Of course you were born upon the first snow fall. I tried to put on your 0-3 month snowsuit but it was 3x bigger than you. So, I bundled you in blankets and left the hospital hat on you. Your daddy went to get the car and I walked you to the elevator and then a nurse stopped me and said I couldn’t go down without a wheelchair. So, I snuggled you on my lap and we were rolled out. Kinda silly. I could walk, it wasn’t my best strut but I COULD walk.
We get you to the car and I hold you in the blankets until the car is warm enough. Your daddy and I can not believe you are ours and that we are entrusted to take care of you. I tuck you into the car seat with the blanket nuzzled around your floppy head to keep it somewhat upright. To be honest, this looks like the least safe solution to transporting a baby, I give you my finger and your wrap your hand around it tightly. I later learned that this isn’t something you should know how to do yet, but you do. Your eyes appear heavy but you keep trying to open them and look towards the bright window.
Meanwhile, I realize your daddy just took the weirdest route home, granted, I ended up giving birth to you in a somewhat random hospital outside of Chicago. So there we were driving extremely slowly and carefully through some of the roughest parts of Southside Chicago. I started laughing at your dad. You’ll learn quickly that he is normally very ON, together, with-it, responsible… but when he isn’t, when he’s nervous or tired, it’s quite funny. You and your itty bitty body made him act like he was jetlagged and confused. We joked that you were from the streets of Chicago and you might as well get the grand tour.
We finally get home and dad drops us off out front and I bring you up the stairs and then he drives around back and parks. We get inside and it’s freezing. We had apparently turned the heat down since we would be out. So I just sat on the sofa with you covered in 2 or 3 blankets until it warmed up. We lit a fire, cranked up the heat and… turned on your first Nebraska Huskers game. You and daddy watched the game together while I took a long salt/herb bath and took a nap.
You slept for 12 hours or something ridiculous. Which is considered dangerous because you are supposed to eat every 3 hours. I was a wreck all night, wide awake and watching you sleep… the next day I pumped milk or rather, colostrum for you and you fed through a syringe bulb. You needed the calories to work up the energy to nurse. Alas, you woke up and were soon able to feed. However, getting you to stay awake and nurse was an ongoing struggle for several days. Once awake you would do this hilarious and yet discouraging head bopping thing while crying with your eyes closed. I called you Stevie Wonder for weeks. You ate so little, you weren’t dirtying a diaper, so we drove you to the pediatrician to check on you, the minute we got you naked to weigh you, you pooped and peed all over the table and we learned that we needed to pack far more diaper wipes. The next day we took you to the chiropractor, she held you upside down and you stayed asleep, not unlike a bat. Funny little dude you are.
In the beginning, you really wanted to sleep on our chests. You would wiggle your tiny 7 lb body up our torsos with your arms and nudge your head as far into our necks as you could, hard. I couldn’t help but call you Lieutenant Dan when you did this. I would end up half sleeping with you on me and my head cocked way back so you could have your way. I confess, I love that you’d fight to be as close as possible to me, I inhaled those moments because I could feel them slipping away fast. I had a prayed for a snuggler and you were certainly that. We let you sleep like this for about a week and then I got nervous about the whole bed sharing thing and we bought this titled rocker bed that you decided was good enough to sleep in.
As I write this, you are 10 weeks old and though other people may just see you as another baby, albeit, a super cute baby… your dad and I see all your little quirks and personality coming through.
You are obsessed with your hands. I’ve never seen a baby do so many things with their hands. You are like a vogue music video in infant form. You sleep with your hands in mid air like you are playing the “air piano”. You criss cross your hands several times while deep asleep. You fling them out as if you are startled by your sleep, though this somehow never wakes you up. You clasp them about 20 different ways, dad jokes that one of these positions looks like you are going to be a good golfer, oh dear… You curl your little fingers around your eyes like you are looking through them and if the light is too bright, you cover your face. I’ve been trying to ink your hand print for weeks but I give up. Those hands are all yours buddy.
The first few weeks of life your tiny, squinty eyes would open wide with this shocked/terrified look. It was pretty hilarious. Especially the first time we bathed you. You seemed really serious.
You are a great sleeper, a horribly unfocused nurser… but a great sleeper! However, the minute you wake, you scream at the top of your lungs as if the worst thing ever just happened to you in your sleep. We try to imagine what you could possibly be having a nightmare about. We got nothing. You started sleeping in your crib at around 5 weeks. You sleep better when we aren’t in the same room, as do I! And… I get to sleep next to your daddy.
Speaking of your daddy, he is completely in awe of you. We still can’t believe you are ours. He sings to you, bounces you, tells you all kinds of things that you won’t understand for years. Sometimes, he lets mama sleep through a feeding and gets up with you, even though he has to work the next day. He’s a real good man, you’re gonna be so proud to call him your dad.
Okay, back to you.
You really like soft fabrics, dim lighting and the sound of our heat, the dryer and dishwasher. The vacuum, tv and music does not wake you but nothing makes you cry harder than someone sneezing near you. Which is funny, sorry buddy, but it is. You’ve started crying over a wet diaper and smiling when we change it. You love foot massages, back rubs and having your fuzzy little head caressed. You’re very particular, but than again, so am I. Bath time is your favorite time, you kick and splash and look around happily, you are not pleased when we take you out.
We flew home to Maine and Nebraska for Christmas, you were a pro. I was told that most infants sleep the entire flight. Not you. You wanted to see everything. Daddy bounced you on his lap and you decided it’s your new favorite thing. Sometimes we can’t figure out why you are crying and then we bounce you and you stop immediately. When daddy comes home from work, you assume it’s bounce time.
You have more clothes than I’ve owned in the last decade. I shop with my friend at thrift stores and get bags of clothes for $20. You’re like a little snuggly doll that cries, sleeps and now…smiles! I even caught you laughing in your sleep earlier today, you were probably dreaming about milk or a bath or a milk bath!
I’ve been putting you on the counter in the kitchen while I cook. You sit in this bouncy lounge chair and I talk with you while I cook. My hope is that you can smell all the different ingredients and soon you’ll get to taste everything!
You are a little love, fiery, sweet and snuggly. You have taken over my life and my heart and I’m beyond grateful.
I love you,