I said all sorts of stuff about how I’d raise my hypothetical child before I had her. I tried to include the words “I’d like to…” or “I plan on trying…” rather than “I will definitely…” so that I wouldn’t look like a complete idiot when made to eat my words. Now that we’re two months in, here’s where I’ve netted out:
I blew it all in the hospital. I had a very detailed birth plan. It was: “Get drugs. Have baby. Have goop wiped off baby before holding.” When I checked into Labor & Delivery, the nurse asked if I wanted the baby cleaned up before I held her. I said no. I don’t even know why I said no, the word just came out of my mouth. (We never got to that point, but I think I would have been okay either way).
My hospital “strongly encouraged” rooming in. I “strongly encouraged” sleeping, so I swore I’d send the baby to the nursery. After I had her, it was late, my parents (who were stalking me in the waiting room while I was in surgery) visited, and no one really asked if I wanted her to go the nursery. Plus, I was traumatized by her birth and didn’t want she or J to leave my side. The next night, I figured I’d have to nurse her every two hours, so she could stay. I didn’t count on the fact she wouldn’t go back to sleep immediately after eating, so by my last night I was an exhausted, sobbing mess, and it was “strongly encouraged” that I send her to the nursery. I also swore there was no reason for J to spend nights with me in the hospital, but after realizing how hard it was to get out of bed every ten minutes to care for a screaming newborn, he only spent one of the four nights at home.
Once Emilia came home, it just continued.
What I said: I want to nurse for at least 6 months (or until baby had teeth), and would build up a stock of pumped milk to send her to day care with when I went back to work.
What I did: I nursed for 7 weeks and never pumped enough to give her a pumped bottle more than once a day, if I was lucky. It was hard, and I had to stop for my own sanity as much as for Emilia’s health and happiness. Overall, I’m okay with the decision, but sometimes I think – I should have tried harder. Then I look at the baby who never screams unless its been 3 hours since her last bottle, sleeps for 6 hour stretches at night, and gained 2 pounds in a month, and I think – Nah, its okay!
What I said: I’ll wear her in the Ergo all the time and get stuff done.
What I did: I do like the Ergo, but she’s too little to use it without the infant insert, which is an extra step. And it makes both of us hot, sweaty messes. She likes it, though. I wear her when she gets fussy and I don’t feel like holding her, I wore her at the wine tasting last week, and when I raked yesterday (that didn’t last long). I do see myself using it more when she’s a little less squishy and easier to get her in and out of it.
What I said: We’ll take her everywhere with us!
What I did: She does go wherever we go, within reason. She’s been out to eat multiple times, and usually sleeps, but does sometimes get fussy. She doesn’t scream though, we pick her up or feed her ASAP. I try to take her out every day – for a walk, to the store, out to lunch, the vineyard (she may have a drinking problem). I realize she’s at the stage where she’s highly portable, and this freedom could change at any minute! We also do things without her, we left her with my parents at two weeks old, and I’ve left her with J many times.
What I said: I’ll be back to running in no time, and in my regular clothes by the time I go back to work.
What I did: Gained too much weight while pregnant, and still working on it. I didn’t count on the C Section, and while I did start walking a few weeks after having the baby, I didn’t start running until after my 6 week check up. Its going slowly (as is the weight loss) but I’m running my first race this weekend. I’m only hoping to run more than I walk, and make it to the free beer before it runs out.
What I said: I’m going to cloth diaper.
What I did: The diapers I bought (FuzziBunz, BumGenius, and Flip) are one size fits all, 8-35 pounds. I knew I wanted to give getting used to a baby a month or two before I added in extra laundry. And then I needed laundry detergent, and I needed to actually figure out how to use them. But I started the other day, and so far, so good. I haven’t attempted overnights yet, or out and about, so I’d say she’s in them 50% of the time. But they’re easy to use, just one extra load of laundry every 3 days or so, and they’re really not that much extra work. She can’t use them at day care, so I’m not going to recognize a ton of cost savings, but I really wanted to try them and I’m glad we’re doing it, even if its not as much as I’d like.
What I said: I’ll never sleep with the baby.
What I did: 95% of the time, she’s in her crib. But when its 6am and she’s screaming in her crib but not in my arms, and I’m tired, she’s napping with me. It makes me nervous, but its comfy, and we do it as safely as possible. I’m currently holding strong on the “no family bed” thing, but reserve the right to change my mind to get a good night’s sleep.
What I said: I’ll get all sorts of stuff done on maternity leave!
What I did: I do get stuff done, but not as quite as much as I thought. Its not really the baby’s fault, its more because I’m lazy. If I don’t get up and moving, I find myself farting around on Facebook waiting for Ellen to start (what? Emilia likes to dance too). I do have dinner planned or cooked every night, I do keep up with house things, and I did finally assemble the Ikea dresser for the spare room. Grocery shopping is tough with the baby, but as long as I don’t put too many canned goods in her car seat we’re good. As a side note, its only a matter of time before I get arrested for shoplifting because something has fallen in between her car seat and the carriage and I forget to pay for it.
So, I’m eating a lot of my words, but I think that’s ok. And this little one doesn’t seem to mind.