1 month old...

wow, i can't believe aj is already 1 month old! as i reflect back on this last month...

1) life changes...
it's amazing how life has changed! (no shit i know huh?) s and i are obviously a family of 3 and aj is our number one priority.
- most of our conversations revolve around our child and his pooping / eating / sleeping habits
- eating is no longer enjoyable as it's a race to finish before aj starts crying or getting fussy
- anywhere we go revolves around his feeding schedule (well, not like i've really gone anywhere but more on that below...)
- sleep will never be the same. =( i no longer use my mouthpiece at night because i'm not asleep long enough to get into a deep sleep and start grinding my teeth
- i'm the most paranoid person now when it comes to how aj is doing and making sure he's okay

2) "doing the one month"
there is a VERY traditional chinese ritual of having the mother / child stay home for a month after the birth of their child. it really revolves around replenishing the mother's body after birth with warmth and heat. if followed, this will keep a woman in better health condition as she gets older. in true old fashion tradition, one is not suppose to shower or wash their hair for an entire month. you also can not leave the house. one must be well covered as to not catch any chills or have your skin exposed to the wind / cold air. there is a very strict diet - no cold drinks or food. your diet revolves around ginger, chicken and soup. so...yes, i actually followed this tradition...to a certain degree. i didn't shower for almost a week and didn't wash my hair for 2 weeks. i didn't leave the house for a month except for doctor appointments and for an entire month, only ate gingered chicken and eggs, rice, chicken soup and hot water. surprisingly, it wasn't that bad. i think it was harder for s as he had to go out and run all our errands.

3) emotional roller coaster
i think i cried more in aj's first 2 weeks than the last 10 years! i haven't cried this much since we had drama in our sorority. 95% of the crying came from breast feeding. i was so much more sensitive to issues / problems that i was experiencing.

4) breast feeding
wow, if there was a more humbling experience - it would be breast feeding. i've always been one to strive for the best and do all the necessary research to be good at something but when it's completely out of your control, it's such a helpless and frustrating feeling. after reading everything possible online and in brochures and seeing various lactation consultants, i've done all i can to help aj latch on correctly. although it has gotten slightly (as in a minuscule amount) better than a couple of weeks ago, it's still very painful (in the sense of sore and throbbing pain). aj's mouth is opening bigger and he is using his tongue at times but it's still not this pain-free, wonderful bonding experience that everyone keeps referring to.
on top of that, i do have a slight over supply problem on one side (i know, better than low supply). however, it is very painful and having hard areolas doesn't help the situation as that makes it harder for aj to latch on well.
since breast feeding is still quite painful, i only do it during the day and pump twice at night. i also only give one breast at each feeding and my body has not adjusted to this schedule yet.

5) "deep conversations" with hubby
even though having a child is an incredibly amazing bonding experience with the hubby, there were also some heart - to - heart conversations that we had and would obviously never have had if it weren't for having a baby.

timing was bad with s' work. he had a launch the week after he went back to work so he was VERY busy at work and had to occasionally work on weekends and evenings. i felt that he was choosing work as the priority over our baby and that was extremely frustrating for me. obviously, he wasn't but i, of course, was overly sensitive and perceived it that way. the funny thing is how ironic is it for me to think that? i have always been the workaholic and willingly spend more time working on weekends and evenings than s. for me to say this to him, man, things are different! it actually makes me wonder what my state of mind will be when i go back to work!?

s and i also don't agree on the issue of aj's crying. s believes in tough love and will let aj cry for almost an hour. i've tried to tell s that at this early stage in his life, he's just trying to communicate to us and wants to be held. there is no such thing as spoiling a baby. also, when aj's arms are shaking and his face is completely red, it's pretty tough for me to ignore that. i mean, i can for five or ten minutes...but times five and that's definitely a no-no for me.

6) unconditional love
even though i've listed these 5 reflections that might not appear to be very encouraging, i have to say it's all worth it. aj is just so precious. i swear i can stare at him all day. well, unless he's crying but even then he has this most adorable pout right before he starts crying. hahaa. i can also spend all day kissing his cheeks. i also love seeing how s holds and talks to aj - it brings me such warm fuzzies!

aj ready to go out for a walk with daddy
(apparently, everyone says he's a spitting image of s)


Jeanne said...

Congrats on one month! It's a very special milestone for aj as well, but I hope you celebrated your newfound freedom. I drank a cold soda when I celebrated and it was sooo good.. =P

joyce said...

wow, can you believe it's been a month already? i agree that he does look like S! about AJ crying...S needs to know that he doesn't have the neurological ability to self-sooth, so it's okay to pick him up and comfort him when he cries! :) hang in there with the BFing, hopefully it gets easier for you soon.