calibrateBUMPS: 5 weeks of Noah
I made a mental note this week to write down the major happenings/my thoughts from each day so that this post would be easier to write. Sadly because I never wrote this mental note down I never did it, so once again I'll definitely miss a million things but I've done my best to recap what was, at times, a pretty hysterical (for us) and traumatic (for her) week.
Firstly, before I forget for the 3rd week in a row...I will always be a huge advocate for staying active and fit through pregnancy. I do think that keeping up with training and with moving was massively beneficial both during and post pregnancy. However, as Jack and my dad have both pointed out, moving continuously and training throughout pregnancy has turned around to bite me in one respect - Noah refuses to be chill and be still. She needs to move constantly. The easiest way to put her to sleep is to hug her into your chest and just start walking - she's out in about 15 seconds. If she's in the car she's perfectly content as long as the car is moving. If you pull up to a red light, she screams. The only real benefit of this is my step count post-delivery shot right back up pretty quickly, I can't sit still with her or she fusses.
I usually make the most of this by going for a 90min (ish) morning stroll with her in the carrier. We normally set off at 9ish and return by 11. If I miss the morning stroll she's usually keen for a walkabout anywhere from 2-4pm. Either side of that either I'm still trying to juggle getting ready with a baby in hand or she starts settling in for a late afternoon fussy session (sometimes followed by an early evening scream).
I don't have too much to report this week. She threw up on me a WHOLE bunch this week which is lovely. Twice I had to shower straight away afterwards. I think I'm becoming immune to the smell of rancid milk...She did EXPLODE out of her diaper once this week (more later) which resulted in a bath for her straight away. Thank the Lord we were at home...
The week for Noah
She turned one month on Wednesday and we honoured the month with a super traumatic day. As you all know, she had to fight off a minor pneumonia infection from birth. She did 2 x-rays while we were both still in the hospital but had to do one final follow up x-ray at 1 month old to ensure her chest was well and truly clear. On Wednesday I took her for a 90min stroll around Central for her morning nap and she woke up just in time for the x-ray. She did not have fun. She screamed bloody murder the entire time. I had to go into the x-ray room with her and pin her to the table :( Once the x-ray was over she was due for a feed so I walked to the doctors office (the walk put her to sleep even though it was only a 150m walk) and fed her in the nursery. 10 minutes into the feed the nurses needed her for a weight/height measurement and then the doctor saw her. Noah did not like having her feed interrupted. Once everything was all over she was not impressed. It was a tough afternoon...
The plus side of the morning was that we found out despite all the vomiting and spitting up, Noah has gained almost 1kg and has grown 3.5cm in the last 3 weeks! So something is working!
This week Noah discovered (and then promptly forgot) how to blow raspberries with her mouth and how to blow bubbles. She also become increasingly smiley, vocal, and chatty which is actually the best. This week we had lots of conversations about animals. She learned lots for her zoologically inclined mum and aunt. HashtagAlternativeFacts.
Life continues to be a bit too interesting at time and she's very good at not wanting to nap. This this causes chaos later on in the evening. My method of getting her to nap is to walk her to sleep. Jack's method is to sing her to sleep. HashtagUseYourStrengths. I tried singing to her on Thursday morning, she didn't sleep, she was just very confused.
Other than that we had a pretty standard week. She pooped, she fed, she cried, she napped, we strolled. One of her poops this week was so explosive it required the sofa cushions to be washed. High five Noah!
The week for mum
For the first 2-4 weeks of her life Noah was pretty content to be held by anyone at any time. This week that all changed, she was very clingy this week and wasn't happy with anyone other than me holding her. As much as I love her, it would be great if someone else could take her for even 20 minutes so I could do literally anything other than hold her. She got a bit better by the end of the week but the first half of the week was pretty brutal. I didn't have time to wash my hair until Friday night because she was screaming so much.
I know there's a school of thought whereby you should "let screaming babies cry it out" but I can't do it. I don't believe that a 5 week old is capable of self-soothing or "crying themselves to sleep". More often than not she just needs a cuddle and she'll settle right down.
The other big milestone this week: Noah will sleep on her back! She still sleeps in the same bed as us but she sleeps on her own - not on me! This means that I'm finally able to sleep on my side which basically means Christmas has come early. The next step is getting her into the bassinet.
I still breastfeed her on demand but this week we did introduce the bottle! We tried twice and it didn't go super super well but it also didn't go horribly badly. We'll keep at it and see how we get on. For now I'm still just catching the letdown in the Haakaa pump and storing that, I'm still not going to buy a pump until we're sure she'll actually take the bottle.
I don't know if I mentioned this before but for the past 2 weeks or so she's started to do this really weird thing where she'll unlatch mid-feed and then immediately bounce around trying to latch again. It only happens in the late afternoon so I'm not too sure what that's all about. Might be something to do with milk being harder to pull later on in the day but I'm not a lactation specialist so really can't say. She does finish the feed eventually, it just takes a bit more time...
Mental Health Check-In
I did say I'd check in with myself every few weeks to address anything I feel needs to be addressed. Both the good and the bad.
On the plus side, I think we're doing pretty well! She's definitely learning lots and growing. There's no routine yet but we're not in a huge rush - she's only 5 weeks old! I have peanut butter in my pantry that I've had for longer than she's been alive.
I know I sound like a broken record but the independence I've gained with the carrier honestly made everything so much better.
On the down side, it is frustrating when sometimes I just want to chill and instead there's a screaming child who can only be settled by me. It's also frustrating to want to go so many places but having to scrap plans because either 1) it'll be too loud for her and overstimulate her too late in the afternoon, or 2) the timing will not work with feeds and the destination doesn't have appropriate feeding options, or 3) population density of the destination is no longer appropriate given the fourth wave of COVID infections.
There are still moments where I'd just like to have some time to just do me but those moments are definitely becoming few and far between. Especially now that she does do adorable little baby babble.
Things are definitely looking up and while I still look at my husband sleeping soundly or lounging comfortably on his own reading with immense jealousy at times, but all I do is look down at Noah, see her adoring eyes gazing deep into my soul, and that's enough to make everything seem a little more worth it.
Monday - walk around Happy Valley and Times Square. Noah slept the entire time and was not aware she went on this adventure.
Tuesday - walk around south side. Noah slept.
Wednesday - trauma day in Central. Noah slept first then screamed.
Thursday - I did feel a bit unstable in my pelvis today so I opted to have a chill day. We just strolled in the garden and around Shouson Hill.
Friday - Stanley stroll (Noah slept) and an afternoon of visits from friends.
Saturday - Shouson Hill stroll (Noah slept)
Sunday - longest walk from Pokfulam to Repulse Bay for breakfast.
Finally, I was warned I'd never have time to read again now that I'm a new parents. Jokes on you guys, I read Dr. Seuss' Hop on Pop and Fox in Socks 3 times each this week (I also read Dear Girls by Ali Wong).
Next week the only exciting thing currently on the agenda is making gingerbread houses. I'm sure more fun things will happen though and I will try my best to make a note of the funny stuff.