Wednesday, December 14, 2011

My world is forever changed...

Nineteen days ago, John and I welcomed our son, John Junior, into the world.  Eighteen days ago we brought him home.  In the seventeen days since then, John has found a job, we've gotten familiar with the process of changing a cloth diaper, and discovered the joys of co-sleeping.  (No, seriously, I cannot for the life of me imagine how new moms get ANY sleep with baby in another room... but that's a whole separate post...)

I've also realized that nobody can possibly be as excited and obsessed with our perfect baby boy as we are (nor should they be), and rather than continuing to drive everybody on Facebook nuts with constant status updates every time JJ does something adorable, I decided to roll with the bug a friend put in my ear and start a mommy blog.  Took me a few days to find the time and the energy, but here we are!

As the title suggests, I am by no stretch of the imagination the Fount of Wisdom for All Things Baby.  I did a lot (and I mean a LOT) of babysitting growing up, which prepared me in some small measure, I'm sure, but the last (almost) three weeks have thrown into stark relief how little I actually know.  I fell into "Mommy-mode" with barely a pause, and much of it is instinctive... burping the baby came without a second thought, for example... but this is the easy time.  Yes, I'm tired because I'm suddenly running on six hours of sleep a night (and I count myself blessed to get that much, he's a WONDERFUL baby), and yes, I get frustrated when I can't figure out why he's screaming (which, thank God, has only happened once so far), but at this point his needs and what to do about them are extremely simple.  Full stomach + well-burped + clean diaper + Mommy = happy baby. Generally speaking, anyway.  It gets complicated later, and believe you me I am ENJOYING this simple time... despite my aching back and all mutterings to the contrary.

That picture up there?  He was just about 90 minutes old when that was taken, they had just brought him back from the nursery.  I have to say, I don't look half bad, which kind of surprises me, because I got maybe an hour of sleep the night before, and the delivery was pretty insane.  The picture makes me laugh because I look completely stunned, and I was.  I kept looking at him, trying to wrap my head around the idea that he was inside me, that John and I together had made this beautiful, tiny, precious little creature that was now clutching my finger and sleeping with his ear to my heart-beat.  I couldn't seem to grasp it, and spent the better part of my conscious moments that day alternately grinning, crying, and staring at him in total astonishment.

In the last couple of weeks, I find myself looking at the world and everything in it with a completely new frame of reference.  EVERYTHING is being passed through the "we have a baby" filter, with some interesting results.  Shows I liked (or at least was willing to tolerate) before now have me asking John to change the channel because I don't want the baby hearing that crap, even if he is too young to understand.  I find baby-talk addressed to adults more obnoxiously irritating than ever.  The zoo scene in Happy Feet made me suddenly burst into tears... and not because it was sad.  It's supposed to be this tragic, gut-wrenching scene detailing Mumble's slide into depression and madness, and all I could think was "I get to take JJ to the zoo!"

We get to take him to the zoo, and the aquarium.  We get to watch his face when he tastes chocolate for the first time.  We get to teach him how to ride a bike and climb a tree and make snow angels.  John will be showing him how to clean a fish, and I'll be teaching him to sing harmony the way my mother did... by singing "Come, Follow, Follow" and "Row, Row, Row Your Boat" in rounds with him at bedtime.  We get to tell him how flowers grow and why the sky is blue, and all about that big round white thing in the night sky and why it sometimes looks like a coin and other times like the clipped-off piece of a fingernail.

All the neat things we get to do with him thrill me.

All the scary things we have to protect him from terrify me.

And somewhere in the middle is this squishy little bean who wrapped his tiny hand around my finger and melted my heart into a pile of warm fuzzies.

Welcome to the world, son.  It's gonna be a crazy trip!

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