Written Thursday, Oct. 10, 2013
(Anna left, Elise right)
Happy 2-month birthday to our little ladies! I will probably say this every month, like the typical new mom, but where has the time gone?
Anna and Elise continued to make this parenting thing pretty easy on us. This month, they graced us with many, many smiles. This month, especially the last week or so, I graced us (and my trusty advisers) with many, many questions and concerns about whether we’re doing things right in regard to sleep and playtime.
Likes: Being held and rocked; kisses from Dexter; grabbing or holding onto things, such as the pile of cloth diapers in the Pack N Play, the seam of my nursing bra or a finger; messing with each other.
Dislikes: Being hungry; riding in the car or riding in the stroller too close to mealtime; tummy time.
Weights: Anna is 7 lbs, 1 oz, while Elise is 6 lbs, 14 oz. Both are up nearly a pound and a half since last month.
Lengths: Anna is 20.5 inches long, while Elise is 20 inches long.
Milestones: Both girls were really, truly smiling by 7 weeks old.
(Elise left, Anna right)
Eating: A combination of breast milk and formula—about 75-80 percent breast milk and 20-25 percent formula, mostly at night, to help them stay full and sleep longer and more soundly.
Wearing: Newborn-sized clothing, folded cloth diapers during the day and size 0 all-in-one snap-up fleece diapers at night.
Nicknames: Anna Banana, Elisey Bean, Peanut, Peanut Butter, Peanut Pants, Pumpkin, Pumpkin Pie, Pumpkin Pants—or some combination thereof.
And now, here’s what’s on my mommy mind, inspired by Kristin from Iowa Girl Eats:
- When I was pregnant, I wondered what kind of mother I would be, and I stressed out about my abilities to care for not one, but two tiny humans. I didn’t know a thing about babies! Would I feed them enough? Would I dress them appropriately? How would I tell the difference between a hungry cry and a sleepy wail? It turns out, you just know—or you and your super supportive husband just figure it out and fall into your new roles as parents. That doesn’t mean I still don’t have a hundred and one questions or doubt my abilities or worry whether things are normal or being done the right way. (It turns out, too, that there really is no right or wrong way and most everything is “normal.”)
- So, we don’t really have a routine—at least it doesn’t seem like it. We follow the girls’ cues, so they are eating between every 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 hours (and sometimes a bit longer through the night), then awake for a bit, then, hopefully, asleep again. Feedings take about an hour. First, I breastfeed. (I try to breastfeed them both at the same time as often as possible so as to keep them on the same schedule and to be efficient.) Then, if they are still hungry, or we need them to be chill for a while (say, to run errands or go to the doctor), we give them supplemental bottles of formula or a mix of formula and pumped breast milk. Last, we burp and, if necessary, change them. Playtime is not a thing around here. We interact with the girls, but they don’t play with toys or lay on an activity mat or look in a mirror. More often than not, they are drowsy after being at it for an hour or more, so we try to put them down. Naptime usually goes pretty well (although some days, especially lately, are worse than others).
- I wonder when the girls will start to sleep longer through the night. A few rare nights they have only woken up once or twice, but most nights they are up, like clockwork, every 3 to 3 1/2 hours, which is rough on Christopher, who gets home around midnight (later on Fridays) and needs to sleep. Should we be doing something different? Should we institute a real bedtime? How do you merge feeding on demand with that? Are we doing middle-of-the-night feedings correctly?
- I wonder, also, how to play with the girls. Lately, if they are in a good mood, I’ve taken to grabbing their hands and “dancing” or talking silly with them, and they’ve reacted with lots of big smiles. The last day or two, Christopher has started to play baby-friendly music. (Elizabeth Mitchell is awesome—cute, simple songs done with her beautiful voice and a guitar.) My friend Amy gave me some simple suggestions, and I’m going to try to implement them more often.
- If you don’t know me well, then you might not know that I have an incredible lack of patience. Having
a babybabies has really forced me to lighten up. Babies can’t be reasoned with; if they want to cry, they’re going to cry. Babies can’t be rushed, either; if they want to dink around while they eat, either at the boobie buffet or with the bottle, then they will. You just have to relax and let it ride. Some things still bother me, like when I can’t get the girls to nap or at least chill in their swings so I can make dinner; or when Anna pukes up what seems like her entire meal, soiling my clothes, her clothes and everything in her path; or when Elise gets so red in the face and freaks out crying and shooting milk out of her nose, ending any possibility of her going back to sleep without being held. *sigh*
- How in the hell do moms wear the Moby wrap with success? It sounds silly, but I am not kidding. I spent $50 on this humungous strip of fabric that is supposed to help me get stuff done while holding and soothing my baby…and I can barely get the thing on! I’ve done it once with success, but I’ve not been able to do it again. And I’m terrified to try it while I’m home alone. Any tips?
That’s a wrap! Two months, two precious little girls, two proud parents. Happy 2 months, girlies!