When Tornado A came to town

It started Tuesday evening.  If they weren’t so strong, I would have said they were Braxton Hicks.  They were painless, but they felt like a giant fist was squeezing my uterus.  So we waited, sure that we would have to go soon.  At 1:30, I fell asleep on the couch; while, The Husband snored on the floor.  At 3:00, I woke to nothing.  I sat there waiting, but nothing happened.  After an hour of waiting, I joined The Husband in bed.  I felt so cheated by my body that I slept on my side, the position denied to me by my body, unless I wanted to be sore and stiff the next morning.  I gave my body the finger.

The next morning, it gave me the finger right back in soreness.

About 9:30, they were back.  Only they weren’t painless.  They were uncomfortable.  In between contractions, like the night before Tornado A would kick and hit, trying to stop whatever was squeezing him.  Everyone was on high alert.  After all, Tornado S came in six hours.  While the time in between contractions became shorter, the intensity barely got stronger.

Though I was starving through the day, I only nibbled here and there.  I didn’t eat anything but crackers and cream cheeses for lunch.  It was the last I would eat until Tornado A was in the world.

My mom kept calling.  The Husband kept asking to go to the hospital.  At 4pm, The Husband was beside himself and started asking if he could call the doctor.  It sounded more like a plea.  If anyone remembers, we got to the hospital to deliver Tornado S, and I was already 7 cm and nearly missed the window for the epidural.  The Husband was NOT about to let me deliver without massive amounts of pain killers.  That’s love, people.

So I gave in and let him call the doctor, who said I could come down whenever I was ready.  She happened to be on call that night, which was nice since I hadn’t met anyone else in the practice.  Of course, if I didn’t have her, I would be fine as long as someone was there to catch the baby.  I called my mom to ask her to take the boys.  The Husband went and got her, and I started to get things ready.

I dinked around for another hour or more so we wouldn’t drive in rush hour.  Sure, the hospital was only a couple of miles away, but that’s EIGHT lights, people.  And yes, when we drove there, we hit all of them red.  Thank God I wasn’t in real pain or I would have been demanding for some law breaking.

When we finally got to the hospital, we went into the main entrance because we didn’t know where else to go.  Because we’re not a tour-taking kind of people.

Me: Hi.  We’re looking for labor and delivery.

The two kids at the desk stared at me and blinked.  They looked at each other.  Then they looked back at me.

The Dude: Uh.  Um.

Me: Yeah, I’m in labor, and I need to get to labor and delivery.  Can you tell me where it is?

The Chick: Um.  Uh.

The Husband seethed behind me.

The Dude: Ok.  (pulled out a paper)  Just follow the map.  Go down this hall to almost the end and turn left.

He handed me “the map.”  I looked at it.  All it had on it were arrows in the shape of an upside down L.  Right.

I rolled my eyes and started down the hall.  When we were out of ear shot, The Husband started on his comedy rant, which is only reserved for the most incredibly stupid.  I wish I could remember it because I was laughing so hard, but I was in labor.

We find labor and delivery by following the large signs, not by the map.  The reception desk sent us on another hunt down more halls.  We found our special doors to find them locked, even after they tried to buzz us in.  Luckily my doctor was coming down the hall and was happy to let us in.  See ya, in a couple hours.

So we were admitted in triage.  And apparently when I get nervous, I start cracking jokes.  The nurse was happy to joke with me.  I got into my gown and was hooked up to machines.  I was 4 cm.  Woohoo.  I went to the bathroom Again.  (When I was in labor with Tornado E, I was dehydrated which means it was more painful.)  I wiped myself to find blood.  Ohmygodohmygodohmygod.  Calm Down.  Calm down.  We’re already at the hospital.  Just tell the nurse.

Me: Um, I’m uh bleeding?

The triage nurse: Oh. No worries.  That’s just your bloody show.

I started to laugh hysterically.  Three pregnancies and this was my first bloody show.  I had no idea.

The nurse decided to get ahead and get my blood drawn and get my IV going.  I hate needles.  I hate shots.  The Husband hates them even more and sat in a place where he could miss it.  Baby.  On the third vial, the needle slipped, I felt blood run down and pool into my palm.  Fun stuff.  The nurse was so embarrassed and kept apologizing.  My labor and delivery nurse showed up to collect me.  And also helped to wipe up my blood.

I was allowed to stay.  The doctor’s orders were to let me labor for two hours, and if there was no change, I would get Pitocin.  Fine.

It wasn’t long until my contractions stopped.  Stopped.  One more time with feeling.  Stopped.  And I became what I dreaded all day.  A watched pot.

One thing proved that not all was normal in Fae’s body.  Heartburn.  Horrible, terrible, wild fire heartburn.  I kept tapping my chest in a vain attempt to settle the fire.  When my mom arrived, fresh from her line dancing class with dinner for The Husband, she began asking if I could have water  or ice chips to cool down the blaze.  But the nurse and I both told her it would only make things worse.

The Nurse: The only thing that’ll make it better is having the baby.

My cousin came down from her station at the NICU to say hi and see how I was doing.  I assured her labor wasn’t that bad and that they had drugs to deal with the pain.  Hell, it isn’t so bad when your contractions stopped.

Two hours hit, and the call was made to the doctor.  If I was going to get Pitocin, I sure the hell was going to get my epidural.  The call was made to the anesthesiologist.  The Husband went out to get some coffee, and the nurse explained to my mom only one person could be in the room with me when I got my epidural.  I assured my mom that The Husband would not be in the room when I received my epidural.  At that moment, The Husband entered the room and was explained the situation.  He reassured my mom that he would prefer to be out of the room and proceeded to run out of the room.

The anesthesiologist came and gave me my shot.  But without contractions it was hard to let him know if it was working.  My feet were numb.

The Husband came back into the room just in time for the volcano in my stomach to spew.  My heartburn burned up my chest as I threw up the junk in my stomach.  Which was weird because it wasn’t what I ate for lunch.  Looking on the bright side, the nurse told me that I shouldn’t have heartburn any more.

I wish.

Then came the horribleness of the damn catheter.  We should have known then something was wrong with my epidural.  I don’t know how any one does it without drugs.  It was the most uncomfortable experience I ever had.  I started to weep.  I begged the nurse to take it out.  The Husband, my mom, and the nurse tried to soothe me and comfort me.  I got The Button to give myself another shot of painkillers.  I took both shots.  (I can still see the tape residue of the catheter and I still shudder.)

Then came the contractions.  We were now nearing midnight.  I couldn’t believe it was taking so long.  It was like starting again.  But then the intensity and the pressure began to increase.  I started to moan.  The nurse called for the anesthesiologist again, waking him from his nap.  I held on to the hope that he would be back and in fifteen minutes I would be fine.

And fifteen minutes came and passed.  He arrived at last.  The pain was worse than ever.  He asked me if it was a pressure or a sharp pain.  It was both.  He increased the dosage up because the medicine wasn’t up my spine far enough.  He left.

Ten minutes until relief.

Instead I vomited again.  The nurse got the go ahead to give me something for the heartburn.  But she insisted that I wear an oxygen mask.  God, I Hate oxygen masks.  I took it off the first moment I could.  Stupid oxygen mask.

And hell began.  I can’t put it lightly.  I’m a wimp with pain.  It’s why I take painkillers.  It’s why I will never pierce a sensitive body part.  It’s why I’ve never given blood.  I have never been in as much pain as I was that night.

I pressed my button.  I moaned.  I cried.  I squeezed that rails to the bed.  I refused to hold The Husband’s hand or my mom’s in fear that I would break them.

In the middle of one contraction, as my back arched, I felt and heard my water pop.  It burst out of me like a broken water balloon, landing all the way down to my ankle.  In my last labors, my water never broke.  Another first for me.  I wished someone had seen it because I was curious to know how it came out.  The Husband said he heard it but missed seeing it, since he was busy trying to calm me down.

The nurse checked me, and we were ready.  The doctor was called.  Nurses came in.  The room seemed so much more crowded, but I was just aware that I. Needed. To.  Push.  NOW.

Breathe.  Breathe.  Breathe.

No.  No.  No.  He’s ready.  He’s here.  Oh, God.  I have to push.

Calm.  You’ll be fine.  The doctor is almost here.  Breathe.  Breathe.  Fae, look at me.  Look at me.  You’re doing fine.

I can’t look down or I’ll push.  Oh.  God.  He’s here.  Please.  I have to push.

Breathe.  You’re doing great.  Hold on.  Breathe.  The doctor is almost here.  You’re doing fine.  The doctor’s here.  Let’s get the bed ready.

With my feet in stirrups, my hands gripping the bed rails above me, I arched like a possessed victim, crying.

Ok, Fae.  Next contraction I want you to push.  Bear down.

Push.  Push.  Push.

One push.  And Tornado A came spiraling out.  I felt his head come out and then the slowing at the shoulders, but I kept bearing down, feeling that if we stopped now I wouldn’t be able to take it.  I don’t know if I had it in me to push again.  But Tornado A kept coming out.  The Husband barely had time to cut the cord and get out of the way before I forced out the afterbirth.

They placed Tornado A on my stomach so I could see and hold him.  They whisked him away to test him and clean him up.

The doctor began to sew me up, and I moaned with pain.

The doctor: Fae?  You can feel that?

Me: Yes.

The Doctor:  Hmmm.  Let me numb the area.  You’ll feel a pinch.

Me: Ok.

The doctor waited a minute for the pain killer to take affect and started again.  I moaned, trying to be quiet.  Then I felt someone take my hand, and I opened my eyes.  My mom looked down at me and squeezed my hand.  The doctor had to numb me two more times, but at least, I could hold someone’s hand.

Once the doctor was done, I was able to take in my surroundings.  My cousin was in my room as the assistant to the natal nurse.  The Husband was holding Tornado A.  My labor and delivery nurse asked me if I wanted something to eat.  I shook my head, and she told me to tell her when I was ready to eat.  My doctor finished filling out paperwork and congratulated me.  My mom took pictures.  She held Tornado A for a little bit, but rushed off around 2 because she would have the boys the next morning.  The room cleared, leaving the nurse, The Husband, Tornado A, and I.

The Husband fell asleep on the couch, snoring.  I fed Tornado A, and the nurse brought me a turkey sandwich with apple juice, graham crackers, chips, and jell-o.  After Tornado A had fed (painfully because he didn’t latch properly), the nurse washed him again and insisted I eat.  Oh, glorious sandwich, which now I’m sure would suck under normal circumstances.

At four, we were admitted to our room.  A single room, so The Husband’s snoring wouldn’t wake anyone else and I could take care of the bathroom rituals, which accompany all post-delivery mothers (pee, wash, dab, spray, change pad, add witch hazel pads), with the door open to view Tornado A.  I finally slept.


My future doctor

Last Wednesday.

I sat there, breathing through another uncomfortable contraction.  Hey, this breathing thing actually works!  When there’s no pain!

Tornado E: Mommy, are they going to cut you open to get the baby?

Me: (chuckle) No, sweetheart.  They do that for some women, but I doubt they’ll do that to me.

Tornado E: Oh.  Ok.

He ran off.  I sighed.  Like I needed The-how-do-babies-get-out-of-Mommy’s-womb talk during labor.

A couple hours later.

Tornado E: Mommy, I’m going to be a doctor.

Me: Awesome.

Tornado E: (pulling out his Kung Fu Panda sword) And I’m going to help you.  Let me cut you open and get the baby.  (He sliced me open.)

Me: Thanks, baby.

Sushi and Pregnancy

Back in the days when I was pregnant with Tornado E and working and the economy was rolling, The Husband and I ate out about three dinners a week or more.  Our favorite was sushi.  We had a neighborhood sushi restaurant with the most amazing rolls like an awesome dynamite roll and my favorite a killer spicy tuna roll.  We probably went at least once a week from the grand opening on, and yes, we got to know the owner quite well.

But then I was pregnant.  And all those books and websites said NO SUSHI.  And that lasted about two weeks when I learned The Husband felt no moral obligation to give up sushi as well.  (Bastard.)  So we returned to sushi.  My beloved sushi, how I missed you.  For several months, we did well and only ordered the cooked stuff.  We feasted on crab, shrimp, scalloped and the occasional cooked fish.  But in time, my beloved spicy tuna handroll began to call me again.  I gave in to its spicy yumminess.

For The Husband’s birthday (when I was 36 weeks), I surprised him with a huge sushi party platter custom made from our favorite sushi place and a few friends.  As I indulged, I forgot that one of our friends worked for my OB/GYN.  Ok, I didn’t forget.  I just wasn’t sneaky enough.  She caught me.  And lectured me.  Damn.

So the next doctor’s appointment, The Husband felt the need to confess.  (Which is odd, because he’s not the Catholic one.)

Doctor: So any questions?

The Husband: Yes, one.  Well, and a confession.

Doctor: Oh?

The Husband: Well, um, we, Fae has been eating sushi, and we were told that was bad for the baby.

Doctor: The reason we don’t want Fae eating sushi is because of the danger of food poisoning.  If you go to a reputable place, there shouldn’t be any harm.

We sighed with relief.

Me: So, sushi tonight?

Random pregnancy thoughts

Everyone is trying to get me out of the house.  Everyone being The Husband and my mom.  (Yeah, I married my mom, go figure)  I just want to stay home and prepare the house.  Hello, pregnant woman nesting.

But no, The Husband thinks we need a movie this afternoon (and my mom agrees) because we won’t have couple time for months (not that we have it that often  to begin with).  He’s right.  But I would rather be home blogging, reading blogs, sleeping.  If he wants to make me happy, he could pick up his stuff in the bedroom or hand me a couple hundred so I can buy everything I want for the baby.  I’m not holding my breath for the either.

My mom has decided she’ll treat me to a pedicure tomorrow.  Of course, this is sweet and wonderful and all, but again, I would rather be home doing the same stuff I mentioned in the last paragraph.  Heck, I’m trying to keep on top of the chores because I know they’re going to fall to the wayside.  So mom, if you want me to be happy, grab a sponge or an apron; I’ve got some more nesting to do.

In other pregnancy news, Tornado E and Tornado S are declining to be in the hospital when the baby is born.  Which is fine because they weren’t going to be there any ways.  But they are now both boys are convinced that the baby is going to “pop” out of mommy’s tummy.  And that would be gross and messy.  Let’s thank all the people who said I look like I’m about to pop.

Until I have a moment to write and read again.

April 9th Friday Recap

I’m really enjoying these weekly top 10 things I learned this week.  I hope you are too because I don’t see myself getting bored of them because I figured out how to do theme ones when I run out of 10 things.  Though I am running out of catchy titles.  Blame it on the lack of sleep (and the Damn black eyes I’m developing).

  1. Making chocolate nests for Easter is a lot harder than it looks.  Because it’s hard to mold the liquid chocolate and chow mien noodles.
  2. The best part of chocolate nests is to snap off the jelly beans and eat just the chocolate; next year it’ll be Jordon Almonds.
  3. Nice day + nice clothes + four boys + pool = 4 wet boys in nice clothes  (Yeah I should have seen it coming.)
  4. The more my grandma tells me about her mother, the more I’m in love with the woman and I wished I had met her.
  5. If I want The Husband out of bed, I should send in two tornado alarm clocks.
  6. Tornado S is still insisting on Kit Fisto for the baby name; we figured out a name that would use Kit as a nickname.  Either Tornado S’s a good sales man or we’re suckers.  (But it’s not set in stone.)
  7. Tornado E has learned to scream like a girl at first sign of trouble.  And I’m a little embarrassed by it.
  8. I now have a killer meat sauce for spaghetti.
  9. Two weeks out from the due date, The Husband starts turning into the Perfect Husband.  It’s weird.
  10. There are some conversations I have to have over and over with The Husband.  They are usually about bills.

And a bonus:

  1. My readers rock my world.

These Final Days

I’m days away.  My mom is over the moon.  I’m quite hesitant.  The Husband is nonchalant.

In these last days, I realized we’re woefully underprepared.  We still don’t have a name.  The bills are due, and I’m the only one with all the passwords to pay them, and I’m waiting on the paycheck.  Not to mention, my doctor’s office would prefer if we prepay so that we don’t have to worry about the bill after the baby.  We still owe a couple hundred dollars.  I finally dragged The Husband to the hospital so he knew where it was, but he was on the phone the whole time there.  I’m hoping backtracking will stick in his mind.  I still don’t have a take-home outfit or a baby book or a new cover for Tornado E’s old seat, since over four years can really wear out denim.  I need to finish the receiving blankets I started.  I have to wash the stroller cover.  I have to finish washing the baby clothes, but I need to put the clean ones in something.  I know.  Details that I shouldn’t worry about.

But in the last days, if I sit in one place for five minutes without eating, I fall asleep.  So if any of my posts don’t seem to flow as well or don’t make the same amount of sense as they used to, it’s because I fell asleep in the middle and sometimes had two naps during a writing session.

Since I’m falling asleep, I’m behind in my blog reading and commenting.  And doing the monthly budget, but we won’t talk about that.  I miss reading on my bloggy buddies.  I look forward to reading everyone off my phone, which I did last week, but I miss commenting so you know I was there.

In these final days, I’m sore.  My hips are sore.  My feet are sore.  My thighs are sore.  My butt is sore.  Really?  My butt?  I never had that happen before.  I’m searching for stretches to loosen those muscles up.  But nothing to kick in labor.  As I mentioned before, I’m hesitant.

In these final days, I realize my patience is wearing thin.  And that my kids can’t to do anything without me telling them a dozen times or yelling.  Oh, and Tornado E is developing teenage attitude.  And Tornado S had decided he’s a baby.  Should I drop the F-bomb now?

Lately, I want a nut bar.  A bar of nuts.  Nuts in a bar form.  Don’t say Payday because The Husband and my dad already asked me that.  I just want a healthy snack of nuts . . . in bar form.  It reminds me in the last days before Tornado E was born I started searching for the perfect trail mix, and I ended up making my own because I couldn’t find anything I wanted.

You know, fresh coconut sounds good right now.  So does vanilla ice cream.  Separately, not together.

In the last day or so, I finally packed my bag.  Mainly because I was tired of hearing my mom nag me about it.

In the last several days, it dawned on me that I should be taking it easy.  Like sitting and resting more.  You know so I don’t send myself into early labor, since I’m hesitant about it.  Bless The Husband for having a laptop so I can write from the cushy couch.

For the last several days, I’ve been trying to vacuum, but something keeps barring the way.  I wonder if I should give up.  I also have started asking The Husband to take out the trash.  I may try nagging again.

In the last days, I wonder if I’m having some sort of psychic block that keeps me from having the baby (NOTE: I meant to say naming the baby, but maybe that was a Fruedian slip).  Maybe I have some real deep issue that needs to be solved.  Or I’m a procrastinater.

It’s just a few more days.

And you thought the fear about how to get the baby out was the worst part

This post is about sensitive material.  Too Much Information Material.  Things like pooping, breastfeeding and sex, so if you’re not into reading this stuff, especially if you have a Y chromosome, I suggest you keep on moving and join us tomorrow.

There were a few things that scared me nearly to death after I gave birth.  One fear was how was I going to take care of an infant when I felt I was barely able to take care of myself.  What crazy God thought I could take this little bitty innocent thing and nurture him to manhood?  Obviously someone who is either not omniscient or just has too much faith in me.

But more immediately I feared having a bowl movement.  As in dear-God-if-you-would-remove-this-cup-from-my-lips fear.  I dreaded it, wondering if somehow my stitches would come undone just by that.  Things are just so fragile down there.  Of course, nature takes its course, and everything turns out just fine.

Then there’s sex.  There are so many concerns about sex.  Or at least I had so many concerns about sex.  I wondered what kind of damage birthing did to my lady parts.  (I’m torn because I’m one of those people who uses biological correct terms, but euphemisms are so much fun.)  Again, those stitches worried me, and I wondered if everything was as pretty as it used to be.  I wondered, like so many others, was I little stretched out.  Finally I worried that I would squirt milk on The Husband at an intimate moment.

The first concern was the last to be resolved because I became a convert to lights out sex after pregnancy.  Not only was I concerned with how my stitches looked, I became very much aware that my tight little belly pooch hung down and out now.  So it wasn’t until one afternoon long down the road, that I completely forgot about my new religion that I was assured I was fine.

The second concern I mentioned to my mom one day, soon after Tornado E’s birth.  She looked at me funny.  “Sweetheart, if we never went back to normal, the tampon industry would only be selling to teenage girls.”  Um, good point.  I’ve yet to hear of a man that was as thin as a tampon, so I think we’re all safe.

But my real concern, my real fear, the thing that keeps The poor Husband celibate much longer than I attend or he would want, is squirting milk during sex.  Once my milk comes in, it stays in abundance.  I could feed several babies if I wanted.  My breasts are always ready and waiting for the next feeding.  If I just think about feeding, my breasts start to leak.  It doesn’t take me long to picture what some fun bedroom activity would do to my swollen, ready-to-feed breasts.  While I’m sure The Husband would shrug it off, I would just be mortified.  It would feel like the ultimate betrayal of my body, reminding me that it’s not just MY body anymore.  My body also belongs to the hungry monster sleeping in the bassinet at the foot of the bed or the crib down the hall.  So rather than try and put my fear aside, I feign an uninterest in sex for the first several months until the kid is feeding every four hours or so, not every two.

Now Fie Upon This Quiet Life has this wonderful post about how she coped with motherhood and sex, and I thought how different my experience was from hers and yet it really is very similar.  She didn’t feel sexy because she was a mommy, and I don’t feel sexy because I was a mommy (that leaked).  It’s so hard to be sexy when you’re coming to terms with a body that has changed so dramatically.  I was worried that if The Husband watched me push a baby out of my vagina that he would have flashbacks for months.  It didn’t happen.  While he was uncomfortable with third trimester pregnancy sex, he couldn’t wait to get back on the ball after the six week all clear.  Granted, I wasn’t ready with all the lack of sleep and all.  (Sweetheart, that feels . . . ZZZZZZZZZZZZ.)  But in the end, I gained a comfortablitly with this new body, much like when I went from a tall, lanky kid to a tall, curvy woman.  It was awkward, uncomfortable, and weird to go through puberty, but I liked me and my body afterwards.  Just like pregnancy is often awkward (at least the waddling is), uncomfortable (which is how you feel when the baby lays on your bladder), and weird (ok, your belly is being moved around by something inside you and you can See It), but in the end, you’ll grow to love the new parts of you, stretch marks and all.  And so will your husband.

The Friday Recap

  1. Double check texts before you send.
  2. Blame me if you must, but never criticize the Program.  The Program is good.  The Program is solid.
  3. Tornado S thinks Kit Fisto is the perfect name for a baby.
  4. It’s been way too long since we saw the inside of a church; it’ll probably be longer still before we do.
  5. A pregnant woman cannot be held responsible for candy purchases for Easter baskets.
  6. If I make kid friendly meals (like mac and cheese or quesadillas), they’ll eat better, but I can only do THAT for so long.
  7. Budgeting is hard; I miss the inside of book stores.
  8. Tornado E believes he’s a monkey, a daddy, a comedian, and a food critic.  I’ll accept the third one.
  9. Tornado E is tall enough and curious enough to look into the shopping bags left on the table; he’s not getting Peeps in his basket.
  10. I only have a few more weeks of a chocolate diet.  It’s not going as well as I hoped.

So this is what I get?

You know what’s hard?

Checking out cute guys in kilts.

When you’re pregnant.

When you’re holding the hand of a two year old.

When you run by later trying not to pee your pants while cursing the recreation department for putting the bathrooms so far from the playground.

You know what’s hard?

Trying not to flirt with the incredible cute cashier with a British accent.

When you’re pregnant.

When you have a four year old and two year old dancing around you and trying to pull out the moving counter for wheel chair check writers.

When your husband is waiting at the end of the line for you.

Someone is mocking me.

Bringing Home Baby . . . #2

Want to blow your kid’s world away?

Bring home a sibling.

Nothing changes the family dynamics like a new little brother or sister.  And everyone has heard the horror stories of the older sibling who now hates mommy and daddy because of that thing.  A friend of mine told me her son didn’t speak to her for three days.  When my baby brother was born, my grandma refused to tell me it was a boy in fear that I would turn my wrath towards her.  (I just refused to learn his name for six months or so.)  As we neared d-day of Tornado S, The Husband and I worried what Tornado E would do and tried to prepare.

First off, Tornado E was just under two.  Do you know that two-year-olds don’t have a very good grasp of gentle?  My first attempt of paving the way to a non-only-child-household was to buy Tornado E a baby doll to teach him gentle.  Tornado E loved Bobby and readily practiced gentle.

Second, I bought a Big Brother Gift.  Some experts say to have the gift be from the new baby; other experts say that your elder child(ren) will know a baby didn’t buy the gift so don’t insult the child(ren) with a lie.  Seeing The Husband has a hard enough time letting Santa have all the glory, we just had the gift come from us.

Third, I stalk piled small gifts for Tornado E just in case people brought only gifts for the baby.  Yeah, let’s start out an already rocky relationship with jealousy.  Lucky for us, we didn’t need one of those gifts because our friends were so generous with Tornado E.  The baby just got clothes; Tornado E got toys.  Sweet.  (I kept the gifts for birthday and Christmas.)

Fourth, we added Daddy time.  The Husband now made it a point to take Tornado E to the park or some small adventure every week, starting during the last trimester.  Tornado E was over the moon to go with just daddy.

Fifth, we made it a point to never say Tornado E couldn’t do something (like scream in the house during baby’s naptime) because of the baby.

Sixth, my mom came out for three weeks to help with the adjustment of Tornado S.  She came in the day Tornado S was born, staying the night with Tornado E, making it a special treat.  She let him help her decorate the house for the baby’s homecoming.  She let him pick out flowers for mommy and a gift for the baby.  She spent tons of time with him during those three weeks.

I’m not sure how we managed it really, but I waited for the other shoe to drop for months, waiting for Tornado E to start hating the baby, start hating me, start being angry and resentful.  But it never happened.  He adored Tornado S.  The birth announcements were a picture of Tornado E holding Tornado S, beaming with pride.  Tornado E didn’t begrudge Tornado S any time, any toy, any baby thing.

One day as I sat nursing Tornado S, Tornado E climbed on the couch next to me with Bobby.  He pulled up his shirt, cradled Bobby in his arms, and started nursing Bobby.  Yup, just like Mommy.  I turned to my mom.

Me: Um, what do you think?

My Mom: (Trying not to laugh too hard) We should get him a baby doll bottle.

Me: Especially before The Husband sees this.

Now we can only hope that bringing home baby #3 will be just as easy.