Babies get giddy too — the mere sound of my sighing was enough to elicit a fit of giggles from our little monkey. I keep this clip on my phone and it never fails to make me smile. My husband and I both have healthy senses of humor and view laughter as an integral part of life. What a wonderful thing it is to hear Declan’s belly laugh – may he always see the humorous side of life…
I had trouble finding balance in my life long before my little guy came along. My tendency is to view endeavors as all or nothing. For example, if I’m starting a workout regimen, I do it every day or I don’t do it at all. The same goes with house cleaning – I want to clean the entire house in on fell swoop or I don’t want clean at all. One of the things motherhood has taught me is that I need to have balance – I simply can’t do it all at one time.
Being a new mom has taught me to slow down and relax in some aspects of my life (cleaning, errands, etc.), but it has also taught me to prioritize and be efficient. When Declan was first born, I was exhausted, not only from Declan’s grueling feeding schedule (every two hours for the first 5 months), but from my frantic efforts to cook, clean, and ‘keep house’. I don’t know what I was thinking – maybe some sick subconscious desire to be ‘super mom’, or some vain attempt to maintain a semblance of normalcy in my life. Tired of being, well, tired and stressed trying to keep up with it all, I gradually began trying only to do one major chore or task a day to avoid becoming overwhelmed again. It is so very true when people say to put more energy enjoying this fleeting newborn/infant stage and less time into the minutiae of keeping a spotless house.
Another area in which I’ve struggled is my exercise regimen. Thanks to breastfeeding, I was able to lose my pregnancy weight by my 6 week check-up. However, the extra weight I had on before I got pregnant is a different story. Those pounds have been stubborn and slow-going, but my exercise routine has been stop and go. I don’t know what it is, but every time I get into a great rhythm, something pops up to derail me (this past time it was vacation and a subsequent cold). If there is one thing I do have, that’s perseverance. I’ll continue going to the Y and watching what I eat and not get frustrated with myself when I fall off course. If I have an off day, I can always count scrubbing the tub as exercise, right?
I made the decision to cloth diaper before I was even pregnant. Seeing a male friend post about washing diapers on Facebook sealed the deal. If a guy was down with cloth, how hard could it be? I vaguely remember my sister tossing around the idea of cloth diapering with her first child ten years ago, but I was absolutely not in a baby state of mind back then. I mentioned my desire to use cloth to my mom and found out that I was a cloth diapered baby (albeit with flats and pins and rubber pants). My research began when I was trying to get pregnant, and by the time I was expecting I already knew what route we were going to go. In the beginning, I was overwhelmed with all of the different types of cloth diapers, not to mention the brands and designs, etc. What helped me was evaluating and ranking my reasons to use cloth.
I would like to say that my number one motivation to use cloth was to cut down on landfill waste but, alas, it was not. My motivations were almost equally to save money (instead of spending it on something that would, literally, be pooped on) and the fact that it would the best option for our (future) baby’s sensitive skin (I won’t go on about all of the chemicals in disposable diapers). With those ideas in mind, I decided that prefolded cloth diapers, in unbleached natural fibers, and diaper covers were the best option for us. From there, shopping became easy once I was pregnant (mind you, I did do a lot of research to check out reviews). The best part? People in the cloth diapering community were incredibly friendly and helpful once I began asking questions.
Somewhere along the way, be it the cloth diapering blogs I frequented or the many cloth diapering Facebook pages I subscribed to, I realized that there was more to this cloth diapering thing. It’s not just something you do to catch pee and poop, I realized, it’s a whole community that embraces many of the same parenting philosophies. I see this philosophy, in a nutshell, as a gentler, more nurturing and more eco-conscious way of parenting.
The top photo is Declan at 7 1/2 months and the one above is him at 1 1/2 weeks old — this diaper will fit him until he potty trains.
This may be a no-brainer for some of you, but I loved this idea when I came across it (and likely wouldn’t have thought of it with mommy-brain):
I layer my crib sheets with protective pads so that I need only strip off the top layer and pad if/when the sheet gets soiled. When D first started sleeping longer at night, this was a lifesaver, as he would often wake because his diaper had leaked. I could whisk him out of the crib, do a quick diaper and sleeper change, and strip the top sheet and pad off; all done without completely waking from my semi-conscious state. This is also a great space saver if your linen storage is limited. I currently have three crib sheets layered on ‘in case of emergencies’.
When out running errands do not a.) lose track of time, b.) lose track of diaper changes, and c.) forget to stash a size appropriate spare outfit in your diaper bag. Consider this a warning, as Declan had to wear this little gem out of a restaurant today:
Yup. This would be my 7 1/2 month old wearing a 3-6 month romper.
#badmommy #motheroftheyear #futurefashionicon
In an attempt to share my natural parenting experiences, and to network with other moms with similar mindsets, I’ve started The Median Mommy. It’s an incredible adjustment going from career woman to stay-at-home mom, and some days I just need to feel creative and exercise my brain (apart from troubleshooting baby conundrums and the like). I could go on about my lack of adult interaction and this blog being a sounding board, but the truth is that I get together with other moms regularly and am not starved for adult conversation. I actually have a more active social life now than in my pre-mommy days. I’m an average mom, fumbling my way through motherhood, with a desire to share what I’ve learned and continue to learn. I plan to discuss some of my parenting dos, and probably a lot of don’ts, which will likely align with the parenting philosophies I’m developing as I go. The thing to remember is that there are no wrongs or rights, just differences. Just because I advocate, say, babywearing, doesn’t mean that I believe that anyone who doesn’t wear his/her baby is awful. This blog is about what works (and, alternately, what doesn’t work) for me. Take what you want, leave what you don’t, and try to be as non-judgemental and open-minded as possible. Come back often, link to me, and feel free to give me a shout-out 😉