ONE.

I can’t believe – I have a toddler! I waited for such a long time to write this. Owen is already 13 months old! So much has happened since his fabulous, Lumberjack Themed party.

Owen started waking on his own some time around 11.5 months. Lots of bumps and bruises, the poor little guy – but he’s tearing through the house now. He still for the life of himself cannot get himself up to standing and still will not crawl! What a stubborn little man. He’s saying lots of words now. Up, Kick, Ball, Mama, Dada, Doggy, Hello, Bye Bye…to name a few. He rotates between them and some times you won’t hear a word for a long time and then every day, all day.

Daycare started January 4th. Transition wasn’t as difficult as I had imagined. It took him about 3 solid weeks before he stopped crying at drop off. But he absolutely loves his daycare worker! You can see it in his eyes, as much as hers. Month of January was very difficult on both of us in terms of our health. We’ve both been sick a total of 3 separate times in ONE month! It was awful. I just hope we’re both going to have a brighter February.

I’m back at work now. It’s been three weeks. Transition has been slow but welcomed. I find myself having more energy and patience now that I have a work/life balance again. It has proven both Owen and I a good thing.

I look back on the year and I am amazed. Amazed at all the time that passed, everything we’ve been through together and I’m excited for our future.

I’ve not decided but I’m either going to stop posting updates or they will become more sporadic. I felt like I had a good run and it’s coming to an end. I’m so happy I was able to chronicle my journey all the way from the beginning of TTC.

I didn’t think I’d become a mom again and yet, here I am with this beautiful baby boy. And if I can help encourage & help any women out there on the internet looking for answers and hope then I feel like I’ve done a good thing. Thank you for everyone who tagged along in my journey and I wish everyone the very best. And I hope everyone gets their happy ending too.

Barb

xo

Fears. 

All parents have fears for their little ones. You worry about their health & wellbeing. It’s natural. 

In the non-baby loss world, do any of you worry about your child’s mortality? I lost one child and I have had fears about loosing Owen since he was born. I understand statistically nothing bad should happen to him but I can’t help but to wonder and hope nothing does. I hear horrible stories about children dying of Cancer. We had a boy in recent news in Ontario who died of Cancer yesterday and I know a friend of a friend who’s daughter is slowly dying of a inoperable, incurable brain Cancer. And then of course, Cancer is everywhere!!

Childhood Cancer must be one of the cruelest, unfair things to ever happen to a child. Just horrific. No child should have to experience Chemo, live in w hospital or be told they won’t live to grow up. No parent should ever have to see their child die before them. Never. 

I know the pain that comes with losing a child. And I can’t imagine ever having to live through that again. I can’t imagine knowing for months or even years that your child is slowly deteriorating and they won’t be here to sit next to your dying bed like it’s supposed to be! We are meant to go before our children. 

I have fears. Some times when I hear an awful story of a child dying of cancer or from a horrible accident, I get scared that I may loose Owen too. I’m afraid that I won’t get to die before him. I really hope I won’t have to feel the pain of loosing my child ever again because the mere thought of it makes it unbareable. I wouldn’t want to live in a world where Owen isn’t in it. I am not sure I could. 

I’m curious, if anyone of you also feel the same? Have these thoughts? Either you’ve had a loss or you haven’t. I wonder what is normal some days. And what is because I’ve already lost my little one. 

~B

11 Months

We’re in Owens 12th Month and I just can’t believe he’s going to be a year old soon! He’s been growing and developing so much lately it’s blowing my mind. It also me ans it will be time soon for me to return to work and for Owen to start Day Care. I’m so very torn. I have to return to work but if it were up to me, I’d stay home just one more year. I’m going to be torn away from him for so many hours a day. How am I supposed to do that?! A part of me is ready to return back to a routein of my own again and having more adult interactions. But I know the bigger side of me will miss him greatly and I’ll be wondering, is he also thinking about me? I’m cherishing every day we still have together for now. 

Owen is basically ready to walk on his own. He cruises furniture and people and some times will let go of my hand at random times while he’s waking. My back has been sore for months walking him because he’s absolutely not content sitting. He whines and eventually cries if he has to sit for long. 

He’s been starting to say words other than mama, dada, baba. Hello, Bye bye, dog (sort of), ball (sort of), kick. He will at random mimic a word I say but only once. So I’m left to wonder, did I imagine it? 

He’s full of cuddles and hugs now which I’m looooooving. He searches me out for comfort and it’s really one of the best feelings. 

Owen doesn’t eat a lot. He’s now on full fat dairy milk (goodbye formula!) and eats three meals including snacks. Some days and some meals he does very well but most of the time he doesn’t eat very much at all. Any of you experience the same thing? Maybe I’m taking him off formula too soon?

Teeth; he has none! I swear this kid has been teething forever….yet he’s still as gummy as the day he was born. 

I’ve planned Owens first Birthday Party which is exciting. It will be a Pancake brunch with a Lumberjack theme. Appropriate for a Canadian Boy :)

Here are a few photos of the big boy!

  

    

 

Peanuts Allergy Results

Hey everyone, I wanted to update everyone sooner but it’s been quite a busy week. I’m happy to say Owen is peanut allergy free. 

 He has some elevated antibodies towards peanuts and he tested skin positive for peanut butter but he passed the in-office oral challenge. The allergist administered peanut butter every 15 minutes, 5 times in total. After each 15 minutes he listed to his lungs and heart. Checked his skin for hives. After the last dose, Owen slept for an hour and after a final exam we were released as peanut free but that we need to make sure peanuts are a regular part of his diet. 

So, why did he react to peanuts? The doctor says he believes it could either mean nothing or as studies have shown, he could be one of those children whom if we held off peanuts for years, he would develope the allergy later on. 

My message is to urge all of you to make sure to expose your babies early to all the allergen foods. Studies are showing that early and regular exposure can help prevent an allergic reaction and that is a very good thing. 

~B

Allergy Blood Results

So, to make things more complicated Owens blood work is also inconclusive which means we will be heading into a food challenge on Monday at the doctors office. It’s going to be a long day of 3 + hours & then of course the nerves of what if he reacts badly?

The doctor ordered two tests. One is a general test which people refer to as RAST. It’s been used for a long time and gives you an indication of how allergic a person is. Owen tested positive with a Moderate reaction. 

A second Peanut protein specific test that’s relatively new and more specific called RARA H2 which tests to see if Owen would have an anaphylaxis reaction turned negative. Detection of <0.35 as the result. Which from my interpretation is negative. 

I’ll be finding out more and what the tests mean soon. I’m hoping in the end it doesn’t mean much at all for him. He gets hives with skin contact and two tests have been positive while two have been negative. How confusing?! I’ve read and been told by his doctor that an oral challenge is the Golden test. 

I’ll update after Monday’s appointment. Wish me strength!!

Xo

9 Month Update & Allergy Update

OK so I’ve totally sucked thinking I’d have more than 1 update a month – HAH!

Owen is now nearing 10 months…9 days left to go. There’s been a lot developmentally but overall, same thing – different day. He is 19.8lbs & 31″ tall. He went up to 98 percentile. This kid is lean but he got tall.

I had an update saying he was all clear in the allergy department but it is a continuing saga. He developed hives on his face when the PB came into contact with his skin so we went back to the allergist and got blood tests done. I still haven’t heard back on the blood work but I’m hoping some time in the coming week because his follow up appointment is next Monday the 26th and I need to know if we’re doing an in-office food challenge or if we’re talking about how to manage his allergy. I’m really hoping an allergy doesn’t show up in the blood results or its very low. At this point, we’ve removed peanuts and have been treating him as if he has a peanut allergy. In the meantime our homework has been introducing tree nuts. He’s had Almonds, Walnuts, Cashew, Hazelnut and so far no reactions.

Owen is walking assisted now. He loves walking – wants to do it all day long. Which is really hard on mom and dad’s back so I’ve been forcing more seated activities – which he isn’t thrilled about and will often fight! He has no inclination towards crawling but I’m hoping by forcing him to manage on his own more, he will find a way to scoot around some how. The days are very busy now that he’s more active and his attention span is short. I still try to get out as much as humanly possible because it’s the one time he is calm, relaxed and content.

We’ve nailed down a date for when he starts Day Care. And can I tell you how wrong it felt?? I know I have to return to work and I’m OK with it. I’ve accepted that from the get go. But as the day’s near and I realize how we won’t have these days just him and I – the whole world our oyster do do as we please – and someone else taking care of him?!?! I wish I could stay home with him just one more year. Alas this isn’t reality so Owen starts Daycare on January 4th. I have the first two weeks off of work so I can transition him, myself and also get some time to relax before heading back to work. I will no doubt find many things that I’d like to get done and finally have the time too, as well.

Anyhow, that is about all. I’ll update again soon after the allergist appointment. Until then here is some more baby eye candy!


  

Half Month

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I feel like my monthly updates really don’t feel like they’re enough…I want to change that. I want to change it mostly for me because this is a great outlet for me. Being a mom is a lot of damn work and it’s not that I don’t have time to write more, it’s that I’m too tired! When I get time to myself I’m either catching up with things, friends or plain old tuning out to a TV show. I’ve also noticed a lot of mom bloggers I follow who I dont see regular, not even monthly updates & I get it. I’d love to see their little ones but I totally get it – some times there’s just not enough time and spreading yourself thin doesn’t do anybody justice!

Now that Owen is a world of entertainment & needing to be entertained, there really is less me time. I don’t have a lot of those moments when he would nap and I could type to my hearts content. And that’s totally OK. Because right now my job is to be this boy’s mommy and to give him as much of my attention as humanly possible! I have about 3.5 more months left before he goes to day care and I won’t see him this often. So strange to think of it this way. I often look at him these days and realize that and think how someone else is going to have all these moments with him M – F, 8 -6. I’ll only have my baby on evening’s and weekends.  I’m going to miss out on SO much. It’s so unfair that we live in a world (or city) where I can’t stay home with our son. The option just isn’t there. We are a middle class family in Toronto and we both have to be working. And having said all that, I’m living in the now and enjoying each moment. Making sure I do everything on my list before January. 

Owens doing great! He’s thriving well. He is still fussy with food – he had days, weeks or simply one meal out of three is the best we can get. I’m learning to be relaxed about it and not push it. I can’t tell you how hard that is. I want him to have a healthy appetite. But I understand children go through phases. 

Owen has been rolling from back to stomach a lot. And back and forth. Didn’t think I’d see the day this kid enjoyed playing on his stomach. But it has to be by his choice or else he’s mad about it! He’s showing interest in crawling and has tried to inch worm but he’s still having a hard time coordinating his body. I see he wants to get around so badly though. He has a fun time walking assisted. He looks for our dog, Chloe. Looks for daddy. Plays with the guitar (obsessed). He enjoys the freedom of being able to get to where he’d like to be. And everyone says I’m crazy but I can’t wait until he can crawl or walk. He gets so frustrated sitting in one place so I know he will be happier. 

Next week is his 9 month wellness appointment and shots. I’ll be sure to have a fun update afterwards. Wow, can’t believe he will be 9 months soon!!! 😢

~B

Baby Fever!

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It seems like the Mommies who have had babies around the time I did are all going through baby fever…they’re ready to procreate again….already. It’s only been 6-8 months since they last gave birth and slept 4 hours a night but, they’re finally ready to do it all again.
I remember vividly up until Owen was about 6 months of age I would say to my husband, “How do people do this over & over again?”….that was when I was pumping like mad, breast feeding wasn’t working no matter how hard I tried, no time to shower, exhausted, etc, etc…(never once have I regretted having my boy – this is not what I’m saying – it was just SO hard when they are that little and I couldn’t imagine going through that difficult newborn phase again & my difficult pregnancy). Yes – even a person who’s struggled so damn hard to get pregnant can say that. Because being a mom is just the hardest job there is. It is also the most rewarding job ever and that boy can make me smile and melt like no other.

But once that fog lifted and Owen started becoming a little person with a big personality and we were finally really enjoying one another, I started to miss him being a little baby. I’d thumb through photos of him when he was born and the first few months and it feels like a life time ago. I would love to hold my little baby boy as a new born just for one more day. And then, I understood.

My husband and I discussed it to lengths and agreed we would only have one more child and no more. For starters, we just can’t afford any more children. We live in Toronto which is an expensive city to live in and my husband has an almost 11 year old girl and has to pay child support and ECA (also expensive) and we have to send Owen to Day Care because we can’t afford for me to stay home (also very expensive). Perhaps if we could afford for me to stay home (thus affording another child) we would have considered it but alas, that’s not the story. And I would not bring another child into this world unless we could give it the best start into this world. And my husband and I also, would like to retire some day.
The other issue is that my husband plainly doesn’t want any more children. He never wanted to have children to being with and then, ooooops!, his daughter was born. And then another “oooops!” and Aida was born. And then we lost Aida. And my husband said to me that while he was OK to move forward having his one living child, he understood it was important to me to be a mom and he also wanted to have another child with me. And so there’s Owen.
So of course, we agreed we’d only have one living child between the two of us and I am not one of those women who makes an agreement and works hard at changing her husband’s mind. Plus, I’m realistic and understand that we plainly cannot afford it. There is also the aspect to consider that I’m high risk and it was very stressful being pregnant with Owen but I do believe Aida being born early was just a fluke now.
BUT having said that, if the situation was different and we could afford another child and my husband wanted it, I would strongly consider it. But I believe this is for a few reasons. One is basic – mother nature. I like other women fall into the Biological Clock ticking at me even if I don’t want it to! The second reason is, I miss having a little baby around. And lastly and selfishly (you mom’s who failed at breast feeding will understand this) I want to do it right. I want the opportunity to get Breast Feeding done RIGHT! I know it may seem funny and not the right reason at all for most of you but, any of you who’ve failed at breast feeding their babies will understand that when you think about having another baby that is one thing that comes to mind. Getting breast feeding done right this time.

Having said all of that, we are not having another baby. Owen has his half sister who ADORES him and I know she will take great care of him. I hope they have a special, close bond and she will be someone he can look up to.

But I admit it. I already miss having my little baby around. My boy is growing up too fast and I wish I could freeze time.

~ B