Is there anything more heartbreakingly wonderful than having a baby? Even when they drive me insane, I adore my kids. I love them at every age and despite all the sleepless nights, spit-up, messy diapers, and wailing, I loved the baby stage. Life with a baby can be tough, but I did my best to enjoy every moment, knowing that it would end too quickly. What follows are my own personal lessons learned from different aspects of caring for an infant.
Baby Sign Language is an amazingly satisfying way of communicating with someone who is full of thoughts and interests, but too young to express their ideas verbally. In my experience, not only did signing reduce tantrums and improve our relationship, but I believe it encouraged my kids to speak earlier and helped them to have richer vocabularies since they started communicating complex ideas at such a young age.
I honestly don’t know how I would have lived without a baby carrier. Both of my babies wanted nothing more than to be close to me for a great portion of their first few months. Once I stopped fighting that desire, we were both much happier. Carriers also allowed me to preserve my close relationship with my older kids as babies were added to our family.
Nursing my first child did not start out as the idyllic image I envisioned, but ultimately it became one of the most fulfilling aspects of being a mother. Once mastered, it also made life so much easier.
I always knew I wanted to try cloth diapers. While not as easy as disposables, it’s not as hard as one might imagine, saves money, and just seems friendlier in my opinion, both to the child and the planet. We are by no means exclusive in our cloth diapering, but we try to use them at least half the time.
I definitely did not start out planning to co-sleep with my kids. However, after carefully researching the literature and suffering through many sleepless nights, I made the leap and couldn’t be more happy that I did.
There really are not as many items necessary for raising a small person as one might imagine. This is a list of baby shower gifts that are not necessarily common, but extremely useful to a new parent or someone pregnant with their second child.