If it’s 2am and you’re currently awake with a baby, this post is for you.
Let me paint a scene for you… You’ve just been gifted (however that happened for you) a sweet, tiny, beautiful baby. To you, everything about them is perfect. You’re in a sort of dreamy fog where the moment is happening but you feel somehow outside yourself.
And then you take them home and they cry. A lot! Sure you can handle it during the day when the sun is shinning. But something changes when that sun sets. Your patience from 12am onward is very thin and you find yourself feeling angry toward that sweet baby. You’re up every two hours feeding, nursing, or putting that dang pacifier in their mouth because you just want some sleep. Sound familiar?
If you have one of those unicorn babies that sleeps through the night immediately then perhaps this post isn’t for you. (But please share your secrets in the comments because the rest of us are dying to know how you did it!)
Maybe it’s just me but when I don’t get 8 hours of solid sleep at night I am not the best version of myself. Now combine that lack of sleep for months on end. It’s a recipe for a short temper, lack of patience and an overall negative cloud that sort of just hangs in the air in the home.
I am going to be honest. The first few months of my kid’s lives were not my favorite. Once they started getting some mobile independence and exploring their world they (and their mama) were so much happier.
I’ve noticed that there is a stigma if you admit that the baby phase is not your favorite. It seems to be ok if you admit that about the toddler or teenage stage because of course that is to be expected right? But when you share your feelings on an infant, you’re looked at like you’re heartless or ungrateful. It is a very sensitive topic.
Let me just throw this out there. It’s OK if those first months of your baby’s life are not your favorite. Take a deep breath and give yourself some grace if that statement rings true for you. It doesn’t mean you don’t love your baby fiercely. It just means you have feelings and you’re human!
I am learning is that sometimes it is ok to have negative feelings and still be incredibly thankful at the same time. (Hello, marriage!) Emotions change so frequently that they can rarely be a marker for anything.
This season too shall pass and hopefully in the future you will look back on those first months fondly. The sleepless nights, the small onesies and that newborn smell. 🙂
But accepting this doesn’t change the feelings. You have to change your perspective. In order to truly live above your feelings, I’ve found you must let yourself sit in the past, present and future all at once.
Reflecting on the past and remembering before you had that sweet baby. Before they were anything but a hope in your heart.
Living in the present where they’re crying their little lungs out, hoping you can help them and communicating the only way they know how.
Foreseeing the future when you know you will look back and give anything for even one more day with that crying baby who is calmed in your presence.
It is a choice to live life this way and I will be the first to admit it isn’t easy. I alway try and validate my feelings but not focus on them. I have found that directing my thoughts towards something positive ends up being more life giving.
What to focus on instead
- The milestones! Whether its smiling, rolling or crawling, it is energizing to see your baby determined to overcome their environment.
- Studying your baby. Have you ever studied a baby’s face while they’re watching the world around them wide eyed for the first time? A leaf twirling in the wind becomes a marvel.
- Celebration of the little things. Did you make it to the grocery store today? Did you have a peaceful 5 minute shower?! Celebrate it!
- Coming up with a daily rhythm for your family. After reading simplicity parenting, I have been working on being more intentional at cultivating our family rhythm. It might be overwhelming to look at the whole of your life so just pick one thing at first. Just start in an area where you know you can be consistent. Choose to eat dinner together every night, read a book before every nap or take an evening walk each Sunday.
- The sweet moments of infant sleep. You might not be sleeping but there is something so magical about watching them do it! The way their breath slows, mouth parts open and their eyes flutter as they peacefully sleep in your arms.
Hopefully you find these tips helpful if you’re in this phase like me. Whether it be for the 1st time or the 5th!
Do you have any other aspects of the baby phase that you love? Leave me a comment below!
From my home sweet home to yours,
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