One month ago I gave birth to the most handsome and sweet little boy. We named him Hank. Before he was even born I decided I wanted to steal an idea from Emily over at The Culinary Couple. Emily writes a letter to her son Sam every month on the anniversary of his birth. I'd like to do the same for Hank.
We've setup a gmail account and I'll be sending his letters there. I'd also like to share them here so his family and friends can follow along.
Without further ado, here's my one-month letter to Hank.
. . .
I can't believe you are one month old. It feels like you've been here for only the blink of an eye. At the same time it feels like you've been here all along.
You were born on 8-8-12 at 9:02 in the morning via cesarean at Mount Nittany Medical Center. You weighed 6 lbs. 8 oz. I was induced the day before at 37 weeks gestation and labored throughout the night. I made it to 10 cm dilation and even got to push for 15 minutes. But your heart rate was dropping during contractions, and the doctor didn't want to take any chances. So she recommended we do a c-section. Your Dad and Aunt Stacey looked kinda scared as they prepped me for surgery, but I wasn't scared. I knew in my heart that you and I would both be okay.
I waited anxiously as they worked to bring you out, and your Daddy stayed at my head. He had tears in his eyes and told me he was so proud of me. I knew that he would be the first of the two of us to see you, so he had my big fancy camera with him. When you were out, I heard you cry, and in that moment I fell in love with you. I didn't even need to see you. Your cry was like nothing I had ever heard before. It was like I already knew you.
Your Dad got to cut the umbilical cord and watch as they cleaned you up. He took some pictures of you and brought the camera back to show me what you looked like. We both cried as I looked at you. You were as cute as a button, even with your cry face on.
Then they let Daddy bring you over to see me before going back to the nursery. I could barely see your face through all the blankets. I longed to hold you, but knew I'd have to wait an hour or so before that would happen. We both had to get cleaned up a bit before we would be reunited. But your Daddy stayed with you the whole time.
Feeding you has been an adventure. You were such a little guy that you had a hard time breastfeeding at first. You were great at latching on, but just couldn't get enough food because you weren't quite strong enough. We even ended up back in the hospital so you could get an IV to help make you strong again. It took 3 tries for them to get an IV going on you because you were so tiny, but you were a brave boy throughout all of it.
After we left the hospital (the second time), feeding you was a long process that involved nursing for 30-45 minutes, supplementing through a supplemental tube system or a bottle, and then Mommy pumped milk for you for another 20-30 minutes. We would do all of this every 2-3 hours, and it took about 90 minutes to do all of it. So Mommy and Daddy were pretty exhausted, but we knew it wasn't going to last forever… just until you were strong enough to nurse all on your own.
Your Daddy and I both love you so much. We spend a lot of time just looking at you. We laugh at the faces you make and the things you do. You make what I call your "lawyer face" a lot… your lips purse tightly and your eyebrows raise and it looks like you are silently judging everyone. You also make smiley faces a lot. Whether it's gas or a real smile, we're not sure — but it's cute either way. You have the longest fingers and toes. You often stick your legs out straight while you're eating and curl your toes under. I find it so adorable. You grab onto us when you're being fed or cuddled, and you even pull your Daddy's chest hair when you're upset. It makes him scream but then he laughs at you. You already entertain us, and you're not even talking or moving yet.
Your sister Sophie loves you very much, too. She watches over you and protects you. She always checks the bassinet to see if you are in it, and sniffs you while you are sleeping. She gets anxious when you cry, though she is getting used to the sound of it. If we let her, she'd lick your face and hands all the time, but we only let her get in a few licks now and then. You don't seem to mind. She's just biding her time until you start eating solid foods and can sneak her treats under the table like Nana and Opa do.
We named you Hank because it was a name that your Daddy and I both loved, even before we were married. We love that your name is a name you can grow into someday.You do have quite a few nicknames already including:
- Mr. Hank (pronounced "Midder Hank")
- the bean
- little nugget
- burrito boy (when you're in your swaddle)
- Mister Hankles
You look just like your Daddy and Opa Sollman. One of our friends even said, "It looks like somebody left Rick in the dryer too long!" and that about sums it up. In fact, we had other plans for your middle name, but you looked so much like Daddy and Opa that we decided to name you Richard after them.
You also act just like your Daddy. You are really laid back and happy most of the time. When you get upset, it's usually for a good reason. It takes you a good while to wake up from a nap (just like Daddy in the morning). You also make man-sized farts and burps that truly rival your Daddy's. It makes him proud, and I just shake my head.
Our first month together hasn't always been easy, but we wouldn't change it for anything. The rough spots have helped our little family bond. We're in this together. And the sweet spots... well, life just doesn't get any sweeter than it is right now. Even when we're sleep-deprived and exhausted and smelly from not having time to shower and our house is a wreck — we are so happy. We can't believe how lucky we are to be your parents.
Love you so much, Mommy
hospital photos taken by your Daddy Sophie photo taken by your Aunt Christie one month photo taken by Mommy