Help Around the House
I'll continue with the Gory Details posts shortly, but I wanted to give a quick real-time update first. Austen turns one week old in less than an hour on this, his original due date as calculated by the LNMP method. So far, so good. I am regularly violating the "sleep when the baby sleeps" rule—apparently I value time to myself far too much—so Al has proposed that I limit my computer use to one session a day
My mom is here helping us for a week or two; when she realized that Al would be staying home from work during the same time, she wanted to know what we needed her for, and wondered whether it wouldn't have been better to come in January, when Al's back at work. I think she understands exactly what we needed her for now: Mostly, an extra set of hands and feet. Al and I are doing really well caring for the baby, but I'm still limited in how much I can get around in what our contractor calls The House of Stairs. Mom has been charged with picking up painkillers and baby supplies at CVS; entertaining Austen while I'm in the shower; running up to the nursery (which is on the third floor, along with the guest room) to bring down more Onesies and bathing supplies and diapers; washing baby clothes in the kitchen sink and our things at the laundromat (yes, the washer is STILL broken; I finally lost it with Sears this morning, and they apparently heard the desperation of a new mom suffering through one diaper malfunction after another in my voice and agreed to come out this Thursday rather than making me wait until December 14—WTF???—which I was told yesterday was the first available service date); bringing me food and tea in the master bedroom; and helping me sort through the two boxes of baby clothes and paraphenalia that nj and Morrisa sent us (thanks, guys! I had no idea we'd need so many Onesies).
Dad stopped by last night on his way home from a jobsite to see the new kid, fix our garage door (the spring and cable snapped on one side about a month ago), and help Al get a Christmas tree at Home Depot. He stayed overnight and then left around noon today. As you can see, I have a very helpful family: My sister, who drove my mom up on Friday, brought us a ton of food, some diapers, and some Christmas clothes for Austen, and my aunt Jancy came by on Sunday with some extra newborn gowns and more food for the fridge. She and mom also did a Trader Joe's run for us, so we're set on the yogurt and snack front as well.
Austen is as cute as ever, and seems to get cuter every day; I really could stare at him for hours. It's fun to watch him growing and changing right before my eyes. Breastfeeding, which resulted in cracked in bleeding nipples in the first few days, is still somewhat painful, though only for the first few minutes after he latches on. He now seems to be on a regular schedule of feeding every 1.5 to 3 hours, with one 5-hour-or-so stretch per day (and I do mean per DAY; we're hoping that it moves to nighttime soon). He's regained most (but not all) of the weight he lost in the first few days after birth, but he's still definitely newborn size. Everyone warned me about how he'd probably never need Newborn size diapers, and not to buy too many size 0-3 months clothes because he'd only wear them for a week, but he's really not very big. He's at the low end of the growth charts, and with the aforementioned diaper failures, we're changing outfits almost as often as we're changing—yes, Newborn size—diapers, so we exhausted our supply of 0-3 month clothes by Sunday morning. (Why I lost it with Sears should now be obvious.) Thanks again to nj and Morrisa and to Jancy for supplementing our supply.
My hands and arms are still covered with bruises, and my feet and ankles are still so swollen they look more like polar bear claws than my usual slender-heeled 7-and-a-half Ds (ironic, considering that I didn't swell at all during the pregnancy), but the swelling in my upper legs has gone down a bit, and I'm down to one Percocet every 4 hours instead of two (plus one fat Motrin every 6 hours). Yesterday I also got to see the kitchen (two short flights of stairs down) for the first time since Saturday, and I've since visited it TWICE (!) more.
The battery life on the Powerbook is draining steadily (and so is my right breast, necessitating one-handed typing), so that's all for now.