Monday, December 27, 2010

Throwing in the towel. Or blanket.

Finn has had trouble sleeping on and off for the past year or so. Getting him the "big boy" bed of his choosing helped for awhile. Heck, he would even tuck himself in and drift off to sleep without so much as a peep. Then, he'd get a cold, or cut a tooth and as with all toddlers his sleep would be disrupted. He'd climb into our bed, or we'd spend the night camped on his floor. Then suddenly he wouldn't go to sleep by himself. He'd have to have one of us sit next to his bed for a few minutes and chat about what we were going to do the next day. But then he'd be okay with us leaving and go to sleep after singing to himself or stroking the life out of his beloved seahorse. Then he progressed to not wanting us to leave at all, which is what we're still doing. One of us sits there for up to an hour while he ever so slowly fidgets to sleep. And sometime over the summer he added horrendous night terrors into the mix. He'll be soundly asleep for an hour or so and then just start screaming. High-pitched, blood curdling screams and sobs that scare the absolute crap out of me and Steve and any other adult that happens to be around. He's completely inconsolable when he has one. He's awake, but not really awake. He has no idea where he's at, who we are, and has no concept of his surroundings. He'll scream for things that he's already holding (his blanket, his baby), shakes like a leaf and works himself up so much that we're always petrified that he's going to pass out. His shortest episode has been about 30 minutes, but generally they last closer to 90. In reading up on night terrors this morning, every article seems to recommend leaving him alone when they happen, as trying to console him can make the episode worse and last longer. But how in the hell do you let a terrified 3-year old sit in the dark by himself, crying so hard that they make themselves sick?  I don't know anyone that would be up to that task.

So, I did a little digging this morning and found a pediatric sleep program at Children's North. It seems like an extreme measure to take, but with at least one episode a week and a toddler that is scared senseless of falling asleep I have no idea what's left to try. We booked the earliest appointment for an initial evaluation, and it's over a month away. I'm hoping they can give us some insight on how to help him because I can't bear seeing his little eyes glazed over in tears every night.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Midwife meet and greet.

Met up with Ellen this morning. I was a little anxious that I wouldn't "click" with her since she was kind of quiet over the phone the first time we chatted. I'm a terribly self-conscious phone person myself, so it was an awkward conversation to say the least. But, she showed up semi-unannounced this morning ( I thought she was calling before she made the drive here) and the fact that she was unfazed by 70 pounds of dog beast hurtling at her full speed won her points right away.  She's much easier to chat with in person, which is a huge relief. I feel like I should have a had a huge list of questions for her, but then again I didn't want to be one of "those" women that have a mile-long list printed off and drill her with no-brainer questions. I did think to ask how long she's been practicing (over 30 years, which is staggering since she certainly doesn't look that old) and how many babies she's delivered (about 850. Holy babies!) In chatting I also found out that she's a mom of 5, including 2 sets of twins, all born at home. The "two sets of twins" thing might make her a candidate for sainthood, as far as I'm concerned. She works a lot with the Amish in the area, which I found super intriguing. I guess she even has a separate house for the Amish women to labor in, in the case that they have a lot of family coming and going at their own homes and want a little privacy. Besides the chatting, everything else was essentially like my appointments at the doctor's office. Except that Finn could run around and be as rambunctious as he wanted. He was super curious and had to investigate the sphygmomanometer (still one of my favorite words of all time) and learned to say "stethoscope".  He loved that when she used the Doppler to hear the baby's heartbeat he was allowed to crawl up next to me on the bed, something that's a big no-no at the doctor's office. And of course he delighted in showing off all his "mad skillz" for her, as he does with anyone new.  He also demonstrated that he has no filter concerning what he should and should not tell people. He regaled her with the story of how he peed in his favorite boots a few weeks ago and that's why he only wears one of them now. Complete with sound effects.  Luckily, she's used to this sort of thing and just laughed her head off.  So, all in all, I'd say it was an excellent visit.  The final decision will happen after Steve and I talk tonight, but I was certainly happy with how things went today.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

So, maybe I'm losing my mind. Maybe I just need to get this out of my system and exhaust all possibilities. Maybe it's just hormones. But, lately I've been really freaking out over giving birth in a hospital setting. I swear every other blog I read is posting amazing home birth stories these days. And not just run-of-the-mill home births, but HBACs, something I would, by all medical smarty-pantsness, be nutso to consider. I read all of these women's stories and I get teary-eyed, I get all smooshy thinking of new babies, and I get all sorts of thoughts of "Well, why not me?"

So, I've spent the morning scouring every midwife database I can for even semi-local midwives in private practice.  Of the two closest, one didn't have any contact information listed (but I managed to find a number listed under her name) and one I'm not so certain about just based on it's location (it's a mere 6 miles from us, and I'd really like to think that if we had midwives that readily available I would have known about it. But, man would that be convenient.) I e-mailed a home birth service based in Erie, even though we're 10 miles south of what they list as their coverage area. And the drive from Erie to here is an hour and a half in good weather, so late February to mid-March could be sketchy. But, I'm determined to start somewhere.

Edited to add: According to our doula, the first midwife I came across seems quite nice and does attend VBAC's. So that's definitely good news. I'll be giving her a call later today. And the home birth service that's super close to us seems to be two doulas, one of which also states that she's a Direct Entry Midwife and the other is an assistant midwife. I didn't see anything about whether or not they attend VBAC's. But based on their website I think they're a little too fanatically religious for me.  Their proximity would make them ideal, but I don't think they'd enjoy my profuse use of the Lord's name in vain while in labor.
Thought? Words of wisdom?

Friday, December 3, 2010

Bump Watch: Week the 28th

I should take a new photo, since this one is from 26 weeks, and I am undoubtedly more round by now. But, now is break time while Finn and his buddy Harper nap, so blogging after over a month is the most activity I'll be doing at the moment.

Cab is growing quite well (as illustrated by my expanding midsection) and on the whole this pregnancy is just as uneventful and average as the last one.  I did have to go in for a third ultrasound so another attempt at seeing his spine could be made, but once he cooperated everything proved to be just fine. The only things vastly different this time are that I have a toddler to chase around (which equals extra sore back and extra frayed nerves at the end of the day) and Steve is working at a much, much busier shop, so he hasn't been able to make it to any of my appointments.  His work schedule has also thrown Finn into a loop since he only gets to see him for a couple hours between dinner and bedtime. Add that on top of whatever teething/growth spurt/realization-that-he's-not-going-to-be-the-baby-anymore thing that he's been going through, and you've got yourself a recipe for a great time (read: at times impossible to deal with little boy).

That's all for now. Time to revel in the plushness of the couch. Which really means that I will sit down for 10 seconds and then panic that I have laundry to switch, a butcher to call about a half hog I ordered a week ago, dinner to start prepping, and million other little things.