I can’t believe two weeks have passed since DJ, as I’ll call him here, arrived. Our sense of time has dissolved so much that we didn’t even realize Memorial Day was here.
It amazes me that things we thought were important a few weeks ago, like checking email every day, just aren’t now. Our days have become a continuous cycle of feeding, changing diapers, changing his clothes once he’s soiled them, holding him, smiling and having staring contests with him. He usually wins.
He’s thrown us a few curveballs already. First, he inherited his father’s blood type, not mine, so there was a danger of jaundice. DJ’s pediatrician thought he should spend time under special lights in the hospital nursery. The lights are designed to help his body process the chemicals that cause jaundice. We planned to have him in the room with us the whole time, so that was disappointing. DJ didn’t seem to mind. In his diaper with cloth “sunglasses” over his eyes under the lights, he looked like he was at the beach.
We minded, though, especially when they had to test his blood every six hours.
And then there’s the nursing. In the hospital, my ob/gyn said his wife called nursing “the second hardest thing you’ll ever do.” She was absolutely right. At this point, nursing takes two hands. The books I read when I was pregnant didn’t discuss what to do when his little arms are flailing between him and me, or how to get him to open his mouth wide enough to latch properly.
It’s important to feed babies every tow or three hours, even if it means waking them up. At night, thankfully, we can let him go four to five hours between feedings.
I now know it’s nearly impossible to intentionally wake a sleeping baby, though there are a million ways to do it accidentally.