Friday, January 4, 2013



It's 3:30pm, Jasper is finally sleeping, and so far the only chores I have managed to accomplish today are transporting the laundry from the drier to the bed and trimming 3 of Jasper's fingernails.  Jasper coincidentally has managed to cut himself twice on the face today with his other nails.  So, what am I doing writing instead of trimming the rest or putting away laundry?  Well, this once neat-freak girl has learned that chaos is a neccessary aspect of motherhood.  I have relaxed about the state of my home a little (and luckily my husband has picked up many of the areas where I slack off!) since Jasper came along.  Now, when he sleeps, I divide my time between what has to get done and what I would like to do for myself.  So right now, I am stealing a little time before he wakes to bring you other such revelations and changes from the past couple of weeks. 

Another thing I have discovered recently is that Jasper continually rocks my world more and more every day.  I keep reaching new plateaus of thinking I couldn't possibly love being his mama any more than I already do, and then he comes up with some new coo or new way of interacting with me that bursts my heart open even more.  He is amazing.  He LOVES talking, especially when he is getting his diaper changed.  He looks me right in the eye as he gurgles and says, "A-Gooooo, ooo-aaahh," but, with the sweet intent expression on his face, it seems like he is saying the most important thing in the world.  Then his eyes stray to the ceiling fan and he spends several minutes enthusiastically chattering away and laughing in it's direction.  I do believe the ceiling fan is his best friend. 

Jasper loves being social.  We went to a crowded holiday party at a friend's house just before Christmas.  He wore this outfit:

and was thus the hit of the party, especially with the ladies.  Seriously, he stayed up way past his bedtime and didn't have his usual evening meltdown.  He was loving it.  Until the car-ride home, during which he wailed the entire way.  Poor little dude.  I think we were all a little stressed. 

We have started going to a new mom's group once a week.  Jasper loves it, of course, being a socialite.  He loves staring at the other babies, looking wide-eyed when he hears that he isn't the only one who cries.  And I love it too.  It is good for me to see other mamas with younger babies going through similar things that I went through, like breastfeeding issues, and mamas  with similar aged babies going through what I am going through now, and mamas with older babies going through what I have ahead of me.  It helps me feel less alone in my experience and normalizes the hard things in a way that brings in some softness and ease.  And it is fun!  I love how I find myself in an hour long conversation about baby bowel movements and used baby clothing stores with other mamas who normally I wouldn't have enough in common with to share as many words.  Babies break down the walls of the differences between us.  (I swear if mothers ruled the world, we would indeed have peace on earth and all life would thrive!)  It is especially good for me too to hear that my baby isn't the only one who sometimes cries inconsolably!

Jasper had his first overnight trip on the winter solstice.  We stayed in a nice rustic cabin in a campground on the Oregon coast.  It was such a lovely time with just the three of us.  Beautiful and sweet.  It was nice to break up our routine a little bit and be in a new environment.  But, of course, Jasper cried A LOT throughout the morning.  Poor little dude.    

We had a test-run last week back at my job with Charlotte. Her parents are happy for me to bring Jasper with me when I come to be with Charlotte.  Just in case, Lucas came with me to be available to help with Jasper if needed. It was awesome to spend time with Charlotte again, as I have missed having her in my weekly life. But, it clearly wasn't working for us. Jasper did a lot of crying.  He is young enough and discontent enough that he needs me a lot of the time. Even with having Lucas there to help, it was overwhelming and stressful for Jasper, Lucas, and I. I realized that the arrangement would not be fair to Jasper nor to Charlotte at this time and so we decided to give it more time before I go back to work. Luckily, I have the luxary of this choice, and luckily Charlotte has a childcare backup plan in the meantime.

Jasper is now 12 weeks old and is weighing in at 15 pounds and 1 ounce as of this morning.  My latest revelation is that it is time for me to stop trying to stuff him into my favorite 0-3 month clothes.  They are just too tight!  He is growing up (and out).  It is time I accepted this and allow him to wear exclusively the roomier 3-6 month clothes.  His developmental changes are speeding up too.  Jasper still doesn't love floor time.  He manages to enjoy it for a few minutes at a time.  And he especially doesn't love tummy time, which he can only stand for less than a minute at a time. 

He prefers to practice standing, which he is getting really really good at, jumping, and sitting.  He wants to be a big boy.  From these more upright positions he is working hard on his finer motor skills. 

He is sooooo aware of his hands and is really intent on commanding them to cooperate with his mind.  He loves using his hands to stroke the varying textures of different objects like my hands or Lucas', different fabrics, the plants, and even the cats.  He is starting to get really good at grasping his toys and holding on to them for longer periods of time, and is even bringing them slowly to his mouth with more accuracy, not just banging himself in the cheek with them!  He loves his playtime, until he doesn't.  And then he is sure to let us know that he is DONE.  

You may have caught on that Jasper cries a lot.  We are learning that Jasper is very particular.  Lucas said this morning that "the nut doesn't fall far from the tree," the tree being me in this case.  (Wait, was he calling Jasper a nut?!?)  Anyway, Jasper is very good at communicating what he doesn't want to be doing and when he is tired.  I celebrate that he is a good communicator, and I am trying to learn how to be more diligently aware and responsive to his early cues to avoid meltdowns.  He has a tendency to get himself worked up, his cry escalating really really fast when something is amiss and it just about breaks my heart into pieces.  Now that I am being shown that all babies have their moments like this, I know I can approach them with more relaxation, focusing on surrounding him with love instead of my own stress of being unable to fix what ever is wrong.  And as he gets older, we can focus on showing him how to regulate these emotions efficiently and healthily. 

Really, Jasper does rock my world.  And, really, he does have way more happy moments than sad.  And, really, we are all doing awesome.  We are learning so much about baby J every day and absolutely loving to watch as he learns and figures out what this being alive business is all about.  We think he is the cutest and most brilliant kid around.  And we don't think we are biased ;)  Now, please excuse me while I quickly try to put away the laundry before the handsome sleeper wakes up!


Scott said...

enjoyed the update on my little buddy - miss being with him (as well as with his mom & dad).

Roxie said...

I so look forward to your updates with pictures and your wonderful descriptions on how life is going. It surely is a challenge - but so rewarding! You are doing a GREAT job! We are so looking forward to our next visit! Love you all!