“He’s like a Christmas present that I get to open every morning,” says Molly Sims of her one-and-a-half-year-old son Brooks.
Lest you get the wrong idea, she also referred to him as a “nipple vampire” minutes earlier. Before Sims returned to work – filming episodes of The Carrie Diaries and as a guest star on TBS’ Men At Work, penning a “girl’s guide to everything” called The Everyday Supermodel for HarperCollins, designing maternity apparel (Molly Sims’ Stork & Babe in collaboration with Thyme Maternity), and updating mollysims.com (which is more magazine than blog) daily – she was tackling a far more challenging undertaking. Her hungry infant happened to be born with a tooth (!) making nursing excruciatingly frustrating. Smartly, Sims sought help for that issue – and for almost every parenting challenge since then. The result: an enviably supportive network, and one that’s open for us non-supermodels to tap in to, too. “The more I learn about parenting, the more I think you need a village around you.” A village, and a hefty supply of Medela Hydrogel nipple pads. “The ones you can put in the fridge – I loved those.”
I take Babies First Class and Jackie gives handouts and guidelines to follow. Sleep training, toilet training, solid foods and allergies… But also the developmental stuff. I know it’s work and that you have to be the disciplinarian, but you can take those boundaries and redirect them into fun. As Jackie would say, listen: You can say hi to your baby or you can say HIII-EEE!!!
I tell all my pregnant girlfriends, get involved with your community. Ask around and find the best mommy and me class. I have one that’s more social and one that I really learn from. (Cricket’s note: Red Tricycle has a directory for many cities.)
When everyone seems to be talking about something, it’s usually for a good reason. Like, Bringing up Bebe – it’s worth it. Or the Macaroni & Cheese series, which I love.
When it comes to nursing, some of us are cows and some of us are goats; I was a goat — there’s milk, but only a little. I loved my lactation consultant Linda Hanna. Yes, she taught me tricks, but I love her because she made me feel good about myself. Definitely work with someone because the latching on is the hardest part.
Jill Spivack at Sleepy Planet helped me to sleep train my baby. The Seedlings Group offers support for sleep and lots of other parenting needs. (Cricket’s note: They offer phone consultations, too.)
Find somewhere with ambience between 5 and 7pm and one that’s loud. For us it was Terroni’s. Sure, he wants to get out of the high chair 20 mins into dinner, but I come prepared. My diaper bags weighs 20 lbs, 15 pounds are cars. And crayons.
My single girlfriends would make me laugh during the first year. I was like, “we had bilirubin,” and they’re like, is that an Indian dish? I told them my nipples look like they belong on a different animal. We all laugh about this stuff.