Friday, August 22, 2014

Seven Quick Takes: Nine months and nine millions

Tad turned 9 months on Wednesday and had his well check yesterday. He weighed 18 pounds 15 ounces and was 27.25 inches long, which means he's gained 2 pounds 12 ounces since his 6-month visit (but only 8 ounces since his "sick" visit a month ago) and only an inch since said 6-month visit. He's apparently in the 38th percentile for weight and the 11th for height. The pediatrician's office switched to computerized charts recently so now they can give me exact percentiles to obsess over. (Before I had to plot his growth on the WHO charts and figure out an approximate percentile myself.)

Nobody's concerned about his growth, but I have to keep reminding myself that growth charts aren't a grade of my ability to feed my baby properly. I think I'm still a little scarred by his first month of life. (Back then, he dropped from about the 60th to the 25th percentile in weight in 5 weeks. That was legitimately concerning.)

Relatedly, they didn't ask nearly as many questions about his eating habits as I thought they would. Are you still nursing him (yes), is he on solids (yes), how often (about twice a day), what kind (ask for clarification, she says, "Like, does he eat baby food?" I say, "Oh, no, he eats table food"), does he like it (yes, he likes pretty much everything). I've heard so many stories of people having pediatricians push for their 9-month-olds to be on 3 meals and 2 snacks a day, or eating X number of containers of baby food, or whatever, that it was a little disconcerting. I mean, they asked if he likes food. My goal is to get him to like food, but I was under the impression that healthcare professionals were in favor of stuffing babies full of food whether they like it or not. (Again, possible flashbacks to basically having the hospital refuse to discharge him until he was taking so many mL of breastmilk or formula per feeding.)

This take refuses to be a cheery update, so Imma just abandon it now, okay?

I decided a little while ago that I was going to try to publish at least 100 blog posts in 2014. That means I need to publish about 10 this month, so I suppose I should get cracking.

I did attempt to write a day in the life post the other day and it turned out really boring. Also I never finished it. Oops.

Fun fact: My almost-9-month-old still nurses about every 2 hours around the clock. Before he was born I was under the impression that this was a typical newborn schedule. It turns out a typical newborn schedule is actually eating every 45 minutes except for an hours-long cluster feed in the evening followed by sacking out for 4 hours.

Babies are a lot of work.

Here is a picture of him all dressed up (in size 12 month clothes!) for the Annunciation.

He did remarkably well at Mass considering it started at 7:30, which is right about when he starts to act like he's being slowly tortured to death by tiredness. Afterwards we got ice cream and took it home, at which point he crawled around sobbing with exhaustion and Scott had to play with him for a little while. As soon as I finished my ice cream and nursed him he got a second wind and bounced around until 10:30 before I finally walked him down. Weird baby.

Tooth #6 is slooooowly emerging. Up until a day or so ago Tad's poor little gum was all puffy; now you can see a break where the tooth is going to come out, but you can't actually see the tooth yet. Not that he ever lets us get a very good look inside his mouth.

I keep telling Scott that it seems like baby teeth are subject to Zeno's paradox--they always seem to be closer and closer to breaking through but don't actually get there. I tend to say that right before a tooth actually does break through, so maybe having said it again will be good luck or something.

I've been trying to figure out how to bake sandwich bread recently. I think I'm on my third attempt. On attempt #1, the first loaf was a miserable failure because I didn't cook it long enough ("don't overbake" my well-endowed backside...) but the others turned out okay. The second time they were just about perfect, well-done and light and fluffy and tasty. The third time I tried the same thing except for some reason they didn't puff up as well so I tried leaving them out overnight and they still didn't puff well and then tasted NASTY. Turns out that leaving yeast bread out forever doesn't just mean it gets bigger. It means the yeast eats ALL the sugar and leaves you with awful bitter bread. Science, man.

Relatedly, Melanie posted this on Facebook the other day (week? month? I don't remember) and now I want to revamp my tried-and-true chocolate chip cookie recipe to see if I can make it better. (Said recipe is from the 1980 version of the Better Homes And Gardens cookbook. My mama got the cookbook for me off eBay, because the new versions are just not as good.)

Of course, the downside of baking is that it produces dishes, and my kitchen is already a complete wreck even just from the dishes that have accumulated due to all the necessary cooking. Because if I only have half an hour per day when the baby is not hanging off me and crying, I'm going to spend it making food so we have something to eat and let the dishes pile up.

I've been kind of floundering in general the last month or two--bad sleep means I'm too tired to get stuff done, and baby fussing all day reduces the opportunities to get stuff done anyway, and then I hit the point where I feel like I'll never catch up so what's the point of bothering to do anything?

I feel like I'm having low-grade PPD, if that's a thing. It's not nearly as bad as it was when Tad was a newborn, but it's kind of not fun to go through life with this unshakeable vague apathy. Prayers would be appreciated if you have any to spare. (And if you live near me, feel free to come over and wash my dishes! I have no shame anymore about accepting help!)

To cheer things up a bit in here, a funny story:

Earlier today, Mom was driving Teresa to her homeschooler art class. They saw a yard sale sign and were talking about the book Caps for Sale; then Teresa started saying, "Teresa for sale! Teresa for sale!" Mom told her she wasn't for sale. Teresa persisted with the topic and decided that if she were for sale she'd be worth 9 million dollars. Then she said that if some rich person came along with 9 million dollars and tried to buy her, she would tell that person, "Sold out! I'm just on display!"

This kid is so worth more than 9 million dollars.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!


Rosalie Shiffler said...

#6: I wish I could offer some kind of help, but at least I can empathize? My whole summer has felt like that too, and I've started to wonder if PPD can follow a miscarriage... The timing would make sense. It's so draining to see everything slowly getting worse around you and feel like you can't do anything about it! I'll certainly keep you in my prayers.

The Sojourner said...

*creepy internet hugs*

Even if it isn't technically PPD, I'm sure a miscarriage can do a number on a person's mental health. I hope you feel better soon too.