February 17, 2011


Last night my sister came over to hang out for a bit and by doing so she got to witness how my son loves bath time. His little whale tub doesn't quite fit under the kitchen faucet, so I fill it in the big tub and then move it to the floor so I can better clean those little toes. Joaquin just loves the water. This is such a huge relief; his first bath wasn't exactly a success. But ever since that first try he has loved it. [I think I'll try showering with him now that he loves it so much. It might be easier than cleaning that whale each time.]

At my baby shower I got all the bath toys I registered for. Foam letters, the tub [that came with a mini whale cup with holes in it], and a whole bunch of squirt toys that look like sea creatures. I figured that I would only be using the tub for while, seeing as how little my boy is. 
Last bath, I took one of the squirty toys to see if he'd react. Nope, he could've cared less. I tried again last night though and he loved it. He let out a small giggle and the biggest smile ever when I squirted him with the little sea horse. So precious!!

After bath time I snuggled him up in a blanket [and his jammies], fed him and he fell asleep. I thought he'd be out for half hour, max. He doesn't usually sleep for longer until midnight and at this point it was only about nine-thirty. So with him sleeping I got to eat again, pump for later that night, and get ready for bed. Finally around ten o'clock I moved him from his favorite little chair [that I call his La-Z-Boy] to his crib. After climbing into bed myself I couldn't help but check on him, thinking he was going to wake up any minute. I also didn't want to fall asleep and have to get up right away. [For some reason that's worse than going to bed late]. But to my surprise, I too was in bed, asleep, before eleven o'clock. Amazing. 

I had had my fingers crossed that maybe last night would be the night that my little man would sleep through the night. Some might say it's too early to even dream of such things, but my mom said that both my sister and I started sleeping all night when we were six weeks old. And well, folks, it's that time already. Joaquin is six weeks old today. Sadly though, he didn't sleep through the night. But I won't complain. He gets up, eats, and goes right back to bed after a good burp. 

Yeah, he's pretty much the most amazing baby ever. 

February 14, 2011

Whooping Cough

There have been a few commercials on TV lately about whooping cough.
And let me tell you, it scares me. The thought that I can give something like that to my son without even knowing or having it myself is pretty crazy.

If you don't know what it is, whooping cough is a flu like illness that can end up killing your baby. Whooping cough is also called pertussis. Any one at any age can get it but it's the most dangerous for babies younger than four months. Babies who are still in their first year of life are the ones most likely to develop serious complications from it.
Now even though this scared me when I saw the commercial, I immediately thought that this was only something that happened a long time ago and that nobody gets it these days. Wrong. I found out that within just the past few years it has become very popular [or should I say 'unpopular']. I don't know exact numbers or anything but I read that just in the years 2000 to 2004 there were over twelve thousand cases in the U.S. alone. I heard that numbers are slowly going down. Thankfully! But don't ignore it. Do something about it.
The best thing I can think of to do to help these numbers and our babies is to get vaccinated. 

Today I got my prevention shot and now it's the hubby's turn!

February 13, 2011

Say 'No' to Valentine's Day

Say what? Yeah, it got your attention didn't it? [I win!]

America, well the United States, has made a huge deal out of Valentine's Day for quite some time now. In my opinion it's just a way for stores to make a boat load of cash. I am not one of those women who detests the holiday for no apparent reason at all and I'm not out to complain about love. [That is something I do have.]
What makes my blood boil has always been around during this holiday, ever since I was born and I'm pretty sure long before that as well. I'm talking about people's "need" for the material.

Marcos and I got a TV for Christmas and thanks to free cable at our apartment I've been seeing all the Valentine's Day commercials that I wouldn't usually see. (I never used to watch TV). So yeah. These commercials y'all have here in the US of A. Mmmm. I don't like them. They have either become more stuck up, rude and desperate or I just didn't ever notice before leaving the country. The so-called things that us women supposedly need to show us we're loved; oh goodness. Chocolates. Flowers. Fine. I understand that some you want to feel appreciated. But diamonds, jewelry, and other luxury items? Come on! Since when did we need those things? Is it not enough any more to get a kiss or a hug? How about a hand-written letter from your special someone? [Not a text or an email].
The one commercial I hate the most is sponsored by Hershey's Kisses, of all people and it's aired on USA Network. They talk about the handmade gifts our children [or maybe even grandchildren] give to us on holidays like these. They go on to show a few kids showing their parents the gifts they made, being all proud telling you through the little gift how much they love us the parent. Cute right? Right. Except for the fact that each of the parents in the commercial makes a disgusted face asking what the hell their kid made. Every time I see this commercial I get really mad and have to change the channel.
Of all the gifts [or sometimes the lack there of] these should be the ones we treasure most. The small, love smothered crafts that can only mean 'I love you.'

Love your loved ones back this year. Show them you're thankful for them.

Maybe you can even doing it by spending zero dollars.

February 9, 2011

1 Month Appointment

My son had his one month appointment this morning.
Now, I might be a bad mother by admitting this but I didn't go with. Yeah, you read correctly. My husband took him, alone. I stayed home to catch up on sleep from being sick. [Did I mention I have the terrible little infection called Mastitis?]
My hubby reports that our son perfectly healthy! Which also means that I must be doing something right as a mother.
At his first check up he had lost 6 ounces since birth making him 6 pounds 10 ounces. [Now ladies, don't let anyone freak you out into thinking this is bad. Nearly all newborns lose weight the first week after birth. This doesn't mean they're unhealthy. It's normal!! (I'll tell you a story about this a little later)] I was really looking forward to today's appointment to see how much weight he has gained. People and books say that a baby should gain 1/2 pound each week in their first month along with growing 1/4 of an inch. Well!! My son weighed in at 10 pounds 8 ounces. That's almost 4 pounds! He's also 2 1/2 inches longer! This all happened within the last 4 weeks. Holy smokes!
At the beginning I, like most new moms, wasn't sure if Joaquin was getting enough to eat. I now know that he has gotten plenty! Super healthy and gaining weight. Healthy weight!
One thing that concerned me starting about 3 weeks ago was him grunting like he was trying to push poop out. I thought he was constipated. [Which would be super sad because I know how uncomfortable adults get not to mention an itty bitty baby]. So I looked up in my handy dandy What to Expect - The First Year baby book why he might be dong that and to see if my suspicions were correct. According to the book it takes babies a little more effort to get poops out and some might grunt (some a lot) while doing so, even in their sleep. My son does this mostly while he sleeps. The book advises that if you want to help baby, you can do some bicycle movements with his or her legs.
My husband told the doctor about it today and asked if there was anything else we could be doing. She gave us a prescription for gas relieving drops but told us that she would recommend us giving him tea instead. Manzanilla tea to be exact[which is also Chamomile to some of you]. But seriously? Tea? I didn't think you could give babies anything other than breast milk or formula. I guess I was wrong...
I never imagined that I would be having tea parties with my son.

February 8, 2011


For the most part I loved my stay at the hospital. The first of three baby nurses was great. She advised me on the normal stuff when it came to breastfeeding and had suggestions about foreseen problems. She was overly helpful and very nice. But I don’t have anything nice to say about the other two nurses. The second nurse just wasn’t friendly or helpful. She just made me feel uncomfortable. She even stood and watched me breastfeed. I mean when it was my first go at it I understood because I had never done it before and appreciated the pointers. But this woman didn’t say anything to me let alone give me advice. The third and final nurse to “assist” us was the worst. She seemed friendly but by the end of our stay I realized that she was a tad bit on the forgetful side. The first thing that put me off was she made me stop nursing Joaquin so that she could take him to see the pediatrician. I know that the doctor was making his rounds at that time but they had just urged me to breastfeed as long as the baby wanted and stressed how crutial it was to nurse him at that point so that he would get used to it. They gave me a four pack of ready-made formula in case I would need it. I didn't want it; I was determined to breastfeed but whatever. When they brought him back from the nursery we were given the go ahead to head home. I started packing up when I noticed that only three of the four bottles of formula were there. I was curious as to if it had just fallen out of the cart or if they had used it, but I kept my mouth shut and didn’t say anything. I just wanted to get home.
After getting home, Joaquin started spitting up. You know, the thick white stuff you'd only see after feeding a baby formula. It could've even been from breastmilk but seeing as how my milk hadn't come in yet, I knew that nurse had used the missing bottle of formula.
As for my nurses, one was super great while the other shouldn’t have been allowed to work. The night shift nurse had the shakes so bad that it caused her voice to shake. It was almost as if she had Parkinson’s. She would start talking randomly about only God knows what and it didn’t even seem like she was directing the “talk” to anyone real. It kind of seemed like she had “invisible friends.” Of course she had to be the one to take out part of my IV. I was so scared that she was going to rip it out of my arm! That’s how bad her shakes were.
My mom ended up staying with me that night while my husband was at work. She told me that when she left that morning Nurse Shakes was talking to herself. She was sitting down the hall from the other nurses all alone using an iPod. She was talking about how so and so has been pregnant for a year and still hasn’t had her baby. And then she went on talking about something else. My mom just walked away and soon heard the nurse say “Well, goodbye!” She said it was really freaky and agreed with me that she shouldn’t be working, let alone as a nurse.

After a few days the hospital called me to check on how the baby and I were doing and to allow me to give opinions of went at their facilities. Oh man! It was finally my chance. So I let this lady know about the worst of the baby nurses [who gave Joaquin formula when I told her not to] and the nurse with Parkinson’s. I didn’t remember the name of the baby nurse but I knew when her shift was. Thankfully the lady on the phone seemed just appalled as I was about both nurses and said things would be done thanks to my complaints! Wahoo!
So hopefully, if I ever go back to that maternity ward those ladies won’t be there.

February 5, 2011

Labor & Delivery

On January 5th my day started out by going to the doctor for my 40 week appointment, at that point I was so ready to not be pregnant anymore; I had really hoped that I wouldn’t have had to go for yet another visit to the doctor. After the routine weight check and the millionth time of peeing in a cup, I met with the nurse practitioner and was hooked up the non-stress test. After checking me [and baby] she informed me that I was all ready to go. That if I wanted, they could induce me.

Even though I loved the thought of not being pregnant anymore, I still wasn’t fond of the idea of using chemicals to bring on labor. I had also heard that contractions are much stronger after you’ve been induced. So after thinking it over and making a pro-con list with Marcos we decided not to do it and just wait. By the look that appeared on the face of the NP, she thought I was crazy. But I didn’t care.

Marcos works second shift and doesn’t get home until after midnight, any time between midnight and three in the morning. As soon he got the job, I started praying that I’d go into labor either on Sunday (his day off) or in the morning. I mean, what woman wants to be in the hospital, in labor, alone? Not me!
So, that day after getting home from the doctor hubby left for work. And there I sat, like every other day until late that afternoon when the contractions started. I wasn’t really sure if they were real. They weren’t consistent and didn’t seem to be progressing much. I even started ‘journaling’ the times when I had them in order to keep track. By the time Marcos got home my contractions had become more regular and by 4AM they were about five minutes apart. So of we went to hospital.

After going through a million questions in the triage, I was told that my doctor wanted to start me on some meds to speed up my contractions. I wasn’t too pleased, but I didn’t want to complain at that point. By 7/7:30AM I was throwing up because my contractions were so strong. [Thanks to the meds!] That was by far way worse than the contractions themselves which were pretty darn painful to begin with. So not being able to control my vomiting (Oh and my body was shaking extremely out of control. It was almost as if I didn’t have any control over stopping it.) I made the decision to have an epidural.
Now, this whole pregnancy I had been telling people and myself that I wanted delivery to be as natural as possible. So I was kind of disappointed in myself at first for having help. I will also admit that I was a little nervous about getting an epidural, more so than the thought of pushing a baby out of my body. But once that catheter was in and started working, I loved it. I even got to rest while I waited for the labor to progress. My water did break on its own, which I was happy for. That was at about 11 o’clock. By 11:50AM our son was out!

I was just as excited for the birth as any other mother would be. They put the baby right into my lap as soon as he was born. But I found it kind of annoying that the nurses coach you even after the birth. “Hold him. It’s your baby!” I know all of that. “Look at him!” It felt almost as if they didn’t think I wanted him. All I was doing was trying to catch my breath. I mean, come on! I just pushed for nearly an hour.

Other than being sick during labor, it wasn't a bad experience. From all the stories and TV shows on the subject, I expected it to be much worse. And maybe it would have been if I would have gone 100% natural. I don't think I'll ever find out. If I get pregnant again, I am for sure getting that epidural and this time it will be before I get sick!