Hello, old friend!
I miss blogging, I really do. It’s pretty challenging to find the time (and the free hands) to sit at my laptop these days. And blogging on my iphone is frustrating to say the least. But here I am today, with two free hands and probably another 20 free minutes to spare to fill you in on what life is like for us these days. I’ll preface this schedule with: some things get easier, but other things get harder. And those things will probably continue to change every week! Also, this is a typical day where we don’t have a morning or afternoon “outing”— which we typically partake in 3x during the work week.
Wake up: 5:45-6am
Just like mommy, Max is an early bird. He literally starts chirping at me right before Melbs’ alarm goes off which gives us a nice few minutes of peace together, where we nurse silently and greet the day by (dare I say) gazing into each other’s eyes.
For the first 5 weeks we exclusively co-slept with the baby in our bed. But this week we are transitioning Max back into his Rock N’ Play which is situated near our bed. So far, it’s been working for his first and second waking… but typically not the third. He can’t fall deep enough asleep during his last sleep cycle to be deposited outside of my arms. I don’t mind. :)
Coffee in bed with Daddy (Melbs) while we play with Max. He coos and smiles at us for 60-90 minutes. Its really his best effort of the day and I’m so glad Melbs gets to enjoy this time with him. He typically doesn’t start pooping until he’s been awake for a while, so sometime during this fun time, Dad gets to change a solid diaper. Max nurses again around 8-9 and usually falls back asleep for an hour. I check email and social media on my phone, and Melbs leaves for work.
If I’m lucky, I’ll sneak in a shower while Max wraps up his morning nap. If I’m not, I’ll rush around the house and pick-up the mess from the day before. I never know if I’m going to get another chance to tidy… and if I’m going to be home all day, things MUST BE NEAT. Yep, I’m like that.
Max will wake up and I’ll change his diaper and put him in his crib for about 15 minutes while he “wakes up”. He LOVES staring at his mobile. And lately I’ve been putting a soft rattle near his arms or legs. He smiles and talks away while I finish up my chores and make myself lunch. Again, I don’t know if I’ll have another opportunity to feed myself, so I whip up a protein salad or something easy ahead of time so that it’s ready to go when the time comes.
Every other day during this time, Max gets a bath, which he absolutely LOVES. He has a little mesh seat that sits upright in our tub and after he’s all scrubbed clean, I scoop him into my arms on his back and let him float-free in the water (while I’m still holding his head and shoulders up). He goes into a trance! The only downside to the bath is taking him out of it. :( He screams the most ear-piercing cry you’ve ever heard (and his normal cry is pretty low/husky, so this is jarring). I thought it was the temperature change at first, but now I think it’s ripping him out of that trance-enducing swim. We’ll work on it.
After he’s all clean and dry, we pick out an outfit for the day…then feed him his “lunch”.
Baby-wearing time. This kid needs constantly stimulation and movement. Aside from the couple times a day I can lay him in his crib to stare at the mobile, tummy-time, and active playing… if Max is awake, HE NEEDS TO BE MOVING. You can not put him down. So, I have a Moby wrap, a Sakura Bloom ring-sling, and a sturdy Baby Bjorn at the ready. Depending on our activity level for the afternoon, I’ll put one of these on and wear Max while I go about my business. He will stay awake for almost 45 minutes then fall asleep for an hour or two. While he is awake, we go for walks.
After he falls asleep I cannot remove him from my body or he’ll wake up VERY UPSET. So what do we do? If I’m pooped from the walk, I’ll watch TV. If I’m not, I work out! I lift weights, I do squats, pelvic tilts, etc. The extra 10lb of baby is pretty useful and I take full advantage. I also use this time to do laundry, dishes, take out the trash, prep dinner… typical housewife fluff. Gotta keep busy. If anyone tells me I should be napping with the baby, I’m sorry but it’s in one ear and out the other. This girl does not nap.
During this nap, I will also pump. Yes, while he is strapped to my body! I have to build up a reserve of breast milk for babysitters and for bottle feedings, and I’m trying to train my body to produce a full feeding at this time (rather than just pumping the residual milk after each feeding).
When Max wakes up, I feed him. We repeat out play cycle. We usually watch the mobile together for 10-15 minutes, then come back out the living room and do tummy time on the play mat. He LOVES to stand, so I just hold his hands and let him stand for as long as he wants (sometimes 20 minutes). All the while, I am talking to him or reading aloud.
Melbs comes home while we’re actively playing— usually bouncing on an exercise ball by this point. When he becomes bored of playing and is starting to get tired, the ball is the only thing that will pacify him. He won’t stand for being rocked or walked around… just the ball! And he wants to be up-right all the time so that he can see what’s going on. I’ll typically feed him again to get him to go to sleep since this is his “witching hour”… sometimes he will fall asleep. Sometimes not. If not, then more bouncing on the ball while Melbs and I eat dinner and catch up.
If Max fell asleep, it won’t be for long. We’ll change his diaper, make him happy with silly voices and the mobile again, and then typically head to bed with him. I will, that is. Melbs stays up to watch Sons of Anarchy. He tucks us both in which is pretty cute. I’ll nurse Max and then put him in his Rock N Play once he is asleep, around 10.
I lay in bed and read blogs, social media, etc until I am sure Max isn’t going to startle himself awake. And then I fall asleep too.
1am & 3am
Typically he wakes up 2-3 times, every 2-3 hours. Luckily, all he needs is to be nursed and he will fall right back to sleep. Like I said, he doesn’t start poopin’ until morning time so I rarely have to get up and change a diaper. I can typically hear him start to rustle around each time he wakes and can lift him into bed before he starts crying. Which means that Melbs (who comes to bed around 11) doesn’t hear a peep! What a lucky fella, huh? ;)
So that’s about it. The glamorous, always-on life of a new mama and a 6 week old. My back is still feeling much better and my body is getting stronger by the day. It helps that my little guy is more than 10lbs now! We’re looking forward to our 2-month check up. For 10lb he is awfully small looking and I want to see if he is super-dense and muscular… orrrr filled with rocks.
In other baby-related news: I’ve joined a couple of mom-groups and am going to attempt “baby and me” yoga this Friday. I’ll try to post an update on how that goes. I’m just grateful to get out of the house and to be slowly accumulating more stay-at-home type pals.
Best thing I’ve learned since becoming a mom so far: You cannot spoil an infant. My only job for the first few months is to love my baby and keep him comfortable.
Until next time,
Rachel + Maximus