Thursday, October 08, 2009

Motherhood and Lightbulb Moments

Monday was not a good day.

It began well enough. Griffin was happy and we spent most of the afternoons running errands. I got a ton of stuff accomplished and we seemed to be on the same team.

Then, all of a sudden, we weren't. He was tired and cranky but wouldn't take a nap. I was tired and cranky and couldn't take a nap. Things went from bad to worse and before I knew what was happening I was screaming at my four month old baby. My anger and frustration multiplied by the guilt I felt for yelling at him led me down a dark path. I felt despondent, detached. I understood suddently how so many of my friends felt in the first weeks of their children's lives.

The first weeks of Griffin's life were magical for me. I had an amazing support system. I trusted my instincts. My guiding principle was you cannot spoil an infant. He cried and I fed him. He slept in my arms for hours. It was paradise.

Then, he got older and my guiding principle seemed to no longer apply. Suddenly, I had an endless stream of advice from friends, family and baby books telling me to put him down in his crib, get him on a schedule, don't spoil him!!! The pressure kept increasing until I felt like Griffin and I were in a constant battle instead of beautiful dance.

But that ends now.

I'm trying to go back to reading his cues and meeting his needs, instead of forcing my expectations on him. Tuesday was a dream. Yesterday, even better. With any luck, we'll be moving together to the music soon and this Monday will be very different.


Anonymous said...

Good for you. Sometimes you have to forget about all the advice and books and follow your own instincts as a mother (a great one I might add) There will be alot of instances thru the years where he is not going to do exactly what you think is best but you'll know at that time what is best for him and for you.

I love you

Michelle said...

Yes, good for you. If we listened to all that advice, our kids would be eating biscuits and gravy at 2 months and wearing snowsuits in July (babies are apparently always hungry and always cold).

You're a great mom. And hooray for doing things your own way.

Becky said...

I don't think it's possible to "spoil" a baby. What does that even mean?! I did get my kids on a a very basic schedule (mostly a nightly routine that was comforting and signaled that it was time to rest) but that ME and MY KIDS. The exact opposite could work for you. Advice is fine, just don't let anyone make you feel guilty about any decisions you make. It sounds like you all are doing a great job. And he's just cute as can be!!!

Aunt Lana said...

Think of it like this..

Some days the two of you will Waltz.
Some days the two of you will Rumba.
Some days you'll want to do the Waltz and he'll want to do the Rumba. That is the Tango.

Some days he'll lead and some days you'll have to lead.