I can't believe that it's been over a week since I wrote a journal entry. In some ways, the days fly by, and in other ways, they seem to go so slowly. I think being up all hours of the night has caused me to kind of lose track of where one day ends and another begins :)
Anyway, I want to take the time to record some of the things that Caleb has accomplished in his short little life. (I got these "milestones" from the book What to Expect the First Year.)
Caleb was able to hold his head up at just a couple of days old. At almost two-weeks-old, he was able to bear his body weight on his legs. He could even stand unassisted for a few seconds before toppling over :) (His physical strength has quite impressed his Grandmama, who has spent time with many more newborns than we have.)
At two weeks old, Caleb focused on my face/eyes for 3-5 seconds. Somewhere between his second and third week, he found his hand and began sucking on it whenever he was hungry. (Very nice heads up for me :) Around three weeks old, I noticed that he was lifting his head almost 45 degrees while laying on his stomach. (He hates tummy time, but we do it at least ten minutes every day.)
At three weeks and four days old, Caleb blessed his mommy with his first social smile. He was fussing, and I started singing to him. He looked right at my face and his frustrated little expression transformed into a wide, toothless, incredibly adorable grin. Since then, he has several smiley periods every day, though Daddy hasn't had the opportunity to be in on one yet
Around four weeks old, Caleb started cooing (making happy non-crying noises). He'll be one month old on Sunday, and I'm sure the coming days will bring even more baby wonders than we've seen so far :)
Thursday, April 13, 2006
When we could only give Caleb sponge baths, he would scream all the way through his bath. Even now, he hates being naked for more than a minute, and he really hated being wet and naked. But when he turned two-weeks-old and his cord fell off, we were able to start giving him "big-boy" baths, and his attitude completely changed. He loves being submerged in the warm water and having mommy and daddy's hands all over him. Of course, we still have to get through the fussing when we take him out of the warm water and dry him off, because he does NOT like that transitional naked phase, but bath time has definitely become much more enjoyable this week :)
Wednesday, April 12, 2006
Caleb is growing so quickly! He was done wearing his three little preemie outfits at one-week-old. He's been wearing newborn clothes since then, and he can fit into a couple of his 0-3 month outfits (like the Ralph Lauren onesies Aunt Jennifer gave him :). Today was his last day of wearing newborn diapers. He has officially graduated to Pampers Swaddlers #1. (I am now officially a Pampers mommy; the Huggies diapers have leaked four or five times, and the Pampers not once.) It won't be long until we have to put all his cute little newborn outfits into the "retired" bin as well. I'm beginning to understand why all the mommies who see him say, "I'd forgotten how small they were!"
Tuesday, April 11, 2006
Today Caleb and I had our first meeting with the New Mommies' Group that is coordinated by the hospital where Caleb was born. The facilitator is a lactation consultant, who also happens to be a very warm, personable individual who knows a LOT about new mommies and new babies. I really enjoyed the meeting. Caleb is a little young to enjoy socializing, but he definitely charmed everyone there. He was the youngest, with the next up being a six-week-old girl, and everyone was impressed with his big blue eyes, adorably-shaped little head, and all-around alertness. There were about fifteen mommies and fifteen babies ranging up to almost a year old. (Babies "graduate" from the group when they turn a year old.) Each week, Teresa (the facilitator), talks about a baby topic relevant to the season or to a specific problem brought up by one of the moms. Next week, since summer is fast-approaching, we'll be talking about sun protection and learning how to preserve our babies' skin. Teresa also spends time asking each mommy in the group how her baby has been doing this week, and everyone gets a chance to share and be responded to by the others. Since this week was my first week, I was able to share about our efforts to conceive, my pregnancy and delivery, and the difficulties with breastfeeding so far. Everyone was very interested and supportive. I can already tell this Tuesday afternoon group is going to be a blessing for Caleb and I.
Monday, April 10, 2006
It seems that I am being required to pay for my painless labor with an unbelievably frustrating breastfeeding experience. In my breastfeeding book (A New Mother's Guide to Breastfeeding, published by the American Academy of Pediatrics), there is a section entitled "Problems and Solutions". There are five major problems discussed in this book that are sometimes encountered during the course of breastfeeding: cracked nipples, clogged milk ducts, baby's refusal to feed, mastitis, and thrush. Caleb is only three weeks old, and I have already experienced all of them! The worst of them was mastitis, which included three MISERABLE days of high fever (102), hot flashes, violent chills, headache, foggy brain and horrible pain in my left breast. I've been on antiobiotics for four days now, and this is the first day that I've really felt good. I had a clogged milk duct a couple of weeks ago, and managed to work it out with hot compresses and massage, but it was still painful. I mentioned his refusal to eat my onion-ring-flavored milk in the "Baby Drama" journal entry, and talked about the first problem in the other "Breastfeeding" entry. Now, the current issue is thrush. Caleb doesn't have it (yet!) and it seems to be resolving on me, so maybe the breastfeeding drama is coming to a close. Either way, I'm very glad that I'm still feeling very committed to breastfeeding, because I seem to have been given every reason to give up!
Monday, April 3, 2006
I've been reluctant to write about how well Caleb is sleeping because I'm afraid to jinx it, but now that he's 11 days old, I can't resist the urge to brag on him any longer :) For the past week, he has been sleeping a 3-4 hour stretch beginning around 10:00 pm and then going right back to sleep after nursing for another 2-3 hours. Other than getting up for an hour to feed him, I'm getting a fairly normal night's sleep! (Of course, now that I've advertised this on Caleb's website, he will now certainly begin waking up hungry every hour.) Anyway, he is such a sweet little boy and so good-natured 95% of the time, I can hardly believe that he already has his days and nights straightened out at such a young age.
Saturday, April 1, 2006
Its amazing how many things there are to worry about! When we first brought Caleb home from the hospital, we were all concerned because he didn't poop for several days. After that drama ended with a very full dirty diaper at 6:00 am on Sunday morning, a new one emerged: Caleb didn't like the taste of onion rings in my breast milk, so he spent two feedings (one in the middle of the night) screaming and refusing to eat. I think I might be scarred for life by watching him refuse my milk over and over, and I have been subsisting on a diet of Cheerios and Chick-Fil-A ever since. Today's drama is that Marcus is sick (sore throat and headache) and Caleb is fussy, hot and clammy. Babies under a month old are automatically hospitalized and subjected to a spinal tap if they get a high fever, so we are sitting on pins and needles hoping his temperature doesn't rise. Anyway, all that to say it is truly amazing to me how drastically the ups and downs of my day are wrapped up in the health and comfort of one little 8-lb bundle of exquisitely adorable life.