If you would have told me then, that only a short THREE weeks after I posted my last blog post I would be holding my baby in my arms, I think I would have melted with anxiety on the spot.
Because I value the birth story information that the big ol’ interwebs has to offer to first time mama’s-to-be, I will shamelessly be posting my labor and delivery experience soon in a different post, but in the meantime… just a few things I have learned over the past 140 days of motherhood…
- I have fed our baby over 1,200 times with. my body. since the hour he was born. It takes about 30 minutes each time… which has been the total equivalent of 36,000 minutes, 600 hours, or TWENTY FIVE FULL DAYS …however you choose to process that information best. Basically, growing a human inside, and outside the womb, is impressive, amazing, and commendable – so CONGRATULATIONS to all mama’s out there.
- Nothing is comparable or the same to anyone else. Your body is different. Your baby is different. Your marriage is different. Your house is different. And Lord knows.. your (my) extended family is definitely different.
- Time goes so fast! Everyone says it, and they do because it is true. It’s like BOOM – it’s almost July and I just had Christmas. I need to be planning Christmas events again, and I am in complete shock from this.
- Pack. Extra. Clothes. For both yourself and baby. Trust me.
- Do NOT put off for tomorrow what can be done RIGHT NOW! Don’t! If baby is sleeping and you need to start making supper- Be like Nike and JUST DO IT.
- People remember and speak most about the negative things. Breastfeeding is hard. But it is not terrible and is manageable. Which brings me to:
- Ask for and accept all help.
- (Side note: If you can’t breastfeed YOU ARE NOT A FAILURE and are still an amazing mama! Find and befriend the lactation consultant in your area, and get all the advice you can, but if feeding your baby formula is going to take that elephant of stress off of your shoulders – A FED BABY IS THE BEST BABY. My little guy had to have formula for the first time last week (while at his first week of childcare during my work day, while I pump my stock milk supply back up..) and I was entirely way too stressed out over it for some weird reason. He didn’t notice a difference whatsoever from breastmilk to formula – much to my secret annoyance and disappointment. Also – Pumping is annoying, whatever the lady-term for emasculating is, and super hard to figure out where it fits into your day.. but you’ll figure it out. Ask for help and advice!)
- Walk away when your husband starts to help. Let him figure it out on his own and don’t micromanage. Husbands are tender things and they need their pride – which involves their wives not making them feel like a kindergartener who has been given a special duty for the day.
- Multi-use items are the bomb.
- Don’t over buy, and don’t buy everything new. They have been manufacturing childcare items literally for centuries. Stuff is out there for second-hand purchase, and so much will be given to you by those sifting through dusty store-rooms of their treasured and long-past baby-raising years.
- WRITE THANK YOU CARDS. So you can sleep at night and face charitable friends and family when you meet them again.
- People who give diapers and baby wipes at baby showers are SAINTS. Do not look at these presents with contempt and thoughts of lacking originality – they will SAVE YOUR LIFE ONE DAY. And you will truly use them!
- Schedules and needs literally change day to day. Roll with the flow and figure it out as time goes on. There is no normal.
- Do what you gotta do to maintain your sanity and life! Do you need to order pizza because it is 9:00pm, you finally finished feeding the hungry monster called a baby, and you haven’t eaten all day?? DO IT. Do you work best by using an app to keep track of your grocery shopping list, or are you a wander-the-aisles-and-figure-it-out kinda person? Doesn’t matter – Just survive! Do you need a few hours to yourself to soak in the tub, catch up on the ever scrollable facebook feed while drinking a few glasses of wine and (finally) shave your legs, and then update your deprived blog website?? Hahaha…. Guilty. :)
Are you a mama? What advice do you have??