Progress in May 2011

Wow. What a difference a good day makes.

We had a particularly good day on a Wednesday a couple of weeks ago – the best day we have had for so long. Isaac had next to no colic, we relaxed, Anastasia had fun with animals, we ate delicious seafood, everybody slept well, we got to watch a whole movie in one go. It made us feel fantastic. In fact, despite a number of significant crying episodes since it felt as though we turned a bit of a corner on that day. Wednesday, 18 May 2011. It’s a date for us to remember in perpetuity.

What made this day so great?

  1. Bateman’s Bay
  2. To begin, we were staying at Bateman’s Bay in a very nice little holiday apartment at a place called Parker By The Sea. I would heartily recommend this place – the apartments were gorgeous, modern and well kitted out. The kitchen was fantastic. The bedrooms were nice and large. The whole place just had a great feel to it. Our apartment had the master bedroom downstairs, where we slept with Isaac, and two bedrooms upstairs – one with a queen bed and one with twin singles. We let Anastasia choose which one she would sleep in and she chose the queen bed. She looked so small sleeping in the middle of this enormous bed but she loved it. She slept more soundly there even than she would normally at home.

  3. Birdland Animal Park
  4. Not the famous jazz club, or I might have gone as well. As it was, I stayed home and read books while the girls went to the animal park, which is part wildlife vet, part tourist attraction.

    Anastasia had a ball – she patted wombats, looked at wallabies and even had a snake draped around her. In fact, she enjoyed the snake so much she went back to it and had it placed on her several times.

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

    At Birdland Animal Park, Bateman's Bay

  5. No colic
    Aside from one session of crying for about half an hour or less when they were arriving at the animal park, Isaac had basically no colic all day. In fact, during the afternoon he was particularly delightful – smiling and gurgling at us.

  6. Excellent seafood
  7. Thanks to a most excellent tip received from our friend Bianca the last time we were in Bateman’s Bay, we returned to the 3 Fish Cafe in the main street of Bateman’s Bay. An absolutely delicious mixed seafood grill consumed while sitting in a little park looking out over the water. A pretty much perfect lunch.

  8. Anastasia slept for at least 3.5 hours during the day
  9. That pretty much explains itself.

  10. Free time and good sleep
  11. Because Anastasia slept so well during the day and because Isaac had a good day, Tegan and I had lots of free time. We got to read books, watch Masterchef and even watch a movie (Mao’s Last Dancer – we liked it) after Anastasia went to bed. And then everyone, including us, slept well overnight. It was glorious.

  12. Did I mention, no colic
  13. It was just so good.

Of course, the next day Isaac had a couple of pretty major colic episodes, including one in the car just as we were leaving Bateman’s Bay, which necessitated a stop at a little park in Nelligen where Tegan and Isaac got out and let Isaac’s screaming annoy all the surrounding workmen, a boat-load full of people out for a river cruise and other people enjoying an otherwise pleasant picnic in the park. A couple of elderly ladies were lovely and came to help Tegan while she was trying to change Isaac’s nappy and get her changing gear sorted out on a picnic bench without it all blowing away and plenty of passing people made the usual sort of comments we get, along the lines of, “there’s nothing wrong with his lungs” and “gee, what’s wrong with him?”

And a couple of days later, on the Saturday, we had a particularly bad end to an otherwise great week. The full set of events feels a bit too long to recount here, but involved it taking us 2.5 hours to get home from Braddon due to Isaac crying, bike tyres punctured and deflating three times in quick succession, each only minutes after the previous one had been fixed, and very dirty nappies with no change facilities in proximity. All this while we were trying to get home quickly in order to look after Tegan’s niece so that Tegan’s sister could get down to Canberra Hospital to relieve Tegan’s Mum, who had been waiting there in emergency with Tegan’s Nan for more than a day and a half while they waited for a bed to be found for her. We should have known it would be a hard day when it started with not enough sleep and Anastasia head-butting Tegan (on purpose? accidentally? we’re not sure) very hard in the nose, to the extent that Tegan at first thought her nose might be broken. I saw it happen – it reminded me of Vinne Jones in an early Guy Ritchie movie.

Since then
In the last two or three weeks since then, things might have been improving. We think. There have been some complicating factors so it is hard to tell.

Isaac seems to have less colic, which is very good. We had some friends around for pizza and movies one night, and a couple of people mentioned that Isaac was, unusually compared with their previous visits to us, not screaming. However, we have all, including Isaac, had annoying colds so he has been grumpy and upset for different reasons. And he still does get colic episodes, but far less of them. We now have more good days than bad days, which is a complete reversal from a few weeks ago.

Over the last couple of days, I thought that Isaac’s colic was back with a vengeance – there were seriously significant amounts of crying starting from early in the morning – and today he wasn’t even eating properly. However, it turns out that it’s an ear infection instead and he’s on antibiotics, which seems to be helping. While he’s following in his sister’s footsteps with the ear infection (Anastasia has had a number per year since she was about 10 months old) he has started with them a lot earlier than she has. I don’t think this is a good sign.

Isaac at 17 weeks old

Isaac is now about 17 weeks old. Some observations:

  • He smiles a lot. He really, really loves smiling at people, particularly Tegan and I. He’s much more smiley than was Anastasia at that age. He also laughs, or as close as a baby can actually come to laughing. It’s really very, very cute – we love it and so does everyone who sees it. On a couple of occasions Isaac has charmed random people in cafes just by looking up and smiling intently at them. I wonder if it’s because at other times he has been in such pain and been so unhappy that when he’s happy, he’s very happy indeed.
  • He has developed quite odd sleeping patterns in the evening, but they’re still helpful. He tends to fall asleep now around 5:30pm or so, often but not always waking up for a feed around 8:30pm, then takes a dream feed at around 11pm before Tegan goes to bed. He then wakes up again sometime between 4 and 5:30 to feed. He was then going back to sleep until after 7am, but for the last few days has stayed awake after 5:30 – just wanting to play.
  • He’s always been pretty alert, but is getting more so. He is also developing his dexterity. He started reaching out and holding on to things a few weeks ago and is getting better at it. The other day (actually when Tegan was trying to settle him at about 4 in the morning) he reached out and turned pages in a book that she was reading to him. He also enjoys playing with some of the baby toys around his cot or on various baby playmats we have.

Anastasia

See Tegan’s post. That’s a pretty good summary.

Us

I’m into my last week of leave. More updates on us when I post a summary of my four months off before I go back next Tuesday.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *