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The Lessons I Learned with Number One
Number One (my first and only child) is currently two years and two months old. She is a beautiful and bright little girl, and she truly is the light of my life.
My sister just gave birth to her first child, and I find myself constantly giving (often unnecessary) advice all the time. I learned a lot with my first child. I did many things perfectly and I did many things horribly, and I want to share all of it. I certainly do not want to forget any of it.
My soon-to-be-husband and I are planning to conceive Number Two within the next five months, so babies pretty much consume my brain lately. Allow me to take a moment to decompress.
What I Did and Plan on Doing Again
I did a lot of things "right," and by "right" I mean things that I do not regret in any way, shape, or form. Things like:
- I did not need an epidural. I hope I can do that again.
- I was able to breastfeed without a single issue. I learned a lot of things too, like how you can very simply rub out those golf ball sized milk ducts while feeding to relieve the pressure.
- I took a billion pictures. I did not take pictures of every single first, because enjoying those moments was more important. No regrets there.
- I never allowed myself to get so stressed or tired that I cried.
- I showered every single day, even if it was incredibly late at night.
- I tell Number One that I love her every single day.
- I pumped breast milk and never fed Number One a bottle of formula.
- I had professional newborn and one year old pictures taken. They are adorable.
- I wrote everything in the baby book, and I hope I'll have time to do the same for Number Two.
- I didn't care if the house was dirty and I did not waste my time at a gym trying to get my pre-baby figure back.
- I co-slept. I did it safely and really enjoyed it.
- I allowed my daughter to put herself to sleep without rocking, patting, singing, or anything else besides a white noise machine.
What I Did and Hope I Don't Do Again
Come to think of it, it's a lot harder to come up with things that I plan on doing again! Which is funny, because I have a hard time admitting when I do something "wrong." Some things that I do want to do differently with my second child include the following:
- I asked for "IV meds," as my doctors called it, during labor. "IV meds" apparently meant morphine. It had no negative side effects, but no positive ones either. Felt completely the same, didn't "take the edge off" like I was promised. Pointless, I won't do that again.
- I didn't take stool softeners before the birth. I won't make that mistake again.
- I tried the castor oil thing. Won't risk the harm that can cause again.
- I didn't introduce the bottle until Number One was about one month old, and I gave up on that quickly. She never really took a bottle. I'll introduce it sooner next time.
- I used a pacifier because my mother snuck her one and I felt mean taking it away. I won't allow that with Number Two, unless I choose to because it is absolutely necessary.
- I mixed baby cereal with formula in order to fill Number One up more before bedtime. I doubt I'll waste my time on baby cereal with Number Two, but if I do, then I will mix it with pumped breast milk.
- I fed Number One those little cans of baby food. I'll make my own next time. I finally have a blender!
- I was induced after going over two weeks past my original due date. I'll try harder to go naturally next time.
- I found out Number One's gender. I hope I can keep that a secret with Number Two.
How many children do you want?
Number Two - Here I Come!
I learned a few things, but I'll still be content if everything ends up the exact same with Number Two. I seriously cannot wait to have Number Two, and he/she isn't even in my belly yet! Any tips for handling a newborn and a three year old? I'm really nervous about dealing with the jealousy and sibling rivalry!