Hello, month 3! This month has been super fun, as Jude is discovering the world around him, and totally enjoying all of it! At the beginning of April, Jude learned how to blow raspberries, and he loves showing off his new trick. Almost anytime people are talking around him, he makes sure to chime in with coos and bubble blowing. Pretty cute.
Jude still really hates tummy time, and cries pretty much the entire time he’s laying on his belly. He hasn’t caught onto the fact that he can use his arms to push himself up yet, and does a full “superman” with his legs and arms up in the air, and the poutiest face he can conjure up. I keep trying to put his arms under him, but he refuses to cooperate. On the other hand, he LOVES sitting up, and is a huge fan of his exersaucer. He’ll also now stick anything close to him in his mouth and chew on it, and the drooling has been non-stop. Doc said although we might not actually see a tooth til month 6, Jude is definitely teething. Bring on the fussy stage!
A few weeks ago we entered into an interesting phase of what I’m pretty confident is social anxiety. People have told me that it might just be separation anxiety, but Jude LOVES being by himself and is totally fine if I put him down and leave the room. He loves playing alone. The real issue is that he totally loses it around a large group of people. I think it stemmed from the first few days his eyesight and hearing started getting better, and it was just too overwhelming for him to handle. When people would crowd around him and talk to him, he would just scream until completely removed from the area. I’m not talking about baby cry. I’m talking sweating, shaking, and the most terrified look on his little face. Because he looks so frightened every time we were around groups, we decided to not push it and give him some space. He did so much better when being introduced to one person at a time while I held him. He’s definitely turned a corner, and now is content with people around if he’s sitting in his carseat and has his own space (doesn’t need to be held by me anymore). I researched a bit on it, and most of what I read said that this sort of thing starts around 6 months, which was frustrating. But in talking to other moms, I received a lot of encouragement by hearing similar stories and being affirmed that he’ll be alright and grow out of it. I got worried that we coddled him too much, but it really was a sudden switch. One day he was fine with people holding him, and the next he wasn’t. I’d always made a point to bring him in public while I run errands, and people have been holding him since the day he was born. Now that he’s getting a little better I’m seeing that it really is just a phase. One mom even encouraged me that he’s just creating boundaries, and that’s ok. Thanks, moms! It’s true what they say that every baby is different, and inevitably you’re going to run into a situation where there’s just no simple fix or easy answer. I am thankful for the moms that are understanding and not automatically judgmental when it comes to parenting!
Jude trying to make a run for it
On that note, can we talk about unsolicited advice? Now, this started the day we announced we were pregnant, but it seems like it just keeps getting better and better (read worse and worse) as time goes on. What is it that people think the only reason a baby would cry is because he/she is hungry? I can’t tell you how frustrating it is when your baby is crying and some random person you’ve never seen in your life walks by you and in the most condescending tone says, “Bottle, lady” and walks away. I wanted to say, “Oh, wow, thanks! I never thought of that!” I have a couple issues with this. First, just because my baby is crying, doesn’t mean he’s hungry. You have no idea if my baby JUST ate and maybe he has gas, or maybe he’s tired, or maybe he just had shots the day before. Or maybe he’s just a human and is having one of those days where he just can’t deal. Second, it never helps a mom when you give your advice to her like that. She knows her baby is crying in public and undoubtably disturbing someone around her. She doesn’t need to be told that she’s being a disruption. What she needs is some grace, and maybe a, “You’re doing great, mama.” Third, what if her baby is hungry, but that mom is exclusively breastfeeding, so she doesn’t have a bottle on her? What if she’s doing everything she can to get back to her car quickly to feed her baby? She can’t exactly pop her boob out on the spot in every scenario.
Moral of the story, don’t assume you know what’s going on, or that you have all the answers. This is just one example of advice I’ve received from random strangers. And I know this is a very common problem discouraged moms have to fight. So, if you are that mom, know you’re not alone, and know you’re doing great. It’s true that moms (and dads) really know the best for their babies. Don’t let someone else drag you down with their careless words. Maybe they’re having a really bad day, too. If you aren’t that mom, I encourage you to be an encouragement to that mom the next time you see her. Offer a smile or a “You’ve got this.” It goes a long way.
That being said, let me leave you with an encouraging word. Ryan and I have had some moving pieces in life out of our control lately, and we’ve been really praying for peace and trust in the Lord’s hand, believing that he knows what is good and cares for us. These verses have kept coming up all over the place this week, and I thought I’d share with you in case you need to also be reminded of His provision:
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” Matthew 6:25-34
The verses right before that are the Lord’s prayer, and the scriptures talking about praying and fasting in private, and storing up your treasures in heaven. So often I forget that these verses are all in the same chapter. The Lord showed me that everything, even learning how to pray, He provides. This means he provides for our spiritual, emotional, and physical needs. We have no need to worry for anything in life. Our call is to seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness. A higher call. Let’s rest in Him as we seek His face.