Are you a new mom? I’ve been there…twice. In my last 5+ years as a mother, I’ve learned a lot, and decided it’s time I share some tips (10 to be exact) with the new moms out there who have now idea what the hell they’re getting themselves into! These are things I WISH I knew ladies, so pay attention, take notes, and share these tips with your other mama friends (sharing buttons at the bottom. haha).
#1. Sleep is a luxury, not a right
I never knew how much I would miss sleep until I had my first child. I can’t believe I actually took it for granted! The sweet shut-eye I once abused was they very thing I relished when my little one came along. Thank goodness for coffee or would have been toast! (I actually can’t believe how much I actually say that about most things. lol)
#2. You will need cabbage, lots of cabbage
But what for? Your boobs! When you first get your milk in those puppies will feel like two overripe watermelons. Sore, red, bulging and painful. The way around it–a shit ton of cold cabbage leaves. A certain chemical in the cold cabbage leaves aids in the reduction of swelling. But be careful, this can also lessen milk supply, and should only be used when you’re literally exploding (i.e. milk could shoot out at a moment’s notice.), and you need to reduce your milk supply fast to prevent a volcanic eruption.
#3. Get a good pump…seriously don’t skip this step
If you are going to go for a pump, make it a good one. This is especially true if you’re going to go back to work shortly and will need to pump a lot. I’ve had a shitty pump and I’ve had a good one. The difference is night and day. If you plan on being by your babe all day and using it infrequently then you might be able to pass with a half-ass one, but if you can land a good one…go for it! If you’re returning to work in any capacity, then make sure you equip yourself with a top of the line pump.
#4. You don’t need all the extra stuff
With both my boys I thought I needed a swing, a bouncer, an activity mat, a walking stroller, a running stroller, sun shields for the car windows, special nipples for the bottles, fancy bottle cleaners, fancy bottle soap, a changing table, a nursing chair, tons of toys, a…
As you can see the list could go on, and on, and on. Truth is, I didn’t need half that stuff when it came down to it. Heck, I didn’t need a quarter of that stuff. In fact, one time I had the option of using a changing table at a friend’s house or the floor–I chose the floor. lol
#5. You’re doing the best you can
At times it may feel like you’re doing a shitty job, but your not. You’re actually learning and growing and getting better every.single.day. You have to realize (and remember) that nothing is perfect the first, second, third, or maybe even 20th time. It all takes time, patience, practice, and coffee (of course you can’t forget coffee). The important part is your trying. You will get it. Keep at it. 🙂
#6. Breastfeeding is a personal choice
“You really should breastfeed.” “You really shouldn’t breastfeed.” Both statements I’ve heard, and both I’ve had to ignore. Why? Because it’s my decision, not someone else’s. In the end, you can’t let someone else influence your decision. You have to do what is best for you and your baby. In my case, I chose to breastfeed. In your case, it may not work. Bottom line, it’s no one’s decision but your own. Case closed haters.
#7. Listen to others, but trust your judgment
I really do believe that parents and grandparents have a lot of valuable wisdom to share. However, this doesn’t give them license to take your parental card hostage. I think it’s great to listen and learn from those who’ve taken the journey before you, but I’ve also had to realize that their journey is different than mine (and your’s) and that it’s OK to pick and choose what I agree with. Let’s face it, things have changed from 20+ years ago and therefore there’s rarely a cookie cutter response to most situations. Take advice or leave advice, but always trust your instincts.
#8. It’s hard but worth it
Damn is it ever. Being a parent is tough. Not only can it be physically draining, but mentally draining as well. Long nights=sleep deprivation. Sleep deprevation=crazy lady. (You can begin to notice a pattern.) But let me tell you what…it’s SO worth it. Those little cuties become your world, and every sleepless night is worth it. Just watching them sleep still gives me a peace in my heart I can’t describe. I love my kids and true love is forever, no matter the circumstance.
#9. Sorry, your house won’t stay clean
Just give up now. I mean still try to keep the place presentable, but don’t strain yourself if it gets out of control from time to time. I use to trail around the house like a crazy ass trying to pick up after my three little ones (one of those kids was my husband), but one day I hit a wall (not a literal wall, but almost. lol). I realized I could drop the act of a perfect home because I had a “get out of jail free card” of sorts. As a mom and parent, people realize your home isn’t going to look like a model home from My Fair Cottage. In fact, I’ve found that people are way more relaxed in my loosely clean home these days. Why? Because there’s is the same! haha. J/k. No, because they can unwind and not worry about being a little messy (kinda like my kids…wait are we all kids inside?).
#10. Be easy on yourself
So you might not be able to see your legs when you shave for a few months (or years, no one is judging). The extra skin and bloating from carrying a baby tends to have that effect. What’s important to remember is it won’t be that way forever. After having a baby, your body is working to flush out all the “extra stuff” from childbirth. Sure you may have some fat left over, but it too will come off with time and dedication to a clean diet and workout routine. Plus eating clean is in your baby’s benefit, especially if you’re breastfeeding. ❤
To all you moms, both new and experienced, you’re doing great! Know a mom who could use this article? Share this post with your mama tribe! It’s what inspires me to keep creating unique content.