4 months postpartum

By January 15, 2015Postpartum, Pregnancy

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We were in her 4-month doctor’s appointment yesterday when I realized she was going to be 5 months old this week and that I hadn’t done her 4-month update yet. I’m not late, but it’d be nice to not get caught up and end up several weeks behind…again.

If you’re a parent, you no doubt have heard of Wonder Weeks. It’s a methodology for tracking major physical and cognitive leaps in a baby’s development. It’s relatively accurate, more so than a lot of the other predictor/experts out there. It comes with the huge disclaimer of all the things it’s subject to (birth date vs. due date, etc), but the context of the leaps have been pretty accurate.

Anyhow, if you follow the app (don’t waste your time with the book), babies go through a leap called “world of events” in weeks 14-19. The major markers for this stage are the use of all the senses when it comes to interaction. This has very much been the case.

  • She has discovered the dogs, and LOVES them. Fussy baby? Call in the dogs and feed them peanut butter. As a result, Matilda has gained three pounds — oops!
  • She went from kind of grabbing at toys with a repetitive open and close grip to gripping things with both hands and pulling HARD. She’s almost pulled the activity mat down on herself several times.
  • Everything goes in the mouth. Reversely, all sorts of noise comes out, and in a range of sounds and volume. She is especially vocal during car rides when she will just look out the window and talk to herself.
  • She is figuring out her body. She likes to rub and scratch her head when she stretches, and if she’s naked, she constantly grabs at her legs and chubby tummy.
  • We still call her “Beeb,” but she’s also acquired “The Dictator” (from my brothers) and “Troll” from us because she feigns being upset and will smile when you go to attend to her needs.
  • Still not rolling over, but with her demonstrative strength in other areas, I really think she’s trolling us. She has assisted sitting up down pat, and when she doesn’t want you to take the bottle from her hands, you are NOT getting it.

She has outgrown about 90% of her 3-month sizes, and is slowly creeping into a few 9-month items, which doesn’t say much because NOTHING is standardized. At her appointment, she had just crossed the 14-pound mark and was measuring 24 inches. She measures petite like me, but has my appetite.

Kaitlan - 18 weeks

Overall, we’re definitely seeing some independence and self-soothing, which I think have been the biggest relief about 4 months. Whereas before she wanted to be attached to us, carried, and held at all times, we’ve been able to put her down on her play mat and have her being okay for 10-20 minutes while we change/switch laundry or throw together a quick meal for the crock pot. I think we are most looking forward to the major milestones of rolling over and sitting up, more opportunities for her to kind of entertain and explore her world and hopefully not be frustrated so easily.

Solids

The words I have seriously been waiting for since the beginning. We have been given clearance to begin introducing “solids.”

She hit this point late last month where she started waking up in the middle of the night and tanking a whole 5-oz bottle. While she’s always gotten up roughly every 2-3 hours for 1-2 ounces, her increased hunger during the day (+1 bottle) and now taking anywhere from 5-8 ounces overnight is indicative that it’s something we can slowly start playing with.

Our plan is to prepare a few different stage 1 foods, and introduce them on a weekend. She started showing an interest and watching us eat over Christmas break, so I’m excited to see her reaction when she can actually begin to taste flavors.

Vacation

We’ve started planning our first major trip with her this summer to Colorado. While you know we are typically backpackers and tent campers, we’ll be opting for a cabin or a situation with more amenities this round. Still feeling out all the details, but we wanted to take her to our favorite place first, and we’re excited to see what all she’ll be doing and thinking at 11 months when we make the trip!

Concessions

I think the biggest point of thought/reflection this month is how many things we’ve ended up doing that we thought we weren’t, but now that we’re on this side of the fence totally make sense. Here are a few examples:

  • Blackout curtains: Our kid was going to be able to sleep anywhere! She will, but she does it better when it’s pitch black, and frankly I don’t blame her.
  • Co-sleeping: Especially now that it’s so cold — I’m such an enabler.
  • Disinfecting everything: Enough said. Buy me stock in Clorox wipes…
  • Going to bed early: It’s a concession, but it’s growing on me. Then again, when you have to wake up at 5am to pump, more sleep = sanity.
  • Isolation: I realize she’s getting exposed to the flu no matter what, but I’ll cut our chances if I can.

I won’t go so far as to say we’re hypocrites and that we were blissfully ignorant before she came, but you definitely get a crash course in patience and fast-track adaption in some of these areas — mostly when it comes to both you and the baby getting enough sleep and being able to function. This post by one of my favorite bloggers Kathleen hits it right on the nose.

Well then...

This all being said, I had no idea how absolutely in love with her I’d be. Not Facebook humble-bragging kind of love, but like this intense protective desire to have my face against hers all day sort of love. The kind of love that makes all the sacrifice and inability to do pretty much everything else I used to do okay. For now anyway haha.

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