Monday, September 26, 2011

But I Don't Like Cereal, Mommy!

What are we going to do, Mommy?

I like the new plastic bib you got for me, Mommy.

What is this nasty stuff? Why are you doing this to me, Mommy? I want my bottle. Waaaaaaaa....

Such was our first attempt with cereal the other night. Poor little dear. We skipped it last night because we were at Auntie's and I hadn't taken any cereal with us. But we tried it again tonight, and although she still wasn't crazy about it, she was a little more open to it. She sure does watch me intently while I eat, so I think it's just a matter of time before she enjoys her cereal.

Hello, Pre-pregnancy Wardrobe!

I have lost nearly all of the fifty pounds I gained while pregnant with Michaela!

I honestly did not think this was doable in such a short period of time, and I did absolutely nothing to make it happen. My plans for walking on a daily basis, and trying something like Nutrisystem were unnecessary. The weight just dropped off on its own. As my sister pointed out, I had a couple of things stacked against me - my age, and the fact that I wasn't able to breastfeed. Doesn't seem to have mattered though.

The last couple of months, I have been wearing size 10 pants as they were the largest size in my closet. I had gained weight back in 2009 during and after our first IVF, and I had invested in a few pairs of that size back then. Good thing I didn't get rid of them when I started to lose weight while Michael was sick. Over this summer, I even supplemented the few items of what I had with some things I was able to find on the clearance racks at Loft. I was fine with that, and I figured that if I plateaued at size 10 for a while, I could live with that.

But, this morning I weighed in and was surprised to see that I now weigh what I did on my wedding day. I weighed myself twice because I couldn't believe it. Then I went to my closet and pulled out a pair of size 8 pants. I fully expected that they would be tight, but they fit perfectly! I am giddy just thinking about all the pants I have to choose from this week.

After Michael went Home, I was pretty stressed out and I dropped nearly ten pounds, so I have some size 6 pants in the closet, too. Only time will tell if I will be able to fit into them. It's not something I am going to work towards, but it would be nice. I'm certainly not as skinny as I was when I met Michael. I think I was a size 2 back then, but I have no desire to be that thin again. I'm just pleased to be wearing the things I already own. It's been quite a while, and so they all seem new again!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Work Stress = Grief

Sometimes I feel like I have a target on me at school. Mind you, I'm not unhappy at my new school. In fact, there are many good things about it, but something happened this week that was really hurtful and it's not entirely resolved yet. I just don't understand the contentiousness that some people bring to the table when dealing with their child's teacher. And I don't understand why it's not more obvious that so many things about public education are not in the teacher's control. I feel like a foot soldier who takes orders from commanding officers most of the time. The autonomy I once enjoyed about my job that allowed me to make decisions about how to deliver instruction and manage my classroom is almost non-existent now.

I was reduced to tears yesterday as I felt that I was being unfairly criticized and unsupported. After the last couple of years, I really need to have a school year in which I can feel successful and valued once again. That, or I need to win the lottery or find another profession.

Anyway, not having Michael to come home to and be my safe place just made my grief feel "newish" again. I longed to share my troubles with him and have him embrace me in his strong arms. But that's not going to happen at the end of a hard day, and that really sucks. I have great family support and lots of friends who love me and encourage me, but nothing compares to the love of your life sharing your burdens with you.

I was easily agitated when Buffy wanted out and then wouldn't come in the house at 11:30 last night (waking me up and robbing me of the little sleep I do get), and I had an angry cry over that. Then more tears on the way to work this morning as I felt like too much rests on my shoulders. I even threw a temper tantrum at God. Which is really stupid, and I even though I blame that on sleep deprivation, I have repented. Being angry at God is counterproductive and immature. He never changes. He's good all the time, and I need to seek Him when I'm troubled and persecuted.

I just hope and pray that this school year will be a peaceful one. Last year was just awful, and I'm not up for that kind of drama in my life.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Michaela @ Four Months

There have been so many developments in the last month! On the very day she turned three months old, Michaela began to laugh. It was thrilling to hear her do that for the first time, and I kept acting silly just so she would keep laughing. In the last month, her laughter hasn't been a regular thing, but it's a joy to behold when something tickles her funny bone.

In the last couple of weeks, she began rolling over from front to back, and from back to front. I wasn't the first person to see her do this (dagger in my heart). I think Grammy, Auntie Julie, and nanny Elisabeth all saw her do this before I did. The first time I saw her attempting to do so was in her bassinet one morning, and that was the sign I'd been waiting for to transition her into her crib in her nursery. She has taken to her crib very well, and although I put her down on her back, when I go in to check on her she's usually rolled over onto her tummy. I miss having her sleep right next to me, but our house is so tiny that I can almost hear her breathing in her room.

Michaela is becoming more and more coordinated with her hands. She grasps her toys and brings them up to her mouth. Everything goes in the mouth! She's also started to touch my face. It's very sweet. What's not so sweet is how she pulls my hair. Ouch!

Speaking of hair, she has been losing hers. It's all over her sheets and blankets. Most of the hair loss seems to be from the sides of her head. She has so much hair that I don't think it's that noticeable to other people.

Michaela is wearing a size two diaper, and she wears six months sized clothing most of the time. We haven't seen the pediatrician for her official length and weight, but I'm pretty sure she weighs about 16 pounds.

Her disposition continues to be very easy-going. She rarely cries. When she does cry, I know she must not be feeling well. Her acid reflux is still an issue, and that can cause her to be upset. Michaela smiles all the time and vocalizes a lot. So much personality in such a little person! Her mommy, and everyone else who knows her, is absolutely smitten with her.

Updated after pediatrician appointment on Thursday 9/22/11:
Michaela now weighs 14 pounds and 14 ounces. She is 26 inches long. We have the green light to begin solid foods. I was not going to do cereal, but our pediatrician said it was a good practice food and that I could introduce something else five days later - like bananas or avocados. So, I guess we will give it a try!

She didn't fuss too much after her shots, but she was very cranky last night. Grandma stayed overnight with us and did most of the baby wrangling through the night. She is so good to us both. Michael always told me that his mom was "incredible" and he is right. I love having her here with us every week.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Working Mom Blues

Today was the fourth day of the new school year. I am grateful to be in a new school and working with new people, but I honestly hate leaving Michaela. I know she's in good hands with our nanny and her grandparents. It's not that. It's that by the time I get home from wrangling my students (that's what it feels like), I am so tired that I don't feel like I have much left to give her. I totally forgot our little bedtime routine tonight of books and songs and prayers. I don't want her childhood to be less than because I'm tired and distracted when I get home from spending the day with other people's kids.

I just want to pour myself into her. Be there to witness all the firsts. I've already missed a couple just since I went back to work not even two weeks ago. Sigh...

I long to be a SAHM, but I know that even if Michael was here that wouldn't be possible. However, it is something I pray for because I've learned that miracles do happen. Michaela is my miracle. Truly anything is possible. So I'll just keep petitioning the Lord and see what His plans are for our life, and take it one day at a time. It's overwhelming to get anymore ahead of myself than that.

If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! (Matthew 7:11)

Monday, September 5, 2011

What a Difference a Year Makes!

From this:

To this:


It was September 5th last year that I learned that I was pregnant with Michaela. It was an incredibly hard journey - all the failed attempts, Michael's illness and his journey Home, and a very difficult pregnancy. But today, I am the mother of a wonderful little girl. Every day with her is a new adventure, full of delights and challenges.

I remember desperately praying during that two-week wait. Really crying out to the Lord. Acknowledging the near impossibility of this ever happening what with Michael's sperm being effected by the cancer, and my eggs being old. But I knew that God could override all that and create a perfect baby if that was His will for my life. Michaela truly is a miracle, not of modern medicine, but of an all powerful God who lavishes His children with blessings.

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. James 1:17