Well, as you know from the unusual mid-week postings... this was the first week of daytime solo caregiving for me... and... it was exhausting.
Thanks be to God, Kev got to come home midday yesterday. I got some translating done and got a nap as a result.
Every day seemed a little more exhausting than the one before. Caroline did GREAT at my appointment with the faculty. She was happy and cooey and delighted them all. She was crying on most of the drive to school, and started crying again just before we left. But when it mattered... charming, delightful, magnificent. We decided to pick up daddy from work that day to get some more drive time in to allow a bit of a nap. It was a brilliant plan. "Hey, here's a gas station right by his work. I'll fill up this nearly empty tank as we have some time to kill. It is pay at the pump! Great!" So I paid. I pumped. And then got a message I needed to see the cashier for my receipt. So I parked and pulled my sleeping angel out of the car and went inside to find a LONG line of customers. Some of whom graciously let us move up a bit in line. And, of course, with the jostling, she woke up. So much for the nap. For not the first time, and for what surely won't be the last time. I pulled into a parking lot and nursed.
I must celebrate that Caroline was under the care of solo daddy for a good four hours or more last night while I attended a school function and she was sleeping peacefully when I returned. She had taken just a bit of the milk I left for her, and while taking awhile to go down, went down relatively peacefully. And... she stayed asleep until 12:30 or later. Four plus hours! I went in to feed her at that point. She had a good long feeding, but then, just when I was about to give up and ask Kev to spell me for a bit, when she pulled off aggressively for the fifth time, I put her on my shoulder to carry her to him and she didn't squirm. She was sound asleep. So I put her down. And there she stayed for another four plus, nearly five hours! Apparently she started to wake up a bit when Kev was getting ready to go early this morning, but put herself back to sleep. And when she started to make noise shortly after Kev left, they sounded like happy noises so I let her be for a bit while I got up, and gathered supplies to pump while I fed her, etc. When I came in she had worked her way all the way to one corner of the crib, the corner in which a small clutch ball that I used to play with was sitting. And she was making happy noises and playing with the ball!!! She smiled when she saw me. What a wonderful way to start the day!
The rest of the day has been rougher. I had commitments on campus all afternoon and spent a good chunk of this week seeking child care for that time. I finally found a div student who had once said "If you ever need a babysitter..." to be available to watch her on campus for the afternoon. Sweet. We went in early to offer this sitter some orientation. She was pretty content then. I opted to feed her a bit before going. And as she was still hungry when I needed to leave, the sitter took over with the bottle I had prepared. I was occupied for the next two hours, only mildly worried about how things were going. When I passed the room where she was being watched on my way to my 3:00 commitment (at which I had to present- for a much different audience than I was anticipating), I heard her screaming. Apparently it had just started a bit before. We tried getting her into her car seat to allow a walk in the stroller, but she started screaming the bloodiest screams she is capable of. So, pulled her out, and nursed her a bit (she had already taken the whole, very full bottle, this was definitely comfort nursing). She calmed down a bit. I passed her back, went in to do my presentation. Came out right after my presentation and she was screaming even harder. A different student was walking her about. Clearly, it had been an overwhelming hour for the sitter. So, I volunteered to keep her with me for the remaining hour. I started nursing her again. She settled down. I decided to stand up while nursing her and try to walk back to my meeting with her still nursing/draped. I stumbled as I went to stand I didn't fall, but I bumped her leg pretty hard. Blood curdling screams again ensued. So we walked and bounced, walked and bounced... and she calmed right down. We went back into my meeting where the other group was now presenting and I stood in the back patting her back and bouncing. Now the super angry baby was super happy baby, cooing loudly, squealing... so I took her out as her happy noises could have been distracting to the presenters. I brought her back in awhile later and fed her in the back. She ate LOUDLY. But then fell into a deep sleep. For 15 or so minutes. And then we had to leave again. Anyhow... twas an exhausting afternoon.
I need to find a toy that allows her to be very mobile, yet safe. Probably an exersaucer or a jumper of some kind. She is SO mobile now that she rolls over shortly after lying down and gets herself stuck in all sorts of awkward positions, frustrating her and ending her play time. I could just lay her on a big blanket and let her move, and I do, but she misses having stuff overhead. So... the search must begin.
I have to celebrate the mail this week! A BEAUTIFUL blanket from knittin preacher arrived! The colors were inspired by the book "Oh the Places You'll Go", the theme of Caroline's nursery. And... we got a generous refund check from our midwives... the insurance kicked in and reimbursed some. Alleluia! And... the d.v.d. that goes with Brazelton's "Touchpoints" arrived. And... pictures of me as a baby. (She does look much more like Kevin. But I think she has my nose!) And... two of you thoughtful friends who read this blog generously ordered "The No Cry Sleep Solution" for us. The first copy arrived on Tuesday and I started reading it right away. The first step in her process is charting the sleep patterns of your child. I'm going to start that next week. But I was wondering if I should write in the charts in the book or not. What if I want to pass it on someday? Just as I was wondering that, the second copy arrived! So, I will write in one and save the other as a gift. I know I will want to pass it along. THANK YOU for being SUCH thoughtful readers and supportive friends. We are SO grateful.
Hopefully some pics will follow, if I can get them up before crashing tonight. But for now... must. find. dinner. And must get baby to bed.
Thank God it's Friday.
And 19 weeks. Wow.