Sunday, July 26, 2020

one month of colin

Happy one month, little guy!

I've been struggling with what to write about the last month, and I realized why: I'm afraid I'm going to jinx it!! Colin is such a relaxed baby! He's a good eater, a decent sleeper, and overall just a very calm kiddo. He only fusses when he's hungry, and even then it takes him quite a while to work up to a full cry. He tries to soothe himself by sucking his thumb, but rarely remembers to unclench his fist enough to actually get his fingers into his mouth. When he's tired, he puts his hand to the back of his head and pulls his fingers through his fuzzy hair. See, tired:

His favorite activity is staring. He stares up into the blue sky on our walks, and he stares forlornly in our direction if we walk away while he's awake in the baby swing. He sits in his little pillow chair and stares at us while we make dinner. But mostly he likes staring at our faces while we cradle him on the couch. He likes to stare at Dan for at least a half an hour after his midnight feed, and refuses to go back in his Pack 'N Play until he's stared himself back to sleep. His gaze bores deep into our eyes. (He captured our hearts the moment he was born, but I have a suspicion he's trying to capture our souls also.)

He's started to add some hesitant coos into his vocal repertoire of grunts and snores. I'm hoping to see some smiles soon! He tolerates tummy time (with much grunting and struggling), but seems much more focused on pushing with his legs than lifting his head. He also tolerates sponge bath time, but LOVES the part where we dip his head under the faucet to rinse his hair. He's only had sponge baths so far since his umbilical cord is still healing, so I hope his love of the faucet translates to a love of splashing in the plastic baby tub soon!

This infant lounger has been a godsend. We move it around the house with us: kitchen, dining room, and, yes, even the bathroom, so Colin can hang out while we go about our days. He does frequently nod off in his little baby nest, though we don't let him nap in it for extended periods of time.

We took our first family walk when Colin was about a week old. I think half the neighborhood was outside that evening, so lots of people got to meet him (from a distance). Since then, we've gone out for walks almost every morning before the summer heat gets too unbearable.

Mae is adjusting well to life with a sibling. She's a big helper and always eager to fetch things when asked (burp cloth, onesie, pacifier). She loves introducing Colin to people on our walks, saying, "This is my baby brother! He barfed on the couch twice and pooped on the wall twice!" (In her opinion, these are the most notable events of the past month.) Her chattiness has only increased since our attention has been split between kids, and there is rarely a moment of silence in our house now.

We are looking forward to month two!

Sunday, July 19, 2020

facetime the family

Due to coronavirus, Colin's first introduction to the family was mostly virtual! The hospital did not permit any visitors, and we were recommended to have any family isolate for 2 weeks prior to visiting. While our first week at home wasn't exactly peaceful even without visitors, it was nice to start building our new routine. Mom took this family photo for us when Colin was 9 days old, the day she went back home after taking care of us for over two weeks.

I put on makeup and real clothes just for this occasion! The photo is a bit deceptive, though. We look all nice and put together, but we are actually surrounded by the typical chaos of the playroom! Here's Mae, hamming it up for the tripod.

While Mae was the first one to meet and hold Colin when we got home, Grandma also got plenty of baby snuggles in that first week. Fortunately, he's still a pretty cuddly kid and loves being held. (But not in that "I'll scream if I'm not held constantly" way. More in a "I will gaze adoringly into your eyes for hours while you cradle me" way.)

Colin's had several FaceTime calls with Dan's side of the family! I think he snoozed through the first few with GranE, Batman, and Colleen. I forgot to take a screenshot of group FaceTime that included Tim and David! (I think he slept through that one, too.)

Dad and Kelsey actually got to see some eyeballs. They must have called during a rare hour of alertness! (They were able to visit along with Kevin when Colin was about 2 weeks old, so I'll have to share those pictures later!)

While it's been unfortunate that Colin hasn't been able to meet all our friends and family in person yet, he does spend more time awake and engaged every day! That'll make future visits even more fun for everyone!

Monday, July 13, 2020

big sister

Mom kept Mae entertained during the week leading up to my due date. They filled the days with picnics, puzzles, and trips to the park while Dan and I were still working from home. We've been letting Mae go to playgrounds, as long as they aren't crowded and she sanitizes/washes her hands right afterwards. Mae was so happy to have some undivided attention from Grandma after weeks of being trapped at home with two working parents!

Mae and I compared our baby bumps. Shortly after this was taken, Mae birthed a small balloon. I think this is the last photo of my bump before I went into labor!

On the day Colin was born, Mae got to celebrate becoming a big sister! We gave her a doll carrier for her Bitty Baby and a very cute "Big Sister" shirt made by Stacey (check out her etsy shop here). She also helped Grandma make some chocolate cupcakes and a big poster to welcome us home!

We missed her SO MUCH while we were in the hospital. We were so happy to come home to her big smile, and she immediately declared Colin "soo cute!" She already loves reading to him, especially her "I'm a Big Sister" book!

Friday, July 3, 2020

he's here!

Colin Matthew was born at 1:11 pm on his due date, Friday, June 26th! (He’s the first person in our family to arrive on time for anything.) He weighed 8 lbs and measured 20 inches long.

My labor started around 1 am Friday morning. I woke Dan at 3 am and we left for the hospital. Fortunately, my mom has been staying with us since the previous Friday (after a 2 week quarantine at home), so we didn’t have to wake Mae or call neighbors before leaving for the hospital. I was 6 cm dilated upon arrival to the hospital and in a decent amount of pain, so they quickly hooked up my IV and prepped me for an epidural. I had more anxiety about the epidural procedure than any other part of labor since my last experience was so traumatic. I sobbed through the whole thing, but it was uneventful and, more importantly, it worked!

Overnight, I rested while watching “Spider-Man: Far From Home” and “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” and had my COVID test. They warned me it would be “uncomfortable” but I was expecting it to be more “swabby” and not nearly so “poky.” It felt like they were jabbing a coffee stir stick into my brain. Not fun. At least it was negative so I didn’t end up in isolation.

The doctor broke my water around 8:30 am. I felt so lucky that the doctor on call all weekend was the same doctor who had held my hand through the very stressful beginning of this pregnancy. While this is my second live birth, it’s my fifth pregnancy and was preceded by two back-to-back miscarriages. This doctor was so reassuring and helpful throughout the whole pregnancy, birth, and hospital stay.

I only pushed for about 10 minutes and thankfully avoided an “operative” delivery with forceps like last time. Colin was born healthy and screaming like a champ!

We stayed in the hospital for 2 days and took full advantage of the nursery to get some sleep overnight. We came home to a VERY excited big sister. Mae was hyper-ventillating with excitement to meet her baby brother (and to show us how well she had cleaned up the playroom.) Adjusting to life with a newborn and a toddler has been a lot easier with my mom helping out, but we are slowly working into a routine!

P.S. I'm going to need to work a little harder to come up with blog title puns for the name Colin than I did for Mae!

P.P.S. If I can birth an 8 lb baby while wearing a mask, you can wear one to the grocery store.