I can't believe I'm already writing about Willow's first month. The past four weeks have absolutely flown by and it's crazy to think that she is one month old already. It only seems like yesterday that I was making my way to the hospital to be induced, to deliver Willow by emergency c-section less than 48 hours later. It's been four weeks of sleepless nights and tiring days as we get the hang of this parenting business and as I settle into life as a new mama, I realise everyday is a challenge and adventure all rolled into one. It's been a crazy first month.
I want to do regular updates on how Willow is getting on and like my pregnancy posts these are going to be super honest and upfront. I'll be talking all the cute and adorable stuff that I'm sure most of you want to read, like milestones reached and baby developments, but I'll also be sharing my honest thoughts on what being a first time mama is really like, the hard times as well as the good and the boring as well as the fun. It's all well and good sharing the rosy moments, but that wouldn't be a true picture of life all the time, and I know from comments, messages and emails from lots of my lovely Tattooed Tealady readers, that it's how upfront and honest I am in my baby posts that you like the most!
Feeding and sleeping, because that's all babies do right?
When you have a baby there are three things you will do continuously. Feed them, change them and try and get them to sleep. Me and Willow are still working on these three vital things, but each day it gets easier.
Nappies are by far the easiest of the three and most of the time if she starts crying it's because she wants her nappy changing instantly and if there's even a second delay, she'll let you know about it! We've been using the Aldi Mamia Newborn nappies and found them perfect, which is such a big help money wise as one 24 pack costs just £1.49, compared to well-known brands like Pampers who charge £3.75 for a pack of 23 newborn nappies.
Sleeping is getting better with every day. I find it much easier to settle her at night now, especially into her SnüzPod2 3-in-1 Bedside Crib which we had been having difficulty getting her to settle into at night. During the day it massively depends on her mood how much she will sleep. Sometimes she'll have naps after all of her feeds, but most of the time she will nap every 2-3 feeds and only for a couple of hours before she's wide awake again. We've never managed to get her to sleep the '18 hours a day' all the baby websites say newborns sleep for, so whenever she does nap during the day I take it as a chance to get as much done around the house as possible!
Feeding, well that's a struggle I was definitely not prepared for. I was so set on the idea of exclusively breastfeeding and I even had it all planned out in my head that I would do so for one whole year. I wrote a post back when I was pregnant, is breast best?, talking about my feelings towards both breastfeeding and formula feeding and I made a point of saying in that post that I would breastfeed if I could. Yet I don't think I ever actually considered what would happen if I couldn't or if I struggled, and boy have I struggled. So much so I actually have a few posts coming up specifically about my breastfeeding journey, but for now let's just say things haven't gone to plan and Willow is being combination fed with formula.
Something else that comes along with feeding is wind. Gosh, it is horrible when your baby struggles with wind! I know it's super common for newborns to have wind issues but seeing Willow wiggle and squirm and scream and cry with trapped wind is just heartbreaking! We have to give her Infacol before every feed and spend at least 30 minutes winding her during and after each feed. I will probably do a post on managing a windy baby later down the line, as it's something we've really struggled to manage and having found some things that work for us, it may help another new parent whose desperate at 3 o'clock in the morning to soothe an inconsolable newborn.
Willow changes every day
Every time I look at her I feel like she's changed so much. She's already developing a cute little character and she's hit the age where her development is taking a leap. She's becoming more aware of touch and sound, she's able to see more clearly, further and more colours too - although still prefers her contrasting colours of black and white the most. She has started to interact more too, making coo and ahh sounds at me and some hints of smiles that aren't all down to wind!
She's started to use her playmat already and my partner has been making sure she gets some daily tummy time - due to recovering from my caesarean, I can't yet get down on the floor with her like that but I can't wait until I can! She's still not a fan of bath time and absolutely hates having her whole body put in water, and we're working our way up to proper tummy massages which she's as of yet not very keen on.
It feels so surreal to say she's one month old, no longer a tiny newborn but a proper baby who's becoming more aware and alert with each day. It's a crazy journey this mama life, but I love every minute of it and can't wait to see what the next few weeks bring as she develops more and more.
P.s. The rug Willow had today's mini photography session on is a beautiful new rug in her nursery from Kit for Kids - more info on our upcoming nursery tour post!