Hey y’all! My name is Abbeigh Blake and I blog over at…oh wait, I don’t exactly blog. Let me rephrase that — I’ve started a blog not one, but three times, and each time I started off great! I mean blogging 2-3 times a week for a couple months and then, nothing. I just stopped cold turkey. My husband would say that’s pretty normal for me…starting something I don’t finish! Like that time I insisted we do hot yoga together, or CrossFit, or even that time I wanted to be vegan. But I’m proud to say that I did start something and finish it, and now I have a beautiful baby boy to prove it!
Now that my sweet Benny boy is five weeks old, I’ve learned a few things! But believe me, I have a whole LOT to still learn on this whole motherhood journey. But if a few things I say can help another momma out (or just make you smile), then I am all for it! Here are a few things that I’ve learned in the first month of mommahood — from the first couple days in the hospital to now!
1. Your baby isn’t the only one wearing diapers. Alright, so maybe you’re not either but I certainly was. Some women love those granny panties they give you at the hospital with the thunder pads. I, however, hated them. My solution? Depends for the win! They’re so much easier to put on, take off, and much more comfortable. The amount of bleeding that happens post-delivery is quite frightening and I found Depends to be the only thing that could handle the bloodshed. TMI? Sorry! How my husband will ever find me attractive again after seeing me strut those lady diapers, I don’t know. But he loves me still!
2. Never say never. Ever. Isn’t it funny that the real pros of pregnancy and parenting are the ones that haven’t been either?!? I certainly was that way. I used to say things like, “we will never, ever cosleep with our baby,” and “our baby will only listen to age appropriate music.” You’re probably smirking at that second one but really, I insisted the only music I’d play is KLOVE, Christmas tunes, or lullabies. Because really, if they start listening to the top 40 countdown they’ll for sure turn into Justin Bieber. And I don’t have time for that. But when your precious baby is inconsolable and on comes old school Biggie Smalls and your baby instantly stops crying, you bet I’m turning that Devil music up. Biggie Biggie Biggie, can’t you see. Sometimes your words just hypnotize me. Indeed they do.
3. If you’re breastfeeding… Let me preface this by saying that whatever way you choose to feed your baby, good for you! You have the most important job in the world, and that’s to nourish your baby into a healthy, young kiddo! I chose to breastfeed, as long as it worked for baby and I, and luckily it’s been pretty great for us both so far. I’ve heard from so many people to take it day to day, that it’s not the most comfortable feeling and takes a while to get used to. Those both are very, very true. However, what no one told me was how much I would LOATHE the cold…if you catch my drift. Your nipples are so incredibly sensitive while breastfeeding. A drop in temperature will surely make you cringe. Now, I live in North Carolina but I’m originally from Connecticut (like Caitlin!) and the thought of heading home for Christmas to the below freezing temperatures is really causing my anxiety to spike.
4. Just breathe. And have a glass of wine. Or a shot of Jim Beam, whichever you fancy. There will be days where you’re just begging for a break from the tears of your not-so-sweet-at-the-
moment baby. She/He’s sobbing away and you go through your checklist. He’s fed, his diaper was just changed, he’s not hurt, I’ve been snuggling him for what seems like forever, etc. etc. Remember to just breathe. This too shall pass. But for now, hand him off to your husband for a few minutes of cuddling or a drive around town, sit down and enjoy that glass of wine you’ve waited 9 months to have. You, my dear, deserve it!
5. Not all babies like the same things. I repeat, what works for Suzie Q, may not work for you! Like most pregnant women, I spent the 9 months researching and researching what were the best products for baby Blake. I literally scoured the internet, read countless mommy blogs, trying to figure out what would be best to register for. From bottles to swings, and even as miniscule as pacifiers. We bought three different types of pacifiers and since Benny’s birth, two more. He hates them all. Like, imagine me walking through the freezer aisle in the grocery store. That’s about the equivalent of him trying to take a pacifier. And same thing with swaddling! His ninja arms and legs loathe being constrained. We’ve tried a bazillion times and he’s just not havin’ it. So even though Suzie Q’s baby loved being wrapped up like a burrito, doesn’t mean your baby will. But when you do find out what works for the baby, it’ll be like Christmas!
6. The witching hour. Now not all babies suffer from this but if yours does, raise your hand. Right aroundevery night, Benny becomes inconsolable. So we’ve deemed the hour from , his witching hour. I’m sure our neighbors just LOVE dinnertime at their house. After about two weeks of dealing with his madness, we decided to change bath time to every night at . Some babies don’t love the bath but ours can’t get enough of it. As soon as he hears the water running, he’s as calm as a cucumber. Now I say it’s never too early to start a routine. Every night at you’ll find us giggling and just gushing over this sweet boy in the bathtub. He really is just so precious! Aren’t all babies?!? And then the next morning between , you’ll find me struggling to keep him happy. I suppose he’s found his new witching hour. Two baths a day is okay, right? Bath time is the best time.
7. Your husband. Or significant other is amazing. You thought you loved them more than you ever could the day you first exchanged “I love you’s”, and then you got engaged. And then on your wedding day you were convinced that was the most you could ever love him. And then you found out you were expecting your first bundle of joy! But then you deliver your baby and your love for each other just sky rockets! Seeing him hold him for the first time and kiss his tiny forehead just makes your heart leap out of your chest. Now I’m convinced that our love for each other is growing day to day. I will only love him this much today, forI will love him even more.
8. Your heart. When the nurses first put your baby on your chest, you are just so overcome with emotion. So much joy, love, gratitude and thanksgiving. This baby that you just spent 9 months carrying is now here on this beautiful earth, and in your arms. You never imagined that your heart could be so, SO full! It’s literally overflowing with more love than you can imagine. Babies are the best kind of miracle!
Caitlin — I’ve enjoyed watching your journey through pregnancy and I am SO thrilled for you to be welcoming your sweet baby girl soon! Annabelle, you are already so loved!! Caitlin, enjoy these last few days with your husband, and get ready for the BEST birthday ever!