Featured, Motherhood

Six Lessons in Six Months

Dear Mama,

This is the letter is the one I wish I had 6 months ago. A little something would remind me when I was at my most exhausted, that I will make it through what seems like a very long season.

So Mama, Congratulations! You had a baby! The plan you had laid out on how you had planned to birth and where, was exactly 360 compared to what actually happened, but you did it! You birthed your tiny preemie a whole month+ early. He will sleep through a bomb going off, but just a heads up he won’t sleep when you put him down. He will love the skin to skin more than anything else, so it’s a good thing you planned to spend 72 hours right after birth doing just that. Fair warning, due to your baby being a preemie, you will not be able to do it till a week later. If this introduction gives you a clue to what the lessons ahead could be like, grab a glass of something strong (just drink after you breastfeed) and relax!!  Here are 6 lessons for 6 months:

  1. Your baby is going to grow-FAST!- It may not seem like it when they are infants and nurse what seems like  hundred times a night, but all that nourishment is growing your little human. You will wake up a month later and that little person you created will have grown and changed right under your nose. I know you are so tired and it seems like they will never stop eating every 1-2 hours, but they will. And you will sleep again. Your heart will melt watching the relationship between your husband and baby. Six months from now, you will feel like they are the perfect addition to your squad. It will seem like your child has always been meant just for you. Because they have!

  2. You will feel lonely– That’s okay. Somehow even when your husband offers to hold them while you nap or give you an extra 5 minutes in the shower, you may feel alone. Probably cause your baby grew under your heart and in your belly. So she/he knows your voice and scent best. They know their mama and that’s who they want. That means when you put him/her down it seems like an utter betrayal (FYI babies never die because they cried for two minutes while you pee.). You are doing a very hard task and you don’t get to clock out of the hard job you are doing. So it’s alright to feel like you are alone, as long as you remember that you are NOT. Countless people are there for you. You just have to pick up the phone and ask for help. Doing that doesn’t make you less of a mom. That means you know it’s alright to come out of the infant vortex and breathe for a minute. Community will be your new best friend.
  3. It’s O-K-A-Y to co-sleep/Bedshare– There is so many people who will tell you to hurry and “sleep train” your baby. Yet literally everyone you have talk to will have co-slept at some point. Do not stress that he/she will be 1-year-old and still in your bed. Eventually your baby will want their own space. Also before you spend HOURS researching how to “sleep train” your baby, remember that every baby is different. So while one child the same age responded to  ‘Crying it out’, your baby may not. That is 100% okay.
  4. Moming is tricky- Many well-meant and some not so well-meant people are going to give you advice on how mother. From strangers, parents, grandparents, siblings, and even friends. When you ask for it, awesome! But what about when it’s not asked for? Whether it’s them telling you “breast is best”, or what type of bottle they should take to not have ‘nipple confusion’, take it and stride and listen because most of them mean well. Some of it may help you along the way, but if not that’s okay! You are going to “mom” your own way and that’s okay! Are you a ‘crunchy mom” or ‘whatever works mom”? What are you wanting or needing to make motherhood work for you and your family? Turns out you will be a crunchy/co-sleeping/fading/oils/cloth and disposable diaper kind of mom. And guess what?? It works for you and your family! You shouldn’t try to please anybody, even though I know that side of you wants to creep in sometimes. This isn’t about them! It’s you and your baby, who it needs to work for.
  5. You will always wonder– At the end of the day, even the best moms wonder if they did enough. Did he/she drink enough milk? Are they breathing? Will I ever lose the baby weight and will the stretch marks fade? Does my baby feel loved? Let me clue you in on a lesson that you will hold on to for a lifetime; you will always wonder. Yet the very best thing you can do, is to submit the parts you may have forgotten to the Lord and start each day new. You will forget to add an extra pair of socks in the diaper bag and that’s okay. You won’t tell him/her you love them everyday (because you are so gosh darn busy physically showing them) and they will not be scarred for life. You or your spouse may forget the car-seat when picking you both up from the airport (the airport that is 45 minutes from your house) and guess what? You and your child will live! You will make it out of the infant season and you will make it to the season where they smile and giggle at your silly faces. You will make it to the season where your baby responds to your love and cuddles. So stop worrying. You are a good mother and you are doing your very best in your sleep deprived state.

  6.  You will find a rhythm– As orange became the new black, this child in your life will be the new normal. It will be a new way a life for sure. Some days will feel like you haven’t be able to come up for air. Let me tell you that a new routine and way of life will form. It was be different and sometimes more messy than your previous way of life. You may not find yourself longing for the infant days when they are gone and that’s alright. Because the new season and routine that will replace it will also be just as beautiful and just as meaningful as the last. So rest in the fact that it will not be like this forever, so find those tiny moments that are ones to capture and hold on too. They are many and the pass by very quickly

So there you have it! Your 6 lessons to last you 6 months. Hopefully your little one stayed down long enough for you to read this and finish your glass of ‘something stronger then coffee’. Until the next 6 lessons!

Tying you in,