Friday, February 3, 2012

Neurotic Little Things

Part of welcoming a new baby into your home is purchasing all of the baby gear. You choose patterns and prints... Lions or monkey? Jungle or zoo?

You get delighted when you put your bundle of joy in the swing or bouncer for the first time but lately I have been zeroing in on all of the tags hanging from all the cuteness. Sure my son is mesmerized by the adorable blue elephant hanging above him. But perhaps he would enjoy it more if all those ugly tags weren't hanging out of the elephants butt. Or the lions next to him. What's with all the highly visible tags that rob these expensive pieces of baby gear from their cuteness they deserve?

Today I am cutting all the tags. The tags from the bouncer, the swing, the Playard, and anything else. It feels a bit renegade like cutting the tag off a comforter. However. I'm cutting them all. :).

Slightly neurotic? Definitely.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

So much for going green...

When preparing for the coming birth of my son, I decided to explore all of my baby-needs options thoroughly. When you are a first time mother, often you get hung up in reading reviews and pondering possibilities on all of baby's needs just to give in to the "norm" because it feels safer. The tried and true, so to speak. This time, I decided, I would do my research and be an advocate for my child's health as well as the planet. This time I would make green choices for rearing my baby.

I had decided I would attempt a VBAC completely natural using only the Bradley method for pain control. I would make sure breastfeeding was successful, since the last time was anything but. I would use cloth diapers through a service (because I certainly wasn't going to wash them!  We are talking green here... not crazy!).  Lastly, I would invest in the highest reviewed glass bottles to ensure the safety and health of my child.

You would have thought, being a second time parent that I would know better than to make presumptuous claims without having met my baby or tried any of the above.  But I am a mom... a warrior, right?  Wrong.  I'm a mom... I am fallible, and I live by trial and error.

Pregnancy this time around was very difficult, and in the last month you might even say miserable.  I found myself being the stereotypical pregnant woman on television.  There were a few bouts of crying and yelling at my husband that it was, indeed, his fault.  These bouts were usually followed by bouts of demanding he get the baby out NOW!  It wasn't until about 38 weeks that the doctor confirmed what I already knew: this baby was big.  At just 38 weeks he was measuring 8.5 lbs.  After a brief discussion with my doctor, I had let go of my perfect VBAC notions and agreed to a cesarean section.  A week later, he was born at 9 lbs 6.5 oz and 21 inches.  I think I made the right decision.  Shortly before his arrival, breastfeeding also fell of the plan.  This one was particularly hard for me and for a while, made me feel like less than a woman.  Occasionally... this feeling still catches me off guard.

Also, a week before baby showed up, our cloth diapers also made their appearance on our doorstep as planned.  I was excited and brought them into the house and began putting them away.  At first I was taken back by the fact that the diapers and the wipes were awfully worn and not pretty, shiny, and new.  It was at this point that I reminded myself that the point of cloth was for the baby's health as well as contributing to the saving of the planet and NOT to be a fashion accessory.  Fast forward to the birth of my son and being in the hospital.  I was using the provided pampers with much disdain, even though I remembered I loved their powdery scent.  I felt like I was cheating, and requested that my husband bring up some of our cloth diapers to use.  We used exactly two cloth diapers and realized that we had a hard time telling when he was clean or not, that the snaps were extremely inconvenient and difficult to use on a crying baby, and that we were both very uncomfortable using them.  It was at this point we packed the cloth diapers away along with our notions of not contributing to the landfill and decided to go back to Pampers.

Back at home we proudly used out vented glass bottles that the reviewers had assured us would reduce gas and spit up.  We used these for over a week while we switched formulas 3 times trying desperately to reduce our sons painful gas,  when my husband suggested it might be the bottles.  I was appalled at his accusation, until I noticed he wasn't latching onto them correctly.  I decided to try out a BPA free popular brand that was also vented and touted less gas and spit up.  This seems to have really helped him, and thus contributed to the death of another hopeful green initiative.  It was at this point the Luv's commercial came to mind, "Live. Learn. Get Luv's".  While I wasn't using Luv's it did remind me that nothing is predictable as a mother and that everything truly is trial and error.  Often we have a vision of how things should go and we have a difficult time letting the vision go.  In the end, our child decides whats best for them most of the time... the others, our experiences open our eyes.  I love the image of the natural birthing, breastfeeding, green diapering and feeding mom.  I adore these women.  The reality is... I am NOT one of these women.

Goodbye green, at least for now.