Wednesday, September 28

Life with our newborn

This is the first baby I've had with kids in school. Boy does that change the pace of our days! As I looked at these pictures again, I was overwhelmed with the peacefulness of those first moments I had with him. I was so curious who this new little man in my life was and hoping my efforts to be his mother would be enough. I miss that peace most moments of my day.

Quiet moments like these are what I dreamt of as a young girl holding my younger siblings as babies. They liked me but I wasn't quite mom to them. I absolutely love these moments I get holding my babies. The intoxicating new baby smell. My newborn nestled against me completely passed out in a milk coma. Ahhh, it's heavenly!

Jake's schedule is pretty predictable -- sleep, eat, baby bjorn time -- no matter where we are (home, practice, errands, church, the park). I've got a lot to get done each day and not enough time, so after feeding Jake, we get some face time where I make all sorts of faces and talk baby babble to coax smiles from him. HURRAY! I work hard for these first smiles because it's so affirming in my sleep-deprived, busy day! It's like the daily thank you I get for all my efforts and lately I crave it!

So after Operation Smile, it's into the Baby Bjorn so I can do chores until he zonks out and I can put him in bed. It's quite hilarious to see his eyes start to roll back in his head while carried around trying to hold his heavy noggin up!

Easton's gotten really good at holding and pacifying Jake in my times of need. On Sunday mornings, Ryan has early meetings before church so I have to get me and the four kids out the door by 8:30. It's been rare that I have both my hair AND makeup done on the same Sunday since I almost always did my makeup while Ryan would drive us to church. This last Sunday, however, Easton held Jake those last crazy fifteen minutes of getting ready and got Jake to pass out. I was so happy and proud of him I told him he was my lifesaver. He sure liked that! My makeup still didn't happen, but I'm getting used to it.

Ryan's still trying to sneak in time with Jake in the evenings. It's not easy when the other three kiddos are dying for his undivided attention and I want help. I'll often ask Ryan if he'd rather hold Jake or do dishes after dinner. He picks Jake every time but Jake's ready for his walkin' time after being fed which means Ryan doesn't get to just sit and hold him. At some point he's gotta be up walking or Jake's hollering. Ryan's picking up on this and often circles by the kitchen to check my progress. Subtle hint? Not necessarily Ryan's ideal bonding experience after a long day at work.

My payoff the last few evenings was that Jake hasn't needed me to walk him after his feeding, but has zonked out snuggled up under my chin held close. Oh how I love that soft fuzzy head of his and the smell. Oh that smell! But the tradeoff is that the dishes haven't gotten done and therefore slapped me in the face in the morning. There's hardly anything as defeating to wake up to as a dirty kitchen. Why'd my mom have to go home?! WAAAAAH!

Last week I had a stroke of genius for my sanity -- introducing the bottle on evenings when I need to clone myself. Perhaps that seems like a no-brainer, but to invest so much time in getting nursing established and believing mom's milk is best, it's a big deal to me.

Now Ryan or Easton can feed Jake either his meal or top off his tank while I attend to making dinner, cleaning up dinner, or supervising homework, baths, teethbrushing or whatnot. Ahh, it's done me a world of good! My ego isn't too puffed up cuz my genius-ness is very fleeting. A certain 5 yr old who colored all over his bedroom wood floor and his almost 3-yr-old sister keep me humble hour by hour!