does. It is too cute. People ask me if I'm jealous that you're so attached to your dad. Of course I'm not. For one, it melts my heart to see you two playing, cuddling, and being best buddies. Second, you were attached to me (literally) for nine months, and then you were basically attached to me through nursing for another eight months. It's about time your daddy had a turn as the favorite parent :)

Declan, we love you so, so much. It's really crazy. When you were born, we were in love with you. But this, a year later, is a whole different kind of love. We don't just love you for being our son, we love you for you - for your personality, for the way you crawl right up to our faces and, with a big grin, yell "DADADA" when you wake up the morning, for your determination, your stubbornness, your friendliness towards *everyone*, for the excited, proud look on your face that you have when you're walking, for the way that you stare into our eyes like you're trying to read our minds. And for so many other things. I couldn't write a letter long enough. This first year has been so much fun. So full of changes for all of us.

I love you, Declan River. And I can't wait to see what the next year brings.


The Other Side of the Birthday

Well, that's it, he's one! No going back now :)

We had a good time celebrating, and it's not over yet. Sunday night we had a party at our house for Aaron's dad's family. Just pizza, cake, and presents. Nothing fancy. On Tuesday (the birthday) it was just me and Declan, chilling out and playing with his new toys. This coming Saturday, we'll have a party with Aaron's mom's family, out at their place.

I am really glad that this birthday didn't work out the way I'd hoped. If it had, I'd be way more stressed and way more broke. Know what we ended up getting him for his birthday? A board book from the dollar store and a 99 cent playground ball. Yup. And guess what his favorite present from his whole birthday is? The 99 cent ball. He and Bruce chase that ball around the house all day long.

But not tonight, because the poor one-year-old is running a fever. He is such a mess right now. Fever, ear infection, runny nose, teething, super gross blowout diapers, angry red diaper rash - it's times like these that really test your confidence in your parenting skills. And I KNOW it's all connected somehow. Like, the teething somehow lowered his immune system, he caught a cold which gave him the ear infection, and one of those things is causing the diarrhea, which is definitely causing the diaper rash. Or something like that.

Anyway, I can't wait for all of those things to disappear so that I can have my happy one-year-old back.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Happy Due Date, One Year Ago!

One year ago, I was due! But as you all know, Declan decided he was way too comfy in there to come out on the 15th. Actually, I'm grateful that he stayed in. Here's why:

His birthday is special. Even before he was born, October 19th was special, because it's St. Aaron's day! I didn't find this out until my induction date was already set, but that just sealed the deal in my mind. Of course he wasn't early or on time, because he was meant to come on his daddy's feast day! And even better, St. Declan's day is my birthday. That's how I knew we picked the right name, too.

If I had gone into labor on my own, it probably would have lasted a lot longer than it did. I know a lot of people hate it, but I think Pitocin is a wonder drug. I had a nine hour labor! I've heard that with first babies, to expect 12-24 hours of labor. Nope! Going in pain-free, not having to second guess "should I go to the hospital?" "are these contractions?" etc. was totally worth the i.v. drip.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Noooo... I think Declan may be sick for his birthday. We're on the mend from a cold we got a couple of weeks ago, I'm totally better, Declan was just dealing with the last of his runny nose... Then all of a sudden today Declan is hacking up a lung and totally miserable. Aaron made him a doctor's appointment for tomorrow, we're crossing our fingers that it's not bronchitis AGAIN.

I love that Declan looks just like Aaron. But I hate that he has obviously inherited his breathing / lung / sickness troubles. Aaron was in and out of the hospital as a baby with bronchitis, asthma attacks, etc. Declan is way, way healthier, but I think that if put in the same situations as baby Aaron was (milk allergy, born in the dead of winter, colic, reflux, blah blah blah) he'd probably be in and out of the hospital, too.

Anyway, looks like we're gonna have a sickie on the big b-day. Best case scenario, he'll be feeling all better tomorrow morning and the doctor's appointment will be a regular ol' one-year check up. I don't even want to think about the worst case scenario, because God knows I have a wild imagination.

We have two competing ideas about why his cold suddenly threw in in reverse and came back with a vengeance.

1. We just had a cold front come through, Aaron thinks he got cold in bed last night because *I* didn't put pajamas on him (usually he sweats like crazy and cries because he's overheated, 99% of the time he goes to bed in just a diaper.) I suppose this could be a contributing factor, so he'll be wearing pjs from now until next summer.

2. Aaron insists on sleeping with a fan on. This irritates my throat under regular circumstances, not to mention when I have a cold. Why it would have suddenly made the cold worse when it's *always* on, I don't know. Mostly I just wanted to bitch about waking up with windblown hair.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

A Year Ago Today

This was me:

I remember how that felt. Heavy.

I still find myself resting my hand on my stomach sometimes. Not that it's anywhere near as big as it was last October, but it's still a little bit... there. But it's empty. Every once in a while, I'll have a gas bubble that feels just like a baby squirming and it is so cool.

For all I complained, I can't wait to be pregnant again. A friend at work is trying to conceive, and I am on the absolute edge of my seat every day that I see her. We're close enough that she lets me know if she started her period / got a positive ovulation predictor test / is having some weird symptoms etc. I am living vicariously through her until I finish my degree and can TTC myself. I think that it will be awesome to have a baby on purpose! Seeing that positive pee stick and being excited, hearing the heartbeat and feeling nothing but joy, making the big announcement to family and friends without shame or fear... Must be nice!

Seven days until my baby turns one. Yipes! I have to go tomorrow and buy some paper plates, napkins, streamers, etc. We're having THREE separate dinners, in order to keep them small and conflict-free. Saturday is Lindsey and her kids, Allyson, Randy and Reid, Holly, Chad, and Spencer, Pete, and possibly some other friends that Aaron has invited that I don't know about. Sunday is the pumpkin patch, then dinner with the Smith family - Kevin, Ronette, her grandkids Kaiden and Braelyn, Tricia, Hawkeye, Logan, and Lauren, Grandma Patsy, and probably more. Then the next Saturday, we're doing a barbecue at the Phipps's. We were going to have another one at our house, but they were already planning a family dinner since Melodee will be in town, so we just combined events. I'm way glad, because our house is kinda little. And by kinda I mean really.

Okay, being way distracted by the new hottie on Glee. Am I getting too old to say that about guys portraying high-schoolers? I'm going to go look up his real age to make myself feel better. .... Oh thank God, he's 21. I don't feel bad at all now.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

One-Year Postpartum Body Check

So it's been just about a year since my body went through a major trauma - childbirth. I'm running a systems check. And whenever I feel like I want another baby in the next 3 or so years, I can ready this, and motivate myself to hold off.

- Difference in pounds between February 2009 (8 weeks pregnant) and now: +10.
- Difference in pounds between October 2009 (40 weeks pregnant) and now: -25.

- Same.

- Have returned to pre-baby size, but a vastly different shape. At least all of my cute bras fit again!

- Looks like Freddy Kreuger's face. Also saggy. But better than a few months ago. I'm hoping in another year it will bounce back even further.

- 1/2 size bigger. Stupid.

So that's that. Still feeling anxious / sad / resentful about this big birthday that's coming up. Of course I'm excited, too, mostly for Declan - he's learning so much, walking so well, having so much fun. I know that the next year is going to be a big hilarious adventure.