Thursday, October 25, 2012

Growing up too quickly

My little girl is not so little anymore :*(  But I enjoy every single day with her! 

I only have 4 1/2 more weeks of maternity leave left and it saddens me to think that soon these carefree days will be something of the past.  I think I'll be photo-blogging a lot more often now, since it's easier to bring my thoughts across.

Cloth diapering has been an interesting experience... as soon as I put the first cloth diaper on Linmari, I broke down into tears.  She literally has NO bum (unlike my side of the family who all sport serious behinds), and I was getting used to that. As soon as she had the diaper on, she had one really BIG bum!  It made me cry. SERIOUSLY.  This then cascaded into me being sad because now that she was wearing cloth diapers she would no longer have a tiny bottom which I could pat, and I don't want her to grow up too quickly, and I don't want to have to give her to someone else to look after her, and then I suddenly decided I don't want to go back to work!  Thus, a very interesting experience this has been so far!  But on the more serious side of things, I have found the prefolds to work beautifully for her sized body right now.  The flat diapers worked well, but her legs were so abducted at the hips I didn't quite like the sight of it.  We'll give it another go when she's slightly bigger.  I have not yet tried the AIO Fancy Pants diaper, we'll try that at a later stage.  My husband still doesn't get the hang of it (folding prefolds, how hard can it be? ;-P ), and I must admit that we still use disposable diapers on Thursdays and Fridays, as well as when we go for LOOOOONG rides, because she tends to e.x.p.l.o.d.e on us on those days only.

Check out how big her bum looks here!!!! (This is her very proud 9 year old cousin)

I also spoke to Thinus about breastfeeding long before this little one's arrival, and made him promise that he would not allow me to give up on it before I've fed for at least 6 weeks.  What a precious promise that turned out to be.
This is what it looked like when I breastfed on day 2:
If it hadn't been for my doula, Melissa Jacobs, midwife, Karen van der Merwe, mom and husband's ongoing support, I might just have given up on breastfeeding. Melissa told me at Linmari's first feed "Never settle for a bad latch. NEVER."  And again, Melissa said to me on day 4 post-birth: "Ronél, when you have to work so much harder at continuing breastfeeding, you will always cherish it and probably also breastfeed for a longer period of time because you know how precious it is".  After SEVERAL weeks it went better (6 weeks), and there are still days that it hurts. So Mommies-to-be, PLEASE don't give up on breastfeeding.  I had looked forward to having that bond with my child, and had to work really hard on correct latching (Linmari is a lazy-latcher), distracting myself when the pain got a bit too much.  I watched a LOT of Grand Design-episodes during those first few weeks of breast feeding, just to make the pain more bearable.  I was systemically treated for thrush, since the pain I experienced was similar to that of thrush in the nipples.  But the pain has not really gone away, I just seem to have gotten used to it.  Another possible cause is vasospasm of the nipples (as stated by my doula and midwife), which you can read up on here.  I now love breastfeeding, even though it still hurts at times, and won't exhange it for anything in the world!  Linmari also tends to get VERY excited when she realises that she's going to be breastfed, something that makes me very happy!  I hope to be able to exclusively breastfeed for as long as possible (read: about 9 months).

Pajama-drill has been ... interesting.  We've been spat on, vomitted on, peed and pooped on many a time during the night!  Especially in the first few weeks.  But I also found it difficult to fall asleep again in the first few weeks since I just wanted to stare at my beautiful daughter and her gorgeous Daddy whilst they were fast asleep!  
 See? Totally adorable at 2 AM!

The first 5-6 weeks were the hardest, since Linmari often swallowed wind (lazy-latcher plus fast let-down equals LOTS OF WINDS!) and it took forever to burp her.  Thinus was on burping duty, what a joy!  One night, out of pure desperation, we took Linmari for a drive around the highway since it was 4 AM and she had been struggling to fall asleep since 01h30 AM.  We were beyond tired, and just wanted her to sleep so that WE could sleep (plus we knew the car lulled her to sleep).  It worked like a charm, but once we got home and I was busy unbuckling her, the seatbelt suddenly shot up, startling her and waking her up...SCREAMING... so we buckled her again and got right back into the car to take another drive.  Finally at 05h10 AM we could go to bed.  Thank goodness for a wonderful husband who was willing to do this for me.  Another wonderful thing is that Thinus had 4 weeks of paid leave directly after Linmari's birth, allowing us optimal bonding time as a family.

Okay, that's me for now.  I hope to be blogging more often about this wonderful thing called "Motherhood"!
(Linmari and her Godmother being silly together!)

Announcing the arrival of Linmari Kahlan

On 11 August 2012 at 21h53
was born
weighing in at 3.5 kg (7.71 lbs)
and measuring 51 cm (20.07 inches) in length.
It was a waterbirth with a midwife, doula, my mom and husband with me :-)
She was her Daddy's BIGGEST birthday gift (we did not induce, PROMISE)!  I could not have bought him a better gift!

She has quickly gained weight, and looks rather different at 1 month!

Spring Day (1 September 2012) in South Africa was celebrated with a new dress (actually a 3-6 month sleeveless top).

Linmari and her Daddy have the most hilarious conversations!
She loves her cousins, especially when she can use their shoulders as a brace for her chin!

And because she's a girl, Mommy gets to make her pretty dresses, and her aunty gets to hold her a lot so that Mommy can take photo's of those pretty dresses!