A baby was born. And then no one slept for one hundred years. What is up with that??
Breastfeeding. I love everything about it except for the sore neck and shoulders. After a fatiguing birthing session, being thrown into the new-mom Olympics of hoisting and lifting and schlepping leaves the shoulder girdle needing some restoration. Try this Floor Angels stretch to open a tight chest and biceps. You can even put your babe on your chest or stomach as you do it.
NOTE: Don't just lie there and fall asleep. Move your arms around in the same way you would make a snow angel, trying to keep the backs of the hands on the floor as you slide them up toward the head.
Carrying the baby. I love it and we put a nix on strollers so there isn't any other option. Pregnancy is actually nature's strength-training program (if you know how to carry your body weight to maximize this period of time.) You know all that weight you gained during the last 9 months? Some of that was muscle, in the perfect match to the weight of the baby-to-come. Why? So that when baby is born, you have extra muscle mass to be able to carry him/her/them. No, the weight isn't in your arms, but in the legs. Keeping the baby on your body allows you to keep this muscle mass and all of its metabolic wonder. Don't think of losing all that baby weight -- keep the good stuff!
Diapers, cloth. They are amazing. And hold much less than disposable diapers, especially when you have a newborn with no body fat (or "chicken legs" as they are known in the Bowman family, a phenomenon that is explained by my father, who says we came from a noble line and rode horses instead of walked). Which is why we had to switch back to disposable for two weeks. Then the little man gained two pounds (he started out as a 7-n-7) in three weeks, so we were back in the cloth diaper game.
Early. That's when I get up now. And interestingly enough, is also when I go to bed.
Feeding schedule. According to anthropological data, hunter-gathering populations today feed their babies every 15 minutes for a few minutes at a time (called continual feeding, used by mammals that "cling" or "follow" their babies) as opposed to the longer feedings adopted by "spaced feeders." Spaced Feeders are birds (who leave their babies in nests) and most of the industrialized cultures who schedule longer feedings based on the infant's napping/playing away from the mother (more than one meter). The main difference seems to be in the properties of the milk and in the effect on reproduction. Breast feeding using the continuous method is what minimizes chances of becoming pregnant while nursing, as opposed to longer (20-40 minute) feedings. I'm trying the shorter, frequent method, although every fifteen minutes is a stretch. More like every 30-40 minutes. And I just feed when the baby is looking for it. And guess what hunter-gathering moms do just after feeding?
Gymnastics! A couple times an hour, H-G babies are encouraged to move their body vigorously. This is done to both tone the babies muscles, cultivate their walking and gripping reflexes, and calm them. I, of course, started doing this right away. No, I'm not trying to get the kid to do push-ups or anything, but using the babies natural grip, pulling the arms gently to create resistance, pressing against the soles of his feet to let him practice push off...that kind of stuff. And I have one of those babies who started crawling up my body in search of the party (if you know what I mean.) He also started rolling to one side at two weeks and rolling to his stomach at three weeks. I believe that our cultures failure to cultivate a baby's natural walking and hand over hand gripping reflex (called brachiating) from infancy is what has led to our extremely poor strength-to-weight ratio. That's why, for Christmas, I want some baby brachiation bars (http://naturallybetterkids.com/resources/equipment/brachiation-ladder). The ability to hold one's own body weight from their arms has a direct impact on how much oxygen the body takes in and how much the lungs inflate with each breath. If you have a child with (or if you have) breathing issues, consider heading out to the monkey bars a few times a week, slowly building strength. It's not about buff shoulders, it's about oxygen. And, it's about time you got to that, don't you think?
my Hair. Really. What is going on with this ratted out bun in the back of my head? It's time to chop my hair, but I don't know what I should do. What would you suggest? To help you out, here is a look at my hairstyles past. I'm particularly fond of the uneven mullet that my mom *says* she did not give me. I can tell, she's lying. You know how I know? Because of her giant glasses in this pic (but look at my cute haircut!):
And what about this one:
My mom brought all of these down when she came to visit, to help us figure out who the baby looked like more. Since the boy, at this time, does not have a perm, Salon Selectives in his bangs, huge 1970s-style glasses, nor acid-washed suspenders, I'm thinking he looks more like his dad. But back to the bigger issue...WHAT TO DO WITH MY HAIR?
I can't think of any thing to put here.
Just Kidding. I can, but I'm too tired to write anything more.
Naps. Let's have one, shall we?
O. This was the shape of my belly four weeks ago. Four weeks later it is almost back to pre-baby (in appearance, not in terms of strength), which I attribute to easy-paced walking and carrying baby every day, light stretching, and breastfeeding.
Potty training. Yeah, we're doing that early too with the help of this book: Diaper Free: The Gentle Wisdom of Natural Infant Hygiene. Here is da first poop in da potty:
Q: Did you really just post a picture of baby poop? A: Why yes, yes I did.
Reflex, Brachiating. See "G" for Gymnastics.
STU. As in STUpidly long alphabet. Who has time for this??
Vitamin K. In hindsight I would have taken a Vitamin K supplement during my pregnancy. I am now taking it in the form of chlorophyll and it helps with blood clotting among other things. Why do they call it Vitamin "K"? For the German word Koagulation. This reminds me of my favorite German word, Obstipation, meaning constipation, which, ironically, the Vitamin K also helps with...
Women's Guide to Foot Pain: The New Science of Healthy Feet is now available for pre-sale on Amazon.com. Why do I bring it up? Because in addition to babying and aligning and walking and blogging, I'm supposed to be editing for tomorrow's deadline. Just kidding. The deadline was yesterday. Just kidding. The deadline was Tuesday. But I'm almost done, I promise.
NOTE FROM AUTHOR: Due to recent lifstyle updates, She will be modifying the alphabet to not include the letters: K, L, M, X, Y, and Z. Please accept our apologies. We have to go get our haircut.