Hello Bleeps. It's really hard to believe that I have been a mother for a year now. A few years back, I thought this day would never come and here I am celebrating my 2nd Mother's Day. It's amazing.
I would love to say that the first year of being Reese's Mom has been nothing but giggles and glow, but that would be a lie. We have definitely had our rough moments and there have been tears from both of us (Reese and I that is). But we survived and it has made us stronger. I cannot imagine being a single parent. Even when J is gone and I play the part for a couple days, it exhausts me. The people who do it constantly have my most sincere praise. I need J as my back-up. I can't do this without him.
When I dropped Reese at daycare Thursday morning, the two ladies who are there in the morning (that Reese and I both love), had a Mother's Day card that they had made and a present for me. They said they don't do this for most Moms but because I bring joy to their lives, they wanted to let me know they apprciated me and thought I was one of the best Moms they had ever seen. These ladies have seen hundreds of mothers. For them to say that sincerely warmed my heart and made me cry. It was very much appreciated. They even had a card they had made that said on the front "to one of the greatest Moms." So sweet.
I've learned many things in this past year as a Mom.
1. A baby crying is not always a bad thing.
Our sleep coach has told us that when a baby is tired and cries (especially if they are overtired), they release a hormone in their body that helps them go to sleep. She is 100% correct. It was hard to listen to for a long time, and still is, but usually it is short lived and Reese falls asleep soundly for hours on end. Thankfully she has started to take really good naps at home, daycare is a whole 'nother story.
2. You never know how much sleep you REALLY need until you don't get it over an extended period of time.
Everyone tells you to get your sleep before the baby comes, and boy do I know why now! We've had our fair share of sleeping issues, although for the moment, we're doing quite well. But I have learned that I can live with about 4-5 hours of sleep and do relatively well. Even if it is over a longer period of time.
3. Lazy weekends don't have to go away just because there's a baby in the house.
When we don't have events planned on the weekends, we have always lazed around in bed until 11 or noon. Even with Reese when she was still nursing, I fed her in bed with us at 7:30 am, then we take a nap, we feed again at 10:30 am, and we finally get up. It's a wonderful way to start the weekend. It disappeared all too quickly. The last time she wanted to nap with me was on Christmas Day. I have tried since then, but she apparently is like J, and likes her space now. Unless she is sick, then she'll sleep on me still.
4. Breastfeeding is SOOOO hard, but more worthwhile that I ever could have imagined.
Yes, breastfeeding was a huge struggle at the beginning and throughout my nursing days. And when she bit with her two bitty teeth, then with her 4 teeth, then with her 7 teeth! But there is no better thing to me. I gave Reese something that NO ONE ELSE can. And that was our time. It was special. It was hard. It was worth it. And it was usually instantly calming for her. For any woman who doesn't think they will breastfeed, I would say PLEASE at least consider it. Because it is awesome, for Mom and for baby. Truly incredible!
5. Watching the world through a child's eyes is amazing.
Watching Reese's "firsts" has been eye-opening to say the least. Not only watching her roll over, smile, sit up, laugh, speak, crawl, walk (still with help), but watching with her amaze herself is so fun too! She gets excited when she achieves something new.
6. You can never hear "your baby is gorgeous" enough.
I think part of what makes Reese so gorgeous is that she is usually happy. A crying baby can be hard to take (and yes, we have our days), but for the most part, she is joyful and so pleasant to be around. When she emits how gorgeous her soul is through her smile, it's hard to resist her.
I'm sure there are a million more things, but those are the big ones that I can think of now!
Birthday letter and pictures to come!