Apr 30, 2011

Vaccines and fever

My back spasm is better. At least I can say that much for this week. The spasms stopped on their own a day or so after the doctor's visit. The rest of the week consisted of recovery, so I skipped my cardio workout and went to a stretchy-therapist in the building opposite us who helped out my back and the rest of my body. Since the lower-middle back is now better, the  back problems have transferred back to their usual locale: the upper-middle back. But it's not a spams, just discomfort. And a second visit to the stretchy guy really has helped.

My health recovery was short-lived, however. This week, I came down with a sore throat and a fever. On the same day that baby-boy needed his first vaccinations. And hubby needed to be out of town. 

The shots were no fun for baby-boy. The doctor was kind enough to ask someone to help her so that both shots went into his upper legs at the same time (poor kid!). Baby-boy took to screaming at the top of his lungs. Louder than I've ever heard him scream. Hubby had the honor of holding him down for the shots, so I had the honor of consoling him. But he wasn't to be consoled. No amount of breast was attractive enough to settle the screaming. So we got last minute advice amidst the distress, left the doctor's office noisily, and attracted lots of stares from people in the waiting room. Eventually, baby-boy took to a breast in the breast feeding room. Thank goodness.

The rest of the evening was no more fun. I think baby-boy relived his terrifying moment several times while dreaming. Clearly, this was a very distressing event for him. Of course, moments before we had him gurgling and laughing on the doctor's table, so it was a complete surprise. Since hubby had to leave town, I ended up holding a very cranky baby the rest of the afternoon and evening, until exhaustion hit. He slept badly that night, as did I since I was still burning off my fever. What an exhausting experience for both of us.

As a result of the fever and general fatigue, I skipped another cardio session this week. Not great for my return-to-pre-pregnancy-weight goals, but I couldn't face another training session in the cold pouring rain.

Thankfully, the weather is on the up. I even spotted a bunch of buds on all the trees in our road. Spring is definitely on its way. I just wish it'd be a bit faster!

Apr 20, 2011

Back again

As it turned out, I waited 2 hours for the doctor only to be told all muscle relaxants are transmitted to breast milk, so nothing could be done. The doc quizzed me for 15 minutes about postpartum depression. This seemed odd to me, until I realized it was probably because I burst into tears in her office after 2 hours of waiting and a week of pain. She must have thought that having a new baby was too much for me to handle.

I didn't mind her being thorough except that it was followed by another 10 minutes of quizzing about my back, and then she disappeared for 15 to get a consult from another doctor. I suspect most of the doctors in the walk-in clinic are interns, so they can't move a muscle without checking everything with someone else.

The end result: she came back to tell me to bend my knees when lifting the baby and take hot baths. As if I haven't done/tried those things already.

Needless to say, I walked out of the hospital with nothing but frustration. Only to find the dreaded red parking-ticket car next to my car, slapping a ticket on my windscreen. I had gone 15 minutes over my parking meter time. And since I was stuck in the doctor's office, I couldn't top it up. I promptly burst into tears again.

A wasted day, all round. I think the universe is trying to teach me patience.

Apr 18, 2011

Back update

So my back got worse over the weekend. A lot worse. In fact, the spasms are comparable to having contractions, about half-way through labor.

Needless to say, I'm off to the doctor's this morning. Better hope that I don't get the mean receptionist, because if I do, my patience is running short and she'll get an earful!

Will keep you posted on my medical situation.

Apr 15, 2011

Extra weight

For a while now, I've been lugging around some extra weight. And slowly paid the price. During late pregnancy, my pelvis suffered. Two months postpartum, my back is back to its old tricks. It's on the verge of a serious muscle spasm. Actually, it probably is spasming - I'm just in denial. 

I blame the extra weight. My own, and that of baby-boy. As he packs on the pounds, my back is packing in. On top of the 15 or so extra pounds I'm carrying (mostly on the front, as I did in pregnancy but somewhat more top heavy), it makes for a bad combination for my back.

I foresaw this, of course. I know my own body, and I know that sporting size G cups has to be  troublesome for someone who's normally a B. What I failed to realize is how beaten up the rest of my body would be. Sure, I no longer have troubles such as PUPPP or swollen hands and feet (though I still can't wear my wedding ring yet). But everything else still seems to be out of whack. My physiotherapist made this clear last week when she moved some things around in my hips, back and neck. 

In anticipation of needing to build my strength, postpartum, I joined a mommy-and-stroller exercise course. Twice a week, I train my cardio and my French. Well, Quebecois anyhow. The cardio is awful - I've always hated it. The French is less awful. Still, I persist in spite of subfreezing temperatures and miserable weather (and baby-boy happily puts up with it from his cocooned stroller) for the sake of getting back into shape. 

Even so, my weight (loss) has plateaued and my body still sports the post-pregnancy belly. The key to this, I'm told, is internal abdominal strengthening exercises. I know that my core is getting stronger what with plank and kegel exercises up to my ears. But of course, my back had to protest at all this muscular activity at some point.

So I spent most of last night awake, not because of the baby but because of my back. And that truly sucks. At least with the baby, I can rationalize the need to spend time awake feeding. With my back, I've lost all patience. It's been a recurring problem since my teens and no amount of physiotherapy/osteopathy, chiropractic or exercise seems to help prevent the back spasms. And for the moment, I can hardly turn to the semi-blissful state induced by muscle relaxants. 

In my desperation, I'm trying every trick in the book: cold compresses, hot compresses, ibuprofen, and tomorrow, a long massage.

Gawd, I hope I sleep tonight ...

Apr 10, 2011

Movie star

We've been taping bits of our baby-boy during his daily activities. This doesn't exactly make him a movie star, but with some editing, it makes for an entertaining minute of viewing. 

Apr 3, 2011


Baby-boy is now 6 weeks old. And he's suddenly beginning to change. Yesterday, we were out most of the day, and baby-boy spent most of his time awake. Rather than sleeping his way through the trip to the mall, he spent his time wide-eyed, looking at all that was passing him by. Late afternoon, we made a trip to have dinner with some friends. The presence of five other children made for a chaotic surrounding and baby-boy spent the whole time awake, observing the scene or crying a little.

It seems we're entering a new phase - a more awake one. He's also hit the six week mark which is supposedly when they cry the most. For sure, he's developed somewhat of a schedule whereby he cries intensely from about 7.30 to 9.30pm. Hubby and I have tried various ways to soothe him. Most of our tricks work only temporarily. The pacifier seems the most successful, but we're conscious of not trying to create a habit, so we use it sparingly. Other than that, we've done everything from shushing, soft rocking, walking, stomach hold (good for colicky babies), feeding, bathing and baby massage. Sometimes it works well but inevitably he ends up crying again until he falls asleep, probably from exhaustion, at about 9.30 or 10.00pm. 

The good news is that this is the peak, so it should get better from here-on in. Also, he's much more engaged with us, and has started to do fun things like look around him, keep himself occupied with gurgles, squeaks and ay-s, and best of all, smiling. He smiles a lot especially in the morning. We've been trying to capture it on camera, and finally today hubby managed it. So here it is, a smiley picture of our handsome little devil.