Baby One was one tough customer. Don’t believe me? You know how the nurses offer to take your wee newborn baby into the nursery for the first night or so so that you can get some rest? Well, the nurses brought him back to me after an hour and told me he was waking up the other babies. That set the tone for about one year of sleep issues. (Oddly enough, after a week-long cry-it-out session at 11 months, he has slept through the night ever since. Weird.)
This little guy, however, is an absolute angel. In the hospital, they only brought him back to me when it was time to eat at night. Why? Because he SLEEPS AT NIGHT. What a concept. He also sleeps in his bassinet / crib. (We have moved him into our room in a small crib.) At nearly six months old, he goes to bed at about 8:00, sleeps until 3:30 or so, has a snack, then sleeps again until about 7:30. Bliss! I even let him sleep with me after his early-morning snack…because everyone loves a baby snuggle, especially baby.
I suspected that Baby One’s sleep habits were not of my own doing – that he slept / didn’t sleep according to his own feisty nature. And I was right. Even from infancy, we have so little control over who they are as people and what they’re like.
They are who they are. And they are so different already.
One of the reasons I think I am a good mommy is: I am tired at the end of the day. I am constantly riding a bike, walking across the yard, shoveling sand in the sandbox, or crouching by Blaine’s side at the river. (Who needs a gym, right?) He loves being outside, and I try to encourage this behavior by playing with him and helping him think of things to do out there. This morning, he wanted to play in the empty pool (wasn’t quite hot enough for swimmin’ yet), so I brought out some balls and made him a ball pit. He LOVED it. There was much rolling and giggling and jumping. The only problem was, he’s working on his fast ball, so there was also much throwing. All of the balls eventually made their way to the lawn. Twice.
But that’s cool. That’s what being a good mommy is about (I think): working hard to let your kids play. Toddlers are hard work. They require constant attention. (There will be no sitting on the lawn at the park idly watching him climb the slide for you, missy.) And they are BUSY. All of the things that B seems to like to do require a significant amount of bending, lifting, grabbing, walking, pulling, or scooping on my part. It’s easy to get tired. His playing is my hard work. I dutifully picked up all those balls, but relished the look on his face when he got to throw them all out again.
For more information on why toddler moms are so tired (and how / when it will end), read this article – The Life Cycle of a Park Parent – on Funny is Family. It’s funny.