Tuesday, March 29, 2011

What's that, you say?

My little girl is growing up and this past weekend was a huge indicator for me.

Just before the weekend, I got curious about just how many words Abby actually knows. She can communicate with us pretty well by now and most words she says can be interpreted by most people who hear her.

With that in mind I did the project manager thing and nade a categorized list. I then sent it to DH and asked him if I was missing anything. He admitted that he was useless in this department (aka he doesn't read his email) but without his input, I had managed to find over 100 word that Abby can currently say. That doesn't even count the words she understands.

Then, spending time with her this weekend blew me away.

Saturday we went to visit my parents. My mom had just gotten back from a month-long trip in Thailand, so it was important for me to see her and have her see how much Abby has grown in that time. (Did I mention that she has shot up almost 5cm in the last two months?).

While Abby played and interacted with Nana, Poppy, Uncles, Aunts and her cousins, I learned that Abby knows way more than I give her credit for. I couldn't tell you how many times I stopped and said "I didn't know she could say that".

Part of me had the guilty working parent feeling, because I have to learn these things far after the fact. However, it is just as exciting for me to hear her speak to me as if it was the first time she ever spoke.

Now my little girl, what will you say next?
-Laura Bee

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Mom Confessions

Every mom has their little secrets; the things they don't share about their parenting style lest they be judged. In my 18 months as a mom, I've learned that a lot of mom's have the same secrets. What does this mean? That our "confessions" are actually a fact of life and shouldn't be buried away with the little white lie you told about not having that deli sandwich during your pregnancy.

And so, I open the closet to my parenting skeletons and confess to the world wide web (with no excuses!):
- I have been co-sleeping since Abby was 5 months old
- I have let my daughter eat more on more than one occasion: fast food french fries, chocolate, popcorn, popcicles, orange juice, apple juice, cake, chicken nuggets
- I still nurse Abby at least one time a night
- my daughter doesn't sleep through the night. In fact, she usually wakes up 2 or 3 times at night to cuddle up closer to me or nurse
- we turned Abby to forward facing at 13 months
- Abby watches TV. Mostly cartoons, when they're on but she can't help but dance to the theme song for Hanna Montana and Sonny with a Chance

Ok, you can judge me now for these few things, but before you do, remember that it is impossible to be the perfect parent. I do what is best for my child. Sometimes I am not proud of the decisions I have to make (especially when Abby recognizes when we've just pulled away from the drive through), but it's what we have to do to get by. The day I win a million dollars (ok, maybe 5 million), I will quit my job and devote my life to being the perfect parent.

Right now, I will enjoy my wins and learn from my losses and most of all, be honest about everything. Maybe someone else will learn from me or not be afraid to talk about something considered "taboo" in the parenting world.

Go ahead, you can tell me - what's hiding in your closet?

-Laura Bee

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Sleep deprivation sucks

I have an overdue apology for the gap in time from one post to another. I have been so sleep deprived the past 4 weeks that I don't know how I am still alive, let alone awake.

After dealing with Abby's croup, which turned into a nasty cold, we each took our turn in the sick-bed. I got her cold, which was a doozy. Shortly after getting on the mend, Abby decided to teeth, or go through a growth spurt, or have night time anxiety. I'm still not sure what quite happened there.

It started with her whining in her sleep. I would pop back in her pacifier and she'd roll over and go back to la-la land. When that turned into her waking up every hour I knew I had to do something. Broken sleep was not doing any favours to my daily duties at work. I was becoming unfocused and tired by 2pm, yet I didn't give in to starting a coffee habit.

I turned to online resources and my own know-how on how to deal with this situation. I began different things: offering her water when she woke, changing what she wore at night (since the weather is starting to get warmer here), giving her advil, changing our night time routine, baths, location, you name it. The only real thing that seemed to help was a combination of a bath using night time body wash by Johnson & Johnson and a bottle of water for her to drink at night.

Then, one magical night, she woke up every 3 hours. To a working mom who needs sleep and doesn't have the opportunity to take a nap on lunch, this was incredible.

I am happy to report that whatever it was that bothered her has passed and she is now only getting up 2 times at night. A HUGE improvement over once every 1-2 hours. It seriously felt like having a newborn again, without the 20 minute feeding sessions, that is.

I am a much happier mommy and she is a much happier baby. Now we are having trouble getting her up in the morning! I sense shades of what it will be like when she's a teenager.

The lesson I learned here is to never give up and that nothing, as far as a toddler is concerned, will last forever. And most importantly...I love sleep!