Tuesday, May 05, 2015

Three months with Silas...

"The world is as many times new as there are children in our lives."
-Robert Brault

 We began the month with a wonderful visit from Lovey, Aunt Callie, and cousin Luke for Easter. Not only was it invigorating for Mama to be surrounded by her tribe, but the cousins were able to meet for the first time. (Although I'm not sure that Silas realized Luke was there.) It was really neat to see what milestones Luke had reached (he's six months older) and know that Silas would be reaching them in just a few months. Lovey spoiled us with Easter baskets, a shopping trip, and handmade baby shorts. And, the conversations between Callie and I are always so authentic and energizing. We can't wait until we see them again... hopefully this summer!

The excitement for the month... Silas started running a high fever late on Sunday night. With doctors' offices closed, we had no choice but to take him to the ER, where his temperature was measured to be 102.6°. Because he was just shy of 3 months old, they had to do the full work-up, including taking chest x-rays, drawing tubes of blood, inserting an IV port and giving him fluids, inserting an in-and-out catheter for urinalysis, and admitting him for two nights on the pediatric floor of the hospital. Watching him get poked and prodded hurt this mama's heart, but he was such a trooper. Turns out it was just a cold virus, but better safe than sorry. By the time we were discharged on Tuesday evening, he was almost back to his normal smiley self; although a cough and snotty nose still linger, and he was nice enough to share his cold with Mama. Hopefully that was a once-in-a-lifetime experience... we could do without another hospital stay ever!

What is Silas up to?
The spit up... oh my goodness, the spit up!! The most memorable quote from Aunt Callie while she was visiting: "wow, he really does spit up a lot!" This month Rob and I noticed a pattern of it happening most often when his stomach is compressed, so we cut down on tummy time for a few weeks and stopped throwing him over our shoulder to burp or carry him. Although it hasn't totally eliminate the mess, it does seem to help.

As hinted at in the 2nd month summary, Silas slept the whole night through for the first time on the first night of his third month. Mama was thrilled!! Although this still isn't yet the norm, I really can't complain about his sleep routine: it could be much worse! His usual pattern is to go to bed around 8:30 pm, wake to nurse for a few minutes sometime between 3:00 and 4:30 am, and then I wake him for the day around 6:30 am. The hospital stay and cold messed with his routine for the few days following, but we have been graced with a few more all-nighters here and there.

We have been swaddling Silas at night since he was born, most recently with the Velcro swaddle blankets from Summer Infant or Kiddopotamus. When his hands are wrapped inside, he expends a lot of energy trying to break the swaddle and free them. We have started just leaving his arms out. Lately he has also been spinning himself around during the night. When I come in to wake him in the morning, he has rotated 180 degrees around.

We knew early on that Silas was going to be a thumbsucker, but until just recently his lack of coordination usually kept him from getting it to his mouth. It was so funny to watch him miss his aim, hitting his forehead or cheek. But then all of a sudden, this month he started hitting the target! Sometimes he will prop his other hand up to keep it in his mouth... which is just about the cutest thing ever! When the thumb hits the mouth, it's a sure sign that a nap is soon to follow.

This month Silas started officially giggling. The first time was in the backseat while Lovey made silly faces. He is a often smiley, happy baby, but that little laugh is the best! Kissing just under his ears or moving his arms along with a song is a surefire way to get a cackle.

From Mama's perspective...
When Silas was almost 10 weeks old, I returned to work part-time and started full-time a week and a half later. As expected, I have struggled a little bit with the idea of going back to work and leaving Silas with other people. It's the strangest oxymoron... I don't want him to know that I've left him with strangers for the day, but I also kind of want him to miss me while I am away.

It's been especially difficult, given my choice of "present" as my One Little Word for this year. Although I chose that word hoping to make the most of all the time I'm with my little guy, it makes me sad that it's not possible for me to be physically present with Silas for much of the day. I hate that our time together has to be squeezed into 30 minutes in the morning and a couple of hours at night.

Despite all of my reservations and feelings, returning to work/leaving him at day care has actually gone better than I envisioned. I have always been comfortable with the childcare facility that we chose, which has helped ease my mind. I am also glad that we are beginning these routines early before he is really aware that I'm leaving him.

Transitioning into it by working half-days was the way to go. (I would totally recommend this to other new moms!) At first I told myself that I could go pick him up in "just four hours," and on the first full day, the morning routine felt just like the half-days. Now I am just counting down until the weekends!

A few of Silas's favorites...
  1. Aveeno Baby Lotion : The latest skin care regimen for Mr. Silas. At his two-month appointment, his pediatrician recommended Aveeno for his dry skin. I've been giving him mini massages with the lotion every morning and night which he loves... And, his skin is getting softer and less scaly!
  2. The Very Hungry Caterpillar Teether Rattle : Silas is just beginning to hold onto toys, and one of his favorites is this caterpillar rattle. It makes a crunchy sound when it flexes and jingles when you rattle it, but Silas's favorite part is the soft felt legs that he likes to put in his mouth. 
  3. Helium balloons : The highlight of Silas' hospital stay was the helium balloon he received to wish him well. We lightly tied it around his ankle, and he was entertained for a long time. I'm not sure that he ever realized he was controlling it, but because he kicks his legs so much, it was constantly bobbing around.
  4. NoseFrida : Even after he was discharged from the hospital, Silas battled (and still is battling!) a cough and snotty nose. So twice a day we have to hold him down to suction his nose, which he HATES! Luckily the NoseFrida Snotsucker sucks up the mucus much better than those darn nasal bulbs. Unfortunately I haven't yet figured out how to use it solo: I have to hold his hands and position the funnel at his nostril, while Rob holds his head and sucks through the mouthpiece. But because it's more efficient, the "trauma" doesn't last very long.
  5. Britax B-Agile 4 : Rob and I fell in love with this stroller when planning our registry. (It's manufactured just down the road in Fort Mill, SC.) We paired it with the brand new B-Safe 35 infant car seat model, and Silas is riding in style. The nice spring weather has been perfect for long neighborhood walks or spectating a bike race.
  6. Boken Every Day Bag : I wanted to find a super functional diaper bag (read: backpack straps) that didn't scream diaper bag and didn't cost an arm and a leg. The Boken bag meets all of those qualifications and more. It is made of out a lightweight windbreaker fabric that looks a bit wrinkled, which may not be everyone's style, but I love it. It has been quite the workhorse going back and forth to daycare... bottles in the side pocket and several changes of clothes (did I mention he spits up a lot!) in one of the interior pockets.

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