Wow! What a whirlwind, I can’t say I was at all prepared for motherhood despite reading the books, googling all the questions, getting the advice from friends and even Pinteresting the Life Hacks that would make me into a super Mom.
This is what I’ve learnt about being a mom:
- Don’t take yourself so seriously. After coming home from the hospital your whole world is tipped upside down and that’s okay. Enjoy the chaos and the moments of peace that come with it. There is no perfect mom, but you are the perfect mom to your little baby and that at the end of the day is all that matters. Never measure yourself against all the picture perfect Instagram moms you see. You are doing a great job, you did, after all, grow a little human!
- Trust your gut. Always take a minute to assess any situation but always go with your gut. I know this is so cliché but it comes naturally, always trust your instinct.
- When in doubt, phone your mom. Yes, I know I said trust your gut but if all else fails, speak to your mom, aunt or grandmother. So many times as a first time mom I would be on the phone in a flat panic with questions like ‘is it supposed to be that colour?’ or ‘how long do I sterilize the bottles?’ and with one simple phone call everything would be right in the world again. Bottom line is, use the support around you.
- Get all the advice, but do things your way. This happens when you are pregnant and it only gets worse when you have the baby. Everyone has their own story (mostly horror stories in my case) and advice that they feel is necessary to pass on. Sometimes we listen to be polite other times it’s actually useful. But I say listen to it all and do things the way you feel it should be done.
- They are tougher then you think, this is my favourite. I am by no means saying you shouldn’t take care when handling your baby. I am saying that they are hardy little creatures! Don’t be scared of your baby, I think this paragraph more applies to the husbands in many cases, but seriously enjoy them because it really goes by so fast.
- Let them be. Don’t faff over your babies, let them play. At some stage in the first year of their lives, everything will go into their mouths and that’s okay. I will never forget when my little one started crawling, she ate cat food pellets and I nearly had a heart attack. I look back now and think oh well, maybe it counts as roughage. But seriously, let them play and explore.
- It’s not the end of the world, so your baby isn’t crawling when the books say they should be crawling or they aren’t rolling at the right time. Every baby is different and that is okay. They will do it at their own pace.
- LOVE THEM! Someone once told me I should NEVER let my baby sleep on my chest because they will get used it and they will want to sleep there all the time. While I appreciate the advice, I will cherish every moment that my baby fell asleep with me. I can’t believe how fast the first year has gone. You can never love your baby too much!
- Take photos! This is a no brainer. But make sure you back them up, frame them in the house and try make up albums. You will love sitting and looking back on how tiny they were and how far they have come.
- Give your husband your time. There is a new person in the house that has absolutely consumed your time. Don’t forget about your hubby. I am not going to say ‘plan a date night every week’ because I felt that highly unrealistic in our lifestyle. But take time to listen to him. Ask him how his day was and if possible try spend a day with him in the month where it can just be the two of you. Let him be involved with the baby and baby duties, times have certainly changed and men are far more involved than they were in the past. Let him help you!
Contributed by Tarryn Palmer from Clamber Club Parties – East Rand
Tel: 071 582 1621