Being a first time mum is a whole new life. It requires a part of your life and your absolute commitment. Dear wife, get ready to have your privacy invaded by your new baby boss. Your wild days are over, at least temporarily.
Although you can’t be a hundred percent prepared and ready for the mum life, but going through articles like this will sure help provide foresight as to what your experience would be like, how you can prepare for it and handle it when the time comes.
Firstly, congratulations on carrying your pregnancy to term. You are strong, you are beautiful and energetic. You have really done well. But then, caring for your baby is where the bulk of the work lies. Before now, you must have heard diverse advice on how to care for your baby, breastfeeding, diapering, combining child care with work, business, academics, house chores, family time and the likes, this is just to add to the several articles you’ve read on child care.
1. Having your new life on schedule will help you and save you from some sort of stress. Your baby’s nap time, feeding time, time for yourself, work or chores, ensure you have them on a schedule. Even if you don’t end up following your schedule sometimes, It will help you figure out what you want to do and when. It will be a lot easier that way and also help add structure to your new life.
2. As much as you have your day all planned out, note that bad days are inevitable. You won’t always do all the things you plan on doing. Sometimes, somethings might go wrong. Your house could be a mess, your baby could be cranky all day and you might get all worked up and tired at some point. But note that you are not a bad mum. You are a good mum that is having a bad day. Just walk past that day knowing the day ahead is going to be better.
3. Breastfeeding will feel like the most time consuming thing you ever do, but it will be the wisest thing you do for your baby and yourself. Asides being physically draining, breastfeeding can be draining emotionally too. Just count it as one of your medals for being a mum to a pretty little creature. You won’t breastfeed forever remember? So enjoy this feeling of love and motherhood with excitement.
4. After childbirth, you transit to the Postpartum recovery stage. At this point, you don’t have to be too hard on yourself or pressure yourself. You nursed an human being for nine months in your belly, so it is okay if your belly is a little saggy or squishy. The one you should channel your energy to is your baby. Love your body and be patient with it. With time, it will come back to its previous state or even better.
5. It is expedient that you also pay attention to yourself. Postpartum depression is real and you don’t want to be a victim. So watch over yourself also. As much as you try to make your baby look good, make yourself look good too. Dress well, brush your hair, feed well, don’t beat yourself up if you delight so much in nap times, you need it. You could watch the TV as you cut down your baby nails, listen to music alongside your baby’s shower time or feeding time, nap while your baby is napping and engage in other fun stuff too. But note that at this time of your life, your social media time/engagement will reduce because you need to spend more time with your baby.
6. If you are more of the career woman, you might want to get a help. Don’t be ashamed to ask for help when you need it. Even as a stay home mum, asking for help is not a criminal offense. You have loads of laundry to do, care giving, fixing your own life, family time and chores. You are also trying to get your life back by engaging in your hobbies/stuff you love doing. These can be daunting. However, asking a friend or family member to come over for the weekend so you could eat without having your baby in your arms is advisable and if you can, hire a nanny.
7. As the day goes by, you will find yourself staring at your baby. Not to worry, it is normal. Take all the love in and show it as much as you can and want to.
8. There is a thing called the “mum’s brain”. It makes you forget things very quickly than usual. So to save yourself the stress of racking your brain in what’s next or when what happened, always write things down. Write down memories of your baby that you’d like to remember, first walk, first crawl, first talk and the likes of sweet childhood memories you’d want to look back on and be glad.
9. Your life will change but for the better. You will become protective. This part of you will come naturally because you will always want to protect your child from harm or people you perceive as harmful. But be careful that you don’t become paranoid.
10. Dear first time mum, as much as you feel tired and deprived from your own personal time and leisure, you should not expose your baby to TV time. It is bad for your child’s development. Patiently wait till they get to the stage of being exposed to TV time.