|Your first bath at home. You were NOT a fan. I don't know why we insisted on using the little basin from the hospital. Once we got you in your tub you became a bath girl and never looked back!|
Your first few days home were a mixture of sweet snuggles and wide-eyed fear. Scary, amazing, and blurry. We had no idea how to do anything but love you. Of course we had taken the classes, we knew what we were suppose to do. But then you were here, depending on us for your every need. That, my sweet, was terrifying.
|Save me from the bath Mom! As you can tell from these first pics, you were a bit jaundice at birth. I didn't think you looked yellow at the time until I started looking back at photos. My baby oompa-loompa ;)|
Fortunately we got the hang of things quickly and learned to trust our instincts. There is WAY too much information out there for new parents. I struggled between wanting to research everything, getting other opinions to help me through these new experiences, and just learning to trust myself. The problem with all of the information out in the world and on the internet is that everyone has a different idea of what is right. When I finally learned to stop listening to everyone else I became a much calmer mommy.
|Look how teeny tiny you are! I thought you were so big at the time, I don't remember you ever being this small! That outfit was one of two newborn outfits that you grew out of the first week.|
With the plethora of information out there for new moms, there are still a few surprises. I was lucky enough to have a friend who was very honest with me about how difficult breastfeeding can be in the beginning. I think a lot of new moms expect everything to be magical and instantaneous, but that is just not always the case. Breastfeeding is hard. Neither of us knew what we were doing. It was painful and time consuming and isolating. It was also beautiful and is one of the best, most rewarding things I have ever done.
|Snoozing in your swing. At the time I didn't know just how much we would depend on this swing for the first 4 or 5 months. Best purchase we made!|
I was told if I could make it through the first six weeks of breastfeeding I would be golden, for me it only took two. If I had not known that, I can see how easy it would have been to get discouraged when things got difficult. I think a lot of moms end up not breastfeeding as long as they hoped because they do not have the support or the information to help them through the rough patches.
|4 days old. For my first Mother's Day you dressed up as a cupcake! My two favorite sweets!|
I think it also helped me to know that not everyone has such an easy time breastfeeding. Once I made it through the soreness at the beginning, I really had no major problems. A lot of moms have issues with being able to make enough milk, or having to take prescriptions that make it impossible to nurse, or having to work full time and not being able to keep up with all of the pumping. Because I didn't have any of these issues, I almost felt like it was my duty to keep at it! Now you are almost a year and we are still going strong.
|Passed out after nursing. I love this picture of you. Check out your awesome babylegs! This was also before we started using the cloth diapers. We used disposable until your belly button healed up, then we started the cloth.|
Another thing a lot of people don't talk about is the physical and emotional recovery after giving birth. Physically the first week was a little challenging. I mean, I had just given birth people! Emotionally everyone is different, but I definitely experienced what they call the "baby blues". Starting about three days after you were born and lasting about a week, everyday around dinner time I would suddenly just feel so overwhelmed and I would cry.
|This picture prompted one of your first nicknames: Spongebob Squareface. It was always said with love ;)|
I couldn't figure out why I was crying. I was so happy that you were here. You were an easy baby and I loved you more than I had ever loved anything or anyone. Logically I knew it was just the roller coaster of pregnancy hormones giving way to nursing hormones. I'm sure the lack of sleep didn't help either! But that knowledge didn't make the feelings any less real. Wow was I glad when that was over!
|Tiny nursing feet.|
So besides the normal craziness of adjusting to life as new parents, we mostly just snuggled in and enjoyed your sweet, soft, sleepy little self.
|This is where you took your best naps, snuggled up with Daddy, nice and warm.|
At first we had only a few visitors, which allowed us time to rest and get to know the newest member of our little family.
|Auntie Em lovin on some baby feet.|
|"I'm trying to sleep Grandpa!"|
|Out for your first walk. You slept through it!|
|See what you missed?!|
|First trip of MANY to Starbucks.|
|Papa sat and waited for people passing by to exclaim how cute you were and ask how old you were. He was so proud of you from the very start.|
|Your onesie says 25% sugar 25% spice and 50% everything nice. Made by your sweet Auntie Grace Ku.|
After a week or so we finally let your hoards of fans come to meet you.
|Uncle Chris meets his newest niece.|
|Snoozing with Mama|
We spent most of our time on the couch upstairs, sleeping, watching bad reality television, and nursing. We were lazy slugs and I loved it. I was suppose to take it easy, and you were a baby after all! What other time in our lives would we be able to just snuggle all day?
|Practicing the Thriller dance in your sleep.|
It is fun to go back and reminisce about that first hectic month, but part of me wishes that I had started keeping this journal for you back then. Not that I would have had time to write, but I am sure I am forgetting some of the little things.
Little things like how you made really loud squealing sounds like a guinea pig when you nursed. Or how we had to move your bassinet out of our room into the adjoining bathroom because you made so many noises when you slept that I was up all night checking on you.
|Perfect pout. Look at your nursing blister! See, nursing was hard for us both at the beginning :)|
I don't want to forget how that first couple of weeks I would nurse you ever three hours around the clock. It took you a long time to nurse and then after you nursed I would have to pump to get my milk supply up. By the time I was done it was almost time to start again! Ok, maybe I DO want to forget that!
|All I wanted was a girl with curls.|
I remember when you were 10 days old and your dad took me out for the first time since you were born. Our dinner was at a little Italian restaurant down the street. We left you with Nani and Papa and tried our hardest not to talk about you the whole time. Of course, we failed miserably and talked about you nonstop. I remember having my first glass of red wine (the only thing I craved and could not have during pregnancy) and savoring every flavor. I remember bursting with pride and wanting to tell everyone I saw that I had a beautiful 10 day old daughter, and didn't they want to see a picture?
I remember how your Nani stayed with us the first couple of nights and I was so nervous the first night she went home. It was just the three of us, our little family. We did alright :)
I remember going to Target with your Nani on Mother's Day. It was my first time away from you. I only made it once around the perimeter of the store before I was completely exhausted. The checkout lady thought I was newly pregnant and was super embarrassed when I told her I actually just had you. I wasn't embarrassed! You were four days old, I looked really good for just giving birth! :)
|Oh man, I love my girl.|
|No pictures please.|
I remember your Auntie Em making me laugh so hard that I cried. She would hold you and move your lips to make you say "Sookie!" just like Bill Compton in True Blood. Serious tears of happiness.
I remember how you would make cute little nursing movements when your lips while you slept. I laughed when you would smile and chuckle in your sleep. What did you dream about?
|You slept so well in your swaddle sacks, but every once and awhile you would fight the velcro and an arm would escape!|
|I loved wearing you around in the Moby wrap, but we didn't do it enough. You got too big too fast and it was hot in there!|
|Peeeeeeking at Nani.|
|Whenever anyone else was around I never got to hold you! You loved to sleep on Papa, he was the baby whisperer.|
|Sometimes Papa fell asleep too. . . and by sometimes I mean all of the time!|
|Sweet little pea. This is the same bassinet that your Grandpa Roy slept in as a baby (different sheets ;))! We had you in our bathroom for the first couple of months!|
|Your very first Ugly Doll picture the day you turned one month!|
I know there are so many tiny special moments that I have forgotten. Your sweet tiny toes, your warm snuggles and every middle of the night feeding has changed me into the mom I am today. I love looking back on this last year. So much has changed, but my delight in every new wonder remains the same.