So the health visitor came over last Tuesday to weigh Mia. In one week, Mia put on one pound. ONE POUND! In a week! It might not sound impressive (I can put on a pound in an hour by consuming a tub of ice cream during an episode of Big Brother) but for a newborn, this is pretty cool stuff. Breast feeding is going really well, I'm relieved to say. I've now past the first milestone (by three weeks, Jack was on mixed feeds) and feeding is now painless. Breast shields and massive globs of Lansinoh for one week seems to have done the trick, hallelujah. I've been practicing various holds as well, becoming slightly more adept at feeding Mia and having a hand free to do important things, like changing television channels.
This is all very exciting for me. I couldn't feed Jack without an elaborate array of pillows and both hands (plus any extra on offer.) It never stopped hurting, and I never enjoyed it in the least. I dreaded more of the same with Mia, particularly when my nipples became cracked and painful. I had that familiar feeling of anxiety as I approached the next feed, and let out the same gasp of pain when she latched on. To be able to feed Mia without hesitation, feeling calm while she nurses, not looking at the clock and getting a knot in my stomach, and simply enjoying gazing into her little greyish-blue eyes while she looks up at me from my breast...it's priceless.
But before most of you leave with a feeling of disgust at my constant smugness since Mia's birth, it's not all been rosy. Paul has taken on almost all of Jack's daily (and nightly) duties so that I can take care of Mia, which means that my little boy now cries out for daddy when he wakes up or hurts himself. I went to comfort him one night when he woke up crying, and he pushed me away with an angry "NO!" and kept sobbing "Daddy daddy daddy!" while I tried not to cry. I'm trying to get involved with his daily routine more now, and it already seems to be making a difference - probably more for me than for him. Mia seems to be going through a growth spurt, making for some very restless nights and grumpy evenings. For all of us.
And tomorrow is my first day alone with toddler and newborn. Please come over and bring as much cake as you can carry.