6 Weeks with Luke
As every other parent will attest, it's bittersweet when your baby - no matter how young or old they are - reaches new ages and milestones. Luke was 6 weeks old on Saturday and this couldn't be more true. He's more attentive every day, he can smile and coo, and he's clearly recognized our voices for some time now. I'm so excited to continue watching him develop new skills (he'll be rolling over in no time!) and to see his little personality blossom.
But, I'm already nostalgic for those newborn days that seem to be slipping away too quickly. For example, Luke no longer likes to be held like a baby. Instead, he prefers to be held upright, where he can take in the world. I also think it makes his tummy feel better, since he often gets gassy and seems to struggle with reflux a few times a day.
Anyway, the old saying, "the days are long but the years are short has never seemed more true. I already miss my sleepy newborn but I'm even more excited to see what's next in Luke's development. Hopefully longer stretches of sleep is on that list!
Here's what's happening in our world right now.
At nighttime, for the first few weeks, Luke was consistently waking up twice each night, plus an early morning feed around 5 or 5:30 am. He'd do a 3 to 4 hour stretch, then be up every 1 to 2 hours after that. We then had a rough week where he was up 4+ times. A few nights there, he was waking every hour, which was difficult. For the last few days, though, I'm happy to report that he's consistently slept 5 to 6 hour stretches, which has made a world of a difference. Let's hope it lasts!
During the day is a different story. His daytime naps are all over the place. Sometimes, he'll only take quick 10 to 20 minute power naps, and other days he'll nap in 2 to 3 hour stretches. The most difficult part is that he will rarely nap in his crib or swing. He prefers to be held, so most naps take place on my chest. While I love the cuddles, it makes it difficult to get anything productive done, including feeding and bathing myself. In fact, he's napping on my chest as I write this. In a few weeks, when he's 2 months old, I'm planning to start implementing a bit of a schedule, so I'm hopeful his daytime sleep patterns will improve. Stay tuned.
Luke is a champion eater. Seriously, I think he's aiming to win the biggest baby award because the boy can eat. He typically eats every 1 to 2 hours during the day, which is challenging at times, but I'm certainly glad he's growing as he should and that we've been able to establish a strong bond through breastfeeding.
Just last night, we also introduced a bottle of pumped breastmilk for the first time. I was a bit nervous he wouldn't take it and become confused by the different nipples, but he took it like a champ and we picked up right where we'd left off with breastfeeding. I'm planning to continue feeding him primarily via breastfeeding for at least another few months, but it will be nice to be able to go out alone or with Adam occasionally and know he's happy taking a bottle. I'm also excited that Adam will be able to take over his feeding from time to time, which will not only give me a break but, more importantly, they will be able to share that bonding experience as well.
Luke's wake time, while he's not eating, mostly consists of cuddle time or time on his play mat. We do tummy time for a few minutes - he's getting so strong, holding his head up for longer periods every day! - followed by time of his back. He'll spend a good 10 to 20 minutes staring, cooing, and batting at the toys and rattles. We also read books or go on the occasional outing to a coffee shop, appointment, or shopping trip.
I can honestly say i've loved spending the first 6 weeks of Luke's life at home with him. Motherhood is certainly challenging at times, but I love being Luke's mama. Let's see what the next 6 weeks have in store.