On having a 4 week old

4 weeks ago our little one was born. It’s still a bit surreal that this little beauty is our very own child- and we’re her parents! We like her a lot. I sometimes imagine her all grown up, then I start to feel nostalgic about the days when she was a newborn- then I realize- she is a newborn so I don’t have to yearn for the past- when it is the present. Okay… so I might be really tired. A few times everyday I say, “Grant- come look how cute she is!” We just can’t get over it.

I’m in sleep debt. Throughout the watches of the night, I lose track of which times I got up to feed/change/soothe the baby and which times I just dreamed about it. Sometimes there are clues, like: clean diaper = I probably changed her recently and memory of a light up blanket with a movie projecting from it = probably a dream. She spends a lot of the day and even more of the night making these awful grunting/pushing sounds. Her face gets red and she works herself into a frenzy and starts crying and kicking. When it gets to this level, she is very difficult to console. It’s especially true if she’s laying down or not being held. She might be mimicking her earliest auditory memory- or maybe her tummy hurts.

I did a little research on this and learned that dairy might be the culprit. Often mothers with milk sensitivities (like me) have babies with milk sensitivities and dairy gets passed through breast milk. I typically avoid most dairy- but still consume a moderate amount at my own risk. Now I will be eliminating it completely to see if it helps settle the baby. Did you know most bread has dairy in it? Also waffles, most baked goods, of course yogurt, cheese, cream of anything, butter, chocolate, most dressings, sauces, and even some crackers contain dairy. Fake cheese-alternative is not tasty at all- but if it helps, I really don’t care.

Most days I’m lucky if I change out of my pajamas before noon. Staying in the house for a month couldn’t be healthy- but it’s not easy leaving. I usually feed her- then she gets fussy for an hour, until she finally falls asleep. I put her in her crib and try to make it to the bathroom before she wakes up again and starts the grunting routine. By the time I return from the bathroom, she’s worked herself into a screaming frenzy so I have to change her and walk with her until it’s time to feed her again… and repeat. By the third round of this, I usually need a nap.. which usually gets cut short. I’ve also had a headache for the past 4 weeks, and I’m afraid we have forgotten to feed our dog a number of times. Poor Ziggy

I’m not complaining though- I like to hold my baby, and make up songs to sing to her, and rock her while watching episodes of The Office or feed her while reading books. I especially like the rare moments when she’s not crying, grunting, sleeping, or eating. When this happens, I drop everything to look her in the eyes and tell her everything I know (well, the important things I can think of at the moment).

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