This is my second child and although my first one is only 3 years old, I have already forgotten so many things. How were my days like with a newborn back then? Was it the same? What did I do?
Of course, I do remember some things. It is not like I got some brain damage like in a Mexican soap opera (they always get some brain damage, forget everything about themselves, are cheated by crazy cruel people and then by some accident get their memory back and everything turns out well). But I do not remember the details. And details are just so important to survive this messy, crazy, but also relatively short stage of life.
That’s why I am recording this. To remember and compare, and possibly allow others to remember and compare what is the life like when you have a 6 week old.
5:00 Morning starts – sort of. Little V is hungry after a long night of eating only every 3 hours (=total starvation). She eats like crazy for 15 min and falls asleep again.
6:00 Baby remembers that she has not finished eating and continues a bit, but falls asleep again.
8:00 Another feeding time! This time she eats for real, like I haven’t fed her all night. She is of course dead tired after that and snoozes for another 30 min. In the meantime I get up and sneak in a short shower, play a bit with the older one and fix her hair and prepare myself a decadent breakfast (bowl of muesli with milk and black coffee).
Then (in the middle of lifting the first spoon of muesli to my mouth) I hear the baby asking for help to change her diaper. That means, I do the changing part and she does “let’s try to pee while there is no diaper under me” game. It is very funny and I start winning this game most of the times now, just not when there are other people present and I want to show my mommy skills.
8:45 Baby is changed and dressed, older sister leaves for kindergarten (this time with my husband) and little V and me have the house for ourselves. She lies a bit on the tummy while I do the laundry and gulp my breakfast. Most of the tummy time is baby being unhappy about the tummy time and me trying to lure her into trying it a bit more. We agree to change the game and look a bit at the mirror. This is her favorite game right now. She is just so fascinated with that baby in the mirror, tries to touch it and then looks at me, questioning why she is only touching cold surface instead…
9:30 She yawns and starts looking a bit tired. I put her in the carrycot and lovingly stroke her hair. She seems content for about 1 whole minute. Then the corners of her mouth suddenly drop and this lovely being turns into a screaming red ball. I swing carrycot on my lap, making shhhh sounds and holding her hand until she falls asleep.
10:00 She is wide awake and hungry – again. So hungry in fact, that she manages to latch on the wrong part of my breast, leaving a nice blue mark. She eats quickly and efficiently (this is in fact something typical for my babies – they never, even as tiny newborns need to eat more than 20 min at the time) and burps like a drunk man who just had a liter of beer and a roasted pig leg.
10:30 Yes, another diaper change. I use the opportunity to give her a manicure. She is not happy, to say the least.
11:00 She is suddenly super tired. I get close to being surprised that she falls asleep soon after I put her in the carrycot. Then 5 min later she remembers that this is not how things are done – they too easy. We go back to rocking and holding hand.
11:15 My legs are NUMB and I put carrycot down. She complains a bit, but then falls asleep by herself. Now it is time to get a few cups of tea (I always put them together, as I never know when I again get the opportunity for it!), a snack and fix small things around the house.
12:30 Lunch time! V is getting her milk, while I eat yesterday’s leftovers, trying not to drop anything on the baby (has happened before…).
13:00 Full, with a new diaper (only baby, not me) and good mood, we leave for a walk. As I wrote before, I aim for min. 10 000 steps each day and so far it has been going well. I walk about 8 km (approx 2 hours) and then also do various things at home, fix small things (e.g. pick up dry cleaning, shop etc.). It has not been a big challenge and yet has given me a feeling of achievement (even very little one). This is why I take these 2 hours as “me” time. The baby? Sleeps happily in the pram or looks all amazed at all the things we go by.I call this a win-win.
15:00 Come home from the walk to leave any items I bought and prepare to head to kindergarten. I pack my ammunition (Baby bjorn carrier and a few snacks for the hungry-as-hell toddler).
15:30 Arrive at kindergarten. Few toddlers aim to ride me over with their balance bikes, but I manage to survive. It is seriously like a mine field to cross that playground next to the kindergarten!
My dear daughter A (aka the toddler) is usually super happy to see me, but not willing to go home at all. We look through all the toys she played, all the drawings she made, for all the things she has lost (socks, t-shirt, indoor shoes, hair clip and drinking bottle being the usual suspects).
16:15 we are finally on the way out. I am sweating under the Baby bjorn (with baby in it) and after having to compliment A’s kindergardten friends’ drawings and dresses. I am just not a natural when it comes to that.
16:45 We reach home. It is actually only 10 min away, but we had to check out leaves and a hair pin we found on the ground, eat the snacks I brought, calm the baby who is getting unhappy of being in the pram and jump from one shadow to another.
17:00 Baby V is… yes, hungry again. I feed her while reading for the toddler and pray my significant other would come home soon. If I need to make dinner alone with two kids, then the kids will cry both at the same time, or at least one of them, but very loud (99% likelihood so far). That just a law of having children, I am sure of that.
18:00 Dinner time. It is a bit too late for the toddler, so she is super hungry and cannot wait for food to cool down. I stuff cucumber into her mouth and this helps. She would have not eaten it herself, but when it is in her mouth, she realizes it was a good solution. I believe this is the second law of having children: they just do not know what is good for them and will fight it as much as possible. But that is what parents are for.
18:05 Toddler is calm and eats while telling stories about her day. The baby is not calm (look at the first law of having children), thus my food is waiting while I swing her in my arms.
18:30 My turn to eat and tidy up, while my husband takes care of the children. I fight the urge to make a “real” cup of coffee and instead turn to my decaf stuff. Glass of wine (or three) would also be nice. But at this time, the baby is “stocking up” for the night and the feeding schedule is .. .well not very scheduled…
19:15 The toddler is in the bath and the baby is eating and crying. Since the toddler is not around, I turn on the Netflix and try to calm down little grumpus by swinging and singing. She nods of for a few min, but then the toddler runs in joyfully to announce out loud that she made a poop. The baby is of course awake again.
20:00 Big sister is in her bed, sleeping and the baby is still playing the grumpy game. Luckily, now I am not alone. This feels nearly like holiday!
I am trying to start introducing the nightime routine and change baby V into her pj, but that is pretty much the only item on the list I manage before she screams again. Back to swinging and singing.
21:00 Baby is finally fully asleep… until 23:30… then around 2:00 and again at 5:00.
It has been a fun day and the most fun about it is to start seeing (finally) the routines in comparison to 4 weeks ago. While I am against putting the baby on a schedule (as my parents did with me), I am very much for establishing a schedule that is based on what the baby already does. So far, I think we are on the right track!