Travel Often

“I see my path, but I don’t know where it leads. Not knowing where I’m going is what inspires me to travel it.” — Rosalia de Castro

Love Deeply, but Laugh Along the Way

"Happiness is only real when shared." - Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild

View Marriage as an Adventure

"Love is a flower which turns into fruit at marriage." ~Finnish Proverb

Fuel your body with GOOD (It's the only one you get)

He who has health has hope; and he who has hope has everything. - Arabian Proverb

Open your Soul to Motherhood

A Grand Adventure is About to Begin - Winnie the Pooh

A New Kind of Love is Born

Mothers hold their children's hands for a short while, but their hearts forever.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Keeping Track of Baby Milestones - Week 5

I'm trying to think of a cool (and easy) way to keep track of all Jackson's milestones. I haven't completely figured it out yet and it kind of makes me feel like a bad mom, especially since I haven't been great at video taping Jackson as he grows or I haven't been able to organize the hundreds of pictures we've already taken. I'm usually so good at this stuff but part of me is still walking around in a fog. We planned on video taping the birth (as in setting the camera next to my shoulders), but the nurses changed in and out right as I was about to push. And that was a little more important. With that said, the record button never was pushed. I'm bummed about it, but I also don't see how I could ever forget that moment Jackson came out. Even with all the drugs.
Our sweet little Jackson James Koester at Week 5

We're at week five. I can't even believe it. Right now I have piles of keepsakes that we need to put in something (I can't make out the top of my dresser anymore), but I don't know what to put this stuff in. I like the idea of scanning in a lot of the stuff and creating a cool digital scrapbook, but there are some things we just can't scan in. I started writing in a cool journal a friend got us at our first shower. And I can add pictures to some of the pages. But the pockets aren't big enough for all the stuff we have and I hate my handwriting. And then there is this blog. Sometimes I feel like it's a bit more about me...and I guess that's OK since it's my blog. But I also want to write about some of Jackson's milestones in here too...

So here goes nothing, starting from the beginning...

Weeks 1 - 4
Hey buddy! We're just getting to know each other this first month. I feel like you've known me for a lot longer than I've known you. After all, you have nine months on me. Yet, I know you're mine. I can see me in your eyes when I pick you up. When I kiss your cheeks. When you make silly faces. When I breastfeed you.

Speaking of breastfeeding....boy...we had our issues. You'd get so mad and frustrated because you couldn't figure out how to latch on right. And you'd cry. And cry. Sometimes it would be for 15 minutes, sometimes longer before you could even start eating. And then I'd get so frustrated. And I'd start sweating and getting nervous and mad. My neck hurt! My back felt like it was going to snap in half. When no one was looking, I'd cry. I couldn't show anyone that I was struggling so much. Because everyone else seemed to breeze through it. What was wrong with me?? Luckily I realized I wasn't alone.

It killed me to know you were hungry and I couldn't feed you immediately. But I needed you to figure out how to eat correctly. I wanted us to click right off the bat. But, oh man...I really wanted to quit. I so wanted to throw in the towel, but I was determined to make breast feeding work. I'd tell myself..."just get through this week, and you can quit next week." Week five and we're still at it.
You're not crying AS MUCH during your baths! OK...just a little....

You weren't gaining enough weight and I had to take you to see the pediatrician a lot. (A LOT.) And the lactation consultant. (A lot.) But started gaining. You and I worked through it and as I look at you week five, I'm so glad I pushed through. Even as sore as I still get from time to time. We're like a little team. This is our special time together. Our quiet time. I stare at you and watch your eyes as you're eating and take the time to look up at me. Then as you look around the room, your eyes look like you're in REM sleep and that you're so in love, so happy. And I wonder what you're thinking. As weird as this sounds, this moment is the best time of my day now because you have taught me TO SLOW DOWN and enjoy the moments that count. I was such a freak with rushing through everything and crossing off things from my list. The moment that counts is being with YOU. I have no idea why I think chores and errands and other stuff is so much more important sometimes.

You don't do a whole lot during the day right now and I wonder if I'm being a good mom. Should I be doing more?? I keep asking your dad if I should bring out all the toys we got at all the baby showers. But all you want to do is sleep or look around. I tried handing you a rattle and some other vibrating toys, but you just like to sleep in your swing during the day and in your bassinet at night. Or you just want to be in my arms for hours at a time. The old me would find something like this annoying or boring, but I don't at all. I find this time to be the most rewarding. You need me. And I need you. And so we just look at each other and before I know it, three hours have passed and all we have done is stared at one another. But I feel like I've made a difference. Like I accomplished something huge. Like I have a purpose.

I tried reading a few books to you. I sometimes cry when reading them. I's a little emotional, and very tired these days. You weren't very interested in looking at any of the pages in the books, but you'd stare at me and recognize my voice. Then you'd fall asleep. So sometimes when I'm not by your books, I read my Health magazines to you or read you all my friend's Facebook posts.
How can I not stare at you????

You love our stairway. Your dad calls it "The Stairway of Mystery" and lowers his voice every time he takes you up and down it. He kind of sounds like Count Dracula when he says this. We can't figure out if you stop crying because we're going up and down stairs and I worked out a bit on the stair stepper when you were in my belly or because you see spirits in the "Stairway of Mystery"? All we know is you LOVE it. I remember the first week at 3:25 in the morning I marched up the stairs for at least 35 minutes straight just to keep you quiet.

You also love to be wrapped tightly (swaddled) in a blanket at night. I can set you in your bassinet and even with wide eyes, you fall asleep. And somehow, by morning, you've found a way during the night to free your arms. How? Your dad thinks you're going to be the next Harry Houdini. We were actually going to name you Harrison and call you Harry for short (after your great grandpa)...until your dad reminded me that all the telemarketers call us The Keesters. Harry Keester would NOT fly in school. Jackson it was. You can thank us later.

During week four, you discovered your stuffed sock monkey when we were changing you. And you stared at it for quite awhile, like you have just discovered something HUGE. It's a simple sock with orange yarn for hair. And you love it. That was pretty cool to see.

Your dad also gave you your first "big" bottle during week four. We had to supplement the first two weeks with one ounce of milk, but your dad and then your Grandpa and Grandma Powalish gave you your first bottle full of three ounces of milk. I guess you drank it in under seven minutes. Sometimes you can keep it down, sometimes you spit it up. You're having issues with spitting up lately and you're making me nervous. You projectile spit up all over the bathroom floor the other morning. You love to hit our red couch too. I hope this is normal....

I kind of find myself getting sad when you drink from the bottle. I know. Make up your mind, mom!! I couldn't wait for the bottle, and now I find myself bumming out about it. I miss our special time together when you are bottle fed, but it is a nice little break and a time for you and your dad to bond.

Week Five
Let the smiling begin. I've noticed in the mornings you are very happy. And you've been smiling more and more. Talk about MELT MY HEART. I can't wait until you do this more and more because you are ADORABLE when you smile. Who am I kidding? You are adorable ALL THE TIME.
I love you SOOO much!!!

It's so strange. You go to sleep at night and I can't WAIT to see you in the morning because you're so cute. Every time you wake up from your naps, I get so eager to pick you up and hold you. I don't even care if you have a full diaper.
You slept five and a half hours straight THREE nights in a row. However, for the last two or three hours before you wake up you whine and moan and whimper. You are a VERY loud sleeper. You went a total of seven hours without eating. So I know even more sleep is coming. Mommy is getting more rest and feeling more like herself (which she needs). She was going a little cray there on your dad! For those who think a baby will "fix" their relationship or marriage are VERY wrong. I have decided if a couple can get through the first month after having a baby, they can get through most anything. You're so VERY vulnerable and MUST communicate to survive!!! For your information, your dad and I have made it through....just a few tears shed here and there. OK...a LOT of tears. The lack of sleep will play tricks on your head. A sense of humor is a must.

I'm able to set you in your swing or on your boppy or in your rock and play when you are awake and you're OK being in there. You look around to discover more. This allows mom to do a load of laundry and empty the dishwasher or eat breakfast!
You like your NUK every once in awhile

We're making progress and are having a lot of fun together. You're a pretty awesome baby. And I find myself thanking God for you a lot.

We're going to take a Baby and Me class together in Shakopee so we can get out of the house more and meet some other new moms and babies. More to come on that!