I wanted to put pen to paper of things I wish I had either knew or listened to.
Try to not listen to everyone as everyone has an opinion and sometimes listening can hurt and cause you so much confusion.
You see many people with two children, this makes me think, ‘if people have had two babies, it can’t be that hard’. Having had one from my experiences I can only assume that it is hard, but you equally forget what it is like. I had a C-section and it still hurts, but you do forget, and I am ready to say ‘yes’. I can see myself with another baby in the future. Maybe not right away but I can see baby number 2 is an option; you just put the birth to one place, even if it is traumatic.
From my experiences, this is what I wish I knew and how I would like visitors to act.
- Don’t overspend on rubbish.
- Rest – plenty because rest doesn’t exist afterward.
- Pack wisely and use your time even more wisely.
- Ask for help but also shut the door to people.
- Don’t let anyone kiss your baby, no matter who they are. Don’t even let them hold your baby’s hand. It used to and still does make me angry.
- Make everyone wash their hands and take their shoes off.
- If someone offers to wash up, let them.
- My best gift was my friend having a home delivery sent to my house.
- You can say ‘no, I don’t want visitors!’ or ask them to leave.
- You can also say ‘make your own cup of tea’ or ‘get your own glass of water’. If someone wants cuddles, go for it. But if they are asleep, ask if you want the baby put down. (9 times out of 10 the answer will be yes).
- Offer an opinion if it is asked in conversation. Tell them they are amazing because you know more what, they are. They created a little human.
- Offer to cuddles if the baby cries, but if it’s too much, give the baby back to their parents. Again, don’t overstay.
- Be grateful to any gift.
- Don’t read everything on Google or listen solely to your other mummy friend’s. All babies are different.
- Well done you breastfeed. Well done you bottle feed. You know what, it doesn’t matter, you have fed your baby and it is alive!
- It is hard, lonely, frustrating, rewarding, loving and emotional all rolled into one.
- It is amazing, scary and draining all at the same time. It very much blurs into one.
- Don’t reply to texts and if you do, who cares if it is 3am. That is the new 3pm.
- Drink plenty of water and keep fuelled.
- Sleep when the baby does, or chill on the sofa.
- Don’t do the housework.
- Get good food in and buy newborn baby clothes.
In the list above, I mention about packing wisely. You see lists everywhere, from my experience below are a few things that I needed and some essentials that most mums to be should consider.
- For the mum – a pillow, towels, slippers, nightdress, dressing gown, noise reducing headphones (is a must as well). Comfy clothes (Shorts or loose leggings, baggy tops- whatever you feel comfortable in), flip flops (no way my feet were going in shoes and some areas of a hospital are not overly clean), nipples cream, oversized muslins (to hide when unwanted stares), Take plenty of water keep up the fluids, healthy snacks (pack extra for the partner), Maternity pads, (you just leak through everything, I know it’s not attractive but who sees you) and disposable knickers (also buy two sizes bigger knickers for afterwards. I spent the first two days cutting my knickers because they were just too small, and I had swollen up so much).
- When packing for the baby remember – baby blanket, plenty of newborn vests (my husband thought 0-3 months was new-born), baby grows, nappies, cotton wool, hat, socks and a pack of water wipes.
Enjoy the last few days before baby come. Love the first few days when the baby comes. You are the boss. Say no to anyone who wants to come. You are tired, it is new. Everyone wants to tell you how to do it and tell you to rest. How can you rest if they want to visit and overstay when you are shattered? Let your baby sleep, don’t ever feel the need to wake them up. Be the mummy you know you are.
The most important thing is to enjoy the moment as a family, you will never get that moment back. Not ever. Take a million and one photos but get photos with you. My regret, I have hardly any photos with my baby as a newborn.
You’ve got this! It’s the hardest, but the most rewarding job you will ever do. You will be amazing!
Lots of love
The Unlikely Mummy