As a first time mom, I wanted to do everything PERFECT. I researched EVERYTHING.
My child, never ate anything that wasn't organic. I steamed his carrots, and froze them into cute little trays. I never let him eat anything that had fallen on the floor. I took weekly pictures, documented every milestone, and shared way too many pictures. I was so proud I created this little perfect human!
Now, don't get me wrong. I love my second child to the moon and back! She is the sweetest, chubbiest, cutest little cherub! Things are different though...
I thought of this specifically last week. My son dropped a bunch of "puffs" (those little air filled snacks that don't really have any nutritional benefit) on the floor. My little lady scooted right over and began eating them all up. I just laughed and watched her. Kid one... I would have picked them all up and thrown them away. Kid two... eat away sweetheart! This is our house right...
I still feed her mostly organic food, but I buy a lot of it... I do get pictures of her monthly milestones. We haven't had a professional picture in awhile though...
There are benefits though to this that comes with more than one child. I am much more comfortable nursing her in public. I was much more self conscious with my first. I covered during my 6 week postpartum exam... I mean COME ON they were there when I had him!?
The biggest thing I have realized is I have relaxed as a mother. I am starting to understand what is really important. Maybe I am just losing time to care so much about the little things.
Don't get me wrong, it is not all sprinkles and rainbows around here. Like today... nap time was torture. I can rarely get the toddler down anymore. I took away his new tent and "threw it away." Not my proudest moment. Not getting sleep and trying to get my children to sleep is in my opinion the hardest part of parenting!
Moral of the story: We are all just doing our best. We all mother differently and that is what is beautiful! I have learned so much from my experienced mother friends and hope I can pass along some tiny pearls of wisdom to those mothers in need.
Some days I feel like I have it all together, then the next day my son cracks raw eggs, colors on the walls, and takes off his diaper during his nap... Trust me, when I see you on the struggle bus I will be there to help! please do the same for me. This IS my circus and these ARE my monkeys!
Women have so much to think about during pregnancy. We spend so much time planning the perfect birth, nursery, shower etc. We often forget about the fourth trimester!
The fourth trimester is a time that describes the first three months of a babies life. When I had my first squish, I remember someone saying to me that my little guy looked like a little frog. He was all squished up laying on my chest. He loved this position. I wondered why that was?
Babies love their mamas! We are all they know! Our smell, the sound of our voice, the warmth of our skin, and the sound of our heart beat can often times instantly calm our babies! These little babes don't know they are even born! They want and need us.
This time can often be challenging. As mothers now, we are changing. We are exhausted, healing, learning how to breastfeed and just adjusting to new life with our new baby. I want to share some easy tips to survive the fourth trimester.
It is easiest to try and think about what a baby experienced in the womb and try to recreate it! They spent their whole lives inside of our womb and that is all they know! By using our common sense we can often times meet their needs.
- The placenta was constantly feeding your little one in the womb. They never felt hunger before. Feed your baby! Feeding on demand lets your little one know you are there for them. Don't worry about a time clock and how long it has been since their last feeding. Nursing them not only relieves their hunger but it comforts them as well.
- Our womb is a noisy place! The sounds of our digestion, heartbeat and muffled sounds soothes baby. putting on a sound machine, fan or running water helps recreate this noise and can soothe them.
- Babies are constantly lulled by our daily movement in the womb. by carrying our baby, or baby wearing, we are recreating this movement they are used to. it can help them fall asleep as well!
- Our babes are used to constantly hearing the sound of our heart beat! doing skin to skin with mom or dad can calm them by this sound they are so used to being comforted by. Not to mention it releases oxytocin, helping us bond!
- Baby is used to hearing us and others talking. talking, singing and laughter can soothe our babies and let them know we are near.
- Our baby has never felt cold before! they are most comforted being warm.
6. Closed Quarters
- Baby is constantly snuggled up tight in our womb. recreate this by arm swaddling, baby wearing, and keeping close.
I hope these tips help you survive the fourth trimester. This time of life is so sweet. The days are long, but the years are short. Cherish every moment, every snuggle, every late night feeding. All too soon they grow up and you find yourself missing these moments. Breath them in, remember their littleness. We are so blessed to be called to be mamas.
You can learn this and SO MUCH MORE by taking a birth boot camp class. Visit www.birthbootcamp.com to find an instructor in your area. We also offer online classes you can take from the comfort of your own home! Visit siouxfallsbirth.com to learn more about me and the classes I offer in the sioux falls, sd area!
Paige Goldade - A Birth Boot Camp Instructor living and loving in South Dakota. She is a wife and mother of two rambunctious toddlers. She works as a childbirth educator and Board Certified Registered Nurse.