Wednesday, 26 January 2011

I've got a lovely bunch of coconuts

If you've been following my blog for a while, you know that I use coconut oil on Zachariah's bum.

Since bringing this amazing oil into my home, I'm definitely feeling the coconut love!  So I thought I would do a fun post of my top 10 uses for coconut oil in no particular order!

10) For cradle cap - Zachariah has pretty much outgrown this ailment, but when it was a problem, I rubbed a little coconut oil on his scalp a few minutes before bath time, and it really helped a lot.
9) As a diaper rash preventative - I've found that as long as I keep Zachariah's bum slathered in coconut oil, he doesn't get rashes that often.  Even if he does, they aren't bad, and don't last long.  And no wonder with all the amazing healing properties of coconut oil.
8) In Zachariah's baby wipe solution - Lots of mommas use different kinds of oils in their baby wipe solution to keep baby's bum nice and soft.  Since I originally bought my coconut oil for the baby, this is what I decided to use.  It works great, so there doesn't seem to be any reason to use anything different.
7) On my cesarean scar - Because of where the incision for a C is made, the site can be susceptible to yeast infections.  Never thought of that, but it absolutely makes since.  Coconut is naturally antifungal so it works great for keeping the yeasties away.
6) As a massage oil - Babies (and mommies!) love a good massage.  Warm up a little coconut oil between your palms, and it's a perfect, tropical smelling massage oil!
5) As a make up remover - Most make up removers are made with various kinds of oils, and who knows what else.  Coconut oil takes that eye makeup right off, and doesn't have any funny additives that you can't pronounce!
4) As a facial cleanser - My skin gets extra dry in the winter, so my normal facial bar doesn't work at all once the seasons change.  I've been softening a bit of coconut oil between my fingers and sprinkling in some baking soda to cleanse and exfoliate all at the same time.
3) As a moisturizer - Sure, I have plenty of lotions, and I use them.  Occasionally, though I find myself in a hurry after washing my face, and the coconut oil is right there.  No reason not to dab a little on my face and neck so I can get to that hungry boy!
2) As a bath oil - Who needs expensive bath oils when you can just add a teaspoon of coconut oil to the bath water for a sweet tropical small and super soft skin?  Just make sure to wipe down the tub afterward!

And my number one use for coconut oil...
1) As a spread - Let's not forget that coconut is a food, first and foremost!  Coconut oil is a yummy treat wherever you would use butter.  It has tons of health benefits, and there's even a coconut oil diet!  I could get used to eating more coconut.  Maybe I'll give it a try!  ;)

Friday, 21 January 2011

Co-op love!

Two weeks from today, we will be starting back to our homeschool co-op's Friday School!  We are all very excited about this.  My girls keep telling me that the semesters are too short, and the breaks are too long, and I have to admit that I agree!  Friday school lasts from 8:15 in the morning to noon, and consists of chapel, and 3 classes.  This semester, Celestia will be taking Cross Stitch, How to Use Your Brain, and Purity for Girls.  Tatiana will be taking Origami, Grand Prix, and Sign Language Choir.  As in last semester, Zachariah and I will be in the infants' room, with two other mothers.

Our co-op isn't just about Friday School, though.  Some of the families in the group don't even participate in Friday School at all.  No, our co-op is a whole network of families who love and support each other in every aspect of parenting and education.  When I was having difficulty with baby blues after having Zachariah, I was able to post a thread on our group's page, and these women chimed in with words of love and encouragement.  Several weeks later, I received a call from a momma just to check up on me.  We have regular meetings for parents in homeschooling families.  Maybe I just wasn't as plugged in as I should have been when the girls were in public school, but I wouldn't have called any of their friends' parents if I were struggling with baby blues.  Or for any other parenting issue for that matter.

I've been thinking a lot about our homeschooling journey lately.  It's not always easy, and has taken a particularly difficult twist as of late with a tween and a teenage girl.  And an infant to care for, to boot.  Every time I begin to question whether or not I'm doing the right thing, I consider the alternative.  Our experience in public school wasn't horrible.  We had good teachers.  The principal was a sweet lady.  I loved our nurse.  What I didn't like was the one-size-fits-all approach to education.  Although the district we were in wanted to "embrace diversity" what they really ended up doing was homogenizing things to the point that anything which had to do with culture or personal beliefs was pushed right out of the school.  When Celestia was in kindergarten, She took snowflake ornaments to school to give her friends around the holidays.  I specifically chose snowflakes so as not to offend anyone.  The Jewish teacher that I worked with had the same snowflakes hung in her classroom to decorate it for winter.  I had considered pencils, but the kids didn't actually get to keep their own supplies, and most of the pencils had things like Santa on them, anyway.  In any event, these snowflakes were sent home because "not everyone celebrates Christmas".  Celestia came home wanting to know why what she did was wrong, and I went in the bedroom and bawled, because my daughter had wanted to give her friends a present, and wasn't allowed.  I really would have pulled her out of school that very day if we could have.  Even then, though, homeschooling wasn't even on my radar.  I wanted to send her to a private school.

My sister homeschooled her boys, and I honestly thought it was a little weird.  I knew that her son was super smart (although he is five years younger than me, he was studying pre-calc the same year that I studied pre algebra) but I still didn't really get the whole homeschooling thing.  I won't lie, the idea of homeschooling came out of nowhere.  It was a Sunday afternoon.  I took a nap like I often do on Sundays, and when I woke up, it just hit me.  I needed to homeschool the girls.  I've never felt something so strongly as I felt this particular objective.  I wandered into the kitchen, still somewhat taken aback by the urge to do something that I had never even considered.  Jonathan was working at his computer.  I sat in his lap (yeah, that's what happens when a 4' 11" woman marries a 6' 2" man), and said "I think I need to homeschool the girls."  I had honestly expected a bit of resistance, but he simply responded "OK, if that's what you think you need to do."  And the rest, as they say, is history.  For two and a half years or so, my mother actually taught the girls while I continued to work full time.  When I was laid off in February of 2009, we revamped our budget, and I never went back.  I enjoy working part time at a music shop, but it's honestly more to get me out of the house than it is to make money.  While my income is a nice little supplement to Jonathan's, I'm hardly bringing home the bacon.

It's funny how my blog posts can sometimes evolve as I'm writing them.  I began this just because Friday School begins in two weeks, and we're all excited.  It turned out to be a walk down memory lane.  We've definitely had our ups and downs over the years, but if we hadn't made this choice, then I wouldn't be able to enjoy beautiful moments like this.
Oh yeah, I love homeschooling!

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

Cloth diapering 201

I have known for a long time that any future babies that I had would wear cloth on their bums, so I spent literally years researching my options.  What I learned, was that for a newborn, the best options are either a rental package, or prefolds and covers.  Now, a lot of women buy used diapers, or go for the rental packages with fitted diapers for their little ones, and that works well.  I kinda get the heebie-jeebies about things like used underwear, swimsuits, shoes...  You get the idea.  I don't mind so much if I actually know the person they're coming from, but a rental?  I couldn't get over my heebie-jeebies about that one, so I went the prefold and cover route.  Prefolds are really super easy to use, and pretty much indestructible!  Like any routine with baby, we have become more settled than we first were.  Very quickly, I discovered that changing a boy on my bed with just a pad underneath would not work.  It doesn't matter if you cover him with a wipe, about every third time, he's going to pee everywhere.  We had quite a few tinkle fountains in our first days home, so I invested in a changing pad for our dresser.  I love my changing set up, as everything is in place and easy to reach.
It took me a little longer to decide that folding the diaper, putting baby on it and pulling out the edges was silly.  Now, I just lay him on the diaper out flat and fold the front edges in.  Much easier than trying to pull the back edges out!

I am also loving the snappis we got, which I didn't use much at first.
Probably one of the reasons that it took me so long to decide that putting Zachariah on the diaper flat was easier was because I was trying to get the diaper and cover on all at the same time.  Everything had to be placed just right in this particular scenario, and a wrigely baby didn't always cooperate.  Really, diaper first, then cover.
Now, let's talk rashes for a minute.  We've had ONE that was nasty to get rid of.  The coconut oil just didn't cut it.  Even Bordeaux' Butt Paste by itself didn't cut it.  I mixed Butt Paste, probiotic powder, and Neosporin together and kept it slathered on him for several days to get rid of this monster that seemed to be caused by atomic poop.  I never could figure out what I was eating that disturbed him so, but he hasn't had a bad rash in a month or so.  ANYway...  Regular diaper cream can't go in a cloth diaper, because it causes the fabric to repel.  While we had to put this oh so lovely mixture of goop on Zachariah's bum, I used some of the fabric that I had originally intended to make wipes out of, as liners.  I also used some of the unfinished fabric as wipes that I kept separate from the rest of my wipes so that they wouldn't get the cream on them either.  Before tossing a used diaper in my wet bag, I removed the liner, and rinsed both the liner and wipe out in the sink.  Those went in with a towel load instead of the diaper load just to ensure that NONE of the cream got on my diapers.  I got a GroVia Magic Stick that is cloth diaper safe (but not quite strong enough to completely get rid of his rash) to use when we were out and about so I didn't risk forgetting to separate everything out before throwing it in the wash.  Now, I know this may sound crazy complicated, but really it's not.  It took me a while to figure out what the best course of action was for his rash.  I tried several different things, including various "cloth friendly" creams before I finally settled on this particular cocktail of stuff and resigned myself to using liners.  Frankly, my prejudice against liners was far worse to overcome than actually using them was.  I keep a basket full of that scrap fabric by the changing pad now just in case we have another rash like that one.  You can clearly see the build up from the diaper cream on the dark liners.  Glad I didn't get any of that on my diapers!
Once it was gone, though it hasn't come back.  I can't say that given our family's history of sensitive skin that I'm shocked to find that Zachariah, too needs his bum babied.  I simply use coconut oil every time I change him so that he will have that barrier between him and the poop.  That seems to have done the trick, and my basketful of liners and emergency wipes sits unused 99.9% of the time.

As I'm sure you can tell, Zachariah is quickly outgrowing the infant sized prefolds that I have.  My other reason for choosing to go this route was that prefolds are so versatile.  I am working on making pocket diapers to stuff them in.  I have some super cute ones I love, made by my favourite work at home mom (WAHM), and some absolutely adorable flannel that my sister sent me waiting for me to sew some of my own.
Beyond pocket diapers and a Magic Stick for travel, I haven't added much to my diaper stash.  I did splurge on an all-in-one diaper for Zachariah's Christmas outfit.  Why?  Because it had sock monkeys on it!  I mean really, who can resist sock monkeys?  As an aside, I put Zachariah on his stomach to take these pictures, and he discovered that he could roll over.  :)

This is the only diaper I have that doesn't require a cover.  It has a hidden layer of PUL which makes it waterproof.  I know that a lot of moms want a diaper that is the most like a disposable in usage.  This is it.  You put it on, pin it, and go.  I could have had snaps added, but I find that I really prefer pins or velcro over snaps.

I know you're thinking "All that is fine and good, but you still have to wash them.  Ewwwww!"  Let's talk washing routine for a bit.  First of all, the only time I actually touch dirty diapers is when I change the baby.  Really.  They go into my wet bag, and I turn it inside out in the washer, and that's it.  Because breastfed poop is completely water soluble, I don't even have to rinse them out yet, so even when I'm changing I don't touch much.  Once the bag is inside out in the washer, I set my HE washer to do a short wash on cold with no spin.  I like to add a small scoop of Oxy Clean to this wash just to give it a little extra stain fighting, (more on that in a minute) but that's totally not necessary.  The purpose of this first wash is to rinse all the poop and urine out, so that when you run the main wash, the water isn't full of pee and poop.  For my machine, I don't have the ability to add extra water to a wash (I know some HE machines have a setting that lets you add water to the load) so not spinning the water out of the short wash is especially important.  That way, the sensor on the washer thinks you have a larger load than you actually have, and uses more water.  I know some mommas have solved this problem by adding a wet towel to the load, which can work, too.  Once my short wash is finished, I run a heavy duty wash on hot wash/cold rinse.  I use 1 tablespoon of Country Save laundry detergent, and put 3 drops of tea tree oil in the fabric softener compartment for a little extra bacteria fighting action.  Occasionally, I also add some vinegar in with the tea tree oil just to keep things fresh.  Once the diapers are clean, I throw them in the drier without a drier sheet, because the oils in them can build up on the diapers and cause them to repel.  The one thing I really feel I could use is a drying rack so I could hang my diapers out to dry in the sun.  I understand that the very best thing for those lovely yellow breastfed poop stains is some good old-fashioned sunshine.  I had a clothesline, and was really looking forward to hanging our diapers to dry, but my HOA made me take it down.  Someone must have ratted us out, because it was not at all visible from the street (it was my impression that as long as it was under the fence line that your backyard was your backyard.  Silly me.) and the HOA isn't supposed to be able to come on your property to look in the backyard.  I've been kinda dragging my feet about getting a drying rack because the weather hasn't been great.  And I'm still a little torqued that I had to take down my clothesline.  One of these days.

So how about the nitty-gritty?  What do I really like, and not like?
~ I LOVE my prefolds.  Super easy to use and oh-so indestructible.  They absorb well, and dry fast.  Not to mention that this is absolutely the most affordable diapering option available.
~ I really like pocket diapers.  again, stuffed with prefolds, they absorb well, and are durable.  Pockets have the added benefit of not needing to be folded when baby is in them.  You just wrap, pin (or not!) cover, and go.  Not to mention the cute factor.  Yes, you have to use a cover, but you also cover up those cute lacy panties that I know you're wearing.  ;)  The down side is that they have to be stuffed before hand (not a big deal, I usually do this while watching TV in the evening) and unstuffed before washing (again, not a big deal, I just pull the prefold out before I throw it in the wet bag.  My hands are dirty from changing the baby anyway, so it doesn't bother me at all).  They are also a bit bulkier than just the prefolds alone, which can be bothersome under certain outfits.
~ I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with my Thirsties Duo covers.  I love the gussets in the legs.  Zachariah's legs are a little bit on the thin side, and these gussets really hold everything in.  I have never had a leak with them as long as the diaper is completely tucked into the cover.  I love how well these have laundered.  They've been washed 3 or so times a week for 3 months now, and show almost no signs of wear and tear.  I love that the rise is adjustable so that they will fit him longer than a sized cover, and I can also let it out over bulkier diapers.  On the other hand, I don't love that the rise snaps sometimes come undone when I'm pulling them up over the diaper.  I have heard that this is not a problem on the Duos with the snap closure.  All but one of my Thirsties are velcro closure, and interestingly enough, I don't have as much trouble with the rise snaps coming undone on my snap cover.  I don't know why this should be the case, but I've heard it from other moms, and my experience does seem to validate that claim.  I also don't love the white trim.  Really people?  White?  On a diaper?  Not the best idea.  Bottom line, I do think these are great covers, and unless I find something else that rocks my socks off, I'll probably stick with the size 2s when he outgrows these.
~ I'm not at all crazy about the GroBaby (now GroVia) diapers I purchased.  I really thought these were going to be the diapers that I was going to love.  In reality, the breastfed poo never stays on the soaker pads, so the shell has to be changed every time he poops.  I never feel like the mesh liner on the inside of the shells dries between changes without smelling a bit, so that's a drawback, too.  I have better success using the shells as covers with my prefold or pocket diapers, but they don't have gussets, so I find it more difficult to get a good fit on the legs.  As adorable as my GroBaby shells are, they really haven't laundered as well as my other covers, and are showing definite signs of wear around the edges.  It could be user error, as I've been drying them and should probably have been hanging them to dry.  Oops.  I've debated selling, but really want to give them one more chance to wow me once we start solids, and the poop isn't as runny.
~ Don't bother with Amy Coe designer diaper pins from Babies R Us.  Although they're adorable, and clearly state on the package that they have a "functional point", I don't find them to be nearly as sharp as the plain ol' diaper pins.  They're also smaller than a standard size diaper pin, and close on the opposite side.  Too bad.  I love the monkeys.
~ I received a Gen Y cover as a shower gift, and it is super-duper adorable.  These are sized covers, and Zachariah is just now growing into them, so I don't have a long-term impression yet.  They lack the gussets that I love so much, and also have snap closures, which I'm not all that mad on.  I always feel like it's easier to get a good fit with velcro.  So far, we haven't had any leaks with them, and I definitely love that the trim isn't white!  And really, how cute is that?
~ I also received a Planet Wise wet bag for a gift, and love it for my diaper bag!  It zips, so it's a little easier to use than the drawstring, and has a snap handle, so if the used diapers get too bulky to fit back into my diaper bag, I can just snap the wet bag to the strap of my bag.  Jonathan and I are planning a short trip in March, and I will be buying a large Planet Wise bag for it.

~ As far as fitted diapers go, I did receive two as gifts at my baby shower, and it's definitely fun to have a couple on hand.  If I had a "Tatiana's favourite" category, these would go under that. They're quick, they're easy, and no folding is involved.  As far as I'm concerned, I will probably keep one or two on hand just because, but it's not worth having a whole stash, financially, as they're much more expensive than prefolds and pockets.
~ I'm not sure what I think about all-in-ones.  My sock monkey diaper is pretty much the cutest thing evah, but I'm not sure I love it, functionally.  I may not have prepped it enough, but I feel like it doesn't stay quite as dry as my prefolds and covers.  It could be that fit on my little man's skinny legs again, too.  I'm definitely NOT going to get rid of it, and I may try some more, but it's not my go-to diaper.

What about products that I'm looking to try next?
~ As aforementioned, a drying rack to sun my diapers.
~ Blueberry Coveralls.  I've heard great things about these from friends, and they have gussets!  These are a one size cover, so wouldn't be good for newborn babies (Unless you have whopper babies like I do.  lol) but should last a good long while.
~ Weehuggers covers.  Because oh my goodness, the guitars and jungle animals are adorable!  They, also are one sized, and have leg gussets.  No white trim, either.  Score!
~ Sewing my own.  My friend, Kim made a couple off the Rita's Rump Pocket pattern (and I'm just about certain that Hip Mama's pocket diapers are based on this pattern, too) and let me try them out.  They're super cute, work great, and she assures me that they're easy to make.  Just gotta find the time.  I'll let you know how that goes!  ;)
~ Wool covers.  Wool is naturally antimicrobial, and completely waterproof when lanolized.  I have an old wool sweater that I need to prep and try to make a cover out of.  Again, I'll let you know how that goes!  lol
~ Bagshot Row Bamboo.  I hear SO much about these diapers on my cloth diaper chat board.  When Zachariah outgrows the fitted diapers I have, I'm going to try out a BSRB just for the fun of it.

There you have it, folks.  My lovely cloth diaper novel from A to Z.  It's three months in, and I still love cloth diapering!  It may be a little more work than just throwing it in the trash, but it honestly doesn't bother me, and is worth every second of that extra work to know that a) there are no chemicals on my son's bum and b) 500 years later his dirty diapers aren't still going to be stewing in a landfill somewhere.

If you think you might be interested in cloth diapering, or babywearing, I'm going to be having a demo at my house on the 31st of this month.  Send me a message, and I'll get you all the info!  :)

Monday, 10 January 2011

Reflections on a labour gone awry

This has been stewing in my brain for a while now.  I knew going in to this pregnancy that Zachariah was likely to be a big baby.  I knew that a c-section was a possible outcome.  Why, then should it bother me so much that I had a c section?  The answer is, perhaps, more complicated than you might think.

The entire time I was pregnant, there was an underlying theme among most of my mom friends: "You should give a midwife a try."  I have two close friends who were pregnant at the same time that I was, and both of them had successful homebirths.  Several of my other friends asked me if I had looked into midwives in the area.  Why then, despite these urgings, did I never even consider it?  You would think that the cloth-diapering, homeschooling, lactivist, hospital-phobic mom would seriously look into a homebirth, or at the very least, check out the nearest birthing centre.  Maybe it was the underlying anger of the moms on my birth board that were birthing with a midwife.  (For the record people, be it politics, religion, or medical care; anger, fear-mongering and hatred is not the way to get your point across.)  Perhaps, it was a loyalty to my OB, who I absolutely LOVE.  Most likely, it was fear.  Fear that I couldn't do it.  Fear that I couldn't handle the pain.  Fear that something could go wrong.  Fear.  Whatever the reason, I never even googled it.  And I've been kicking myself for the last three months.

In preparation for labour, Jonathan and I took a hospital tour and childbirth classes.  Both of these experiences assured us that I would be delivering at a hospital that recognised a woman's ability to birth a baby naturally.  That is, after all what our bodies are designed to do.  Women managed without major medical intervention for hundreds of years.  The day I checked into the hospital for my induction, I was paired with an older nurse.  I don't remember her name, so we'll just call her "Helga the nurse from Hell".  Can you see where this is going?  This woman had me literally in tears before I was even in my hospital gown.  I had a similar experience when I had Celestia, and I swore that I would never again allow a labour and delivery nurse to attend to me if she was going to treat me that way.  I was going to kick them out of the room and demand another nurse.  Why didn't I do that?  Because I was nervous.  I was wound up.  I was about to have a pitocin drip and I knew it was going to be uncomfortable.  Simply put, I wasn't in any sort of mental state to make decisions for myself at that point.  I really needed someone else to do it for me.  I should have discussed the possibility of a rotten nurse with Jonathan beforehand.  Because I didn't, he went with the flow.  I had done this before, and he took his cues from me.  And I was too nervous to tell her to get out of my room.  Despite all the hospital's grandiose policies, I was confined to a bed once again.  The only time this woman allowed me out of bed at all was to sit in a rocking chair, and the only reason she let me do that was because I asked when my OB was in the room.  I have no doubt that if my OB had not been in the room, that she would not have let me out of that bed at all.  Not only did this nurse not adhere to the hospital's policies of allowing a labouring mother out of bed, she was extremely condescending.  When she started cleaning off my arm in a very strange spot, I asked her if that was where she was going to put the hep-lock.  She very rudely informed me that I wasn't getting a hep-lock, I was getting an IV.  Well excuse me, Helga, I had a hep-lock with my other pregnancies.  She blew that vein, by the way.  Only blown vein I've ever had.  She continued to treat me in this manner for my entire labour.  Long before my doctor was willing to concede that I was no longer progressing, this nurse was pushing for a c-section.  I was an annoyance to this woman.  She wanted me to have the baby and get out of her hair, and she wasn't afraid to show it.  Previously, I really believed that the reason my L&D nurse with Celestia treated me so poorly was because I was 18.  All she saw lying in that bed was a statistic.  That was how everyone in the hospital (with the exception of my OB) treated me when I had her.  I certainly did not expect a similar experience as a happily married, 31-year-old, experienced momma.

Now, the fact remains that I was diagnosed with Cephalopelvic Disproportion.  The question is, then, do I really believe that? Honestly?  No.  Yes, Zachariah was a 9 pound baby, but Tatiana definitely had a bigger head, and I was able to have her.  Yes, it took me longer to push an 8 pound 7.5 ounce baby than it did to push a 6 pound 8 ounce baby, but I did it.  Frankly, I really feel that given the opportunity to try, I could have done the same with Zachariah.  So what went wrong?  I probably shouldn't have chosen to induce.  There, I said it.  Because both of my other labours involved pitocin, I expected this one to need it, too.  I didn't have confidence in my body to do what it's supposed to do.  I had a rotten nurse.  It's no secret that stress in labour can cause a woman not to progress.  I was afraid.  I was afraid that he would be too big.  I was afraid when I checked into the hospital that I would have to have a c-section.  It was a self-fulfilling prophecy.

So now what?  I want more babies.  I've always wanted four.  What I don't want is another c-section.  It was horrible.  I'm still feeling the effects.  Yes, three months later it still hurts.  My clothes irritate the incision.  I can feel my muscles pulling when I drive.  It's uncomfortable to hold my stomach in when I stand up straight.  I'm giving you fair warning that the next person who tells me that I should be completely recovered is going to get an earful.  Scar tissue takes a year to completely form, and some women experience discomfort for that entire year.  So don't tell me that you were scrubbing your house from top to bottom two weeks after your c-section.  Don't tell me that I should be completely healed.  I'm sick of hearing it.  I'm not.  Out of three labours, I had one nurse treat me like a human being.  That's a 66.67% chance of having a rotten L&D nurse.  And they're the ones who really make or break your labour.  Not your OB.  So, I'm done.  Now what?  Now I research labour the way I researched sleeping arrangements and cloth diapering.  I've already located one birthing centre that accepts VBAC moms as long as they've only had one c-section.  I have some other friends who have had successful VBAC homebirths.  Unless I have to transfer, I have no intentions of having another child in a hospital, because hospitals are for sick people.  Hospitals have bully L&D nurses who have forgotten that women are at their most vulnerable when they're in labour.  Hospitals have nurses that poke and prod on you every hour after you've had a baby.  Hospitals have horrible, uncomfortable beds, and an awful smell.  Next time, I will be prepared not only to take care of the baby, but of myself.  That was where I went wrong.  I spent so much time focusing on what would be best for the baby that I forgot to think about what would be best for me.  And that is a mistake that I won't make again.

As a footnote, I would just like to add that I do not consider myself a victim of anything but a poor choice made by myself.  My c-section was nothing more than a result of my decision to have a pitocin-enduced hospital birth.  A choice that as a lover of all things natural, I should have known better than to make.  My amazing village of mommas that I am a part of (I love you all so much!!!) have all loved on me and shared their experiences, and assured me that anger is a normal feeling for someone who had an unexpected c-section.  Yes, I am thankful to have a healthy baby.  That's not the point.  The point is that I have this baggage now.  I am still healing, both physically and emotionally, and forever after I have had a c-section.  I will have to either have a repeat c, or a VBAC.   Not something I ever wanted to face.  I am writing this as a way to work through my feelings.  As a way to share my experience with other mothers.  Maybe one who has had a c-section and doesn't have the awesome momma village that I have.  Maybe that mom needs to hear that it's normal to be angry.  Maybe a momma is reading this who has never had a c-section and doesn't understand what all the fuss is about.  To that mom, give us c-section moms a break.  I need you also to hear that feelings of failure and anger are very real, and completely normal.  We're not looking for a pity party, just trying to work through it.  If any of you have gotten to the end of this, thanks for listening.  Love you all lots!

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Bad blogger mom!

So much to say, so little time!  This will probably be a mish-mash of thoughts, just because I haven't posted in so long.
First things first: How do you like the new header?  I'm not completely satisfied with it, but I AM happy to have actual pictures of our family and to have Zachariah represented.  I have renamed the blog "Not your mainstream momma!" which I AM completely satisfied with because I'm not.  ;)

Zachariah is doing well and growing like crazy.  At his 2 month appointment (which yes, was a month ago) he weighed 12.4 pounds.  He is currently in the middle of a growth spurt and does nothing but eat and sleep!

He's smiling and talking lots.

Now, I know Christmas is long gone, but since I never posted anything about it...  The kids got their traditional pajamas that they opened on Christmas Eve.

Although Zachariah wasn't really that interested.

Our row of stockings grew!
And the girls did another wonderful job of decorating our beautiful tree.
I didn't really take a ton of pictures on Christmas this year.  OOPS!  Here are a couple of Zachariah playing on his new playmat.  He is becoming confident enough to play on it for a good 15-20 minutes a day, giving Momma a welcome break.  :)

Grandma and Grandpa Martin got the girls Rock Band for Christmas, and we all took turns playing together on New Year's Eve.  Yep, even Momma sang for a while.  ;)
We all stayed up to toast the New Year...
And went to the aquarium the next day.  Grandma Martin was in town, and we didn't get a single picture of her.  (Ooh, double bad blogger mom!)

Today it snowed, and I got Zachariah all bundled up for his first Texas snow.  He wasn't that interested, so he and I didn't stay out for long.

 The girls took full advantage of the rare Texas weather, though!

That's about it for now.  I'm still having bouts of baby blues, mostly dealing with having such a traumatic birth experience, which has a lot to do with why you haven't heard from me in so long.  I think I'm over the worst of it, so you should hear more from me soon.  Specifically, I've had a request for an update on how the cloth diapering is going, so I'll be working on that.  Expect lots of extra cute fluffy bum photos!!!  :)