Weight: 6lbs 4oz!!
We're still on the same schedule that I outlined last week. Some days, I feel totally fine about it and other days I feel insanely exhausted by it. He doesn't require as much waking up before/during each feeding, which is a huge improvement and makes each meal much speedier.
He usually nurses for about 20 minutes and then takes 40ml of pumped milk. At night (for the 12am and 3am feedings), to increase the amount of sleep we're getting, we've tried giving him just pumped milk -- 60ml per feeding. The intention was to allow us to wake up for just 25-30min or so to feed him and change his diaper, vs. a solid hour if I were to nurse at each of those feedings. I don't think that's going to work. On the nights that we tried this, he's been extra fussy, and we've actually slept less. I think we'll go back to the 3-step process for all 8 feedings for the time being.
Good news is that our pediatrician told us yesterday that now that he's over 6lbs, we don't need to wake him up to feed anymore during the night. We can wait until he wakes us up. I think this will be great because we won't be interrupting his REM cycles, and we might get to stretch the time out between nighttime feedings a bit, depending on his appetite.
He still sleeps most of the time, but he is having increasingly long periods of alertness. When he's awake, I really try to engage with him -- reading, singing, looking at brightly colored things, showing him toys, narrating my day, making silly faces, etc.
At night, he has had a harder time falling back to sleep after eating. Our nights involve a lot of letting him cry so that he can learn to self soothe. Obviously, if he has a dirty diaper, is hungry, or actually needs something, we attend to that, but for the most part, he just has been fussy because he wants to be held. I LOVE holding him, but I want him to get used to being able to fall asleep on his own at night.
How I'm Doing
I'm very tired, but very happy. I love being home with Shepherd and just staring into his sweet eyes when he's awake. I love the weird faces he makes. I love his snuggles. He makes Matt and I laugh a lot. It's been such a sweet 2 weeks with all three of us home all day. Matt goes back to work today, so it'll be just me and Shepherd today and tomorrow. Matt has Fridays off, so he will be with us Friday, and then my mom comes to town on Sunday. She's staying Sunday through Friday to help out with Matt's transition back to work. I'm so excited to see her!!
As far as recovery goes, I feel like I have it pretty easy with Shep being early and small. It no longer hurts to go to the bathroom (this is a big win!), I'm starting to get more energy, and my bleeding has reduced significantly. I'm definitely still not looking like I did pre-pregnancy, but relatively to what I looked like immediately after he was born (I looked about 7 months pregnant), I'm much much closer.
I've been wearing one of those Belly Bandit things during the day. I'm not sure if it's just a placebo effect or if it actually does something, but I figure there's no harm in using it. I'm officially able to fit in my pre-pregnancy jeans now, so that's exciting. I can retire my stretchy pregnancy jeans until we start working on kid #2 (likely a year or two from now). I don't wear the Belly Bandit at night for comfort reasons.
I'm seriously considering adjusting our budget so that we can fork over the cash required to purchase a Roomba or a Dyson vacuum. This whole sweeping up Morton hair 2x a week thing is less fun with a newborn, but I can't just skip sweeping because then we'd all be covered in hair. That dog sheds so much. Maybe I'll see if there's a good Black Friday sale. Send me links if you see any good deals.
- He's in the fun phase of peeing on our walls/his clothes/everything when I change his diaper. I'm learning to be speedier to prevent this from happening.
- I put him in bed next to Matt while I went to Shep's room to get a book for his bedtime story, and came back to see them unblinkingly staring into each others eyes. It was just about the sweetest thing I've ever seen.
- He's started making eye contact with me while he nurses, which is both kinda awkward and kinda endearing.
- Dressing him up in maroon garb to watch his first Aggie game on TV (vs. Alabama; needless to say, we lost)
- Revisiting books from my childhood. My mom mailed us several boxes of books from when I was little.
- Hearing that he's now over 6lbs at his 2-week pediatrician appointment. That means that we are doing a good job at keeping Shepherd well fed.