According to my father, you can count your true friends on one hand. There were a lot of things my folks said that are just now starting to resonate. Guess I should log this away for my future self that parenting isn’t synonymous with instant gratification. Here comes your validation, Dad: You were right.
A Once Social Butterfly
Middle and high school, man oh man, was I rambunctious! And, not surprising, I had a gaggle of friends. Dad laid down this gem on me and I was flabbergasted. Did he not see the Best Friends Forever charm necklace I was wearing?
And then came college and hanging out was the curriculum. While I didn’t admit it to myself, my wide net of close-knit friends were getting more intimate.
Then graduation came, I got hitched, and moved across country. And goramit (if you get that reference and think it’s awesome, you cool. We can hang.), it is so much harder to make friends as an adult especially when you’ve left all your social circles behind.
Friendships Are Hard
I’m adulting now and there are benefits like happy hours and going out for a dance class if I want to. Now wait a minute! Creating and maintaining friendships feels a lot like work. Remember the whole I’m an adult now, thing? Well, there are some drawbacks: chores (that apparently never go away), working for that paycheck, hanging with the hubbs (less adulting and more because I want to, hence why I married him).
I don’t have the time to cultivate the friendships that came so easily before.
Ephinany time! (Sing like “Hammer Time”!) Perhaps the friendships that came together so effortlessly before also fell by the wayside just as easily because the bonds were superficial. The hard work to make a friendship special also makes it more like that the relationship will last.
And that’s why the next part stings.
Saying Goodbye And Thanks For All The Fish Memories
I’ve had some friendships that just abruptly stopped. Maybe I got dumped. Maybe things changed in their or our lives and we just weren’t compatible. “But what about all that time I invested?!”, my ego wants to shout.
Well, bringing it full circle, I guess those folks just won’t be counted off on my right hand. And that’s OK.
And so now I offer up some reconciliation (to myself):
Dear former friend – we don’t talk anymore and I miss that. I miss the varied topics we’d discuss and how you challenged me as a person. I miss that this chapter in our lives is over but I’m OK with it now. I want to thank you for all the lovely memories and all the lessons you’ve imparted. My wish for you is that you are healthy, happy and at peace.
I’m only 9 weeks in to this gig as a new mom but I’ve already learned some real gems that I’d like to pass on to new mamas (and papas too). If you’re a mama-to-be then make sure these items make it on your registry. You can thank me later.
If you plan on breastfeeding then you need these puppies. Hear me: You WANT these.
Breastfeeding wasn’t as easy as I imagined it would be — insert boob here, right? Unfortunately, no. Breastfeeding can be challenging for a myriad of reasons. Perhaps baby isn’t always cooperative, you don’t get a good latch, your milk hasn’t come in yet, etc., etc. And while you’re figuring it all out your nipples are getting annihilated. I’m talking bleeding and scabs. Oh Joy!
You’ll save yourself some heartache and your ladies will thank you.
Dr. Brown Bottles
Wait, who needs bottles when we just discussed the importance of breastfeeding? Indeedy do, observant and attractive readers. Indeedy do.
However, you’ll want a reprieve and perhaps your partner can give the babe a bottle while you take a shower (oh, what a treat!). And there are many bottle brands out there to choose from. I initially registered for a bottle that touted having a nipple that felt natural for the kiddo, but didn’t flow so naturally. Said another way, the flow of many bottles’ nipples for infants are like beer bongs for adults.
Way. Too. Fast.
While Dr. Brown bottles are made of twenty thousand different pieces, when their powers combine they make a truly — and more natural — slow flow. And that’s what we want so baby doesn’t choke and splutter.
Some moms and blogs may tell you to hold off on using a pacifier so it does not interfere with breastfeeding. I say consult with your pediatrician.
Now, if your pediatrician gives you the green light then I highly recommend these little suckers. (See what I did there?)
In addition to being the pacifier that hospitals prefer to provide to newborns, they are also the one my little boy prefers best.
If you’re still on the fence about pacifiers, consider the value nonnutritive sucking provides to your infant:
So having a super quiet home isn’t doing your little one any favors as any sound could startle him or her. Also, it can be a little upsetting after going from a very noisy environment to one that is void of sound.
However, it is not practical to lug a large white noise generator around in your diaper bag so consider downloading a couple of white noise generator apps (some are better than others). I use the White Noise Lite app for Android but I wish I could have the MyNoise app that is only available (for now) for iOS.
This noise generator has a “newborn sleep machine” with sounds that mimic the gurgles of mom’s tummy, her heartbeat, the whooshing of amniotic fluid, and mom and dad’s voice as comforting murmurs. Here, take a listen.
This seems like a no-brainer and I’m sure the boppy is already on your registry, right?
I love the boppy. Wherever I go in the house this half-moon pillow follows. In addition to making the kid the right height for feedings, it is also a great place to rest your milk drunk infant and take the pressure off your still healing incision from the cesarean surgery. Oh wait, the latter part is perhaps more unique to me.
Still, the boppy is fantastic and you need one. Add it to your babyli.st registry now.
You may also want to consider requesting additional slip covers as it will get dirty. Fact of life. But at least there are uber cute designs, like this one:
Not to be confused with Catan — as in the Settlers of Catan, the award-winning multiplayer board game by Klaus Teuber and a favorite in our household. Oh, excuse me. My nerd was showing.
No, instead I’m talking about the baby sling. Wearing your baby is more than a fashion statement, it is fantastic for your baby as he just wants nothing else but to be close to you. Plus, you gain mobility and the ability to get something down around the house. Say, for example, the dishes I’ve been avoiding as I wrote this post.
Post-baby bodies or #Mombods (is that still a thing?) is a beautiful body that is trying to return to “normal.” But nothing will truly be the same after having a baby, will it? Nonetheless, wearing a wrap around your tummy can help encourage things to go back to where they were.
Note: This isn’t for vanity. This isn’t about losing weight and returning back to your pre-pregnancy weight. However, there are several big benefits to wearing a wrap:
Provides support to your mid-section which can feel good if recovering from a C-section
Aids in decreased bloating and swelling
Reminds you to utilize your core muscles
Helps to gently persuade muscles back together
Wearing a body wrap can also help boost your self confidence and help you get into some of the pre-pregnancy clothes. Ok, so it’s a little bit about vanity.
Stretch marks are the tell tale sign that your skin has gained or lost a lot of weight in a short period of time. And my skin certainly made a rapid change when I lost 30 pounds in two weeks. Albeit 10 of those pounds was attributed to my baby boy.
Preggo mamas usually like to lather up with some Palmer’s Cocoa Butter to help prevent stretch marks. However, it is just as important what she eats as what she puts on her skin. And unfortunately there are a lot of products that are targeted towards pregnant women that may have chemicals and preservatives that could negatively impact the fetus.
So, that’s why I opt for products that are all natural like aloe vera and vitamin e to help reduce the appearance of stretch marks. Plus when aloe vera dries it feels as though your skin is tightening up. Placebo effect? Mayhaps.
Aloe vera and vitamin e have made it to my daily moisturizing regime but there are other natural products you may enjoy more including almond oil, jojoba oil, avocado oil, olive oil, sesame oil … and on and on.