“I Wish I Knew Then What I Know Now” 8 Lessons for A New Mum
Becoming a new mum is a scary place and with advice coming from every angle, from health professionals, grandparents and friends it’s easy to feel confused and worry that you’re doing it wrong. Whether you’re the mum to be or you have a friend or family member that has just brought a new life into the world here are a few handy thoughts from those who have been there and done it and are happy to share with the statement “I wish I knew then, what I know now”!
We’ve scoured the world of new mum guides to come up with a list of simple things that are in your control, even if you don’t feel that you’ll ever be in control again.
Don’t Stress About the Mess
Having a new baby is hard work but it is the best gift of all. The chances are you couldn’t wait for the little bundle to arrive and now you have probably never known tiredness like it, and have you ever known love like this? Embrace these early weeks and forget about the daily chores. So what if the pots are piling up, they’ll get done, for now it is not your job, so ask your partner, a friend or relative to come and help in exchange for cuddles. Your job is to look after this new life that is probably just as bewildered as you.
You’ll have visitors a plenty, don’t wait on them, allow them wait on you! They can wash up whilst they are there too, but remember not to overdo it. It’s not rude to say “Not today can we reschedule”? You need your rest, so unless they are happy to mind the baby whilst you go and have a sleep make sure you are feeling up to it.
Stock up on snacks. Have a good supply of water, sandwiches and easy to munch goodies to hand. It’s a good idea to invest in a cool bag that you can keep at the side of your chair. There are times when you’ll feel you can’t put baby down and you need to keep you’re strength up. If you’re breastfeeding you need plenty of extra calories too so this is not the time to be thinking about getting into you’re pre-pregnancy jeans, that time will come but it’s not anything to worry about now. You are beautiful and quite the hero!
Babies don’t need stuff. Don’t break the bank investing in the latest pram set, sterilisers and baby gyms. There are lots of bargains to be had on-line most of which are barely used, babies grow quickly and develop at an incredible rate and so quickly outgrow their “stuff”. We’re so lucky in the UK to have the NHS, so birth and healthcare comes free, but a baby can cost on average around £500 in the first month. Nappies, first clothes, feeding equipment, toys and furniture all add up so make the most of good quality used items where possible.
Sleep when baby sleeps. It might only be for an hour at a time but you’ll need it. If you can’t get off before baby wakes again for the next feed make sure you are comfortable, put your feet up, put on your favourite film or flip through a magazine. Remember the three R’s - Rest, Rest and Rest. It won’t be forever, and before long you’ll start to see the signs of some kind of routine but for now you will be baby led, relax and go with it. Breastfed babies can often cluster feed which can be draining both physically and mentally so whenever you get a few minutes make the most of it and don’t forget the nipple cream!
Babies by nature will cry. They might be hungry, they might need changing or they might just want a cuddle. Remember baby is new to all this too. They’ve had quite a journey and whilst in the tum they didn’t have to think about food or having a wet bum, they are learning too so be as patient as you can. If you’ve checked the obvious stuff and still no joy, make sure baby is safe and leave the room for a couple of minutes. Walk around the house, make a cuppa and breathe. Practice mindfulness and remind yourself that you and baby are in this together.
Time flies, and any parent will tell you that baby will soon be sitting, walking, going to school and before you know it they are all grown up. Make the most of these precious early months in baby’s life. Aim to keep a journal, like the beautiful Cross gift set in our Baby Shower box, to track how you are feeling, what baby has done today and take lots and lots of pictures, it’s amazing how much you will forget. It will be a great thing to keep, not only as a reminder to yourself for future babies but also as a memento for the little one.
Meet Other Mums
Being part of a social group with shared interests can be a great support. You will be able to share the highs and lows with other new mums and make long lasting friendships, not just for you but for your baby too. Even if you have a caring and considerate partner it’s hard for them to know what you are feeling or what you’re going through, but other mums will. Be a good listener to them and support one another, it will help you to cope and will give you more patience with those around you.
Here at Ooh we love baby stuff, in fact our first gift box was “The Softee” which we put together for a friend. We now have the Mum to Be, Baby Shower and Nursery Gift Boxes as well as the range of Mini New Baby Gift Boxes and also the Mummy and Daddy mugs which you can have in any combination.
We hope you love our newborn gift boxes as much as we do.