An unfiltered fire hose of flaming condemnation

Newsletter: Month Two

Dear Leta,

Tomorrow you are officially eight weeks old. I am sitting here typing this as you lie sleeping next to me. Over the weekend your father and I discovered that if we place you on your stomach you will actually sleep longer than five minutes at a time. This morning, in fact, I had to wake you up after three whole hours of sleeping soundly on your stomach, and when I rolled you over you had the cutest case of Binky Face, all mushed and covered in binky-shaped indentations.

I wish they made Binky Face bread tins so that I could bake a loaf of banana bread in the shape of your sleeping profile, and then instead of trying to eat your chubby cheeks I could just eat the banana bread. That would probably be better for both of us.

Yesterday I read in one of the dozens of medical books we bought since your birth that babies your age can sometimes wrap their fingers around objects that are held close to their hands. Your father and I ran and got the rattle that your Uncle Shan and Aunt Sydney gave you and held it close to your right hand, and you wrapped your fingers around that thing so hard it almost snapped in two. And then, proving once again that you probably have ancestors from the planet Krypton, you began waving that rattle around like you were flagging down a plane.

Your father and I got so excited that we almost had to change each other’s diapers, and we sat there cheering, “GO BABY GO!” At that moment I totally forgave you for the hours and hours and did I mention hours? of sleep I have lost getting out of bed at night to walk into your room to put the binky back in your mouth.

You totally snorted in your sleep just now. A gigantic snort, and remarkably it didn’t wake you up. For the past couple weeks when you have been attempting sleep on your back you have been waking yourself up by smacking yourself in the face repeatedly. I did a Google search on this flailing arm phenomenon (other recent Google searches include: “baby poop looks like caramel” and “healthy baby poop” and “infant hair loss Rogaine”) and I couldn’t find any professional advice on how to restrain your arms so that you can get some sleep. There have been nights when I’ve brought you back to bed with me that you have punched me in the nose with your little clinched fist and I’ve had to walk around the next day with a swollen nostril.

We’ve tried swaddling you, and in the first month of your life swaddling totally worked and you looked like a little frog-caterpillar hybrid. But your arms have become strong enough in the past month that you can break free of any of our swaddles, your father’s swaddles included, and your father could swaddle a full grown octopus and it wouldn’t be able to wiggle its arms.

A side effect of your Flailing Infant Arm Syndrome is your discovery of your right hand which you like to chew on at every possible opportunity. Aside from being very cute and very loud — the air you suck around your fist tends to slurp and often it sounds like a 400 pound man passing garlic farts — your hand chewing is also very drooly, dripping with drool, and if I don’t keep up with the drool the entire right side of your face becomes slimy with drool bubbles. You don’t seem to mind at all, but of course, you don’t mind sticking your sock-covered foot into your seedy caramel poop as I change your diaper, thus forcing me to do YET ANOTHER load of laundry. I can’t wait to teach you how to do laundry.

I look forward to this next month with you, to more coos and noises and near giggles, to more of the moments like the other night when I was feeding you at 1:30 AM and you kicked your sleeping father in the head. Your father and I love you more than you could possibly know, and you won’t know or understand just how much until you have a child of your own. Just please don’t have that child when you’re still a teenager. Which reminds me: You’re not allowed to date until you are 25.

Love,
Mama

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Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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