Tuesday, March 10, 2015

4 months in.

My roly poly little bundle of perfection is 4 months old today! I can hardly believe it. It feels like he's been here forever and like I just gave birth to him, all at the same time.

Here's a little bit about our Natey Naterson at 4 months old.

Nathan loves:
1. His hands. Homeboy is obsessed with sucking on his hands and playing with them.
Mmmm hands
2. His mama. This kid is definitely a mama's boy. He likes just about everyone, but always looks for me when I'm talking and loves to nuzzle into me and fall asleep. Lucky for him, I'm pretty fond of cuddling up with him too. 
Best fwiends
3. The car. Nate still loves sleeping in his car seat and is incapable of staying awake in it. It's super nice for now, because I can go on walks and runs and do errands and he just peacefully snoozes away.
4. Bath time. Bath time is a highlight of both of our days. He is so darn cute in there, kicking and splashing. Our whole bedtime routine is a happy time, and snuggling up to my sweet smelling baby in cuddly pajamas afterwards is one of those moments I just want to put in a bottle and keep forever. It is everything I dreamed it would be. 
Just the cutest little nugget
 5. The mirror. That baby in there is just so cute!
6. Tickles and zerbits. Making that cutie pie laugh is MY favorite.
7. Spitting up. I'm not sure how much he likes it, but he sure does it a lot. We do a lot of laundry. And always smell like sour milk.  
8. Everything. Nate is always smiling and playing (unless it's nap time). I read somewhere that babies this age cry an average of 2 total hours per day, and I would be shocked if Nate totaled 15 minutes of crying each day. He is so happy and content, and I just love his guts.

Loving grandma cuddles
Reading books with Aunt Jenay and Ellie. Nate loves to be read to!
Enthralled by watching TV. I try to keep the TV off when he's awake because anytime it's on, he is completely fixated.
His hair is growing in blonde, and it is crazy looking!
Nathan does NOT love:
1. Sleeping. I sure wish this would change. We work at this every single day. We have a predictable routine of eat-play-sleep, I lay him down awake and he falls asleep by himself, but he wakes up every single dang nap at exactly 45 minutes. You could set a clock to him. And he absolutely will not go back to sleep no matter what I try, unless I hold him. In my arms, he will sleep for 3 hours. What the heck, baby?? His night sleeping has somewhat improved, in that he wakes up 4 or 5 times usually instead of 15. But sometimes he throws in a 15 wake up night just to keep my on my toes. And once again, I don't feed him to sleep, he goes down to bed awake and falls asleep no problem, and I am completely bamboozled by his sleep dysfunction. But I am apparently learning to function on 5 highly disrupted hours of sleep and usually only have a complete mental breakdown every 2 weeks or so. We'll get through it. And when he's a teenager, I'm going to go into his room at night and cry every 30 minutes for pay back. 
Sleeping in Mom's arms is where it's at for Nate-dizzle
2. Getting his neck blow dried. Due to spitting up all of the darn time, he got a really gnarly yeast rash in his chubby neck folds. We have to blow dry the area after bath time and put some cream on in it, and he haaaaaates it. Sorry, buddy. Stop spitting up and we won't have this problem!
So glad his little neck is better- it looked so painful and sad!
3. When I try to feed him and he's not hungry. Sometimes I try to feed him a little sooner than usual because we're going to church or out somewhere, and he gets soooo mad. It's a little annoying but mostly hilarious to hear him yelling when his mouth is full of boob, haha.

His "not love" list is a short list, because he is just the happiest, most content little man. His default emotion is happy, and it takes a lot of tick him off. I'm just crazy about the little booger.

And here's a little bit about me, at 4 months of being a mom.

I feel like I'm finally coming into my own as a mom. After reading stacks of books and scouring the internet for all baby advice, my internal "mom" compass was spinning wildly and I had no ability to trust myself and my abilities as a mother. I was completely paralyzed by not wanting to do it wrong. I read one book that just really spoke to my type-A neurotic planner self, and I tried to stick to it religiously. I would feed Nate, play for a while, and at the first sign of an eye rub or a fuss, I would do our nap routine and lay him down awake for his nap. He would fall asleep perfectly and then wake up at exactly 45 minutes and I would completely panic. It's only been 2 hours since he's ate, and he's not hungry, so I can't feed him. But the book says not to let them be awake before you feed them because they'll get too tired and you don't want them to fall asleep while eating. But the book also says not to hold them or put them in a swing or give them any other "sleep prop". So what do I do?? It seems so stupid now, but having a baby that wasn't following the "rules" made so panicked and stressed. I felt like I was doing something wrong because my baby was still waking up so much at night and napping like crap, and I resented Nate for foiling all of my efforts to have him on a schedule. As I read yet another baby book, which contained the exact opposite tenants of book #1, but equally as passionate that this was the right way, I realized that there is no "right" way to raise a baby. There are things that work for some people, and tips that can help trouble shoot, but in the end, I'm the one who knows this baby. The people who wrote these books never met Nate, and Nate definitely did not read up on how he is supposed to behave. I was texting a friend about my many insecurities as a mom and countless ways I was royally screwing up, and she told me that Nate was sent to me for a reason, and I am exactly the mom he needs. This made me cry (what doesn't make me cry...) and I have been working on remembering this sentiment when I'm not sure how many more nights of waking up a million times I can handle. I can handle all of them because I was hand selected for the job of loving this sweet baby in the middle of the night, and what a privilege it is to have that job.

In less emotional mom-news, I am going bald. Every time I wash my hair, I pull out giant handfuls of hair. I recently spent $600 on a stroller and I'm still getting sweaty palms just thinking about it. It's the Baby Jogger City Select, and it's pretty groovy. I spent like 4 hours playing with it and putting it in all of the different configurations, and now I have to have second kid someday since I have this radical double stroller. I've gotten pretty good at nursing in public, and nursing in front of my brothers and I've only completely flashed everyone one time. Going out with Nate no longer makes me panic, and in fact I rather enjoy running errands with my little buddy. I'm finally feeling like a real mom, and not like a really extended babysitter. I'm used to carrying a million things every time we go somewhere, I can unfold the stroller without saying too many bad words, and I think I look pretty good with a shoulder perpetually adorned with spit up. Taking care of Nate's basic needs is pretty second nature now, and mom life going pretty smoothly. Just in time for everything to change again. Because as a very wise friend once told me, the best and worst part about motherhood is that everything is a phase. The good stuff and the bad stuff are all temporary so buckle in and enjoy the ride!

Watch Nate grow:
 1 day
 1 month
 2 months
 3 months
4 months

I sure love you, Nate the Great.