When Parenting Becomes Hard

It’s been 2 weeks since I’ve posted an update and so much has happened!  This might be the most exciting 2 weeks since she’s been born!  Last weekend, Sept 18, Mackenzie had a great time hanging out with her Aunt Ashlea and Uncle Andy.  Then, Richie went to the Black Crowes concert while I packed up our stuff and Mackenzie and I headed to Greensboro to spend Saturday night with Gigi and Pop!  They hadn’t seen her since she had started rocking back and forth on her knees, so they were ready to spend some quality time with their granddaughter.  My mom was playing with her on the floor when she decided to check out the “tooth” situation.  I told her that I check everyday and hadn’t seen any pop through yet.  Well, she stuck her finger in there, and sure enough you could feel the top of a little tooth that had pushed through the gums!  I was so excited, but kinda sad that I wasn’t the one to find it myself.  All in all it was a great evening and Mackenzie got lots of love – even Jared fed her a bottle!  She was amazed at the hard wood floors – she scooted her way over to them while the rest of us were sitting at the table eating dinner.  She loved laying on her tummy and hitting the floor.

Saturday night goes down as one of the worst nights since she’s been born.  She slept fine from about 8 until 10:30 when I went to bed.  Then, she decided she wasn’t going to sleep in her crib.  She would cry, I would rock her back to sleep, and then when I would lay her in her crib, she would wake back up and start crying again.  She also started sounding congested, so my wonderful dad went to Walmart at 11:15 at night to get a humidifier.  We run the humidifier every night at our house, and I will NEVER go on another trip without bringing it with me.  Once we turned the humidifier on, it helped to keep her asleep.  However, she woke up at about 3 and again at 4:30.  Finally I fed her a bottle and she slept until 7:30.  Ugh… I was exhausted!  Sunday afternoon while I was taking a nap after we got back home, Richie said she was fussy and cried almost the entire hour and a half I was asleep.  (see the title of my blog – parenting is getting harder!)

Last Monday and Tuesday Richie was gone to Detroit, so I was on full-time daycare duty and it was great to be able to visit for 2 days in a row!  After talking to Ms. Wagner, we decided to up her breakfast and lunch feedings to 1/2 a tub of baby food.  For breakfast, she eats rice cereal and 1/2 tub fruit, and for lunch it is just 1/2 tub veggie.  Well, on Tuesday, she ate the whole tub of green beans!  I couldn’t believe it!  I can definitely tell that she is getting more and more of her food from the babyfood because she is consistently leaving 2 ounces in her bottles.  However, there are some times where she drinks the full 6 ounces, so I always make 6 ounces for each bottle.  I don’t want to leave her wanting more.  Since we’ve moved up to the size 3 flow nipples in the past 2 weeks, she sucks the bottles down really quickly.  As far as food goes, she has recently been introduced to pineapples (mixed with pears), blueberries (mixed with apples and bananas) and mixed vegetables.  The mixed vegetables was a disaster because she hated them.  I can’t blame her because they looked and smelled totally disgusting.  I would put a spoonful in her mouth, she would make an awful face, and then she would start grunting and getting very mad.  She would eat it, but she definitely wanted something different.  I just threw them out and gave her bananas instead.  Well, they aren’t her favorite either, so she kept getting frustrated.  I need to go back to the store to get her some more veggies that she likes such as sweet peas, carrots, and her new favorite butternut squash and corn.  She tried it last night and gobbled it up! 

Wednesday and Thursday, I worked late since the tax deadline is quickly approaching.  So, I missed feeding her and putting her to bed.  But, Richie is wonderful with her and I think it’s great that they get some one on one time.  However, Thursday night when I got home at about 8:30, Richie presented me with a video from that night of her taking her first “crawling” steps!  She looked like a little baby horse just learning to walk, and could only take a few crawls before she fell on her tummy, but she was doing it!  Actually, Thursday morning when I went to get her out of her crib I thought I saw her crawl across the crib to get her pacifier.  It was just one step so I couldn’t really tell.  Richie said when he dropped her off at daycare Thursday morning, she took a few crawls there, too.  Well, everyday since then, she has been getting stronger and faster!  This weekend, her favorite thing was to crawl over to where Ramsey’s dog toys are and play, or she ventures to the hardwood floors and plays on them.  Last night, we skyped with Richie’s parents.  We had the computer on the floor on one side of the living room and her on the opposite side.  She would crawl right over to the computer.  She’s getting to be such a big girl!  Once again – parenting is becoming hard because we have to constantly watch to make sure she is not getting herself into a situation where she could get hurt.  The days of relaxing on the couch on a Sunday afternoon while she sits and plays in the floor are OVER!

I think I have mentioned this before, but Mackenzie has become very aware of her surroundings and who is around her.  If you sit her on the floor and leave the room, and she is not in the mood to be left alone, she will start crying and sobbing – she even gets the big crocodile tears going!  But, then if you come back in the room or pick her up, the crying immediately stops and she starts smiling! 

Back to the sleeping situation – apparently last Saturday night was not a one time thing.  She was up for about an hour on Monday night, and again for about an hour and a half on both this Friday and Saturday nights.  On Friday and Saturday, she woke up at about 4:15 am crying.  I went in there and rocked her back to sleep.  The instant I would sit down with her, her eyes would close and she would be out like a light.  But, the second I laid her back in her crib, she would cry.  Sometimes she would even roll immediately onto her stomach and get on her hands and knees.  I’m ashamed to say that on both nights, we ended up just putting her in bed with us because that’s the only way all 3 of us could get some sleep.  Richie and I both were at our wits ends.  After about 30 minutes, I would always move her back to her crib and she would stay asleep for the rest of the night.  

She has always been a back sleeper and never really seemed to sleep well if she ended up on her stomach.  Well, last night at about 9:30, I went in to check on her and she was on her stomach.  I figured we were in for a long night.  At about 10:30, I checked on her and she was on her stomach with her knees pulled up and her butt in the air – very cute!  But, her face was buried into the bumper pads.  I moved her over into the center of the crib, but I must have woken her up.  About 15 minutes later, she started crying so I went in there and rocked her back to sleep.  When she immediately woke up again when I laid her in her crib, I made the decision to just let her cry it out.  I knew nothing was wrong with her, she wasn’t hungry, and she was developing a very bad habit of needing comforting to get back to sleep.  It took about 15-20 minutes, but she finally stopped crying and I didn’t hear a peep from her until 7:15 this morning!  I have read that babies have problems sleeping when they hit a big milestone.  So, between crawling, teething, and being able to realize that she’s alone in the room and if she cries we’ll come to her, it creates a very frustating and heartbreaking scenario for us as parents.  We either listen to them cry, or create a cycle that is very hard to break.

Aside from the frustrations, I love watching our little girl grow and learn before our eyes.  The most wonderful thing about her crawling happened yesterday morning.  I was sitting in a chair and she crawled right over to me and pulled on my pants for me to pick her up.  She loves her mommy and I love her right back!


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