Sunday, August 17, 2008

grandparent visit!

My parents are coming into town Tuesday night to see their grandchildren (Lucy and Olsen). The house is a small mess, but hopefully they will not mind too much. I hope that we will be able to show them the area a little bit, but I honestly have not really gone out much since Olsen's been born.

I'm not going to lie - this newborn stage has been pretty challenging for me. It's difficult to know exactly what is bothering Olsen when he cries - I'm always convinced that he's sick. I miss sleeping and it's difficult to not be able to just get up and go, especially when I feel permanently hooked to my pump*. It's also weird to not be able to get things done. I'm a little worried about school starting but hopefully I can do it. Every time I look at him, I know that it is all worth it, and this newborn stage will go by so fast that I will be sad when it's over.

*sooooo, we still are not nursing. But he has been solely getting breastmilk because I am now an "exclusive pumper." But it's so time-consuming that sometimes I want to quit. But I really want him to have breastmilk because it's supposed to be the best, and I want him to have the best, especially with his hip dysplasia. (although pumped BM is really second best to getting it from the source.) There are other reasons too, like I don't like the way formula smells or tastes; I've heard that formula poop is worse than BM poop; and BM is free.

Maybe one day he will nurse. I've heard some people say that after 6 weeks (one said after 4 months!) that their baby just "got it" and started nursing. I would love to be able to nurse because it is so convenient - you don't have to get anything ready or wash anything and it's the perfect temperature. Plus, this pumping takes up almost 3 hours of my day if I include the washing of everything. I suppose I can do other things while pumping (like write this post), but I hate feeling so worried that I'm going to dry up if I don't pump at least every three hours. I have heard that after about 3 months, my milk supply will stabilize and I can start pumping less until I'm only pumping four times a day, so that will be nice.

The other worrisome thing about pumping is that the pump is not as effective at pulling out the milk as a baby is, so some people can end up decreasing their supply when they just pump. I have started taking fenugreek, this herb that people say can increase your milk supply. It's side effect is to leave me with a maple syrup aroma, which is not my favorite perfume. My ultimate goal is for him to have BM for a year with my minimum goal of 6 months. I hope I can do it.

I suppose it will not be the worst thing in the world if I end up having to supplement with formula. After all, I was a formula baby and I feel like I am relatively healthy. But it has taken me awhile to feel okay with that possibility. I cried a lot those first two weeks when all I did was try and get Olsen to nurse. I suppose if we were in the wild, he would have eventually gotten it because there would have been no other option. But since we're not in the wild, I wasn't willing to have him go hungry and so I pumped and gave him a bottle (probably not the choice that La Leche League people would have chosen). We did try other supplementary methods like the syringe, but it was so time-consuming that we couldn't really keep that up. Oh well, I think it should work out one way or the other...

Friday, August 08, 2008

Olsen is two weeks old!

Olsen turned two weeks on Thursday! He now his harness that he will be wearing for several months. We're not entirely sure of the time line, but we have to go into Salt Lake every 2 weeks to see his orthopedist to check his progress. He seems to tolerate the harness pretty well and he can still kick his legs so it isn't too restrictive. Diaper changing is a little more difficult, but other than that, we can't complain too much. We're just praying that it works!

Olsen had his 2 week appointment on Friday. He now weighs 7 lbs. 12 oz. and is 21 inches long. He grew a whole inch! In weight, he's in the 22 percentile and in height, he's in the 61 percentile. Adrian asked the doctor if that meant he'll be a tall, skinny guy, but the doctor said that the percentiles don't really mean anything. I like our pediatrician because he's pretty patient and allows us to ask him a ton of questions - most of them are pretty silly. It is a little disturbing because Olsen's next appointment is for his 2-month checkup. Does our pediatrician really think we can handle the next 1.5 months by ourselves, without getting checked up on?

We still are not really in a routine. I feel like we mostly spend our days trying to feed the guy. Maybe we'll get that down at some point. It's weird because even though I don't really do too much these days, the days go by fairly quickly. Our little boy is too cute. He does get fussy at times, especially when we take him upstairs for bed. We have to bounce him for a really long time before he will settle down. I don't think he cries too much but he can have his moments of yelling. Although, it seems like all of our friends that have recently had babies have babies that never cry. hmmmm. Sometimes I wonder when I will feel like a real person again. It's only been 17 days or so, though, so it will probably be awhile longer.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Lucy meets Olsen

So many people have asked how Lucy likes Olsen. We were wondering the same thing. But here is a video that shows the first time that Lucy met Olsen on Olsen's first day home from the hospital. He wasn't even out of the car yet before Lucy wanted to say hi.

If you can't view this, then contact me on YouTube.
My user name is MidnightYell2003.

Lucy loves Olsen and wants to take care of him. She likes to clean his face or his hands with her tongue and gets sad when he cries. She can't wait until he grows up a little bit to where he can start playing with her.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

one week!

Olsen is more than a week old now! He has had a pretty eventful first week. First off, he was born. It must be a really weird feeling to be a newborn and getting used to life outside the womb. It's funny to watch him get used to his body. His arms and legs are like springs and his grasp is really tight. I read that these reflexes don't last long and soon his arms and legs will be more relaxed, so we have to appreciate his springiness while it lasts.

He had a case of jaundice when he was born and for his second night in the hospital, he had to stay under the blue bili lights in our room. He had to stay under them for 3 hours at a time, so we couldn't pick him up when he fussed under them. And he did fuss. He did not seem to really like them that much. We were able to take him home the next day and we had to bring him in the next two days to get his bilirubin levels checked to make sure that his jaundice was gone.

The difficult thing about the jaundice is that the best way for him to get over it was for him to eat a lot so that he could poop a lot to release the extra bilirubin. But the jaundice made him so sleepy that he was really ineffective at breastfeeding. So at the hospital we had to supplement with formula and then at home, I have been pumping like crazy. He is over the jaundice but he is still not really eating at the breast. It's been kind of frustrating because he has a really lazy suck. We've been putting him on and trying to get him to latch. He finally latches but then he sucks very weakly. Then eventually, he gets really hungry and cries and then I cry because I can't feed him. So then we give him a bottle of pumped milk and then I pump. It is a time-consuming, frustrating process, and I hope he can get it soon or else I will have to become attached to my pump, I suppose.

One other challenge that Olsen has right now is a case of hip dysplasia in his left hip. Olsen's pediatrician found it the morning after he was born when he moved his legs around. His left hip socket is shallower than normal, so his left hip can easily become dislocated. We're not sure why he has this since it is most common in girls and breech babies, which he is neither, though it is more common in first born babies. The good news is that since he is so young, the treatment method is for him to wear a harness for a couple of months. The harness will keep his legs abducted so that as he develops, it will press his hip ball and socket together to form a deeper socket. From what I have read, this works 90% of the time and no further treatment is needed. So, we are praying that this will work so that he won't need surgery. And the good thing is that since he is so little, I don't think the harness will bother him too much. We go into Salt Lake on Monday to see an orthopedic pediatrician to get his harness.

That is pretty much his first week in a nutshell! (Plus his umbilical cord fell off today...)

Here is another video of Olsen (including the bili lights and putting on his first clothes!)
If you can't view this, then contact Adrian at:
and either "add as friend" or "send a message" or "subscribe to videos" or something. Either of those options will contact Adrian and will allow you to see this video.