Hormones? Breast milk? Reaction to my antibiotics? not sure of the cause, but Hope has spots … and so do I.
Mine I put down to the aftermath of being pregnant, the disrupted sleep, oh and the small mountain of chocolate I have eaten recently … breast feeding makes me need to eat more, sometimes savoury and other times sweet – I never used to eat much chocolate but now … nigh on a chocoholic, well that and a cheese straw-o-holic, and a salad-o-holic …
anyway – my hair has lost its lustre, my skin has lost the ‘glow’ (as it was) and I look pasty and tired and my hormones are rampaging around normalizing my body again following the intrusion of The Spaniard and the exit of Hope … and I have spots.
Hope’s spots came quite suddenly, I expected the odd milk spot on her perfect translucent skin and not this almost measles like rash that has rendered a part of her cheek all scaly … poor little soul, and she has scratched herself above her eyebrow so she looks a bit more worldly now than the serene little person that arrived just over 7 weeks ago (I know, I can scarcely believe it) with skin as smooth as monumental alabaster (there’s a Shakespeare challenge for you). Apparently her hormones are rampaging too, they have also given her a ring of spots around the front of her neck which I’m assured is normal and to be expected. Maybe all this means her hormones will have settled down by the time she is a teenager and she won’t have spots then. I thought initially they might be a reaction to my antibiotics, the doctor thought I might have an infection or something odd going on behind my cesarean scar as I was still bleeding (sorry for the information overload but important to be factually accurate!) so they gave me some grim drug which made me spotty and itchy and then almost immediately afterwards Hope developed her “baby acne” … anyway – who knows the cause, and to be fair Hope’s is actually settling down a bit now after 6 days. All part of the new baby journey.
While we’re documenting changes I may as well talk bottom end stuff … when she first appeared apparently her poo was black (I never saw that as she was in intensive care for a couple of days after she was born), then it became a kind of yellow green colour with tiny lumps in, which amazed me as all she was having was breast milk and formula. Now she is pretty much entirely on breast milk it is fairly bright yellow (like a turmeric colour) and some days runs like a river and other days nothing … she also has shocking wind. After church this morning one of her flock of admirers was holding her and was I think a little shocked to hear such sounds from “down there”. Hope is indeed a little charmer! We’ve been through different types of nappies and our opinion so far is that Huggies are rubbish, Boots own brand are shocking, Pampers work well but have odd netting stuff in them which sticks to her bottom and the Nature’s babycare nappies are pretty good. We tried her Tots Bots towelling knickers with little liners and again they worked well but after one particularly loud explosion from below they had to be changed and needed a wash so that put an end to that experiment for the time being.
Her hair started off dark, then went more fair and now seems to be picking up a hint of reddish auburn … all the changes (above and below) fascinate me. I still can’t qutite believe that only 8 weeks ago I was packing a hospital bag and patting my tummy and chatting away to The Spaniard, still doubting whether it really would transform into a real live baby. It did, and Hope is changing, growing and becoming more and more engaging and loved every day. I have begun now to recognise (sometimes) just some of her different cries. She makes a sort of a bleating sound when she is really tired, when she is cross or frustrated she battles to release her feet and hands from any kind of containment and then goes quiet and puffs her chest up and crumples her face and gives a very sudden loud yell and then howls – this suddenly stops from time to time while she looks around to see if anyone is listening. There is a different sound again for hunger and for wind. Most of the time I don’t have a clue but as I say I’m beginning to learn and sometimes can even stop her wails but talking to her or just looking into her eyes while she sits on my lap looking at me. Talking of eyes, they don’t seem quite as dark and inky as they did, somehow more blue now. Her ears are more fleshy but still so delicate and hear hands and feet continue to be ultimate time wasters. My favourite of Hope’s features is her mouth – a perfect rosebud of a mouth with perfect perfect little lips. She did fail her ‘smile test’ last week … her first official failure, other than that she has passed every other test with flying colours, “she was a little bit premature, so she will probably smile later”. Bless her, I wouldn’t smile for a strange doctor either.
So there you have it. She is now 7 weeks and 3 days old (although on her growth chart in the ‘red book’ all mothers are given for new children she is marked as 3 weeks as she was born early), her little quiff or tuft has grown but still sticks up proudly and causes old folk to try to ruffle it and children to try to smooth it down (really) and she is a constant companion. I still can’t quite believe it’s all real and that someone won’t just wake me from a dream or walk round the corner and say something like, “oh there she is” and reclaim her.
She’s been registered, she has an NHS number and her own GP so she is officially a part of a multitude of data sets already. I’m utterly besotted with my girl and I feel absurdly proud when letters arrive with her absurdly long name emblazoned across the front of them, I spend hours gazing at her and stroking her fingers and her feet, we rub noses and we chat about everything under the sun. We listen to music together and when she eats like a voracious ravenous squirrel, slurping, panting and gulping, I laugh and my tummy turns over with pride and wonder that I am able to sustain such a miraculous little person.
Right now she is settled in her little Moses basket by my bed, the basket her Granby bought her when she was born, the basket that I think in another month she won’t be able to sleep in any more as she will have outgrown it. She is wearing the little farm animal outfit her Auntie Susannah gave her – probably for the last time as it really is a little small now and gives her an off the shoulder look. I sound like a proper mother now saying, “I can’t believe she’s growing up so quickly”, my perfect little baby girl… my perfect spotty little baby girl.