A blog about babies: the babies I lost, the babies I never had, the baby who made me a Mama.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

How Are Babies Made?; or, Putting Money Where Mouths Are

Here's an amazing project that I recently learned about: a new kind of "where did I come from?" book that's inclusive of all kinds of families and all kinds of ways families come into being. I'm not affiliated with the people developing this at all, but I think it's a great project that deserves our support.

Whatever stage we're at in our family building, I'm pretty sure that gaining wider acceptance for families created through adoption, donation, and ART is a worthy goal.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Little Bit of This, Little Bit of That; or, 4 Months!

I hate to write a quick bullet-point post, but life has been hectic of late and I'm afraid that's all I can squeeze in right now. So here goes!

My Sweet Smudgie is four months old now. He is incredible: full of smiles and wiggles, so alert and eager to explore the world around him (especially if the piece of said world can be jammed in his drooly little mouth).

He's a wee little peanut, only 12 lbs 1 oz and 24 inches long. Definitely going to be long and lean like his papa. He had his four month shots earlier this week and was a total champ about them-- not even 30 seconds worth of crying and then he was back to flashing his huge, flirty grin at the nurse (this kid's a hit with the ladies, let me tell you). That night he was very drowsy and had some sad moments of crying, but overall he was great.

Twice a week, Smudgie is with our nanny and another little boy (who's just under two months old [ed. no, I mean two YEARS old!]). And Twice a week I criss-cross NYC: teaching a class in one borough, auditing a class with my advisor in another, fitting in a yoga class or a therapy session or errands or doctor's appointments in between. The days are so full that I don't have time to miss Smudgie too much until I see him again at night and my heart explodes. Then we only have a half hour to spend together before he goes to sleep, and I hold him close and nurse him and read to him and feel extr-super grateful that we get to spend the whole next day together.

It took some diligent effort on my part, but Smudgie is a total hero at napping in his crib. Starting at about three months, I made sure to put him down in there for at least one of his naps every day and to do whatever it took (rocking, shushing, patting, stroking, covering his face with a burp cloth--while I stood directly next to him the entire time, of course) to get him to fall asleep. If he only slept for 20 minutes, I still counted it a success so I wouldn't get discouraged and give up in desperation. I wanted him to learn to associate day-time sleep with the crib before I went back to teaching. And now, four weeks later, it's working really well! Smudgie takes three naps a day and I try very hard to make sure the first two (which are both 1 hour+) are in his crib. That gives me time to get some reading or lesson-planning or chores--or blogging--done.

Also right around 3 months we started cloth diapering him. I had bought all the diapers on sale over the summer while I was pregnant but wanted to wait until he was close to 10 pounds before using them. And then I just felt nervous about making the transition. But it only took a few days of trial and error to get the hang of it, and now it's going great! We still use sposies at night and when he's with his nanny, but the other five days of the week we are exclusively cloth. His tush looks so chubby and adorable in them, they are easy to put on and change, they don't blow-out as much as the sposies, and they are so soft and comfy. I kind of wish my undies were that delicious feeling. I also installed a diaper sprayer to our toilet water supply all by myself (with an assist from YouTube). See, motherhood does develop new skill sets!

The first day that we transitioned him he got very upset during diaper changes. He doesn't love new sensations, so I think he was just trying to process it. But the next day (and ever since) he's been fine. Our favorite of his dipes are his bumgeniuses--they are SO absorbent and fit like a dream despite being adjustable up to 35 pounds. When we have another baby, I will definitely jump into the cloth diapering faster now that I've seen how manageable it is.

Not much else is going on. Life is full of reading and writing and teaching and playing and doing laundry and pumping breastmilk and cuddling my perfect little one. I have truly never been this busy or this happy. I hope I can hold onto this feeling of deep contentment all my life--I know things will get harder (and easier!) at various points, but I want never to forget how blessed I feel right now.

And finally, what you've all been waiting for...Smudgie pic!