The second I caught sight of these little faces waiting at the end of the long corridor, tears started streaming down my face and when I reached them, I held them tight against me and breathed in their sweet scent. Oh, how I had missed them!
This baby girl had literally been awake for 24 hours (aside from 2 one-hour naps) and she still had smiles for everyone. She was completely charming and mesmerized by her new family. (I am declining to write about the trip home because it was long and grueling and I don’t want to dwell on it).
|Elisabeth was immediately in big-sister mode.
Here, Gramma Paulette is holding
Rosalie and Elisabeth is playing peekaboo.
|Brothers with their new baby sister|
|Gramma Teri and the Fabulous Four|
This first week home has been one of those times when life doesn’t quite live up to what is expected. (No complaining, just sharing honestly.)
Expectation: We would arrive home Thursday, rest up for a couple of days, and then have a great weekend as a new family of six and proceed to regular life.
Reality: I came home sick, have left the house once in the past nine days (aside from a trip to Urgent Care and taking Rosalie to the doctor, which I don’t count), the jet lag has been horrible, and Rosalie caught my virus and has slept so much that we have hardly seen her.
When I say Rosalie has been sleeping, I mean she has been awake for only 1-2 hours per day. And the first few days she was crying whenever she was awake. Besides intense throat pain, her two front teeth had broken through, and then I finally discovered I was giving her only 1/5 the amount of ibuprofin she could take. My throat hurt so badly I had to take a full dose every six hours or the pain was unbearable. I felt so bad! Poor baby was miserable. We hardly remembered the happy, smiley girl we returned home with, but we are finally starting to see glimpses of her again.
We have all been disappointed, particularly the kids, to have seen and played with her so little. We have told visitors to not bother coming over because she won’t be awake. The past two days she has had two wakeful periods each day that have lasted a bit longer. Although yesterday she went down for a “nap” at 2 and we had to wake her to feed her at 9, and then put her right back to bed for the rest of the night.
I have a few thoughts on Rosalie’s seemingly excessive amount of sleep:
* She arrived home with a serious sleep deficit.
* She is sick.
* She is emotionally exhausted (which leads to physical exhaustion) from all the transition in her life.
* We received information about her daily schedule when she was 4 months old and again before we got her at 10 months. I was shocked by how little sleep time she had. As a mom who has had three children pass through those stages, I have a good idea of the general amount of sleep that a baby needs and it is much more than they were reporting she gets. Maybe she is finally able to make her own schedule and is getting the amount she needs to grow and thrive? It’s only speculation, but I pray it’s true.
I’ve heard babies grow the most while they sleep. Rosalie is now eating as much as she wants, whenever she wants, so I’m hoping her body is using this time to GROW. Whatever the reasons (probably a combination of the above), I am thankful she has been able to crash in a peaceful place because she obviously needs it.
As I said, we are gradually seeing more of her, and the kids are very “attentive” anytime she is awake (read: in her face with smiles, rattles, paper airplanes, tickles, etc.) We did start the Williams’ Academy back up this week and are looking forward to restored health (Elisabeth has the virus now), upcoming sunny weather, celebrating Easter, and fully integrating Rosalie into the Williams Family.
so great to read your story. Expectation and reality often miss each other — but Rosalie is home safe and sound and we shall all watch lovingly as the rest of this story for the Williams family unfolds. xoxoxo Alethea