Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Voices in My Head

While Edwin gets his pre-nap exercise (this mean standing in his crib and trying oh-so-hard to reach the stuff on a nearby shelf before laying down and falling asleep), I thought I'd finally update you on some of my latest thoughts.

And before you get too worried about that title, let me explain.

One of the benefits of having children later than many of your friends is that you get to hear others' advice, thoughts and methods. Then you get to sift through them and decide which to keep and which to throw out.

My problem, however, is that whenever I come upon a tricky situation (like a little boy who wakes up in the middle of the night randomly when I am not used to this at all since he started sleeping 10 hours a night at 6 weeks) I suddenly am assuaged by all these "voices" saying I should do "this" or "that". Not real voices, of course, but just what I think others would say "should" be done. You know, that parenting book says do "this" or that person would do "this" certain thing. It's quite annoying actually, and not helpful.

So I've found that I have to make sure to follow some of the best parenting advice I read since becoming a parent.

Be quiet, pray, listen to your intuition and go with that. Not follow something some one else said to do in a certain situation, but try to be focused on what the need is at the moment and what the true solution is. Not just what some "expert" says.

That advice has been encouraging and helpful. And peaceful. I should say that I do like to hear what the "experts" recommend and I don't necessarily think they're always wrong (at least, not the ones I agree with), but I find that I need to make sure I don't let myself get mentally bombarded with what everyone else says - or what I think they say.

So I was thinking about all of this after Edwin woke up crying twice last night. I think I finally figured out the problem (and it may have originated with that orange slice he had at lunch...) and helped him feel better.

Nothing about parenting so far makes me feel more inadequate than when Edwin wakes up randomly at night and I have little to no idea why. So I try to take that advice to stop, pray, listen and then act.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Random Musings

I taught my first class at Spool last Saturday, braving the snow and driving to Philly while Dan watched Edwin. All went well. I only had to sit at a student's sewing machine one time (and pretend I was making the project) in order to make sure I was giving correct instructions. It was a class of 7 women. Mostly my age or younger, and it was fun, fun, fun. The snow out side made it all the more cozy. All successfully finished their zippered pouch in the 2 hours we had.

I am a cold weather person as opposed to a hot weather person. I would much rather bundle up in layers and walk down a cold, windy street than break into a sweat when merely walking down the same street because the sun is so hot.

Sometimes I can't quite believe that I'm already on my way to being 32 and I've only just had my first child.

I used to think I was totally an unstructured, spontaneous person, but as time goes on, I find that I'm a little more "type A" than I thought. Either teaching did that to me or it's something that is growing along with my age. I really like having a routine (not a hard-and-fast schedule, mind you) to my days and weeks. Laundry day is Monday; we tend to do things in the same order when at home all day, etc. However, I always like having some planned unstructured time that I can spontaneously decide to fill in one way or another, but that isn't filled ahead of time. Does that make sense? Structured spontaneous time?

I can't believe how much more time I spend online now compared to just 2 years ago. I have blogs that I read regularly.

As I think about having more children, I realize that I'm not at all opposed to hiring help, if necessary (especially if we continue to live relatively far from family). This has partially been shaped by my experiences as a nanny for two different families, our time spent in Zambia where we had "house help" and by the stories of friends who have many children. Growing up in the culture and community I did, I recognize an attitude of it being a luxury (which I guess it is) and of it somehow meaning that you're doing something wrong if you need help. You know, strong work ethic, able to do any and every thing that needs to be done, etc., etc. And yet, if you don't have family nearby whom you feel free to call on to help, what should you do? Struggle on your own? Out of pride? Because society says women should be able to do it all on their own? Everyone needs a support network (i.e. help) and if that includes hiring someone, I'm all for it.

I just finished a crocheted hat that has a little brim. For me.

I'm really enjoying the friendships I'm making through a local MOPS group I attend.

I've been online long enough tonight.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

9 Months

Today marks Edwin's 9th month.

It's not been his happiest day, unfortunately, but I don't plan to dwell on that in this post.

Some of his recent accomplishments include:

Crawling on hands and knees. He used to primarily do the "army crawl" but I hardly see him do that anymore. He really just got the knack of crawling within the past week or so.

Along with crawling, he's figured out how to pull himself into a standing position, and he first did that in his crib. I think he now spends a portion of time standing up in his crib at the beginning of nap time (and sometimes bedtime...such as right now, possibly), but so far I've only had to rescue him once from a position he fell into and couldn't roll out of.

Let's see, along with standing up he's also discovered that he can reach the cereal boxes, the basket of letters, some books and folders beside the letters and my piles of fabric which he explored for the first time today. (Can you tell I haven't totally "baby proofed"?)

His social interactions continue to be mostly fun and cheerful. He is becoming more opinionated and outspoken these days too. (I'm trying to take that in stride...)

We're thankful for this little guy!!