currently my baby is sleeping wrapped in a large fuzzy blanket with woodland creatures on it. she is naked except for her diaper, because an hour ago i couldn’t bear to change her one more time. she is an excellent baby in all regards, but she has an absolute terror of being changed (clothing or diapers). she gets this utterly wild look in her eye, shoots her arms straight out in front of her, and screams bloody murder.
it can be devastating to be the one putting her in such a state.
so today, after a projectile spit-up episode, i cleaned her up and calmed her down and really didn’t want to work her up again. plus, i rarely get to see her without all her cute clothes on . . . and she just looks so much more like a baby.
more important than this inane bit of babyness is the fact that i actually wondered if i should feel guilty for not bucking up the courage and putting more clothes on her. am i already a push-over mom? before i know it, ramona will be calling all the shots around here. because i am weak.
i know, it is all so ridiculous. but i don’t want this to be the norm, all the guiltness. for now i am learning to laugh at myself and not take everything so seriously. the first few weeks were rough (compounded by the fact that i was so sick) and i seriously wondered why people ever had children. newborns can do that to you. but then, a week or two into the trenches, i started to see the little joys. and to realize that each day she was getting bigger and older, and i could choose to enjoy her royal tinyness, or i could hurry it along. obviously, it is so much more fun to enjoy.
i had picked up a book from the recommendation of friends that promised a life of sleeping bliss if you scheduled your baby’s life away. my mom took one look at the book i was reading and practically snatched it out of my hands. “don’t listen to guilt-based parenting!” was the equivalent of what she told me. and i should have listened to her and stopped reading. but, (big surprise) i didn’t stop reading and immediately i was wracked with guilt for how my not scheduling ramona’s sleeping and eating was causing her to sleep less deeply, and starting her down the slippery slope towards a spoiled childhood.
luckily, i stopped halfway through and haven’t looked back since.
i am sure that process works for some, but for ramona–well, we have to take her into account. for now, it seems that she is on a somewhat flexible schedule (eating every 3-4 hours during the day, taking quite a few naps that vary in length, sleeping for 2-5 hour stretches at night) but it changes slightly everyday. and sometimes it changes in big ways. i love the flexibility because that is the kind of life i want to have with my baby, and that is the kind of life my neighbors have.
for an excellent take on the whole babywise phenomenon, check this blog out.
in other news, ramona met my bhutanese family today and it was one long exercise in letting go which resulted in me constantly asking people to wash their hands while i was forced to eat large platefuls of sticky, sweet rice. they bought ramona baby clothes with minnie mouse on them that she probably won’t grow into for another year at least. but it blessed me so much–these people who didn’t have enough money to heat their apartment last year are buying my baby clothes.
we are going to a bhutanese festival with them on saturday, and we shall see how ramona likes all the traditional dances. as for me, i am just excited to get out of the house and be around some of the kindest people i have the privilege of knowing.