In January, Ashley and I welcomed Adelaide into the world. The last few weeks have been quite emotional and very tiring. Max is now six years old. I am completely out of practice. Even if you are out of practice, it comes back to you. After a few hours, I felt comfortable holding a newborn. After a day or two, I remembered how to adequately swaddle a newborn.
Then there are the things that come back, but are not helpful. What worked to soothe one does not always work to soothe another. That has been a hard lesson to learn. I am learning what works for this one though (lots of music and gentle bobbing, much like walking). She cries. She poops. She is beautiful.
The most surprising change has been watching Max interact with her. I knew he would be gentle and respectful. I was not prepared for how much affection he shows her and how understanding he is with her. He reads to her. He talks to her. I try to take it in as much as possible. This is not my first rodeo; I know that these moments are fleeting and one day I will wish to have them back.
I am working hard at being more patient. I remember becoming quickly flustered with Max if he started to cry or became upset. It always felt like I could not soothe him. Either Adelaide is easier or it is easier because it is my second time around the course. Either way, I am appreciative of this time. I am very fortunate to be working for a company that gives a generous paternity leave this time around (whereas with Max, my previous employer offered zero paid paternity leave). I was able to bond with Adelaide over the first four weeks of her life, without worrying about work. I am grateful for that time. Additionally, I still have two additional weeks of leave that I plan on taking later in the year; it will be exciting to have additional time with her when she is out of the newborn stage, when her personality has developed more. She will most likely be a completely new person in a few months. They change so fast.
Welcome to the world Adelaide. I cannot wait to see who you become.