Becoming a parent for the first time is definitely a scary process. Pregnancy and labour are hard enough to get through without having to worry about what happens after you’ve delivered. Everyone certainly has different ideas and views regarding parenting but it literally is all trial and error.
You’re thrown in at the deep end with a very cute, crying baby and you have no idea what you’re supposed to do! You’re given various different pieces of advice from different health professionals, family and friends about how you should raise your child but most of the advice just isn’t for you or your baby! I’ve learnt a lot since I became a mom. I’ve learnt it on the go and by doing things my own way rather than doing what someone else has told me to do.
1. Not using Google.
Everyone does it, if we need the answer for something we ask Google. As great and helpful that Google can be, searching for the answer regarding your baby can lead you to some pretty advice. What worked for one particular individual may not be the best thing for you. Searching Google for symptoms of something your baby has is also quite bad, that’s what we have health professionals for. Some of the stuff I searched for when Keira was younger just lead me to ridiculous reasons and made me panic even more!
So yes, using Google for baby related things will not be on my to do list any more.
2. Not doing things by the book.
All babies are different and they all follow their own schedule. All of these baby websites have these milestones with ages of when a baby should be doing them, I’ve found that a baby will only do something when they’re ready rather then when someone has said they should be doing it.
Healthcare professionals have guidelines of when to wean, how often and how much they should be drinking or when to move them into their own room but a baby doesn’t go by a clock. If you’re baby isn’t ready to do something then you can force them to. Mother knows best, any parent will tell you that. A mother’s instinct is always right.
3. Not keeping on top of the housework.
The housework can always wait, you’re children growing up can’t. When Keira was born I tried my hardest to keep on top of things, but it just wasn’t possible. When she started moving around and playing with toys the house was constantly a mess because every time I put something away, she’d drag it back out again. Sure I felt like a lazy parent because my house would be horrific by the end of the day but at least I knew my child was happy and that I hadn’t miss her do anything.
4. Not buying lots of newborn clothes.
The amount of times in the day that you have to change a newborn thanks to pee, poop and sick it is just ridiculous to keep putting them in cute little outfits. It’s just not practical. When Keira was still a newborn I bought all the cute little outfits and dresses and it was quite difficult to dress her in them just for her to get them messy within minutes.
This time we’re just using vests and sleepsuits. They’re comfortable for baby and easy to change if need be. I have a toddler to contend with during the day so I need to do things that consume as little time as possible.
5. Not worrying about breastfeeding.
Everyone criticises you for not breastfeeding your baby, and you’re constantly reminded that “breast is best”, but sometimes it just isn’t for you. I didn’t breastfeed with Keira and I had my reasons for that but I still had people looking down on me because I had chosen to fed my baby formula. She has grown up no different other children and she’s never been ill so using formula really can’t be as bad as some make it out to be.
I have chosen to breast feed Joshua but it is difficult and it is demanding so I don’t know how long it will last but I won’t beat myself up about it if it’s something I decide to stop doing because I know that no matter what I choose to do, my baby will be happy and healthy with a full tummy!