Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Look who's eating cereal! So exciting!

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Wednesday, September 22, 2010


I am finally nearing the end of a two week emotional roller coaster. Two weeks ago, my sleep training book convinced me that the reason T doesn't sleep at night (and hence neither do we) is because I rock her to sleep every time I put her down. Not even 72 hours before this conclusion, I had a sweet moment doing just this with my daughter. It was a beautiful afternoon, she had just fallen asleep and as I gazed at her peaceful face, the curve of her profile, the nose that is cute on her but not on me, I distinctly remember saying to myself "this is my happy place". The mere thought of having to give that up sent me into an emotional storm; by enjoying these moments I was harming my child by keeping her from learning healthy sleep habits, I was damaging my marriage and our health by our not sleeping, and by waiting all this time to begin sleep training, I had made it harder and more frustrating for T. What's more, this was a sharp painful reminder that my little baby wasn't going to stay this little forever and she wasn't going to need me for everything for very long. She's already outgrown two size groups of clothing (N and 0-3) and is close to moving up a size again. She's placed her binkie in her mouth a few times on her own now and is so close to rolling over. As excited as I am for each of these new developments, I'm overwhelmed with sadness that I can never get this time back with her.
Now, two weeks into sleep training, I'm starting to pull myself out of my abyss. Training has gotten easier and less teary although we feel like we have no idea what we are doing! We have made some progress and have had a couple of nights with quality rest. We've survived our first cold and I got to have a couple of chances to still rock my baby. I've found a loophole! I cuddle with her and rock her when she first wakes up and is still snuggly! Thank goodness for this! It's almost better than when she falls asleep because this is when she is the most talkative and she tells the best stories!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Top cities for working moms...

Forbes recently published their 2nd attempt at ranking US cities in the perspective of a working mom. The criteria used to calculate the rankings include cost of living, pediatricians in the area, crime, unemployment, women's earnings and spendings per pupil in public schools. While these may seem all-encompassing on the surface, they really don't get to the heart of what working mom's desire. From my perspective (mom of a 5-month old so still relatively new to this), some of the things they missed were quality and quantity open green spaces, cost of QUALITY day care (who cares if day care is cheap if you are frantically worried about your child all day!), family friendly workplaces (i.e. sick leave, paid time off, flexible hours, etc., family friendly activites offered in the evenings/weekends, and networking opportunities for working moms to name a few. If I live in an area with the highest paid earnings, but the workplace is hostile towards working moms and daycare costs an arm and a leg, then it's not a very good city for a working mom now, is it? Even if my workplace is ideal, if at the end of the day/week, I don't have any way to network or meet other working moms, then my community is lacking. This last point is very important to me. Nearly all the programs geared towards infants where I would meet and connect with other moms happen during the day, M-F! Where are the evening/weekend programs for the rest of us? forbes has missed the mark for a second year in a row. I hope they take into consideration the comments left by their readers. Granted, these are very difficult aspects to gauge mathematically. I'm sure one of their working moms can come up with a clever solution!

It used to be...

It used to be that I could easily cradle Miss T in one arm while I rocked her to sleep; now her legs hang off the side of the chair! It used to be that I would grip her with both arms as we walked ever so carefully down the stairs; now I hold her on my hip with one arm. It used to be that I was her favorite form of entertainment; now she is fascinated by everything but me!

In five lightning quick months, T has grown up so much, full of personality. She's so inquisitive, alert, and curious. Everything fascinates her now, from the doggie (who licks only her for some reason), to the breeze coming through the open window, to the trees swaying in the wind outside. While we are approaching new milestones (teeth, sitting, rolling over, solid foods), I can't help but feel a little saddened by the amount of time that has already gone by, especially when I look back at pictures of her, so tiny and helpless.

I watched her put her binkie into her mouth by herself for the first time the other day and cried. It meant that she was starting to not need me for something and be able to provide for herself. I know it will be a long, long time before she is an independent woman and that on some level she will always "need" me. But, it's so hard to let go of that feeling of being the one that provides everything. Still, it is with such pride that I can watch her learn, grow, and develop into this beautiful person right in front of me.