It’s been the most amazing, exhausting, astonishing, overwhelming and incredible 12 weeks ever. You are our beautiful baby boy and we love you beyond what any of us ever imagined. We can’t stop looking at you and cuddling you and talking to you.
And as I listen to your aba feeding you next door, and your little sighs and snuffles and sucks, I want to tell you the story of your first 12 weeks…
You arrived on Thursday 8th September 2011 at 1605 and weighed 3010kg/6lb 10oz.
You were born in the water at the birth centre of The Whittington Hospital with the help of two marvellous midwives – Maggie Thomson and Liz Thomas – and your aba. And once you’d decided to come out you weren’t going to hang around; it was one of the fastest labours they’d seen for a first birth.
We stayed the night in the birth centre where the midwives showed us how to feed you and change you;and your first visitors were Savtal and Saba. We left on Friday afternoon even though we hadn’t managed to get you latched on properly, they wanted us to stay but we wanted to be home for our first shabbat with you. Savtal and Saba brought dinner and your Gnunu came too and on Shabbat morning your Auntie Als arrived from Washington. Judy and Ben dropped by in the morning and your nanny Chris and grandpa Adrian in the afternoon and at that point we were a little dazed by your arrival but still in good spirits.
Your first night at home we put you to bed in our room, in a cot with open sides and a firm mattress. And you were so little that you looked lost and scared all alone, so we picked you up and slept with you on our chests the rest of the night. The next day we put you in the small carry cot with solid sides and a roof and put a sheepskin on top of the hard mattress and you were a lot happier. We listened to every noise and snuffle you made, jumping up to check you were ok. It was quite scary knowing that we had to take care of you.
We had to feed you every 2 hours with a syringe, because you still weren’t latching on, but you were so sleepy. We spent ages undressing you and putting cold flannels on your hands and face to wake you up but you were very determined to stay asleep. The midwives became worried you were losing weight so they kept an eye on you until you were 28 days old. We tried breast feeding, at first there was so much milk that a couple of times i squirted you in the eye by mistake. And eventually you latched on perfectly but we just weren’t compatible and at 7 weeks we stopped and since then you’ve just had formula.
You finally started waking up to tell us you were hungry, which was great, but you gave us little warning. One minute you’d be happy and quiet and the next second you would be screaming for food, tears literally rolling down your cheeks. It took us several weeks to get into the swing of things and have water ready boiled and chilled so we could get your bottle ready quickly.
At two weeks old you had your brit milah and you were named Boaz Yaakov ben Chanoch. Boaz means strength – both physical and character – and Yaakov was the name of both Saba’s father Jack Singer and Gnunu’s father Jacob Lyon Gold. We wanted you to have a first name that you would make your own and a second name that reminds you of your family and those special people whose footsteps you follow in.
You were so well behaved, the perfect baby and you have continued to be. You don’t cry unless your hungry, dirty, cold or tired. You can lie on your back on your play mat for ages watching the yellow lion or purple giraffe or on your changing mat chatting away to the birds on the wall. You make the most wonderful assortment of sounds, when you fall asleep on us you make a beautiful snuffle snore like a hedgehog, it’s so loud that people down the phone can hear it. When you eat you make lovely satisfied sucking noises and although you kick up a fuss when we try to burp you, you do produce big rolling burps, generally one long one followed by a shorter one. And then you let out a big sigh from the effort of it all.
You’re already sleeping through the night, it happened unexpectedly when you were 9 weeks old. We were feeding you at about 11pm and then again at about 3am – but 3am came and went, I was still awake at 4am listening but you didn’t wake up and cry for food until 6am. Now you sometimes sleep until 7.30am!!
Still to come…
Auntie snora, pidyon haben, nicknames, singing, bouncing, bath time, waterbabies, poos, boggies, wales and the girls!!