REAL Advice For A Brand New Mom
I’d always heard, “Women have been doing this since the beginning of time, so it can’t be that hard.” Umm…yes it can! Being a Mom is one of the hardest (albeit extremely rewarding and worth it) things you’ll ever do. I also think it’s a lot more difficult these days with all the Nosy Nancys and Judgmental Judys out there. No matter how prepared you think you are, it’s a whole new, scary world once you bring that tiny little person home.
After 9 (let’s be honest, it’s really 10) months of people fawning over you and your growing bump, it gets REAL pretty quick as that all fades away, and you’re left to figure it out on your own. I reached out to several of my fellow Mom friends to share their advice for new Moms. This is REAL advice for new Moms, because in those first days, weeks, months; it really feels like you’re fighting in the trenches.
One thing that was told to me (and it’s sooo true), that I always tell my new Mom friends is: TWO WEEKS. Give it 2 weeks. No matter what is frustrating you, worrying you, making you want to pull your hair out…it usually gets better within 2 weeks. Breastfeeding pain/issues, teething, the evening “witching hours.” Now, some things may last longer for some babies, but it usually gets better or at least bearable in 2 weeks. I also used this mindset in my breastfeeding goals: make it to 2 weeks, then a month, then 2 months, etc… Breastfeeding is not as easy as you’ll be led to believe and it takes work. Smaller goals, one at a time, are much easier to attain, than trying to go for the whole enchilada!
Here is some other awesome advice:
-Your time is all of a sudden no longer yours. It is completely controlled by a little baby that is 100% depending on you for all of their needs. I think it takes a while for all new parents to adjust to this.
–Jennifer, The Joyful Lane of Life
-Listen to everyone’s advice and tips, but don’t take them as gospel. Only you know what’s best for your baby, your body, and your family! Don’t be afraid to stand-up and defend your choices. Also, while pumping at work, I learned to tuck the cups into my bra so I could read. I wish to God I had Netflix back then!
–Tara, An Unconventional June
-If you don’t have mom friends already, try to make them. It’s so helpful to have friends who know what you’re going through! Look for a Mom’s Day Out or MOPS program in your community.
–Micaeh, Motherhood and Life
-I would just say that it is really hard. The beginning can be so hard. Remember to ask for (and/or accept) help and to know that you are all figuring it out together. That is to say, your baby is new to this too. They are not disappointed in you. You are the BEST mom to them. You will learn together. You’ve got this, Mama.
–Mary Leigh, Live Well Play Together
-Take it one day at a time. You don’t have to do it all by yourself. Ask for help and ACCEPT help when it’s offered. It’s hard and some days it freaking sucks. And I’m not convinced it gets any easier, it just changes. But those changes are pretty amazing to be a part of.
–Kristin Marie, This Wife and Mommy Life
-Your little love is going to take so much time and energy. It is all worth it, but don’t forget who you are. Do something for yourself every single day. Something that keeps you going, refreshes your mind, makes you feel like you. For me, that was making sure I had a cup of coffee each morning and finding time to exercise. Even just a ten minute walk. Taking care of yourself means you are taking care of your little babe.
–Sara, Rad Babee
-My best advice for a new mom with a newborn is learn how to nurse side-lying. It saved me in those first few weeks when it was painful to even sit up by the end of the day. I found that, unfortunately, most Lactation Consultants don’t really teach new moms how to do this, I guess it can be hard to get the hang of when trying to learn to breastfeed. I remember the nurse at the hospital who helped me learn to breastfeed said it doesn’t really work for new moms. I went home and I watched youtube videos over and over until I got the hang of it. That way, even though I had to wake up to breastfeed, I didn’t have to get up if I was in pain. Husband brought baby to bed, I’d nurse and he’d put her back in the bassinet.
–Diana, Go Wander, Bee Happy
-You’ll never be fully prepared…and that’s okay.
–Nina, Chaos in Mommyhood
-Parenting/motherhood is a learning process. Don’t beat yourself up, we all are winging it.
–Breyona, The Savage Mom Theory
-You will be judged no matter what you do. Just do what is best for you and your baby’s health.
–Diana, Before and After Babys
-Speaking from a physical standpoint, I wish I’d known that breastfeeding can be quite painful at first. My little guy didn’t latch properly for a few days, so that didn’t help, but even with my baby girl (who latched properly right away) I had soreness. Also, after birth, you are sore. More than sore. It will probably hurt to sit, stand, lay down, walk. Get some ice packs or make some “padsicles”, they will feel so good. Seriously. No one warned me about how much pain I would be in during recovery, and I wish I had known so I could have prepared better!
–Courtney, Joyful Intentionality
-Be the mom your baby needs not the mom everyone thinks you should be. Everyone will tell you the right way to do something. It may have been right for their baby but it may not be right for yours. Every baby is different and there is no such thing as a perfect mom. As long as you listen to the doctor and love your baby the best you can, you will be a great mom.
–Stephanie, Relaxed Momma
-Don’t overthink it. There is such an overload of information out there. Do what works for you. Especially first time moms! Trust your instincts! You got this Mama!
–Kermilia, The Millennial Stay at Home Mom
-“This too shall pass…” Motherhood is HARD, but keep in mind that there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. Colic is a phase, teething is a phase, terrible twos is a phase, and while some phases are longer than others, all phases come to an end. Enjoy the happy moments with your little one[s] and focus on the positives because the difficult phases will pass, while the love and connection you build between you and your children will be there forever.
–Betty, The Terrific Five
Fellow Moms, is there any other advice you would give a new Mom?
New (or expecting) Mommas, what is something that concerns you about being a Mom?