This should be our theme song, especially at 3 am:
“It hurts to be in love
Day and night
Night and day
It hurts to be in love this way”
This song comes to us courtesy of my mother, who played the cassette tape “KRLA 21 Solid Rock Hits 1965” (stolen, apparently, from my Uncle Dan when my mother went to college, and later recorded to tape so we could listen in the car) for us continuously so Colleen and I have a comprehensive knowledge of those hits. Much good it has done us. And now here we are, inflicting it on the next generation.
In other news, here’s Benji after eating 3 whole ounces.
Benji can’t see more than 12 inches from his face yet, and all he can really make out are edges and faces, but that doesn’t stop him from looking around. Here are a few things he’s experienced lately.
Mommy feeding him (and getting in some reading, too):
Napping with Grandpa Joe:
Getting a snack from Grammy:
Sleeping with Daddy after an early-morning feeding fraught with tears:
Perhaps the observant among you notice a theme with Benji’s activities. That’s because eating and sleeping comprise 2/3 of his behaviors at this point (the final behavior, “outputting,” we don’t photograph, having our hands full and not needing to share that poopy experience with the world). Occasionally Benji does expand his repertoire to looking around dazedly with one or both eyes, waving arms and legs randomly, making a variety of noises with his mouth, and grabbing things within reach.
Today Benji has been with us for two weeks, although I would swear it’s been two months, or even two years. My time sense is all off from getting up at crazy hours day and night. I have no conception of what day of the week it is or what the date is; Benji doesn’t know or care, and I’m on Benji time.
He has started opening his eyes more after feeding, entering a quiet alert phase that is fun for us. Open eyes make him seem much more human, somehow, like you can see the little person who’s in there peeking out now and again. I look forward to getting to know that little person as he develops.
By the way, I continue to enjoy non-pregnancy SO MUCH, it almost makes up for some of the screamy bits. Clearly I’m not one of those people who miss being pregnant, or enjoy it and treasure every moment. Pregnancy was a means to an end, and now we have achieved that, I’m not nostalgically looking back on those months – I’m enjoying the moments we have with Benji as he is now, and looking forward to finding out who he will grow into in the future.
The first 10 days Benji was with us, we set up camp in the library during the day and our bedroom at night. Now, however, we are finally starting to use his room a bit. At night he sleeps on the floor in our room (or downstairs with Daddy if he’s fussy, which he is with increasing frequency as he gets older), but during the day I bring him up to sleep in his crib while I pump.
The more time I spend in his room, the more I like it. It’s cheerful but calm, and gets pleasant afternoon light. Benji likes looking at all the edges.
Here’s my home base in Benji’s room.
Yesterday we got that cheap lamp from Target. I hate Target and would prefer to have gotten it used, but Target was expedient. The rocking chair, however, is an heirloom piece from a neighbor of my parents’. She is preparing to move and when she heard we needed a rocking chair, bestowed this upon us. It’s wonderful, and perfectly sized for me. Ian fits, but not comfortably, and prefers sitting downstairs.
This is Benji’s crib, a Ferguson family crib that Ian slept in as a baby. It’s sturdy in a way that most furniture is not these days. The quilt was made by a friend of Mom’s who I have known practically forever.
No need to go into what this is for. Benji would say it’s a torture device, for sure.
Here’s what I see from my chair when I keep an eye on Benji. He mostly is content to snooze in the crib, making the occasional heart-melting newborn noises. I have a hard time not picking him up and cuddling him when he does that, but he’s happy sleeping, so I restrain myself.
Sometimes Benji doesn’t seem all too certain about us. Then again, I might feel the same way in his situation:
He has started turning towards my voice when someone else holds him, though. Awwww.
This morning as I was changing the amazing human fountain, I discovered the following tucked under his changing pad.
Day 10: I remain in the clutches of my evil jailers, who – in a sinister touch worthy of a James Bondian villain – insist on calling themselves Mommy and Daddy. Since last week’s forcible abduction, they have had custody of me, apparently in an attempt to break me. I have resisted so well, though, that they called in a torture specialist named Nana overnight, and she and “Mommy” forced me to consume many ounces of the sweet, fatty substance they call (again in a nightmarish parody) “milk” that I’m coming to suspect is addictive.
I believe they plan to turn me into a milk addict, and then use that hold over me; but I have resolved to remain firm in my rejection of this substance and thus thwart their nefarious plan. In my old home I never needed milk, and although it makes me feel good (lethargic or alert by turns), I continue to successfully rejected “Mommy’s” repeated, insistent offers of her breast (the source of the liquid). “Daddy’s” finger-feeding has proven impossible to resist thus far, but each session I resist anew, even as I find myself craving more of this “milk.”
After a session of torture, they wrap me tightly in blankets that remind me strongly of the home I was so forcibly abducted from on August 15… And I actually feel content. It seems a betrayal, weakness, as my captors slowly wear me down. I persevere in my resistance, but day by day I feel my resolve weakening.
Here comes “Mommy.” I hide this in the hope that even should I succumb, a record of my (if I may make so bold a claim) valiant struggle will remain a tribute to my effort, and a warning to others.
These moments make up for a lot of hours of missed sleep.