I triple checked that Lincoln was really an entire month old today.
Although, at the same time it feels like I was pregnant with him several months ago and that he has been here as part of the family for ages. Time is definitely a strange creature.
He is wearing size one diapers, and 0-3 month clothing with a few newborn items thrown in for good measure. But, the newborn sizes in footed pajamas are too short on him.
Weight: 9 lbs 5.5 oz
Birth: 7 lbs 1 oz
Height: 21.5 inches
Birth: 20.5 inches
Lincoln has been so easy to nurse. With Aria being a month early she had trouble latching, and we needed to use a nipple shield for a while before she could latch on her own. Lincoln picked up the whole latch thing fairly quickly. Although, he had a strong preference for the left side over the right side for a few days. After a few stubborn nursing sessions I finally got him to be okay with both sides. Since then nursing has been a breeze. He eats every 2 to 3 hours during the day, usually closer to every 2 hours. And at night he will usually give me wonderfully long stretches of 5 to 8 hours between feedings. Some nights he is only up the one time. (I'm knocking on wood as a type this.)
He also is much more efficient with nursing than Aria. Aria could hang out on the boob for an hour. We spent so much time nursing, no complaints because I loved the snuggles. Lincoln is done with both sides after 10-15 minutes. And, in the middle of the night after going so long between feedings and me being so uncomfortably full I have to limit him to about 5-6 minutes. If I don't his little tummy gets too gorged and inevitably comes right back out and all over mama...and her pillow.
I'm so grateful that he is nursing so well and that my supply seems to be just fine. I enjoyed nursing Aria so much that I was a little worried it wouldn't work out this time. I was also a little scared that I would be so sore because the nipple shield seemed to ease me into nursing the first time around so I didn't have any pain, but there was only minor discomfort in the beginning this time and that quickly went away.
I haven't pumped at all this time either, which I am loving. Again, Aria was a month early so she couldn't even attempt to nurse for a few days so instead I had to pump. My supply was crazy. We had a freezer full of pumped milk, I was constantly leaking and uncomfortably engorged. But, everybody kept telling me to keep pumping so I did for months until I finally decided to quit. My supply regulated to Aria and I stopped being uncomfortable and leaky. We never touched more than a few bags of that pumped milk either. I don't even have a pump right now, and I'd rather not bother with it but I do wish I could let Aria give her baby brother a bottle. I think she would love it. If only it were an easier process. We will probably just wait until she can help feed him solids around 6 months. I'm sure she will enjoy that just as much.
Play is a little bit of a strong word right now, but Lincoln enjoys "playing" on his play mat. He will hang out on it for 30 minutes up to an hour and kick his little heart out while cooing to the mirror. I'd forgotten how sweet baby sounds are! I placed him on the play mat while I wrapped presents a few days ago and he was perfectly content. So far he is not a big fan of tummy time (just like his big sister) and he won't even stay on his tummy anymore. I try to put him on his tummy and he is on his back again before I can blink twice. But, his little neck is so strong and he loves to look around while being carried. I love that he is seeing further away now. I was taking his one month pictures and he kept staring at the camera strap scarf that I have. And, when you can see him find your face and watch you - there is hardly anything sweeter. He woke up from his nap yesterday (Dec. 20th). So, I went over to him and said his name while running my finger down his cheek and he gave me a big smile. I thought it was a fluke but he did it three times and I melted into a puddle of mama love.
I'm going to type this quietly, but Lincoln's sleep has been amazing. He started going about 5 hours between feedings at night just before he was two weeks old. And, he has kept up with it almost every night since. This week he has started giving me around 7 hours pretty often, topping out with an 8 hour stretch two or three nights ago. I'm not sure what I did to get so lucky...Aria didn't give me such long stretches until she was 8 weeks and at the time I thought it was the most amazing thing. I'll just continue to knock on wood that he is an even better sleeper than Aria, and that he doesn't decide to stop sleeping when he turns two like Aria did.
His naps are still all over the place. Plenty of cat naps that last 30 minutes or so. But, he is usually good for one long nap per day as well. Maybe 2 hours at the longest. I definitely wake him up when he hits 3 hours since his last feeding though because he goes so long at night I want to make sure he is getting enough food the rest of the day.
I love having a newborn in the house again so much. It may be exhausting but it is a sweet exhausting. Before I had babies I always thought I'd be a boy mom. So, when the ultrasound technician said we were having a girl I was thrown for a loop. Then actually having a little girl...I couldn't imagine anything better. So, when we popped our gender reveal pinata and saw blue? I was again thrown for a loop. I was so sure we'd end up having another little girl. And, boys? What do I know about little boys? Mild panic set in. And now that I have my little boy, a son - my heart feels so complete. I love having my not so little girl and my tiny boy. I'm not 100% sure we are done having babies (more like 98%), but right now I feel so very good about our family of four...especially considering how scary it is to add another baby to the mix.
And, that big sister sure loves him. The excitement at the idea of having a sibling is quite different from when that sibling actually arrives. So, while I loved how excited Aria was when I was pregnant I was a little worried that it might not be everything she imagined when he joined us on the other side. But, she has blown me away. Apart from some initial jealousy when mama was recovering from giving birth along with having a spinal headache, it's been smooth sailing. She's been both helpful with Lincoln and helpful with self-sufficiency...such as wiping her own tush and playing happily by herself. It also very much helps that dad can come home at a reasonable hour to play soccer outside and catch lizards with her, and that great grandma loves playing beanie babies with her too.
I remember having Aria and thinking how hard it was to take care of a baby, but this time seems so much easier. It's probably a combo of first time parenthood and stressing out about every little thing, along with not having gotten those 5 to 7 hour stretches of sleep at night with Aria. It really is nice to not stress about all the little things with Lincoln. However, he is my little grumpy old man. With Aria she brought out the grumpy in the evening and before bedtime. With Lincoln he is pretty much grumpy all day. If he isn't sleeping or eating, he is probably crying. Or at least he was until about a week ago. Thankfully he has started to chill out more, especially in the mornings. He still despises the hours from 5 to 9 though. We all put Aria to bed at night as a family, per her request. However, Lincoln is usually very unhappy the whole time. I try to time reading bedtime stories with nursing so at least he is quiet for that, but we mostly end up singing bedtime songs at the top of our lungs. It's a very relaxing environment for going to sleep =) But, Aria doesn't complain and again it is her preference so we are all crossing our fingers for him getting over his hatred of those evening hours.
Surprisingly one of his favorite pastimes is getting his diaper changed. He can be complaining at the top of his little lungs but we put him down on his changing table and a decent chunk of the time he will quiet right down. He likes it so much that we just leave him there and enjoy the peace for a handful of minutes. It doesn't last forever, but just enough time to regain some sanity. Another favorite pastime is bath time. He gets his nightly bath around 7, so during his unhappiest hours, but as soon as I lower him into his blooming bath in the sink he stops fussing. I usually let him soak in the warm water until it is time for Aria's bedtime stories.
Even though he is my grumpy guy, I adore him. When he sticks his chin out while doing his 'wah' cry...it's one of the cutest faces. And, I can't get enough of kissing his cheeks. I love that I get to see another set of 'firsts', but it is already zooming past way too quickly. Only 11 months until 1 year old? That just seems way too close already.