Thoughts on child-rearing after 12 weeks

Well, today marks 12 complete weeks of parenting. It’s been a rollercoaster to say the least, and that goes for all three of us.

The first 8 weeks were particularly hard. Before that point, Ellie wasn’t responding much to us, and she was just very needy, without much “reward” for Marti and me.

For the first 2 weeks, we were in the honeymoon period: we were infatuated with our new arrival, and I was at home full-time, so we could get everything done and we felt accomplished. But then I needed to go back to work. And Marti was essentially home by herself except for a few visits from her Mom.

Taking care of a newborn is taxing. I consider myself quite a patient person, but even still, there were times that I would get quite frustrated. And we were more fortunate than most! Ellie wasn’t easy, but she also wasn’t difficult. And as soon as we could let her sleep for longer, and eventually for 8 hours, she generally did.

Just the monotony of staying in the house for 24 hours a day and feeding a baby every 2 hours was enough to drive Marti over the edge, but then there was everything else, like preparing meals and keeping the house clean. Of course, I helped out where I could, but there are only so many hours in the day.

So the first 8 weeks were hard, but then Ellie started to get a bit more of a personality, we started to get into a bit more of a rhythm, she went longer between feedings, we got her used to taking a bottle (pumped breast milk of course, not formula) from both Marti’s Mom and me and she was generally sleeping a full 7-9 hours most nights.

The last 4 weeks have been much more enjoyable. We’ve been able to venture outside of the house with her, we’ve been able to take a date together, and we’ve been able to do our own thing while the other looks after her when needed.

Today is Marti’s first day back in the office. She’ll be working in the office two days a week, and working from home three days a week. So I get to look after Ellie on one of those two days, and Marti’s Mom takes the other one. I’m now at a point where I feel confident in how things have been going that we’re going to have fun together, and she’s independent enough to actually let me get my work done!

Bring on the next 12!

Author: Dave

Dave is many things. Most importantly, he's a husband and a father to Ellie and Jack. Almost as important, he's British (though he lives in Florida). Following on from there, he's a WordPress developer and civil engineer, has an unhealthy love of hummus, is vegan, likes cider, wants to travel to Iceland and Japan, loves solving puzzles and is a realist.

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