Wow. It has been a while since I’ve posted. But y’all, babies keep you busy. Not like I thought I’d have time to sit around watching TV and eating bon bons, but really, all day and all night = taking care of baby. Not that I mind. I’m getting used to it. And luckily she’s pretty darn cute. But it’s definitely a challenge like I never imagined.
Miss Louisa is now a month old. Time really does hurl by at an alarming pace, doesn’t it? It’s almost frightening. She gets cuter and more fun everyday. Now she’s starting to make little cooing noises, and to smile and sort of laugh. She likes to lie in her little co-sleeper thing and windmill her arms and legs around while chomping like mad on her binky (that’s a pacificer for those of you who know it as such, it’s called a binky where I com from). About a week ago she started getting pretty grumpy at around 4 o’clock everyday. It lasts about 3 hours, which is apparently normal, only most babies do it later at night. So I’ll take it. Grumpy screaming is always better from 4 to 7 than it is from 7 to 10 (or from 10 to 1). She has also been ravenous – for serious. Sometimes she eats every 30 to 45 minutes for 4 hours straight during the day. According to my sources (many websites and books about parenting) this is pretty normal for breast-fed babies. Bottle-fed babies eat less frequently because they stay full longer. Also, breast-fed babies like to “cluster feed” (which is what this behavior is called) so they can stock up before sleeping for a longer period of time, which she has been doing. She usually falls asleep at around 7:30 or 8 pm and stays asleep until 11:30 – which is heavenly. I know, it’s only 3 & 1/2 to 4 hours in a row, but compared to the 1 to 2 hours in the first couple of weeks, it’s a delight.
And then there’s me. For the most part I’m okay. I totally dig being a parent, and I am madly in love with my daughter. But then there are those dark moments where I wonder if I’m doing everything wrong, where I feel like a total failure, where I cry on the couch in the middle of the night while I’m feeding her. These moments are usually when I’m incredibly tired, and the baby is screaming and I can’t figure out why. Her screams dig right into my heart and I can’t help but want to fix whatever is wrong. Logically I know that babies get fussy and scream, it’s just in their nature, but logic doesn’t usually play into things in the heat of the moment.
There are also moments in the middle of the day where I really miss my husband, and the outside world. I don’t get out much, mostly because we only have 1 car (that Jason takes to work every day) but also because being out and about with a newborn is just more hassle than it’s worth. Yesterday we wanted to hang out together instead of doing our errands separately like we’ve been doing, so we put her in the carseat and took her to the grocery store. Where she proceeded to throw a screaming tantrum, which induced a panic attack in me. Then today I had to take her back to the pediatrician for her 1-month checkup. Again, where she screamed so hard her face turned purple, and made me want to kick the doctor in the face. I go back in one month, whereupon she will receive her first vaccinations. Can’t wait for that party. I may have to force my husband to take some time off and come with, I don’t think I can bear watching her wail while they stick needles into her little body.
The good news in all of this is that she is doing fabulous. She gained a little over a pound – which is excellent and exactly how much she should have gained (and all on mama’s milk, by the way, which makes me feel less like a failure – my boobs are sustaining her!), and has grown an inch and a quarter. Her little cheeks are all chubby and her thighs are starting to fill out. So flipping cute. Today as I sat in the waiting room (for 30 effing minutes – get your shit together, people) a woman and her teenage daughter were gazing at my lil bug, and then the mom said to me “she’s just perfect”. Louisa’s little arm (the missing left hand, did I never go into detail about it? Probably not. She was born with part of a wrist and some little nubby fingers, no telling yet what she’ll be able to do with them, I’ll find out when I follow up with the orthopedist) was in full view and I couldn’t tell if the lady hadn’t seen it, or if she had seen it and wanted me to know that she is perfect anyway. I chose to believe the latter because it warmed my heart a little. Well, off I go – the bug has awakened and is demanding her dinner. Here’s some eye candy for y’all: