Follow me at my new/old home… I’m finding it easier to use.

http://momofoneanddone.blogspot.com/

Hello to my few followers!

I’m considering a switch back to Blogger.  As much as I like WordPress, I am considering the ease of linking all my accounts together easily through Google. I’ve exported this blog there and will be trying out my posts there for a while.  Please let me know what you think and which site you prefer.  Thanks!

Here’s the link: http://momofoneanddone.blogspot.com/

One of my very first blog posts, as a parent, was about my “Newborn Vampire” and how he had his days and nights mixed up. That was on my old blog and I’ve never figured out how to move the posts here.  This one started a few months later, and focused a lot on Little Man’s helmet journey and my mixed up emotions. Heck, it still focuses on my mixed up emotions!

Anyway, I’m talking about sleep because it’s a precious thing. I’ve driven around for an hour to keep Little Man napping–if he fell asleep in the car. Though I never drove anywhere to get him to fall asleep like some of my mom friends have. Thankfully I never felt that desperate.  At the beginning, Little Man was a terrible sleeper–particularly during the day. The only place he’d sleep was ON ME or in his infant carrier. The latter contributed to his brachycephaly.

Somewhere around 3 months of age, he slept through the night (STTN).  It was short-lived. And from 3-6 months, his sleep was erratic. Some nights he’d sleep from 10 pm (his initial bedtime) to around 5 am, then take a bottle and go back to sleep for 2 hours. Other nights he’d sleep from 10-2 and then from 3-6 and nap several times during the day. There was a dark period–from 6 to 9 months, where he was just a rotten sleeper. I blame that on teeth (got the first 2 just before/at 6 months and the second 2 around 9 months).  Thankfully, at 9 months, he began sleeping on his tummy. Once he did that, STTN was common and no longer infrequent. His bedtime was (and still is) at 8-8:30 and he usually sleeps until 6:30 am. So his average is 10 hours of sleep per night–I wish I could have 8!

Naps, however, took longer to get on track.  As I said, initially he’d only sleep in his infant carrier or ON me–until about 5/6 months when he got too heavy, I was fine with him sleeping in my Baby K’tan Carrier. He’d also sleep pretty well in his travel swing (once he had the DOC Band, I didn’t worry about that). But he never slept in a Pack-n-Play and that caused some issues, as it was his “nap place” at my office until he was 9 months old.

At that time, my in-laws moved and I got the crib they had for the grandkids. Little Man would sleep there–but only after I had rocked him to sleep and transferred him to the crib. And the naps were short. Both weren’t more than 45 minutes most days. And he’d almost always fall asleep in the car, on the way home, for about 20 minutes.

Finally at 11 months of age, I decided that enough was enough! I needed him to nap! So I let him cry it out (CIO) for naps. No Ferber checks. Just crying. The first day he wailed for about 30 minutes but eventually slept (sniffling in his sleep) for close to 2 hours). The second day was worse. But by day 3, he was napping within 10 minutes of being put in his crib. And until last February, when he turned 18 months, he took his first nap at home (at around 9 am, and I’d be at work by 11) and his second nap at the office, at around 1:30 pm.  Both naps were about 1-1.5 hours long.

Since he was 18 months old, he’s been on a “schedule” of sorts. One nap per day. The nap usually begins at 12:30 after his lunch.  He’ll sleep anywhere from 1.5 to 3 hours, with 2 being the average until recently. Lately it’s been 2.5 to 3 hours. But if he sleeps too long he’s crabby.  But I think he is happier at night after his 3 hour nap. I know I can get much more done while he’s sleeping. And, when I’m home, I’ll nap too.  My husband doesn’t understand–he’s not a good napper. But I love naps and will nap whenever I can, especially while Little Man still does.

I’ll miss the days of napping when he eventually drops them.  I hope it’s not for a while. While it does limit my afternoon activities, I like naps.

When the whole Charlie Sheen meltdown was happening and when the Bronx Zoo Cobra had “escaped,” I decided to finally become a twit and join Twitter.  I chose the same screen name there as I have here: sweetnjmom. I’d like to think I’m sweet and I am a mom from NJ.  I’m not that creative.   The reason I mention this is because of my profile there. It says:

I’m a busy mom who is taking care of my toddler son, my hard-working husband, my neurotic dog and my disabled parents and trying to find the time to do it all.

It’s pretty true. I’m trying to find a way to do it all.

My dad is technically disabled. He needs his right hip and both knees replaced. I think once that’s done, he’ll be in pretty good shape for a (soon-to-be) 69-year-old man. But, for now, he uses a walker and a cane and is in excruciating pain from his damaged hip and bum knees.

My mom has Parkinson’s Disease and an Orthostatic Tremor. Two separate neurological conditions. She is also extremely depressed. Because this is a public blog, I won’t go any further. But she doesn’t really care for herself and she doesn’t let my father or me help care for her. It’s so hard when someone you love is hurting.

Add to the mix taking care of my toddler son and keeping up with his therapies through Early Intervention, I’m feeling very overwhelmed by it all.  Little Man is actually progressing quite well and his DI therapist is extremely optimistic about his progress. His speech therapist has only seen him twice, but has also noted his progress. So I’m feeling more positive about everything and I’m seeing a subtle change in his behavior already. He rebounds from tantrums more quickly. They’re less intense. Less frequent. And shorter, too.

So I feel like I’m always in the middle and never getting anywhere.  And there are other family relationships that are complex and that leave me feeling like I can do no right. Finding a balance between being a mom, daughter, sister, wife and friend is not easy. I really hope there is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow or a light at the end of the tunnel. Because I’m feeling like I’m on a never-ending road, or going round and round in circles. I need a break.

Today is the day.  Little Man’s second developmental intervention session and the first full week of therapy. DI is Tuesdays/Thursdays and speech therapy will be on Fridays, but this week it’s Wednesday because he’s finally having his hearing test this Friday. (Of course he has ANOTHER ear infection… but this time it will be 6 days on antibiotics by then.) His initial session last Tuesday went well, I think. I hope his therapist is able to catch him up. And I’m very much looking forward to the speech sessions starting. Little Man is aching to talk, but he just can’t get the words out. I think the shove will propel him and he’ll be a chatterbox (like his mama) in no time.

Life is going full throttle as well.  As I wrote briefly yesterday, Little Man is now TWO!  It’s actually the only number he knows.  (When he counts, he goes “two… two…”) He finally needs a haircut.  And it’s funny, it’s not like he has a full head of hair.  Thus far, his hair is actually fine and somewhat sparse. But what hair he DOES have is long and crazy curly. So it’s time. I’ll miss his baby curls when they’re snipped. But he needs that cut. And maybe it will help his hair to grow? I keep hearing that. Any hairdressers read my blog? Please feel free to pipe in.

Since I just linked my blog to Facebook, it’s possible some of my friends will start reading this. I guess I tend to overshare and I’m working to make my thoughts more general and not specific. My husband is my opposite–extremely private–and I don’t want to betray confidences. But at the same point, I don’t think Little Man’s speech and developmental delays are anything to hide. Nor do I think my fears should be hidden. There is nothing shameful about a child needing help or possibly having a problem.

Now I still think and hope that Little Man’s tantrums and behavior issues are mostly due to his delays. And there are times when he is EXTREMELY good and well behaved for a 2-year-old.  And there are times when his behavior is just typical for a toddler. They have fits. They scream if they don’t get their way. I also know that most 2-year-olds at this time are saying more than he is and are more advanced socially. But my son mostly has a smile on his face and he is so affectionate. I have a strong belief that by his 3rd birthday, he’ll be typical and even more fun to be around.

I love my son so much. I’d do basically anything for  him. I realize that I’ve done TOO much FOR him–instead of pushing him to do things–and I’m working to correct that. I don’t want my only to be a spoiled brat. I want him to share (whenever toddlers figure that one out) and play with other children. I want him to make friends and NOT be a “lonely only” and I want him to be happy. Childhood is so brief and I want him to enjoy it, without any obstacles. So catching things “early” is a good thing.

I had typed up my blog earlier tonight but the draft failed to autosave as the new version of Firefox crashed. So I’m keeping it short.

Little Man turned 2 on August 14th.

His stats were:

30.2 lb (80th percentile for weight)

36 inches (90th percentile for height)

19 inches for his head circumference, but I never asked about the percentile. He was at 50 consistently, so I’d guess somewhere in that ballpark. It was also the last time head circumference is measured at a well child appointment.

In other news, we finally had professional photos taken. Most were of Little Man, but we got a family pic, too.

And I think it’s about time for Little Man to get a haircut!

More to come soon!

Last Thursday I was supposed to drop Little Man off at his school in the morning and then come back home to have my IFSP meeting with Early Intervention.  But when he woke up, he felt quite hot to the touch and I took his fever with an ear thermometer and it was 100.7 and he seemed somewhat clingy, so I kept him home.   I still had the meeting (in the kitchen, while Little Man watched classic Disney cartoons on the DVD player in the family room) and the plan is set for him to have speech therapy once a week and work with a developmental interventionist (generally a special ed teacher) twice a week–that’s 3 hours total per week.  We set simple goals (6 month) of speaking in 2 word purposeful sentences, saying his own name, responding to his name and following adult-led play for 10 minutes. I also want him to be less “dependent” on his Donald Duck toy. I guess more on this once the therapies start, by the end of August.

When the EI team left, I planned to give Little Man lunch and put him down for his nap. He just seemed not hungry, though he ate a little, and felt MUCH warmer. So I took his temperature and it was 101.7! This might not seem like a lot to those moms whose little ones have had fevers.  But this, honestly, was his first one over 101.  I managed to get some children’s Tylenol in him (Dude had picked some up, since we wanted to have it handy) and he napped, badly, for short periods of time. Maybe two 20 minute stretches. When he woke he was VERY clingy and we just watched Mickey Mouse Clubhouse on the DVR.  I managed to take him out with me, for a short trip, to Rite Aid to get him Children’s Ibuprofen. Since his fever was still 101.5, I gave him Tylenol at 4 pm and then Motrin before bedtime.

The next day, Friday July 29th, he woke up feeling cool to the touch. But I took his temp again, in the ear, and he fought me like crazy. (Should have been a hint.) He was normal, but he was acting strangely. He kept crying and screaming and saying “Boo boo! Boo boo!” By 9:30 am he was spent, and I put him down for an early nap. I planned to sleep, too, as I’d had little sleep the night before, listening to Little Man crying in HIS sleep. But I called the pediatrician before I conked out and scheduled an appointment for 12:15, as his behavior was quite odd and I knew something was off.  We both napped and when he woke I gave him an early lunch (not that he ate much, but I managed to get some yogurt and blueberries into him) and we headed to the doctor.

Of course at the doctor’s office, he was running around like crazy and giggling. It was like nothing was wrong. So I thought I’d taken him there for nothing. And after a HUGE fit when the nurse tried to get his oxygen levels (first on his finger, then on his foot) and a broken baby scale (we used the “big” one and he was 31.8 lb), we were finally seen by our favorite pediatrician in the group. He checked Little Man out, listened to his chest, looked in his throat (no 2 year molars yet), left ear… right ear… YEP.  He had an ear infection!  That happened to be MY first illness (at age 3). So he’s copying his mama and earlier. Makes sense that he gets sick once he starts daycare/preschool, right?

We head home to get the prescribed Amoxicillin (pedi called it in) with a brief stop at my office (was there too long, but I had no choice) and I managed to “force-feed” him the bubblegum pink medication close to 4 pm. I thought he’d take a late nap, but nope. I think the flavors in the antibiotics are all sugar because he was so hyper after that first dose and I felt like a limp noodle. The second dose was easier but not by much. And Dude’s train was VERY late so he was in a pissy mood and got home late. He didn’t even want to see Little Man, which made me upset, since he wanted his daddy. But I put him to bed (around 8:15 or so) by myself and he slept mostly OK.

Now to add insult to injury, *I* came down with Bronchitis this week! So both of us are on antibiotics. Me, a Z-pack, since we’re 90% sure I’m allergic to Penicillin.  And with a switch in our health insurance, I had to pay out of pocket and am canceling other appointments this week. But that’s for another vent.

In less than 10 days now, Little Man will turn 2.  Time goes so fast. I’m grateful it took 23 months for him to get sick the first time.  And he’s doing pretty well now (day 8 of antibiotics) and did much better in school this week. I, however, am EXHAUSTED.

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