Saturday, August 28, 2004

Crying, Crying, Everywhere

When I first tried to get into Blogger, Lori was sittiung with Rachel in a chair a couple of feet from me. The baby was holding Lori's thumb with one hand and her fingers with the other, pulling and pushing to make Lori's hand open and close. And then she'd spend some time crying. She seems to cry every night, fighting sleep.

It has been hard finding time to do updates. I feel like I've been behind ever since returning from Virginia. The trip was a smashing success and Lori and I wondered for a moment what it might be like to move. However, there wasn't any hint that a job would be available, houses cost the same over there as they do over here and we couldn't afford over here if we were shopping now. And there's the whole issue of all that snow over there.

Anyhow, I was working on a project and came in the house to hear a song playing on one of the Sirrius music channels that DISH has seen fit to give us at no extra cost. It immediately gave me chills and by the time it was over, I was crying. Tears and everything.

I went to find my wife and she was in the bathroom, having just gotten out of the shower and trying to do her makeup. Baby was in the bouncer on the floor of the bathroom. I say trying to do her makeup, because she wasn't having much luck. She had heard the song and was crying, too.

The Streets of Heaven
Sherrie Austin

Hello God, it's me again. 2:00 a.m., Room 304.
Visiting hours are over, time for our bedside tug of war.
This sleeping child between us may not make it through the night.
I'm fighting back the tears as she fights for her life.

Well, it must be kind of crowded,
On the streets of Heaven.
So tell me: what do you need her for?

Don't you know one day she'll be your little girl forever.
But right now I need her so much more.
She's much too young to be on her own:
Barely just turned seven.

So who will hold her hand when she crosses the streets of Heaven?

Tell me God, do you remember the wishes that she made,
As she blew out the candles on her last birthday cake?
She wants to ride a pony when she'd big enough.
She wants to marry her Daddy when she's all grown up.

Well, it must be kind of crowded,
On the streets of Heaven.
So tell me: what do you need her for?

Don't you know one day she'll be your little girl forever.
But right now I need her so much more.
She's much too young to be on her own:
Barely just turned seven.

So who will hold her hand when she crosses the streets of Heaven?

Lord, don't you know she's my angel
You got plenty of your own
And I know you hold a place for her
But she's already got a home

Well I don't know if you're listenin'
But praying is all that's left to do
So I ask you Lord have mercy, you lost a son once too

And it must be kind of crowded,
On the streets of Heaven.
So tell me: what do you need her for?

Don't you know one day she'll be your little girl forever.
But right now I need her so much more.
Lord, I know once you've made up your mind,
There's no use in beggin'.

So if you take her with you today, will you make sure she looks both ways,
And would you hold her hand when she crosses the streets of Heaven.

Saturday, August 21, 2004

Missing Baby

I had to go out of town for business and I miss Rachel like crazy. I miss her mom, too. Last night I stayed up late packing and only got two hours of sleep. I didn't sleep on the plane and now I'm in Virginia, it's nearly 3 am EST and the alarm is going off at 6:30 am and I'm still awake. They put the three of us in a single room and the other two guys are snoring.

But, anyhow, about the baby. I knew that the hotel we were staying at had complimentary wireless internet access, so before I left, I bought two GE Webcams from Target. They're USB. I put one on the computer at home and brought one with me on the trip. So tonight when it was time to get Rachel for bed, I called home and Lori put the phone on speaker and then we opened up MSN Instant Messenger and shared video and could see each other. It worked extremely well. Rachel stared at the screen almost the entire time we were chatting, but occasionally she would look at the phone. She cooed a lot.

But nothing beats last night. We heard clicking noises coming from the cradle at the food of our bed as Lori and I settled down and got ready to pray. We were like "What is that kid doing?" Attached to the cradle is an "Ocean Wonders" aquarium from Fischer Price. It plays music, has lights that fade on and off and a compartment filled with water with plastic fish inside that move when air bubbles are released from the bottom of the compartment and float up. Well, we're laying there wondering what on earth she's doing. Then there's a *click* and the music stops and the lights fade. Did she? Could she? Was it an accident? And then *click* again and the music started back up. That seemed too huge to be coincidental. So we quickly turned in our beds so that our faces were down peering in the crib. Our little baby, her eyes staring intently out the aquarium, was using all her powers of concentration to try to get her arm, which she still doesn't have full motion control over, to hit the big blue button. And by golly, she did it and the music turned back off.

We just started laughing and could not stop laughing for several minutes. This baby, a mere two months old, had figured out how to turn the music on and off just from seeing us do it. She doesn't even have full motion control and here she is, comprehending cause and effect and actually making things happen.

Ok, now I miss her even more. I get back on Tuesday and I don't want to take any more business trips.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Strawberries and Stork Bites

Rachel's got a red spot on the back of her head and smaller red spots on her neck. We looked them up and the spot on her head is called a "strawberry mark" -- they typically appear after birth and normally go away between seven and ten years, but will be covered with hair anyway. The spots on her neck are from dilated veins and are typically called "stork bites" or "angel kisses" and too usually go away with time.

Here's a whole article on about birthmarks.

Saturday, August 07, 2004

Baby Talk

When I change Rachel's diaper, often she is crying when I start. Usually eyes closed, full-on bawling. Well, I always call her by name and try to get her attention. Because now, as soon as the sees the diaper in my hand, she quiets down, knowing what's coming next. If she's really cranky, the hold wipe may start her up again, but usually not.

Well yesterday, she was squirmy. Not quite fussy, but not calm either. When I was finished, she made a noise like "eh." So I said "Eh" back. She stopped. Everything. Froze and just stared at me. Then she made the noise again. So I said "eh" back again. She just lit up with the most gigantic smile and her eyes were positively sparkling. I was speaking her language. Though I have no idea what I said. (She'll read this later, claim she remembers the exchange and that I promised her a car and a pony.)

They say that part of the reason babies get upset is because they can't communicate. I think that she thought we were communicating. I tell her I love her all the time, but I don't think she knows what that means yet. I haven't been able to get her to do it again since then, but it was just an amazing thing to behold. She is an amazing thing to behold.

Tuesday, August 03, 2004

And the heavens opened...

And angels, in rows, stood wingtip to wingtip, singing "Hallelujah!"

Baby slept non-stop from 1:30 am to 7 am when we woke her to change her (nearly nothing) and feed her. Of course, for most of the day and night, up until 1:30 am she cried constantly (teething?). But as soon as we placed her in her car seat, she went out light a light. Being turned off.

Now, 45 minutes later, she is once again sleep, this time in her crib. The wifey preparing to join her in sleepland while I get ready for work. (Normally I would type grumble grumble here but I was the one trying to placate the baby last night for awhile and from what I hear, she had been problematic all day, so I'm not sure staying home would be more fun than going to work.)

So, it's not easy being a parent. They start out not sleeping very much and you worry and you fret and you stress over your own lack of sleep. Then they do sleep through the night and you keep waking up wondering why it's so quiet and you have to keep sneaking over and tickling their feet to make them make some kind of movement to prove they're still breathing but at the same time hoping it won't be enough to actually wake them.