A birth story: continued

After making it home safely, having none of my fears of death and twisted metal brought to life, we settled into life with a newborn.

The best way to describe it is: weird.
Wonderful but weird. It felt so strange because all of the sudden there is this other little person who depends on you. It's not like you can take home a baby for a couple hours a day to get used to it. You can't experience a trial period of pregnancy to see if you like it. You find out you are pregnant and a very quick 9 months later you are blessed with a little human of your own. There is no preparing yourself for the feeling of being a parent.

The first day was home pretty uneventful. Baby C was a wonderful baby. I was trying to breastfeed but I was having a very hard time with it. So, unwillingly, I was forced to turn to formula.
I cried.
I cried because I felt like I had failed at being a mom. And on our first day home! I was heartbroken. You NEVER hear how hard it can be. All you hear from most mothers is how they have their baby and immediately start breastfeeding. You don't hear about the pain and extreme dedication that it can involve.  I had no idea what I was doing. I knew about colostrum, which is like super baby milk. It comes before your actual milk supply comes in. I didn't know when your milk did come in, it would all come in at once.
At least it did for me.
I was so engorged I couldn't even attempt to breastfeed. A hot shower helped but all I could do was wait for the swelling to go down then attempt to nurse again. I decided to use a pump and supplement with formula. It worked great for me and the baby. I felt better that he was getting the most important things he needed from breast milk and that on the days I couldn't feed him as much, I could use the formula.
Looking back, I should have pumped more often to keep up my supply but that is something I will work harder on with this new baby.
Anyway, thats enough about my mammary glands.

Like I was saying, Baby C was a wonderful baby. He slept great at night, he ate great, but we were worried when he started screaming for some reason we couldn't figure out. After calling friends and family, we figured that maybe he was having gas and it was hurting him. So an emergency run to the store, we gave him some gas tablets which fixed the problem right away.

First minor emergency out of the way, life with a newborn commenced. The first night home was pretty random, with no tangible sleeping schedule; but it wasn't as bad as I was expecting. Within the week, he had developed a sleeping schedule of about every three hours. I had read that breast milk can stay out and still be good at room temperature for around 4-6 hours. So I would set out a bottle by the bed before I laid down. All I had to do was reach over, grab the bottle, grab the baby from his bassinet, and feed him. It took 15-20 minutes and I was back in bed! Some nights, he would be a little more fussy, so I would lay down with him on my chest and we would both go back to sleep. I have to add, for those of you who just gasped, I am a very very light sleeper. The slightest movement from the baby and I was awake.

And life went on. Learning and loving every minute of it. I learned that he liked to be on his back when he was gassy, he loved his bouncer, and rocking him to sleep works every time. He is very stubborn and fights sleep during the day but not at night. He was strong too! He could hold his head up the day he was born. He amazed me every day with something new.
The first month flew by.

He is now a very stubborn 11 month old with a sense of humor. He likes to dance around in circles and make himself dizzy. He loves his new teeth and tests them out on your leg if you are not watching. He gets hyper sometimes and goes back and forth between his room and the living room, yelling and talking to himself. He loves to climb on the couch and reach for things on the counter. He yells at you if you take a toy he really wants. He can say about 5 words and he's not even a year old. He is as smart as a tack so be careful what you show him how to do.
He is my world.
My sunshine.
My little monkey and I love him to death.

I am excited to bring home a little brother for him. I don't know how he will react or what he will think but I'm sure he will grow to love having a brother. I know it will be hard at first. I know I will be sleep deprived all over again. I'm pretty much starting all over; one year later and I'm back where I started. I get to experience early morning feedings, a gassy screaming baby, and the joys of teething and learning to stand.

I get to do it all over again and I couldn't be more happy.

Bring it on.