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Ashlee is Mama of one darling boy. A 28 week early bird, now 1 and some change, doing beautifully. She lives near Chicago with her sweetheart husband and French Bulldog. She's a thinker not afraid to get her silly on. Babywearer, veggie queen, photography nut. Before the domestic days Ashlee was pursuing a future in developmental psychology but has happily shifted gears in favor of staying at home and couldn't imagine doing anything else. In her free time (ha!) you can find her whipping up babyslings, holding down the fort at Mama Speaks and spotlighting as an Itsy Bitsy Yoga Instructor.

Mama's Nest

Still possible Tuesday, April 18, 2006 |

I had my postpartum follow up- follow up today and got the best news ever... Since Xavier was born early we've been searching for reasons why and wondering what to expect for future pregnancies. During my last visit the lovely term "incompetent cervix" was brought up as a possible cause, and while grateful to have something that could give me answers it left me feeling defective.

I researched and found that treatment during a future pregnancy would be to essentially stitch the cervix closed at 16 weeks and remove the stitches at 37 weeks allowing delivery anytime thereafter. And while there is some controversy over whether or not this is necessary (some say decreased activity and rest are just as effective) I was happy to know this would allow me to carry a baby to term. I assumed however that this would mean I'd have to deliver with an OB in a hospital- which I would do in a heartbeat if it were the only way we could have another a child, if that was best for all of us... but I was so ready for our homebirth with Xavier, and dreamed we might still be able to have our next baby at home...

I learned today that hopefully we still can!!! Dr. Ransom told me to please continue to see my midwife, there's no reason not to. She said not to worry about next time, simply wait until I'm pregnant again and have an ultrasound to measure my cervix. If they find I will need the stitches, she'd be happy to work with my midwife if necessary so that we can have the birth we've dreamed of.

So, I'm relieved... we're definitely going to wait a couple, few years to do it all over again. But I am reassured that even if a bit of intervention is necessary we'll be able to bring another life into this world, into our arms where they belong.

• 0 Chirping

Hello World Saturday, April 15, 2006 |

We ventured out on Friday... as a family, for the first time really. We go the doctor and Target and the grocery store now and then, but we still hadn't really taken Xav out and about yet. So we packed up half our house and headed over to Great-grandma and grandpa's for a visit then decided to head over to Good Friday service at church (my first time at church in 4 months!)

It was amazing (... and stressful, and tiring, but amazing nonetheless.) It was great to see everyone and be part of the outside world again. I felt like it solidified our family unit, we were out there ALL together for the first time. I got to be a proud mama and after all these months show off my beautiful boy... I smiled and smiled and smiled.

It was difficult though - I hadn't yet had to deal with people (while well meaning I'm sure) tell me how to care for my child. That was a bit nauseating but I'll get used to it :) And while Xavier is a big baby now people don't realize how fragile he still is and that he can't be smooched and poked like most little ones... it's hard always being on guard and keeping distance, declining advance without hurting anyone....

We're learning though and I'm sure as with all else, it will become second nature soon enough. Tomorrow is Easter and while I'm not sure I'm ready quite yet, but we're going to go at it again...

• 0 Chirping

My new favorite quote... Thursday, April 13, 2006 |

"The house is not built upon the ground, but on the woman."

• 0 Chirping

It's Spring! A walking we go... Saturday, April 08, 2006 |

• 0 Chirping

Days Like Today Thursday, April 06, 2006 |

5:30am = Good morning! Time to feed the babe and play, play, play. Playtime quickly turns to helping Xavier poop... after 15 minutes, stinky success.

8:00am = After a snack it's nap time, I'm snoozing too!

9:00am = Wake up to partially digested breast milk splashing on my cheek. (Ewww!)

It's times like these, I can't help but cry from laughing so hard about how much life has changed. I love every second!

• 0 Chirping

Progress Monday, April 03, 2006 |

Somebody woke up this weekend and decided to be a big boy! The changes 24 hours can bring sometimes are amazing. Xavier is now holding up his head every chance he gets, babbling and cooing like crazy, so alert when he's awake and those smiles...! We've also made it 3-3 1/2 hours between feedings during the past couple of nights (it's amazing what an extra hour of sleep will do for you) and while he's still nursing every 2 hours during the day that's been quite a change.

Now that he notices the world around him he's afraid to miss a beat ... we've had to start wearing him down for naps rather than counting on him doing the newborn zonk...The bad news (for me) is he's napping more like a little man too which means I'm probably going to have to work on putting him down for naps rather than toting him in the sling all day (breaks my heart!)

...I started this post this morning and as I finish it tonight Xavier is sleeping in his amby bed, all by himself. Grunting every now and again but otherwise unaffected. It seems silly having such a hard time having him sleep all alone, but it's really crushing me. He's been sleeping in my arms pretty much since he's been home... and while I know at some point during the night he'll join me in bed and it is a bit nice to have my body free of the sling for awhile... I can't help but feel like I'm missing something. I think I'm simply trying to make up for lost time...

• 0 Chirping