The Bodacious Belgrade Blog

December 9, 2008


Filed under: Uncategorized — bunitingi @ 3:54 am


Maja is sick. Raging fever. Started Friday. On Sunday she was getting better, but then this evening it hit again. She’s going to the doctor tomorrow.

This has left me to take care of her and the baby. Her mother has been coming over in the mornings to help out, and this when i’ve been getting my major sleeping in.

Maja has continued to breastfeed while sick, as surprisingly this is medically recommended. The idea is that viruses are airborn and not passed on through breastmilk. What IS passed on through breastmilk is the antibodies she’s been developing to fight off the sickness, which the baby needs to fight off the sickness too. The baby is not sick, thank GD, as this  could potentially drain me of the last of my sanity.

Folks, caring for a newborn is TOUGH. It’s a round the clock job, and a newborn doesn’t yet have the mental facilities to do all that cute baby stuff like smiling and laughing and cooing and squeeling with delight that one envisions.

The baby would smile as a reflex and only recently has started smiling a bit more regularly. He’s going through a growth spurt, and this growth spurt will result in him gaining some additional superpowers, like smiling and one day doing the whole coo, delight stuff. But we’re not there yet.

There is still a good bit of bliss, as despite the extreme demands made upon us a parents, he is phenomenally adorable, and holding him while swaying back and forth to music as he looks up and stares into my eyes is what gets me through the insane lack of sleep and endless toil that is caring for him and my wife at the same time. Maja is still struggling with breastfeeding, as it is a difficult thing to negotiate.

Obviously blog entires here have suffered, as i either don’t have the time, or simply don;t have the brainpower to say anything clever or even interesting.

I was well warned about this first month. A friend of mine here, whose wife had a particularly difficult labor, described a scene where at 4 in the morning he’s holding a screaming baby while his wife is sobbing. With Maja sick with fever, i have had the honor of experiencing this first hand, and he nailed it.

Some parents left this first month’s brutality out, and i can see why. You don’t want to shock the poor expectant parent. But now being put through the ringer, i’m actually grateful to folks like matthew and janell who, while encouraging, were also clear about some of the messy new parent woes. Knowing that this is normal is actually a comfort.

Eventually things will change, the baby will grow, we’ll get better at this. For now, i cannot see beyond going day to day. Someone recently pointed out that everything gets a lot better after the 6 month mark. This is like handing a suicidal wreck a razor blade. (metaphor alert. I’m fine and not in the least suicidal. I do love my little boy and it’s really not all bad) But 6 months is simply an impossible length of time to envision at this point.

Adam has begun being awake a lot more of the day, which is nice, as now he is awake without being fussy, and more likely to just be checking stuff out. He requires a lot of attention and particularly enjoys being held, which is great. He can’t return love yet, but that doesn’t mean that he doesn’t need lots of it.

If only he could just… learn to accept that diaper changing is part of his day and stop hating it so much. Still, i change his diaper right before feeding, so there is a garaunteed calm down coming after it.

I have gotten quite good at calming him. Being held and swaying back and forth to  music really works. We do this to The Carpenters’ Greatest Hits quite often. Sometimes Beatles, but i can even throw on funk or anything without aggressive guitars. If it has a beat he can be swayed to, he likes it.

Speaking of which, someone is getting a little fussy over there. I guess sleep time is ending. (it’s 3AM. he often is hungry about now.)

See you all on the other side.



  1. Yep, normal normal normal. Sucky sucky sucky. But normal.

    I wonder what it is about diapers that he hates so much? Coldness? dry diaper texture? Moving his legs around? So mysterious, babies.

    Has his umbilical stump fallen off yet? When Nathan’s did, it fell behind the’s probably still there in that apartment (ew!). Did make diapers less difficult.

    When is your 40 days up? I’m so curious about his weight and length and all of that. He’s definitely more “present” in his pictures!

    Comment by emjaybee — December 9, 2008 @ 5:02 am | Reply

  2. The deja vu, it burns…


    I know.


    It does get better. I say this to you from the other side, a place it is nearly impossible for you to imagine at this stage. But it is a real place, and if I can make it there, so will you.

    A taste:

    This weekend, our former shrieking infant started telling us about his poops BEFORE they left his bottom. It was amazing. He’s not fully potty trained yet, but at least he’s now paying attention to what his body is doing. It’s one more step into independence, and like everything else he does, it’s been a VERY long time coming. Even 3 or 4 months ago, potty training seemed impossible, and now he’s figuring it out with a modicum of prompting from us.

    I remember believing, honestly believing, that he would never learn to crawl. He just wouldn’t do it. People told me he would, and I would look at my little stump-armed critter and quite frankly could not fathom him making any coordinated motions of any kind. And then one day, we used my glasses (prize of all prizes) as bait, just a few feet away. The boy crawled, to his own amazement and to ours.

    It’s only in hindsight that it all seems inevitable. Of course he would learn to crawl, and walk, and talk, and take off his pants, and chew his own food, and drink from a cup without spilling, and use a fork. But every one of those things has at one time or another seemed almost completely impossible to imagine as I watched him try with his little stumbly limbs that oh so gradually learn their skills. Good lord, the boy will be driving a CAR one day. The horror.

    People worry about our generation having no patience, always with the on-demand everything. But small children don’t know from generations. They move at the pace that suits them, and we have to slow ourselves down a bit to be of any use to them. Because we were once children, we’ve been in a constant state of shifting gears upward for our entire lives. But now, quite suddenly, we are brought back to a more primal speed, shifting way down to slowly climb a gentle upward curve that takes its sweet time getting where it wants to go. The tortoise, not the hare.

    You are adjusting, I can tell. You will adjust more still. At last, there will be equilibrium, and then the ride will be much more fun for all involved. You know this, obviously, but I find it’s good to hear messages from further on down the path, the better for you to know you’re not walking off a cliff.

    Comment by matthew — December 9, 2008 @ 5:06 am | Reply

  3. Um, I hate to point this out honey, but he can’t actually use a fork yet, consistently. He’s more of a finger-eater, even with cereal.

    but yes. Getting there.

    Comment by emjaybee — December 9, 2008 @ 5:42 pm | Reply

  4. Pants on fire! He eats perfectly well with a fork & spoon. He just chooses not to half the time.

    Comment by matthew — December 9, 2008 @ 8:19 pm | Reply

  5. Then one day, they discover the screwdriver:

    Comment by matthew — December 11, 2008 @ 6:30 pm | Reply

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