Dec 1, 2011  •  In Aerin, Claire, Motherhood, Personal

The State of the Union, 1 Month

Today, our Aerin Isabel turns one month old.

And because I know my sister — who is currently living in Paris(!!!) for 3 months — is always begging me for pictures of her nieces, here is the latest of Aerin:

One of the most common questions I hear these days is: how is everything going? In other words, just how in the world am I surviving motherhood with two babies that are just 13 months apart?

The answer is simple: one day at a time.

That, and wonderful grandparents who are doing everything they can do to pitch in so that I can get some rest here and there.

As previously stated, Aerin has finally started to sleep in 2-3 hour stretches. But her day-night reversal has not improved and she fell victim into the dreaded “witching hour” at only 2 weeks of age. As such, I look to the hours between 12am ~ 3am with great trepidation every night. What usually ends up happening is that I will hold her and bounce her around the house for up to 3 hours at a time, because HEAVEN FORBID that I even sit down while holding her…she will start screaming her little head off! (And we can’t have her waking up Claire, who will surely take a while to fall back asleep, or J, who has work the next day.)

That being said, Aerin generally seems to be an easier baby than Claire. I am not sure if this is because she is the second child and we know what to do and expect, or if it’s really because she is an easier baby. (Neither J nor I can accurately remember how Claire was at this age.)

Speaking of Claire…I had failed to mention on this blog that she has been pulling herself up into a standing position for over a month now, and even took her first unassisted steps a few weeks ago. However, our overly-cautious little girl is still too scared to transition fully into walking. We’re in no hurry and are letting her do things at her own pace, but I think it’s safe to say that she is now a toddler. :-)

With toddlerhood comes all the frustrations of this stage, which mainly stems from not being able to physically accomplish everything they want to do — including communication. This, in addition to her new life as a big sister (where she is no longer the center of attention at all times), has led to an increase in tantrums and other unpleasant behavior, such as throwing items on the floor. And if you can believe it, Claire has started to talk back to us! Most of what she says is still gibberish, but the tone and attitude — including gesticulations! — are definitely already there.

This is perhaps the most difficult part of my new life: attending to a newborn while tending to an oftentimes frustrated toddler.

Once again, one day at a time.

The upside to Claire’s maturity is that she is learning, and absorbing lessons at an unprecedented rate. I am proud to say that at 14 months of age, our eldest already knows 3 letters of the alphabet: O, R, and S. :-D  This is mainly thanks to my cousin’s wife, who had gifted us the LeapFrog Fridge Phonics Magnetic Alphabet Set — although this toy is marketed for those who are 2 years of age and older, Claire has loved it since day one and plays with it all the time. Additionally, we all continually point out different letters of the alphabet in books and anything else with large text — this is something even the grandparents, whose English is not too great, can help with since they all know the English alphabet.

As for mommy — myself — I am happy to announce that I seem to be back to my pre-pregnancy self in terms of how I am physically feeling (aside from the typical new parent fatigue). I have lost an additional 5 lbs since my last update, bringing the total weight loss to 30 lbs in 1 month, and am hopeful that I will lose the remaining 20 lbs in 2 more months, as was the case the first time around.

I will also be turning 31 next week, and have decided to keep it low-key by celebrating it with a lunch-and-movie date with J. And although he wanted to take me to my favorite steakhouse in NJ, I insisted on Red Lobster instead so that we could save some money.

Is this a sign of old age? Not being excited about birthdays anymore, and insisting on cheap(er) celebrations? And we can’t overlook the fact that most of the items on my Amazon Wishlist now consist of things for Claire and Aerin!

…Does anyone have any suggestions on what movie we can watch on my birthday? I hardly watch television anymore, so I have no idea what’s even playing.

11 Responses to “The State of the Union, 1 Month”

  1. My husband is nagging me to see The Muppets with him- but I’m thinking since this is precious time away from your own kids, you don’t want to spend it with a theater full of other people’s kids!

    Glad everyone is doing well!

  2. My oh my! She’s grown so much!!! I hope that aerin will sleep at normal hours so you can rest too! Have fun on your bday and please enjoy. I wish I could suggest a movie but I don’t know any since everything is blocked here lol xoxo

  3. Stephanie:

    If you are into chick flicks, go see New Years Eve. It opens next Friday. It looks good!

  4. I don’t know why it always amazes me how different siblings can look…Claire and Aerin are both so cute but they look so different! Whenever I try to imagine what our next child will look like, I just can’t picture anything else but how our daughter is now. I’m glad you’re hanging in there!

  5. The Decendents! It looks so cute and George Clooney is in it. I’ve heard such good things about it. Also, I cannot believe how much Aerin has already grown! Both your girls are precious and I think your one day at a time approach is the best way to go.

  6. So happy for the update!! Happy early birthday…I hope that it’s wonderful and relaxing no matter what you guys end up doing!

  7. Liz:

    Wow, I had no idea how hard even 1 baby is (I have a 5 month old) … so physically & emotionally tiring so I can’t imagine how crazy it is with 2 so young! But now you also have double the fun/cuteness :)

  8. ABC:

    Happy early birthday! My birthday is next week, too :) We’re planning on seeing J. Edgar this weekend–Leo DiCaprio has come a long way since Titanic, and I always love political movies/shows, even if I try to avoid politics in real life :) Your girls are beautiful!

  9. Kate:

    Your babies are beautiful. My daughter is the same age as Claire, and is starting with the tantrums. Sometimes it’s cute (sort of), but most of the time it is so frustrating! Sending you lots of luck and sleep for the next few months!

  10. wen:

    Have you tried the Moby wrap or something similar? That way you can still “hold” her and bounce around, but at least you’ll have your arms free and it won’t be as tiring. My little kiddo (6wks) demands to be held and bounced whenever he’s awake, and putting him in a wrap is a godsend. He usually falls asleep within 5min.

  11. Suzy:

    just saw this. thanks for the pics! i miss them, they’re turning out so beautifully!

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