To My Peanut

The start of a Blog, the start of a new life

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

A Helping Hand

Today I want to thank everyone that helps out with Kayla and those who have offered me help whenever I need it, I won't mention names, because I don't want to leave anyone out, but you know who you are. The only people I will mention is my mom and my boyfriend, I don't think raising a child is a one person job, it shouldn't be, and I admire those who do have to do it on their own. There's no way I can repay my mom for all these years she's been there for me, she's taken care of three of her own and now she's helping with her granddaughter. But in this blog I would like to write about the daddies, because I think, for most of them, it's more difficult to bond with their little baby and do all the things that come so naturally to most women.

In my opinion, the fathers should start early on, help get the baby's room ready, getting baby clothes, fixing up the clothes to take to the hospital... This should all be done by the couple, not just by the woman. The fathers should also be included in the baby showers, I wish my boyfriend had been there when I opened all those presents, I know I didn't make Kayla all on my own, so why not include them in everything about the new baby? The fathers might not feel they can do anything, they might think they don't know how and so many times I've told my boyfriend that I also had never changed nappies or looked after a baby, the answer he used to give me was: "But you're a woman". Ok, I won't argue with that, most woman have that instant maternal instinct, I'm so happy I did, but that's not an excuse not to help out, practice makes perfect, no ones born knowing, everyone has to learn. When guys help out, they must remember they're not only helping the (tired) mother, but they're helping the baby as well and what most men might not even think of is that they're helping their bond grow stronger, which should be done early on. Doing all these things aren't very difficult if you practice everyday, take turns doing what has to be done, woman need to help the fathers be a part of the baby's day to day. My boyfriend helps me a lot, he didn't always take initiative, because he thought he wouldn't know how, but I would insist with him and let him take care of Kayla on his own, he still has some difficulties, like dressing her and I sometimes ask myself: "How come he can't dress a little baby and can build a house all on his own?". There are still things that just I do and there are very few times when I'm really tired and I need him to jump in and save the day. But I must say, he does help out a lot, not only with Kayla but with cleaning the house too, lucky for me he was never one to say "That's a woman's job" and I hate that saying, even more so when coming out a woman's mouth! If they dirty, they can clean, why must we get left with all the work? The first few months you might not see much reward from helping, but when baby starts to interact with you, you'll be happy you helped make the bond between you grow. When Kayla hears someone opening the house door she already screams out Pappai, when I tell her to give him a hug or a kiss she does and when I tell her to call him she shouts out for him, she loves her daddy and her daddy loves her, I just love seeing them together.

This all to say, fathers, join in the fun and hard work of child raising, you'll be glad you did!

Time Flies

Peanut - 1 year and 1 month

I've avoided writing about the knew life in my life, because when I started writing, I wrote too much of my stay in the hospital, which wasn't very good, it's definitely not because I'm not happy, she's one of the best things around!

I regret not writing from the beginning about her, a lot changes in a baby during the first year. She got her first two bottom teeth at 5 1/2 months, then one on top came out a few months later (maybe at about 10 or 11 months), she looked funny with two bottom teeth and one big top one, now the rest are following along slowly. I do miss the days she gave us those big smiles of hers and she had no teeth at all, that was a laugh, but she isn't less cute now! She left the breast easily at around 10 months (she thought it was interesting to bite) and now I want to try to make her leave the bottle. She eats nearly everything, which I'm happy about. She started walking about 2 weeks before her birthday and even before she could walk on her own she would want to run instead. The first time she walked with no help, I had a busy day with the company Kick-Off and I went to see her at my mom's before I went out to the hotel where the company were to get together, my mom wanted to show me her new trick, and there she was, walking! I was surprised! Now she hardly ever crawls and just wants to run up and down all over, the little show-off. She says a lot already, I think most Portuguese words than English, she doesn't always say certain words the same but here are a few: Pappai, mammai, granpa - ampa, ouma, avó, dog - dó, mán - moon, du/duck, bebé, bé - bear, bola (she used to say bó), I'm not sure what she calls her grandmother, she says people's names including her own, and there are so many more! When she first started saying "Pappai" my boyfriend would just melt (and he still does). Every night, when he and I are in bed, he gives a little laugh, then I already know he's going to tell me something Kayla did that day. She loves her blanket, it's nice and soft and she loves rubbing herself against it, sometimes she doesn't want to get out her cot unless she brings it with her. She's never really been a difficult baby (not that she's easy either, especially when changing her nappy), she hardly ever cries, got sick maybe 3 times and she smiles and laughs a lot, she's also very friendly. People say that children who go to crèche are more developed and social than children who don't, I don't find that in Kayla, she's developing great, some things before her time and she's very social towards adults and other children, usually she won't just go to anyone she doesn't know, but when she does get to know a person she's very friendly and a show-off, everyone just loves her! There are some songs she likes and will dance to, so cute! She is a bit naughty now, when we take something from her or she doesn't get what she wants, she'll throw a tantrum, but I think the best way to get rid of that is to ignore her in those moments, that way she sees it doesn't affect us, I don't believe hitting is the solution when raising children (or in any other case) it will only teach her that hitting is ok, although I didn't always think that way, but since I got pregnant I've been reading about every step and a lot of my thinking has changed, but I guess there will be times that a little spank will go her way. She loves water, whether it's to drink, to swim in or to have a bath, although she doesn't like the beach (maybe because of the noise the waves make), but we've taken her to the swimming pools a few times and she never wants to leave the water! Sometimes, when she doesn't really want to drink the water she'll put a lot in her mouth and then just let it spill out, I think she likes the feeling of it growing down her chin. I remember when she tried so hard to grab what was in front of her that her breathing even changed and not long ago when she was perfecting how to let go of something she was holding. Also I remember when she started to pull up on her feet, then getting from lying down to sitting, and when she started crawling, the beginning to that was funny, she looked like a worm, going with her legs first, on her tippy toes then going out with her arms. She sleeps through the night on most nights, except when she's not feeling well or when a tooth is starting to surface, but the only complaint I have about night time is that usually she goes to sleep very late (12am most nights) and I have to walk up and down with her singing to her, she doesn't want daddy to do that, although it shows that she loves him very much, we do try different things to get her to sleep earlier and on her own.

I try to avoid her eating chips and other junk, but it's a difficult task, seeing as I'm not with her all the time and some people don't respect my will when it comes to her not eating those things, I'm not very stricked with that, I let her eat them now and then, but it isn't difficult giving her an apple (which she loves) instead of that, I just wish others would respect my will towards raising my daughter the way I want.

I was looking at a photo of Carla and I of when I was in the hospital still pregnant and then a photo of Kayla when she was so tiny, it seems so long ago and looking at her now it's strange to think she was soooo small. Still now, sometimes I look at her and think to myself: "That's my daughter, wow!", there were times I couldn't believe that I had a little baby, she was my daughter, mine and my boyfriend, she was going to be with us forever, growing and changing, I still think about that, not in a bad or negative way, I think and always thought about it in a good way, imagining her growing up, imagining her when she's about 3 and I get home from work then she screams out "MOMMY!" and runs to give me a hug, hehe. I miss her a lot when I'm at work, I can't wait to get home, but I have a few photos up on my desk to help a bit and they do.

It might seem that my life is perfect, it isn't, I do feel down sometimes, tired often, a bit irritable at times, maybe have a lack of patience more times than I'd like, but I try to look at all the good around me, everything that makes me happy. I do have a lot of other worries about raising Kayla and at times I have thought of putting her in a crèche, but I'll think about it a little more later on.I know

I sound like a very proud mommy, I am, and it shows on this blog, after all, it was made especially for my little peanut. I'm sure when I've posted this blog I'll remember more things I didn't mention, but I make an effort to write again.

P.S. Mommy, none of critism in this blog is directed to you, you've been great with Kayla! Love you!