Raising Baby: 10 Habits of Super Chill Moms

by Kim on August 7, 2012

When learning a new skill, everyone has to start somewhere. Parenting is no different.

I imagine that raising your second kid has to be 10x easier than raising your first, because you’ve gotten so much of that crazy first-timer crap out of the way. (Unless, of course, your first baby is really easy and your second is a hell-raiser.)

There are a lot of things I’ve learned in the past 4 months that I’d love to go back and tell my pre-mom self. Maybe save myself some trouble here and there.

But it probably wouldn’t have helped, because some things you just have to experience to truly learn.

I can already guarantee that my approach will be a lot different with my next kid. Specially, it’ll be much more chill.

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I know there’s a reason that as women have more kids, they become progressively more relaxed. They begin to realize that all the overanalysis and Google research we first-time moms pour ourselves into just isn’t necessary.

They become Super Chill Moms.

Super Chill Moms…

1. Don’t freak out about sleeping. Worrying that your kid isn’t sleeping through the night or taking perfectly scheduled naps every day just isn’t worth the headache. The best advice I heard was that all you can do is arrange the best possible sleeping conditions for your baby, and the rest is up to him. A few months ago, I was becoming so paranoid about sleep issues that it was starting to ruin the experience of having a baby. In the end, even if you do everything wrong and your baby sleeps like crap his entire first year of life, he will probably just grow out of it and be fine anyway.

2. Don’t compare their babies to other babies. Easer said than done, I know. If you think about it, adults are all so incredibly different, so why do we expect all babies to be exactly the same? We need to give our kids a break and just love them for who they are (and aren’t). This goes both ways, though-parents of easy babies who never cry, sleep like champs, and hit their milestones early shouldn’t pat themselves on the back too much. Chances are it has more to do with their babies’ temperaments and personalities than their amazing parenting skills (not that they aren’t amazing).

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3. Don’t freak out if they can’t read their baby’s cues. “This is his hungry cry.” “This is her tired cry.” Whatever. We moms love to try to figure our babies out. Something about identifying their patterns makes us feel more in control-plus, we like to show off how well we know our kids in front of other people. “Oh, he always does this.” (*knowing eye roll*) Somehow we get the feeling that if we’re not able to diagnose every whimper instantly, then we’re totally blowing this parenting thing. The problem is, the minute you get your baby all figured out, he will completely change. So just go with the flow, the Super Chill Moms would say.

4. Don’t misinterpret simple questions as judgment. Is he rolling over yet? Oh, you’re still swaddling? Did you stop breastfeeding? More often than not, it’s just conversation. Super Chill Moms are confident in their parenting decisions. They say “it works for us,” give a nonchalant shrug, and move on.

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5. Don’t purchase complicated outfits. Collared shirts, overalls, sleepers with snaps, hooded sweatshirts…I don’t care how cute they are, or how confident you are that you’ll be different than those other lazy moms. Super Chill Moms buy what’s practical: onesies in the summer and zip-up sleepers in the winter. Boom. (Well, ok, they’re fine with having a couple nicer outfits for pictures and special events. But SCMs know when to say no.)

6. Don’t feel guilty about taking time off. Mommy time, date nights, even weekends away. You and your marriage are important too (and if either of those suffer, your parenting skills will suffer too). This means not being such a control freak that you’re unable to let someone else watch your baby, for fear that they might do something DIFFERENTLY. And on that subject…

7. Don’t become such control freaks that they bar their husbands from helping with anything. Again, he might do things differently than you, and he might ask you some questions, but that doesn’t mean he’s doing anything wrong or that he’s incompetent. The baby will live, even if he’s not rocked for exactly 7 minutes after being read 2 books.

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8. Don’t stay locked up in the house all day because they’re paranoid about messing up naps. If you spend your days running home for naptime, you’ll end up exhausted, irritated, and lonely. So go out, talk to ADULTS, walk through the mall (without being paranoid that the baby might melt down randomly in Pottery Barn-just cross that bridge when you get to it). The more convinced you are that your baby can only sleep under perfect conditions and at home, the more convinced he’s going to be of the same thing.

9. Don’t feel like they have to entertain their kids every second they’re awake. I used to be worried that Mason wouldn’t be properly stimulated (read: tired out enough to sleep well) unless I was all up in his business the entire time he was awake. And now I wonder why he can’t seem to play alone for more than two minutes at a time. A Super Chill Mom would laugh so hard at me.

10. Don’t panic if their babies aren’t meeting their “milestones.” Baby’s not rolling over yet THE DAY he turns 3 months old? Who gives a crap. No one reaches any other milestones at the exact same time (think puberty or greying hair), so why should this be different? There will always be freaks of nature who will roll over at 1 month, and some babies that just like to chill on their backs. Chances are good that they will not make it to adulthood without the ability to roll over.

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I’m definitely not a Super Chill Mom yet. I especially struggle with 1, 3, and 8 (and probably some 7). But I’m working on it.

It’ll be interesting to see how this all changes with kid #2!

Are you a Super Chill Mom?

Which steps trip you up?

 

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Pixie October 13, 2016 at 5:00 am

Hey chillers :-)

I am that chill mum- never thought I would be.. never thought I’d be a mum !
Maybe I’m chill cos I have no husband to help ?

Hmm I think I’m guilty of 9. As an early childhood teacher I’m like ‘let’s do waterplay and bubbles and do this for your language development etc. –

Also 4. But I think that’s cos I generally despise small talk.

Great article :-) thankyou for writing

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Rachel@curious runner girl September 20, 2013 at 8:55 pm

Just came across this blog post and it is awesome, hilarious and TRUE!! i have a 7 month old and am still trying to figure out some of these things, I am trying to become a SCM, thanks for the tips :)

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FabFrumpy November 8, 2012 at 9:57 am

What a fantastic list! I could not relate more. :)

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Kim November 8, 2012 at 11:27 am

:)

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Hannah November 5, 2012 at 9:40 am

Love this post! I’m proud to say that, yes, in fact, I AM a Super Chill Mom! I didn’t start out that way but after almost 7 weeks getting to know my little guy, I’ve learned to take this whole parenting thing in stride. Most of these traits are incredibly accurate to me and my mindset – it really makes me feel a little better about feeling “lazy” or inattentive (as per #9 – hey, mama needs a little me time!). The only one I say I struggle with adapting to is #7… but that’s because he IS incompetent (am I right, ladies?) Haha.

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Kim November 5, 2012 at 9:56 am

Hahaha you’re hilarious, Hannah! About #7–like I said, I struggle with that one too! But congrats on your SCM status!! Funny that you associate it with laziness–I’d call it confidence! :) Now, any tips for the rest of us??

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Amelia October 30, 2012 at 4:53 pm

Love this list! These characteristics can also be seen in moms who trust their instincts, as opposed to feeling obligated to do tons of research and pick a particular parenting technique or theory.
None of us moms know what we’re doing, but we all have the ability to parent, if we can just stop getting in our own way :)

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Kim October 30, 2012 at 5:04 pm

I completely agree! Too much research just makes us all insecure.

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Kim August 7, 2012 at 5:44 pm

Of course, Jenna! (God willing) :) Now, let’s talk about Baby Whiting #1!
Kim recently posted…Raising Baby: 10 Habits of Super Chill MomsMy Profile

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Jenna Whiting August 7, 2012 at 2:46 pm

So there WILL be baby #2?! Whoop, whoop!

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