Well that sure stunk…

We headed out to Central PA for a bridal shower for one of R’s cousins on Friday. My neck has been a disaster, even with the maximum dose of muscle relaxers, so I wrapped a heat wrap around my neck on the way out (I always do the driving).

We tried to time things so Bella would nap for the 3 hour drive, but she only slept for 45 minutes. We were afraid this would make her a cranky mess, but she had so much fun seeing everyone that she stayed in good spirits. Upon arrival I took my next round of muscle relaxers and kept wearing the heat thing around my neck.

We just hung around my in-laws until my SIL got off work and came over, then we went to the Amish barbecue. Because the barbecue had started around 4pm and we didn’t get there until around 7pm, R and I got the VERY last 3 pieces of chicken. They had already prepared out plates by the time we realized this, so we just took the food with us and found a barbecue restaurant where all of us could eat. The food was definitely not impressive, nor were the portions.

We went back to my in-laws for a little while so the kids could play some more and then headed to my SILs place where we were staying for the night. (Next batch of muscle relaxers here) I was dreading the evening. Last time we stayed with my SIL, Bella lasted maybe 3 hours in her playpen and then she had to get into bed with R and me and no one got sleep after that.

Now that she’s been sleeping in a bed, I knew sleeping in the playpen was going to be even more of a challenge. But I brought her comforter, blankets, 2 pillows, mini Pooh and mini Eyore and she had her binkie and larger Pooh she always sleep with. Because we played so much at both my in-laws and my SIL’s place, when we put Bella down at 9:30, there was no struggle at all. Phew.

We stayed up chatting and watching TV and went to bed around 11pm. Then 12:30am hit and I could hear Bella crying in the room next to us. I walked into the room and she said “Up” and held out her arms. So I brought her back to bed with R and Me. Bella was able to fall asleep and R and I got some sleep intermittently, but it wasn’t what I would call restful.

The next morning my SIL made some eggs and coffee and we got enough food in our bellies to start on our days (muscle relaxers taken here).  R and my SIL’s girlfriend were going to the Amish sale. (It’s a sale/auction of Amish made items, livestock and donated things to raise money for the Amish Hospital Fund). I had wanted to go and take Bella, but I knew that after a bad night, I was going to need to just take it easy (which my SIL had planned to do anyway). So my SIL, Bella and Me hung out at home for a while and then ran to Ollie’s to get a few items (including yet more books for Bella ;-P).

When we got back from Ollie’s, Bella and I took a shower together. She screamed the entire time. The water pressure at my SIL’s place is fairly strong and it scared/overwhelmed Bella. But in the end we were both clean and I was able to put her down for a nap and then veg a bit until it was time to get dressed for the Bridal Shower. I’m not used to wearing anything other than jeans, sweats and shorts, so it felt weird getting dressed up even a little bit.

We let Bella sleep as long as we could (about 90 minutes) and then got her up and dressed and into the car to head to my in-laws before we went to the church where the celebration was being held in the basement.

The Bridal Shower was very nice, but I don’t know the bride all that well and since I’ve been married twice, it doesn’t hold as much significance for me. But the bride-to-be’s friends and family did a lovely job decorating and making food. Unfortunately, this basement party area is fairly warm and even though there were fans scattered throughout the room, I felt myself getting overheated. I got Bella to eat very little food (she had a banana for breakfast and scrambled eggs, so it wasn’t a huge deal).

After a while, Bella’s cousin Veru took her to the playroom area and they were back there for quite a while. Eventually, I went back there to hang out/supervise/cool off until the party was over. The girls had fun playing and I enjoyed the cooler air.

When we left, we went back to my in-laws and I immediately changed into something more comfortable. I was in pain but only had 1 muscle relaxer left. So I took that, a klonopin and a mystery pill I found in my pill case (vicodin?). After a little while I noticed I wasn’t in any pain at all for the first time in a long time.

We left my in-laws later than we planned with me driving at first. But when we’d gone about 30 miles and hit our usual gas station to fill up, we decided it was best for Rod to drive the rest of the way. Bella woke up when we were at the station and took a long time to fall back to sleep. I rested my eyes which I had problems focusing with whatever particular mixture of medication I had taken. R listened to the Phillies game and we were homeward bound.

About 40 minutes from home, Bella got really upset and we couldn’t calm her down. We happened to be near a PATP rest stop, so we got off and R went inside while I tried to calm her down. Whatever was bothering her passed and we drove the rest of the way home. We finally reached our house around 11pm. (Side note: during the multiple diaper changes during these 2 days, it appears that Bella is recovering from her yeast diaper rash…. it’s just taking a while longer than I had hoped.)

A valiant effort, but the skunk “lost” the battle with Chloe

Our dogs are always insane when we come home, wether we’ve been gone 10 minutes or 36 hours, so entering the house is a coordinated effort. I have to go in first because they will follow me out the back door into the yard, where as with R, they keep waiting for me for some reason. So I got the dogs out (I had brought Bella’s bedding in) and Rod brough Bella in a few minutes later. She was kinda awake, so he placed her on the recliner in her room, fixed her bed and put her down for the night.

Meanwhile I’m  outside when I smell something that isn’t right. It almost smelled like burning rubber and I was afraid the pool pump had destroyed itself while we were gone. Then I realized “Oh crap, I think that might be a skunk, I need to get the dogs inside”, but I had to wait until I knew R had Bella in bed and her door is shut.

Nemo came near me and I gave him a sniff and he smelled like normal, dirty dog. Chloe then came near me, I took a sniff and I thought “Oh Shit!”. So I got R’s attention on one of his trips carrying bags inside, he came outside, immediately recognized the smell and said “Who was it?” and I said “Who do you think?”. Around this time I ran inside, Nemo slipped in with me, Lou the cat slipped out and I grabbed a flash light. I looked around the yard and quickly found the corpse.

So, to recap, we drive 3 hours, get home around 11pm, let the dogs out into the yard (I was with them the entire time) and in the space of 5 minutes Chloe both pees and gets sprayed by a skunk before she kills it. Awesome.

One time when we were picked Nemo up from the groomers, they were late with him because they had an emergency skunked dog to treat. The owner of the shop said the best thing to use to remove the skunk smell is actually dishwashing liquid (because they were sprayed by an oil). So we close off doors, I get changed into clothes that I don’t care if I throw out, I start putting warm water in the tub and lots of dish soap. We had some towels we were planning to donate that we decided to use for this debacle.

R went and put Chloe’s collar on her (we don’t make them wear them) and dragged her into the bathroom and we both shoved her into the tub with me and closed the sliding doors. I washed her with soap for quite a long time and then we let the soap sit for about 5 minutes. After that I washed the dish soap off and then lathered her up with some Oatmeal dog shampoo. After I washed that off, we got her out of the tub and R tried to dry her off as well as possible (Chloe is a long-haired dog, but it’s very fine and there’s not much of it). While he dried Chloe, I started washing myself down with the liquid soap. Then I waited a few minutes myself, washed it off and then cleaned myself with my regular shampoo and some soap.

Chloe is the dog we adopted that decided she was going to sleep on our bed the very first night we brought her home. So, R spread some blankets on top of our comforter. We let Chloe dry off a little on her own and then decided she smelled OK enough to be let into our room. I took a chance and poked my head out the backdoor and was able to get the cat back inside for the night.  We got ready for bed and when we finally turned out the lights, the clock read 12:45am. Ugh.

Bella was up at 6:30 and demanding to be let out of her room, so no chance to sleep in. My neck is killing me (I’ve already taken my muscle relaxers), I have the heat wrap on again and R and I are both exhausted.

So from the standpoint of my pain, Bella’s sleeping and Chloe’s skunk encounter… this weekend really stunk!

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Maybe it’s the weather…

Image courtesy of http://killahshakur.deviantart.com/gallery/

No, that’s not me. Just how I feel.

But I woke up with a roaring migraine at 5am. The sumatriptan worked swiftly, but now I’m sleepy and the rainy weather isn’t helping. Bella is full of energy today and I just don’t have any.

The dogs have been barking at phantom noises a lot lately and its driving me nuts. I can’t have the shade open in the front window or Chloe will bark which will make Nemo bark which will make me holler at them to “Shut Up!” which will make Bella say “Kai-ee shush!” and “Mo shush!”

I really don’t want this migraine to come back, but things aren’t looking good. I think it’s time for some muscle relaxers.

In other news, there is no other news. I have my blood tests tomorrow morning and have a play date/work date with C3 scheduled for Thursday. Our pool is no longer green thankfully, but our DE pump is still being a pain in the ass and the water isn’t as clear as I’d like.

Wow, this is a lame post.

I hope everyone else is having a good day and I’m grateful for the rain, wish more of it was falling in areas where they really need it.

It’s Been A While, So Here’s An Update (if you’re interested)

Bella
She’s learned how to push every single button that I have. Every day is a battle of wills, and I honestly don’t know who’s winning. But her vocabulary is growing by leaps and bounds, she’s happy and content (as long as she gets what she wants), and she’s started giving kisses on request (but man are they sloppy). She wakes up a little earlier than I’d like, but is content to play in her crib and sleeps through the night almost all the time. She actually escaped the crib the night before last, so we have to keep an eye on things to see if this becomes a trend. She is completely opposed to vegetables of any kind, but I’ve grown tired of trying to “sneak” them in, so dinnertime has become very difficult. The worst part lately is when I ask her not to do something or stop doing something and she looks me dead in the eye and continues to do it. This is especially bothersome if what she’s doing is annoying the dogs. They’re rescues, they’re unpredictable and she tries their patience daily.

Work/Blogging
My extended unemployment benefits from NJ finally ran out last month. It was a sudden thing and I was very surprised to receive the letter in the mail. I’ve been getting unemployment for a very long time (2.5 years) and I am grateful for that (hey, I’ve paid plenty into the system over the years). But now things are at a critical point. R’s salary alone is not enough for us to stay afloat. We’re short by about $1500/month. This isn’t a lot of money, but finding a job in marketing is difficult now and the whole daycare thing is overwhelming. If I even think of putting Bella in daycare, I start to get upset and anxious. I don’t want to miss any milestones. Even though being with her ALL the time is exhausting, I can’t imagine anything else. I am sending out resumes for marketing positions in the area and had an interview last month, but my heart really isn’t in it. My dream is to find a way of freelancing and/or blogging from home to supplement the income we need. But are there enough people out there willing to read about the daily exploits of my life? I just don’t know. Additionally, R would like to have another child and I told him I would be unwilling to do that if I was working outside the home. Plus, there’s my health issues….

Depression
The depression itself is tolerable, the anxiety is somewhat manageable, but the inability to concentrate is a continued problem. It’s very hard to get any writing accomplished when my mind is continually jumbled and I have a 2-year-old and 2 dogs vying for my attention. Doc T thinks I need to go to a neuropsychologist specialist because she’s out of ideas. Once again, she thinks this stems from the Chronic Lyme she thinks I have.

Migraines
I hate my head. I just want to remove it from my body. At this point I get migraines or headaches/neck aches of some kind EVERY SINGLE DAY. It’s incredibly demoralizing. The sumatriptan will usually kill the migraine, but I’m going through my stash quickly. My problem with acclimating to medication has also made it that I can no longer take Tylenol 3 with codeine or vicodin for pain. Oxycotin is the only thing that I know will work and that shit scares me. Doc T just upped my muscle relaxers so I’m taking double the dose I used to, but if today is any indication, that’s not going to work long-term. Again, Doc T thinks these problems treating my migraines stem from the Chronic Lyme. I was getting some massage for about a month or two, but I didn’t feel the 15-minute sessions were helping me and dragging Bella along was a hassle and made the experience extremely stressful.

Weight Loss
The upside of the medication roulette I’ve been playing is that I’ve lost 25 pounds. There was one weigh-in where I’d lost 28 pounds and I moved from obese to simply overweight, but I have since put a few pounds back on. I am unable to exercise with the demands of motherhood, chronic pain and the overwhelming heat of the summer, so I have taken to cutting my caloric intake. A lot. I know it’s bad, but other than my coffee in the morning, I usually don’t eat anything until dinnertime. I just don’t know what else to do and I’m so tired of the excess weight.

Mommy Groups
I’ve joined a bunch of things online so I can try to get together with other Moms in the area, but I have yet to attend anything. I rationalize that most of the gatherings take place during Bella’s nap time, but I’m also scared of meeting new people. Social anxiety is not fun and Bella is paying the price for it. She rarely gets to play with other kids and it breaks my heart that my neuroses are having this effect on her.

Fur Babies
The animals are all fine. Chloe managed to hurt herself a few months ago (probably jumping over the chicken wire fence around the garden) and we would up having to have surgery on her. It was weird having surgery on the dining room table, but I love that our vet comes to our house. He informed us when he was here that another feline patient had died and now Lou is at the top of the list for the animals he dreads working on the most. He turns into a Tasmanian devil when he’s getting examined. Otherwise the animals are all healthy, just desperately in need of being bathed. We can no longer afford to take Nemo to the groomers and Chloe didn’t like going anyway. Lou spends most of his time outside to avoid Chloe who still chases him even after 3 years. He comes in at night, but insists on being let outside early in the morning.

Random

  • Some guy just knocked on my door 20 minutes ago and asked if he could use the wheel lock key from my Jetta to get his car worked on. I gave it to him, but he just came back with it and it didn’t work. 😦
  • I took Bella to the beach with S about 6 weeks ago and she LOVED it. Hoping to go back with R so he can see how much fun she has.
  • I bought an Android tablet, but haven’t been able to use it as much as I would like because every time I try to do something on it, Bella is there like white on rice.
  • We haven’t used the pool as much as we would have liked this summer because it’s actually been too hot to be outside with a toddler.
  • R dropped my camera a few weeks ago, so I now have a new one with better resolution.
  • My folks lent us an A/C unit for our living room to take some of the pressure off the main wall unit that likes to freeze up frequently. Since we got it, the main unit hasn’t frozen up, which is very nice.
  • I went to NYC on Wednesday to see my cousin Kerri who is in town for BlogHer 2012. She had some good advice for me getting started and it was great to just hang out for a while.
  • I had a nice visit from my MIL and her sisters last Friday. It was great for them to see Bella. They brought along her cousin Regan who is only 9 months older than her, so it was fun to watch them play together.
  • Bella is REALLY loud. She doesn’t have much of an inside voice. And she’s hyped up like she’s been mainlining sugar all day when we actually don’t give her any (except what’s naturally occurring in fruits).
  • I went to see the Reading Phillies at the Trenton Thunder with S and D and it was AWESOME. I hope we get to do it again sometime soon.
  • K&K’s 4th of July bash was the standard excellent affair.
  • A friend in Canada found a toilet training book about “Queen Bella” and when I asked the publisher about getting a copy in the U.S., they sent it to me for FREE. Thank you Cold Water Press!!
  • Bella finally called me “Mommy” in the middle of May and finally called my Mom “Nanni” in July (she was already proficient with “Papa” and “Daddy”)
  • Bella is in the pool with Daddy and the Professor having a grand time at the moment. We will turn her into a fish I’m sure.

July Facebook Mom’s Group Posts Catch-Up

7/2 – Holy crap, Bella slept in until 7:30am. Maybe this clock is actually working. She was crying around midnight for a minute, but got herself back to sleep.

Holy crap is right. She had the poop of a lifetime at midnight and when she finally got up for the day, there was poop everywhere. Had to wash all her bedding, including her crib bumper and her poor hiney and vagina were still all red as of her noon diaper change before her nap. She insisted on sleeping in just her diaper for her nap.

7/5 Facebook post – Dogs were freaking out at midnight because of a bad storm and Bella was up at 5:30 because of poop issues. R and I are a bit tired. And of course Bella is behaving like an angel (yeah right)

Bella went down for a really early nap at 10am and is still sleeping. Forgetting about this morning though, in general I think the clock is helping her sleep in later.

7/6 Facebook post – It’s been a “we just bungie-corded the chairs to the dining table because Bella wouldn’t stop climbing them” kind of day. I am SO ready for my folks to take her tomorrow and they are gonna be SO unprepared for how bad she is right now.

I think she sees them often enough that she’ll act up for them too. Especially because they’re taking her out in public.

7/8 Facebook post – She wasn’t bad. She wandered around, but my nephew stayed with her. I asked my folks to keep her until after her nap, I’m not quite ready for Mommy duty yet.

7/9 Facebook post – Yeah, I was SO in need of the 24 hours without Bella over the weekend. She’s been testing her boundaries so much lately, I’m ready to scream. And I don’t mind if she falls or trips, but when she does stuff that could cause a dog to bite her… then I have a problem. (although I’ve calmed down a bit and I think Chloe senses it because she’s been better around Bella lately)

Doc T says they SHOULD have a soother until age 2 for SIDS prevention. Try again in a few months. Don’t beat yourself up. I’m weaning Bella back to just having hers for naps and bedtime. It actually makes her want to take her nap. SMH.

7/10 Facebook post – Trust me, Bella has pillows, blankets and stuffed animals in her crib as well as a regular bumper. Not sure why Doc T says 2, but it’s good enough for me. Means I don’t have to worry about trying to get her off the binkie for another 3 months. ;-P

7/12 Facebook post – We have been putting Bella straight to bed after her bath since Sunday night. The bath has been a bit later (7:30), but she’s in bed by 8pm. She’s been taking 30 minutes or so to fall asleep. Hopefully that time will lessen. She’s not complaining though. She still wakes up a little earlier than I’d like some days, but usually doesn’t start making a lot of noise until after 6:30.

Of course tonight it’s been an hour and I still hear her mobile going. WE’RE going to bed soon. I’d really like to think she was already asleep.

7/16 Facebook post – Yeesh. 7:20 and Bella is in bed already. She started getting really fussy and I asked her if she wanted to go “seepies” and she said yes. This probably means a pre-6am wake-up.

7/17 Facebook post – I just decided to flip Bella’s car seat around. Didn’t take quite as long as installing it the first time, but still not easy. But that seat ain’t goin’ nowhere.

7/18 Facebook post – I’m having one of those “I want to run from the house screaming” kind of days. I am a jungle gym, something to pull the hair on, something to completely ignore the requests from and the owner of a dog being pushed to its limits of tolerance.

And she’s apparently decided to skip her nap today. I’m ready to shoot myself. My Dad is busy at the Senior Center and Mom is in MA with her sister because my uncle had cancer surgery on Monday.

Longest day ever and she’s still making noise in her crib. She took a nap between 2:15 and 4:30. She was still driving Chloe (and me) nuts all evening. Then, she flipped out when we sat down for dinner and flipped out again around 7:30 for no discernible reason. I don’t know what’s up with her. Hopefully tomorrow will be better. For some reason, I’m just incredibly exhausted. I think it’s the constant stress over Bella and Chloe interacting. Chloe has been really good for a while now, but Bella put her head next to Chloe’s to try to snuggle the night before last and Chloe bared her teeth. <sigh>

And now she’s flipping out again. I sent R in.

7/19 Facebook post – Nope, she was up at 10:45pm and I had to sit with her for 20 minutes. It was a bit of a pain, but also a bit wonderful to hold her in my arms sleeping. She’ll be too big for that someday. I’m a bit tired today, but not exhausted.

7/24 Facebook post – My penalty for Bella sleeping in a little today is that she’s apparently going to be a brat all day. Yippee.

Well, I wasn’t able to get her down for her nap until almost 2pm. So the day was trying to say the least. This willful disobedience has got to stop.

I just hate when I ask her not to do something or to stop doing something and she looks me right in the eye and does it again. Grrr. It’s all annoying, but the improper treatment of the dogs gets me the most. Bella likes to point to the parts of your face (which is fine), but I’ve asked her hundreds of times to not do this to the dogs because sometimes when she points to your eye, she actually touches it.

I “tried” a timeout for the first time today, it did not go well. I moved her little blue seat to the corner by the front door and sat her in it and she immediately stood up. I tried to hold her in the seat and tell her to stay there and she just started screaming. I need to figure something else out. She’s so damn willful.

7/25 Facebook post – we had our final overnight diaper leak last night. i’m getting new diapers today. btw – bella pooped 4 times yesterday.

7/28 Facebook post – Bella is being a real joy today and even though she took a short nap yesterday and went to bed early, she still didn’t really sleep in. I’m not willing to go outside in this weather and apparently overnight our pool got cloudy, so A/C it is.

7/30 Facebook post – And tonight the role of “Mean Mommy” will be played by Me. I made Bella sit in her chair until she finished her broccoli and when she just started feeding to the dogs, I just let her sit there until I was ready to put her to bed early. She NEEDS to start eating vegetables again, this is ridiculous. But with as horrid as she’s been lately, this was especially hard. I had bought her some stuff at the Disney Store today and I put it in her closet for a time when she’s not being such a brat. It’s been a week now, I think I can safely say she has started the Terrible Twos early. Give me strength. All day every day is a battle of wills.

Bella has started the Terrible Twos early and I am slowly going insane. Discipline is tough, especially when she cries in response. But I am determined that she will not be “one of those bratty kids”. It’s exhausting fighting with her all the time, she is just as stubborn as I am and the pure definition of willfully disobedient. Send me strength everyone, I sure need it.

7/31 Facebook post – ‎”No” gets me one of two responses.
#1: screaming at full volume
and my personal favorite
#2: looking directly at me while she does exactly what I just told her not to do/to stop doing
It’s especially bad for M and me because they just don’t know how to act around the dogs and don’t listen when we try to teach them, so there’s the constant anxiety that the dogs will get fed up and bite them.

I know C, and I have snuck stuff into her food. But I was talking with my Dad yesterday and he reminded me that we were never allowed to not eat things. I remember that was true when I was a kid, but he said that even as a toddler I had to eat what was put in front of me. I’m not going to kowtow to her pickiness anymore. She used to eat broccoli, there’s no reason she can’t eat it again. I don’t expect her to eat every vegetable under the sun, but she needs to eat some.

FYI – I am making chicken quesadillas tonight and Bella’s will additionally have shredded carrot in them.

Bella is getting up early again (around 6am give or take 20 minutes). I’ve tried giving her shorter naps during the day, but it doesn’t change the fact that she will only sleep 9-10 hours at night. And if I put her to bed late, she still gets up at 6am. She doesn’t fuss to get out of her crib, but I can never get back to sleep after R’s alarm goes off at 5:20, between him getting ready for work and her babbling next door.

Bella was being a pain in the butt to the dogs today and Nemo nipped at her to tell her to back off. He’s going to actually bite her one of these days if she doesn’t start listening to me.

May Facebook Mom’s Group Posts Catch-Up

5/1 Facebook post – Apparently, every other night is a bad night in our current pattern. So tired.

Chloe had to be let out at 12:40 and Bella was up at 1:15 (luckily for less than a half hour). But I still don’t do well with interrupted sleep.

That is especially true with her Pooh bear and binkie… a delay in getting either of them on demand leads to complete meltdown.

Well, that wasn’t quite what I expected. Bella was being a fussy mess and we couldn’t decide between bath time or straight into her jammies so I let her run around naked for a while. She was standing on the small carpet next to R’s side of the bed and I notice she’s grunting and all of a sudden I see we’ve got poop coming. So I scooped her up and threw her on the toilet. She held onto me for dear life and cried, but she did poop in the potty.

Well, Bella had already pooped in the tub. ;-P We haven’t put the new toilet seat lid on yet that has the smaller, internal seat so she won’t feel like she’s going to fall through. That’s happening Friday.

5/2 Facebook post – Not the easiest night last night. Bella was up 3 times herself and Chloe was up even more. I let her out a few times, but she apparently came into the living room to vomit a few other times. Now that I vacuumed up the excess fur from the stress of the vet exams, washed bloodied towels from Chloe’s surgery and wiped down the floors, the rest of the day is gonna be pretty slow and low-key here.

5/4 Facebook post – Ditto, it’s nice just having Rod around so I’m not completely on my own all the time (even if he’s doing chores and I’m still watching Bella). We dressed Bella light tonight, her room was reading 79 degrees!

5/7 Facebook post – Bella is being a disaster today as well. I can’t wait until bedtime. Constant battles of wills and I refuse to give in… which means lots of screaming and crying (and Bella is upset too ;-p)

We’re starting to think Bella adjusted to DST and needs to start going to bed around 8pm or so instead of 7:30 if we want her to wake up after 6am.

8pm Monday night and what is R doing? Putting our mattress cover in the dryer. Why? Because against his better judgment he let Bella play on our bed (including getting under the covers) when she was butt-nekkid. That girl holds a lot of pee.

Bella was never really more than a 10-hour a night sleeper. She did 11 hours for a little while, but now she’s gone back. She does take monster 2-3 hour naps, I’m thinking of cutting them short (but I love her nap time with as cranky as she’s been lately).

5/8 Facebook post – 11:15pm – 2:30am? Are you kidding me Bella? After the day you had yesterday?  Today is going to be a bleary-eyed day, that’s for sure.

I hate *always* blaming it on teething. I think she’s just starting the Terrible 2s early. Also, I haven’t been giving in to her as often and trying to force her to use her words instead of pointing… a frustrating time all around. I don’t know why she kept waking up last night. She didn’t seem to be in pain. She was holding her Pooh and a blankie and had her binkie in her mouth, standing in the corner of the crib like she was just waiting for me to come get her.

I did. She went down at 10am, and fell asleep around 10:30 or so. I got up just after noon and took a shower and had time to make her lunch and pack stuff up to take with us when she goes to my massage appointment. Luckily, R texted me that he should be home early since they went out to lunch to celebrate a co-worker getting married next month. Kind of hard to relax and worry about Bella trashing the place, even if it is a 15-minute treatment.

5/9 Facebook post – So how long do you let a toddler have a tantrum when you know what they want but they refuse to ask for it or it’s something they’re not supposed to have? I feel Bella spends so much time screaming lately because I want her to use the words I *know* she knows (like Pooh) or she gets mad because I take her crayons away when she doesn’t use them at her desk but on the walls instead. I don’t want to be mean, but I want her to know that she needs to listen to me. I also feel like I default to MMCH too often just to get some peace and quiet. Anyone else struggling with this?

Bella is unfortunately hard to redirect. This is my go-to strategy, but if she wants something bad enough, there’s no deterring her. And the dog food and water issues are really frustrating as well, she just won’t leave them alone if she’s in a “mood”. And there’s the whole trying to not let her have Pooh or her binkie when she’s not sleeping… should I just let her have them to comfort her or keep encouraging her that big girls save Pooh and binkie for sleeping?

5/10 Facebook post – She’s more likely to want the binkie than Pooh, but she usually wants both. I’m trying to encourage Pooh more and binkie less.

Last night when Bella was having a massive meltdown right before bath time. I patted her butt, made her look at me and then hugged her until she started hugging me back. We hugged for like 5 minutes and she calmed down.

5/11 Facebok post – In-laws are driving 6 hours for a 6 hour visit of which Bella will be sleeping 2-3 hours of.

5/12 Facebook post – Tolerable visit. Bella was scared of them when she first woke up and wouldn’t even look at them and would only hug me. It give me an odd sense of satisfaction.

5/16 Facebook post – I’m here, I’m OK. Chipped cavity refilled yesterday, finally seeing pelvic doctor today and OB/GYN yearly tomorrow. Still feeling anxious a lot of the time though I’m taking a decent amount of klonopin. The depression is better, but not as good as I’d like. Sorry for the silence. Bella has been a terror most of the time too.

Bella has been going to bed later lately. She actually slept past 6am though, so I won’t complain too much.

Pelvic doc wants me to do some biofeedback stuff I can’t afford or just distract myself when I have to pee, hold off peeing as long as possible and work on my klegels (sp?) I have been feeling a bit better luckily, so we’ll see. She also gave me a recommended diet that might help. I see my standard OB/GYN tomorrow… fun, fun. I think at this point I’m more concerned with my mental health, the anxiety has been pretty unbearable, thankfully the depression is much more bearable.

5/17 Facebook post – A magical moment: I just went to pick up Bella from my parent’s house after a doctor’s appointment and Bella ran up to me saying “Mommy”. She’s never called me that before. <happy tears>

5/19 Facebook post – Yeah, Bella has been up at 6am or so and I need just a little more sleep than that. Plus, I just feel tired all the time and I think it’s the zoloft. So I can be depressed and hopeless or anxiety-ridden and sleepy. Awesome.

I’m going to force myself to sit outside around a fire with R and the Professor and listen to the Phillies while I consume wine or mead… no matter how tired I am.

5/21 Facebook post –  Bella was up at 6am, but I left her in bed until almost 7am. Wound up she had a breech, so now the laundry has begun.

BTW – I have NEVER found that bringing Bella to bed with us when she wakes up early ever does anything but make us more tired and let her use us as a jungle gym.

5/23 Facebook post – I let Bella “brush” her own teeth when I do mine and then near the end I let her brush my teeth with my brush while I brush hers with her own.

FYI – brushing her own teeth consists mainly of sucking on the toothbrush and occasionally actually brushing. Strangely, she asks to brush her teeth when I go into the bathroom for any reason.

yeah, I was taking the generic when I looked back thru my CVS records. I found online that some people take both, I proposed this to Doc T, still waiting to hear back. Thanks for asking your cousin!

I blended up some peas tonight and mixed them with rice and a little cheese and Bella did OK with them. Maybe I’ll finally start using that blender I bought to make baby food. ;-P She also ate her tandori lamb, she had been bad about eating her meat the two nights previously.

5/24 – Had a wonderful visit with the Crea’s. Finally met Tony. Ben and Bella had lots of fun playing and it was nice for Christina and I to chat.

5/26 Facebook post – Still can’t believe we emptied the entire attic of its contents yesterday and moved them to the rec room for sorting. R did most of the heavy lifting (pun intended). Today we’re getting the A/Cs in working order since our house has consistently been over 80 degrees for weeks even when the outside temperature doesn’t get out of the 70s.

5/27 – Bella didn’t really sleep much later with the air conditioner installed in her room

5/28 – Bella didn’t get to sleep until about 9pm, but she was willing to stay in her crib until 7am the next day.

5/29 – s’ok. a lot of cleaning and food prep and then monday seemed to go too fast. lots of migraines from the heat and i think i might be getting another one now. bella is still pushing my buttons a lot and NEVER listens when I call her name when she’s doing something she shouldn’t. I think it’s going to be a lazy day here, maybe a load of laundry and putting dishes away if I’m really motivated.

My mind is in chaos. I got a call today about a job interview Monday for a copy writing position. There is a daycare in the same complex, the salary is decent and the other benefits are good, but the thought of being away from Bella is heart wrenching. I really want to work from home, but when my current round of unemployment runs outs in August, if I don’t get any more, we’re in real financial trouble. My mind is just in turmoil.

And it’s not like I have an offer or anything, it just wasn’t a call I was prepared to get.

5/30 Facebook post – Bella was fine until we left the house, then she was a disaster. Into everything at my massage office, into everything at the deli I stopped at, into everything at my folk’s. She must have grown because it seems like she can reach everything now.

5/31 Facebook post – Bella will only shower with one of us if she doesn’t get her bath in the sink. I bought a mat the other day but haven’t used it yet. Will try tomorrow morning, we skipped her bath tonight and her evaluation is tomorrow.