100 Days of Norah: What I’ve Learned So Far

I’ve had my baby for 100 days. That’s 100 days of snuggles and kisses, tears, and growing pains. That’s 100 days of learning. And 100 days of loving someone so much more than I ever realized I could.

Normally, I write a post at the beginning of each new month with my little girl with some tips I’ve learned about being a mom:

Tips From a First Time Mom: 1 Month In

Tips From a First Time Mom: 2 Months In

But instead, today I just want to reflect on what I’ve learned in the last 100 days with my baby.

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Just Give Me A Reason

Just a little bit’s enough…

Sorry, I couldn’t resist. But no, this isn’t a tribute to a Pink song. The title is very fitting, though. So, I’m going to borrow it.

In this post I want to discuss something I am so very guilty of: trying to explain everything. Everything happens for a reason right?

That’s what I used to think, at least. And then I had a baby…

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My First Mother’s Day!

I was seriously so excited for my first Mother’s Day. Like, more excited than Christmas kind of excited. I’ve been looking forward to it for weeks!

Why? I don’t really know. I mean, it was a great day! But, it wasn’t the day itself that I was looking forward to. I think it was the idea that made me so excited. It’s another thing that makes it really official: I’m a mom.

I know that celebrating Mother’s Day doesn’t make me any more of a mom than I was the day before. But, it’s the whole experience. The process of becoming “more a mom” every day.

I know they say it comes naturally. And, in so many ways, it does. But, I’m still learning (and, I have a feeling I’ll spend the rest of my life learning) what it really means to be a mom. With each milestone we hit, whether it be something Norah does for the first time, or taking her to see the Easter bunny, or my first Mother’s Day, I feel like I’m slipping more and more into my new role.

And I really do mean “slipping” because some days it feels like I’m just making it up, just slipping and sliding along, trying to balance being a mom, wife, and full-time worker.

But, on my First Mother’s Day, I decided to only be one thing: a mom. I didn’t do one dish. I didn’t think about work. I didn’t clean or shop or worry about the house. My hubby took care of all of that (he’s pretty awesome like that).

I spent time with my baby girl.

AND I pampered myself. I took a long nap and TWO extra long showers. It was glorious. On top of all that, my hubby surprised me with a beautiful Mother’s Day present!

It might seem a little tacky, but I don’t really care. It’s exactly what I wanted. I want everyone to know I’m a mom. I want everyone to ask me about my baby so I can show her off.

So, to all you mamas out there, whether it’s your first or your fiftieth Mother’s Day, I hope it was as wonderful as mine! Here’s to us!

Not The Post-Mother’s Day Post I Planned On, But…

I just need to take a moment to talk about this man right here.

My best friend, my travel buddy, my constant, and the best daddy my little girl could ever want, need, or ask for.

Since going back to work full time, my hubby has been staying home with Norah. She hasn’t made it easy, but he’s done such a great job. He’s not just been taking care of our baby. He’s been cooking dinner, doing dishes, cleaning the apartment. He’s been doing everything possible to make my life easier.

And when my first Mother’s Day came around, he made it so special. But, I’ll talk about that more in the blog post I had planned (and actually wrote Mother’s Day evening, to be honest). This post isn’t about Mother’s Day day. It’s about Mother’s Day night.

The night I spent sitting up sick and in pain. The night our baby girl decided she wanted to play instead of sleep.

It was the perfect storm. And who guided us through it? My amazing husband! He took care of me while simultaneously taking care of Norah. He did it all without one complaint, one mumble or grumble about being tired. He really is the best man I could have ever wanted to be my husband. I honestly don’t know how I would make it through this whole life thing without him.

So, while yesterday was Mother’s Day, and it was all about me and Norah, the real hero was my hubby. And I feel like that deserves to be mentioned.

My Baby Isn’t Your Baby (And That’s Okay!)

“My baby is sleeping through the night.”
“My baby is grabbing onto toys.”
“My baby is rolling over.”

Well, MY baby isn’t doing any of those things.

Does that mean something is wrong with her? No. Does it mean that I’m not doing a good job as a mom? No.

So, what does it mean?

Absolutely nothing! It means nothing. And I’ve had to remind myself of that. I can’t compare my baby to other babies. And I can’t compare myself as a mom to other moms. It’s okay if Norah’s not sleeping through the night yet. That just means more snuggles and more time together–just the two of us. Maybe she’s not grabbing at toys just yet, but man! she loves books. She has her own personality, and I just love seeing it come out a little more every day.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that I want other moms to stop bragging about their little ones’ achievements. Believe me, as soon as Norah sleeps through the night for the first time every single person in the blogging/ facebook/ social media world will know about it.

I think it’s great that we share our victories with each other. I think it’s important that we celebrate them together. But, in order to do that, we need to come to a place of complete understanding and acceptance of one very important fact: my baby is not your baby, and that’s okay!

Don’t be discouraged if your baby is still waking up two, three, four times at night. Don’t panic if your baby isn’t rolling over by this time or crawling by that. Let your baby be who they are. Love them and encourage them. And, while you’re at it, encourage the other mamas around you. Celebrate with them. Cry with them. Feel their pain and their excitement. Because being a parent is hard and there’s no one-size-fits-all guide to raising a baby.

Your baby is perfect for you, and you are perfect for them. That’s why they’re your baby. I am the best person in the world to care for Norah. And she is and always will be my little girl. She’ll hit her milestones and in the blink of an eye, she’ll be walking, talking, running, going to school… If she wants to take her time, I’m okay with that. I’m just going to soak up every moment and be in that moment completely.

So, tell me mamas–What awesome thing did your baby do today? I want to celebrate with you!!

Working Mama: Update

So, I’ve been back at work full-time for 2.5 days. Thursday, Friday, and now Monday. How has it been going? It’s interesting you should ask. Because I’ve just been trying to figure that out myself.

On the one hand, it’s going pretty well. Pretty well for me, that is. Well, pretty well for me in the professional sense. Emotionally, I’m a wreck. And hubby? Well, poor hubby has his hands full. Oh, and, of course, the baby! She’s been struggling, to say the least.

So, as I sit here, pumping in my designated “lactation space,” I can’t help but reflect on my new life as a working mom. Here’s how I feel it’s going so far.

All you working mamas out there, let me know if this sounds familiar, please! Am I (we–my family) alone in our struggles? AND, as always, any advice you can share is so appreciated.

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