I know I say this with every update but time really is flying, I will have a 1 year old in 4 months time. It’s so funny isn’t it because in so many ways I feel that time has gone so quick, but in other ways it’s hard to even remember those early days. I think the first year is just all one big fuzzy daydream. I look at pictures of him when he was a few weeks old and I can’t even remember him being that small.
Now I hate to jinx it, but I think 7-8 months might be my favourite age yet. We’re finally out of the 6 month sleep regression phase and apart from the odd bad day due to a cold or teething, this time actually feels pretty (dare I say it) settled. I feel more sure of what I’m supposed to be doing, our routine is becoming easier to implement and Jacob is adapting well and I feel like we’re finding ourselves again. We feel comfortable leaving him for a couple of hours now that his sleep has settled which has meant a bit more freedom for us as a couple and we seem to have found our feet as a team.
Jacob is still doing baby-led weaning and is really enjoying food. He tries everything I give him and his motor skills from picking up his food have really improved. He doesn’t eat huge amounts yet even though we offer him 3 meals a day, but that’s okay! I have also just introduced fish which he enjoys. He feeds every 4 hours in the day and I have started combi feeding so I feed him through the night and of a morning but he has an afternoon and evening bottle of formula which he loves. I think feeding him myself less has also taken some pressure off me and made me feel a bit happier in myself.
We’ve implemented a sleeping schedule for Jacob and we try to stick to it most days. Weekends tend to mean a bit more flexibility in his routine if we’re out and about but it doesn’t seem to affect him too much. He’s sleeping in his own room in his cot now and it works much better for both of us. He still hasn’t slept through and on average wakes up 1-2 times a night to feed. He’s making a lot of progress in terms of self-settling so I’m hoping that we’re on the right path to him sleeping through when he’s ready.
The main reason why I love this age so much is the development. Jacob is developing into a little character more and more each day. He has started saying ‘baba’ and ‘dada’ even though I don’t think he has a clue what they mean. He loves clapping hands and sucking his thumb is his favourite thing to do. He’s so cuddly and affectionate, not just with me but with family and friends. He’s really curious about every little thing and needs to touch, taste and see everything that’s going on. He can shuffle along the floor but he’s not quite crawling yet although we’re getting closer. He’s really strong at sitting up on his own now too. He’s shown signs of teething from about 3 months but no signs of any teeth just yet. He loves independent play and his baby sensory basket and I finally feel like I can sit down with a hot coffee and enjoy watching him play and explore. He’s such a happy baby, always smiling and he laughs at pretty much anything. It makes me feel so proud watching all of these little changes every day.
And as for me, I’m feeling really positive lately. There’s something about a new year that I really love and the opportunities it brings. But I just feel pretty settled at the minute and I’m just going to soak up these last few months before I go back to work in May, which I’m even feeling more positive about. I think generally I’ve just started to relax more on my motherhood journey. When I look back on last year, I know that I worried way too much about the smallest things that in hindsight didn’t matter. I’ve learnt to stop comparing my journey to others and put my phone down when I feel myself spiralling. I’m learning the importance of living in the moment more and prioritising my needs as well as Jacob’s. I’m focusing on my classes, my fitness and doing things that make me feel good. And I think it’s making me a better mum in the process.
What I’ve learnt so far on my journey is that every baby goes at their own pace. We don’t need to stress about when they’ll sleep through, when they’ll eat a full meal, when they’ll walk. We end up wishing time away and they’re never going to be this small again. So for now I’m enjoying the cuddles, letting him do what he needs to and slowing down to enjoy the little moments.