Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Best Friends

For the last few days, Naama was running a high fever so I kept her home from daycare. She really likes the daycare, so having her routine interrupted kinda sucked, but I thought she would be home for a day or two, but it ended up being like 5 days. Naama is teething, so in addition to the fever she's all mucusy and coughing. She refused to eat anything and only wanted to drink water or nurse. It was a bit hard on me because she only let me hold her in the nusing position even when she wasn't nursing. I took her to the doctor after a few days and he gave her antibiotics for strep, so now I can add the bumble gum tasting medicine to my home pharmacy collection! Let's see, shes now on tylenol, cough syrup, a mucus regulator that I think does nothing, and now the antibiotics! all of these medications come with their own syringe, so Naama takes the medications like a bird feeding through a dropper and she LOVES it! She also loves playing with the syringes.

After a few days of her not eating, I was desperate, and since she loved taking medication through a syringe, I had the brilliant idea of feeding her yogurt through one of the syringes. It worked like a charm for about 3 minutes! At 15 months, Naama weighs around 8 kilos (17Lbs.) so she really doesn't need to lose more weight, but I resigned myself to the fact that she wasn't going to eat and I just held her, comforted her and nursed her on demand, which of course meant very little sleep for me and my husband, but hey,welcome to parenthood!

For 3 days Naama stayed home alone with me. I didn't have help until the evening. Those 3 days were the most precious days and I will remember them for a long time. Even though Naama was still feverish, she was coming back to herself and she started eating a bit. During lunch, I played a few games with her and she fed me some of her food.  At one point Naama started spraying soup from her lips which made her laugh hysterically. I tried disciplining her about spraying soup, but her laughter was so infectious I started laughing hell with discipline! playing and laughing was way more fun! After lunch we played on her floor mats. Naama accidentally hit me in the face with a toy. When I said ow, she looked up and hugged me. It was the best feeling ever! My Naama is such a girl. She loves shoes and kept putting her little feet out so I could put them on. We walked hand in hand for a few steps and then returned to her mats. She picked up her hairbrush and instead of brushing her hair she brushed mine=) I have a feeling Naama will be my best friend when she's older.

After playing awhile, Naama started getting tired. She is so light that I picked her up, held her to me and walked with her down the hall to her room. I had never carried her before for fear that having her weight on me would cause me to lose my balance and fall. When I realized that I had just walked with Naama in my arms with her head resting on my shoulder with her little baby arms wrapped around me, I almost cried. It was the most deliciously warm feeling. Whenever I had to pick her up and carry her a short distance, I usually picked her up under her arms, holding her body away from mine as I carried her from point A to point B. It was cold, detached... I was getting something done. Holding Naama against my body as I walked with her was the complete opposite. I don't remember why I decided at just that moment to carry her against me for the first time and I only became aware of what I was doing once I set her gently down in her crib for a nap. I have carried her against me a few more times since then. It's so much easier than having to make sure the stroller wheels are wiped down and maneuvering the stroller through the apartment. Carrying Naama is also much better than having her crawl on a cold floor to get to her destination. It's weird because I'm so sure footed and careful when I'm carrying Naama it amazes me. It's almost like I'm two different people. On my own I fall. Holding her NEVER....thankfully. Despite this,I know carrying Naama isn't the safest thing to do so I still use the stroller to transport her around the apartment.

Naama is becoming very attached to me now. When my help arrived in the evening, Naama kept pointing to me instead of wanting to be with the mother's helper whom she knows well. We shared such a beautiful few days together that part of me didn't want to send Naama back to daycare. I know it's good for her to be around other children, but I wasn't ready to send her back. However with Passover fast approaching, I had to run a few errands today and I couldn't take her with me so I put her in the daycare. Naama had such a confused look on her face when I dropped her off. I felt terrible for leaving her but I physically wasn't able to take her with me to run errands. I promised to make it as fast as possible.

When I got home a few hours later, I was really tired...guess all the sleepless nights were finally catching up with me. I lay down for what I told myself was a half hour nap. Two hours later I woke to Doggie barking incessantly. I looked at my watch realizing I should have picked Naama up an hour ago! I threw on my clothes and ran to open the door for the mother's helper. As I was rushing out the door, a little girl came up to me and asked in Hebrew if I had any food products to give away. I was still half asleep and my mind was having trouble understanding her, so I told her to come back. Now in more of a rush, I raced through the park with Naama's empty stroller. I got a few stares from the kids in the park and I wondered if I had forgotten to put a piece of clothing on or something, but I quickly realized they were staring at me because of  my funny walk. Continuing towards the daycare, I saw the daycare lady standing outside holding Naama. I felt so bad and apologized for being so late. As soon as she saw me, Naama broke into a huge smile and pointed at me. I pointed back. I missed my tiny friend.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Different strokes

Today, like every Tuesday morning, I dealt with Naama on my own since my husband was out the door before the birds were even awake. I usually have help when I need it but 6:30-7am is a difficult time to ask someone to show up just to help me get Naama ready for daycare. I thought I had a great arrangement with a teenager who lives in my building but that just fizzled out, so lately I've been dealing with Naama on my own on Tuesday mornings and now that Naama is crawling and standing, caring for her is a lot easier. Naama is also becoming more aware that I don't do things the way her father does and she doesn't like that at all! When I go to take her out of her crib, the second she sees me with the stroller, she starts crying harder. She even throws her head back and points to our bedroom as if to say Oh no! Not you! I want my daddy! I think it's hysterical and I have to hold back a laugh every time she has her little fit.

This morning, while I sorted out a clean diaper and clothing, Naama's crying eventually slowed. She probably realized I was the only parent she was getting today and she would just have to deal with it. Usually I put her in the stroller after lifting her from her crib and I use the stroller to transport her around the house. Today I barely used the stroller. Every other morning, my husband brings Naama to our bed where I nurse her. Today I thought about wheeling Naama to the couch and nursing her there but quickly changed my mind. I wanted to nurse her in the rocking chair which is more comfortable. Even though the rocking chair is about 6 steps from her crib, I didn't want to walk her over. I've done it before, but this morning I didn't feel confident enough, so I just set her down on the carpet hoping she would crawl to me. The second I put her on the floor she started crying. I felt horrible but went to sit in the rocking chair hoping she would follow me, she didn't, but a quick flash of boobie got her crawling toward me real fast. After she was done, she was off my lap like a fire had been lit underneath her. Having to run after her, I didn't think about needing the stroller to transport her. I just grabbed a fresh diaper and clothes and ran after her. I'm not nervous about her getting into things she shouldn't because we have childproofed all the important things.

Naama crawled to our bedroom, which was perfect. I lifted her on to our bed and quickly changed her diaper. I'm always thankful she normally saves the messy diapers for when her father is home so he can help me if she gets squirmy and difficult to change. After that, I let her crawl to the kitchen where I sorted out her breakfast. She put up quite a fight when I tried putting her in the highchair which was unusual, but because I never know when Naama will decide to be difficult in transferring, I always have a chair behind me. After a few minutes of trying to get a hysterical Naama to sit still, I took her out of the highchair. She wanted to nurse AGAIN! She must be teething...afterward, I finally sat her in the highchair and fed her breakfast.

It was getting late and Naama and I were still in our PJ's. Since I just started working again, Naama started daycare full time and she LOVES it! Dressing Naama is never 5 minutes for me, although I am getting better. I had the brilliant idea of letting the daycare lady dress Naama. Why should I have to struggle when she can change Naama much faster than me?? After letting the baby play for a bit, I picked her up and put her in the stroller. Her cry sounded like I hurt her when I lifted her. I think I have to find a new way of picking her up. I lift her under her arms and always hold her away from me since I'm afraid I won't have the balance to hold her against me. Maybe my grip is too hard... I put her sweater over PJ's and we were out the door. I felt bad that I cut our playtime short, but she was so excited when we got to the daycare, so I felt much better about rushing her out of the house.

When I picked Naama up in the afternoon, we were very happy to see each other. She gave me a huge smile and quickly crawled to me. I picked her up, kissed her yummy baby cheek and put her back down so I could wheel the stroller into the room and put her in it. As soon as I set her on the floor she erupted into tears. She thought I was leaving her! I'd love to be able to pick her up and walk out with her, but I don't want to compromise her safety when I'm in a different environment. Thankfully Naama's tears stopped as soon as I picked her up again. Our situation is far from ideal but I think Naama is learning that mommy has to do things a different way and I take longer to do most things with her.

From the daycare, we have to walk through the park to get to our apartment building. Naama loves the slides and the swing, but I don't have the balance to slide her down the slide or put her in he swing, so I don't stop in the park, but I feel bad because I know how much Naama loves the park. Her father plays with her in the park and she always has a blast with him. My husband always washes Naama's hands with soap and water after coming home from the park or daycare. Since I can't hold Naama and wash her hands at the same time, I improvise by cleaning her hands with hand sanitizer.

My husband wasn't going to be home in time to bathe Naama, so I organized help beforehand. I can bathe Naama, but I can't carry her to the bath. Since Naama crawls everywhere, I thought about being able to get Naama into the bath on my own by just having her crawl to the bathtub and I'd just lift her in, but I nixed that idea because I don't want her crawling around naked=)

My limitations may be frustrating and confusing for Naama and sometimes I feel that Naama is afraid of me and may not love me, but tonight as I got ready to nurse, Naama erased all my doubts when she gave me delicious kisses and wrapped her little arms around me hugging me tightly. Knowing that Naama loves me despite my limitations is the best feeling in the world.