Many women spend years trying to conceive, others are more fortunate to do it on their very first try and cycle. The rollercoaster and emotional turmoil begins the moment you and your partner decide to give the whole having a family thing a try. You have the emotions of pregnancy tests, negatives that you so wished were positive. You have the excitement of a surprise baby, or finally getting that positive pregnancy test you have craved for so long. Nothing beats that realisation you’re going to be a mom, that is for sure.
However, what I find with new pregnant moms to be is that there is so much focus on the actual pregnancy. Many expectant moms know what every little flinch is, what every ache or gripe is, how big their little baby is as each week passes by. They research birth option, pain relief, and even pack their hospital bags ten times over to ensure they have enough outfits and essentials to get them through the first few days. But what happens after that? Too many parents to be don’t really research what to do when the baby arrives, and then it can feel like they are getting a cold harsh reality check on what life is going to be like. Of course, it is always going to be an adventure, and there will be times where you wonder how you will get through the day. Aside of preaching to you how to raise a baby, because let’s face it, that maternal instinct does exist and it does kick in at some point. There are some home truths I wanted to share with you that I hope will not only encourage how great a job you are doing or will do, but also how normal some things actually are.
Changing diapers just becomes a normal everyday occurance
Changing diapers may have been something you were not looking forward to when you first had your baby. After all, who wants to clean poop. However, your mentality changes the moment you do the first one, and let me tell you, you will be surprised about how many conversations you and your partner have about poop moving forward as you navigate what is normal and what might indicate if your little one is under the weather. You have the essentials, the diapers, the nappy rash cream. Whether it is poop, whether your little boy has weed on you, because that can happen, it just becomes the norm to you.
You learn how strong you really are
I am sure you may have realised that you are one strong cookie after labor. No matter how pleasant or unexpected your birth story is, you are one strong lady for getting through it. But raising a baby really highlights how strong you are mentally. It is a big change having a baby, and one perhaps we don’t embrace as much as we should. We can often be expected to just take it. But actually, it can be a very emotional to be a new mother, hormones are raging, and so remember just how strong you are.
How much you can actually get done on little or no sleep
Saying you are tired has a whole new meaning when you have a baby. To the point where you will look back on your life and wonder exactly how you coped before this obscene lack of sleep hit you. But, this actually is another element of showing just how strong you are as a person. No matter what sort of party your baby had at 2am, you need to get up in the morning and carry on. There will be things to do, perhaps other children to look after, and so you just get on with things and get things done. It is amazing how much you can actually do on little or no sleep, and phenomenally, you do things rather well. If by the end of they day everyone is happy, then that is certainly a job well done and definitely something worth celebrating.
Finding small hacks to save time becomes your new obsession
Finding a hack for washing, knowing that you can use baby products for other things, these sorts of hacks become your life. You may be scrolling through Pinterest to find that you can use baby oil to clean stainless steel, or that baby oil in the bath for you and your little one can also act as an excellent moisturizer, saving you precious time. Hacks that help you get organised such as routine changes, doing things the night before. Spending certain amounts of times to things like chores, Speed cleans or power hours. They will become your new and latest obsession as you strive to find the perfect balance.
The dynamics of your relationship can change
There is no beating around the bush with this home truth, when a baby comes along the dynamic of your relationship with your partner will change. You won’t get as much time together, not just to communicate but also to connect with one another. In fact, some things you used to love doing together can become some of the last things you want to do as time becomes a factor and priorities change. But, what you do find is a whole new level of respect for one another. You support each other in different ways. You are a shoulder to cry on, a person to depend on, and actually it can make many couples relationships far stronger than they were before. The level of bond you have is on a completely different level, you share something together that is both of yours, and that bond can be another level to build upon your relationship.
Food prep can be a key survival technique
On a side note, a hack that perhaps needs its own explanation is food prep and meal planning. This can ultimately be your saviour when you have a baby. Time during the day can often escape you, which means that come the time you want to eat you may not be able to prepare healthy food, and opt for something more convenient and quick. However, meal planning can help you to determine what you can eat, and food prep in advance could mean you have something nutritious ready prepared for cooking or even cooked and frozen ahead of time. Especially for those moments where you just want something quick and easy.
Past priorities become a thing of the past
If you haven’t guessed it by now, your priorities are going to change dramatically. Gone are the days where you will want to be out with your friends all night drinking, favoring your favorite tipple in your pyjamas just before heading to bed early. Sleep becomes your most wanted thing. Rest becomes a god send, and time on your own feels like a day at the spa. Priorities change yes, but new priorities come in their place. It doesn’t mean that your old life is shelved for good. But that time you do catch up with friends or head out on a date night with your partner become so much more appreciated, and you enjoy yourself so much more.
Getting your mom tribe will keep you sane
Finally, getting your mom tribe can be a great way to help you feel sane on those lonely days. Knowing you have someone you can meet for coffee, invite round without the need to tidy your home or even just heading out for a walk together can be the breath of fresh air you need. You do need to work on this, and heading to baby classes and groups during the week as well as using social media can help you connect with moms locally in similar situations to you.
I hope that this has highlighted some of the best moments that are about to happen in your new parenting life.