In the past 4 months, I really feel like I’ve got this whole “mommy” thing down. I know what MacKenna needs, when she needs it, and how to keep her as happy as she is. I’ve given advice to other new moms and feel like I have become somewhat of a resource of possibly useful information to other moms out there.
However, that doesn’t make me exempt from feeling like I have no idea what the heck I’m doing still. As any new mom knows, those first few weeks with an infant are incredibly trying. You second guess every move you make, you google just about everything under the sun just to reassure that you are doing the right thing, you twitter-bomb all the other new mommy’s for their opinions on what you should do. It. Is. HARD. And I think that’s an understatement! I told my BFF recently that as long as my baby is alive + well, I must be doing an OK job.
But, after awhile, you start to get the hang of things. You’re not googling nearly as much, though your Twitter friends still hear all about every little move your baby makes.
While I feel parenting is starting to feel natural and like something I’ve been doing for much longer than 4 months, I’ve come to a point where I feel completely lost again. Recently, MacKenna has decided to go through a little bit of a sleep regression. It was too good to be true those few weeks she was sleeping through the night. As soon as the words came out of my mouth, she started waking up once a night again – sometimes twice a night and a really early wake up time.
I have to admit, I was completely lost on what to do. My problem: she wasn’t hungry when she woke up in those wee hours of the morning. She simply just wanted to squeal and play with her hands – her 2 new developmental discoveries. While I was OK letting her babble (loudly), those shrieks would soon turn to tears. I didn’t want to pick her up since I wanted her to go back to sleep on her own. The pacifier just wasn’t enough, but she definitely wasn’t hungry either.
Matt + I were completely and utterly confused on what to do. I was already feeding her before bed so her belly was full. Was breastmilk just not enough? The pediatrician suggested starting solids (she’s just not quite ready yet) and supplementing with formula, but I just wasn’t convinced it was due to hunger. I’m still not positive what the issue is/was, but Sunday night, she at least slept from 8:30 PM to about 4:30 AM. Not quite as great as she had been doing, but we’re at least getting closer to where we were.
I’m also totally lost on feeding her things other than breastmilk. We’ve gotten to the point where I can no longer keep up with what she is consuming, so we are starting to supplement one bottle a day with formula. I am still pumping and can get enough for all but 1 feeding a day, which I think is still great. But, I’m still trying to figure out this whole formula thing. Which formula and how to prepare it. Do I use regular tap water or do I need to use something else? Can I just use bottled water or do I need to boil everything before giving it to her? I’m just so confused… (If you haven’t figured out, I’m a little crazy at times.)
And don’t even get me started with starting her on solids. When to start? Is she ready yet? (I’m still with a no on that one.) Rice cereal or not? How to prepare it? Can I microwave cereal or do I have to warm it another way, like with milk? I’m constantly researching but that doesn’t make me feel any less lost.
I guess what I’m trying to convey here is that even 4 months in and feeling comfortable in my motherhood role, there are still time where I feel like I have no clue what I’m doing. I’m pretty sure I will do this her entire life. I don’t know if I’ll ever truly feel like I’ve got the hang of this and stop second guessing myself. I think it just comes with the territory.
Have you ever felt like a pro at something, only to have something happen that leaves you completely lost and thinking, “What the heck am I doing”?