Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Smurfy News

In Casa GMP, the following has transpired:

Smurf is 3.5 weeks old. Sleeping one big chunk (4-ish hours) during the night, and the rest of the night grunting and panting trying to produce a BM. And sort of sleeping. All this wakes up mom who jumps at the slightest whimper, thinking that Smurf is in excruciating pain.

Smurf eats like a champ and weighs over 11 pounds (N.B. for those who don't have kids, babies lose a fair amount of weight in the 3 days or so until the milk comes in; generally they are supposed to be back to their birth weight by 2 weeks of age). Fat babies are cute. I am working on making mine as cute as I can, helped by the fact that my eyes no longer pop out of their sockets with pain every time Smurf latches on to nurse.

I love my husband more than ever. He has valiantly taken over all the work with the other two kids so I am having the best vacation of my whole life! When they are all away (hub at work, older kids at camp), I try to nap with the baby, and don't have to cook or do the dishes! It's awesome! All I do is snack, nap, and maintain the dairy factory. And snuggle with Smurf as much as I can. The downside is that the kids don't eat home-cooked meals, but I am hoping for a teachable moment -- could they in fact get sick of pizza?

I have become a germophobic nutcase, shielding the baby from the older kids who, after having been completely healthy for months, both got sick in recent weeks. My oldest, who hadn't been sick in probably 2 years, got a strep throat and an ear infection on day 2 postpartum! The boys are crazy excited about the baby, but nutcase mom is hogging him and growls at anyone who dares even look like they are about to sneeze or cough within a 5 meter radius of the baby.

Feeling rested, I decided to skip naps for one day and made hub take the day off, so we stayed at home and watched movies. Lo and behold, the following night and the next day Smurf kicked my butt -- would not sleep at all and I was completely exhausted. The moral of the story is that you can never, never count on your baby's good graces/predictable behavior. Even a little bit of counting on it will come back to bite you. Take it only one day at a time.

I have been able to work a teensy bit. Half an hour here and there, answering emails, correcting papers, planning fall proposals. I am editing a special issue of a journal in the fall and organizing a fairly major conference next spring, so there's stuff to do there but it's mostly busy work, which is easy enough even with my foggy postpartum brain. And then there are manuscripts that still need to be submitted... Those take me a while.

After having Smurf, I somehow became acutely aware of my own mortality and panicked about what would happen if I, making 2/3 of the household income, were to just drop dead (not sure why this didn't bother me so much with 2 kids). So I went and got myself a hefty term life insurance policy, and realized that I am close weight-wise to a cutoff to make a low premium rate. I have been very poorly motivated over the past several years to lose weight, but it seems that being a cheapskate is the right motivator for me: saving $20 per month over the next 20 years is apparently enough of an incentive to get me to lose weight, because I have been successfully watching my diet for the past few weeks (no worries, I am having lots of protein and lots of water, so my milk production is in good shape). I am calling it "The Life Insurance Diet." I made the target weight, but will hopefully continue on the new diet, as my husband is enthusiastically praising the newly emergent physique.


Alyssa said...

So glad you're enjoying Smurf (what a cute nickname!), and good for you on your Life Insurance Diet! LOL!

Cloud said...

I'm glad Smurf is settling and keeping you on your toes as all good babies do.

Roughly one week after Petunia was born, we got a note home from Pumpkin's day care saying that someone in her class had swine flu. The vaccines were just starting to come out. I stood in line for 2.5 hours to get Pumpkin vaccinated (even though rationally, I knew that it was too late to do any good with the day care case) and then, about two weeks later, Hubby and I both stood in line for four hours to get our vaccines. Good times. (But no one got swine flu....)

So I hear you on the germophobia.

Good for you for getting life insurance. Don't forget disability insurance. You can't get that until you're back from your maternity leave, though.

inBetween said...

I love Smurf's nickname too. And I'm so happy to hear you enjoying newborn world. Your husband sounds like a rockstar.

Are you really working some?! I am so impressed. It took me a good three months before my head was anywhere near close to being able to think clearly enough to remotely consider working on a manuscript... (was that convoluted enough for you?!)

Clarissa said...

I don't have children but my sister tells me that having a kid lets you see the best qualities of your partner magnified by ten. And the worst ones, too, if there are any. :-)

I really love these posts because for people like me it's important to see that people can have a baby and still have a life.

Thank you for blogging about your experiences!

Dr. Sneetch said...

Love the nickname Smurf. He sounds adorable. Glad to hear things are going great. So I did a search on term life insurance weight cutoff on google and your post came up on page 2. Wow that was quick. I couldn't find a chart.

Namnezia said...

Glad to hear things are going well for you and the family.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Your diet is hilarious. I think I'd be the same way if I had kids. :) Seconding the other commenter on long-term disability, if you don't have it yet. I'm safely grown, but my mom recently had a medical condition crop up that qualifies as LT disability. It would be such a nightmare in this economy if she hadn't been insured.

prodigal academic said...

Yay! Glad to hear things are going so well. I hear you on the "Life Insurance Diet"--I am a cheapskate too!