Have you ever seen streams of darling, sleepy newborn baby pictures show up in your newsfeed on Facebook and Instagram (guilty as charged) and wondered in amazement at the idyllic life of a newborn?
Well, guess what? The reason you see all those sleepy baby pictures is because that’s when moms actually have a free hand to grab a camera. Much as I believe in documenting real life in all it’s raw splendor, it’s pretty hard to grab a camera when both your hands are occupied holding, patting, sticking a pacifier back in, patting, wiping spit up, patting, feeding, changing diapers amidst those teeny tiny flailing legs, patting …
Luckily, Adam is old enough to operate my camera reasonably well and it’s so much fun to have a few images of the awake and busy moments when my hands are full.
But just in case you wanted a glimpse of what it’s really like to have a newborn (or a bit of humor for your otherwise normal Tuesday) let me tell you about last Monday.
I woke for the how manyeth time at 7:30 to tiny, hungry baby cries. I was completely hung over with exhaustion. We’d spent the day in Virginia on Sunday because David was going down to pick up his niece and I couldn’t stay out of the van when looking at the chance to see Bella’s almost twin cousin. Seriously. How darling are these babies and how fun is it that they are only three days apart in age?
I figured if women in Bible times walked to the temple on day eight to get their boy babies circumcised, it couldn’t hurt me to drive three hours in a van, right? Hmm. No long term repercussions, but oh was I tired Monday morning. We needed to be out the door by 9 to get to the pediatrician on time and it certainly didn’t look like I was going anywhere big when I could hardly make it out of bed. David rescued me and said he’d take me in. He walked out the door to work and said he’d be back to pick me up.
I thought this should go like clockwork (how is it that I’ve still not figured this out?). After all, I had the diaper bag packed the night before. This is baby number 4. I have very little mama pride left, plus, I’ve got long standing rapport with the pediatrician’s office by now. Bella was simply going to go in her puked on sleeper, because no one was going to assume I was a negligent mom based on dirty pajamas. You can bet child number one would have gotten a thorough bath if it meant getting up at 6AM to do it. I’m telling you, by baby #3 or 4, it’s about survival.
I fed her and like usual, milk entering her belly created a poopy eruption down south. While I was holding her legs up to change her diaper, she peed and gravity spread everything up toward her umbilical cord and over her belly. My hand felt pushed so I grabbed clean clothes and bath supplies and headed out to the kitchen sink for a quick sponge bath. Just like our other babies, Bella has regurg issues so I always try to bathe right before a feeding and even then she usually manages to puke on her clean clothes before I’m even finished dressing her. Well, with a full tummy, she erupted three times, not just once. I kept wiping skin with the wash cloth and clothes with baby wipes and finally she was dressed, wrapped in a blanket, and carefully positioned with a burp diaper placed strategically around her chin … just as David walked in the door to pick me up.
I handed her off to Adam with instructions to please keep her upright and the burp diaper in place and rushed off to shower since I smelled like every body fluid known to man and apparently there is still a teeny vestige of mama pride in there somewhere. About that time Adam announced that Bella had filled her diaper again. David went to change her and called out that she’d pooped through. Oh please. I knew the outfit change would only start the puke cycle again and it was a tiny amount anyway, so we wiped it up with baby wipes. If you’re the investing type, you may want to look into buying stock in a baby wipes company. They’re sure to go up with the amount we’re going through. David moved to take Zara potty and we headed out the door only five minutes late. The boys and Rochelle stayed home to start laundry and do a few other chores. I breathed a huge sigh of relief. Late, sure, but hey, we were making it.
Halfway down the curvy, hilly, thirty minute trek to town Zara got carsick and threw up all her breakfast down over herself and her car seat. She was crying in horror as I wiped things a little bit with baby wipes and promised we’d get her cleaned up as soon as we stopped. Bella started screaming with tummy ache because that’s what happens every time we put a baby in a carseat. I was suddenly in a game of twister with one hand trying to hold in a pacifier and one hand holding wipes in place so Zara couldn’t see as much of the awfulness in her lap and trying to soothe both verbally with little success.
We arrived and I escaped the stinky van with baby and bag while David cleaned up the mess, stripped Zara, and wrapped her in the Moby for lack of anything else. It was a forever long appointment with a repeat PKU and finally we were out. A stop at Roses, the only store in town with clothes, to pick up a dress for a pullup clad toddler and we were back in business. We made a quick stop at the grocery store since we were in town anyway then headed home.
David hurried back to work and I had nothing more wonderful in mind than the recliner and some rest.
About that time Zara popped in her panties.
Let’s just say potty training has only been about 50% successful around here and I’m never quite sure if the positive 50% is me being trained or her. Either way, we both missed it on that one.
More clean up and a bath later, we were eating lunch. She was on my lap because she wasn’t eating when I felt a warm flush all over my legs. A diaper and a nap for a two year old rarely looked so good.
It may have been Monday, but I’m pretty sure it was spelled with a capital P because it pretty much looked like poop, puke and pee to me. So there you have it. The other side of that darling wouldn’t trade it for the world newborn stage.
Actually, I’m pretty sure I could sum it up in one word.
- Baby Love
- When Your Baby is Fussy