Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Parenting

I miss my snuggles....

Isaac started sleeping through the night, not sure if its just a phase or if it will continue but for the past THREE nights in a row, our bed had been "baby free." You would think this would make me happy. To have a whole nights sleep, no kicking, scratching, or constant sucking, what could be better right? Wrong! Now, granted at 2am after my little leach (as I lovingly called him) was STILL latched on nursing it seemed annoying, but now my bed seems lonely. I kept getting up to check on him, even though his Angel Care monitor showed he was still breathing and just sleeping like a little Angel. Even worse, this morning he didnt wake up crying for his mama, no he woke up and started playing, and did this through my whole shower, *I* had to go get him and tell him it was time to get up. Six months ago I would have found this wonderful, now that it is upon me....I want my snuggle buddy back! He's growing way too fast. *sniff sniff* You think I could train Zoey to bark at say...1 or 2 am and wake him up for me??

People would always say.."Don't let that baby sleep with you, You'll never get him in his own bed." or "Just let him cry it out, he'll learn that he needs to just go to sleep." Well I'm sorry, I LIKE my baby sleeping with me, and I'll never let him cry it out, he cries because he needs me. Even if its just for a hug or a cuddle, until he is able to verbally tell me what he wants and needs, crying is his means of communication. I'm his mama and he needs me.

Maybe its different for us since we went two months where we could do nothing for his cries. Where cuddling was a once a week experience for no more than 1 hour at a time. Where eating had to take place exactly at every three hours for no more than 30 minutes each time. But I am attached to my baby, he's a baby, he needs his mommy to snuggle him and help him feel safe. Parenting is about more than making sure they are clothed, fed, and have toys. *

I oftentimes question my parenting. Am I doing it right? But, then I receive affirmation that I must be doing something right. My baby is healthy. My baby is happy. My baby is the most gorgeous, awesome, smartest baby ever!** Not that all sick and/or unhappy (and/or ugly) babies are the result of bad parenting nor are all healthy, happy, and/or pretty babies the result of good parenting. But my baby has come a long long way, and maybe its prideful, but I AM proud of how far he's come, and how far we have been able to bring him. It hasnt come without sacrafice...we have loosened up a little since its nicer weather but we did things like stay home and keep him away from people. We sacraficed in our jobs so that he didnt have to go out. Our parents sacraficed and he gets to stay with grandparents and not daycare. I was tied to that stinking blankedy blank breast pump for THREE months (and still am to some extent but I've slacked off a little, can ya blame me?)so he could get only breastmilk. Seriously, I didnt go ANYWHERE without my little black bag. I pumped in the car (and flashed a few truckers) I pumped in back rooms, corners, on my couch while watching TV (sorry UPS guy). The came the drama of him coming home and still having to pump AND make bottles. But then one day he woke up and decided to nurse (Praise the LORD!) Of course, I failed a little there and we have to do a couple bottles of formula while I am at work, but he NEVER EVER gets a bottle at home and when I am not at work I do my absolute best to make sure I am with him so he can get the best from the breast.***

Maybe, I'm tooting my own horn a little. But, SO WHAT?! Its my blog, and I can blog about me if I want to. I'm proud of myself. I've come along way from the selfish little whiney think I was almost two years ago when we started this whole thing. The struggling to concieve, the short but perfect pregnancy, the early (unmedicated) delivery, the NICU stay, the having a fragile baby...it all has made me stronger, wiser, tougher, and much more appreciative.

Okay, so I got off on a tangent, but where I am going with this is that it pains me greatly when people say things like "I cant wait until he/she can hold their own bottle." "Why should I waste my time giving her/him a bottle when he can hold it himself." "I just let him/her cry until he/she goes to sleep." "Don't go to them too quickly or they'll become dependent on you." "I'm so glad to get rid of the little rugrat for a while." "Just stick him in his pen and he'll learn to play on his own."

WHY do comments like this bother me, because parenthood is a priviledge. So many many women would do anything to have the opportunity to be a mom. So many men have hearts that are just crying out to be daddies. I can guarantee that there are NICU mama's crying and wishing they were being kept up all night with a newborn. I can guarantee there are women who have been trying for years to get pregnant holding back tears as they listen to a co-worker gripe about their baby. I can guarantee there are men who are being told by their friends "be glad ya'll dont have kids yet" that are heartbroken because they have wives at home who feel like they have failed them.

Okay, so I got off on a wild tangent, forgive me. But, the point of it I guess, was to describe WHY I parent the way I do. Anyway, if you go through this whole post, good for you. If it made you mad, I'm sorry, maybe you shouldnt read my blog if it bothers you because this is how I feel and I am pretty passionate about it, so get over it.

*Disclaimer: Not making any judgements about anyone's parenting style so beofre you get hostile....

**Okay, maybe I am a wee bit biased

***Not saying formula is bad or evil or that formula feeing mom are bad moms. But the breast IS best, and especially for a preemie.


Okay...now that I have been all controversial, judgemental, and mean....lets all take a deep breath and look at the world's cutest baby...all together now...1...2...3...AAAAWWWWW!!!!


4 comments:

Nicole said...

Awwww! His eyes look so gorgeous in that picture!

Good for you for parenting the way YOU want! You're doing a great job and I think it's pretty cool that Isaac is doing so well on his own even though you do miss him. It shows how much he's grown and how safe he feels in your guys' home :o)

Brandy said...

Erin, you're a good Mamma.

Take away the comment where you said you've failed in him having formula.

um, NO you are doing it exactly correct for your family!

You are working.

You are pumping.

You are breastfeeding!

I totally agree on all your comments about hating to hear other parents talk about raising their kids or feeding their kids as if it's a chore.

I abhore watching a friend of mine prop the bottle up on a burp cloth so she can be hands free. I actually picked him up a few times and fed him his bottle. She just looked at me like I was crazy.

Isabel is in bed with us and will be until it's not beneficial for our family.

You go mamma!

TammyIsBlessed said...

Preach it sister! :)

TammyIsBlessed said...

Oh, and I agree with Brandy - you have not failed in regards to breastfeeding in any way, shape or form. And I'm never wrong. :) OK, I'm sometimes wrong - but I guarantee I'm not wrong about this. You have done amazing!!