The Sum of Six Weeks: A Note to My Daughter

26 10 2011

So, we’ve had you with us for a nanosecond and for an eternity.  You’ve always been here, and yet you just arrived.  I suppose it’s that way with a lot of parents, and probably the lack of sleep adds to the dichotomy.

But the calendar says six weeks.  And tomorrow will be seven.

Where has the time gone?

Well…

You’ve taken 4 trips of three or more days and three or more hours away.  2 camping trips.

You have gone to 3 midwife appointments, 3 pediatric appointments, 3 Ob/Gyn appointments, 1 ultrasound appointment, and 1 massage therapist.

You’ve broken 1 bone, and that you broke it being born makes it no less impressive.

You’ve met dozens of dogs, 1 cat, 2 horses, a cow, and the mouse that took up residence in our living room for a few days.

You’ve gone to restaurants: Mexican, Peruvian, Japanese, Thai, American… And slept through most of them.

You hate the car.  Except sometimes you love the car.

You sleep between your dad and I, and my heart nearly breaks with happiness if I spend too much time thinking about it.

You’ve slept through the removal of windows and exterior walls and the cutting of concrete and the installation of sheetrock and the barking of dogs.

You started at 6 pounds, 10 ounces and have grown to 10 pounds, 6 ounces.  You have outgrown clothes already.

You make these squeaky little sounds and I call you “my little mouse.”  And yesterday, you made your first consonant sound, the “m” sound, and you said it to your grandma, not me, so I pretended not to be impressed but I was, I was just jealous.

Right now, you are sleeping on the bed next to me, and I keep poking you because I miss you.

I could keep going, but none of it adds up to our six weeks together.  None of it adds up to who you are at this moment in time.  None of it expresses just how much I love you.

I could keep going, but I don’t want to miss another moment of cuddling with you.

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3 Weeks

3 10 2011

Hazel's First Camping Trip: She wasn't the least bit bothered by sleeping in a tent in the pouring rain.

Some days, I’ve slept enough hours to actually feel how little sleep I get anymore.  Luckily, most days I haven’t.

I’ve learned to play that game that new mothers play: “If the baby only sleeps for five more minutes, what do I want to do in that time?”  There is a constant list of possibilities, but everything is a trade off; the baby will wake up.  So the game goes.  I can take a shower OR brush my teeth OR change the laundry OR make something to eat OR eat it.  If I take a nap, I may never get an opportunity to shower; if I shower, I won’t have time to wash the diapers.  Never mind the dishes.

That’s okay.  I was pretty smug about my child-rearing skills going into this whole thing, and I probably deserved to be taken down a peg or two.  For example, I really didn’t understand why it’s impossible for a new parent to be on time.

Then I had a baby, and I learned that other game: the “Trying to Get Out of the House” game.  You know, the one where you are trying to get dressed but the baby needs to nurse, then the baby poops and needs a clean diaper, then falls asleep, so you get dressed (finally!) and pack a diaper bag, then pick up the baby who either poops or vomits all over you (and herself, and the diaper bag), which wakes her up, then you repeat the whole process… again… and again… FOR HOURS.  I wake up at six a.m. to leave the house by 8, and am lucky if I actually leave before 10.

This sounds like a complain-y sort of post, but I really don’t mean it to be.  I mean it to be a hey-new-moms-I-am-finally-in-your-club sort of post.

Because right after my baby spits up on me?  I kiss her cheeks and her head and call her silly names.  And right after she pees in the middle of a diaper change?  I kiss her forehead and blow raspberries on her tummy and talk to her in that ridiculous baby-pitched voice that everyone hates except mothers and babies.

Because I waited my WHOLE LIFE to be sleep-deprived and pooped-upon and chronically-2-hours-late.  And now that I am, I wouldn’t change it for the world.

This is my "Camping in the rain with an infant is nonstop fun! But I do wish I had the time and energy to brush my teeth and change my underwear..." look.





Not Entirely Neglected…

30 09 2011

The dog and the cat still live here.  I’ve just been, you know, a little distracted by nothing less than the cutest baby EVER.

Charlie doesn’t seem too perturbed by the baby, even when she’s screaming (which isn’t often, but it happens).  He’s very interested in her poop, which is typical for him.  And he already recognizes the baby carrier and associates with WALK.  Otherwise, he pretty much just ignores the kid and waits for me to put food in his bowl.  Even when I just put food in his bowl 5 minutes ago.

And while Charlie’s walks have gotten a little shorter as I recover from the C-section, in my defense?  I’ve learned how to breastfeed wearing the baby in a sling AND in a soft-sided carrier.  That’s dedication to our daily exercise.

The cat, on the other hand, is a little more aware of this new creature in our lives.  In part, because the baby came with wonderful new places for a cat to nap: crib, bassinet, Boppy pillow, endless cuddly blankets.

Plus, the house is now perfumed with the scent of milk and regurgitated milk.

Wolverine is rather jealous, and tries several times a day to exist in the exact same spot as the baby.  Or on top of the baby, if he can’t actually replace her.  He weighs about twice what she does, so we have to supervise his movements carefully.  On the other hand, he doesn’t seem to wish her any real harm.

So… not the most exciting post, due to a complete lack of sleep and the baby starting to fuss… but… the boys must not be forgotten entirely!





5 A.M. at My House

29 09 2011

 

 

Wide. A. Wake.

 

 

 





38 Weeks: Commencements

2 09 2011

Ah… 38 weeks.  Full term.  Two weeks until the totally meaningless due date (there’s a 5% chance this baby will be born on that day).

A little over a week ago, I started gearing up for the final stages of impending-baby preparations.  You know, washing all the diapers and a selection of clothing, stocking up on tasty beverages for labor (the non-alcoholic kind – if only because alcohol can impair labor), packing a bag for delivery, and setting up baby’s things around the house.

Typical.

Since when do Jason and I do “typical”?

Right.  So, Jason worked some financial magic, and last week we committed to residing the house, reroofing the house, and having new windows installed.  Okay, we really need this stuff done: we had snowing blowing in through the windows last winter, and we listened to our 30-year-old wooden shingles being blown off during storms.  These aren’t frivolous repairs.

But it’s going to take, oh, eight weeks, give or take a few days.

And we’ll have a baby in, say, a week or two or four.

Did I mention that some reframing of walls is included in this project?  And that there is already a freeze warning in effect for our area (um, goodbye summer, it was nice knowing you…).

Now the old roof is off, and left behind a thick layer of dust on, well, everything, including the baby’s changing table and freshly washed diapers.

And then I started working.

Because, when you are 0 – 37 weeks preggo, you think, oh, hey, working for the couple of weeks before my due date will distract me and give me something to do so I’m not bored.  Then the 38th week arrives, the alarm goes off at 5:30am, and you realize I was in no danger of boredom.  And then the cat gets an eye infection and has to be kept in the house all night, and he protests by punching you in the face every 30 minutes or so, claws extended, and it dawns on you that you are going to be exhausted with a messy house and no clean diapers unless this kid delays her entrance by about eight weeks.

So, despite my long summer vacation leading up to my due date, and all my good intentions for a well-organized home for my newborn, it turns out that I am going to start life with a new baby just like most other moms.  And just like most other moms?  I can’t wait.








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