Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Black Friday

Before kids I did the black Friday shopping thing.  I don’t know why really, but chances are that when the kids are older I may do it again (except where I can get free shipping by doing online shopping of course).

Instead, today, I work.  Traffic was nonexistent, the parking garage was eerily empty.  But no one is around to keep me from getting stuff done.  It’s really nice.

I don’t typically mention much on this blog about those topics that are in the ‘air’ currently that are controversial.  But for some reason I wanted to talk about Black Friday turning into Black Thursday.

On one hand I’m like ‘whatever’.  It is my understanding that most retailers are not having a hard time finding people to work.  And a large portion of those that work in retail probably need the extra money that they could make on a holiday, so why not?

On the other hand I think it’s crap.  Why make people work on holidays?  I doubt I’d ever shop on Thanksgiving.

Thursday, December 12, 2013


February 25, 2012.

The first day that I didn’t nurse bug. I wrote a number of posts about weaning her last year (see some herehere and here), and going back and looking at them again brought new tears to my eyes.

I look at my little girl, who now really looks so much like a little girl, and it breaks my heart just a little that we weaned when we did, for the reasons we did. Infertility and wanting another baby.

Some of my worries back then didn’t come true. I was so worried that we’d wean and then never get pregnant and I’d regret it. I don’t regret weaning – because I look at the beautiful face of my smiling little boy and know that HE wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for weaning when we did. That doesn’t mean that the ache doesn’t come back sometimes.

One of my other worries that I don’t believe I really wrote too much about was that I was afraid that my nursing relationship with a new baby wouldn’t be the same.

And it’s not.

Goose isn’t known to comfort nurse in the same way that Bug did. For Bug, I was her EVERYTHING. If anything bothered her she wanted to nurse. If she couldn’t settle down she wanted to nurse. If she was tired, cranky, happy, hurt, sad, ill, she wanted to nurse. She loved our nursing relationship as much as I did. In the long run weaning that last daily session was easier with her than I expected, but she held on to my boobs (literally and figuratively) for months and months afterwards. Even when she went through her distracted stage she was still all about the nursing relationship. It was filled with sweet sweet moments of just her and I, loving each other as a mama and daughter were meant to in the early years.

Goose isn’t like that. He does some level of comfort nursing, but not like she did. I can’t keep him focused sometimes long enough to get a letdown. In the morning he’s become so accustomed to taking a bottle that he isn’t interested in me if I’m around when he gets up during the week (weekends he will eventually nurse). In the deep pit of my stomach I’m so afraid that he’ll self-wean earlier than I want him to. I want so badly for him to nurse until at least 2 because of the bond it creates. Because of the good that I know it does for him. (and the ease and price of it ain’t half bad either!)

He is rougher than she was. Yeah, she got those claws in my skin sometimes, but not bad (or maybe I’m just remembering the good part?). He is so rough and tumble, he will grip both sides of my boob sometimes and squeeze it in his tiny little fists. I’ll come out red and marked up. Sometimes with scratches. But the other night I was nursing him before bed, and I realized in some ways it’s not so different.

The relationship. In many ways it is similar.

I choose to take that step back and really pay attention, recognizing that he has a lot more going on than she did with a toddler running around to keep his attention.

As I felt the weight of him curled up against me, the rest of his hands on me (yes, he was being gentle) the way he eagerly drinks and the way his sweet little eyes went half closed reminded me of all those sweet moments with her. I took the step back and reclaimed the sweet moments with him right then and there. I watched him break away for a moment and take a deep breath, only to go back to nursing. That same soft deep pull of the nipple as he gets one of the best things that I can give him. The way his warm body stayed so close to mine.

And I realized that I very well may be wrong. That this relationship may have a lot more time in it yet. That our sweet moments are still there, hanging in tight, and it makes me glad (with a little sadness around it) that I weaned Bug when I did, so that I could have this relationship with Goose. And I thought that about 4 more times overnight as he woke up (teething) and wanted nothing but mama to nurse him through.

And, nursing Goose has taught me something about nursing Bug. Turns out she had a HORRIBLE latch and that’s why my nipples were always sore (nipple cream was used up until the last day I nursed!). Goose? He may be rough and tumble, but that boy has an AMAZING latch and the girls only get tender when AF is near. Nipple cream? I’m sure I have some in the medicine cabinet… somewhere :-)

Monday, December 9, 2013


Goose is teething. He is teething, but is a better teether (is that a word?) then Bug was. At least that’s what I keep thinking to myself in my sleep deprived haze that has been building up for the last 10 1/2 months. I know it’s true, he, in general, sleeps better than Bug did. But the weeks leading up to a tooth being cut are tough, and the week before and after are just brutal. I’m in the throes of that time. He just popped through teeth 3 and 4 and is working on 5 and 6. And I’m scared. The other night when he woke up the first time I dealt with something I don’t ever remember dealing with when it came to Bug, and she definitely was cause for severe sleep deprivation for a very long time. First, I didn’t really wake up to his cries. K did. Well, I guess I kinda did. I heard K ask a question about the cries, I think it was something along the lines of who it was that was crying, although I’m not sure. He said this morning that both kids were making noise, but I still don’t remember hearing Bug at all. K doesn’t typically wake up to it in the middle of the night in part because I'm so quick to wake up to him, so that makes me question how long Goose was fussing, and maybe that was why Bug was too – because she kept hearing Goose. In my sleep deprivation haze I couldn’t even function enough to understand that the noise I was hearing were a babies cries, and my husband asking who. He had to ask the question a couple of times while I tried so hard to dig through the haze to understand what was going on. I was confused. I finally got through and was able to advise that it was Goose. K left and went to care for him. What felt like a minute or 2 later (although K said it was 20 or so), K came back in and let me know he thought Goose wanted to nurse. I could hear Goose crying (again I believe?). I was oriented enough to go nurse him. But while I was nursing him I felt myself weaving in and out of confusion, weaving in and out of this haze. The best way I can explain it is to liken it to the stories I hear of people who have been in a coma, and how they explain of this haze, fog, muck all around them that they have to try to dig, crawl, fight through to get to the surface. I know sleep deprivation isn’t a coma, and please understand that I’m not trying to say my situation is anything like a coma. That is simply what it felt like. There was this haze all around me, and I kept feeling so lost and confused as I tried to dig my way through. I’d get through and recognize that I was holding a suckling Goose to my breast, and I’d close my eyes again and sometime later I’d realize I was deep in the fog again. I have no idea how long I sat there. It seemed like a long time. Finally I realized that he wasn’t nursing any more, and I had no idea when he had stopped. He was quiet and asleep in my arms. So I put him back in the crib, to which he woke up to. I stood there patting his bottom until I thought he was good. Then I went back to bed. Shortly after I heard him fussing again, but I didn’t have the energy to get out of bed, and it didn’t last long before he was back asleep. I know he woke up at least one more time, and I know the fog was there but I don’t think it was quite as bad. But I don’t really remember that wake up and nursing session. Maybe I’m getting them confused and that was the second nursing session and the first I remember even less. I really don’t know. The night was a confused hazy blur that honestly freaks me out a little bit. Here’s to hoping for some sleep tonight.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Pilot's Wife?

Yes, I’m still a Pilot’s wife. It’s true, I am :-) We've been both lucky and unlucky since K lost his job 2 years ago as a Flight Engineer on a 727. He didn’t have the hours to get another job for a carrier of any kind. He got his pilot’s license in his 30’s and got the job as an FE because he already worked for the company as an A&P Mechanic and they LOVED him. So he remained unemployed during our move, and then took a few months to spend at home with his little girl, whom he had been gone from 21 days a month for her entire life (sometimes more; during training). So a year and ½ ago he went back to work, but as a flight instructor. Then a year ago he added in some corporate flying on the side, but then that became his ‘main’ job in August of this year. Last summer he was never home. He committed to being home one weekend day and one evening a week this summer, and did that. He just kept chasing the new hour requirements for his ATP. (for those of you non-aviation followers, it’s something required to fly as a Captain/Co-Captain by commercial carriers) It sucked. He kept saying ‘there’s going to be a shortage of pilots and they’ll have to revise the laws’ for months. Then, they FINALLY DID!! He had just barely the right amount of hours for the Revised ATP (R-ATP), and happens to have a degree in aviation from a university that is in the process of getting their approval to be used towards the R-ATP. That is still in process, but in the interim he got hired on by United Express. They are desperate for pilots, so they hired him knowing that they may have to pay him to sit at home until the University’s approval comes through. So a month ago he started training. The first part of training was local, so he was home every night, but laaate every night, and helped get the kids ready for the day in the morning. So they were seeing him for maybe an hour a day during the week (that is rushed of course) and maybe 2 hours on the weekend. Then on Sunday he had to go out to Seattle for his Sim training at Flight Safety. Goose is doing fine with it (10 1/2 months already!!), but Bug, well, she’s not handling it so well. Daycare has mentioned many times over the past 2 weeks that she is sad or emotional during the day. I know it’s because she misses K. She does good most of the time at home with me, and is typically pretty happy, but I know it’s because I’m around. Luckily he got domiciled here at home. Low man on the totem pole we figure he’ll get a lot of 5 day trips in the beginning (that’s their longest stints). I’m good with that, but I’m worried about Bug. For those of you left out there following me that are Pilot wives, any suggestions on helping a 3 ½ year old handling daddy being gone after he WAS home? I feel so bad for her, it’s heartbreaking. And now she wants me more than him, which is sweet for me, but tough on him. We will Skype for sure when we can, but any other thoughts are appreciated. On an awesome note, United Express has flow through to United, which is K’s carrier of choice. So hopefully a handful of years from now he’ll be working for United! AND just because……. I AM SO EXCITED FOR NON REV BENEFITS!!!! (except the first bunch of times I use it will be Kid Free until I am a semi pro at handling it LOL) Any suggestions on non reving? :-)