This how we spent Audrey's one month 'birthday'
Audrey's favorite activity at the park
Audrey and I ready to go shopping
Audrey is an eating machine! She loves to nurse, and does so frequently - day or night. We're working on getting the night time routine sorted out, and so far she'll sleep about four hours her first stretch, then it becomes a feeding frenzy. Last night for example, Audrey awoke at 2:15am, and nursed off and on until 4:45am...where upon Eli woke up and was miserable for a while before heading back to bed. Eli then can crashing into bed with me at 6, and Audrey woke up at 6:15 to eat again...night time is not my favorite time right now haha.
Audrey is very alert, looks around and makes eye contact easily. She tracks my voice and movements, and smiles at me as we talk. While she doesn't enjoy bath time or diaper changes, Audrey LOVES to be snuggled and so I enjoy baby snuggles as often as I can get them! Having two busy boys underfoot means that this sweet baby is also very patient, and often takes a break from nursing when Eli is needing help RIGHT NOW, as she is currently the more patient of the two of them. Audrey is a very calm and even tempered little angel, and I simply adore her!
This first month has brought a world of new experiences and 'firsts' for Audrey, including 'first cold'. Being the lucky little sister of two doting older brothers, Audrey is in contact with germs on a daily basis. Darius and Eli have both had colds, the 24 flu, and random coughs in the past month, so Audrey has fared pretty well with only contracting congestion. Shes doing a really good job at clearing the mucous herself, and it hasn't held her back much at all. Night times are a bit rougher with her congestion as she needs to be propped a certain way to be able to breath...which means I usually end up with her in bed with me, with her propped against my body, and me stiff as a board by morning. Despite being a little under the weather,Audrey weights in at 10lbs 12oz which is a nice little gain over her 7lbs 1oz birth weight.
My body continues to heal and return to its active self. I ran my first 5 km this past week, have been hefting weights, and continue to do stretching and yoga. The standard advice is to not to return to full activity until after six weeks postpartum, however I needed to have the mental lift that being active gives me. I listen to my body and only push as far as my body is able to comfortably. Returning to exercise has been a fabulous help for me to push through the day after my extremely short nights.
My Mom was here for the first two weeks after Audrey arrived, which allowed me to sleep, eat, and snuggle Audrey all day long. It was heaven! After she left, getting back into the swing of maintaining a household, running after two busy boys, and caring for a newborn has been a challenge for me. Some days I end the day with a smile on my face, feeling like a million dollars! Other days I cry myself to sleep because I am overwhelmed and exhausted. It's been a bit of a roller coaster of emotions but my Handsome Hubby has been a great strength and help to me along the way. If he weren't such a hands on Dad things would be down right crazy around here haha! The reason blog posts have been rather sporadic/non-existent as of late, is simply because when I have a moment to sit down I fall asleep - which is probably the best use of my time right now haha!
I have been dealing with major 'mommy guilt' over the past month in connection to Darius and Elias. They've lost a lot of the one on one time that we enjoyed prior to Audrey's arrival. Darius has expressed his feeling about this, and is obviously working through our new normal. Eli is having a bit of a tougher time, and has taken to waking up extra early as a result.
I also feel guilty for how much has slipped through my fingers in the past month as far as maintaining our home and feeding my family. I prepared really well, or so I thought, but it still is hard to get healthy meals on the table when my kiddos are hungry. We've eaten out more than I care to admit, and there have been more treats than is healthy for anyone - let alone kids that aren't used to having treats so often. All of our belly's are suffering from sugar overload, and it definitely contributes to the lower mental state I've been exhibiting.
Heading out of the house on my own with three kids is such a daunting thought that it actually hasn't happened yet, other than going to the beach. Darius is really great at listening, and Audrey is pretty low maintenance, but Eli is a busy body with limited communication abilities and a stubborn streak a mile long. I had Eli and Audrey with me in a store on Saturday, and I ended up with Eli in the baby stroller, Audrey in my arms, and leaving the store as quickly as my one arm could maneuver the stroller through the isles. It's a whole new workout haha!
All in all, I wouldn't give up this challenge for anything in the world - it's been a fabulously overwhelming [and wonderful] month.