Week 1: Cullen’s Story.

I’m not quite sure how it happened, but somehow my little peanut is one week old today.  I am already freaking out that he is growing up too fast.

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I had so much fun writing my pregnancy updates, and I wanted a way to continue to share our family’s journey with you guys.  My plan is to continue to do weekly updates each Friday, this time focusing on life with a baby and my post-partum adventures.  That way I can weave our family stories in with the rest of the regular food and fitness talk (which is returning next week!).  I hope you guys enjoy following our journey.

I’m not even sure where to begin with this update since it is all just that – the beginning.  Our first week with Cullen has been nothing short of amazing. 

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Eating

Breastfeeding was one of my biggest fears going into pregnancy – would I be able to do it?  Would my baby respond?  Would he get enough to eat?  I’m happy to say that so far everything is going really well.  Cullen and I work as a team to continue to figure it out together.  Of course I have my worries about him getting enough and if I’m doing it right, but at his first pediatrician’s appointment earlier in the week, he had gained enough weight that the doctor assured me all is well.  What a huge relief!

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I continue to track all his feedings and diaper changes in a phone app so that I can make sure he’s eating often enough (every 2 to 3 hours), and that he’s pooping enough (exciting stuff!). 

Sleeping

Once I was overdue, I stopped believing that I was going to go into labor naturally.  So when I went to bed last Monday night, I had no idea that it would be my last baby-less night of full sleep for quite some time to come.  Believe it or not, I’m actually feeling really great and not minding the sleep schedule at all so far (check back with me in a few months). 

Cullen basically sleeps all the time.  So much that I keep consulting baby books to see if he’s sleeping TOO much, but then I have to remind myself that he is only a few days old.  At night, we tend to wake up every 2 to 3 hours for a short nursing session, and then he goes right back to sleep.  Casey gets up and changes his diapers while I get ready for each feeding.  We’re only one week in, but so far our system is working pretty well. 

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Oh and that whole baby going in the crib from day one thing?  Tooooooootally didn’t happen.  I think we ALL saw that coming, right?  :)  I just couldn’t do it.  So night number one we set up the pack n play next to my side of the bed, and he happily snoozes next to me for now.  We’re hoping to transition him to the nursery soon, but I needed a little peace of mind for the first week or two. 

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The big excitement of this week (other than having a baby of course) was getting our newborn photos taken.  I researched and booked the photography session months ago, and went back and forth over and over again wondering if it was something we should do or not.  I ended up deciding that my first baby is only a few days old once, and it was something I didn’t want to miss. 

Our photo session was yesterday morning with Jenny Hughes, who I can’t recommend enough to my Seattle friends!  By the end of our session, she felt like a friend, and I’m already looking forward to doing pictures again when he’s a bit older.  She sent me a few proofs already, and I am so excited about how well they turned out!

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As far as life with Cullen goes, we still don’t have a routine or schedule yet, but I didn’t really expect to in just one week.  We also have a house filled with houseguests, which has made our return home fun, but busy.  Next week will be the first time the three of us will be on our own, and it will be nice to see how our new life feels as we ease back into it.  In the meantime, Cullen has been helping me try to catch up on work for a few hours each day…

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And I spend no less than an hour of each morning chasing him around with my camera.  He sleeps most of the time these days, so any time I can catch him alert and showing me his beautiful eyes, I am snapping away.

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And many of you have asked – what about ME?

One Week Post-Partum

Considering I had a baby seven days ago, I’m feeling pretty great.  I feel like pregnancy has taught me so much about the human body, and I am in constant awe of how I’m changing and adapting to each new phase of the process.  The day I gave birth, I still looked about 7 months pregnant.  The next day, 5 months pregnant, and so on and so on.  One week after delivering Cullen, I have lost 24 pounds – just 8 pounds away from my pre-pregnancy weight. 

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Let me remind you what I looked like the day I went into labor, with an extra 32 pounds on my frame. (I look so cranky!)

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The weight loss is entirely due to delivery, breastfeeding, and my body’s natural adjustments.  I have literally done ZERO activity this week other than sleep, eat, and stare at my baby. 

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Emotionally I feel fantastic.  I’m a hormonal mess and I cry at least ten times a day for no reason, but it’s all because I simply cannot grasp how happy I am.  I had no idea that life could be this good.

Physically, things are a little tougher.  A three-day labor did me no favors, and I will have a longer road to healing than I had hoped for.  I have a LOT of stitches and other unpleasant side effects of childbirth (that I will spare you), and I’m in a lot of pain as my body works towards healing.  Walks are limited to a few slow, short blocks and I’m really trying to take it easy so that I can return at 100% when I’m ready.

On the upside, the number one perk of not being pregnant anymore?  Sleeping on my STOMACH!  I cannot get enough, and it feels sooooo good.

While I’m healing and resting, I’m cherishing what I know are days that will go by too quickly and that I will long for when he is a screaming toddler. 

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Thank you all so much for all the love and support through all of this.  Life is definitely different, but I can’t imagine it being any other way now that Cullen is here. 

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You can check out the new parenting page for all our family updates and weekly recaps.  Off to enjoy my little 8 pound bundle of love…