Ten Things I Learned in Two Months of Motherhood

Hello, adorable one.
Our baby is two months old this weekend! I've got that thing going where I feel like he just arrived but also like he's been here foreverrrr. What was life like before Jack was here? I don't know! (Mostly I don't know because I'm so tired I can't remember.)

Two months is a super delightful age. This sweet little worm is turning into a person! He smiles, he makes eye contact, he knows us...it's so satisfying to feel that connection after devoting so much to him over the past two months. 

It's also positively thrilling to see his personality emerging! We are so lucky to have a happy, bubbly baby. Jack talks non-stop - coos and yelps and oohs and aahs. He loves the outdoors and baths and his activity mat. He's perfectly happy at restaurants (or cafes or breweries) if someone is holding him and he gets to look out at the world. He's just delightful.

Parenthood continues to be the biggest challenge of my life so far, and of course we're learning TONS every day. Here are Ten Things I've learned in the last couple months that I wish I knew...well...two months ago!

1. Breastfed babies can go 12 days without pooping, and it's totally fine. Sure, that poop is gonna explode out of them on day 12, but it's a-ok. (Note: Jack didn't go 12 days - he went more like 6. I think I called the Nurses Hotline three times though. Man, I call that Nurses' Hotline all the time.)

2. Before you wash all the clothes you got as gifts, check to make sure the later age clothing is season-appropriate. This sounds bitchy because I'm critiquing gift giving. But I do wish, when giving clothing, that people would think about what season it will be when he or she wears said clothes. Because you don't need long sleeve fleece pajamas in July, no matter how adorable they are. But this is all on me, really, cuz I should have thought about that before washing everything. I could have had some sweet gift cards for this baby.

3. Speaking of clothes...so hey, none of your clothes fit after having a baby. Your maternity clothes feel too big (or just don't fit right anymore without the bump), and your regular clothes certainly do not fit yet. I could do a whole blog on post partum clothing, but for now I'll sum it up by saying - get some Old Navy/Target nursing tank tops, a couple pairs of leggings (maternity or just large sized), some yoga pants, and a variety of flowy shirts and tank tops. If you want to look cute out in public, get some elastic-waist skirts from Old Navy or H&M and some jeggings from Target. (Yes, it's true...I bought jeggings. Motherhood does weird things to you.)

4. Even if you changed his diaper just minutes ago, if he won't stop crying, change his diaper again. We still forget this simple fact.

5. Their nails grow SO FAST. I guess it makes sense - everything about a baby is growing super fast. My sister gave me the tip to cut his nails while he sleeps, to lower the chances of me snipping his skin. I've also done it while nursing him; he's so into the boob, he doesn't even notice.

They love each other.
6. Here's one we're still working on - let your husband take care of the baby too. This is important for both of you. I think mothers often have a hard time letting the husband (or partner) help. It's a natural place to go - you are (often) the provider of food, you are the smell the baby knows, you are usually the one who stays home longer while your husband goes back to work. All this adds up to you being the "expert" on the baby who says, "Here, let me take him" when he starts crying every single time. Now, I'm not saying this is all on the mom - this is a parenting issue that goes both ways. But I think mothers can be better (myself included) about letting their partners be equal parents. It means you will have to stand by and watch them fumble a little. But in the long run, it feels like it's better for both your partner and the baby (and for you too). Brandon and I are trying to be conscious of this issue as we go. It's still a work in progress! I'll let you know how this pans out.

7. Daytime television is terrible.

8. It turns out babies are very resilient and rubbery. I mean, you shouldn't purposely drop them or anything. But if you bonk your baby's head, just know it's gonna be ok. Every parent does it. Every parent feels terrible the first time they hurt their kid (the guilt is almost insurmountable), but it really will be ok. Your baby won't remember, and he or she will be fine.

9. We tried so hard to resist the "sleep crutches" - the swing, the automatic rocking feature on the bassinet, the falling-asleep-and-then-putting-baby-down (as opposed to putting them down "drowsy and still awake"), the nursing-to-get-to-sleep, and countless other things I'm probably forgetting. But guess what? We do whatever it takes to get that kid to sleep. WHATEVER IT TAKES. I think every parent does. I wish we had just done it from the start instead of trying to be all self-righteous for so long.

10. Is your baby being crazy? Yeah, that's JBBB! (Thanks to Julie for this bit of sanity!)

I'll keep cataloguing the lessons as I learn them. They're coming fast and loose these days!

Happy Two Months to my perfect little man!