Saturday, April 24, 2010

Lifestyles of the Lactating and Exhausted

(note: that title pretty much guarantees my dad won't want to read this post. Don't worry, dad, I don't really talk about lactating. In fact I won't even use the word 'lactating' anymore. I promise.)


(sorry... couldn't help it. I'm done. Now for the post...)

For having a 3 week old and a 20-month-old, I gotta say that Tim and I are surprisingly coherent. Really, ew toootlally r cohairent…I reaalie meen GJVGTBNJJJJJJJJJJJJJJJJJHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHJJJJJJJJJJJJHHHHHHH

Oops. My head just hit the keyboard. It's alright, I'm cool. It's all a normal and natural part of motherhood.

Don't let this F6 embedded in my forehead fool you, I'm really feeling pretty great. Yes, Ava is still nursing (day and night) every other hour – but I don’t feel as tired as such a schedule would lead you to believe. I’m either completely insane and I don’t realize how crazy and out-of-it I am… or I have some of that postpartum adrenaline keeping me all hopped up.

Although anatomical realities have spared Tim from knowing the world of newborn night duty, he has his own reasons for being exhausted. He is our official Bub wrangler…and wild bubs can’t be broken. Alexander continues to be totally enthusiastic about the arrival of his baby sister, “Aba”. Endearingly and dangerously enthusiastic.

Alexander’s latest jokes often involve wearing other people’s shoes, or putting non-footwear items on his feet (boxes, hats, etc.) Here he is walking around the house in Grandma’s shoes:

And here he is putting a bucket on his feet and testing material for his groundbreaking 2028 Comedy Central special:

Being both hilarious and a big brother is exhausting. At the end of the day, Bub likes to chill out in his Fortress of Solitude and watch Elmo.

This weekend we had a visit from my grandma (Bub and Ava’s Great Grandma or “GG”). It was so wonderful to have GG here, and even though she just left twenty minutes ago I already miss her.

I think both Ava and Alexander sufficiently yarred out GG. Ava showed how soundly she could sleep…

And Alexander just batted his insanely long eyelashes.

So that’s our life right now. I’m spending most of my days with my shirt half-off and trying to give sufficient attention to both my wee offspring. Bub’s super excited about his little sister and Tim’s trying to keep Bub from injuring said little sister with aforementioned excitement.

Won’t someone please think of the kitties?

Seriously. Has anyone seen Cow and Bear?

Monday, April 12, 2010

Introducing Ava June!!

The tiniest member of our family has arrived!

Ava was born via c-section on the afternoon of April 3rd. She was 7 lbs 14 oz and yarry as all get out. She was 37 weeks old, so she was a bit early but she is still considered "full term". On Saturday April 3rd I noticed she wasn’t moving around much. This led to a two hour NST test which led to a biophysical which led to the discovery that she only had 3 cm of amniotic fluid and needed to be delivered immediately. Here she is, just minutes old.

Alexander came to visit her at the hospital:

He said “Baby!” when he saw her. He now calls her “Aba” (although every now and then he gets the “v” right and it comes out “Ava”... so he can officially say his sister's name before he can say his own name.) When he sees her, he often blows her kisses – completely unprompted. The kisses were a completely spontaneous reaction on the part of Bub. YAR!!

Our beautiful girl began to develop a Simpson-esque yellow glow on about day two. It turns out she was developing jaundice. We left the hospital with instructions to get her bilirubin checked at the doctor’s office the next day. The next day, we found her weight had dropped to 6 lbs 14 oz, and her bilirubin levels were quite high. So we had to go back to the hospital, this time to the pediatrics unit. Ava spent a day and night getting a tan under the “bili-lights”. She loved the warm lights, but hated the eye protection she had to wear which made her look like she was impersonating a raccoon or planning to rob a bank (or impersonating a raccoon planning to rob a bank). We wondered if we could have gotten the same treatment if we had simply taken her to the neighborhood Tantastic – but we decided to follow doctor’s orders and stay at the hospital and use their medically approved uv lights.

She was released to go home and we had to use a bili-blanket. Don’t let the name fool you. It isn’t a soft and comfortable blanket. It's a narrow plastic panel attached to a gigantic hose. She had to be on the “blanket” for 23 hours a day, which meant I had to keep her on it even when breastfeeding. It did offer some cool sci-fi effects, but it was otherwise annoying.

While her weight is still down at around 6 lbs 14 oz, her bilirubin levels are not crazy-high anymore. Yeaa! We need to try to get her weight up and keep an eye on the bilirubin levels to makes sure the continue to go down. As a result of all of this, we have to make frequent trips to the doctor. Here she is getting read to go out for one of those trips:

Oh, and in case you wonder, I am doing fan-freakin-tastic!!! This was the easiest delivery on earth, I swear. I had a cold, so the cough was a bit painful, but other than that recovery was a breeze. That’s not just the pain meds talking, either, I swear. This was super-dooper easy. (OK... the pain meds help a little.) I realize the enthusiasm of the above statements may sound like sarcasm, but I'm not being at all sarcastic. This. Was. EASY.

Sorry it took a while to post the announcement here. We’ve been a bit busy. I promise I will try to post updates from Yar-central as often as possible, but dramatic pauses are sort of inevitable.

Thanks for all the prayers and well wishes. If you see my mom, give her a high five because she has been a super-hero grandma in helping Tim, Alexander, and I welcome our new family member. Thanks, mom!

We can’t believe our DNA managed to make another super cute kid.