Thursday, February 11, 2010

Good and Bad

So, a lot has been going on around here. I need to sort my brain out, I feel kind of scrambled.

First off, we got a new pediatrician. We got the pediatrician I tried to get before the kid was even born. He wasn't taking patients but when I called last week, desperate to switch, they let me. The lady on the phone was really nice, and got him an appointment the next day. From the minute I met the new ped, I instantly felt better. He was more professional, he was more talkative, he explained things better, he presented new ideas and treatment ideas, it was awesome. Everything about it, the doctor, the nurses, the receptionists, the offices, the PAs and NPs, everyone and everything was better. I'm so glad we switched.

So, the new doc, Dr. M., suggested Owen get a blood test to rule out a couple of rare diseases that might be contributing to his weird poop problem. Those were clear. However, Dr. M. also tested his lead levels, which are elevated. The first thing he asked when he called (personally, not a nurse, extra points for doc) was if we lived in an old house or a new house. So, the kid is inhaling lead dust from the building. He said he doesn't even have to be eating paint or anything to elevate his levels. He also said that the lead levels are NOT high enough to be causing any symptoms or contributing to his poop problem, but he wants to keep an eye on it.

This leads to the other thing. We need to move, pronto. We have been throwing the idea around for a few months anyway. Living in this building with a baby is hard, and everyone can say "I told you so." It's hard. It's especially hard now that he's walking and attempting to open doors and stuff like that. It completely sucks to live on the third floor and cart a baby up and down the stairs. We really like living here, it's so convenient and the place has SO much character and history. It's so spacious and huge and I love how I have it decorated, but if there is a chance that living here may affect my child's health, we are going to have to bounce.

Clint's job is to finish the wall and fix a little thing in the laundry room, and then I'm going to hire a cleaning company to come in and clean this place better than I ever could. Then we are going to get a realtor in here and start getting serious. Then, when we finally sell, we are going to go back to renting (a whole house, with a yard and three bedrooms in case #2 shows up while there), and the goal is to be completely debt free (except for car payments and student loans) before we buy "the house."

So, on the cusp of this big decision, something happened last night that is making the transition SO much easier. Everyone is fully aware of my distaste for Darling Downstairs Neighbor. This woman has been a thorn in my side since we moved in here two plus years ago. I have always been nice to her, I've never done anything that can be considered mean or rude to her. Still, every conversation I have ever had, she manages to say something rude or inconsiderate to me, whether it's telling me that Clint walks too loud, or we shouldn't get Owen up so early on Sunday mornings (for church!) because they can hear us getting him up. The woman has absolutely no tact, or consideration or sympathy, WHATSOEVER.

So last night, because Owen is still going through his poop problem, he is having major trouble sleeping. And, unlike every other night of his life, he is not sleeping through the night as regularly. When he wakes up, we either need to change a poopy diaper, give him some water, or something little like that - but mainly, he just wants cuddled. And, Clint and I are both happy to oblige. However, he will not fall asleep on us. As soon as he's drowsy enough, we go to put him in his crib and he starts screaming again.

Now, there are a lot of different schools of thought on parenting in this situation. Generally, we are not a fan of the "cry it out method," but there comes a point sometimes where you have to let them cry. All of his needs were met, his diaper was clean, he wasn't thirsty, he didn't have a fever, he just wanted held. We held him for 30 minutes and tried to put him back. He cried for a solid 15 minutes after that. If we didn't live in an apartment, I would have let him cry, because the ONLY reason he was crying was because he didn't want in his crib. However, after the 15 minutes, I went in and got him again. I know this was a mistake, but I was trying to have a little consideration for our neighbors. Of course, now he assumes that anytime he cries, we are going to come in and get him, so he may as well scream until we do. I rocked him for another 30 minutes (and by now it's 2:30 am and he has been awake for two hours almost. He's very drowsy, and I go to put him in his bed. He starts crying again, obviously. And after FIVE minutes, Darling Downstairs Neighbor calls me. She asks to make sure everything is OK with Owen because they can hear him crying. I explained that he has been sick and he's having trouble sleeping. She said, "Well, I just wanted to let you know that both of your downstairs neighbors are awake now." WTF? I said, I'm sorry you're awake, but I can't keep going in there and getting him out, I have to let him cry or else he won't stop crying. I'm sure if we would have given him a few more minutes he would have gone to sleep, because whenever he is up, he's never up for more than 2 hours. She reiterated that they are both awake. ??? I said, "I'm sorry, but you don't know what it's like to have a sick child," (they have no kids). She got defensive and I got defensive right back. Honestly, what was the point of her calling? I know it wasn't because she was concerned for Owen. I apologized for them being awake, but I'm not going to make excuses because he is sick and sometimes babies cry!!! AND SOMETIMES THEY CRY AT 2AM!!!!!

The final straw was when she REITERATED AGAIN they were both awake. I said goodnight and hung up. I was so upset that I started crying. Clint went in and got Owen and we are trying to figure out what to do. We decide to bring the pack and play into our bedroom (to let Darling Downstairs Neighbors get back to sleep of course) and put him in there. Of course he starts screaming more. So, we decided to break the Cardinal Rule. We brought him into bed with us. We NEVER do this. And we don't plan to ever do it again. But Owen calmed down, finally. He snuggled up to me for about ten minutes, and then draped himself over Clint for about ten minutes, and was nice and relaxed, so we put him in the pack and play, he cried for about two minutes and passed out.

I fell asleep shortly after, but Clint laid awake fuming about the neighbors until 4am. He wanted to call them back and have words. If you know my husband, you know that's awfully out of character for him. He hardly ever raises his voice or gets mad enough to want to hash stuff out. But he didn't call them back. And sure enough, the kid woke up with Clint's alarm at 7:00 and stood in the pack and play staring at Mommy and Daddy. I pray he takes decent naps today. And of course I'm more motivated than ever to move.

When you live in an apartment, you give up certain freedoms. Most people also have some level of decency and tact. I'm fuming mad, still.

Ok, good stuff. We KILLED on our tax return this year, having a baby is awesome! :) We are paying off some more stuff (the debt just keeps dwindling!!), Clint's having some work done on his car, and we are STILL going to save a big chunk of change. We did have one frivolous purchase, which we have been dying to make for about a year - a new TV! 32inch, flat screen HD LCD, hot damn! It's awesome! And, I don't even feel guilty, because we got it on a super sale at Sam's Club (I heart Sam's).

And Miss Chicken is finally getting declawed on Tuesday. She has scratched her last wall and swatted at Owen for the last time.

AND, I bought 12 tubes of Burts Bees on EBay for $20 (a total steal).

And I had a date with Laura Jackson Roberts last night for crab legs and Reisling (for me, none for her, she's got a bun in the oven). It was so wonderful going out and chatting for hours while the men took care of the boys, and I'm very sorry to hear about the massive leaking in your dining room today. Good luck with that.

Ugh, I want to fast forward to whenever we live in another place, and the summer, where all this snow has disappeared.

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