What’s up with Liv?: Liv is 3 weeks old! Already! I don’t know her current weight, but I can tell she’s filling out. Her cheeks are getting deliciously chubby and we’ve switched from Newborn to Size 1 diapers! However, she’s still growing into her pants…
Contrary to what our photos may lead you to believe, Liv has more and more “awake time” each day. She’s getting so strong, working hard to control her head and neck, and kicking her little froggy legs out straight a lot more — it’s a bit of a wrestling match to change her diapers these days. In the hospital, she didn’t cry much, but she’s certainly found her voice and boy, it’s mighty!
We’ve started giving her a pacifier, which she’s still figuring out, but it usually buys us a few minutes of peace here and there. In a regular swaddle, Liv always breaks her hands free, moving around, and rubbing her face in her sleep, eventually waking herself up. I’m so grateful for the Miracle Blanket, which is the only way we’ve found to keep her hands swaddled down. At night, it’s helping us get three hour stretches of sleep at a time!
As for her reflux, we’re still taking it day-by-day — or feeding-by-feeding, I should say. We’re sticking to Dr. M’s plan: short, frequent feedings, 20-30 minutes of burping, and keeping her upright/inclined. I’m eating gluten-free, dairy-free, and as bland as possible.
Unfortunately, our girl’s still uncomfortable and fussy through many of her feedings and she’s still throwing up erratically. After describing her ongoing symptoms to Dr. M, he ordered an ultrasound of her tummy to hopefully rule out pyloric stenosis — a blockage in the stomach preventing food from entering the small intestine. The ultrasound is scheduled for Monday and we’ll talk about “next steps” then.
What I’m up to?: Jared’s parents flew back to Chicago on Saturday and on Sunday, Jared and I spent the entire day eating leftovers of his mom’s cooking and watching Season 4 of Parenthood. On Monday, my parents arrived in San Diego after a four day drive from Cincinnati and we finally, officially closed on our new home!!!!
How I’m feeling?: Liv’s been a lot fussier and I feel like I spend a few hours everyday just bouncing, rocking, and trying to comfort her. I was prepared for the fussiness and crying, but I wasn’t prepared for how helpless I’d feel as a mother. It’s so hard not being able to calm my own baby…
Every day I think: “It’s impossible to be more tired than I am.” Then tomorrow comes and I eat my words. I can’t remember what it’s like to sleep for more than 3 hours straight — before Liv was here, I was getting up to pee a half dozen times a night. But as overwhelmingly tired as I am, I’m also used to it by now.
Aside from Liv’s inconsolable crying and episodes of throwing up, middle-of-the-night feedings are the hardest time for me. It’s dark. The rest of the world is asleep. And as desperately tired as I am, I have to wake up enough to change, feed, and burp Liv before soothing her back to sleep. In some of these instances, we’re both quiet as we go through our nightly routine. Other times, she cries and cries and I wish Jared could feed her for me, just-this-once! Most of the time though, Liv sleepily whimpers and coos as I talk to her in a nonsensical baby voice. She gets a clean diaper, a belly full of milk, and a nice, long burp session, while being showered with kisses and praises and sometimes, made-up songs. I usually fall back asleep curled up on the edge of our bed with one hand still rocking her in her Rock ‘n Play. And my last thoughts are almost always about how lucky I am to be this beautiful baby’s mommy.
I may feel helpless at times and completely exhausted always, but I’m also thoroughly enamored with our little Liv.
Marathon Mommy in-the-making: I feel like I’ve been less energized and less active this week, probably due to everything mentioned above. Nonetheless, I did get out for two longer walks with Liv in the BOB stroller and our first walk with Liv in the Ergo.
Week 3 Thoughts from the Zen Dad:
It’s 4:28am and I’ve been awake since 2-something this morning. I got up to change Liv’s diaper before her “3am feeding” and then I just couldn’t go back to sleep. This week has been one of the craziest of my life. Meg and I officially closed on our first house. My parents departed after an amazing couple weeks here in San Diego and Meg’s parents arrived after driving 2000+ miles across the country. And things with Liv are fairly difficult right now. Her stomach issues aren’t getting better despite Meg having changed her entire diet, having Liv feed more frequently, and burping more often. It’s scary to see her still emptying her stomach at the most unexpected moments. So she’ll be having an ultrasound of her stomach on Monday. I can’t believe my daughter, who’s less than 4 week old, will be having an ultrasound.
So yeah… it’s been tough.
But despite it all, those moments when Liv looks me straight in the eyes, calmness emanating through her whole body — those are the moments that offer me with such relief and solace. I can’t help but choose to focus on those heart-rending moments. Every time she curls her little fingers and toes around my fingers, I melt inside. Each day when she takes a brief nap, stretched out across my chest, I remind myself to truly breathe… and smile.
Breathing in, I embrace her spirit.
Breathing out, I release the pain.
Week 3 in Review:
- Liv loves: Warm baths, car rides, holding hands with mamaw, and pooping as soon as she gets a clean diaper
- This week’s firsts: Dinner at Souplantation and shopping for our house at IKEA, Lowe’s, and Home Depot. She slept through dinner, but cried through the shopping.
- Workouts: 3 walks between 1.7-3.3 miles, plus hours of bouncing, dancing, rocking, and swinging Miss Liv
- Countdown to my “comeback half marathon“: 12 weeks & 2 days!
- Countdown to moving day: 9 days!
- Liv’s funny moment of the week: In the middle of nursing, she sneezed a big mouthful of milk right in my face!
- Jared’s funny moment of the week: During a middle-of-the-night diaper change, he groggily asked: “When do they start potty training?” I told him 4 weeks, ha!
- My favorite: When Liv’s finally, peacefully, perfectly sleeping on me, like a little angel…