This Diary of Motherhood is a series of weekly letters to my first baby, my little son who I call Baby Bird. I know not everyone wants to read about the highs and lows of motherhood so you can read non-baby related posts about travel, writing, freelancing or Amsterdam instead. Alternatively read one of my short stories or check out some book reviews and recommendations.
Dear Baby Bird,
Upon reflection, this week feels like that moment a pair of stiff new shoes become a little softer and more comfortable. We're not totally free from blisters or aches because this is all still very new, but it no longer hurts to walk just a few steps. The blisters this week were a morning of non-stop tears and a night where you refused to sleep after 3 o'clock in the morning no matter how much food, cuddles or coo-ing I offered you. As I paced the apartment holding you, we both cried. Then, at 8 o'clock that morning after we stole an hour's sleep on the sofa, I woke to you gargling at me. I think that was the first time I heard what I believe will become your laugh.
You still don't fail to surprise me. Though we didn't expect it for a few more weeks we saw you smile for the first time a few days ago, and I swear it had nothing to do with you passing wind or something more solid... Of course, your smile was directed at your daddy as opposed to the parent who's been feeding you every three hours for more than a month.
And yesterday, when we took you to a friend's house for their birthday party, you slept for the best part of four hours surrounded by loud voices, music and a small army of kind strangers telling you how cute you are. Those hours of sleep were a gift as I sat and talked to people about life as a new mother, but also life as other things... I can already tell I will need many conversations like this.
You also have the ability to surprise others. At your first check-up with the doctor this week you were the perfect baby, quiet, full-eyed and pouting lips.... until you pee-ed all over the kind, young woman who was trying to measure how tall you've grown. I was immediately embarrassed and apologised profusely. Your dad just shrugged and said, "At least it wasn't a number two."
Since day one I've known that I'm incredibly lucky that you and I both find breastfeeding easy. We've had few problems getting you latched on and my milk came in quickly and relatively painlessly. Furthermore, you're incredibly efficient. You're quick, you know when you've had enough and most days, you feed like clockwork - every three hours exactly. However, every now and again you will throw the schedule out of the window and demand close to a full feed every hour. I find it incredible how my body replenishes the supply according to your demands. I also find it hilarious when you pull away mid-suckling only for a broken shower head-esque spray of milk spurts from me in all directions splashing in your eyes and covering your face. I'm sorry that this makes me laugh every single time. Or maybe I'm not sorry; I need these laughs.
I know that I'll not always be able to satisfy and keep you as well nurtured so I'm going to keep thanking my lucky stars that we've got this sorted for now....
Your often confused by you, but always proud of you, crazy-in-love mother x
Frances M. Thompson
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