Baby Keira was born on January 18. She was born at 36 weeks which is a whole month early. I had the intention of posting a birth story, but maybe because it was such an exhausting ordeal that I haven't. I will say though, that it wasn't the labor and delivery that was the hardest for me, it was the fact that she had to stay in the NICU for about a week. Fortunately, everything turned out okay and she has no serious long term health effects that we need to worry about. She just needed that extra week in the NICU to mature. She's home, safe and sound.
How can I describe this precious baby with words...I call her my little gummy bear. Daddy calls her Kiwi. Both are fitting. She is sweet enough to eat, but adorable and loveable all the same. She has certainly found her own voice here in her new family. She doesn't like to wait for me for very long. If daddy walks her around, or grandma rocks her, I can skate by for a little while, but not for too long. She is a good nurser. I nurse her on-demand (yes, like a cable program) and I know by the little twinkle in her eyes that she appreciates my availability. She repays me by only nursing twice during the night, once at about 130 and again around 4. I think she chose that time so she can hear daddy hustling and bustling while he heads off to work. She loves him already. He's hooked, naturally. All her sisters love her, she is the star of the show right now. Even our little diva Roslyn has allowed her to take center stage, most of the time. I decided last night, that the most heart-wrenching thing I could think of was feeling spread too thin between two needy babies. We were sitting on the couch, while everyone else was asleep, and they were both crying. Roslyn has a cold and she kept coughing. I brought her out to lay with me on the couch for a bit while the humidifier in her room got into gear. Well, I quickly found myself trying to comfort two crying babies. I don't think it would have been as hard if I didn't have to support the baby as much- you know, with the large head/weak neck problem. Also, Roslyn has quite the noggin herself, and she would slam it right down on top of the baby's head if I wasn't paying attention. She likes to cuddle with her. So, I did the best I could. I used some minor psychological warfare on Roslyn to get her to comply with me holding just the baby for awhile. Then, after she was settled, I was able to lay between them and comfort them both. I did it. I am getting more and more confident about my role as a mother of 4. We have had grandma around and helping so much, and I think it has taken me longer to grow into the role, because I have had so much help. But I am feeling it now. I really believe parenting is like a muscle sometimes. The more you work it, and work at it, consciously- the stronger it becomes. Every day is like a work out routine. I do some of the same movements repetitiously and they become easier and easier. Feeding them, for example, has become a lot easier. I know the easiest thing to do is to cook dinner a lot earlier than usual because the old time is right smack in the middle of Keira's feeding. And then there are new exercises, like going somewhere as a family. I imagine this will be the most strenuous activity we take on for quite some time. The double stroller helps, but the orchestration of a successful trip to a restaurant is slightly more difficult than the food is satisfying. Meaning, the food is barely worth the mental and physical struggle most of the time. But hey, that's okay. We have 2 children under age 2. It will get easier.
I have been anxious to write and have lost so many of the ideas that have popped into my mind, but I will get to them. They are still in there, somewhere. Now excuse me, I have an episode of Scooby-Doo to watch before nap time.