My due date is 2 weeks away… so of course, it’s time to celebrate the Dekkers transitioning into a family of FIVE!
In case you missed it, I’m giving away over $1500 of prizes for Celebration Week… make sure you enter to win them all!
Although I’ve been super excited to “meet” all my babies and bring them home from the hospital, I’ve been noticing more and more that this is the first time I’ve been super excited… EVEN THOUGH I feel like I actually know what to expect when we get home 🙂
With Nora, I was blissfully naive about what it would be like to bring a newborn baby home. Although I thought I was as prepared as I could be (maybe I was for a first-time parent) I have never, ever felt more insecure, completely overwhelmed, and so unprepared as I did those first few days and weeks at home with Nora.
Yes, we had diapers, wipes, food, clothes, a bed, a super cute nursery, etc. but there were SO many other things that I never even thought of or considered when it came to preparing for a new baby.
I needed to have INFANT medicine, not CHILDREN’S medicine (so obvious now, but not at the time)
Gas drops… I needed them and didn’t even know what they were for weeks and weeks until someone suggested we try them
I didn’t have a baby carrier of any type, and boy would that have come in handy with miss Nora who wanted to be held 24/7
Believe it or not, I didn’t even have a stroller for the first couple of weeks, besides a HUGE bulky double-stroller that came with our car seats. I figured it was more practical to buy a double stroller right away since we were planning to have more kids eventually. What I didn’t realize is that it was a big pain to push a double stroller — and that I would be taking Nora for multiple walks EVERY day to try and get her to stop crying!
As for our car seats, although we had the base installed in our car, it took Dave at least 5 minutes (which seemed like 5 hours) to finally figure out how to clip the car seat into the base as we left the hospital… and yes, Nora was screaming the whole time!
The first time I tried to use a breast pump, I was frantically reading through the manuals and trying to figure everything out. After what seemed like an eternity, I was finally ready to pump… and only AFTER I pumped did I realize I should have washed and sterilized everything. So I tossed out the milk, and cried the whole time I was washing everything.
We didn’t know how to work our monitor properly, and I can remember that first night, we put it on the very loudest setting to make sure we could hear her… Yup, we heard her extremely loud crying no problem that night!
As a “just-delivered-a-baby-naturally” new mom, I never thought about the fact that we basically had no adult pain medicine in the house (I know, what was I thinking?) I rarely ever take medicine of any type, so when the doctor casually told me to alternate Ibuprofen and Acetaminophen every 2 hours for the first couple of days, I remember thinking it was a prescription that I had to fill. I had no idea what Miralax, or Colace, or Dermoplast spray were… and I certainly didn’t have any in my house when I got home from the hospital.
I honestly figured I would bleed for a few days or maybe a week. Never did I realize that I would bleed for many WEEKS.
And absolutely NO part of me could have been prepared for how exhausted I would be — especially as someone who regularly got a solid 8 hours of quality, uninterrupted sleep prior to kids.
Even as I type this, I can almost feel the anxiety coming back, thinking about how overwhelmed and totally unprepared I felt after we brought Nora home.
I thought I would feel more prepared and “ready” to bring Simon home, but the overwhelming waves of anxiety came right back as I buckled him into his car seat to bring him home from the hospital.
How would I take care of TWO kids with Dave gone all day at school?
How can I manage with TWO babies who don’t sleep through the night?
How do I change a boy’s diaper and care for his circumcision? (I was oddly stressed about this for some reason)
And of course, the whole issue of if I would use bottles was weighing on me those first few weeks as I wondered what I would end up doing.
Sigh…. I know learning the hard way is the best way for me to learn (and boy did I learn quickly) but I truly feel like things will be SOOOOOO much different the 3rd time around.
And THAT is a great reason to celebrate!
Not only have I done this twice before, I also now have experience with a boy (which sounds silly to say, but it was definitely a little bit of a learning curve growing up with only sisters).
I have the essentials on hand and ready to go.
I have INFANT medicine.
I have my baby carrier and strollers, and I actually know how to install the car seat.
I have all the baby gear, children’s books, and toys we could ever want or need
I know how to use a monitor and a breast pump and bottles and formula… and how to properly wash everything.
I have built-in playmates and a little girl who is super excited to help me “babysit” the new baby.
And maybe most importantly, I am fully stocked with necessities for MYSELF, including a hubby who will be home with me for more than 1 day after bringing our new baby home!
Yes, I know it will still be a huge adjustment, it will still be very trying and tiring and overwhelming at times — but I’ve seen the light at the end of the tunnel.
I know that “this too shall pass”.
I realize that “the days are long, but the years are short”.
I’m aware how fast the time passes… and that I should “enjoy every minute”.
However, I also know that I really do not love the infant phase, and it’s OK for me to just smile and nod when old ladies tell me how much I’m going to miss the seemingly horrible newborn period. Maybe I will miss it some day (and honestly, maybe I won’t!) but for now, I’m just going to celebrate the fact that I feel as mentally and physically ready to bring this precious new babe into the world as I ever have with any of my other kids.
Even though we still have a couple projects to cross off our list, even though I truly do not have my bags packed yet, even though my freezer isn’t as stocked as I’d like it to be, and even though we don’t have a 100%-set-in-stone-plan for what we are going to do with Nora and Simon when I’m in the hospital, I FEEL READY.
I know I can do this — and as we’re celebrating tomorrow, I’m ecstatic that I won’t have to do it all by myself because Dave will be home ALL summer to help!
I can not wait to share our big news with you so we can all celebrate!
I can’t wait to see his face and hold him after 9 months of wondering “what will he look like”.
I can’t wait to call our parents from the hospital to tell them “he’s here!”
I can’t wait to tell everyone his name.
I can’t wait for Nora (and Simon) to meet him and obsess over how cute he is.
I can’t wait to not feel so huge 🙂
It could literally be “any day now”… or it could be a few weeks yet. It’s kind of nerve-wracking to wait and wonder, but at the same time, I actually love waiting and wondering and not knowing every specific detail.