Baby Style

April 27, 2016

Dear Baby,

Style. You got it. As your primary fashion decision maker, I take my job really seriously and whether you are rocking head to toe polka dots or trying a hipster chic outfit complete with mandatory cool bandana, you are one seriously stylish lass. 

Sure, one day you will hate the things I choose for you and die of embarrassment when I suggest a “cool” pink top but for now you are at my satirical whim and I LOVE IT. 

And let’s be honest, will you really look back and cringe at your super fucking amazing outfits? I really hope not. 

So while you leave the house every day looking like a rockstar, I can’t claim to be your best accessory. In fact, I know I’m taking our cool factor down a level because….

IT IS FUCKING IMPOSSIBLE TO DRESS YOURSELF AFTER HAVING A BABY. 

Ladies, are you with me?

Here’s the four pronged problem. 

1. It’s been a long time since I bought clothes that were cool. Maternity clothing is never cool no matter what designer makes it and since getting pregnant, it’s been 15 months of scant style. Before getting pregnant, my go-to look was shabby boho chic ish. Meaning long flowy tops with an “I don’t give a fuck and maybe just rolled out of bed and just look this good first thing in the morning without trying (but also trying pretty hard)” vibe.

Now because I am always tired and actually coming straight out of bed, this look went from amazing to a literal hot mess. I don’t seem to need any help looking shabby or careless these days. 

2. On the flip side, my body is all kinds of different and tight clothes make me look a bit too much like a chicken McNugget for my taste. Having boobs is a straight up mind- fuck. Everything looks different and while trying to wear a top that is tight enough to look out together, loose enough to hide my new extra skin stuff and easy enough to nurse in (oh, and also crappy enough to throw out should a poop or barf explosion hit), I am left with a limited availability. 

3. Finally, I know that I am a new version of me but I can’t wrap my head around who that person is- clothing wise. I have always centred around a personal style but now my personal style is unidentifiable. Example. I bought a rainbow coloured Mexican blanket style dress with pom poms (which I promptly returned because what the fuck was I thinking), a shirt dress, a baggy t shirt with holes, a pair of sleek trousers and a linen blouse. What does that shopping bag of items have in common? A skewed sense of purpose is what. It’s now all back where it belongs, returned to the atored from whence it came. 

4. At the root of it all, I just want to be comfortable and cute. I have an incision on my pubic line that is numb and painful at the same time, I have boobs that still are trying to figure themselves out, I’m nursing on the go and I am carrying a 12 pound weight at all times that finds it fun to pull on things. So while tight jeans seem like they would be fun- spoiler alert: no. 

Babe, I’ve succumbed to leggings, my number one nemesis. I have even uttered the phrase “fancy leggings” in the past week. My prenatal self just barfed. 

But I’ll be damned if a pair of lulus aren’t WAY more comfortable than stuffing my ass into jeans. 

So the lesson? Fashion is fleeting, comfort is crucial and enjoy clothing and crazy trends in your life. Don’t beat yourself up when you lose your style and don’t be mean about mom jeans. If I could wear low rise skinnies with crop tops, I would. 

In the meantime, sweatpants are acceptable for a Wednesday afternoon outing- right?? (Barf)

xo

Mom

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Baby Style

7 Months: a (late) Roundup

April 25, 2016

Dear Baby,

I’m such a jerk because I totally forgot to write to you on the 18th. My bad. Blame it on the jet lag. 

So here we are at 7 months and Baby, it’s pretty terrific. When moms I know say it only gets better and better, I think they are right. Every stage and every step gets better and just when I think I can’t love you any more, I go ahead and love you a thousand times more the next day. It’s crazy. 

So what are you like at 7 months? 

You are super active. You move a lot and do a lot. You are always busy with something or other. 

You are curious- especially about people and faces. You love to look at the world around you. When we carry you in the baby Bjorne you hold out your hands like you want to feel the world around you. 

If I haven’t told you this already, you LOVE TO EAT. I mean, really really really love it. Each meal begins with you panting and drooling at the sight of food and ends with you covered in it. The good news is that you are a really solid eater and you will try anything and love almost everything (the exception is plain yogurt which is so crazy because I buy you this full fat yogurt that basically tastes like cream but never mind). 

You have a really good sense of humour and you love games that take a bit of anticipation. Like peek a boo or variations of it. I love making you laugh and we laugh a lot. 

You stand, you sit, you roll and you are about 5 seconds away from crawling. 

What really strikes me about this age is that you are more than halfway to a year old. I can’t believe how fast time went and how the days of you as a newborn seem so long ago. 

A friend of mine is newly pregnant and asking questions about the first months and I have a hard time remembering the days and nights when you didn’t sleep or have a routine, when everything made me cry, when I listened to the life saving but soul sucking Harvey Karp cd over and over again to get you to sleep. When we slept together to the sound of “old rattling air conditioner unit” and when my boobs felt like they would actually just fall off from pain.

At this point, I hate the idea of leaving you because we have so much fun together. There was a time not too long ago when a shower and nap was my salvation.

So just a reminder and less a lesson to savor the moment. When people say that it passes by WAY TO FAST, don’t disregard them just because in the present every hour feels like an eternity. For better or worse you will forget those nuances that coloured your experience. 

In the meantime, happy 7 months to you, my love. Now please slow down time. 

xo

Mom

7 Months: a (late) Roundup

Baby Talk

April 24, 2016

Dear Baby,

Well it’s official. You have said a first word and even though you have no idea that you said it and it is really more of a first sound than a first word, it is “dada.”

Dada. 

Break my fucking heart, Baby. How hard would a “mama” have been?

Watching you learn language is a totally amazing thing. It started a while ago but then this past little while you have really been babbling and working on shapes with your mouth. You watch us intently, mimic our movements and work really hard to make funny sounds.

Last week you learned to make raspberries which is delightful and hilarious.

I hope that the words come flowing out from here on in and that this noise is the first of many as you develope and refine language. 

But, be careful with your words, Baby. Words are a very powerful tool that can be used for good and for evil. The things you say are very important so always make sure to say things with thought and purpose. 

People who speak just for the sake of speaking are super lame. 

I know that you won’t always know what it is you are saying or how impactful it can be but try your best to be mindful about the words you choose. 

In the meantime, I’m going to cry in the corner until you learn how to say “mama.” KIDDING. By the time you say mama, you will not just be babbling sounds. Plus, I’m happy to hear you any little thing that you can. 

#obsessed. 

xo

Mom

Baby Talk

Pass Over the Wine, Baby

April 23, 2016

Dear Baby,

Happy Passover. It’s your first foray into the bread-less land of Jewish holidays and I’m pretty pumped to have you at the Seder table (or sleeping in your bucket close by). 

Here’s the thing about the Seder. I love it and I hate it all at once. I love the family gathering, the songs, the food (because why not start every meal with a hard boiled egg in salt water- amiright???). On the flip side, I don’t know if I love the overall messaging or the forced religiousness that I am made to feel. 

Like any religious holiday I am conflicted. 

And more conflicting than ever is how I am going to raise you. What values am I going to bestow upon you and which ones am I going to ignore. How religious should our home be? How much fact vs. fiction am I willing for you to believe and how do you teach someone so small about the difference between tradition, religious, science and fantasy?

When we found out that we were having you, your dad and I had the enviable discussion of “how to raise you” but the answer of “Jewish” seemed enough at the time. Now, we get closer to addressing what that means- how Jewish? What does that even mean to us? How do we feel about religion? 

And herein lies the conflict. Without divulging my preferences and opinions, it is suffice to say that I appreciate tradition without subscribing to all the elements of religion. What does that mean for you?

I hope whatever we do, at this point you feel like you have ample education about religion in general to make your own choices and form your own opinions because no matter what, that is the most important end result.

So Baby, know this: when it comes to the bigger things in life, there is no right answer. Your dad and I will do our best to give you everything you need to form an opinion by we will probably fuck something up along the way. There are no right answers. If there were, we’d all have them. Don’t be afraid to ask a lot of questions and feel conflicting feelings about the deeper questions. That’s all normal. 

And know that ultimately, we love you no matter what you want to be. 

In the meantime, the sacramental wine really helps to keep your focus on the less important questions, like how much kugel is TOO MUCH KUGEL??

#notmadaboutit

xo

Mom 

Pass Over the Wine, Baby

Passing off your Baby Gear

April 21, 2016

Dear Baby,

OMG. This week was home- purging bliss. One of my best friends is pregnant and needs gear and another has asked for her gear back and with that in a foul swoop (or three), I was able to get rid of bags of shit. It feels great. 

Passing your baby gear to another mama has a much different feeling than packing up your too-small baby gear. There is less nostalgia and more excitement about the new life that the stuff is getting because, let’s be for real- someone had to get use out of those once worn floral overalls and if it’s not you, Baby- let it be your friend to be. 

I packed up clothes that we are finished with, carriers that no longer carry you, diapers that you grew out of and toys that no longer get played with. I packed maternity tops that thankfully are too big on me now and a giant box of adult diapers for the more glamorous parts of the post pardem experience. 

It was great.

When I had you I had a few friends who generously packaged me up boxes of stuff to use and it is the fucking best. Who on earth wants to spend the money on crap that you outgrow in 5 seconds anyways. 

I am so happy to return the kind favour.

And here’s the lesson we can glean from this: always pass a good thing along. When a stranger smiles at you (in a friendly and totally non creepy way),  smile at someone else and pass on the happiness. When someone is there for you in a hard time, be their rock when they need you in kind and when a friend gives you a sweet ass tie dye dress for a baby that is so killer, make sure you pass on some awesome clothes to another. 

Karma is real so be kind and you will get kindness in return. Be generous and you will see generosity and be good- just because your mama raised you that way. I should know. 

In the meantime, your closets have never looked so good and empty. Bye bye bags of crap! Enjoy your new life. 

xo

Mom

Passing off your Baby Gear

Baby vs. Bathroom

April 17, 2016

Dear Baby,

Here’s something no one EVER tells you about having a baby: you will have to make time to take solo bathroom trips. I’m talking number 2 here, Baby. You either suck it up (literally), spend your poo with a baby on your lap and fucking Macgyver a way to wipe or you wait and pray that you will be afforded time before it’s too late.

This morning as I was preparing you for your morning nap, I had to go.

Wait, sidebar. Just want to acknowledge how embarrassing it is to talk about poo. As if I am the only human on the planet that needed to make one this morning. Somehow it makes me feel less feminine and more disgusting all at once. I wish we had a bit more leniency about these topics. Ok. Done.

Anywho, putting you down for a nap. I zip up your cozy little sleep sack, put in soothing classical music and cuddle you. You start to cry (why!!!??? You are living the fucking dream, Baby) and I HAVE to go.

I put you down in your crib with babysitter mobile on and do my thang. My great fortune this morning was that you fell asleep immediately (hurray for jet lag) and it was an easy situation.

In past times, you have wailed when left for the few minutes I needed. Then I stress that I am just going ahead and ruining you forever because I left you for 2 minutes to whine vs crapping in my pants. This is mom guilt to the extreme. Guilty for having to go to the bathroom.

I have always thought it was super gross to hear my parents talk about their bowel movements so I won’t carry on here. You’re welcome.

The lesson is priorities. Know your priorities and don’t feel bad about them. For example, keeping you happy and putting you down for a nap in a very calm and gentle way is my priority. Not pooing in my pants is a bigger one.

In life there will always be a million things pulling you in a million ways. You have to take a mental stock of what you need and get shit done. If you can prioritize your tasks you will always be better at things like time management and organization. This will serve you well.

And, be selfish. Put yourself first and do it with pride. There is no shame in taking care of your needs whether they be some time alone to regroup or an audience free bathroom escapade. By taking care of yourself, you will be your best to then take care of the people around you that you love.

In the meantime, going to get as much done in my “nap hour” as humanly possible. Mom super powers are a real thing, Baby.

xo

Mom

Baby vs. Bathroom

Other People’s Babies

April 13, 2016

Dear Baby,

We are here in Israel for a wedding so Tuesday night we had a wedding rehersal dinner. I was anxious about going in the first place because I don’t love taking you out past bedtime to a place that is an hour away by car in a country I don’t know but nonetheless, we went. 

We arrived in the pouring rain to find the party was outside in a tent and we would either have to have you in the tent with us where it was loud and smoky or in the house next door where we would not be able to see or hear you. 

I wish I was one of those cool moms who would be all like, I’m so down to just leave my baby in a house alone and not worry but I am a fucking nervous wreck and ate all my nail polish off my fingers while stressing about the decision. 

And of course, my stress became your stress and you were restless and crying for much of the evening. Your dad and I rotated coming in to sooth you before begging to go home. A shame because I love a good party and if I wasn’t about to loose my mind, I’m sure it would have been one. 

And in the end you of course came home, went back to sleep and slept the night away so my stress was for nothing because you couldn’t have cared less that you were out and probably had no idea. 

It was a good reminder to check myself and my unnecessary stress at the door. 

The other thing about that night that really helped me to check myself was the other baby at the party. The family whose home it was had a little 10 month old baby and yes, it was their own home so naturally there was a comfort level there but also their baby stayed up pretty late and they didn’t spend every 5 seconds going in to check on her once they out her down. 

And interesting that they didn’t check on her because you should have seen where this baby slept. I honestly thought they were kidding when they showed us her crib. It was a white crib just like your but lined with plush bumpers (pretty sure those are “illegal” here), a blanket, a DUVET should the blanket not suffice in keeping baby warm in a country where a cool night is 15 degrees. They also had a pillow and a few stuffed animals. 

Aside from the crib that would have given our baby CPR instructor a fucking heart attack, there was no sound machine, no humidifier and no Baby Einstein mobile. 

HOW DID THIS BABY SEEM SO NORMAL AND HAPPY????

I’m kidding. The obvious answer is that we really spend way too much time stressing about you. Heaven forbid we don’t pack your fucking sound machine on our trip and we feel like we will have ruined your whole life. These people are 10 seconds from smothering their kid in a blanket and they give zero fucks. Go figure. 

And that brings me to this. Baby, don’t sweat the small stuff. In your life there will be a million stupid things to stress about. Try not to. 

Things that may seem super important are often not when you just put them in perspective and it’s good to take a deep breath here and there and remind yourself that whatever is going on, it’s not the end of the world. Unless it is literally the end of the world in which case your stress is warranted. 

In the meantime, got to get you to bed so we can have one solid night before the wedding. Your dad and I will be on the balcony getting wine drunk (and watching the monitor, obviously). 

xo

Mom

Other People’s Babies