Baby milestones are important to track their development. But what about your mommy milestones?
By Shannon Richards
Moms and babies both get to tick off those parenting milestones.
Article originally in Parent24
We all discuss baby milestones, when she rolled over, crawled, took her first steps or gurgled out her first word. Moms and dads can spend hours surfing the net to make sure their baby is up to par with other babies their age, that they are coping well in this race we call life.
But what about mommy milestones? First day wearing real clothes (not pyjamas or yoga pants), first outing with a newborn, first outing that DOESN'T result in a mommy meltdown, first home cooked meal (from scratch, not Woolies), first day of work, first time leaving your baby alone, first night away.
I recently experienced the last mommy milestone. It's a biggy. If I had a mommy milestone book, this is one that I would remember to write down: I spent 2 nights without my baby. 19 months + 9 months of pregnancy and we have never slept apart (asides from those few nights I was trying to follow bad advice and put her in her cot in her own room, but we don't talk about that).
As an extended breastfeeder, being away from my baby for two nights posed a logistical as well as emotional problem. How was I going to make sure I maintain my milk supply, avoid getting mastitis and remain comfortable? I have never been able to express, have always hated it, but duly went and bought a breast pump.
After a tearful (me not her, surprise surprise) goodbye, I started off my two day freedom challenge. I was at a total loss the first night, I wandered around not knowing what to do, how did I manage before marriage and motherhood? I felt like I was missing my me-ness. I couldn't sleep and woke up at usual wake up times, looking for my baby. The second night was better, I went out with a girlfriend to a grown up restaurant, drank cocktails and didn't have a curfew. I had a ball! I got home to boobs that were over full and was bought back to Earth with a bump and a guilt trip.
I felt guilty for enjoying myself when I should have been pining for my family. Ridiculous right. I wallowed in self-pity for all of 40 minutes while I dutifully expressed, which I still hated but was very necessary. Then, as I got into bed, alone with my book and a cup of coffee for company, I chastised myself for this. I still missed them, I missed baby snuggles and giggles and I missed gazing starstruck at my very handsome husband, but when they were with me I missed me.
I missed alone time, and me time. So I stopped feeling guilty, and enjoyed the first solid 7 hour sleep in 19 months. Woke up feeling like a new person, one who missed her family and was ready for them to come home, but who won't fight to hard when it's time for the NEXT mommy milestone, dirty weekend away with no kids, whoo hoo!
What's the next mommy milestone you're looking forward to?