Friday, February 26, 2010

Our Forever Baby

Lilah is our forever baby.

The backstory:

The Hubs and I decided to start trying for a baby at the beginning of June, 2008. We were blown away when we got pregnant on the very first try. It all seemed too good to be true. It was. By the end of July, we found out via ultrasound that the pregnancy wasn't viable. Shortly after, I began to miscarry. In many ways, I was lucky. The miscarriage happened naturally, with no need for medical intervention. Of course, I was monitored by the Early Pregnancy Assessment Clinic at BC Women's Hospital, and I was given options, but we chose to let my body do what it needed to do. Thankfully, nothing further was needed, and we only had to wait until I'd had one regular menstrual cycle before we could start trying again. Physically, the pain was bearable. Although it was certainly unpleasant, a cocktail of over-the-counter pain-killers and anti-inflamatories was really all that was needed to manage it. But emotionally... emotionally... that's another story. It was the most devastating thing I had ever experienced.

I am not at all religious, and I believe that an embryo or fetus doesn't really become a "baby" until it can survive outside the mother's womb. Because of this (and perhaps because I never saw a heartbeat or the movements of a little bean on the ultrasound), I don't feel that we lost a "baby" per se. More the idea or dream of a baby. That didn't make it hurt any less. To be given such a gift only to have it snatched away a few short weeks later... horrendous. At the time, I would have preferred several months' worth of negative pregnancy tests than to have been taunted so. The platitude "It just wasn't meant to be" rattled around my own brain and was offered by others. My silent response was always, "Why the hell not???!!!"

Flash forward to today:

February 26th. One year to the day since the due date of that first pregnancy. If that one had been "meant to be," we would have a one-year-old (give or take a few days). Instead, we have almost-eight-month-old Lilah. And I wouldn't have it any other way. I only have to see her smile, hear her giggle, watch her wrinkle her nose at a new food, smell her delicious little head, or feel her body resting against mine, and all is right with the world. Everything is as it should be.

Yes, I experienced a loss when that first pregnancy ended. I most certainly lost my pregnancy innocence. My second pregnancy was fraught with anxiety. I rode an almost constant roller coaster of emotion, with the lowest of lows between appointments with my doctor, and the highest of highs after hearing Lilah's heartbeat on doppler or seeing her little body squirm on the ultrasound screen. The first trimester was particularly hard, but I really didn't feel I could relax and enjoy until I was about 28 or 30 weeks along.

But overall, I can honestly say that, through that experience, I think I gained more than I lost.

Had it not been for my miscarriage, I wouldn't have joined the message boards on iVillage. I wouldn't have met and become friends with some of the most wonderful women I have ever had the privilege of knowing. These women are spread out across North America and Europe. Some of them are miscarriage survivors like myself. Others have babies who were born within days or weeks of Lilah's birth. And still others are still on their journey towards motherhood. Whatever their situation, these are some of the most supportive friends a girl could ever hope for. I never thought of myself as someone who would have "internet friends," or that I could become so invested in the lives of people I had never actually met in person. But there is something to be said for the (mostly) judgement-free zone of internet message boards that unite those in similar life situations.

I also like to think I gained a greater empathy through my experience. I will never again ask a couple the dreaded question, "so, when are you going to have kids?" You never know what someone has gone through when it comes to fertility and baby-making. If they want to tell you, they will. We can all do without the nosy questions.

Most of all, what I went through led me (and the Hubs) to where we are today. Contented parents to the sweetest, most delightful little creature on the planet, our forever baby.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Firsts, Seconds, and Thirds

Wow! Time flies! I can't believe it's been a week since I last posted an update.

Lilah's had lots of firsts this past week, which I guess is why things have been so busy. A couple of nights ago, she started crawling "for real" - on her hands and knees. She only goes a short distance this way and then flattens out onto her tummy and reverts to her commando crawl, but it's a start. It also means she is no longer content to be immobile in her play pen or exersaucer. This kid wants to be moving ALL the time!

She's also started cruising around her play pen and a little on the furniture, although she does topple over quite often. That poor (large!) head of hers is going to be taking quite the beating from now on, I fear!

Her second and third pairs of teeth have started to make an appearance as well. She's a teething machine! (And she's already started grinding the teeth she has - ugh!)

So between the constant movement and the teething, Mommy is T.I.R.E.D.!!!! I'm looking forward to having some time off to go to an Olympic event or two this week while Daddy, armed with several ounces of expressed milk, takes over for a few consecutive hours!

GO, CANADA!!!!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

"Hi!"

Lilah's first "word" caught on camera - at seven and a half months!!! Truly the daughter of a speech therapist! Make sure to turn up the volume on your computer so you don't miss it!

video


Clearly, this was a total fluke, but I thought it was pretty amazing nonetheless!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Do The Wave

Here's a little snippet of Lilah "waving" to her fan club (founding members Mommy and Daddy would like you to know that new members are always welcome)!

video

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Saturday, February 13, 2010

No Use Crying Over Spilt Milk

Whoever invented that idiom was probably male and obviously had never had the pleasure of hooking himself up to a breast pump. Pumping is the bane of my existence, but a necessary evil if I am to enjoy any independence from my li'l Lilahbility.

Every drop of breastmilk is precious, and spilling some of the hard-earned liquid has always, at the very least, elicited a swear word or two from me, if not tears. (Okay, the tears were more during my extremely hormonal early postpartum days, but still!) I now understand why one dad I know refers to the stuff as "liquid gold."

Around 9:30 every morning after Lilah goes down for her first nap of the day, the familiar sound of the pump can be heard around our apartment- in fact, that's what's playing in the background at this very moment! Shhhh... can you hear it? Suck-suck, slurp-slurp, they're playing my song!

Personally, in one pumping session, I can only pump a quarter to a third of what Lilah takes during a big feed. That means three or four days of pumping for one measly bedtime bottle.

Bagging, labelling, freezing, and counting my store of milk in the freezer has become almost a compulsion for me. All is right with the world if I have 40-50 ounces stored up. Any less than that, and I start to get a little edgy. Those little plastic bags in the freezer are the key to my freedom!

So now are you really going to tell me not to cry over spilt milk, Mr. Idiom-Maker-Upper-Man?

Friday, February 12, 2010

Something something

Teething + a runny nose + constipation make Lilah a something something...

Friday, February 5, 2010

Lilah's 7-month Stats

Because we went to Maui for two weeks in January, we didn't get around to taking Lilah for her 6-month checkup and shots until Feb.1, when she was two days shy of the 7-month mark. Her stats were as follows:

Length: 72 cm (100th percentile!)
Weight: 8.21 kg (75th percentile)
Head size: 45.7 cm (97th percentile) - Let's face it, we all know she gets THAT from her Daddy.

Only one shot this time. Piece of cake! And no more of those till she's 12 months - Hurray!

Only one hitch - poor little bunny is constipated! We are doing our best to manage it with diet alone, instead of putting her back on one of the meds she was on before that helped her stomach contents empty more quickly, and she got HUGE relief on Tuesday (the type that necessitated an emergency bath, if you know what I mean), but she's back to struggling again. So I think we will back way off on the solids feeds and hope that Mommy's milk does the trick.

The pediatrician thinks that we will be able to take her off the reflux meds all together in a month. Woohoo, can't wait!

Bear With Me...

I'm new to the blogging scene.

I started this blog yesterday on a total whim. I just wanted an excuse to ramble on about my favourite topics - my 7-month-old daughter, Lilah, and motherhood in general.

There are still so many things to figure out. Who do I want reading this blog? Will it be just for friends and family to keep abreast of Lilah's progress, or will I eventually have the confidence to share the link with others? Should I make it password-protected and by invitation only? Or should I invite just anyone who happens to have an internet connection in to hear my thoughts on such a sacred topic? Will the blog be all about Lilah, or will I branch out to other topics? Will I bore potenial readers (family, friends, randoms) to death droning on and on about the tiniest details of our day-to-day experiences?

I haven't answered any of these questions. Yet. I think for now I will just write what's on my mind and see what happens. Let the blog take on a life of its own and learn as I go.

So bear with me.

One thing that did come to me right away was what the blog should be called. We've started calling Lilah our li'l Lilahbility now that she is essentially mobile. She crawls around commando-style, belly sweeping the floor, collecting whatever cat hair or dirt we've been remiss enough to leave behind. She can move across the room with surprising speed, given her chosen mode of transportation, and she is into absolutely EVERYTHING. She's particularly interested in anything dirty, dangerous, or tiny enough to present a choking hazard. Our babyproofing hasn't quite caught up to her yet (and I suspect we will always be half a step behind her), so I've been spending my days chasing her around the apartment and struggling to find activities that will keep her in one spot for more than thirty seconds.

Adventures in mommyhood. The learning curve is steep, but the payoff is incredible!

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...