This may be the most disorganized blog post of all time, but it will at least be jam packed with good information. Good for me at least, and hopefully any other mom friends out there who are still checking in on my posts.
I keep meaning to blog about the things I have learned as a Mom, and I keep not finding the time to do it, but here it goes. I finally feel like I can give some legitimate advise. I feel like a pro actually. I am NOT a pro at this parenting thing at all, but I feel like one because I've finally got some confidence about myself.
First thing is first.
The secret to parenting, is realizing that there is no secret to parenting. Some kids sleep through the night, some don't. Some switch between bottle and breast like a pro, some will never take a bottle. Some like pacifiers, some don't. No matter what swaddle, feeding trick, essential oil, sound machine, bassinet, or magic potion you are trying- your baby is going to do what your baby is going to do. period. Sure, some things work better than others. But I will tell you this, putting all your hopes and dreams into a product and a way of parenting and then being devastated (and broke because you spent all your pennies at Buy Buy Baby and on Amazon.com) because it didn't work, that is almost as bad as dealing with it. I know when you are in the throws of sleepless nights and teething it's hard to accaept, but it is what it is.
That being said, things that have gotten us this far include:
-Baby Log App for tracking the newborn craziness
-Moms on Call for an idea of a schedule to follow
-Other moms. I don't care if you have to befriend someone you have never talked to before from church, the gas station, whatever. Find other moms.
-Understanding that what people say always works, doesn't always work. Cry it out did not work for us. I gave it a go. It didn't work. And by it didn't work, I mean I couldn't do it. And therefor, it didn't work. I think it is a great idea if you have the discipline, but discipline has never been one of my strong suits. I preferred to be miserable and rock my baby at all hours of the night for the better part of a year. But the sleepless nights will end. Then they will start again. Until I'm guessing your kid is driving. That's what I hear at least.
-Baby Essentials Gerber bottles. The cheap ones. We were using Dr. Browns and if I had to wash one of those stupid parts one more time I was going to lost it. Made the switch around 6 months and never looked back. Do yourself a favor and try these before committing to a year of constantly washing bottle parts for an hour a day.
It gets easier. When your baby can sit, crawl, play, and entertain themselves for a few minutes here and there- it gets SO much easier. From 3:30-6:30ish, N has a free time. I call it free because she doesn't eat, nap, or take medication in this time, so the world is our oyster. Sometimes I even leave the house without a diaper bag. I just throw a diaper and wipes in my purse and go. And she is in a convertible carseat so there is no stupid baby carrier to lug around. It's unbelievably freeing.
I feel like even when the days are stupid hard. Like you are covered in who knows what, the house is a wreck, you are in a horrible mood, dinner is not made, you're fighting, and it just seems like "BLEH"….… you will still miss your baby as soon as they go to bed. You will have a bunch of memories for the mess you made. And you still love your people. I have yet to have a day of motherhood that good music, a candle, and a glass of wine couldn't fix. Even when you are enjoying all of that while scrubbing carrot puree off of your entire kitchen.
I do not get people who neglect or abuse their children. My life is pretty charmed I will admit, but I have had my fair share of challenges. Part of the reason things are so good over here is because we make the conscious effort to give our best, try hard, plan, and be happy. One thing I know for sure is that when you aren't a Mom it is easy to miss… but once you become a Mom, it should smack you in the face. This is THE best gig on earth.