It’s official – Hazel is six months old. Can you believe it? No, me neither. I know it’s a tired old cliche but time really DOES fly, and I’m genuinely shocked that she’s been out in the world for half a year. That’s AGES, guys.
For me, the first six months of motherhood can be split into three stages. Stage one, which I’ll call ‘What The Actual Fuck Is Happening?’, took place from birth to three months. Stage two, ‘Well I Thought I Had The Hang Of It But What The Actual Fuck Is Happening?’, covers four to five months. And the last stage, ‘Oh Ok, This Is Quite Fun Now Isn’t It?’, is where I’m at now, six months in.
It’s only in the last few weeks that I’ve felt like I’ve got a bit of breathing space. After the struggle of the newborn days, I found my feet only to be knocked right off them again by the four (and five) month sleep regression. I don’t want to scare you, new mums, but that thing is an absolute bastard. But like everything to do with babies, it passed and we made it through to the other side. The other side, where sleep is much improved, solids are now a thing and Hazel is just a joy to be around.
I mean, really. Too cute.
All babies are different, of course. But at six months old, these are Hazel’s highlights:
– Rolling all over the place – Hazel first rolled at four months but promptly forgot about it and didn’t pick it up again until very recently. She can now roll front to back AND back to front, meaning she covers some serious ground if left to her own devices
– Sitting up – a very new skill acquired just this week, but one I am SUPER PUMPED for. She’s still very wobbly but is getting more stable every day and I can’t wait for her to properly sit and play with her toys
– Weaning – we started weaning just before six months and I’m following a true baby-led approach, which basically means sticking whatever I’m eating in front of her and hoping for the best. Hits so far include strawberries, hummus and pitta, pancakes and tomato pasta
– Improved sleep – at one point during the seemingly endless regression, Hazel was waking up almost every hour and I was BROKEN. But we got through it (just about… I still have the eye bags) and her sleep is much better now. She doesn’t sleep through – we’re on about 2/3 wake-ups a night – but I’m cool with that. Sleep is a big issue for new parents and many judge their success against the sleep habits of their baby, but we try to just go with it and not worry too much. If she’s still waking up through the night at the age of 5, maybe we’ll assess. But for now… we’re good!
– Established breastfeeding – this is a biggie for me. I’ve written about my struggles with breastfeeding before and it wasn’t really until three months that I felt I’d really got the hang of it. Now at six months, I absolutely love it. So much so that I’m currently applying to train as a breastfeeding counsellor! When Hazel was a newborn breastfeeding to six months felt completely unattainable, so I’m totally delighted we’ve got this far and have no plans to stop any time soon.
– Everyday life – Hazel is just SO much fun at the moment. She smiles at everything, she laughs, she cuddles, she’s so interested in the world around her and is generally just a delight to hang out with. During the week it’s just me and her and we’re super sociable – we go to lunch, we meet up with our pals, we do sensory classes and we walk everywhere. We even went to Madrid, on our own! At the weekend when Rob’s around we’re a proper family unit – rather than just being a sleeping baby in a pram, Hazel is now part of the things we do and it’s the absolute best.
Bring on the next six months!