Worry Doesn’t Fix Anything

What’s your favorite tip for raising a healthy baby?

When my first daughter was born, there was so much about being a mother and raising a child that I was completely and utterly clueless about.

I had a good example to follow – my mom was (and still is) a fabulous mother. I knew what I wanted my “end result” to be, but it didn’t dawn on me til I was holding my new daughter that I really had no clue how to get there.

I was blessed with a beautiful, healthy 7 pound, 11 ounce little girl. She was a ball of perfection with a little curl on top of her forehead. I couldn’t have been happier.

When I brought her home from the hospital, we settled into a routine pretty quickly. She slept rather well during the day and then once 10:00 pm hit, she would wake up and be a monster all night long. She screamed and arched her back for hours at a time, and if I was lucky enough to get her to go to sleep, she would wake up as soon as I put her down.

It took me months to admit it, but my baby girl was colicky. She cried more than she didn’t cry. As a new mom, I didn’t even realize that all babies weren’t like that for their moms. Instead, I worried.

I worried that she wouldn’t gain enough weight. I worried that she would never sleep in her crib. I worried about what she ate. I worried about what I ate. I worried that everything I was eating and doing was making my baby miserable, which in turn was making me quite miserable, too.

Then one day I realized that the worrying wasn’t helping. In fact, I realized that the worrying was probably doing more damage than any of those situations I was worrying about.

I decided to stop worrying if the chocolate I ate was giving her stomach pains. I stopped worrying if she was getting enough milk at each feeding. I didn’t worry about her lack of sleep during the night…as long as she was sleeping sometime. Schedules could come later. I decided to enjoy the time to catch up on all of my sitcoms on late night TV.

I stopped worrying. And that made all the difference. Her colic didn’t disappear overnight, but she was happier because her mama was happier and a whole lot more relaxed.

Now when I talk to friends having their first baby, I counsel them to relax. Worry does not make baby happy. And worry certainly doesn’t fix anything.

Children’s health is at the top of every mother’s mind. What’s your favorite tip for raising a healthy baby? By replying, you will be entered to win an exclusive Million Moms Challenge Gift Pack, which includes an iPad2, a custom-made Million Moms Challenge pendant and a $50 donation in your name to Global Giving.

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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Million Moms Challenge. The opinions and text are all mine. Contest runs November 14 to December 18, 2011. A random winner will be announced by December 20, 2011.

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