When I was pregnant, my biggest worry was how I would cope with three children and now sit here typing my third born’s two-month baby update. I have “made it” through one of my biggest fears.
Yes, yes… I still have a lifetime and plenty of challenges ahead of me, but now that I have a taste of it, I can say that it’s hella’ tricky, but survivable. I don’t know why we’re always doubting ourselves as mothers?!
The short of it is that my child lives up to his name – Kgosi, which means King. He has a calm demeanor 90% of the time and a very commanding cry when he’s hungry and needs attention.
- Breastfeeding – all.the.time!
- Being in his baby carrier. We are using the Ubuntu Baba stage one carrier.
- Being sung to
- Massage time – read more about my baby massage tips here
- Morning naps
- Staring at light and any sort of lines
- Staring into his Mama’s eyes
He is able to:
- Smile – yes I’m mentioning this for the second time because I just love it.
- Lift his head slightly while he is on his tummy
- Put his hand to his mouth
We are currently co-sleeping. He sleeps in his cot next to our bed and because I’m a light-sleeper, I never struggle to hear him, even when he’s just moaning during a dream. I did the same with his sister until she was two and a half years old.
I may not co-sleep as long this time, but being right next to him is what makes sense for us right now.
The first month of breastfeeding was incredibly tough and frustrating, so much so, that I thought of giving up a few times. I never thought I would get to the stage where I am now – loving it just as much as he is. This is the third baby I am breastfeeding, but it has not been any easier than the previous times. What I do know, is that the first few weeks are the worst, then it gets better – well, usually (with my first born, I did not preserve long enough to find that out).
This time, we started off with latching problems from the hospital. The nurses would come in and help me, but then I would be back at square-one once they weren’t around to help. Then I had sore and bleeding nipples and mastitis (blocked milk ducts). What eventually helped (saved) me was calling in a lactation consultant for assistance. I learnt that suffering alone does not do you any good!
If you can’t afford a lactation consultant, I would recommend going to a Dischem baby clinic, the sisters are usually helpful and knowledgable when it comes to breastfeeding!
At the moment, I am breastfeeding most of the time, but I wouldn’t say it’s exclusive, because on some days he will have one bottle of formula. It all just depends on What our day looks like and what I have going on with my other children. During the week, I aim to be exclusive as possible. The days when he needs to cluster feed are challenging, as I can’t do much else when he is on the breast all day. These are usually the days when I will use some frozen breastmilk or make a small bottle of formula.
My goal is to breastfeed him for a year… let’s see how that goes.
As far as routine goes, I have let him take the lead, as opposed to forcing him into a schedule. Over the weeks, I have been able to pick up on the consistency of his naps and feeding times.
He wakes up between 8am-9am and has about four naps during the day, lasting between an hour to two-and-a-half hours. His afternoon nap is always the shortest, as his siblings are home and the house is generally LOUD.
Bath time is at 6pm and he will have a feed and take a short nap thereafter. I wish I could say he stays asleep but he usually wakes up after an hour and only goes down again at around 9pm. He will then sleep until 3am, get a nappy change and feed, then sleep again.
I really need to work on the final bedtime, I don’t have a handle on that yet. A part of me doesn’t want to worry because he is still so young and the other part worries a lot because it will be difficult when I go back to work.
I have downloaded the BabyCentre and Wonder Weeks apps, which have been phenomenal for tracking his development and helping me know what to expect next in his development. I would highly recommend that you download them.
Seeing a Chiropractor:
During my breastfeeding struggles, the lactation consultant I saw noticed a few things, like the face that he had difficulty moving his neck to the one side, which was causing our latching issue – he just wasn’t comfortable. She then recommended that we take him to see a Chiropractor – which I had heard is brilliant for babies, but had not tried before.
We did our research and my hubby got a referral to an exceptional Chiro that has specialized in pediatric care. During our first session, he picked up that the left side of his head was very flat – something I wouldn’t have ever noticed. After the second session and doing a bit of homework, we saw an improvement in this neck movement and body alignment. He also sleeps so well after each session! He has never cried or been restless during any of his consultations and it’s something I wish I had explored with my other children.
The lesson I learnt from him is how important and beneficial tummy time is.
How I am doing:
To be honest, I’ve just been floating by. Between the baby, our house move and getting through these last few weeks, I have just resolved to do what I can, when I can. Experience helps a lot! I have not put pressure on myself to do anything that is beyond what I can give and I don’t sweat the small stuff.
I have been blessed to have lots of help, my mom has been staying with us since Kgosi was born. I’m on the hunt for a second helper to assist once she leaves and I go back to work. I’m nervous about what our new normal will be like, but I know we will make it.
There have been hints of the baby-blues a few times, especially in the first month of his life. But having had post-natal depression before, I felt like I knew what to look out for. What helped me was speaking to other new mommies, spending time alone (even just to do the groceries) and praying.
When I had post-natal depression after my first child was born, I felt alone, trapped and stuck. The first few weeks of having a baby are all-consuming and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. If you ever feel down, lonely, anxious or depressed, PLEASE seek medical help and also talk to someone that you are close to. You don’t need to suffer alone.
Physically, the third caesarian section recovery was tough. I still have tenderness and pain in some parts of my abdomen.
I also have a very large abdominal separation (diastasis recti) from pregnancy, that I am trying to heal through pilates and proper exercise. I will share more detail on that in a seperate blog post. My pet peeve at the moment is people that comment on my weight; I have lost count of the number of people that have told me how big I am (sigh).
I’m looking forward to more milestones, although I also want to just enjoy and freeze this time. I get emotional thinking about leaving him to go to work, but I also know he will thrive as his siblings did.
I’m also working on helping on getting his sister to adjust to not being the baby of the family anymore – more on that in another post.
I wanted to say a big thank-you for all the love and prayers during my pregnancy. I really have found an amazing online tribe!
Modern Zulu Mom