How is she sleeping for you?
From their first cry, babies are expected to achieve many milestones.
It starts right in the maternity ward. Your new little bundle is expected to gain a certain amount of weight, feed, poop and pee a certain amount at a certain time. For the doctors, it is a certificate of good health to be released from the hospital and for you, new parents, it is reassuring to know that your baby is doing well, or as expected.
But with motherhood comes worry. You will ask yourself everyday: Is my baby doing what he is supposed to? Is this normal? Why is he not waking up to feed? Or why is she not sleeping? Is she gaining enough weight?
Well-intentioned family, friends and even lovely strangers often put a lot of pressure on new parents as well. Some are just being curious, some want to share their knowledge, others are just making conversations, but at the end of the day, all these inquiries about your child take a toll on your spirit. You may start doubting yourself and wondering if your baby is doing all right.
Please remember that most people vaguely remember how life was when they first became parents. Being a parent of one, two or more children doesn’t mean they have mastered motherhood and it is as simple as having different children than yours.
We all struggle as parents and parenting is hard, we learn as we go and none of us really knows what they are doing.
But you are the best mom for your baby, therefore, you are doing the right thing for your baby. Only you know what is good and works for them.
Give them freedom
Now that I boosted your confidence and you understand that you are the right person for the job know that your child knows what is job is. He doesn’t need to be pushed and encouraged into sitting for example. It is a natural development milestone that he will achieve on its own.
Let’s put it like this: if your child is not developmentally ready for something then he won’t do it so anything that will fast trbaack his natural readiness is not necessarily a good idea. Don’t feel the need to buy all the baby equipment there is out there.
If you allow your child to move freely and give him the opportunity to explore his surroundings safely without interruption, your by will find a way in his own time.
Trust your instinct
That said, as a mother, you should always trust your instinct. If something feels wrong, you should never let anyone tell you otherwise. Take the time to observe your child on a regular basis. Observing is a very important (and difficult I must say) skill to master as a parent. We often want to intervene and help our children to reach for something, or succeed in a task they are having a hard time with. But try your best to let them be, and watch them explore the world on their own.
However, don’t hesitate to consult if you believe that there is something out of the ordinary.
Slow down and smell the coffee
“Your child is only little once” I have been told. It is so true. Let your baby be himself and most importantly, enjoy every little bit of it. Always do what feels natural, there is no right or wrong.
If baby doesn’t feel like walking at 16 months and everything seems ok otherwise then maybe he is working really hard at talking or mastering other skills. Be patient, slow down, and enjoy your family.