Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Growing Pains

They DO grow up fast! You hear people say that all the time but there's nothing to prepares you for it. Everyday, something about W is different, whether it's his face, his cry or even his behavior. It's the speediest yet most gradual phenomenon I've ever witnessed. Most of the time, I can't remember what or how we dealt with the baby the day before!! Parenthood is simply the art of constant adjustment.

It's been a couple of weeks since he started to smile in response to our silly faces! Oh the joy!! It literally breaks my heart a little bit at a time each time I see that adorable smirk! And it's so addicting, I find myself doing all sorts of ridiculous things (dancing, singing made-up songs) just to make him do it again. That has to be the most exciting development to date. He did giggle once with his daddy, but we haven't been able to muster another one out of him since then. But soon...very soon....I can feel it.

My latest struggle is dealing with the 3-hour feeding schedule W's on. There were a couple of days where he was eating every 4 hours. What a tease. That's like saying I have 24 hours to diffuse a bomb and then realizing the timer says 5 minutes! The night feedings are the most brutal. W is so sleepy sometimes, I could be sitting there for 45 minutes trying to wake the poor guy up just to finish. And trust me, you want him to finish. Otherwise, get ready to wake up in an hour. The trick is to wake him just enough to eat...but not so much that he's alert and ready to play. The same goes for those diaper changes. They really need to do something about those velcro snaps. Might as well sound the alarm, damn things are so loud.

And he appears to be going through constant growth spurts. He's already huge for his age, I don't understand why he's in such a hurry to get big. He's only 7 weeks old and already wearing 3-month old baby clothes!! He's so big I keep thinking he can sit up by himself, only to see his big head flop forward suddenly. We're doing plenty of tummy time because he's gonna need NFL-sized neck muscles to hold up that big noggin of his.

For the past few weeks, I went through such turmoil trying to implement a feeding schedule for the little guy. Supposedly babies are happiest when on a routine. Makes sense, no? Who doesn't feel secure knowing that they will be guaranteed their next meal, right? Unfortunately, his tummy always beats me to the next scheduled feeding and it just snowballs from there. So I give up. I'm just feeding on demand. And demand he does.

Oh yeah, an update about the crying. He still cries to sleep, but mostly it's during his fussy time or when he's super tired. We tried to let him cry it out and it was going good for a while there. And when I say going good, I mean going good FOR US. I don't know if it was because I was feeling detached from my new baby or what, but I didn't have as much trouble listening to him cry before. Now when I hear him cry, it's like someone is ripping my heart out ever so slowly. The same goes for P. It's so awful to hear and to know that he's miserable, sad or lonely. Truthfully, I think he's just tired and fighting sleep. Either way, it sucks and it isn't long before we're in there soothing him. There was one time when we weren't sure if he was tired or hungry. After 10 gut-wrenching minutes, I went in and picked him up. He stopped crying immediately and gave me this look like he was saying, "Why did you ignore me? Don't you love me? I'm so hungry. Where were you?" I'll be accepting my award for WORST MOTHER OF THE YEAR now, thank you very much. Honestly, I think I died a little. I will never forget the look he gave me, that cute little face with his wet eyes blinking up at me. *sigh* Sorry, baby.

I hope one day soon I will be able to tell the difference in his many cries. But it's hard because even those are changing. His cries are more grown up now. And P says it's getting harder and harder to hear him cry because he's starting to be more like a person and less like a newborn. Before, it was just eat and sleep, eat and sleep. No interaction or reaction. Now, he smiles and coos at us, looks around and pays attention to the toys we put in front of him. It's getting to be really fun. And now we know he feels more than just hunger pains. He's actually happy at times! So when he cries, it's hard not to think that he's UNHAPPY, see what I'm getting at? Love hurts.

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