Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Seven Weeks

We took our tripod to the bluebonnet field when the light was good to get a few shots of all of us.  Look at us, a true Texan family.

Kate is seven weeks old.  It amazes me how much she changes from week to week.  She continues to be more alert for longer periods of the day.  Much to our delight, she started smiling around five weeks, and she smiles more and more every day.  This morning she woke up and wanted to eat; I wasn't ready to get up yet, so I lay down with her and fumbled around to get ready to nurse.  I forced my eyes open and happened to glance down at Kate.  She was looking up at me with the biggest, sweetest open-mouth smile on her little face.  I melted and snuggled her close to me and was no longer sad she'd woken me before I was done sleeping.  

At exactly six weeks, Kate started sleeping longer during the night.  She's always slept for 4-5 hours at a time, but on her six week birthday, she slept from ten until seven.  I woke up at three and at five, and both times I freaked out and prodded at her tiny body until she squirmed and I could be sure she was still breathing.  She hasn't slept that long since, but she's been sleeping for 6-7 hour stretches now.  I have really been enjoying it and feel very blessed.

Kate gets cuter by the day.  She is my little buddy.  I am happy to see, as both a mother and as a speech pathologist, Kate is very much in the "coo and goo" stage--she frequently makes sweet noises when she is calm and happy.  

Kate and her daddy have a special relationship.  He can calm her down and put her to sleep much faster than I can.  He loves playing with her, and one of these days, she's going to love it, too.  

Monday, April 16, 2012

She Hears Me

(Sweet dress from Auntie Katie)

Kate's ability to perceive that there are other creatures in her universe increases daily.  The other day, Jay was giving Kate a bath (I usually give the baths, but I try to have him do it whenever possible because she truly doesn't cry as much when he does it).  He pulled her out of the warm water (the part she hates because, to her, being cold is worse than anything--anything--except maybe being hungry) and laid her on a towel.  She pulled her sad, cute lemon face and started her pre-yelling hyperventilating, and Jay said, "It's okay" in a soothing voice a couple times, and she relaxed.  A minute later, she started working herself up again, and Jay said, "It's okay, Kate.  It's okay."  And she relaxed again.  

"When I tell her it's okay, she calms down," he said, awed.  And she was calm: she was so cold her little gums were chattering and her chin was quivering, but she was practically serene as he dressed her.  

Now, she's not like that for me, no matter how many times I tell her she's okay.  But a few minutes ago, I tried to put her down for a nap because she's exhausted, and she started crying in her swing.  A pacifier worked for a minute, but her distress quickly returned.  I swaddled her and cradled her in my arms, my cheek pressed against her downy head.  She relaxed into me, but arched her back and cried when I laid her down again.  I listened to her cries as I switched a load of laundry to the dryer, hoping the white noise would comfort her.  She yelled louder.  

I walked back into the room and looked at her sweet, contorted face and her kicking legs.  On a whim, I started singing her this song.  She stopped crying almost immediately and locked her eyes on my face as she swung back and forth.  She was so obviously aware of me it took my breath.  My throat tightened, but she remained still as I struggled through all three verses.  

She knows me, I thought.  She hears my voice.  My presence and very existence is comforting to her.  

I am completely consumed by the burden and sweet blessing of her trust.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Bed Head

I love Kate's wispy hair, especially when it goes a little crazy.