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All newborn babies look pretty much the same. At least most Caucasian babies do. They’re all kind of squished and chubby and squinty and pink. Unless Evan is very awake and making adorable baby faces he is practically indistinguishable from any other 3 week old child, girl or boy. Several times while looking at baby products and/or advertisements online I’ve thought “Hey, when did Evan pose for that photo?!” until I remembered it’s very unlikely he’s been sneaking out to work on his modeling career. Before you call me a lousy mother, I’m not saying I couldn’t pick my baby out of a line-up. I’m just saying I doubt anyone else could.

The most consistent advice anywhere about how to handle having a newborn is: Sleep when the baby sleeps. Let me tell you, that is total crap.

If I slept every time the baby slept I’d be getting like 18 hours of sleep a day. None of it would be very restful though, since his naps only last 2-3 hours. I’d never get a shower or a meal or change my clothes. The worst part is losing those blocks of time. When I sleep, breastfeed, sleep, breastfeed, sleep, etc. I end up feeling like a dairy cow. It’s actually more refreshing to spend a couple hours watching Law & Order, doing some laundry or making brownies instead of  just checking out. It breaks the cycle.

Also, sleep is supposed to help increase your milk production, something I am NOT in favor of. I almost blinded the baby this morning when I unhooked my bra and the milk actually squirted 6 inches right into his eye. I could have saved myself the $30 I spent on that breast pump and just “manually expressed” my milk into bottles since my boobs are apparently capable of expressing themselves.

Maybe I just have a baby that sleeps more than normal and I should STFU for a few more weeks. I hear that’s when colic usually hits. Since I was the most horrible, colicky child ever I feel the universe is bound to punish me.

Here’s a tip: Don’t order your birth announcements without having AT LEAST two people proofread them. Preferably people who have not given birth in the last week and are consistently getting more than 3 hours of sleep at a time. Otherwise, there’s a chance that in your bleary, half-awake state you might accidentally forget your child’s birthday. The child you have just given birth to. Then you will feel like a terrible, horrible mother. You might cry. You will definitely have to throw away 45 perfectly nice cards and sheepishly call the company back to have them re-printed with the correct date.

But if you are lucky, and if you ordered your announcements from www.paper-moments.com, you might not have to pay for your stupid mistake. The lady on the phone might laugh and feel bad for you and say she’s definitely been there. And instead of charging you again, she’ll just send the new, CORRECT announcements out for free.

I highly recommend www.paper-moments.com. I am totally thrilled with their excellent customer service. Here’s the announcement all my friends and relatives will be getting in the next couple days:
birth-announcement1

Obviously, I can’t let something as important as the birth of my first child pass without getting a new tattoo – or as my mother puts it, “Ruining my body with something [I] will regret when [I’m] 65”.  E wants to get one too, although we’re not necessarily going to get exactly the same thing. i checked the internet for ideas and the standard seems to be baby footprints. Very cute but not very original. Plus if I do the same thing for my other future (imaginary) children, I’ll end up looking like I’ve been stomped to death by infants.

So I spent my evening playing with fonts and numbers to try and create something on my own. I’m definitely not an artist and I’m not set on any of these – I just need something to show my tattoo guy so he has an idea of what’s in my head. I might include the date. I’ll probably get it on my left wrist. What do you think?

tattoos-pic

p.s. Number 1 & 2 are supposed to look kind of like butterflies and number 3 like an infinity symbol. I like the idea of the meaning being kind of obscure.

Why does entertainment  intended for children seem like it was created by people on drugs? Last night I rocked Baby Evan to sleep to a song about bowling. Bowling with a guy named Bert. I can understand most of the other songs on the tape because they’re about baby whales and meadows and trains and silly giraffes named Joshua. Very child friendly. But bowling? Raffi might have had a few beers that day.

Clearly though, the real serious drug users have focused on children’s television. Teletubbies? Sponge Bob? Yo Gabba Gabba?? No way were those shows created by sober people. I barely even believe they’re actually meant for children.

Happy Birthday Baby Evan! Today you are three weeks old…which is pretty much the same as two weeks old except you’re hungrier. I didn’t think that was possible, but congratulations, you proved me wrong. You win two very tired boobs. You’ve also learned that when you cry, someone picks you up and your inner manipulator is now ruling the household. It’s worse for me than it is for Daddy because although the screaming can pierce anyone’s eardrums, my new super Mommy-hearing means I can hear you even with a pillow, a solid wood door, a flight of stairs and half the house between us. I think Daddy would disagree though, because I have the option of shoving a boob in your mouth while his own useless nipples would probably just anger you further.

Since my mom went home I’m in charge of all the cooking and cleaning – which means there are piles of laundry everywhere and we’ve had Wendy’s for lunch twice this week. The only reason this bothers me is because I like McDonald’s better, but I’m so hungry I’d eat the cat if she’d hold still long enough for me to put some peanut butter on her. I did manage to get to the grocery store yesterday (Alone. In my convertible. It was glorious.) and have plans to make dinner for the next few nights, but we’ll see what Mussolini Baby Evan is doing at about 6 pm.

Next weekend the baby will be 1 month old and the march of visitors begins. Besides my folks coming back to help us finish some home renovations, my sister, grandmother, E’s parents, my best friend and her husband, and my other two best friends are all hoping to come. I’m trying to figure out exactly how many weekends there are in May, but I have a feeling the answer is not six. Don’t worry friends and relatives! You will all get to meet my bebeh soon. Although considering how much he’s eating I can’t guarantee you’ll be able to pick him up without throwing your back out. To make your visits more enjoyable, we’ve put in the work order to get the boat out of winter storage, so although you may be listening to a screaming baby, at least you’ll be listening to him while drinking Long Island Iced Teas on Long Island Sound. My baby is totally doomed to a life of plaid and popped collars.

My precious, beautiful baby has a wicked case of acne on his forehead. My pediatrician assures me this is normal and temporary and that it will definitely clear up soon, but right now he looks awful. I’m almost afraid to take him out in public in case people think he’s sick or diseased. Strangers don’t really need another reason to offer unsolicited advice – just having a baby seems to be plenty.

I’m afraid that between E’s rosacea and my own terrible teenage pimples – plus our pale Northern European genes – poor little Evan is doomed in the skin department. I was just hoping he’d at least make it to puberty before it got this bad.

At the risk of offending one of my real life, in person friends I really need to get this off my chest.

All comments about the weight and/or fitness of a pregnant or recently un-pregnant person are unwelcome. Don’t tell a woman she’s getting huge, even if you mean she looks cute. Don’t tell her if she doesn’t get more exercise she’s going to be too out of shape to handle labor. (Clearly, this logic is flawed. Had my pushing been any more effective, the baby would have actually shot out like a cannon ball, possibly killing my unsuspecting OB.) Don’t mention that she’ll have lots of time to lose the weight before swim suit season. Don’t comment on her diet. Don’t mention that she is still wearing maternity jeans 2 weeks postpartum. (I know it feels like a long time since I gave birth but it’s only been two weeks. I’m not even allowed to start exercising until after my 6 week check-up.) Don’t talk about your own hugely successful weight loss, especially if it involved crazy fasts and cleansing drinks. I have to have calories to produce milk.

I know people who say stuff like this mean well. I don’t think it’s meant to come across as judgy and insulting. I’m sure no one’s trying to make me feel bad, but right now ANY comments on my appearance are unnecessary. That’s why babies are so cute – so moms can be kind of squishy and go a week without washing their hair and no one will notice. It’s science.

Is it ok to take my baby to an 11:30 am movie on a Thursday morning?

On the one hand, people who bring babies to movies are almost always assholes. Babies don’t understand that screaming during the most exciting part isn’t a good way to show their appreciation for a director’s work. Babies don’t always remember that you fed them ten minutes ago and the book says they should sleep for at least 2 more hours. (Sometimes I think babies don’t even READ those books. Jerks.) Plus there’s just something weird about someone bringing their baby to a grown-up movie, even if the baby is too young to see anything further from their face than their own hands and the only word they know is “AAAAAAAUUUUUURUUURUGH”.

On the other hand, who goes to the movies at 11:30 on a Thursday? I would be shocked if there was more than a dozen people in the whole building, let alone seeing the same film. If Baby Evan did start screaming, I could feed him without a single person knowing . Any screaming lasting more than 20 seconds would result in a dash to the door where I could calm him down without any angry glares.  And I plan to see something mostly harmless (if you consider Zac Efron’s attempt at world domination “harmless”) and not “Zombie Strippers vs. Lesbian Vampires Part 2: Now With More Nudity!”. Although to my baby, toplessness just looks like a delicious buffet.

Holy hell does breastfeeding make me hungry.* I had to sit on my hands to keep from eating an entire extra-large pizza on Sunday. At BJ’s my stomach almost climbed up my throat and ripped open a box of Oreo’s entirely on its own. I had lunch less than 3 hours ago and I’m already dying for dinner. And the thirst! My mouth feels like I’ve been eating sand the minutes the baby latches on. I don’t know what all that “breastfeeding helps you lose the baby weight” foolishness is about. Anyone who can fight this level of hunger wasn’t fat to begin with and probably didn’t attempt to eat their weight in York Peppermint Patties during their pregnancy. You know those Weight Watchers commercials where hunger is a cute, fuzzy, orange monster? My hunger is like that thing was bitten by a radioactive spider, injected with gamma radiation, implanted with Adamantium claws and then locked in a basement without food or water for two weeks. YOU WON’T LIKE ME WHEN I’M HUNGRY. Also, I clearly need to watch some movies not based on comic books.

*I actually have no idea if this hunger has anything to do with breastfeeding, it just seems like a convenient thing to blame it on. I doubt all my couch sitting and napping is burning enough calories to require more than a cup of tea as sustenance. The thirst thing is a medical fact.

I love email! It's like talking to other grown ups without having to worry if the baby is screaming! Contact me: bebehblog@gmail.com
April 2009
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