Before the baby came, I had the ridiculous notion that my maternity leave would be the perfect time to give my very neglected blog so much needed TLC. Two plus months later, with dark circles under my eyes and a messy unwashed bun on top of my head, I laugh at how naive I was pre-baby. It’s amazing to me just how time consuming caring for a newborn is, especially in those first few weeks. I knew I’d have my hands full, but I wasn’t mentally prepared for the extent of this life change. You can read all the baby books in the world and take notes from hundreds of experienced mommies, but you just don’t know until you’re spending every sleep-deprived waking moment feeding, burping, rocking, and changing that beautiful bundle of joy.
Now that my daughter is two and half months old, I feel like I’ve gotten a better handle on things. We’ve fallen into a somewhat bumpy rhythm together. We do our best to stick to a relatively consistent routine. Some days are smoother than others, and that’s okay because we’re both new at this. But even on our best days I still rarely get a moment for myself. That may sound selfish to some, but I’m a firm believer that I will raise a happier kid if I can take care of my needs too.
One thing that came somewhat easy for us was sleep. After those first few weeks of round the clock nursing, it became evident that Lilian was a pretty good sleeper… at night. We are now down to one middle of the night feeding/diaper change, with a five hour stretch on one end and a three hour top off before morning. Of course, every night isn’t that easy, but from what I gather, that’s pretty good for a baby her age. The true struggle comes during the day.
My kid can sleep through a noisy New Years Eve party, getting passed around from person to person, but god forbid I set a cup down the wrong way during nap time.
I have a very happy baby. She wakes up smiling and gives me lots of loving grins and coos throughout the day, but when it’s time for a nap, she won’t go quietly. First off, getting this kid to fall asleep during the day is a battle. She’s tired. All the signs are there, the yawning and eye rubbing, but she won’t go down without a fight. I’ve tried every tactic, letting her cry a bit, rocking her, taking her for a walk in the stroller, swaddling, pacifier, white noise, etc., with inconsistent results. Second issue, when I do finally get her to fall asleep, it’s not uncommon for her to wake up a mere 15 minutes later. Our average nap clocks in at around 30 minutes, with a rare stretch of 45 minutes on occasion. My kid can sleep through a noisy New Years Eve party, but god forbid I put a cup down the wrong way during her midday nap.
With just a few half hour periods to myself a day, I usually start the morning by prioritizing what needs to be done. Somehow, I try to fit in as much as possible in those 30 minute windows. Does the house need to be swept? Is the laundry piling up? When was the last time I showered? Needless to say, there isn’t much of an opportunity for me to sit down and write a blog post. I get some relief when Blake gets home. Most nights he cooks dinner, and he helps with the household chores, but there is only so much he can assist with when it comes to the baby as she currently lives and breathes the boob. Heck, I’ll take whatever help I can get. While my beautifully demanding baby sleeps on her daddy’s chest after work, I get in a little “me time”. Relaxing in a warm bubble bath, reading a few chapters of a good book, or a little time to write a new blog post is all it takes to keep this mama happy and, more importantly, sane.