This is my 12th week doing this parenting thing. So far I’m alive to tell the tale. As the weeks go on it seems to get easier. Either that or you just become used to the chaos!
In the spirit of being honest though, I have a bit of a theory. If all first time parents were being truthful, we’re all totally making it up as we go along, right? (RIGHT????!)
So much of this blissfully tiring parenthood is a guessing game. (“Crap, he’s crying and I just fed and changed him and he’s had a sleep….NOW WHAT?!!”) One piece of advice I got when I was pregnant that I hold very dear is that as the mummy to this little life, you will tune in to them and have instincts about them that no one else will – go with them and the rest will eventually fall into place. I’ve been working on that bit of advice, and find it to be pretty spot on.
Levi is a pretty good baby – and I’m not just saying that to be smug or competitive – he just is. We definitely have our moments, me and him. Some nights I’m so exhausted by the demands of breastfeeding and wiping up spew, I try to fool him by starting the bedtime routine at 6pm, just so I can sneak in an extra hour or two of ‘me’ time, and other times when I peep in at him sleeping, he looks like such a munchkin I want to wake him up so we can hang out & be cute together. (see picture)
No two days are the same, and routine is foreign.
I’m also finding that a lot (not all – but a lot) of mummy’s tend to fall into two different categories when talking about their babies…
It’s either ‘Oh yes, they sleep through the night, they never spew down my top, they go straight to sleep when I put them in their cot, I’m not even sure if I’ve ever heard them cry’ OR ‘they never stop crying, I think they have some sort of rare not-sleeping disease, I’ve had 2 hours of sleep in the last 15 days and I haven’t been able to make my bed since they were born’….
The temptation to fall into either of these categories (denial mummy or devastation mummy) is pretty strong. Admitting that having a baby is hard going and they don’t always do what you want to is sometimes hard. Navigating your way out of being overly dramatic and moany about having a baby is also hard. Somewhere in between is the reality that none of us know what we are doing – and some times we fluke it and it goes well.
My understanding so far is that most of parenting is trying to remember what you did that worked, and repeating it over and over and over again!