Sunday, December 18, 2011

Nice to know...

Tonight, my friend, mentioned my last blog post...from April...and we talked about it some. It's nice to know that I have someone who reads what I feel worthy of expressing in a public forum. I appreciate the support from him. It has been awhile...about 7 months. Our little girl is 10 months. She has done a lot of work, since my last post. She crawled at 6 months, and now is walking. She is such a sweet and patient child. She loves to be with me, but can play independently for a little while too. She expresses much through her eyes and facial expressions. We laugh daily. She reminds me of my grandma, who is no longer with us. I am so thankful that God has given her similar facial expressions. I always feel that she is near, and watching over us. I miss her a lot.

Anyway, our daughter is not much of a book listener. She likes to talk. Our son...on the other hand...loves to be read to frequently. He is quite wonderful, and full of spirit. He challenges me every day, which makes me even more determined to be the best mama that I can be for him and his sister. It is harder and easier in some ways having two children. I'm learning how to help him understand his world and positive ways to express himself.

We suspect that he has a milk allergy. Several months ago, he was tested for allergies. I found out this week that he was tested for environmental allergens and not food allergies like I had previously thought. We have already started him on soy milk, and there is a huge difference. He is not wheezing anymore. His lungs are not crackling anymore. His teachers are giving him soy milk at school. I would like to have a doctor's note proving that he is, in fact, allergic to milk. I am starting to put a lot of past experiences together.

On an other note, I did pass the exam. I am an IBCLC. I'm not sure when or how I am going to use my certification. For now, I am happy that I have it when I need it. I am quite happy at my job. It's nice to have a supportive boss who cares about breastfeeding like I do. I am working on becoming a LLL leader for a local group. I am excited to help mothers nurse their babies everywhere. It is a passion of mine. I'm also quite interested in learning about herbal medicine, which relates very little to breastfeeding for me. I do try to avoid consuming too much peppermint during Christmas time.

Yes! Merry Christmas everyone! I hope that December has been a wonderful month for you. We have enjoyed many traditions, and are about to enjoy another one. We are going to go see The Magic Tree. :) It is quite a sight to see...

So, we are alive and taking it a day at a time over here. We are always wanting to grow and become the people that God created us to be... We say a prayer of thanks every morning for the opportunity to wake up together, our health, and our friends and family.

Have a Happy New Year, if I don't post before then. ;)

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Spring to Spring

Good morning! It is a beautiful spring day in the midwest. The birds are singing. Red buds are blossoming. Children are sleeping. Yes, it is time to reflect on...little one is just now waking up...the year. There has been quite a lot of growing going on around here. Last Spring, just a little less than a month from now, Borislav and I celebrated our first anniversary as a married couple. It was nice to have some special time for just us. I felt attractive...may not have been...but I did. I wore a beautiful flowing dress to dinner, and later enjoyed a massage. For me, a massage is a rare treat from him. We needed that night together to connect not just as parents but as friends and lovers. Thankfully, our friends were able to watch Ilia. We weren't gone long before we started thinking more about him than ourselves. He had had a wonderful time. Now, our second anniversary is coming up. We haven't really discussed any plans.

Our daughter, Evela, was born on February 4th this year. It seems like Borislav and I really connected that weekend! She will soon be three months old. I can hardly believe how fast her little life is going. She has a wonderful spirit. I found out that she was with us on my birthday last year, which is coming up soon too, May 28. Throughout my pregnancy with her I was working out feelings of guilt, fear, defense, anticipation, and overflowing love. It's amazing how different pregnancies can be... With my son, I was happy almost always. With her, I was sick from the very beginning, and not as happy. I was happy to be having her, but I seemed to find myself feeling guilty about not bonding with her like I bonded with her brother. I also felt guilty that I was bonding with her sometimes when I could be bonding with Ilia. I also felt unsure about what kind of birth I would have with her. Would I give birth in a hospital or at home? We eventually chose a hospital birth. For us, it was more affordable due to insurance. It's sad that I had to forgo a home birth due to money, especially when I had a midwife who was willing to work with me (I didn't want to take advantage of her). Anyway, after we had decided on a hospital birth, my defenses were raised and I was determined to have as natural a birth in a hospital as possible. I put together a 4 page birth plan and went over it several times with my doctor. We had a beautiful birth...I drugs, no IV's, no counting down into my contractions, delayed cord clamping, skin to skin, breastfeeding within the first five minutes. She has latched well from the very beginning. She is such a wonderful baby. We've had so much support from our community of womyn. It was an honor to be part of a Blessingway all in celebration of our journey together and her life. My mother and sister have been so excited this time around, which has been so refreshing. I am so happy that she has such strong women in her life. Now it seems that both children are awake.

I still am learning how to balance time and energy with both of them. My son is still my baby, but somehow he has grown into a little boy in the last few months. His hands are bigger. His cheeks are bigger. I was sad a little for our relationship to change. I liked it where it was...I loved being able to hold him. Now, it seems that he wants less holding and more play. :) I can give that too. I just want to do what he needs. He is offering other challenges like negative attention getting techniques. He doesn't like to listen sometimes and can actually be quite defiant. I feel that this time would have come despite him having a sibling. We are working each other's weaknesses out each day as we go along. Evela is just patient. She smiles and likes to talk in her own way. She is just discovering her feet and my face.

We have been battling sickness this year. Ilia has been sick. He has been on the nebulizer a couple of times since Evela's birth. He's had albuterol treatments. He's been on flovent. He now takes claritin every day. He's gone thru RSV, an eye infection, an ear infection, and has never seemed to be able to clear his lungs. We are taking him to a pulmonary specialist next month. I am concerned about food allergies. I also am wondering if his health issues are carrying over from the years that he had an ASD, Atrial Septal Defect, or hole in his heart. I am not sure, but I am sure that I would rather him not have to use an inhaler if I can help it.

Another development is that I have been on my way to becoming a lactation consultant. From working with breastfeeding mothers for the past few years and attending classes, I can sit (hopefully) for the IBCLE in July. I hope I do well.

We are planning to begin a garden. My husband has turned over the soil, and is sure that we do not need a tiller. I grew up with using a tiller every year, but it seems that we will try it a different way. We have started a landscaping project in the front yard. My mom had cut down bushes that really were not attractive, which left a good size area of just dirt and weeds. We planted sunflowers in the space last year, and will probably do so again this year. We have bought landscaping bricks to build a wall, the wall has been built, but we need dirt. Someday, we will get around to it. :) A lilac was planted alongside its border yesterday. It smells so good.

I think internally what I am missing most at the moment is that found again relationship with my husband. It seems that we don't have enough time just for us. I know there is time in life for us...I just really love him and can never get enough. We are focused on our dear little ones, and really am thankful that we get to be their parents. We want to fill them with so much love.