Monthly Archives: September 2011

My not-so-difficult-as-I’d-like-to-think Life

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My boy, he’s been cranky.  I’m not gonna lie, it’s been a rough couple of days.  Zach fusses when he’s awake, and he doesn’t drift off to sleep so easily.  After four super-easy babies, I am so afraid that I’m going to have a colicky baby!  It’s one of my biggest fears right now, because I don’t know how to handle a “difficult” baby.

I’m still ruling stuff out.  Tomorrow morning, I’m taking Zach to the chiropractor.  Since he was born with his arm and hand up by his head, maybe he pinched a nerve or something.  I’ll know after tomorrow!  (I have never in my entire life been to a chiropractor.  If this works, I will be a new follower!)

Maybe the thrush is bothering him.  I kinda doubt it, because I think his mouth looks really clear.  There’s nothing on his tongue, and just a few white spots on his cheek.  Which might be milk spots, not thrush.  And not once, since he was born, has he refused to nurse or fussed while nursing.

My thrush?  It’s still there.  One side worse than the other.  (Weird, right?)  But at least I only feel like crying while he’s nursing on one side!  But if my children, poor dears, try to snuggle close to Zach or talk to me while he’s nursing on that side, well…

The thrush has receded, I think, but I’d like it to be GONE!  I’m picking up gentian violet at the drug store tomorrow.  I’m going to paint me and Zach purple and be done with it once and for all!  I hope.  A lot of people have told me that this stuff really works.  Even the doctor who was seeing Cameron when he and I had thrush a few years ago told me about it.  (Almost four years ago!  I can’t believe Cameron’s that old already!)  It’s a natural treatment, so that makes me feel better about using it.

I have been eating yogurt like crazy, and taking tons of supplements.  Oh, and painting Zach’s Nystatin on me.  It’s sticky stuff!  I didn’t take any supplements today, and I honestly think Zach has been more calm today than he has been for a while.  Maybe I was overdosing a little too much?  It would’ve been interesting to test my breast milk.

Maybe my boy’s just a smart cookie.  He knew that Mommy’s “Parenthood” show was on tonight, and that he’d better sleep in his bed for at least a tiny bit!

He’s been sleeping on me at night,  all night long, and I am so tired of sleeping sitting up in my bed!  This morning he woke up bright and early at 5:30, compared to his normal anywhere from 7:00-9:00am wake-up time.  I was so tired it wasn’t even funny.  But then Dee made me coffee before he left for work, I read my Bible and prayed for my kids before they woke up, and then when they did wake up, Zach was back asleep so I put a movie on and conked out on the couch for a bit.  (This kind of sleep is always fitful, because I have to get up numerous times to supply my kids with peanut-butter graham crackers and drinks of water.)

Around 9:00am, my mother-in-law came down to see if I needed any help.  She knew Zach had been fussy yesterday evening, so thought maybe I hadn’t had a good night’s sleep.  Isn’t she amazing?!!  She watched Zach and the other kiddos while I took a shower (and shaved!), and then she took everyone but Zach up to her house for pretty much the rest of the day!  She even did school with them.  *Sigh*…  I have it pretty easy, huh?

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Where I pretty much complain about thrush. And drugs.

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I couldn’t do it.  I filled Zach’s prescription, spent $20 for the stuff, but then I couldn’t give it to him!  His pediatrician prescribed Nystatin?  I’ve never heard of it before.  I gave Zach one dose, on the inside of his cheek, and then I was reading all the possible side effects of the drug.  Mouth irritation, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, or stomach upset… fast heartbeat, wheezing, muscle pain… rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.  And then, “This is not a complete list of possible side effects.”  Um, I don’t think so!  Not my two-week-old baby boy.

So it sits on the counter.

And I’m back to gritting my teeth every time Zach nurses.  Which, remember, is quite often.

And I’ll need to stick to my diet of plain oatmeal for breakfast, coffee with no sugar (I do cheat on a liiittttle bit of cream!), raw almonds for snack, yogurt, rice cakes and (all-natural, fresh-ground) peanut butter for lunch, all the veggies I want, rice and beans, and anything else I can think of that has no sugar, dairy, wheat, or yeast in it.

Dee wanted pizza from Tony’s for supper.  I said that was fine, I just wouldn’t be able to eat it!  Dairy, wheat, and yeast.  Sugar too, although not tons.  So then he wasn’t going to order pizza, but I pointed out that pretty much everything he and the kids would want to eat, I wouldn’t be able to eat.  He didn’t want to join me for rice cakes and peanut butter.  I told him to just throw a pizza party without me.  (That sounded sarcastic.  I didn’t mean it to!  I really hope my family can still enjoy yummy food in spite of my diet restrictions!)

I bought a baby probiotic powder that goes on Zach’s tongue and cheeks, and I’m still taking tons of probiotics.  Plus garlic out the wazoo (good thing it’s odorless), and lots of vitamin C and other anti-fungal stuff.  I’m slathering an anti-fungal/anti-bacterial cream on my boobs, and also a water/vinegar mixture before and after nursing.  Yogurt too, applied topically, is supposedly a miracle product.

We’re going to beat this thrush!  In the meantime, don’t try to talk to me while I’m nursing.  Or touch me.  Dee tries to kiss Zach’s head, and even that makes me extremely irritable.  Poor guy.  My big guy, not the little one.  Zach doesn’t seem to mind the thrush at all!  All the info I’ve read said that an infected baby might cry or fuss while nursing, since the thrush might be painful.  Nope!  He just chomps down and goes to town.

So.  That was a lot of girl talk.  Maybe too much info for my male readers?  But this is my blog for future memories.  ‘Cause yeah, I’m resigned to the fact that I’m going to forget almost everything!  I refused to believe it for many years, but I already can’t remember when Kirstyn and Cory were babies.  I can’t even remember how many times I’ve zapped my coffee in the microwave today.  Four, I think?

Oh!  I can eat popcorn!  Without butter, of course, but that’s what I’ll munch on during our movie tonight.

Also totally random:  My maple trees are turning red and gold!  This makes me all warm and happy inside!!!

Alone again

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Wednesday, September 21st, 2011

Scratch that.  “Alone” isn’t the right word!  Not with my five beautiful children living here, and that husband of mine I keep falling in love with…

What I meant was, I’ve had a sibling living with me since late July.  (I know!  A long time.  Believe me, I knew all along I was being very spoiled.  Almost like Angelina and her four nannies!  Almost.)  But everyone left on Monday to head back to Massachusetts, their real home, and now it’s just me and my brood.  I think Megan considers our house “home” to some of her Massachusetts relatives.  Andrew came back down with my mom and dad last week, and when Megan saw him walk in the door she yelled, “Andrew’s home!”

I was okay with everyone leaving until Anna hugged me and said, “I love you.”  Then I cried.  I am seriously going to miss that girl!  I miss the rest of my family too of course, but Anna’s special.  She was “my” baby, born when I was 11 years old.  We spent a lot of time together, her and I, those 19-going-on-20 years ago!  She’ll always be attached to a special heartstring of mine!

We haven’t been doing a whole lot around here!  Just surviving.  I mean that in a good way, not a bad way.  We’re doing what’s necessary, not much else!  You know, like eating, sleeping (when possible, always interrupted), school with Kirstyn and Cory… and I nurse, change, and rock Zach.  On repeat cycle.  The dirty casserole dish from last night’s supper is still sitting on the table.  We did school around it.  My hamper is overflowing with dirty clothes, my carpet needs to be vacuumed, and I see dust bunnies congregating.  They’re making a whole rabbit warren.  But I keep telling myself, “This is good.  This is okay.”  And it is okay!  I’m glad I’ve had babies before.  I knew I’d be overwhelmed!  But I also knew that this in-over-my-head, pass-me-your-shoulder-because-I’m-going-to-cry-again part of life with a newborn will pass quickly.  In just a few short months, I’ll be staring at Zach, saying, “Remember when we brought him home from the hospital?  How tiny is was?  He’s getting so big…”

He really is getting big!  His two-week checkup was today, and I found out he’s 9lbs, 12 oz now.  He’s put on over a pound in just two weeks!  Yeah, now I wouldn’t brag about that, but for a baby, that’s pretty impressive.  He’s also grown an inch and a half.  I’m going to have a whole houseful of tall, strapping boys !  (Even my daughters will probably be taller than me.  It won’t take much!)

I also found out today that Zach has thrush for sure.  I knew there was a reason I felt like screaming in pain every time he nursed!  Cameron and I had thrush… not fun.  With Cameron, I fought the thrush without medication.  I cut out all sugar, dairy (except yogurt), wheat, and fruit, and made sure Cameron and I took probiotics like crazy.  It took maybe three weeks to get rid of the thrush?  But I don’t have three weeks this time!  I have too much else going on.  I’m getting on meds!

No, we’re not done yet!

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(September 14th, 2011, around 6:00pm)

My babiest boy is a week old today!

Dee and I had recently arrived at the hospital this time a week ago, and I was hooked up to a machine that monitors the heartbeat and contractions.  (The lack of machines is one thing I would love about a home birth!)  I was 5 centimeters dilated when we arrived, and even though we were only at the hospital for 4 1/2 hours until Zach was born, that was a long 4 1/2!

I’m glad it’s over.  Labor and delivery is HARD!  I’ve given birth to all 5 of my babies naturally, without pain medication.  But in the moment, I always moan to Dee, “Are you SURE I can do this without an epidural?”  My sweet husband always tells me he knows I can do it, but that I can have an epidural if I want one.  Good answer!  He passed the test.  And then usually, by the time we’re done talking about it, I’m almost fully dilated and ready to push the baby out.

And I’d do it all again, yes.

Yes, for those wondering, I think we’ll have more kids.  I LOVE my children!  I can’t imagine being done yet.  Now, if you’d been a fly on the wall in the hospital, you would have heard me tell Dee, “Let’s have five kids.  Five is good!”  But that was moments after pushing a head and fist, and the rest of a 8 lb, 10 oz little body into the world!

It always makes me mad when I go to the hospital to have a baby, and the nurse doing the “questioning” asks if I want my tubes tied.  I know it’s a mandatory question.  They probably have to ask the women with 1 kid and the women with 5 kids the same question, but it still makes me mad!  But I usually only get mad on the inside, so the nurse only sees me smile politely and say “No,” while I’m thinking, “NO!  I DON’T want my tubes tied!  I chose to get pregnant with all of my kids, and you’ll probably see me at this hospital again in a year or two.  So there.”

Why would I want my tubes tied when I can have another one of these…

We’ve been rocking a lot, me and Zach, in front of the kitchen radio.  By the window with the pink roses outside.  We sway to country music, since I assume that’s his favorite!  He’s been listening to it for 9 months.  Yesterday, the song “High Cost of Living” came up.  It’s a sweet lullaby tune, good for rocking babies to, but such a sad song for too many people.  I was thinking how so extremely grateful I am that we can have 5 kids, plan to have more, and afford to put diapers on their butts and food in their bellies!  Even so many of our wants and wishes are met, not just our needs.   I love being a mom, and I love knowing that I have the rest of my life to “mother” my 5 kids.  (Sorry, kids!)

Our new and improved family

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Yes, the newest Hunsberger is here!  Zachary Sean was born last Wednesday night, September 7th, at 9:55pm.  Not the 9 1/2-pound baby I feared, he arrived weighing in at 8 lbs, 10 oz.He was born with his fist up by his face, the cute little stinker, but my awesome midwife was able to get him out without any damage to me.  I’m assuming we have another strong fighter in the world!

Zach’s name means “God has remembered and is gracious.”

Our days right now are filled up with this sweet grace!  I wish we could pause time for a while, and never stop snuggling this tiny bundle of love:

The brothers…

The Daddy…

All my children…

Mommy gets the most snuggles, of course.  There are advantages to being the only lactating person in the family!

(I went a little crazy with the coffee after Zach’s birth.  I didn’t have to worry about him getting a straight caffeine drip through the umbilical cord anymore!!!  Plus, both my sweet husband and my friend Heather bought me coffee.  Am I NOT going to drink it?  I don’t think so!)

Moosies especially loves to hold and “pet” baby Zachy.  I knew she’d adore him!

Cboy is our baby whisperer.

So, there are just a few raw snap-shots of our life right now!  Dee’s still home from work, and we’re all being pretty lazy.  I love it!

Basement pictures, and ways to induce labor that do NOT work!

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Does somebody else want to come vacuum my house?  Maybe Baby doesn’t like my nesting style.  He missed another storm, too!  Now that I’m three days past my due date, I’m not giving him so much wiggle room.  Time to be born, and snuggle with the rest of the family for all of this rainy week!

I tried overdosing on red raspberry leaves.  I drank 18 tea bags and took probably 24 capsules in a 24 hour period.  No go!  A few sporadic contractions, but nothing that stuck.  Last night, Kbug told me, “Mom, I want you to go to the hospital tonight!”  (I’m not sure if she was thinking about the baby, or the party I’m sure will happen while Mommy and Daddy are gone.)  I told her, “Believe me, I do too.”  Besides the anxious-to-meet-baby-and-start-snuggling factor, there’s the size factor.  All Baby’s doing now is getting fatter and fatter, and I am NOT looking forward to pushing out a 9 1/2 lb baby!  (That’s the size Dee and I guessed.)

(This weight conversation happened on a walk, another try at inducing labor.  We’ve also tried all the fun, couple-oriented ways of inducing labor.  Which, by the way, did not work with my first four kids either.  I’m sure it’s a scam started by a male doctor.)

I tried over-eating.  Yesterday, for Labor Day, Anna and I made a yummy feast.  Chicken pot-pie, fried green beans, and stuffed jalapenos.  I ATE, let me tell you!  But it didn’t force Baby to give up his space.  If I had castor oil in my house, I’d be mighty tempted to drink it right now.

Maybe I should run out to Wal-Mart…

I promised basement pictures a while back.  Here’s where we’ve been hanging out, and where we’ll be hanging out a lot more in the near future!  (I’m the type of mom that loves company after a new baby, so stop on in to say “Hi!” and hang out with us!)

 

Waiting busily! (Is that an oxymoron?)

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No baby yet!  But I do have permission, from Dee’s boss, to go into labor any time now.  Dee had a big commercial job to unload today, with multiple truckloads of roofing material arriving every 45 minutes.  He’s the only driver that could do it from our branch, so his boss really wanted him to be available today!

Now that job is done, and I can tell it’s a load off of Dee’s mind.  He kept calling me today, after he was done, asking, “Sooo… How are you feeling?”  I’m thinking, “No, Dear, I have NOT gone into labor yet!”  But I was just polite and said, “I’m fine.”  Because I am.  No contractions, nothing.  Which is fine, because I haven’t even reached my due date yet!  I’m happy to have Baby stay in until he’s strong and healthy and ready to face the world.

Dee’s been super sweet recently, helping me get stuff done before Baby comes.  Monday night he put new cabinets in our bedroom closet, which now looks amazing!  I’ve been throwing stuff out like CRAZY!  All over the house.  This afternoon I finally dropped off the whole Suburban load of junk things at a thrift store.  It felt good to get everything not just out of the house, but off the property!  The nice people at the thrift store were very grateful.  I don’t know if it was genuine.

(Side note:  You know how little boys usually want to be like their Daddy when they grow up?  It’s hilarious in our family.  EVERY. single. time we pass a dumpster, all the kids shout, “Mommy!  Mommy!  A dumpster!  Can we dive into it like Daddy?  PLEEEASE?!!”  I mean, who dreams of dumpster-diving?  Maybe I should say “yes” one of these days.  At least we’d get free food from the Taco Bell dumpster!   Annnyyyyhoo….  At the thrift store today, Cboy decided he WAS going dumpster-diving, and proceeded to bloody his toe all up trying to jump from the hood of the Suburban into the thrift store dumpster.  Dangerous work, I tell you!)

Dee’s also been letting me get out to shop and run last-minute, before-Baby errands.  He had the day off work on Monday, and instead of working on his projects, he sent me and Anna shopping while he watched the kids.  AND did school with Kbug and Cboy!  While watching a two-year-old and a three-year-old!  I was properly impressed and appreciative.  And, I was properly appreciated when I returned home Monday afternoon.  I asked how school went, and Dee said, “Good… But next year, they’re going to PUBLIC school!!!”  Oh yeah.  I’m thinking he’ll be bringing home lots of compliments and Starbucks home to me this school year!

Tuesday evening we hung out with friends, and tonight we took the kids swimming.  It’s been nice to take a break from projects, and just kick back with our kids.  This morning, my three youngest kids piled in bed with me for half an hour, and I soaked up every precious minute!  I can’t wait until they have a baby brother or sister to come and cuddle with in the mornings.  This little baby is entering the world with a ready-made fan club!

So come on, little one, we’re all anxious to meet you!