Tuesday, February 24, 2015

8 Weeks Old / Guilt-Free Confession

8 weeks old! In a few days you'll be 2 months old. Since you were born on the 30th and there aren't 30 days in February, we're going with the 28th on this one.

In the last few weeks you have definitely been smiling REAL smiles and we've gotten the occasional giggle. It's more of an excited yell but to us it's giggling.
And oh  boy are you getting talkative. I have so much fun playing copy-cat and mimicking your sounds. You seem to enjoy it too.
We've been practicing tummy time more often (like we're supposed to be - oops) and your neck is certainly getting stronger. You don't always like when I strand you on your tummy but you're lifting your head up more and more and for longer. You still like looking at lights and objects that light reflects off of. You also like when we click our tongues and smack our lips. Probably because you've discovered this past week that you can smack your lips too. It's cute and hilarious when we wake up in the morning to the sound of you smacking your lips as if to say, "c'mon, guys, I'm awake and hungry and ready to play!"  

Believe me when I say that we love you more than you will know - until you have a child of your own.

Now, let me confess something to you.

The other day on Facebook, I saw a list on a friend's wall that suggested 10 Ways to really help a new mom (click HERE to read the list. It's fantastic).
While pretty much every item on that list rings true (with regards to the napping, I disappeared from a get-together-to-see-the-baby we had before you were even a week old to crawl into bed and sleep while everyone oohed and ahhed over you. I recommend every new parent do this), I felt like #8 was included on that list just for me. There have been only a few times I have been away from you for more than half an hour and those times involved me going to the grocery store.
I enjoyed grocery shopping long before you were conceived but now... it's almost like going to the spa.
It's time where I can stroll through the aisles without worrying about whether you're still asleep in your car seat, whether your car seat is really safely balanced in the shopping cart, whether I'll be able to grab items if I also have to hold and bounce you.

Yesterday, your dad watched you while I went grocery shopping, got us lattes from Starbucks, and spent $75 on wine at the LCBO. I treated myself to two bottles over $18 among others because gosh darn it, I'm worth it.

It made me realize that while I don't feel like things have changed, my life has changed dramatically.

My "me time" used to be all the time. With the exception of when I was working, I could sit back and watch tv when I wanted to, lay back and devour book after book, spend lots of time in the kitchen making dinner, wandering around the neighbourhood and stopping in to stores to browse and shop. When friends invited me to their parties I only had to check to make sure I wasn't working. When we didn't feel like cooking, your dad and I would say hey, let's go out for dinner. And we'd head out.

Now I watch tv when you're napping. When you're awake Im busy making noises to make you smile and bouncing you around. The TV is background noise.
Now I sneak in reading time when you take your morning nap, before we've abandoned the bedroom for the living room.
Now I throw ingredients into the slow cooker while you're happily occupied looking at things in your bouncy chair (this has promise as you're able to sit for longer in your chair now before you start fussing).
Now if I want to go out I plan it carefully to make sure we're not out for too long and to make sure I can get your stroller in because carrying that car seat around is not an option. It is heavy. And honestly, sometimes it's just easier to stay in than get you ready to go, get you into the car seat, into the car, then out of the car, etc. Especially since it's been -20 degrees most days. I imagine this would have been a slightly easier process if it were spring/summer.
And going out with friends? If it's a day party, yes. An evening? Pass up an opportunity to go to bed at 10 pm if you go to sleep earlier than 11:30? No way.
Now if your dad and I want to go out for dinner we have to plan ahead and make sure someone is available to watch you. We went out for dinner on Valentine's day and I'll be honest... by hour 3 I was itching to get back home to see you.

But boy was it nice to go on a date with your dad. We both got to eat our food at the same time! This is hard to do at home when one of us is holding you and keeping you happy.

It seems like the days of just making plans on the fly, or picking up and heading out are over for awhile.  

Being a new parents seems to mean giving up your time to be selfish. Not entirely but that freedom to be self-indulgent is certainly reduced.

I miss my selfish time but honestly?

I'd give it all up,  a hundred times over, to spend hours making you smile.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

7 Weeks Old / My Google Search History

If you have young children, I'd bet money that at some point you've googled some topic or another that more or less boils down to wondering if you're killing your child.

I was very guilty of abusing the Google machine in the first few weeks of my child's life but I can't say that I've reformed my ways entirely.
I google things less often but I still google them.

I thought it would be fun to check through my search history and share the things I've googled with respect to caring for a newborn.

So without further ado ...

  • When do babies sleep through the night? 
  • When will my milk come in?
  • Does Guinness help your milk come in?
  • How do I know if my baby's getting enough milk?
  • Why is my baby crying?
  • When do babies get colic?
  • What do you do all day with a newborn?
  • What are the rules around drinking and breastfeeding?
  • What colour should my baby's poo be?
  • How can you tell if your baby is dehydrated?
  • Is it normal for the soft spot to pulse?
  • When does the soft spot close?
  •  When will my baby smile?
  • Is green poop okay when it's usually yellow?
  • How often should my baby nurse?
  • How long should my newborn be sleeping?
  • 3 week growth spurt
  • 6 week growth spurt
  • When should I expect growth spurts?
  • Is my baby fussy cause she's growing?
  • Should I still be waking my baby every 2-3 hours to nurse?
Etc, etc.
I've curbed my googling A LOT since the first few weeks but I'm still guilty of secretly googling things when I start to worry. It can be scary ('your child is dehydrated! Bring them to the ER immediately!') and it can be incredibly reassuring ('your kid slept for 5 hours straight? Don't wake them to feed, they're fine. Consider yourself lucky and go back to sleep!').
Yes, my child did sleep a solid 5 hour stretch one night and it was glorious. No it hasn't happened more than two or three times. But yes, I know how lucky I am that I even got that much continuous sleep. 

And yes, when I wake up in the middle of the night before she does I still put my hand on her chest or poke her to make sure she's still breathing. 

I can't google that kind of reassurance for my first-time-mom worries. 

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

6 Weeks Old / What Will Your Favourites Be?

Oh baby baby, how you've grown and changed in just 6 short weeks.

You've been smiling and cooing and it has become my life's mission to make you smile and coo.
You love laying on your back (a game we call 'bug on the rug'), especially on the change table. You kick your legs and stretch your arms and look all around you. 
I make the weirdest animal noises I can think of (my personal favourite being the wild cat/cougar). I tickle your toes and ask you any question I can think of. 
You seem to like the monkey noise and the wild cat noise best. You also really like your toy Mortimer the Moose (from Rimouski, as per your father) with his crinkly feet. But I don't know what a moose sounds like.

I wonder what your favourite animal will be.

Last week I tried to read you a book but you were fussy and you started crying. I don't want you to think reading is no good. I want you to love books like I do.
We're taking you to PEI this summer for a wedding and a road trip to basically-New-Brunswick-Quebec for another wedding the weekend after so you and I are going to read Anne of Green Gables. 
Then we're going to read Harry Potter. 
And Charlotte's Web.
And all of my favourites.

I wonder what your favourite books will be.

Some nights, waiting for your dad to get home, we decide we've watched too much tv and we dance to music instead. You seem content with whatever song I put on. Taylor Swift, Missy Elliot (a resurrected love post Super Bowl cameo), Alt-J, Lil Wayne, Robert Delong....
The first week you were home you used to get fussy in the evenings. One night your dad danced with you while the Single Ladies video was on. You stopped fussing and were transfixed. 
We think you're a Beyonce fan.
Today in the car while listening to the radio I wondered what your first concert will be. I hope we go together.

I wonder what your favourite songs will be.

I don't want you to grow up faster than you need to but little bug I can't wait to really meet you.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

5 Weeks Old / Essential New Parent Reading

Today, little bug, you are 5 weeks old.
Everyday you get closer and closer to smiling and giggling. I can't wait until I hear your first giggle. I think it will break my heart.
You seem to see more now. When you look at me and your dad we think you're really looking at us now. 
This has become my goal now, to make you laugh and smile. 
I think my quest to make you smile and laugh has dropped my IQ a bit. Case in point: I somehow decided that you needed a high society name. And that name is Lady Noodle-Wigglebottom. 
Your mom is a certifiable nut.

It's crazy to think that you're a month old already.
In that month you've already grown so much.

And I've cried so much. But thankfully good cries, not post-partum crying. I've been lucky.

In honour of some of my cries, here are a few of the causes as well as some funny reads to balance it out.


A Day at Home with a Newborn

They Should Have Warned Me

and a response to that about postpartum depression:

I'm Glad They Warned Me

When Love Feels Heavy 

And to MY mom, who passed along a love of reading, a respect for all people regardless of their beliefs, a knack for the silly things in life (I'm convinced she tries on clothes at Lulu Lemon just to give them a fake name to write on her changeroom door), and a desire to give my own daughter the same amount of unconditional love she gave to me - HAPPY BIRTHDAY MAMA BEAR!
I love you xo