The process of planning the next stage is complicated further by Robert’s unpredictable schedule. He still feeds erratically, and his sleep times also aren’t always consistent, especially during the day. And as his alert times become lengthier he is also getting more prone to over-stimulation, which in turn leads to afternoons of irritability and over-tiredness. After today’s long outing, we were in for one of those.
Today we reached another developmental milestone in Robert’s life. At two months he is blossoming into a cute and very aware little fellow. In the space of one month he changed from an unresponsive little blob (no offense meant) into a tiny human being who reacts and interacts. If we pay attention carefully, we can easily detect his likes and dislikes, the way he calms down at the sound of his dad’s voice or starts getting excited at the sight of a toy, or at the sound of the running water for his bath. We can tell that he is now that he is watching, listening and taking his whole surroundings in. The pictures we take of him these days show him frequently smiling, as most of the time he is happy to see us and to respond to our smiles. His level of activity is also increasing; he loves standing upright (supported of course), and then he can carry his weight for a few second on his little legs.
To celebrate the occasion of Robert’s two-month birthday we took him on a long walk. Two of the churches in our area were holding summer charity bazaars, and we thought we might find something for him there. Unfortunately we were only able to leave the house late in the morning, and therefore there weren’t any exciting offerings left by the time we made it to the bazaars. We had no success either at the second hand charity shop; the books there were of nostalgic value, but will be terribly lacking for the education of a little guy in the 21st century. The final stop on our tour had to be the bookshop, where we bought Robert a little picture book of farm animals, which I had earmarked earlier as a possible present. Robert was asleep throughout the walk as usual, but he had his photo shoot on our return home.
With two months gone since Robert was born, my clock is also ticking. My maternity leave ends in just over two months, and by then I should have concrete plans in place. My ideas on this next stage are still vague, and I have this image of myself continuing to breastfeed and having an easy schedule at work. I know however that this is wishful thinking, things will be difficult for all of us once I get back to work. During the next few weeks I need to do some research, and ask other working mothers how they solved this problem. Like every other breastfeeding mother, I got terribly attached to the time I spend nursing my son. I feel privileged to be able to provide him with nourishment. To watch him thrive as a result, is pure bliss, and I would hate for this special time to come to a premature and abrupt end, before Robert turns six months. I have read in my baby book about breast pumps, and to me this looks like a solution that will enable me to continue breastfeeding exclusively for the recommended six months. It looks good on paper, but I have to find out if it is practical.