The end of an era…almost

Well folks, I’ve made my decision…my pumping days are just about over.  It’s almost 10pm and I’ve only pumped twice today.  I’m only pumping when it hurts at this point and I figure within a day or two it’s not going to hurt enough to bother.  I had cut back to four times a day since Saturday, then last night Grace was running a fever.  We’ve been having quite a bit of drama at bedtime for the last ten days or so since she made the switch to her toddler bed.  All of the sudden she’s noticing shadows that I guess never registered with her when she was in the crib, there’s monsters in her toybox, something outside her window, the lights in the ceiling fan have to be totally off–dimmed isn’t good enough, the “star show” has to be playing, and “bubba-cor” is the worst thing ever (we have no idea what bubba-cor is, we think it might be the crib so we moved it out of her room Wednesday night).

Anyway, with Grace being sick already (no barfing, thank God, just a respiratory bug) I didn’t want to put her through the bedtime hysterics again so I brought the beanbag chair into her room and sat with her while she fell asleep.  As soon as I sat down though I knew that I was going to fall asleep…that beanbag is so comfy–I want to replace all our furniture with beanbag chairs.  Of course if I fell asleep I’d miss a pumping, if I left to pump she’d be upset…and then there’s the next day, she’ll still be sick and needy and I’ll be concerned with keeping my schedule.  Basically I’m just tired having to make these choices, so I snuggled into the beanbag and went to sleep.  I had a talk with Hope today about not pumping anymore, I promised I’d take good care of her…you can see her response on the right…

I guess she’s not too worried about it.

Yesterday morning I talked to her dietician about starting solids and maybe fortifying the milk with a different kind of formula.  After I hung up I realized that she really didn’t tell me anything I didn’t know.  I’ve fed a baby before!  But just like four-five months ago, when we were meticulously measuring and recording every mL of milk  Hope ingested, I felt like a fish out of water–with no instincts for how to feed a baby.  This morning I gave Hope a little bit of Cream of Wheat, she was shocked by the texture but other than that she tolerated it fine and I felt my instincts return.  Tonight I went to Whole Foods and stocked up on baby rice cereal and bananas, a little baby pears and applesauce.  Hope is just a regular baby, I have to keep reminding myself of that.

I mentioned that we moved the crib out of Grace’s room.  The plan was to just switch the position of crib and toddler bed but after doing everything else possible to make Grace feel comfortable and safe in her room it still seemed like the crib was the major problem.  So I had to wake poor Tammy at 10:30p.m. on Wednesday to help me move it.  I had hoped we could just stand it on its end and wiggle it out of the room but it was too big (according to Grace who noted with much enthusiasm, “ooooh mama, oooh mommy, iz too beeg!  iz skuck!).  We had to partially disassemble the crib to get it out of the room, then reassemble it in our room where it just barely fits where the portable crib was.  Hope loves her new, bigger pad.  For a kid who can’t hardly lift her head she sure gets around in the big crib…she is all over the place, it’s really fun to watch.

Hope continues to amaze us and all of those who work with her, all of her therapists and her intervention teacher are amazed at the changes in just a few weeks on the growth hormone.  Relatively speaking, I’d say that Hope’s gross-motor skills, i.e. head-control, rolling, etc… are about the level of a newborn to 1-month old.  Her fine motor skills may be a little more advanced, she’s pretty well mastered the hand in the mouth and in the last week her reaching skills have really developed.  She is vocalizing a lot more, in fact yesterday she actually fussed if she wasn’t being held–a quiet fuss, mind you, but when you’ve waited six months to hear it–it speaks volumes.  Best of all, she can be “made” to smile a lot easier.  She’s been smiling for at least three or four months but they were so infrequent and few that today was the first time I was able to get a picture of them.  Today she actually responded to a game of peek-a-boo so I was able to grab the camera and get a few shots.

Grace is still not feeling well, she’s such a sweetie when she’s sick…poor thing has a frog in her throat and just wants to snuggle.  I’m blogging in her room, she’s fallen asleep.  Earlier today we all napped in here, she in her bed and Hope and I in the beanbag.  Later I got up and left, Grace was awake by then and I made her stay in her room–she was not happy about that, but I knew she’d go back to sleep after she played awhile–sure enough…

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