Subject: Re: One More Question

Date: 4/19/99 2:56 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Well, I did it. I decided that today was too nice of a day to keep my 20-day-old baby girl indoors, so we took our first outing together, just the two of us, to the local mall. I didn't put a sweater or a hat on her because the ones she has are more like winter parkas (they're really thick) and it's 70 degrees here today. Boy, if my mom had seen me take her out in public with no sweater or hat . . . I did put a blanket over her in the car seat, though.

We had a ball! We went to Gymboree and exchanged three baby gifts and then I found the cutest little white lace bonnet for her at Sears. Of course I bought it! Then we came home and took a nap. My idea of a perfect morning and I must say I feel liberated!

Tomorrow is another adventure waiting to happen . . . I can't wait!

Subject: Nursing in Public

Date: 4/19/99 3:24 PM Pacific Daylight Time

I finally did it--we were out to dinner last night with a friend of my DH's who is the father of a three-year-old, and Cece needed to be nursed during our dinner! Here I am in a calm state of panic, a whimpering baby who is threatening to let EVERYONE within 20 miles know that she's hungry NOW! and only two men around to help me--my husband and his friend!

Donald didn't know what to do either, and his friend Paul (who, BTW, is not the type you'd expect to ask for nursing advice or even other parenting advice--on his list of ten lifetime goals, having children is number 15 on the list but he's doing well as a daddy) was a big help to me; adjusting blankets, calming the baby, calming me. Wow! We nursed at the table in the restaurant for 15 minutes, no one knew, and I kept eating my own dinner. When I uncovered the baby at the end of her feeding I laughed because she had bread crumbs and parsley sprinkled all over her little head! Another parenting challenge met!

Subject: Diaper Explosion!

Date: 4/26/99 9:03 PM Pacific Daylight Time

When I changed Cece's diapers during the night last night, I noticed that all her diapers only had pee-pee in them. I was too tired to be concerned but did think that was odd because she always has stools in every diaper. This afternoon I picked her up out of her car seat and was shocked to feel a thick, gooey puddle under her right leg! Bleeeeaaaachhhhhhh!!! Her diaper exploded!

I guess she was saving all her BM's for one glorious showdown. It sure was!

After cleaning everything up within three feet of her I had a good laugh over this; I'm now fully initiated into parenthood! This was after she peed all over my hand while changing her this morning and throwing up all over me after breakfast. Are we having fun now? :-)

What I want to know is this: she's four weeks old (well, she will be tomorrow, the 27th) and is strictly breastfed. Is this type of diaper content normal at this age with breastfed babies? I just want to know so I can install a fire hose next to the changing table if I need to. :-) Thanks!

Subject: Bum Knee

Date: 4/30/99 9:55 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Okay, now it's my turn.

Had a really, REALLY cranky night last night due to baby's fussiness for seven hours straight! She never has behaved this way and I was at a total loss for a cause. I have also been dealing with a very swollen left knee for three days now but can't get an app't with my regular physician til Monday. I suspect bursitis might be the culprit; I couldn't even get up out of the recliner last evening after trying to nurse Cece! Do you know how scary that is when you can't move, you have a newborn in your arms who's crying her eyes out, and there is no one available to call for help at that time? Yes, I'm practicing deep breathing as I'm nursing so the pain I'm feeling from my knee won't affect her as she's nursing.

Oh yeah, and yesterday was our wedding anniversary. But at least we're all here to laugh about it!

Subject: Empty Diapers

Date: 5/1/99 9:44 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Hi everyone--

Cece and I are doing better with each other with every passing day. I swear, whoever coined the phrase "sleeping like a baby" never had a baby! :-)

Here's something I'm curious about. I read somewhere that all breastfed babies go through a stage around this time (well, Cece's time--she's 4-1/2 weeks old) where their poop starts to smell noticeably pungent and the frequency of poopy diapers changes. Cece has had only one poopy diaper yesterday, and it was a doozy! Today she hasn't had any poopy diapers, but all diapers so far have been wet.

She cries and fusses and kicks her legs like crazy but nothing comes out. Her poops don't look any different so I'm wondering if she's actually constipated or just trying to find her body's natural rhythm. Any ideas?

BTW, I did make a big pot of chicken soup today and had it for both lunch and dinner. Wouldn't it be great if it actually helped her stuffy nose? :-)

Subject: Say Cheese!

Date: 5/3/99 5:20 PM Pacific Daylight Time

My DH is going overseas for business on Sunday (yup, Mother's Day!) and he is so upset about going that I planned a special treat for him in his suitcase. No, we're not stowing away! I took Cece to have her first real portrait taken this afternoon and it was hysterical. I'd scheduled it for the middle of the afternoon so she'd be awake, and of course, she was asleep, REALLY asleep. I'd bought her a new frilly white dress to wear and she slept right through every shot with that outfit!

Then I wanted to have a shot of her naked, belly down, on a bed of white fabric with clouds in the background. The photographer tried first with her on her back but she soon saw why I didn't want that pose; Cece began to cry and then pee-peed all over the white fabric! I did have a diaper under her but she missed. :-(

The belly-down shots turned out so precious! I had an 8x10 made up of it and it is in a special frame tucked in his suitcase. As soon as he can I'll have him put it up on her web page and then all of you can see it too.

Just had to share!

Subject: Colic Relief at Last! (kinda long)

Date: 5/15/99 4:06 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Whew, what an ordeal! After trying everything I could think of for soothing Cece through her crying spells, it occured to me that she might be sensitive to cow's milk. On Wednesday I cut out all milk and related foods from my diet just to see what would happen. By Thursday evening she was a completely different baby! So calm, so relaxed, and QUIET!!! I couldn't believe it! Of course, I'll check this out with her doctor, but I think this could be it. Then I ordered pizza for dinner last night and that set her off on an all-night crying spell. I guess the cheese got to her--and I told the pizza place to put only a sprinkling of cheese instead of the usual gobs of it. I guess I now know to stay away from cow's milk.

As far as the gas pains, does Mylicon work for intestinal gas as well as stomach gas? Cece passes a ton of very fragrant gas during her crying spells but Mylicon doesn't seem to help. Any ideas? Thanks!

Subject: End of My Rope (long)

Date: 5/20/99 11:40 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Hi moms--

Cece has been crying non-stop for the last three hours (it's 11:45 PM PST here) and I have tried everything to soothe her; nothing has worked. My patience is gone and I am ready to snap. Don't worry; I'm not feeling like I'm going to slap her or anything like that; I just don't know what to do to calm her anymore! Donald and I have fed her, changed her, burped her, repeated that cycle, discovered my milk output is decreasing, tried an ounce of formula--which she sucked right down, changed her and burped her again, put her in the swing, put her over the shoulder, on our laps, gave her another ounce of formula, burped her, put her on the dryer and turned it on, gave her a bath, took a spin around the neighborhood, and I've had it!

I guess I'm so frazzled because Donald has had the flu for the last two days and between taking care of him between vomiting spells and taking care of Cece during the night anyway I haven't slept since Tuesday. Thanks for listening; I'm going to go cry now.

Subject: ZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Date: 5/24/99 10:53 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Well, Cece's colic is starting to taper off a little, and she actually SLEPT THROUGH THE NIGHT LAST NIGHT!!! Well, from midnight to 6:30 AM, but having all that uninterrupted sleep was a godsend! There really IS a light at the end of this baby tunnel! :-)

Subject: The "Pinky Binky"

Date: 5/28/99 11:21 PM Pacific Daylight Time

For the last couple of days Cece has had this insatiable need to suck, Suck, SUCK! I offered her the breast and she would suck for 30 seconds and cry, so I offered her a Mam pacifier; no way! I then tried a Nuk pacifier. That worked for a while, but she is happiest when sucking on my pinky! She literally spent about nine hours today cuddling in my arms and sucking my pinky when she wasn't actually nursing!

Is this behavior normal? Should I break her of the pinky binky habit and stick to just binkies? I did leave a message with her pediatrician this evening to see if this might be the beginning of an ear infection. Am I just paranoid?

Subject: Let's Hear It for Nursing!

Date: 6/1/99 5:06 PM Pacific Daylight Time

I joined a new mommies support group last week and there was a woman there who breastfed her six-week-old son but wanted her DH to feed him on Saturday AM's. However, she wanted to sleep in so she didn't want to pump. Her query to the group was how to get her husband to not read the labels on the formula containers. She was concerned, as was he, that the baby was getting mono- and tri-glycerides instead of all-natural ingredients. She was asking where she could find an all-organic baby formula.

I bit my tongue so hard to keep from laughing it almost bled! I guess she forgot she has two sources of organic formula already--right boob and left boob!

Subject: There is Hope for Sleeping!

Date: 6/4/99 10:17 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Hi all--

Just had to share--

Cece slept til 5 AM night before last, and last night slept from 9:30 until 4:15 AM! Hooray!

She also had an app't with a specialist about her hips yesterday and he is optimistic that she won't have to be put in a cast or have surgery done. Yay! He gave her a bigger harness to wear that makes her look like a miniature hockey goalie (her uncle Dan is a hockey fanatic; he'll love that!)!

Subject: ZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzz

Date: 6/11/99 7:52 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Do I dare say it for fear of jinxing it?

Cece has slept eight hours a night every night (10 PM-6 AM) since Tuesday! I think she is sleeping through the night at last! Not bad for a ten-week-old, and she did it all on her own!


Subject: Ahh, sleep

Date: 6/18/99 7:38 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Guess what--Cece FINALLY slept a real night's sleep! Eight hours! 10 PM all the way til 6 AM!!! Earlier I posted that she'd slept through the night but that was more like 9 PM until 3 AM. Of course it's now early in the AM here and I'm so excited I can't get back to sleep myself! :-)

Subject: Important Dr. App't

Date: 6/22/99 2:31 PM Pacific Daylight Time

I need to ask you all for a favor, please. Would you mind sending good thoughts and prayers to Cece on Thursday AM? That's the day we see her pediatric orthopedic specialist (boy, try saying THAT ten times fast!) and find out whether she has to have surgery followed by a body cast or just a body cast. Either way she will be missing out on a lot of what should be her first milestones as far as gross motor development, which is sad, but if it means she'll be able to walk, then it is good.

Thanks! BTW, she weighs 12 lbs 7 oz today, at age 12 weeks. She's definitely my li'l string bean! :-)

Subject: Cece's Hips Aren't So Hip!

Date: 6/24/99 3:09 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Hi everyone!

Thank you all for your prayers and good thoughts for Cece's doctor app't today. It turns out that her hip joints are not progressing; both the ultrasounds and x-ray showed the ball outside the socket, and the socket is still too shallow to hold the ball in place anyway.

She doesn't have to wear the harness anymore; believe me, she is quite happy about that! She's sitting in her bouncy chair next to me as I write this, cooing and smiling away and playing with her rattles. Her doctor wants to explore her hips more closely, so at the end of August she will have some dye injected into her hips and the doc will examine them through some sort of x-ray-type device--kind of like having a barium on the other end of your body! Yes, she will be under anaesthesia for this. She will then be put into a cast from her waist to her toes for three months to immobilize the joints and help them stabilize. Now all we have to do is pick out what color the cast should be! We've narrowed it down to either neon green or neon pink. Then again, why not have one leg in each color? :-)

Subject: Bad Dream

Date: 6/29/99 10:29 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Last night I woke myself up crying hysterically; I had this dream where Cece went into the hospital to get her hips looked at. The doctor put her under, they made the first cut, and then she died. I was in the OR, singing "Amazing Grace" to her as she took her last breath. Thank God it was only a dream!

I guess I'm more worried about this whole thing with her than I let myself believe.

Subject: Cece's Hips Have a Date

Date: 6/30/99 11:34 PM Pacific Daylight Time

We have a date for Cece's trip to the hospital--please keep her in your prayers and thoughts on Wednesday, September 1st. The doctor wanted to do it two weeks earlier but I said no because (now don't laugh!) she is getting baptized sometime in August and I didn't want that to conflict with the procedure. Not only that, if her legs are going to be immobilized in a frog-legs position, I don't know if she'll fit into her baptism gown! Just kidding!

I know, I know; all for a good cause, right?

Subject: Could It Be . . .

Date: 7/4/99 3:53 PM Pacific Daylight Time

. . . or am I imagining things?

1--Major fussiness

2--Waking up at all hours of the night again (Cece had been sleeping peacefully for 6-8 hours a night)

3--Chewing on anything and everything in sight

4--Drooling just a little--for now!

5--Swollen lower gums

6--Two raised white bumps on lower gum; one is the front incisor location and the other is about four teeth to the right


I guess whoever told us that she'd get over colic only to replace it with teething wasn't kidding!

Subject: Don't Try This at Home (long)

Date: 7/7/99 10:51 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Boy, did we do something dumb last night!

Our homeowners' ass'n here doesn't allow BBQ's and Donald and I were craving S'Mores last night. We thought they might work in the oven by broiling the bottom graham cracker, the chocolate and the marshmallow for a couple of minutes, then taking them out and topping with the other graham cracker. WRONG!!! The marshmallows caught on fire, which set off every smoke alarm in the house. We each went to grab the large canister of flour which is kept--guess where?--above the stove! I ran for the pantry instead and grabbed an unopened 10-lb bag of flour. We ripped it open and dumped the whole thing on the fire. What makes this even funnier is that my kitchen floor is covered not with linoleum, but with MAROON CARPETING! Wall-to-wall carpeting! Anyone wanna help me vacuum?

Once the fire had finally died, we put the cookie sheet with the now charred remains on our front porch to cool off overnight before I could clean the mess up. I forgot it was there today and all of my piano students had a good laugh at my front door, once they found out what the mess was!

We did discover that you can make S'Mores in the microwave; just watch them like a hawk. After all that excitement, though, all I wanted was a stiff cup of tea!

Subject: WAHHHHHHHH!!!!

Date: 7/9/99 12:23 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Well, tomorrow night I go back to work. I'm already sad about being gone for seven hours! I started Cece on formula part-time this week to get her used to the taste (please don't harangue me for that!) in case she's still hungry after drinking the bottles of breast milk I'll have prepared for her. Wait, that sentence didn't even make sense! Man , I must be tired. What I meant to say was that her daddy will be watching her while I'm at work and he will have three bottles of breast milk to give her while I'm gone. Just in case she goes through all of those, I wanted to be sure she would tolerate formula, so I started giving her a little formula each day this week.

Guess I now join the ranks of women who work both inside and outside the home. Sigh!

Subject: Guess What Cece Did?

Date: 7/13/99 6:47 PM Pacific Daylight Time

My little darling is now drooling like crazy and living the phrase out of the "infant study" posted previously here: "Gee; I don't know what that is, but I'm gonna try and eat it!"

While holding her over my shoulder last night as I was preparing dinner, I felt my cheek get really wet all of a sudden. That child of mine was trying to bite my cheek! I laughed so hard I startled her and she started to cry. It's moments like this that I kick myself for not having a camcorder.

Subject: Not-the-Mommy Syndrome

Date: 8/4/99 8:30 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Is there such a thing? I've been at work now for about four weeks, and each time Cece has been screaming while I've been gone. Not crying, but SCREAMING. My DH is almost at the end of his rope because this goes on for almost four or five hours. I'm only gone for six hours at a time!

When she gets herself so wound up, her face gets beet-red and her eyes go wild; it's really weird. Is that normal or am I just paranoid?

Subject: Baptism At Last

Date: 8/16/99 10:23 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Well, we FINALLY got a date for Cece's baptism--next Sunday! AACK!!!

Excuse me while I try to clean house, make one, only ONE hors d'ouerve, and call about 30 people to come to Mass on Sunday.

Oh yeah; did I mention I'm now the music director at my church so I'll be running back and forth from the baptismal font to the piano? This should be fun! :-)

Subject: Cece's Baptism

Date: 8/22/99 3:03 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Well, we finally did it today and Cece was so well-behaved! She was just about to fall asleep when the priest poured the water on her head. She woke up and gave him this look that said, "Hey! Can't you see I'm trying to sleep here?" But she didn't cry at all; what a trouper ( or is it trooper?)! When the priest went to anoint her forehead she grabbed his finger and tried to gum it.

It was a beautiful ceremony and we had our family and friends witness it and then party at our house afterwards. Donald had videotaped it and wanted to play the tape back for everyone to see. Imagine my surprise when all present were treated to a showing, not of Cece's baptism, but of her first experience in the shower with her very, VERY naked mama! My wonderful DH had rewound the tape too far! LOL!!!

Subject: Cece and Shriner's Hospital (long)

Date: 8/26/99 10:54 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Here's the scoop on Cece's hips:

We went to Shriner's Hospital today, a 3-hour drive from home. She had two sets of x-rays done and a check-up. The doctors there concur with our orthopedist's diagnosis but are concerned about his treatment plan. Our ortho wants to have her put under, then have dye injected into her pelvis so he can see where her hips are and try to stabilize them. If they can be, he'll put them in place, clip one of the muscles on either side of her groin to further release tension from the pelvic musculature (sp?) and then put on the body cast. After a while he will do a cat scan and see if the bones are still holding. If they are then the cast stays for two months. If not then it comes off and he wants to wait another five months for a more invasive operation.

The doctors at Shriners are concerned because of the failure of the Pavlik harness on her. That, and the fact that her hips are really out of whack, apparently increases her risk of failure with next week's procedure to 50%. They don't understand why the doc can't just perform the more invasive procedure right then while she's already in the hospital instead of making her go through the whole thing again later. All we can do now is hope and pray that it goes well, but now we are not so sure.

BTW, Shriner's is a GREAT place! So much attention is being paid to ensure that each child is well taken care of. This place even had clowns, face painting, and dogs for the kids to pet, and that was just in the waiting room! I saw one little boy, about five years old, strolling from the face painter to the big Dalmatian in the other end of the room. He was carrying his right arm in his left. I had to look again before I realized that it was a PROSTHETIC right arm that he had slung under his left as casually as another boy would carry his skateboard. LOL!!!

Subject: 24 hours to go . . .

Date: 8/30/99 11:34 PM Pacific Daylight Time

. . . til my li'l Cece goes to the hospital. There is a 50% chance that this procedure (cutting a muscle on either side of the groin, stabilizing femur in the pelvis and casting it for three months to make sure it stays put) won't work. If that happens, then we have a choice as to when to have the second, more invasive procedure done: either wait five months like her orthopedist here wants to do, or do it immediately like the doc at Shriner's Hospital in Sacramento want to do. The second procedure would be cutting her open and scraping out some pelvic bone, literally digging a hole to create a hip socket.

I know this isn't such a big deal as far as developmental defects go, but Donald and I are pretty broken up about the thought of our little one having to be put through all this pain. Please keep her (and us!) in your thoughts and prayers tomorrow. Thanks!

Subject: Now What?

Date: 9/1/99 2:22 PM Pacific Daylight Time

We made it to the hospital by 6:30 AM and Cece was out of the OR by 9 AM. She came through the procedure beautifully, though her mama and daddy had a hard time seeing her lying so helpless on the hospital bed with the necessary tubes and what-not attached to her, as well as a big, very PINK cast from chest to toes!

After she recovered from the anaesthesia, she went upstairs to the CT scanning machine where they did a scan on her hips to check their stability. Guess what--they were stable in the OR but slipped out again by the time we go to the CT room; only an hour or so later! Her doctor told us that because her hip sockets were so displastic (malformed, underdeveloped, whatever you want to call it) and the femoral heads (the balls at the top of the femur) were so much smaller than they should be at her age that it was very difficult to get the femurs to stay put. We took her right back down to recovery and her cast was sawed off and thrown away. No sense keeping it on if it didn't help, right?

Now her doctor wants her to wait a few months to see if the femoral head (the ball at the top of the femur) will grow any bigger; its tiny size is part of the problem. We are now trying to decide what comes next, but finding out just how badly formed her hips are was a big shock to us today. Cece is currently resting quite comfortably, at least til the Demerol wears off.

Subject: Solids for Us!

Date: 9/10/99 10:30 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Cece had her first taste of solid food last night and it was a riot! She'd take a spoonful of rice cereal, make this face as if to say, "Hey!!! What's this stuff?" and then lean over to chew on the high chair's tray. That high chair's tray has to be the most expensive teething toy we own! LOL!!! Of course she ended up wearing more than she ate, but we had a ball.

Tonight she ate it again and was really enjoying it. She already has the little birdie-mouth down pat! Sunday we try applesauce and after that, who knows?

We got it all on video and my DH has some software that can take stills off a videotape and make snapshots; this way we can put pics of her on the web faster. Check out the link in my sig. line to see the pics of Cece in her cast after her surgery; those pics are off the videocamera.

Subject: Hip Update

Date: 9/10/99 10:37 PM Pacific Daylight Time

The doctor at Shriner's yesterday gave us more information than any of her previous doctors; she even showed us on the x-ray and CT scans what she was talking about.

Cece's hips are very malformed. The sockets are folded in on themselves, sort of like the round half of an eggshell whose edge is crunched inward. The cavity of the socket is filled with junk; I believe she said fatty tissue and cartilage. She recommended surgery within the next three months to dig out the cartilage and reposition the legs in the sockets. She did say that Cece would be able to walk if this were left untreated, but she'd be prone to bad arthritis by the time she was my age and her gait would look like a duck with a hangover.

We are now trying to decide when to have this surgery performed.

Subject: Oops!

Date: 9/18/99 11:20 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Last Wednesday I was rushing around at church, getting stuff ready for choir rehearsal; I was late, as usual. As I was going back out to my car to get my music, a little boy and his dad came up to me. The boy asked me, "Excuse me, but somebody lost something! Do you know who it belongs to?" He then held up (and I kid you not) a nursing pad! I told him that I would find out took it. Of course, I'm thinking "Omigod, this couldn't be MINE, could it?"

Yep, it was! LOL!!!

Subject: Johnny Jump-Up

Date: 9/22/99 12:18 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Well, Cece's doctor said it'd be okay for her to use it, so Sunday afternoon I set up her Johnny Jump-Up. This kid LOVES it! She gets the biggest, silliest grin on her face as she bobs up and down, up and down. I put on some music for her to help her get in the groove; so far we've listened and jumped to the Brian Setzer Orchestra, Manhattan Transfer, and the B-52's.

Maybe we should be listening to either Van Halen's "Jump" or the Rolling Stones' "Jumping Jack Flash," or even Count Basie's "One O'Clock Jump" as well!

Subject: Razz-a-ma-tazz

Date: 9/23/99 3:04 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Cece started blowing raspberries today! She purses her lips together and lets 'em rip! What's funny is that she's drooling like a broken faucet so she sprays bubbles when she does the raspberry. It's so funny to watch!

Subject: Finally!

Date: 10/8/99 9:01 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Cece finally rolled from back to tummy tonight while I was reading the messages on this board! Guess she wanted to see what was up with all her cyber-buddies. LOL!!!

Subject: Cece's Six-Month App't

Date: 10/19/99 12:20 PM Pacific Daylight Time

My li'l string bean is 26-1/2 inches long and 16 lbs, 8 oz. She is a very long, skinny baby who was trying to chew on the doctor's stethoscope AND the reflex hammer!