The first Friday of every month The Portland Children’s Museum has a free evening for families to enjoy what the museum has to offer. We decided to get out of the house and take advantage of the free evening, even though Edith is a little young to appreciate the museum. We arrived and were greeted chaos. To say we were a little overwhelmed by the mass of families with busy little children running all around is an understatement. We took a stroll around the museum, trying to orient ourselves, eventually searching out the baby room and making a beeline to it as soon as we found it.
Although there are many fun activities at the museum such as the water room, the play cafe/market and forest, among other things they were all a little too old and too packed for us. The baby room on the other hand only had a few families in it and was much calmer. We played there for a bit with Edith and talked with a few other families. Overall we had a wonderful time there as a family, however I’m not sure I would go to another free Friday night until Edith is a bit more mobile.
As new parents, there are so many exciting new changes and developments happening so quickly if you blink too long you might miss one. Most of these changes are exciting and reason to celebrate (even if you do get weird looks from your friends or co-workers for celebrating your baby’s first laugh or the first time they’ve held on to something). But, as a new father, there’s one change that is really hard to experience. Separation anxiety. Since most of these changes just happen overnight, they often catch you off guard or unprepared.
I’ve been a really lucky dad. Where most Dad’s I’ve spoken with have said that their children didn’t show a lot of interest in them until 6 months (or even later in some cases), Edith has always been comfortable and happy with me. I’m often the one who can calm her down when she’s upset or soothe her to sleep when nothing else is working. (She’s got to be the ONLY person out there who enjoys my singing) So, it was especially hard to deal with the first time she let out that scared, worried screech and started pushing away form me and looking around frantically trying to find her mom. The rational part of me knew that it was nothing personal and was just another step in her continuing growth and development. Separation anxiety begins when babies first start to understand that people and things exist even when they aren’t directly in front of them, otherwise known as “object permanence”. This is also why peek-a-boo becomes such a fun game for them all of a sudden (or in some cases why peek-a-boo can probably upset them too!). Aside from just a matter of being attached to those that they love and who love them most and are around them most, there is thought that it is part of human evolution. That a defenseless baby would rightfully get upset and worried when left alone to fend for themselves. Despite all of the rationale around it, it is tough to deal with when you’re on the wrong end of separation anxiety. The important thing to remember is that, to some extent, all babies experience separation anxiety and it’s not permanent. I’ve already noticed Edith that when it comes to me, the anxiety is lesser than it was and typically only happens when she’s really upset or tired.
While it can be upsetting or tough, I know it’s best not to let that show too much around Edith and that being calm, comfortable and outwardly expressing love for Edith is the most important thing I can do and is what will help her know that she is safe with me. Be sure to talk with your health care provider as well, ours gave us lots of great tips!
Some sources I’ve found helpful include:
All photos are random ones that have been taken over the past few days. They don’t really have much to do with this post (except the cake) I just wanted to share them.
For the past three days it has just been me and Edith. Okay well and my parents but honestly as helpful as they are it just isn’t the same as having your partner with you to help balance the childcare. Neil made the journey out to Portland this pas Wednesday and has been settling in and preparing to start his new job this coming Monday. Due to Edith’s (early) six month appointment and the cost of flights we decided to head out a week later and boy is one week a long time. The last time Neil and I were away from each other for more than five days was the 2006 holidays.
Needless to say I miss him, Edith noticeably (to me anyways) misses him and honestly I’m a little jealous he has already moved. However I know that Neil has it worse than us. While we are staying with my parents and have familiar faces around us he is in Portland all by himself. Luckily some people from work have offered to show him around so he hasn’t been totally alone but I imagine it is still difficult and lonely.
Speaking of lonely today is Neil’s 32nd birthday so ya’ll should make sure to wish him a Happy Birthday! Although we aren’t there to celebrate with him we are thinking of him today and hoping he goes out and tries a new coffee shop, maybe a Voodoo Doughnut and of course a new brew. Luckily I was able to throw together a last minute surprise dinner the Sunday before he left and I’m so thankful for all the friends who could make it out and help me keep it a surprise.
Anyways this post is getting to be a little bit of ramble. I haven’t had a good chance to get my thoughts down in writing lately and my mind is a little bit of a fussy mess on overdrive. As soon as Neil and I settle in we are going to work on an editorial calendar for this blog because we both have so much to share with you.
Wishing Neil a wonderful birthday and wishing all of you a Happy and Healthy New Year!
I know that we have been pretty absent over here but if you read my healthy living blog, Running With Tongs, you have probably already heard the news but in case you haven’t ……
We’re moving to Portland, OR!
Long story short Neil was offered a position in PDX and we are moving there in less than three weeks! To hear the whole story you can head over to my post on RWT–> see here.
Those are the three things going on right now in our house. As I said over on RWT we have had some big top secret developments going on around here as well as a busy working dad, a clingy, fussy teething baby and a mom who needs a nap. We are hoping to get back to regular blogging soon and will reveal our news in a few weeks. Until then here are some photos for your viewing pleasure.
This past Saturday we dressed Edie up in her very first Halloween costume and headed downtown where they host a big Halloween event for kids. There are bouncy castles, music, a costume parade and shops hand out candy to trick or treaters. Although E didn’t partake in the bouncing and the candy it was fun to dress her up and walk around while checking out all the costumes. My favorite costume we saw (besdies E’s of course) was a tie between a little sailor and a little peacock.
E was dressed up as a chili pepper in honor of the bottle, after bottle, after bottle of hot sauce that I consumed while pregnant with her. When we saw the costume at a second hand store it just seemed fitting!
What did you and/or your children dress up as for Halloween? Neil and I didn’t get dressed up this year but I see us doing family costumes in the years to come.
Our weekend in iPhone photos:
On this day, National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Rememberance Day, we would like to take time to be thankful for having such a beautiful, healthy and happy daughter, Edith Mary. After our first two pregnancies resulted in miscarriage, it really helped us to appreciate even more how special Edith is to us.
Today, we’d like to take time to remember those who have suffered the loss of a child or a pregnancy.
Our own Awkward Family Photo