I guess it's actually been 7 months now - I can't believe Lucy is closer to the age of 1 than she is 0. It's been quite the adventure. Time goes by SO much faster now than it did when I was pregnant (thank goodness), but at the same time it's true that it can all be happening a little too fast. I've learned A LOT in the past 6 months - looking back I can't believe how much I've learned to be honest. I was pretty naive going into this whole motherhood thing. We started off with a newborn - the most precious thing on earth. And I was pleasantly surprised - Lucy was EASY!
|In her 1st month|
Lucy & I were living the dream! She breastfed like a champ, slept more than I expected, and she even liked the dreaded tummy time most kids scream about. I kept thinking - wow, I'm just so lucky. I was on cloud 9...
Lucy was still adorable & still so easy in her 2nd month. Family would make comments assuming we were sleep deprived and little did they know, I was getting more sleep than all of them! Like 9-10 hours some nights. Lucy was awesome. I wasn't prepared when I started to feel the 'baby blues' creep up on me though. What did I have to be blue about exactly? Oh I don't know, hormones are fun like that. I'd literally be crying & verbalizing "I have no idea why I'm crying" because I really didn't. I was glad when those went away that's for sure. But Lucy was still so easy to take care of.
Lucy just gets more fun the older she gets. She's more interactive & I love her big personality. However, she starts to not be so "easy" you could say when she was around 3 months. And sleeping through the night? Ya right. So being the 1st time mom I have already read the sleep books, I know all about those Baby Wise schedules & different methods. I was busy trying to strategize and get Lucy back to being that perfect newborn I took for granted.
Now to the 4th month and Lucy is getting cuter! And I love it! Yet the more she comes to life the more crying and fussiness seems to come with it. She would have melt downs in the car seat. We used to drive all around town in the "early days" & I never heard a peep! But now, 20 minutes of crying felt like hours. I would experience so many emotions from patience & compassion, to anger & frustration, and eventually I would be in tears begging her to stop screaming, we were 5 minutes from home! She used to be so "easy" & now she was all of a sudden scared of strangers, including family. For some reason I felt "guilt" or something when she would be fussy when other people held her (I told you I've learned a lot). She hated bottles, she hated sleeping more than 2 or 3 hours, she would nap sometimes, or she wouldn't. I was writing down possible schedules we could try. One night I said to Bryce that my baby was "broken" and I didn't know how to fix her...ugh I feel so dumb thinking this! It wasn't long after that, I realized it was ME that was broken.
Don't get me wrong, this entire time I'm loving watching Lucy grow and change. When she was being cute, it was dang cute. Learning to sit & laugh and play games would just overwhelm me with happiness. As I felt like I was coming to my wits end with my "schedule" techniques, I decided one night to just stop trying so hard. And wow, my life has sure been easier ever since! Lucy would cry at night...and I would get frustrated thinking she was manipulating me or she needed to learn independence, I was the boss, and on and on an on. Poppycock. Lucy was hungry!! I get hungry 8 hours after I've finished a giant meal - why wouldn't a baby who's eating (quickly digested) breast milk? So I get up once a night with Lucy & I feed her. And we both go back to sleep. And we wake up and we are happy. And she naps on a schedule that naturally came to be. And she doesn't really like strangers, but I don't care because she's a momma's girl and it makes me so happy to hold her & have this time together.
Basically I just needed to CALM DOWN. Lucy's been patient with me while I was figuring it out. Sometimes she has bad days, just like me, but we cuddle & get through them. The bad days aren't so bad anymore. She's started being okay with other people the more she spends time with them, novel idea isn't it? She doesn't crawl at 7 months and my friend's baby has been crawling since 6 months. So what? I still have the luxury of putting her down & knowing she's safe for a minute while I check on something.
Basically I'm sorry Lucy has to be the guinea pig, but she's been blessed as the 1st child so I guess that comes with the territory. It will have its perks too though (she has so many NEW things). I'm not saying she runs the show or anything - I'm still the mom & we have a "basic" schedule. But I'm a lot better at doing what is best for her and for me and not what everyone says we "should" be doing. When I committed to exclusively breastfeeding I didn't quite know what that meant. But it's exactly that, a commitment. I know there are breastfed babes who sleep through the night & those families are very blessed ha ha, but I'm willing to feed Lucy at night to exclusively breastfeed. I'm happy with that decision.
|Most recent shot - it's freezing these days!|
I feel like I now understand the joke that "parenting doesn't come with a manual" as I've tried desperately to google so many things and get it figured out. I have to be patient with myself too, but I find that I am laughing at who I was a few months ago with all the things I was trying to make happen. Bryce has been able to laugh at me too, which I'm grateful since I was a little insane & dramatic at times. I'm grateful that I can be forgiven - even when I lose my patience for 1 second I feel SO much guilt & I'm apologizing to Lucy all day. She's quick to forgive :). Lucy's 7 months now and it's definitely my favorite age so far. I'm glad I'm not broken anymore! I know every stage of her life will have its challenges, but I have a much better attitude about how I will approach those challenges now. Wish me luck!