All the Sun For You

A mom, two boys, a husband, and a whole lot of adventure!


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Still…

Still no AF.

I just finished one beer, and was wanting another.  I thought, “let’s just test again for good measure before I have another.  You never know.”

But I do know.  I always know.

Still a BFN.

Where the hell is it????  I could care less about not being pregnant right now, but holy hell, I am ready to be done with this PMS, or whatever it is.

My left breast hurts.  I haven’t nursed since Friday night but the poor-producing left breast has decided to make things difficult while the right, over-producing breast is just drying up like it’s supposed to.  Why has the left one decided to be a superstar now when it was such an under-producer for the last year?!?!

I’m done complaining.

Time for another beer.  I think I’ll have 6.


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My New View

When I was weaning Matthew, I never thought that there would be things that would come from it that would make me thankful that he’s weaned. I thought that I would just miss everything about nursing and that that certain closeness would be gone.

But something entirely new, and spectacular, has emerged. Matthew, who would only cuddle while nursing, now does this:

And this:

And this:

I have a snuggler!

I am typing this on my phone as he naps on my chest. And this is what I’m looking at:

When he is drifting off to sleep now in the rocker, he’ll randomly pop up to kiss me. LOVE!!!! I can bury my nose into his hair and smell his fresh baby scent. And I can flutter his eyelashes with my nose as I sing softly into his ear, helping him drift to sleep. Right now, he just stirred and grabbed me tightly before coo-ing himself back to sleep. We couldn’t/didn’t do any of these things while we were nursing.

I’m in heaven!


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Loving

Just a quick thing I want to record.  B went on a day trip today for work – just a 2 hour drive from home.  He left around 5:30 this morning and was home (met us at Pan.era) at 6:00.  Really, this was a normal work day for him, from my perspective.  Matthew wakes up after 7:00 now (THANK GOD!) so many mornings, even if B is staying in town (which is the norm), he doesn’t see Matthew in the morning before going to work.  But B feels like he’s been gone FOREVER… and he’s crawling around on the floor with Matthew as if he hasn’t seen him in days.  There is nothing but joy in our living room right now… and it’s bath time but I don’t want to break up the party  😉

It’s precious.

I feel like the luckiest mom and wife in the world right now!  He is such a loving man  🙂

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I’m Ready!

It’s no secret that I am rather ambivalent about TTC #2 – but I now need to rephrase that.  I was ambivalent about TTC#2.

Now – I’m ready.

I am late – very late for me.  I’m coming off of breastfeeding so I figured I’d let it ride for a bit before I tested.  I hate having HPT’s in the house – they give me great anxiety.  I figured I’d get a BFN and then have 2 HPT’s leftover from the box, and that was too much for me.  Just knowing they’re under my bathroom sink makes me want to have a reason to use them.  It’s weird, I know.  Or maybe it isn’t.

Anyway – I wasn’t testing.

I have the most insanely sensitive sense of smell right now.  I can smell cat puke spots from months ago.  I can smell specific bugs outside.  I can pick up the faintest scent and it’s been driving me nuts.  Of everything I was smelling, B could only smell the same thing as me once.  This was a tell-tale sign.

I’ve been sick, off and on, for weeks.  Sunday was rough – but I didn’t read too much into it because I wasn’t sick when I was pregnant with Matthew.

I’ve had lots of faint little cramps – just like when I got pregnant with Matthew.

So I tested this morning.  BFN.  I knew it.  I wasn’t sad – even though I had let my mind wander into the realm of, “what if?!”  In fact, I had a spring to my step.  And here is why.

I now know that I am ready to TTC #2.  I am ambivalent no more.  I am looking forward to starting a cycle.  I am looking forward to getting this show on the road.  I am looking forward to knowing where we stand with all of the IF business.

I needed this little exercise – it let me really figure out how I feel.

But now, all I need is a period.  Where the hell is it?  I’m ready to get it over with so we can start a cycle (or testing) next month – and then use one of those annoying HPT’s shortly thereafter  🙂


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Considering Our Family…

This post is my contribution to the PAIL monthly theme post

“I’m bored with you, Mom. Please give me a little brother or sister ASAP!”

So here we are, it’s July and I’ve just finished up breastfeeding Matthew so that we can move onto TTC #2 with fertility treatments.  Yay.  😉  I am a little irritated that Matthew and I have to give up something that we both love just to try something.  There are no guarantees that it will work any time soon – and there is a part of my brain that is angry that we had to stop nursing just to attempt something that only has a 40% success rate.  But I need to get over it – because it is what it is.

I am ambivalent about TTC #2 (if you can’t tell!).  Working on #1 was very hard on me – it took 1 full year of trying naturally, then 2 IUI’s (both BFN’s), then a fresh IVF cycle (BFN), then a frozen cycle (very early miscarriage), and then another fresh IVF cycle (Matthew!).  From starting the TTC process to a successful ultrasound, it took us over 2.25 years.  2.25 years.  God, I hope it doesn’t take that long again!

For me, ideal child spacing would be about 3 years, but we don’t have that luxury.  I am 36, Matthew is very social and really needs a sibling ASAP, and… we have 7 embryos in the freezer.  We want to give them all a chance if we can, which means that we could be looking at TTC #3 if all goes well with #2 and we have a couple of embryos left over again.  In other words, we need to GET ON IT!  If I had my way, I would wait a little longer so that Matthew and I could have a little more “us time,” but I do forget that getting pregnant doesn’t yield us a baby for at least 8-9 months so there’s still plenty of “us time” ahead of us.  AND – the only reason I say that 3 years is ideal is because my little sister is 3 years younger than me and we are true besties – she was my very first love and always will be.  Maybe 2 years spacing would be ideal for my babies and that’s all that really matters.

And then there’s this… given what it takes for us to get pregnant, maybe my babies will end up being 3 years apart anyway.  We just never know.  And that’s the whole point of all of this, right?  We just don’t know what’s going to happen and we need to trust fate and just jump in feet first!

But… I do know that both my head and heart are ready to get started again.  We definitely want another baby (or two!) and we know that Matthew wants a little friend, so it’s time to make this happen.  I have no doubts that it will work, but the question is how long it will take and what all it will take.  Our RE has different ideas of what we’ll do if the first FET fails (he wants to do a fresh cycle, I’d like to try another FET… but he’s right – my age is an issue), so at this point, I just want it to work the first time so that I don’t have to make hard decisions.  That would be nice.  However, that would not be likely.

I do know that I will not allow myself to be as stressed out about this as I was when we were trying desperately to get Matthew.  We have one baby already and that is all we need – we are complete with him.  I have written about this several times – I feel it deep down in my soul that Matthew completed our family for us.  Every baby after him is an extra cherry on top of our sundae (and I love cherries!)!  We are no longer looking at being childless, so that makes TTC #2 way easier on an emotional level.  Sure, I’ll throw my heart and soul into it, but I have a little boy who warms my heart and completes my soul.  He gives me strength.  He gives me happiness.  He gives me peace.  I will kindly take those gifts from him and use them to make this process easier on us ALL (B included).  I assure you, and myself, of that.

 

 

 

 


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Weaning Complete

* This used to be my Weaning Progress Page, but now that weaning is complete, I figured it was better as a singular post.  We really were done on the 14th.  I thought that I may nurse until I get my period, but last night (07/15), I told B that I just have to bite the bullet and get the breast pain over with, and that Matthew was ready to be done.  So I thawed out some breast milk and filled up a sippy cup for bedtime.  It went fine – he didn’t fall asleep, but he hasn’t fallen asleep at bedtime in a long time with the exception of the final night of nursing.  Matthew fussed for 20 minutes (like normal) before settling down.  It was uneventful.  He didn’t seem to miss it – but I did.  However… I am fine!

We started weaning today (7/1).  This was hard for me – there were some tears over it.  We developed a plan with Matthew’s pediatrician who suggested dropping one nursing every 3-4 days.  We started with Matthew’s morning nap and will continue to just not nurse for this one nap for three days before then dropping his afternoon nap nursing for three days, and so on.  This should take a total of 12 days since he nurses 4 times a day (when he wakes up, morning nap, afternoon nap, bedtime).  The reasons we’re doing it this way are that the doctor agrees with me that Matthew will likely be very stubborn so we should ease him into it, and, more importantly (per the doctor), Matthew nurses quite a bit and easing back will help me avoid mastitis.

07/01/2012 – dropped the nursing before the morning nap.  I was a wreck over it, and Matthew clearly wanted to nurse, but he let me distract him by rocking him while standing up with him.  He fell asleep but then did fuss when I put him in his crib.  However, he was over it and asleep within a couple of minutes.  My heart broke a little, but honestly, it was easier than I expected.  I did not cry at all during or afterwards.  He handled it well.  I was so looking forward to our afternoon nap nursing that I let him sleep in my arms for 2 hours.  I am clearly the one having a hard time with this  😉

07/02/2012 – morning nap went just fine.  I’m almost sad about how easy this has been – my boy apparently doesn’t need me as much as I thought.  😉  HA!  I put him down awake at 10:28 (after standing and rocking him for 10 minutes) and he whimpered some until 10:30 – no full-on crying.  Unreal.  We’re coming up on 1.75 hours of napping.  I have his sippy cup all ready for him with 3.5 ounces of the oldest frozen breast milk we have in the house – it’s from September.  It smells and tastes like metal (this happens with all of my milk once it’s frozen, it’s due to some extra enzyme – it’s perfectly safe), but he drinks it.  He’s a good boy  😉  Update:  Matthew’s nap today was 2.25 hours.  What in the world?  And he took his sippy cup very happily!  Update #2:  Nap 2 was spent in my arms.  I enjoyed the snuggles too much, and he went down late and I didn’t want him to sleep past 5 – so there you have it.  He actually was not happy about this as he got too hot and didn’t sleep well.

07/03/2012Well, this just keeps getting easier and easier.  This is the last day of just one nursing being dropped.  Tomorrow, we go for the next one, which will be the afternoon nap feeding.  This means that I will not nurse tomorrow for over 12 hours, and that has me a bit nervous.  We will nurse when Matthew wakes up (6:00-6:30) and then not again until bedtime around 8:00.  Oh boy!  Right now, I’m going 9 hours between feedings and I feel fine, so maybe 14 hours won’t be so bad?  I don’t know.  Anyway – this morning’s nap went well.  We read 3 books (as usual before any sleep time!) and then I stood up and rocked Matthew over my shoulder.  He didn’t even try to nurse.  He was pretty playful at first, but then settled down and even fell asleep.  I was so happy!  When I put him in his crib, he opened his eyes and moaned for a second, and then drifted back to sleep.  He’s been asleep for over an hour now.  This is going too well.

07/04/2012 – We dropped the afternoon nap nursing.  Matthew handled it just fine – he’s getting used to finishing his books, then being rocked to drowsiness on my shoulder.  His morning nap was not as long as usual (only 1.5 hours today) because we let him go down earlier.  The afternoon nap was then earlier and shorter as well.  I like to stretch him 3.5-4 hours before a nap, but today, he wanted one after 3 hours.  He does try to nurse here and there, but he’s easily distracted.  The breast milk in the sippy cup is treating him really well.  I’m not sure it’s going to last into September because he could definitely drink more of it if I’d let him.  I am watching his dairy intake to ensure he only get 16-20 ounces a day – don’t want to over-do it.  I am doing fine with the weaning, but I was ready to nurse him tonight.  I wasn’t in pain, but I would have been if we’d gone much longer!  We may do 4 days of this (2 nursings, 2 non-nursings) instead of 3 because I’m a bit scared of how I’m going to feel when we drop a third nursing.  I have to believe that will be painful.

07/05/2012 – We hit a rough patch today.  Matthew wasn’t too interested in nursing this morning when he woke up, so I went from 6:45 AM until 8:00 PM without nursing, and started that stretch with semi-full breasts.  Ouch!  By 8:00, I was desperate to nurse.  I even pumped afterwards (2.25 ounces).  Poor Matthew was desperate to nurse during the day today too.  He was trying to nurse from my arm, my shoulder… from anywhere as I tried putting him down for his afternoon nap.  He settled for a sippy cup of Mom’s milk.  We both survived… but it was tough!

07/06/2012 – Today was going to be my last day of nursing 50% of the time, but we’re going to take an extra day (or two) before dropping it down to 25%.  I need to give my body another day to adjust down – I’m a bit uncomfortable by about this time in the day (5:45 PM) after not nursing since 6:00 AM.  Today was way better than yesterday – HOLY HELL I THOUGHT I WAS GOING TO EXPLODE YESTERDAY!  Matthew did rather well today but after waking up early from his nap (he napped in my arms – oh the sweetness!), he tried to nurse.  Very quickly, we got the remaining 1.5 ounces out of the fridge and that seemed to do the trick.  Whew!  I am looking forward to nursing him tonight for different reasons than last night.  Last night – I was ready to explode.  Tonight, I’m ready to snuggle!

07/07/2012 – Today is going well – Matthew has had his cup of milk BEFORE his naps today and I think that’s working better.  He only gnawed on my arm for a few seconds before going down for his AM nap.  I am feeling pretty good.  We’re doing 2 nursings today and tomorrow, I think.  I just want to take it slow so that I am not in pain.  I was miserable 2 days ago, and there’s no reason to push it.  I’m really happy with how this is going!  It’s going much better than I expected for both of us!

07/08/2012 – I messed up my schedule in my milk tracking spreadsheet, so I get an extra day (6th day) of 2 nursings a day – which means tomorrow is a gift!  I would rather take an extra day to wean than update that spreadsheet again.  I am pleased, I was struggling with which feeding to drop (first thing in the  morning, or bedtime nursing).  I think I’ll drop the morning feeding next.  Today went just fine – and my milk supply is adjusted quite well to just morning and night feedings.

07/09/2012 – This day went fine – it was my bonus day of a 6th morning of nursing.  I was supposed to drop down to just one feeding today (at bedtime), but I messed up my milk planning and added a day to the schedule.  Fine by me!  I truly enjoyed our final morning snuggle together!

07/10/2012 – It’s a rough day – I haven’t nursed since last night at 9:00 and it’s 5:00 PM now.  Ugh.  I’ll be OK, but this is not fun.  Three more hours to go until I get some relief.  On the bright side, Matthew is devouring his milk in his cups.  He even yelled, “yeah!” when I showed him his afternoon nap sippy cup of milk  🙂  He’s napping great today (almost 2 hours this morning and going on an hour right now, with no end in sight) and he slept until 7:20 this morning.  I should rephrase that – he woke up at 6:10 and since today was the first day of no morning nursing, I let him try to settle down and he did within 4 minutes.  He woke up 20 minutes later and fussed for a couple minutes.  He fussed one more time at 6:45 and then went back to sleep until 7:20.  It was so nice to have the house ready before he woke up.  His sippy cup was full and waiting for him, and the cats were all fed and shot up (we have a diabetic).  We went to Target at 8:30.  What a morning!  I owe it all to not nursing this morning.  I missed it, but it’s OK.

07/11/2012 – I’m always amazed how much better day 2 is after dropping a nursing.  I was in terrible pain yesterday by pool time (1:00 PM) and today – I feel just fine at almost 5:00.  Unreal!  The body is truly amazing!  Matthew wasn’t so keen on his milk today – he stretched 5 ounces across two nap feedings, leaving a 4.5 ounce bag in the freezer.  This is just fine – he’s getting plenty of dairy between his cups, the one nursing, and his morning yogurt.  I’m almost done nursing… 4 nights left.  I’ll be OK.. I’ll be OK  😉

07/12/2012 – I cried a bit tonight as I nursed Matthew.  It his me that I only had 3 more nights of nursing left before we’re all done.  I cried through the entire first half of the nursing.  Matthew seemed concerned by this.  Besides that, the day has been uneventful in the weaning department.  My supply has totally adjusted to just one nursing and I’m just amazed at how smart the human (FEMALE) body is!

07/13/2012 – I did not cry tonight.  I’m ready to be done – but only because Matthew goes to sleep better when he’s rocked over my shoulder than when he nurses to sleep (drowsiness).  The nights have been brutal at bedtime with him crying for 20-40 minutes, off and on, after nursing.  I’m told it could be my let-down adjusting which may be upsetting him.  I don’t know – but I do know that I LOVE rocking him before his naps with him draped over my shoulder and I will LOVE doing that at bedtime too.  I realized today that I’m not giving up a bond – but the way we bond is changing slightly.  And that’s OK.  One night left… I think.  Let’s see if I chicken out and keep nursing just at night for a little while longer.

07/14/2012 – I think we’re done.  Sniff, sniff, sniff… sob, sob, sob!  Seriously, the final night went well.  I committed to letting him nurse until he fell asleep and fell off of me.  Twenty-three minutes in, he was fast asleep but still nursing so I shifted just a smidgen and he fell off – and I rocked him for a minute and then put him to bed.  I thanked my sweet boy for over a year of wonderful bonding and told him I loved him and walked out.  He didn’t make a peep.  And then I cried  😦

What a great run this has been!  I never expected to make it this long.  I originally planned to make it to 3 months, then 6 months, then a year.  We made it to 1 year and 3 weeks, and only quit because it’s time to start trying to give Matthew a little brother or sister and we can’t do that until I’m done nursing (per the RE).  We have enough frozen breast milk to get him to 15.5 months and maybe even longer – and we NEVER planned on that!  So I am happy.  I am proud.  I am at peace.

Here are some of our more recent nursing photos – I will always smile when I look at these!

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EAT

We had a date night tonight – unplanned.  We were going to go to a family-friendly place but B surprised me by getting dressed up (we are very casual folks!) and driving downtown.  He looked hot!  Anyway, he called a restaurant on our drive down and asked if they had high chairs, so I knew we weren’t going to our normal stand-by.  I panicked.  I did.  I admit it.  Matthew does not do as well as he used to at restaurants unless there is food in front of him at.all.times.  I did not bring anything with me (since he eats so well) so we didn’t have an “appetizer” for him like we often do.  I asked where we were going and B said “Alba.”  You know… just one of the  hottest “it” places around our fair city.  On a Saturday night.  At 7:00 PM.  Cue even more panic.

We got there and Matthew needed to go for a walk.  It was not starting out well.  We asked what they had for kids and THANK GOD they didn’t give us the normal run-down of fried foods and cheese dishes.  No – they didn’t have a kids’ menu and said they’d do whatever we wanted as long as they had the food to do it.  This is the best way for restaurants to handle kids, if you ask me!  Most parents would be totally put-off by this but we were thrilled!  We opted for grilled chicken and green beans (and they only charged $5 for it).  We got steamed chicken (thigh meat, which made me happy since all he ever eats is chicken breast and we want him to like dark meat) with green beans, yellow beans, zucchini, carrots, and corn.  Besides the corn (not paleo-appropriate and is truly the devil of all food products around), we were set.

But we feared it was not enough.

This kid can eat.  I mean – HE CAN EAT.  He eats whatever we put in front of him, and I’m not kidding.  He used to resist green beans but he even piles those into his mouth now with great enthusiasm.  He enjoys fish (he ate smoked salmon for 2 days until I finally tossed it – I was tired of him smelling like fish!), loves chicken, and loves ribs even more.  He will eat any veggie or fruit and fights you for your yogurt.  He’s a dream to feed.  But this presents us with serious problems.  He wants to eat everything we eat, so we now can only eat what he can eat (he saw us eating home-made spiced nuts today and lost his sh*t when we wouldn’t give them to him).  This forces us to eat healthy, but it also limits us on things we love (like nuts and cheese) until he’s napping or asleep for the night.  Not a huge deal, but something for us to keep top-of-mind.  It also means that in addition to his own meal when we go out, he wants ours too.

Matthew started making his way through his food rather quickly.  We tried slowing him down with some filling from our prosciutto and jalapeno fritters – but that only lasted so long.  When our food arrived, we moved his food aside knowing full-well that he would be wanting ours instead.  B got Guinness braised short ribs and I, of course, got salmon (because Matthew loves salmon).  We alternated him between his food and ours, and just kept tossing bits of food in front of him as we tried to eat as well.  Once he tasted the ribs, it was all over and that’s all he wanted – it was a good thing he’d finished his own meal or he would have had the stomach to eat most of B’s dinner for him.  He liked the salmon just fine, but he loved the ribs.  Any time he got loud it was because he was OUT.OF.FOOD.AND.WANTED.MORE!!!!!  We were frantically cutting food for him and tossing it in front of him.

I will say that I saw several people look over with pleasant surprise as he ate all of our adult food, and it made me proud.  We often hear, “that baby is eating salmon,” or something of the like, and it makes me so happy!  I love having a good eater.  This has been a huge goal of ours since we were pregnant and I started researching how to teach kids to eat well.  I credit the homemade baby food for his fabulous eating habits.

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Once Matthew was done, it was time to go.  There is no time to waste – wipe him down, clean up the floor under the high chair, and get the heck out of there.  We LOVE the desserts at this restaurant (we swear they have the best in town – and no – none of them are paleo-appropriate) so B ordered two to go.  I took Matthew outside to get some fresh air as we waited for B and our desserts and we chatted up a couple on the patio.  When I got in the passenger seat to go home, I noticed the baby fork (that we did not even use at dinner) on the center console.  I mentioned it and B said, “that’s so you can eat your dessert on the way home.”  What a nice guy!  I ate my caramel creme brulee with that Ger.ber baby fork and loved every bite.  We then pulled over and B and I switched spots so he could eat his chocolate lava cake during the rest of the drive home.  We may have used Matthew’s baby fork, but he had no idea what was going on up in the front seat – and we enjoyed finally having some food to ourselves.  We didn’t even share with each other  😉


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Slacker

I’ve been a slacker at blogging lately.  There’s been some very consuming stuff going on and when it’s not going on, I like the downtime to just sit in the hot tub with B.  We’ve done a lot of reconnecting this week, and for that, I’m grateful.  I have  lot to write about though – like the PAIL monthly theme post, a weaning summary, pool photos, milestones (new teeth), etc.

Keeping my weaning log updated takes some time.  Not a lot of time, but it’s important to me and I like to do it every night.  I’ve also been planning, and planning, and planning out my frozen milk supply until it’s used up.  What’s been going on with that is trying to make sure that Matthew does not get TOO MUCH dairy once we are done weaning.  Between his yogurt, nursing, and frozen breast milk, he was getting too much for a few days so I had to dial it back and then re-figure how long our frozen stash will last.  I am going to give him around 12 ounces of breast milk a day and then 4 ounces of yogurt and then some cheese, if he wants it.  We are not to exceed 20 ounces of dairy total, and the doctor says that includes breast milk.  The target is 16-20 ounces a day.  I was originally planning to give him 16 ounces of breast milk a day, so you can imagine what this shift did to my spreadsheet!

OMG my spreadsheet! HA HA!  I’m happy to report that it is all updated now!

We are not the biggest believers in dairy after a certain age.  There are studies that have proven that most humans become lactose intolerant sometime after the age of 3.  So when a doctor tells me to keep the dairy intake limited to 16-20 ounces a day, I listen to her and tend to want to end up on the lower end of the spectrum.  All of this re-figuring, and then sorting out how to introduce whole cow’s milk to Matthew (which I’m not comfortable with but I guess we have to do it), got our frozen stash stretched out to October 10th.  OCTOBER!  That means he’ll be 15.5 months old when he switches solely to whole cow’s milk (we are transitioning him over a 15 day period).  I am so pleased that he is able to have breast milk exclusively for the first 15 months of his life!  I told B the other day that I’m really proud of this.  I’m not sure if I’ve ever been prouder of anything in my life, besides having my son.

The other thing that has taken my time each night is keeping my “favorite things about Matthew list” updated.  I just love doing this little piece every night – and I hope we all enjoy re-reading it over and over again over the years of Matthew’s life!

So that’s where I’ve been.  I have some craft projects to do next week but will try to make more time for blogging.  I’m still waiting on my birthday party photos, but I’ve seen them and they’re really good  🙂  I’ll post some as soon as I have them.