Up to this point in mommy world, I have realized that celebrating even the simplest achievements is very important. As a mom, you have no way of gauging how successful you are and no one is there to give you a “monthly review” of your job, so it’s important to allow yourself to celebrate accomplishments. Below I have listed the top 10 things I am proud of achieving so far as a mom!
1. Keeping my baby alive for 3 months!
This is a huge deal! I knew that I would be able to feed, change and offer a safe place for Millie to sleep, but having never done this before, the responsibility of looking after a precious and tiny human was so intimidating. I can thankfully say that Millie is not only alive but is thriving!
2. Breast feeding
I know that breastfeeding is not for everyone, and that is totally fine, but for me it seemed like a no brainer decision. Millie latched right away, however, the pain factor was tough. No one ever told me that taking a simple shower could cause so much pain to my nipples! Ouchy!! (During the first month I had to wear a sports bra every time I took a shower to protect them). The mental aspect to breastfeeding was a struggle I had to overcome. I used to hate going to bed because I knew that I would be up every couple of hours to breast feed. I really had to change my selfish attitude and choose to view it as a need I was fulfilling for my baby. Overall, breast feeding has been amazing experience and thankfully I am producing more than enough to keep Amelia growing and happy.
3. Fitting back into my pre-pregnancy pants
This was huge! My stretchmarks and extra cushion are not going to keep me from feeling confident in my post-baby body! During my pregnancy, I was determined to stay active, not only for my sanity but to make it easier to bounce back to my pre-baby size. Although this was always my goal, after I had Millie I realized that I may never be my pre-baby size again and I was okay with that! However, after I got the OK from my doctor to start running again, I was thrilled. Between running and breast feeding, I am happy to share that a few weeks ago, I put on my favorite pair of size 6 Prana jeans and they buttoned with no problem! Stretch marks and all I am so proud of myself for being diligent with exercise and getting back to my pre-baby size!
4. Cloth diapering
I was never too sure about cloth diapering a baby. It always sounded messy and like too much work, but I have come to really like it! It helps when the diapers are super cute and the method is user friendly. We use the Grovia Hybrid system and I love it (look for future post about cloth diapering!) Although we only cloth diaper part of the time, it has saved us money and I like that Millie is wearing natural fibers against her skin. Cloth diapering takes a lot of discipline and more energy than just disposables, so I am very proud of myself for sticking to it when we are at home.
5. Getting Millie to Nap for 2 x 2.5 hour segments
I remember my friends telling me that their world revolved around nap time, and I never understood it…until now! We have worked very hard to get naps more regular, and we are getting there. Obviously, some days she chooses not to nap, but more times than not I can plan her napping from 9-11:30ish and 1:30-4ish. I am so proud of Millie and myself for sticking to a routine, because it gives her good rest and offers me a break during the day.
6. Leaving Millie with a baby-sitter
This is a huge accomplishment for me. Alex and I had left Millie with my parents early on to run to the grocery store and do small 30 minute errands, but I just recently left Amelia with my mom for several hours so I could go have some “me time.” Doing this for the first time takes guts. As a mama, you are the only one that knows your baby the best. You know the cues for when she gets sleepy, cranky and hungry, so thinking about leaving your baby with someone else can be scary. But guess what, both Millie and I survived and now we know we can do it!
7. Date night with my hubby
It is vital that Alex and I keep our marriage at the center of our family. Having a healthy marriage is not only important to us, but it’s important for Millie. I want Millie to always know that we love each other and prioritize spending time together. About a week ago, Alex and I got to go on our first date since Millie was born. This was such a treat, because Alex and I have been surviving these first couple months, and a date gave us a chance to sit and relax and enjoy each others company. I am so proud of us for letting go for a few hours and to spend quality time with one another!
8. Moving baby into her own room
To be honest, we moved Millie into her own room at 3 weeks old. Most pediatricians recommend waiting until 3-4 months of age to move baby into their own room, but that was not how it worked for us. Early on, we realized that Amelia was such a loud sleeper that I would wake up at every peep she made thinking she was hungry. So, we decided in order for everyone to sleep better, we should try moving her into her own room. This was such a great decision for our family! Alex and I got our room back to ourselves and Millie was able sleep soundly without me thinking she was hungry with every sound she made. Plus, we use a fancy monitor that allows us to see and hear her, so that gave me peace of mind knowing my tiny baby was in her room by herself. This was a huge accomplishment for me because I thought it would take months for me to feel comfortable leaving Millie in her own room.
9. Creating a night time routine
I never realized how much a routine person I am until I had a baby. I like knowing what to expect next and a routine is something you can take with you anywhere. We started a night time routine for Millie at 6 weeks old and have kept it the same since. Our night time routine consists of a bath, a feeding and right down to bed. Millie has thrived on this routine! I will never apologize for being a routine mama, because it works for our me and my baby.
10. Taking a long weekend in Denver
The comfort of being home was my safety net when Millie was first born, and to be honest it still is. I have everything I need when I’m at home and that gives me peace of mind. So, when we had to travel to Denver for a few nights to see family, I was nervous. Millie was only 5 weeks old at the time and I was sure she was going to cry the whole drive and get sick from being exposed to so many people. Call me a worry wort, but every first-time mom is a little on edge when they travel for the first time especially with a tiny baby. But I am happy to say that Millie not only slept the whole drive to Denver, but we discovered that Millie is a “go with the flow” kind of kid. She never fussed and loved being around all the new people. I am so proud of myself for getting through that weekend and learning that I will survive outside my safely net.
I think it is so important to allow yourself to celebrate your accomplishments, even if they are as simple as keeping your baby alive or even taking a shower. By giving yourself a pat on the back daily, it will help you to tackle the next challenge that tomorrow will bring and help build confidence in yourself as a parent!
Abby is a first time Mom, and an amazing team member of Baja Baby. She lives in Colorado with her husband Alex, their beautiful new baby girl Amelia Grace and Maple the dog.
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