Sunday, August 22, 2010

Still here, still busy, still in awe

Apologies-- I haven't updated in a while. I think about it, and then get caught up in stuff. I got a funny, dear, alert, cuddly, wonderful daughter in the baby lottery, but I did not get a baby that naps. She sleeps well at night (mostly), which is a blessing, but by the time she goes to sleep at night the last thing I think of is updating a blog-- I have to do the ten thousand things I can't get done during the day before I fall into bed!

Baby carriers, FYI, are great inventions. I can do a fair bit of stuff with her snuggled against my chest. She generally falls asleep-- until I try to take her out of the carrier. And then-- WOE! I CANNOT SLEEP IN MY CRIB! WHY MUST YOU MAKE ME?

Or something along those lines. (And she's fine in her crib at night, fortunately.)

Elle is seven weeks old this coming week, and it's hard to believe it's only been seven weeks because so much has changed. Sometimes I look at her and it still feels like I'm on the world's longest babysitting assignment-- like at any moment life will go back to what it was, and this little girl will go back go someone more worthy to be her mom than me. But life will never be the same again, and that's as it should be.

I had a friend over yesterday who ended up hanging out for most of the day, much as we would have BB (Before Baby). And it was so nice to hang out with Elle and my friend, and to see the way my daughter has not just changed my life, but also how well she fits into it, and how she is making her own place in the world. People that matter to me are going to matter to her, and she'll have her own relationships with them. And my horizons will expand, too. They already have.

Speaking of Elle, I believe she's finally getting up; I should go get her so that we can maybe make it to church today. We had a late night last night, so it's good she slept in a bit. Sweet, snuggly babies who don't nap need a good night's sleep!

Thursday, August 5, 2010


A friend just visited-- another single mom. Her daughter is just over two years old, and a very busy bundle of curls and curiosity. It was good to catch up with her, and she got in her baby-holding quota. (No one wants to put a sleeping baby in their crib except their parent! Everyone else wants to hold them. It's hilarious.)

She asked me a question that's gotten me thinking: how is being a parent different than I expected?

I tend to be fairly verbal, but I didn't have a quick answer for this. My reply, eventually, was that right now it's pretty much what I thought it would be. I always expected the first six weeks or so to be fairly overwhelming full-time infant care. I expected to enjoy it, mostly. I expected to love kissing my daughter's head, or to get a kick out of giving her a bath. I expected to feel a little cut off from reality. I expected all of this, and it came true.

I guess what I didn't expect was that I'd find tiny little things absolutely fascinating and endearing-- how her eyebrows raise in surprise when she finds a food source, how her hands constantly move around like little butterfly wings, how she is not fond of loud noises or direct sunlight. These are not particularly revolutionary things, yet I note and remember them as if they're the most important facts ever. They are, in a way.

I also didn't believe how enormous this experience would be. You know intellectually that everything changes when you become a parent; it's different when it's no longer an intellectual exercise.

It's entirely, overwhelmingly different.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Maintenance and quick update

Alert readers may note I've added a tag: "Elle." That is not my daughter's name, FYI, but it's what I'll call her here, and how I'll tag posts involving her. And alert readers who know me in RL may figure out why I chose that as her online name. :)

Miss Elle is napping at the moment; I'm going to go wake her up as soon as I hit post. It's after 6:30, after all, and if she sleeps much longer it will be a loooong night. And while she's had some catnaps today, her mother has not, and will need whatever sleep she (I) can get.

She's such a joy-- today was, largely, a very smile-y day for her. She's still not smiling at me, really, but when you look at a little month-old smiling face it doesn't really matter that she has gas. It's just a total delight to see her smile. On a face that tiny, the smile takes up most of the real estate, and I just want to kiss her little cheeks.

Of course, when she's not smiling, she's struggling with gas. Poor baby girl. You spend a lot of time worried about bodily functions with kids, I've realized, and watching her turn bright red in order to burp just breaks my heart. Her pediatrician visit is next week and while I'm fairly sure this is normal and not reflux, I'm going to make sure I talk with the ped about it to see if it is reflux, or if there's anything we can do to help. (I'm already feeding her while she's upright, burping her frequently and feeding smaller quantities at one time, keeping her upright after feedings-- all the stuff the intarwebs tell you to do.)

Tiny smiling babies shouldn't have to be in pain. I'm just sayin'.