the first of many

It would be easy for me to just post about happy mommy times on this blog since so much of my new life is full of smiles and love. But I've always tried to be honest here, sharing both the good and bad even when I'm embarrassed to admit my imperfections. Friday we had one of the bad times and it would be odd if I didn't talk about it here, so here it goes.

I made my first bad mommy mistake which resulted in our first accident and therefore my first bout of mommy guilt. It's still painful for me to think about but I'm definitely handling it much better now, a day later, than I was yesterday when it happened.

My mom made Nate and I lunch and we were going to eat outside on the patio, so after nursing Truman I put him down in our Maclaren rocker chair to carry him down the stairs. It has a little bar over top of it with toys on it and it's always seemed very sturdy so I've been using it like a handle to carry the chair. I had a fleeting thought as I carried it down the stairs, worried that maybe the bar wouldn't hold so I was holding it with one hand the the other was holding the top of the seat for added security. As I got to the landing between flights of stairs my concerns were validated and the bar broke free from the carrier and it began to drop away from me as I still held onto the top of the seat. It all happened really fast but I know I screamed when I saw the seat hit the landing and tip Truman out of the seat. I know we had a guardian angel with us at that moment because somehow Truman fell out and remained on the landing instead of rolling all the way down the rest of the stairs, and since the whole carrier fell out of my hand he didn't free fall from my waist but instead tipped out of the entire seat onto his little forehead. I remember yelling something like, 'Are you okay?' over and over as I scooped him up and ran outside to Nate. He cried for a total of a minute or so then drifted back to sleep but already had a small bump on his forehead which of course made me absolutely sick to my stomach.

I had to sit down because I was shaking so hard and after a few minutes of inspecting him and freaking out to Nate I just lost it and started to sob. I cannot put into words how awful I felt. How could I be so stupid when I was worried the handle wouldn't hold in the first place? What kind of mother makes a mistake like that? What if my baby has a concussion now because of my idiotic decision? Deep down I knew Truman was probably okay but my brain kept replaying the scene over and over again and imagining how much worse it could have been.

It could have been so much worse, you guys. I can't even let myself think about that right now or I might get sick.

Nate tried to calm me down saying Truman was obviously fine, that everyone makes mistakes, and now we just won't carry any seat around by the overhead bars except for our car seat. I told him I felt like the worst mom in the entire world and cried some more. My mom came out to comfort me, too, but even with my two biggest supporters giving me words of encouragement I couldn't stop beating myself up over it. My precious baby boy depends on me to protect him and care for him and I just let him nearly fall down the stairs at 4 weeks old. I feel like I've failed him as a mom right now.

I called the doctor's office and did my best to remain calm on the phone but even the nurse could tell how upset I was. She informed me that they get tons of calls each day about babies hitting their heads and it almost always turns out just fine. She gave me warning signs to watch for and said it sounded like he was okay since he cried and then calmed down and wasn't acting out of the ordinary afterward. Basically she just wanted us to watch him for any of the symptoms of a head injury and just breathe, since I was having difficulty with that task at the moment.

Truman did just fine the rest of the day and his little bruised head looked a lot better than I did. He probably doesn't even remember it but I know I will never forget how devastating my first experience with mommy guilt was for me. I realize that Truman will have many more accidents in his life, he's probably going to get hurt and it's always going to break my heart; I'm going to make more mistakes throughout my life as a mom, too. I know Truman is one tough little dude and he doesn't hate me for my mess up. But now I completely understand how gut wrenching it is for moms and dads to see their children get hurt. It totally sucks and I hope we don't have to go through anything like that again for a very long time.

I tell you this story because I feel like I need to be honest on this blog, but also because I'm sure other mommies out there have made mistakes that caused their babies pain, too. I know it's a part of life but I doubt it gets any easier with time.

Nate's way of making me feel better is by joking around about it. You know how boys can be, they get over things pretty quickly so saying things like, 'Now we can tell Truman that his mom did, in fact, drop him on his head when he was a baby,' seems like a good thing to say. But I informed him that I'm not quite ready to make light of the situation just yet but maybe in a few more days I'll muster up a chuckle for him.

Once I started to feel a little better we decided to put this adorable onesie on Truman for some pictures. My mom and I made him two tie onesies and this is the first one, inspired by Etsy of course. You can see his little bruise over his right eyebrow in some of the pics and I resisted the temptation to Photoshop it out just so I don't have to look at it. But I didn't and actually it looks even better today. Please note how insanely adorable my baby boy is in these pictures:)




And then we decided that both of our boys needed some pictures together:

I love that Truman is glaring at Henry here:

Henry gets really excited when T is down on his level:

The boys:)

A formal shake for an introduction:

A sneaky lick by Henry:

And a giddy little Truman in response:

I love this little peanut and just want to kiss his goose egg all day long:


And eat up those little toes:

And squeeze that little tushy:


Yep, he's still pretty much perfect and tough as can be:)

I guess my mistake can teach us all to follow our instincts and it definitely makes me thank God that Truman came out unscathed, aside from a tiny bruise. I hope my confidence heals as quickly as he has!

As an aside, my Mom flew back to Missouri today so that makes me a little more emotional than normal also. But we had SO much fun with her here and can't wait to plan another visit very soon. Hopefully next time will only be full of happy times and no tears from me (granted, Truman might shed a few tears each day just because it's a baby thing to do and all the cool kids are doing it---but I hope none of them are because of me next time!)


  1. Julia-I know EXACTLY how you feel, hun. I had a similar experieance with Ella but it involved her falling off the bed. We were in Florida and playing in the hotel room. She keep crawling around on the bed, which was really high off the ground, and I kept telling her to be careful (she was 14 months old so understood what that meant) as my biggest fear was her falling off the bed. Well she started crawling really fast and slid on the comforter and fell right off the bed on her head. I screamed at the top of my lungs and went over to comfort her. I tired to keep her still in case she had hurt her neck but of course she wanted me to pick her up and hug her. So I did, called my Grandma in their room and cried liked crazy. We kept her awake for 2 hours just to make sure she was ok, which she was, and then she took a nice nap and was fine. It was the scariest thing ever as Ken wasn't with me and I felt like the worse mother in the world. But she survived and I did too.

    Truman will be fine and you are not a bad mom. :) Kisses!

  2. Truman and Henry are the cutest! Love the pictures!

  3. You're going to get tons of stories from other moms on this post - but rest assured, you are not alone, and you are an awesome mom!

    2 weeks ago, I locked my keys in my car, while it was running, with my baby in the car. I guess it's a little different because I knew she was SAFE, but still - those 20 minutes waiting for AAA to come unlock my car were the longest minutes of my life, and I felt SO stupid! I was actually at the hospital for my Mom & Baby group (they have valet, which is why the car was running), so I felt even MORE idiotic because tons of people were around too. Ugh!!

  4. This story doesn't make me see mommy guilt. Instead, I see a mommy with great intuition! Look how you had a hunch a second before that bar broke...and look and how you saved Truman from a worse fall.

    Don't be too hard on yourself. You're right...this will probably be the first of many. To this day my mom says something happened when I was really little that she majorly regrets. Here I am at the age of 28 and she won't relive it to tell me...and I seemed to turn out okay :)

    You're a good momma...don't forget that :)

  5. things like this are going to happen, it is true. Be happy though that Truman won't remember it and be able to bring it up to you everyday!

    When I was 4, my mom hit me with a cast-iron skillet across my temple. Yes it was totally on accident, but whenever I am feeling spiteful, I remind her that she hit me in the head (I have a scar to prove it) and all I wanted was my Popsicle broken in half. Talk about mommy guilt, hehe and I still use it 30-odd years later.

  6. Oh my gosh -- I think my heart stopped, reading that! I can't even imagine how terrified you must have been. But it sounds like you did a great job saving him from a worse fall, and he looks perfectly fine! And who knows, maybe what you learned from this experience will keep something worse from happening down the road -- you'll probably never know, but it might have actually been a good thing (horrible as that sounds right now!).

  7. Hi, Julia (long-time blog stalker here). I'm currently pregnant so I find your blog SO helpful (especially all the cloth diapering stuff). Anyway, I had tears in my eyes as I read your post because I have some of the same concerns about being a new mom (and the pregnancy hormones are in high gear). You are perfectly normal, and Truman is perfectly fine! Oh,and P.S. I'm from Jeff City, too! I was all giddy when I read that you were from there on your blog somewhere!

  8. Oh, I know how scary that had to be.

    mommy guilt is by far the hardest but you should try not to feel guilty bc your intuition kicks ass :)

    give him lots of snuggles :)

    and if it makes you feel better, blake dropped brady a month or so ago. Not far, and he freaked out and felt awful, and i suprisingly just laughed because he did it and i didn't. lol. I have this unhealhty fear of dropping him. :)

  9. julia, i'm really sorry you had to go through that experience...just like a lot of other people have said on here, you are definitely not the only mom something like that has happened to. when isabela was 7 months she fell off the bed at my friend's house and fell head first onto a hardwood floor!!!! i nearly died in that moment!! i felt like the worst mother in the world and unfortunately that feeling will never go away for as long as i live because i will for always have that memory etched in my brain...i know i am a good mother (or at least i hope i am) but it's hard not to feel guilty even over a year after it happened. we just have to learn from our mistakes and move on. i hope you feel better soon!

  10. how scary! i'm so sorry you had to go through that. don't beat yourself up.

    the same thing happened to me, except hudson wasn't in the seat. i always thought the toy bar was a handle until i picked up the seat (ours isn't a rocker) but the "handle" and the "handle" popped off-- revealing itself as just a toy bar and not a handle at all. pretty sure they need to make an actual handle on those things!

    and.... when hudson was 3 months old or so i laid him down on the huge ottoman in our living room and ran to make him a bottle. stupid. i heard screaming about a minute later and ran in there and he was on the floor. i missed him rolling over for the first time. and he rolled right off the ottoman. didn't put that on my blog. you're MUCH braver than i am. i'm so over the "don't do this to hudson" comments. haha.

    anyway.... we all have stories about dropping the baby or letting the baby roll off the bed or the ottoman. you're a great mommy and truman is lucky to have you!


  11. As you can see, every mom has a similar story of "If only" ~ and yet our little ones seem to survive our learning curves. Hugs!!

    Great pictures, I'm so impressed he already has the neck control to sit up in a Bumbo seat so well.

  12. Oh, I'm so sorry! I know it's probably easier said than done, but try not to beat yourself up too much over it. These things happen and you're still and infinitely better mom than so many people out there. Truman is luck to have you and Nate.

    He is absolutely adorable! And, I, of course, love the pictures of him with Henry!

  13. Julia- you are a GREAT mom!!!! Every kid gets their first "bump" least you were right there to help and comfort Truman when he got his!!!

    And, if it makes you feel better, I was dropped pretty much the SECOND I came home from the hospital, and I was (and AM) A-OK!!! It happens to EVERYONE!!!

  14. Julia, thanks for sharing your story. There are lots of new mommies out there who can benefit from your words of wisdom - myself included! You are a great mom and accidents happen. You are definitely not the only one who has ever experienced an accident, but because of your willingness to share your story, perhaps another mom will not have the same accident.

  15. Awww I've heard that this is completely normal - that guilt. My one friend came into work crying one day and I thought something was seriously wrong. She told me that that morning, her son had gone to grab onto something that he shouldn't because it could tip, so she turned and said his name and "no!" - but it came out as a yell. He immediately started crying and she said she felt like the worst mom ever. I guess all moms go through this guilt!

    So glad little guy is a-okay!

  16. Glad T is fine. You're a mommy but your're human. I think something like this happens to all parents at one time or another. Thanks for sharing.

  17. Julia I completely choked up telling Tony about this. Please do know that it is the first of many and that although you would like nothing more than to never experience the heart wrench it will happen again. It's amazing how much we learn about our parents after WE become parents.

    I'm so glad that Truman is okay. You did everything you could! He's just a cool dude sporting a bruise. :)

  18. Julia, you handled the situation well. You are not a bad mommy. Truman is lucky to have you. :)

  19. Babies, as I think you'll find out, are quite resilient creatures.

    : )
    Hang in there! You're doing great!!


  20. Oh Julia, I just want to reach through the screen and hug you. That mommy guilt is STRONG, no? It has the power to take away all your confidence especially when you think you're doing great and BAM, your infant gets his first "boo boo."

    When Landon was two months old I left him setting on the sofa while I reached up to get something and apparently he was much more mobile then I realized. I heard a loud thud and realized he had fallen onto the hardwood floors! {Insert horrible mother of the year award here}. He cried for all of two minutes and I cried for hours. In fact, I think I remember calling my husband and bawling for him to come home ... that I just "ruined" our perfect baby boy, lol.

    I think the reason why it's so hard is that when they're infants they are so very helpless. They are looking to their parents for protection from, well, everything! And when something happens that is our fault we feel as if we have failed him.

    My son is 20-months-old now and has actually (gasped) had skinned knees! It is still so hard to see them fall even when they are more independent but the anxiety, worry and mommy guilt lessens up a bit when you realize they are going to inflict injury upon themselves. Thank goodness it won't always be our fault.

    And he is now old enough to say "boo boo" and come get a kiss from mama on said "boo boo," which I actually adore providing!

    You're doing great, hon. You're not a terrible mama. This is proven in how hard you're taking Truman's first spill ;)

  21. Yes...along with everyone else I have a couple of embarrassing "Not Mom of the Year" award nominations due to a stupid mistake I made. We all survive but those are the HARDEST times as a parent so I feel your pain. Like someone else least you have good instincts and learn from this one. Parenting is such a non stop learning experience. He still looks adorable as the pictures!

  22. Awww, Julia, thanks for being honest, and those accidents do happen all the time. My aunt and uncle once set their infant in a car seat on a kitchen table and it came crashing down. Just thinking about that kind of fall makes me shiver. They had a trip to the ER and a CAT scan done and he was just fine. The docs said that babies are actually ridiculously durable and their bones and bodies can heal much more easily than an adult's. Just think about how banged up they get during delivery and that is still considered normal. Yes, your baby boy is adorable in those photos and you are looking great as well!!

  23. I'm late to this but hey, you're only human. We all make mistakes. I'm very glad to hear that T-man was ok!!!

  24. Sorry for the upsetting event.

    Will it make you feel any better to hear that my dad dropped my older brother STRAIGHT onto his head onto the asphalt parking lot when he was a toddler...and now my brother is getting his PhD in plasma physics from an Ivy League school?

    My dad even jokes that this is because he knocked some sense INTO my brother. :)

    Hope you feel better soon.


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