So you have gone through the pregnancy and labour phase and are taking your little bundle of joy home. Things should get easier right? Well not necessarily. Most parents report having the toughest time in the first months of a newborn’s life. Some babies take a while to adapt to their new living space outside the belly and can get very restless. Some really cry a lot even and wake up many times during the day and night. As parents the first few months are pretty much a continuous cycle of; feeding, cleaning, changing diapers, and repeat. While this may seem like such simple tasks, it can be very exhausting. So here are a couple of tips that can help you with your newborn, especially for first-time parents.
Make a parenting plan
Ideally, this should be done before the baby is born. Ensure that you have a plan that covers all the things the baby will need. If you are not a single parent, you can discuss this with your spouse and come up with an agreement. This has to do with issues such as who wakes up to check on the baby, who changes and cleans the baby etc. As long as both parents are on the same page emotionally and physically, things are bound to be manageable. However, a plan is not completely foolproof. Babies are very unpredictable and do not yet have set routines. So the plan just helps you have an idea of what to do and when to do it.
The irony of parenting is that as much as you may need to have a plan, you also need to be flexible. The first 6 months of a baby’s life is pretty much all over the place. Babies do not have set schedules and they sleep and eat all the time. As a parent, your life fits into the baby’s activities. Let your baby teach you what is best for them and with that information, create structure around that. Otherwise, you could end up being very frustrated in the long run.
Do not compare
It is always healthy to join a group of parents who are going through the same thing you are. It helps to share personal experiences and how best to deal with certain situations. It also helps in creating a really great support system. However, beware of falling into the trap of comparing your baby with someone else’s baby. Children are as different as they are similar. Actually, most parents even admit that they had to use different tactics to their children. Each baby behaves differently and it is up to you to find what works for them.
Ask for help
Do not be shy to ask for help. Most parents think it is shameful to ask for assistance. The truth is if you can get a nanny, babysitter or a house manager, do it. The first couple of months can be rough. Juggling house chores and taking care of the baby can take a toll on you. You can choose to get someone to help out with the chores at home so your full concentration can be on the baby. Parenting: 5 Tips To Keep In Mind When Recruiting A Nanny
Fight the urge to be perfect
Parenthood will drain you. It will use up the energy you did not know you had. Often times you will get frustrated, angry, overwhelmed, confused and even lonely. Most parents might think that admitting this makes them terrible people but it is actually the opposite. You are still human and it is okay to feel that way. However, parenthood is also beautiful and fulfilling. Just learn to embrace the bad times and enjoy the good times. It is a rollercoaster ride but it is one you should treasure. Health & Parenting: Things You Should Know About Postpartum Depression