Saturday, July 19, 2008

life at home

lb's milk came in the night before last, and if bebe was a mellow baby to begin with, she's on a whole 'nother level now. on the colostrum, she would eat and then proceed to fuss a little and eventually chill out, but only with some coercing. post-milk, we can't keep her awake long enough to burp her. she eats, falls off the boob, and sleeps for about three hours. she'd sleep longer than that but she's not supposed to go longer than three hours between feedings so we often have to wake her up. just so she can eat and go back to sleep. it's a cruel world she was born into.

these first couple of days have not been nearly as bad as i expected. i imagined us as zombies, stumbling around at the baby's beck and call, sleeping sporadically- twenty minutes here, thirty minutes there- but that hasn't been the case. the first full night we were home was a little dicey. i remember being up from about two-thirty to five, when lb asked me to take her for a while. we watched a movie, some sportscenter, saw the sky begin to lighten... and then mommy was back for another feeding. i hadn't fallen asleep until after midnight, and was awake every time she cried, so that was a tough night. but by the second night, i got a solid six hours of sleep and felt pretty good the next morning. this is important because if i was sleeping at night, it meant that lb was not. and since i couldn't do what she was doing(but dammit, couldn't i try? would my breasts always be but barren, empty taps, producing nothing but small tufts of hair which bebe would gum and attempt to tear out? alas, so it seems), which meant that all of the chores fell on me, and i gladly did them and considered them my contribution to this whole 'baby' thing.

i wasn't only relegated to meals and taking out the trash though. i've had some experience with changings, and as my mom said at the hospital "joshua always could change a mean diaper." it would seem i have not lost my touch. i'm also an excellent burp-inducer, though lb is catching up fast in that dept.

i think that the reason things aren't as hard as i expected them to be is because of the way my wife and i handle them. there are no expectations, no agendas, no hurt feelings... we move as one parental unit with bebe's best interests in mind. and we also communicate. regularly, even. it sounds like a given, but when you can outline what your idea of the next half-hour looks like, and then proceed to negotiate, things run so much more smoothly. and if the person you're working with is a fair and decent person(which she is), then everybody gets a turn on the pony, bebe included.

will it get harder, of course. but it will also get easier. in the immortal words of Twin Peak's Special Agent Dale Cooper- "Everyday, once a day, give yourself a present. Don't plan it out, just let it happen..."

and if that present just happens to be your four-day-old daughter making gurgling noises at you while trying to pull your nose off?

talk about the gift the keeps on giving...

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