Well my friend Katie at The Life of an Army Wife did a blog the other day called "What I've Learned Thus Far", which had to do with how much shes learned since giving birth to her little beauty. I loved that she posted that, so I decided to be a total bitch and steal her idea and do my own :)
1. Sleeping when the baby sleeps- I have to agree with Katie...this is so not possible all the time! It was easier when I had just gotten Evelyn home, and had Paul to help take care of her with me and clean up our messes. But since Paul left I cannot always nap with Evelyn. I have to make sure the house, even if its not mine, is clean. Believe it or not, its really not easy being a "single but married" mother, I have to make 2 trips from my bedroom to the living room to start and end my day. So when Evelyn sleeps I clean the house or at least straighten my area, then pay bills and other things.
2. The fears- I had always heard about risks, even before I was pregnant. I knew about SIDS, jaundice, suffocation, you know all that grand old scare the living hell out of you stuff. I really quite honestly didnt freak out about it until after I had Evelyn. Paul is by far one of the cheapest men I know! I can find the best deals and he is still unsatisfied that it wasn't free. So when I asked him if it was ok for me to buy the Angel Care Monitor, thats a motion and sound monitor he told me no. I listened to him at first, and decided I might be over reacting, I am a new mom after all, but I recently decided that I will need to get Evelyn in the habit of sleeping in her own room away from me when Paul gets home from Iraq, and the thought already terrifies me! I purchased the monitor yesterday. I love my husband but if anything were to ever happen to Evelyn that could have been provented by the monitor then I'd never forgive myself.
3. Breastfeeding- Evelyn was not born like most babies. Evelyn had a bowel movement when she was still in my belly, so when she was born I did not get to nurse right away and I did not even get to nurse for HOURS after she was born, since everyone would not give her to me. So when it was time to really nurse, Evelyn really was not interested. I got her to latch the first time with no cooperation from Evelyn at all, and struggled with it until recently when my milk finally has slowed down! I had very little help from Paul because he would get so upset that Evelyn was screaming and I hated to give her formula. It took sometime and tonz of patience but Evelyn is now 100% breastfed! I never ever thought it would be hard, I thought I'd get so lucky and she'd be a champ, but I had to work at it a little more.
4. Patience - I have never had much of it. So I've been surprised at how well I have done, especially since Paul went back to Iraq. I have not had to ask for much help from my parents. Its really done me good to be thrown into this "single but married" lifestyle right away. We all know deployments are always going to come, and even though I know next deployment I'll be dealing with a toddler, but its already started me on learning to be patient with Evelyn. When she's crying and I cant figure out why, I'm still just as happy to learn more about what she needs then worry about her frustrating me.
5. Poop- I never thought I would be so open about that. I always found it totally nasty to hear parents talk about the colors and look of it...but now...its normal.
6. Old Life - I honestly could give a shit-less about my old life. I am beyond happy in this one. Everytime I think about not having Evelyn my mind flicks back to her and I look at her and smile. My old life was nothing compared to this one! I have a purpose and its the job I was meant to do!
7. Its all about her!- My friend Jennie told me that my daughter would become my best friend after I had her. I took that pretty much with a grain of salt (sorry Jennie), but Paul was my best friend and I never thought someone, especially a baby could take his spot....well Paul is still my best friend, but Evelyn is too! She's by my side all the time, and I hate leaving her with my parents while I shower or pick up the house. I love to watch her sleep and laugh at her quivering chin when she cries. Evelyn and her Daddy are the best gifts I've ever had in my life!!