We survived! Yay for us! With Baby Holly turning 6 weeks old as of yesterday, my wife and I have apparently made it through what I hear is the toughest part of the postpartum days: the first 6 weeks.
That first month or so is when you as the parent must figure out the details on what works best for your baby regarding sleeping schedules, formulas, and diapers. It’s a culture shock as a parent, even after already having one child. I knew it would be challenging going into it.
However, I must have kept my expectations lower than I needed to because, honestly, it hasn’t been that bad!
Despite us managing our newborn’s infant acid reflux, for the post part, things have been fairly predictable. There have really been just 10 simple steps to caring for our newborn during the first 6 weeks:
1) Feed her an ounce, burp her. Repeat until each ounce is gone.
2) Change her diaper.
3) Play with her by talking to her and helping her do exercises.
4) Take a cute picture of her.
5) While you teach yourself newborn photography, by the default of taking so many pictures, Instagram your work to show it off to friends and family.
6) Change her diaper.
7) Wrap her up in a blanket and rock her to sleep with the pacifier in her mouth,
then place her in the crib.
8) Change her diaper, now that she finally fell asleep but wet herself again.
9) Rock her back to sleep and place her in the crib again.
10) Repeat two and a half hours later when she wakes up again.
Those are my 10 simple steps. This has been my life for the past 6 weeks.
Granted, these 10 steps have been my wife’s reality more than mine, since she’s on maternity leave, but I still work during the day. A lot of the time my main responsibility is to take care of our 5 and a half year-old son Jack while my wife Jill takes care of the baby.
This past weekend I celebrated the end of those first 6 weeks by shaving off my postpartum beard, as well as getting a hair trim. As you can see though, I was unable to overcome the temptation of shaving (and Instagramming) in stages.
And if my eyes look bloodshot and cross-eyed, and I look like I need some ginseng because of lack of sleep, it’s probably true.
As for Baby Holly, she doesn’t have that problem so much…
Fare thee well.