And so I sort of rebelled, a little. I began increasing the amount of nursing in between bottle feedings, and then began skipping the scheduled bottle feedings altogether. It just all seemed a little ridiculous to me; why go to all the trouble of pumping, which was clearly just not working well for me, only to feed her the milk from a bottle later? Slowly, I began to regain the confidence I had lacked and listened more to my instincts and Kristen's needs than doctor's orders. And Kristen seemed to be thriving! The truly telling point, however, came when we had her most recent weight check...she's over 7 pounds now, and the pediatrician was pleased with her weight gain! I am thrilled to report that my trusty old Medela Pump In Style (purchased when Dylan was an infant...this link is actually to a newer model) has sat abandoned in the corner of my bedroom for the past several weeks now and Kristen actually goes days at a time without any type of supplementation. We no longer set an alarm at night, and she has actually been sleeping most often in our bed, where we share together the joy of night time nursing just as I did with her older brother and sisters.
She is still receiving caffeine, which we're told she'll most likely outgrow the need for by the time she's four months old, but in all ways she is just the picture of health! She's outgrown all of her preemie clothes and is now wearing mostly size newborn and a few size 0-3 months. I'm so excited to see that it probably won't be much longer before the smallest cloth diapers we bought will fit her!
And I'm trying really hard not to be so overprotective of her. She actually had quite a busy weekend! We've been very reluctant to take her anywhere for fear of germs, and in fact, aside from several doctor visits and one trip to the hospital lab, she had only been to church twice (she made her debut on Mother's Day--her original due date!). But we all really wanted to go to the bookstore on Friday (it was Darren's day off), and so we figured that, being a weekday, it probably wouldn't be too crowded. We were right! We had the children's room to ourselves, and when Kristen began to fuss, there was the nice, cushy, swivel rocker (used by the storyteller on Saturday mornings) right there to sit and nurse her! She went to Mass for the third time on Sunday, where she was an absolute angel, and today, quite impulsively, we made a quick trip to Lowe's for grass seed and some canvas storage boxes. She is really such a good baby. Here are a few recent pictures from the many hundreds I take each day. :)
Here she is napping against my shoulder in bed a few days ago. I love her peaceful expression in the first photo, but also really like the half smile in the second. So you get them both:
And here she is just hanging out in her Baby Papasan seat. She likes it quite well.
My days are busy, full and long, but I try to embrace every second of them. Time is just passing so quickly. My mom will return to Florida in a couple of weeks, and I'll return to work soon after. "Normal", for us, will soon be changing again. But I think I'm ready for it; or, at least, the thought of change isn't quite as terrifying as I thought it might be. This is life at it's best. We are so blessed.