Month One

9.10.2015

R is one month old today! I can't believe it went so fast, blah blah blah. BUT SERIOUSLY. And at the same time, it's like she was always here. I mean what did I used to take pictures of? Nothing quite as cute, that's for sure.

Nine months ago, this is exactly the sort of post I would have skipped over, but since finding out I was pregnant, I'm all over reading about what other people's babies are doing. So I wanted to share a little bit of we've been up to this past month.
When we brought R home from the hospital, my mom said, "So do you know what to do with her?" And I was all, "Duh, Mom. Yes I know what to do with her."

But actually, Mom, what do I do with her?

I literally texted one of my friends to ask her what babies sleep in. Do they sleep in nothing? Just a onesie? Wrapped in a blanket? Just kidding I know they sleep on their stomachs surrounded by bumpers and large stuffed animals.

That was a joke.
This past month has been a blur of feedings and dirty diapers (oh, the diapers) and sleeping in bursts. These days I'm very excited if I get three straight hours. I do try to nap when she naps, but sometimes when she's napping I want to act like a human and shower or make a hot lunch or even work on my scrapbook, so I don't always nap when she's napping (read: she's napping right now, and I'm writing this so take what you will from that).

It really is crazy, this parenting a newborn thing. I think the best and most comforting advice I've gotten so far came from my mom (who else?). She told me that R is a brand-new human and has to learn everything, so there's no possible way we can mess up this early. So just do what we think we should do and learn together! Brilliant.

There have been a few hard days. Like, really hard, where I wasn't sure how I could continue on. Not in a dramatic depression way but just in a "this is my life now and it's overwhelming" kind of way. Because having someone depend on you for literally everything all the time is tiring but kind of awesome too.

And it DOES get easier. People kept telling me that in the very early days, and it was extremely comforting. It's still not easy at all, but it's easier than it was before. Because every day we learn things about her, and that makes it easier to know what she needs. It makes it easier to know what to do with her, which we definitely did not know anything about when we brought her home.
With that said, here are some things we've learned about R this month: 

1. She has an uncanny sense of when she's just been changed and knows the precise moment when the fresh diaper is on to blow it out. She's pooped through a new diaper multiple times while still on the changing table. You're welcome, Pampers.

2. On a related note, we know that she sometimes has tummy problems and gets very, very upset while trying to fart, poop, or burp. The grunts she makes when trying to poop, you guys. Oh my gosh. We're more used to it now, but for the first few weeks, Jordan and I would take turns sprinting to the nursery because we were sure she was choking to death on my breast milk.

It should also be noted that when she's too quiet, we take turns sprinting to the nursery to poke her and make sure she's alive. Hashtag new parent problems. Just the other day Jordan was like, "We really need to stop being paranoid that she's died just because she's asleep and not moving." The struggle is real.

3. She doesn't really like taking naps. This girl fights sleep and likes to be held. She also loooves her pacifier and cries whenever it falls out of her mouth. We waited until three weeks on the dot and then stuffed that thing in her mouth so fast, nipple confusion or not.

She slept in the bassinet for the first week, and then at six days old we put her in her crib in the nursery, and that's where she sleeps. We don't have a baby monitor, but her room is right across the hall, and we keep both doors open and can hear her when she cries (or grunts, see: above).

4. She has an umbilical hernia, which basically means that when her umbilical cord fell off the muscles didn't grow together correctly and her belly button is a serious outie. I'm talking freaky looking. It's nothing serious and doesn't hurt her, but we do have to keep an eye on it, and my pediatrician referred us to a surgeon at the children's hospital downtown just to check it out because it looks like it's gotten larger over the last few weeks.

5. She hasn't been given a bottle yet because the thought of pumping and storing milk overwhelms me and I'm procrastinating. The first week home she didn't gain any of her birth weight back, and I spent all day crying about it. But when we went in for her checkup, she'd gained nearly 2 pounds! So I can rest easy now. Although I really should start pumping soon so I can build up a stash for when I go back to work.

6. R is still wearing newborn clothes and diapers, which is awesome because I feel like we're getting our use out of them, but some of them are starting to get a bit snug so we might be moving up soon to the 0-3 category.
7. Overall, R is a very sweet baby. We've had some seriously fussy days/nights, and tears have been shed by all. One night she was up from 2-5 am, and I got a total of 3 hours of sleep and it was truly as terrible as you imagine. But overall she's really quite lovely, and I spend a good chunk of time just staring at her. She smiles in her sleep, and it's the freaking cutest thing ever because LORD HELP ME THE DIMPLES. Amen.

So that's what's going on in our world. I have gotten out and about on my own a few times, which was really weird, and you better believe I did that annoying mom thing and started missing my baby after approximately 15 minutes of being away from her. But I can be away from her and the world won't end, so that's a good thing to discover.
When my mom told me that I would start feeling like my usual self around 3 weeks pp, I thought she was a loon. But of course she was right, and so my one-month advice to all you new moms or soon-to-be new moms are the comforting words I myself received from many a mom friend:

You will feel like yourself again soon. And you are doing a great job, and it will get easier.

On to month two!

24 comments:

  1. Aww! She's cute! And I enjoy reading these updates about Baby R. I don't have kids or anything but I enjoy reading about this new transition in your life! And again, kudos for making time to blog through it! Seriously impressed!

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  2. She is so adorable, Amanda! Love the photo of her and Jordan looking at each other!

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  3. I typed a comment while breastfeeding....and then it disappeared. #momlife Anyways, it basically said that this post was seriously one of my favorites you've ever written! I'm so glad to be able to read through your experiences and realize that I'm not alone and some of the crazy things P does are actually normal! Happy 1 month R!

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  4. Email me if you want to talk about pumping/prepping for work. What I will tell you here is that you don't have to have a stash in preparation for work. You literally have to have one day's worth of milk holed up in the freezer for the first day you are back at work, and from then on you'll pump that day what she needs for the next day and Friday's pumped amount will work for Monday. Its a beautiful system and so in the meantime, nurse her as much as you can and as much as she wants and enjoy that time together - pump a few times in the couple weeks leading up to starting work, or maybe once a day if you want to start her practicing with a bottle a little bit (I can give you some tips about that too) but basically I want you not to stress about having a stash of hoarded frozen milk. You'll be OK with 9-12 oz stored the day you start work and you have plenty of time to get it (literally, you could pump the week before you started work one time per day for a few days and you'd get that much). Enjoy life without the pump now, because pump life stinks and you'll be sick of it soon enough. :) R is adorable, and I am so happy for you, lady. You are going to be a great mom! (if you want to talk nursing/pumping stuff: tiffandcurby at gmail)

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    1. Yes. Yes. Yes. I only did it for 5 weeks, but I'm also happy to share what worked for us. It can be stressful, but doesn't need to be!!!

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  5. That's really good advice for your Mom and friend! It's true too, from what I hear. Keep writing these posts- I'm obsessed with reading as much as possible and it calms me down! LOL

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  6. I hope you keep writing posts like this! She is absolutely adorable! I definitely asked my mom what babies sleep in at first. Haha I knew about the dangers of blankets, etc but the actual pjs and swaddlers and short sleeve vs. long sleeve thing was not obvious to me. Also I completely agree with the comment above... pump life stinks. Hold off as long as you can and just enjoy nursing! (I am actually typing this while pumping.) I stay home, but I am a bit of a milk hoarder since I really like to get out of the house on my own whenever the opportunity arises. Especially in the early weeks, I think the whole pumping and storing thing can add unnecessary stress, so you have been wise to wait - just my two cents. Sounds like you are a doing a great job!

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  7. Not only does it get easier, but it keeps getting better too since by the end of the second month, she'll almost surely start smiling and interacting with you a bit (which will just about melt your heart).

    And yay for posting adorable pictures of your beautiful baby! Love them :)

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  8. So many gorgeous pictures! I also can't believe it's been a month already, and I'm not even you. :)

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  9. Cutest pictures ever! And I already know we will be paranoid parents. How do I know? I probably already told you the story about the 6 year old boy who lived with us for a couple weeks and how I woke up 3 times a night like clockwork to go and listen to him breathing and make sure he was fine...and he was 6!!! Also, when we had outdoor cats, Angel used to randomly wake up to go check on the cats outside in the middle of the night. Plus, he knows/researches every medical scenario possible medical scenario (my leg was hurting the other night and he was like, "Well, it could be a blood clot."). We're a mess.

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  10. Awww! This is awesome, and such cute pictures! Your mom sounds super reassuring and I'm totally bookmarking this to reread some day in the future.

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  11. Sounds like you guys are doing a great job!

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  12. she is so cute! Love all the pictures!!! So thankful you have your mom and friends to help you through!!! You are doing great momma!!!

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  13. Great update!! R is soooo adorable. You are rocking the mom gig. And I'll totally come back to read through the advice (it gets easier, she's learning everything so I can't screw up too much at this stage, and I'll feel like myself again after around a month) when I'm freaking out in November. :)

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  14. she is truly stunning. <3
    and y'all are learning so much and growing closer!

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  15. So now that Michael and I have a dog... we're basically in the same boat, right? ;) ;) ;)

    But seriously. She's precious - weird belly button and all.

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  16. Keep the baby pics coming! R is such a smash between both her parents--how fun is that? Oh, and enjoy every moment, even the diaper explosions (ha) because about a week from now she will be getting on the school bus for her first day of kindergarten.

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  17. Happy One Month to the whole family!!! She. Is. So. Cute.

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  18. She's so precious. I'm bizarre and love these updates. Maybe I'm mentally preparing for the future?

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  19. I loved reading this! I have lots of experience with babies thanks to the time I've spent nannying, but I've never kept a baby on my own that was less than 6 weeks old. So I love hearing the ins and outs of the early weeks! And I love hearing that you are learning more every about her. And it sounds like your mom is giving rockstar advice! :)

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  20. She is looking so precious. Glad each day is getting easier.

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  21. Happy 1 Month to that little cutie!! :) I had to LOL at the "Of course we know what do with her" conversation with you and your mom- I totally see that being my mom and I. And I have zero clue what to do with a teeny baby ;) But you are doing awesome and R is so precious!!

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  22. She is so precious. I love that shot of her toes in front of your window! My second baby only wanted to be held for naps too... Until she was almost 7 months old! But I always reminded myself that they don't stay babies forever, time flies! Excited to see more of her monthly updates :)

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