My baby girl is 4 months (+ 1 week) old already!
Happiest baby ever. Thank you, God.
Time is flying. Seriously – the first 4 months of Wyatt’s life felt like the longest 4 months of my life. But the first 4 months of Hadley’s life have definitely been the fastest ever.
At the same time, I almost can’t remember what it feels like to be pregnant, but I know that I hated it. When I was going through infertility, I’d feel (embarrassingly) jealous every time I saw a pregnant woman. Then I got pregnant, and I’d get excited whenever someone announced a pregnancy. Now? I see pregnant women and just feel bad for them. I’m glad to have that stage of my life behind me.
She’s so much more fun on the outside – even when she’s grumpy.
- Sleep: Well folks, the 4-month sleep regression is real. It started exactly one week before Hadley turned 4 months old. I never noticed it with Wyatt because he had no where to regress to. I just re-read Hadley’s 3-month update and I want to cry. I can’t believe she used to sleep so well. She’s up 2 times most nights now, and is ready to start the day by 6 a.m. However, naps have gotten better. She’ll usually take two 1-hour long naps in her crib each day, and the rest of her naps are on the go. The sleep regression isn’t all bad, though. Now she’s so tired during the day that she actually rests her head on me. She used to be a pretty non-cuddly baby so I’ll take it.
- Breastfeeding: Is still going really well. Eating is Hadley’s favorite; she is humungous – 17lbs and in size 9 months clothes – and hums whenever she nurses. She’s still not taking a bottle, though, unless she’s dream-fed.
- Mom of two: Wyatt is taking more of an interest in Hadley, and absolutely loves helping taking care of her. Things have been easier this month but only because I’ve been in NJ with my parents for 2.5 weeks. They were gone the other day, though, and I was alone with the kids and quickly remembered how much more difficult it is caring for two kids on my own. Maybe Hadley will be past her sleep regression by the time we get home this weekend. That would certainly make things easier for mama. #wishfulthinking
Postpartum weight loss:
I weighed myself before we left for NJ and I was at my pre-pregnancy weight!
Ignore my hair – it’s been falling out in chunks and is even more of a disaster than normal.
But I have a feeling I may have put a couple pounds back on since then. Between Hadley’s extra overnight feeding sessions and my longer runs, my appetite has been insatiable – and I’ve been making some unhealthy food choices. This happens every time I’m in NJ because it’s the land of Surf Taco, crumb cake, and fudge. Totally worth it!
I still have a belly and am much wider through my hips. Three pairs of pre-pregnancy shorts fit me, but most other things don’t yet, including most shirts. I wish I could buckle down, do more ab work, and limit my sweets intake to lose my belly but I’m too lazy. I feel like I look pretty similar to how I did at 4 months after having Wyatt, and my belly eventually went back close to normal size after I had him, so I’m just not motivated. Instead, I’ll just cringe and whine every time I try something on that doesn’t fit. I make no sense.
Return to running:
As I’ve mentioned in my NYCM training updates, running is going really well. The only weird thing I’ve been experiencing lately is nipple chafing. It’s been happening on every single run, and it’s not even that humid here. I’ve never had this issue before, so I’m assuming it’s breastfeeding-related? All of my nursing sports bras are new, so I can’t figure it out.
Here are my month 4 running stats:
- Longest run – 12 miles
- Fastest run – 7 miles in 7:37 pace (which included 7x 800m at 6:52 pace, hence the fast average)
- Fastest mile – 7:00 flat during 800m repeats
- Fastest stroller run – 5 miles at 8:03 pace (with Hadley) <--- I likely won’t beat this until the next time I’m in NJ where it’s flat.
I feel pretty much like I’m back to my old self with running. I’m a little slower than where I was after I had Wyatt, but I think that has more to do with marathon training this time around instead of half marathon training.
Things are good and I love my happy girl so much!
Years ago, I overheard two older woman I know talking about another woman, who was younger than them. The younger woman just had her second baby – the older women each had two children of their own who were college-aged.
“Why is she complaining about how hard it is to have two kids? Every mother has been there. She’s not going through anything special. Just wait until her kids are teens, that’s the hard part.”
At the time, I was studying for the LSAT (how funny is is that I planned on being a lawyer?). I was so nervous for this test. I’d taken prep courses and spoken with lawyers and professors. Some of them told me it was no big deal. “Every lawyer has taken it. Just wait until you’re in law school, that’s the hard part.”
But it was a big deal. Doing well on this test was so important to me. I was stressed about it and wanted to do well. (Ironically, I did – and then I decided not to even apply to law school.)
I had a feeling those lawyers were once stressed about the LSAT, too. And I have a feeling that those moms thought having a toddler and a newborn was hard when they were going through it. But just because so many people have gone through it didn’t make my feelings any less valid.
The thing is we seem to look at our pasts through rose-colored lenses. We hold on to the good parts and our memories appear so much better than what really happened. And when we think about the bad parts, we don’t remember them being quite so bad. Because we can only really feel the present.
Yes, they are the best gifts ever – but sometimes they drive me crazy.
This week has been tough for me. Both of my kids have been waking up in the middle of the night, and the hours from 4-8 p.m. have been even more challenging than normal. The other night I had to go in the bathroom and cry with Hadley while I distracted Wyatt with an episode of Little Einsteins. I thought I wish I was still pregnant and only had one to deal with.
Did I really want that, though? No. I was miserable when I was pregnant, but how easy it is to forget how terrible morning sickness and insomnia truly are when it happened months ago. So, I tried to reverse my thinking and imagine my future. One day they won’t want to hang out with me all evening – heck, I won’t even know where they are.
But I cannot even picture that right now because I have zero concept of what it’s like to have teenagers. I can only feel now. I hear her shrieking at the top of her lungs, feel my shoulders throbbing from holding her for so long, unable to comfort him during his tantrum because I can’t put her down, all while the house is an utter disaster and I have no idea what we’ll have for dinner. And you know what? In that moment those teenage years sounded pretty appealing.
Even though I knew millions of moms had been in my exact same situation before, it didn’t make me feel any better. That’s great that they survived, but in the midst of it I didn’t feel like I would (I’m not at all dramatic.)
Here’s what I wish we all could keep in mind. Just because you achieved something successfully – such as raising little kids – and have moved on to a new life challenge, doesn’t mean that people who are currently raising little kids have it easy. It doesn’t even mean that you had it easy at the time – you simply don’t remember how hard it was because you can only focus on the present.
Likewise, warning the person currently raising the baby to fear the teenage years is pointless, too. She’ll have zero grasp of what that’s like because she can only focus on her current situation. Plus, each person’s experiences are different. Everyone told me to appreciate Wyatt when he was a baby because toddlers were “so bad”, but I prefer toddlers to babies.
So, to everyone who is pregnant, raising little kids, or studying for the LSAT – it is hard. I hope no one gives you any “just wait” advice that belittles your feelings. Instead I hope they say “I’m so sorry – it sucks” and offer you a cupcake. Because, really, baked goods are infinitely better than any advice.
You know that saying “you have a child forever, but a baby for only one year”? It’s intended to make moms all teary-eyed and elicit baby fever. Well, it doesn’t work on me. When I hear that saying all I think is thank God.
No offense Hadley.
Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate each age and stage, and the last thing I want to do is wish away my daughter’s infancy. The baby year just isn’t my favorite. I thought it was because Wyatt was so difficult, but now I have an easy baby, and I’m still not a huge fan of this time.
It’s because I have another age to compare it to: toddlerhood. And even though the highs are high, and the lows are (so, so) low, toddlerhood is the best because…
That tiny person can now communicate with you. In the most honest, innocent, sweet, and heartfelt way. Even if you’re having the worst day ever a simple “I love you much, mommy” can turn it all around.
Toddlers hug back hard. They don’t just flop their head on your chest. Rather they wrap their arms tightly around your neck and squeeze you with all of their might.
They’re predictable (for the most part). Even if he skips his nap, I know there will be some amount of downtime between 1- 3 p.m., and the same goes for bedtime.
You can bribe them. Oh man, I'm not too proud of this, but bribery has become the norm since Wyatt hit 2.5. But if an m&m or an episode of Little Einsteins will give me 20 minutes to work in peace, I’m all for it.
Hippobus and the Beetlebugs bought me tons of “free” time this week.
And distract them. I used to dread bringing my son to my doctor appointments, and we’d rarely attempt long car rides. Now? I don’t think twice because of the best invention ever – the Ipad. Related: what are the best apps for 2.5 year olds? We have a long car ride to NJ coming up!
They’re eager to help. Sure, toddlers rarely listen but something magical happens when you give them a “job”-- they feel important. Wyatt loves it when I ask him to watch Hadley when I run to the other room. He talks to her like I do. So cute.
They’re literal. My mom said “it’s raining cats and dogs” the other day and my poor son ran to the window looking outside and saying “meow, where are you?”
I asked him to play with the blocks and watch baby sister – he literally did both at the same time!
They find joy in every little thing. Toddlers are probably the only people who enjoy life to its fullest.
An empty playground made his day.
Related: Can you tell which kid behaved better for me this week? Haha. I’ve started putting him to bed earlier, and he’s been sleeping and napping better and acting so much happier. Imagine that!