...I have painfully learned about parenthood.
1) "You will never get good sleep again"- I used to HATE it when people would say that to my pregnant self. "Oh, you better sleep now, because when that baby comes, you'll never sleep again." I swore, I would never say that to anyone I knew who was pregnant. The thing is, I am finally willing to admit...they are completely right. I mean when I was pregnant, my thoughts were...my baby WILL sleep through the night, because I will TRAIN her to do that. The thing is, Lacey is a great sleeper. She slept through the night at 8 weeks...most babies don't get there until 12-16 weeks or some babies not until 8 or 9 MONTHS (Lord, please help those parents)! But, 2 things I didn't understand (for whatever reason) was, 1) just because they sleep through the night 2 or 3 nights in a row, doesn't mean that they will FOREVER be sleeping through the night. I don't know why I didn't even think of that. Plus, when you are used to sleeping all night, and then suddenly for a week you have to get up 1 or 2 times a night, it is painfully difficult. Secondly, just because your baby is sleeping doesn't mean you don't think about them. "Is she too hot?"; "Is she too cold?"; "Is she breathing?"; "Is her leg stuck in the crib?"; "Did she roll into the bumper?"; and my favorite "I can't believe she is still asleep, I better get up and go check on her." I still won't say this to people who are pregnant, maybe they'll have an AMAZING sleeper, but if not, its totally fair for them to figure it out on their own, because that is what we all have to do.
2) It is the most selfless job on the planet, and requires the most patience-a very obvious statement, but didn't really hit me until as of late. When I think about how much time I spend taking care of Lacey and thinking about Lacey, I wonder how I have time to do anything else. Your priorities are definitely put to second place and what Lacey needs, Lacey gets. I have spend endless hours trying to get her to fall asleep, only for her to wake up 25 minutes later, ready to go again (where I know that she will be ultimately crabby in a short hour). I notice it the most, when I am exhausted and the minute I fall asleep, she wakes up. Or there are the times when you just want to go to the mall and look around but she won't stop whining and its easier to just go home rather than try to shuffle through the mall, holding a baby in one hand and pushing the stroller with the other, while trying to look at things. But, it is all worth it. 100% completely and utterly worth it. When you are at your witts end, I handle it by reminding myself that if anythingwere to ever happen to her, I would rather have spent 3 crying hours getting her to fall asleep every.single.night. (or whatever the current struggle is), than not have her here. It just comes with the job.
3) Sometimes there is nothing you can do to help your baby- this you painfully learn during the first six weeks during the "witching hours" those hours in the evening when your normally happy newborn, just cries for no apparent reason. But the problem is you know that's coming because everyone warns you about it. It is so hard when they are in pain or uncomfortable, and you can't do anything to calm them down. I learned this, this past weekend. It was hard. We had a couple days in the 80's. The brainchild who build this condo, decided to not put AC in the units. We didn't even think that we might not have air conditioning. Its a new condo. brand.spanking.new. Anyway, it was HOT in our house and Lacey can't sleep without being in her sack, but who can sleep covered when the sun in blaring in your room and you are hot? The poor thing, was dripping wet, crying and crying. We can't open her window because we live on a busy street that is pretty loud, she had a fan blowing but i think it scared her more than anything... we tried everything...most people just tell us, just lay her in her crib in a onsie and she'll fall asleep when she is tired enough. No she won't. I've waited up to 4 hours for that to "work" and it doesn't. We had 2 painful nights of lacey screaming because she is beyond tired and hot, and mama crying because she wants to help lacey but has absolutely no idea what do do. Mike is so frustrated because why the heck do we not have AC? It was so sad and so hard. Last night it cooled off and she went to bed at 7 and slept until 6:30 this morning so we were redeemed. Either way, I've got to figure out something this week because it is supposed to warm up next weekend as well. Any suggestions? Please let me know.