Some things I see and hear a lot are mom's going crazy about the latest baby trends, what their babies should be doing at certain ages, what they're supposed to be doing for their kids at surtain ages and just trying to do everything "perfectly".
When I became a mom I was't like that.. I thought maybe it was because I was young? But I now realize that's really not the case.
As a mom, I'm pretty unconventional... What I mean by that is, I don't listen to anyones advice, LOL.
I mean of course I need/needed help with certain things and asked my mom and the internet about it but I didn't care if my baby wasn't doing what Sally's baby was doing at 3 months...
I didn't push Lilly to do anything that most woman would find essential to babies growth.
For example... Lilly went right from breastmilk to solid foods. There was no baby food or making my own pureed food. I breastfed Lilly until she was about 3? And then when I felt we were done with that, we started solid foods, and more often throughout the day.
When she was about 2 I stopped breastfeeding during the day and left it to only bed time. Then when she was almost 3, we stopped cold turkey and started eating regular meals with no breastfeeding at all.
Most woman are told to breastfeed for 6 months then gradually introduce food. I tried that, but noticed it was just making my life so much more complicated for no reason, because she wasn't interested or ready...and that was fine!
I could have thought about Sally and her 6 month old who was eating pureed chicken and rice and force-fed Lilly until she accepted it, but like I said, it was just making things more complicated and stressful for me and that meant it was becoming stressful for Lilly and a 20 year old first time mom did not need any more freaking stress.
Lilly attending the daycare I was working at and her teachers were not making it any more easy on me. For example, Ms. Stromboli tried giving me "advice" by scaring me into thinking she'll never learn how to eat because she's not eating enough real food yet and trying to tell me that I was wrong for that and I needed to do the ethical thing and start packing her more real food.
Don't get me wrong, it was a GREAT daycare and Lilly and I absolutely loved everyone I worked with and they loved us. They weren't trying to be mean or judgmental or anything, they were just old school and have been working there for years and years and just knew all the baby trivia and thought they were helping me.
A lot of people actually tried giving me unwanted advice because I was young and I guess they thought I needed the help and would appreciate it. I called this "unwanted co-parenting." But little did they know I didn't give a fudge and they were just wasting my time by making me stand there and listen and nod my head for 20 minutes.
I could have stopped them mid sentence and been like, "Stop right there Ms. Stromboli.. I won't do that and this is what we're currently doing and are going to keep doing, but thank you very much." But that wouldn't have helped. I've tried that. People just thought they knew best and I should listen to them and they would just keep insisting and try co-parenting until I agreed. So I just learned to smile and nod until it was over.
Anyway... I would be like "wow Ms. Stromboli I didn't know that! I'll get on that right away and make her some smushed peas and potatoes ASAP!!!!" then just come in the next day with my breastmilk bottles and hear the same thing all over again.
But if I was a paranoid mom and took their advice, I would have a constant crying baby and would feel so stressed out about doing or not doing the "right thing" and I am SOOOOOOOO thankful that I wasn't and went by my own beat.
Another unconventional parenting tactic was letting Lilly sleep with me. I heard all the horror stories about parents not getting any sleep and constantly getting up to feed their babies in the middle of the night and I was like NOPE!
So Lilly slept in my bed with me and whenever she woke up I literally would whip out a tit and fall right back to sleep. It was amazing.
I understand why a lot of parents wouldn't want to do that though because like the whole rolling over your baby thing and also it gets your baby too attached to sleeping with you and makes it more difficult to get them to sleep not heir own, in their own beds, but I didn't care about that. I was very aware I had a tiny child next to me. It also helped that I had a king sized bed. But I loved sleeping with her and getting to cuddle with her like a stuffed animal all night and waking up to her. It was fun for me.
Even sleeping in the same bed I had some sleepless nights so I could only imagine what it would be like going through that with her in a different room.
Today I am so grateful that I did that because I realize how much of a relief I had being able to sleep (most nights).
I also think sleeping together, having that constant touching throughout the day and night, made us grow closer and bond so strong.
A lot of people tried to advise me against it but again, I don't listen and I did what I wanted and just took in all the backlash and I'm happy I did.
Yet another thing that I did that many would consider a big no no was I let Lilly nap whenever she wanted to nap and eat whenever she wanted to eat.
I was told that she should have scheduled naps everyday at the same time and eat every 3 hours. Don't get me wrong, there is absolutely nothing wrong with a routine for your baby. In fact, it's probably the best idea to do so, so you and your baby are on the same page, but Lilly liked to sleep A LOT and she liked to eat A LOT and the more I tried to keep her from eating until it was the "right time" and keep her from sleeping until "the right time", the more frustrated we would both get and I just wasn't down for that.
So if Lilly was falling asleep, Lilly slept. If she woke up from a nap and wated to eat then go right back to sleep, thats what we did and I don't regret it!
I'm not saying that I'm perfect and made perfect decisions and will do everything the same the second time around, no. I may not do anything the same next time! I'm just saying being a mom is stressful enough and if you can make it easier in any way, do it.
The reason for this blog is to hopefully help some Mamas out there.
The unconventional moms to reassure them that they are normal and keep doing what you want!!! Listen to yourself and your baby. Do what YOU think is best.
And the worried moms that are trying to tackle every milestone at each specific age because their doctors and daycare teachers say so... STOP!!!
In my opinion children don't work that way. They do what they want and know what they want and are all different. LET IT BE! They're not going to die if they don't have sweet potatoes and lentals at 6 months... If they're not crawling at 6-10 months... If they want to breastfeed longer than Sally's son... Relax and enjoy yourself and your baby. Save yourself from the stress. You don't have to take everyones advice.
Lilly is now 4 years old and alive lol.
She knows how to chew and swallow and eats a shit ton. So eat your heart out Ms. Stromboli!!!!!!!!
Our next unconventional parenting tactic that I will get a lot of negative comments about is that Lilly will be homeschooled and I truly do not care what anyone says about it because as you can tell, we do what we want to do and do everything our own way.
I encourage you all to do the same. 🙂
Leave a comment and tell me what you think! If you need any help or want to talk about being a young parent, send me an email! email@example.com.
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Thank you for reading!!!!
Love, Emily & Lilly 🙂