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Finally

I guess it pays to be patient, because finally, after 8 long weeks of trial and error, breastfeeding blues, and sleepless nights, Baby Loquacious and we are starting to get into a routine.  Now we know what almost all of her cries mean (although she doesn't really cry very much anymore), how to mitigate situations where she might hit that "Hangry" mode of hunger, and when to give her time to play and be stimulated versus calmed and rocked to sleep.  By no means are we experts in the matter but we are definitely improving in our ability to read her cues, resulting in a generally contented, growing little girl who is hitting her milestones on schedule (if not early).

But that's not to say it was easy.  In fact, I'm a bit bitter that so many experienced moms have glossed over the truly ugly and/or difficult first weeks of parenthood, allowing me to think that I was somehow inferior as a mom for having had such a hard time adjusting.  Nobody mentioned the fact that latching would be difficult and breastfeeding positioning would be awkward, and milk production might not come naturally for me.  I didn't get the memo about how Hubbs and I would bicker at 3:00 am in the morning when we were both bleary-eyed with fatigue and staring down a crying infant who had already been fed, changed, and burped.  There was no warning about the fact that finding time to shower and pee would be difficult (if not downright impossible on some days), and doctors' appointments would suck up a lot of time in the first few weeks, and meals would often consist of prepackaged frozen entrees or unacceptably frequent trips through the fast food drive-throughs.  Despite everyone's advice to sleep when my baby slept, nobody told me about how I would still need to do laundry sometimes, or wash the dishes and sterilize the bottles, or Swiffer the dust bunnies out of the corners of my home, thereby sucking away at that precious sleeping time I was supposed to have.  And finally, did anyone mention the fact that breastfeeding might feel like a chore and not a pleasant bonding experience between mother and babe? No.   

That was then, however.  This is now, and now things are starting to look like sunshine emerging from behind gray cloudy skies.  Baby L is an expert latcher and though I'm still needing to supplement and pump, my milk supply *is* increasing (thank you God!).  The time spent with my little girl on my breast is growing on me, and I've come to really look forward to bonding with her through nursing.  Despite still having to wake up at abysmal hours of the night, we are figuring out ways to get some sleep, and are also finding time during the day to practice good personal hygiene.  The chores are still an issue, but now we can at least rationally make some decisions to prioritize some things over others (e.g. sterile bottles > clean laundry > clean floor).

Best of all, Baby L smiles now, and at us, no less! And that, above everything else, makes those first miserable weeks worth every horrid minute.

Her goofy smile...LOVE IT.



Comments

Jel said…
I'm still in the 'struggle with latching' stage at 3 weeks - i'm glad to see you've found a way out of the dark, gives me hope! Thankfully Ethan's witching hour is in the evening rather than 3am.

I've named our dust bunnies :) They help scare away the spiders!

Such a cute picture of your little one smiling! Am looking forward to that from our bub.
Amen! You said it all so perfectly. We are living in parallel. It's true, that smile does wash away all the pain!
Sharon said…
Yay! I'm happy for you guys :) There had to be a redeeming quality at some point, right? haha always hopeful...!

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