One Month

26 Jun

Dear R3

Today you are one month old!

It doesn’t seem like you’ve been around very long so it’s hard to believe that you’ve already been here a month.  At this point you’ve spent half your life at the hospital in the NICU and half your life at home with the family. I wonder if you know the difference. You spend most of your time asleep (or at least with your eyes closed) and it doesn’t seem like you’re even aware of your surroundings most of the time. I like to think you’re aware of being home safe and sound with mommy and daddy though.

Even though you spend most of your time asleep, you seem to have three main wakeful periods during the day: about an hour mid morning, an hour mid afternoon, and 2-3 hours later at night (around 8-11pm). When you’re awake, you like to stare at stuff and make incessant and incredibly loud grunting noises. These aren’t your typical bowel movement straining sounds, which is what I originally thought. You just grunt. A lot. And when you’re asleep, you keep grunting. I seem to remember your older brothers grunting as well, but I don’t remember it being quite this frequent or loud.

At one month old you’re about six and a half pounds and just over twenty inches long. You are eating approximately 2 ounces (or a little less) every 60-120 minutes. This pattern is consistent throughout the day and into the night as well. We’re pretty tired, but Dad and I are taking turns being in charge of night feedings. Its wonderful to have a partner who takes an equal role in parenting duties, including the unpleasant part.
So far it’s way too soon to tell what your personality will be. Right now you’re an adorable and puny little lump that sleeps, grunts, eats, and poops. 
Your big brother R2 is obsessed with you and constantly wants to hold you, feed you, change your diaper, and shower you with hugs and kisses. Your big brother R1 is more reserved with his affections but always wants to give you affectionate little caresses and hug you goodnight/good morning. We’re all looking forward to watching you grow and seeing some baby smiles! Give us a smile soon little buddy! 

 

Thank you to Marie from Marie’s Digital Designs and Prints for the epic photo prop!  Please visit Marie’s Facebook and Etsy pages for many more ideas to personalize your milestones!

40 Weeks

21 Jun

Today is my baby’s due date!  

Of course he is already 26 days old but it feels like an official farewell to my childbearing years.  So long pregnancy!  Thanks for the miseries!

Here’s my last “belly shot” – my third pregnancy at 40 weeks!

Bad posture (I seem to have lost my ability to stand up straight) and my pregnancy weight make me feel uncomfortable, but my wee infant makes it all worth it.

Happy due date and happy Father’s Day!  


  


  

Happy Father’s Day

21 Jun

When I first met Jason I knew he would be a good father, but I didn’t know how good.  

Over the past nine months, I’ve been repeatedly blown away by how Jason basically took over child rearing and household duties, in addition to his ridiculously time consuming job.  And his part time job.  I spent the majority of my time trying to hold it together and complete the most basic daily tasks for myself and the kids.  

We made it though.  

I’m slowly but surely getting back to my old self and my amazing husband is still here, loving and supporting me and all three of our beautiful children.  

  
  
Thank you Jason for 12 years of companionship and almost seven years of completely egalitarian parenting.

What’s in a name?

15 Jun

It took us months of thinking and talking to settle on a name for our third-born.  A cousin actually suggested the name and I liked it but was unable to commit to it.  Jason LOVED it though so I just kept saying it out loud and in my head and it started to grow on me.  Then I started loving it too.  But I still couldn’t commit 100 percent.

At my baby shower in April, we were given a little blue sweater with the word ‘Rebel’ on it.  I figured it was a sign and I should just commit already.

So that’s it, the name of our third-born son.

Rebel

Rebel Morningstar 

 Rebels are thought to be trouble makers, but really they are non-conformists. 

A rebel is someone who stands up for what’s right even if it’s not popular. 

A rebel will find his or her own path with little care given to societal norms and pressures. 

 A rebel can change the world.
Rebel is, of course, also for the Rebel Alliance and the light side of the force:
 Rebel is for David Bowie :
 Rebel is for Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers too! 
 Rebel is for Jesus who eschewed the hypocritical teachings of the Pharisees; he hung out with the lowest of the low and offered nothing but love and acceptance.  

 Interestingly, in the bible, Jesus was sometimes referred to as the bright morning star. 
 Morningstar is a name I first heard when I was a young child. My mom’s cousin was visiting and brought his young son, his son had the name Morningstar and right then I decided I wanted to use it for one of my children.
In high school I read Walden and was captivated by the line, “the Sun is but a morningstar.” 
 When my first and second sons were born, I decided I couldn’t use the name morningstar because it was too feminine. When I found myself pregnant with a third son, I still wanted to use the name and I knew it would be my last chance. I was thinking about this in the grocery store one day when I noticed the cashier’s name tag said Morningstar. I took that as a sign and decided this baby would have the name I had been thinking about for almost twenty years.
So that is the story of our baby’s name.

It’s amazing to carry a baby inside you and think about names but really have no idea exactly WHO the baby will be. 

I have a very hard time bonding and feeling loving about about new little lives while I’m pregnant because of how terrible I feel, plus the depression. Then when the baby comes out, I’m able to see his face and assign him the name I was thinking about for months.  Suddenly, the blob from my womb becomes real!  My little baby with a name and a personality of his own!

And maybe, the little fighter I birthed flips around from back to front in his NICU isolette and then rips out his feeding tube. 

 Seven times. 

People around me were saying, “ohhhh you really tempted fate by naming him Rebel.”  I just smiled and thought, “No, this is my Rebel with a cause. He has no time to just lay around in the NICU; he just wants to come home.” 
 

Releasing some names into the universe: Part 2

8 Jun

At the end of January, we found out we were having a boy so the lengthy list of “girl names” I had compiled was no longer necessary.  

I released most of those names but held onto the name we had chosen for our potential baby girl.  I wasn’t ready to let it go on the off-chance that the ultrasound tech was mistaken.

But I’m ready now.  

The name we chose for our potential daughter:

Ruby Alice Moon

Ruby because the boys chose it and it went very well with our R name nature theme.  Alice for Alice Cooper and Alice in Wonderland.   Moon to honour Jason’s aunt Cindy, as Cynthia was a Greek goddess of the moon.

Our original list of possible girl names was pretty long; much longer than the list of boy names we compiled.

But I’m going to release those names into the universe now too!  Hopefully someone will see these names and be inspired for their own child.

Asher

Archer – we came really close to using this name
Cedar – I was pushing hard for this name
Clay
Indigo
Jasper
Pheonix 

Ranger – too close to my oldest son’s name
Robin – one of my favourite names, but I was hesitant because of “Rob” or “Robby” for a possible nickname (it wouldn’t “go” with the other kids’ names)
Sage – another favourite name, but I felt we needed a two syllable name for some reason
Slate
Zenith
Zephyr
Some of these names were rejected because they’d already been used by friends.  Some were rejected because they sounded bad with our last name or for other reasons, but I still love them all.  Maybe you will too!

Up next: our actual name choice.  Stay tuned!

Ten Things to do in NICU

5 Jun

jason and I have been going back and forth between hospital and home for almost two weeks.  

We realize that we’re very fortunate because our baby’s situation was never considered life threatening.  Nevertheless, we will be happy to put this chapter behind us.

Here is a lighthearted list of ten things to do when stuck in the NICU:

   
                Once a baby is well enough to get into the bassinet, s/he is usually well enough to try a couple sleepovers with mom and/or dad in one of the NICU-adjacent parenting rooms:  
 

We’re exhausted (and not because baby is up all night eating but because the hospital is a loud and impossible place to sleep) but we are feeling positive!

Here’s hoping for a weekend homecoming!

37 Weeks!

30 May

We made it to 37 weeks!

Almost.

36 weeks and 3 days actually.  But this what my former fetus friend looks like now at 37 weeks:  

 

On May 26th, 2015 (at 3pm), my beautiful new son rushed into the world twenty-six days before his due date.  

It wasn’t completely his choice of course; the doctor decided my blood pressure had risen high enough and it was go-time.

He was rushed to the NICU and we’ve been attempting to split time between the hospital and the big boys at home.  Sooner or later (hopefully sooner) I’d like to post about the birth and life in the NICU.

We are tired but happy…and completely in love with our third-born son. 

      

 Welcome to the world! 

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