Friday, September 17, 2021

July 2021 thoughts

July 2: Took LO to IKEA. Best Friday night. Made it farther than last visit. LO sat in the high chair and ate a bunch of things from the cafeteria. We got some bins and trays to organize our junk drawer and the cabinet below it because LO is obsessed with it and its full of potentially dangerous stuff and as of now, LO puts things in the drawer but soon I imagine he will take things out too.

July 4: For about 6 months after LO was born, I needed at least 3 servings of chocolate per day. I am not usually a dessert person and never considered myself a chocoholic.

We're leaving tomorrow for our cross country flights. I am a nervous Nelly! We are packed as much as I can think of what we will need. We're staying 10 days before we come back home.

Part of me is worried about DH. Even though I know he's a grown man. I've been WFH for a year and a half. I would say I've been a SAHM but I also taught university courses at 70% of full time. We, like many people, have been cooking at home and watching streaming services at home and doing projects at home...safer at home. I guess I'm having re-entry stress.

DH goes back to work "full time" starting Tuesday. He's been "on call" since the start of lockdown a.k.a LO's birthday. I just know things will be different when I get back from this trip. LO might be starting day care when school resumes... depending on COVID and availability. 

I don't know what I'm actually worried about. Maybe just fear of change, in general.

We are traveling to my parents' house on Monday. 2 planes. A 3 hr layover. Over 7 hours traveling. I am tentatively packed and trying to hope for the best. DH is not coming. Just me & LO.

July 16: First time being treated for mastitis. Diagnosed by teledoc. Really wish I could go to a La Leche League meeting and talk to other breastfeeding women. COVID is still ruining stuff. 😷😒

How I got mastitis: Combination of LO chewing and some dermatitis and some traveling and maybe fewer showers and also forgetting to take lecithin and wearing a sports bra for 3 days in a row at my parents' house where there was no working shower or laundry. I am definitely regretting my life choices. And LO has a cough and seems pretty miserable today. Boo hoo.

Trip recap: On the way there, the flights were timed with naps so he slept on the flights. 1st flight was 1h 45min. 2nd flight was 1h 20min and he was awake but chill for the last half hour, but very chill. On the way back our 1st flight was 3h. He was awake the first half and slept the second half. The 2nd flight was only 40min. He was very snuggly and watched Netflix with his headphones the entire time. I know we'll never do a "lap child" flight ever again. It was a good experience. 

I also had an anxiety moment, stuck on the runway in Vegas and there was no AC on the plane. Don't know how long, maybe 10 minutes while they were refueling, but it felt like forever. It got hot fast and I felt so icky in the mask and with a hot baby on my lap.

Most people didn't want to sit in our row but the folks who did all had kids at home and were super nice. Parent solidarity was a fun new feeling. This was a big trip out into the world. I am still processing all of it.

My mom complained about me putting the kid down for naps and having bedtime before dark. She constantly says that HER children (me) didn't nap and I'm like wondering if it is just that she never put us down! I would advocate that moms shod do whatever they need to do to stay healthy. I skipped out on self-care during my 10 day visit with family and suffered for a week afterwards. In hindsight, I wish I had put my needs a little higher.

July 17: We are officially in the climbing phase. Set up a baby gym in the living room. Stairs, ramp, tunnel, etc. 

I'm still suffering from mastitis. LO is developing a cough. He doesn't want solids, just nursing, which is probably best to help clear up this situation in my breast. It was nice to see family but it sucks that we are sick from the trip.

LO is finally getting the hang of waving bye-bye and it is the cutest thing ever. We hardly ever said hello or goodbye to anyone prior to this trip. He is also much better at nodding yes or no when we offer him things. He puts out a little hand and makes a sound when he wants something. Kind of like "Meh."

July 20: I've completed 4 days of cephalexin for mastitis. LO has a raspy cough. I am trying to stay away from obsessive googling. I suck at resting but I am giving it my best effort. LO is normal in terms of his capacity for play and intake of solids and wet diapers, no fever, so we haven't taken him to the pediatrician. My husband was ON CALL for all of the pandemic until now. So it's harder to keep LO busy all day here at home. I don't want to take him out because of spreading germs. I hate that COVID cases are spiking again. I hate that LO isn't immunized. I hate that there's only one month left of summer break.

Our landlord called a week ago to let us know that they are considering selling our condo. We rent. So we have been scrambling to get pre-approval for a loan. All I can do now is pray that they will sell it to us for a price we can afford. If not, we might be able to keep renting here, rent elsewhere or buy elsewhere. The thought of moving doesn't terrify me. Maybe COVID has acclimated me to an uncertain future.

July 23: I feel like it's time to unfollow and unsubscribe from all the baby-related accounts. They do have some toddler-relevant info sometimes but I don't want to be reminded of pregnancy and the 4th trimester when I'm chasing around a busy 16 month old. 

On a positive note, I feel like LO's cough is getting better. Maybe his teething pain is letting up. No fever so I'm gonna guess it wasn't COVID. My mastitis is feeling better but I do think I'm experiencing some vasospasm due to "nipple trauma." I can't make this up. Thankfully one breast is still normal so I tell myself that eventually the wonky one will go back to that.

Our HOA finally opened the swimming pool for the summer. They had said it was closed due to COVID. We have a floatie and I'm so excited to get LO back in the water. He kicked around in a floatie a bunch last summer but we stopped going to the pool once Fall classes started. Our pool isn't heated. 

This week I kept LO indoors becuse his cough makes it pretty obvious he is sick. But it's been rough feeling imprisoned in our home. My fitness instructor said the cough can linger for weeks after they aren't contagious anymore. She encouraged me to come back to in-person classes. But with COVID cases on the rise among unvaccinated people, I didn't want to be responsible for passing along whatever this is to any other moms or babies in our group. We picked it up traveling cross-country with 2 planes.

July 24: Got a play kitchen. So far, so fun!

July 26: Broke out the Duplos.

July 28: I feel like becoming a mom has helped me be comfortable with vulnerability. I feel like I can live more emotionally exposed and not worry about what people will think.

I wish I had more agency. I wish I could be more authentic. I wish I could be louder and more goofy and more open to making new friends.

COVID sucks. Cancer sucks. Mastitis sucks. I won't see MIL until Christmas 2021 because she's having chemo for pancreatic cancer. She refused to see us after a debacle last Thanksgiving (Nov 2020) and I hate that we are politically polar opposites. My mom had been coming out to see LO every 6 months. Her next visit would have been Sept 2021 but with this spike in COVID cases, and how I just visited her, I don't think she'll be out for LO's 1.5 year bday. I feel lonely because LO has been sick since we got back from our trip, I don't know if it is COVID, so we've been quarantining for 2 weeks. I am trying to stay cool and avoid Dr. Google. DH is back to being on campus 40 hr/wk and I am doing the SAHM thing. Every day is full. I feel like I'm solving puzzles trying to fit in meals, naps, fitness, learning activities and meeting everyone's needs.

How do you travel?
Prebaby: Car-free. Trains + bicycle. Can't tell you how many hotels we checked into with our luggage on our bikes. Packed light. Most days outdoors.

Postbaby: Minivan. Pack all the things. Day trips to the beach. Weekends "away" at hotels within 1-2 hour drive of home. Day hikes with baby in carrier. Bike rides with baby on bike. Lots of stroller walks. It's not as eco-friendly but I'm not super comfortable taking transit with baby. Too much risk of getting stranded somewhere. I will say that the hotel experience is significantly diminished in the COVID era. No pool, no breakfast, no fitness room, no dining. It's not worth it IMHO.

July 29: Watching a show about peanut butter. Thought about how peanuts are a crop. Thought spiral about sustainability and climate change. This [NYT]( article really hit me in the gut.

Packing List
1) Umbrella stroller 
2) Yoga mat strap 
3) Pink backpack (diaper bag)
4) crackers 
5) cherrios 
6) infinity scarf (didn't use)
7) diapers 
8) wipes 
9) changing pad 
10) extra clothes for Albert 
11) Phone charger 
12) toys 
13) ergo carrier 
14) birth certificate 
15) masks (2)
16) proof of vaccines 

1) underwear 
2) socks 
3) walking shoes
4) flip flops 
5) yoga pants 
6) sweat pants 
7) tank tops
8) bras 
9) toiletry bag 
10) headphones (didn't use)
11) fitness equipment 
12) swimsuit (didn't use)
13) hat 
14) Tylenol/vitamins 
15) long-shirt (didn't use)

1) short outfits (3) 
2) long pants (2) 
3) short onesies (3) 
4) footie pjs (2) 
5) socks (4) 
6) sandals 
7) reusable pouches 
8) ring sling 
9) swimsuit / water shoes / swim diaper 

Wish I had brought
1) nail clippers / file for mom and Albert
2) mom's socks
3) garment bag for dirty laundry
4) more different bras and mesh bag for washing bra
5) shampoo / conditioner

This was for a 10-day trip to see and stay with family. We took a plane so your list might be different if you're driving. Snacks I brought included goldfish and veggie straws. The best toy was a dimple-like silicone [thingy like this](

We were 3 hours early. It was a bit unnecessary but made checking bags, printing boarding passes, and getting through security very stress-free. LO was in a carrier. I brought an umbrella stroller with a shoulder strap. Gate checked stroller, which was super-easy. Backpack-style diaper bag. 

Let LO walk for ~1 hour prior to flight. ~30 min of strolling. Slept on flight. Repeat for layover.

Edit to add: kiddo was a lap child. DH not with us. My sister loaned us a carseat at our destination.

June 2021 thoughts

June 7: Pushing rolling things around the house is big time fun now. A bar cart, a scooter and the learning walker. Even though he can walk unassisted and even run, pushing stuff is paramount these days.

He is really into opening and closing doors and does a really cute little shuffle when I remind him to "watch your feet" so the door doesn't scratch him. He scoots his little feet back ever so slightly before moving the door.

We have had to move all trash cans up on top of stools because he loves stashing stuff in there like his toys and our shoes. As others have said there is a constant mixing of clean and dirty laundry that can get confusing and results in larger loads getting washed just to be sure.

Our pediatrician had to reschedule the 15 month appointment and now it's going to be at 16 months plus 4 days. What happens at that one?

June 9: LO is doing a cute hand gesture these days. Kind of hand opening and closing. Don't know what he thinks it means but if we do it to him, he will do it back. If he starts doing it, and we do it back, he cracks up. Silly monkey.

June 10: Vulnerable feelings alert! I'm scared about getting in shape / period returning / stopping breastfeeding / starting daycare / Albert growing up. I feel like I can't tell anyone because they might say, it's natural, get over it. I feel like I can't talk about it to my husband because he has to absorb my constant drama. 

I want to lose this belly pooch but I worry about cutting calories and not making enough milk. Likewise for period returning (which hasn't happened yet). Please no advice. I am trying to process these feelings. It's like making my LO my top priority for so long, it scares me to move myself as a higher priority. 

We are on a waitlist for day care for fall but I'm already starting to worry about it. Sharing in case anyone else is out there quietly feeling this way. It seems most people in this group have already crossed these thresholds, so I haven't posted here because I didn't want to seem behind the curve. 

I am holding on to this baby because we are one and done. I didn't expect to enjoy motherhood this much and I didn't give much thought to how I would balance working and parenting because our Reproductive Endocrinologist gave us a 50% chance of a live birth. It felt like flipping a coin. My husband was betting it would work and I was betting it wouldn't.

I am doing my best to embrace the change. Also working out harder is making my C-section scar hurt a bit and it makes me remember labor and makes me wonder if I could have had a vaginal delivery if only I had tried harder. What? Seriously I gotta get out of my head.

June 14: He pretended to blow his nose in a tissue. So cute!

June 16: Took baby for a hike. RIP my neck, trunk, arms, legs, etc. I tried to go to sleep but I was so hungry I had to sneak down and have a late night snack. It was only 3 miles and I babywear quite a bit, but I guess hiking is just that much different. LO was in a Deuter hiking backpack. Last time we took LO for a hike, he was 8 months old. Back then DH wore LO and I just walked. Today I wore him the whole hike. He did very well today but wow am I exhausted.

June 19: Me: sees a picture of an 8 year old
Also me: crying because LO will eventually be 8 years old

June 22: Me: I wonder why my left hip hurts...
Also me: At the store. Doing laundry. Gardening. Cooking. Walking on the beach. Carries LO on my left hip.

Infertility Babies: I am simultaneously wanting another child and feeling jealous of fellow bumpers who are pregnant or already have a 2nd, 3rd or 4th. But also feeling like I have my hands full now with one 15 month old. And still breastfeeding. And had a C-section. So like aren't I supposed to wait 18 months before even trying to get pregnant?

We do not plan to have another child. There is no way I would go through IVF again at my age (40). I hate it when people say, "you can't have an only child. He needs a sibling." But yes if it happens, I would love another. But no, I'm not actively trying. 

But yes, the TTC threads on my bumper group are super triggering for so many reasons! I selfishly want to have a second labor so I can have a better birth experience. The first one sucked except for the fact that both me and the baby survived.

Side note: I am starting to get fit again and doing scar massage and I think a lot about my birth experience and feel lots of regrets about it. My baby was born during a set of difficult circumstances. I don't feel entitled to a "do over" because I know it could end up the same or worse the 2nd time. And also it's crazy to want to "do over" birth and newborn stage right? You still gotta raise the baby for many years after that. I just don't know how to heal from my birth experience (after IVF) and immediate lockdown because of COVID. My son was born 3/14/20.

Wednesday, August 25, 2021

Summer is Over

Realizing I have not posted in July or August and wondering "where did the time go?"

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

home economics

The funny thing about all this is that most of these are a "break even" situation. Also it's not "either/or" but instead it's "and." If I can say one thing about preparing for a baby: you don't know what you don't know. You learn continually and adapt so there are no absolutes that work forever.

Taking a tally of what we spent to get up to speed with cloth diapers vs. what we would have spent if we did disposables full time

No matter what : $65

Changing Pad $30
Changing table $35

Disposable only : $914

Hanging organizer $20
wipes $3.00 × 12 = $36
Genie $20 x 2 = $40
Refills $7 x 30 = $210
size 0 (36 pack) $5
size 1 (196 pack) $40
size 2 (76 pack) $26
size 4 (180 pack) $46 x 11 = $495
Wipes (11 packs) $13.98 x 3 = $42

Cloth only : $626

Affresh (3 pc) $7 x 2 = $14
Toilet Sprayer Kit $30
SprayMate Kit $42
style A 6 x $12 = $72
Inserts (6 pack) $15
style B) 6 x $12 = $72
Used Lot $225
Covers (10) $43.00
Covers (10) $9.00
FSTs (15 pc) $16 x 2 = $32
FSTs (4 pc) $4 x 7 = $28
Bamboo cloths (12 pc) 2 x $12 = $24
Octopus hanger $5 x 4 = $20

Taking into account what we would have spent in formula versus breastfeeding and associated technology

Either way : $256

Burp Cloth 4 x $15 = $60
Bottle Warmer $70
Sterilizer and Dryer $100
5 oz Bottle Set (3 pack) $11
8 oz Bottle Set (3 pack) $15

Breastfeeding only : $601

My Brest Friend pillow $17
Manual Pump $30
Electric Pump $300
Bags (100 ct) $15.00 x 2 = $30
Tubing $19 x 2 = $38
Breast Shield $15 x 3 = $45
Membranes $5 x 2 = $10
Valves $7 x 3 = $21
Car Adapter $8
Connectors $12 x 3 = $36
Pumping Bra $33 x 2 = $66

Formula only : $3330

$37 per can x 6 cans/month x 15 months

Taking into account how much it costs to buy baby food versus making it yourself and associated technology

Either way : $16

High chair $10
Bibs $4
Spoons $2

Homemade : $395

Immersion blender $50
Miniprep $50
Food processor $200
Portion containers (50) $15
Silicone mold $15
Pouches (6) $15
Dishes $50

Pre-made : $1369

5 x 365 days x $0.75 

So I guess I spent a bunch on cloth diapers but I have like 3 times as many as I would actually need. I have 3 redundant "systems" that are different.

But it seems like breastfeeding and homemade baby food are clear winners even though they have a fair amount of technological cost to get going. I had a goal of breastfeeding for 6 months. Then I had a goal of making it to a year. My current goal is to make it to 2 years or whenever weaning occurs naturally.

One argument I get from my husband is that washing cloth diapers (and perhaps the associated tools for making our own baby food) add to the water and power bill. Comparing the year without a baby to our first year with baby, the bills were consistently higher with baby.

July 2020 $252 ($54 more)
Sept 2020 $536 ($144 more)
Nov 2020 $386 ($169 more)
Jan 2021 $174 ($13 more)
Mar 2021 $171 ($36 more)
May 2021 $219 ($8 more)
Total for 1 year ($424 more)

I wonder if this is true for everyone who was quarantined (working from home) during the pandemic though. I know we used to turn our thermostat up during the day when we were working out of the house and then turn it back down only at night. Now that we're home all day every day, we keep it running more during the day when we're here. The air conditioning I mean.

top left drawer (AIOs), changing pad

top right drawer (pockets), clean & dirty clothes

middle left drawer (fitteds & covers)

bottom left drawer (wetbags, sheets, wipes)

favorite toys

If I were starting over with a blank slate, I would have bought many many fewer toys. These are the ones that our kiddo goes back to over and over.

Fisher-Price Stacking Rings
Little Tikes Shape Sorter & Stacking Cups
Fisher-Price Milk Bottles

Baby Einstein iPod

Baby Einstein Star

Ikea Cat Puppet

shoe heaven

Aug 19, 2018
ASICS Gel-Kayano 24 Road-Running Shoes - Women's

Jun 13, 2019
Brooks Ghost 11 foot selfie. So they must have been freshhh

May 10, 2021
Brooks Ghost 13 "a return to running"

I felt it was time to replace my Ghost 11's. When I tried running in them, it felt like I had two sponges strapped to my feet, like I had no support. I wish there was a definitive way to tell when your shoes are done and ready to ascend to "shoe heaven." Like they have a blue line on disposable diapers when it's time to change them. Is that asking too much?

Monday, May 31, 2021

may 2021 thoughts

3 May: So are people stocking up on diapers? Are we expecting them to fly off the shelves in advance of the price hike? I needed motivation to reprogram my approach to cloth diapers, so maybe this is it.

We watched "Nursery University" a 2008 film about getting your toddler into preschool. It was eye-opening. I have a dream to send LO to the on campus child development lab when he's old enough, but with COVID I never put him on the wait list. I doubt they are open and don't know when they will reopen. 

I know our University will be continuing virtual instruction for Fall 2021 but I don't know my teaching schedule yet. A good friend with two younger kids might be moving in nearby soon. I don't know how she would feel about watching LO. It's so hard to plan!

LO is becoming an adventurous and successful eater. Thank goodness and adios purees. He's been a champion gainer, staying around average weight for his age, despite lots of spitting up, thanks to lots of on demand breastfeeding.

It's a lot of work to anticipate how much to offer and have it ready. My meal prep game is about to have another adjustment. I feel like LO is always screaming about one thing or another. He wants to do things he's not mastered yet. He needs my help and attention so often. His molars are shifting again. Is he also hungry?

LO is walking but not more than 7 steps or so. His determination is inspiring. He reaches out for things but does not point yet.

4 May: Scrolling instead of sleeping. Wishing I weren't so hungry. Can I sneak away for a snack?

5 May: Asleep at 8-9pm. Feeds at 10:30pm and 3am. Wake & feed at 5:30am then back asleep until 7:30am. That's a typical night around here.

6 May: I'm also at a loss. We were using flour sack towels with covers and I am looking to switch to maybe prefolds? I have a set of fitteds and a set of pockets and some AIOs but I'm worried about rash from non-cotton fabric and/or leaks/blowouts. Just trying to make it to summer break where I'll have more time to experiment and heat to air-dry things.

Went to IKEA today with LO for the first time. We only made it 25% of the way through the showroom then took a shortcut to the family restroom. Washed hands. Ate in the cafeteria. LO enjoyed salmon, meatballs, broccoli, carrots, lingonberries, mac & cheese, garlic bread. He was so good. It was our first indoor dining. The tables were really spread out and they cleaned everything a lot between customers. We had to leave a phone number, for contact tracing? There were table numbers and assigned seats. It was daytime on a weekday (off peak) so not crowded at all. It wasn't normal. No coffee bar. But it was really nice.

7 May: Sometimes I wish I were still pumping. It's pretty satisfying to see the milk. It was great to have DH do some of the feeding. Good for you for investing in your comfort and success. I was just thinking about getting new running shoes. But I was like, "I'm not a runner." But then I was like, "I might get back into running if I had better shoes." So that's kinda the same, right? I think your story just convinced me to get new running shoes.

Edit to add: I fantasize about going back to EP especially when LO is going through a biting phase, like he is now. But last we checked (which was 9 months ago) LO wouldn't take a bottle. Do you use cups now? I'm kinda scared to put breastmilk in a straw cup because won't it be hard to clean? Also my LO throws everything on the floor. Not a big deal with water.

I am so thirsty like I was right when my milk first came in. LO is chewing my nipples and it is so exhausting with the hair pulling, scratching, screaming and tantrums. 

Watched "The Incredibles" on Disney+ and totally cried at how the mom was so protective of her children. She literally threw herself between the kids and danger over and over again throughout the movie. I get it now.

Put LO in the kitchen helper a.k.a. learning tower. He almost fell out the back but caught himself with his hands on the siderails. It was exciting. But scary.

Bought two used nursing tops sight unseen that were listed as XL-XXL and they fit VERY tight. That put me in a tailspin of body image demons. I guess it's my fault for buying used and not shopping based on my measurements.

Thanks to someone in the Facebook group who posted [this podcast]( It was so soothing to hear our experience described like that. Really put into words some of the angst I've been feeling.

8 May: I gotta say nothing trips my mom rage circuit like DH saying "you look tired" to LO less than 1 hour after a nap. It's so frustrating to listen to DH try to get LO to sleep when LO isn't tired. I want to slap DH and say, "the baby's not tired, you're tired, and so am I, but one of us needs to watch LO until he is *actually* tired." But I don't say that.

My aunt came over this morning for 2.5 hours. It was so short. I feel worse than before. But at least DH cleaned the bathroom before our guest arrived. I gotta say we clean less often when nobody ever comes over. So now I'm back to being stressed and depressed but in a clean house.

I guess I'm sad because it was so short. Like what we need is real help. But this was a really quick show & tell. We were on our best behavior. 

This aunt promised pre-COVID to come down, stay with us, cook for us, for like a 2 week period. I love my aunt, more like a sister and I so desperately wanted that time with her. 

Today's visit felt like eating a single green pea when I wanted a 3-course meal. It's the last week of the semester. I have so much work to do. I could use help. Now. But for lots of reasons, she's not available and she gave us all that she could.

I'm just mourning what COVID took from us (again).

10 May: We are nodding our head YES now. So cute. No was one of our first words. There has been lots of NO. But it seems "affirmative" is coming online now. Mandarins, yes! Favorite toys, yes! Mommy figures out what I wanted her to do and she does it, YES!

12 May: Got all happy because our campus offered a Zoom class for toddlers age 1.10 years and up. Guaranteed a spot in on-campus day care when things open back up. Emailed them to join. Found out that 1.10 means 1 year 10 months. Not 1 year + 36.5 days. Oops my bad.

14 May: Yesterday was...a day. I teach 3 classes at the University. I would prefer to teach 0 classes and SAHM but my husband does the finances and says I should keep working. Somehow he doesn't remember that there are other duties involved in teaching that aren't actual lecturing like writing exams and grading student work.

I wanted to finish writing an exam to share with students on Thursday morning. The computer I use for zoom teaching and all WFH is corralled inside a double super play yard gate so I don't have to watch LO constantly and I can work while he plays when it's just the two of us. So Wednesday evening DH thought it would be the perfect time to take down the play yard and let LO have full access to the kitchen, dining room, and living room. I had a bit of a meltdown and asked him to put it back.

Thursday DH agrees to call off work to watch LO while I finish up writing  the exam. It's so hard to write exams now that students can Google everything. I have to be even more creative than before and Google everything myself to make sure the questions are unique. I have the test workout and multiple choice so I have to come up with 4-5 wrong answers for each question. DH seems to think it should only take an hour and we got into a pretty big standoff yesterday. 

It ended up with me raising my voice and saying, "if you want me to continue working, you have to give me time to do actual work." Taking the baby during my lectures is the absolute minimum. There is lots to be done before and after class. I have been squeaking by but sometimes when it comes to a task that needs my full attention, I just can't have the baby nearby.

Things got better after I made that comment. DH began to see it from my perspective. Don't know yet what we're going to do when Fall classes resume. It seems things are starting to open up. Our university has changed more classes from virtual to in-person just in the last week. I shared my embarrassing blunder with the on-campus childcare program earlier this week, so now I know that's not an option until Spring 2022. 

DH is staff and he's been "on call' since the start of lockdown. Our boss has demanded that staff resume their usual full-time in-person hours in fall so I guess we will come up with a solution by then. Looking forward to a summer of less stress.

I am not the best at being transparent with my time needs. I could do better at asking and telling. Having a baby certainly exposes these things.

LO calls the dog, Edna, by the sound "Naah." It's real. They share ALL meals.

LO wakes up crying at night or from a nap. Sometimes he whimpers in his sleep. I always blame the teeth.

16 May: This weekend was very healing. I feel like I just came up for air after having been under water near drowning since about mid-February. I was scrolling through my photos and it seems like Valentine's day was ages ago. It seems like I have been struggling ever since then. 

I don't know if my kid is going to keep getting cuter. If so, I don't think my heart can handle it. When I go back and look at pictures from a year or 11 months ago, that baby was cute and he is definitely the same person I know today, but he is so much more adorable now. I am so grateful I survived the semester and I can spend my time more unscheduled for the summer. 

I do have some goals, like to keep doing meal planning and prepping. To keep up with my fitness and playdates, whether virtual or in person. I hope I can complete some sewing projects. Switch up my cloth diaper routine. Raise some vegetables in the garden. Bicycling, hiking, running, swimming with LO. Visit the zoo. Visit the beach. Maybe read a book?

For the CD reprogram, I was using FSTs and covers with Velcro. But I think I want to switch to pockets with snaps? Last time I tried using pockets, the synthetic fiber caused a rash. But I've had the genius idea to use the cotton burp cloths as a protective layer closest to LO's skin. The Velcro was starting to pop loose due to LO's increased mobility?

18 May: Gifting some music boxes from my godparents to others in my community through Buy Nothing. These gifts have so much negative karma attached. It makes me feel toxic just thinking about it. Every year on my birthday, my wealthy godparents would gift me an impractical, fragile, not-for-kids music box made of porcelain. I had a floating shelf in my bedroom at my parents house that would display these 'treasures.' As you can imagine, each year the merchandise got heavier and heavier. One year, in the middle of the night after my birthday, the shelf fell off the wall. All the music boxes fell down on me and rolled on to the floor and broke. My mom, who was routinely verbally abusive, started yelling and crying, sobbing and clawing at me. She stayed up all night gluing those figurines back together. She blamed me for the shelf falling down. I was maybe 12 or 13 years old. I didn't know how the shelf was mounted.

Fast forward to now. My mom came out for LO's 1st bday. My sister has a baby 7 months younger than my LO so I send her all our hand-me-downs. My mom brought a suitcase for this purpose. Instead of bringing it out empty, she filled it with all these freaking broken @$$ music boxes and left them here when she went back home.

When I look at them, all I can remember is feeling shame. Also, how much I hated being a "girly-girl." They are all like ballerinas and pink and princesses and one plays the song "someday my prince will come." I understand that it's Disney and some people love that, but I was a very tomboyish girl. I went out on my own at age 18 and didn't meet my husband until I was 26. I don't subscribe to the idea of being rescued. I hate the way our society genders kids and starts piling on expectations. Pink = girl. Blegh. 

Anyway I am getting rid of them and hopefully that bad karma too. Family heirlooms are so fraught with conflict. My mom kept them because she somehow thought I could sell them for money since they came from my wealthy godparents. But they aren't worth much. I will be glad to see them go. I had to share this somewhere because I don't want to attach this story to the objects when I pass them on.

23 May: It's finally the end of the semester. Ran a 5k today with LO in the jogging stroller and hubs running alongside. My fellow fit4moms were chatting afterwards and our group leader told me about one of her acquaintances who committed suicide leaving behind a 7 month old and another older child.

She said that it's why she keeps the group going, so that it is there for new moms who may or may not be struggling. I definitely logged on every day when I was not working to see other humans (moms and kiddos) and maintain sanity. She said that when you think you're the only one going through a tough time with LO or DH, it can be a struggle. Even if you don't share what you're going through, it's good to hear that you're not alone.

So I wanted to share that with this group too. It's great that we can all give product recommendations and talk about milestones. But also, I appreciate just checking in every day and seeing that there are other moms out there doing their thing, whatever it is. Love you all.

25 May: DH and I have different boundaries in mind for LO. I prefer to childproof to the extent that the entire house is a 'yes' space. DH is less comfortable allowing LO to get into things and make a mess. I don't know what we're going to do to get on the same page.

Our LO is obsessed with trash cans at the moment. Yesterday we found our shoes hidden inside the (thankfully clean and empty) cloth diaper receptacle. Now I have to watch to make sure good stuff doesn't accidentally end up in the bin.

27 May: Excuse me while I have all the feels about gifting our foam floor tiles (which I hate) and our pop up jumper (which I love) that our LO has outgrown. I felt like this about the swing when he outgrew that too. 😭😭😭

I kinda feel like the padding was more helpful for MY knees while playing on the floor. As soon as we opened up the baby gates, LO was falling all over the fake-wood laminate and he's fine. I'm still pretty hesitant about our concrete patio but I'm gonna put down a [extra large single piece ]( mat.

28 May: Tried our first applesauce pouch last weekend. It was a hit. Ordered reusable pouches and they arrived yesterday. LO enjoyed applesauce from the pouch last night at dinner. This is a big relief because mealtime was so stressful. LO no longer allows us to spoon feed him. He wants to be independent. Sometimes he will take a loaded fork but not always. Now I have a way to help him enjoy purees and yogurt and stuff like that again.

30 May: We took our LO on public transportation for the first time yesterday as a test run for a cross-country plane ride maybe sometime this summer. Here's what we packed: Umbrella stroller, Yoga mat strap, Cotopaxi backpack, Pouch with fruit, Peanut butter & jelly sandwiches, Water, Hats, Sunscreen, Long-sleeved shirts, Diapers, Wipes, Changing pad, Change of clothes for LO, infant Tylenol, 4 toys (2 soft, 2 wristlets), Phone charger. We used everything we brought.

We parked our car at the train station around 9am. LO was in the Ergo carrier. Bought our tickets and waited about 10 minutes to board. DH carried the stroller and backpack. LO was awake, alert and quiet on the train. I wore him as we made our transfer to a bus. He ate and slept on the 40 min ride. After we got off the bus, LO went in the stroller and we adults ate some takeaway food. This was around 11am.

We visited with my cousin at his apartment for 3 hours. I drank about 2 Liters of water and chased LO around. LO drank some water, ate some fruit puree from a pouch and we did 2 diaper changes. We left around 2pm. LO was getting pretty fussy. I put him back in the Ergo. We waited a bit for the bus. LO ate and slept again on the bus ride.

We arrived at the subway around 3pm. We could've taken a short subway ride and a long bus ride and got back to the car by 4:30 OR take a long subway ride and wait a bit then a faster train and get back to the car at 5pm. We chose option 2 because of restroom availability. LO snuggled with me in the carrier on the long subway ride.

We used the restroom and ate our sandwiches at the train station. None of the restaurants are open. We boarded the train a bit early and our BIG MISTAKE was that we let LO walk a bit while the train was not moving. It was hard to get him to settle back down once we were moving. Thankfully we put Cocomelon on the YouTube on my phone and that settled him back down until we got back to our car.

Apologies for the long post, but I wanted to share these insights for my future self and anyone who is flying with their LO soon. I was impressed with how happy LO was to be in the carrier for so many hours. It felt great also to have him in the stroller when my shoulders and back needed a break. 

I'm glad we brought our lightweight stroller for easy maneuverability. Some of the sidewalks had ADA violations, like poles in the middle of the sidewalk, so it was great to have a narrow footprint. I hung the carrier on the handlebars of the umbrella stroller and that was handy. At other times, I wore the backpack with the carrier over it on my back and that was fine too. It was nice to have a carrier with a zip pocket to easily and securely store my wallet, phone, tickets and one little toy.

31 May: We clap now.

DH was off work today so he was "watching" LO while I did a Zoom workout. Naturally LO was dressed in a Memorial Day outfit: red, white and blue. Usually I keep a close eye on LO or wear him during my workouts because DH is usually at work. Today dad was in charge.

About 20 minutes into the workout, I hear crying. According to DH, the kiddo had jammed his face into his learning tower. Was dad watching? Don't know. Blood is pouring out of LO's mouth. All over the red & white shirt. I am so angry. Not about the shirt but because I feel like I chase LO around ALL. THE. TIME. DH is more casual and scrolls on his phone a lot. I feel like I've lost trust in DH. And I'm scared LO ripped his upper lip and what if he won't eat today.

I am so tired of being the one who keeps track of when it's time for LO to eat, what should he eat, do we have enough of that food, etc. It's not that complicated. 8am, noon, 5pm are meals. There are suggestions on the fridge for what to feed. It's like DH has no concept of time when it comes to this.

DH was pretty offended when I got upset. He said... wait until LO gets hurt or is bleeding while you're watching him. I am very hovery. I mean I hover around and redirect a lot. It's exhausting but I can't stand seeing LO hurt. And what if he can't eat now for a while? I have to calm down and forgive but I'm struggling.

The other day I proposed a schedule like "I will supervise LO between the hours of X and Y, if you supervise LO during the hours of A and B." DH became very defensive and said that parenting is 50/50 and we can both be responsible for watching LO all the time. I guess we have different definitions of "watching" so maybe that's what we need to discuss. Gahhh!!!