la Ketch

my life story

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

happy Seventh (month) lil D!

I was born 7-7-74 and Davey was born 7-27-07. We have a lot of sevens. So I think it's appropriate that we celebrate lil D's 7th month. Yay D! He's doing so awesome. He slept through the night last night. He did stir a few times but I put him down at 7:30pm and didn't get him until 5:30am and that makes mama a happy lady.
I love you little man!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

if you have a baby with a stuffy nose...

then you should get this.

it really works. the bulb syringe can suck it. i mean. no it can't. it doesn't suck it at all. it just sucks. it sucks because it doesn't suck.

before i had a baby with a cold, i always secretly judged mothers who allowed their kids to walk around with a runny nose. i wasn't hard on them or anything. i realised it must be tough to keep that runny nose wiped but i secretly vowed that i would never let my child walk around with snot on his lip. NO WAY.

people, it's like shoveling in a snow storm. you can't be constantly wiping it. it's just impossible. also, he HATES it. he SCREAMS every time i wipe it.

Davey has had a cold for three weeks now. THREE WEEKS. It's definitely getting better. There was a relapse but it's getting better. The cough is almost gone. No more coughing fits in the middle of the night. We've taken him to the doctor twice. It's just a cold. Poor little D. His spirits are high though. His energy is back. He's not really sick anymore, just the runny nose. I'm trying to cut out dairy from my diet to see if that will help him get rid of this congestion.

In fantastic news, we've had amazing success with the sleep training again. We started back to it this weekend. I only got up with him once last night. He's falling asleep on his own now. I'll write another post later to explain. Dup and I are so relieved. So, so, so relieved. We're not out of the forest yet but there's a light, a bright light.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

craig's list post of the day - this can't be real, can it?

i had to take it down. it was freaking me out. Dup told me you can "flag" stuff on craigslist so that the people who run it can look into it and take it down. this is going to be my new new hobby.

i would also like to add that since i started my new hobby of looking at shit on craigslist but not buying anything, i haven't bought one single thing on craigslist. i have inquired. i have come close but i haven't actually bought. it's such a great thing for the impulsive buyer because you have time to think and so many things can go wrong. i love it.

I Voted For Hillary

There, I said it.

I don't know why I feel the need to confess. I guess it's just that most people I know and love (including my husband) have Obama Fever and I kind of have it but not enough to not have Hillary fever. It's weird too because usually I'm gonna go with the most idealistic choice. I registered myself Green and voted for Ralph Nader in the Bush/Gore election, a decision I obviously regretted DEEPLY when I saw how things panned out. Especially now that Gore has become all smart and cool. Oh Gore, why did I forsake thee? So I guess that may have something to do with it. I was so idealistic then and I got smacked in the face by the reality of that fucker George Bush and he EVIL, EVIL army of idiots.

Now don't get me wrong. Barack Obama. I would be so, so happy if he were our next president. I really would. I would also be really happy if Hillary were our next president and I actually wouldn't even want to kill myself if it were McCain because at least he has a heart and a brain. He's still a fucking Republican and he's for the war which is HORRIBLE but it would still be way better with him because at least he's about government and not about killing people in Jesus' name. So, whichever way the wind blows, the future is looking bright in my eyes. I am optomistic at any turn.

I think Obama is really really great. I love his message of hope. We need it. I was so conflicted going to the poll and right up until I walked in the booth I was 98% sure I was going to vote Obama. Then I saw her name.

Hillary Clinton for President.

Hillary Clinton for President, ohmygodhowcaninotvoteforher?

The thing is that I love her. I've always loved her from the first moment I saw her. I love that people thought she was a hard ass bitch and cold and calculated. I didn't care. It made me love her more. I don't love that she wears pink now and has comprimised so much but she's still really, really smart and really, really strong and I admire her a great deal.

Is it because we have the same name? Maybe? Probably has something to do with it but I don't think that's it entirely? She spells it differently!

I think it's mainly because I'm a feminist. I am also a humanist and I know that voting Obama would probably be the most humanistic choice but also I voted for her because I think she'd do a very good job. I think that she has the experience and the know how to get us out of the war in the best way possible (what that way is, I have no godforsaken idea). I think she has the experience and the know how to get us the best health care plan possible. And then of course there is Bill.

Papa Bill. I love him.

So there you have it. I voted for Hillary. I feel like i'm about 100 years old admiting it but I love her and there's nothing I can do to change that. I know she's not perfect. I know the Clintons have done some dirty things. I know she let Bill make a fool of her with the stupid fucking Lewinsky thing. I know that she has made some major mistakes. But she still stands. She stands strong. She marches on and works hard to get the job done. She has worked really really hard for New York, for this country and yes, for herself.

If I had my number one wish come true it would be for Hillary to win the nomination and for Obama to run with her as VP. I think it would be the most genius of genius plans ever imagined. COME ON DO IT!

Ok. There you go. I voted for her and I'm glad I did. I just couldn't turn my back on her now.

Let the mud slinging begin you crazed Obama fan friends of mine. I'm sure my crotchedy ass deserves it.

PS. A lot of people think she can't win because so many people hate her but I think even more people than that hated bush when he ran and he won so I think she can win. Yes, I know Bush fucking cheated but I still think she can win without cheating.

Friday, February 08, 2008

stand to the right

A little break from the sleep training report to bring you one of my biggest pet peeves of all time, right behind people who block the subway doors and refuse to move to the center of the train. Yes that's right, it's people who stand on the left hand side of the escalator.


Is there anyone out there who doesn't know this? If there is who are you? Are you new to this planet? Certainly you must be at least new to the city.

If someone does it because they don't know any better then of course I forgive them. Often you can tell it's someone who just doesn't know or maybe it's a mom and her small child, forgiven. Maybe it's a dad and his small child, forgiven. Maybe it's someone on crutches, forgiven. Maybe it's an insane homeless person, forgiven. Maybe it's a tourist, forgiven but educated by pushing them to the side lightly and saying in a nice voice, "please stand to the right."

I take the 7 train into Grand Central every morning. The people who take this train at the same time I do every morning are all going to work. They are all New Yorkers. They all better know that you stand to the motherfuckingright but sometimes one of them doesn't and usually when one of them doesn't the rest of the people stop behind that person and a line forms so that no one is walking up the left and then the people on the left stir and steam and suck their teeth in anger but they don't say anything. Sometimes if I'm really late and in a punchy mood and this is happening I like to scream up the escalator, "Good Morning New Yorkers! Please stand to the right and walk on the left!" That usually does the trick. People start moving on the left like so many cattle. They hate me, yes they hate me but secretly I think they love me.

There are people who are New Yorkers who don't believe in the rule. They blatantly defy it. People push past them and bump them and they shake their heads and suck their teeth and say things like, "EXCUSE ME, uh huh huh." It is my job to tell them about the rule. When I tell them about the rule they argue with me. They claim to never have heard of it. "The escalator is not for walking. If you want to walk take the stairs." I actually had a woman tell me this. "Then why are so many people doing it? Why are so many people standing on the right and walking on the left?" I'll tell you why. They're doing it because it MAKES SENSE BITCH!

This is a public service announcement: Please stand to the right. Please don't block the door. Please use all available doors. Please move to the center of the train. Please let the passengers off before you try and get on. Please be mindful of the city around you. Please don't piss me off and make me yell at you. Please do what makes sense. In a city with too many people we really need to try to make it work. Please try to make it work.

Thank you.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Hogging the bed III - road block or possibly a brick wall

Monday night Davey fell asleep on his own, Deron and I were in the other room. I decided to put the side of the crib up and see what happened if I left him alone. He fussed for a while, cried a little bit and the found sleep. It took about 15 minutes. We were so proud of him.

Then, 20 min. later he woke up. I went to him, got him back to sleep. Then, 20 min later he woke up. I went to him, got him back to sleep. Then, 20 min later he woke up. I went to him, got him back asleep. Then, 20 min later he woke up. I could fill the page with these two sentences.

At 2:30am Dup had a break down. Why won't he sleep? I want to sleep. Why won't he go to sleep?

Me - um, because he's a baby?

Then I realized Dup was right. This wasn't normal. Something else was happening. His nose was all runny. His eyes were glossy and red. He's sick.

It took us one week to get to build him up to falling asleep on his own and about 5 minutes to tear it all down. I brought him into bed with me and nursed him to sleep. I did the same thing last night. We took him to the doctor. It's just a cold but the poor little darling is delirious from sleep deprivation. He just can't breathe well.

Our Doctor told us to wait until he gets better and then FURBERIZE HIM. This means put him in bed at 7:30pm, shut the door and don't go back into get him until the morning. You have to listen to him cry but you don't go to him under any circumstances. It takes 3 nights, each night he cries less.

Dup is ready to do it. I think I am but I'm very waffley. I don't know if I have the resolve. I know that sleeping more is going to help him. Right now we just need to wait until he's feeling 100%.

I'll keep you posted.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Hogging the Bed II (nights 4, 5 & 6)

It's still rough going. I'm going to stop giving the play by play because I think you understand the technique here. Still laying him down the the pacifier, he takes it out, rolls over and cries and gets upset, pick him up and lay him back down with the pacifier, "it's time for sleep", until he finally finds it.... sleep.

Friday was a tough night because I decided to try and not feed him at all. Consistently he's been able make it to about 3am and then he wakes up and can't go back to sleep. On Friday I worked with him from 3:00am - 4:30am and I finally fed him at 4:30am. He was starving. He took huge gulps and then crashed. I just let him fall asleep on my boob and lay him down. I felt so bad for starving him.

Saturday was wonky. He took a good nap in the morning but because we were baby sitting for our friend's baby who is 10 months, the afternoon was difficult. Our friend's baby was tired too and when Dup tried to get Davey down, he started crying with Davey. So I was trying to get him down in the front room while Dup was working with Davey in the bedroom. One would fall asleep and the other would wake them up. It was so frustrating. Of course, I took all my frustration out on Dup again and we fought. I had to grovel for an hour for being so mean to him but he forgave me and we ended up having a nice time with the kids. We just gave up on getting either of them down and tried to distract them which worked but they were both delirious. Davey crashed when it was time for bed, then woke up 15 min later. I got him back down immediately and he slept until 3:00 am again. Just like Friday night I worked with him until 4:30am and then decided to fed him. He fell asleep after until 7:45am.

On Sunday He took 2 naps that were 1 1/2 hours each. This was fantastic. It was tough getting him down but not too bad, took like 30 min each time but totally worth it. It's amazing what a happy baby he is when he's well rested. It makes SUCH a huge difference. Dup and I talked about this and how we both want to keep going with the training because it's really helping him out. Eventually it will help us too! But right now....

So last night he went down pretty easily, took about 20 min. He woke up around 10pm and again at around midnight and I put him back to sleep easily in about one minute just by giving him his paci and rubbing his back. Then right on schedule at 3am he woke up hungry and couldn't get back to sleep. I told myself that I was going to work with him until 5am if I needed to and that if he still hadn't gone back to sleep, I would feed him then. He went back to sleep at 4:20am and slept until 6:20am. So, YAY he got through the night without eating at all. I'm praying that tomorrow will be easier. I think it will.

I don't know how many people are still reading out there (thanks for your comment Lia, very sweet). I do think I'm going to keep recording this here though. It's interesting to me, how it's all panning out and I'm hoping it will be helpful to other parents. I still think we have at least another 2 weeks before he's sleeping through the night but I think he can and will do it.

I talked to my friend Jesse about he sleep training experience and she said, "the whole 3 night thing is total bullshit." And I was like, "TOTAL FUCKING BULLSHIT." I have heard from some people we know that they've done it in 3 nights but they were doing the straight Furber (cry it out alone method). I'm still really glad we're not going that route. Davey was just so far from being able to put himself to sleep one week ago that I'm certain it would have been a major failure. I think if we were to try it now he could probably do it. I think we want to keep doing it the way we're doing it now though.

So far the steps we've taken are no more bouncing him on the yoga ball, no more taking him in bed with us, and for the first time last night no nursing. Now that he's made it through without nursing, the next step will be to put up the side of the crib and push it a bit away from the bed. I'd like to get there before he starts crawling, which will be any minute now!! It's so cute. He's pushing himself up on to all fours now and catapulting himself forward, landing face first. Not hard but It can't feel good. He just shakes it off and keeps going. He is determined to move forward, usually so that he can pet the dog. He's really into the dog now. I wish Eliott could say the same for him.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Hogging the Bed II (The third night)*

*For the first and second nights read the previous entry below.

Now, I know what all of you are thinking out there, “How did la Ketch do getting Davey to sleep last night?” Well, I’m going to tell ya….

Overall it continued to go well. I’m still really encouraged and excited. I definitely see how it’s working and it’s good for him and us and we are going forward with it. We did have a bit of a hard time last night, which I will explain.

First of all, putting him down initially went really well. It took about 40 minutes, which is only a 5 minute improvement from the previous night but it was way, way easier. Just less crying and more independent time for him working it out. He did cry but I barely had to pick him up at all. We did his regular night time routine after dinner, bath, diaper, pajamas. I nursed him and he started to go to sleep so I woke him up by walking him around and burping him. Then I nursed him on the other side and he started to fall asleep again so I woke him up again to burp him and then let him eat even a little more. I wanted to be good and sure that his belly was nice and full. Then, before he drifted off again I went into the bedroom and lay him in his crib.

I think I should explain our sleeping situation. Davey is in a co-sleeper next to our bed. Our apartment is small and there is no baby room, just a large room with our bed and his crib. The co-sleeper has 3 sides. The open side goes flush up against our bed on my side of the bed. So it’s like he has his own little side car. Some might argue that this being there next to him is going to make this whole thing take way longer since he can see me right there but it’s really neither here nor there. This is the arrangement we have and we need to make it work. So, he’s learning to sleep on his own in his crib next to our bed. I think that in a few days I’m going to try and put the side up on the crib so that it has four sides and push it away from the bed so that there is some separation. I think this would be good to do before he can crawl and before he can pull himself up to stand in the crib. Also, I think it will help with my urge to pull him into bed with me and my urge to nurse him in bed like we’ve been doing.

I’m starting to think this whole thing is going to take at least 2-3 weeks to fully settle. I was really optimistic yesterday and was sort of getting cocky like I really thought that since he had only woken up one time the night before that he would not wake up at all the next night. Then last night he woke up twice. So the first time he woke up about 12:30am and a few things happened to make the whole thing go wrong. In the thick of it I really started to doubt the whole thing for the first time. I was like, “oh this isn’t working after all.” But this morning, looking back I can see what happened to make it not work and I can see that progress is indeed being made.

So just to finish how it went getting him to sleep initially at 8:00pm, as I mentioned it was easier than the two previous nights. He still cried and fussed but he never got extremely upset. It was the same dance though. I was hoping he would need less time but there was a five minute improvement, so I took that as success. When he woke up at 12:30am I was a bit disappointed because he had slept for a much long period the night before and I thought, “well that’s just how it’s going to be now.” I think the fact that he cried much harder and longer the night before may have attributed to the longer sleep though, he was just more tired because of it. So I took him into bed with me and nursed him a little. As soon as he took his mouth off the first time I replaced it with the pacifier and put him back in his crib. He started crying at first but then started to drift. I was thinking, “oh yes, it’s working.” Then Dup got up to pee…

Just as Davey was about to jump on the sleep boat, Dup FLUSHED. Davey’s eyes popped open. I thought I would kill Dup. Davey’s eyes did go back shut but I could tell he wasn’t as asleep as he needed to be yet. Dup got back to bed and I screamed at him in a whisper in the way only a mothering wife can do, “WHEN YOU PEE IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT YOU NEED TO SHUT THE DOOR SO THAT YOU DON’T WAKE HIM UP WHILE HE’S TRYING TO GET BACK TO SLEEEEEEP!” This is all whispered.

I thought he was back to sleep or maybe I was just wishing he was and now I needed to pee so I got up, shut the bathroom door of course and went to the bathroom. Then I heard him wake up and start crying. UGH. I had lost the loving feeling. Up until this point I had been as patient as Job through the whole thing, which is completely shocking considering that I am an extremely impatient person in general. I think what has helped me maintain patience is having faith that it works. That sleep comes and eventually he will get on the boat. That’s what’s so great about Tracy Hogg’s tone in the book. You can tell that when she does this with babies she never loses faith for a second. She has this calm soothing attitude that is saying, “go ahead my dear and take your time. I have all night.” And that is the trick. You have to be prepared to take as long as it takes and have faith that sleep will come. That energy and attitude helps the baby and you.

So I lost the faith and the patience and at one point I picked Davey up and we bonked heads. I got so frustrated and a wave of RAGE went through me and I screamed at Dup, “I NEED HELP.” Dup got up but was still totally asleep and I was placing him in a very difficult situation, handing him a very distraught baby. At first Dup tried to soothe him and I laid on Dup’s side of the bed with my back to them. Then Davey really started to lose it, so I turned to look. I should have left the room and slept on the couch but I didn’t. Davey saw me and started reaching for me. Dup started saying, “I don’t know what to do!!” I got really mean and said, “Just figure it out like I have been doing.” Dup said, “You’re shutting us out. You’re shutting me out and you’re shutting him out.” So I said, “Fine, if you can’t do it, if you give up, then I’ll do it.” So I took Davey back. Then I said, “Get out of my way.” Dup went back to his side of the bed. Davey had quietly watched the argument. We weren’t screaming but it was mean and tense. I laid Davey back down, took a deep breath and tried to wash all the negative energy away. He started crying so I gave him the paci, lay him on his side and then I did that thing where I pretty much lay over him, pressing my face against his and I just kiss his face and send him as much love as I can, trying to sooth him without lifting him up, nursing him or bouncing him. It worked. He calmed down and fell asleep in about 2 minutes. Dup and I went to sleep angry.

Davey woke up again at 3:20am. I brought him into bed with me and nursed him. This time I let him nurse a little longer because I was so scared from the previous experience. Still, before he drifted off I gave him the pacifier and put him in his crib. This time he went back to sleep almost immediately. Thank God.

So that was night 3. He woke up for the day at 5:30am on the dot, same time he woke up the day before. That’s a total of 9 ½ hours sleep. The goal is at least 10 hours, so we’re getting close! Dup and I discussed what happened as soon as we were up. It was a good talk and we were friendly again immediately. I spoke to him this morning and he had a HUGE success getting Davey down for his first morning nap. We spoke over Instant Messenger. Here’s the conversation:

me: well?
Deron: he went down at 7:47
me: and what time did you start? how did it go, that's way better right?
Deron: it's way quicker. we went into the bedroom shortly after you left
like minutes and I read him the two books then I put him in the crib
me: aww that's so nice scoob.
Deron: he fussed well first he played a little then he kicked into high gear
working the pacifier taking it in and out of his mouth rolling over at one point he had his arm through the slot in the crib
me: yeah he did that last night
Deron: and then I laid him on his back and gave him the pacifier
and it took
me: good job scoob. good job D!
Deron: I was still holding his arms down lightly for a few minutes
and then he went down so it's still like we have to hold him down and put the pacifier in his mouth (two props)
me: yeah but no ball
Deron: but
me: so one less prop
Deron: right no ball
me: one step at a time
Deron: so that has to be progress right and just the fact that it was so much quicker this morning I’m going to take that as encouragement
me: omg totally. I was thinking this morning too. even though he woke up twice last night I’m still taking it as progress it's not a step back
Deron: yeah I went over the book this morning and one thing I do like about what she says is that she gives you numbers about how long stuff takes
like the couple in the accidental parenting chapter it takes them FIFTEEN days just to get that kid to hang out in the crib
me: yes. I think we should expect this process to take 2-3 weeks
Deron: and later when she's talking about how she got him to stop taking the breast
she says I laid him down the first time 41 times the next time 21 times and then 3 times
to give you the idea that you just have to stick with it
me: yes. have faith that it will work. that's what I was saying this morning that attitude she has is so calm like, "I have all night. do this as many times as you want. I’ll be right here"
Deron: right. now my question is if you're following the idea of hers where you're setting behavior in the beginning of what you want to do in the future
at what point do we have to look at moving him out of our room?
me: well I’ve thought a lot about that (of course) and I don't think it's going to happen
Deron: I mean in some ways it seems okay if he's sleeping through the night, right?
if he's not getting up to feed then he's in his crib the whole night
so then it's an easier transition to his bedroom? maybe. I guess I’m trying to force myself to think into the future which isn't my natural impulse especially for things like this.
me: yes. I think it's fine. it's just the way it is. we live in a small apt. I think that as long as he's getting enough sleep and we're getting enough sleep we're doing great we'll just have to see how it goes, one step at a time.
Deron: I was just trying to think ahead since we didn't know too last time
I’m reading your blog now about your desire to punch me in the face
me: I told you about that!
me: I’m working on another blog post.
Deron: ha ha that was a good one scoob
me: I’m going to write a book
Deron: I’m going to frame it and give it to d at his college graduation
me: called, "the baby screamer"