I have a tiny person sleeping in my lap right now (and here I am, breaking a cardinal rule about "sleeping when she sleeps" - that's a laughable concept, by the way). I would like to introduce you to her.
Our daughter Annalise Ruth was born on January 3, 2012 at 8:52pm, coming in at 7lbs 7oz and 21 inches.
I've gotten a lot of questions about her name. I knew that if we had a girl, I would want a somewhat Scandinavian-sounding name, and something that doesn't pop up on popular name lists. It took a little while, but Randy and I both liked Annalise. The question of a middle name was harder. We had a tentative agreement on one, but at the hospital as we were walking down to Room 3 from the registration desk, we had a mutual change of heart. You see, it was kind of funny to us, room 3 and it being January 3. This was at 2 in the afternoon - neither of us were sure that she would actually arrive on the 3rd, but if she did, well, Babe Ruth wore number 3 for the Yankees. And my mom was a huge Yankees fan. Wouldn't Ruth make a good middle name? Later, once I had an epidural and could carry on a conversation, we made it official.
"Annalise" is a modern spelling for the German/Scandinavian name "Anneliese" and it means "grace" or "graceful light." "Ruth" is Hebrew in origin and means "friend." I'm also particularly fond of the story of Ruth in the Bible.
So far, our baby girl is thriving. She likes to be held, but she's not fond of being swaddled and she pushes hats off her head or squirms out of them if she's lying down. She recognizes Daddy's voice when he comes home in the evening. She seems to like men's voices in general - if there is a man speaking on the radio or television and she's alert, she'll turn her head toward the source of the sound. She likes Christmas music a little better than regular lullabies. Like most babies her age, she likes car rides and being in the stroller will calm her down pretty quickly.
Annalise will be a month old next week. We have some milestones coming with that - first shots, first time spending a few hours with grandma instead of mommy. I am okay with these things, because every milestone we reach is a small victory. Proof that this is really happening, proof that we're doing something right even when everything feels odd and hard and impossible (proof that yes, one day, I will get to sleep in my bed for more than 15 minutes at a stretch). Still, a month. How on earth did that time pass?