Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Survival

We've made it through the "survival period" as our pediatrician calls the first two weeks of having a baby.  I'm under the impression we're still in the throes of surviving, though.  I guess we're a little more used to the "routine" (if it can actually be called that) of getting up, feeding the baby, rocking the baby, playing with the baby, sleeping.

It's crazy how little time there is for things like, oh, a conversation between my Bubba and me.  Today I made waffles for breakfast thinking it would be a nice treat for us while Lucy slept.  Ha ha.  Silly me thinking that Lucy would sleep through something so delicious.  We have eaten in shifts for the past 19 days, and today would be no different.

The conversations that we do have sound sort of like:

"Is Lucy asleep?"
"Yeah."
"I'm going to go lay down."
"K."

Or:

"What do you want for dinner?"
"Whatever."
"K."

I can definitely see how relationships change and some suffer with the addition of a baby.  I can see how this survival period can become a holding pattern.  We have to learn how to be really efficient with our no-crying-baby, awake time.

We used to show each other love by doing a particularly disliked chore, or making a really nice meal, or saying sweet things while cuddling each other.  Learning the Five Love Languages transformed how we interacted.  Now, our displays of affection involve putting an arm over or touching feet while sleeping or being the first one to get up and change the baby.  It's a different way of communicating, and I admit I'm not used to it quite yet. 

I usually go to bed around 8 or 9 with Lucy and the Bubba has been getting up or staying up for the first feeding around midnight.  All I want as I relax is for the Bubba to rub my back or cuddle me and tell me I've done a good job with the baby all day.  But I have to remind myself that he doesn't have the energy for that kind of interaction any more than I do.  I'd probably be insulted  and mad if he asked something similar of me.

The efficiency applies to taking care of ourselves too.  Getting a shower or being able to sit in silence with nothing expected of us - ahhhh, heaven.  Would it be more cathartic to lie down for 20 minutes or blog?  We have to learn new languages of communicating with each other and with ourselves.

I guess people aren't lying when they say that having a baby changes everything.  It's a very interesting transition for everyone.  I guess even as I knew it would blow our minds to have a baby, I couldn't have expected the extent.  It's a fun challenge, though, and it's a pretty steep learning curve.

And now for your daily pic fix:

Lucy helping daddy with his spreadsheets

2 comments:

Carrie said...

I totally disagree with your pediatrician about the survival period being over. It's more like 6 weeks. Especially since you are still recovering from labor and getting the whole breastfeeding thing down. Really, be kind to yourself and dont expect much for another month. Then one day you will wake up and realize that you are out of it and that things are starting to get into some sort of new routine.

It sounds like you and your husband are going to do well- realizing that the baby changes things and that you have to make more of an effort is the first and most important step!

She's beautiful still, thanks for the picture.

Elizabeth said...

I agree... it takes at least 6 weeks to adjust. But it just gets easier (for the most part) from there.