When I had Harper, I was clueless. I had absolutely no idea about how or even where to begin to raise a child. I had never changed a diaper in my life. I could count on one finger how many times I had held a baby.
Very early on in those foggy newborn days, I resorted to Google. I became obsessed with finding the “right” way. I needed answers and was convinced that little handheld wonder could teach me how to be a mom.
I was wrong. Google led me down a path filled with uncertainty and second-guessing and confusion. It was all noise and was slowly making me deaf.
So, I listened to my instincts and the small voice inside that eventually became loud enough to drown out the chatter. I became an expert not on motherhood, but on my little girl. We stumbled through it together. Sure, we both stubbed our toes and got some bruises, but we made it through that first year.
And now that I’m expecting my second baby, I’m still clueless. I don’t know the “right” way to do this motherhood thing. I will make mistakes daily and undoubtedly will continue to screw it up. It will take some time to become an expert on her. And it’ll all be ok.
Certainly there are plenty of mistakes I know I won’t make again with my second baby. I’ll ask for and accept help when I need it. I’ll remind myself that sometimes the Pediatricians don’t know it all, either. I’ll surround myself with my mama tribe right from the beginning.
But, here are the 5 mistakes I’ll make (again) with my second baby:
1. I’LL HOLD AND CODDLE HER TOO MUCH. Meaning pretty much all the time. For the first 4 months of Harper’s life, she napped on me. And now that she’s a little toddler tornado and snuggling is not at the top of her priority list, I long for those early days of her nestled in where I could pepper the top of her head with as many kisses as my heart desired. I will savor all of those newborn snuggles and not give a damn about “what it means” for later and if we’re creating sleep crutches because I know that all too soon, she will be off running.
2. I’LL BUY ENTIRELY TOO MANY PRETTY LITTLE DRESSES THAT SHE’LL ONLY WEAR ONCE FOR 5 MINUTES. Because it goes against all logic and I just can’t help myself. And this one is doubly ridiculous, because we have so many hand-me-downs from Harper. But those little pink frills and white bows make me weak in the knees and my uterus and I have absolutely zero defenses against them. It’s called nesting.
3. I’LL LET HER CIO. Oh, Cry It Out. Remember the article I wrote for Scary Mommy? Boy, did some of those sancti-mommies hate me. You’d think I was letting their babies cry. I still firmly believe that of ALL the decisions I made in the first year of my girl’s life, letting her cry it out was the absolute best. And guess what?! She’s a totally normal, well-adjusted, well-rested little person 2 years later. Gasp.
4. I’LL THROW BABY LED WEANING OUT THE WINDOW. I was somehow convinced I was screwing Harper up for life by not doing BLW. I mean, if we started with purees and not whole food, how was she ever going to learn how to chew?? Ummm, she totally did. Thanks to that whole evolutionary survival thing.
5. I’LL WORRY TOO DAMN MUCH. But this time, I’ll give myself some grace. Because worrying is just a part of this gig. Is she too hot? Is she breathing? Is she going to be spoiled because of all those pretty newborn clothes? What mistakes am I making this time?