pregnancy and parenthood

On parenthood: 4 months old

It feels weird to say that I have a four month old – a big, chunky 20-pound-with-fat-rolls four-month-old. So long, fourth trimester! (Oh boy does it feel good to leave the fourth trimester behind us). 

I no longer have to work hard for  baby smiles. He gives them freely! My favorite is the “milk drunk” smile. There is nothing that melts my heart more than locking eyes when we nurse and getting a sweet mid-latch smile. Finally, mama gets a thank you! We are still waiting on that first real laugh, though. He does all the motions, but no noise comes out!

He is making a whole lot of noise in the form of raspberries though! He  woke up one day and started blowing them at me, and he hasn’t stopped since. It’s ridiculously adorable.

With this month comes new challenges, too.  Just when we think we have him figured out, there’s more to learn. The biggest thing we are working on lately is getting consistent with a sleep routine. His newborn sleep fairy dust has worn off, and so the way we approach nap time and bedtime is requiring a few more Ninja skills. I kind of miss the newborn days where he could sleep anywhere and anytime, but then again, not really, because this age is proving to be so cute!

Experienced mamas have warned us that no matter how consistent we are, sleep is going to be hit or miss especially with all of the growth spurts, development leaps, sleep regressions, and teething that happens in the first year. We are at the cusp of the 4-month sleep regression right now, in which he wakes much easier and needs help learning how to fall back asleep, and so daddy and I have been mentally preparing, researching different approaches and arming up with coffee. Some nights he only wakes twice, other nights he just likes to poop and party every couple hours. The good news is he doesn’t seem to be angry when he awakes, in fact, Sean and I are up in the wee hours of the morning laughing our asses off because he will be smiling and blowing raspberries at us in the dark.

We are also hitting the beginnings of teething. He is drooling so much more (thank god for those adorable bandana bibs!), and putting toys and fingers in his mouth constantly!

The biggest lesson for me this month has been to keep my expectations low so that I have an easier time adjusting to all of the changes he continues to go through – remembering that there is no “norm” or perfect routine with a baby, and that every month will truly bring different challenges, and therefore different needs based on what he is going through. It’s so easy as a parent to get carried away with implementing structure – which has its place – but not to the point where we become rigid.

With that approach in mind, our days have grown less stressful and more fun. He is taking so much interest in the world around him, and it is incredible to witness this inate desire to learn. He may not be talking, but he is watching – and playing! I bought some new toys, and he loves holding all kinds of textures and shapes. We also added a doorway jumper to the mix of never-ending baby gear, which has quickly become his favorite thing ever. He lights up whenever he’s in it and kicks and bounces as long as he can stay awake in it!

Likes: One-on-one conversations, blowing raspberries, drooling, sucking on fingers, co-sleeping, baby wearing, browsing fruits and veggies at the grocery store, staring at the TV on dad’s lap, holding toys, bouncing up and down, kicking and pushing up on his feet, going to the coffee shop and staring at the artwork on the walls, and MIRRORS!

Dislikes: When mommy tries to put him down and walk away for naps, being swaddled or having any type of blanket on him, being cradled (prefers being held upright and over the shoulder), the rocking chair (very particular about being bounced, not rocked).

 

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