Baby D Makes Three

born December 27, 2012

the end of breastfeeding

Dear Cora,

last week we stopped breastfeeding. Thursday, November 14th was the last day you nursed. I saw this day coming early on. I knew we weren’t going to make it a whole year when I went back to work and pumping was so hard. I knew, but I still hoped. and so, when you decided you were done, I grieved. I grieved the loss of that special bonding – breastfeeding was the one thing only I could provide you. I grieved your growth – no longer wanting to nurse means you are becoming more independent and growing into a child, no longer my dependent infant. I grieved the loss of that extra cuddle time – as tired as it made me, those late night and early morning snuggles were still cherished.

but then I celebrated. I celebrated that we made it 10 and a half months! Just one and a half months shy of my goal. that’s not bad. I celebrated that you are such a healthy, happy, and growing baby. I celebrated that when I get sick, I can take medicine now. I celebrated that I didn’t give up, that I let you decide when you were done. I celebrated that for the first time in 20 and a half months, your nutrition and well-being isn’t completely reliant on my body. I celebrated that your daddy can take over the late night feeding, so hopefully I will be less tired.

and you know what? the snuggle time with you while I feed you your bottle is still just as special, and since you aren’t frustrated with me for trying to coax you to nurse before getting your bottle, you are even more cuddly. after you finish your bottle, you sort of sit up a little, and put your arms around my core, and then snuggle your head onto my chest. it is one of my new favorite things.

I am so thankful breastfeeding was successful for us. It was one of the things I worried about most while being pregnant. I am also thankful you are such an easy going baby, and that formula was just fine for you too, when I couldn’t produce enough milk to support your growth.

I love you, darling one. continue to grow. continue to reach milestones that make me grieve the loss of your babyhood. because then we can continue to celebrate as well.

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confliction

dear Cora,

there are so many things on my heart right now. I wasn’t prepared for this confliction I seem to feel about everything now that I am back at work. being a working mother is wonder-awful. I am so in love with you and wouldn’t trade being your momma for anything. but it seems there is a flip side to almost every wonderful aspect of working motherhood; a negative side, lurking just beneath the surface.

here are a few examples of wonder-awful working motherhood:

I am overjoyed that you are happy at daycare. I am saddened to be away from you.

I am thrilled you are such a good eater and get so much to eat during the day. I am heartbroken that I do not seem to be able to pump enough to keep up with your appetite.

I cherish the moments late in the evening and early in the morning when I nurse you; it is our special time together. I am exhausted from going to bed later and getting up so early to be able to nurse you.

I love seeing your happy face every morning before I go to work. I hate to leave you.

being back at work is easier than I thought, and a lot more rewarding. I miss you all day long, and feel guilty you are being cared for by someone else..

evenings are sacred; you are only awake for a few hours after work and daycare, and I try to squeeze a whole days worth of love, snuggles, and kisses into those precious hours. there is not enough time to go around, and I find myself stressing over the chores that aren’t getting done.

my body was your home for 9 months, it protected, nurtured, and grew you; that is amazing to think about, and a huge blessing. my body looks like it grew and birthed a human; I am uncomfortable and self conscious of my new physique.

you are a happy, healthy, intelligent baby! I constantly worry about your growth and development.

my love for you expands every single day. you bring joy and wonderment to my life. you make me a better, more loving, more patient version of myself. And there is no awful flip side to that. so I’ll hold on to that as I start another day, and hope that today holds more wonderful than awful.

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update

I’m a bad, bad blogger. it seems every time I find a moment to think about what I might want to write about, Cora starts to cry, or I realize the dishwasher is full, or hey! I can shower! the past (almost) 6 weeks have been exhausting, amazing, and indescribable.

I’ve had so many sweet mommy moments with this beautiful little girl and I am so grateful that I’ve had the opportunity to stay at home with Cora so far. sleep is getting better. Cora slept for 8 hours the other night, giving me 7 hours of beautiful sleep. and she slept 7 hours the two nights previous to that, and 7 hours last night, so I am grateful for that too. she has actually been a pretty good sleeper from the beginning. she would sleep two to four hours at a time in the night since birth and she has gradually been increasing the time she sleeps. don’t get me wrong, she is a newborn, so we have had our fair share of rough nights. sometimes she is just inconsolable but usually only if she has been overstimulated during the day or is overtired (this mama can’t blame her as she sometimes feels exactly the same way at the end of the day :P).

Cora is also a champion eater. she has a great latch and eats very efficiently. I think the longest a nursing session has lasted is about 40 minutes. usually she is finished in 10 to 20 minutes. I am very thankful she has not had any problem eating or gaining weight. at her 2 week check up, she had already gained all of the weight she had lost back, plus a half a pound. and she just keeps getting bigger and bigger. it’s bittersweet seeing her already grow and change from my teeny tiny newborn to this (almost) 6 week old.

I’m working on writing about Cora’s first month and getting some photos uploaded.

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Bump Update: 29 Weeks

How far along? 29 weeks

Baby’s size: small cabbage (17 in., 2.9 pounds)

Total weight gain: 20 pounds

Maternity clothes: yes and no. pants are a problem right now as the maternity ones are too big, but the belly band over my pre-pregnancy pants isn’t the most comfortable either.

Stretch marks? nope 🙂

Sleep: well, I am sleeping, which is nice, but the crazy preggo dreams make sure I don’t get adequate rest. I am so tired.

Best moment this week: we worked more on the nursery and it looks like a room 🙂 we celebrated our second wedding anniversary at the melting pot. yummy.

Food cravings: caffeine free diet pepsi. mmmm.

Food aversions: nothing

Gender: baby girl

Symptoms: fatigue, shortness of breath, a couple of moments of dizziness/light headedness (according to the books this is because there is too much blood, and the heart isn’t able to keep up with it all), backache, more leg cramps (while awake now too), and I have definitely slowed down (it takes me way longer to get places than it used to :P)

Belly Button in or out? still in

Wedding rings on or off? off, but I did wear them to dinner to celebrate our anniversary. I think the cooler weather is helping with the swelling, but they are still tighter than they once were, so they are staying off.

Happy or Moody most of the time: happy happy

Looking forward to: our breastfeeding class is this tuesday, getting some more things put away in baby girl’s room, and picking out fabric to make a crib skirt.

What I miss: sushi.

Movement: oh yeah, especially at church this morning. she was loving the music and all the voices singing. I might start calling her boots because when she kicks me really hard, J says she is booting me 😛 she has booted me hard enough to make me jump multiple times this week.

Doctor’s appointment: not this tuesday, but the next one.

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