It’s been four months since Lucas came into our lives. It’s been wonderful and tiring, confusing and delightful, and we’ve learned so much.
1. Everything your baby does is cute.
It’s adorable when he scrunches up his nose. It’s wonderful when he laughs. It’s just so cute when he wears his giant sunglasses. Even when he looks grumpy, I could just squish him because he! Is! Just! So! Cute!
2. You get obsessed with poop.
Our doula recommended this app called Baby Connect. You can log everything: diaper changes, expressed milk, feeding times and durations, vaccinations, height and weight. EVERYTHING!
So of course we dutifully log everything. Over a month ago, we noticed we were logging fewer bowel movements. From six or seven a day, it became four, then three, then two, until it was just once a day, every few days. Eventually there was a five-day stretch with no poop! We got worried, so we brought Lucas to the pedia. She put a suppository in his butt, and out came, well, a lot lot lot of poop.
So now we count the days between bowel movements. Every time Lucas poops, it’s like the clock resets. It’s like watching a Doomsday clock.
3. Breastfeeding involves a lot of logistics.
If we’re at home, breastfeeding can involve tricky scheduling. Okay, gotta feed the Child as soon as he wakes up. Okay, gotta feed him before I go to work. What, he’s asleep? But he was supposed to feed!
In the first three months, breastfeeding also involved SO MANY PILLOWS. We were still learning, and finding comfort zones, and I was in pain, so it was all so complicated and confusing. We had a nursing pillow, and of course that wasn’t enough, so we needed pillows upon pillows upon pillows: to prop up the Child, to support my back, to support my elbows.
Then we discovered side-lying, and that meant pillows on his back, and at my back, and under my head, and between my knees.
Then we survived the breastfeeding struggles, and managed to leave the house with Lucas more often.
Now, when we’re out, we have to time his feeding. We have to feed just before we leave, so he’s not hungry while we’re on the road. We usually have to feed when we get to our destination. We have to find a breastfeeding lounge or a quiet corner somewhere, because he can’t feed if it’s noisy. If we’re at the pedia, we usually feed him after our appointment.
Oh, and of course, every time we feed, we log it in the app! Which means I need, like, ten hands to breastfeed, so I can hold the Child, lift up my shirt, open the flap on my nursing bra, hold my phone, open the app, start the timer, jam as much of my areola as possible into the Child’s mouth…. Yeah. You need ten or more hands to breastfeed.
4. You’re going to take a bazillion pictures.
I’m sometimes of the mind that you should just enjoy what you’re doing, and that sometimes the act of trying to document every single thing takes some joy and spontaneity away from the moment.
Clearly that sentiment flew out the window the moment my child was born. I think I have pictures of every single day of his life.
I’m going to need a bigger SD card on my phone.
5. You’re going to spend SO MUCH MONEY.
Formula is not cheap, which is why we’re sticking to breastfeeding (and we’re very lucky that I have enough milk).
The cost of diapers can add up. In the grocery I frequent, Pampers costs Php 295 for a pack of 38, and EQ Plus is Php 226 for a pack of 38. To cut costs, we use EQ Plus and reusable cloth diapers during the day, and Pampers only at night and when we go out. I mean, imagine how much it would cost if Lucas went through, say, 8 diapers a day.
And then there are the doctor’s visits and vaccinations. Consultation fees can cost anywhere between Php 500 to 1000. And vaccinations, ouch. We spend between Php 4,000 to 8,000 when Lucas has vaccinations.
We’re paying for a yaya too.
There are lots of ways to cut costs, sure, but sometimes the cheaper option requires more time or effort, or it won’t be very comfortable or convenient for Lucas. All we can do, really, is consider each expense, and think about how the choice will affect him.
6. Did I mention that everything your baby does is cute?