Every home seems to have a tool kit. Whether your husband is a DIY extraordinaire or you have one on standby for assembling your child’s toys. While a tool kit is not necessarily used every day, it can be a lifesaver!
When you become a new parent you need to assemble tools to help handle the new challenges that come with having a baby.
Lay Down the Hammer (on visitors)
You’re at home with your new little babe and it seems like every 20 minutes someone is rotating through the front door to meet the new baby or texting you to see when they can stop by.
It is truly amazing the outpouring of love everyone gives to your new babe. However, at the same time, it can quickly become exhausting.
If you are a “yes” person this time in your life will become even more challenging if you don’t quickly learn how to manage visitors.
The first few weeks at home are crucial. This is the first time you will be able to bond with baby without the interruptions experienced in the hospital.
You will also be learning the nuances of breastfeeding and honestly, you deserve to have a minute or two alone. As a new family, you want to have time to figure out your “new normal”.
The stress can start to build if visitors are causing you to get off your feeding schedule or if it interrupts babies’ nap time.
If you notice your blood pressure rising it is time for a change. Start by spacing out how often folks come to see you.
It is also important to remember which type of visitor you are up for. Visitors such as your grandmother or aunt may be easier to manage than visitors such as your neighbors, co-workers, or friends.
This is a time in your life when you can say “no” and not feel bad about it at all.
Your priority is your baby and your health, if you feel like having the entire neighborhood over great! But if you feel like limiting the amount of foot traffic coming through your house that is completely fine too.
A Wrench Will be Thrown
Every time (seriously every time) I thought to myself “Wow we finally have a great routine with Pierce” he would completely change things up.
Babies are growing and developing so quickly that right about the time you have things figured out, BOOM! They blow up your world.
While it is important for you to start to establish your new normal with your little one it is also important to stay flexible.
For example, I thought I was a machine at breastfeeding. Pierce did not have a problem latching and the first 6 weeks of his life and we had a great feeding rhythm. Then week 7 came.
He started spitting up everything he ate and he wouldn’t latch on my right side.
After a few rounds of doctor visits, we found out that his new acid reflux + my strong letdown = a recipe for disaster.
Even though a few days ago everything was great, I had to be flexible to his new needs.
This meant throwing my plans to exclusively breastfeed out the window to start supplementing with formula.
You never know when your little one will flip the script on you, and if you have the mindset that change is inevitable you will be just fine. (Quick Tip: Wine helps)
Measure the Milestones
Baby milestones are a dime a dozen their first year of life. From sticking a “2-month” sticker on them to take their photo each month, to capturing the very first time they roll over.
Each day brings something new and exciting.
While you are all about the baby right now (which you should be!) remember to take time to celebrate your own milestones.
The first time you were able to sleep 4 straight hours. The first time, you were able to eat an entire meal without any interruptions. These may seem like small things, but they are MAJOR wins when you become a new parent.
It’s important to take time to focus on you. And yes one day I promise you will be able to shower more than every 3 or 4 days!
Pry Yourself Away
One of the hardest things you will ever do as a parent is leaving your baby for the first time.
We are all different when it comes to our feelings on when we are ready for time away. However, one of the best things you can do for yourself, your partner, and your baby is to step out of the parent role for just a bit.
Your new title as “mom” is one you will never want to get rid of (until maybe the day your babe is a teenager) but it is ok to hang your “mom” hat up for a while to step back into the world as just yourself.
You will be a happier and better mom when you take time for you.
It can be something as small as going to your favorite coffee shop or taking the time to meet girlfriends for lunch.
This is a time in your life that everyone is asking what they can do to help. Once you feel comfortable leaving your babe (it can even be with your spouse) head out to get a fresh coat of polish on your nails and remember the fabulous human being that you are.