July 14, 2011

MOMMY MENTOR: EVERY GIRL SHOULD HAVE ONE

I'm 39 and pregnant with baby #1. Needless to say that is a lot of years spent wandering around on the earth never entering a Babies R Us and skipping the diaper isles on all major grocery excursions. But that is all about to change. And let me tell you - if getting pregnant and leaping into motherhood is intimidating for the immortal 25-year old, it's nothing less than jumping out of an airplane without a chute for someone at 39.

Why? Because we've heard the stories. Our friends have had the worst pregnancies. We watched them gain 200 pounds and grow tumors in their ovaries and hair on their backs. We watched them puke every day for 9 months and bleed from their eyes and gestate for 50 weeks. We've heard every labor and delivery horror story that exists - and at 39, you can get cankles from eating a really salty steak, never mind being pregnant. So let's just say our expectations are a little skewed.

That's why everyone needs a mommy mentor. Someone to be straight with you but hold the drama, please. Someone to tell you the real baby necessities versus the ones you can get by without. Need a stroller recommendation or someone to give you advice on which of the zillion car seats to get? Call your mommy mentor.

I know what some of you are thinking; I'll just ask my mom. What better mentor is there? Well, in most instances I'd never argue with you. My mom gives sound advice and knows me so well that her delivery of said advice is exactly how I need to hear it. But let's just say that things have changed since the last time my mom had a baby. Car seats were just being invented - I think. Cloth diapers still required diaper pins and plastic pants. And you couldn't really get away with saying the words "pubic pain" in the work place the way you can now.

So move over mom and hello mommy mentor. I'm lucky enough to have my best friend Kym a few years ahead of me in the mothering game. Our tastes are very similar and there is a huge amount of trust there. So when she said, "don't bother investing in a bassinet, just borrow one, I listened". And when she suggested I get the BOB revolution stroller (in orange) and the nicely corresponding Peg Perego Viaggio car seat in apricot, I ordered both. She also encouraged me to start having conversations with my OB about my birth plan and letting the doctor know my concerns about forceps and epidurals. Done. She has also made suggestions for baby monitors, cribs ("don't spend a ton of money on the crib, just get one at IKEA and call it good") and strongly encouraged me to get a rocker/recliner for the nursery...done an done.

Don't get me wrong, my mom will be the one to help me during my first week of motherhood. She'll show me how to bath the baby, swaddle it, and perform baby massage. She'll help me figure out when the baby is hungry, needs to be changed, or has gas. I'll call her a million times a day to ask her questions like, "does it hurt Clementine when I cut her nails?' or "if she spits up a lot, will she be hungry again soon?" And my mom will have all the answers just like she always does. She'll teach me how to nurture. And when it comes time to take Clementine to her first concert, I'll call Kym to help me pick out the perfect set of kid noise canceling headphones.

9 comments:

Whit said...

At least you have a cute nursery!

noelle said...

yay for kym!

i know this is going to sound totally gross/weird, but i don't clip my newborns nails because i'm so panicked about cutting their skin (even the "safe" ones aren't a sure bet). SO, i bite their nails instead and then i don't have to worry. take it for what it's worth...yes, i am a gross mom.

Kristy said...

Glad you have a mommy mentor to help weed through all the nightmare stories and such and find the cool things for baby! You have a whole neighborhood ready with information. I promise I won't share any horror stories. But I did also appreciate the truth. I had a few...no one told me moments! You will be an awesome mom and you look beautiful, just a few more weeks.

kym said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kym said...

Ahhh. Excuse me as I get up and take a bow and curtsy. It's because I wish I had a baby mentor since I was clueless as well when giving birth at 40. And because I wanted to save you from hours of indecision and money. Love you T and can't wait to meet little mini-T.
PS. I couldn't clip Lily's nails either. I was much too afraid I would de-claw her forever. Of course, you have Agnes and have plenty of experience with that sort of thing.

kym said...

PS. Your nursery looks like a spa. Clementine will sleep well in it's soothing atmosphere. In fact, I would sleep well in that room.
I love the self-portrait of Agnes. They are going to be best friends.

debiebritton said...

OMG! I read your blog, it came up when I hit "Next blog" You are me!!! Or I am you! My "baby" is 14 now so I am older then you but she is my first and only and I had her when I was 39. I pick at my cuticles, I resist change vigorously my mom was deceased when I became prenant so relied heavily on Mommy mentors. :) Good luck, the adventure is awesome!

Lo said...

So glad I stumbled across your blog, just by googling cute congratulations banner. i look forward to reading more and hope you don't mind that i linked you from my blog. www.herwhitehat.com

squid said...

Hey Clementine, love the post!