Because your newborn was curled up inside your uterus for so long, she will prefer to stay curled up for a bit. She will likely keep her arms crossed and legs curled up. Her legs may even appear to be “bowlegged” or curved. Don’t worry – she’ll uncurl herself and straighten out as she gets used to having so much room! During this time, it is also likely that she will prefer to be swaddled (wrapped tightly in a blanket).
She will spend most of her day sleeping. Don’t be alarmed if she spends up to 17 hours a day, sound asleep! This daily sleep marathon will be broken down into several naps a day.
Most breastfed newborns will need to eat every two to three hours. Babies fed formula can go a bit longer, about three to four hours. The reason being the proteins in formula break down a bit slower then the proteins in Mother’s milk. By the time she is one month old, you may see a definite eating/sleeping pattern developing, but do not be alarmed if it takes your child longer to fall into a routine.
A newborn’s only form of communication is through crying. Eventually, you will be able to tell what she needs by her different cries, but in the beginning – it’s a guessing game. She may be hungry, tired, in need of a diaper change, over-stimulated, or just wanting to be held and cuddled.
Your baby’s sight is still quite underdeveloped. She can only see roughly 12 inches. Recent studies have shown that babies prefer to look at human faces over other shapes or objects. Hold her in your arms with your face within one foot of hers and speak gently to her, she will study and learn every aspect of both your face and voice.
Treasure and make the most of these moments, before you know it, she’ll be out the door and on her way to college!