15 Ways to Make Your Life Easier After Your First Child is Born
Bringing your little baby home after birth is thrilling and over-bearing. Use these proven tips to make those first several months a little less stressful and a lot more fun.
1. Get a Daily Routine Planned.
Mothers who are natural planners could find this one to be always a no-brainer, but if you’ve always lived life flying by sight, take note. Babies and parents who have an established timetable every day are more happy and less pressured than those who just, well, go with whatever comes. That’s not to say you should run your household like a brigadier-general, but you should plan activities (like waking up, eating, playing, napping) around the same time each day to help the baby know what to expect and put both of you at ease.
2. Ask for help.
For independent kinds, this is challenging, but in those first couple of weeks with a new baby you will need a helping hands more than ever. Don’t feel guilty about requesting a pal who drops by for a visit to watch the little man while you finish off some errands. Or ask your mother-in-law to complete the laundry while you get some good sleep. Your friends and family are happy to assist, especially if they have been there themselves.
3. Keep written notes of your baby’s needs.
Writing down every time you breast- or bottle-feed (along with how long or how much) and noting your baby’s diaper count will help your sleep-deprived brain keep up. If anything appears out of the ordinary, you’ll have a helpful log that you can show to your doctor. So this isn’t just to keep track of those important milestones!
4. Get a video baby monitor.
A video baby monitor can help calm your doubts. Rather than just hearing your child crying in the middle of the night time, you’ll have the ability to see her and know when she does indeed need her mom and when she’s just blowing spit bubbles.
5. Make friends with other moms.
If you’re the first in your group of friends to have a baby, this is extra important. You don’t have to say goodbye to your kid-free pals, but definitely seek out new mom friends who can commiserate and celebrate each part of your new experience. Nothing beats a heartfelt “I understand precisely what you mean” to assist in saving your sanity.
6. Get organized.
Within the last trimester, you’ll likely have the nesting bug and embark on a cleaning frenzy. Build on that drive and make sure everything has its place. That way, when your baby does arrive, you won’t be scrambling around thinking: “Where did I put that extra crib bedding now?”.
7. Adjust your sleeping times to the baby’s.
This tip has been passed on from generation to generation for just one reason: It’s excellent advice! Your typical evenings of uninterrupted rest are forgotten whenever a baby is born, so take each opportunity you have to get some sleep. If for some miraculous reason you aren’t exhausted when your baby takes a nap, use the extra minutes to take a shower or catch up on a good book. Me-time is priceless in the first few months, so take advantage of every spare minute.
8. Listen to your parents and grandparents.
Just like when you’re pregnant, everyone wants to give you their two cents when you have a newborn. Sure, it could be annoying, but it can be really helpful also! Don’t discount everything your mother-in-law and mom say. Remember, they do a fairly good job increasing you as well as your husband, so they must have done some things right.
9. Trust your gut feelings.
While everyone who gives you advice means well, you will be the mom and you understand what’s best for your child. Always trust your instincts and talk over any concerns with your doctor.
10. Fill up your video recorder or get Netflix.
Feeding your little one is great bonding time, especially in the first few weeks. But afterwards it can honestly start to feel like just another chore. If you stock up on recordings of your favorite shows, those endless feedings – especially the late-night ones – won’t feel quite so monotonous.
11. Take breaks.
There will be days (lots of them) when the laundry doesn’t get done and you crash into bed while there are still dirty dishes in the sink. And – write this down – that is alright. Your baby is only a baby once, and even if it doesn’t feel just like it now, the right time will pass so fast! Enjoy the little moments of success and don’t try to be Supermom all the time.
12. Buy lots of nutritious foods.
When you haven’t even had time to brush your teeth throughout the day, cooking a complete meal for supper is out of the question. In the few months before your child is delivered, make and freeze healthy casseroles and dishes that you can just pop in the oven easily. Also never reject a neighbor who offers to drop off a meal.
13. Buy some baby milk just to have an alternative to breast-feeding.
Even if you’re a die-hard breast-is-best advocate, it doesn’t hurt to have one can of formula for backup. If you have a tough time getting baby to latch on during that first week, or you will need to provide your sore chest a rest just, it’s nice to have another option readily available, so nobody must make a particular visit to the store.
14. Ask Ask Ask.
You’re a fresh mom, you can not know everything. Don’t be afraid to ask your pediatrician as many questions as you have, even if you think they sound silly. Getting the answers shall put your mind at ease and let you enjoy motherhood even more.
15. Go out and enjoy life once in a while.
Every new mom deserves a rest. Let your husband watch the infant and take an full hour for a pedicure, facial or massage. Or get a much needed date with your girls. You’ve spent nine months creating the miracle of life – you deserve a night out and some time off once in a while.