When I was pregnant I got heaps of advice and here are the best tips I received.
1. You don’t have to change your baby’s clothes all the time. If you’re tired and they look clean enough just don’t worry about it. Babies don’t sweat, they’re not running around the place, it won’t hurt them, so don’t stress about it. Now get some sleep.
2. Buy a clothes marker pen and when someone gives you some clothes as a present write the gift givers name on the label. Trust me, in 4 months time when you’re putting that lovely baby grow on, chances are you won’t remember who bought it for you. If you do this, you can take a picture of your little one in the outfit and send it to them to show your appreciation.
3. Breastfeeding is difficult but usually, it gets easier. Don’t feel bad if you don’t get the hang of it straight away and try and get hold of those pink ladies while you’re in hospital, they’re lovely and helpful. Also, don’t beat yourself up if it doesn’t work out. Being a parent can be tough and it’s very important for your baby to have a happy mother too.
4. Try and remember that every baby is different. You will find that lots of people will have advice for you especially if their baby is sleeping well and yours isn’t. The advice giver will perhaps feel that it’s something they have done and think they are being helpful and actually they’re just bloody lucky. Your baby is normal and not sleeping like most other babies. Smile, nod while swearing at them in your head.
5. Your baby is designed to keep your attention because this is what they do to survive. But remember that it is also vital that you and your partner keep building on your relationship too. It is really important for your baby that they have happy parents that want to be with each other, so take some time for the two of you and don’t feel guilty about it.
6. If your baby gets a temperature strip their clothes off until their temperature comes down. You might feel you want to wrap them up because they have a cold but don’t do it! Get their clothes off in order for them to be able to cool down.
7. Even if you don’t feel like you have much in common with the people in your antenatal class stick at it, as they will be vital for the first 6 months of your baby’s life. They will be the only people in your life that aren’t at work and are going through exactly the same thing as you are at the same time. It may not seem like it now but their company and support will be invaluable. You can also be lucky enough to make some amazing friends.
8. If you have time go to a baby first aid course before you have the baby – do it. It was the most useful thing I did while I was pregnant as it helped me feel prepared and empowered.
9. Poo stains only come off if you wash them instantly with a bar of hand soap. You’ll be tired but if you leave it till later it will take EVEN longer if it even comes off at all.
10. Sleep when the baby sleeps. This is the piece of advice that people often give the most. This can be very hard to do at times as you may have a mountain of washing or cleaning to get through. You can call on The Mummy Company service to do the laundry and you and your baby can sleep while we do all those chores you needed doing.
11. Get some food shop deliveries lined up for the first few weeks so they just arrive and you don’t have to think about it.
12. When your milk comes in it can feel like you’ve got the flu. Your milk coming in can cause a fever and make you feel absolutely rubbish. Keep an eye on it though as there are other causes for those sorts of symptoms, like infections, so if in doubt call the doctor.
13. Trust your instincts you know your baby better than anyone else.
14. If anyone asks you what you would like for a baby present ask for them to buy vouchers for some home help – you will be so grateful for this in a few months time. Asking for a food delivery service or some home help from The Mummy Company will be a lifesaver. Not only will we tidy up and make you tea we can also help with any questions you have and can give you advice as we have been there and have lots of baby experience.
15. Sounds obvious but avoid germs a couple of weeks before giving birth. Try not to go anywhere where there are too many people, and if you do, wash your hands a lot. I went to a wedding and got a cough a couple of days before I gave birth and it made my recovery after birth brutal. Put it this way, if you’ve got a hurt vagina you feel it when you cough. Ouch!
Do you have any tips that you wished you’d known before your new arrival? Put it in the comments below.
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