Thursday 27 November 2008

On the first three weeks as a mom of two

Y is now 3 weeks old. She’s an absolute ANGEL – there is no other word for her (I hope she doesn’t make me eat my words anytime soon!). She is an angel primarily because she allows me to rest by herself sleeping close to 20 hours a day. A lower-maintenance kid I did not expect. She has to be gently prodded and shaken awake in the nights so that she can nurse. We actually manage to get solid 2-3 hour chunks of sleep. What a blessing!

I was wondering whether I would remember all the basics of infant/baby care. It seems so long ago that I had to care for Ads the infant. But I guess some things, you don’t forget (not for a while anyway). Nursing, burping, diaper-changes, soothing – all the old tricks came back without consciously trying to remember them. S and I have our night-time routine down pat. He sets the alarm every 2.5 hours, wakes Y up by changing her diaper (we found this was the most effective method because she abhors diaper changes), and hands her over to me to nurse. She invariably falls asleep after her feed, so all I have to do is burp her and set her down for another few hours.

She is beginning to look a lot like Ads too, especially when she is asleep. Unfortunately, unlike her brother, she has not inherited her father’s beautiful brows and eyelashes – what an asset it would have been for her! Physically she is a lot chunkier, a few shades darker than Ads and also has much larger eyes. Ads could have easily passed for a Thai or Filipino child at that age.

We have been at the receiving end of not a few temper tantrums and erratic behaviour by Ads. It is taking an enormous amount of patience and understanding to deal with him. There has been a certain amount of regression in some areas – more potty accidents, for example. His English language skills seem to have decreased somewhat and his teacher reported an inability to listen in class. I try not to be near him when I am nursing Y, and practically the only time I play with her is when he is at school or at the park or occupied outside the house. S and I try to be the ones to feed him, bathe him etc but the attention of four adults obviously isn’t enough for my little tyke, who’s been enjoying a monopoly over the affections of the household for the last 3 years!

Monday 10 November 2008

Yukta arrives

Our daughter Yukta arrived at 7.27 am on Nov 5th. My due date was the 4th and I was pretty sure she'd arrive that day. The 4th went by quickly, since we were all busy watching the US Presidential elections. My bag of waters broke at 11 pm, S and I were in the hospital by 11.30 and honestly thought that the baby would be out by 2 am. But my contractions were so mild and fitful that S and I actually managed to doze off for an hour or so. At 5.30 am, the doctor decided to introduce Pitocin to speed up the contractions. They came hard and fast after that, so much so that I was forced to request for a painkiller (there went my dreams of an all-natural, drug-free birth like I had with Ads!). Within 30 mins of taking the pain medication, I was ready to push -- it was with a deep sense of deja vu that I experienced the next 1/2 hour. I had dilated so rapidly that the doctors and nurses were caught totally unprepared and there was a mad scramble as they fought to get ready for the birth. The obstetrician, a young woman called Dr. Kane, was really nice. She got herself into position, smiled brightly and said "Get set to welcome your baby!" After 10 minutes of excruciating pain and pushing, there she was -- our little daughter. It was a very emotional moment for S and me.

We were in hospital just for a day and back home by the 6th afternoon. Yukta looks a lot like Ads at the same age, prominent nose and all. Big brother is slowly getting reconciled to the loss of his monopoly.