Swim

Two weeks ago Jack started swim lessons at the Rose Bowl Aquatic Center. We signed up with a few friends from our neighborhood play group. Jack is an avid and energetic bather, so I thought he would enjoy a larger body of water to explore. This weekend Lynch was able to join us so we got some pictures of the goings on.

Jack is like a little frog, kicking and splashing about. He also seems to have acquired a taste for pool water. During certain activities, it was nearly impossible to keep his head above water,  he kept dipping his face in for a drink (I think he is learning some tricks from Axle.)

It is really interesting to observe the other babies, and see their personalities as they play and interact. Some of them are more cautious and aware, some more eager, and some super chill. Jack is excited and slightly caustic. He flaps his arms and kicks his legs, pummeling all in his path. His huge goofy grin is ever present and ever warming this Mamas heart.

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8 Months

A rare moment of stillness

Dear Jack,

When I was newly pregnant with you, the nurse pulled out the doppler and asked if we wanted to hear your heart beat.We had seen the tiny flicker of your heart on the ultrasound but had not heard it.  She cautioned that we may not be able to, that it may be too soon. And if that was the case it did not indicate a problem, it was just too soon.

Your father and I passed each other loaded looks. This was hardly casual to us. We had lost a previous pregnancy at 5 months, discovering it by a silent doppler.  We were nervous about heart beats.

The moment that she placed the doppler on my stomach we heard the loud rhythmic pounding of your heart. The nurse chuckled “better get ready to chase this one.”

That was the first prediction made about you, the first indication of your personality. And she was sooooo correct. You have been on the move for since beginning to crawl 6 weeks ago, and you have yet to take a pause. From the moment your eyes pop open, to the second they begrudgingly close for the day, you are in motion.

I feel like this has caused a bit of a battle between us, placing us at cross purposes. For example sometimes I want to change your diaper and you want to roll off the changing table, and see if you can rip the painting off the wall at the same time. Sometimes I want you to put  clothes on you, and you want to do head stands and leap off the bed. Sometimes I want to nurse you. You want to nurse too, but only if said nursing includes ninja kicks and high fives to the other boob.

The worst of all offences has to be  suctioning out your nose. This might be the torture that future therapy sessions are based on. I literally have to pin you down, you hate it so. But if it is not done you sound like a snoring bull-dog, and you can’t breathe or nurse due to your lingering cold.

You have just started gingerly taking steps, gripping the sides of objects with your hands. You have also been practicing standing for a few seconds, grinning, practically beaming ” look, no hands.” These experiments with gravity don’t always end well, but you have such fierce determination that there is not much I can do. Although purchasing you a helmet has been discussed.

In the last month you have gone from looking like a giant baby, to looking like a tiny boy. You have thinned out a little and the big news is; you now have a neck. Certain people never achieve necks, so you should be proud!

Your personality becomes more evident everyday.  It was always there but now that you can express yourself more we can all enjoy your delight and energy.  You have been your radiant self, from those very first solid, booming heat beats. Getting to watch you unfold everyday is my greatest privilege. I love you.

xoxoxo Mama

In Just Spring

 Jack is thankfully doing much better. While not a yet completely up to par, I think he will be soon. We are hoping that we can make our first swim class on Sunday.

It really feels like spring over here. The temperature keeps climbing and the sound of lawn mowers is constant. This time of year the poem “in Just” by e.e. cummings runs through my head. I have been reciting it to Jack at bed time.

I hope everyone has a great weekend!

in Just-

by: e.e. cummings 


IN Just-
spring when the world is mud-
luscious the little
lame baloonman
 
whistles far and wee
 
and eddieandbill come
running from marbles and
piracies and it’s
spring
 
when the world is puddle-wonderful
 
the queer
old baloonman whistles
far and wee
and bettyandisbel come dancing
 
from hop-scotch and jump-rope and
 
it’s
spring
and
the
 
goat-footed
 
baloonMan whistles
far
and
wee

When It Rains…..

These last few days have an exercise in stress management. Sunday night the Home Slice started to exhibit signs of a cold, heralded by a runny nose and wakeful night. By Monday morning it had bloomed in to a full-blown stomach flu. Complete with vomiting, rash, diarrhea and fever. We went to the doc on Tuesday morning, but there is really not a lot that can be done for a virus. I have been giving him pedialyte and nursing him in small doses, so that it is easier on his stomach. This is the first time that he has been seriously ill. When ever you find yourself up at 4 AM reading baby books, trying to decipher at what degree of fever you should take your baby to the ER, well that is never a good thing. Having a sick child is heart breaking. His hot little head resting on my chest and the soft mewing sounds made in fevered sleep, punctured my Mamas tender heart.

In addition to that, one of the sewage pipes under our house burst. We rent the house so it has been a lot of coordinating with various plumbers and our land lord. And has taken a few days to resolve. We have been sleeping on the living room floor because the other side of the house (you know the one with the bedrooms) has been deemed toxic.

I think the cloud is lifting. Lynch and I have managed to make our way through with only minor colds. And as I write this I am not wearing pajamas, and not smelling like throw up! As of this morning Jack is feeling quite a bit better. He is able to keep down a full feeding, and his situation down south is on the mend. A crew came out this morning and cleaned up under the house, so we will hopefully be able to sleep in our bed tonight. And I feel confident that this literally, very shitty week is almost over.

Mini Break

We had such a lovely time in Encinitas this past weekend. It was the perfect way to ring in Lynch’s new year. We rented a house a block off the beach. It was walking distance to most of our favorite eateries and shops.

We spent a lot of time in La Jolla.  Friends of ours, that we have had since grade school, were there on a family vacation (from Seattle.) They have three kiddos, their youngest is the same age as Jack. It was so sweet to have the two little boys meet.

It seems most of our old friends are scattered around. I think that tends to happen when you are from a small town. There is not a ton of opportunity, so people move to larger cities to work and raise their families. It is such a treat to get to meet up again and watch our families grow together.

I had such a great time that I completely forgot to take my camera out of the car. I phone to the rescue!

A Birthday

Today is my loves birthday! We are heading down to Encinitas for the weekend. I am looking forward to spending time with some dear friends and relaxing with my boys. Just thinking about how incredible this past year has been for Lynch, and day dreaming about the future makes me so full of emotion and gratitude. Have a fantastic weekend!

P.S. This pic was taken when Jack was a month old.

Pride and Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice is one of my favorite novels (original I know.) I am a huge Jane Austin fan, but Pride and Prejudice holds a special place for me. I have enjoyed all the versions of the film, too many times to say without becoming embarrassed. We used to watch them around Christmas time growing up. We even watched the 1940’s version starring Sir. Laurence Olivier and Greer Garson. It cuts out a huge amount of the story and the costumes are from the wrong time period but it’s charming still.

I ran across this book while browsing a gift shop a few weeks ago. I was laughing out loud while I turned the pages and demanding that Lynch look at it too. Then repeatedly asking him if he “got” how funny it was. Yup I was charming. And for the record Lynch has watched the 2nd BBC version with me all 5 hours of it (he is actually charming.)

They also had a version in Jane Eyre and Romeo and Juliet, but Pride and Prejudice was the most entertaining. You can also find the books here.

These Days

We are in full-blown teething mode this week. He has cut 3 teeth in the past month. The discomfort seems to manifest itself primarily at night. He has a hard time sleeping and wants to comfort nurse all night. This usually lasts for a few days and as we  start pulling our hair out it passes and we have a few normal night (4-6 wakes up, still kind of hideous.) But the last week two teeth are making their dramatic entrance together and the result has been pretty disastrous. Poor little man has not slept in 4 days. He has been waking up once an hour to nurse and cry and is usually up from 3AM on. He is really crabby during the day, and seems to constantly be injuring himself as his motor skills have taken a hit, due to lack of sleep.

I am really excited for these teeth to break through so I can have my charming little son back and his alter ego, the Nefarious Dr. Fussers can depart. I have been doing what ever can be done to manage the pain. Cold clothes, teething toys and an amber teething necklace. We use a Tylenol occasionally when he seems to be really in pain, but I don’t like having to do it. I am so much looking forward to a reprieve from this.

So I am going to brag a little bit now, cause Jack is amazing and also because it’s my blog and if not here, then where? Jack is on the move! He started crawling about 3 weeks ago and is now sprinting around the house discovering every orifice that is unsuitable for children. He started crawling on the youngish side and he seems pretty smug about it. He wanders around giggling and growling and smiling at no one in particular. The teacher at our yoga class was really impressed with the form of his crawling (I am actually not kidding.) She told me that some children never crawl with such perfect form, and that she thought he would be walking in no time. I really can’t take credit for any of these achievements, but it is always nice to hear how awesome your kid is. Unfortunately he may have negated his reputation for perfection, by accidentally knocking a few little kids over later in the class, and shamelessly stealing toys.

He is pulling up on everything that he can, and many things he can’t (poor Axle.) He has stood on his own for a few seconds once or twice. He does seem keen to walk, and all of his playtime is spent in the pursuit of this new goal. I am hoping that he holds off a bit. When they walk so young it’s difficult because they have no concept of caution, or the word “no”. I no longer question if he will fall down, but how hurt will he get before I intervene. If I got involved every time he looked precarious I would never let the poor kid move.

So, remember that nanny that I was really late in calling back? Well I finally did, not totally sure what I was going to say. But she had already taken another job, at hearing the news I felt a huge sense of relief swell in me. So clearly she was not the right person, or it was not the right situation. This incident further proves my theory that usually in life “I don’t know” really means no. Indecision is usually a delayed rejection, for me anyway.

I did however have our babysitter (she has watched Jack for a few hours at a time previously) come in today for a full day. I worked out in the morning and then came home and nursed Jack, then I went to work over at Shark Pig in the afternoon. This was by far the most hours I have ever been away from him. It was also the first time anyone other than Lynch or myself has put him to sleep. It went really well. He did not sleep very long for her and seemed a little indignant about having to sleep for someone else. But he seemed in good spirits despite the teething. I wish she was available more, but she is not really a babysitter she works in film production and is not always available.

I really enjoyed working and missing Jack was a novel and surprisingly sweet experience. I think I am going to try to have the sitter come in once a week if she is free. I feel better about the casual nature of the arrangement, I like taking it one week at a time without having to make a commitment. I really think things worked out for the best.

Changes

I have a friend who is currently expecting and I found myself musing about what changes the baby would bring to her life. There are the expected ones, lack of sleep, expansion of the heart, new routines ect. But is seems to me that babies bring with them an unexpected and sometimes dramatic rearranging of life. I know so many families whose lives seem to erupt with new homes, major moves, new work situations, and other major life changes with the addition of a new baby.

I think part of it is a shift in the parents, to provide a better situation for the baby. A reorganization of priorities, and increased motivation. I had a sneaky feeling that we would move when I got pregnant, but that was not to be. Lynches work got really hectic/awesome/ and he started a production company. That’s right, the man got even more driven ( I did not actually think it was possible.) I think the changes can’t be predicted and are often really surprising.

I also have to think that the changes are brought on by more than the rational desire to provide a better life for your child. That the child entering the family brings with it his or her own Karma and desires, and that life rearranges to accommodate that. A new person entering a new relationship changes the dynamics and direction of that relationship. Why would we expect any less of the child joining our family?

Sometimes I look around at my own little family and feel like Lynch and I can make all the plans that we want but Jack will have his proverbial say.  I already feel like some of the changes in our life are because of Jack and have nothing to do with us. I think that is part of the excitement of a new baby. And I am so excited to watch the process unfold for my friend, as I am sure amazing things will result from their new addition.

Easter

We had a really lovely Easter weekend. It was pretty quiet. A lot of our friends are traveling right now, and honestly we have been pretty wiped. Poor  Home Slice is cutting teeth numbers three and four, and they are not treating him kindly.  So a mellow weekend suited us perfectly.

On Saturday we went to an Easter party in our neighborhood, put on by the Self Realization Fellowship, up the hill. It was a really sweet event with egg hunts, face painting and of course the requisite Easter Bunny. Jack seemed to enjoy himself. He was pretty excited by the presence of so many children. Although he was a bit skeptical of the bunny herself.

Sunday we had a really nice brunch. It made me reminisce on past Easters. I was pregnant the past two, so having Jack with us, sitting in his little high chair made me so happy. We toasted with champagne to celebrate. The rest of the day was spend playing in our yard. It really feels like spring is here. Flowers are blooming, and the air is warm and sweet. This time of year breeds optimism. It feels like there will be a lot to celebrate this spring.