Saturday, December 12, 2015

What To Expect In The First 6 Weeks

The title is actually quite misleading. My sister just gave birth about 6 weeks ago. As a *cough cough* now a fully certified medical practitioner, my sister has been asking me various of baby-health related questions even I couldn't answer. 

Why is that so? I've been taught what a normal birth and growth will be and what to expect if a child experiences out of ordinary things (aka illness). Whatever in between, such as heat rash, babies changing sleep pattern, fussy babies and babies who don't wake up for feeding after 2 hours are way beyond my scope of experience (or shall I say, non-experience, since I've YET to practice).

Here are my conclusions in the last few weeks I've been home (I first saw my adorable cutie-little-tiger baby niece when she was about 1 week old):
  1. She turns vermilion red when she cries.
  2. She has her own feeding schedule. She'll tell you when she is hungry. No force-feeding aka waking her up every 2 hours is necessary unless it is wayyyy beyond her feeding time. My sister and I realize that my cutie-little-tiger feeds around 2-4 hourly, unless she feeds too much or refuse to sleep for more than 6 hours previously. 
  3. Which brings me to my next observation. She usually sleeps after her regulated feeding and nappy-changing (very necessary since she poops after meal). However, she has her 'play-time' as my sister called it, as she has been known to refuse to sleep for hours (it can stretch up to 6 to 8 hours). That said, she usually wakes for around an hour and settle down quite well after feeding, nappy-changing and burping session.
  4. She has no concept of time. Of course. She can wake my sister up at 2AM and proceed for 'play-time' until 6AM. Such is the life of new mothers.
  5. She is utterly adorable. She makes all this cute sounds. So adorable, I tell you.
  6. She grows up without us realizing. She just got bigger and bigger in front of our very own eyes.
  7. My cutie-little-tiger will cry if she needs anything. Her main reasons for crying will be: Her nappy is getting wee bit full, her tummy needs some attention aka food aka milk or she is about to vomit.
  8. Bathing her is HARD. My very experienced Mama (Mama loves kids and she has 5 of her own, moi included) is solely responsible to her bathing since none of us are confident enough to bathe her until she was at least 3-4 weeks old.

This last point deserves an explanation of its own:

Yes, she vomits. A lot. We've been frantic and going to PRACTICING medical practitioners for consultation and a bunch of them kept on re-assuring us that is just normal for a newborn. I know, I know. Actually, I don't. To no one's surprise.

Newborns have yet to learn to gauge the correct amount of food they need. Many of them just feed and feed even after they are full. Which will lead them to vomit. This is not helping that they are mostly in lying position (food is not passing down easily horizontal) most of the time, their gut is short (hey little cutie pies) and in some cases, their gastrointestinal system is yet to mature fully. Thus, the vomit. This doesn't happen to all newborns. Some do, some don't. My Yaya didn't have this while my cutie-baby-tiger does. 

We learned to put my baby niece in vertical position and burping after feeding, elevating her pillows slightly and prepare soft tissues and plenty of towels and extra change of clothes and mittens in hand. The first 2 things I talked about in the last sentence are super duper important. Babies can easily aspirate the vomitus (inhale the vomitus) which is bad as we want their lungs to be clear of EVERYTHING other than air. 

After that my sister will continue to feed her after she vomits as she will be super hungry, poor baby. We also make sure to wipe her down with warm water after each vomiting session as she easily develop rash especially at her cheeks.

That said, not all vomiting episodes are normal, people. If your babies are having ANY one of these things with vomiting:
  • projectile vomiting
  • prolonged inactivity and passiveness
  • failure of gaining weight
  • consistently refusing feed
  • vomiting with weird vomitus (aka the colour is weird such as green, yellow, red, brown etc or the smell is funky)
  • vomiting with other weird things such as high fever, abnormal bloating or yellow discolouration
  • or if you are just plain unsure


Better be safe than sorry guys. 

My cutie-little-baby tiger is growing so well. She's gaining weight and she looks super cute. She eats, cry, poop and sleep well. All of us are content.

Lastly (didn't I just say the previous point was the last one? Well, I lied), we just couldn't do it without my Mama. She's our guiding light, the one that helps us (well, my sister) through the whole process. Seeing her and my sister, I realized my Mama sacrificed a lot for me. For that, I am eternally thankful. I love you Mama.

And I am missing my cutie-litle-tiger.

P/S: The reason why she is my cutie-little-tiger is because she makes these cute noises like a cute tiger cub. So ADORABLE!!!!


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