Letters to Jack: Month 1

_MG_1542Well, hello there, my sweet boy. Welcome to your first letter.

You’ve been in our lives for one month, and what a fantastic month it has been. Oh, there have been difficult moments, but your Dad and I seem more level-headed about it all. Perhaps because we’ve been through it before. Perhaps because we don’t have time to dwell on the rough moments with a 4 1/2-year-old running around. Perhaps because you’re too damn cute for us to think about anything else.

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Right now, you’re sleeping in the amazing swing that your Uncle Dan and Aunt Rhianna let us borrow. It’s a rare moment of quiet. If it’s the case that no two children are alike, you and Charlie differ mostly when it comes to sleep. You don’t seem to like it very much.

For your first three weeks, you averaged only 90 minutes of sleep at a time – even at night. You refused to be swaddled. And you woke up ravenously hungry every time.

Thankfully, those sleep stretches are getting longer, about two hours now. Last night you slept four hours straight, but that’s probably because you refused to sleep AT ALL during the day. I’m also learning what your sleep snores and grunts mean. In the beginning, they just seemed loud.

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You’re also an incredibly light sleeper. Even the click-clack of my typing seems to stir you. And when you wake up, you are so, so fussy. You refuse to be put down. It’s difficult to get anything done around the house.

(Agh! You woke up……..OK, I got you back down…….no wait, you’re up again…….)

(45 minutes later)

Wow, your timing couldn’t have been better on that one. This is real-time reporting, Jack! You seem to be asleep now. I’m crossing my fingers.

(Aaaa, up again! …..Take a NAP, child! )

(The next day.)

Aaaaand, I’m back. The only reason I can continue is because we’re at Grandma B’s for mini-Thanksgiving. Uncle Barry and Aunt Sandy are also here, so there are five adults to juggle two children. Ha — we outnumber you! Barry is playing Legos with your brother and Grandma is giving you a bottle.

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Let’s talk about your appetite. We’ve had much more success with breastfeeding this round. It’s an experience I didn’t get to have with Charlie (I ended up pumping for nine months), so I’ve been enjoying our time together. I weighed you yesterday at breastfeeding support group and you were 10 lbs, so you’re up about two pounds in a month. I believe it; you are packing 4-5 oz every two to three hours. Your face looks rounder already.

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With the help of lactation consultants and your pediatrician, we discovered a few weeks ago that you had mild tongue-tie, which was affecting your ability to latch. Making the decision to get it cut was difficult. Your pediatrician gave us only a 50% chance that you would nurse better following the procedure.

It was tough for me to consider inflicting unnecessary pain on you. I burst into tears when you were taken into another room for the snip. You came back only moments later, not crying; you did great! And the first time you latched, I could feel the improvement.

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I’m really enjoying maternity leave. I find myself cuddling you as much as possible and inhaling your intoxicating baby scent. Maybe it’s because I know you are my last child. Or because the transition from one child to two feels so much easier than zero to one. Or because you’re my only child who doesn’t give me attitude (yet) and I enjoy the quiet. Not suffering from postpartum issues helps, too.

Your father looked at me the other day and said, genuinely, “Motherhood suits you.” I was disheveled, sleep-deprived, unshowered, likely smelly, and flashing boobs through an unbuttoned nursing shirt.

It made me smile. I always knew I wanted two children, and with your arrival I feel like our family is complete. Being your mother and Charlie’s mother makes me feel complete, too. I truthfully feel it is what I was meant to do.

So, welcome to this crazy, wonderful family and to this crazy, wonderful world, my son. We are so grateful to meet you.

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