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Jul 4, 2011


On the whole, things continue to go swimmingly around here, largely due to the fact that Colin is a good kid and is taking this whole thing like a champ, as well as the fact that babies seem so easy compared to a two year old. I mean, not only do they not talk back when you tell them to do something, they don't even move. Caroline's fits are a short "Wa!" and then she looks around to see if anything is moving close to her face that might have some food. And, of course, as soon as you stuff something in her mouth, particularly something like a boob, she calms right down!

I think the biggest factor that is making my life so lovely these days is the fact that I am, definitively, not pregnant. My body feels good, my mood is great, I don't even care that I'm not sleeping because I have a baby to take care of instead of just my body complaining about being pregnant. This is all kinds of great, and I am happy again.

While all babies look about the same and are, in essence, about the same, we all know that each baby has his or her own particular quirks to make raising them/keeping them alive a little more interesting. The following are a few that I've learned about Caroline.

1. She is a snacker.
While she and I have largely mastered nursing (a lovely gift from the heavens for which I will be forever grateful), she does not seem to believe in meals so much as just the occasional mouthful of milk to get by. In the meantime, she dozes and looks around, preferring to have a boob in her mouth but without that bothersome nursing. This means that, unlike her brother, who used to eat for an hour at a time, but only every four hours, she eats for fifteen minutes out of every hour. Every single hour. Sometimes I can stretch her to two hours, but she really loses her head when I do that.

2. She is not into that whole swaddling thing.
Listen, people. Do not try to swaddle this girl. She is a free wheeling spirit and does not like to be tied down. I wouldn't try socks, either. This is a little person who likes her business aired out.

3. It is always a touchdown around here.
Along the same lines as above, not only does she not enjoy the swaddle, she wants to be as stretched out as possible. Arms straight up in the air, elbows by her ears. Legs straight, toes spread. Other babies might have enjoyed the nine-month squash before their birth (read: Colin the Ever Swaddled Baby) but Caroline is making the most of the surrounding real estate.

4. She is a snuggler.
It is the only time she'll curl up - when she's on your chest/in your arms/in the Moby wrap. Basically, she wants her skin to be touching your skin at all times. This includes nighttime, when she is all of twelve inches away from me in her little bassinet. Too far, period. A better solution, she might suggest if she had words, would be to keep her in bed with us, her on her back and me curved around her so as to be completely enclosing her in my loving, hopefully not smothering embrace.

5. She has inspired great love in her big brother.
Colin is unequivocally the best big brother ever. He adores Caroline. She is his first thought in the morning and one of his last at night (aside from the screaming about needing a drink and not being sleepy and needing "something, Mommy"). His default activity is to be kissing the baby. He watches her when she's awake and narrates her motions and moods. "She's kicking, Mommy. Mad baby!" or "She's sleepy, Mommy."And always followed by a kiss.

And this is my life, for now. My fellow interns have started work and have, by all accounts, survived! I am at once jealous of finally getting to do what it is we have waited so long to do and grateful for this protected time with my family. I think, if I had to, I could physically return to work relatively soon (if that work were some kind of desk job), but I am still mentally and emotionally attached to Caroline. The Fourth Trimester phenomenon at work again. When she cries, my body physically responds with preparations to feed her. Her every sound and movement register and resonate with me and I protect her (from our vicious cats) even when I'm sound asleep.

This part of the process is amazing and wonderful. More specifically, the fact that I can appreciate it and revel in the wonder of it all makes it all the better.

1 Readers rock!:

MamaDoodle said...

I love the descriptions of Caroline's personality! They bring back lovely memories of my now-eleven-year-old daughter. She was also a snacker but, like Colin, she liked to be wrapped tightly.

It's interesting to see that some of these behaviors have lasted. She still prefers to eat lots of small meals and likes to be tucked in tightly at bedtime.

So great that you get time to enjoy the Mommy Bliss before jumping back in with both feet!