Going through a growth spurt and breastfeeding has proved challenging. I am starving. I am always thirsty (and water doesn’t cut it!). And I am beyond exhausted. (It is past midnight and baby is sleeping. I should go to bed.) So tired that my eyes hurt. I have cried the past two nights. More so last night when Victoire was crying, hungry and I felt empty. Not one drop of milk would come out. And all I wanted to do was sleep. I can understand now why a mother in distress would go to formula! We eventually fell asleep and, a couple hours later, some more milk had come in and she was able to nurse. She actually ate A LOT last night. I am hoping that tonight will be a little easier than last night – but I feel fuller, even tensed so it should be. I was able to get support from some ladies on the French LLL Facebook page and it really helped. Who would have thought that something so natural would be so hard!?
Is there anything more discouraging than your children refusing to eat what you lovingly prepared for them? It is beyond frustrating and it’s been happening a lot lately. I sometimes feel super lazy to cook but I do because it is part of the job! And I am almost proud of serving her a nice home cooked meal (nothing fancy but still, I am not much of a chef!) until she says “na”. I say “Try it. It is yummy look…Hummmmm. Sissi do it!”. And she says “na” again. And I get so upset! She often ends up eating just dessert. And it drives me nuts! I was starting to worry and posted a message on Baby Led Weaning’s Facebook Page and was almost immediately reassured reading this:
“- Dont allow the situation to be stressful.
- It still doesn’t matter if your older baby or toddler doesn’t eat at every meal as long as they are still receiving their usual milk when they want it still doesn’t matter if your older baby or toddler doesn’t eat at every meal as long as they are still receiving their usual milk when they want i
- Keep offering a variety of foods.
- As your child gets older, they can help in the preparation of the meal. Children who are involved often eat more adventurously than those who aren’t.”
It also seems to be quite common at this stage. So I guess I will keep doing what I am doing and wait until she eventually outgrows it!
Victoire (1 month), Sixtine (18 months)
Three girls. Three pairs of feet. Three different personalities and routines, wants and needs.
When I became pregnant with Victoire, I often wondered how life would be like, looking after a 17 months old and newborn. I wasn’t so much worried about organization than how Sixtine would react to this change in our lives. I felt sad for my baby daughter thinking she would have to share her Mama, a Mama who could barely walk her to the park during a long, tedious pregnancy. I felt sad thinking she would have to be the “big girl” now, a big girl that was only so little…
I never really enjoyed being the eldest of four. My friends in school would call me “the little Mama” and that, I didn’t want for my daughter to have to go through. I wanted her to live her life and not worry about who was coming after. Or at least, not for some time. I guess I was projecting my own fears on Sixtine.
I had been dreading it for a week but one very early Monday morning, my husband had to go back to work after three weeks home (including one at the hospital for the birth of baby). When that day arrived, I had a good cry (I can’t-do-it-alone-sob-I-am-too-tired-sob-help-I-need-somebody-help), wiped my tears, got up and went. I nursed Victoire, prepared breakfast for Sixtine, got both girls ready, and one thing after the other, it was bedtime for Sixtine. I had mixed feelings at the end of the day: I felt both happy and proud, and at the same time I wondered how I would be able to do it for another week, month, year. But I realize now that children bring the best in you.
Looking after both of them day & night is extremely challenging – I find it hardest at meal times and at the end of the day, when we are all tired. But even then, it is much better than what I had envisioned.
Sixtine who I feared to be jealous and terrible, is actually very sweet to her baby sister, helpful, and generally well-behaved (as much as a 18-month old can be). She helped me change her sister this evening, holding wipes and diaper for me, and putting the dirty one in the garbage. She kisses, and strokes her sister’s head every single day, many times a day. She does sometimes walks on all fours (she has done that a few times now, since her sister has arrived), steals her sister’s soother, or jumps in her sister’s bed but I guess she is just showing her love. She loves her sister so she wants to be like her. She has also done a few cute things like putting a nursing pad under my shirt or hers. She’s also tried to nurse a couple times, asking then for a bottle of her own. (Oh yeah, and that one time when she told her sister not to scream with a threatening finger…I was in shock when it happened – it was the first time ever I heard her say “no screaming” (in French), let alone associate two words together.)
She loves her to pieces. The thought of it makes me really emotional as I can tell how happy she is to have a baby sister, even if she is still very small and doesn’t interact with her. I am so happy that we were able to give her the gift of a sibling. Now, I can’t say that it is all roses. I am extremely exhausted (as in major case of baby brain, and falling asleep for a half hour and waking up thinking it has been a full night already). I sometime forget to go pee or eat. I sometime feel like I am running a never-ending marathon. I haven’t blow dried my hair since Vic’s birth. I have very little time for myself until the night comes, and even then, baby Vic keeps me company. She is breastfed and we co-sleep. But I enjoy her company very much.
It has only been a month and I know there are more challenging days to come but this is how things are right now. I don’t think I can afford to worry about how it will be in a few months down the road. Let’s see how it goes tomorrow and make the most of it. It is much less scary that way!
She is here, and I am back. Before starting to blog again (I don’t know how realistic this is but I will give it a try), I would like to apologize for being a stranger and announce the birth of my new baby daughter, Victoire Callie. She was born March 25th, late morning. She is one month old, and three days today.
To keep it short, my daughter threatened to make an appearance at 24 weeks which made for a very stressful pregnancy. Fortunately, she was born healthy at 40 weeks + 2. Blogging in times like these wasn’t something I had the energy for. But I have missed it.
One month has passed since she was born. I feel that I can finally get back to it or at least try. It made me happy.
She slept through! After almost two weeks of waking up to play for some nights up to three hours a night, Sixtine slept through the night. I can’t tell you how exhausting those past two weeks have been…I was starting to lose it. Literally! Let’s hope it lasts!
This time around, I will take things as they come. I won’t read all the books, and the blogs, and the forums, and I won’t put too much pressure on myself, wanting to be perfect. This time around, I will ask for help earlier if I have troubles breastfeeding but I will also let it go without regret if it doesn’t work out. I won’t think of myself as a bad mother. This time around, I will love you, and give you my all, and that will be enough.
…just for clarification. I posted a somewhat subtle picture a few weeks ago but I received an email from a friend asking if I was actually pregnant so I thought I would clarify the situation for everyone. I am currently 14 weeks+ pregnant and I am due in March.
Now, as I type, I am recovering from a fever and I have what I think is the flu so excuse me in advance if I sound harsh but I guess being up all week with a sick baby (she is perfectly fine now – I am not) and trying to survive the everyday life I have been very sensitive too many things, in particular, the questions and comments some people have been making since the announcement of my pregnancy.
- I know – when Sixtine was born (even during pregnancy) I said I would never be pregnant again and I only wanted one child. For whatever reasons, people seem to think it is appropriate to bring it up again. How about Congratulations, how are you feeling? instead of I thought you only wanted one! Oddly, these comments only come from one side of the Atlantic.
- Back-to-back pregnancies. I was pregnant not too long ago and my baby is only 11 months. We found out we were pregnant when she was 9 months old. I feel that naturally, my already stretched belly picked up where we left off pretty quickly. I posted a picture of my cute belly and received a lot of: OMG You are so big or comments along those lines. How nice! In my defense, I would like to say that I haven’t gained a pound yet.
- I guess I didn’t need bullet points. I only had two main things to complain about.
I would also like to tell everyone that my house is a mess. And I have zero energy to do anything about it. It is really bad – but at the end of the day, I think if my baby is happy, entertained, fed, clean and rested, I have done an all right job.
Sixtine turned 11 months old today and said her first word (other than Papapapapa, Mamamama, and Bababababa which don’t really mean much). I asked her in French (I speak French 95% of the time) if she wanted her “tétine” (which is the French for pacifier) and she said with a smile: “téti” as I was handing it to her. She had never made that sound before and I was very proud of my little one!
Happy 11 months to my wonderful baby girl.