What We Learned About Having a Baby


62 Comments
Baby Girl's feet

All three of us are home and happy and healthy. We’re all pretty exhausted, but loving our new life together.

Around here, we’ll just call her Baby Girl. This was actually the name printed on her ID bracelets because her mommy and daddy needed some time to try on some different names. Unfortunately, Thor didn’t fit.

We’ve learned a lot over the last few days. Here are a few of them in mostly chronological order.

  1. When a resident checks you and says, “You’re not in labor,” it actually means the exact opposite. Thankfully, a real doctor knew to double check the resident’s noob assessment.
  2. The ice pellets from the maternity ward ice machine makes having a baby totally worth it. Just trust me on this.
  3. Just because you have a doctor doesn’t mean you’ll have him/her there for delivery. Yep, despite the multiple “Code: White” calls the nurse made over the intercom, Baby Girl was delivered by a nurse and yours truly.
  4. Despite your doctor not arriving until a full minute after your baby’s delivery, it is possible to withhold punching him/her in the face. Especially if you’re a mushy-gushy mess and crying harder than your newborn baby.
  5. Let your emotions run free. You are watching life come into this world. It’s amazing. Don’t pretend like it isn’t.
  6. Remember that all the cute features (read: every square inch of your baby) came from your wife. Especially her dimples.
  7. It’s all in the swaddle. Chipotle employees are probably the best parents EVER.
  8. That sleep thing? Yeah, that used to be fun. But on the plus side, you get to watch sunrises and The Wonder Years reruns at 4am. All while being accompanied by the coolest baby in the world.
  9. Anything can happen when that diaper comes off. Be prepared… be very prepared.
  10. Having a baby is the most beautiful, trying, wonderful thing ever. We’ve only known our Baby Girl a few, short days, but we can’t get over how much we already love here. Over the last few days, we’ve reached our lowest lows and highest highs. Adjusting to parenthood has been a wild ride, but we feel so blessed to be the parents of our sweet Baby Girl.

So without further ado (or delirious, sleep-deprived rambling), meet our Baby Girl.

Our Baby Girl

Thanks for all the well wishes. We appreciate every one of your kind words. We’ll be back to posting regularly, but it might take us a few weeks to get back into the swing of things. But we’re beyond excited to resume with a new Our Freaking Budget team member.

For the parents, does our list resonate? Anything else you’d add? For those thinking about parenthood in the near future, have we sufficiently freaked you out?

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62 Comments

  • Reply Renee S January 10, 2013 at 9:25 am

    She is such a beautiful Baby Girl!! Take care of yourself and enjoy every minute :)

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 12:42 pm

      Thanks, Renee! All three of us got some really good two hour chunks of sleep last night, so we’re finally rounding the corner of “taking care of ourselves.”

  • Reply Michelle January 10, 2013 at 9:36 am

    Awww so adorable! :)

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 12:46 pm

      Thanks, Michelle! We can’t get enough of her.

  • Reply Amy January 10, 2013 at 10:11 am

    congrats! She is adorable

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 12:46 pm

      Thanks so much, Amy!

  • Reply MomofTwoPreciousGirls January 10, 2013 at 10:30 am

    Regarding your experience with the doctors, what a bunch of dopes! I really was blessed with great doctors through my pregnancy and they were perfect during the L&D. However, you get to have a great story to tell that little beauty when she grows!

    Don’t put the tv on when baby wakes. If you keep things very quiet and dark, baby will pretty much eat and fall right back to sleep!

    The really gross diapers should end soon!!!

    It IS amazing…I tell my girls that I grew a brand new heart to hold all my love for each of them (Mommy has 3 hearts!). Had NO idea how much love I was capable of until they were born.

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 12:49 pm

      I’m always up for weird/unique experiences so long there’s a good story to tell later on. I probably would have preferred the doctor be there, but we’ll take what we can. :)

      Thanks for the advice. And I totally understand and love your “brand new heart” line. Totally spot on.

  • Reply Catherine January 10, 2013 at 10:41 am

    SO beautiful!! Congrats again :) It almost makes me want to have another RIGHT NOW. Almost 😉

    I laugh at the ice machine, I told my husband that if I won the lottery I would be installing a hospital grade ice machine in our house.

    We very quickly learned that our daughter hated being swaddled we stopped after about 2 weeks, It may have had something to do with her being born in a hot summer but she hated it.

    Agreed with above commentor, the gross diapers will settle down…until they start solids…

    I’m 7months in and still waiting on the sleep thing…as long as it evens out in the next 4months before I go back to work :S

    Enjoy every. single. second.

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 12:54 pm

      Haha. Depending on the hour, we’re either saying “We need to have another baby ASAP!” or “Baby Girl will be our only child.” It’s such a roller coaster.

      Coming to grips with the lack of sleep has gotten better. And since it’s not likely to change anytime soon, we’ll just have to adjust and enjoy our awake time together.

  • Reply John S @ Frugal Rules January 10, 2013 at 11:13 am

    What a beautiful little girl! As a parent of three, each of the points in your list resonated with me. Especially #5 & #10. I remember being a balling mess when each of ours was born. There is NOTHING else quite like it. Enjoy it all.

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 12:59 pm

      Thanks, John! I’ve experienced nothing quite like it. Too many emotions for this little brain to compute.

      Three kids sounds totally overwhelming to me right now. But I’m sure you guys handle it like pros. Every day gets easier and more enjoyable for us. Hopefully that trend continues.

  • Reply Grayson @ Debt Roundup January 10, 2013 at 11:24 am

    I am extremely happy for you. I know what you mean on all of the bullet points, since I went through it only 2 weeks ago. Our doctor came in literally right before our son was born. I don’t sleep anymore, so zombie walking has become common place. At least you have a girl, because a boy can get almost anything wet when a diaper is changed. Anything!

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:02 pm

      Haha. Zombie walking! Spot on, Grayson. I don’t even know if my sentences make sense anymore. If you see rambling zombie nonsense on the blog, I’m glad to know at least you’ll know what’s up.

      A few of our friends recently had boys and we’ve heard some really fun stories about “cold air mishaps.” We’ll count our girl blessings for now. :)

  • Reply Rob January 10, 2013 at 11:53 am

    I can relate somewhat to your labour room experience. Fortunately our doctor was present at the time of our daughter’s delivery and so was I – helping my lady with her breathing and trying not looking down at the “receiving end” of things until after our baby was born (and crying her head off !!!) :-) A very emotional experience.

    Contrast that with when a few years later our son was born, I was not allowed to be present in the delivery room – a different doctor in attendance with different procedures. It still was an emotional time as well.

    As to picking baby names – before our two kids were born, my wife and I each made up lists of boy / girl names using a baby name book. We then compared our lists to determine which names we both preferred, considering to be careful that we didn’t pick a name that the kids in future might use in teasing our child with – like Johnny Cash (in his song) being a boy named “Sue” !!! :-) If you catch my drift ….

    And, by the way – hopefully your 2013 freaking budget will have a diaper budget !!! :-)

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:07 pm

      It’s so cool to hear all the different unique delivery experiences. I can’t believe you weren’t allowed to see your own son’s birth! I’m sure that was tough. But if there’s a healthy baby and mommy at the end, none of that stuff really matters. Which is why I let our Dr. Lame-face slide.

      Haha. Smart take on naming. Love that song, too.

      We’re definitely going to be moving some numbers around to account for a diaper budget. I had no idea how fast we’d go through them.

  • Reply Newlyweds on a Budget January 10, 2013 at 12:05 pm

    so, so sweet. My heart is officially melted.

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:11 pm

      My heart’s been a mushy mess for a week. That’s not okay for a dude., right? I need to go chop down a tree or something.

  • Reply Mrs. Pop @ Planting Our Pennies January 10, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    Those are some wrinkly feet! If the rest of her is like that, her name should be Benjamin Button! Congrats again. =)

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:15 pm

      Thanks! The Benjamin Button syndrome is mostly around her feet and hands. Which means should she decide to be a hand model later in life, she’ll see her best work in her 60’s and 70’s.

  • Reply Pauline January 10, 2013 at 12:57 pm

    She is really cute, congrats again!

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:16 pm

      Thanks, Pauline!

  • Reply jrm January 10, 2013 at 1:10 pm

    Beautiful baby, congrats again! Excuse me while I eat her feet, nom nom.

    I don’t have children but have a friend who delivered his son in a scenario similar to yours. For whatever reason when it was time for the baby to come out the doc was no where to be found. The doctor still sent a bill for labor. After receiving the bill he called his doctor and said (in so many words): You must be joking if you think I’m going to pay this bill. He didn’t and nothing else came of it. So…bonus…free baby?! Or discounted baby….or something.

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:19 pm

      Thanks so much. I snack on her feet and hands regularly. She already thinks her dad’s weird.

      I didn’t even think about complaining about the bill. I think all of it will be covered by our insurance, but if not, this is fantastic advice. I’m all about free babies. Or maybe they’ll do a two babies for the price of one deal… or something. 😀

  • Reply Brad @ Mr. Write Away January 10, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    Congrats! How exciting? I just stumbled upon your blog today so perfect timing… a new start for us both. My daughter is 19 months so I can assure you one day you’ll get some rest, maybe not today or tomorrow, but one day sleep will be a part of your life again. Enjoy her and take as many pictures as possible, they grow extremely fast. Overnight fast. Literally. She’s beautiful.

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:22 pm

      Thank you for sending my sleep-deprived soul a ray of hope!! And thanks for your tips. We really do need to savor these moments. Appreciate your words of wisdom.

  • Reply Joshua January 10, 2013 at 6:23 pm

    She is beautiful! And I mean it! Most newborns look like raisins! Y’all did good!

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:24 pm

      Hahaha. Best compliment we’ve received to date. Thanks.

  • Reply Roo Ciambriello // NiceGirlNotes January 10, 2013 at 8:52 pm

    Hooray! She’s beautiful! The OFBaby. :)

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:26 pm

      Mucho thank you. Right now Our Freaking Gassy Baby would be a better name for her. But she’s cute so she gets away with it.

      • Reply Roo Ciambriello // NiceGirlNotes January 11, 2013 at 1:53 pm

        I hate unsolicited advice, so let me give you some. Bicycling her legs gently will help relieve some of that pain AAAAND so will feeding her a little bit more slowly (Mom leans backwards a little bit when feeding so Baby’s not chug-a-lugging as much).

        I’ll go now.

  • Reply Budget and the Beach January 10, 2013 at 9:04 pm

    Chipotle employees are probably the best parents EVER.- ha ha ha! So beautiful!! Congrats again!

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:28 pm

      I’m going to conduct a research study and prove my assessment right. Just you watch.

      Thanks for your kind words.

  • Reply eemusings January 11, 2013 at 2:07 am

    What a stunner :)

    What HAS freaked me out is reading the birth stories of some bloggers who had babies in 2012. Jeez. Talk about messy, awkward and humiliating. I’m now even more terrified of the thought of one day going through that process.

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:37 pm

      Don’t fret. It’s totally cool. It’s actually really comforting knowing that every single person you’ve ever met came into this life through the same process. And regardless the story, it pretty much all turns out the same.

  • Reply Weekly Personal Finance Blog RoundUp – 1/11/2013 | No Sleep Edition January 11, 2013 at 7:34 am

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  • Reply Jefferson @SeeDebtRun January 11, 2013 at 8:37 am

    wow , you two… what a beautiful little girl you made!!
    cherish every second with that little one!

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:39 pm

      Thanks, Jefferson! I credit Joanna on the beautiful part. I claim her fantastic burping abilities.

  • Reply Brian January 11, 2013 at 9:11 am

    Our experience was a little different. My wife ended up with severe pre-eclampsia so she had an emergency c-section 6 weeks early. Our little guy spent 10 days in the NICU learning to eat (we got lucky and everything else was fine and the steroids they gave the two days before the c-section really helped his lungs so he never need O2).

    We got lucky on the sleep thing and about 3 – 4 months in he started sleeping through the night (got my sleeping patterns BOOYAH). Of course we have heard that babies from the NICU seem to take schedules easier since they are pretty much forced into a sort of schedule up there.

    As others have said, there really is nothing like and it does go too fast so ENJOY it! She is an adorable little girl

    Congrats agains!

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:53 pm

      Thanks for the comment, Brian.

      So glad to hear that everything worked out great with your little dude. We had some friends recently with a similar pre-eclampsia experience at 12 weeks. He’s also doing awesome now.

      I think I will give anything to have our little girl sleeping through the night in 4-6 months. ANYTHING. I think we can manage the major sleep deprivation the first few weeks/months. But if she’s cramping our sleep style after six months, I’m blaming you. :)

  • Reply Sunny January 11, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    She’s beautiful. Congrats.

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 1:56 pm

      Thanks much, Sunny!

  • Reply Brick By Brick Investing | Marvin January 11, 2013 at 1:22 pm

    Congratulations!! She’s gorgeous! Our doctor happened to be at a conference when my wife gave birth to our doctor. Luckily we had an awesome doctor that the hospital had on call and actually liked her better than our normal doctor!

    Before we gave birth everyone and their mother was telling me to get sleep while I could. In hindsight I wish I would have listened. Those sleepless nights never really go away until about the 6-8 week period, then things start getting back to normal after a year.

    It’s an awful shock to your body at first, but I know you two will love it and wouldn’t trade it for the world.

    • Reply Johnny January 11, 2013 at 2:06 pm

      Everyone told us the SAME thing about sleep, too. I just don’t know if there’s anything that would have prepared us for it. No amount of all-nighters could have prepared us for this. You really need to live it to finally know what everyone was talking about. But you’re right—we wouldn’t trade any of it for the world.

      Thanks for your comment, Marvin.

  • Reply K.K. @ Living Debt Free Rocks! January 11, 2013 at 7:47 pm

    Gorgeous! You must feel really proud and blessed :) So did the doctor at least apologize for not being there and for letting the nurse do all the work???

    • Reply Johnny January 12, 2013 at 12:29 am

      Nope, no apology. Luckily, we had an amazing nurse, so maybe it was for the best anyway.

      We do feel very very blessed to have a healthy, happy, chubby-cheeked little gal.

  • Reply Michelle January 12, 2013 at 1:06 am

    Your daughter is so beautiful! Congratulations. Makes me excited to have a little person…after I meet someone and get married LOL!

    • Reply Joanna January 13, 2013 at 1:46 pm

      Thanks, Michelle! We are smitten with every inch of her!

  • Reply Cait January 12, 2013 at 5:50 pm

    Thanks for sharing a pic of Baby Girl! Nice to hear you’re all settling in together nicely :)

    • Reply Joanna January 13, 2013 at 2:30 pm

      Thanks, Cait! There’s a lot of adjusting going on in our house, but it’s well worth it to get to kiss on those chubby cheeks and tiny toes!

  • Reply Canadianbudgetbinder January 12, 2013 at 6:45 pm

    Congrats to the both of you, she’s precious. Cheers Mr.CBB

    • Reply Joanna January 13, 2013 at 2:32 pm

      Thanks! We are in love!

  • Reply Rachael January 14, 2013 at 6:21 am

    Gorgeous! Congratulations you guys from everyone at M&I :-)

    • Reply Joanna January 14, 2013 at 4:04 pm

      Thanks, Rachael and crew at M&I! We appreciate it.

  • Reply Shanna Johnson January 16, 2013 at 5:06 pm

    Wow…she is absolutely beautiful. Congratulations, you guys. Even though I’m still new to your site (and I LOVE it immensely), I can tell that Baby Girl has got two of the cutest, funniest, most loving parents a kid could ask for, so enjoy the ride!
    Shanna

    • Reply Johnny January 16, 2013 at 9:57 pm

      Thanks a ton for your extremely kind comment, Shanna. Your opinion might be a little off on Baby Girl’s parents, though. :) Despite my differences with you on leftovers, we can be friends again.

  • Reply Timothy Mobley January 18, 2013 at 12:49 am

    Congratulations! What a precious little angel! I just came across your blog and must say that this is the sweetest, most heard warming and funniest post I have read this week. Your baby girl is gorgeous and will bring you so much joy. As a father of two girls, I can tell you that the baby stage does really fly by. The nights are long (even more so if they are sleepless) but the months and years fly by. Also, as a few have already told you, it does get much easier with sleep. Parenting is the most awesome adventure!

    • Reply Johnny January 22, 2013 at 8:54 pm

      She’s already the light of our lives. The nights are definitely sleepless right now, but it’s great to hear perspective from another father. Thanks so much for you thoughtful words, Timothy!

  • Reply Nicole January 25, 2013 at 10:32 pm

    Hey! I’m a family medicine resident and I take complete offense to your comment about residents – I am a real doctor! Cervical exams are very tricky and subjective (you try doing one!), I have proven both nurses and attending doctors (“real” doctors) that their exams were wrong compared to mine, as well as vice versa. Unless it’s July and you have a true bunch of newbies, give the resident a break! Residents are also more attentive – I have been at about a half dozen deliveries that the attending slept through or missed the page, but I was there. So take it easy there buddy :)

    On the main note though, congrats! She is gorgeous :) I’m glad everyone is safe and healthy, and that I have found a new blog to add to my reader!

    • Reply Johnny January 26, 2013 at 12:02 am

      Haha. I’m really, really sorry! This post was written during one of my many delirious, sleep-deprived rants. And it definitely wasn’t my intent to make any generalizations about residents, merely our resident. Her bedside manner wasn’t too impressive and we just weren’t huge fans. BUT, to her credit, she was was prompt in doing the exams, unlike our doctor for the delivery. :)

      Thanks for dropping by and hope to see you around the site. I’ll be better about not putting down residents, I promise. :)

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