For the next baby…

I’ve learned many things as I stated before about what to do and what not to do for the next time I have a baby, this includes not telling anyone the gender of the baby until AFTER (or at) the shower. Well, here is a few more lessons…

Buy the bigger bottles. You know, the 6+ oz ones. You’ll be switching in 4 months or less anyway. Go ahead and buy the next size up nipples for them too. The anti-colic bottles are great for newborns, but they don’t really do anything for baby after three months unless your baby has severe reflux or other gas/tummy issues. So if you’re going to buy them just buy a few. 

Cradle cap. Dear God. Just go ahead and buy some cocunut oil. Coconut oil is good for many things anyways so it’s not a loss to buy a whole big jar of it. If your baby ends up having cradle cap just wash his hair, lather it on his head, leave it on overnight, wash it out the next morning and use a baby brush to get rid of the flaky skin. I am obsessed with picking so I literally pick the flakes off my baby’s head all day until it was absolutely gone. But the coconut oil helped tremendously. It made it easier to peel off the dry skin. His cradle cap was gone in one day. 

Store brand instead of brand name items. This includes formula, diapers etc. For formula we were buying about $30-$40 worth of formula a week. We did some research and compared the ingredients on the store brand of the formula that compares to ours, the EXACT same, and and whole $20 cheaper. I still like my Pampers dieapers but buying the Costco brand diapers if you can is much more money saving and my baby’s bum doesn’t know a difference. 

You need patience and acceptance. Seriously, this is what I needed to hear my first week with a newborn. I was sleep deprived, I was crying, I was not showering or eating right, I was so incredibly close to having postpartum depression. I wish someone would have told me that baby’s just cry, and it’s alright to be frustrated at yourself and even your baby. You will get annoyed. You will get annoyed at your baby, and good God you will get angry at your spouse. Trust me, you don’t want to fuel the anger, just accept things such as the fact that you WILL get up to feed the baby multiple times throughout the night for months and you will not sleep but 2-3 hours until your baby sleeps for AT LEAST 4 straight hours at night. Just accept this fact and you will be less annoyed when having to get up at night, even when going back to work at just 6 weeks postpartum (if you’re American like myself). I also feel the newborn stage is boring. I really do. Your baby won’t do anything interesting or fun for a while. But just be patient if you feel this way also, every day that goes by your baby does something different and they learn from you. 

Another helpful note is to find you a mom group. I mean a social gathering or an online group specifically for mom’s due or baby’s born in the month yours is. Introduce yourself and you will be able to ask anything and get to experience everything together. This helped me so much, and the women in my group are so fantastic about everything. You will want to rant and vent about just random things and the women that are going through the same things will let you cry on their shoulders. You will need this. 

Comment some helpful things you’ve learned!

Book Recommendations

Do you need any new books to read? My go-to store is Half Price Books, but I know not every state has one. They have an online store and I’ve found many books (especially textbooks) cheaper than on Amazon. 

Some favorites of mine:

House Rules by Jodi Picoult

This book is about a mother and her two sons. It’s my favorite book because there are so many real life things happening that I related to (and I read this in high school). The youngest son in this story has Aspergers and the story is told by all points of views and is a great look into what it is like being a single mom trying to do it all herself, as well as her two boys’ views on what is happening. This book made me open my eyes to other people I never understood and how we really do take everything for granted. 

Birthing from Within by Pam England and Rob Horowitz

So this book is not for your typical lazy day reading, but I would definitely recommend it for anyone experiencing pregnancy for the first time, or anyone feeling overwhelmed, or just not knowing what to do. It goes into the history of what pregnancy and birth looks like and how we got to where we are today medically. This book is like a meditation class. And inside it has pictures of drawings that many women drew to show their feelings when you can’t explain them. It has the pros and cons of every type of birth, positions for laboring and giving birth, breathing techniques and so many other things that just make you feel like everything is going to be just fine because your body knows what to do. It also talks about how to cope with pretty much every emotion you go through before and after your baby comes. 

Good in Bed by Jennifer Weiner

I’ve seen some negative views on this book and the writing she does, but I honestly don’t know why. I loved this book and her style of writing. It was like she was talking right to you. I felt every emotion she felt. I felt happiness, I felt heartbreak, and I felt complete shock and rage. I never knew what was going to happen on the next page and it was like I was waiting on my best friend to fill me in on gossip. 

God Never Blinks by Regina Brett

When I first started college I went through a rough patch and got overwhelmed by my own emotions. I needed something to remind me everything was okay, but I didn’t want to talk to anyone. I was recommended this book by a nice lady at the bookstore and it really comforted me. Each chapter had a new “lesson” that the author shares and she tells her own story and what she learned and how it helped her as well. This book had something I needed to hear at the time and it was better I think that it came from a complete stranger. I even bought this book as a gift for a friend and will do so again for anyone going through a rough time or someone I just know would appreciate it. 

Getting in a routine

Finally I think we’ve got a routine down. Although this routine has taken place with me falling asleep on the couch every night rather than our bed… 

Baby will be 3 weeks old tomorrow and our routine is this:

Mornings: turn on lights, open window curtains and let the sun in (but of course since he’s been born it’s been rainy and cloudy). 

From morning til night:

Feed from one boob, change diaper, feed from other boob, awake time/nap time, feed from one boob, change diaper, feed from other boob, repeat… 

Nighttime: turn off lights, close curtains. Clusterfeed, change diaper, fight gas pains, I go and shower and leave husband to watch baby, feed again at 10-11pm while watching Netflix or Hulu (got into this habit when he would clusterfeed all night long), and then put to bed…in the swing or on my chest…and then in the swing or bouncer although I’ve noticed he sleeps a lot longer on my chest but I can’t fall asleep that way so sucks for me. 

Now… He had a cradle upstairs but will not have it. Or at least wouldn’t have it, I have not slept upstairs in our bedroom where his cradle is for a week. His gas pains and clusterfeeding got me confused on which was which and what he wanted for a bit. But the main reason I’m not sleeping upstairs is because my husband started back at work and I would feel bad for constantly waking him up. Plus it takes an hour or so to feed, change, and feed again because baby likes to take long pauses while sucking, so I would feel bad for maybe keeping him awake during this time and/or me just getting frustrated and annoyed hearing my husband snore because I can’t remember the last time I even dreamt because I haven’t been able to reach REM sleep. Maybe I’ll try tomorrow night to sleep in my own bed. Fingers crossed. 

Cluster feedings and amazing husbands

I have no advice for either of these. Baby started cluster feeding day 4 or 5 and I lost a lot of sleep. I started crying for no reason, thinking I was terrible because I hated not sleeping and I hated the pain from breastfeeding constantly.

I had the baby blues, and I was sad. My husband knew it and he told me he couldn’t see me this way so he sent me to bed and he stayed up with the baby all night. After that night, the baby actually calmed down and I felt so much better. Up until this point we had been staying up in the living room where there is a TV and I finally was awake for Jimmy Fallon and got used to watching his show. My husband said it was time to move back to our bedroom where his cradle is and get him used to it. Baby doesn’t like lying flat on his back so we use a Boppy pillow and it works perfectly. 

Now, I don’t miss the sleepless nights of clusterfeeds, or the aching pain in my breasts and back of having to sit up a certain way. But I do miss Jimmy. Haha!

But there will be more clusterfeeds! My baby is 11 days old and I am patiently waiting for what else is in store and what habits we are into right now that he will break again.

I would like to take this time and thank my husband because if it was not for him on those first few days I am pretty sure I would have developed a more postpartum depression like state if not it. I thought mean things of myself and contradicted myself a lot and the baby’s cries made me lose it. My husband talked with me, he may not know how it feels but he definitely understands. 

I am very lucky to have this amazing man in my life. I love him more now than I ever did. 

Nursery

I still don’t have a crib in here yet because it is being made by my father in law, but we do have a cradle that will stay in our room until the crib is finnished. 

My nursery does have a semi-theme of a mix of Harry Potter and elephants. And a huge green dinosaur that you should have seen me carrying around in Big Lots!