Ahh the day you have been waiting for. To bring your wee lil babe home and begin the greatest adventure of your life! You have everything ready, the nursery, the clothes, the bedding, and all the love in the world to give.
First thing we did when we were home was introduce the lil one to his fur sisters. Abby immediately b-lined to the back of the house, which was to be expected. Laney however was very curious. She reminded me of the scene in Lady and the Tramp when they bring the baby home and Lady is so sweet and curious. Laney did just this. She didn’t leave his side for some time and has since become very protective. Daddy introduced him as her baby and she accepted him fully as such.
Our first night went spectacular! We put him in his bassinet next to our bed and he slept fantastic only waking every 2-2.5 hours to eat of course. What’s that you ask? Every 2-2.5 hours! Yes that is what I said! I was soon going to learn that time can shorten to every 1-1.5 hours and you WILL NOT SLEEP AGAIN EVER!
The next night the real fun began. We started our nighttime bed routine around 7. He was a sweet sleepy baby all day and took great naps. What we did not know is there is a thing called the witching hour and we were going to get the full on introduction! Now when I say it is remarkable such a tiny lil one can scream at decibels that the dogs in the neighborhood are awake, I am not exaggerating! This is not just crying mind ya, this is full on screaming that goes on for hours! You feed, change, rock, walk, sing, talk, pat, everything in your arsenal and nothing works! This goes on and on until exhaustion finally sets in and sleep, kinda, happens 5 or so hours later.
I thought, it’s a fluke and maybe just a night of colic. WRONG! This goes on for weeks. By the end of the first week you come to a realization that this is an episode of Game of Thrones and you are the Mother of Dragon’s! Well singular that is. The sweet and precious lil one is like an angry fire-breathing dragon and nothing you do will calm the beast. You get to a point where you cry because you don’t know what else to do. Picture this if you will, your poor husband is observing this whole thing, and I am sure it is a sight. Baby crying, you crying, dogs running to hide and he is trying his darndest to assist only to get his head bit off in the mix. After week two you are pretty sure you are now a zombie and there isn’t enough coffee in the world that will help. Not that you can drink copious amounts if you are breastfeeding, so there’s that. My Dr. said that your body will literally shorten the time needed to get to your REM state but I don’t believe mine ever adjusted. I need to throw in this tidbit, both myself and hubby caught something in the hospital and were so sick when we got home it’s not even funny. It was some type of severe chest cold that caused uncontrollable coughing.
Now as a new mom you may or may not know that your body is so out of sorts, which is a different story, add any type of sick on top of and everything is exasperated by a million! I had to invest into adult diapers, blue hospital pads for when I sit and of course drink tons of water! Your milk has yet to come in (again different story) the first few days so water is imperative! So let me paint this picture a little different from the above. I am sitting on the couch, coughing my head off, can’t take anything for it, peeing with every cough, running a fever still, and I have my lil one to tend to. I did learn however to master holding a crying baby and sit on the toilet at the same time, which let me tell ya is no small feat. You learn to eat while consoling, if you eat at all. Oh and at some point you still need to shower and tend to yourself, clean your house, dinners etc. as well.
So around week two we discover gas drops and gripe water! HOLY HEAVENLY FIND! You can’t give it to them until they are at least two weeks old so don’t get too excited. Anyhow, I would give him gas drops before he ate and gripe water in the afternoon. I also found the Zen Swaddle by Nested Bean. It mimics your touch and is the greatest ever! The combination of the above was our road to sleep and to having a peaceful baby once more. We were still up every couple of hours for him to eat but the crying had stopped. We started into a routine of sorts and at almost 5 months old now he has become a good sleeper.
While every experience is different, this was our journey. There were lots of curve balls and learning to be had, but there were great aspects as well. When you are cuddling with your lil one and your husband and you realize your heart could explode at any moment from all of the love you feel it erases all of the trying times. The journey is still amazing and I wouldn’t trade it for the world!
Any new mama’s out there just remember you’ve got this! And we are here for ya!