First of all, I am not a believer of giving EVERYTHING to my child. Personally I feel that if I give my EVERYTHING (Time, money, efforts, mental capacity etc) to my child, it means that it leaves me to nothing. And nothing means... NOTHING. I will then have nothing to give to myself, nothing to give to my husband, nothing for my work, my team of people, and basically nothing to give for anything.
My resolve is to give him my best. The best that I can. I am a strong believer of my own identity. Eg; Even after being married, I am still my own identity. Even after having a child, I still find it important and am even more conscious of maintaining my own identity, my own value.
Many people laugh and often suggest that I would sooner or later not be wearing my heels anymore, I will have short hair and perhaps a messy one. Or I will no longer be able to wear my tight fitting dresses anymore, I wont be able to go out anymore etc etc... In general, I will no longer be who I was and will become like a typical 'mom'. Obviously, I do not know why people want to make things sound so bad.
The truth is, I am annoyed but so challenged at the same time. I asked myself; what kind of mom will my son have? And it is also the same question I did asked myself over and over again before I got married to my husband;'what kind of wife will I be to him?'
Lots of women sacrificed and gave so much into their motherhood that they lost their own identity in the process of that. In fact, some loses their personal value the moment they marry.
Surely, I believe in sacrifices. I sacrifice too. I limit my work hours so as to take care of of my little infant more (I believe in strong nurturing esp in his first 3 growing years), expressing milk, feeding at every any hour, night duties etc... I as well, believe in giving the best. But I strongly believe that there is a definite thin line between 'everything' and 'best'.
Giving our best may not be to give our everything.
The truth is so many mommies overly-gave what was not within their capacity and soon became burnt out moms! Eg; not having enough 'Me-Time' or perhaps 'Hubby-Time'.
Like I cannot be caring for my kid 24/7. Or put it this way. I can care for him 24/7 but I will not want to. Because I want to still function for my businesses, I still need and want to breathe. I should not reached a point in my life that, the only thing I can remember of myself is being a mother to someone. As such, by the grace of God, I found an awesome sitter by the kind recommendation of a friend whom suggested that her mom could care for my baby. However, I do not take this for granted. From every Mondays to Thursdays, my son is with the sitter from about 10am to 3-ish pm. I plan a 6hours out-of-home schedule. I can do anything from 9am to 3pm, but I will pick him back home and put him to his bedtime discipline everyday. Fridays are special arrangement days whereby I will take a 8-10 hour break from my baby to do chores, sleep a little (hopefully) or spend a little hubby-time. Weekends, I will have the little one all for myself.
I make sure that I take care of my personal outlook by watching my weight, eating well, maintaining my disciplines. I am honest to let my husband know whenever I need 1 or 2 hours to plan for work. Or if I simply am going to go crazy caring for the little boy for more than 48hours. As much as I can, I slowly adapted a schedule to allow myself to still maintain the life I have had before my baby and incorporated my baby into my life. I did not let the baby rule my life and my household.
Definitely many often blame the erratic-ness of a baby; - the 120% attention the baby will snatch/ need from you. But I feel that this may not be the case.
I find babies being very versatile. They follow their parents and catch on the vibes of the parents even just being 1 or 2 months old. I remembered once when I was having a heated argument with my hubby, in the presence of the baby, he started crying very loudly (which he rarely does). Once we have cooled off, my little one was back to normal.
A Baby Who Sleeps Early - BedTime Routine
My son is 3months plus and he has a bedtime routine. The wearing of pyjamas, the cello music, the setting of the sun are processes we do to tell him that it is his bedtime and bedtime is 7pm. Why 7pm? Because I say so. Haha... these nights, me and my hubby can have the luxury of staying in our bedroom, doing what we used to do together; while waiting for his next feed. And usually his feed plus burping and a little cuddle is about 15min.
SO my typical Mommy Schedule goes: (In brief and in approximate timings only)
730am Feed or No feed. Depending on if the little one wants breakfast or not
745am Morning Bonding and allow him his Educational TV time while Daddy, Mommy prepares for work.
845am Nanny Place
9am Breakfast with hubby (Hubby Time)
920am Head to Work
10am to 3pm - Work or Whatever (typically this period is my 'Me-Time'
330pm Pick the Baby
430pm Feed and Sleep (Baby)
445pm Workout (30min-45min)
From 430pm - 7pm My baby will ask to latch almost every hourly. Sometimes it extends to till 9plus in the night. In Between every hour, me and hubby will eat dinner etc...
Else 7pm till next Morning, he only wakes for 15min feed, burp, sleep and it will be couple time for me and my hubby.
And so this is how I keep sanity and identity by keeping a schedule. You do not have to follow a schedule like a uptight crazy person. But it is more like a guide. It helps you to evaluate how you could tweak around the timings to make your life work better for you. And the keyword is 'your life'.
It is important to have your own identity in your own life and you will be surprise how much more you could give to your husband, your child/children in calmness (eliminating the screaming and yelling) of course!