Sunday, January 24, 2010

Max Kontzer is Stealing My Heart

So here's the thing about Max after a month: He's an unusually wonderful baby. And so was Jackson. That makes me 2-for-2 in the "unusually wonderful baby" department. For that, I am very thankful.

Last night, Max slept 7 straight hours--from 9:30 pm to 4:30 am--then fed, went back to sleep, woke up again at about 8, fed again, and went back to sleep again for another hour before waking up for his busy time of the day. The thing about having an infant is, even when it all goes just as planned, it's still draining. Every day is a relentless string of feedings and diaper changes and comforting attempts and long moments of fixation and sporadic sleep.

This kind of schedule puts me into an almost dream-like state. My days often feel like an elastic affair, centered around the comings and goings of people visiting the baby, meals passing in a blur, with more than enough baby responsibilities to keep two reasonably intelligent adults quite occupied.

Naturally, Sarah's taking the brunt of things. It's such an unfair reality that women have to endure all of the most physically and emotionally demanding acts in creating and caring for a baby--namely, birth and nursing. It's pretty amazing the way a new mother is immediately tuned into the needs of the baby at all times, whether awake or asleep, whether the baby's making his needs known or not. It burns inside the mother's gut just as her own instincts do--the baby's not even a separate being in some ways. He's an extension of the mother. As a matter of fact, when you get right down to it, from conception until the baby's, oh, a year old or so, the father is pretty much unnecessary.

Good thing I don't care. I'm gonna touch and kiss and care for little Max as much as possible, whether he needs me or not. Because at this point, let's face it: I need him.

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