We are all “awarded” the title of parent upon the birth of our first child, but I now know that I truly earned my first set of “parenting stripes” with the completion of the first year.
So, here are the Top 30 things I have learned from year one:
1. I can love someone covered in amniotic fluid, poop, spit-up, tears, food and/or dirt.
2. Breastfeeding is hard.
3. My husband is an awesome Daddy. And being such an awesome Daddy makes him an awesome husband. (Even if I do get jealous that our daughter calls both of us “Da-Da” sometimes.)
4. Sometimes I really need to ask for and LET people help.
5. Breastfeeding is hard…really hard.
6. Sleep training was a challenge. It’s not for everyone, but definitely worked for us.
7. Some things I just need to do myself.
8. Every child is sooo different in sooo many ways.
9. It’s amazing how difficult a day filled with nap struggles, eating struggles, teething struggles, and just plain don’t-feel-well-struggles, can be.
10. Every parent is sooo different in sooo many ways.
11. It’s amazing how a smile or a hug or a coo or a reach can erase a whole day of nap struggles, eating struggles, teething struggles, and just plain don’t-feel-well struggles.
12. Breastfeeding is hard, but also hard to give up.
13. If I parent with love, “they” say I’m doing just fine. I, however, feel like I don’t do anything right no matter what “they” say. I also feel like “they” are constantly judging me… “they” are so fickle.
14. Amazon Prime is my best friend.
15. Be good to your parents because they will be grandparents to your children and will become an invaluable support system. Plus, you will want them to buy diapers, babysit, help around the house, babysit, fly in to visit and babysit.
16. 12 Baby teeth + breastfeeding = OUCH!!!
17. While I never planned to be a stay at home mom, having this year to watch my daughter grow has forever changed me, bonded my daughter and I, and has been more difficult than anything I could ever imagine.
18. Pumping sucks…literally and figuratively.
19. Being in the same room as my parents when my daughter is hysterical, gives me a whole new perspective on what they had to put up with with ME.
20. Poop can be an array of colors and consistencies.
21. I still roll my eyes like a 13-year-old at some of the things my parents say. And now that I’m a parent, I just look at my daughter, already fearing her teenage years.
22. Never underestimate the power of mom-friends. No one “gets” what I’m going through quite like them.
23. Shirts I wear to sleep and shirts I wear out of the house are often times the same shirt.
24. It’s amazing how my definition of “sleeping through the night” has evolved.
25. Never underestimate the power of non-parent friends. No one can remind me that I am more than “just” a mom, quite like them.
26. Learning to walk is hard. How do baby deer make it look so easy?
27. I need to take more time for me. Whether it’s for a shower, a movie, to write, to read, to dance, to clear off the DVR, or to do something non-child related. I don’t do this often enough, but when I do, I am a better mom and person for it. And truth be told, I haven’t really danced.
28. Pureed peaches are pretty tasty.
29. Breastfeeding, plus cutting out eggs and dairy to help my daughter deal with allergies via my breast milk did not help me drop ANY weight. What a racket!
30. One year simultaneously slowly creeps up and flies by.