On Schedules, Anxiety, Changes, & Private Parts.

September 6, 2011

This weekend we made a quick trip down to San Diego to celebrate with our friends at their wedding & also just to visit Lighthouse. It had been awhile since we had been down. It was a super sweet time — I always come away from our visits feeling so thankful for the community we have at Lighthouse. It’s really something special that I don’t think people even realize until they’re not there anymore. At any rate, I was super nervous about spending the night elsewhere — and about having to share a room with Oliver again — but he did well for the most part. He did miss a lot of naps though & was the fussiest I had ever seen him since he was born. It was really sad to see him so cranky & tired, but Steven says we can’t just not live life because we have a baby. He is right, as usual. This weekend we saw the Ollie that could have been… if we had never put him on a schedule. Not to say that schedules are the only way or the right way, but we really saw the benefit of giving him a routine & providing opportunities for him to get adequate sleep everyday. He is a much happier baby when he is well rested. That gave me renewed confidence in sticking to scheduling & also a more grateful heart for his generally happy disposition, even when he has some short naps here or there.

We stayed with Jin & Grace, our go-to family when we spend the night in SD. If you don’t know, Jin & Grace pretty much mentored us throughout our dating relationship, gave a toast on our wedding day, and now Grace is walking me through this new stage of motherhood. I call her every time I freak out, and she helps me work through all the little decisions I have to make, while encouraging me & telling me I’m doing a great job haha. She’s the best. We got a chance to catch up with them after the babes went down, and it was neat hearing all their insights now that they have two little boys. They encouraged us just to enjoy baby Oliver & not to stress so much. I hear it all the time, and I know it’s true, but it is so hard to let go of all my worries. They also brought up a funny little observation they had noticed with many of the kids at church: they found that most firstborns weren’t as affectionate as the second- or third-borns, and they believed it had something to do with the first-time mom anxiety. It’s no secret that babies can sense stress or anxiety from their mothers, but it was interesting to think that a mother’s emotional state could affect their personalities so much. Thought provoking.

Yesterday was recovery day for our family. We put Ollie back on his schedule & were thankful that he bounced right back. It was nice that Steven had the day off & we got to spend a lot of time playing together at home. I have been kind of lazy about taking pictures, but snapped a ton of photos yesterday since Steven was home. Last night I uploaded them all to my computer & we put up a slideshow of his first almost-3 months on our TV. It is amazing how much he has changed. I was laughing & tearing up, seeing his newborn pictures juxtaposed with his almost-3 month pictures. I hadn’t even realized how much he had changed. I could really see that he is looking more & more like Steven, just as people have been saying.

I was tearing up looking at pictures of me holding him when he was just a week old. I remember putting makeup on & changing out of my nursing gown so that I would look somewhat decent for the pictures. At the time, holding him felt foreign to me. I was insecure & confused, in the thick of dealing with my postpartum blues. I was afraid he could sense my feelings & that he would cry in my arms. The only job I felt comfortable with was nursing, and even that was a challenge. So much has changed in less than three months. It really leaves me speechless at God’s handiwork in transforming him to be this happy, smiley, cooing, active baby boy & in enabling me to care for him as his mother. And to think that in another three months, he will be so different! Crazy, I tell ya.

Lastly, I had been becoming increasingly concerned about Ollie’s private parts. Every time I change his diaper I notice that his wee wee is very sunken in. I make sure to pull back the skin every time so that it doesn’t adhere again, but I was starting to worry that maybe they messed up when they circumcised him? I didn’t want him to become the boy that’s made fun of because he has a weird “thing”. So I did what I always do when I am unsure of something: google. Turns out it is called an “inverted penis” or “disappearing penis” and actually quite common in baby boys who are on the chubbier side. Their fat pads just kind of envelop their private parts & cause them to sink in… alarming to look at, but it supposedly goes away as they get older & thin out a bit. Steven & I had a blast reading people’s comments on the forums — we were laughing up a storm. Anyways, glad it’s no big deal. Really dodged a bullet with that one!

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