Our little guy is now 2.5 months old! And, of course, we can't believe how quickly time is flying. Here's a look back at his second month.
Stats: 11lbs 12oz and 23.5 inches long as of his two month well checkup on 10/6/14 (at 2.5 months)
Nicknames: Muffin is still sticking around! Baby Caleb. Buddy Caleb. The Senator.
Milestones/Firsts: We still think he's so strong! Early in the month he rolled over for the first time (from his belly to one side) and has rolled over a couple more times since then. I'm really bad about having him do tummy time, mostly because he cries. But when I do put him down on his belly, he can lift his head and chest really well, and seems to naturally want to roll over every time. One time I put him in the crib while I showered and came back to find that he had scooted his way to an entirely different position (and scooted his diaper right off). I couldn't believe it! Though, the scooting seems to have been an isolated occurrence. He's awake for much longer stretches, and freely gives his momma and dada coos and smiles (but he's still very reserved around others, which I don't mind, but I'll be happy when he gives smiles and coos out a little more freely). Near the end of the month I even got a few joyful squeals out of him! He tracks toys very well and will entertain himself for long stretches of time, laying under a baby gym. As he gets older, he's easier to distract, which has gone a long way with making diaper changes more bearable. We brought Caleb to church for the first time, where he had his first experience with wearing headphones (our church is loud!) and he also had his first visit to the chiropractor.
Likes: He's still a big fan of being held on the shoulder (rather than being cradled), being swaddled for bed, and going to sleep/being soothed to the sound of white noise. Caleb loves when Taras carries him around - Caleb's belly resting on the inside of Taras's arm, like a monkey. He likes to coo and smile for mom and dad. He loves, loves, loves his baby gym. He'll sit under that thing for a solid 30 minutes, which gives me a chance to shower and eat some food. He also likes to lay on his back, while he looks around and kicks his arms and legs. He's warming up to liking his swing.
Dislikes: The dentist who fixed his tongue and lip ties - it's a like/dislike relationship. :) He's gotten better with a lot of the every day tasks, like diaper changes, clothing changes, getting a bath, and riding in the car. Though, we're not completely in the clear, as sometimes he freaks out with any of the above. So... we're working on it.
Struggles: Breastfeeding. Still. We, thankfully, made a lot of progress this month. After being wrongly diagnosed during his first month, this month he was correctly diagnosed as having lip and tongue ties. One trip to the specialist in Albany later, and we're now making a lot of progress. I would say that we struggle about everything that has to do with eating - it's our biggest problem and I've probably become slightly obsessive about analyzing when he's hungry, if he's had enough to eat, etc., etc. The whole thing causes tears on both our parts, and I'm looking forward to it all being worked out and our days becoming less frustrating for us both. His feeding frequency, along with having to pump and supplement each of his meals, makes it difficult for me to leave the house... so that's fun.
Sleep: We got the okay from our pediatrician to let Caleb to sleep on his own schedule. Previously, we were waking to feed him every 2-3 hours, in order to get his weight on track in light of all the nursing troubles we were having. Caleb instantly gave us a six hour stretch at night and he continues to do that. We moved him to his crib, which was a very anti-climactic affair. He jostles around and makes a lot of noises during the night, and all the activity was keeping me awake. So into his own room he went! I can still hear his fidgeting from the other room so we don't use a baby monitor unless we're downstairs. And aside from the couple of times that I've managed to fall into a super deep sleep, we're able to get to him when he awakes for his nightly feeding before he has to cry for us. We're guilty of still looking in on him to make sure he's breathing, though we do this much less frequently than last month.
Wearing: We've moved out of newborn clothes and into 0-3 month clothes, hooray!
Eating: Breast milk and formula. We're still having to supplement with formula until my supply can catch up now that we've worked out Caleb's problems (the lip and tongue ties). He's still eating every two hours, which is followed by me pumping and feeding him a supplemental bottle. Each feeding takes about an hour, so I'm basically living in one hour increments. I'm hopeful that we'll soon turn the corner on all of this... but until then, eating continues to be quite the ordeal for us. We also had our first public breastfeeding experience. It was a disaster. Someone doesn't like being covered. So... for now he eats in the car when we're on the go.
Travels: Caleb had his first road trip! We had to travel to Albany, NY to see a children's dentist who specializes in lip and tongue ties, so we added a few more states to Caleb's list: Massachusetts, New York, and Vermont (where we saw the first changing trees of the fall season). We also spent a weekend away in Maine with friends, giving Caleb a real look at what life is like in Vacationland.
Our favorite products this month: Ikea baby gym. Skip Hop diaper changing station (this made the list again - it's amazing for being on the go). Lavender essential oil (for diffusing at bedtime). Cloud Baby Monitor app (works best if you have a spare old phone to use as the crib monitor).
Two months! We can't even believe it! We still spend all our spare minutes staring at you. Your dad can't decide who you look like, but I think you look like him when you're asleep and like me when you're awake. You have the cutest old man hairline and the most adorable cheeks.
These days you're so much more alert, with a lot more awake time. I love being able to interact with you more frequently, getting small peeks at your personality. You love to stare at your dada and I, cooing back at us as we talk to you. You top it off with big, gummy smiles. My heart melts every time you coo or smile at me. You and I coo back and forth with each other for minutes at a time. I love watching your tongue and mouth move as you try to repeat each sound that I make. You form the cutest O with your lips. My favorite trick is when I say "I love you," really high-pitched and super drawn out, and you respond with a long coo that definitely means "I love you, too!" We're just starting to hear some squeals of delight from you, and I can hardly wait to hear your laugh. But it's not always about the coos and smiles: you've perfected the pout of your bottom lip, and now your bottom lip trembles when you're super upset and crying. Oh, man, that breaks my heart to see! You make your super serious face much less often, but your resting face is fairly serious, which has earned you the nickname The Senator.
You like to clutch your fingers into a tight fist or hold on strongly to my shirt, but you relax your grip to gently stroke my shoulder when I'm soothing you. Your favorite toy is the baby gym. You will sit under it for long stretches of time, cooing and grunting at the moving shapes. You'll kick your legs and pump your arms. It's fun to see you so delighted by something. Your playtime gives me enough time to shower and eat food, so I'm very thankful for your favorite toy. You still like to look at toys when I dangle them in front of you, and you like to follow the toys with your eyes. You're also happy just laying on your back and looking around, as you give your arms and legs a workout. You prefer to be in the mood for tummy time, so we don't play that way as often as we should. But when you're happy to oblige me, you continue to tickle us with your strength. You rolled over for the first time this month, and it's a trick you're happy to repeat for us anytime you don't fuss when I put you down for tummy time. You lift your head high, even lifting your chest, and you have such great strength and control.
You're a champ when it comes to sleeping. Once we got the okay from your pediatrician to let you sleep as long as you'd like, you gave us a six hour stretch the first night and you haven't looked back. Thank you. We moved you to your own crib in your own room this month, and you didn't even notice. You seem very happy in your own space. After your last feeding each evening, your dad will take you from me and rock you to sleep on his shoulder. When he thinks you're asleep, he puts you in the crib and your eyes pop open - he repeats this about five times before you finally zonk out. Your dad's shoulder is your favorite of all the shoulders - you calm down instantly when he puts you up there. I still let you sleep on my shoulder often during the daytime. Nursing has been such a struggle for us that I don't want to put you down when you sleep - it's become the time when I can relax and soak you in. My absolute favorite moment during your naps is when you lift your head super high (while still asleep), purse your lips out, shake your head around, then flop your head back to my shoulder. It's as if you're nuzzling the air and I think it's just adorable.
We're still working hard to make breastfeeding enjoyable and sustainable for the both of us. I'm looking forward to seeing how your temperament levels off when we're not having so much trouble with each of your feedings. I wouldn't call you a generally needy or fussy baby, but there are a lot of tears that happen during each feeding. We've made a lot of progress this month, and I'm hopeful that soon you'll be much happier when eating is more comfortable for you and when you don't have to worry about there not being enough milk.
The progress we made with breast feeding is because you were diagnosed as having lip and tongue ties. Your dad and I were so happy to finally have this property diagnosed, and now it's just a matter of time for your mouth to heal and for you to re-learn how to use your tongue to suck and swallow. We really made a lot of progress at the end of the month! To have your mouth corrected properly, it was highly recommended that we visit a specialist in Albany, NY. While it was fun to bring you on your first road trip, the drive home was easily the hardest thing I've ever endured. You were so uncomfortable and there was nothing we could do to soothe you. We know we made the right choice to have your lip and tongue ties fixed, but I doubted everything during that drive home. It completely broke my heart to see you in so much discomfort. You're now eating so much more comfortably, I can see your tongue freely move inside your mouth, and I'm convinced the smiles and coos flow much more easily post-procedure.
You had your first vacation this month, in Maine, which seemed appropriate since Maine is known as Vacationland. We spent the weekend at a beach house with some of our best friends, and you got to spend a lot of quality time with your cousin. You visited the beach for the first time and you were such a trooper among all the activity and stimulation. We're so excited for all our vacations still to come, and we can't wait to show you this world, one trip at a time.
Your dad and I think you're the bee's knees and we feel truly blessed that God has trusted us with you. We're so excited to be on this journey of parenthood and we're thankful every day that you're the little man who made us parents. Thank you, Muffin.