almost four weeks later…
Blythe woke me up the other night at some point between Olive’s 10pm and 2am feeding asking if I could put on her pink cowboy boots (the same ones she’s pictured in below). She then proceeded to heave them onto my bed where I had been sleeping (oh precious sleep!) only moments before. This means that in her drowsy stupor, she actually had to rummage through her dark closet looking for these boots before walking into my dark room to deliver them. This, along with her daily questioning, “can we go somewhere? I don’t want to go home,” can only mean one thing: we have officially been “cloistered” in our home too long. All the rain lately hasn’t helped either. So, on Friday, I decided to pack up the kids for my first solo outing in public. Yep. That’s right, alone — you see the desperation here? (I realize that I’m not the first mother to venture outside of her home with four children in tow, but I know from the awkward “are you crazy?” stares I receive when in public, there must be some sort of lunacy involved.) Due to the weather, the park was not an option, so we went to the local Barnes&Noble, where I immediately bee-lined for the cafe — this WAS an event after all. While ordering my tasty treat at the counter, I hear the man behind me heartily chuckling. When I turned to see what about, he gestured toward my sons who had apparently picked up the latest SI swimsuit edtion found right at their eye level, but instead of ogling the scantily clad beauty on the front cover, they were practically drooling over the M&M ad on the back of the cover and discussing which color they liked the best. The man was right: this was funny. “On second thought, let’s add one of those gigantic-pastel-sprinkled sugar cookies to the order and put the M&M magazine back on the shelf.”
Honestly, the last few weeks have been relatively wonderful. Exhausting (what life with a newborn isn’t?), but wonderful. Thanks to my mom and Pam who each stayed for a week and the benevolence of several friends who have brought us meals and/or gift cards, this transition and recovery has seemed to be one of the easiest thus far. Liam, Burke, and Blythe adore their little Olive, alternating who gets to hold her or “help” take care of her, generously showering her with frequent kisses and hellos, and of course the perpetual ” I love you, Baby Olive.” The boys created a song to sing to Olive when she cries (I tried to get it on video, but the battery was dead, and the other time we were in the car.); it goes something like, “It’s ok. Yeah, it’s ok for you to cry. It’s ok for you to cry, even in the sunshine. It’s ok. It’s ok. It’s ok for you to cry.” Blythe, who almost exclusively refers to her baby sister as “MY baby Olive,” mostly sings the alphabet, aka “the ABCDs,” to her (and sometimes as a bohemian with a microphone as seen above). We’ve found her on two occasions in the crib with Olive trying to “help,” but that quickly lost it’s appeal when she realized this type of helping came along with a pop on the butt. They are all pretty fascinated by the fact that I produce milk. Fortunately, the only analogy to milk-related items or animals so far was from Liam saying, “Mom, you’re like a giant bottle!” Son, you have no idea.
As for Olive, she’s taking this crazy family in stride, accomodating all of our carressing and noise, and for the most part, she still spends about 20 hours per day doing this:
At almost a month old, I can’t complain.