Dear New Mums,
First of all, I just want to say, you look amazing and you are doing the absolute best you can with your new bub.
Read that sentence again just to make sure it sinks in.
Ok, here are some other things I really wanted to tell you.
New babies sleep A LOT in the early days. Enjoy it! Breathe it in! Yes they’ll wake up for feeds often throughout the night, but they’ll spend a lot of their day sleeping. The older they get, the less they sleep.
It may seem so daunting leaving the house in the beginning, but when the baby sleeps happily in the car/capsule/pram it will be a breeze. I’m going to say it again – ENJOY IT! When they get to about 4 months they’ll scream in the car until their first birthday when you can finally turn their seats around. At around 6 months they might decide they hate the pram and shopping outings will seem impossible.
When people ask you “What can I do? What do you need?” respond with “Bring food and coffee and don’t judge my messy house.” Never be ashamed to ask for help. If you’re sinking, make sure you reach out and ask for help.
The sleep deprivation will hurt, but coffee will make it bearable and you will get through it. It will feel like your baby will never sleep through the night, and maybe at around 8 months they will. Not regularly, but you’ll get a taste of it!
A long warm shower will make everything better.
Give yourself permission to have a lazy day, watch that next episode, cuddle your baby on the couch while they sleep, leave the dishes and the washing for tomorrow. Housework can wait.
Babies can’t answer you back. They don’t have tantrums, they don’t care what colour their bottle is, they’ll let you dress them in whatever YOU want, and they won’t squirm to be put down so they can toddle off and go exploring. Enjoy them while they’re so compliant.
Do some milestone photography, you can never go back in time and get the “one month old” photo again. And a collage of all 12 looks amazing.
A common disagreement that you may have with your partner is what to dress the baby in, and how many layers they need. You don’t want them too cold because they’ll wake up, but it can be dangerous to overheat them. Get a “gro egg” or some sort of thermometer for the baby’s room (or your room depending on where they’ll sleep). Then you know exactly what to put them in for that exact temperature.
Follow the “wonder weeks” to know where your baby’s at, or for reassurance that their ‘fussy’ behaviour is normal. In my experience, my baby’s whole life was a wonder week and he just has a few good days here and there – so take it with a pinch of salt. That goes for all the “expert” baby advice. Read all the books and blogs, but at the end of the day do what your mummy instinct is telling you – as long as your baby is fed, clothed, warm, safe and loved. Just go with the flow. Every baby is different.
Embrace Facebook “mothers groups”. If you’re lucky you’ll find some wonderful friends who are going through the same things you are.
New mums, please be kind to yourself. You’re doing the best you can.
Love from me.
Mother of Two.
This article is written purely based on the author’s personal experiences.