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Archive for June, 2009

On Friday my best friend’s daughter died. She was seven weeks old. An autopsy revealed no obvious cause of death, so it seems that dear Abigail died of SIDS, or Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

I’m not going to go into a ton of details, but I do want to mention this. My friend has worked for Jason’s Deli for a long time, and most recently has served as the regional catering manager for the area surrounding Orlando, FL. Jason’s has been an amazing employer during this time. They are paying to fly Abigail back to our hometown, where she will be interred. They sent an e-mail to all employees asking for donations to help pay for the services, and whatever isn’t covered the owner himself has offered to pay for. They are also transferring my friend back home (incidentally, where Jason’s was founded), because she and her family do not want to be in Florida anymore.

So, I’d like to ask anyone who lives near a Jason’s to start going there regularly, if you don’t already. They really do have the best salad bar you’ll ever find, and loads of other good, healthy food. God bless good employers.

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Ryan’s first haircut

I’d been thinking about taking Ryan to get his hair cut for a while. Then, last Sunday, we woke up to this.

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Cute, yes. But the mohawk had to go. So I found the one kid haircut place in town that was open on Sundays and took him.

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One of the girls who worked there blew bubbles at him, which he liked. When we were done, they gave me a lock of his hair and a “first haircut certificate.” He also got a small toy. Now I have a little man. This isn’t the best picture, but I’m not the best photographer. 🙂

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Me and My Pump

Warning: this is going to be a long post about boobs. And not the cool kind. You’ve been warned.

Today was the first day since Oct. 25, 2008 that I have not used my breast pump. That was the day Ryan decided that nursing was NOT cool and would scream every time I tried to get him to eat. He was five months old. I tried, for a month, to get him to nurse again to no avail. I brought him to the doctor to check for an ear infection. I thought maybe he was teething (he didn’t get his first tooth till he was 9 months old). I talked to my lactation consultant. I tried everything.

And finally, a month after his first refusal, I decided to stop trying to get my poor, screaming baby to nurse and to continue to pump exclusively. I was already pumping 3x/day at work as it was, so this decision required the addition of another two pumps at 7 and 9 pm, and one around 3 am (whenever he was waking up to eat). Mason would bottle-feed him in the middle of the night while I pumped. I was lucky, and always managed to pump more than he ate. At my peak I got around 40 oz a day. I stored the extra in my deep freezer.

Anyway, my Medela Pump in Style Advanced (it’s ok to giggle at the name) took the place of my nursing sessions for 7 months. I always had it with me. Once I had to pump in my car. True story. I dropped the middle-of-the-night session around 6 months and some of the others as he started eating solid food, and at the end was pumping four times a day. I dreamed of the day he turned 1 and could drink cow’s milk, relieving me of my duty. There was no love lost between me and my pump.

So, the day finally came. Ryan turned one and I purchased a gallon of whole milk. Sweet relief! No longer did I HAVE to pump, but I continued, dropping pump sessions every few days to let my supply go down slowly.

Which leads me to today. Today I did not pump. Today was the first time in 21 months that my body was 100% my own. I can take my allergy medicine! I can drink without having to time it far enough away from a pump session!

And the crazy part is, while I’m definitely happy about it, I’m kind of sad, too. Breastfeeding was my last link to pregnancy which, minus the 15 weeks of morning sickness, was a pretty good time. So I’m kind of sad, but also appreciative of my newfound freedom.

I’d do it again, but I hope I don’t have to. Despite a couple of trips to the ER, Ryan is generally not a sickly child, even though he is in daycare, and I’m telling myself it’s because of all the antibodies in breastmilk, if only to justify the last 7 months. 🙂 While I don’t believe ALL the hype about breastmilk (and all the anti-hype about formula — I read once that giving a baby only one bottle of formula predisposes him/her to diabetes. Whatever.) I do think it’s good stuff, and, if nothing else, cheaper than formula.

So anyway, I’m done! Yay! Here’s to the next pump-free year of my life.

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Ryan is 1!

Today is Ryan’s first birthday. On June 2, 2008 at 5:19 pm we were blessed with the cutest bundle of joy ever. Here’s my first post after his birth. Remember when I posted this a few days later? And then this?

Well, here we are now.

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We threw him a birthday party Saturday. It was so fun! We had about 35 people. I have a bazillion pictures but I currently only have the energy to post a few, so here we go.

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Singing “Happy Birthday.”

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Trying to convince Ryan that cake is good.

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Success! Ryan realizes the goodness of cake.

All in all, it was a blast. We had a kiddie pool for the kids and beer, horseshoes, and washers for the adults. All the family and a bunch of friends came in to celebrate our baby turning one, and (I like to think) Mason and I surviving the first year of parenthood. Was it as hard as everyone says? Eh, I think it was harder. But how many really great things come about with no difficulty?

Now we are moving into toddlerhood as Ryan gets ready to take his first steps, and parents with more experience than me keep telling me how it just gets more difficult (“look out for the terrible twos!”; “good luck getting him to eat anything!” etc.).  And while all that is probably true, after the last year I would prefer to not worry about what’s to come, and just celebrate each day’s successes, like watching Ryan figure out how to make a rattle out of a Pirouette can and a block, or seeing him joyfully splash in the bathtub.  So that’s my goal. I’m not sure if I can do it, but I’m gonna give it my darnedest. I hear babies grow up fast, and I don’t want to miss a thing.

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