The purpose of providing advice is to help others but I completely understand when it is unwelcome. I have received plenty of unwelcome advice from others. I am actually appalled at times when I am offered 5 completely different answers for one simple problem. Why can’t we as society have more concrete answers when it comes to raising babies? Why is everyone’s perspective so different?
The answer, I believe, is because every child is different. What works for one baby may not work for another.
As we are learning to become parents we are taking things one at a time. Here is a list of our personal lessons (so far)-
1. When you have a boy and are changing his diaper, point it down. It prevents peeing through the diaper. I wish we knew this before 2 weeks of age.
2. Support one another, take breaks when needed and ask for help from your spouse or family.
3. Drying their clothes really makes them shrink. I should have introduced the 3 month size much earlier. Also, just because he is “3 months old” doesn’t mean he wears size “3 months”. We are in 6 months clothes at 15 weeks. My co-worker’s son is wearing 9 months at 11 months old.
4. Feeding is going to be different for everyone. This was the most dramatic change in our life. It runs our world and will for quite some time. I understand the need for maternity leave for this alone. You can’t listen to everyone’s advice here but lactation consultants are your best friend, if needed.
5. He doesn’t really like tummy time but he does like sleeping on his tummy. We put him to bed on his back still (back is best) but Dad allows naps on the tummy when he is right there with him.
6. I am still learning this one, try to ignore everything else while spending quality time with him- undistracted by the house’s mess, missed calls and making dinner.
7. I like to buy clothes on clearance for next year. So, right now I am buying this year’s clearanced summer clothes for 18 month size. I won’t buy any further out than that though because you can’t be sure of their exact size.
8. Don’t read those baby books like “What to expect the first year” and then worry if you aren’t doing something exactly as they describe or if your baby isn’t quite at that level yet. It is meant to provide guidelines. Every baby is on their own pace and just because they do something early or late doesn’t mean that they are smart or not. When you stress, I think your baby knows it.
9. It is great to talk to friends about their experience but I realized that the best thing we can do is spend time and learn about our unique little one. He has told us his needs and we learn more about his developing personality every day. Some sleep through the night, some don’t. Sometimes you need baby monitors, sometimes you don’t. Some babies love swings and bouncer seats, some may not. Some eat like a champ, others have more of a challenge. Some babies love a bath and others will cry the whole time. No two babies are alike, just like the rest of us.
10. I am really enjoying the benefits of Amazon Mom.
Remember, Steady as we go.