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Becoming a Mom

by - Thursday, April 09, 2009

No, I'm not in labour :) That's how I start most of my phone calls these days so thought I'd start my post the same way. You know, in case you were wondering ;) Baby HandyLuster seems to like the April 15th due date because there's no sign s/he will be early to the party. Which is fine with me because I'm enjoying being off on mat leave, cleaning up the house, running errands, and filling my head with all sorts of information on how to be a mom.

Its funny, I find my approach to impending motherhood is the same as my approach to designing a room. I research, research, research - on the net, on chat boards, in books and magazines, from TV shows, on blogs. Then I'll collect those ideas that resonate with me and store them away for future reference. With motherhood, its a bit more difficult because EVERYONE has an opinion and much of it is conflicting. People have the best intentions when they're giving you advice, but its difficult to hear your own voice, find your own way sometimes. I find comfort in the thought that there is no right or wrong, as long as you're acting in the best interest of the baby.

One kind friend at work passed this onto me: Dunstan Baby Language. Have you heard of it? Its a system that claims to help you understand the meaning of your baby's cries. I'm not sure if it will work, but anything that will help me keep baby crying less and smiling more is worth a try. Do you have any tried and true tips to pass onto me? I'd love to hear them!

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  1. My daughter-in-law used "Baby-Wise" to get both of her babies on a good sleep/eat schedule. it worked really well and they were sleeping through the night at an early age. They also use "Love and Logic" as a discipline guide and it works amazingly well, too. Every baby is different. What works for one won't work for another. You'll figure it out. Just enjoy that precious newborn and don't stress out.

    On an unrelated note, I am almost ready to post pictuers of my office--I took my inspiration from your office and I'm super happy with it. So thanks.

    And just enjoy that new baby.

  2. I was wondering! It's been a while since you updated. Something I've picked up from my sister is to read to your baby every day. I think establishing fun rituals and traditions are really sweet.

  3. We were disappointed the big Beechnut didn't understand what the new baby was crying about! I can tell you this: babies are always hungry. When in doubt, try feeding. Regardless of whether the baby "just ate" 30 mins ago.
    When the baby is around 8 months, its a good time to do sign language. Our first could clearly communicate about 15 words before her 1st birthday. It was helpful for her granparents and babysitters to understand what she wanted.

    Just remember this: YOU are the mommy. Whatever you think is right, its right.
    Hey- didn't I just read that you thought you got too much advice.. sheesh... I can't even stop myself! Congrats, I'm sure you will be an excellent Mom.

  4. Oh, and Happiest Baby on the Block by Harvey Karp. Just get the DVD. It helped both our babies be good sleepers.

  5. Anonymous11:30 AM

    My biggest piece of advice is to avoid having your child watch TV and videos, even the "educational" ones. It's just not good for them. We did it, and still managed to get stuff done. Instead of being plopped in front of a TV, our kiddo was plopped down with books.

    You're going to be great.


  6. A lot of people will give you advice- some of it really good and some of it just plain crazy. Trust your own instincts- nobody will know your baby as well as you. In the beginning it's hard to tell which cry means what. Go through the list- feed, burp, diaper, hot, cold, wet clothes, change of scenery and binky. As you go through your list, you'll start to become familiar with the different cries. Every baby is different so do what works for you.

    Also, when people give you advice (especially the bad kind) just nod your head and say thanks. You don't have to do anything they say and you don't have to prove that you know what you're doing to them. Everyone has an opinion- unfortunately!! lol

    Good Luck and Best Wishes!!
    Yard Sale Mama

  7. Caroline2:45 PM

    Oprah had possibly the same author on her show once for an hour. It
    was very detailed video and has some mothers try it, and it worked.
    Maybe someone has a tape of this show. It was a show called The Secret Language of Babies.

  8. My advice is that you should enjoy your baby as much as you can , relax because babies pick up on tension , no baby EVER died from crying its what they do , if you are going to breastfeed hang in there if it hurts something isn't right latch usually, stick with it and it will pay off in spades, do what your heart tells you is right for you and baby , be careful with food introductions {example high allergy foods it is always better to do that with caution ,from a mom with a kid with the dreaded peanut allergy}
    listen to your instincts if something seems wrong listen to that voice its called mothers intuition and it is real .
    Most of all you will make mistakes and that is OK we all do , just move on and forgive yourself.
    When you need a break take it , ask for help when you need it .
    Don't forget to take care of you and enjoy your time with your baby , time flies after babies are born.
    keep well ,

  9. live a colorful life - I haven't heard of Baby Wise or Love and Logic. I'll have to look into it, especially if it will help baby sleep through the night earlier :) Ooh, I'll be on the lookout for pics of your new office!

    j&k - that's a great suggestion, thanks! I have fond memories of my mom reading to me too, even though I can't remember any of the stories now.

    Jessie - I have the book and just started reading it. Hope it works well in practice! And thanks for the comment about me being the mommy... its easy to do doubt yourself when you haven't been a mommy before :)

    jbhat - I totally want to avoid the TV, especially when baby is young. It'll be harder for me though to kick my TV habit, lol.

    Thanks for kind words Rachel. Learning to nod and smile is something that has come in very handy lately, lol ;)

    Thanks Chris :) Breastfeeding is one my concerns... I hope it goes well but won't beat myself up if it doesn't. I do know I have to relax and enjoy more, rather than 'do, do, do' which is what tends to happen in the rest of my life.

    Thanks for words of wisdom everyone!!

  10. If this is your first child and you intend on breast feeding, I highly encourage a breast feeding class. Also to know that although it is natural, it is not always naturally easy! It's okay if bf-ing is complicated, hard, frustrating and tiring. Nobody told me that it could be difficult. Definitely rewarding, but can be difficult. Make sure you have a lot of support from others who have gone through it.

    I also wish I would have been okay with the idea of hiring someone to come clean my house. It would have been awesome that first year. Glad I'm okay with it now. Would rather spend $$ on a cleaning crew than a babysitter.

  11. I know my biggest fear about having my first baby was breastfeeding , I was terrified but it went suprisingly well ,LANSINOL i believe it is called is the ointment I used ,it helped , I didn't have the option of giving up on breastfeeding, formula was not an option we could not afford it , as well the doctors telling me any children I had would have asthma because my husband and sister have it made me determined, I knew breastfeeding was the only thing I could do to prevent that , and I will tell you I would love to tell that doc she was wrong , neither of my kids have asthma or any breathing problems , for that I credit my 1 year of breastfeeding for each, it is so much easier than bottles too being a nanny for many years before kids I know the bottle and formula thing, the thing is if you approach BFing with a maybe it will work appoach I think it can then be doomed , I did not love breastfeeding like some do I gave them a year and I was happy to stop then, but it is an amazing thing to be able to do , it is easy , the best and most complete nutritionaly and beneficial in so many ways for the baby , it is so worth the effort , I agree with taking up all the support you can through the hospital and clinics it will be invaluable ,
    I will get off my soap box now .
    I am here for moral support if I can be of any use .
    I hope you get a good sleeper .

  12. Bee & Chris - thanks for the breastfeeding encouragement! The doula will be helping show me the ropes and my sister is part of the La Leche league so that will help too. But, I won't hesitate to look into clinics or lactation consultants if things are difficult :) Fingers crossed that it won't be too bad.

  13. YEAH! Well, hopefully by now Baby is here! Congratulations and I can't wait to see pics. The baby room looks wonderful. I love all the little details on the walls. So cute! Congrats!!! xoxo Traci


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