It has been a while, I know. I'm sure you're wondering why I'm even bothering to update you if I'm not going to do so regularly. Well, I'm turning over a new leaf...mainly because I miss my outlet of bragging (about my kids and husband), venting (about my kids and husband) and opining (about everything else). But, my life has also gone through some changes since I last updated this blog and I figured this is really the best way for me to keep track of memories and experiences along the way since I am not good at scrapbooking or any other creative things like that. So, here is to a new start and to a new life...
Ann "Annie" Lorraine Patrick
Born on 10/14/10 @ 9:38a
8 lb, 3 oz and 20 3/4"
Annie arrived via repeat C-section at the University of Michigan's C.S. Mott Children's Hospital. I'm trying to decide whether to rehash the "loveliness" surrounding my pre-op and post-op experiences thanks to an anesthesia resident (pre-op) and a old nurse (post-op). For now, I won't...but, that's not to say there won't be a future post exposing all that ridiculousness! Anyway, the actual surgery went as smooth as can be and even though there was some meconium when Annie was delivered, everything was fine. Surprisingly, Annie was born on a Thursday morning and I left the hospital the following evening, mainly due to the "awesome" (dripping with sarcasm) nursing staff.
Since we've been home Annie has been great. She only cries when she is hungry or has a dirty diaper...OR if you put her down. I do not remember Ella needing to be held this much. I am trying to enjoy it realizing that this is most likely my last baby, but as my house gets more and more cluttered and smelly (?), I need to be able to get things done. So, this is where I'll give a shout out to the Moby wrap (http://www.mobywrap.com/). I don't know how I lived without this when I had Ella, but this is the only thing saving my sanity...and my back.
I'm also trying to breastfeed again with Annie and I'm happy to say that overall it is going a lot better than it did with Ella. Unfortunately, as I was celebrating the smoothness of breastfeeding this go around, Annie ended up losing 12% of her birth weight within the first 4-5 days of life (more than 10% is not normal). As we took her to and from the pediatrician's office and saw a lactation consultant, no one understood what the problem was as my milk had some in good and plenty and it seemed like Annie was latching and feeding well. Even still, I was put on a strict feeding schedule of feeding Annie every 2-3 hours (and waking her up to do so if she wasn't already awake) and then pumping after the feedings to get any other milk I had and then offering that to her. 9 times out of 10 she would take more milk. I was not understanding what I was doing wrong, if anything, and felt like I couldn't succeed at breastfeeding no matter what! Why did everything have to be soooo difficult?!?! I will admit that after a few days of this I was going insane and in the middle of the night I did NOT want to pump, so I supplemented with formula if she wanted it. She didn't take it every time, but the times that she did, it was so much easier and faster than pumping! I did this for about two weeks and thankfully it worked. As fast she dropped to 7 lb, 4 oz from her birth weight of 8 lb, 3 oz, it seemed she gained it all back and more and on Nov. 2 she was a whopping 8 lb, 7 oz! So, I was officially able to get back to 'normal' breastfeeding, whatever that is (I'll save those rantings for another post). I will still pump occasionally if she ends up sleeping longer and I'm about ready to explode. Ella has enjoyed helping feed her and it killed her last week when she had a bit of a cold and we made her stay away from Annie!
Speaking of Ella, she is a big Kindergartner now and goes to school all day (which apparently isn't a free right in MI) and it has been good for all of us. I cannot imagine her still only going to school for 1/2 a day. She would hate it just as much as I would. But, with that big transition and also her riding the bus to and from school everyday, becoming a big sister on top of all that has been an interesting journey. She absolutely loves her sister and wants her to be able to play and talk already! As for now, she enjoys singing and reading books to Annie. But, completely separate from Annie she has her 'normal' 5-year-old moments that I believe she would have whether Annie was here or not. But, I am confident that she will be a GREAT big sister and tons of help in the future!
As for other 'new' things, Stephen is a fellow as of July 1, 2010. He started a dual fellowship in neonatology and is also a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar. No one knows what the latter is, so don't feel bad. It's a highly regarded research fellowship for medical personnel, but again means nothing to us lamen folk. His dual fellowship is a total of three years (meaning the earliest we would be leaving MI is in 2013). The first two years is 80% research and 20% clinical time which means he's mostly in the NICU on-call on the weekends unless he is on service which he only was in July and won't be again until May 2011. The third and final year will mostly be clinical time in the NICU. He is absolutely in love with his job(s) and is excited about the opening of the new children's hospital in November 2011.
So, new things abound in the Patrick family, especially since the last time I posted something. I'm looking forward to more newness in the future and more posting, but right now I would just love to enjoy the familiarness of my bed.