The first month (what I’ve learned)

Okay – I’ve decided that I need to dedicate specific days to blogging or I’ll never blog again. Today I am declaring that I will blog 3 times a week on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. This way – I won’t let so much time pass me by (and it also makes topics a little easier).

Even though Annie is over a month old (she’ll be 6 weeks on Saturday! Holy hell – where did the time go?!), I thought I”d take a moment to reflect on the first month of being a new parent.

First – it wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be. While I still feel like I don’t know what I’m doing (seriously – how do you “play” with a newborn?!) – I didn’t kill Annie and I never found myself feeling completely helpless or like a total failure. Annie is the first baby I’ve ever: fed, changed a diaper, held for an extended period of time, swaddled, etc. You get the idea – I wasn’t experienced in the baby department. But now I feel like I’ve gotten into the groove of caring for her.

Other things I’ve learned:

  1. Newborns aren’t totally breakable. People have commented on how Annmarie (I interchange calling her Annmarie and Annie… and I’m sure this will just confuse her for awhile) has really good neck strength for her age. I don’t feel like I always have to support her head (I still do but I don’t flip about it). I’ve also hit her head on a few things. She’s also scratched herself on my necklace and Jeremy even tripped going down the stairs (he missed the last step) while holding her. And she’s still here… alert and happy.
  2. You don’t have to jump everytime the baby cries. Jeremy still kind of jumps up immediately when Annie cries but I’ve learned that sometimes she’s just making sounds… and she does this a lot in her sleep.
  3. It is not impossible to leave the house with a newborn. While I haven’t been able to come up with many activities outside of shopping (and this is quite dangerous for our budget) – I’ve learned that it isn’t impossible to leave the house with a newborn. I still, however, get anxiety about her crying when we’re out. It actually makes me sweat. As one friend told me, “Who cares? Babies cry. People know that.” I need to relax.
  4. You need to be fast with diaper changes. You also need to wait a few minutes before changing a diaper. Just because you hear that loud poop, it doesn’t mean she doesn’t have more coming. One a few occasions, she has PROJECTED poop during a diaper change (actually – it was a shart but it still shot out and off the changing table). She also likes to pee when her diaper gets changed. So – you need to have the new diaper ready or you risk getting drenched.
  5. Parents will give you unsolicited advice… ALL THE TIME. If one more person says, “oh she’s hungry” to me anytime she fusses, I will scream. Now – there are some occasions when she actually IS hungry but more often than not, she’s just fussy. My mom is VERY guilty of this and has accused me of starving my baby and being mean.
  6. Your own parents will criticize you by talking to your baby. Is this a universal thing or just a Korean mom thing? My mom LOVES to dish the criticism while talking to the baby. She’ll coo to her, “your mommy is mean” or “your mommy is stingy with her milk” or even “your mommy is freezing you”. (I’ve learned that your own parents will never think you keep your baby warm enough.)
  7. Newborns sleep A LOT. I worried that I was perhaps letting her sleep too much but I went to a sleep training discussion last night and learned that it was perfectly normal… and in fact, she may not be sleeping enough. Whoops.
  8. Just when you think you’ve got a “schedule” – you don’t. Newborns are tricky. Just because you had 2 good nights, it does not mean the third night will go as swimmingly as the others. You just have to go with the flow.
  9. Accept help when it is offered! I’m thankful for the friends that have stopped over to help (and help sometimes is just having them hold Annie while I eat dinner).
  10. Time flies so enjoy it all. I can’t believe we’re almost at 6 weeks. A lot of it is a blur and it is almost scary to think that she’s just getting older and older… and at some point she will be a teenager. Be sure to take lots of pictures (moms – be sure to get lots of pictures with YOU and the baby. I’m failing miserably at this.)

And in case you don’t look at my Flickr pics, I thought I’d share her weekly photos.

Week 1 - February 12, 2011

The tutu was courtesy of my SIL. She has 2 boys so she is loving that she can now buy girly baby clothes. And you can see that Annie HATED the tutu.

Week 2 - February 19, 2011

Week 3 - February 26, 2011

Week 4 - March 5, 2011

Week 5 - March 12 2011

I know it looks like she’s smiling in Week 5 but she’s actually about to cry. But I’m glad we captured the moment before because she looks so happy!

As for that awesome monkey? I made that. There is another mom blogger that takes weekly photos of her son with a sock monkey and I loved the idea of having a constant “prop” so you can really see the growth of the baby. I also think I’ve under-utilized my monkey.

Lastly – Annie had her first official “play date” with some other babies (it has been a baby explosion around here within the last year). At the end of the play date, the moms wanted to take a photo of all the babies together in order of age. I love this photo because you can really see the developmental differences across the age groups. Annie looks like a sad little sack…

Ages from left to right: Annie – 5 weeks, Kolton – 7 1/2 weeks, Harrison – about 6 months, Charlotte – about 8 months

(And seriously – I know I’ve said it before but I promise I won’t turn this into a complete mom/baby blog.)

4 Comments

Filed under Charm City Kim Breeds

4 responses to “The first month (what I’ve learned)

  1. CAG

    TOTAL CUTENESS!! Okay seriously…I need my damn playdate! LOL

    I heart her life!

  2. Stephanie

    I am amazed by the no baby experience prior to having one yourself. I was 19 when my little brother was born and that really gave me the best experience after living with a new born and baby for months at a time when I was still in college and coming home for Christmas and summer. Good experience and good birth control.

    I remember one of the first times I changed his diaper, I took him back to my parents’ bed and he had newborn baby squirted everywhere. I was trying to clean him up and then he started squirting more. First, the smell and second the quantity of poo everywhere. WOW! I did not know to have a diaper ready nor did I know what to do about the crap all up his clothes which I basically was spreading around trying to get him changed. I laugh now but it was crazy then.

    I think one of the funniest things that my husband ever did was call me at work one day when he was watching our two neices. They were 4 years and 18 months or so. His sister smokes so the girls did not smell fresh (whole other story in itself) so he was going to give them a tub and putting clean clothes on them. He called me to ask me if it was okay to clean their private areas. I just started laughing because he was so nervous about cleaning up two little girls and it seeming inappropriate. It was so sweet yet funny at the same time.

  3. Vonni

    I love the fact that you are as honest about the birthing/baby care as you are about everything else. I don’t mind reading your “mommy blog” cuz you aren’t nauseating about it. Plus Annie is darn cute and those pics of Jeremy sleeping with babe in arms (or pillow) are just adorable. Glad things are going swimmingly and congratulations! You are now way more grown up than I am.

  4. I don’t think she was crying because she was hungry, (first picture,) I think she was crying because she was pissed about the big-ass bow you stapled to her skull. Seriously, how could you do that to her?

    She’s cool with the tutu, though. Don’t ask me how I know, I can just tell.

    Also, I don’t mind that you’re gushing about the peanut because A) that’s what fills your life right now, and B) you’re not constantly bitching about how it’s SO hard to be a mother and none of us who don’t have kids will EVER understand how hard it is. Plus, you talk about poo.

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