The past eleven weeks have flown by and it’s safe to say we are getting the hang of this parenting thing.
Already in Harrison’s life span, he has battled, or is battling, colic, eczema, a suspected dairy allergy, sleepless nights, baby massage classes and a naming ceremony! Okay so the last two are more fun things for him, but you get my point!
It’s a crazy feeling isn’t it…one moment you are literally finding out you’ve created life, then you go through months of growing that life, then the day comes and that little life is now out in the big wide world looking cute and smelling amazing and you just can’t get your head around that fact…! (This could also be due to the drugs they give you in the delivery ward!)
Then you go home…and reality hits in! Your beautiful baby does not just lay there looking cute and giving off that new baby smell…they have needs and wants. But they can’t tell you…and that, I think, is the scariest part of being a new parent. No amount of reading or attending antenatal classes can truly prepare you.
I feel there is a very popular view that ‘it all comes naturally’ and to a point this may be true. There is a strong urge to want to give your baby everything they need and more. You want to cuddle them and smell them all day long! It’s an over whelming feeling…but it is also totally normal to feel terrified, anxious or even overwhelmed.
The first couple weeks after Harrison was born blurred into one time span of feeding, changing nappies and rocking him to sleep while staring at this beautiful boy we managed to create and grow. We would occasionally sleep in between. Caffeine has become my very best friend.
This is the period you will get offered lots of advice. I will be honest…it’s not always helpful! It is a case of taking on board what people offer you and deciding if that would work for you. Because what works for one family won’t work for the next.
For instance, when we first came home I was constantly told to ‘nap when the baby does’ and this is actually a solid piece of advice; however I am one of those weird people who can not nap during the day. If I nap during the day it usually means I’m unwell!
There have been times since our little man arrived that a midday siesta would have been amazing but my mind is never on the same page as my day time nap needs! It can’t switch off if it’s daylight outside. But this is an example of good advice if you can switch off long enough; specially when your baby wakes regularly through the night, or is maybe up for several hours inconsolable with colic or reflux.
Becoming a new parent, we have discovered, is just a huge learning curve. Because babies are fickle little things, what worked yesterday may not apply today!
But for all the times I’ve felt overwhelmed and anxious or all the times I’ve googled to see if something is ‘normal’, for all the sleepless nights, the poonami’s and the crying fits where I can’t figure out what is wrong…I would not change it for the world. Neither of us would.
If your baby is fed, warm, clean and loved with a roof over their head then you’re doing a great job!