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Friday, December 30, 2011

11 things from Grayson, by Jac

Hi guys - so thankful to have a precious guest post from Jacqueline over at BabEblessings today! Enjoy it & her and have a great weekend!

Today Grayson is 11 months old! It’s hard to imagine that almost a year ago I was holding my little man for the very first time. Gray has taught me a lot in the last 11 months, so I thought I would share 11 things that I have learned from being his mom.
It’s okay to laugh at someone’s actions, but only if it’s your baby.  
  • Grayson has decided that there is only one way to get from crawling to sitting. He goes into a downward dog yoga position and then power squats his way to sitting. I wish I had video to show you but the only time I have is when he’s in the bath tub and that’s not something I want on the internet. He also does these crazy penguin arms as we call them. Whenever he gets excited or wants something he flails his arms up and down like a penguin trying to fly. It’s absolutely HILARIOUS! Now I know I shouldn’t laugh at my kid or he’ll get a complex, but seriously how can you not laugh at things like that. And sometimes those moments of laughter make my day, they can turn my mood around.

Laundry can wait; it’s time to play.
  • Brian and I are both very task focused. There are times when we can get into a groove and want to take on the world, or just the kitchen. Sometimes in those moments, playing with Grayson doesn’t seem productive; then I have to remember that being productive isn’t the most important thing these days. There are times when I need to stop whatever I’m doing and just play with Gray. Blogging, dishes, laundry, making dinner for Brian and I; it can all wait. Enjoying Grayson at 11 months will pass too soon and I don’t want to miss it.

Expecting a different result for the same action is human, and being disappointed that there wasn’t a change is human too. 
  • I love watching Grayson play in his playpen, especially when he’s sitting there playing with his toysteering wheel. He’ll push the same button a million times expecting a different result and then look puzzled when the same thing happens over and over and over and over and over. And over. I realized I do the same thing. I expect a different result in the same situations and it doesn’t happen.

I don’t have control over all situations but I have control over my attitude and reactions.
  • I was once a control freak, okay I lied, I am still a bit of a control freak. I am a planner and if there isn’t a plan there needs to be one! However when you have a baby it’s a bit hard to be in control. They don’t really listen to reason, or listen at all. They are the neediest creatures EVER. But being a mom has thought be that even though I would prefer not to get up 5 times in the night to comfort my child, I can do it with a good attitude. I would prefer not to have to ever change a dirty diaper, but I can be thankful that I get to change dirty diapers because G’s bowel issues seem to have subsided. I can’t always control what’s going on around me, but I can take a moment and control my attitude and my reactions to things.

Sometimes you just need to hug it out. 
  • There have been moments in the last little bit that G has misjudged his physical surroundings and ended up bonking his head or falling over and not being too happy about it. The only thing you can really do is to give him a big hug and dry his tears. When we were still in the NICU we had a day when we had no control over what was going on. We could just be spectators on the sidelines while the doctors worked and nurses carried out their orders. Those days all Brian and I could do was hug it out. All I really wanted was to bury my head in Brian’s chest and be held. It’s okay to have moments when all you really need is a hug, and it’s okay to just ask for a hug.

The simplest idea is usually the best
  • I think most parents will agree that a box is possibly the best toy you could give your child. Last week I gave Gray a box to play with along with his other toys. That Oreo box entertained him longer than any other toy he has. The simplest toy we could give him is the one that he loves. I think I need to apply that to my life. Sometimes I need to simplify things. I need to take all the complications and simplify it.

Don’t get so focused on the destination that you forget the journey.
  • Gray has become quite mobile now. He likes to tour the house, a lot. When he’s at the front door he’ll spot something in the living room and start moving down the hall, but he’ll get stuck in the kitchen or at the stairs and discover something new. For him it’s not about the destination, it’s about what he can discover. I think I’ve been living my life in ‘destination’ mode, and forgetting about the journey. First, it was just getting to the point when G would sleep through the night, and prayed and prayed for that, and I feel like I missed some of the moments those days because I was too focused on just sleeping. Now I’m making sure that I just stop and enjoy the moments.

A nap is an attitude changer.
  • We have a rule in this house: bad attitude means nap time. When G starts to get cranky or fussy for no reason other than just wanting to be cranky, we head up to bed and have a nap. It’s usually met with some crying in the crib for about 2 minutes, and then a good nap and a very very happy boy when he wakes up. It’s amazing how just a 20 minute nap can result in a totally different child. He’s the happiest baby when I walk in his room, greeting me with big smiles. Even for me lying down in bed for a few minute can make my outlook on the day so different. I need to remember that a nap is sometimes just what I need.

Finding the courage to stand is hard but worth it.
  • The other week Gray decided to stand up. He was playing on the ground and the next moment we looked over and there he is standing up on the edge of the dishwasher. HUGE deal for us. This is the first time he’s done that on his own, and the first time he’s stood up for more than about 20 seconds straight. Now he’s learning how to walk a bit. Brian’s working with him on trying. I can only imagine what it’s like to stand for the first time. Your whole world is on the ground, crawling and sitting and then you stand up and realize there is a whole new world out there. In the last few months I’ve had to stand up and accept some things. I had to accept that the baby blues weren’t going away, I was suffering from severe postpartum depression, and I had to get some help if I wanted to get better. I had to have courage to ask for help. But it’s worth it! There are starting to be more good days in between bad days.

3 am has a purpose, it’s for snuggles.
  • The first few weeks of Gray’s life I got to sleep through the night. Since he wasn’t allowed to nurse, and the nurses told me to skip my 3am pump, I was really spoiled. Once he was allowed to start nursing it was only every second or third feed, and they would let me sleep through the night and just nurse during the day. It was only when he was ready to nurse full time that I had to start getting up in the middle of the night, and then we were even more spoiled and the nurses would deliver Gray to our room for him to eat and then just bring him back to his room after. Those times we were both up and Brian would snuggle me while I snuggled G. When we got home we had G sleep in his own room, and the weekend after we got home my parents took us to pick out a rocker for Gray’s room so we could snuggle there. I didn’t love getting up at 3am, or 2am or 4am, anything between 10pm and 8am is a stretch for me, but  when Gray would snuggle up to me after he finished nursing and fall asleep it made it all worth it. He’s sleeping through the night most of the time now, but those nights that he does wake up, I trudge out of bed knowing that I’ll get some of the best sleepy snuggles from Gray and that makes getting out of bed worth it.

Love is the most important choice I can make.
  • I was brought up in the camp that love is a choice. Love is an emotion, a strong one, but it is also a choice we make to honour others above ourselves. As a wife I choose to put Brian’s needs above my own every day, choosing to love him every day. And every day I choose to love Gray and put him above myself, not just because he’s a helpless babE. Choosing love, and choosing Brian and Gray and everyone before myself is the best choice I can make in a day.

I’m excited to see what Grayson will teach me in the next months and years.

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