The Guilt

IMG_1850fWhy do I always feel guilty? Why do I always feel that I am not doing enough? Why do I always think that the grass is always greener on the other side? As we approach the six month-mark of exclusive breastfeeding (so proud of myself), and four sharp teeth, I am contemplating the idea of changing things up. I have discussed about potentially getting a pump with some of you, and still haven’t. I am beyond exhausted. I have lost an amazing amount of weight (which is great, don’t get me wrong, but I feel weak), my nipples are sore, and I am just not enjoying it as much. We are still co-sleeping, and she still nurses frequently at night.

I feel the need to mention that I am writing this post during a growth-spurt and therefore, I am very sensitive about the issue. After a couple nights of constant nursing, I am ready to tackle tonight but I can’t help and wonder: Have I hit rock bottom? Is this it? Can I keep going like that for a few more months?

One part of me wants to stop breastfeeding and feels extremely guilty for not wanting to continue to do what is best for my daughter. And the other part of me wants the best for me (mentally and physically speaking). It is just me and the girls 24/7 most of the times as my husband works away, and although we have family here, I care for them exclusively. I dream of a day off. I feel bad about it but it would make me feel so good – walking around, light and free. I would sleep in, read an entire book, window-shop without the stress of being as quick as possible so that my babies aren’t too cranky by the end of it, create, paint, do nothing.

What does it have to do with breastfeeding? Yes, good point. Well, I feel like I am losing myself. I don’t want to be cranky anymore because my child bites me when I feed her. I don’t want to be cranky because I don’t have time for myself in the evening. I don’t want to be cranky because I don’t have uninterrupted sleep. But when she is in her own bed, I can’t find sleep because I miss her.

My first baby drank formula when she turned 2 months old. I wanted the best for her. And I want the best for the new baby. But I know more. I have grown as a parent, and a mother, and it is hard to ignore the simple facts. Breast is best. It is not going to damage her – Sixtine is a beautiful toddler, but I can’t quite tell myself: “Oh, I am tired, I’ll just give her formula. It doesn’t matter that it isn’t best for her.” Pumping would be ideal. Unfortunately, it takes up so much time and energy – I am afraid it might make things even more complicated than they are now.

I am at a complete loss.

Do It Yourself: Montessori Dancer Mobile

dancermobile

Mobiles seem to be a baby registry essential. I didn’t have one for Sixtine – never even thought of it – and felt quite bad about it after the fact. My friend Rachael  offered me a Gobbi for Sixtine when she was a little over 5 months I believe but I lived in France at the time, she did not have a nursery/room for herself and I thought I would wait until I’d get home. I am sure that it doesn’t matter now but I wanted to make sure that our second child would get a lot of hanging material to look at and observe. I like how you can make up for what you think are “past mistakes” when you have a second baby (or third, or fourth…!).

The Dancer Mobile is a four-part mobile and is about 6.5 inches high. Each dancer is made of a three-part body, which allows for movement. It is introduced at the age of 3/4 months and promotes concentration and hand-eye coordination.

Material:

  • Fishermen’s string
  • Black paper (you may want to use a different color)
  • Metallic paper (you may use a different color)
  • Wooden dowels (10″, 12″ – and a 14″ if you do it like me)
  • Twine (if you hang it my style, otherwise you won’t need it)
  • X-acto knife or scissors
  • Glue
  • Copy paper
  • Safety pin

Instructions:

  • Resize to 7 inches, print and cut out shapes in black and metallic paper.
  • You can use this template from 60 activites Montessori pour mon bebe by Marie-Helene Place.
    dancer
  • Glue them together.
  • Using a thick safety pin or needle, poke holes.
  • Tie string.
  • Hang two dancers on the smallest dowel and two others on the medium-sized dowel.
  • Hang them both on the largest dowel using clear thread or fishermen’s string.
  • You are all done.

Moment of honesty:

It didn’t look like much but it took longer than expected to get this done. You might need to make changes accordingly. I poked more holes than the template suggested and I didn’t hang the dowels as the book suggested either. I did what felt natural to me. Instead of using a third dowel, I managed to tie the two dowels together. It didn’t prevent Victoire from enjoying her mobile. In fact, it was so appealing that her sister, Sixtine, enjoyed it too much and dismounted it. It was heartbreaking…and since I didn’t have the heart to put it all back together, my husband did it – with his own touch.

Let me see how yours turns out! 

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Make Your Own Fall Colored and Scented Play Dough

dough

Ingredients:  2 cups of flour 1 cup of salt 2 cups of water 3 tablespoons of lemon juice (or 1 tablespoon of cream of tartar) 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil 1 1/2 tablespoons of pumpkin pie spice food coloring (or any homemade vegetable/fruit juice) Recipe: Whisk together all the ingredients in a pan Cook over […]

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Toddler Art: Outdoor Painting Fall Fun

fall

We’ve had very bad weather for a few days now, so I couldn’t pass on going outside with the girls this afternoon when the sun came out! I also had painting in mind and thought: why not combine the two? Apron, cardbox, leaves, foam brushes and out the door we went. Victoire was able to […]

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Toddler Practical Life: Food Preparation

snackprep

I want to give Sixtine as much independence as possible. At almost two, doing things for herself is something she craves for. She absolutely loves to watch me cook, and help whenever possible. And so today, I decided to let her use her child-sized knife to make her own snack. She was very excited to […]

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10 Ugly Confessions Of A Mama Of Two Under Two

conf

One baby stays up late. The other baby gets up early. Do the Maths. I am seriously tired of changing diapers. I never really cared for it but I consider it a chore now. I have lost tons of weight. No diet. I go to sleep long after midnight. Because it is the only me-time […]

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Toddler Practical Life: Window Cleaning

window

My daughter loves to engage in water play and I was looking for a new activity for her to do that would differ from transferring and require more gross motor skills. I decided to set up a window cleaning activity which was very easy to organize. I put a towel to define her work space […]

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Launching of My New Online Boutique: Sixtine et Victoire

I am happy to announce that I have finally decided to take the big plunge and open my own online boutique. It is called sixtine et victoire, after my two inspiring daughters and although I feel slightly nervous, I am mostly very excited about it all. Simply beautiful products for little and not-so-little naturalists including wooden […]

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Teething And Biting While Breastfeeding

This will be a quick post. I haven’t been blogging much for many reasons but I will get back to it as soon as I can. I have been working on a very exciting project and with two little ones under two, it has proven difficult doing it all, let alone blogging but it should […]

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Potty Learning Without A Plan

pottytraining

Sixtine is 21 months. In the morning, little miss tornado gets up naked and points at her diaper saying either “dirty” or “caca” which means poop in French. She can’t stand a dirty diaper, and says “caca’ pretty much every time she goes. I think it is safe to say she is starting to be […]

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