I have about 25 minutes to myself. This has to go fast.
When you are a new mom, you will hit several walls. I think my pattern is about every 3 weeks, sometimes more frequently if I’m lacking sleep. My latest wall occurred epically on Father’s Day (#wifeoftheyear). I decided I couldn’t make my daughter happy after a long day of crying and stomach issues, and I also couldn’t handle celebrating my husband, so I left the house and ended up alone on a park bench eating Dairy Queen. Nut job. But guess what? It’s what I needed. I realized then that I need an hour a day to myself to do whatever I want- blog, clean, exercise, primp, or eat 1200 calories. My sweet and very understanding husband embraced this (he actually suggested it,) and is kind enough to support me in this sanity-saving endeavor. In fact, I forgot about “my hour” until he asked if I was going to get out of the house tonight. So I skedaddled. Hot tip: Dunkin’ Donuts seems to close at like 6pm or some shit. Tim Horton’s it is.
Anyways, I’ve come to find that having a child means there will always be some issue you are trying to navigate. Just when you think you have it solved: wrong. You didn’t. Start from scratch. OR, yes! You solved it! Life will be better now! UNTIL… new problem arises. Repeat. Friends have warned me about the mindfuck (their words, not mine) that is the art of child rearing, and they were so right. Our latest and most urgent issue is how my beautiful, determined daughter refuses to drink from a bottle. She won’t drink breast milk, she won’t drink formula, she won’t drink it from a fox, she will not drink it wearing socks. This kind of resilience will serve her well down the road, but for now it’s simply wreaking havoc on everyone’s lives, including hers. The struggle is real, folks.
So of course I’ve sought out advice from our pediatrician, two lactation consultants, took a pumping class, Googled everything under the sun, and reached out to Facebook and Twitter moms for help. I’ve gotten some great ideas, feedback and personal stories that make me feel not so alone. Most advise that like other issues, this is something she will grow out of and simply have to adapt to. This is also what I believe (because I have to or I will die of panic.) Still, one of the main pieces of advice I’ve received and read about was, “Try XYZ nipple, bottle, sippy cup,” and so on. Much of the same thing when I was looking for the ideal sleep sack for Lily after she kept breaking free from her HALO swaddle. I started making daily trips to Buy Buy Baby, 40 minutes from home, to exchange the sleep sack of the moment and try something else. I was searching for the Holy Grail of sleep sacks. What some people swore by didn’t work for us. The one I ended up settling on was “The Woombie” because it zippers, effectively constricting her to a little baby burrito straight jacket. It’s pretty cute, actually.
It was only then that could see there is no one product that is going to solve all my problems and make all of our lives more tolerable. My baby is going to do what she does and do it a certain way until she is good and ready to do it a different way. She is going to prefer the sleep sack I choose for her not because of some magic comfort it brings her, but because that is the sleep sack she is used to because I put her in it every night. She may be spitfire determined, but guess who she got that from? 😉
As we endure the latest battle of wills, I am trying to remember what several great moms have told me; this too, shall pass. And also like her mom, she’s not about to starve herself so whether it’s an Avent bottle, a Playtex drop-in or a goddamn spoon, she’ll figure out a way to eat.
Time to go home.