Monday, March 15, 2010


A friend recently asked what was so hard about having a newborn. She wanted a detailed specific answer. Unfortunately twitter only lets you use 140 characters. I've been thinking about it ever since. 

The quickest obvious answer is the sleep deprivation. 

But that's not it.

There's crying. Explosive poop. Constant feeding. 

But that's not it.

I kept thinking of my own recent experience and what was hard was trying to meet her demands while also taking care  of two other children. I had to think way back, 5 1/2 years back, to when SkyWalker was a newborn to realize what was really so hard about newborns. 

All the self-doubt. The second-guessing. The not knowing if I was making the right decisions or not. The floundering without a plan. Am I feeding enough or too much? Should I wake him or let him sleep? Is this poop normal? 

I think that's why I was so attracted to The Baby Whisperer. It gave me the plan. The framework I could use to better understand him and know what he wanted. And when things started to fall into place it gave me the confidence to continue. When the Princess was a newborn it was hard juggling two kids and we didn't really do all that much. I was a new SAHM (and I stayed at home), so I was adjusting to being home with my son, having a new baby, and my best friend moving a million miles away. But I was somewhat confident in myself by then (with her, not so much with SkyWalker). With Chewie I knew what I had to do I just couldn't necessarily do it because I had two older children who needed to leave the house and be entertained. Or needed to be taken care of. It was frustrating. Annoying. And yes, it was hard. But not in the same way. If I had other people to entertain my kids (which I sometimes did) the newborn was "easy." 

I'm not saying that your 3rd or 4th newborn experience is a piece of cake, but I knew she would sleep, I knew I could breastfeed, I knew poop came in all different shapes, sizes & colors. I had faith in my skills. And that makes a world of difference. Even when Chewie was napping for only 45 minutes I knew the likely reasons (overtired, undertired, or hungry) and just had to tweak things to fix it. Sometimes tweaking wasn't always possible because of the other two, so we just dealt with it the best we could.

Once you have faith and confidence in yourself, all of the newborn stress and problems are just inconveniences. I'll take newborns over big kids and their crazy half-logical thinking anyday!

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1 comment:

Bee said...

i think the hardest thing is learning to compartmentalize your day into 2-3 hour blocks of time... trying to get things done one tiny step at a time (including sleeping) while caring for a new person whose personality you don't yet "get"... it is freakin nuts!