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I’m five months old today!

At Tyler’s December 4 appointment, he measured 27″ long and 15 lbs 14.5 ounces.  He is still in the 98th percentile for height!  He is seriously such a tall kid.  At a Christmas party we attended, he is taller than our friend’s 9 month old daughter.  LOL!  (Someone at church today asked if he was 10 months old!)

This month was a big month for Ty…and us.  At his appointment, his pediatrician gave us the go-ahead to start him on rice cereal/baby food.  I was SO ready to start.  Breastfeeding and pumping is no-joke difficult!  Tyler didn’t have any feeding/latching issues like some other babies I know, but having your body be your child’s sole food source is hard work!  And I am just not that type to find it as this wonderful bonding experience.  All power to those moms that do and can keep it up for months/years. For me, I’d rather bond face-to-face with Tyler, not boob-to-face.  And don’t even get me started on the pump.  We can send people to freaking Mars, have cell phones that can cook your dinner…but have breast pumps louder than a jet, force you to hunch like Quasimodo, with these plastic pieces jutting out in front of you.  When sin entered the world, women were going to have pain in childbirth…no one said anything about pumping!  <End rant>

With my job involving traveling from one client’s home to another and essentially living out of my car, there was no convenient time or place to pump during the day, leading to some risky pumping-while-driving commutes, and I-hope-no-one-looks-over-here-while-I-attach-these-plastic-appendages-to-my-chest situations.  Plus, the time I spent pumping was time I wasn’t seeing clients, meaning my appointments had to be scheduled later, my work day was longer, and I was getting home later. Thus, I saw Tyler less.  Pumping was definitely a nuisance and I needed to be done with it.  So I started weaning, and Tyler began solids on December 5.  We started him on apples (this Gerber stuff is not cheap!  One 2.5 ounce serving is $.50!  More on this later…) and we caught his first taste on video:

I sang in my 7th Highrock Christmas Benefit Concert and even though I was sick, it was a lot of fun!  Not sure if this was going to be my last concert as we are joining the Highrock Acton church, but if it was, it was memorable and I have really enjoyed serving and singing!

We celebrated Will’s birthday with dinner out with his parents.  Happy Birthday Daddy!

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And we celebrated Jesus’ birthday with a Google hangout date with my family, all of us in different locations.  My parents were in Maryland, Uncle Chris was in Florida, and Aunt Melissa was in New Zealand!

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Tyler is doing great.  He is such an easygoing baby.  He is still very observant and serious, but is now smiling when he sees people.  He is not yet wary of strangers, though I do like to think he recognizes me and Will.  His back to belly rolling is pretty coordinated and he is getting better at going from belly to back.  Tyler still needs help sitting up, but is getting stronger and less wobbly.  The other day, while on his belly, Tyler pushed up on fully straightened arms.  When on his back under the play gym, he is grasping the dangling rattles and using his eyes to focus on the light-up toys.  When first eating solids, he wasn’t sure what his lips and tongue were supposed to do, but after about a week, he figured it out!  He now will take the food, swallow, and immediately open his mouth, awaiting the next spoonful.  He looks like a baby bird.  It’s so cute.  He will get really mad if you don’t shovel in the food fast enough.  Tyler’s still sleeping in his swaddle, though he has flipped himself over twice, and called us screaming to help him flip back over.  He takes about three naps 9-11, 1-3, 4:30-6:30, eats dinner, and then to bed at around 7:30pm.  We tried eliminating his 10pm dreamfeed, which worked for a few days, but recently he has woken up 2-3 times in the night (quiets with a pacifier or being changed/held), but we will probably reinstate the dreamfeed to see if that helps him stay asleep.  He also has had a runny/stuff nose and cough (probably caught it from daycare), so that probably hasn’t helped his sleep.

Another big thing this month was a decision regarding my work.  The last 10 weeks has been difficult on many levels.  It was tough adjusting to the new job, new type of work, traveling all over the Lowell/Chelmsford/Dracut/Tewksbury/Billerica area, pumping, eating in my car, daycare pickup/dropoff… Most Monday mornings I cried.  We would blame the burst of emotion on multiple reasons, all valid reasons, but after 10 weeks of doing so, I realized that we weren’t addressing the biggest reason – I didn’t feel like I was fulfilling my role as mother.  There were many days that I was seeing my clients (babies 0-3 years old) more than my own child.  There were nights that I welcomed and allowed Tyler to fall asleep in my arms and just held him until I had to go to bed.  I just missed him.

Will asked me once how many hours would I need to see Tyler to feel better.  And you know, that’s a tough question because I just don’t know.  I’ve never done any of this before.  I’ve never had a kid before, so everything we do is something new.  Which is scary because everything is so uncertain.  (And I hate “uncertain.”  It stirs up immediate anxiety.)  But what I do know for certain are two things. 1) I am currently not happy.  I am sad.  And 2) I am jealous of other mothers that can stay home with their child.

I also felt completely overwhelmed, drowning, and unable to breathe, with all the responsibilities I now had.  I needed margin in my life.  After several conversations, a whole day of examining our finances, and a marital check-in with our pastors, we have decided for me to go part-time at work.  Now, I still don’t know how this transition will turn out, but we have to give it a try.  And after making this decision, I already feel some breathing room and I am excited to get to spend more time with Tyler.  Many have told me, “You can always go back to work.  Your child will only be this age once.”

As 2014 comes to an end, this has definitely been the quickest year.  Most likely because each week was numbered; whether we were counting how many weeks I was pregnant, the number of days until I was due, the number of days until my mom had to leave us and we would have to take care of Tyler by ourselves (!), how old Tyler is, how many weeks before I had to go back to work, and how many weeks I have been at work.  52 weeks have gone by and 2015 will already bring some new things for us.  I’ll start going part-time and we will also leave Highrock Arlington to join Highrock Acton.

Praying for patience, peace, and joy in 2015!

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