Wow, I'm feeling overwhelmed which seems strange since;
Maggie is a very easy baby - so far, very content to sleep - even at night
Jack has not responded to big-brotherhood with the ignore tactic nor the being mean one. He has acted out a bit, but seems okay after we give him a little attention which can even be done while I'm nursing.
Leesha has been surprisingly helpful - carrying Maggie to and from the car, holding Maggie, opening doors, etc.
Jeffry has helped with household tasks as well which sometimes just means holding Maggie while computing just so that I don't have to keep the older ones from annoying her.
I'm feeling really good. Still recovering, but up to most things I normally do when at home - cooking, laundry, grocery shopping, etc. And the last few nights, I haven't missed much more sleep than usual. I also fit into some of my pre-pregnancy clothes already!
Anyhow, I suppose anticipating 5 days away from home next week and all the preparations necessary for that could be considered stressful for a new mom.
Enough griping, on to the last week ...
Maggie and I stayed in the hospital until Saturday. I let her sleep in the nursery so that I could get some sleep. That proved to be a good choice Friday night since she apparently had a choking episode and they put her on oxygen for a little bit. Glad I didn't have that stress. The normal heart murmur she had disappeared by the time we checked out. Again, our stay at Regions was wonderful. I almost feel bad I won't be going back.
So, Saturday morning, I got all ready and we waited for Jeffry to come get us. Then we waited for the nurse to go over my discharge instructions, and we were on our way. We headed up to mom and dad's for lunch and (more importantly) to pick up our little man. Funny how when thinking about Maggies birth, I never thought to make accomodations for Jack and Leesha while I was at the hospital. Thankfully, mom and dad were willing and able despite their own busy schedules.
(One of the most amusing things about my stay in the hospital was reading the following instruction on the package of sanitary pads; "use adhesive side away from body". Every time I read instructions like that, I wonder just what sort of situation necessitated that.)
Arriving at their house, Jack was excited about Maggie. He kept asking her questions almost seeming to expect her to answer. So far, he's been good with her. A little unaware of his own weight or strength at times, but hasn't seemed to do any permanent damage.
In the car, on the way home, I realized that I feel happy and complete. My family is complete now. Even though all of my kids weren't in the car, I still felt complete. I had really missed Jack and Leesha while in the hospital, and even considered going home on Friday instead of Saturday just to be with everyone. After Maggie choking though, I'm glad we stayed.
We went to church on Sunday and Maggie got oohs and aahs from several friends and people we don't know yet. One of the kids I babysit, Grace, was very excited about baby Maggie and I'm told even thanked Jesus for her during her bedtime prayers. Leesha got home from being with her dad while I was outside in the yard trying to nurse Maggie and let Jack run around a bit. He just loves being outside, and I don't think to take him out much, which is awful since we have such a great back yard.
On Monday, we had to put Maggie on our insurance and then get her to the Dr. We picked Jeffry up at work before heading downtown to take care of the insurance thing. That was quick and painless - except for the fact that the kids regular pediatrician isn't on our health plan, so we've still got to figure that out. We let the Monarch staff ooh and aah over all three kids before stopping at mom and dads to feed Maggie. The Dr. we saw in the afternoon was full of praise for all three kids and thinks Maggie is doing just fine.
Tuesday brought the need for groceries to a head, so we went shopping. Leesha pushed Maggie in one cart while I had Jack in the other. It was a lot easier than I thought it would be. We'll see what I think when Leesha's back in school .... For Small Group, we went to help friends of one of the couples in group. We worked on some painting. Maggie got to meet Abby who was the other recent addition to group. The girls are about 3 weeks apart. Jack hung out with Grandma and Grandpa. Apparently while he was there, he told them that Maggie eats applesauce.
Willis West (Jeffry's brother and family) came over on Wednesday to meet Maggie. It was surprising to realize how much Maggie will grow in the next 4 months when we looked at Smith. Jack and Simon got along pretty good too. Jeffry was surprised to get work since Summer School let out on Tuesday. We were expecting him not to have work for the rest of the week, but are being blessed with more hours than he's had all summer so far. We'll make up for it with our week of vacation next week. Emily from our group brought dinner by, so I had a night off.
Thursday, Jeffry had work again! Mom had arranged to watch my nephews Nathaniel and Aaron, so the kids and I met the three of them at Como Zoo. Great zoo. We didn't have the best timing with many school groups also being there when the doors opened. But we survived - even with the double stroller. Poor little Jack, since I shouldn't be chasing him around, I made him stay in the stroller. He kept asking; "Ma-ge-out-a-st'oller please?" (May I get out of the stroller please?) While the bigger kids were enjoying a couple of the amusement park rides, I went and found the playground so Jack could have some fun too. It was so precious to see Nathaniel and Aaron attend to Jack on all the equipment - going down the slide before him to catch him, going down the slide with him. So very sweet.
On our way to the zoo, Jack asked if we could listen to some music. Leesha found a station and Jack started copying the short phrases in the song. He's learning to sing. Another very sweet moment.
Later in the evening, while I was nursing Maggie, Jack was playing with his new favorite set of toys - the little plastic animals and the wooden barn - on the couch beside us. He pulled out the dolphin and said; "That's a walrus. No, it's not. It's a dolphin. That's a dolphin." And then, quoting Raffi's "Baby Belugah"; "Dolphins play. Splash all day."
We've heard a lot of "Yashur" (Yeah, sure.) and "Gank you's" (Thank you) as well as several "I'm shawwy" (I'm sorry) (even when he hasn't done anything wrong) recently. So cute how he says it.
Now that it's been a week since Maggies arrival, I can't help but feel sad that I'll never have that again. I'm enjoying it as best as I can.
We'd describe her as a squaker. She does cry when she gets worked up enough, but when she's hungry, she usually just squaks a few times.
This last week, we also learned that the organization that's been providing a scholarship for Leesha to attend North Heights won't be able to help this next year. Ouch!