Ryleigh is 1 Month Old!

Where has the time gone? Ryleigh is already 1 month old. I want to freeze time and keep her this tiny forever. My husband, on the other hand, wants her to get bigger and be able to talk and play. I know that will be a fun time too, but she will never be this little again.

So much has happened in the past month. Maybe that is why the time has seem to have flown by. 10 days were spent in the hospital. Five of them were when I delivered her and five of them were with complications after the pregnancy. Then there's the whole adjusting to parenthood.

So here is a run down of Ryleigh for month one of her life. I can't take credit for this streamlined list. I got the idea from the beautiful super-mom Haley, who blogs at Running With Diapers. She also inspires me every day!!

So here goes:

Height & Weight:
21 inches long and 10 lbs 11ounces. She actually hasn't increased in height since birth, but the doctor assures us that's okay since she's gained weight. (She was 9lbs 2oz at birth). She's wearing mostly 3 month onesies cause she's a little chunker. We might as well have never bought newborn size. I think she only wore about 4 of the ones we had - the first 4 days of her life.

How she is sleeping:
Typically she is waking up about every 3 hours to eat, but there have been two or three nights that she's slept for a 5 hour stretch. Those are nice. We have tried getting her to sleep in her pack and play but she doesn't like sleeping on her back much and it's not safe to have her sleep any other way so she winds up sleeping cuddled with one of us. I never thought I would have been a co-sleeping mom, but I guess you can't really say "I won't do this or that" before your child is actually born.

How she is eating: 
The plan was to breastfeed and it was going very well when she was born. The nurses and lactation consultants in the hospital were impressed with my supply and the ease of her latch while we were there. When we got home it was going pretty well too, but it started going downhill when I wound up back in the hospital. I was only home with her for two days so I obviously hadn't pumped and stored anything for her. Even if I had it wouldn't have been enough to last her.
I needed a CT scan with contrast and was told I couldn't breast feed for 48 hours. I was pump and dumping to keep up supply, but probably not as often as I should have been. Plus I had another CT with contrast 2 days before I was released and was on strong diuretics while in the hospital which can dry up milk supply. I was also release with a prescription for diuretics to take for 5 days post release.
Feeding her became a struggle. She was screaming for food about every 45 minutes and I wound up continuing to supplement with formula because I felt like she wasn't getting enough food. My husband made me lactation cookies and I tried that. Then I tried pumping to measure how much she was eating, but I wound up producing very little from one side and being in extreme pain - so much so that I couldn't lift my arm or turn to the side. I couldn't even hold her. After all that had happened up until this point I broke down and we decided to try formula feeding. She had been formula fed for the 5 days I was in the hospital and supplemented for the past 3 I was home.
We wound up trying Enfamil Gentle Ease because she was fussy and gassy. This wasn't working for her and we eventually switched to Similac Sensitive. After a little bit of constipation, which the doctor had us give a little prune juice for, everything seemed better, she was eating well, feeling better, and no longer needing gas drops.
She now eats about 4 ounces every 3-4 hours. Occasionally she will eat 5 ounces.

What she is loving right now:
Ryleigh loves car and stroller rides. If she's being fussy for any reason, once that car starts moving she almost instantly falls asleep. It takes a little longer in the stroller, but it will eventually happen then too.

She loves to eat and her favorite bottles are Dr. Browns. She will eat from pretty much any bottles though. When I had been admitted to the hospital she had never eaten from a bottle and I was scared she wouldn't. She took right to them. When we realized none of them were clean we tried some other bottles we had. She doesn't have a problem with any of them. We like the Dr. Brown's the best because they seem to cause the least amount of gas.

She also loves her pacifier, but only the Avent Soothies. This was the one they gave her in the hospital and the ONLY one she will take to this day. We have tried others but she doesn't like them. At first we were skeptical about using them because they can cause nipple confusion when breastfeeding, but now we're okay with it. And sometimes she can be fussy without one. Even if she has a clean diaper and has just eaten. Will we regret it later when it comes time to wean her off of it? Maybe. But for now we're okay with it.

Blooming Bath. Not only does she seem to like bath time in this but I love it! This makes it so much easier to bath her, especially after having a c-section. I must admit, the first time I saw this I thought it was kid of silly. Then I thought about it and it made sense. It makes the sink and easy place for a bath. It cushions the sides and you don't have to bend down into the tub to bath the baby. This is extremely helpful after a section. There is no way I would have been able to bathe her kneeling down. And although she may not look too happy in this picture that was right after she was in it the first time. I promise she liked it after!!

What she doesn't seem to like:

She doesn't like sleeping on her back but that's too bad since it's unsafe to leave her on her side or tummy. She does spend a lot of time cuddling with mommy or daddy and that seems to work for getting her to sleep instead of having her sleep in the pack and play.

What Mommy is liking right now:

Swaddle Me blankets. These are really awesome for getting her wrapped tightly enough to not be able to wiggle her hands out. I like the Aden and Anis swaddle blankets for everything else, but when I swaddle her with those she wiggles her arms out. The Swaddle Me blankets are made with velcro spots to strategically keep baby in place tightly. I jokingly call it the baby straight jacket. When she is getting fussy I wrap her in these and it helps her calm down and get to sleep more quickly.

Lullabies Station on Pandora. I didn't know if this would really work, but I figured I'd give it a try. I turned it on and it seemed to calm her down when she was being fussy. It's worked on several occasions. And it's put me to sleep too!

What Mommy isn't liking:

Time seems to fly by so quickly in between feedings. I never seem to be able to get much done so I feel like even though I am home so much is being neglected. I know eventually it will get better, but I don't like the feeling of being home all day and still feeling like I don't have time for anything. Even this blog post has taken me four days to fully write.

Although life has obviously changed drastically this past month it has been amazing and Ryleigh has made our life much more meaningful. Parenting is such a learning experience - what works for one baby may not work for another. What one baby likes another may hate. Eventually you figure out what works.