Thursday, May 6, 2010

Writer's Workshop-Letter to New Moms

1.) Open letter to new moms.

OK, this week’s prompt was meant to be, because I just started reading the book “
A Three Martini Playdate.” I’ve wanted it since before I had kids, and I just acquired it from another new mom, who had never cracked it open. And I mean this wholeheartedly, even though I have read all of about the first 30 pages, all new moms should read this book. It’s got common sense, laughs, and best of all, it does not ask you to be a super-mom.

The whole premise is that when we were kids, we couldn’t wait to be grown-ups, so we could be in charge. And now that we are grown-ups, we have handed complete control of our lives over to our kids. We coddle them all the time, allow them to do whatever they want, and don’t believe that they should get hurt. Ever. I am all for a kid not breaking her neck, but how is she supposed to learn what “hot” is if you don’t ever allow her to feel heat? And if she falls over and hits her head on a wall, and you get all emotional and clingy and she cries, do you think she is hurt, or she is just reacting to your actions?

When I was pregnant, the number one thing that people told me to do was just relax, and enjoy my time with my baby. And now, almost 16 months later, I cannot say I have heard truer advice. Just chill out! Rock your child and play with her. When she is sleeping, let her sleep! It’s OK to have a blanket to keep her warm; she probably will not die of SIDS. (Hey…I can’t guarantee anything.) When she cries, try not to cry with her, try to figure out what the hell she wants. Food, diaper, more or less clothes, tiredness, or boredom are usually the case with new babies. (Of course, there are the cases out there where kids have chronic belly-aches, but that may not be your kid! And if it is, they make medicine for it.) I am not kidding when I say that as an infant, Sam slept around 16 hours a day. Sometimes more. So little babies require lots of sleep, you just have to figure out how to get them to do it. I am a big fan of the swaddle/straightjacket. My mom always told me she felt mean strapping her down, but Sam slept like a lamb with that thing on. If nothing else, read a book by
The Baby Whisperer. I heart her.

Try not to think about the fact that you and your husband are solely responsible for turning this little person into a productive member of society. Just try to get through the day. If you are relaxed, there is a good chance that you kid will feed off of your energy. (I also believe this with dogs.) Of course, I only have one. (kid and dog)

Here is my disclaimer: This is a letter to NEW moms, most likely with one kid. I can’t help you if you have twins or, oh my…triplets. And of course, it’s easier said than done. But even so, just try to relax, even if it goes against every fiber of your being. Which, fortunately for me, it does not. I have a PhD in relaxing.


paige said...

This is my favorite one of these I've read. I love it. Great post.

Pammie said...

I know kids pick up whatever mood the parents are in. When my older preteens fight, our baby starts fussing right along with them. I have to stop the older kids before the baby will calm down. Good advice.

Amber Page Writes said...

Triplets? Shudder. I'm with's so important to just relax and be. That's all a kid needs!

Alex said...

great post!

Kasey said...

I read that book too! It was so helpful! Happy Mother's Day!

Erin said...

I think I need to learn how to relax before baby comes in September.