And I'm not really sure I'm out of it... Little Alex is almost four weeks old, and I can't believe how quickly time has passed. I seem to have no time to do anything, and unfortunately blogging, both posting and reading, has dropped to the bottom of the list. It turns out that I really did need to have a job to find time to blog! I miss it, and will try to include this as part of my routine going forward.
Alex and I have good days and bad, and I could write many posts about all of it. During the day, she will sleep and sleep. I wake her every three hours to feed her, which seems to take about 1 1/2 hours each time. So then we have about 1 1/2 hours of downtime to sleep, take a walk (which seems to help my spirits), do a little laundry, or feed myself (which for the first time in my life I seem to forget). And during the night, she won't sleep for longer than 1-2 hours, so we're doing the feeding thing about every 2-3 hours, and it's more often 2 hours than 3. I try to take naps during the day, which I can do most days, but some days it doesn't happen, which screws everything up for another day or two. Breastfeeding is still going. I really appreciate all the people who gave me such thoughtful and helpful comments and emails! Such good advice and support from all my bloggy folks - thanks! Some days are good - she only wants about 4 ounces of formula in a 24 hour period, and some days aren't that good - up to about 12 ounces of formula in 24 hours. I am not being as good as I should regarding pumping and trying to stimulate my breasts more than what Alex does. I haven't pumped at night in weeks - too tiring. And whole days go by without pumping. Right now my MIL and grandmother-in-law are staying with us, and I don't really feel like pumping in front of them - I'm barely comfortable whipping one boob out in front of them and then covering it with my baby! But they leave on Tuesday, and I'm going to try to commit to one full week of everything I can do to increase milk production, including lots of pumping!
In three weeks, we are leaving to go to Denver and stay with the in-laws for three weeks, and I'm very nervous about the trip. Not necessarily the trip, but living there for three weeks. Right now, I have all my stuff set up between three rooms: my bedroom, living room and kitchen. This includes a bouncy chair set in the pack n play, a swing (which is just the best invention ever), a fabulous rocking chair, two changing stations (day-time in my bedroom, night-time in the living room), and a bottle cleaning station in the kitchen. None of that is going with me to Denver, except my MIL keeps telling me that she bought a pack n play. That's nice, except for the fact that Alex is not a big fan of sleeping flat on her back - she's most content propped up in a swing or the bouncy chair. Or her favorite place, my arms! And the only thing that is going with us to Denver is my arms... Before giving birth, I read so many books and talked to a bunch of people about sleep routines, and raising babies, and I was convinced I knew what I was going to do. I really liked the idea of Babywise, and I was going to follow it perfectly! And then I had a baby... In the middle of the night, when all I want to do is sleep, and all baby wants to do is fuss and cry if you set her down, I am ashamed to admit how many times I fall asleep in bed with Alex sleeping on my chest, something I swore I would never do. It's amazing what we will resort to doing when desperate for sleep! I've nursed her in bed, and fallen asleep while nursing (something I didn't want to do), kept her in my Moby wrap for hours, fed her to sleep, and other things that my sleep-deprived mind can't remember now that I swore I wouldn't do in this way. I really wanted to have a schedule, and get her to sleep through the night quickly, and it seems I have turned into a bit of an attachment-style parent - something that is fine for others but I really didn't want to do myself. I like the ideas, but knowing I am going back to work 12 weeks after birth makes me very nervous about keeping up the ways of attachment parenting. I worry sometimes about undoing the bad habits that we've clearly started, but I keep telling myself that you can't spoil a newborn. But at what point does it get better? I keep thinking about the time I go back to work. Granted I have eight more weeks left, but in the four weeks so far it hasn't exactly gotten better as far as the night feedings. Well I guess during the first week it was constant because she was starving, so that's better. I know I'm rambling, but I just really hope that it will get better here soon because I can't imagine trying to function at a job after the nights I have if her current schedule continues!
Besides worrying about sleeping when we go to Denver and when I return to work, things are getting better. I'm getting the hang of this mommy thing, and I'm having the time of my life. When things are rough, all I have to do is look at her precious face, and my heart melts, and everything seems better. My dad came to town for Thanksgiving, and it was amazing seeing him with Alex. I love how smitten he seems with his new granddaughter. It's moments like those that make everything else in the world disappear, and I couldn't be happier.