Monday, July 11, 2011
New couch. Newish baby.
When Declan was three days old, the nurse wheeled me to the hospital exit, wished us well and released us into the world. Caleb hustled to buckle the baby into his sister's old car seat, and I hurried to join them in the back, the wind that April day particularly cold and biting. Baby was situated, we were ready to go - and that's when we realized that we had locked ourselves into the backseat of our own car.
Directly in front of the hospital lobby.
Thanks to Volvo's ubersafe childproof locks and Declan's carseat situated in the middle, we weren't getting out easy.
We hadn't even left the hospital parking lot and already, we had failed.
And what did we do?
We laughed hysterically for about five minutes before Caleb managed to squeeze his lanky frame over the passenger seat and drive us home.
I think that moment is a pretty good indicator of the past three months with Declan. By no means is he a "hard" baby but certainly harder than his sister was as an infant. Thankfully, the second go at this has made everything seem easier.
I'm a bit weary of the incessant spitup (and overflowing laundry) but I'll take that over the colicky screaming fits that blessedly strike with less frequency these days. I've made miserable attempts at cutting out certain foods (no cheese, no sampling the chocolate chip cookies I just baked with the kiddo), but honestly I'm hoping that the books will be right this time, that those newborn intestines will work out the kinks by week 12 and the gassiness will just magically disappear.
Because I like manchego and chocolate chip cookies.
He giggled at me around the second month, a strange, burbling sound that truly does not seem part of this world, more of an echo from his alien beginnings. A friend shared with me that some tribal cultures don't believe that the baby is truly human until their first laugh, a sentiment I can get behind. Even though they are here, in your arms, don't they truly seem that they are not yet fully part of this world? The unearthly cries that don't seem to come from his throat or lungs but elsewhere, those phantom, almost metallic sounding grunts as they paw at the breast for food? I guess it's the trade off for those big, gorgeous brains they have - we are blessed not to give birth to a munchkin that's been bulking up for 52 weeks, but really, wouldn't it be nice to cook those babies a little longer so they come out as if they were 3 months old - bright eyed, smiley, and ready to engage with the world?
I'm happy to report that Declan is fully with us on the planet. Kiddo is strong - he could hold his head up well at 7 weeks, so now his neck works like a spectator at Wimbledon, constantly swiveling to see where that pesky little blonde girl went. He is committed to what we call his baby crunches, curling forward so that he can (one day) sit up. Unfortunately he likes to practice this in his car seat, a move that typically results in his getting his head stuck on the side of the seat.
Some patterns are starting to emerge from the haze of those early weeks. He has a bedtime which is early (yay) but coincides with his sister's next door, so it's like trying to soothe a baby to sleep by placing it in a ballpit inside a Chuckie Cheese. To her credit, Harlow tries to be quiet, but really, I don't want her memory of bedtime to be SHHHHHHHHHHHHDONTWAKETHEBABY. Fortunately for us, she has chosen just the right time to fall in love with a fellow 4 year old lad in her summer day care, so she's eager to hear bedtime stories about Prince Bryce and fall sweetly into dreamland for more.
They are both asleep. The house is quiet. Mama out.