All mom’s are a little protective over their first babies, right? With the first, we sterilize the pacifiers when they fall on the ground, with the second we might rinse them off, and by the time the third comes along, we’ll pull it out of the dogs mouth and pop it into the baby’s (okay, maybe we don’t go that far, but all moms go a little bit crazy after they have their first, right?) Well, I think I was certifiable. Recently, my stepmom came across a three page instruction manual I wrote in preparation for the first time she babysat my firstborn. In it, I outlined every single thing she could eat, when she could eat it, how much of it she could eat, what she COULDN’T eat, what time her naps were supposed to be (and what time her naps might be if she didn’t sleep during one of them,) what her bedtime routine was (consisting of 8,563 steps,) and exactly what dilution of water to juice should go in her sippy cup. It also included such precious gems as:
– Whenever she gets up, offer her 6oz of warm whole milk in a bottle, but after an hour, throw it out because the milk might spoil.
For breakfast she’ll eat bananas with applesauce. Give her one bite of banana, then one bite of applesauce until she doesn’t want anymore.
(Because the order of food intake is critical, and Mom might not realize she ought to stop feeding the baby when the baby stops eating.)
At 9:00, she should take her first nap. Change her diaper before putting her to bed.
If for some reason she sleeps until 11:00 you can wake her up and put her down again at 2:00. The rest of her schedule should stay the same unless… in which case you’ll… and then she may not… you also wouldn’t… because then she would only…
(There’s just too much to unpack in this mess.)
– IF, however, she is still up by 10:00, then you can get her up and put her back down at 12:00 (feed her lunch first.)
Dinner… baby food cereal. This is how you mix it…
(Just in case she can’t read the directions herself?)
Give her a bath before bed in the big bathtub (just don’t put in a lot of water) with some water-safe toys.
(Because, you know, Mom might not realize the dangers of too much water, or throwing, say, a hairdryer in there for the baby to play with.)
How did anyone put up with me?