In my opinion, admitting one’s failures is humbling. I think it also shatters the perfect image that’s so easily fronted online. I will never ever claim to be perfect (although I’m plenty arrogant… cue the humbling).
Before M was born, I had a plan. Then we brought our fresh baby home and realized plans are meant to be ditched. Back up plans are also good for ditching 🤷
If you’re a parent and you find yourself having to alter your course, I’m just here to tell ya you’re not alone or a failure or wrong. That’s just how life goes sometimes.
And here are some things that just didn’t work out…
B R E A S T F E E D I N G
We tried. We went all in and registered for the pillows and bags and pads and creams. We got a pump from our insurance company and we spent $$$ on a lactation consultant both before and after M’s arrival.
And you know what? It just didn’t work out.
It took me a week to make that decisions and I struggled HARD for those 7 days (and I wrote about it), but once the decision was made I never looked back.
C O – S L E E P I N G
According to the internet, co-sleeping and bed-sharing are different. Regardless, I mean sleeping in the same room.
We started M in the bassinet in our bedroom for her first 3 weeks. During week four we put her in her crib to start, then brought her into our room after her first middle-of-the-night bottle. Then we did it after the second feeding. Eventually she just stayed in her crib all night.
We HATED sharing a room. Every time M made a noise I woke up. I laid there terrified that K or the dogs would make a noise and wake M. We had to keep our room warmer than we typically would’ve. And truly, I just needed “my space” back in some part of my life. So we kicked her out.
Listen… we have a video monitor, I check her often, and we’ve done all the other steps to reduce SIDS. I am a paranoid momma and I wouldn’t put my child at risk. Also… from the start she slept (and sleeps) SO DAMN WELL on her own in her room. We’ve noticed she’s got a slight independent flare to her (holla ‘atcha girl!) and she does very well by herself.
D A Y C A R E
Once I headed back to work we thought M would spend half her time with family and half her time at daycare. Two things derailed this plan. First of all, we have almost NO daycares around us… and the ones that do exist have 3 out of 5 stars. I wouldn’t send the dogs to a daycare with that rating.
Also, turns out I am TERRIFIED of M getting RSV or Hand Foot & Mouth Disease soooo….. sticking her in a room with a bunch of other children is a hard no from me right now. I’m fine with parks and family and all that, but I know people send their sick kids to daycare and I’m not all about that. She’ll learn to share and socialize some other way for now.
*(I am very grateful that I have the privilege to make this call- our family is AWESOME for keeping M during my work days.)
N O S C R E E N T I M E
Hahahahahahahahahaha. I’ll just go ahead and see myself out.
M loves Mickey & The Roadsters, Puppy Dog Pals, & Sesame Street. She typically only gets an hour or less of TV when we’re home, but I imagine that will change over time, too.
I’m going to go out on a limb and say this will not affect her likelihood of graduating high school. I think we’re safe.
Parenting is effing hard. When things don’t work out, don’t beat yourself up- spend that valuable time with your kid(s) and find an alternative.
Fortunately, we’ve had some things work out beautifully. M is on a pretty decent (sleep) schedule. We’ve had much success with cloth diapers. We’re about to start baby led weaning & I can tell M is excited about food.
I struggled with quitting breastfeeding and I cried the first few nights M wasn’t in our room… but things pan out how they’re supposed to and you’ve got to go with the flow sometimes. I’m proud of us for the things we’ve stuck to- those decisions have shaped our parenting journey.
18 Comments Add yours
Your story is totally my story here: I switched to formula almost immediately (though I still pumped for a few months) because my sanity was more important. Also, he went into his own room around 3 months. To this day, he will not sleep with me/us. He won’t nap anywhere but the car or his crib. It’s like he needs to put himself to sleep and I appreciate the independence I created there.
Gosh yes. By the end of week one my sanity was SO much more important than trying to breastfeed. I think M has an independent streak… she likes playing alone and sleeping alone. I definitely appreciate that. Especially since she still likes us & cuddling ❤
Good job creating that independence, mama!
You are rocking it! I think everyone makes plans before they’ve experienced something, naively. I really never thought about sleeping in the same room as your baby and it disturbing your sleep like that. I can totally picture dogs waking her up!
Thank you! You definitely eat your words and chew them up well after a kid is born. Hahaha. Man… I truly just NEEDED my own space back in some aspect- and it was my bedroom. I felt sad to put that distance between us but it’s done wonders for all of us at night!
All of life has so many plans … & then life actually happens.
You do what works best for you & M.. & all of it is OK 🙂
I laugh when people say no screentime. Its usually the only break you get in a day.
Ha! Screen time is how I steal a few minutes to eat lunch! Lol!
There are so many things I swore I would or wouldn’t do before I became a mom. And now I am like…whatever goes…goes. I don’t ever say I wont do something now because you never know. I was the same way with breastfeeding. It just wasn’t for me and was stressing me out so bad. I slept out in the living room with Zoe for the first 3-4 months, and then she went to her crib. We still use our video monitor and she is 3.5 years old. Best money spent. Watching them eat foods is so fun, I hope you enjoy it!
Yesssss. I wish formula feeding wasn’t such a taboo thing… We do it proudly but I didn’t even consider it until we were struggling HARD with breastfeeding.
M was in a bassinet next to me and it was awfullllll. A monitor with a screen is so much better because I can glance over to see her and no one disturbs anyone else!
I’ve always been a fanatic about safe sleep and I was convinced M would share a room with us for at least 6 months, possibly a year. After less than 3 months I could not do it anymore. Everyone sleeps so much better and I’m so much happier. I also was convinced I would cloth diaper but after a few weeks of researching it was too overwhelming for me. BLW was also too overwhelming for me!! I did manage to breastfeed but only because I was adamant about making it work… I want to write a post about it because I really struggled with it
Man… you truly pick your battles and prioritize when it comes to newborns and babies. I just couldn’t do breastfeeding for my own sanity. Cloth diapering has been amazing for us, though. I love it- but it was overwhelming at first. And we do lots of trial & error.
We’re working through BLW… It’s a slow going process. Hahaha.
I love this. I think parents put way too much pressure on themselves, especially moms, to do things “right” or the way they had planned. You can’t plan for things sometimes, so you just have to roll with it! That’s great that M is doing so well and she has a pretty great sleep schedule. I think she’ll be just fine in the future. 😉
So true. You’ve got to pick your battles sometimes. Ha.
She’s been a little butt when it comes to sleep lately but I think it’s a regression. Babies are constant rollercoasters. Ha.
What’s the deal with hand, foot and mouth? Thought it was just a trivial thing…it’s not like foot and mouth in animals?
From what I understand it’s a highly contagious skin disease- especially in young children. I don’t think it’s damaging longterm, but it’s ouchie and uncomfortable and easy to contract.
Really interesting read! What’s the quote… you make plans and God laughs? I’m not parent, but I assume a lot of it is trial and error and doing what works best for your family!
You are very very correct. Lots of trial and error, and going with the flow, and prioritizing/choosing your battles. Lol!
Same for me with every single one of these. Also went all out on breastfeeding plans with Caleb, then had to ditch them. We kept Caleb in our room for awhile (by awhile, I mean 2 months), but Holden didn’t last in our room for long at all. He was a LOUD sleeper as a baby, so we all did way better when he was in his own room. We’re also lucky that my mom watches our boys, so we’ve never had to do daycare. Aaaand my kids love screens. They love shows and Caleb really enjoys his Kindle. So sue us! Ha.
I actually forgot one! We’d intended to do kangaroos care when she was born and let her rest on my chest for an hour or so. Welp. Delivery was a bit traumatic and I had her on my stomach for roughly 20 seconds before the nurses scooped her up to examine her. I didn’t end up holding her for about an hour. You just kind of adapt to whatever life throws at ya… especially with children. Ha.