Thursday, January 16, 2014

on CVS and Shopping Carts

So you know those days? The ones that are like; wake up tired, pack lunches cuz i forgot to do last night, make Shaina look all pretty cuz its her 6th(!) birthday party at school today, oh no i'm late, run to work, phew still have time for coffee, set up room, people coming to observe students, have to sound knowledgeable and professional, take kids outside, bring them in, noses wiped, lego negotiations led, goals worked on, sing and teach and play, take kids to bus, check emails, an emergency evaluation to do, test kid and talk to mom and become professional again and OMG i didnt use the bathroom or eat anything all day but OMG party is in 15 minutes and i have to run and get more cupcakes and pick out a present and get it wrapped and will the girls like this book and the minutes are ticking and is this a legal parking spot and good we're here with 3 minutes to spare and where are my quarters and run in, big hugs, sing, dance, eat, take pictures, open present (well received) run out, home, grab baby for my always fun and enjoyable WIC appointment, Shaina wants to come with and review her birthday book, OK so come, strap everyone in and out, sit for 5 minutes, WIC lady 'where is husband's income?' 'he doesnt have any cuz we dont have 2013 tax records yet'. 'Sorry no checks', back in car and 'hey theres still half hour and Meira needs diapers, lets go to CVS'. You know THAT kind of day?

So there I am physically and mentally drained from my nonstop day and runin at WIC, and since I dont want to my outing to be a total waste, I figure may as well take the girls for one last stop for diapers at CVS. As if. When you have CMT and a baby and less than half hour, its never 'just a stop'. I had already strapped her in and out of the car seat twice in the last hour and I figured it would be easier to lift the entire infant seat and throw it in the shopping cart than deal with the straps again. So Thank God for my handicapped license, we park right in front and Shaina gets out of one door and I shlep the whole car seat out and just hobble along with this big 30 lbs of baby and car seat, resting it with every step I take. I'm almost there ready to plop my baby into the cart and double the cart as my walker and leisurely stroll through the store. So we get inside and I scan the entryway and horror starts to take over as I realize: There are no shopping carts. My heart drops. The manager confirms there are none around. I start to panic inside. What do I do? Do I put the seat back in the car and pull out Meira and carry her? Do I let her crawl around? That, combined with more strapping and unstrapping didnt sound appealing. Do I just go home? I'm here already and we need diapers. I text Adiel moaning about how there is no shopping cart and tired and I'm ready to cry. Start making my way toward baby aisle -- maybe I"ll see a cart somewhere? Step by step. Around shelves and people, down the baby aisle. Grabbed the box of diapers. Took a break. Took a deep breath. I have big box of diapers, big girl, big infant seat and big mounds of anxiety of how I am going to make it out. Ready to cry. Shaina is watching my every move and notices when I get tense and upset. Can't fall apart now. I get a text back from Adiel. 'I'm sorry, do you want me to order chinese for dinner? Are you OK?'

And I dont know why but that text somehow caused some sort of brain shift to happen. It was like I won't have to cook dinner and my honey gets it. Everything is really OK. And I was just like 'screw all of this crap. screw shopping carts and all those three letter words like CVS and WIC and CMT'. I am a STRONG and ABLED mother of 3 and I am going to walk out of this store with diapers come hell or high water GOSH DARNIT. And thats what I did. I texted Adiel back 'No, I'm just venting, I am a survivor!' and I somehow managed to find some sort of inner strength, hobble back to the casheir with and infant seat in one hand and a box of diapers in the other and very pleasantly and happily play for everything. I gently told Shaina she couldnt buy the big Hello Kitty of chocolate (does anyone buy that for their valentine?) but a package of M&Ms is ok. I cracked a joke with the manager and managed to sneak two coupons onto the scanner (he only put on one, but I knew it would take two). I lent my CVS card to a stranger who left hers in the car. Loaded the baby, big girl in one shift and grabbed bag of diapers that the manager left right by door in the next shift. We managed to make it home with two minutes to spare as my babysitter was getting ready to leave. I really did feel like a survivor and to celebrate, I allowed Shaina to open the package of M&Ms in the car and we took turns eating them and naming which colors we took. We put the rest away and she made me promise not to sneak any on my way to work, I have to save them for the next time we're both in the car. I came home very tired but feeling very good about myself despite everything that happened.

Looking back, I don't know what came over me but I want to tap into it more often. Believing in myself and cheering myself on instead of falling apart. Yes, I have physical limitations but I also have a lot of physical abilities and - moreso- mental and emotional abilities to push me when things get tough. I'll never be an athlete or dancer, but yes, if I take one step at a time, I can make it through a crowded store carrying a heavy infant seat and a box of diapers. Maybe it was the supportive text, maybe it was having Shaina next to me, maybe it was just realizing sitting on the CVS floor and crying was not going to help me in any way, but I really liked what happened and it felt so much better than throwing myself a pity party.

And btw we absolutely ordered dinner in. But we went for subs instead of Chinese. MMMM

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Almost 3 weeks

Its almost 3 weeks since Mira entered our world -- almost halfway through maternity leave. Aaah!

Quick recap on the past week since my last post;

Really busy end of the week. Fun and maybe a bit too much but it was good to be busy.

Wednesday was my good friend's wedding. It was also miserable out. I also spent two+ hours at the WIC office trying to prove that Ad's income was 'real'. Tough for someone self-employed to prove their income. Oh, and I had Yak with me. Poor bored kid. Thank god they turned on some cartoon. And Mira cried a lot. I nursed her in the office so they didnt have to ask 'do you breast-feed?' In the end, Ad brought my pay-stubs and even though I'm not working anymore, its what we used to qualify. I just did not want to walk out without my checks so i'm glad we stuck it out. But by the time I got home, I was tired, and wondering if i'd have energy for the wedding. After a yummy nap with my baby girl I felt more rested and was a little more in the mood of the wedding. We got a sitter, I pulled out my wedding outfit, jewelry and wig and actually managed to pull myself together and look half decent. As we were about to run out, we discovered the bathroom was locked. And I had to get my makeup from the bathroom. Ad got it opened while I got Mira ready and off we went. On the way I realized I forgot my makeup at home. Gosh. Even someone like me who is two weeks postpartum and not a make-up wearer could not walk into a wedding with no makeup at all. We got to the hall and I went into the ladies bathroom -- thankfully some lady was putting on makeup and she looked really nice and friendly and I asked if i could borrow. She said sure, I put some nice stuff on my face and we ended up chatting and become friends. I went to wish mazel tov feeling a lot prettier. Everyone was amazed that I came and that I looked good and actually did a little bit of dancing. It was nice to be out, doing someting normal and chatting with friends I hadnt seen in a while. I was definitely a little 'out of it' and spacey. Mira also misbehaved for a decent part of the wedding so I spent time comforting her and feeding her. All in all, it was good for me to go and the bride was so happy I came. Everyone had a good laugh at the make-up story and the funniest part of all - on my way out, I checked the diaper bag for Mira's cloth diaper -- and there, sitting innocently on top - was my make-up. Which I had indeed stashed there before leaving. Half a brain, I tell you.

Thursday was the holiday party at work. I had in mind to also do some shopping after. Got a nice lazy start to the day but still did a little tidying up. I showed up at work about 11:20 (party was from 11-12:30). I decided to dress up a bit for the occasion. Happily I fit into this cute short skirt which I matched up with a blue sweater - first non maternity/hoodie top worn since the summer. Black boots, a grey hat and I felt good. I got tooonnns of compliments -- on the baby and how I looked. It felt great to be around my coworkers. I really enjoy being with them and at least going back to work means spending time with people I love. Only 3 kids (out of 11) were in my classroom, so both assistants were downstairs. I ate, chatted, got to participate in a work game and exchanged presents. Mine said 'for the kids so Mom can rest' so I figured I'd let the kids open it later. At a certain point Ad called and told me he had to go into the city yet again so I should work out pickups. I decided instead of having friends pick the kids up, I'd try pickup myself with the narrow inflatable 'Bubble bum' booster I had just gotten that day. After nursing Mira and spending more time with coworkers, I handed in my disability papers to be signed and left. At this point it was close to 2. Kids dismissal was 3. Not enough time to go home. Enough time for one shopping trip. So I did some WIC stuff and it was only 2:20. IN a flash I realized it would absolutly make Shain's week if I actually walked into her classroom with her baby sister. So thats what I did. Found a spot right across from her school, took the baby out of the car and into her school we went. Instantly we were surrounded by a super happy big sister and 15 adorable little girls oohing and ahhing over the baby. It was so adorable. A few kids even knew the baby's name and one little girl kept nudging Shain to tell Mommy what her name was. I guess that this must be the Meira in her class. Shain floated out on cloud nine and we went to get Yak from school. It was tight but we all managed to fit. Part of the issue with the back seat is that I find it way easier to use the infant seat base, instead of strapping the straps through. But that adds extra room to an already tight back. I'm going to order a car seat extender which I hope will help and i dont see the three of us going out THAT often at this point so i think our setup is dealable. I got home with all 3 kids and groceries and brought evertything in and was zonked. I was so glad I had that present which ended up being amazing -- a big sticker thing with cakes for Shain to decorate and an I Spy game for Yak to play with. Really a life saver!! I emailed my director asking who my Secret Santa was -- I wanted to thank her! Made me feel a bit bad tat I just gave a crystal serving platter to my lady. But anyway, it was another busy and productive day. I rested and even gave the kids dinner put them to bed. Go SuperMom!

It was nice to have the weekend at my Mom - the packing is a pain but it was nice to hang out there and not have to do any sort of work or walking around. I rested a lot (and ate a lot!) I had a friend from the Upper West Side visit today with her daughter and it was great, the kids hadnt seen one another for a long time! Always a breath of fresh air to hang out with this friend.

This week is hopefully going to be slower and less busy than last week. And now that I'm a little more 'myself' I hope to accomplish a few simple errands. Get insurance for the baby (shes on mine for first month).  Organize some of the baby's clothing. Organize some of the bigger kids clothing while i'm at it (noticed some stuff getting small on them). We are getting one more awesome week of meals(!) but I have to get some groceries, including some WIC stuff. I hope to have a couple of friends visit this week too and Ad wants us to spend some family time on New Years so I have to think of an easy family activity. Not sure yet about this shabbos. It was so nice by Mommy but I know Ad likes staying home so we'll have to see....

Monday, December 24, 2012

Two weeks postpartum

We're almost 2 weeks AMB (after Meira Baila). I'm definitely on my way to recovery. My body is a lot back to itself, now I'm just dealing with normal fatigue of a new mom. I'm already (gulp!!) a third of my way through Maternity leave. How nuts is that. No clue what i'm doing for babysitting yet, but im working on that next week. Anyway Mira is a pretty good baby. She cries plenty but she nurses well and stays in bed with me at night so its not THAT exhausting. Slowly I'm getting back into doing things like laundry, some basic housework, climbing stairs, etc. This morning Ad had to go in to the city early (so he could park by 8 and get the early bird special) so I actually got both big kids dressed and ready! I had a friend take Yak to school and I actually took Shain to school! It was my first time behind the wheel and its a little adjustment just mentally to sharpen my instincts and focus more. It also took me a bit of time to warm the car up, get Mira ready and pack all her stuff into the car. After dropping off Shain, i went to WIC to get forms and than to my Dr and kids Dr to get stuff filled out. I treated myself to a bagel for brunch and wrote some thank you notes as I ate (third kid so less thank you notes than with the older ones ;) ). Then I went back home and rested while nursing Mira.

This week is definitely going to be busier than last week. As I get more into things I'm going to expect more of myself. I've been pumping every day (hate pumping but gotta get that milk stored and ready) and have been organizing my stuff and putting away maternity and stuff. But I have a bunch of things coming up this week.

To backtrack for a second - sorry brain is all over the place but wanna first write about past few days. We had a very nice and relaxing weekend. Mommy went away for Shabbos so I had my two oldest nieces from Queens come. They are 13 and almost 12 and are major helps. They can take care of babies and big kids, clean up, make salads, etc. I took great care of them and spoiled them when I was the young (rich) single aunt so I have no qualms asking for their help :). I actually love how things come full circle like this and I promised them that one day Shain and Mira (and maybe even Yak) would help them with THEIR kids!

On Sunday a lot of Ad's family was going to an aunt and uncle in Philadelphia. And even though it was a 3 hour drive, they dont keep Kosher (so we'd be bringing our own food) and - oh btw i am 10 days postpartum and have a newborn baby - we were still planning on trying to make the trip. And Ad was fasting until sundown, a Jewish fast. But in the end, there was an issue with their dog -- my kids are afraid of animals especially HUGE dogs like this aunt and uncle have. We asked if they could have the dog in a room or by a neighbor for the few hours wed be there. In response we got told not to come. Not 'hm, that may be hard but we still wanna see you, what can we work out?' But 'Forget it, uncle is going to be too nervous' They are older and never had kids so i get that it was overwhelming for them. And I'm sure it would have been very challenging for us so we were not too disappointed. Its just surprising to get that type of reaction - I was raised that family is THE most important thing in life and you do anything for them. I see my siblings and mom all the time and its so strange to me that others aren't on this same page. But anyway, Ad's mom is coming back in a month to see the baby so hopefully some of his sibs will come then as well. And I'm digressing. The point is we had a very relaxing Sunday instead. My bro and his wife came and we set up like 3-4 football games to play on various TVs and computers in the same room. There were a lot of important games to watch. Ad took kids out in afternoon so the rest of us chilled and watched football :).

We've been getting these awesome dinners every night. My friend set us up on a 'meal train' and we got over 3 weeks of friends and neighbors signing up to make dinner M-Th the past week and the ones coming up. Its so fun to get various different foods, fresh, hot and delivered to our door! And no cleaning up before or after. I really love our community even though I sometimes complain about some aspects of it. When I had my bigger kids, I got a few meals here and there but this is really amazing.

OK, back to my week. Tomorrow is Christmas....we dont celebrate obviously and the kids actually have school. But most adults have off :). Well Ad is taking advantage of no traffic and free Manhattan parking during the week (which happens all of 5 times a year on the Major legal holidays) and is going back to the client he was at today to finish networking stuff. I told him if he has to go again he should go next week on New Years. Anyway bro and SIL are here again and were going out for brunch tomorrow. Yay :). Wednesday I have a WIC appointment in morning. Yak has to come. Sigh. I'll bring him to school late I guess...or maybe pull him out and bring him back? I hope they take Ad's self-employed form as proof as income. They are so the type to give a hard time even though supposedly a supervisor OKed it on the phone. OK, so Wed night we have a wedding. Yay! A close friend of mine who was dating last year and after I knew I was pregnant I said 'You better end up getting married at a time I can come!' So 2 weeks postpartum is not THE best timing but its better than morning of. They were going to get married in Brooklyn but the hurricane messed up the hall and its not back yet so they actually changed the location to a hall in Woodmere, not far from us. We'll prob only go for 4 hours or so. Already booked my kids favorite babysitter. And of course, Mira comes with us so I can feed her and we can get all sorts of compliments on how cute she is :). Hope I'm not too tired to enjoy somewhat but at least we'll make a presence.

Thursday my work is having a party! Usually my work is off the whole Christmas - New Years break. This year, because they missed so many days due to Hurricane, they had to open Wed-Fri of this week. So they are making a big party with music, secret santas and good food. This is pretty big of my work. Usually they just put out some pizza and salad. Its nice they are doing more. And I plan on showing up with baby :). Its 11-12:30 which is perfect. I also have to hand in disability forms to sign and stuff. So that should be fun. And then, after that its Shabbos again! Ad was all like 'lets stay home again' and i'm like 'No way'. I feel like going to Mommy every single Shabbos that shes home until maternity leave finishes! The packing and shlepping is annoying, especially with three kids and a newborn and a small car. And its a lot more back and forth for him. But its soo much easier. As great as Ad is and as great as my nieces were, theres nothing like going to Mommy. She really takes care of me, takes the big kids, takes the baby and puts me to bed, etc. Plus its a small and cozy apt so less going up and down and all around. Its definitely warmer. My house can get a little drafty and her apt is warm and yummy (sometimes too hot i'll admit). And also my Manhattan friends can come visit Sat night or Sunday :). Its way easier for them to visit me there than to shlep all the way to Far Rockaway, especially the ones without cars. I already had one friend visit last time I was there and two more want to visit the next time i'm in. So we'll go and hang out there and if Ad needs to go back and forth a little, he'll survive.

OK, I'm just blabbering now. Glad I got back into writing. I spend most of my day in bed or on a couch (watching something from afar or on my iPad) so its hard to get into typing. But here and there i force myself to sit in a chair and actually do old fashioned web browsing and blog updating and stuff.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Long awaited birth story

On Monday, December 10 I was feeling crampy. I had been feeling contractions for at least a week and it always turned out to be nothing. I'd wake up in the morning and it would be gone so I wasn't sure whether to believe it or not but it did feel somewhat stronger and more real than anything I had felt previously. I wrapped up a few things at work including straightening my desk and doing an observation at my son’s school in his classroom. It was very cute. Got the kids, made it home and rested a little bit. I put up spaghetti and meatballs for dinner which got a little burnt because I was too tired to watch it. I told my mom that I might be needing her later, but I knew she had a few things to take care of in Brooklyn, so I said it's probably not going to be until much later and I might not even need her at all. We lit the menorah, it was the third night of Chanukah, and we ate dinner. The next morning was a bris for a cousin of mine in Brooklyn. I set out nice clothing for the kids and told my cousin we were hoping to make it. I also had my daughters 'Mommy and Me' Channukah party the next morning. I thought that it would be somewhat typical of me to have a baby the day I have something else going on. With both of my other births, I missed a wedding, so a bris and party weren’t too bad to miss should that be happening. I had my mom on reserve for Shain's party in case I couldn't make it.

The night went on I felt the contractions a little bit stronger but still not strong enough to make me believe it was definitely immanent. Mommy kept calling asking ‘should I come now or can I do xyz?’ and I’d tell her she just has to be there over night – just in case. Nothing was happening earlier. I made a list of things I have to take care of including folding laundry, organizing my stuff, packing last minute stuff in my hospital bag, activating my new phone that Ad had gotten me, etc. Slowly but surely I made my way through the list. I even loaded the dishwasher and tidied up the kitchen. I took a nice relaxing bath and spoke to my unborn baby asking if this might be the night and wondering if she would be a girl. I g-chatted with a few friends, telling them I might be in labor but I wasn't hundred percent sure. I timed my contractions - they were getting more consistent, about 10 minutes apart but then they would stop. Ad, who never knew whether to believe my contractions, asked me at one point 'Do you think we're making it to the bris tomorrow' and I said 'No'. He asked 'Do you think we're having the baby by morning?' I thought for a moment, paused, looked right at him and said 'Yes'. That freaked both of us out and Ad decided he was going to get an early night of sleep. I made him sleep in my spot which is near the wall. I told him I would definitely be getting out of bed more often than he would. I wanted to go to sleep early too, but I had to wait for Mommy who ended upcoming a little after 11 o'clock. I warned her that it wasn't for sure happening but I was grateful that she'd be there no matter what. I also showed her where the kids’ lunches, knapsack, clothing and coats were. And to bed I went, wondering if I'd wake up in the morning with no labor or perhaps very active labor....

I woke up a few times during the night, around 1:00, 2:00, 3:00...each time I wondered if it was morning and realizing that it was not. The contractions were definitely getting stronger.  About 3:45 I got into the bath to take the edge off the pain that helped for about 20 minutes I timed my contractions in the tub and they were between 5 and 10 minutes apart. I got dressed and into pajamas at the same time and woke up Ad and I told him ‘This is it, we're going to the hospital.’  Mommy woke up, helped me breathe through a painful contraction and wished me good luck. She gave me a hug and told her to be in touch as soon as anything happens. She made me promise that she’d get a phone call and not just a text (my sister did that oops). I tried reaching the doctor, but when I pressed 6 for an emergency, the first thing that I was told was to call back in 15 minutes if nobody calls me back. I didn't realize I was supposed to stay on the line to get someone. In any case, I figured I’d call again from the car but I have to use Ad's phone because mine still wasn't activated. We left our home about 4:20 in the tranquil silence of the night....I teared up as I told Ad 'We’re leaving our home as parents of 2, god willing, to return as parents of 3'.

And we headed for the hospital. It was the third time we would be going to the hospital in the middle of the night. Pretty cool to see the empty roads that were usually so crowded.  We tried calling the doctor again and got the same message. I held on for a couple of seconds longer but it didn't look like anybody would be picking up the phone so I hung up I figured they'd reach my doctor once we got to the hospital. It was an exciting and magical ride mixed with a couple of very painful contractions. The contrast was pretty interesting. We got there in a very short amount of time, not even twenty minutes. Ad helped me inside and then went to park the car. It was a long wait; well it felt like one anyway, probably took about 5 minutes in reality. I sat in a wheelchair waiting and grimaced through another painful contraction. When the security guard saw my husband he told me 'he's coming!' and then told my husband to hurry up.

Finally we reached the L&D floor... Definitely brought back memories of my other two. I used the bathroom, changed to my gown and got this point it was a little after 5:00 and I was about 6 cm dilated. Always a relief to know I was definitely in labor and able to be admitted. It’s my biggest nightmare that they'll send me home and say ‘Lady, you're only 2 cm dilated’ (although that never happened to me). So I’m definitely admitted and figure I probably have 3-4 hours to go, based on my last birth. Nurse gently asks ‘have you considered an epidural?’ and I’m like ‘I haven’t NOT considered it! Please lets do it!’ But I know how it works, it’s not something that happens instantly. First you have to sign a buncha stuff, then they need to find my vein (always a challenge for some reason), then drip an IV for half hour and finally THEN can I get that much needed pain relief. Good news is that the hospital reached my doctor and he’s on his way. Bad news is contractions are fast and furious. I’m also less able to move into more comfortable positions because I’m on the bed and hooked up to stuff. Ad goes to admit me. At this point, between the IV drip and my active labor, I start shaking uncontrollably. This is besides for the painful contractions. And in between the contractions there is no relief because I know it’s going to start again any second. The nurses, like the last two experiences I had at South Nassau, were just ANGELS. I mean it. It’s such a hard, vulnerable and painful time when things were so out of my control and I almost felt like an animal and they were so reassuring, let me squeeze their hand, kept saying ‘You’re doing great, etc’.  God bless them, especially Caroline and Cindy. I kept looking at the clock and thinking ‘I just have to make it till 6, that’s when ill have enough IV drip and get my epidural’. The minutes went by slowly. At one point the baby’s heart rate went down and they paged a resident. That was very scary for me, they gave me an oxygen mask and I realized how scary this whole birthing process really could be. Was so glad to be in a hospital, being monitored and all. Thank Goodness heart rate picks up. Ad came back and joins in the reassuring choir.

Its almost 6:00. (I’m reassured the anesthesiologist is on his way up. It’s a small hospital and I’m on the 3rd floor, yet it always takes forever for him to come up). Another painful contraction but I just have to get through it because then I’m getting my epidural. But it’s so painful. ‘I can’t do it. I feel like I’m dying’. ‘Yes you can, you’re doing great’. It occurred to me that those awful feelings of giving up are usually right before birth is imminent….could it really be? And suddenly ‘I feel a need to push’. ‘OK, let’s do another internal before the epidural. Lay down…..Oh my I see the head!!’ And all of a sudden things began to move massively fast. I know from last time a whole buncha things get ready when you get to 10 cm….now they were trying incredibly fast to open the lights, prepare the weighing tray, page the covering OB (mine hadn’t made it yet), etc. No one expected me to be ready so quickly, least of all me! The various personnel in the room were all like ‘DON’T PUSH’ which I still don’t get but honestly I didn’t care who was there at this point or how ready anyone was. My body was in pain and telling me that pushing was the appropriate thing so the heck with all of them…I pushed and all of a sudden out came a baby. 

It was so shocking honestly and a bit anticlimactic. Like ‘huh? Already?!’ Usually I’m at 10 for a while and have to push a bunch of times and get all this encouragement till the baby comes out. It was so unexpected I didn’t’ even know how to react….I don’t think anyone did. I took a look and first thought it was a boy and then realized it was all clear there – it was a girl! Just like I had wanted (secretly of course). They had to clean her a bunch but she was alert and cried and she looked absolutely perfect to me. She was 7.7 and 20 inches long. My poor OB showed up a couple of minutes later, scrubbed in, and helped deliver the placenta which took a lot more time to push out. Yay him lol. He mentioned that he was going to change the answering service so people know to wait on the line and not hang up. I hope he still gets paid for my delivery even though the other guy showed up for two minutes and caught the baby (or did he, I’m not even sure). PS: Lenka, below reminded me of something funny - the covering dr's name was put on my card as 'Mother's Doctor' so my OB crossed it out when he came to check on me the next day :)

Recovery was amazing. It was my first time that I didn’t tear and didn’t need stitches and it makes a huge difference in recovering. Not having to push much meant I wasn’t sore. No epidural, just like with Shain who came too fast, although I didn’t noticed a difference with my recovery when I did have the epidural with Yak. I’m still very pro epidurals, ill just have to get there sooner next time! In total, I was in the hospital bed less than an hour. Was walking around soon after, using the bathroom normally, nursing well right away. My body, which so often feels subpar, totally rocked this labor and delivery. And the whole pregnancy. You go body! :P And I guess it’s good to know that some of my nerves work very very well.

The next couple of days were good and quiet. Mommy filled in beautifully at Shains party where she was the center of attention….i think I would have spent my time socializing with other moms, but Bubby really interacted with her. I got some visitors from the immediate family (sister and kids, mom and my family). My kids were excited to see me and their sister – but more excited to push the buttons on my hospital bed and run down the hallways….good thing I had the iPad with me. I ate like a horse (I forgot how hungry nursing makes you!) and asked for a sleeping pill both nights and relaxed a lot with my babe. What a little miracle :) The LC would pop in and I’d roll my eyes…its my third kid! Oh and I finally got my dumb phone activated, I only needed to download google talk on my iPad and spend 50 MINUTES talking to the dumb lady until it worked. And once it started a ton of messages started pouring in…

So that’s it. I am officially a Contemporary Mother of Three. I can’t believe it. Meira Baila (I’ll probably name her Mira here) is so delicious. She doesn’t sleep so well but I nurse her in bed and we get through the night. It’s going to be really hard once I have to go to work. Now I’m taking it one day at a time, slowly getting back into things. Ad has been amazing taking care of the home and bigger kids. I think he’s a little stressed but he’s managing. Were both a little nervous about our finances but we hope to rent out part of our house soon so hopefully that will help. I’ll probably get on WIC so I can at least get formula which ill probably need down the line. My body is recovering normally. Interestingly my hands definitely feel weaker than normal, even though they didn’t really go through any trauma. It’s my first baby in the house, as opposed to our small apartment, so I’m trying to limit my times up and down the stairs and have set up stations with diapers, wipes, clothing, etc on both floors.

I think I am hearing my Meira now…..Meira means ‘light up’ btw, which we thought of because she was born during Chanukah. This has been an insane couple of months; first with the hurricane and losing power and all, then bombs being thrown in Israel and the awful awful incident that took place last Friday…..Life can really get so hard and can be so depressing and difficult sometimes, we could all use a little light to help us get through and remember that good times are ahead. May she, and all of my children, help to bring light to us and anyone else that they meet….

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Its a Girl!

Meira Baila

Our beautiful daughter was born Tuesday morning at 6;06 AM. I really wanted to update earlier but the iPad wouldnt let me and thats all I had in the hospital. So much I want to write but so tired. As Michele pointed out, this blog needs a minor name change :)

I'm a (Contemporary) Mom of Three!

Hope to update and write more details of the birth some time this weekend.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Into month 10

See not everyone can say they are in their 10th month. I'm very special :). Apparently my uterus is so super-cozy that baby just doesn't wanna leave. Cuz this is the third time I've been late. 3 for 3. I had fun looking at my old LJ blog cuz I forgot just how late I was with each. With Shaina I was due Jan 8, she was born on the 12th so 4 days. With Yak, he was due March 15 and I was just 2 days late, on the 17th. Now it looks like baby #3 will probably be the winner as it was due on Dec 6th and we are almost at the 10th with nothing doing. Well I shouldn't say nothing doing. I've been having fake labor on and off for over a week. About a week and a half ago, Ad made some awesome chili. That night I really thought I was in labor and I started to FREAK out. NOTHING, and I mean NOTHING was ready. When I woke up and realized that I was not in labor I started making massive lists of things I needed to do to get ready; wrapping things up at work including finishing some reports, meeting a sub, contacting some parents, etc. I started making calls to friends to find out who could take the kids if we'd need to be in the hospital during the day. I started locating and collecting some baby stuff although we don't do every last bit of planning in advance. I kept adding to the lists and checking things off as the days went by with no baby around. I have to say, I'm a lot calmer and more ready now than I was 10 days ago. I even spent those 2 minutes packing that so overly touted 'hospital bag' with stuff that I could easily pack while in labor or have Ad bring if need be.

So am I impatient? Do I want baby out already? Am I going bananas? Hmmmm. I don't think so. Not quite yet. I know that once baby comes along my life will be turning upside down, nights will be taken, boobs will no longer belong to me; new schedules will need to be arranged and my whole life will get a lot more complicated. Thankfully and blessedly and because of the most wonderful reason in the world, but still complicated. So I'm enjoying the peace and quiet, the ability to chill and do nothing at night, to just throw my two kids in the car and go off (cringing imagining the two of them AND the car seat in my tiny little car). When we have the opportunity, Ad and I try to spend some time together and my mom here last night so we went out to celebrate first night of chanukah and perhaps our last pre-baby time with one another.

With every weekend that passes I'm relieved to have gotten through shabbos without worrying about plans. (we've had guests each time just in case). As I said, I keep knocking things off my to do list. My living room corner downstairs looks like a baby center. I even got some fun stuff from this 'city moms' baby shower that I won a ticket to. Slowly but surely I'm tracking down baby stuff i lent out and I'm going through both boys and girls newborn stuff and I am mellllltttting. This stuff is sooo ridiculously cute!! I'm also enjoying Chanukah which started last night and I know things will be crazy once I have the baby. So im glad we had two normal nights so far of lighting the menorah, eating latkes, giving presents, etc. At this point I'd like to hold out til Tuesday when Shain has her 'Mommy and me' Chanukah party. But my mom is on call just in case. Ad is holding out for Wednesday which would be 12/12/12.  Pretty cool :). Now with everying being said, the fact that its Chanukah and I have no clue when the baby is coming or what gender s/he is, it does mess up plans a little. Mommy wants us all to come to her next shabbos but if its a boy, we'll want to be here to make the shalom zachor (special party for the first fri night a boy is born). So everyone will come here although I will hiding in my room and not making a single bed or cooking a single dish. Who knows I might still not have the baby by the weekend! That'll make me like 9 days overdue but its not unheard of! So maybe we'll even go to Manhattan next weekend sans baby.....its better to be closer but its not like its THAT much further to my hospital; maybe an extra 20 minutes. And I generally go to the hospital in the middle of the night so no traffic and there is an awesome car service by mommy that always has cars and gets there in 5 minutes. But all this remains to be seen. I'm guessing that as the week progresses and I don't have the baby, I'll get more and more impatient. I have a fetal monitor coming up Tuesday afternoon which should also shed light on if anything is going on, otherwise Dr will talk about induction which Im not really hoping for.

Me and a bunch of stuff I brought home from that shower
Now as to how I'm feeling physically - well remember that whole post I wrote about how lovely being pregnant with CMT is? Well don't get me wrong, I am still loving the whole pregnancy thing. But its getting a little tough. Switching positions is very hard. Getting out of bed in the morning (or middle of the night as often happens) sends shooting pain in my back and sometimes up my legs. And than theres the fake braxton-hicks contractions that I've been dealing with. So thats a lot of fun. I've been taking baths every night which seem to help. Stairs and bending is really hard. I try to set my expectations low and take things slow. I'm also not sleeping well so that makes things harder during the day. I have been conking out after putting the kids to bed. Oh also my feet totally swelled up. I can only really wear crocs now and these booties that are somewhat big on me. Its possible its CMT related. Who knows. Truth is, I'm just grateful to still be making it and able to get around. Mum with CMT said something so smart to that post that I think about often. As a CMTer I'm so used to my body NOT working for me and messing me up. In a way its kinda awesome that this aspect of me, thank god, has been absolutely wonderful. My ability to conceive, keep and grow a child and carry to full term, and push it out when ready is kinda cool. Even though its so normal, its still great that its something I can do. And all of this while still maintaining a normal life as a mom and working full time -- I get some credit, right?! It does help that I carry small (people dont believe I am overdue they think i'm in my 6th month or something!) My assistants at work have been just wonderful taking care of me, having me sit, etc. I bought them little holiday gifts although we dont usually exchange gifts and hope to give it to them tomorrow.

Will keep you posted if anything is going on!! Sometime this week this CM of Two will god willing become a CM of Three!!!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Moving ON

I'm a little tired of writing about Sandy. I'm sure you are tired of reading about it. There are still so many people suffering but the community is pulling togehter and really trying to help them out; financially, emotionally, legally, etc. Its going to be OK and we're a stronger, better community when all is said and done. I want to move on and blog about what is going on in my life now, namely a still unborn person who is likely to make an appearance any day now. And causing fun for my already limited body. Or chanukah. or my delicious kids including a little boy who is falling more than I'd like. But I've had these scattered thoughts saved and I need to put them out first before I can talk about anything else. So here goes, some random thoughts about various aspects of living through and after the Hurricane.

First I want to mention how grateful I am. I feel so grateful and happy with life and a hurricane might do that to you. We are so lucky; our home did not get damaged including the basement that we are almost finished working on. Friends that lost basements are having it the hardest cuz insurance barely covers anything. So I am grateful that the only challenges we had to endure were living like nomads for a couple of weeks and a little loss of business for Ad.

Speaking of work, I am grateful that my job was closed for the full two weeks. If I had a job in the city, who knows what I would have done with the kids. They are scrambling to make up days now and are taking away part of Christmas week (doesnt affect me, ill be on matern leave anyway hahaha). but in any case, I am so glad I was able to be there fully and completely for my kids throughout the whole ordeal.

And speaking of kids -- can I just say they are awesome. They are adorable and reselient and fun and adaptive and totally breezed through this whole thing. I know some friends who's kids were going insane from not being at home, sleeping in their beds, having structure, etc. My kids were thrilled as long as there were toys, food and Mommy nearby. I actually really enjoyed my time with them and was continously amazed how OK they were with the whole escapade. Another massive thing I am grateful for; their ages. They are 3 and 4 (1/2). Not too young to need a lot of help and care, not too old to be traumatized or bored. And they had each other. Wherever they went, they just went right into things and played together. Did House. Colored. Shared stuff. They just had one another and it was amazing. A 2 and 5 year old, for example, would have been a lot harder to entertain. They were thrilled with the libarary, pizza store, etc. Everything was fun. The one day that I sent Yak to school and not Shain, she asked where he was and looked a bit unsure of what to do. It ended up being fine cuz we took trains and busses (wow! Seriously she couldnt decide which was more fun!). But im glad that for almost the rest of the time they had one another. And I didnt have to care for an older bored child or a baby. Or- yikes - a newborn.
Which brings me to my next grateful thing; I was not due yet. I think this whole thing would have been sooo much harder if I had a newborn or even if I was due around then. The stress probably would have sent me into labor. So many times I looked at my belly and said 'You are in the best, warmest and most comfy place and are out of everyone's way. Please stay put!' At a couple of points where we thought it would take weeks more to get the power back I imagined having to give birth while living elsewhere or in a dark home. The thought made me cringe. Thank god I am in my warm, lit up, powered home now that my due date is actually here. More gratefulness.

Finally I am so massively grateful to be part of my family, neighborhood and community that pulled through like they did. I had a wonderful place to stay for the whole week and other options when I needed to. When I was home, I felt so taken care of by the community who was constantly offering free food, legal service, other help, etc. I feel so warm and mushy by how people just came through to help one another. Its interesting how the hurricane affected so many people from all different walks of life. Rich, poor, mansion owners, projects dwellers, Irish, Jewish, Catholic, and not religious at all. It did not discriminate with who it hit although some might have a harder time recuperating then others. I feel so lucky and grateful, really and truly to be in an area where people are there and helping each other, even when they are also suffering. 

A couple of more thoughts -
driving post hurricane was surreal. Stop signs were a relief. Big intersections were petrifying. Driving at night was just not an option. There was a massive gas crisis but thankfully my tank was full and stayed ok until the crisis past. There was a police presence everywhere. Something that struck me was this was the first time I could remember that sirens didnt completely freak me out. Usually I see a police car and my heart freezes. Sad to say but they are public enemy #1 when I drive. And its amazing that this whole time they were actually our friend, not the enemy. Not looking to give out tickets or pull people over or lecture. But to help folks get through traffic OK and keep people safe. How refreshing.

Finally on CMT and the storm; it was barely an issue. As I mentioned above the storm affected everyone, no matter what they are and who they are. The stress level was similar for anyone even those with perfect feet. The only time I found it very challenging was the morning after it snowed when I went to my friends house with my laundry. Having to make several trips to the car with the kids, clothing, laundry, etc and dealing with stairs and snow was not fun. But it was OK and I survived. I also got some really awesome astronaut socks that they gave out to keep people warm. And lord knows my feet need to be kept warm in the winter, even though we have heat at home. In fact I'm wearing them right now :).

OK I think i said what I needed to say and can finally move on to other stuff......thats a wrap folks.