You are so tiny. When you are in your car seat, or when you’re unclothed, or when you’re all swaddled like a little burrito – these are the times when I am amazed at how tiny you are. Before you were born I was so worried and hesitant to handle little babies; they always seemed so fragile. However, with you I haven’t ever had that fear, trusting that you are resilient and that if I handle you with care you’ll be alright. But there are times when I register just how little and tiny you are, and I cradle you in my arms and think about the fact that you won’t be this little forever, that you are already about 10% bigger (by weight) than you were when you were born, and that someday you will make my arms sore and back ache when I carry you.
When I went to breastfeeding club last week there was a parking lot of strollers outside of the room. I was perplexed by all of these women using strollers to transport their babies the relatively short distance from the car to the room. I much prefer to simply grab you out of your car seat and carry you and I relish these times when you are so light that I can carry you and barely even notice the added weight. We haven’t even used your stroller yet and I almost dread the day in the future when we’ll need to use it; it seems so big and clunky and cumbersome and is just one more piece of equipment we’ll add to the list of things we must schlep with us everywhere.
Last week I ordered you a snowsuit from the Patagonia sale for next winter. Your dad and I pondered over the sizing for a long time, wondering how big you’ll be in one year. We finally decided to just order the 12 month sizing and hope it fits. When it arrived and I unfolded it I just started at its enormity. It is huge. It literally almost reaches up to my hip (from the ground). Will you reach up to my hip in just 12 months?! I cannot fathom that you will grow so much in such a short amount of time. I cannot believe you will not be my little, teeny, carry-able baby girl forever. For now I’ll carry and rock and soak in your tiny-ness as much as I can, and we’ll keep the stroller cozily stowed in the garage for at least a couple more weeks.
Newborn and 12 month snowsuits
Of course everyone is so happy you are here, but I don’t know if anyone was more happy that you were a little girl than your papa, nana and me. Over the past several months your papa has been telling your nana all about the things they’ll do with you, their ‘granddaughter’. He was just certain you would be a girl. I’d secretly been hoping you were a girl, but I really had no intuition before you were born of what sex you’d be.
Now that you’re here, and after months of gender-neutral decorating and clothes buying, we are ready to fully embrace all things ‘girl-ish’. Your nana decided to make you a tutu and matching headband, and they are adorable. We had so much fun dressing you up today and taking pictures. Thankfully you obliged our desires for dress-up, and seemed quite happy to play along. I imagine this was just the first of many dress-up sessions we will have; I can’t wait for all of the fun to come!
A tiny ballerina
Also recently we received some really fun and girly gifts from your Aunt Nancy, Uncle Denny and cousins Kim and Ali. They sent you dresses, a purple fleece jacket, pink Cardinals gear (your dad’s favorite), pink Converse (my favorite, tied with…), a pink Adidas track suit, and an abundance of other amazing gear. They love you so much already and have been doing a great job of spoiling you.
Luckily, (so far), you are not much of a crier. You cry briefly and can generally be consoled fairly easily. Sometimes when you are the most upset, you cry wholeheartedly and intensely, arching your back and flailing your hands and feet and turning bright red in the face. However, until today, your cries have been tearless. But today for the first time your eyes were wet and little tears spilled from the corners. It was sort of a sad milestone; I think the tearless crying was somehow less heartbreaking to me.
Well, your cord stump is still hanging on, and while we can’t give you a real bath, we decided you definitely needed a washing. So we got out the little infant tub, filled it up, and gave you a sponge bath. You seemed to mostly enjoy it.
First bath at home
Also today during one of your naps your dad and I caught up on some ‘Glee’ episodes. One of the songs they sang on the show had a chorus that said: My universe will never be the same. I’m glad you came. I couldn’t think of a better way to convey the way I feel about you!
Today you turned three weeks old. I’ve been trying to think of a way to visually capture how much you are growing from week to week and month to month. Your Aunt Gretchen took pictures of each of your cousins each month next to a big stuffed lion. You have a stuffed elephant but you are already as big as him. The next tallest thing in your room is the vuvuzela your dad and I got in South Africa. You are already almost as tall as a vuvuzela. For future weeks/months I’ll have to find something bigger.
You are becoming more active and aware, and seem to be having more and more wakeful periods. Unfortunately, I have a little work I have to get done; I have two conference papers that are due during my leave. It is impossible to get any work done on them while I’m watching you, so thankfully your dad offered to watch you and I headed to a coffee shop to work on them. I think he enjoyed having some uninterrupted time alone with you, and I was happy to have some focused time to work. I spent four hours there and got one paper done. Yah! Unfortunately I still have one to go…
I’ve been craving sushi for months and now that I’m able to eat it again I couldn’t wait to have some. Your dad got sushi take out for us tonight and we had a nice dinner at home with you. I’m really enjoying the benefits of not being pregnant, like eating sushi and having a beer every now and then!
Your doulas came to visit you tonight. They met you when you were first born but haven’t seen you since. They were such a great support for me and your dad during the long labor and right after you were born. I am so thankful we had them by our sides through that adventure. They were so excited to see you, and are a great resource for us. They answered lots of our questions and also gave you lots of loving.
The doulas - Fiore and Carrie