When my friend, a fellow new mom, told me that she gave up complaining for Lent, I thought she was a genius. So, instead of complaining about how my child was sleeping, I simply talked nonstop about it. Eventually, I had completely exhausted and bored myself talking about Weston’s sleep patterns, so I thought it was an apt time to complete Rookie Mom Challenge #21: Talk About Something Besides Sleep.
I picked a very busy day to shift gears: Weston and I would be attending MommaCon; a brand new convention all about things to do with babies and children on Long Island. We would be attending with a friend and her baby, and she was bringing friends. I figured it was a perfect time to use the conversation starters Heather and Whitney suggested!
Distract Yourself, Mama
I decided my one rule was that I couldn’t bring up Weston’s sleep; if someone asked me about it, I could either change the subject, or answer and move on. I quickly realized that the best way to not think about your child’s sleep (or lack thereof, in my case!) is to distract yourself! Do something different, out of the way, and new. We experienced our longest drive, went to a totally new place, and partook in a new activity.
The convention was amazingly cool! I got information on music classes, tons of freebies, talked about doing fun fashion things on my blog, and didn’t think about Weston’s sleep habits at all! I used the conversation starters with the other new moms, asking about their jobs, their high school experiences, and what their children ate. It was really nice to get to know my friend a little better (I had had no clue where she even grew up!), as well as meet other new moms and trade some ideas with them.
It’s A Process…
After about an hour, the little one started to lose his cool (it was very loud!), so we hopped outside to listen to some music. I have to admit, it is so ingrained in me to discuss his sleeping, that when my friend asked, “is he sleeping?” I quickly quipped back with, “Well, inconsistently! Some nights, yes, some nights, no, some nights in his crib, some in our bed…” She smiled and said, “Um, I meant right now? Is he sleeping in his stroller?”
Through intentionally changing the subject and not dwelling on sleep (or sleeplessness!), I realized how the constant chatter about sleep makes me feel frustrated, sometimes embarrassed, and confused. To be honest, most of the time I think I’m rocking the Rookie Mom thing, but when it comes to sleep “issues,” I go back to feeling like a clueless kid.
Yes, this is going to be a process, but I’ve got to curb it when it comes to talking about sleep: his or mine. Because, really, it isn’t fair to Weston: he’s an amazing, funny, smart, silly little boy who deserves for me to talk about all the positive things, not the one negative thing he’s maybe, sometimes, having some issues with!
So, I dare you, Rookie Moms: take the “sleep talk” out of your vocabulary and see what happens to your spirit; I’m excited to stop talking about it, that’s for sure!
Find more baby activities with the 52 weekly rookie mom challenges. If you’re already participating, use hashtag #rookiemoms on instagram or twitter so we can cheer each other on.