So, if you believe the current research going around these days, you might think it was a good thing to, oh, pay attention to your baby... Sorry, I'm just mildly appalled that we had to do research to prove that paying attention/giving affection to one's child has a proportionally positive effect on their mental health, even well into adulthood. So, in case you needed an excuse to throw a little extra attention and affection your kid's way, this report says you should.
In other "duh" news (this section could alternately be titled, 'Wherein She Wins The Most Observant Mother Of The Year Award'), as I was sweeping chunks of curdled milk vomit out of Ja.ck's mouth last night, I noticed there were some small patches inside his cheeks near the corners of his mouth that weren't wiping off...
THRUUUUUUUSH. Gah. GRR. GRRRRRRRRR!
So yeah. Suddenly, the need to nurse every hour started to make sense. Very likely, the hunger indicators (gnawing on fist/fingers, fussing, rooting) were in fact 'Hey, Mama, My Mouth Hurts' indicators. I have no idea how long it's been since the thrush came back, but I'm guessing some time about 4 or so days ago, when the fussiness started. In all fairness, the boys both have chunky vomit often enough that it's hard to notice an unmoving white patch on the side of their cheek, because there are always white patches all over their mouths.
Luckily, we have plenty of medication to go around again, and unlike their reflux medicine, they actually like the nasty, sticky-sweet, neon yellow, banana-flavored goo that is used to treat the thrush. I, personally, don't really care for the funky-scented cream-goo used to treat my nipples, but so be it. Thrush. Round two. Here we go again.
Also, yesterday at 7:30 p.m., when I finally quit nursing the boys (that particular session started at around noon), I made the executive decision that it wasn't doing any of us any favors to keep up with the once-an-hour pattern. The boys were both hungry and frustrated, because I was literally tapped dry, and while they were getting a little something, they weren't getting enough to fill up. So, we gave them formula, and they each took about two ounces, and my poor, beleagured nipples got a rest. It seemed to trigger some sort of reset button, because since then, they've tuck to an every 2-3 hour schedule (including a 4 hour stretch last night! Yippie!). We'll see if it sticks...
And, additionally, in the whole 'sleep begets sleep' realm, they've been pleasantly napping today, first at the doctor's office while I waited for my appointment, and then again after nursing just before 11 a.m. (and miracle of miracles, after some serious work, they actually napped while laying down on the bed! Granted, I was laying next to them, curled around them with my hands on each of them, and it was a fitful sleep, but for 45 minutes, they napped somewhere besides ON me...). They woke up to nurse at just before 1:00 p.m., and now, they're asleep again (though this time, back on my lap on the nursing pillow... baby steps...).
Anyway, being home alone with them is hard, but bit by bit, I am figuring things out. It's slow-going, but there is small progress being made.
In other news, I have been given the all-clear to return to full activity! I may bribe H by saying that certain married-people-activities are much more enjoyable when one has had the chance to relieve some stress with a little treadmill-time. We'll see whether I have the time or energy to run once he's home from work, but boy, could I use it right now...
And I know I haven't said it enough, but thank you. Seriously, thank you all so much for all of the advice and input. I'm still (at points) stabbing in the dark with this whole parenting thing and reading about how you all have managed to survive things is SO helpful. Really. Even if I don't end up doing things the way you've suggested, just reading about different perspectives helps me to figure out how I want to go about solving various issues. So, keep the advice coming. It is always, ALWAYS appreciated.