Friday, April 6, 2007

Bath bliss

On Monday, we all fell sick here at the Homestead with variations of the same cold. As the pregnant one, I'm hardest hit since my immune system is AWOL. Homestead Mama is already on the mend, and Pequita has the sniffles & a bad cough but none of the body aches, sinus pressure, scorching sore throat or headaches that seem to only be worsening in me. (At least we don't think she's suffering - all we see is the usual face-splitting smile and lots of giggling. If she felt like I do, she'd be crumpled in a fetal position and whimpering. Wouldn't she?) She's doing so well, actually, that I have seriously considered hitting the stockpile of frozen breastmilk for the immunities that Homestead Mama is clearly passing on. If only she didn't keep such a close eye on the supply, I could get away with it.

After listening to Pequita hack, cough and struggle to breathe for a couple hours, we decided to steam all our heads/chests on Wed night before bed to help us sleep better. Into the shower we went at about 8pm. Pequita usually falls asleep between 8 - 8:30, so she was perky when we started. It was a tad challenging not to grip the slippery baby too hard in an attempt to not drop her, but it was a hoot. Now that it is warming up as winter grudgingly departs, she has started to experience different and new sensations on her skin (other than that of being bundled in 5 layers of cotton and wool.) She loves it - she is making up for lost time with her toes/feet by never letting go of them once I take off her socks & Robeez shoes. She adores being naked and being tickled gently, or getting some bare-butt time to stave off rashes. She is particularly fond of the after-bath oiling with Burt's Bees almond oil that Homestead Mama likes to give her – keeps her skin protected and she smells great, but Pequita just likes the baby massage. The new sensation of water showering down on her skin kept her in a state of constant surprise for about 10 minutes - we rotated her body around in circles so her feet, legs, back, stomach and head got to feel the spray. After the shock (and its accompanying raised eyebrows and O-shaped mouth) wore off, the smiling started. Homestead Mama and I took turns getting clean and holding the babe, and breathing deep to clear our congestion.

Pequita was finally overcome by fatigue. I was holding her while Homestead Mama rinsed her shampoo out, and Pequita moved like a suckerfish down my face and neck desperately looking for her bedtime comfort boob to nurse herself to sleep on. She usually knows that I am a 'dry well' and hasn't been interested in nursing on me since she was about 8 weeks old. Maybe it was the fact that Homestead Mama and I smelled like the same soap, or just that any boob in her exhaustion would suffice, but she latched on and immediately fell asleep quietly suckling away. In the shower. It was amazingly cute and touching. Homestead Mama finished up while I stood in the hot spray beaming beatifically at our sleeping baby. She got out & dried off, then helped me - still clutching the sleeping & wet baby - out of the clawfoot tub. We wrapped me & Pequita all up in a towel and we zipped upstairs where we outfitted her with dry jammies & a diaper, and transferred her to the real fountain of boob, Homestead Mama. She only nursed for a couple minutes and then achieved the state of deep relaxation/ sleep that we call 'loll'.

Loll: [lol].

Verb (used without object)

1. to recline or lean in a relaxed, lazy, or indolent manner; lounge: to loll on a sofa.

2. to hang loosely; droop; dangle: The dog stood in the heat with his tongue lolling out of his mouth.

Verb (used with object)

3. to allow to hang, droop, or dangle

Noun (archaic):

4. the act of lolling.

5. a person or thing that lolls

Loll, for Pequita, means that she is able to be set down anywhere and she'll work diligently to stay asleep. Her mouth is slack, her eyes closed, her breathing steady and slow. She may continue to suck on her pacifier or even the boob, but she isn't likely to wake up. We love loll. So in a state of loll we gently tucked her into her co-sleeper, tucked ourselves into bed, and were asleep by 9pm en famille. We all slept solidly (except for my 6 trips to the bathroom, but I don't even wake up for those anymore.) It was a lovely night.

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