Having a baby is exciting, but it’s also a little scary the first time around. As a first time mum you’ll have so many questions that no one can really answer, and the fact that it is different for everyone is very frustrating!
But as a seasoned pro (AKA a mother of two or more kids) you will find yourself offering words of wisdom to other mothers-to-be such as these.
10 things I wish I’d known as a first time mum
1. Your baby will come out eventually
When you’re pregnant you are so focused on the labour and delivery part of the process that you can lose sight of the bigger picture. Like enjoying your pregnancy, and knowing that no matter how much you read (or stay up at night worrying), your baby WILL come out one way or another.
Labour is only one day (OK it might be two or three in some cases) and in the end you get handed a teeny tiny bundle that is yours to love and treasure.
The memory of labour will soon fade (that’s why people go back and have more kids).
2. Your baby will start to sleep better at some point
If you have a baby that doesn’t sleep or settle very well, it can be easy to want to tear your hair out. But nearly all babies fall into some sort of sleeping routine eventually (they might be nearly two years old, but they will get there).
Sometimes you’ve got to just say ‘OK, my baby only wants to sleep for 45 minutes at a time, but they are happy and healthy so let’s move on!’
Use the opportunity to pop your baby in a pram and get out in the fresh air for a walk – it will improve your mood and might even help them nod off for a while too.
3. You will talk about poo A LOT
All of a sudden your brain is so focused on this little person’s sleeping habits and bowel movements that you can find yourself talking about the contents of a particularly full nappy over breakfast with your partner or at Mother’s Group. This is completely normal.
Just remember your audience, as your old boss or elderly neighbour is probably not interested in the colour of your little one’s poop.
Did you know experts say your baby’s IQ lies in their poo?
4. Mother’s group could be your saviour
At first it can feel tough to drag your tired self, your baby, and your giant nappy bag along to the group sessions, but it is so worth it.
These women all had babies around the same time as you and are all going through similar experiences. These are the people you can ask anything and they won’t think you’re losing the plot.
They might just end up becoming the best friend’s you’ve ever had (and chances are they live close to you too which is a bonus). Watching your kids develop their own friendships within the group is truly heart warming and adorable.
You could also join The Healthy Mummy New Mum Support Group and connect with other mums online in a safe, judgement free environment.
5. Your relationship with your partner will change
Adding a new baby to your family is like throwing a live grenade into a relationship. The combination of hormones, feeding your little one, the overwhelming tiredness, less money coming in, and for some women a loss of identity from staying at home can all add up to some serious stress on your partnership.
Try to remember that your partner is doing their best, and they also still need to get some of your attention too.
This can be tough when you are so exhausted, but try to make the effort to have a date night when you can – even if that means ordering in and eating by candlelight in the lounge room.
Watching your partner with the baby and seeing them fall in love with their son or daughter is one of the most amazing things to see.
6. Your partner is not a mind reader
At first, dads can feel a bit helpless as this little person just wants milk and mum most of the time. If they do try to help, do your best not to criticise how they do things. After all, they are learning too (you’ve just racked up more hours in most cases).
If you feel as though you need a hand with something in particular, do not wait for your partner to read your mind and do it for you. Now is the time to speak up.
You could try things like:
- ‘I haven’t had a shower today, could you hold the baby while I take ten minutes?’
- ‘I know I haven’t cooked dinner all week, but do you think you could make something for us to eat tonight – I’m exhausted.’
- ‘It would be lovely if I could have a lie in on Saturday when you’re home, would that be OK?’
- ‘Why don’t we take turns to go down to the pool for a swim on Sunday to get some exercise?’
- ‘Do you mind taking your mum up on her offer to do a few loads of washing this week?’
7. You might feel like a zombie / milk machine
Nobody knows what tired means better than a new mum. Your body and your brain in particular is not used to functioning on such a small amount of sleep and it’s easy to feel as though you are unravelling.
Many babies go through growth spurts early on, or are quite unsettled, and just want to feed and feed and feed. So much so that you will probably refer to yourself as some sort of milk machine (or cow) at some point.
Try to just roll with it, those first 6 to 8 weeks with a newborn are tough but just know that it does get easier with time.
Have your tried The Healthy Mummy’s Energy Boosting Super Greens?
8. You will feel like yourself again at some point
When you feel ready to start eating well and exercising again it can be a great way to start feeling like your old self again.
It can feel really good to do something for yourself, even if it’s just a 15-minute session of lunges, squats and push ups in the lounge room while your baby naps.
Eventually when your baby gets a little older and is sleeping for longer stretches at night, the fog will lift and you will feel less tired, and more like your old self.
The 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge is a great way to ease back into exercise and healthy eating. It is breastfeeding friendly, budget friendly and family friendly. Learn more here.
9. Let your friends and family help you
Everyone wants to help a new mum, and it can be too easy to dismiss people’s offers for help. But now is not the time to be too proud to say yes to their kindness.
Here is how you accept people’s offers to help you out:
- ‘Yes please I would love it if you could drop a meal off one night, that would be a huge help.’
- ‘I am a bit behind with my washing, can I please give you my sheets and towels?’
- ‘My baby usually sleeps around 9am, would you mind coming over then for half an hour while I go to the dentist?’
- ‘We would love you to babysit so we can go out for a coffee! How’s Saturday at 11am?’
10. It will be the most amazing, tough, rewarding thing you’ll ever do
Words really can’t explain how much having a baby will change your life. Sure, there will be hard parts, but the good parts outweigh them by a thousand million trillion times so you just don’t mind too much.
When your baby first smiles at you, when they do their first baby giggle, as they reach each milestone, you will find your heart filling with more love than you ever thought possible.
Now go and kiss your little baby, because they won’t stay little for long.
Our Smoothies are 100 per cent breastfeeding friendly!
Did you know The Healthy Mummy has breastfeeding friendly, meal replacement smoothies?
These smoothies are great for meal replacements, weight loss and loading up on essential vitamins and minerals.
We do not use any caffeines or weight loss accelerants in our smoothies so that breastfeeding mums can use it.
We also included fenugreek in the smoothie to be an additional benefit – and if you are not breastfeeding, fenugreek can still be a great benefit to your health as it provides carbohydrates, dietary fibre, fats and minerals like iron, calcium and phosphorous.
We even have thousands of emails each month from mums on our plans who report improved milk supply from using our smoothies!
To learn more about our Smoothies – click here.
To purchase one of our Smoothies – click here.