Tag Archives: weaning

Rachel 9 Months

I’m not sure where the time has gone this summer.  I’m a bit behind (what’s new?), but Rachel turned 9 months old two weeks ago!

Man, oh man.  She is SO fun right now. She figured out how to crawl and is enjoying perusing the entire house at her leisure. I found her today playing with the broom in the laundry room, and sitting on her knees in her room while she fiddled with the garbage can sitting on the lower part of her changing table. Apparently we aren’t as baby-proofed as we used to be with Josh. Either that or she just loves to explore more!

She is my cuddly baby, who loves to be near me. Whenever I scoop her up, her arms fly around my neck faster than I can say “Hi!” (She then proceeds to pull my hair or pinch my cheek, but whatever.)

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We went to Six Flags Discovery Kinddom a few days ago and left Josh with his Aunty and Uncle. But Rachel came along with us (as well as my nephews and their grandparents). We almost didn’t have room for her in the stroller, but we managed to fit her in. 😉

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I wasn’t sure how it would go, but she did great. Slept and ate on cue, even. I’m not sure she even cried while at the park. I brought a quilt and found a (relatively) quiet spot so that I could nurse her and let her crawl around.

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It would seem I only have toys for big brother in my diaper bag right now. She really doesn’t mind…

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After her nap I couldn’t pass up taking a picture of her hair. Kind of hard to see in the photo. But it was cute.

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Speaking of hair, I tried to get a clip in her hair the other day. As you can see, it’s not really my specialty. I put her down for a nap and forgot about the clip until I went to get her up and realized that it was missing. After a moment of panicking (the girl loves to put everything in her mouth) I thankfully found it underneath her crib. After Josh’s bean-up-the-nose experience, I’m a little nervous.

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Grandma had to crochet her a smaller blankie a few weeks ago because her other blankie was pretty big and she kept rolling around in it during her naps until she was caught up in it really tight like a cocoon. This smaller blankie has done the trick and she hasn’t been getting stuck in it.

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My youngest nephew (pictured after this next picture) loves to play with Rachel and the other day I had to decline his request to hold her (probably because I was too busy with other things and unable to sit with him). So he dressed up Rachel instead. As you can tell, she wasn’t very amused.

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He isn’t always denied his requests to hold her…

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All my nephews just love her so much. They love Josh as well and play with him tirelessly. It’s such a joy to watch!

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Rachel with her Aunty. She’ll be incredibly different when they see each other again in a few years (*sniff sniff*).

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With Grandpa in the swing. Rachel’s pretty much up for anything these days. She was enjoying this more than I was able to capture in the picture!

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An update on weaning her: It didn’t happen. My mom came for two days in a row and I left with Josh and just let my mom keep offering her the bottle, sippy cup, or whatever she wouldn’t refuse. By the end of the second day she wasn’t taking anything or even opening her mouth. It. Was. Stressful. And oh, the look Rachel gave me when I walked in the door at the end of those days! She looked so betrayed. Since I was still able to nurse her, I wasn’t at a point where I wanted to let her starve for a few days until she gave in and took the formula. So we picked back up where we left off. It hasn’t been so bad… she’s sleeping through the night and nursing 5-6 times a day. But I do look forward to transitioning her to cow’s milk at a year old.

9 month stats: 17#4oz. 27 1/4 inches at her last drs appt. Just moved into size 4 diapers. Fits in 9 and 12 month clothes, although I keep squeezing her into 6 month clothes because I just don’t have a ton of bigger clothes. Loves solids, and eats 3-4 servings a day. Still not loving the sippy cup, but it’s offered to her (with water in it) with her solids. She has mastered picking up puffs and loves doing that. She is accepting most of mom’s homemade baby food! Hooray!

So thankful for this joyful little person God placed in our care! We love our Little Rachel! (Her Daddy started calling her this when she was tiny and it just sort of stuck, even though she’s not very ‘little’ anymore!).

 

 

 

 

 

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Endometriosis: Is it Coming Back?

It’s 2 am and I’m sitting here wondering: Is the endometriosis coming back? Little by little, the pain has started to return with each subsequent cycle that I have had since Rachel was born. I sat up in bed last night and a very sharp pain in my lower right side took my breath away for a few minutes. The same pain had occurred the day before. There is now a dull ache in my side, almost like my ovary is tacked up against my abdominal wall. It’s a pain I am all too well familiar with.

The other thought I had, which seems much more unlikely, was an ectopic pregnancy. I only have one fallopian tube, and I’m pretty sure it’s mostly or completely blocked, based on the last hysterosalpinogram I had years ago. Although I am high risk for an ectopic pregnancy, it’s seems pretty unlikely that I’d been feeling pain from such this early on in my cycle (I think I’m on CD 25).

I’m tempted to feel frustrated that I seem to have crazy aggressive endometriosis, but miraculously we have two children (despite thinking I would need a hysterectomy 3 years ago). If there’s anything I’m learning these days, it’s that the past does not necessarily predict the future, and despite my best guess– I actually have no idea what God has for our future. I’m learning to stop making assumptions. So I don’t know if this means that more exams, ultrasounds and surgeries are in my immediate future. I don’t know if it means we will be able to have more children. But I do know that God can do anything, and that His plan is always best. (And His plans are usually a complete shock to me.)

In the meantime, I’m attempting to wean Rachel. The reasons for this are complicated and varied, and it’s going about as well as trying to get a lion to go on a vegetarian diet. She wants nothing to do with either the bottle or formula. She just wants to nurse, and it makes it doubly hard for this mama to see that. Weaning Josh was hard and yet still much easier than this, so I am not sure of the path forward from here. We’ve tried just about every trick in the book. I’m warming up formula at the moment that I’m 99% positive she will reject (but like I said, I don’t know the future!). Maybe this time she’ll take it. Or maybe we’ll still be at this in a few weeks — please say a prayer for us!

 

 

 

 

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Moving Forward

It’s taken me a while to muster up the courage to write this blog post. For a while I’ve been thinking that maybe I just wanted to have a more private life, and that I didn’t really want to broadcast on this blog the latest, the greatest, the saddest or the baddest happening in my life. Maybe I should stop blogging altogether, I thought.

Looking back, I didn’t blog much (okay, actually not at all) before, during and after we went through IVF. At the time, I felt that I couldn’t. I was realized that this was mostly due to the crippling fear I had that it wouldn’t work.

But then the Lord gave us Josh. A blessing greater than I could have ever surmised.

Since I find myself wanting to retreat from this blog again, you might have guessed why: We’re headed towards a frozen embryo transfer (FET) soon.

It seems a little soon,” you might say. And as Josh is a handful of days away from turning 6 months old, you would be quite correct. It is early. We had hoped to wait longer, so that my body could have more time to recover and so that I could keep nursing Josh for at least a year. But things didn’t turn out as planned (when do they ever?). If you read my blog much, you might remember my post about never ending PMS symptoms. At the time I felt pregnant. For a month I had nausea, heartburn, fatigue, bloating, cramping, spotting… which finally resulted in my first postpartum period, 30 days later. I felt relieved, as it meant my month of PMS torture was finally over. But at the same time, my heart sank. I knew that it meant my (aggressive) endometriosis would be able rear it’s ugly head again, and conceivably soon. In the past, I’ve gotten endometriomas (chocolate cysts) in just two months. That’s right– in just two cycles I had been diagnosed with two endometriomas and scheduled for surgery. And since I’ve had surgery three times, I’m not into waiting it out  to see how it goes. I’ve got 4 other embryos to think about, and I don’t want to risk having to have a hysterectomy or having multiple surgeries that might impair their ability to implant and grow. Our IVF doctor, taking the aggressive nature of my endometriosis into consideration, thinks it’s a wise plan of action to do the FET soon.

The biggest downside to doing the embryo transfer soon is that I had to wean Josh. I found it quite an easy thing to talk about and a much harder thing to actually do. Now, before I go on, I must say that nursing Josh has not been an easy feat. I didn’t write about it on this blog, but I dealt with Josh’s tongue-tie, multiple block ducts, never ending milk blisters, a mastitis scare (basically fever, chills and body aches that self resolved), low milk supply, and lots and lots of Josh crying with frustration while nursing. Often times, I would cry too. Despite all of the hardships that came along with nursing, I found it unbelievably hard to give up. I planned to make it as non-traumatic as possible–starting with one bottle a day with something like 3/4 breast milk and 1/4 formula, while slowly adjusting the ratio over time so that it was only formula, and slowly substituting nursing with bottle feedings over the course of a month. But Josh would have none of it. By the third day of my “plan” (remember, my plans don’t work out very often) Josh was completely refusing the bottle, even if it was solely breast milk. So, I had to force the issue and had to wait it out until he was thirsty enough to A) take the bottle, and B) take the formula all by itself. I felt awful during this process and cried buckets of tears. It was also a hit to my body to go from nursing 6-7 times a day to not at all. Talk about dropping prolactin levels! I prayed and asked God to not let Josh go 3 days or something horrible like refusing the bottle and without fluids. And to my great relief, he didn’t! He actually didn’t go any great length of time at all. I nursed him Friday night (his last time nursing) and when he woke up crying at 4 am, I gave him a bottle with formula and he took 2-3 oz. He sucked it down and sat happily in my lap while doing so. Now he is really cuddly and even cries sometimes if I don’t get the bottle in his mouth fast enough, taking anywhere from 4-5 oz at a time. So, although things didn’t go according to my plan, they still went remarkably well and sped up the process much faster than I could have imagined. And for all my attempts over the past 6 months to give Josh a bottle here and there, and to give him formula occasionally — well, let’s just say that it was pretty much pointless in the end.

I’m not sure when the embryo transfer will be (probably in the next month or two?) but I covet your prayers. I’m surrounded by fears again — such as: What if I don’t get pregnant? Or if I do get pregnant: What if I have another incredibly painful pregnancy, this time with a toddler to care for also? What if it’s twins and I deliver prematurely? What if it’s twins and one of them dies? And on and on the worries can build. But it’s just another opportunity to seek the Lord, to ask for another child, to rest and to not spin these worries out of control. I have to look around me and see all that He has done, and how greatly I have been blessed!

And now that I have gotten over my initial fear by letting people know about our plans to do an embryo transfer soon, I will do my best to keep you updated. The hardest part about this is not getting pregnant and then having someone ask you about it. But conversely, there is the great joy in also telling an inquiring person that it worked and that you’re pregnant! We just don’t know what the Lord has in store for us. Either way, I’m counting on Him to carry us through it.

Thanks for praying!

And why not end with some happy pictures of our little guy? (The first two taken by my talented friend Katherine while I was over at her house.)

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Filed under Baby, Endometriosis, Infertility, IVF, Pain, Pregnancy