There have been several times in the past few weeks that I've wanted to blog, but so far I haven't had much time. Who knows how long this post will take me to complete - it all depends on if the baby keeps sleeping or not.
I had a really good recovery from my c-section, far and away the best I've ever had, and a fairly relaxed first 3 weeks of the baby's life, emotionally speaking. This was due in great part to the extensive visit of my sister, who stayed from before Laura Louise was born until the end of October. At the point when everyone went home and back to work after I had my other two, I started trying to bring some order to my life, gain some control, and prevent evening crying jags by working on my babies' nap schedules. I made myself crazy trying to get them to nap at the same times every day for as long as the books said they should. I even said after the first one that I wasn't going to do that again, but the second one came along and I did it again. So I've resisted whatever urges I might have to check out the latest "get your baby to sleep" books out there. If I don't have a "should" to follow, then I can't follow it, right? I'm telling myself just to enjoy whatever naps she does take and not expect anything else.
The problem is, now that I am taking care of her almost exclusively by myself (sister has gone home, and husband is in seminary - 'nuff said), it seems like she has three states: sleeping, nursing, or crying. She literally cries 99% of the time that she is awake, unless she's nursing. She has actually made herself hoarse crying so much. It doesn't matter if I'm holding her or not, walking around with her or not, singing to her or not; she just cries. Her daddy and I have discussed the possiblity that it's reflux that's making her cry, but I don't know if that's it or not. Anyway, it's a good thing I'm trying to go with the flow otherwise, because all the crying is draining enough without expending energy trying to control how the day goes. Even still, the crying does wear a person down after awhile. Pray for me.
With the other two, especially the oldest, I've switched from a very structured homeschool schedule to what I like to call "guerilla homeschooling." We fit in a reading lesson while I'm nursing or holding the baby. We do math on the floor while the baby unexpectedly naps. You get the picture.
Another thing that's really helping me is that some of the mothers here have started an educational playgroup co-op twice a week in the mornings. This gives me a break from the two older ones so I can relax a bit, mentally. We'll see how it goes when it's my turn to participate in the teaching/supervision part! The administration here is really hoping to turn this grassroots effort into a full-fledged daycare/preschool, they say by next school year. I think it would be a real boon to the seminary if and when that happens, but I'm thankful for what we have now.
I'm going to be churched early, Lord willing, tomorrow, so that I can venerate the relics of St. Vladimir that are scheduled to come here the following weekend. My husband's dad and stepmother are coming to visit us this weekend for a few days, tand then about a week after they leave, his mother will be visiting us for Thanksgiving. While she is here, Laura Louise is scheduled to be baptized during the liturgy on Thanksgiving day! We are so excited to have that to remember each year on Thanksgiving, and blessed to have a fellow-seminarian and his wife as the intended godparents for our little one. They are pious, thoughtful, hospitable people with whom we feel we have a lot in common, and wish we had even more in common, when it comes to their virtues.
I think I'd better wrap this up and get some sleep while the getting is good. Pray for us.