Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Do Not Put Them…

Yesterday, our ENTIRE day was taken up by THIS:


Okay, so not the entire day, just from 9:30 am until 5:00 pm. We got a couple of hours to ourselves.

Amaya asked me if she could go outside. Not 5 seconds later, she was screaming bloody murder.

I ran outside and she was dancing around, screaming, and holding her nose. I pulled her hands away, to which she bucked wildly, and I couldn’t see any blood or anything wrong so I just kept talking to her, trying to get the story.

“I put a bead in my nose…” she sobbed.

I dragged her inside and tried to look inside her nostril, but couldn’t see anything. She was fighting me like a mongoose. She kept screaming that it hurt, but I really could not see a thing. I said, “What color was it?”

“ORANGE!” she wailed.

So I figured she was telling the truth. And she knows her colors.

While she screamed in the bedroom and hid from me because she did not want me to touch her nose, I looked up how to remove objects from a child’s nose. None of which worked.

Jake came home and tried closing one nostril and blowing into her mouth, CPR style, but that didn’t work either. (Thanks a lot, google.)

We called the doctor, and Jake took her. He came back 2 hours later totally frustrated and said bead was still in said nose. Apparently she was acting like a crazed demon and fought everyone. Jake had to use all his strength to hold her down and the nurse held her legs. You know Jake’s not a weakling, right?

Meanwhile the doctor stuck things up her nose to try to get the bead out, which they could barely see, but said it was definitely in there. The doctor also made jokes about sending her to Amsterdam where they give drugs to children. He didn’t want to deal with her anymore and sent them away.

Hmmm. This is where I’m glad I did not pick this guy as our regular pediatrician.

His secretary was golden, however, and she called all over the island to get us an appointment with an Ear Nose and Throat Specialist. She got one for the next day, which of course was not acceptable for me, but still kept calling around trying to find someone for the same day. I called everyone I could find on the internet in the area and was surprised when one ENT actually answered his own phone and explained very thoroughly and convincingly why he would never treat a patient for that in his office, mainly that children are usually out of control when this happens and he would rather be in an ER where they could be sedated in case he accidentally slipped and pierced the brain or pushed the piece down where it would be aspirated into the lungs. He prefers to play it safe, he said. He said we should take her to the ER and they would call a specialist in if needed.

So I was freaked out by that point and called a few more doctors. Did you know that every doctor on Oahu takes lunch between 12 and 2 pm? Maddening.

The secretary from the first doctor called us back and said she found someone who would see Amaya if we could get there before 4:30. It was about 2:50 at that point so Jake jumped in the car and I planned to follow after I fed Mozely and grabbed stuff. Did I mention that my mom was leaving on the plane that night? We planned to take her down to the ER at Kapiolani if the doctor couldn’t get it.

Jake barely got there in time because of traffic. Literally about 2 minutes before 4:30. I showed up about 10 minutes later and I could hear her screaming from the hallway outside the doctor’s offices. She just kept screaming that she wanted to go home and it didn’t hurt anymore.

Yeah. She was very convincing.

I walked in just as the doc put a nostril widening device and swept out the bead with a pokey device.

It took about 10 seconds. And, boy, is that ENT worth every penny. And I want to buy those devices. Just in case.

I told Amaya about 50 billion times to never do that again. That’s usually how many times it takes to make sure she doesn’t do something again, so hopefully it sticks. I don’t want to plant the idea in her mind but I wish I could tell her not to do that to Mozely.

I did catch her putting a quarter in Mozely’s mouth the other day. Should I be worried?


Amaya was so happy to have that thing out of her nose. She was back to her normal only partly wild self. And we still made our dinner reservation before taking my mom to the airport.

We are such pros at being parents.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

It’s 3:35 am

A lot can happen at 3:36 am. Everything except sleeping.

A baby can be spitting, grunting, crying, hissing, mewling and pissed since 2 am.

He’s been fed (twice), binkied, swaddled, comforted, patted, changed and ignored.

Gas happens. And then that other thing comes 2 hours and other swear words later.

Every. Night.

Only at night.

Ok, so it’s only happened 3 nights in a row now, but can you blame me if it feels like


It’s 3:48.

Thursday, August 26, 2010


Forgive me for pulling a Seinfeld here, but

What’s with bras?

Let’s take 2 very sensitive parts of flesh and encase them in metal and fabric but not in the shape of that flesh, actually, more like how that flesh should look if you’d gotten them surgically enhanced. Let’s also make that fabric very scratchy. And the straps thin and hard.

4 years ago I had enough milk to feed a small country. Or at least an island. Definitely enough to feed a chunky baby who ate every 2 hours and preferred milk over food any day. I definitely fed a few friends’ babies with the extra in my freezer. Plus a lot of overflow that stained our sheets, the carpet, 2 chairs, all my shirts… (Milk, it turns out, is like the worst staining thing ever.) I went through a box of nursing pads every 4 days. When people say nursing is cheaper than formula I wonder about this.

So this time I am determined to keep it in check. I wear my bra all the time. For some reason it helps. I wonder if they have a shower bra, because I do think I need it in there, too. I’m like Tobias. A never nude.

But, OH! My tender flesh-es are angry with me. On top of being sore, they scream to be free. I’d like to let them out, but I know they are not going to stay disciplined. They are like Amaya running out the door at 6 in the morning because she knows she is not supposed to, but she has to because she wants to.

At least, unlike Amaya, they don’t know how to unlock the door yet.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Hair Cut

IMG_8905 I took Amaya to get her hair cut. This is her 2nd official hair cut at a salon.

But this time there was a lot of weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth. I imagined we were in some movie version of our lives as she gripped the arm of the waiting chair for dear life as I attempted to bring her to the stylist’s station.

She bucked wildly and whipped her head around as much as possible while screaming and crying for the entire 10 minutes it took to cut her hair.

We tried sternness, time out, and threats. Then we moved pretty quickly to bribery.

“I’ll get you shave ice!”

“I don’t WANT shave ice!”

If this kid does not want shave ice, this is a seriously traumatic experience. I was totally mortified. The stylist sighed several times and tried to work around my arms as I held her down and tried as much as possible to cut Amaya’s hair straight.

When Jake saw her afterwards, he said, “It doesn’t even look different.”

I tell you, I don’t care. Even if she looks like Cousin Itt from The Munsters, there is no way we’re going back until she’s a lot older.

Like 23.


Sunday, August 22, 2010

Old Men

Is it really just size that makes old men seem pathetic and babies seem cute?
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Friday, August 20, 2010

Big Sis

IMG_8907 Amaya’s been pretty good at being completely ignored these days.

She wakes up at 6am, unlocks the back door, and goes over to see Nana without even saying a word to us.
She sang to herself in her room this morning: “Twinkle, twinkle little star… How I wonder Farmer Dell.” That verse was immediately followed without pause to “All the single ladies, all the single ladies… dum dum dum dum dum dum put a ring on it…” Which may be the actual words to the song.

She even initiates her daily alphabet lesson because she knows she can’t watch a show until she does it, and she’s realized that we aren’t making sure she gets that in anymore. She runs to us and says, “What letter do you want me to draw?” and we say a bunch of letters and then she erases them before we can come check on how they look. But really, she’s doing much better with letters. Jake listened to a podcast and told me that she has good episodic memory but not good semantic memory. I’m not exactly sure what that means, but it sounds like this:

I show her the word “rat” after we’ve done every word I can think of that rhymes with cat. She understands what rhyme is and can clearly see that I keep only changing the first letter.

“Amaya, what word is this? Sound out the first letter.”

“Ummmmm…. huh, huh, huh…” (she’s sounding out the “H” sound)… “BOOK.”

So we still have a ways to go.

She likes little Mozely, although she did tell someone that we gave him away because he cries too much, and when someone offered her a trade in, baby for a puppy, she immediately ran to us and let us know we could have the greatest deal ever.

She didn’t cry when we said “No,” though

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

19 Days Later

IMG_8823 A lot of people who know me and the problems I had last time have asked, “How is nursing going?” I think that it’s hard to answer this question without going into some unpleasant details and using the n word. The one that rhymes with ipple.

So I think I’m going to answer, from now on, “Crunchy.”

Because that really is the perfect adjective in this case. And I’ll leave it at that.

I nurse for 10-12 hours a day. Nursing is like the most boring possible activity for me. I can’t read or even watch a foreign film because the former requires the use of my hands and the latter the use of my brain. I have to constantly keep an eye and both hands on the baby, who has the same condition his sister did, which is “woodpecker on crack with no aim” when he is nursing. I can only watch extremely obvious and lame shows with very tidy and repetitive plots. Case in point: I’m currently watching the first season of Prison Break. I already watched the first season of Lie to Me and The Unusuals. We watched Green Zone (which, if you’re not familiar with it, is an action movie) last night and Jake had to keep pausing it to tell me what was going on.

I drive to Kailua for the doctor, the lab, the hospital at least 3 times a week. I hate driving. Almost as much as Jake hates accompanying me on these drives.

Nature has decided that the best way for you to be a good mother is to wake you up after sleeping for 45 minutes several times a night so you can be psychologically beaten down.

Isn’t it weird that all of this still doesn’t interfere with how much you can love that baby?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

4 year olds are Giants

IMG_8607 Lately Jake and I have been exclaiming, “Amaya’s hands are huge!” and her feet, and her legs, and her head. She suddenly seems like a giant. She was sitting on my lap and I thought, “When did her butt get so big?”

Mozely’s butt is so little the newborn diapers just slide on down.

I was still calling her “baby” but I think I’m going to have to stop that now. When I was putting on her night time diaper (yes, because otherwise I will be changing those sheets every night) I felt like I was putting a diaper on an adult baby. Feels weird.

She’s also become so imaginative. Compared to the blank eyed newborn stares she seems like a full on real person.

Here’s a story she made up recently. Jake transcribed her words in her little notebook.

“There is a rhinoceros  named Mushroom. he is a very big giant mushroom. Everybody is afraid of him. The only ones who are not afraid of his are his parents because they are giants too.

Everybody is afraid of giants because they are big and dark. Did you know that?

Mushroom and his parents played a game they called “doggie catch.” You play doggie catch by pulling back a tree and letting it go so it will smash into another tree. Then the other tree falls down. That is doggie catch.

Mushroom’s neighbors the Nicebears wanted a new house but they couldn’t knowck down the old one because it was a monster house. Every time they tried to knock it down it tried to eat them.

One day Mushroom and his Giant parents were playing doggie catch… again. Mushroom pulled back the biggest tree he could find and let it go. That tree knocked over the old stinky mango tree. Yeah. The Nicebears did have a stinky mango tree and that tree was next to the monster house and when Mushroom’s big huge tree knocked down the stinky mango tree it smashed right into the monster house. Nicebears were happy and for the first time they were glad to have big dark giants for neighbors.

So they built a new house and made a little card for Giant Mushroom and his huge parents because it was their birthday… which is today.

It’s done.”

Bestseller material, fo’ sho’.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

A Labor(ious) Story

IMG_8644 I’ll try to give you the short version:

My water broke at 11pm. We were watching “Lie to Me” which I like but Jake doesn’t. I was just telling people that day that I wanted to wait until July 30th or later to have the baby, even though everyone always assumes that you are ready to pop and that drives me crazy, especially when they say, “Any day now!” My doc said Mozely probably popped my bag with his long fingernails. They were seriously long.

(Hey, I said I was going to try. Did you really believe me? I won’t mind if you just scroll down to see the pictures.)

Anyway, we were watching the show and lounging on the bed and I heard a pop. 2 pops. My immediate thought was that Mozely had banged his head on my pelvis. I was imagining brain damage.

Then I said, “I think my water just broke.”

“You think? Or it did?” Jake asked.

I kind of shuffled off the bed and held my legs together and went to the bathroom and sat on the toilet where a gush of water just fell in the bowl. I still was in denial and stood up thinking I just couldn’t hold my pee in anymore. When I stood up another gush came down my legs.

I came out of the bathroom. “Yes. My water just broke.”

We began making a bag to take to the hospital. I really had not prepared even a little for this possibility despite the fact that I was 39 weeks along. We sort of threw it together quickly thinking we were going to have to leave right away.

Then I looked in my Bradley book and realized that only 15% of people have their water break before they go into labor, and the people that do, a lot of them don’t go into labor immediately. If you waited for your labor to start naturally, it might even take another week or more.

That kind of freaked me out. I decided to go and lay down and try to sleep and thought maybe we would have to go to the hospital in the morning. I was trying not to think about pitocin and hard labor and all that. I didn’t sleep, but I lay in the Bradley deep relaxation pose and practiced breathing.

At about 1 am I started feeling contractions. A little after that I told Jake to come in and start timing them. They were about 10 minutes apart and didn’t hurt very much. Suddenly they were hitting about 5-6 minutes apart so I was scared of waiting to go to the hospital. We called Robin and Scott, Scott came over to stay with Amaya and we went to the hospital.

In the car I tried to breathe deeply and Jake told me to breathe deeply and relax but I cheated a lot and gripped the seat. Sometimes the contraction never let go completely and I didn’t get rests in between but the peaks seemed like they were 3 or 4 minutes apart. It takes an hour to get to Castle hospital.

We got there at 3 am. Jake started to stop in front of the emergency room but I told him that the labor center was on the other side and I realized we had not done any pre-check in stuff or anything and would I even be able to have my baby here?

I started re-thinking the Bradley method and re-thinking having an epidural when I had a contraction on the walk into the birthing center. I tried to look normal when the nurse was asking who my doctor was and about my contractions but inside I was screaming, “JUST LET ME IN and LET ME SIT DOWN!” Since I had 2 contractions just standing there they decided not to take me into the room where they check you first to see if you are really even having your baby and just check me in to a room.

They got me undressed and I could tell I was starting to not care about what I looked like or what I was doing and they checked my cervix and told me I was at a 5.

I was pretty much ready to cry when I heard I was at a 5. I thought, WHAT?! I can’t keep doing this. Last time I was at a 5 (with Amaya) it took like 4 more hours to get to a 6 and I lost all my nerve by the time I got to a 6 with her (and it still took 8 more hours after that to get to a 10).

I said I wanted to go to the bathroom and had about 5 contractions in the bathroom so I couldn’t stand up or do anything even though I just wanted to go back to the bed. The nurse said, “Does it feel good to have your contractions on the toilet?”

Uh, NO. NO it does NOT feel good to have CONTRACTIONS. Not in a bed, not on a toilet, not walking down a hall, it does not feel good to have contractions, Sam-I-Am, not at ALL.

I was still biting my lip and maintaining some human decency, however.

They got me back to the bed (I had been at the hospital for about 20 minutes) and I said on the way to the bed that I wanted an epidural, now, and the nurse assured me that I could do so and took my blood, telling me that it wouldn’t take too long to run the tests and get the anesthesiologist in here—probably half an hour.

WHAT?! 30 minutes sounded like the longest time of my life. I was thinking, “That is at least 10 contractions.” 10 contractions sounded like the end of my life.

I was pretty upset and I was hating the fetal monitor thing but I was having a hard time making myself as assertive and demanding as I had planned on being. Instead I asked her to check my cervix again because I was having a lot of low pressure.

She said, “Honey, I just checked you.”

I asked her to check it again anyway.

She said, “I will if you want me to. I just checked you 20 minutes ago and you were at a 5. The only time it’s too late to do an epidural is when we don’t have enough time before you deliver.”

I said I wanted her to check me again.

She did. Then she immediately stood up and turned on the baby warmer thing and started moving around quickly and the other nurses in the room took notice and started moving too.

I asked Jake, “What did she say I was at?”

Jake said, “Uh, she didn’t say.”

I called out to her, “What am I at?” right before the next contraction hit.

“You’re at a 10. You’re fully dilated. We’re going to have a baby very soon.”

I was so relieved, but realized, I wanted to push. Right. Now.

You know what? Those b*st*rds would not let me push. I was pretty pissed at them.

“No no no no no, it’s not time to push, we want you to breathe deeply,” Nurse #1 said.

“No no no no no, breathe deep. Don’t push. Just breathe,” Husband #1 said.

“You know, we’ve all delivered babies before, if you really want to push you can,” Nurse #2 said.

I liked Nurse #2. But couldn’t say so, because I was whimpering and breathing and clutching and telling everyone I wanted to push and trying to actually stop my body from pushing with all of its might. Why I was doing that, I have no idea. I really just wanted to push.

I can’t describe it. My entire body was just bearing down and shaking with pushing and trying not to push at the same time but it was impossible to stop. I felt like my entire bottom half was going to burst open.

Jake just kept holding my hand and telling me not to push even though I was secretly pushing a little bit even though I felt like I could not push a little and I felt extremely guilty for not holding to the Bradley method where naked women lay on their sides with pillows cradling all the parts of their body and just breathe deeply through contractions and talk about labor as hard work but no pain.

HA! I was having pain. I was not a good student. I was also realizing that pushing was going to hurt really really badly, and was it really really too late to have an epidural and avoid feeling like a cantaloupe was going to break open my perineum?

The doctor showed up 15 minutes later, suited up, and finally let me start pushing. The nurses were extremely surprised at how fast he showed up but all I could think was, “WHAT?! You thought I was going to wait longer than that?”

When I pushed, I screamed. I screeched and shut my eyes tight and tried to scream louder. Part of my brain was watching myself and thinking, “Is that YOU screaming? You don’t even scream. I don’t think you’ve ever actually screamed.” I totally kept my eyes closed and they told me I was so close but I was just concentrating on screaming louder so they could understand just how much I was hurting, mostly. I’m sure I woke up the whole birthing center.

Mozely was born at 4:12 am. He was slippery and felt very jumbly. He didn’t cry much. I had probably taken it out of him.

The doc stitched me up and I was wimpy about that. I felt extremely grateful that I was at a hospital and not at home with a midwife because he could numb me up properly for that. Plus I had bleeding issues and my uterus was not contracting the way it should and that led to lots of different medications (pitocin wasn’t enough) and at least a day’s worry over it.

Jake and I had some discussion over whether we should have a Z or an S in Mozely’s name. Jake and the other Z voters won out and now we have a pretty perfect little boy. He’s a  good sleeper (except in his own bed) and he actually does just hang out sometimes with his eyes open without crying. That was a totally new one for us.

He’s still jaundiced and his eyes are very yellow. I like to be paranoid, as Jake says, but I’m definitely taking him to the doctor again about it tomorrow. I guess just because he’s #2 doesn’t mean I feel any more confident.

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