Letter from your mother: Dear newly pregnant person - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Letter from your mother: Dear newly pregnant person

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    I like to think of myself as a broad-minded person, open to new adventures, ready for anything that comes my way. This is especially true with food. I love to eat; I love to cook. So I was bowled over when a friend said to me, “You're a very picky eater.”
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Lynne D. Schwabe was owner of Schwabe-May of Charleston, ran her own marketing consulting firm and is a nationally recognized motivational speaker. She has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Women's Wear Daily and has appeared on CNBC's Power Lunch. She currently is director of development for the National Youth Science Foundation. She can be reached at schwabestatejournal@gmail.com.

When my daughter was pregnant, I shared with her a list of things that I learned being a parent. I passed this list on to her, but I don't think she paid any attention.

However, these are true words of wisdom, and as such, I want to share them. I knew that if my daughter had read them, they would stand her in good stead as a mother. I knew she would have occasion to thank me many times for these gems before she passes them on to her child when she is looking forward to birthing although I have received no thank you's to date. This is what I said:

Please come up with a pleasant term for your child to call me. "Grandma" is so common. And it just sounds so senior, if you catch my drift. I like the following options:

1. Zsa Zsa

2. Dear One

3. Excellancy

4. Slim

In terms of advice, here are some things that I learned the hard way. You must memorize, because they are golden:

1. Train that baby to sleep in a subway station. 

Not literally, but nothing is worse than having to tip-toe around during nap time, in mortal fear that the child will WAKE UP AND START SCREAMING. Secondarily, all babies should be capable of sleeping in broad daylight or under surgical lights. This will make your life so very much easier.

2. Pacifiers are like crack to babies. 

You may not remember this, but your father and I certainly do. We had a pacifier dealer on every street corner and woe betide any one who forgot to put one in your mouth and one in each hand at bedtime. And good God, those things are hard to locate at 3 a.m. when your baby is having withdrawal symptoms and convulsing due to the disappearance of any one of the multiple pacifiers in the crib. The thumb is always available, and you have a good job, so orthodonture is not a problem for you in the future. Go with the thumb.

3. Don't worry if you can't breast feed. We are not all blessed with this capability. No guilt. And frankly, being the only one who can feed the darn baby is not all that it is cracked up to be at (again) 3 a.m. Babies love being bottle fed by their dads. It's bonding.

4. Projectile vomiting is easily cleaned off walls. Use a magic eraser.

5. Sleep is overrated. Say this to yourself over and over until you believe it.

6. It is perfectly OK to post 100 pictures a day of your baby on social media. 

Even perfect strangers enjoy looking at baby pictures. In the days before social media, some grandparents had no idea what their grandchildren looked like, unless they had local grandchildren.

7. Educational toys are fine, but nothing beats a good pot lid and a wooden spoon.

8. Never (again, at 3 a.m.) confuse toothpaste with Desitin. Never.

9. Train your child not to purposely sit on the cat to hear it meow.

10. In the case of a female child: Tights. They may be worn on the head. However, if worn traditionally, underpants must be included. Well, if you crave playground popularity for your daughter, you can consider underwear as optional. However, this decision is frowned upon by school administrators everywhere.

11. Check for gum before your child goes to bed.

12. If you want your child to have a large vocabulary and her own room at the day care center, sing her to sleep every night with a medley of folk tunes.

13. Hugging is never optional.

14. All those pundits who publish books about child-rearing have probably broken their own guidelines 1,000 times. Don't even buy one of those books.

15. Becky Trafton had excellent luck with all of that scheduling, but I posit it is because she had an "easy baby." When number two arrived, she spit on that schedule concept.

16. I hear Bio Oil prevents stretchmarks.

17. Invest in whoever makes Cheerios in the stock market, because they will become a staple in your baby's diet. You might as well get some return on that investment.

18. You must cherish your rear-end as it is today, because it will most likely be a lot lower for the rest of your life.

19. Welcome to the world of mom pants.

Sincerely,

Your mother