When I became pregnant, I became an avid reader of every parenting and baby sites, I even subscribed so that I won’t miss an update weekly. The first thing I read in my inbox is “Your baby this week…”. One instance, I got worried because from the update, I should feel a movement in my tummy yet I’m still not experiencing those. Turns out that my pregnancy milestone is a bit late.
When I gave birth to Gwen, my sis-in-law gave us a baby book, a very detailed and good book, from feeding your newborn baby, how to bathe a newborn, and how to train her sleep through the night. I just have to make it in bold letters because that’s the one thing we tried to do for two months. For the first two months of her life, Gwen is wide awake during the night, and she has crying bouts that starts at 8 pm. It’s the most difficult stage, I suffered post-partum deppression too, perhaps due to lack of sleep and stress because I don’t know how to pacify her during her crying bouts. From the baby book, it suggests that we have to turn cold turkey at the baby or the cry it out method, this way, she will be trained to sleep for longer periods. But how the heck I can resist to carry my baby if she’s crying nonstop??? Can you bear not to pay attention when your baby’s crying? So I just read the book for other topics except sleep training because obviously, that didn’t work for us. Thankfully, Gwen started sleeping at night when she turned two months and only wakes up twice just to feed.
I got weekly updates of what to expect from my baby, your baby should be smiling by now, your baby should be coo-ing, your baby should be talking, your baby should be this and that…. As an excited stage mommy, I would watch out for those milestones and then get worried when she’s not doing what the email said. Paranoid me would often wonder if she has developmental delays, etc… Oh and it doesn’t help when some relatives and friends would compare their kids with Gwen, “Si ano, naglalakad na nung _ months pa lang…” “Si _, nagsasalita na nung _ months pa lang”. It’s like Babylympics, I tell ya!
One thing I learned, each baby is UNIQUE, just be patient with them achieving their milestones at their own time. Enjoy each day, with new milestones or not, because babies grow so fast. When Gwen was still a baby, we wished that she could walk already so that we won’t carry her anymore. Now that she’s walking, we wished she’s just a tiny baby sleeping in our arms.
Learn to trust your instincts too, mommies. That’s the gift of mothers, they will immediately know something’s wrong with their kids no other parenting and baby books can tell you.
Make those parenting sites as your guide but don’t let it rule your parenting style, since each baby is unique, each parent also has her own way of dealing with your child’s behavior. You are the mommy, and so you are the expert.