Friday, August 3, 2012

Dear Cora: One Month

Dear Cora,

  Happy One Month Birthday! It is so strange to think that 5 weeks ago, we didn't know you. We talked about you all the time with your brother. He told people about "sissy Co-wa". I stretched shirts over the belly that held you. My body ached with your presence. We wondered about you, but we didn't know you.

  It was impossible for Daddy and I to imagine what another baby of ours would be like. We couldn't dream up how a baby of ours could look, other than like your brother, because he was the only one we had ever known. We tried to think of what personality traits might uniquely belong to you, but that was hidden, too.

 Now you are here, and we have spent the past month just beginning to get acquainted with you. We'll spend the rest of our lives learning you, but here's what we've discovered so far ...

  You are beautiful. We see similarities between you and your brother in the shape of your precious mouth and the color of your eyes, but your other features are completely different from his, thus far. You are so feminine. Since the day he was born, people have said that your brother looks like Daddy. It is so fun and sweet to me that when people meet you, they say you resemble me. What an awesome privilege for parents to get to see tiny glimpses of themselves in a brand new person. You are wholly yourself, Cora, and I can't wait to see how all of your different physical traits develop as you grow.

    You are hungry. After being born at 9 pounds, 2 ounces, you ended up losing 9 ounces by your one week birthday. It took a while for my milk to come in, so you had a few hungry days; and didn't get back to birth weight until you were almost 3 weeks old, but your pediatrician told us that's completely normal for higher birth weight babies. Once you did hit that 9 pound mark again, you took off! Today you weight 10 pounds, 1 ounce; which means that for the past 24 days you have gained, on average, an ounce a day. At this point you still eat 8-9 times a day - every 2-3 hours during the day. Anytime you feel like slowing down and eating a bit less frequently is fine with me. You usually give me one 5 hour stretch between feedings each night. That only equals 4 hours of sleep for me, but they are a precious 4 hours.

   You have definite opinions. You sleep well once you are asleep, but you do NOT like falling asleep. You do okay at night, when you get to fall asleep right after nursing, but during the day when you've had some alert, wakeful time after feedings, you have a really tough time winding down. You fight sleep so ferociously that we thought for a while that you might be extremely gassy and in pain, but after some careful observation, we think you just really don't want to let yourself doze off. This is, by far, the most challenging thing about our days at this stage. You need a very peaceful environment to fall asleep, and your brother is a bundle of chatterbox energy. You also hate riding in the car. Often you will sit peacefully in your carseat while I buckle you in and carry you to the car, but the moment we start moving, you start screaming. You must not have gotten the memo that car rides are supposed to soothe babies. You work yourself into such a state that you sound like a pack of screaming mountain lions. It's pretty intense.

  You are strong. When I took you to the doctor to check your weight at 3 weeks, he said you reminded him more of a 2 month old than a newborn. Your cry is powerful and your little body is strong. When you were 19 days old you rolled over, from your back to your tummy. I had just changed your diaper, you were furious that I wasn't feeding you yet, and you just writhed and squirmed until you flipped yourself over. You love tummy time and do great with moving your head from side to side.

  You are sweet. When you are awake, you are so alert and you just look all around, taking in your surroundings. You turn your head to find my voice, or your daddy's or brother's. You give me the sweetest little grins when you've finished eating and I talk to you and tickle your cheeks. When your belly is full and you aren't too sleepy, you are very content to sit in your bouncy seat or lay on your playmat, as long as your family is nearby. Your daddy and I love watching your big, blue eyes study us, or the collection of black and white pictures that are hung above the couch in the living room. They are your favorite objects to look at.

  You are adored. Your daddy just stares at you and kisses you and compliments you all the time. Your big brother talks to you a little more each day. He gets so tickled when you look at him, and he has his own special name for you: Cora Taco Bell. I am so proud of you and love it when we gaze at each other.

 Here are some special events from your first month:

1st bath! Your brother LOVES helping out with your bathtime.

Aunt Abbie has been at camp all summer, but we've loved the couple of times we've gotten to see her.

Uncle Kyle & Aunt Millie drove from Nashville to meet you when you were about a week and a half old.
A peek at everyday life in our house at this stage

You & Grandaddy share a birthday month & we celebrated with him.

 And here are a few shots from mommy photo shoots this month:

Sweet 9 day old Cora

And here are a couple one month pictures from today:

  We love you so much, Cora, and can't wait to learn more about who you are!

(You can see Liam's first 6 months of monthly pics in the same chair here).

No comments: