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Figuring Things Out?

April 25, 2012

Hello, hello!  Is it only Wednesday?  What year is it??

We’re still a little out of it over here.  :-)

Before I get started with this post, I know some of you might be thinking… “Didn’t this used to be a food blog??” 

Actually, I’ve always thought of this as more of just a “life in general” blog—there’s not enough food on here to be a food blog; there isn’t enough exercise to be a healthy living or fitness blog; there isn’t enough pregnancy/kiddo stuff to be a mommy blog…

Which means that I guess it’s just my blog.  And that means that it’s usually going to reflect what’s going on in my life at the moment—whether that’s awesome food, fun travel, or, as of late, adjusting to life with a newborn. 

I realize these posts might not be interesting to everyone—feel free to pass right over them if that’s the case!  But I know that these early days with Lila are going to be over before we know it, and I also know I’ll be mad at myself if I don’t at least try to blog about what’s going on.  I want to be able to look back in a year (or two, or three), and see pictures like this:

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…and remember the craziness of what it meant to be standing in the bathroom at 1am with the hair dryer on full blast and my newborn in my arms, having had a total of six hours sleep in the past 48 hours. 

If nothing else, it will serve nicely as birth control. :-) 

So.  That’s that.

As far as the craziness goes…as my title says, we’re still kind of figuring things out.  We’ve started to build up an arsenal of “tricks” that seem to work when little miss has her fuss pants on.  She likes the hair dryer and rocking in the glider with Ryan.  She also loves being bounced on our exercise ball:

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…which was killing my arms, until I thought to put her in the sling:

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Magic!  It hurts my back after a while, but it  keeps her really happy and quiet, so that’s a sacrifice I’m willing to make.  :-)  

Even with the tricks we’re learning, she still seems to fuss an awful lot.  As I told the nurse today at the doctor’s office, sometimes it seems like when she isn’t eating or sleeping, she’s crying.  Our doctor assured us that this much crying and fussing is normal. He said it usually sets in around 2-3 weeks (yep) and peaks at 6 before getting better. So…essentially, we’re halfway there? 

And the truth is, she isn’t fussing all the time.  She’s starting to get a little more active, and seems to really enjoy watching toys and kicking her legs while on her back:

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…but these sessions usually only last about 10-15 minutes before she melts down. 

I think we’ve both been taken aback a little by just how hard this is.  Everyone tells you that it’s hard…but I think you just don’t *get it* until you’re there in the moment, staring at your wailing baby who has been fed, changed, swaddled, shushed, swung, bounced, walked, gas-dropped, gripe-watered, and sung to…and is still crying away.

That has been the hardest lesson of the past three weeks: sometimes babies cry for no reason.

Sometimes you just have to wait it out, let them cry, and remember that they can’t stay upset forever. 

It’s hard to swallow, because I think at the heart of every parent is the desire to fix things.  If something is wrong, you want to make it better.  If your child is hurting, you want to make the pain go away. 

But we’re learning that there are going to be times when there’s nothing we can do.  When the only thing to do is pace the house, hold her close, sing a little Simon and Garfunkle in her ear, and remember that eventually, she’ll calm back down and look like this again:

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28 Comments leave one →
  1. April 25, 2012 6:27 pm

    At least she’s an absolute doll ;-)

  2. April 25, 2012 6:32 pm

    This is the hardest time of your life and you’re getting thru it amazingly well…and blogging. Bravo to you my friend!

    • Marcee permalink
      April 25, 2012 9:28 pm

      Ditto!

      You are doing wonderful. A baby is a baby afterall. They don’t stay that way forever. So, just enjoy it all …. the good & great days + the not so fun ones. Time has a way of putting everything into perspective.

      Ohyeah ….. Lila is absolutely cute! She is going to have a rockin summertime!!

  3. April 25, 2012 6:34 pm

    I really hope you get a few more zzzzs – 6 hrs in 48 is crazy my friend! You’re right, in a few months you’ll look back and not be able to believe how quickly this time flew by and you’ll be so glad you documented all the joys (& struggles) on your blog!

    PS I can’t get over how teeny weeny she looks in that sling! So precious :)

  4. Lee permalink
    April 25, 2012 6:56 pm

    One more suggestion–we used a swing like crazy, as well as one of those vibrating chairs. Both helped Esmee sleep. If you had told me to get the swing I never would have. Who wants a huge honking piece of plastic furniture that sings in their house? But a friend gave it to us–and I’m SO glad. Here’s a link to one that was similar to what we were gifted. Only ours was bright blue and had an aquarium theme. Oy!

    We’d strap E in and put that thing on high! Worked like a charm. Good luck Mama….p.s. Note the number of high star reviews. I’m thinking this has saved more than one person’s sanity, non? A bientot!

    • April 25, 2012 6:59 pm

      I was just saying to Ryan in the doctor’s office today that I think we need to get a swing. We have a vibrating chair that she loves, but I’ve heard great things about the swings too. We have a hand-me-down one that is smaller, but I think it’s for older babies– we might be taking a trip to Babies R Us this afternoon :-)

      • Marcee permalink
        April 25, 2012 9:33 pm

        It’s true. Swings are definitely in!

        My niece had something similar that Lee (above) linked. It rocked back and forth …. just amazing. The baby would go to sleep in an instant!

        Big & kinda bulky yeah …. but a true lifesafer. Hope you find something today that works for Lila, mommy & daddy too! Ha.

  5. Kev permalink
    April 25, 2012 7:08 pm

    All the babies that I’ve “raised” have loved swings. Lifesavers, those things. Also, your hair looks great, and that blue is your color.

  6. April 25, 2012 7:10 pm

    Love to you!! I promise it just gets easier and easier from here!!

  7. April 25, 2012 7:27 pm

    Beautiful post…I was curious about the hair dryer thinking, “Do they use it to soothe her?” then I read down and that’s exactly the case…which I think is awesome. I am learning about life from you!

    • April 25, 2012 8:25 pm

      Yep– she loves white noise! I guess it sounds like the womb :-) She has a white noise “sleep sheep” for the nursery– but honestly, the hair dryer seems to work best!!

  8. April 25, 2012 8:00 pm

    you’re doing an amazing job! i love these posts :)

  9. Danielle permalink
    April 25, 2012 8:05 pm

    Not sure if you’ve seen this website already:

    http://www.purplecrying.info/sections/index.php?sct=1&

    My mom uses a saying: “this too shall pass!” All the crying will just be a loud memory.

    • April 25, 2012 8:26 pm

      Funny– that’s exactly what the nurse said at the doctor’s office when we called a few nights ago to ask about colic and gas :-)

    • April 25, 2012 8:28 pm

      And thanks for the website– I hadn’t seen that!!

  10. Morgan permalink
    April 25, 2012 9:08 pm

    I’m a frequent reader, but not a frequent commenter…Hi!

    I have a 5 month old, so I know what you’re going through! The first six months are brutally hard. The first two weeks of my daughters life I broke down in tears more times that I can count. The sleep deprivation, figuring out what the heck they need when they are crying, recovering from childbirth and everything else really takes it’s toll.

    Just wanted to let you know you aren’t alone and that you are doing a great job as Lila’s mommy. :)

    • April 27, 2012 10:28 pm

      Thanks, Morgan!! Comments like this help so much right now!

  11. April 25, 2012 9:26 pm

    Is now the time to tell you that it doesn’t get any easier, that it just changes? You just do the best you can. That’s all you can offer. Love, caring and friendship do come out of all of this. I’m thinking about you Anna! Tony and I went to the antique place yesterday and it reminded me of you. Keep your chin up and stay strong! Hugs to you!

  12. ginger635 permalink
    April 25, 2012 9:30 pm

    I also loved the swing – for both you and Katherine. Give it a try. And, I agree, this is the hardest time for parents; even harder, I think, than managing teenagers (which was no walk in the park, either) But, it will pass more quickly than you can imagine!

  13. April 25, 2012 10:19 pm

    Hang in there Anna. I love these posts because there you. :)

  14. April 25, 2012 11:58 pm

    I can’t imagine how tough these times are for you two adjusting to a new lifestyle. But you’re doing great! Hang in there, she’s changing everyday and will be past this phase soon!

  15. April 26, 2012 12:08 am

    Hang in there!

  16. April 26, 2012 1:36 am

    Oh my… well, this too SHALL pass and you’ll be glad you documented the late night antics. Hang in there and grab a nap when you can!!

  17. Elizabeth permalink
    April 26, 2012 3:33 am

    My mother always said new babies push you to your absolute limit and then, when you couldn’t possibly take it another day, it starts to get better. At least with the blog you are able to share the insanity with the world. I used to stare out the window wondering how life proceeded as usual, while Armageddon (alternating with sheer joy) was going down in our house.

  18. April 26, 2012 2:52 pm

    Oh, sleepless nights with a newborn. It seriously feels like a lifetime ago. Lila will be babbling and giggling and crawling before you know it, and then you will look back on those middle-of-the-night snuggle sessions and think “that wasn’t so bad.” I promise.

  19. April 26, 2012 8:58 pm

    Hey Anna!

    I started reading your blog about..oh my, 2 years have gone by already. Back when the blog was titles “newlywed, newly veg”. I have checked your blog every single day, and every day that there is a new post, I read the entire thing. I started reading this blog because it was a vegetarian food blog at the time, but I have continued to read it because of your amazing writing style, your sense of humor, and also just to read about your life! I often find myself laughing while reading but there have also been times (your post about parent’s anniversary, for example) where I find myself in tears. Happy tears, of course! I just wanted to write this to let you know that regardless of what your blog is about, I will always be excited to read! I think it’s quite fitting that you changed your blog’s name to “On Anna’s Plate”, as this blog really does talk about everything you have on your “plate”, haha. Nerdy, I know, but I couldn’t resist!
    :) Thanks so much for all of your inspiration!

    -Danielle

    • April 27, 2012 3:38 pm

      Awww, this comment made me tear up!! Thank you so much– this means so much to me. And the “On Anna’s Plate”/ everything on my plate connection– YES! I was thinking the exact same thing! So I guess we’re both nerds. :-)

Trackbacks

  1. They Weren’t Lying: It Actually *Does* Get Easier « On Anna's Plate

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