…which I do now because I became a mum. Reality check!
- Bite his fingernails. I was adamant that I would never do this. People suggested it. Websites said it. I had two perfectly good pairs of nail scissors for babies thank you very much. However, the reality of cutting his fingernails meant getting his tiny fingers still whilst he grips tightly. One day, my fear came true and I caught his precious little finger. It wouldn’t stop bleeding for over 45 minutes… So now I get a better finish by biting them… and peace of mind. I won’t bite them forever. That would be gross, wouldn’t it? I plan to go back to the scissors at some point, maybe when he stops gripping my fingers as if his life depended on it (which is majorly cute).
- Use the TV to help me out. I do want to monitor the amount of screen time my boy gets and I am hoping to be more disciplined as he grows up. It helps me to get on with some chores or have a much needed cup of tea. Let’s just say ‘Word Party’ on Netflix has been put through it’s paces and we have completed all three seasons three times already… We don’t binge watch it, although I do sing the songs and know the lyrics more than I probably should.
- Leave him in clothes that have had sick and/or dribble on. He wouldn’t have any clothes to change into if I changed him as frequently as he spits up. I make the best use of the muslin and bibs and alas, sometimes it dries out… Gross hey? Don’t worry, I do change him if it’s pretty awful or if he does poo explosions. I’m not cruel…
- Buy a Grobag. They are fantastic sleeping bags for babies. I thought they were just a gimmick especially as humans have used blankets for generations. Although I use blankets for naps during the day, it’s a real comfort to know that my little one isn’t kicking off his covers in the middle of the night as he really loves to kick. It’s even more crazy now he has found his toes…
- Use a dummy. I felt pretty strongly about not giving him a dummy before he was born. Then he wouldn’t stop crying and I got no sleep. He liked to suck and it immediately soothed him. It didn’t make him sleep but it provided much needed quiet. He isn’t as interested in the dummy anymore, but it is still a comfort at night and for naps sometimes. He also looks pretty sweet with one in! As he can self-soothe, we are not relying on it as much anymore.
- Get really angry. Sleep deprivation does things to you. I hallucinated. I wept. I dreaded the night. I hardly functioned during the day. My body had just been through labour and it was taking time to recover. I snap. Even if I don’t yell. I feel anger and become an ogre. I am mentally, emotionally and physically drained and I snap. I become short with Joel which I hate. It’s horrid. But you don’t know what it’s like until you are in the thick of it. I need the Lord’s help so much in this area, especially when I get moody and upset too.
- Moving him into his own room before 6 months. Guidelines say to keep babies in the same room as you until then. Our little one outgrew his moses basket. We couldn’t fit his cot in our room. The health visitor said it was a personal choice. Jonathan was used to napping in his cot in his room in the day already. The transition was fine. It’s been a blessing for all the family.
Nothing prepares you for becoming a parent and all of your preconceived notions are tried and tested. Flexibility is everything. Taking time out to process this massive life change is crucial. Although it has been one of the toughest seasons of my life to date, I cannot wait to see him in the morning and spend quality time together throughout the day. His smile lights up the darkest days. Forever thankful for him.