Thursday, February 28, 2008

I Just Can't Get Enough

Looking back at my previous update, I realized that it was still mostly about last week. I suppose it's a little bit hard to write an interesting entry about a ho-hum sort of week filled with nursing and laundry. But in case you just can't get enough, I'm giving you a double-header today. (Here's your cue to feign excitement and cheering...)

I am proud to announce that I have finally abandoned wearing all maternity clothes for more than two weeks now. Since I gained 10 pounds less with this pregnancy than I did with either of my previous two, I expected that the trek back to pre-maternity clothes would have concluded somewhat more quickly, but alas, that was not the case. Yes, comfort does come before self-respect at this stage in my life, but even the inducements of comfort have been overcome and I have at last returned to the class of the somewhat self-respecting.

After much procrastination, I finally got all of my clothes out of storage and diligently tried all of them on to find which ones still fit and look nice. I discovered that even if you make great efforts to control its effects, pregnancy does mean, terrible things to your body. And if those ravages weren't enough, nursing finishes off any remaining vestiges of trimness you may have had. What have I done to go from being basically at my goal weight to being large on top and bulgy on bottom? Oh yeah, I had a 10 lb. baby. So basically, most of my clothes "kinda fit" at best or pretty much look like they belong to someone else. I'm sorry to rant, but being post-pregnancy and nursing just takes all the fun out of trying on, wearing or buying clothes... there just aren't many things that are flattering and slimming to my current figure: all previous good points have been obliterated and bad points have been accentuated. I guess having children isn't for the faint of heart.

This is very frustrating and discouraging when I have been making great efforts to eat healthy. This isn't always easy when I'm nursing and have a bottomless pit for an appetite. My latest kick is steel-cut oats with bananas and walnuts for breakfast and brown rice with cheese and a huge bowl of veggies for lunch. It seems healthy enough... After all, it could be Lucky Charms or Doritos and cookies. So why, if I am I eating healthy and passing on the opportunity to devour half a box of Girl Scout cookies, is my weight and figure stubbornly stuck in exactly the same place? I'm trying hard to find a balance-- I do still need to eat when I'm nursing-- but I'm getting irritated. (OK, fine, you don't need to point out that exercising regularly for the first time in almost a year would be a good place to start.... one step at a time.)

In good news, Jackson is becoming a great eater. He is gaining weight nicely-- he seems to be getting bigger every day. His baby acne and cradle cap are gone. He has recently discovered that his hands belong to him and that with great effort and concentration he can make them flail and hit things. He practices this by randomly flailing his arms into you when you hold him. He loves to lay under his "play gym" and bat at the toys. He is getting pretty good at holding his head up... we have very few remaining episodes of "the crazy head:" when he balances for a second and then swerves every which way before bashing into your shoulder. Whenever he is happy he gets really smiley-- he has the best smile and an infectious giggle if you can make him laugh. He has decided that he does not like to be held inward. He loves to be held, but it has to be facing out where he can see everything that's going on. I'm so sad that he's losing some of his beautiful baby hair. Now he has a few long spots left with mostly shorter hair.

So our week has been pretty tame, filled with the usual nursing, laundry and occasional load of dishes (let's just say paper plates are my friend). This week Monday dawned and we were out of veggies, milk, bread and eggs... time for the highlight of the week: the exciting trip to Costco!!! After nursing Jackson and picking Camryn up from preschool, we headed out to attempt the challenge. Jackson still does not like his car seat, but we have found a way around it: I have Camryn feed him a bottle in the car while we drive. Problem solved!! I was feeling quite clever by the time we arrived at Costco with a happy baby and a 4-year-old who only needed a hot dog and lemonade to be good for an hour. Yes, I think I am learning something and getting better as I go.

I had a list and I stuck to it, nearly zooming through the aisles with efficiency and ease, deftly adding items that were coupon discounts as I fed Jackson the rest of his bottle. See, this isn't so bad. You just have to know how to go about it. But somewhere in between the canned goods and the clothes, it started to fall apart. I made the mistake of trying to look at some shirts (to get something that will actually fit me) and Camryn started saying, "Mom, I really need to go to the bathroom." "No, you don't." "Yes, I do! I really need to go! I'm going to pee my pants!" Abandoning everything except purse and baby, I whisked her off to the restroom. After this short detour we returned to our shopping only to hear from Camryn a few minutes later, "Mommy, I need to go poop now." Jackson, who had been starting to fuss, almost on cue started to cry. By the time we got near the checkout lines, his cry had evolved into an all-out wail. "Camryn, you're just going to have to wait until we get home," I said as I tried to find a line less than 3 people long.

I pulled Jackson out of his car seat and attempted to calm him. Jackson, thinking he would get fed, was temporarily calmed until he realized that I was just holding him off, at which point he started screaming. I had been trying to stick to my list, but somehow a Cinderalla sweatsuit got thrown in our cart for Camryn with only the briefest qualms about it being a marginal-looking outfit plastered with cartoon characters. I tried giving Jackson the empty bottle, which worked for about 30 seconds until he figured out that this too was a ruse to keep him quiet. By the time I reached the checkout and tried to load our groceries on the conveyer belt, Jackson was wailing and screaming at the top of his lungs. Some kind woman behind me came up and helped me load the groceries as I held him and tried to calm him down. Finally, with no self-respect left anyway, I threw my jacket over my shoulder and nursed him standing up in line at the checkout. It didn't matter that I bought multiple things that weren't on my list or that I couldn't find my wallet in less than 3 minutes (it turned out to be sitting in the baby car seat): he wasn't crying anymore and my brain was starting to operate again. Who would have thought that you could check out of Costco, hand over coupons and sign a credit card, all while nursing a baby?

As I was standing there in line, I thought, "This would be the perfect idea for a game show.... Have men go to Costco with a child and an infant: Can you make intelligent purchasing decisions while juggling a screaming baby and whining 4-year-old saying she needs to go potty? How fast can you load items on the conveyor belt and find your wallet while simultaneously feeding the baby? Can you get through with the smallest number of treats or bribes? Don't drop your sling, diaper bag, wallet, purse or receipt. Don't forget which items you had coupons for." I'm telling you, it's the next big hit.

Well, luckily for us, we don't have to go to Costco all the time. And while we may not have Phoenix-quality weather, it has been warm for the past few days. On Tuesday afternoon we went to "the Spiderman park" (dubbed so by Jared because of the web-like climbing structure) followed by a trip to Target. The trip to Target would have been remarkably fast except that Jared found a quarter in his booster seat and so spent the entire time we were at Target looking for something- anything- that was 25 cents or less. Unfortunately the cheapest item at Target is 50 cents, but he did find a Snoopy car with candy for $1.33 and tried to talk me into buying it for him and letting him pay me back. I was slightly put off by the fact that he seemed to be looking for anything to spend money on, so I told him that if he still wanted it the next time we went to Target, then we could get it. Jared did not appreciate my sound logic and good parenting and let me know by whining about it and trying to convince me for 15 minutes straight and then the entire time we looked at pants for Camryn. (Wait-- doesn't he remember that I'm the cool mom who bought him the Transformers bedspread? How quickly we forget!) So today I had the good sense to avoid stores entirely and we spent the afternoon enjoying the nice weather at the park around the corner. If only the good weather would last forever... but it's Portland, so you know you can only count on it being sunny after July 5th. =]


Quotes of the Week:

Jared: "Mom, you know the magic set they have at Target? It's not a piece of junk like you said. A friend in my class has it and it's really magic! You can wish for whatever you want and you really get it. So please mom, can I get it?"

Camryn: "I didn't wake Jackson up. I just touched him and he was already awake."

1 comment:

Suzie Petunia said...

You know you have really "arrived" as a mother who can handle anything once you've nursed a baby while loading a conveyor belt full of Costco purchases. :) Though I've never done it myself, somehow I know the feeling. Sometimes I feel like the entire store is looking at me and my kids while shopping. We're like a traveling circus. You sound like you handled it all with grace and dignity. Well done!

And when you're ready to start that exercise program, just meet us at the Y parking lot at 5:30 am. :)

P.S. But you look great!