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As promised, the story goes on. This bit is about us (Emma the mom, Rob the daddy and Eric the baby) surviving from 2 to 6 months. You can read how we made it through the most difficult first two months here.

Once Eric was 2 months old, my mother came to meet her first grandson, she stayed with us for a month. I consciously postponed her visit because I wanted to use the first two months to bond with Eric, get used to this whole new situation, start to understand my baby’s needs. It is my understanding that if you start to rely on advice of “more experienced people” from the very beginning, then you do not develop your own ability to observe, understand what’s going on and make your own decisions – so I tried to avoid that as much as I could.

Now at this point you are probably thinking: “Aha, so you had your mother there to help you!”. The thing is, that her visit brought equal amount of help and extra work so I can’t say that I’ve been resting more while she stayed with us. She came from overseas and we took her on trips to various places, which wasn’t always easy and enjoyable with a 2 months old baby. Eric, our poor free spirit, hated being strapped in his car seat and could scream on top of his lungs for an hour.

Now I must say that we didn’t plan beyond the first 3 months – and I am glad we didn’t. Having a baby changes a person a lot and after Eric was born I have made some decisions that I wouldn’t make before I had him.

One of those decisions was not to put my baby in the childcare. We, Rob and I, discussed it and agreed that we want to keep him at home until he is eating solids and not relying on me for food. I was breastfeeding and there was an additional reason against placing the baby in the child care – he wouldn’t take bottles and I didn’t want to wean him before he is at least 6 months old. But I had to return back to work – even if for a few hours a week – and needed extra help. So we planned that Rob would help me at home.

When Eric was 3 months old, mom left and, as we planned, Rob quit his main job to help me at home with the baby. He did what not many dads are prepared to do – he became a stay-at-home dad. Some of the people we know didn’t understand his choice (some even said so to his face), but he was man enough to do what’s best for his son – even though it wasn’t the best for his “macho reputation”.

With Rob’s help I was able to return to work and I started to do 10 hours a week. That meant 2 hours every day – I was planning to do that when Eric is asleep or while Rob is taking him for a stroll. Rob was still working part time, one-two days a week. So his income, whatever I earned and some money from the government were enough to keep us afloat. Of course we could hardly make the ends meet but we decided that it was worth it – Eric got to stay home with us and not in the child care.

We even started to take Eric to the pool twice a week, from 4 months of age and until 11. I have read a lot about swimming for babies and how it makes them stronger and develops coordination and motor skills, so once he had his immunizations we started to go. First Eric and I were having a swim, and then I would dress and feed him, give him to Rob and swim some laps myself. That really helped me to get back to shape – I was back to my pre pregnancy weight when Eric turned 6 months.