It’s funny how nostalgic you become, even after such a short space of time. Rafe is almost one and I find myself looking back at the newborn days like they were a million years ago and wishing I could go back to the beginning and relive every moment again – to get one more squishy newborn cuddle. As you can see - I also find myself looking back at those days with rose tinted glasses. It wasn’t that hard was it? "IT WAS FUCKING BRUTAL!!" The cluster feeding, sleep-deprived Faye during week 3 postpartum is screaming at me. I read somewhere that motherhood is a mixture of wishing time away (right, just need to get through these first 6 weeks, when is this four-month regression going to end?) and then wanting to pause and simply go back in time to relive certain moments you had been so desperate to pass. Now maternity leave is over (still quite emotional – but less tears) I am constantly saying: “I wish I had treasured certain moments more,” but the reality is, especially as a first-time mum, you are knee deep in doubt, nappies and exhaustion most of the time – especially in those early months. And realistically, if I went back in time and said to the Faye, rocking in the chair while trying to get Rafe to latch on to a cracked nipple at 2am, wearing a giant sanitary pad and scared to have her first poo post-birth: “Treasure these moments, you’ll miss them when they’re gone,” I’d most probably punch her in the face. But my friend has given birth to her second child recently and she put it perfectly when she said: “I’m trying to drink it all in this time.” And if we are lucky to have a second little whirlwind – that’s what I’ll try to do. Also look after myself more, pluck my eyebrows, get in the gym, throw out maternity leggings, keep away from the biscuit tin, don’t obsess about naps, be more calm in general, enjoy every second, sleep when the baby sleeps, don’t hate my husband, have less rage, get baby to self-settle early on, don't google so much, be a general all-round earth mother goddess....
So second week of work down and hardly any tears. But I’m still feeling quite emotional about the little chapter ending but don’t think those feelings will go away anytime soon. But it has got easier. And only really had a few tears on Thursday. I’ve been meaning to take Rafe to the dentist for the first time for a couple of months but kept forgetting and then the first appointment I could get was when I went back to work. So my husband took him on Thursday and I was quite upset I couldn’t be there. He sent me a photo of him looking all grown up in the dental chair and I cried (obviously). I know it was just the dentist but felt like I missed out. But Rafe seems more than happy with his little adventures without me there, so I need to remember that. And like I said last week – I just need to treasure our little moments together. And it’s actually been good to see my husband realise that looking after Rafe can be a little challenging. Although he experienced those early weeks, since Rafe was about 8 weeks, he's been back and forth on weekends so he mostly got to have ‘fun’ Rafe when he was home. But the other day he texted me while out walking, trying to get Rafe to sleep: “YOUR child is annoying,” as he was fighting his nap like the nap-pro he is not. WELCOME TO MY WORLD SUNNY JIM.
Rafe has been teething all week so his sleep has been all over the place so that’s been fun. If fun now means fucking exhausting. It was particularly fun this morning (Sunday) after I'd been out and had a few proseccos and he woke at 2am then up for the day at 5.30. I just laugh now at the thought of being able to say: “my baby is a good sleeper” because I don’t see light at the end of the tunnel. Just acceptance now that I will be exhausted for life. Maybe when he is one he will finally crack sleep? He is also having a mammoth feed before bed and has done so the past week or so (literally nurses for an hour like the early days). Don’t know whether it’s teething – or it’s something to do with his routine changing and me not being around. Who knows? Do you ever figure this baby thing out?
We got the keys to our new house on Friday! It’s so exciting to actually own our home – finally. Anyone who is a military spouse will understand the excitement of not having to move every two years – and goodbye magnolia walls! We are just going to gradually move in over the week – so hopefully be all settled never weekend. A little nervous as Rafe has never been in his own room – not out of choice really, more because we haven’t had the room to do it. People have said he may sleep better as won’t be disrupted by me but I feel like we have got so used to each other, I’m going to find it a little hard to start with. Just because I’m so used to hearing him breathing, snoring, moving around. Anyone else left it quite late to have baby in own room? Any advice???
He has his first day at nursery on Wednesday. With it being term time only, we haven’t been able to have any settling in days, so I’ve taken the morning off, so will go with him – and then my husband will take over, if needed in the afternoon. I had to write a little routine for him – and obviously cried when I wrote “Rafe can be quite serious – especially if he is shy and doesn’t know anybody. But loves bubbles, sensory lights, books, putting toys in his mouth...” Quite nervous about it – but also know it will be good for him. And hoping that the nursery workers will work their nap magic on him!
Rafe is kind of crawling! Well moving forward slightly. He’s doing a one arm commando crawl which is pretty hilarious but it gets him from A to B! He’s also able to get from sitting to crawling position – which he’s never really tried to do. He does kind of face plant doing it but it’s a start!
Right, best be off. Lots of jobs to order my husband to do! (Not stressed at all….)
Royal Marine Wife. Mum to Rafe.