Sunday, April 19, 2015

Mommy Milestones from the First Few Months

Now that my baby is just over a year old, I figured that it was a good time to write down what I remember of those first few months of mommyhood. You know, now that those memories are a little faint and incomplete, and only the exaggerated versions have persisted in my memory banks.

Becoming a mother feels a little bit like you've suffered some debilitating accident, and you have to slowly start to redevelop those abilities that once came so easily. I remember through those early weeks and months feeling like I had hit "milestones". Maybe baby #1 hit me harder than they hit other moms, but these were some of the milestones that I remember celebrating.

Milestone #1: Sleeping in my own bed

When I was pregnant, I had gotten all of this advice about how to keep a bassinet right by the bed for the first few weeks so that you can just pick the baby up, nurse, and set them back down. I thought that sounded like a great plan, and had my bassinet all ready to go. 

Before you leave the hospital after you have your baby, they give you a little training on how to take care of your new little one. It goes a little like this: "If you do this your baby will die, and if you do this they will die, and if you do this they will definitely die". Okay, awesome. Don't ever touch/breathe on/look at the baby, got it. 

One of those "your baby will definitely die" things is sleeping with your baby. I'd always been a pretty good rule follower, so no problem right? Then I had this baby who woke up crying within three minutes of being put down anywhere but in a human's arms. Turns out I had a rebel streak after all. 

Luckily we had gotten this comfy recliner so that I could rock the baby in it, and it's a good thing we did because I lived in that thing for the first three weeks. After much practice, patience, and I think a little bit of witchcraft, I finally got that boy to sleep in his own crib (he never did like that bassinet). Scattered 1.5 hour chunks of sleep had never felt so blissful. 

Milestone #2: Getting dressed (almost) everyday 

Yeah, that's right. This was a big deal, and it took me about four weeks to get to it. I had this baby that wanted to nurse about every 45 minutes, for about 45 minutes, so why would I wear anything more than a robe? Bonus: it also doubled as a giant burp rag. Robes are also a lot like wearing a blanket, so you can fall asleep where ever you happen to be when the baby falls asleep. Practicality reigns supreme when you're a new mom, and things like shirts and pants are just not practical.

When I say that I "got dressed" everyday, we're talking sweat pants and t-shirts here. If it wasn't stretchy and oversized I wanted nothing to do with it, but at least I could walk out to the mailbox without worrying about flashing my neighbors because a big gust of wind came through.

Milestone #3: Leaving the house

Somewhere around the two month mark, I had run out of the last of the groceries that had been stocked up when my parents had come into town (bless their souls). I needed to go to the grocery store, but that meant that I had to take a time bomb with me. You see, he was bound to get hungry by the time I had about three items in my cart, and I was not quite ready or willing to whip it all out in the middle of the meat department. To make matters worse, my baby must have missed the memo on how to be that cute baby sleeping in their carseat in the shopping cart. Instead we called our carseat "the demon chair", because that's apparently how our baby felt about it.  Leaving the house for that first trip to the store was terrifying.

Eventually I got a hold of myself and learned how to be one of those baby wearing moms with a nursing schedule for the baby who can do things like go to the store and know that it's almost always going to go totally smoothly. I've re-learned all kinds of skills like showering regularly and cooking hot meals in something other than a crockpot. I even take less than five pictures a day of my cute boy, and try to keep the kisses to a healthy twenty-or-so a day. It's been some real progress.

Writing about these milestones when I'm less than three months away from having baby #2 was maybe not my best idea ever, but you only go through these with your first baby... right?


  1. Courtney papenfussApril 19, 2015 at 11:59 PM

    Reading this made my day! I have very fond memories of my own recliner those first months!

  2. Can someone please clue me in on how ya'll get your babies to sleep in their own beds?

  3. Best descriptions ever! Please keep writing. :-)

  4. Best descriptions ever! Please keep writing. :-)

  5. I love it! And I can totally relate!! :)

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