Samuel is 6 weeks old today. I am happy to report that it is getting easier. That first month was just hard. So much crying and feeling overwhelmed. The last couple of weeks have felt better. I assume that’s due to my hormones leveling back out more, as well as just getting better at caring for a newborn. I think having to go back to work may have actually helped a little bit too.
There are still moments where I wonder if I am actually holding a little warm baby. I find myself thinking, “Is this real? Do we truly have a baby in our house?” I love him more and more as we continue to bond and learn about each other. He is so cute and sweet. I am so excited to see his first real smiles, hear new noises from him, and see his personality come out more and more. He has recently started making a new “goooh” kind of noise. I love it. He still isn’t looking at faces as much as up in the air or at the periphery of things, but he does look at my face sometimes. I can’t wait for him to stare at me and give me that smile. He does smile a lot, but it’s not the “real” smiles yet. I want to see that he loves me in these tangible ways. So far, I just see that he stops crying when I pick him up and that his face/movement changes sometimes when I talk or sing to him, like he is concentrating on listening.
There are times when I am holding and loving Samuel and I suddenly feel a sharp longing for Luke. I wonder what he would look like at 6 weeks and what his personality would be like. I miss him. I also wonder if I think about him enough. I try to remember to pray for God to give him a goodnight kiss for me and tell him I love him.
After studying Samuel’s face and Luke’s pictures more, I have determined that Samuel and Luke have different ears. I think Luke has Josh’s ears and Samuel has mine. But they have the same hair, similar cheeks, and I think a fairly similar nose and lips. I don’t know about their eyes, never having gotten to see Luke’s:( Samuel’s eyes are currently a beautiful dark blue. I wonder what color they will really end up to be.
This morning, I was thinking about going to the local county fair this weekend. I love that cheesy little fair. I like to see the baby cows, the millions of kinds of pigeons and rabbits, the homegrown vegetables and flowers… I enjoy having the excuse of it being once-a-year to eat some kind of fried treat. I have long desired to take a child to it. Last year, this was a painful thought. This year, I am hoping to take Samuel. He will likely just sleep through it this time, but I thought ahead to next year when he will be a year old. I pictured him reaching out to touch a cow nose. It overwhelmed me with joy and I burst out in tears. That will be so amazing to see.
To take him to the fair, I am planning to use his little backpack carrier for the first time. I have always loved those and longed to use one. I have a Baby Bjorn (from the flea market for $3–I have thoroughly washed it in the washing machine), a Moby wrap and a sling. I plan to use them all! So far, I have really only used the sling, but he likes that. He is over 8 pounds now, which is the weight at which the Baby Bjorn says you can start using it. I tried putting him in it once around week 2 or 3, just at home, and Josh said he was too little for it and I needed to wait. I was just excited to use it. I don’t have a baby scale, but I have been weighing myself on our regular scale, then weighing myself again holding him and deducing the difference. He weighed 9.6 pounds today, according to that method, which I realize may not be precise. He is visibly bigger. He is just starting to be able to wear some of his 0-3 month size clothes, after mostly being in newborn size these first 6 weeks. I am excited for his “Baby Brother” onesie from my sweet friend Bethany to fit properly. I plan to post that on FB as a tribute to Luke.
The growth is fun to see and also makes me sad. I don’t want him to get too big too fast. He is so cute just how he is. But seeing all that develops will be so fun too. And I do look forward to some things that seem like they may make life easier: sleeping through the night, eating baby food, playing with toys and entertaining himself… I kind of wonder if God let me have a harder time at the start because He knew how much I longed for my baby to stay small. Perhaps He needed to give me reasons to look forward to growth.
This is still somewhat of an out-of-body experience. It is SO time-consuming and demanding that I don’t have much time to ponder on it, but I am dimly aware that life is drastically changed. I feel like a totally different person. I am so thankful for him and I am enjoying him. I also sometimes miss talking to other adults daily and being free to do as I please. I feel a little tethered to the house right now. It will be nice when we are able to get out and do more. I think I am a person who needs a balance of home and out-in-the-world to be mentally healthy. I tend to get down when I am home in my pjs and/or unshowered for too long. If I just know that I have to go somewhere later in the day, such as going to see a speech client, then I can relish the quiet time at home until then. But if I have long stretches at home with nothing upcoming to look forward to or to be responsible to accomplish, I can get lost. I keep a running of list of things I need/want to do and if I’m lucky, I get 1-3 done in a day. There is laundry that has been in the dryer for days, the fridge desperately needs cleaned out, I desperately need to email some dear friends back, I have 3 pairs of underwear on the bathroom floor that haven’t made it to the hamper yet (this would be normal for Josh, but not for me)… I guess I just have to find my balance. I keep reading/hearing that around 3 months, several things in baby care get easier. If so, we are halfway there. But I am trying to enjoy all the precious moments on the way and not just be always waiting for some upcoming milestone. I had enough of that during pregnancy!
I hope you all are doing well. I think of you often and feel better just knowing you are out there in the world, feeling similar things to me. I can’t wait to see all the rainbows who are coming. So many blessings on the way:)