Monday, April 11, 2011

Compost, little fishies and last pages.

1. Tipping a bag of compost into a new planter.

2. "This mince is really good," says Nick. "What's in it?"
I have no idea -- it came out of the freezer. And then I spot the hair-like anchovy bones. I am all about anchovies at the moment -- blame Jamie Oliver for their presence in every savoury dish I touch.

3. "I've been terrible with the booby book today," I confess to Nick. We have logged the start and finish time of pretty much every single one of Alec's feeds since he came home from hospital. It gave me a sense of achievement at the end of the day to see how many times we'd sat down together. Nick added up the minutes at the end of the day and I felt as if he now knew for sure how hard I was working. Of course, it's not about the length of the feed, because babies suck and rest, and some of the sucks are comfort rather than nutrition. But flicking through, I can see the change from the early days, when we were still learning and I found it so painful, when I gritted my teeth, cuddled my new baby and counted the minutes. The feeds tend to be longer now -- roughly the length of a Simpsons or Firefly episode. There are 4am feeds when I heard the dawn chorus and the milkman; and feeds with no end because we drifted off to sleep. There are daytime feeds marked with a query because I was taking tea with other mothers and forgot the time.
"Do you think it's time to stop keeping it?" asks Nick, closing the little notebook.
He's right -- we are much more sensitive to Alec's cycles and requests now. I am much more confident in my ability to feed my little boy. It's another happy-sad moment -- like the day Alec found his fingers and didn't need to suck ours any more. I put the elastic round the book and lay it away in his box, along with our hospital bands, the remains of his cord and the newspapers for the day he was born.