Anyway, What's it like having a newborn these days, you ask? Let me tell you... Now we are 16 days post-birth, so I'm starting to settle in to life with a wee baby a little bit more. And here's what I've found.
- Sleeping (ME): I'd be lying if I said I wasn't pretty tired. The most sleep I get in a row is 2 hours, but sometimes only an hour. I'm lucky in that Riley is a good sleeper, so I really do get to sleep when she sleeps, although obviously not all the time, or I'd be sleeping like 16 hours a day! But anyway, usually I feed her at midnight-ish, then we both sleep for 2 hours, feed her again at 3-ish, sleep again for 2 hours, feed her at 6-ish, then usually Mark takes her and I sleep for about an hour without the baby. Then I'm up most of the day, I might take one nap (two if I'm lucky!) with her during the day, and I try to get in bed with her around 9pm and we sleep until her midnight feed.
- Sleeping (HER): As I said, she's a pretty good sleeper, but I've found that she gets overstimulated if there is too much going on (visitors, lots of noise and lights, TV on, etc), and then she doesn't fall asleep, so she gets overtired, and cranky! But this only happens occasionally, and is easily solved by taking her into the bedroom with the lights down low, and she relaxes and falls asleep fairly quickly. She still will mostly only sleep in my arms, so we have been co-sleeping for all her sleeps. I thought I would NEVER do this, but I actually get really good sleep this way, as does she. People keep telling me I'm spoiling her, but I don't believe you can spoil a baby that is only 2 weeks old, and she's not going to be sleeping in my arms forever, so for now, you do what you gotta do to get some sleep and make your baby happy. And to be honest, I really love cuddling with her in bed, and it makes the night time feeds so much easier
- Eating: Finally, now 16 days later, I think (fingers crossed) that breast feeding is going really smoothly! Yay! She is finally eating regularly from both sides now, and I am no longer in any pain every single time I feed her (although my pain was never really bad to begin with), and my milk seems to have regulated (not too much, or too little). Now I just want to try and see if I can get her to eat while I am lying down, because that would make my night time feedings so much nicer!!
- Crying: I am so thankful that we have SUCH a good baby. Currently, Riley only cries when she's hungry, or getting her diaper/clothes changed, and even then she only cries half the time. She will also cry when she wants to be held, but since she gets cuddled a lot, she rarely cries for that reason. :) My parents are staying here with us right now, and our house is not so big, and they have yet to be woken up in the night by Riley because she just doesn't really cry. She wakes me up when she gets hungry, and I usually can feed her before she starts to cry. And she kind of just squeaks when I change her diaper at night, not really a full cry. She barely even wakes Mark up, and he's in the same bedroom! As I said, such a good baby!
- Outings: I had hoped to be taking Riley out and about by now, but it's a little more stressful/tricky than I anticipated. I took her for one short walk, and then I popped her in the car and we watched the last 2 minutes of Mark's soccer game. She HATES getting in to her car seat (as in, screams bloody murder), but LOVES riding in the car. Thank God for that!
- My body: Starting to feel normal today!! No pain when walking or sitting or general moving around, although I don't think I'll be doing much more than that any time too soon. My abdominal muscles are still quite weak (understandably), which makes easy tasks such as sitting up not quite so easy!
- Boppy pillow (with multiple covers)
- Lots of burp cloths
- Water proof pads that we use to change her diaper wherever we are
- Preemie clothes- she wasn't a preemie, but all her newborn clothes were way too big!
- Pacifiers (multiple, since they always get dropped on the floors
- Disposable breast pads and Lanolin ointment.
- Breast pump. Necessary when Riley would only feed from one side! You never know.
- Tylenol. For me, not the baby. :)
- Those baby night gowns, the ones with no legs... trying to unbutton and re-button all those snaps in the middle of the night to change a diaper (4 times) of a wriggly, fussy baby is not so fun!
- Some other things are weather dependent, since it's freezing cold here, we've used some heavy blankets, warm hats, and space heater for our bedroom.
- Swing, bouncy seat, moses basket, etc etc... she only wants to be held!
- Changing table... just easier to change her in whatever room we're in
- Swaddle blankets... I swore I would use these all the time, but Riley doesn't seem to like them yet, mostly because she just likes to be in my arms and there's really no need to be swaddled then.
- Baby bath- we just bathe her in the sink in the bathroom, easy peazy.
And this is me, looking quite tired after waking up from a nap with Riley. This is how we sleep!