Friday, December 14, 2007

Easton is sleeping and I decided to take advantage of the time to myself and blog. I should be doing dishes or laundry or something because my house is a wreck but I need some ME time! Hmmm...which of those stories to tell first? How about a long story about Mom and and Bonnie and Ryan's visit and one in which I talk about breastfeeding. A lot. Sound interesting? Here we go:

We had a great time. They came in late Monday night and Easton and I waited up for them. Once they got here we all sat around and visited as long as we could but finally had to get to bed. I think we were all exhausted. Them from travelling all day and me just because I'm always tired these days.

The next day we got around and went into Winchester for some shopping. We had a nice time. I shopped for Christmas presents for Ry and Ty and Easton. Speaking of Ryan, she was so sweet with Easton! Every chance she had she wanted to hold him or sing to him or help with him in some way. I will never forget her sweet little voice saying to him "Don't cry. Don't cry" over and over and over trying to calm him down. And she also sang "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star" for him when he was crying and sometimes he'd actually stop crying and listen to her. (Thanks, Ryan! Your cousin Easton loves you and so do I!) We ate at Backseat Bar and Grill, a fun 50's inspired burger place with huge portions, good sweet tea and great service. Then we did some more shopping, went to Walmart to get a few things and met my friends and Jason for dinner at Brewbakers. Brewbakers is the place where AmyG, Kelly, Jason and I had our weekly Wednesday night happy hour after work for about a year. It was fun to introduce my family to my friends and take them to one of my favorite places in Winchester. The last stop of the day was a trip to Jason's work to show how mattresses are made. I always enjoy seeing Jason show people what he does for a living and listen to him explain how it all works. It really makes me proud of him to hear him describe what he does every day. Plus, it was pretty cool to be able to show them how mattresses are made...not too many people get to see that. It's a pretty neat process.

The next day we woke up to SNOW! It snowed all day that day and we just stayed inside and visited. We had a good relaxing day and after all the shopping the previous day, we all needed a day to rest and just hang out. Thursday we went shopping again. We went to the mall to have Easton's picture made at Penney's. We were pretty surprised to just be able to walk right in and have it done right away. He was in a Santa suit and looked so cute! (I'll post a pic when I get one.) We all had our picture made together and that was really nice. Can't wait to get that one framed and up on the wall. (Again, I'll post it when I get one.) Mom bought me a pair of jeans (Yay! Not maternity jeans! Not my normal pre-baby size but only one size bigger! Woohoo!) and some really cute red shoes. Thanks, mom! I bought her a gift from Easton that says "You never outgrow your Nana." Also at the mall we got some coffee from my favorite coffee shop (The Daily Grind) and the kids got their pictures made with Santa. But the Santa pictures are another story. :)

The next day I had an appt with a lactation consultant at the hospital to get some hints on what to do about Easton's slow weight gain and some other issues I had. Mom, Bonnie and Ryan decided to go with me and we all loaded up in the car and drove to the appt. I met with Laurie (the lactation consultant) and she gave me some tips and said I am doing a great job. She weighed Easton, watched me feed him, gave me some hints on how to make breastfeeding go a little more smoothly and then weighed him again when he was done to see how much milk he was getting. She said he seemed to be getting enough from me but that I did the right thing by supplementing him with formula when he wasn't gaining weight. She suggested a different breastpump, some herbal tea that would increase my milk production and said she'd be in touch next week to see how we're doing. We left the hospital and began what I now refer to as BreastPumpQuest 2007.

When I was in the hospital, I asked for a breastfeeding pump kit from the nurse. I was told that if I already had a pump at home then I did not need the kit because it would not be compatible with my pump. I said that I still wanted the kit in case I needed to rent the pump once I left. I did not get the kit before I left but only realized this once I got home. I thought oh well, I can always get the kit if I do decide I need to rent the pump. Boy was I wrong! I asked Laurie about the kit when I was in her office and she said that she could not give me one because I was no longer an inpatient but to just get one at the place that rents and sells the pumps.

Fine. No problem. Our next stop is to the Farm Market for some apple cider and an apple because I have promised to take Ryan somewhere fun. The Farm Market is a fun place to go because there you can get stuff you can't get just anywhere. I mean if you want some good apples (or apple cider) you go to where the apples are grown, right? Winchester and the surrounding area are big time apple producers so you can get some of the best apples and apple products at the Farm Market. We drive to the Farm Market only to find it is closed for the year. CRAP! Good thing Ryan was such a good sport about it! I think maybe I was more disappointed than she was. Next stop is Martin's, a grocery store that I know sells the Mother's Milk Tea that Laurie recommended. We get the tea and some apple syrup for my sister to take back to my grandma and grandpa. We also get some coffee (the grownups), some caramel apple cider (Ryan), and the biggest apple I think I have ever seen which Ryan gets to pick out herself from the produce section and weigh and print a price sticker for. Hey, it was sortof like the farm market. Only not. :)

Then it was time for lunch. We drove across town hoping to eat at Olive Garden only to find that they were closed because they had no power. It seems a loose wire had knocked out all the power in the section of town where Olive Garden is located. Fine, we'll go to Ruby Tuesdays. We ate a great lunch there and then it was on to some more shopping. We went into Lowes for little bit and then decided to try to call the hospital and explain to them what we need and see if anyone can help me. I really should have been given the kit before I left, right? I mean after all, I did specifically ask for it.

So, I drive back acros town to go to Walmart where they have a Home Health Store set up in the front part of the store. I talk to the lady there about renting a pump and she says "Now I have no idea about any of this stuff. I just help out on Fridays." Great, lady. If you don't know, I certainly don't know. Then I ask her if she has a kit I can buy so I can just rent the pump part. No she does not. I was supposed to have gotten a kit at the hospital. Everybody needs a kit before they can rent the pump and she doesn't know anything about anything. She just helps out on Fridays. A lot of help you are if you don't know about the products you are selling lady!

So I left Walmart (the first time) with nothing but a lot of frustration and a pamphlet about all the different types of pumps available. Next I decide to try calling the hospital and explaining what happened. I call information to get the number to the hospital because I am driving and of course I don't have the number to the hospital. I call the hospital and ask to speak to labor and delivery. I explain what I need to the person who answers. She says "Wait a minute. You need to speak to the Mother/Baby unit." She transfers me to mother/baby and I explain what I need. "You need to speak to a nurse" says the person on the other end of the phone. Well who the heck are you? The nurses personal secretary? I am put on hold and when a nurse answers I tell her what I need. She says she does have the kits but she cannot give me one because she does not know how to charge me for one once I am no longer a patient. She says I need to call billing and have them charge me for one and then she can give it to me. AARRGGHH!

Fine. What is the number for billing? She gives it to me and I call and once again tell the person who answers what I need. Mind you, I think I have never talked about breasts or breastfeeding so much in one day in my entire life! :) The lady kindly says to me "Well, you need to talk to the billing manager." She gives me her number and also the number of the person who handles accounts with the last names A-F. I take both numbers and have to sit for a minute to cool off before I can calm down enough to be civil to the person on the other end of the phone.

Once I chill out a bit, I call billing and she says she'll call me back. Just a few minutes later I do indeed get a call from sweet little billing lady who informs me that the only way they can give me the kit now is if I call my doctor and ask that he fax over a prescription for a breast pump and the kit and then they can issue me one. By this time it was about 4:30 on a Friday and I wasn't holding out much hope to get this issue resolved that day. And I was positive I wasn't going to get the rx from the doctor's office before they closed. Well then, I guess I'll just have to buy a breastpump. Forget renting one. Forget something I'll need a kit for. Just give me the darned pump Laurie recommended and let's just quit talking about breasts, OK? Yeah right. If only it were that simple.

We drive across town to Target. I've seen the Medela pump there and I'll just buy it. Merry Christmas to me, right? Nope. We get to Target only to find they do NOT have the model she recommended, only one that is a few steps down from the one she mentioned. AAARRGGGHH again! We buy a pkg of diapers because by this time we are completely out of diapers from all the running around we did. When this day started I had never imagined it would take this long to get what we needed and even though I had packed extra diapers we were now completly out. We pay for the diapers, Bonnie changes Easton for me and we leave.

Now where? BabiesRUs has breast pumps. Well, we don't have a BabiesRUs but we do have a ToysRUs that has a lot of baby stuff and is close to Target. Surely they'll have what we need. Everyone stays in the car and I run in to get what I need an get out. Guess what? No breastpump. Well, they DO have pumps, just not the one Laurie recommended and by this point I'll be darned if I am going home without what she wanted me to have. The only other option is to drive BACK across town to Walmart and buy the pump from the woman who knows nothing about them. I go back into Walmart (by myself because at this point everyone is completely worn out) and pay $236.45 for the breastpump model like the one the lactation lady recommended. 6 hours after BreastPumpQuest 2007 began I FINALLY have what I need and can go home.

I called Jason on the way home and told him briefly about our day. We agreed to meet at the pizza place by our house for dinner because by this time it was WAY too late to make anything. We had a nice dinner at King's pizza and went home. What a day!

The next day, we all get up early, they pack up their things and I drive them to the airport. I hate to see them leave and I promise myself I won't cry. I do a pretty good job of it until I'm alone in my car on the way home. It makes me sad to think of my sweet little boy growing up not really knowing much of his family except a visit once or twice a year. I cry a bit and then take a deep breath and just keep driving. I know we'll go home as often as we can and hopefully people will come visit us too. I do love where we live but wish it was closer to home.

BLEH! No more pity party! Gotta get off this computer and get something done. Easton is STILL sleeping and I've got to go to town to find a cute shirt to wear to the Christmas party tomorrow.

Hopefully I'll find more time to blog on Sunday. Tomorrow is filled with class all day (Easton is going with me...wish me luck!) and then a Christmas party with my friends tomorrow night. Should be fun. Hope for yucky weather so my class gets cancelled but not yucky enough that the party is called off. :)