I am fascinated with parenting. I love being a parent. Evan's 5th birthday is on Wednesday and I have been thinking a lot about his birth day (probably because my friend Lisa had her first boy today and my sister Katie is having her first soon as well). Having more babies is literally like a drug to me. How? I am chasing that first "high".
I have never done ANY drugs before, but I do know not only are continued repeats of drug use chasing that first high, but also you can never reach it again - unless you add other drugs or something (again, no personal experience to help in that department!). In that case, I wonder to myself if having a girl would make that height attainable. I may never know. I have mixed feelings about having more kids but mostly I'd like to. Then I think about freedom, Joe's desire to continue his education, and on and on, and I'm not sure if it will happen.
Then the guilt sets in. I wonder why Evan, Nolan, and Calvin cannot be enough? I love them with all my heart. I am so happy and thankful to be their mom.
I am so grateful to nurse Calvin in case he truly is my last. I hold him and thank God for having a baby longer.
My sister Katie commented that I am reaching my full potential by having Calvin. I never thought about that. I do know I am much more developed as a parent because of him. I can tell you a lot about child development that I never knew before (and he's only 8 months...by the way, "Happy 8 Months Calvin!"). I can tell you a lot about perseverance, desire, pain, joy, anger, sadness, relief, disappointment, elation, confusion, patience, and the list could go on.
So, when I think about not ever again reaching that "high" I had when I gave birth to Evan, I am reminded that Nolan and Calvin bring on new and different and good highs...
"I go cool!" (Evan keeps going to school without poor Nolan)
My mom, who had 7 babies, got quite a kick out of that [and Grandma Jo Jo was experiencing some physical symptoms herself ;) ]. When he was out I asked the dr "What is it?" And she smiled and said "A baby!". I found out the next day that my dr had just delivered a baby with his/her cord wrapped around his/her neck. That baby did not make it. I am sure "my" delivery had new meaning to her as well (it is a smaller hospital and I doubt she had a baby to deliver in between the two). I was so happy when she said "a boy!" I pictured Evan and his new best friend.
When Calvin was born I had so many worries. When I started going in to labor I was not emotionally ready (though a part of me was definitely excited). That was obvious if you were following this blog at that time. When Calvin was born and I finally saw him I went back to my room with my ultimate delivery low...I was disappointed. I have not shared that here yet.
I was disappointed with his thick neck, g-tube up his nose, formula pumping through his body, no nursing, a 5-10 minute walk away from my room, drs and nurses I did not know, and this list goes on and on. I do not ever want a "low" list again. In fact, it is partially what drives my desire to yet again reach for another "high". I wonder if this time it could be that high again because of what I (and many others) went through with Calvin.
I did not intend for this post to go in this direction. I wanted to share about Calvin's therapy, food, and new skill. So, I'll do that quick since I have not been given much chance to get on here. If I'm not back before Wednesday, know I'm sharing cake with my 5 year old "high".
He started his first solids a week ago. We started with Sweet Potatoes and he is doing really well. When he eats I tell him "open" and he smiles and is starting to open when the spoon comes to his mouth. At this point I feel like he eats as well as Evan did. Nolan was not huge into solids until past his first birthday.
Calvin's therapy has been going much better. We have an IFSP review on Wednesday and I'm looking into adding Speech to the list. In fact, I'm starting to focus more on Speech than large or fine motor skills because I have confidence those skills will come, but I do not know what Calvin's speech will be like.
The following pictures are from C's last therapy session. His therapist is learning about Reflex Integration. Brain scans are being used to show changes occurring in the brain because of these therapies. I must say that in the 2 weeks we've been using them Calvin has made many improvements. He is bearing weight on his legs much longer, he is sitting longer, he is pushing off and up with his arms, he is now rolling over both ways (left and right) and back to his back, and he over all feels stronger when he is resisting me or moving in my arms. I am very excited about this therapy. I am taking pictures now to make up sheets for Joe to see as well and thought I'd share some here, too.
Leg Cross Flexion Extension:
Just practicing sitting up! Calvin has a harder time with this because of many reasons, including his trunk strength and shorter arms to catch himself. He is improving though and I'd be surprised if he didn't have it down within this next month. I am so pleased with his progress.
Finally, I wanted to share that I've just recently started saying "so big" to Calvin and lifting his arms. 2 days ago he started lifting his arms himself when I say it. I am very impressed with this! Go Calvin! "So Big!"