Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Parenting Things That Are Different Than I Expected

Here is my list of some of the things that have been different than I expected:

1.     Breastfeeding is a beast.  But it is getting better.  For a while, I was pumping and Paisley got half of her food in bottles; now, Paisley usually just breastfeeds.  I had no idea we would have such a rough start.  I thought that if we trouble, I would talk to my mom, or to someone from La Leche League, and we would adjust something small and everything would be better.  La Leche League helped a little, but not as much as I thought it would.  More than anything, they were just sympathetic as I tough it out.  But, I think I will probably keep going, because the ladies are friendly, and going to the meetings feels good socially.  Everyone brings kids, and they sometimes cry, so if Paisley cries or gets hungry, it’s no big deal.  Which leads us to the second item…
Sunday, June 22

2.     It’s really hard to go places.  Paisley may be sleeping, and it could be no big deal.  She sleeps a fair amount.  Or, she could be inconsolable.  I can’t just plan to take her somewhere if she’s hysterical.  What if I get somewhere and out in the parking lot she’s crying?  Do I try to cheer her up out in the truck?  Do we turn around and drive back home?  It’s hard to know what to expect because things change so quickly.

I had an orthodontist appointment recently and I was planning to take Paisley, because they said to bring her.  That morning my mother-in-law volunteered to babysit, so I ended up leaving her at my in-laws’ house.  I was so grateful to be able to do that, because when I left Paisley so was so SAD.  And so MAD!  What if I had taken her with me?  What would that have looked like?  But it was an appointment, so it was at a specific time.  Which leads to the third item…

3.     It’s hard to be punctual.  Even if we plan ahead and get ready, and even if I plan time for feeding Paisley and changing her diaper, etc, at the last minute she could have a burp up and need to have her clothes changed, or she could decide she is starving again, etc.  Being anywhere at a precise time is very difficult. 

4.     I thought we had way more baby clothes than we would need.  I thought she would wear each outfit once or maybe twice.  Ha!  I didn’t realize babies sometimes wear 3-4 outfits per day.

5.     I keep having to choose: Shower?  Sleep?  Eat breakfast?  Pump?  Things that seem like they should be givens are all competing for my time.  Since I have such a limited amount of “free time”, I end up having to decide.  So, some days I get a shower, and other days I eat breakfast.  Not to mention other things, like laundry or property management. 

Monday, June 23
6.     I miss Paisley quickly.  Lately, Jeff watches Paisley while I go running in the evenings.  I’m not gone for very long, but usually by the time I’m driving home I realize that I miss Paisley.  Sometimes when she takes long naps I miss her, too.  A couple times I’ve even woken her up.  That’s kind of weird.  What is there to miss?  Her crying?  Her staring at the skylight?  I don’t know.  Her company, I guess?

7.     I am becoming an intense photographer.  Every time I change Paisley’s clothes, I feel like we need another picture because she just looks so cute!  When she sleeps in cute positions, smiles, stretches, yawns, (breathes, etc), I always feel like we should take a picture.  We have a ton of pictures of this baby, most of which are bad.  The problem is, our camera doesn’t take a picture when I click the button—it waits 2-3 seconds.  By then, Paisley has moved or blinked, or stopped smiling.  I think that must be one of the benefits of having a nice camera: I think nice cameras take the picture you’re trying to take, instead of the picture 3 seconds after the picture you wanted to take.  So, I’m thinking about saving my money to buy a real camera.  [Jeff thinks ours is a real camera because it is 12 mega pixels! and it can do high definition video!]

Those are just a few of the things I’ve thought of.


Ashley R. said...


I miss X like crazy all the time. This intense hurt/missing. He'll be screaming and I'll just get him down..and I'm like, "Maybe I should go get him up...." It's like your heart aches.

LJ said...

1. YES. I talked to four different lactation consultants before I left the hospital and the fourth one finally identified a problem with H's latch. Boy, was I grateful for that lady!

2,3,5. I found the hardest thing was scaling back my expectations of what I was going to accomplish. Some days I was still not showered by 4 p.m., others I had laundry and dinner done by 7. Those laundry/dinner days came about once a month at the onset, then got a little more often as I got the hang of things. Most of the time I was like, "I'm going to walk to the mailbox today!" *cue "Eye of the Tiger*

6. I am not as sweet and soft a mom as some, but man I still miss my boy when we are apart. There's no substitute for cuddling up to his skinny little body and sniffing his neck. It fills a divot in my heart.