March 20, 2013

Out of the Haze…


42 days 42 nights- that's a long time with not much sleep and around the clock care…but we made it!




So, nobody really tells you until you’ve given birth that if you make it through the first 6 weeks of infancy you deserve a gold medal.  I’m serious.  I want to read that book.  Not the ones that tell you what “should” happen, I want the book that tells you what actually happens and how crazy it is!  To all of you parents out there, especially those with multiples or multiple children – high five to you.  You are all rock stars in my eyes.

I knew that bringing home a newborn would be a total shock to our system, but I had no idea how tough (at times) it would be and how crazy my hormones/emotions/lack of sleep would play into it.

Honestly, I was a mess for the first 5 weeks; crying on and off, not loving the daily ins and outs of having a newborn and wondering when it would get better.  I just wanted to fast forward to about 6 months (not that it’s easier, but different); but then I would feel guilty for not enjoying the moment.  I am not a crier, by nature, so when I was crying for no reason, it threw me for a loop. I felt silly, weak, and helpless all at the same time. 

My mom kept saying that everybody has been through it and it will get better, just hang in there.  She along with my aunts and nana would recount the stories of when they were going through it and how they felt the same way.  Well, of course, they were right. 

Coping with poop, crying, spit up, weight gain, lack of sleep and everything else has progressively gotten better and I’m feeling much more like myself again – thank goodness.  No more tears and I get a chance to fall more in love with my little guy more and more every day.  He’s the little love of my life (along with my big love Smile)and I am so thankful that we get to grow as a family together.

Babies are tough, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, but they are also so worth it.  Remember that this to shall pass and to just keep putting one foot in front of the other.  Like my mom told me; If you are loving your baby, you’re doing it right…that’s all they need (well, that and food and clean diapers).

Mike and I are by no means “pros”, but we feel much better off than we did 6 weeks ago.  It has definitely been an adventure so far, and this is just the beginning!


Here’s our recap:


EJA - Month 1


  • I feel like the itty bitty newborn stage would be kind of like basic training if we were in the military.  The only thing I can really relate it to would be our hellacious 3 a day volleyball practices during pre-season in college.   At the time it was hard with no end in sight, but then you somehow do it and gain a lot of experience from it with lots of stories to look back on and laugh (or cry) about.


  • Did you know there was an Early Today Show?  Well there is and I felt like I was up to speed on all of the news of the day by 4 am.  By the time the actual Today show came on at 7 am it was old news to me!


  • Having a newborn is like taking care of a stuffed animal, they don't do much or interact in the beginning, which can be hard since there’s not a lot of reward for all that you are doing, but slowly, everyday you get to see them do something new, however small it is.


  • Baby pajamas are the cutest things in the world.




  • I learned that for me, I needed to get out of the house. Even if its just to go to the Starbucks drive thru or the grocery store for hot dog buns…get out and about!  Everett and I also went for a walk/run every day.  I was going stir crazy inside, but some fresh air definitely helped!


  • Take a shower and brush your teeth. Even if its after dinner for the first time – do it.


  • The first six weeks are like taking 1 step forward and 2 steps back. Just when you think you're getting the hang of it. NOT!  It’s all just trial and error.


EJA - Month 11


  • I knew I was a mom when: I wiped off spit-up to go on date night instead of changing. (I was not however wearing mom-jeans!)


  • I was freaked out about: taking a rectal temperature.  It’s actually not that bad – just make sure you have the quick-read version.  Ours only takes about 5 seconds.


  • I never realized: how comfy my bed was.


  • I was most afraid of: not being able to soothe him. 5s's are helpful!  Everett goes from zero to 60 in about a second, so I have tried to just relax and try figure out what’s wrong instead of freaking out like he is, they can feel your anxiety. Remember 3 minutes of screaming can seem like 3 hours, just try your best to get to the root.


  • I was scared: the first time he "really" spit up. It came out like vomit and I wanted to cry – it scared him and me!


  • We actually figured out that: he was super gassy (causing him pain, not just a lot of toots) and that was causing instant freak outs with a hard to calm baby throughout the night. We got some infant gas drops (thanks Susie!) and switched to a more sensitive formula which seems to help. High five for us!


  • I love it when: Everett stretches, raises his hand like he has a question, looks around and puckers his lips.  It’s so cute!


 EJA - Month 12


  • In the beginning we couldn't have lived without:
    -Adan and Anais swaddle blankets
    -Lots of burp cloths
    -Waterproof changing pad liners (Mom, you were right!)
    -onesies with hand covers, no mittens!
    -bottle brush

    Bob jogging stroller, and easy car seat adapters


  • Most babies have a witching hour when they are fussy, cranky, unsettled, whiny – sounds like a blast doesn’t it!?!  Everett’s was/is anywhere from 4pm-9pm.  Not the entire time, but anytime during that span.  It has gotten a bit better, or maybe we’re just ready for it now!


EJA - Month 21


  • I will say that we couldn’t have survived the first 6 weeks without each other (and some help from Gransie).  It is essential to have a great support staff.  In my case, it is an amazing partner. Work together and set up an "on duty" schedule if needed (easier if formula fed, but can work with pumped bottles of breast milk).

We still take turns with the feedings (since we are formula feeding – I tried breast feeding, but it was quite an emotional rollercoaster/catastrophe – more on that in another post)and switch off during the night.

--Surprise your partner (or helper) with an unexpected shift off.


  • Remember - give yourself a break. Laugh about it, whatever it is and know that you're one day closer to figuring something else out about your new little person.  You're doing it, and doing it well even if you don’t think so!  Don't be afraid to cry either; you probably won't be able to help it anyway!


  • Your new baby is like a pop quiz with multiple choices – take your best guess to answer why it is they are crying/uncomfortable. In the beginning I just wanted to be right the first time and ended up frustrated when whatever I was trying didn’t work.  Remember, until you learn your baby and his/her needs, your best is all you can ask for!


  • As Mike likes to say, “You don’t have to be perfect, you just have to be good enough.”  At this point and time I think we are. Smile


  1. This was one of your best posts yet! And so very true. You're a great writer who puts things into perspective in a really interesting and comical way. Keep it up.

  2. Love this post. You are so on target. Babies don't come with a do the best you can.

  3. If it helps any...the second one is easier! The first one prepares you but you will do most completely different for the 2nd than the first! Having your newborn in the hospital for four heart surgeries really made me a mellow Mom. I know that you are a great Mom and will enjoy the ride. I miss the babies and you will too. My advice is to be sure to write lots down because it will go so fast and bring so much newer events that you will forget. Hugs to you and your new family!

  4. THANK YOU FOR WRITING THIS. This is my life now (at 3 am as i write this and have been up allll night). I don't' remember, did you include learning new talents like breastfeeding in-front of a computer screen to stay awake and then feeling COMPLETELY GUILTY about it?! You should read "Girlfriends Guide" (and by that i mean listen on tape!) bc it is also good. My friend gave it to me.