Providence Revisited

We went back to the doctor on Wednesday for Cooper's 4 month checkup.  He weighed in at 14 pounds and is now 24.5 inches long. This puts him in the 50th percentile for height and weight. I've always thought he was big for his age, but apparently he's average. Which makes me wonder why he's wearing clothes a size ahead of where he should be......  Glad we didn't stock up on clothes too much. I'm afraid he would have even more stuff he hardly got to wear.  I'm losing track of the point of this post.  Oh right - Cooper is right on track! Good job, kiddo!

If you've been following my blog you know we had daycare lined up for him to stay with an old friend, Monica. I was so excited that he wouldn't have to be in a huge center with tons of other kids and their germs. I think most of you probably know, but in case you don't, my mom has had an in-home daycare for 35-ish years. So I'm a little partial to that setting.

Well, a few months after we found Monica, I got an email. She had the opportunity to take a family of children. This meant all her spots would be filled. (Side note - Monica also found out that she was pregnant not long after she emailed me. I can't imagine watching an infant while trying to survive morning sickness.) While I understood where she was coming from, I must admit, I was instantly anxious. We started praying for another place to come up and started making phone calls. I called Council Road Baptist Church to see if they had an opening. They said their waiting list for an infant was 18 months - what!?!?! How is that even mathematically possible? However, they gave me the number of another daycare center that had only been open a few months. I called and made an appointment for a tour.

Tanner and I went and made a visit. I immediately felt very comfortable with Barbara. She is the director. She was a nurse for most of her career and then when she adopted her third child she had lots of difficulty finding good childcare. She decided maybe she should just start a daycare. And so she did, at Putnam City Christian Church. We decided this was a good fit for us and it has definitely proven to be true. After all we went through when Cooper was born, I loved the fact that he would spend his day with a germ phobic former nurse.

The daycare is a five minute drive from work and are pro-breastfeeding. I get to go see Cooper on my lunch break everyday. He nurses, then snuggles, or wants to chat. I love having my Cooper dates! It gives me some quality time everyday, no matter what time I get off work. Or if I'm on least I get that few minutes everyday.

Another advantage of PCCC is that Cooper is the favorite. I know, I know - he would be the favorite no matter where her was. :) But he really is the favorite. Every morning when I bring him in, Barbara says, "There's my boy!" When she has had a rough morning filled with with wet breeches and cranky kids, she says that Cooper makes everything better. But she's not the only one wrapped around his chubby little finger. His teacher, Kaitlyn, got in a little trouble the other day because she was holding him during nap time. Not because he wouldn't sleep in his crib, just because he's so fun to snuggle. Barbara told her that as fun as snuggling is, Tanner and I might not appreciate him being held while he slept at 2 in the morning. Told you he's the favorite!

Over the last few months, there has been some discussion of moving my dad's job to OKC. I thought this was just another proof of God's providence. I mean, how amazing would that be! My mom could watch Cooper. He wouldn't be exposed to all the germs. But.......he also wouldn't be exposed to the other kids. He has a sweet new friend, Trenton. When Cooper is playing on the floor, Trenton (9 months old) will crawl over to him and make the toys move or make noise. And then he waits for Coop to react. Or Kaitlyn will put Cooper and Trenton in bouncy seats facing each other and they will talk and laugh. I love that Cooper already has a little buddy!

Although I still think it would be wonderful for my mom to watch Coop, I can see that he is right where he needs to be right now. God has provided us with a place for our son. We can drop him off and not worry that he will be mistreated or neglected. We can feel completely confident that he is well taken care of. That is providence.  God, thank you for Putnam City Christian Church and for all the wonderful people who love my son!

So Many Questions.......

Aunt Tiff and Uncle Nate stopped by to see the Cooper-man today. They couldn't believe how much he's grown. Neither can I, and I see him everyday.  Tiffany asked me, "So, is motherhood what you expected?" My answer: We're getting there.

This sounds so cliche, but you really can't understand how hard having a baby is until you have one. It strains every relationship in your life - husband, friends, God, yourself. We got so tired of everyone telling us how hard it was going to be. Tanner and I just wanted to say, "shut up and let us enjoy this!" Of course we never did......but we wanted to.  And then Cooper got here and we realized that unfortunately it was as hard as everyone said.  I kept waiting for the fun stuff and it just wasn't happening. The moment Cooper was born I fell deeply in love with him. But I will be the first to admit, I've had many moments where I didn't like him all that much. Like when he didn't sleep for more than about 45 minutes at a time for an entire week. Mommy wanted to pull her hair out and give her baby to the closest thing with hands. The complete and utter exhaustion was overwhelming.

But then he started eating better, which helped him sleep better. That made everything better. Although people always ask, "Is he sleeping through the night?" The answer to that is sometimes. About once a week we have the perfect conditions where he eats all evening. He gets a bath and then eats again. Then he goes to bed with a nice full tummy and sleeps about 7 hours. AWESOME!!!!  But most nights he sleeps from 9 to 2 and is then up at again 4 and 6.  FRUSTRATING!!!!  Hopefully when we start doing some solid food he will stay full a little longer and sleep for those long stretches on a more regular basis.

"Has he <insert milestone here> yet."  These questions leave me with mixed feelings. Yes, he is smiling, but not really laughing much. Yes, he can roll over, but has only done it twice. He holds his head up very well for his age and is very strong. He is just now starting to really play with his toys. It is so much fun to watch.  He does so many things, but I still worry that he is behind. I love to show off the things he does well, but the things he struggles with make me a little anxious.  I try to remind myself that every baby is different and he will reach those milestones when he is ready.

Many people have been curious about how work has been. They all seem to say, "It must be so hard to leave him at daycare." Well, honestly, I think it's good for him. He has been a happier baby since he started going and I know that I need the adult time that work provides. I know a lot of women feel like the best thing for their family is to stay at home with their children, and I think that is wonderful. But I KNOW that I am a better mom when I am working. It gives me a chance to miss him. I was on call this last week, which meant I got to miss him a little more than usual, but we survived. In a perfect world, I would probably work part time, but hey this world isn't perfect. So we will just keep doing what we're doing until God decides it's time for something else.

The more I get to know my son, the less often I have those times that I don't like him.  In fact, I can't remember the last time I wanted to pull my hair out! Although I still get frustrated when he refuses to nap or wakes up for the third time during the night, I still can't believe how lucky I am. Thank you God for putting this amazing little person in my life. My only question is...........What's next?