So, I am on a mission for a new (second-hand) one at eBay. I actually want to get a "gender-neutral" one that's not so dark in colour, and it MUST have a vibration function. Otherwise I'm surprisingly unfussy! ;) But I need one reeeally soon.
Aww, my tiny 'Lijah is crying at the bottom of the stairs for his "Da-deee" so forlornly (Neil has gone to the toilet), so I am going to stop this and cuddle him as long as Lydia sleeps. Back later (maybe?!).
Back. I picked him up and he immediately wanted milk, so he has completely emptied me on one side now, lol! Samuel snuggled up to my other side, but he doesn't seem to want milky any more. I am pretty sure he has no idea there's lots of normal milk there now - he went off it when it turned to colostrum. Benjamin still usually has bedtime milky, but often goes without if he falls asleep before I get to him, and he hasn't any any since Lydia was born because I have been feeding or holding her whenever their bedtime has come round.
Lydia is still sleeping (so sweetly!) on the bed so I will carry on for now. I think I got to the part where she was 4 days old. This photo was taken when she was 5 days old, the day when the midwives came to do her heel prick and weigh her. She weighed a teeny 6lbs 12oz, which is fine as she'd lost 7% of her birth weight (normal is 7% to 10% in breastfed babies). She was still 4oz heavier than Elijah was at birth, but size-wise she seemed just as tiny.
The tiny baby size clothing (up to 7.5lbs) was still a generous fit on her, and I'm sure she's gained weight now since then, but she's still fitting her tiny baby clothing at 10 days old. I have had to put her in a few newborn things when we ran out of clean clothes - the tumble dryer set something on FIRE a few days ago, and died spectactularly! Thankfully it was just one item and Neil was here, and the smoke alarm went off, and everything was okay, but it was a bit scary for a while! Neil had a MASSIVE clean up job to do, and he put the tumble dryer out of the house on his own (heavy!) because it was giving off smokey fumes. He found us a new one and got the old one taken away, and now we have a really snazzy efficient tumble dryer which dries things much faster than before, and has various safety features to prevent overheating and fires. Phew. But we had a LOT of laundry piling up for a few days there!
So anyway, she wore some newborn sleepsuits, which just were tooooo big, and her feet kept being all bunched up in the torso by morning, lol! Some are just about okay, too big, but wearable, if they are brands that come up a bit small for size. She did wear a dress and tights set (her first one - I was sooooo excited, hehe!) that is newborn size - I am having to bear the suspense with various dresses in the drawer still, because they are all newborn size and she's not that big yet, bless her! I put her in the smallest of the newborn dresses and some newborn sized pink tights, and they were a bit big on her to be honest, but I had a lovely time dressing her up and snuggling her anyway! ;) This is Lydia wearing it - she's 8 days old here. I took this photo to show a little girl who had made and sent a card, but as it's a photo of Lydia I will include it here as well! :) See how the newborn tights are all baggy and too long?! Bless, she's so weeny!
Something else that has amazed me, is that Lydia is already cooing and smiling! Samuel started smiling (proper social smiles, not wind) at 8 days old, as I have written about here before, and he maintained that afterwards too. But not cooing until a bit later. Lydia smiled for the first time at FIVE DAYS OLD!!! :-O Seriously. Neil told me that morning that he thought she had smiled at him, but I
have to admit (I feel a bit ashamed!) that I doubted him. I thought, no way, that's not possible at 5 days old. She hadn't really focused on our faces properly yet, even. But later that morning she was fussing a bit, and I put her back to the breast in case she was hungry. She didn't want it, so I held her back in my hands to look into her eyes, and she made eye contact, and it's like she had only been waiting to be able to focus enough to make eye contact, to start with the social stuff! She looked right at me, and her eyes went wide as though she recognised me, and she did a BIG smile, not a little "maybe" smile, a real lovely smile! :) And while I was speechlessly taking that in, she stopped smiling and looked very focused, and I noticed she was moving her lips differently, as though she was intentionally trying to do something with them. She suddenly said, "Coo-gah!" as carefully as she could, really intentionally, like she was putting the two syllables down ever so carefully, one after the other. That's all she said, but OH! Bring on the proud mama!!! I was fit to bursting over it, I was soooo proud of my tiny new baby girl! Five days old. I still can't believe it.
Since then she has had one or two short moments each day where she has connected with us - eye contact like that, and then that intentional look, and a smile or two, and various little very carefully placed cooing sounds. Just a little thing, and then that's it. Often she is exhausted after the smile and tiny coo, and yawns and yawns from then on until she is back on the breast and falls into a long sleep! Such a lot for a new new brain to be doing, no wonder she's tired from it! Today, at 10 days old, she has smiled quite a lot of times so far, some of them little sweet smiles, and one or two really big wide open-mouthed smiles that she's held for a few seconds, looking right into my eyes. She has also cooed at the water glasses on my chest of drawers, lol! ;) The cooing is never for very long, but it's definitely proper "talking" - all the sounds are the same as the others when they have started cooing. I'm just amazed (have I said that enough times yet?! lol!) that she's started both cooing and smiling so early. I can't WAIT to catch her smiles on camera. I am soaking them up right now since once she's smiled once, she's tired and finished smiling, so far. If she smiles, there's no point reaching for the camera because there isn't likely to be another one for a while. Soon though, hopefully! She has done so many more smiles today than any of the previous days, so I'm hoping she'll be beaming for the camera soon! :)
For now, here's my sweetie pie this morning - 10 days old. She is making eye contact a lot more now. Her eyes are lightening up in colour, and there isn't a trace of blue to them. They are grey, right now a mid-to-dark grey, but they will probably continue to get lighter as they days go by. The grey thing makes me feel pretty sure she won't have blue eyes though. Arthur, Benjamin and Elijah had dark grey eyes at birth, and Arthur's are brown now, while Benjamin and Elijah have grey eyes with a brown/hazel ring in the middle. I think Lydia will have some brown to her eyes, but I'll have to wait and see how much. I love this, because it's my mum's gene (all the other grandparents have blue eyed genes) and Lydia's middle name is Jane, which is my mum's name. :)
I put her in a newborn sized outfit this afternoon - it's a tutu!!! I can't believe I'm a mother who has a newborn sized tutu for her daughter, lol! I tried to take some nice photos of her, but I'm a bit of an amateur, and she didn't stay asleep for long while I took photos, and got rather cross quite quickly! These are the three that came out the nicest:
She is more fussy in the mornings these last two days, and doesn't settle to sleep for long. I don't know if it's to do with a growth spurt, needing to feed more therefore, or whether she just isn't into sleeping in the mornings?! Around mid-afternoon, every day without fail, she feeds into a REALLY deep sleep for 3 hours at least. If she isn't waking by then, I tend to wake her to feed her. I would prefer her not to sleep longer than 3 hours without a feed right now. Then, she wakes for a little bit but seems really sleepy, and then goes back to sleep at the breast for ANOTHER 3+ hours, so into the evening. And there I was worrying that she'd be super busy in the evenings because that's how she was in the womb! ;) She's really sleepy in the afternoons and evenings, and I get worried that she'll suddenly perk up for a wakeful/fussy spell around midnight for a few hours like the mornings are becoming! But so far, so good. She sleeps pretty well at night like the afternoons/evenings, so far.
Her cord stump came off when she was 6 days old - well, in the night between 6 and 7 days old, but she was born at night, so yeah, 6 days old. I found the stump (with its clip on) in her armpit in the morning, lol! I'm always happy to see those go, and glad that my babies generally lose them within the first week, because they get kind of stinky before they drop off. Her tummy button is healing nicely now.
I am doing okay - being looked after wonderfully by Neil, as I am still mostly resting in bed upstairs while he takes on everything with the boys, and he even brings me my meals in bed! He's wonderful! I am trying to do a little more these last few days, going downstairs for a little bit with Lydia, or to snuggle some boys on the sofa, etc. Not much. Neil goes back to work on Thursday, so I need to ease myself back into normal (ish) activity by then. My parents are coming from France to meet Lydia on Wednesday - yay!!! It's Arthur's birthday a week from today, on Saturday (he'll be NINE!!!), and they are spending the day with us then too. I'm not sure what their plans are for the two days in between, when Neil is back at work.
This evening (it's evening now, and the boys are in bed), I had a bit of a scare. My bleeding is still going strong, and while it's still normal, I'm sure it was a lot less by 10 days postpartum after some of my other babies. It is still red, and at times, quite heavy. I have had a day or half a day here and there where I've had very little bleeding, which has turned to brown, but red is still the norm for the most part. Tonight I went to the toilet for a BM (adding that tmi in case it's significant), and changed my pad. Then I got back in bed and Lydia was waking up, so I fed her. While I was feeding her, I started to feel a continual flow going on. It wasn't torrential, otherwise I would have put Lydia down to investigate. But I sat there aware of it, feeding her, and getting more and more anxious. She fed from both sides, so about 20 minutes (at most) after putting the pad on, I finally got chance to check it. I had soaked through it, and onto my pyjamas, and could still feel bleeding. I changed my pad quickly, found some clean pjs and got back in bed, soooo nervous. I hate bleeding. :( In the end I phoned Heather. She's in the middle of her craft fair still, but I knew I could ring her at home as usual in the evening, for advice or reassurance. I had probably half as much blood on the new pad by then, but it seemed to be slowing. Heather said I should ring the labour ward to speak to a midwife about it, so I did, and the midwife thought it was probably okay, but that I should call back if it hadn't slowed down in an hour, or if it got heavier. It hasn't stopped completely (though I guess it wouldn't anyway, entirely) but it has slowed down, so I haven't called back.
The other thing is that I am feeling more and more anaemic as the days go by. I feel quite weak and breathless getting out of bed and just walking downstairs or to the other bedroom, and I didn't feel that way a few days ago even. I feel more tired, and Neil says I am "all one colour" - he mentioned that the last couple of evenings, in a concerned way, but I felt okay then. Tonight I feel quite light-headed and just like I really need to fix my iron again. So I'm wary, with more blood loss than usual. I was borderline anaemic before giving birth, and then my blood loss was 350mls - not the smallest amount, but not excessive either. I've had smaller blood losses at birth, for sure. Arthur's was 400mls, the most I've lost at any of my births, and I was anaemic (I think) after his birth. Anyway, so then to have heavier blood loss AFTER the birth as well... I am a bit worried about it, because that's my nature, but I'm going to do what Heather said next, which is to ring the midwives tomorrow and request a home visit to do a blood test for my iron levels. I would also appreciate a check in general, because they weighed Lydia and did her heel prick test, but they didn't actually check me at all! So I would like it if they did that too!
Okay, Lydia is awake now and it's late, so I need to finish this and go and get ready for bed, so I can feed her and fall asleep myself! I will update again when I can! :)