My head is swimming...

...with doubts of my parenting technique, style, ummm...just about anything to do with raising my little one.

How do I know if she is crying because she's now grown accustom to being held ALL. THE. TIME (at least when dad is home. And yes, dad and I have discussed our game plan for that)? Or what if she is crying because she does, legitimately, need some extra loved-on time? Or maybe she is crying because she is teething, thus she needs a bit of extra comforting? Am I giving her enough tummy time? Or what about explorative time? Independent play time (it's more like explore on my back or tummy time at this moment)? Can a 4 month-old attempt to manipulate a situation through said crying to gain what she wants? And if she can and I give in, will that make it more difficult to train her later?

Oh and then I have my "nap time" doubts: how do I know it's time to put her down? What if I missed that perfect little window and we've screwed the whole ordeal up? How do I know if she's transitioning or I need to check on her immediately?

However, the worst right now, probably because this seems to have now become routine, is this: am I doing my daughter a disservice by not worrying about the *several* nights she falls asleep at the breast before in her crib for night-night? I mean, almost any book you read on parenting or children says this - "Put your child down soothed and ready for bed but *absolutely, positively* NEVER EVER EVER EVER (did you get that? Ok. Just wanted to make sure) put them to bed already asleep." My only problem is, no matter how awake she seems to be while bathing her, lotioning and giving a baby massage, and feeding her during the nightly routine, she almost always falls asleep while eating. I whistle. I rub her feet. I talk to her. I clear my throat (not sure why but it wakes her EVERY. TIME). OUT. LIKE. A. LIGHTBULB.

She doesn't wake in the MOTN screaming because mommy was there and now she's not. At least, not yet. And should that begin, then I guess we'll be searching for methods to nip that in the bud, which also means I'll be searching high and low to solutions to her not falling asleep at the breast.


These doubts seem to be the story of the rest of my life. I know I will never live without them completely, all thanks to my wonderful sinful nature. And so I am thankful I have a God who allows me to come to Him covered in my "doubt burs". And He so graciously talks me through them, all the while lovingly removing them. He desires for me to trust Him so they never return. And yet, He never turns me away if they do; unfortunately, they do at times.

What an opportunity to trust Him. I pray constantly I will continue to see this as an opportunity to live as Christ while here on this earth. 

1 comment:

  1. My dear,
    First let me assure you that doing the best you know how is the best you can do for your little sweet pea! The fact that you are having doubts is actually perfectly normal and kind of lets you know that you are still looking for "the best" way to care for your child. (You're doing great!)
    I read a couple of books before Ian was born, one was "On Becoming Baby Wise" and the other was "Secrets of a Baby Whisperer". If you haven't already read "Baby Whisperer", I would suggest it over the other. Both had many things I agreed and disagreed with, but both helped me kind of figure out the best system for Ian and I once he was here! They were both adamant about one thing: figure out a schedule and stick to it! Babies and young children (even older ones) do best when they get an idea of what's coming next-it gives them a sense of security. Flexibility is important for both Mom and baby as sometimes Mom gets caught out longer that expected for nap time or baby is going through a spurt and needs more feedings/naps, etc. But the point is, you control the schedule, not the baby. That way it becomes routine and you can look at the clock and say, "Oh, it's time for lunch, that is why you are fussy!" Of course the routine changes as the baby gets older, as feedings are dropped and playtime gets longer.
    Another tip was to feed, play, then nap/sleep. It is easy to get into a routine of play, feed, sleep, but it is better to let the tummy do it's thing before going to sleep and slowing everything down. Plus, sleep is not as easily associated with eating first.
    As far as the bedtime routine goes, perhaps try feeding her then giving her her bath and "rubdown" before rocking her and laying her down. But even if you don't switch it up, she may stay awake through the feeding as she gets older and more distracted by the world around her ;-)
    I know you probably know some, if not all of these things, but I just wanted to give you a little advice and a lot of support! I love you all and am praying for you!


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