Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thanksgiving Blessings

Thanksgiving was a bit chaotic for us, having traveled 3 hours to stay with family over the weekend. Thankfully, Peanut was such a good baby the whole time, and we didn't have to deal with any crying outbursts or major upsets. Everyone was amazed how different she was from her last visit, remarking that she was indeed a different baby now that her colic was gone.

Peanut got passed around like a hot potato, and she loved every minute of the attention from her adoring extended family. She posed gracefully in photo after photo and kept smiling through all the kisses. On Sunday, when I picked her up from the church nursery, the nursery worker commented, "Oh. The Smiling Baby!"

It was a good visit, and despite my worries of unwarranted advice, all was well. I'm beginning to realize I truly am a first-time parent though, and perhaps my concerns make me seem a bit uptight at times. I can only pray for others to give me grace in this regard, as I am learning more and more each day what it truly means to be a mother and how to parent a growing child. I need the Lord's guidance now more than ever, and I am seeking that out with an open heart.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Holiday Advice

I can't believe it's already the week of Thanksgiving! Time sure has snuck up on us, and Peanut will soon be chowing down on turkey and mashed potatoes. (Ok, well, maybe not turkey and mashed potatoes, more like breast milk! - hopefully)

We will be traveling to my original hometown for Peanut's first Thanksgiving, and I think she will be smothered by all her extended relatives who are anxious to see her.

What I'm not looking forward to...
  • "Are you STILL breastfeeding?!"
  • "She's still hungry, give her a bottle!"
  • "Why is she crying, she shouldn't be doing that" (after being handled for 2.5 hrs and needing a nap)
  • "She's not sleeping through the night YET? Something must be wrong, give her some cereal!"
  • "She's not bundled up enough. It's 50 degrees outside, she should wear a snowsuit!"
  • "You aren't giving her cereal? She needs it."
  • "Here, give her a spoonful of cranberry sauce. See if she likes it!"
  • "I don't think she's eating enough."
  • "She should be going 5 hours in between feedings by now."
  • ect. ect. ect.

My family does mean well, but sometimes advice and comments like the above are exhausting and demeaning. This is just the beginning of the holiday season (we will also be traveling for Christmas and New Years), so I guess I better get used to it quick.

So here's a reader question of the day - How do you handle unwanted advice and comments from relatives who disagree with your parenting choices?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Roll-y Poll-y

Peanut has really gotten the hang of rolling! Just look at this picture, and know that I originally put her down in the middle of that blankie. Barely 10 minutes had transpired when I returned to find my daughter completely on the other side! She gives me a look as if to say, "Well, you didn't really expect me to stay put did you?!"
This roll-y poll-y-ness means I can no longer leave her on the bed unattended. Even if she is in the center of the bed, surrounded by pillows and a sea of blankets. Ask me how I know! She must also be properly strapped into her swing and bouncy and placed far away from sharp table legs when on the floor least she knock her head into the side and leave an unattractive mark for others to wonder about.
Although many parents are no ready for their little one to roll and crawl, I am loving this stage in Peanut's life. Her colic is gone, and she is playful and content for longer periods of time. She grabs her feet and reaches for toys, which make playing with her so much more enjoyable. She even notices the cats and will stare at them for long periods of time as they make their way across the room (although they have learned to stay away from here unless they want a tiny hand firmly grasping their ears, tail and fur!).

Friday, November 12, 2010

Breastfeeding Lessons

Last week I took Peanut to her 4 month checkup. She weighed a whopping 12 lbs! Although I thought this was pretty good for her, her doctor advised me to see a lactation consultant since she seemed to have dropped down on the weight charts. I had been worried for the past couple of weeks that my supply had dropped, so I was not surprised to hear this. The next day, I went ahead and scheduled a visit with the LC.

Peanut definitely wasn't taking in as much as she could, after being weighed both before and after feedings, so the LC advised me on ways to get my supply back up to par. She gave me this delicious tea, Mother's Milk, which I was to drink 3 times daily. I also was instructed to pump more often and offer each breast for a feeding (I had previously only been offering Peanut one at a time since she had seemed satisfied in the beginning from it).

After a week of nursing nonstop, drinking tea and pumping, I went back in to see how much Peanut weighed and if my supply had gone up. Well, she gained a full 4 oz in that week! AND she got 2x as much milk as last week in a feeding! I was so happy! And Peanut surely was too!

I'm proud of each moment that I am able to continue breastfeeding and that I have made it this far (4.5 months) without having to supplement with formula. However, because my mother and grandmother did not breastfeed, I don't have a close support network to draw from concerning this issue. I am thankful I was able to visit with an LC who could give me some much needed insight on things! Support, I am realizing, is extremely important for a successful breastfeeding experience. I am blessed to have a wonderful husband who supports me wholeheartedly in this endeavor!

Here's to more successful breastfeeding milestones I hope to meet in the future!