How in the world is our daughter already one month old?
Just this morning I was thinking back to the day we found out we were expecting her. That morning when I woke up and just knew that I was pregnant. It’s amazing to me how she went from just a hope in our hearts, to an eight letter word on a stick, to the gorgeous little girl sleeping in the bassinet beside me right now. It has all gone by so fast.
How can I sum up Kate’s first month? It is nearly impossible for me to capture it all and put into words, but I will try to share with you some bits and pieces of our lives over this past month–starting with something I wrote when Kate was one week old:
I’m amazed with how much I already know about our daughter. Things like she loves to bounce, likes being wrapped up in a blanket, prefers being burped sitting up on our laps versus laying on our shoulder, and she loves to snuggle and have skin-to-skin contact on my chest. Her absolute favorite thing to do right now is suck on Daddy’s pinkie finger, and if she doesn’t turn out to be right-handed I’ll be really surprised. She’s amazed by both of her hands, but she definitely favors the right. And just like when she was in utero, she loves keeping her hands up by her face.
When Kate was two weeks old I wrote the following:
I cry every day.
I’ve heard that’s normal, so I was expecting it.
What comes as surprise, however, is that my tears are not tears of frustration, helplessness, or tiredness as I was expecting. They are tears of joy and wonder and pride. What did I ever do to deserve this beautiful baby? How in the world did we get so lucky? I hold her in my arms and stare at her beautiful strawberry blond head and the tears roll freely down my cheeks.
That pretty much sums up how it has felt over this past month to be Kate’s mom. Every day has been a joy–even the tough ones.
Kate was two weeks old before we had our first solo outing and it went really well! We both had our two-week follow up doctor appointments, with more than an hour to kill between appointments, so we went to Panera Bread for lunch. I had the Caesar salad and Kate had the undivided attention of half the people in the restaurant. We have since had several more solo outings and she’s done great! She doesn’t mind being in her car seat, does pretty good in the car, and really likes her stroller. So far I’ve taken her to Target, Gap, Baby Gap, and Starbucks–you know, all the important places.
Kate has taken an interest in a few things toward the latter part of this month. She loves her bouncy chair and the little mobile of woodland animals attached to it (we call them her friends), and she’s a huge fan of her Tiny Love activity mat. Her favorite things on her activity mat right now is a large elephant ear that crinkles when she moves it (she’ll kick her feet like crazy to get it to make the crinkle sound–here’s a video of her doing it at 3 weeks old), and the little baby mirror in the corner (apparently she’s inherited her mother’s vanity).
Kate is currently on about a 3 hour cycle throughout the day and night. She eats after she wakes up, then she gets her diaper changed, then we have activity time until she gives us signs that she’s sleepy, then we put her down for her nap, and when she wakes up (usually around 3 hours from her last feeding) we do it all over again. Right now Kate only lasts about 45 minutes to an hour for her awake time (and that includes her feeding) before she’s ready to go down for some sleep. The exception to this is at night when she wakes up, eats, and goes right back down to bed. She is really such a good baby!
I think our biggest challenge over this past month has been burping Kate. She gets fussy when she has that extra air in her tummy, yet it’s so hard to help her work it out! G put it best when he said, “Getting a burp out of Kate is like getting a blackjack in Vegas.”
Our other little nemesis is the hiccups which Kate gets ALL THE TIME! We’re told they don’t bother her, but they get so strong sometimes that it’s really hard to believe they don’t. We’re looking forward to when her little system gets more mature and we can say goodbye to those darned things.
As for me, I’m currently averaging every other day for a shower (which isn’t so bad until you factor in that I’m currently averaging every three hours for being spit up on), our house is a disaster, we’re pretty much living out of laundry baskets, I still have some pain from my c-section, it’s a miracle if I get to eat my breakfast before noon, I’m tired ALL THE TIME…and I’ve never been happier. I don’t think I’ve shared this before, but G was ready to start a family long before I was. I was the hold-out, and he patiently waited for me to be ready. Now that Kate is here I’ve been asked, “Don’t you wish you had started sooner?” As happy as I am, and as wonderful as it feels to be a mom, my answer is still no. I know I would have been a much different mother even just a few short years ago than I am today. Spit-up on the couch would have sent my blood pressure through the roof. I would have been more focused on looking forward to my next “me time” versus looking forward to the next time our daughter wakes up and I get to have her back in my arms. I’m so incredibly blessed to say that right now–in this very moment–I feel like I’m doing exactly what I was meant to be doing.
There are just some things no amount of sleep can compete with.
Additional Posts about Kate’s First Four Weeks:
Labor & Delivery
Kate’s First Photo Shoot
Kate’s Nursery: Part 1
Kate’s Nursery: Part 2
Things Loved in January
More Kate Photos
Maybe I’m a Masochist?