Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Griffin is 7 months old!!!

Wow, it seems like Griffin has grown up an awful lot in the past month, he is doing so many new things! He is getting soooooo big too. He is now 27 3/4 inches long and weighs in at 19lb 7oz. He is wearing size 4 diapers and basically everything in 12 month sizes now, the pants are still a bit long but we roll them up on the bottom and he does fine.

Griffin is now on the move big time, he can get across the room from one side to other in no time flat when he is motivated, and when he is going for something he gets this hilarious intensity in his eyes and ignores everything else. Most of the month he wasn't exactly army crawling, but not exactly crawling on hands and knees either, what he did was he reached his hands far forward and then pushed up onto his hands and knees, this moved him forward about 2-4 inches and then he collapsed back down onto his tummy and repeated the process until he got where he wanted to go.

It took him a long time to figure out that he can move his hands while he is on his hands and knees but a week before he turned 7  months he figured it out and now he REALLY crawls. It is sooo funny to watch because he is so stiff when he does it, he looks like a little crawling robot!

Since he has been able to move around like this I have had to watch him a lot more closely because he really wants to "get" daddy's cords to all the electronics by the TV, the wheels on daddy's office chair, the empty bottom shelf of the bookshelf and he is constantly trying to crawl after the fan we have in our bedroom doorway to circulate the air, for some reason that fan is sooooo fascinating! When I can tell he is going to try and get something he is not allowed to have I say eh eh in a loud enough tone to get his attention, when he hears this he will stop in his tracks, then I say no Griffin. It's funny because he pauses as if considering his options and then continues straight for the forbidden object. At this point I usually repeat the process and then in his considering pause I pull him away and distract him with something else. I don't expect him to actually listen at this point but I am hoping the way I approach this, by giving him the chance to hear the word no and then taking him away from whatever he is not supposed to have the connections will start to be made in his brain. 

He also "chased" me for the first time this past week, I went to go start a load of laundry and he was yelling at me because I left him, well suddenly it got quiet so I peeked my head out of the laundry room to see what my little trouble maker was up to and low and behold he had a look of determination on his face and he was coming straight for me, lol. So I said "come on Griff, come get your mommy", and then I popped back into the laundry room to finish up what I was doing, about 1 minute later when I came back out he had made it 3/4 of the way there and then got tired and flipped onto his back he was just laying there grinning and playing with his feet!

The best part about Griffin being so mobile now is that he is a lot happier. He is so full of energy and gets bored so fast, but now I don't have to try as hard to keep him amused because when he is bored of playing with something he has figured out that he doesn't have to scream until I put something new and interesting in front of his face, he can just go and get what he wants :) He even crawl over to his toy bin and tries to drag toys out on his own already. So happy baby and happy mommy!

Griffin's fine motor skills are getting better, he can grab things and get them to his mouth with a lot more accuracy and yes that is still where everything ends up directly in his chomper.

He also wants to pull up on things, he can't quite figure out how to attack the couch or other things that tall yet from the floor but will climb up mommy and daddy's lap moving his hands from our legs, to our chest until he is standing. If he does this and we are sitting close to the couch he will cruise right over and transfer his hands to the couch.  He can also climb up till he is standing with his hands on the second stair up from the bottom. He loves to do this in fact he will spend half an hour climbing up, standing, loosing his balance, and starting over. He is such a dare devil and just wants do everything the big people do, he thinks he has better balance than he really does.  He even tries to let go sometimes with one or both hands in which case he will balance for about 1/2 second and then either lurch forward with arms outstretched like he is trying to catch himself or he falls backwards and sit/plops down right onto his little tushy (thank goodness for the padding of a diaper). He thinks it is great fun though. He also thinks it's fun to march in place/dance while he is standing and you hold his hands.

Griffin can not only sit independently now, but can get into a sitting position on his own from hands and knees. He really has very good balance in sitting now and doesn't fall over unless he is distracted by something. When he is done sitting he just leans forward and transitions straight onto his hands and knees so he can go get whatever caught his eye. If he does loose his balance he is really good about getting an arm out in time to catch himself enough that he doesn't hurt his head.

We also started sleep training in earnest this month, before that I would sometimes lay Griffin down awake and he would put himself to sleep but for the most part I would rock him to sleep and then lay him down. It actually went really well, We started with naps. We would lay him down and then let him fuss and figure it out on his own but if he REALLY cried than I would go in and rub his back or pick him up for a few minutes until he calmed down and then lay him down again. At first it would take 15-20 minutes for him to wind down and fall asleep, now a month later most times it takes less than five minutes and about 1/2 the time he doesn't even fuss at all, just talks to himself and "sings" himself to sleep.

Part of the sleep training that we decided on was saying goodbye to the pacifier. Griffin could not yet figure out how to put it back into his own mouth at nighttime and was waking us up 6-7 times a night just to have it popped back into his mouth and then he would fall back to sleep so no more paci for our big boy. He was not happy for a few days but has adjusted very well. We have pulled it back out for a few "emergencies" like him screaming bloody murder while we were out shopping at the store and one night when he was teething VERY bad, but I can count on one hand the number of times he has had one since we say goodbye to it so we have been sticking pretty well to the plan. To be honest I would have caved but Jeremy was the one who kept reminding me why we made the decision in the first place and why it is better in the long run to get rid of it now, so I think it is gone forever. RIP our dear friend Paci ;)

We set up Griffin's big boy crib about half way through the month because he was getting up on his hands and knees in the co-sleeper and grabbing for the sides. It was no longer safe. He has adjusted to the crib very well, the first night was rough, he cried A LOT, but ever since then he has done fine. He is such a wiggle worm in his sleep and rolls and scoots all over the place, he usually ends up spending most of the night crammed all the way in the top corner. He also sleeps on his tummy now about 90% of the time. When he wakes up he will crawl around in his crib yelling for us and smoosh his face against the bars to look out, it's so cute!

Griffin still has a bedtime of 8pm. Our evening routine starts at 6pm with a dinner of veggies and fruit mixed with cereal, then we go back downstairs to play for about 1/2 hour, then at 7pm we go upstairs so Griffin can have his bath, then new diaper and pajamas go on. Next I put him in his jumper and turn on Yo Gabba Gabba, or Wonder Pets for him to watch for 1/2 hour then he has his bedtime bottle and off to sleep.

All month we have gone back and forth about whether Griffin still needs a bottle during the night. There are nights he sleeps until 6-7 in the morning without one, and that was kind of making us think he didn't really need that 4am bottle but then we would try to take it away every night with mixed results. So for right now we have decided to just play it by ear, some night he needs that one bottle and some nights he doesn't. He usually wakes up a few times a night and needs us to turn on Mr Wetums and start up his mobile music for him and then he will fall back to sleep. He usually stays in his own bed until between 7-8am and then I grab him and bring him to bed with Jer and I to snuggle. I always hope he will fall back to sleep but he rarely does. Mostly he snuggles in beside me and talks to me, grabs for my face, kicks and wiggles, yells, and giggles when I tickle him. When I have decided that all chances of extra sleep are gone I usually release him to crawl over and wake his daddy up if Jeremy hasn't already been woken up by Griffin's loudness and flailing about, it's funny to watch because he get's so excited to "get" daddy and breathes really heavy and fast and crawls up to Jeremy and either head butts him in the stomach or smacks him until he gets a response, lol

Griffin did something amazing this month, he got his bottom two front teeth, YAY!!! One day he was chewing on my finger and suddenly I noticed something sharp in his mouth, I look and sure enough two tiny razor sharp teeth making their way in! So he is learning something new, mommy's hand is no longer an acceptable chew toy, lol. I pull my hand away and tell him no biting when he tries to put it in his mouth so he is starting to learn what that means. I've gotten nommed on by him a few times when I wasn't paying attention and yikes he has some strong chompers!

He is still eating well. He now shows preference for his fruit over most of his vegetables but will still eat both. He also gets chicken or egg yolk mixed into his evening veggies sometimes now. He likes the egg yoke best.  His favorite new activities during meal times are biting down hard on his spoon so I can't pull it away, and trying to "help" feed himself. I've let him go at it himself with no holds bared a few times and it is MESSY but so much fun to watch. He had such a ball making a mess and always seems to throw his bowl and spoon on the ground when I least expect it. Zoe sure had a fun time helping us clean up after him.

Griffin is very vocal, his new sounds this month are bah bah, and mama (hurray!) he also likes to make the mmmmmm sound with many different inflections, sometimes happy, sad, irritated, even angry (who knew it had so many applications?) and near the end of this month we just started to hear him say da or dada every once in a while, we'll have to work on that one. One of Griffin's favorite things to do for the purposes of self expression we like to call the hulk impression he basically growls and his face gets all red and he makes fists and his arms shake, lol it's so cute. He doesn't do it when he is mad, mostly it's just something he does when he is playing.

We are trying to teach Griffin how to be gentle. He doesn't quite understand that what he does can hurt someone else yet, and this month he has become dangerous! He will pull my hair non stop if it isn't up so I wear it up just about everyday, he likes to grab your skin and then pinch/squeeze REALLY hard (he has even drawn blood with this one), and he also likes to hit everything so that includes your face. He will just be looking at you all peacefully and then out of nowhere here comes that tiny hand quicker than a blot of lightning and before you can do anything to stop him SMACK, he'll get ya. I'm hoping he grows out of this phase soon, we are working on it.

When I take Griffin up for bath time he can be fussy and grumpy but the minute we go in the bathroom and I lay him down on the rug so I can fill up the tub he gets a big smile on his face and then usually rolls over and crawls around, he like to play with the scale in the bathroom or grab fistfuls of the rug fibers and try to yank them out! Lately he has been getting frustrated with bath time, he wants to sit up or crawl around in the bath but it's so slippery it is not safe for him to do that yet, and he get bored so I had to take some toys up there for him which has helped. He also thinks that  he owns the bucket I use to pour the warm water over him, he gets mad when I am trying to rinse his hair or wash the suds off his body because he thinks it's HIS bucket. He also kicks like a madman with his feet, splashes water droplets into his face and then it takes his breath away and he looks so surprised every time it happens, then he smiles. Even with some of the frustration lately bath time is still one of his favorite parts of the day.

Griffin has gotten a lot better about being happy while I do things I need to do, he used to never let me get anything done in the kitchen and I would have to do dishes and make myself food while he was sleeping but most of the time now I can put him in his chair with some toys, or in his bouncy and he watches me and plays. He also REALLY likes to chew on frozen fruit or pickles in his mesh feeder. I can usually steal about 20 minutes to get something done as long as he is in a good mood so that has been nice.

Griffin got his first hair cut this month. We finally evened out the last of his newborn hairs that stuck up about an inch longer than all the rest of them. He did not like it very much but he lived through it and now his hair is mostly even, I say mostly because of all the squirming he did during the process. Lucky for him his grandma Jane was kind enough to give him the haircut and make him extra handsome despite his protests. :)

Griffin got to go to the Berrien county youth fair this month with Jeremy and I. He got to see all the animals and all the rides and bright lights. He thought it was all very fascinating.

The leaps and bounds Griffin has taken lately have made this such an exciting month. It seems every time I turned around there he was doing something new, usually with a smile on his face or a mischievous gleam in his eye. He is just so much fun, and definitely keeps us on our toes! It is so amazing  seeing him realize he can do something new and the pure unbridled excitement that just seeps out of his pores. And I swear you can see the wheels turning in his head sometimes, he is constantly trying to figure out how things work and what else he can get up to!

Griffin has also gotten more snuggly lately and will drop his head on your shoulder and nuzzle into your neck, it is so sweet. He loves it when I take my hand and run it gently down his face like my fingers are tiny little feathers, he flutters his eyes closed and then smiles and coos. When I hold him and I feel the warmth of him, the heaviness or his little body and smell that wonderful baby smell, I am so at peace. Being a mommy is a challenging job but so amazingly rewarding, this little human being gives me so much joy and such a wonderful purpose in my life right now. He is just the best baby ever and such a blessing to have in our lives :)

Friday, August 13, 2010

Griffin is 6 Months Old!!!!!

Griffin is 6 months old… time for an update!!!

Even though I started Griffin last month with a loose bedtime he has taken things into his own hands, he has a VERY strict bedtime now of 8pm. If I try to keep him up one minute past 8pm at night he goes nuts! He is just so tired and there is nothing I can do to stop it. I would actually prefer him to go to bed between 9-10pm so that he sleeps in a bit later in the morning but no such luck. Since becoming a parent I am learning that as much as I want Griffin to conform to my schedule, it usually ends up with me conforming to his lol.

He has been sleeping pretty good, waking only once or twice to eat during the night now, and after his bottles in the middle of the night he puts himself back to sleep. The first stretch of the night we usually get between 6-8 hours before he needs a bottle. He spends 99% of the time in his own bed now and Jeremy and I are starting to talk about retiring the co-sleeper and pulling back out the crib to set it up.

One nice thing about formula is that Jeremy can help me in the middle of the night if I need him to. I still feed Griffin about 90% of the time because it is one of my favorite activities to do with him, but it is nice to get a break if I am REALLY tired or feeling sick. Usually I take care of Griffin throughout the night and if he wakes up early Jeremy gets up with him and I get to sleep an extra hour or so. It works well for us.

When Griffin wakes up in the morning or from his naps and he is well rested and ready to be awake, he doesn't cry to come out of his bed right away. What he does is play with his feet, roll back and forth, talk VERY loud, even good naturedly yell, or screech! So some mornings he does this and I just let him play until he starts to get irritated that he is being ignored. Often times he will do this for 10-20 minutes before we get him up and out of bed.

Griffin is a very good eater and loves his fruits and Veggies. I made him some more homemade baby food a few weeks ago and he likes it all. He eats about 1/2 cup of fruit and oatmeal for breakfast, and about 1/2 cup of veggies and rice for dinner and then drinks Formula in between. He is drinking anywhere from 25-30 oz a day depending on how hungry he is and how much baby food he eats each day.

He has also had a few finger foods and eats them very well. He won't pick them up and put them in his own mouth but will open his mouth wide for me to put more in. If I put a small piece of something on my hand and hold it out to him he opens his mouth wide and then tries to bend forward far enough to grab it with his mouth directly from my hand, lol. He has tried the baby cereal puffs, tiny pieces of noodle, freeze dried yogurt melts, tiny shreds of turkey, some pieces of pancake and even small pieces of the soft saucy part of the pizza dough. He liked them all expect for some reason was not the biggest fan of the yogurt or pancakes. Sometimes he even grabs my hand and fusses at me to give him more FASTER! Griffin has also had "tastes" of other things like ice cream, cool whip, sweet and sour sauce, and broth if I am eating soup. He totally loves tasting new things and makes the best faces lol

We also practice drinking from cups now so that he can learn there are other ways of drinking besides his bottle. He gets practice with a sippy cup, and with a regular cup. It is usually a messy process with more ending up in his bib and on his tray than in his mouth, so for right now he is just getting water. He will bite the sippy cup and this makes the water dribble out, and when I put the regular cup towards him he opens his mouth wide and tries to grab it. I have to watch out or he will spill it all in his haste to "get it". When the cup gets to his lips he sticks out his little tongue laps at the water and gulp gulp gulp and then pauses to catch his breath, it's so cute!

Griffin is so very close to being an independent sitter. Right now he can maintain his balance for up to a few minutes at a time but I have to stay right there and pay attention because when he starts to loose his balance he is not very good at catching himself and tends to bonk his head. He will usually try to catch himself if he looses his balance to the side, but not at all if he starts falling backwards.

He will also scoot/army crawl towards a toy if he wants it but he moves very slowly and it's quite the process so he will not go more than about a foot without getting mad. I think he wants more speed!!!

Just the week before he turned 6 months Griffin got up on his hands and knees in the crawling position all by himself. The first time he only maintained the position for about 3 seconds before he collapsed back down but I was so excited and now he is doing it all the time. It's like he knows it's a position where good things will happen but he can't quite figure out what to do. He usually ends up loosing his arms first and face plants with his butt still in the air. Luckily it's not a far fall so it doesn't make him mad, he just tries again.

We were bathing Griffin in the shower with one of us every morning since he was about 3 months old but in the last few weeks we had to switch back to the bathtub because he is getting too heavy! He loved the shower and would grab for the water and smile and talk to the water, but he loves his bath time too and will splash and squeal!

Griffin is becoming very sensitive to the people around him. For example if I am playing with him and want to pop into the bedroom to grab something or into the laundry room to flip a load of laundry, he will scream! He even sometimes fusses if I am in the same room as him if I turn my back to him so I can do something, lol funny boy. He doesn't always do it, only if he wants my attention. Also If someone is holding him and he decides he wants someone else instead he will turn his body towards the person he wants to hold him and reach his arms out and sometimes even fuss, like "hello, I want you, pay attention!"

Griffin also shakes his head no. I'm not sure he knows what it means but there are times I could swear he does, lol. I'll do something and he shakes his head no, so I say yes and shake my head yes, then he shakes his no in answer. He will do it over and over sometimes. Maybe it is just a conditioned response but it's hilarious!

Griffin's new favorite song this month, is my version on "My Bonny Lies Over The Ocean" I sing

My Griffin lies over the ocean
My Griffin lies over the sea
My Griffin lies over the Ocean
So bring back my Griffin to me!
Bring back!
Bring back!
Bring back!
Oh Bring back my Griffin to me, to me!

When I sing the bring back part, I turn my head away from him when I say bring, and toward him when I say back and he laughs and laughs :)

Most days I can not believe it has been half a year since I gave birth to my little Griffin, 6 months since my tiny squirmy baby was placed in my arms!!! It's funny because it seems to have gone so fast in some ways, for example how could he possibly be so big already or how could he ever have been that small, but at the same time it seems he has been a part of our lives forever. I barely remember how my life could have felt complete before him. I can't imagine life without him. We waited so long for our little boy, we hoped, and prayed for this baby. I cried so many tears, in fear that I may never meet him, and yet God choose to bless us and entrust us with one of the most important jobs in the world. I'm so glad to have the privilege of being this little boys mother, even when I get no sleep, I'm covered in spit up and he has been fussy all day. When he puts those chubby little hands up to my face and looks at me with his big round gray/blue eyes and says GAHHH, I know it's all worth it and I'm right where I was meant to be doing exactly what I was meant to do. Mommy loves you Griffin!!!!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Griffin is 5 months old!

Griffin has continued to amaze us with how awesome he is these last two months. He is getting bigger and bigger. Every day we see more and more lights flashing to the on position in his head. Watching him accomplish something new for the first time is so exciting.

He fits 6-9 month clothes now and started wearing size three diapers right around the time he turned 4 months old. According to our Dr appointment on July 9th he weighs 16lb 11 oz and is in the 50th percentile for his weight as well as height (26 inches) and head circumference (17 inches). Griffin also got his second set of shots at his appointment with the Dr. He just screamed his little heart out when the shots went in but calmed down within a few minutes after it was all over. He was extra sensitive and sleepy the rest of the day and ran a low grade fever for about 3 days after his vaccines. Luckily the worst is over and he is back to his old self now.

Griffin has been rolling tummy to back on his own since he was bout 2 months old and finally just a week before he hit 5 months he went back to tummy on his own. It is still hard for him but he can do it now.

Right after Griffin turned 4 months old, he laughed for the first time!!!! I was pretending to "eat" his tummy and I guess it tickled because he laughed, so I did it again and he laughed again… I was so happy, what a sweet sound :) Now there are multiple things that will make him laugh, sometimes when daddy makes funny noises, or when I jiggle his arms just right, but the best way is still to nibble his tummy, it's hilarious apparently ;)

He is still quite the talker constantly letting the world know how he feels about things! His favorite sounds are Gah, Bah, ooo ahhh, ahhh lah, ooo wah, and he also likes to blow air through his lips to make a wet fart noise, and the newest one that makes us laugh is that he is constantly making gurgling noises in the back of his throat lol :)

Another of the interesting ways Griffin expresses himself is his "fake cough" when he wants something or gets irritated or even sometimes I think he does it just to get my attention if I am doing something else. He will make these cute little eh eh eh noises, like the saddest fake cough ever… the look on his face is so funny when he does it too! I always say "oh you got a little fake cough huh?" and then he will smile. What a goober!

Griffin has really started to develop a little temper. If he wants something, for instance to come out of his jumparoo. He will be happy bouncing and kicking one second and then full on yelling and angry screaming two seconds later. The second I take him out it's all better and he will smile and coo, even with the tears still in his eyes. We are working on this because yikes, if he is already doing this at 5 months old what will he be like when the terrible twos hit!

Since Griffin was born I have always tried to make sure he is not watching TV but he seems to be drawn to the flashing lights and colors. He is constantly straining to see the TV if it is on, sometimes trying to turn his head a full 360 degrees to see what is going on! I just started letting him watch about a 1/2 hour of an educational show a day. I put him in his swing and he rocks, sucks his paci and watches. I usually do this when I am trying to get laundry done and folded.

Around 4 months old Griffin decided to start fighting sleep, previous to this when he got tired, If I was holding him and rocking him , he would normally just drift off. Now he will fuss and strain for a few minutes even when I know he is tired. Finally after making sure I know just how irritated about it he is he will let go and sleep.

Griffin now has a bedtime. Jeremy and I bought a baby monitor and now between 9-10pm he gets put to sleep and laid down in his bed. He also takes naps in his bed in the bedroom now. He sleeps much better in there with his own bed, and his white noise going.

We started baby food at 4 months. First was baby cereal, then squash. Previous to this when we had tired baby food, Griffin was not ready for it. He would make faces and spit it right back out. Now he LOVES it. He opens his mouth wide and lunges for the spoon. He will even fuss at me if I am not getting the food to his mouth fast enough!

One of the things I have VERY mixed feelings about is that we gave up breast feeding right after Griffin turned 4 months old and switched to formula. I called it quits so much earlier than I wanted to. I am sad, but also relived. He has always been a bit of a fussy eater but it just kept getting worse and worse, and all he wanted was the bottle. From 3-4 months it had been a full on tantrum just about every time I tired to nurse him often taking 10-15 minutes just to get him to finally give in and latch to eat. He was also biting really hard (ouch) and although he doesn't have teeth yet it still hurt, and I couldn't figure out how to get him to stop. I was getting so frustrated and mad, he was getting frustrated and mad too. I also developed mastitis twice in the last month which is VERY painful so for my sanity as well as Griffin's we made the switch.

It has been going fine with the formula, it's funny because Griffin doesn't even seem to notice that the milk tastes different, and he likes his bottles a lot. One benefit is that he is only drinking milk twice during the night now, and when I was breast feeding he would sometimes wake up 5-6 times a night to nurse. I do miss being able to nurse Griffin but things have been much more peaceful since the switch so I think it was the right decision.

Griffin has gotten much better at grabbing things and aiming his swats lately. We call his swatting clawing because if you get in his way he will claw you with his little talons! One of the funny things he does is when he is done drinking his bottle he will smack it. He pushes it away and yells at it and then boxes his bottle. I always say "Griffin stop beating up your bottle!".

Griffin's favorite toys are his science experiment duck and his rubber giraffe Sophie.

Griffin is teething full on, so he has become the drool monster and also wants EVERYHTING in his mouth, anything in his reach he is trying to shove into his mouth, including his own hands, mommy's hand, mommy's hair, toys and blankets. I have to be very careful because those little hands are quick and I usually have my hair pulled several times a day if I don't put it up.

When I rock Griffin to sleep I usually sing to him. I adapted the rock-a-bye baby song with my own words. Here is what I sing.

Rock-a-bye Griffin in mommy's arms

Rock-a-bye Griffin so full of charms

Rock-a-bye Griffin you are so cute

And mommy loves you

Yes, yes I do!

One thing that has been good about Griffin getting older is that he is becoming a bit more independent. I can let him play for 10-15 minutes on his own so that I can fold some laundry, or vacuum, ect. So it has made getting things done a bit easier.

Jeremy is still an awesome dad. He takes such good care of Griffin and loves to play with him. Griffin always looks at Jeremy like he is just the most fascinating thing ever and Jeremy keeps it that way by showing Griffin a good time when they play together. Jeremy plays on the floor with Griffin, helps him practice standing and sitting balance, and sometimes even lets Griffin watch him play a racing game on the play station which of course Griffin loves, but Griffin's favorite thing to do with his daddy is dance. Jeremy will stand him up in front of him and make beat box noises and bop Griffin around and Griffin just gets the biggest grin on his face, and squeals with delight, it is the cutest thing to watch!

I love it when I walk into the bedroom to get Griffin when he wakes up from his nap and the second he sees me he just gets a huge smile on his face and starts to coo… he knows I have come to rescue him from the torture that is naptime ;) It melts my heart when he puts his hands on my face and just looks up into my eyes and "talks" to me. Even though he is a feisty one he is just so sweet and so much fun.

We love our little Griffin and can't believe he is 5 months old already! :)

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Griffin is 3 months old!

So Griffin is now three months old. We have spent three months as a family of three and I can't imagine it being any other way! Griffin fits right into our family and we love having him here!

Sleeping has started to change a bit, Griffin will now occasionally sleep longer than 3 hours. We did get 5 1/2 hours in a row one night, but it has yet to be repeated :( On average now, the first bit of the night he will sleep about 4-4 1/2 hours in a row, then after that back to waking up every 2-3 hours. Regardless of the fact that he is still waking up to eat 3-4 times a night, I am feeling more rested this month because I have finally mastered the art of nursing him laying down! This means that all I have to do is pull him out of his co-sleeper into bed with me, nurse him and then slip him back into his own bed when he is done. No more getting up to go sit in the family room to nurse in the middle of the night HURRAY!

He still comes in to bed to sleep with mommy, usually between 7-8am. It's funny because it's like he knows the time and says ok, I'm tired of being alone, I want some snuggle time!

We all know Griffin spits up A LOT! What bothers me is that it is not just the spitting up. He has many of the signs of acid reflux. I have tried all the conventional advice the Dr gave me like, keeping him upright after eating, burping him often, adding rice cereal to his milk… ect. I am sooooo frustrated with this because I explained all of his symptoms to Griffin's Dr 3 separate times , and he just blew me off and said that all babies spit up and it is normal. Finally I felt so bad for Griffin because he was having such a bad day, that I decided to actually sit down and write out a list of his symptoms, and make a Dr appointment to demand that something be done for my little guy. So I went into the appointment armed with this list.

1. Excessive spit up - Big amounts (enough to soak both him and me) and way too often, sometimes he will go an hour without spitting up, but sometimes it is 10-15 times within half an hour. He will also spit up in his sleep and soak himself, he will even spit up while nursing and half choke himself. Often when he spits up it makes him very upset, and he cries like it is painful, or at least very uncomfortable.
2. Gurgles like food is coming up into throat and swallows it back down. (sometimes he coughs and chokes instead of just swallowing it back down)
3. frequent gas
4. irritable when eating - this is sooooo true, nursing can be a very frustrating experience because he will latch on suck for a few seconds to a minute, start to complain, get angry, kick his feet and arch his back, pull off, cry, act hungry root around, re-latch... eat for a few seconds, and start the process again. Now granted there are sometimes where he eats and does not do this but honestly at least 50% of our feeding sessions involve A LOT of the above described process
5. Coughing - He coughs a lot, not enough that I would think he is sick, but enough that when I saw this listed as an acid reflux symptom I was like... yup, he does that.
6.Frequent Hiccups - Griffin gets hiccups 3-4 times a day, and usually he gets very upset about them... not sure if they hurt or what

Well the Dr found out just how protective I can be because when he came into the exam room he knew why we were there and immediately launched into his normal speech to blow me off, I basically cut him off and said you have already told me all of that, I have tried all of the suggestions you gave me and they did not change anything. My son is uncomfortable everyday and I do not believe this is normal. This has been going on since he was born, it is getting worse not better and I think it has gone on long enough… at which point I burst into tears (soooo embarrassing). I then tried to pull myself together and recited my list of Griffin's symptoms. I'm not sure if he decided to do something because he was scared of more tears… lol or if I really convinced him but either way he ordered a prescription of Zantac to try and an ultrasound of his pipes to make sure all the valves were working properly. So either way I am happy that we are trying to find a solution so Griffin can be a bit happier!

One fun thing this month is that Griffin is talking to us all the time. He is full of babbles and coos and he is experimenting with making different sounds. It is so interesting! We have started a list of words that he has accidentally said.. His first word was Ma Ma (hurray!) He said it when woke up and started crying one day, he obviously needed me ;) He has also said good several times and even said "OH boy" and "I pood" when daddy was changing his diaper…lol The best one though was last week when I was holding him and talking to him, I said Griffin you're so handsome, you're handsome aren't you? and he looked right at me, smiled and said "yeah". My mom and Tiffany were in the room and they both heard it too, it was so funny we had a good laugh about that one!

Griffin's always been full of personality even while he was still bopping around in my tummy, but I must say it so much fun to see him developing into such an awesome little person. He smiles at everyone and anyone who talks to him now, and it's funny because if you really please him he gets a huge smile and then will go into shy mode and turn his face away. He will smile at the ladies in Target when we take him in there to show him off, he will smile at the ladies at my mom's gym when I take him there. He even smiles at other babies. He is sooo cute when he is interacting with the world! He used to only smile at us if we got right in his face but now he has also started to smile at mommy or daddy if we talk to him from across the room. He hasn't laughed out loud yet, but he will smile and squeal when he is tickled so I know it is coming soon!

Griffin still loves to stand while mommy or daddy help him balance but has added stepping now, he looks like a soldier marching, it is hilarious!

Griffin has also started swatting at his toys. Although it is still very uncoordinated he will occasionally grab onto one. He will also smile and "talk" to his toys… so cute!

Griffin has started to get upset when he startles himself. He will throw his hands and legs up into the air, get stiff all over and then just start bawling! It is the saddest thing. He will do it if he gets picked up or put down too fast, and he did it once when he grabbed one of his toys on the play mat, but couldn't figure out how to let go. He is starting to get a bit better with it so I am hoping he is starting to realize that mommy and daddy will not let anything bad happen to him.

I got a breast pump this month so I have been pumping and starting to build up a stock in the freezer. I must say that I do not find pumping to be fun at all, not very comfortable and it can be disappointing if I don't get much out. The best way I have found to do it is to feed Griffin on one side and pump on the other. Jeremy got to give Griffin his first bottle of mommy milk, but said it wasn't tooo exciting because he is so used to giving bottles to baby calves..lol. All the pumping I have done has enabled me to go out to a movie with the girls and leave him with daddy, and I also started doing massage therapy in the mornings at my mom's gym. It's nice because I can earn some extra money and Jeremy can watch Griffin.

One problem that has developed this month is constipation. Griffin went 7 days without any poop at the beginning of the month, and we ended up having to take him to the Dr to get a suppository… it worked and I know he was VERY backed up because he then promptly FILLED three diapers. YIKES!!! For most of the rest of the month he had not gone #2 once without the aid of either a suppository or the laxative powder that the Dr gave us. I do not let him go longer than 4 days, if he hasn't gone by the evening on the 4th day, he gets a suppository. I also started giving him 2 oz of prune juice every day and after 3 days of it he finally went #2 on his own for the first time this month.

The pets don't seem to think that Griffin is all that interesting. The cats do seem to get concerned when Griffin cries and will come and look at him like "what is wrong with you?" and they will occasionally sniff his head, but for the most part they ignore him. Zoe seems to view Griffin as more of a piece of furniture than anything and doesn't even flinch when he cries. She is so used to being around babies because of my mom's daycare that he is just one of the pack. Zoe will however lick him if she smells the slightest bit of milk residue and we have to watch her if spit up hits the floor, and clean it up ASAP because apparently she feels the need to clean up after him.

A few milestones this month…

Griffin has discovered how to suck his own fist. A noisy task but he seems to love it. He even ended up giving himself a hicky on his hand/wrist. It scared me at first because I thought it was a bruise, and I was like "how in the world did you get a bruise there?" then I looked closer realized he had given himself a hicky and laughed my head off… silly boy!

He learned how to roll from tummy to back… soooo cute! He will not do it every time I give him tummy time but he has done it a handful of times now, so he is getting better and better at it.

He has kicked the swaddle to the curb and now sleeps unswaddled. The only problem we have run into with this is that he has started to scratch himself during the night. I really need to trim his nails but it scares me because I am so afraid of nicking him! I guess this is a task to tackle for next month.

I have loved watching Griffin grow (now weighing in at 13 lbs) and as he is getting older he is only getting more and more interesting and fun. Being Griffin's mommy is the best job in the world!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Griffin's Second Month

Griffin has grown an amazing amount in the last month. He is getting bigger everyday, he know weighs 11lbs!

One of the newest things he has learned how to do is stand with all of his weight on his legs. Most of the time he just needs me to provide balance for him. Other than that he takes all of his weight. He can hold himself up for quite a long time too 2-3 minutes at a time. He actually really loves to stand like this and often if he is being fussy it will calm him down for a while, at least until he gets bored of it.

Laundry is just as crazy as ever, mostly because Griffin is still a lean mean spit up machine. He still spits up all the time, in fact he and I both routinely experience the joy that is a spit up shower!

Griffin's Aunty Tiffany is one of his biggest fans and spend lots of time with him. She has also learned how dangerous his bodily fluids can be. She went to kiss him this week and ended up with spit up all over her face, and later in the week she was undressing him for me so I could change his clothes and once he was undressed she was bouncing him on her leg in his diaper. She didn't realize that there was poop in there so squish right out onto her leg. She is such a good sport though because after the screaming stopped… lol she always still wants to hold him again :)

Griffin definitely knows who his mommy and daddy are and calms the best when one of us is holding him. But another interesting thing is that I swear he already misses his daddy when he is gone at work. When Jeremy gets home every night one of the first things he wants to do is hold Griffin, now this makes Griffin VERY happy. Daddy gets lots of smiles and coos. Then if Jer has to go do something else he will pass Griffin back to me and Griffin will just get so mad, he starts to cry and pout and in General just continue to be fussy until daddy can take him again. It's the cutest thing!

Diapers have gotten better, he doesn't pee the minute I take his diaper off anymore. Probably only a few times a week now which is so much better than a few times a day. He doesn't get as mad about his skin touching the diaper change pad and getting cold. He used to cry almost every time he got his diaper changed and now he only cries if he is really tired or hungry. He also has decided that he only needs to poop every other day, which doesn't sound so bad except that when it does happen it is insane… blow out time! The last time it was his poop day he filled one diaper and then 5 minutes later filled another one, and then while I was changing him, every time I would get him cleaned up… oops, here comes some more. Well at least it gives me something to laugh about!

Griffin also has a predictable fussy time just about everyday, it usually starts around 7 or 8 pm and lasts until around 11pm when Jer gets home. Usually I can find something to calm him down but then about 5 minutes later He's not happy again and I have to try something new. One of the things that works really good is sitting with him in our recliner/rocker and rocking as fast as I can… funny thing is even if all appearances tell me he is sound asleep if I stop the rocking or slow it down to much he will let me know how displeased he is with me!

I've gotten him onto a pretty good sleep schedule although he is still only sleeping only about 3 hours between feedings at night he is spending most of the night in his own bed. Now he goes to bed about midnight and doesn't come into bed with me until about 7-8 in the morning and we usually sleep until about 9 or 10am.

Nursing has also gotten much easier, he latches on like a pro now! So that does make life a little less frustrating!

Griffin is smiling up a storm now. He loves to be talked to and when he is in a good mood he is making really good eye contact. He will also "talk" to us now too… his favorite time to do this is when he needs to complain about something, lol. He is just making sure we know all about it! But I must say that when he looks right into my eyes and gives me a big smile.. My heart just melts into puddles!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Griffin's first month

Being Griffin's mom is so much more than I thought it would be. Busier, more overwhelming, more rewarding, more laundry, more love, hugs and cuddles…. The only thing there seems to be less of these days is sleep!

I spent a lot of time imagining this, and I must say I was still not prepared. I think people can tell you what it is like or what to expect but until you are REALLY there it does not sink in just how busy, and wonderful motherhood can be.
The laundry is CRAZY!! I do a load at least every other day, and he changes outfits at least 2-3 times but sometimes more. I think our record is 6 in a day. Part of the reason Griffin goes through so much laundry is that he is a little spit up factory! One of his nicknames given to him by His Aunt Tiffany is McGeyser… because when he spits up it does not usually just come out slowly… it shoots out, and sometimes I would even say it explodes out. This brings me to another thing I realized, it is MUCH harder to keep a clean shirt on me too because I have gotten a spit up bath more than I would like to remember in the last month!

Diapers have been interesting. Griffin seems to like to wait until you take off his diaper and then pee ;) another reason for laundry sometimes. He had a really bad diaper rash early on so he spent lots of time naked to let things air out… yikes did I have to clean up a lot of pee. Luckily his diaper rash finally cleared up and it seems to be getting a bit better as he has gotten older. Something I didn't know before he got here… newborns poop in almost every diaper, luckily since he is breastfed the poo doesn’t smell very strong at all, in fact it took me almost this whole last month to be able to tell when he had pooped by the smell.

Sleep is an interesting adventure every night because I never know quite what to expect. When we first brought Griffin home he would happily go right back to sleep after he was fed and sleep in his own bed. Around week two he started fussing sometimes. Now it is a bit of a struggle, he wants to be in bed right next to me and then he is happy and quiet… but if I let him sleep there than I don't get a good sleep because I don't let myself sleep deeply I am aware of him and every move and noise. So my new goal is getting him to be happy in his own bed, because then I get much better sleep. He sleeps 2-3 hours between feedings which is not too terrible but I cannot wait until he sleeps through the night, or even 5-6 hours at a time would be AWESOME!

One thing Griffin loves at bedtime is his glow worm sea horse. If he is only mildly fussy it will usually do the trick to calm him down, and if he has not fallen back to sleep when the music ends he will start again… if I turn it back on he calms right back down again. Maybe it's because I played it for him while he was still in my tummy… he liked it then too! It would make him dance :)
Griffin's personality has been interesting to see emerging.

He is still a wiggler like he was in my tummy. Until he hits deep sleep he wiggles a lot!
Another thing he is known for is his grunting… he grunts and groans as he is falling asleep, and when he is waking up, and when he is getting moved or changing positions, or if he is laying on the floor on his play mat… it is so funny!
When he is awake, has a clean diaper and is fed, he is very calm… he looks around like he is trying to figure the world out, and makes great eye contact when his eyes are not crossed that is ;) He also makes kissy face a lot while he is awake. It is his signature look. The best part though is that he just started smiling at people this week. I was the first one to get a smile when I was talking to him. It was such an awesome feeling! Since then his daddy and his Grandma Jane have both gotten smiles.
He is not afraid at all to let you know when he is not happy. It usually starts with little noises that sound like an angry kitty meowing and if the problem is not fixed he will yell at the top of his lungs, but the good part is that as soon as you fix the problem it's like it never happened. He is very easy to calm.

The one thing that Griffin hates the most is cold. This means that getting his diaper or clothing changed is the worst part of his day. He also hated the sponge baths he had to have while his belly button was healing! He has been doing better with not crying at diaper changes, but still does much better if he is awake at the beginning of the diaper change. Baths have gotten much better too since he can sit in the warm water. He is usually calm when I put him in and enjoys having the warm water poured on him, but when I start washing his hair and body he gets mad.

Breast feeding has been an interesting journey so far. To be honest it is not my favorite thing in the world. Griffin and I are still working on getting it right. I have lots of milk for him but I have not been pain free since the beginning. At first it hurt REALLY bad, and now it only hurts a little but it's still not as good as it should be. I finally broke down and called the la leche league for some help. The lady I talked to was very smart and she gave me some tips over the phone. It does seem to be helping so fingers crossed that it gets even better soon.
Griffin has loved his food from the beginning at first I called him my little snapping turtle because as soon as he knew the food was near he would CHOMP… ouch for mommy! He has gotten much better about that thank goodness. He loves to nurse though, it is the best calming tool in the world. When he is fussing and everything else is good even just a few minutes can help. After he eats we like to say he is in a milk coma… out like a light! He knows I am his source of food because if someone else is holding him and he is upset, even just hearing my voice will make him stop crying and start rooting, and if I pick him up whatever is in front of his face, he thinks it’s food, my arm, my neck it's all fair game…lol

One of the coolest things has been seeing Jeremy with Griffin. He is such a good dad. He is wonderful at calming Griffin, loves to hold him and has been so involved since day one. He has also just been a wonderful support to me. He gets up and changes Griffin's diapers in the middle of the night, and does everything he can to make my life easier.

Jeremy took off a week and two days to be with Griffin and I after he was born. The first day he went back to work was hard, we both missed him. When he got home Griffin was half awake, just chillin in my arms. When Jeremy came in he started talking to say hi to me. Immediately Griffin eyes popped all the way open and he started looking all around the room trying to figure out where his daddy was. Jeremy came over and bent over to give him a kiss and Griffin put up his little hands and put them on Jeremy's beard and just looked up at him… it was the cutest moment ever!
Griffin is a lucky boy to be surrounded by so much love. His Aunt Tiffany, and Aunt Lindsey and his Grandma and Grandpa Siebold, have all been so much in love with him. They have also been a big help with him and are always willing to hold him when I need a minute. He also has love coming to him from a distance, he has Grandparents, aunts and an uncle all loving him from Canada. I can't wait till they all get a chance to meet him!
You know how people tell you that when their baby was born they suddenly realized how much they loved them and it was a new and awesome feeling. I was thinking the other day about how I never felt a new wow feeling. I realized that for me there was never that "moment" because I already loved him long before he got here… for me him being here in person did not change my love, it just gave me someone to kiss and cuddle in person ;) I think it was so different for me because of Gabriel. I knew the love a mother can have from the moment I held our first little boy in my arms. Griffin was wanted so badly and I loved him intensely from the minute I knew he existed. I think I loved him even more because of our loss, even more because of almost loosing him too, even more because of how hard I had to fight for him. He is really our little miracle.

Being a mom is everything I needed. I feel complete now. I was meant to be this little boy's mommy, and I will do everything in my power to be the best mom I possibly can. I will love him fiercely, take the time to play with him, listen to him, and do my best to help him grow up to be the wonderful person I know God means him to be.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Griffin and Gabriel

Griffin and Gabriel look alike. I see Gabriel in his face. It is an amazing thing. I still miss Gabriel everyday, in fact I have cried for him several times since the birth of Griffin, but I also feel a peace that I haven't felt since my loss. I am a mom with a baby here to take care of now. My purpose is being fulfilled, my arms are no longer empty. I will always miss Gabriel, but I will also always be grateful to Griffin for giving my purpose back to me.

Friday, February 26, 2010

The birth story

As you all know Griffin was born on February 14th (valentines day) at 12:30 am. There are no words to describe how happy I am that he is here and how wonderful my new little man is.

I wanted to share my birth story so here it is :) In case you didn't know I decided before the birth to try to do it without an epidural. I wanted to do things as naturally as possible and to fully experience it.

I started having contractions that were waking me up from sleep at 3am Feb 13th, nothing new, so I just tried to ignore them as much as possible, but they were waking me up about every 20 minutes.

Then by 5am they were coming about 10 minutes apart. That continued for about 2 hours. At this point I was just thinking here comes more false labor.

Soon the contractions were getting stronger and stronger and stronger. They kept coming no matter what I did and soon were 5 min apart consistently.

I kept telling myself it wasn't real because I didn't want to get my hopes up, but these contractions had never hurt this much before and I was getting so emotional!

After lunch they took a turn and started doing some VERY painful things, like not fully going away and before a new one would start. They were just getting so strong and painful. Everytime I would think they couldn't get more intense or more painful they would! It was very emotional for me, I was crying through some of these really bad contractions. I did NOT want to cry, but no matter how hard I tired not to cry, the tears would squirt out anyway.

So around 2:30pm we decided it was time to start heading into the hospital. We jumped into the car, and the labor spaced out slightly on the drive. When we got there the contractions were 10 minutes apart again. They took me up and hooked me up to the monitors. I was contracting regularly enough that they wanted to admit me, and they checked my cervix, it was still 3-4 cm but now fully effaced and they said his amniotic sac was BULDGING. The nurse was saying it is going to break VERY soon.

My Aunt Kerry was our Douala and she was also thinking my water was going to break very soon based on her experience and the strength of my contractions.

They took me back to a room and now things were REALLY serious. I was pretty much totally in my own world trying very hard to deal with the pain I was having constructively. Right about now I lost all ability to make decisions. People kept asking me things like do you want to try this position or do you want a drink, and all I could say was I don't know. Just when I thought it couldn't get more intense it did, they got closer together, about 3 minutes apart. Now I was having a hard time keeping control of my breathing and starting to get a bit hysterical near the peak of each contraction. Jeremy and my aunt were life savers, talking me through it, and pushing on my back to ease the pain. I found it so helpful to make noise, to moan to groan to let out some of the pain.

It was right about this time that I was feeling like there was no way I could continue. I was saying I need pain meds, please give me something, I CANNOT do this anymore. Jeremy and my aunt reminded me that I really wanted to do it naturally. I agreed to get through another 5 minutes before making a decision. 5 minutes passed and I still wanted drugs so they popped in an IV. I don't remember much of it but I am told it took them 1/2 an hour to get that IV in. They gave me something in the IV but let me tell you what it did NOTHING to make the contractions hurt less. I say it was like throwing a drop of water at a burning house... so in hindsight probably not worth it.

Soon during the contractions I started to feel different. A pressure, almost a pulling down feeling, it felt better to grunt. I needed to push. The midwife checked me and I was ALMOST 10cm She told me I could do little pushes. I did that for a while and nothing was changing, contractions were now about 1 minute apart, and my water had still NOT broken despite everyone's earlier thoughts.

Finally the midwife came in a broke my water because Griffin was not coming down and she felt this was why my cervix was not dilating the last little bit. Soon after that it was time to get down to business. I assumed the pushing position. Holding my legs and pushing with all of my might. This is where things got the most intense for me, my contractions never fully went away before another would begin. There was about 30 seconds from the start of one contraction to the start of the next.

I was pushing and pushing, I felt like it was never going to end. I was told that the pain is less when you push and I found that the pain in my tummy and back was less but for me the pain moved down low not away. I was working soooooo hard. They kept telling me that he was going to be here soon, and I kept saying "NO not soon, I want him here now!!!"

After a while they were telling me they could see his hair, so they put up a mirror and then I could see him too. It was almost over, I kept going. Soon the midwife was telling me to push little pushes and out popped his head, and then with one more push the rest of him came out, she pulled him out and plopped him right up and onto me.

That moment is the moment I remember most clearly from that whole day. The intense pain that I thought would never end was instantly gone, and there he was, warm, wet, and fuzzy. He was real, and in my arms. He was here! I was asking is he ok? because he did not make any noise right away, it took him about 30 seconds to start crying. But when he did it was such an amazing sound. My little boy was here and he was alive and making noise!

Jeremy was standing next to me just looking like he was awe struck. He kissed me and said "we did it, and I love you!" I was rubbing Griffin's back and holding his hand and just marveling at him. I loved him for all this time and now he was here in my arms, I had imagined this moment so much over the last months, and it could never compare to the real thing. It was AMAZING.

A sense of relief like I have never felt flooded through me. It was over, this journey that had been soooo full of worry and unknowns, was over. My baby was here, my baby was ok, everything I had gone through had been so worth it.

Within the first 5 minutes Griffin welcomed me as his mommy by peeing and pooping on me. I didn't even care!

I must say that the labor and birth experience was INTENSE, I'm not sure if I would choose to do it without an epidural if I get pregnant again, but I wouldn't take back a second of this experience because despite the pain, it was an unbeliveable thing to be a part of, and it's what brought Griffin safely into this world.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

update after 38 weeks apointment

Went to my appointment with the midwife today, progress continues. I am now 3-4 cm dilated, 95%effaced, and the amniotic sac is tight (she said this means it is more likely to break anytime now). She said that she will be surprised if I make it to my appointment with her next week... so we will see what happens. She said all of this Pre-labor (contractions feeling real, and starting and stopping) I am having is normal so the waiting continues just a bit longer.

Come on Griffin Mommy and Daddy are ready to meet you!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

False labor

A subject I have become all to familiar with is false labor... I have been having contractions since 27 weeks!

Since the cerclage came out 2 weeks ago these contractions have taken on a whole new strength and intensity but still nothing has stuck around long enough to get this little man born!

I thought I might have something exciting to share with you on Saturday, I thought I was going into labor, but then it went away. I woke up at 3am with a REALLY bad contraction and couldn't go back to sleep because they kept coming so I woke Jeremy up and we started timing them, they were 5-7 minutes apart and pretty dang strong! I walked around, sat up for a while, took a bath and none of it changed them. I thought this was a good sign that it was the real thing. I had only gotten 2 hours of sleep so at 6:30am I decided to go lay back down and rest a bit, I was still having contractions when I fell back to sleep but when I woke up a few hours later they were gone.

I got up and got ready for the day, took a shower and got dressed, and then went up stairs to help cook lunch. They started again, but now they were even more irregular, more like 5-15 minutes apart, I still thought maybe it was real because they were soooo strong, I was moaning a bit through them because they HURT! Well this went on for a while, I took another bath, same thing, then called my aunt (who is a doula), she suggested I take a walk, so I did that. Nothing changed and then closer to the evening they started loosing strength. Still coming same interval just not very painful anymore, I could talk right through them. They continued until I went to bed around 1am and then nothing throughout the night.

Sunday and Monday were both the calmest days I had in weeks maybe only 10 contractions in total each day.

Yesterday they decided to hit full force again, VERY strong contractions 5-15 minutes apart. I did consider going to the hospital because they stayed 5 minutes or less apart for close to 2 hours but just when I was really getting serious they spaced back out a bit and got irregular again. yesterday it started at 2pm and continued until I went to bed. The difference between yesterday and Saturday is that yesterday almost ALL of them were VERY strong. Only right before bed did they start calming down a bit.

I am so ready to meet this little guy I wish my body would just get down to business, instead of playing around like this... it just tires me out physically and emotionally.

I have also been loosing my mucous plug for the past week now, so I hope that is a good sign.

I go back to see the midwife tomorrow so we will find out if all of these contractions have had any effect on my cervix or not. Last check I was 2cm dilated and 90% effaced.

It's so funny after all this time of hoping and praying for Griffin to stay put, now I am hoping and praying to meet him. I really am so grateful to have carried him this long. It has been a miracle.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

My newest pictures of the growing belly :)

37 weeks

Sorry it has been so long! I really haven't had much to say since things have been pretty calm. I do however have some exciting updates to share so here goes...

First of all my cerclage came out last week Tuesday Jan 26th at 35 weeks +5 days. That in and of itself was not a fun experience AT ALL. I had been told it was no big deal and that it would mearly be uncomfortable... but OUCH! The Dr was having a hard time getting a good view of the stitch to snip it and in the end tried 3 different sized speculums before he found the right one, and those scissors were HUGE and he kept putting them in and out. It was bad. Jeremy couldn't come because he had to work, so my mom was there with me. She held my hand and I tried really hard not to cry but the tears were squirting out of my eyes anyway... ughh It ended up taking the Dr about 20 minutes to get the stitch out.

When he finally got it and snipped and pulled it out I was so relived it was over! The Dr showed me the string that had held things together down there for so long, and I was surprised that's what it looked like. I thought it would look formidable, but it just looked like a blue thread. Amazing!

After the stitch came out I was sent for monitoring, not much going on right after but then when mom and I started for home I got some REALLY big contractions the biggest ones I've ever had. They were pretty painful. They stayed about 10 minutes apart for most of the evening and then spaced back out. I had contractions again that night that kept waking me up with pain, which by the way is not a fun way to wake up! Around 4:30 I couldn't sleep anymore and Jeremy got up with me to time them. They were only 5 minutes apart VERY consistently. We thought maybe this was it. Then after two hours... poof... they were gone. At that point I was so tired so I went back to sleep and slept until about 12:30pm.

Now it has been just over a week from then and things have been fairly calm. The Dr also took me off my contraction medication. I haven't noticed a huge difference in how often I am getting contractions just that they seem to be consistently stronger. I am still having contractions every day usually 2-3 an hour.

Another exciting bit of news is that since I am so far along I no longer need to be part of the high risk clinic so they transferred me to the low risk clinic right next door in the hospital where we are delivering. The reason I am happy about this is because since I am low risk now I get to have a midwife do my delivery. It is what I would prefer because I would like to do things as naturally as possible, and midwives are much more supportive of that.

My first appointment at the low risk clinic was yesterday and it went very well. The midwife checked me and I have made progress... HURRAY! I am now 2 cms dilated, 90% effaced (cervix thinned out), and Griffin's head is engaged... the midwife said... wow he is right there! Now that I am 37 weeks Griffin is considered full term and he can come anytime he wants with no complaints from anyone, including me ;) The midwife says she thinks he will come sometime in the next week 2 at most and I know that she can't tell the future but it is still soooo exciting!

I am soooooo uncomfortable now! Moving hurts! I am allowed to do anything I want now, and have been doing some exercises to help me get stronger for labor but if I stand or walk for more than a few minutes my back KILLS me. Another thing that has become really hard is rolling over in bed, it hurts my tummy and hips when I roll over. Griffin is also still sitting right on top of my bladder even worse than before, so I pretty much always have to do acrobats, lean every direction and be very patient to go the the bathroom.

Now that Griffin is safe and I don't have to worry about him anymore I have been thinking more and more about this whole labor thing... lol I will admit I am SCARED! Jeremy and I did take birthing classes and I did a lot of reading about it, but somehow all of the talking and reading still leaves me scared of the unknowns. I am going to try REALLY hard to do this birth with no pain medication. I think it will make it a more rewarding experience for me to be able to do it naturally, and I know it is better for Griffin. I am also realistic. I don't like to be in pain (who does?) So if I decide part way through that "I want the drugs!!!!" I will not be disappointed in myself.

I know it is so close now. It funny because The Drs kept telling me I would not make it to full term but hear I am. Griffin and I proved them all wrong. Despite my fears of labor, I can't wait to meet Griffin and I admit I am getting impatient. When will this little man show up? I hope it's soon :)

Friday, January 15, 2010

34 week update

To start with a Picture of my growing tummy! :)

Hi everyone,

The good new is Griffin and I have reached 34 weeks. It feels like such a big accomplishment! If I can make it just a few more weeks Griffin will NOT be considered premature if he is born... now that will be AWESOME!

The bad news is that the past week or so I have been fighting with lots of contractions again... BOO! They are coming mostly in the afternoons and evenings and usually 3-6 an hour. I was in labor and delivery once this week for a shot to stop them because they got to be a bit too close for comfort and almost went in again last night but decided to wait it out a bit and luckily they did space back out and I was able to go to sleep.

The Dr did not seem as concerned about the contractions as I thought she would be, just told me to take my contraction meds every 3 hours instead of every 4 if they start getting to close together. So even though I tend to be a worry wart I am trying to relax and leave this all in God's hands. When it's time Griffin will be born so I'm trying to trust in that.

I am also getting much stronger contractions now, which make me stop in my tracks and breath through it. They are getting painful too... so another boo for that one. It is interesting because I'm already finding out things that irritate me when I am trying to concentrate on getting through one. I had to tell Jeremy, do not talk to me and ask me questions while I am having a contraction... also the other night I had one and he was touching my hand so lightly it tickled. After the contraction was over I told him that's a no no too! lol... I wonder if these will be the same things that will bug me when I am in full blown labor.

Griffin is still looking good they did a quick ultrasound today and we saw him practicing breathing... you could see his chest rising and falling it was such as sweet sight! He also looked REALLY big today... that head of his is starting to look a bit daunting as the day of his escape draws closer ;) It's funny because before the ultrasound he was moving like crazy and then during she was trying to get him to move and he was just sleeping and ignoring all of the belly pokes. She ended up getting this little tool that makes a loud buzzing noise a bit like an alarm to wake him up... he was not happy about it!

The plan is currently to take my cerclage out in two weeks baring unforeseen circumstances and he will probably come soon after that... the day we get to meet him is getting so close and I am so excited! I can't wait to see what he looks like and find out what it feels like to hold him in my arms after all this time of carrying him around in my tummy!

the count down is on! :D

Sunday, January 3, 2010

32 week Dr apointment

Just quick update after my Dr appointment last Thursday.

This past week and a half I've been getting sharp, pinchy pains that feel like they are coming from my cervix, so I talked to the Dr about them and she said we do not need to worry about any pain I feel there unless it is acompanied by bleeding so they didn't check my cervix. It's weird after knowing what it was up to every week to now have gone over 2 weeks without a check and have no clue what's going on in there!

The past few weeks I've also been having trouble emptying my bladder because Griffin is sitting right on top of things, so I have to lean this way and that way and it's such a slow process, and also very irritating but the Dr said as long as I'm still going and don't feel pain with urination they aren't going to worry about it.

I'm not going to have another appointment for 2 weeks again at which time they will give me a growth scan just to make sure Griffin is still on track and that everything looks good, so I am excited about that because I wasn't expecting any more ultrasounds.

She also told me that after my next appointment I can transfer back to my local Dr cause a baby born at 34 weeks does not need a level 3 NICU anymore and should do just fine. So at that point if I'm still pregnant I can also deliver at the local hospital instead of the big one an hour away if I want too, it's a lot to think about! They said we can stay with them through to the end as well, whatever makes us comfortable, so Jer and I are still thinking about it, but haven't made any decisions yet.

The great news is that I am now officially allowed to start slowly adding some activity back into my life! I was soooo excited because bedrest has been driving me nutty! So Thursday evening, we went out to dinner and a movie, and it was so much fun! Another positive that came out of it is that I slept so good Thursday night because I was so tired and worn out. It was great, I'm so glad to be able to start building up some strength again before the labor!
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