Friday, December 17

Smiles and a Purple Heffalump

As hard as it is to believe, Liam is already six weeks old. There's no doubt he's growing fast, and is rapidly becoming more interactive with his parents and his environment, smiling and cooing with heart-melting sweetness.  Just yesterday I laid him in his crib after a warm sponge bath, and he suddenly discovered the large stuffed purple heffalump that has occupied the corner of his crib since we brought him home.  It was so fun to watch him and really get to play with him for the first time.  I also managed to get a little video (please excuse the dim lighting and the baby talk...) :

The past few days when he wakes up in the morning he greets me with a smile that I know is for me.  That cute greeting goes a long way to helping me feel less sleep deprived and more grateful that I have such a sweet little boy to wake up to every morning.  Even though both Eric and I are kept very busy these days, we still managed to get our Christmas tree up and decorate the apartment. I wasn't at all sure this was going to happen, but we succeeded.  It's not been easy for me to get into the Christmas spirit this year.  Out here it's been unseasonably warm for this time of year.  As much as my Illinois friends and family will hate me for saying this, it's not as easy to enjoy Christmastime when it's 80 degrees and sunny outside! However, today is a nice chilly rainy day in L.A., and I'm enjoying the coziness of being at home with my little boy sleeping on my chest and a cup of mint hot chocolate (topped with whipped cream, of course) next to me. No doubt it's moments like this I'll miss when my leave is over and I return to work.

Friday, December 10

The First Month

Well, I survived the first month of motherhood.  Caring for a newborn is just as intense and exhausting a job as promised. It makes the twelve hour shifts I worked six days a week at the factory over summers during college seem downright relaxing--at least when I got home from work I knew I'd get some sleep.  The kicker is, I know I've got it pretty easy.  Liam is a good baby.  He's as easy going as you could hope an infant to be.  He takes everything in stride and seems not to mind having two parents who aren't yet finely skilled in the arts of diapering, dressing, bathing , or anything else to do with infant care.  He's also a good traveler.  We've gone out to run errands, go to doctors appointments, get Christmas pictures taken, and so on and he has yet to suffer a complete meltdown.  In short, he's a sweet, even tempered baby.  I can't wait to see how he grows as the weeks go by and we get to know more of his personality.

Aside from juggling the constant care a newborn demands, the hardest lesson of parenthood for me thus far is coming to terms with what I can't do.  I can't keep the apartment as neat and clean as I'd like, or easily prepare a meal, or take time to do any number of things I'd like to do most days.  Letting it go and telling myself this is all okay hasn't been easy.  When the frustration mounts, I sit in the rocker with Liam and try to take a step back and keep some perspective about the situation.  He isn't going to be a little baby forever, and other mothers have assured me there will come a day when I'll wish I had spent less time worrying about when I'm going to find time to dust the living room and more time holding my little boy.  So, while baby Liam learns the difference between night and day and that he can rely on his parents to keep him fed and warm, his mom is coming to terms with all she can't do and is learning to be content in the moment.  I say "learning" because I haven't quite mastered the lesson yet--but I'm working on it.

Last week we had our first family portrait taken.  Liam took being posed and having bright lights flashed in his eyes very well.  He held it together for a couple of family and individual poses before he expressed his displeasure with the situation.  I was just happy we managed to get a few pictures of him with his eyes open!