I'm all about another list today over at The Good Life with Stasha. Ten Tips for New Mom's. I wish I read blogs when I was a new Mom. They certainly would've helped me feel better...that I was not alone...that I was, indeed, doing just fine even if I felt like I was, at times, losing my mind. Which, by the way, you will most definitely feel at some point or another.
Here we go again...enjoy!
1. The battle of the boob or the bottle...formula vs breast milk....to pump or exclusively breast feed? So many questions. I hate these questions and all the guilt it entails if one decides to bottle feed because of reasons of no one's business but their own. I had so many issues trying to nurse my first born. I stressed myself out to the point of tears everyday because I had it in my head that it was the only way to go. It isn't. Please, new Mom's, if breastfeeding is not for you or you simply cannot do it due to nipples that feel like their falling off or mastitis or inverted nipples. Don't feel like your world will come crashing down as I did. I did end up breast feeding for 6 months with my first and I breast fed and supplemented with my second. It's OKAY. Do what you feel is best for your baby and you. You love your baby. That's all that matters.
2. Invest in a good quality sling or front carrier. Or both. I used a front carrier for the first 3 months with my boys and a sling up until about a year. Best inventions EVER.
3. Watch all the Ellen, daytime soaps, MTV that you can right now...pretty soon all you'll be able to watch is annoying crap like Caillou or Toopy and Binoo.
4. Learn when to say no when it comes to friends and family wanting to bombard you with visits. If you're okay with that and welcome the company than good on you. I was very stressed the first few weeks of being home. Having so many visitors gave me terrible anxiety coupled with the feeling of needing to clean and entertain didn't help at all. Give yourself some down time. If they love you and especially if they've had children of their own, they will understand.
5. When your friends and family ask what they can do to help, tell them to bring food. And lots of it. Believe me...part of the reason it took so long for my milk to come in was because I wasn't eating enough. Or at all, really. I had a very 'spirited' baby who took up all of my time and energy, I simply couldn't cook. And I love to cook.
6. Do not overdose on Milk of Magnesia. As much as you may be tempted because attempting to poop with stitches all up in that area is not a good time, don't do it. I could tell a really hilarious story at the expense of my dignity. But I won't. You get the picture. (sorry about that picture)
7. Communicate with your spouse. You're in a whole new dimension of your relationship right now. Chances are, he thinks he's helping when he's doing the dishes while you're tending to your adorable but cranky baby. Simply ask him to take the baby and immerse yourself in those dishes if you so feel the need. Or don't. If you need to have a break, talk a walk, or go into another room to breathe, read or have a nap. God knows you deserve it.
8. Forget all about what 'they' say. 'They' say you're not supposed to rock your baby to sleep. 'They' say not to hold your baby while they're napping all swaddled and delicious. 'They' say you must wake your baby every 3 hours to feed. I don't know who 'they' are but I picture a bunch of expressionless gray faced people in a dull room staring at each other with monotone voices. Do what you want and if you feel what 'they' say works for you then do it...but if it doesn't, don't stress.
9. You cannot spoil your child with love and affection. Smother that sweet face with kisses, smooch all of their yummy chubbalicious rolls, rub your cheek along they're ever soft bellies, bite their bums.
10. If you feel like you might be losing it, even a little, talk to someone. Anyone. But preferable your doctor. You are not alone and you are not weak for needing some help. Reaching out means you're strong. And you are. You can do this. You are never alone.