Thursday, May 20, 2010

Outgrowing toys...

Apparently Sophia's PT is helping. Dan called today to say "we're in trouble with Soph." First, he needs to learn that is NOT the appropriate thing to say when I answer the phone, since a mom's mind can wander...

She was sitting in her bouncy seat, lifting all the way up into a stomach crunch, and whacked her head on the bar at her feet where we turn the seat on/off. Nice ab strength, girlie:) Yesterday, she reached up and grabbed one of the flowers that hang/spin from her swing, and almost broke the motor in the swing. Luckily, the flowers are detachable, but who knows how much longer she'll be able to use it. We've also starting buckling her in the swing. Up until now, she's just sat in it, somewhat contentedly. I have a feeling all that is about to change.

So, everyone seems to be recommending the Jumperoo. I really wanted to avoid another large bulky toy, but it seems if we want to "contain" her in any way, shape or form, we need to get another piece of baby gear.

Also, I think she might be GROWING (in length). She just seems to have grown longer over the last few days. We started using size 2 diapers last night.

In food news, I totally agree with the comments about making the cereal more runny. I have done that each time, getting more soupy each time. Last night, I think she actually swallowed a bit of it, but who really knows. I'm going to start a veggie on Saturday, and am excited about that!

Her sense of touch seems to be heightened over the last week or so. She constantly is rubbing her fingertips, almost scratching, on whatever happens to be close. She scratches the wall when we are changing her, rubs the sheet when she is in her crib, etc. It's really cute. Also, she now realizes that she can hit two things together and they make a noise. Example: this morning before I left for work she was hanging out in her crib, playing with her links (she LOVES those things!), and banging them against the side of her crib.

Monday, May 17, 2010


What started like this...
ended like this...

I gave in. I knew I would. Sophia got her first taste of rice cereal this weekend. Dad did the feeding and I did the video-taping. I TRIED to upload the video but it takes hours. What am Idoing wrong??? It's in HD, is that why it takes forever?? This picture is just a still shot of the video, so thankfully I'm able to do that.
The verdict...she didn't like it. She didn't NOT like it. In all honestly, I'm not sure if she swallowed much of anything. And who can blame her? It smelled like cardboard to me. Any experienced moms want to give me advice? I tried again on Sunday, with the same result. I was planning on introducing a new food each Saturday, but I'm not sure if I should keep up with the rice until then? Or just stop and wait until Saturday and try a fruit? The good news is, she didn't mind the spoon being in her mouth. Dan was holding it so gently that she ripped it out of his hands and was just hanging out with it hanging out of her mouth. Very attractive:)
And, just because...I took this last weekend because she just looked SO sweet and peaceful. You'd think the harness would bother her, but she's so used to it, it's truly not a big deal to her. And yes, that is a flannel sleeper. Our condo gets cold at night.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Physical Therapist

Can I just say that I love the physical therapist? I liked the one last time too, but this one really got down and played with her. Last visit was mostly evaluation so maybe that's why there was a difference. Anyhoo...the PT (Nicole) is very pregnant, with a cute little skinny stick body and a big bump. I think this is the first time I've seen a pregnant woman and not felt jealousy, not a hint of it. Don't get me wrong, seeing her made me *want* to be pregnant again, but not jealous because she was pregnant and I'm not. I think that's progress.

Sophia spent at least 15 minutes on her tummy. Nicole probably thought we were nuts b/c Dan and I had just told her how she HATES tummy time. She taught us a "pull to sit" excercise that we'll be doing also. She said SOphie is doing great with grabbing her toes, which means her abs are strengthening nicely. She taught us a "game" of putting a link or two on Sophie's toes and encouraging her to grab at them.

I got the courage to ask about the flat spot. She said it was very mimimal and at this time not cause for any concern. Phew.

Our to do list:
1. keep doing the excercises after each diaper change
2. as much tummy time as she'll tolerate
3. encouraging her to sit, which she loves
4. holding her in certain positions that encourage her to look right

We go back in 3 weeks, and then 2 weeks after that.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Specialist du jour: Pediatric Opthomologist

Sophia survived her first eye dr visit. Long story short, the dr didn't know what was on her eye either. He said things can just fly into the eye and get "stuck" which appears to be what happened. He dilated her to make sure there was nothing going on other than the obvious blob, and did a quick eye exam on her. I asked when infants usually get their first eye exam and he said "for her, today." So we can check that off the list:)

He was able to get the blob off of her eye (after using some numbing meds) with just a q-tip. He warned us though, that if it was going to require some poking and prodding then he would take her to the OR and do it under general anesthesia. My mommy radar sounded at hearing "OR" and I freaked a little, but luckily it didn't come to that. However, he had to use a speculum to keep her eye open for the procedure. She screamed, and screamed, and screamed. I finally had to sit down b/c I couldn't take it. Luckily, Dan stayed strong and was at her side while I played the whimp.

We have eye drops to use for 3 days to prevent infection, but otherwise we're in the clear unless she's showing obvious distress.

Next stop, physical therapy tomorrow at 1.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Social Work is #1...

lowest paying job, that is. http://hotjobs.yahoo.com/career-articles-1263

And I'm a social worker:0) I choose to do everything the hard way.
I'm trying to start posting about me, in addition to Sophia, because really how many posts can there be about poo, food, giggles?!? I'm trying to make a concerted effort to keep this blog going, because I like doing it. That means that I need to expand what I write about though.

So...I'm a social worker, and after graduating with my MSW 12 years ago, my first job earned $24k a year. It makes sense to me that the starting salary has gone up as it has. And at 24 years old, moved into my own apartment I was ecstatic with $24k. I managed to stay in the job about 13 months. I was a social worker in the true sense of the word. My clients were severly mentally ill adults discharged from the state hospital. I was required to follow-up with them weekly for 90 days after their discharge. I loved my clients. Therapy was not an option, as the great majority were not at that point, mentally. My day to day tasks mostly consisted of making sure they were simply maintaining. I wasn't looking for any earth-shattering improvement, just a simple maintainance of their lives. I paid their bills/helped them apply for benefits, I helped them grocery shop, I made sure they were taking their meds, their showers, I made sure they were eating. I loved most of my clients. Then, within a 6 week period the following happened.
1) a client locked me in an office and threatened my life
2) a client caught himself on fire and later died (smoking/cutting grass do not mix).
3) another client brought a gun into my office (not to hurt me). He put my hand on his pants so I could feel the gun.
4) a client's husband butchered her into pieces and the body parts were found days later, due to smell.

In isolation, none of these things would have forced my hand, but together I saw them as a sign it was time to move on. Plus, I was working about 40 minutes from home. I had just met Dan and he was also pressuring me to quit, based on all of the above incidents.

I quit that job, to move on to another about 10 mins from home, where I worked for 1.5 days. I hated it so much I left for lunch on the 2nd day and didn't go back. I woke up the next morning, applied for a server position and waited tables for the next year and a half. Let me tell you how pleased my parents were to be paying my Master's loan while I was waiting tables. Fortunately, I made more money as a server than I did at my "real" job.

I currently work at a major university, as a Project Manager in the same School of Social work where I gained my MSW. I work in behavioral research and feel like I do a darn good job. I have managed poorly funded grants and multi-million dollar grants; local grants and international grants; big grants and small grants. Timelines and protocols suit my controlling personality:) Sometimes I think my co-workers/bosses think I am better than I actually am. Maybe that shows where my self-esteem is, or maybe I am just good at fooling people. I don't know.

In my "Senior" book in high school I said that in 10 years I expected to be "a social worker, helping people." It's odd that I fulfilled that goal, without much effort. I currently make more than I ever expected to make as a social worker, and I haven't really come close to hitting the ceiling here at the University. I make enough that allows Dan to stay home with Sophia, and for us to be able to upgrade our condo soon.

I still don't think my parents are pleased with my choice of profession, although I know they are relieved that I work on a college campus instead of out of my car doing home visits. I still think about my clients from time to time. We live in an area of STL that is very friendly/open to the mentally ill, so I see them walking around. I know that they are sick. It bothers me sometimes that I am not doing MORE to help them, and am instead sitting inside a nice cozy office directing research projects. But it is what it is.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Ready for solids

As much as I hate to say it, I think little Miss Sophia is ready to expand her horizons. Dr R told us it was fine to start her with rice anytime between 4-6 months. I was pushing for 6 months; Dan was pushing for earlier. I can't say we were fighting about it, but it was becoming a topic of bickering for sure. I brought it up at our last therapy appt, just to put it "out there." He finally admitted that he thought pushing it off would put her at a disadvantage developmentally. I told him (as I had several times before) that we HAVE to start by 6 months, and it's not like we'd be putting it off until she is 1. Why is it that he only HEARS what I say in the therapy office, but not at home?!?! I guess that makes it worth paying the therapist! My argument for putting it off was "why mess with a good thing?" I mean, she's obviously thriving. Anyhoo...we came to an agreement on 5.5 months, which puts as at May 19.

However, the past several days she has REALLY been interested in our food, and watching us eat. If I'm holding her and trying to take a drink, she'll reach out for my glass. I bought a box of rice cereal this past weekend (whole grain, organic of course!), and now that it's in the house, I'm feeling the need to break-down and let her try it. That thought though, is countered by my desire to want her to continue nursing exclusively. Who would have thought I'd EVER feel that way? Certainly not me, or the people who know me well. But, for me, there are so many feelings wrapped up with nursing her.
1) It's a source of pride to look at her healthiness (for lack of a better term) and know that I'm the sole reason.
2) I suppose there is a bit of control mixed in with the idea also, that I am the ONLY one who can do this one little thing for her. Once she starts "eating" I'll be dispensible. I don't like that feeling.
3) I LOVE the private time I get to spend with her, although I still hold strong to the idea that it's not really bonding. I see starting solids as the beginning of the end to that and it makes me sad.

Those reasons are obviously outweighed by the fact that she needs to do this. It's a new step, a big milestone and she's ready. Try as I might, I can't stop her from growing up, nor do I want to.

Monday, May 10, 2010

My first Mother's Day

Yesterday was fantastic. I've been looking more forward to Mother's Day, than to my upcoming birthday. And believe me, I always LOVE my birthday. It was very low-key, and perfect. I had wanted to go to a Mother's Day brunch because, well EVERYONE goes to a Mother's Day brunch so I wanted to as well. However, Dan, the "I know everything about restaurants" guy didn't attempt a reservation at the restaurant I wanted until 3 pm on Saturday. I'm sure you can guess how that went. So, instead of getting upset, I thought outside the box and we ended up having a lunch at a place I've been wanting to try. We walked around for awhile afterwards and noticed that Sophie was getting a little too much color on her cheeks, so opted not to go to the zoo which was going to be our next step after lunch.

I spent alot of time with her, just snuggling, and playing, and soaking in her adorableness:) It was a really great day, not over-hyped in my head at all. Dan gave me a fabulous gift card to get a massage and I really can't wait to use it! And it was SO nice to hear all the Mother's Day wishes. Very surreal. I remember 2 years ago on Mother's Day I was out shopping and someone wished me a "happy Mother's Day." I can still feel the devastation I felt after he said it. I just didn't have the energy to be bitchy and explain that not everyone is/can be a mother. So I just said thank you and went on my way. But I'll never forget it.

I also thought alot yesterday about all my friends still struggling to get pregnant. I know the pain that Mother's Day can bring. I get the idea of not wanting to get out of bed, let alone leave the house on a day that celebrates what continues to elude you. It's so hard, and even though I was able to celebrate, I still can feel that pain.
Mother's Day!!!

Fun with her Exersaucer.

Cool girl with her shades:)

I love this one, because she started in the middle of the blanket, and somehow ended up with half of her body OFF the blanket:)

Thursday, May 6, 2010

doctors, doctors and more doctors...

Am I a hypochondriac?? It certainly seems like it, doesn't it...but most of the time I'm right! Not today though. Sophie has been pulling on her ear for several days, and has been MUCH more cranky than normal. We got her into to see Dr R, who confirmed no infection, but did pull out a crap load of wax from the ear she's been pulling. She said that might be the culprit. Or, it could be teething. She felt (as I have) some bumps on her lower gum, but nothing substantial.

Since we were there, I brought to her attention a teeny brown spot on the outer rim of Sophie's eye. I had noticed it before her last appt at 4 months, but didn't think much of it primarily b/c it is so hard to see. Unless she looks up, you can't see it since it's on the lower portion of her eyeball. About a week ago I saw it again, so I asked about it today. Dr R had NO idea what it was...so we now have a referral to a child opthamologist. That is scheduled for next Thursday. Fun.

She weighed in at 15 lbs 5 oz today, so has gained almost 1.5 pounds in the last month. Holy crap!

I asked Dan if he had done her excercises with her today. He said he tried "but she screamed." Great. This will also be like pulling teeth. How is it that I was able to do the stretches twice before I left for work this morning, AND give her tummy time???!!!! Super mom? I think so:) I do admit that the 2 whole minutes she was on her tummy this morning (before she started screaming) seemed like at least 5 to me. We have a long road ahead of us...

"tortellini" neck confirmed

We had our visit with the physical therapist yesterday and they confirmed Dr. R's dx of congenital muscular torticollis. They also reiterated what I had discovered, that there is a connection b/t hip dysplasia and torticollis. So, go figure our pretty girl would get the double whammy:(


PT gave us two excercises to do with her, recommended at each diaper change, ~5-6 times a day. We have to hold the pose for 30 seconds, so really it's just about 5 minutes of PT per day, for now. We also have to work up to 1 hour of tummy time. Good grief, that will be like pulling teeth. It doesn't have to happen all at once, but over the course of 24 hours, at least 1 hour has to be spent lying on her tummy. We also have to position her in ways that will allow lengthening and strengthening of the neck muscles. The advice at this link was almost word for word what PT suggested. http://hubpages.com/hub/How-to-Treat-Muscular-Torticollis-Naturally

We were told if we do everything they ask of us, the issue should correct itself in about 6 months.

Overall, they said hers is very minor and rated it a "5." They've seen as bad as "40" so that made me feel better. They also mentioned a VERY minor flat spot on her head. I freaked about this a little, but didn't say anything. I've always feared the helmets:(

Oh, and they busted our proud parent bubble by saying that she DOESN'T roll from back to belly. Since she can't get her arm out of the way, http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_U6IIDWZUaXg/S7neflnQHzI/AAAAAAAAAZg/SUIZdpyQMZY/s1600/IMG_0745.JPGit's not considered a roll. Oh well.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

5 months!

Sorry it's been so long, but life has been hectic. Today is Sophia's 5 month birthday!!! In honor of that, I thought I'd list a few "factoids" about her and her life recently.

1. Eyes are still blue, although a teeny bit more gray than when she was born
2. Hair is still strawberry blond. I admit some jealousy over the golden strands:)
3. Weighs 15 pounds
4. She still has cradle cap, but her hair has grown so much that only I can tell.
5. She’s quickly out growing the Size 1-2 diapers. We’ll be switching to Size 2 as soon as we
use what we have.
6. Still fitting in a bit of 3 month clothes, but mostly she’s moved to 3-6 or 6 month
7. She gets “cheese” in her fat rolls:(
8. Her wrists have fat rolls!
9. She doesn’t “squeek” in her sleep anymore:(
10. She gets her nails cut every day.
11. She eats 5 times a day, two of those from a bottle.
12. No solid foods yet.
13. She found her feet in the last week or so.
14. Her toots put any truck driver to shame!
15. She gets 2 baths a week.
16. She’s finally ok with getting a bath.
17. She loves the ABC song. She’ll stop whatever she’s doing if I start singing it.
18. Her favorite toy, by FAR, is her Glo-Worm. Links take a close 2nd.
19. She wears sleepers all day, unless we go somewhere and then she gets “real” clothes.
20. Loves Dr. Seuss
21. She’s still having some issues with the rolling thing, but is getting better
22. Tries to pull herself into sitting position if she is on an incline like a pillow or the bouncy
23. She has started to reach out and touch Sierra.
24. She started holding her bottle last night!
25. Her giggles are contagious:)

I'll post new pics soon. We are going to the physical therapist for the first time today, to talk about her "tortelini" neck as Dan calls it. Also, I think she has an ear infection, so will get her to the pedi for that tomorrow.