Before Elle and Joel were born I did so much research. I read up on what I should eat while pregnant, how to properly breastfeed and how to get my babies to sleep. I took classes at the hospital to teach me the proper breathing techniques for a vaginal delivery and I asked my mom and the other moms in my family for advice. And I got a lot of advice. Lots of moms telling me to do things, not do things, what worked for them, and what didn’t work for them. Some of it was helpful, and some of it was not. But I had the information and that was the best way I could prepare myself.
Would I consider myself a parenting expert? Absolutely. Seriously, I am… not, but when you have two children you learn a lot and you feel like you are, at least with your kids you are. If you are a new mom looking for advice I have a few tips for you to get through those first few months as a new mom.
Don’t obsess about germs
The last thing in the world you want to happen to your perfectly brand new baby girl or boy is for them to get sick, but sanitizing your hands every time you touch a door handle is a little excessive. Keep your baby away from sick people and try to relax a little. I have a funny memory of the first time my family came over to see Joel after I came home from the hospital. I insisted that everyone wash their hands thoroughly with soap and water. My dad couldn’t stop laughing. He kept saying, “But I’m the grandpa”. To that I replied, “And you have germs, now wash up so you can hold your grandson.” When you’re stressing out about germs and what not just remember that if your baby stays inside all day every day and is never exposed to germs, their immune system won’t build up and they will end up getting sick more. So be smart, but don’t get obsessive and hand them a Huggies wipe to clean off the germs.
Tell everyone to bring you diapers in the next size
I’m sure you most likely received a ton of diapers during your baby shower. I’d be willing to bet most of those diapers were size NB or size 1. You’d be surprised how fast you go through them and you probably never considered how fast your baby would grow out of those sizes either.
Your baby is going to pee and poop about 6-8 times a day. In a week, that’s about 42 -56 diapers. You’ll be going through those packs a Huggies faster than you can do the laundry. Within the first week or two, my babies had grown right out of the NB diapers. By month 3 (or was it month 2?) They were busting out of a size 1. I was completely done with all the diapers I got from my baby shower and I had to get the Huggies on my own. Thank goodness for coupons! In fact here’s a coupon from Family Dollar on Huggies pampers and on Huggies wipes – What can I say except you’re welcome? *If your kids make you watch Moana 2x a day, then you totally just sang that line.*
To make sure you’re always stocked up on Huggies never let your family come over empty handed. Ask them to stop by Family Dollar and grab a pack of the Huggies Snug & Dry diapers and a pack of wipes to accompany the diapers. My family would always ask me if I needed anything before they came over and after saying “no I’m good” every time after I had Joel, I learned that this is the worst thing you could say. Lesson learned and I did things really differently with Elle. If she was on a size 1 diaper, I asked for a pack of size 2s! This way I would stay stocked up.
Being the good God mommy that I am I often get her toys, clothes and of course Huggies diapers which now come with increased absorbency and the Huggies One & Done Refreshing wipes.
The new packaging on the wipes ensure only one wipe comes out a time so there’s no waste and no drying out!
I saved $2.50 on Huggies Snug & Dry diapers and Huggies One & Done Refreshing wipes with the Family Dollar Smart coupon!
Ask for help if you need it
While we’re on the subject of telling people when you need diapers, it’s imperative that diapers not be the only things you ask for. If you feel overwhelmed by staying home all day with your tiny little baby, ask for help! Your husband is a great person to start with and I’m going to let you in on something you may have already figured out – If you don’t tell your husband what you need him to do… Im sure you can finish the rest.
Don’t be shy to ask for a friend or family member to come visit and help out. If gramma is around, she will be over there faster than your contractions girl! If you need someone to come over for a bit so you can pee, shower or SLEEP then ask! It’s totally okay to need some help. You are new at this motherhood thing, and it isn’t something that people are pros at overnight.
Find a hobby outside of mothering
I love being a mom and as incredible as motherhood is if you don’t have a hobby then you are going to get burned out pretty fast. Blogging is my thing that I love to do and I’ve been blessed to have this be my job because it also doubled as my outlet. I also love painting my nails, reading, photography, running and cooking. I can’t tell you how helpful it is to have a hobby or job or something else that you love to do. It’s good for your sanity to have something that is “your thing” and I strongly suggest figuring out what that is for the safety of everyone around you.
Sleep when your baby sleeps
Your baby is going to be the most adorable, beautiful, perfect little person in the whole world but she is going to need so much from you requiring all your time, attention and energy. Naturally, you are going to want to do all the things around the house while she sleeps. DON’T. DO NOT. ABSOLUTELY UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES SHOULD YOU.
When that precious little baby closes her eyes for a nap that is also your cue to close your eyes. I’m sure I’m not the first person who has told you this either. And it’s very likely that you won’t take heed to this information until baby number two comes along but you can’t say we didn’t warn you. If you absolutely must clean the house remember this, newborns don’t move, so you can wash the dishes and do the laundry and vaccum or mop while they are awake. This is the best time to do all of that stuff. But when those eyes close mom, yours should too.
Your husband will love you even if the house is a mess and dinner isn’t ready
There is no day when you have a newborn that you will get everything done that you wanted to. Every day with a newborn feels like it lasts forever and when your husband finally comes home, your house might look like an atomic bomb went off with laundry everywhere. On those days, you might have to order a pizza or our favorite – Chinese. And guess what? That really is no big deal. You are a mom. You are doing a super hard job, and you are killing it too! And your husband knows that. So if you have a day where you don’t get everything done on your to-do list, it’s okay. Your husband is still going to love you.
You aren’t a bad mom
You are a good mom having a bad day. Sometimes we can’t stop yelling. Sometimes we’re too tired be a mommy and we let our kids watch TV and eat snacks. That’s okay! Not every day is going to be filled with playgrounds and educational activities and building things out of blocks. Bad days happen, even to moms, and it’s important not to get hung up when they do. Just get through the day, and start the next one off better. You want what is best for your children, and that makes you a good mom, even if you have a hard day.
Pay attention to yourself
Be aware that postpartum depression happens to a lot of people. If you don’t enjoy doing things, if you aren’t as happy as you thought you would be with your new baby, if you don’t feel like talking to people, or you feel down for longer than two weeks, step outside your situation and realize what is happening. Get help before it gets worse. It’s nothing to be ashamed of, and more people suffer from postpartum depression than you know. So pay attention to yourself, and if you think you might be struggling with PPD, get help.
Ready to toast the fact that you’re an awesome mom? Plan ahead: It takes about two to three hours for one serving of beer or wine to pass through your system. Just enough time before she’s ready to nurse again.