10.15.2015

Bringing Home Baby: My Unsolicited Advice

 Welcome back to another Thoughts for Thursday!!  Thank you to everyone who joins this link up every week and keeps coming back. You all are the best.

**I've screwed up a few pages elements but I'm working on fixing them soon, once I figure out how to :)** 

Thoughts for Thursday

In just a few short weeks my sister is due to have her first baby. I've been feeling all nostalgic about my babies and thinking of some of the the advice I wish I would have taken or things I would have done differently. To be honest so many of these things still apply to life with kids almost 2.5 years later.

1. Don't beat yourself up if birth didn't go as you planned- When I was 2 days over due with Miller I was told I needed a c-section for various reasons and 2 days later he was born healthy and happy.  I trusted my doctors yet afterwards so many people had opinions and I beat myself up for months over it. I  didn't have a strong feeling on vaginal vs c-section but in so many ways I felt like a failure. But why did I feel like a failure? Why was I letting people make me feel a certain way? All I wanted was a healthy birth for me and Miller and in the end that's what I got so my birth did go as planned!!! Never let anyone make you feel bad about it your birth story. If it has a happy ending then you should be happy!

2. Take all the help you can get- Seriously. Take it all. If your mother in law wants to come over and dust everything, take it. If your mom wants to hold the baby all day, take it. If your friends want to drop off dinner, take it.  Even if its not the help you want or need TAKE IT!!!  Never ever ever feel guilty about having someone help you. It's taken me awhile to learn that it really does take a village to raise a child and the more help you have the better you will feel and be as a mom. When you have your second or third baby still take the help!! Especially if they want to help with the older kid.

3. Sleep when the baby sleeps- Your baby doesn't care if your house is clean but he does care if you're cranky, depressed, anxious, or just plain exhausted from lack of sleep. SLEEP as much as you can especially with your first baby because once you have two or more you don't have the luxury to sleep when the baby sleeps. So sleep!!

4. Don't be to hard on yourself- You're going to do it wrong. Your kid is going to hurt themselves one day. You're going to lose your patience. You're going to yell. You're going to hate some things about parenting. You're never going to feel good enough. You know what, we all feel that way! Everyone of us. Right when you think you figure it out they decide they like it another way or they learn a new trick. Parenting is different every single day and you're never going to have all the answers.  Ask friends  for help. Google things. Vent to people. Drink some wine. Don't beat yourself up we've all been there.  I remember someone said once Parenting doesn't get easier, you get better at it.

5. Let your husband help and have a special job- Kyle can swaddle and soothe a newborn like a baby whisperer. He's amazing. That was his job with both Miller and Matthew when they were infants. These days it's bathtime and bedtime. If he's home, he's their hero. They listen to everything he says and go right to bed.  I also think it's important for me to have a break and him to have time to bond with them.  

6. Everyone parents differently- No one is going to do everything the same way as you and that's ok. You might swaddle and put your baby in her crib the first night while your best friend never swaddles and co-sleeps with her baby. Neither of you are right or wrong.  You might make homemade baby food and your friend only uses store bought. Again nothing right or wrong with that either. You have to do what feels right for you and works for your family. 

7. Baby books don't know your baby- Baby books are great guides, don't get me wrong. I've read many of them and they've been so helpful but I haven't found one that works perfectly for either of my kids. Miller was a horrible sleeper (and still kind of is) but nothing from the sleep books solved our problems. It was a combination of books, talking with mom friends, and talking with a sleep specialist that finally made things better.  That was my experience. I have a friend who did the Baby Whisperer schedule and her kid followed the schedule to a tee and was a great sleeper by 12 weeks. You never know so don't beat yourself up if your child doesn't do exactly what the book says.  Only you know your baby so do what feels right. 

8. Breast feeding might suck and that's ok- I feel like we as women don't talk about this subject enough. You might hate breastfeeding and that doesn't make you a bad mom. You might have trouble breastfeeding and that doesn't make you a bad mom. How ever you choose to feed your baby is your decision! As long as you're feeding your baby no one should care how you do it.  Breastfeeding is a 24/7 job and many times it's  hard to be away from your baby for more than 2-3 hours.  It's very demanding and can really take a toll on moms when they feel like they are the only ones that can help their baby. I was lucky that breastfeeding came very easily to me with both boys and everything went great until around 4-5 months when my supply totally disappeared. So I introduced formula and it turned both of us into much happier people. This happened with both boys.  With Miller I spent months beating myself up with Matt I just introduced the formula earlier and everything was fine. Both boys were exclusively on formula by 7 months.  Can I dare say I was better mom after formula?? I LOVE my babies but for me I needed to feel like myself again and I needed my body back to be the best mom I could.  It doesn't make me selfish, or if it doesn't I'm not going to apologize for it.  I did what was best for me and my family.
 
 9. Find like minded mom friends- This one is so important!! You need other women in your life to support you and understand what you're going through. Surround yourself with women who support your parenting choices even if they're different than theirs.  Friends that let you be yourself and love you anyway. Ones where you can show up for a playddate unshowered and they won't bat an eye or judge that you haven't cleaned up the toys in your playroom in weeks. Most of the mom friends I've met aren't like many of the articles or blog posts I've read on some of the big mommy blogs. All my friends let their kids eat donuts and goldfish and sometimes watch more than the recommended 2 hours of tv. No one ever judges anyone and we're always their to offer advice or a glass of wine after a long day.

10. Be a Selfish Mom- Read this article and take the advice. Thanks to Annie for posting it on Facebook. It took me a long time to learn to be a selfish mom but you can't feel bad about it! You have to take care of yourself to take care of other people!


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15 comments :

  1. Love when moms are selfish.. I'm not a birth mom, but I'm a nanny and I've met many mothers.. I've always told them it's ok to be a little selfish. Oh and baby books definitely do not know your baby! Xo

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  2. These are all so awesome!! Love this post. Finding like-minded Mom friends. That's so smart and so important. I never really thought of it like that but it makes such a difference. It's going to be so much fun when your sister has her baby!!

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  3. I love ALL these points!! I'm going to share this post with a few of my new mom friends!! Great advice!!

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  4. I agree so much with your points, especially finding like minded moms, not being so hard on yourself, and having your husband have a special job. But the others hit so hard to home as well. I feel like I struggled so badly in the first few months trying to find my footing as a mother, and not getting stressed out that everything wasn't going to plan. this is such great advice for any new mom. Motherhood is tough,

    liz @ sundays with sophie

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  5. Preach momma! And then come and move to Los Angeles ;) but seriously, I loved this and found myself nodding in agreement and comforted by your truths...such a good post!

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  6. Enjoy that baby. The books don't know more than you do. You've got mother's intuition!

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  7. Ps. Check out this post on following your intuition http://runwright.net/2015/09/28/surely-my-thoughts-are-worth-more-than-a-penny/

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  8. Great tips, lady!!! I'm not pregnant nor a mom and I found your tips very informative!

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  9. These are all SO awesome! I couldn't have said any of it better myself. Really freaking great post lady!

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  10. Amen to all of this! With Walker, I felt the need for everything to be perfect. The next time around, I'm going to remember that it's okay for me to be a little selfish. My child(ren) won't remember if the house was clean; they're going to remember time Mommy spent with them! Thank you for this post!

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  11. These are awesome Natalie! Did you write this for me? haha I need to start sleeping more when Oliver sleeps but there's just so much I want to do! And yes breastfeeding does suck and I feel like he's stuck to my boobs nonstop but it helps when I talk to mom's with older babies to know that it won't always be like this! These were awesome tips!
    Ally- Life as I know it

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  12. I don't have a baby yet but I feel like these are great things to remember for when that day comes!

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  13. i love this! great tips and i love my mama friends -- i trust their advice sooo much more than anything i find online. xoxo jillian

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  14. Such great reminders and words of advice, tucking this away for later use! :) Xo, Stephanie

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