5 Things I've Learned in 2 Years of Parenthood


Our little nugget is one week away from turning TWO....TWO! How? What? When? Where? But mainly.... whyyyyy? There are so many thoughts running through my head at all hours of the day. And to be honest, most of those thoughts are centered around her. Sad (not really), but true. So let's get into the top 5 things I've learned in my short two years as a momma.

PSA: these are my personal thoughts. That doesn't mean they're the same as yours, your moms/grandmas/neighbors whatever. So here it is.. let's start at the very beginning... dun dun dun



1. Labor is the easy part!
You read that right! Labor. Is. The. Easy. Part! Those little hairless, naked, loud-yet-adorable blobs come home with you!!! Without the God-Sent L&D nurses! At my age (almost 30 #forever29) a lot of my friends either just had a baby or are about to have their first. And whenever anyone asks me for advice, this is my first response 😅 I know what you might be thinking, "she must have had an easy labor"... I can assure you, that's not the case. I labored for 40+ hours until I FINALLY reached 10cms (you know how many times they check your cervix in 40+ hours? TOO FREAKING MANY)
Then, once I was finally about to start pushing, the doctor checked me for the 853495843 time + goes "That baby's not gonna fit"... I wish someone would have taken a photo of my initial reaction b/c I am sureee it would make one hell of a GIF! I ended up getting a c-section and THANK GOODNESS. Because out came a 9 lb 1 oz "little" girl with a "Greater Than 99% Head Circumference" 🙈 (gets it from dad... not me). AND THAT WAS THE EASY PART! Labor wasn't unbearable. It wasn't easy, but it wasn't unbearable. But those first two weeks with a newborn? Literally the definition of unbearable! And this is not just for moms, for dads as well! You're exhausted, confused, questioning all of your life choices pre & post baby. Yet you still have to tend to that tiny alien they just (in my case) cut out of your body! Then a couple of weeks go by (slowly) and that said little alien smiles....IT SMILES! Poof... You've instantly forgotten about all of the weird + unusual torture you've just been through. There's a reason we continue having more kids & it's not just because of the process to make one 😹

2. It's nothing like the movies...at all!
You know that super fancy birth plan the doctors urged you to write or at least think about? Shred it! Nothing about this experience can be "planned". You watch movies and see this process go, well, the way you think it always goes. Mom's at home. Her water breaks. Mom + dad give each other the most beautiful embrace you've ever seen. They rush to the hospital (mom lookin' super cute 😏) They hold hands while Momma pushes for 5 minutes + out pops this perfect little angel. LIES! Everything can change at any moment (see long drawn out birthing story above). You simply can't plan these things. Or have expectations for that matter. And that's the beauty of it. It's out of your control. So, don't worry about it! Because no amount of time worrying will change it. Just go with the flow! And that advice doesn't end when labor is over. Oh no, no, no! Breast feeding is the biggest "false advertisement" I've ever seen. It looks so easy, right? Just pop out your lovely lady lumps + BAM! Babe's fed. Oh no, no, no! To keep it simple, it's hard. It's really stinkin' hard... & painful. But what a gift to be able to feed your child for months from a product your body made (not to mention all of the calories you burn... mannnn is it worth it #oreooverload). Just remember, this is your journey. Not someone else's. So try not to get discouraged when things go differently for you!

3. Do not read the articles!
As you're literally reading my blog, I can see how that may be a little confusing 😂 I'm talking about all of those articles that get emailed to you from the pregnancy apps. All of the articles that made me think that if I washed my baby's bottles in the dishwasher, her milk would turn to poison. The articles that made me think if I gave my baby a pacifier while she was fussy, she'd never look at my boob the same again! The articles that gave me the irrational fear that if I microwaved my breastmilk it would instantly become lava, turning all of my precious babies taste buds to ashes! The articles that made me think if my little girl had a single drop of formula she would never grow + stay that size forever... because "breast is best" (while I do agree breast is best, fed is the goal). I had so many irrational thoughts and expectations from reading articles. These articles even gave me anxiety into the toddler years. My daughter didn't walk until she was 18-months old. At that point, if I listened to the articles, she should have been in some serious therapy, ankle braces, & wearing corrective shoes (& if that's what our instincts told us she needed, we would have gladly done so). But what that article DIDN'T tell me was that it's common for "bigger kids" to hit gross motor milestones at a later age. Sawyer is still very big for her age. And on top of that, she's not a big risk taker. So she decided to walk on her own time. And that's perfectly okay! The reality of it is YOU DO WHAT WORKS FOR YOU + YOUR KID! If that means microwaving breastmilk OR formula at 3 AM, then by all means, DO IT! If that means having an inventory of pacifiers on hand at all times of the day/night, then by all means, DO IT! It's nice to be informed, but I really think there's such thing as being "over informed". And that's how I felt; over-informed. So with that little tid bit of advice, I urge you to go with your gut.

4. Put your marriage first!
If you're married, I feel like this is some incredible advice. This one is hard to live out though... really hard. When my husband and I got married six years ago, this was one piece of advice that really stuck with me. (Shoutout to my MIL 😘) Put my marriage first? Before my children? But it makes perfect sense. Our marriage is what created our child. Sawyer is half me, half Matt. Without "us", there wouldn't be a "her".  So many times I've heard people say that having kids puts an enormous amount of stress on a marriage; and it does! But it's how we deal with that stress that's important. Do we let that stress divide us? Or do we let that stress draw us closer? When Matt and I get time to spend with each other, alone, it just strengthens us as a whole. And whatever strengthens our marriage, strengthens our home. Time alone brings a breath of fresh air into your lungs; it's the wind beneath your wings; it's the wind in your sails... all that corny mumbo jumbo. So please, don't forget about each other. Your kids will thank you for it!

5. It gets easier faster than you think!
I remember feeling like this is what my life was gonna be like forever. I'd never sleep again. Never brush my teeth again. Never wash my hair again. Never smile again... I mayy have experienced some slight PPD 😐. I remember getting so frustrated that my week old child refused to sleep at night. DUH! That little kid is even more confused than we are! But all of these phases pass sooooo quickly. I just didn't know that my first time around. No one does. You WILL get your life back, it will just be a new life. You will sleep again, it will just be much more appreciated. Still working on the washing the hair/brushing the teeth part but that's more of a personal problem 😂😉 Once we get through those phases, then come the teething phase, biting phase, hitting phase, tantrum phase, and so on.... Next thing you know, one day, you'll be going up to your "almost" two year olds room for the 354th time that night to help her fall asleep. You'll be holding her; her head will be resting on your shoulder; and you'll start to cry.... you'll cry because all you can think about is one day she'll be too big to hold. One day, she won't need you to fall asleep. One day, you'll no longer be Momma, you'll be "ughhh Mom!" And you'll wish all of those phases you thought would never end, would come back... (literally started crying writing that last sentence 😭). So savor those moments... those moments we wished would end are the moments we will miss the most. Whenever you're feeling overwhelmed, remember the days are long, but the years are short.


Parenthood has been such an incredible journey. So many highs + lows. With the highs far outweighing the lows. These little nuggets need us. More than anything, they need us. These past two years have taught me so much more than I could have ever imagined. I've learned so much about childhood development, pooping habits, kids clothes (admittedly addicted to PJ's + shoes), my relationship with God, my relationship with my husband, & finally, myself. Can you believe that? I've learned more about myself in these two years than I ever have. Mainly I've learned, I need that little girl just as much as she needs me. Once you have children, you experience a love so deep + so pure your life just changes. There's no other way to put it. And I guess that's kinda the moral of this whole post. Your life just changes. And it changes in ways you can't control. So buckle up + enjoy the ride. Because this is the one ride, you'll never regret!

Laura 💕


Comments

  1. You're a joy in so many ways. Love how you've grown and how you always make me laugh. Just love you, dear DIL.

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    1. You're so much of the reason I have grown into the person I am today. So for that I either thank you... or blame you, haha! Love you <3

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