life with atticus [months 3-6]

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the fact that i haven’t written a post since august is proof enough of how consuming a baby can be of one’s time. i just finished reading over my last post and it’s amazing how much atticus has changed in a few months (that have seemed to pass by in seconds). he is now more like a little person than a helpless baby.

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in my last update, i wrote how atticus was starting to zone in on his toys and talk to them. well, now he reaches for a toy, grabs it, gives it a good chewing and then moves on to the next one. at six months, he has now begun to master the art of sitting up on his own and balancing his rather bulky frame. we’re at the point where i can leave him on the floor without my hands ready and positioned to re-steady him. he has had a few tumbles and encounters with the floor but luckily he is easily comforted and back to playing in no time. sitting up also means he has moved on to having baths in the big bathtub. he is loving it and has a good ole time splashing the water with his hands. his favorite toys at the moment are plastic spoons (baby spoons that we use to feed him), a ring of metal measuring spoons that we call his “keys” (this toy was created after jeremiah let atticus chew on his set of keys which resulted in his face getting covered with grease marks – no mama likes to see that), a toy giraffe that plays music & white noise, crinkly fabric toys, and anything else he can get his hands on.

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when it comes to eating, atticus just began his first “solid” foods. he continues to be an avid nurser but he is also very interested in eating food. just a couple weeks ago, we started him out on his first food, chicken broth. we have let him gum on a piece of fruit here and there but broth was his first true meal. besides broth, we’ve introduced him to sweet potatoes and avocados but he doesn’t seem to be too sure about eating those just yet. he makes the most disgusted faces when eating them. so, for right now, milk with a side of chicken broth is his preferred meal.

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physique wise, atticus continues to grow nice and chunky. at his six month checkup, he weighed 18 lbs. 7 oz. and measured 27 1/4 ins. he now has his two front bottom teeth and, boy, are they sharp! atticus is a decent sleeper – we have begun to loosely implement a schedule and are working on getting him to sleep for longer periods at night. i’m not going to lie, i am ready to sleep at least a little better!

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we are very excited to celebrate atticus’ first Christmas! his stocking is hanging over the fireplace and there are a couple of presents under the tree for him. we even have a little artificial tree with colored lights set up in his nursery. it’s quite a pleasant sight to sit in the rocking chair with him at night and look at the tree all aglow. it’s fun having a child under our roof this time of year – it makes me kind of feel like a kid again.

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as far as motherhood goes, some days are good, other days are not so good. but i keep trying to work through the difficulties and appreciate the extravagant blessing of being atticus’ mama. i had a friend pass away recently. she was a mama to two little boys. when i think of her and the loss of her, it puts everything into perspective. i do believe she is in a place of pure joy, free from any sorrow and dry of tears. but i am sure she would tell me to embrace every single second of being a mama. i know she loved being one and i can truly say she was one of the most precious mothers i have ever met. her babies changed her, and all for the good. i have never seen a mother love her child more than she. and now i have the memory of her and her love for two little boys, and i am reminded to not squander any of second of being here to love and raise my little boy.

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be sure to follow me on instagram @mdareaustin to get a more day to day update of our little goings-on.

life with atticus [months 3-6]

life with atticus [months 0-2]

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life with atticus has been sweet, challenging, joyful, overwhelming, beautiful and surreal. today marks 10 weeks since he entered the world, and it feels both so long and too quick all at once. we are finding a good rhythm these days but it has taken 2+ months of fumbling through each day. overall, adjusting to our new little guy has been a joyful experience with a few exasperating moments thrown in.

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the postpartum period has gone rather smoothly. atticus and i had a fairly easy transition into breastfeeding which i am very thankful for because i worried it would be a challenge for me. i can truly say that i love breastfeeding and the bond it gives me with my little one. he had his first bottle the other night and, even though it was my milk, it was still hard to watch him eat without me. but i’m glad that i’ll have the option to be gone from him for more than a hour if need be, especially for doula work.

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emotionally, i struggled a bit at night for the first couple of weeks. i would get very emotional and fearful of the night when it started getting dark. like any mom, i worried something bad would happen to atticus at night because nobody was watching him. we were still trying to find a comfortable sleeping situation which made it harder for me to get restful sleep (at first, he slept beside me in the bed and now he sleeps in a bassinet right beside me). it also upset me with how fast the days were flying by and knowing atticus was already growing up (crazy, i know!). the day he turned a week old was a hard one! luckily, the nighttime blues lifted about 2 weeks after his birth.

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overall, my emotional state has stayed fairly positive which is quite a relief. i have struggled with anxiety and depression in the past so i was a little worried about how the postpartum period would treat me. there have definitely been some trying days when i have thought there is no way i can do this alone. of course, i am not alone and have an awesome husband who is in love with his little boy and is great at caring for him and me. but there are days when he is at work and i am at home trying to get the most basic of chores done and atticus is crying, crying, crying. and i think, “I CAN”T DO THIS ALONE!”. it is definitely hard to live away from family at those times when you need your mama to come help take care of you. i am blown away by single moms (and dads). i really can’t understand how they do it and keep their sanity at the same time. everybody needs a break – even from their bundles of joy.

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the one thing i am trying to learn over and over again everyday is to cherish these moments. to soak them in. to hold my baby and study every detail of his face. to pay attention to his needs and what he is trying to tell me with his cries. to enjoy even the most mundane of tasks like changing poopy diapers and wiping away the drool and spit up. these are some of the most beautiful moments of my life and i have been waiting for these very days for many years.

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atticus has grown leaps and bounds in the past few months. morning is his happiest time, full of smiles and coos. milk is still his most favorite thing in the world. hair is returning to the top of his head after going bald for a little while. he is now zoning in on objects and enjoys looking at and talking to his toys. there is a lot of drooling going on these days and he especially enjoys gnawing on his hand. this past week he went for his 2 month checkup and is weighing in at slightly over 13 pounds and measuring 24 1/4 inches long! as for me, i am feeling pretty much back to normal but am still adjusting to a post-baby body. clothes still don’t quite fit right and i’m having to work on dressing in the light of being a nursing mama. my hair is starting to fall out more and, while doing pregnancy i was able to go a whole week without washing it, that is starting to change. even my skin is starting to break out again. so some of the perks of pregnancy hormones are starting to wane. like any woman, i struggle at times with the bodily changes but i love these words from savannah (maiedae blog)Β that she wrote in response to her own postpartum journey:

our body may never look the same but it IS beautiful. It carries battle scars and memories of carrying a baby for months and months and for putting every bit of yourself into bringing your son into the world.”

i can truly say that i put every ounce of myself into bringing little atticus into this world. instead of fretting over the physical differences from pre-baby to post-baby, i want to do my best to view my physical changes as beautiful reminders of growing and bearing my sweet child. i don’t want to be ashamed of the “battle scars” that are evidence of my greatest achievement to date.

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life with atticus [months 0-2]