Saturday marked Grace’s one month birthday and I completely get what people mean when they say it goes by in a blink of an eye. Looking back at pictures from the day Grace was born and now, I can’t believe just how much she’s changed. They also say the days are long, but the years are short, but Brett and I have both said the days go by so quickly too. Some days it feels like we have barely gotten our day started and it’s already time for bed again. I’ve said it before, but I get so sad each time I put Grace to sleep at night because it means she’ll be another day older in the morning. Her Disposition: We joke that we have no idea where she got her chill disposition from because neither of her parents are exactly “go with the flow kind of people,” but we’re not complaining! She rarely cries, and when she does it’s usually because she’s hungry, has a dirty diaper or is cold. Girl hates being cold! Considering it’s been above freezing only a few days since the day she was born, you’d think she’d be used to the cold. Bath time and changing diapers or her clothes can be pretty traumatic, but as soon as we wrap her back up she’s back to being calm. She loves being swaddled or wrapped up in blankets and being held.
Daytime Routine: Since day one in the hospital, she’s been on a schedule of eating every 3 hours during the day starting at 7am . She hit a growth spurt around two weeks and was feeding more frequently, but for the most part she sticks to this schdedule. Mornings are my favorite time of day with Grace. Now that Brett is back to work, he wakes Grace up a little after 7 if she hasn’t woken on her own and changes her diaper/cuddles with her while I shower. I feed her while Brett showers and then spend time cuddling and talking to Brett before he has to go to work. I try and put her back down for a nap around 8:30 and I finish getting ready for the day and have breakfast before she is back up again at 10 to eat. She’s starting to become more alert, but for the first few weeks she slept most of the day. Of course being a nervous first time mom, I worried that there was something wrong, but my doctor assured me that it’s perfectly normal and some newborns just sleep more than others. I’d like to get her on a more consistent nap schedule, but I know this will come with time.
Bedtime & Night Routine: One of the most surprising things with Grace has been just how much she sleeps. Again, we’re not complaining, but we were definitely expecting to be getting a lot less sleep. Aside from our first two nights at home, which were really rough for all of us, she’s been sleeping great at night. We start bedtime around 7 and she is usually asleep by 8. She typically wakes up twice at night (around 1 and 4), but we’ve also been getting one or two nights a week where she will only wake up once. We try and not change her diaper unless we have to at night, so I’m usually back to bed in about 30 minutes.
Feeding: When Grace was first born, I was worried that she wasn’t eating enough because she would only nurse for 10 – 15 minutes max. She still has a tendency to fall asleep after only a short time and sometimes I’ll take her clothes off to wake her up and get her to continue eating. She was back up to her birth weight though at her one week appointment so I felt reassured that she was getting enough to eat. Breastfeeding was something that did not feel natural to me at first, but I feel much more comfortable now. We introduced a bottle at two and a half weeks and we typically give her a bottle at 7 right before bed and for her 10pm dream feed so she is going to sleep with a full belly.
My Recovery: I didn’t really know what to expect in terms of pain and recovery after delivery, but it really wasn’t as terrible as I thought it was going to be. Yes I was in pain, but it was manageable. My biggest problem in the first couple weeks was that I would wake up in the morning feeling great and would end up doing too much in the mornings and would get more sore and wear myself out by the afternoon. Brett was constantly having to remind me to take it easy in the mornings and was great about making sure I got time to nap in the afternoons. I have no idea if it’s genetics, because I was so active throughout my pregnancy, or a combination of both but my body has bounced back so much more quickly than I expected. Even the nurses and doctors in the hospital were surprised by how quickly my stomach had gone down. I have about 4 or 5 pounds to lose to get back to my pre-baby weight, but with the holidays and breastfeeding losing that weight has really not been a priority. I’m excited for my 6-week doctor appointment where I will hopefully get cleared to work out so I can start toning up again.
Best Part: Every time we get to introduce Grace to a new friend or family member, my heart just swells with pride. I just love being able to say that this tiny, perfect little human is mine.
Hardest Part: The hardest part about this first month has been just how cold it’s been. I’ve only been able to get out of the house a few times and those times I have gone it’s been to run from our garage to another garage and into a building. I would love to be able to take Grace and Riggins out for walks during the day and I know the fresh air would be good for all of us, but it’s just way too cold to take her out. I’m hoping that we’ve gotten through the worst of the winter though and we’ll be able to start getting out more. Once Grace gets her two month shots we’ll be able to do more indoor activities too, like visit museums or go out to eat, when we won’t have to worry as much about her catching a cold from another child.