Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Newsletter: Month 2

Dear JB,

Today you are 2 months old.

On the first day of YOUR SECOND MONTH OF LIFE, the Red Sox won the World Series! You will never have any idea how ridiculous that is... and how thrilling. There were people that lived 85 entire years and never saw a Red Sox World Series Championship! I immediately began to worry that you have been born into a tradition of Red Sox fan-dom that I know nothing of. How can I help you learn what it is to be a true Bosox fan in a world where our team has known recent (dare I say) steady victory?!? I am still a little unsure of how to act. As a fan that has the opportunity to relish the present post season experience, instead of only having the option to "gear up" wistfully for next spring, I worry that I have to change our family's passionate cheering strategy. When I was growing up, bragging and talking smack was all about bravado, keeping hope alive, and proving allegiance in the face of regular heartbreak. In your era, the type of sassy loyalty we intended to teach you might come off as cocky and not-so-adorable. Where parents in Red Sox Nation have always had to focus on building a young fan's sense of self worth, I will have to learn to somehow infuse humility into my lessons on team devotion!

In the last 4 weeks, you officially grew out of all your newborn clothes. They say those are "up to 8lbs" but you lasted in most of them until close to 12 lbs. Isn't cotton wonderful? We go to the pediatrician tomorrow, but we know you have probably gained at least another pound since your last visit. Most of the newborn clothes you wore were some of the only clothes that we purchased for you. Because we picked out most of those newborn clothes, we really loved them and it was hard to pack them away. Incidentally, I have already organized and "cleaned out" your dresser drawers more in the last 2 months than I have cleaned out MY dresser drawers in the last 2 years... I guess that's to be expected. (Wwwwelcome to Motherhood, Mr. Baaanks.)

We spent most of your 2nd month (when we weren't just staring at you saying to each other, "isn't he just the cutest, freaking thing you've ever seen...") trying to strategize getting you to sleep more at night. We were willing in the first 4 weeks to let you get up every 1-2 hours to feed, but that started to suck as it went on into this month. (No pun intended.) We waffled and attempted to implement the advice of many: trying keep you up during the day; trying to hold off feedings as long as possible; trying to "stack" feedings, etc... We found that all attempted measures were no more successful than placebo (having no strategy at all.) Some nights you slept well. Some nights you didn't. What did we want from a 2 month old anyway? A MS Outlook calendar?!? Using a "what I don't have, I don't want anyway" approach, I decided that working toward a "schedule" is just busywork- an illusion. As your Aunt Teri attempted to comfort your mothers, she pointed out, even the clock and calendar are arbitrary measures of time.

SIDEBAR: Last night you slept soundly from 11:30 pm to 5:30 am. When I woke to your hungry whimpering and glanced at the alarm clock, I touched a hand to my chest and nearly exploded (with both pride and breast milk!)

Speaking of breast milk, you are still on the tittie. Most folks I know want to kill me for using this term. I've been told, "You're crass," "That's rude," and "That's no way to speak around a baby." I've even been told that if I write about this here, I will somehow scar you and ruin your life, but I'm sorry, I had breasts and boobs my whole life, but this- what's going on here and now... The tittie is all about breastfeeding! You are still going strong and eating well, but for the first time this month, I considered throwing in the towel. It is a lot to have these mammaries pumping out the sweet stuff around the clock. You are worth it, sure. But mommy's tired of never getting to be naked without soaking something. I don't have a solid plan (shocking) and am not sure how I'll decide when to stop. I know if we get to a year, I'm FOR SURE all done. Prior to that, teeth will likely be a barrier for this mommy. But i digress...

This month you've perfected the art of the spit up- you love to drain the sweet, white, liquid gold from my titties and puke some of it back up onto your perfectly laundered clothes. It sometimes appears that you have an aversion to clean burp cloths and (we've said this for a while now: an unsoiled diaper seems to give you diarrhea...) Our washer and drier are going for broke- at maximum capacity, several days a week, but we are so damn proud of everything you create that it seems no bother at all.

Actually, we've finally realized that you only spit up when you are pushing to go number-two too soon after eating. We only needed to have this conversation 500 times: "Honey, what's the matter? why are you so fussy? Now you're spitting up... is your tummy bothering you? Why is your face so scrunched like that? Are you getting sick? I guess some babies spit up after eating, but you didn't do this earlier. I don't know what's wrong..." pllllbbbbbbbbbb... "oh, you were pooping..." before the honest surprise in my voice wore off and I got the meaning of that communication cue.

In the middle of the month, we took a night away to see a play. It was nerve racking, but we packed you up for your first overnight with your Nana and Papa. You were well taken care of, and your mommies got about 6 hrs of uninterrupted sleep. It was so strange to be without you for that length of time. Sometimes when I am driving around and you are at home with your mama, I'll think to myself, "Wow, JB is being so good back there." Then I'll realize that you aren't in the car with me and for a split second, I almost start screaming thinking I left you at Stop.and.Shop or something. Then I remember that I appropriately arranged loving care for you and haven't lost my mind or left you behind.

Your first two major holidays: Halloween and Thanksgiving occurred this last month. I have to say, i thought it would be ridiculous and cruel to dress up a 1.15 month old. If it weren't for Greg and Julie sending a handed down costume, we wouldn't have even had one for you to wear on Halloween. At the last minute, I threw you in the purple dragon outfit and showed up at some of our peeps' houses. We played the "ring and run" game leaving you in the Boppi.pillow on Kerry and Bob's front steps. It was so fun and I'm glad we didn't miss those moments. (Thank you, G and J!) Thanksgiving we spent at home with relatives. Your Grannies and Grandpa came from Ohio. You met your Uncle Josh who came from Seattle. The next day you met your uncle Pat and cousin Eric and were reunited with your Aunts: Anne and Marilyn.

At some point in the last 4 weeks you definitely started smiling- mirroring us when we smile, locking eyes with us and grinning. Your mama has said you were "laughing" for most of this month too. I heard the noise but didn't think it was a laugh. Until last week, when I happened to be staring at you when you made "the noise..." It's kind of a screech, but I think she's been right about it all along. These last few days, you have begun um-mistakably smiling, gooing, cooing, laughing in response to our funny faces and expressions.

It. Is. Awesome.

Things are starting to feel normal again, and we're so glad you are here.

We love you,
Your mommies

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