Anna Rachel ... November 2002

Five months in and I'm only now beginning to comprehend all I had read about parenthood prior to Anna's birth.

In the very early days, friends, who had recently become parents, promised 'It gets easier'. It does, but I am only able to pinpoint that caring for Anna requires less work by identifying all the other activities that now compete for my attention.

Many of the cards, sent to welcome Anna to the world, wished Morrie and I nights of sound sleep. Anna has yet to sleep through the night, but since we've purchased a bigger bed for the three of us to share, I awake refreshed despite being roused two or three times a night.

I'm also far less concerned about nap and feeding times. No-one tells you that some babies will breastfeed for an hour and others will just feed for four or five minutes to extract a similar volume of milk. Anna's only interested in breastfeeding for five minutes or so, but enjoys being offered the breast every couple of hours. Our attempts to feed her for longer than five minutes resulted in episodes of projective vomiting and waiting for three hours since the last meal required us to pacify a grumpy and hungry baby for the last hour. So I've now thrown away my watch and feed Anna whenever she wants and for as long as she wants.

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