Over 40 mama — Adventures in poop, patience, and first-time parenthood

Does this work?
May 18, 2010, 2:11 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I am testing whether this works or not.


January 23, 2009, 10:50 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Okay, I admit it.  I am completely blown away by Facebook.

Not the stupid pokes, or super pokes, or tests or quizzes or “gifts” or any of that crap.  But the genuine connections you can make with people who – in a pre-Facebook universe – would have fallen off of your map.  I have made some incredible reconnections with folks who I’ve not spoken to in 20 years – let alone shared daily updates about dentist visits, or favorite wines.  I know about their kids, their work trials, and their caffeine addictions.

It is particularly satisfying to reconnect with someone you WEREN’T close with back in the day, and to overcome whatever mishigaas kept you from getting to know them better then.

So, yeah.  I’m hooked.

Happy New Year!
January 2, 2009, 5:59 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I’ll start with a weird dream that’s been haunting me all day: C and I were in Boston, looking to get on a bus that would take us to the “West Wing” – an area of Boston in the dream.  We were seeking an MIT dorm there.  Don’t know who was there or why we were going, but there ya go. I’ve tried googling a variety of permutations, and tested for anagrams (often how dreams speak to me) but nothing has leapt out.  

I’ve got a couple of intentions, let’s call them, for 2009. In no order: 

1) create a better system for financial recordkeeping.

2) be the best mom I can be. 

3) improve public speaking skills.

4) improve leadership skills. 

5) live my values of family, community and creativity. 

6) grow consulting practice and financial abundance. 

7) maintain good health, she writes, as she eats a piece of chocolate pannetone for dinner. 

8) balance. 

9) pray. 

10) dance.  

11) DJ more.

12) stress less.

Hold onto your hat…
December 27, 2008, 6:36 pm
Filed under: parenthood, Uncategorized

So, as I mentioned, the bug has learned to scooch. Which means she’s getting into everything that’s between 0 and 12 inches off the floor.   The magazine rack, C’s immense pen box, and the cat box are all potential targets.  Fortunately the cat box is a little off her beaten path as of now.  As soon as she’s crawling instead of scooching, we’ll be worrying about the cat box.

We spent Xmas at C’s brother’s house.  We were all in the living room, with an enormous fireplace where they burnt all the wrapping paper.  The bug was just rapt watching it all: Her cousins, who bounced between the tree and the rest of us, playing “Santa” — the ribbons and paper and crinkly sounds and the TOYS and OMG OMG OMG the PACKAGING for said toys which came in all manner of plastics and paper and cardboard and all kinds of fun textures.  And of course the fireballs that erupted when someone threw in some paper.  Those were cool. 

Thankfully, it wasn’t as orgiastic as it’s been in years’ past.  I made most of my presents this year, since I wanted to save some $$.  So early on I bought some cool yarn and knitted a bunch of hats and scarves for folks.  Nobody totally vomited or said “what’s this supposed to be?” so I guess they were relatively successful. Maybe next year I’ll have a little more skill besides the knit stitch and basic hats, and can venture into more interesting patterns. 

We went to the pediatrician on Dec 23rd, something I really don’t recommend.  The bug was the last patient that day – we waited in the waiting room for 50 min before Dr P saw her.  And by the time Dr P came in to see us, she was clearly exhausted from a long day, and ready to run screaming out of there.

I asked about food and sleep: Turns out, the bug is now to the point where we no longer have to worry about allergies, so she can eat pretty much whatever she wants I want her to eat.  So she’s now eating tofu, carrots from our garden, and lentils.  C’s sis-in-law gave her a graham cracker which I wasn’t totally stoked about, but I’ve learned to pick my battles. 

Dr P also suggested we do a little “cry it out” to help the bug to sleep through the night.  We’ve actually already implemented this during the 3 and 5 AM wake ups and it seems to be working. She doesn’t cry for very long –she may not even be awake.  She seems to know on some level she’s supposed to be sleeping, and can soothe herself.  Daytimes are a little harder.  We’ll get there.  One thing I realized is that I prefer to implement change in interations, where Dr P tends to prescribe things in more black and white terms.  Definitely something to keep an eye out on.  Esp as the bean gets into crawling, I want a ped who can view an issue from multiple sides, and explain the various facets of each.  OMM!

Parental Differences: #1 in a series
July 21, 2008, 9:34 pm
Filed under: parenthood, sleep, Uncategorized

How do other parents out there deal with it when you and your partner have big differences of opinion on issues of child rearing?

It seems C and I are back in Square One with the issue of sleep and overstimulation. Neither of us have good filter for what’s going on with R because we’re so busy being polarized in our beliefs…

Vaccinations, Hallucinations and Bears (Oh my!) –
June 16, 2008, 5:26 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Monday, June 2nd, 2008

Armed with a notebook full of questions, I brought the bean to her one-month visit to the pediatrician on Thursday.

I love this pediatrician. She’s got crazy curly gray hair, and wears a stethescope around her neck adorned with a gaggle of stuffed bears. She is positively encyclopedic in her knowledge of pediatrics, and believes that no question is too stupid. I have already called her 3 times in 6 weeks – each time, she calls me back right away – and this despite the fact that she is the most sought-after ped in the East Bay. (She was also an art major in college, which tells me she’s got a lot more soul than your standard-issue by-the-numbers doc.)

Once we get the insurance info sorted, an assistant named Mary comes in and takes her vitals – the bean has grown an inch and a half and has put on two and a half pounds. (C notes that she now has a “regional manager” chin.)

Mary feels her back and scrunchs her legs to determine if her spine and hips are growing correctly (they are).

Dr P comes in and tells me that, yes, 5-6 weeks is a period of accelerated development, which explains the increase in fussiness. The mylan sheaths are forming around the neurons in her brain, her vision is crisping up, and she is learning how to track voices with her eyes. Her neck is still insanely vulnerable, as is her immune system. The gunk in her eye is normal – as her tear ducts get online – even though her left eye is clouded with filmy goop. All of these developments in her perception creates stressful and unpleasant conditions for a brand new bean. The remedy? Soothe her, play with her, give her neato stuff to look at.

After a gazillion hours of research and talking to myriad parents, doctors and alternative health practitioners, we opted to start vaccinating this week, too. (NB: This is a long and very charged topic so all I’ll say here is that I am more comfortable with the odds of side-effects than I am with the odds of contracting one of these diseases.)

Note to self: Be sure to get a lot of sleep the night before you vaccinate her again – she’ll be up all night fussing afterwards.

Speaking of sleep deprivation, C and I were driving somewhere the other day – he was driving – and I saw a parked truck start rolling backwards. I did a double take, thinking the truck was going to smack into the car behind it, and realized I had hallucinated the whole thing. The truck wasn’t rolling backwards. My brain was. Sleep deprivation has finally gotten to the point of hallucinations. So whee! No driving when I’m this tired, but at least there’s something fun about all this lack of sleep.

Tips for dealing with mastitis (reposted from May 20)
June 16, 2008, 5:01 pm
Filed under: breastfeeding, Uncategorized | Tags:

Grr. This is now the second time that I’ve gotten mastitis. Mastitis is an inflammation of the breast tissue. It affects the fatty tissues, so there is no danger to the baby or your milk. It just hurts a lot and can lead to infection, which REALLY sucks.

Symptoms of mastitis

  • Breast soreness
  • Redness in the skin
  • Hard lumps in your breast
  • A fever
  • Flu-like symptoms, feeling like total crap

Treatment –

  1. Give yourself breast massages to loosen any clogged milk ducts (which cause the mastitis in the first place)
  2. Soak affected breast in warm water and epsom salts 2x a day
  3. Wear a good bra – I cannot believe the difference a good bra makes!!
  4. Okay, so some people think it’s better to wear no bra at all. Do whatever you need to reduce the pain.
  5. Don’t sleep on your breasts or smoosh them in any other way
  6. Try this homeopathic remedy: Take a dose of phytolacca. Three hours later, take a dose of Hepar sulphuris. Three hours later, take another of phytolacca and continue alternating on three hour cycles. I’m trying this for the first time and will report back.
  7. Of course if you get really sick, or you don’t feel like dealing with all this other stuff, you can go to a doc and get some antibiotics. I did that 2 weeks ago, though, so I’m trying the homeopathic way instead.

My friend S who has a 5 year old son says she got mastitis a gazillion times. So it’s not one of those infections that leaves you alone once you kick it, alas.

Okay not the most glamorous of topics, but the one thing you learn early is that motherhood is all about managing effluvia.