If I were to do anything different the next time I have my first child, I’d have read all the books and talked to all the Mums and gathered all the advice BEFORE Gus arrived. I was too focused on the labour part. Which was important, but there is so much more to work out now that he’s here and much less time to read and absorb.

Because the thing is there are so many conflicting opinions. On EV.ERY.THING. For every suggestion, there is an opposite. And most often, both make sense. So how do you evaluate? Scientific studies? Trusted sources? Gut instincts? It all takes time to process.

But here’s the cool thing I didn’t quite get before hand: the biggest factor is Gus. So the ideal is to have it all in my head and THEN figure out how it applies to this particular moppit day by day, moment by moment.

Here is the cool chart that my sister-in-law, Sally brought by. When both she and Lisa had their first kids, they had a doula come stay for the first week and this is a summary of that learning. And echos a lot of what they suggested at our Calm Birth pre-labour class. I like this because it really helped to enforce the cave.


The things to remember read: expect 1 bad session a day and 1 bad day a week (even after routine is established); by the 3rd month you will be cooking dinner, drying your hair AND feeding Gus (all at once); babies are hard

Our friend Amber also pointed us to a great blog called AskMoxi. Her philosophy is lovely too. I particularly like the idea that “there are some thing parents do that really screw up their kids. But those things don’t have a whole lot to do with the sequence in which your baby eats, sleeps, and plays, or when s/he gets off the bottle/breast/pacifier/thumb, or how old the baby is when it sleeps in a bed in a room alone, or when they’re potty-trained.”

And I also loved what Charles’ Mum wrote to me the other day, “If there was A solution……”

All of it is helping us to find the right balance between structure and cuddles. An ever shifting line, I’m sure.

5 thoughts on “Advice

  1. I have to say I know you’re right about reading & talking to everyone beforehand. My friend Allison suggested that I read a particular book on sleeping *before* the baby comes b/c she says you have to focus too much in order to get it and that’s impossible after the baby comes. I think it’s one of those things that women (& their partners) say “yeah, yeah, we’ve got to get around to it” but it makes it a little too real maybe? I’m just now getting around to talking with a midwife and figuring out where (home vs. hospital) I want to have the baby…which, again, I have to be flexible about depending on how the end of the pregnancy goes.

  2. I say go with your intution,Em, since mothers have raised children before there was science, experts or the www and all these people had mothers themselves! I agree with Moxi, that you know your child best so your intuition is the most informed. This doesn’t mean don’t add information to what you know but you be the judge. I have no doubts whatsoever that this child will be a fabulous person. Lots of love.

  3. Hey Em,

    I think from the time you decide you’re going to have a baby, everyone, and I mean everyone, has an opinion about everything (epidural v. no epidural, nursing vs. formula, staying home vs. working). It’s a bizarre thing I think.

    Anyway, I’m not going to give you advice about Gus, because I totally agree with your aunt. You know him best, and it has to be something that works for your family. It’s good to keep reading and learning and seeing what fits.

    Btw, I love all the updates. He is so precious!

  4. It must make life a lot easier to have paid help around after coming home with a new baby. But surely it’s nice to learn your own way of doing things and find your own rhythm as a family. Just remember that no-one has all the answers.

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