Musings From a First Time Mom- Four Months In

Well, I’m a little late with this post. I know I’ve been absent from blogging lately. And, I could bore you all with reasons/ excuses and ramble on about work/life/yadda yadda yadda. But, that’s not why you came here today, now is it?

So, I won’t go into all that. I will say that soon (very soon!) I will be back to my old blogging self.

In the mean time, here are some musings I have to share. For you, from me, a first time mom, four months in.

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Married with Children

It’s good to be aware of the new stresses that are going to bombard your relationship and to come up with a plan of attack for how to handle them when they do.

Are you ready for a cold, hard dose of truth? I’m warning you:

DO NOT READ ON IF YOU WANT TO REMAIN BLISSFULLY UNAWARE OF THE REALITY OF BEING MARRIED WITH CHILDREN.

To start this off nice and terrifyingly, let’s read a quote from one of my favorite books Brain Rules for Baby by Dr. John Medina:

“We now know that this long-term erosion is a regular experience of married life, starting in the transition to parenthood. Marital quality, which peaks in the last trimester of a first pregnancy, decreases anywhere from 40 to 67 percent in the infant’s first year. More recent studies, asking different questions, put the figure closer to 90 percent… Indeed, one-third to one-half of new parents display as much marital distress as troubled couples already in therapy trying to save their relationship.”

What’s more, that stress and distress felt in a marriage is also felt by the baby. Dr. Medina goes on to explain:

“Infants younger than 6 months old can usually detect that something is wrong. They can experience physiological changes–such as increases in blood pressure, heart rate, and stress hormones–just like adults. Some researchers claim they can assess the amount of fighting in a marriage simply by taking a 24-hour urine sample of the baby.”

I can hear your internal screams and worries now:

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN? HOW DO I STOP IT? IS IT INEVITABLE?

I had the same thoughts, fears, and panic. I love my husband. I love my family. What do you mean I have a nearly 50% chance of becoming miserable just because I had a baby? That can’t be!

Well, four months into parenthood, I can tell you, it can be. I’m not saying that it is. Hubby and I are actually doing really great. But, that’s because we sat down before our baby girl arrived and talked about all of this stuff. I’m not saying that we’re relationship gurus over here, and that our marriage is perfect. Far from it.

What I am saying, though, is that it’s good to be aware of the new stresses that are going to bombard your relationship and to come up with a plan of attack for how to handle them when they do. Dr. Medina, in his book, goes on to discuss the biggest struggles new parents will face and how to prepare for them. And yes, we have faced them. We’re still facing them.

But, we were prepared.

And, my hope with this post is to help you and your partner get prepared, as well. Our way may not work for you, but hopefully this will spark you to start having these conversations and figuring out your way to prepare for, handle, and make it through all the troubles of being married with children.

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It’s Saturday Morning…

And as I’m sitting here, watching my baby on the monitor, I can’t help but think, “wow, this is going by so fast.”

Currently, Norah is perched up on her left side, so so so close to rolling over from back to front for the first time. She’s been doing this for about a week now, taunting me and my husband, getting a little closer each time, and then flopping back to her starting position.

She’s also hitting the four month sleep regression. Hence why she’s back in her crib, supposed to be napping, at 7:30am. I think we’re lucky, though, because she’s only getting up twice a night (so far). So, I won’t complain… too much…

She’s also started this thing where she yells at the top of her lungs. It’s adorable. I’ve read where some moms want to stop their babies from doing this, afraid it will cause “bad behavior.” Not me. I absolutely love it. And you know what? I yell right along with her. And we laugh. And a great time is had by all.

It’s crazy to think that one year ago tomorrow we found out I was pregnant. Father’s Day 2018. It’s been such a whirlwind of a year. There have been lots of ups and a fair amount of downs. But, at the end of the day (or the beginning of the day, I suppose) as I sit down and reflect on all of it, I can’t help but smile. I love my life right now. I love my family.

So, while I usually try to have some “point” to my posts, or accomplish something, I guess all I’m really trying to accomplish with this one is to freeze this moment. To remember what she’s like right now, at 16 weeks 3 days old. Because tomorrow she’ll be different. And next week she’ll be doing something new. And it’s all going to go by so fast. It’s already going by so fast.

I Didn’t Know My Baby Has Reflux Until…

I follow some awesome moms on twitter. They’re amazing and open and so honest with their experiences as a parent that I love reading what they have to say. I feel like I’m always learning from them.

One topic I see a lot of moms talk about is reflux. From the stories I’ve heard, it can get very intense! I never thought my baby could have it. She doesn’t vomit all the time. She doesn’t scream when we lay her down. She doesn’t fuss every time she eats.

You see, I never realized that these moms’ experiences encompassed extreme cases of reflux.

Moms with babies like mine don’t talk about their little ones’ reflux as much because it isn’t as impactful. I get it. Those moms who have babies with really really bad reflux, they’re troopers. They’re amazing, honestly! And I’m glad they share their struggle and turn to each other and other moms for support! I love the online mom community I’ve found.

But, in this post, I want to talk about the not so extreme reflux. The reflux my baby has. Because she needed medicine, and I’m glad she got it. And maybe your baby has reflux, too, and you just don’t know it yet because they’re not throwing up all the time or constantly miserable (bless those babies’ little hearts!).

Here are the signs that led to her diagnosis. Some of these things I didn’t even consider to be reflux! I just thought it was her being a baby.

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6 Things I Couldn’t Live Without At One Month But Haven’t Touched Since Two

It’s funny how much can change in such a short time. As a parent, I feel like somewhere between months two and three I have really started to get the hang of my new role. Yes, I expect that will all change soon, as Norah’s on the brink of entering her 4th leap, the 4 month sleep regression, and I’m pretty sure she’ll start teething in the middle of all of it, just to keep things super interesting.

But, still, I feel like my confidence as a mom has picked up. With this, the number of baby accessories I need has decreased. Here are six things I couldn’t live without the first month of mothering that I haven’t touched in the last (at least) 4 weeks.

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Perks of Being a Breastfeeding Mama

Breastfeeding is one of those things you either love or hate. It’s not easy. It’s time consuming. It’s demanding (well, baby is demanding) and when you’re working while breastfeeding, you have to worry about pumping and storing and freezing and all that fun stuff.

Well, while it can be exhausting and frustrating, I’ve been really taking advantage of some of the perks of breastfeeding lately. Here are my top four favorite things about being a breastfeeding mama.

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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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