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Yeah…Immaeatthat

Aug 28

10ish months as a mom.

In the beginning of motherhood I feel like I had so much compassion for myself when I didn’t know what to do or days/nights felt overwhelming because I was learning.  But at 9 months I’ve found myself having far less self compassion.  I was talking to Andrew about how hard I’ve been on myself lately and I think it’s because I was expecting motherhood to get easier.

I was expecting me to adapt and it to not feel so hard. And while I know I have learned a lot and become way more resilient, at least one day a week brings me back to those initial sleepless night feelings when I’d find myself covered in milk crying on the bathroom floor because Jo wouldn’t stop crying and fall asleep.  I just thought it’d be easier by now or I’d feel like I got the hang of it. I feel myself being so impatient…wanting everything to get easier.  Some days go so smoothly and I feel like we got this. And other days Jo is fussy and upset and I don’t know why and I feel like I’M GOING CRAZY AND AN ALARM CLOCK IS GOING OFF INSIDE ME AND THEN…she falls asleep and I’m scrolling on my phone looking at all the cute photos I’ve taken of her.

Andrew says maybe an entire smooth day is too much to ask for. Maybe we should be looking for good moments in a day instead. And that sounds like good advice to me.

There’s nothing else I’d rather be doing with my life. But gosh. Some days are just so hard. But there are always wonderful moments even in those hard days.  

I will say being plugged into a moms group (that has open, honest, authentic moms) has been SO INCREDIBLY helpful. Spending time with them is so restorative.

Nursing

Right now Jo is down to 2 nursing sessions a day: one in the morning and one after her first nap. We’re using formula as needed. When I started weaning I remember getting to a Friday afternoon and I felt excited for the weekend for the first time in ages. Not excited because I didn’t have to take time to nurse Jo, I really liked nursing her and enjoyed the responsibility most of the time, but hormonally/chemically/mood-wise I felt like I was happy and it was something I don’t think I’d felt in 8 months. 

Decreasing nursing sessions wasn’t really an intentional decision, it just started happening when my milk supply would plummet around my period and Jo was eating more solid foods anyways so we’d rely more on solids/formula for a bit. I’ve heard you can supplement with Ca/Mg to boost your milk supply around your period, but honestly I couldn’t handle one more thing…even a thing as simple as taking a supplement. My brain and body just felt depleted and I needed a change.  

I decided a few weeks ago I don’t want to pump anymore, so now I only feed Jo when I’m with her and I’m always with her in the mornings, so that nursing session still makes sense. We are weaning based off what makes sense for our family.

I’m going to visit my niece (who’s still cooking!) in October and my plan is to have Jo completely weaned by then.  Andrew suggested I go on the trip alone and he keeps Jo.  At first I was like NO I’m not ready for that! But after thinking about it more I think being solo on the trip would be good for me.  A couple mom friends recommended having an event mark the end of nursing and that sounds like a good plan to me. 

Feeding Jojo solids

I was excited to do baby led weaning with Jo and referenced the book Born to Eat.  Awhile ago I posted Jo eating a puree from a pouch and a few people on IG messaged and emailed me saying “don’t you realize you’re not supposed to do purees and BLW?” To which I was like, “go away.” 

Jo prefers to feed herself, but sometimes that just doesn’t make sense for our life. Sometimes when I see people posting about BLW it looks like baby led orthorexia (that’s probably too harsh, but that is how it feels to me. I’m sure since I come from an eating disorder background I’m more sensitive to that than others would be).  All of the sudden there are food rules I’m supposed to follow to feed my child…whattttt???!!!  Jo is going to learn how to respond to hunger and fullness cues (aka self-regulate) because she lives in a house that values tuning into those cues and doesn’t put thinness above health. Her relationship with food isn’t going to be damaged because I feed her with a spoon sometimes without letting her hold the spoon once. 

Jo’s first food was ice cream around 4 months old. It was the first time she showed interest in food so I let her have a taste.  

We don’t follow any rules. Sometimes she eats what we eat, sometimes I make her different food (I really did like using Raised Real meals, who I recently did a sponsored IG post with…however this mention is not sponsored), sometimes she has purees, sometimes she has two meals in a row of baby oatmeal, sometimes she eats sugar (I don’t seek out sugar to give her, but if she’s interested in what I’m eating i’ll usually give her a bite), sometimes she eats things with salt. And I feel really good about it.

If you’re anxious about feeding your child because you had an eating disorder and would like a resource to give you some guidance, I think the Born to Eat Book (<– affiliate link) is great. I’ve just skimmed it/used it as a reference guide.

Sleep

Right now we’re in a good patch with sleep after re-sleep training at the beginning of August. Jo goes to sleep at 7pm-ish and sleeps until 6am-ish. We’re going on a vacation in a couple weeks and I imagine her sleep will get off and we’ll be back to a rough place with sleep.  I’m learning to enjoy it when it’s good and hang on for dear life when it’s bad.

How daycare is going.

Good! Really good. Right now Jojo goes two days a week. The change has been really great for our family and I’m more open to looking into daycare earlier on for any future kids. Jojo likes a lot of activity and there’s a lot of activity for her with watching/playing with the other babies and big kids who attend the preschool. She doesn’t nap great there and just cat naps throughout the day, but it hasn’t affected her sleep on days she’s at home with me…so I’m grateful for that.

And yes…Jojo, Andrew and I have been sick as she picks up all the daycare germs, but, except for one night when her cough got pretty bad, it hasn’t been that rough. 

What I’m loving.

I’m loving seeing who she is more and more. I’m still her favorite person, but at the library or playgroups she’ll crawl away from me and go on an adventure by herself.  Sometimes I feel like she doesn’t have much stranger danger.  But of course there are times she cries when she realizes I’m not there.

I’ve heard some moms say they don’t love playing make-believe with their kids/it doesn’t come naturally to them, but I love it.  Yesterday I was pretending to be a lion and I went to kiss Jo and she ended up biting my lip lol, so that wasn’t great…but usually I have a lot of fun with it with her. Making her laugh is hard to beat<3

So that’s where we’re at! Any thoughts on how life with your little one is? Or memories of your little one at this age?

41 comments on “10ish months as a mom.”

  1. I feel like motherhood is making me more resilient! I have a bad habit of quitting when things get tough,, but you can’t quit the responsibilities that come with being a mom (not that I would want to, of course!). It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done but so rewarding. 

  2. Love these updates, especially with all the pics! (seriously, your baby is the absolute sweetest lil thing) I like your view on Jo growing up in a house with healthy ideas around food. All the “don’t feed your baby this!!!” and rules that people set around food, especially for babies, just seems unnecessary and likely to set them up with a pretty bad relationship with food. Just sayin’, but again, I’m also coming from a history of eating disorders. ANYWAY – I like what you’re doin’.

  3. I have 4 and almost 2 year old boys. Some days are wonderful and everyone is (mostly) happy! Other days start with whining before we’ve even really started our day! But being their mom is the greatest blessing and I wouldn’t change a thing. Every stage brings its own joys and challenges. It gets easier from a sleep and logistics perspective as they grow, but other things get harder. Having conversations with my oldest is so awesome now. He is wise and inquisitive and it’s really cool to see the world through his eyes. My little guy is the life of the party and watching my boys make each other laugh is the absolute best too!

  4. I 100% agree with you about the BLW “rules”. Some
    People are so uptight and rigid about it and that just makes eating stressful when it should be fun! We do a combo of BLW and purses as it works for our family too. :) way to follow your mom gut. 🤗 

    • Totally agree with this. I feel like the people who are so hard core BLW are creating disorder feeding patterns for themselves and their child. It just seems to rigid! you do you! We did a mix as well and it has worked perfectly for us! I have an 11 month old and she eats everything we eat as well as a pouch here and there because she likes them!

    • Gotta go with what works for the family! Thanks for commenting, Chelsea!

  5. I love your relaxed approach on feeding Jo! We started our almost 6 month old on solids about 3 weeks ago, and I find often find myself getting nervous every time we feed him a new food and overwhelmed with the seemingly strict/rigid feeding advice that is out there. I need to learn to relax a bit and realize that he’s going to be okay – I love to eat and try new foods and want him to love it too!

  6. I really like your stance on BLW. We followed the same approach. My daughter fed herself early on and we didn’t do a ton of purees, but those little pouches came in handy so much for trips, restaurants and quick dinners!! I really believe the biggest thing is watching for their internal hunger/fullness cues and helping them learn to use those no matter what method you use for feeding.

  7. I also kind of did a combo with my daughter.  I really wanted to do strict BLW but my husband was not comfortable with the gagging, so we went back to pouches and very soft foods for a while before starting again.  It worked for us.  At almost 15mo, she still has pouches when we’re out and about.  I think they’re just so easy for on the go snacks!  As far as sweets, she does not like them (unless it’s fruit).  It’s so strange to me, to have a baby that dislikes sweets, but she does.  I actually offered her a bite of my ice cream yesterday because she was reaching for it, but as soon as she tasted it she popped her paci back in and shook her head no.  It’s hilarious.  But she went to town on my garlic bagel!  I think I just have a savory kiddo lol.  I do try to give her healthy, homemade foods as much as possible, (I figure now is the time while she doesn’t know any different, right???) but I’m not perfect.  She had ChickFilA a couple of weeks ago when we had a very hard teething day.  I was in the line to get some for me and planned to go home and make her something healthier, but then a friend called and invited us to the park.  So she got a kids meal.  And even though I think I might have not allowed that if I had kids a few years ago, I was totally okay with it.  She eats so well and is so good with such a variety of foods that a bit of fast food once in a while is not going to change or hurt anything :)

    Now if I could just figure out how to handle these tantrums that are becoming a part of daily life, I’ll feel like I’ve got it all together ;)

    • I agree with giving babies as much nutrient dense foods as much as possible because they don’t know the difference. I’ve seen recs to not give babies sugar until x age and it just feels icky, restrictive, and (mostly) unrealistic, especially if you have more than one kid, since bigger kids would be eating food with sugar and the little one would probably be too.

  8. I relate to your post so much. I find it sadly hilarious that people are telling you what you are not SUPPOSED to do when it comes to feeding YOUR child. And for what? Upholding the label of BLW? Parents have enough pressures without feeling like they need to feed their child in a way that’s “perfect” according to other people.

    I always did a mix of purees, pouches and self-feeding. My son loved to be spoon fed and loved pouches. My daughter loved feeding herself. I respected their differences and didn’t make a big deal about it. As someone who has struggled with an eating disorder for 13 years and is in recovery from anorexia, I can’t afford to make a big deal out of food. My kids are now 6 and 4 and I strive to always keep food as a non issue. Out only food “rule” is to eat lots of fruits and vegetables and to be grateful we have food to eat. You are doing great and JoJo is so luck to have you. Rock on. <3

  9. So I have four kiddos ages 11-2 and blw wasn’t really a “thing” with the older three and not even much with our youngest. I think having a general guidance for how to introduce solids to baby is important and obviously avoiding choking hazards. The rest of the rules I think are non-sense and if one works full-time, it is quite difficult to prepare everything for your children. I think are are doing a great job and keep telling those nay-sayers to “go-away.”

  10. I just want to say… The reasoning behind not combining purees with finger foods is that babies can get confused which can cause them to choke. They might try to treat a “finger food” as a puree, forget to chew, and struggle with eating it. It’s important to keep that in mind as you’re monitoring your baby as they learn to eat. I think it’s less of an arbitrary rigidity and more of a safety concern for some people. I also think it’s more important in the first month of feeding than with an older baby.

    THAT SAID, I think that every parent knows their child and take it at their own pace. I used a combo with both of my boys as well, but they were good eaters and caught on quickly. By 8 months, I knew what they could handle, and they were eating pouches.

  11. My daughter is 9 months so we are just a little bit behind you and Jo and reading this post brought tears to my eyes. I feel so lost sometimes and I appreciate you sharing your experience as a mom because you often give me the courage to move in a direction that I know is healthier for me but nagging mom-guilt blocks the path…

    Your description of her fussiness and the internal alarm clock panicked feeling followed by peaceful and wistful photo gazing is VERY relatable. 

    Thank you Kylie <3

    • I recently decided that mom guilt is a good thing. It’s wonderful I feel so head-over-heels in love with Jo that I want to be with her and make sure she’s safe at all times. I love oxytocin and that families are designed that way, but I don’t think that means I need to be with Jo all the time or that she’s best off if I’m with her.

  12. I think you are a wonderful mother, and she is soooo beautiful!

  13. I appreciated your comments on baby led weaning. I did this with my first (he’s 14 months now) and really appreciated the book “The Parent’s Guide to Babyled Weaning”. It’s written by a registered dietitian who values intuitive eating and is not nearly as rigid as some baby led weaners out there (wow!). Whatever mix of baby led weaning and assisted feeding you choose is fine in her books. I I would definitely recommend it :)

  14. I have a 6.5month old, and so seeing that you’re still going through varied emotions at 10 months makes me feel somewhat better about how crazy, emotional I am sometimes. I knew having a baby wouldn’t be easy but man is it hard to express how hard being a mom actually is! I wouldn’t give up my baby girl for anything in the world, but man sometimes I think being hit by a Mac truck would be less stressful. I’m actually quitting pumping/breastfeeding this weekend because the stress/hormones are finally getting to me while working full time and trying to manage a household too. I applaud all mommy’s out there just trying to make sure their babies are taken care of and loved. I know this phase only last a “short” while, but I still am soooo looking forward to the night that my child sleeps all the way through! God bless you and your family, and thanks for sharing your life with us. You’re more of an encouragement than you know!

    • I was surprised by how much of a difference I felt in my mood when we shifted around our breastfeeding. I’m hoping you feel something similar, Joy<3 Just the mental workload associated with remembering all the pumping parts (and making sure they're clean) is so much.

  15. Love your post Kylie. So relatable and reassuring – thank you for being so honest

  16. Oh my gosh, life is too short to make feeding your baby something you have to overthink.  Pretty sure no one’s food issues came from not getting to hold their own spoon as a baby LOL!!  I could see from being forced to eat, but seriously babies are pretty good at letting you know when they aren’t interested in eating what you’re offering up!!!

  17. I have two children, 17 months apart. They are now 5 and 6, and I am still waiting for things to get easier! That’s mostly a joke, but I now do see that every stage has its gains and it’s losses. I have loved the move towards independence, and the wonderful conversations we now have. My sister once told me to take each great day with kids as a gift, because they are random and rare! 

  18. You are such a breath of fresh air. Just thank you for being honest and putting yourself out there. I love that you do you. My two girls are 4 months and 2ish years. It’s tough but people like you help. A lot.

  19. We just got back from a vacation with a family that paid SO MUCH ATTENTION to their kids’ sugar intake, etc. It was exhausting. When we made our first stop for gas on the way home, I told my kids that they could get whatever they wanted to snack on. They got something sugary and delicious, and they of course ate only what they wanted of it. I realized in that moment that it is more important to me that my kids are normal eaters than that they are “healthy” eaters. As always, love your perspective!

    • Phew that sounds exhausting. And I agree…I wanna raise a competent eater, not a dieter! Someone who eats sugar as desired so when they’re around it they don’t have to eat 2 entire rows of oreos in a sitting.

  20. I am so with you on all of this. My twin babies (not so babies anymore) will be 10 months old next week, and I know exactly what you’re talking about with the alarm going off inside of you. Just last night, we had a major meltdown of screaming during bath time that lasted all through drying/lotion, pajamas, and until he finally was rocked off to sleep. It was really stressful, but the only way I kept my head was to think “Okay, this is horrible, but it will not last forever. I’ve done everything I can to help him, and he wants none of it, so I have no control over what is happening. This will have an end, we just have to get through to the end.”
    I read an article about how our culture is so scared of negative emotions, and how instead of teaching our children how to suppress and hide those negative emotions, we should be supporting them to feel them, recognize them, and bear through them. For me the most frustrating thing is that I have no idea why they are cranky or whining, so I don’t know how to fix it. But maybe there isn’t really anything to do to fix it, maybe they’re just having a cranky day, like any human, and all I can do is try to be patient with them. Much easier said than done, but that’s what I’m trying to do anyway.

    What you said about the feeding, YES YES YES. I know you’ve talked about baby led weaning a lot and in one of your recent posts, you mentioned feeding Jo with a pouch, and I was totally elated. I really respect your opinion on food issues, and I was like “Okay, so even Kylie, who is trying hard to instill good feeding habits with her baby, is still a real human.” Because at the time, we had been trying baby led weaning at a few meals and it was NOT going well, and I was getting super frustrated, and of course paranoid that my boys will grow up with the same disordered eating issues that I’ve always dealt with. But what you said today totally struck a chord with me. As long as the right intention is there, and we emphasize to eat when they’re hungry and stop when they’re full, they’ll get the right message, whether we are feeding them or they are feeding themselves.
    And I’ve thought about it a lot, when trying to get them to eat “one more bite”, what am I really trying to do? One or two more bites is not going to make a big difference nutritionally, but it might teach them that they should eat past their hunger cues, because that’s always what they’ve done. So, I stopped putting the pressure on them. I will offer casually a few extra times, just to make sure, but then if they still refuse, I won’t push it.
    Now, we’re at the point that one baby will not eat unless he’s controlling everything, and the other baby will not eat unless he is being fed, but he loves to eat and complains when his food runs out. Since we obviously took the same approach with both of them, my conclusion that it is totally up to their individual personalities and their personal preferences, another thing we have no control over.

    And talk about mom guilt, I was never able to breastfeed because the boys were born so earlier, and the NICU doctors were cautious about the medications I was taking (which should have been fine, but what’s done is done), and I STILL feel guilty and a bit sad about it, even though the boys are huge and developing well, and they are well-bonded, and everything is fine now. So, at first I thought I would make up for it by only feeding them homemade baby food, because it was the least I could do, but that also turned out to be a huge pressure that I wasn’t able to keep up, and there have been days where all they eat is pouches and yogurt. But you know what, they are happy (at least on average), and they don’t seem to be suffering, so, what’s the point of beating myself up?

    So, anyway, I think you’re doing a great job with that super cutie (who from pictures at least, is an exact replica of your husband, but cuter), and you are putting so much thought into all these necessary choices that we have to make that we didn’t even know existed before, and I think that’s awesome, and not always easy.

    And what you said about how things are supposed to be easier by now…right? Isn’t that what everyone said was going to happen? I thought surely by 6 months, and then definitely by 9 months, but wow, it’s still freaking hard. Maybe at 1 year? :-P Though I admit, things are a lot rosier on the rare day that they sleep (mostly) through the night, and wake up for the day later than 6 am.

    Now all I have to do is find a mom group of my own.

    In conclusion to my thesis paper: you’re not alone, and in my opinion, you’re on the right track. And thank you for giving me that sense that I also, am not alone.

  21. She’s so precious, my goodness, and I LOVE your thoughts on feeding her. Honestly, more moms need to read this; it would really help our current normalization of orthorexia and disordered eating if we weren’t implicitly taught these habits from babyhood.

  22. I couldn’t handle the gagging/choking/whatever of BLW when my girl was 6 months so we did purées. Then at 8 months, she could handle real food so I switched her to BLW. Now she’s 3.5 and eats really well. (There was pickiness but it was all age related.) So I think like all things you just have to find the balance for what feels right to you and your kid(s).

    And you’re right! BLW can sound a lot like orthorexia when it makes you feel guilty. I needed that as I prepare to give solids to my newest one. Thanks!

  23. Thank you for this post! I have an 8 month old and am TERRIFIED of giving him an eating complex, given my ED history. This is so helpful to read – would love to see more like this as it comes to baby/child feeding and IE! I’m pretty clueless, and most of the internet DOES NOT help with balanced, healthy thinking on these subjects. Baby raising+food advice=judgmental internet disaster.  
    You’re the best…thanks for what you do!

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