Baby on the Way: The 100 (er, 40) Parenting Questions Swirling in My Pregnancy Brain

Image

As you may already know from our announcement post, my husband and I are expecting our first child.

I was never a baby person. My sisters and I were never exposed to babies, never had baby dolls as toys (even if we did, they weren’t played with), and I rarely babysat anyone (let alone anyone under the age of 6). Usually babysitting for us was just hanging out with kids younger than us and “watching” them (aka watching MTV and ordering pizza while they played video games in the other room).

And while this whole thing is very exciting and has my heart filled with a joy I can’t explain, I’m also fearful of and questioning a lot of things these days.

1) How will I know what to do?

2) Will I be a good mom?

3) How tiring will it really be?

4) Will my baby be cute?

5) Will I miss my baby-less life a lot?

6) Are my friends going to avoid us?

7) When do I need to get the baby room ready?

8) How do I know what to register for and how much of each item?

9) Will the delivery hurt really bad?

10) How will I ever be able to go back to work and concentrate on work – how could I possibly stop thinking about the baby all day?

11) Will the daycare place really let me come visit 100x a day, and to feed as necessary?

12) Do we need to go to a birthing class?

13) Should we go to a parenting class?

14) Will they love God as much as I want them to?

15) How will I lose the weight?

16) Can we afford to give them the life we want to give them?

17) Will my parents be as involved as grandparents as mine were – I want them to be super close to my kids, as my grammy and poppop are/were unbelievably important to me?

18) Will I be able to breastfeed as long as I want to – with all the complications of going back to work and such?

19) How do I avoid fighting about how to parent, finances and the stresses we’ll face after the baby is born?

20) Is there any way to be sure the daycare we pick is better than the others we’ve toured?

21) Am I gaining too much weight? Too little?

22) Should I be showing more or less right now?

23) Why do I feel like crying sometimes when I think about the baby – happy tears, tears of anxiety, tears of impatience, etc.?

24) How is it that some girls my age were born with this baby thing where they’re aching to me moms the minute they hit puberty and then become instant rockstar moms the minute they find out they’re pregnant?

25) Is it OK if I am still ME as a mom? I want to be the same old Lindsay but with a baby on my hip and my designer bag on my shoulder (sorry, no Vera Bradley Diaper Bag for me). I want to still see my friends all the time and have fun.

26) How soon am I supposed to start educational stuff for the baby? Immediately? Does that mean reading to them and that’s enough? That’s adorable and I can so do that, but what else can I do to make them smart?

27) Sort of along the lines of question 26 … how do I ensure they’re smart and learn what they need to, when they need to?

28) Should we have stayed in Dallas so that we have family close as we raise a family?

29) How hard will it be without family nearby to help?

30) Is sending them to daycare as an infant going to be harmful to my bonding / my husband’s bonding with them?

31) Will I experience post-partum? And what the heck is post-partum anyway? 

32) Is it bad that I think some moms are just so cheese-y and I don’t want to talk to my kids like that at all? I’ve heard that baby talk is bad for them, and talking to them normally makes them smarter – is that true?

33) How will our dogs react to the new baby? Will they behave? Will they love the baby and protect it? Will they be jealous and act out? Will they have to become outside dogs full-time?

34) Are other moms going to judge me for the way I am as a mom (which I don’t even know how I’ll be yet)?

35) Why does it take so long to make a baby – I want to meet it now?

36) Will a boy be better for me getting used to this mom thing first, or a girl?

37) Am I going to be mean?

38) Am I going to be a push-over?

39) How do we ensure we are a super tight-knit family and are always close throughout our lives?

40) When will I know the answers to all these questions and more?

I decided to share these here in hopes that it would be somewhat cathartic and elicit advice, wisdom and encouragement from you. If only these all magically became answered when the baby is born. 🙂

Advertisements

13 thoughts on “Baby on the Way: The 100 (er, 40) Parenting Questions Swirling in My Pregnancy Brain

  1. Congratulations! What thoughtful questions! I will say that we are expecting baby # 2 in February and even though I already have one, I still have many of the same questions!! Number 25 resonates with me! Before I had a baby I was a bit of a party girl and I probably always will be, although my definition of “party” may have changed a bit. I do still love to go out and see friends, but we definitely do it less often, but it makes it more special and it’s always fun to have something to look forward to. I definitely don’t miss the social scene as much as I thought I would.

  2. My girl and step kids went to nursery, and it made a visible difference to those who didn’t when they started school. They were excited instead of clingy, they instantly knew how to make friends and were use to routine and how to follow instructions. Definitely the best choice. It makes me more appreciative when we are at home, I can had my bad moods during the day when we are apart! Dogs become difficult. You can’t walk a dog at night if baby’s in bed and your other half is out. So we made a decision on that one.
    You’ll be fine.
    I’d never held a kid before, and mine turned out fine! Most foods and baby items come with instructions!

  3. One of the main things that sort of encompasses most of your questions about your life change, is your actual life change. Having baby come into your lives will definately change your day-to-day, but your mentality towards most of these things will be different once baby is here and you switch to “mom mode”.

    My major recommendation is to study! Read everything, mainstream mommy books, hippy natural books, blogs, etc. There are so many “ways”, no two moms are alike. You will get pressure from all sides from well meaning moms,friends and family. You aren’t required to please anyone! Make choices for you and your family based on aquired knowledge, advice, and good old fashioned intuition. No matter what, there will always be “judgement”. I am an all natural breastfeeding, no vaccinating hippy mom, and I receive just as much judgement and commentary as my sister, who does everything opposite. (Usually, all the kids turn out about the same 🙂

    Daycares can be wonderful, my kids have been in one since one year, and two months, respectively. My experience has been great, they are also a “learning center” that has taught them to be more than prepared to transition into Kindergarten. (taught them to read/and basic math well before Kinder!) They serve 1 month-12 years old, and they pick up the kids after school. I selected them because I knew they could “grow up” there and not have to transition into a different daycare when school began, and the familiarity of day care afterschool eased first day jitters (they knew alot of kids from toddler years that are in their classes now)

    Post-partum hits everyone differently, Its similar to depression. Mommyhood is not all bow and bubbles, it can be very challenging. Mommy-Baby bond does not happen at birth (common misconception!). Some mommies have instant bonds with their offspring, others, it comes in time. You will love them more than you’ve ever loved anything, but you and baby have to get to know each other. If you experience a fussy baby screaming in the middle of the night, feel “frumpy”, and are in a spat with hubby, it can wipe you out emotionally. Being at home on a Friday night, then you can’t fit in your jeans and can’t seem to do anything right, can be very emotionally hard on you. That’s were good nutrition (keep taking vitamins!), alone time (showers count!) and leaning on hubby for support will help.

    You won’t ever know all the answers, or the “right way” or have everything organized and be ready for anything. Kids don’t come with manuals, you get to write your own!

    • This was very calming and encouraging to read. Thank you so much. I had a dream the other night I wasn’t feeding my baby and that I was trying to breastfeed. I want to breastfeed so bad, but I’m so worried I won’t be able to for all the number of reasons women have for stopping or giving up. I just hope that since my pregnancy has been so easy thus far, that it’s just as easy to breastfeed. And I’m glad to know about such positive benefits to daycare. Thank you again.

  4. Ah, so many questions. Unfortunately, no one can answer them for you. You will have to figure them all out on your own! Every mother is different, and we can only give you our account of the experience we’ve had with our children..and they are all different. Haha. I can tell you that I have never missed my baby-less life. Ever since my son took his first breath of air, I haven’t been able to imagine the world without him in it. Every mom is different though! My advice is to stop wondering about all these things. The answers will come with time and experience. Just enjoy your pregnancy!

  5. Pingback: My Pregnancy Thus Far: 18 Weeks | mrs. & the misc.

  6. Lindsay, I just found your blog through Facebook, and first let me say congratulations! You and Michael are getting ready to embark on an incredible journey. When I was pregnant with Bailey. I had many of the same concerns as you, and I’m a “baby” person. I read so many books, and once she was here, my brain was so scattered, and I was trying so hard to remember everything. (I know this sounds great, right?) During those first days in the hospital, the best advice that I got came from my aunt. She told me to do what works for us. She said your child has nothing to compare to; she will only know the way you parent. Does that make sense?
    Will you miss your days without kids? Yes, but probably not until they’re older and are misbehaving and showing you an attitude. Jim and I just looked at each other after we had Bailey and thought “what did we do before her?” Now that we have an almost 13 year old, a 9 yo, and a 3 yo, I would love a little time without my kids. But that’s what date night is for (and you will appreciate it more after kids).
    As far as will your kids love God as much as you want him/her to? The best answer to that is prayer. Pray for your kids and then model the behavior to them. If they see that your relationship with Christ is real, then it will be easier for them. We are definitely not perfect parents, but I love to find ways to show Christ to my kids. You will work really hard investing and pouring into them, and then when you least expect it, you will have a huge spiritual moment. There is nothing better!
    I hope some of this is an encouragement to you. As some others have said, try not to worry too much and just enjoy this time in your life!

    • Dawn! So good to hear from you! Your advice means a lot. I am def doing pretty good ignoring all the noise and just doing my thing so far. Can’t believe I’m already 21 weeks …. It’s going by so fast!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s