Fuck. Hasn't it been such a long, long time since I dropped the f-bomb on the blog? I bet it was pre-Preston. Before I developed my Mom-mouth. But since I'm a crazy, I can say it. Because crazy people get a pass when it comes to swearing. Being crazy, and swearing, go hand in hand. They are tight, like a monkey and his tail.
The last seven weeks have been a whirlwind. Three and a half of those weeks were spent traveling- ten flights, eight states, and over 10,000 miles. Norah, at the wee age of two-months-old earned her wings! We visited family and friends in Ohio, and vacationed with family in The Outer Banks. And although seeing our families and friends was much-needed for the kids, Jeremy, and myself...it wasn't relaxing. Living out of our suitcases, being out of routine, sharing bedrooms with the kids, in the car, out of the car, to this house, and that house...nearly put me in the crazy house.
What's all this talk about crazy, you ask? I'd say about a month and a half after Norah was born, after the flow of family help ran out, I proceeded to secretly shut down during the day. And I haven't talked about this openly with anyone, not even my husband.
Most days, it was all I could do to just get the kids fed and diapered. I couldn't wait for nap time for Preston, because I just needed a break. Preston's a great kid and the addition of Norah into the family didn't change things much for him. It's as though he understands she needs more attention/help throughout the day just because she's a baby, and he's okay with that. Me counting down the minutes to his nap time wasn't because he was acting out or being unruly. It was because I didn't feel like tending to him. Isn't that a shitty and overly horrific thing to say about your child? "I didn't feel like tending to him." Oh, the guilt. I knew then, and I know now, that this wasn't "me", but I just couldn't shake the funk.
Preston probably doesn't see it as much of a funk though. After all, he's now been introduced to The Disney Channel and Nickelodeon. Once a child only familiar with PBS programming, has now been cable converted. Ugh. But hey, he can kind-of count to a hundred in multiples of ten; although he has no idea what that means. [Thankfully I had enough sense to steer him clear of the shows featuring grown adults singing. Gag me.]
Norah, on the other hand, hasn't slipped through my crazy unaffected. Last week she turned FOUR months old. [Where the fuck has the time gone- oh, that's right...the crazy has taken my precious time. I hate crazy.] The pediatrician doted over her, repeatedly remarking how fabulous she is. That's the word she kept using, fabulous. Norah is 15lbs. 6oz, and 24 1/4" long; no wonder she's wearing clothing for a 9-month-old. She's in the 75-90th percentile. And she has mild plagiocephaly.
Right now I feel as though I'm at a Crazies Anonymous meeting. I'm standing up in the circle of shitty mothers, and admitting that I've let my poor, helpless, sweetheart of a baby lie on her back too much. I didn't force her to do tummy time, because quite frankly, it made her cry, and I've been too crazy to deal with it. I'm standing up in this circle and I'm shaking. I'm tearing. My shirt is wet from the constant stream of regret and shame. I'm a horrible fucking mother. And I'm in this circle. And it's not soo anonymous, is it? [Just writing this, admitting this, makes me want to vomit, then curl up and die and hope nobody even reads this blog ever again.]
Norah's case is "mild". Which means, the doc isn't all that concerned, but worried. That's what the doc said - not concerned, just worried - aren't they the same? Norah's head isn't freakish and luckily FOR HER she sports a sweet do. Her flat spot is in the back, not on either side. The pediatrician said it's hard to find any one-year-old today without some hint of a flat spot, due to the 'back to sleep' campaign. She advised me to not have her on her back AT ALL unless she's sleeping. This should round her head out, as she's only 4-months-old, and her skull will continue to rapidly develop until about a year of age.
That being said, the pediatrician told me she was adding a 'referral' in my chart. That I should discuss this with my husband. And perhaps we should set up an appointment with Children's Hospital Craniofacial Center. First thought in my mind was...HELMET. Which, of course, I quickly asked her about. She said the doctors there would discuss repositioning options with me, and blah, blah, blah. But all I heard was, "YOUR BABY NEEDS A HELMET. YOUR FAULT." Although neither of those things were ever actually said. It's just the crazy.
I researched the Craniofacial Center online and found out that helmets aren't even an option until babies are over six months old. Whew, okay, a ray of light in this dark mess I've created for my child. Once the referral goes through, Jeremy and I will take her to the specialist. In the meantime, she hasn't been in her swing or bouncer ONCE. I've been using a Boppy Noggin in her crib and alternating the direction in which she lies. [Yes, I'm aware Boppy advises against this. Fuck them. I'm using it in the crib.] The Noggin really helps keep her off her flat spot, and makes me feel a hell of a lot better considering how much she sleeps. Last night she slept 14 hours, without waking. Then she took three small naps today. She's an excellent, easy baby. And for that, I am thankful. Very, very thankful.
This flat-head condition has pretty much been the electric shock therapy I've been needing. I have the righteousness of my wonderful pediatrician to thank for this verbal slap in the face.
Pediatrician: How's tummy time going?
Me: She hates it. Are you asking because of her flat spot?
[No, her flat spot wasn't news to me.]
[No, her flat spot wasn't news to me.]
Me: She cries and screams when I try to lay her on her tummy.
Pediatrician: What if she cried when you put her in the carseat.
Would you drive around with her on your lap?
Would you drive around with her on your lap?
Me: Uhhhhh, no. [Wake up Kate!]
I'll have to thank Dr. Flowers the next time I see her. Otero Flowers is her name. I love her name. Have no idea what it means. But I love it.
Since our recent visit, I've kicked into ORH...operation round head. In addition to the Noggin, I also bought a mirror for the floor. Norah seems to really like it and her tummy time is going much better. In fact, she even fell asleep on her tummy yesterday afternoon! I borrowed a Bumbo chair and she loves it! I've also started laying her across my lap when sitting on the couch. Hopefully this newly found effort will pay off, in addition to whatever the specialist recommends.
The crazy is still very much lingering. Today I've been battling it. Doesn't help it's so fucking rainy here right now. I can too easily sit my fat ass down on the couch and watch G movies all day with Preston. That's another part of my crazy- how grossly fat I am. I've got no excuse here, either. I just suck.
I know, whaaa, whaaaaa, whaaaa. I'm a bigger baby than my kids. :) No worries. I'll pull myself out of this funk. No need to call children's services or set up camera's during the day while Jeremy is at work. We'll be fine. Just send me good vibes and some sunny weather- otherwise I'm going to need one of those sun lamps to keep my spirits up OR pills. Whatever works, right?
In the meantime, I'm making promises.I've made a promise to myself. I promise to take each day one day at a time. I'm going to try to not think about tomorrow, just live for today. I promise to be a better mother to Norah and hopefully this flat-head thing will work itself out. I want her to keep looking at me with those big, loving eyes and wide, gummy smile with such awe. She has no idea about her slightly flat head. All she feels is how much she loves me. I owe it to her to straighten the fuck up. I promise to not let the tv be the babysitter for Preston. We've got to get back to the parks, to our crafts, and playdates. I owe it to him to be the mother he had before his little sister came along. He's an amazing boy and at 2.5, such a smart little being. He needs to experience childhood and learn by doing; not to be sat in front of the tv for three hours a day. I promise to take more pictures and movies of BOTH kids. I promise to take more pictures of the kids together. I promise to update the blog regularly.
Last, but not least, I promise to open up to my husband. I promise to be better at expressing my true feelings, to not be soo snippy and bitchy. I promise to be a better wife.
And after writing this post, I promise to not call myself crazy anymore. At least on here! ;) And I shall finish reading Eat. Pray. Love. It's been a great read so far- when I have the time. And Oprah said it changed her life. Or rather, her producers told her to say it changed her life. Not even sure how it changed her life, or if she can read. And I don't even care if Oprah can read. She's annoying and all of her shoes have red bottoms. And now I'm off on another tangent about another topic. Perhaps I should just go to bed!