After a sleepless night at the hospital my husband came to collect me in the morning and after a quick check over and a bit of paper work we were signed out of the hospital, handed our baby in his new car seat and sent on our merry way. Im pretty sure as soon as we stepped out of the hospital doors both me and my husband looks at each other in the hope that the other knew what to do with this baby we had just been handed!
(James just a few hours old!)
Now as a mum of 2 I am most certainly still learning, still adjusting and still often turn to my mum or other friends with babies for advice. However I have learnt a few things on the way and so today I thought I would share a few of those thoughts with you, so here they are.
- When you first come home don't feel like you have to allow everyone round to visit straight away. Its ok to say no and its ok to need some time to bond and recover as a family. Its so easy to feel pressured into feeling like you must let everyone round as soon as you are home but that's not the case and people will understand that you need some time to settle home.
- Check out your local area for mum and baby groups or sessions as these can be a great way to meet new mums and get out and about. Sometimes being a new mum can feel quite lonely so meeting others who are going through the same thing as you can be an easy way to meet lots of mums in one place. If you have a local Sure Start centre these often run baby groups such as baby massage, mum and baby groups, young mum groups and stay and play sessions.
- Pyjama days are fine, whilst going out to baby groups and play dates is a great way to meet new mums and get out and about its also ok to admit that some times you just need a day to yourself. It can be a lovely opportunity to just spend some one to one time with you and your little one with no pressure to get ready and be out and about and organised.
- Don't be afraid to tell doctors/ midwives or health visitors exactly how you are feeling! When I had James I knew something wasn't right with the way I was feeling but I was so worried that if I told someone they would try and take my baby away that I didn't say anything. Eventually my husband persuaded me to speak to a doctor who said I had mild post natal depression and offered lots of help, support and advice. These people are there to help and support not judge or intimidate so please do feel like you can talk to them if you need to, they won't know whats wrong or be able to help if you don't.
- Don't feel guilty for taking some "me time", your a mum and a human not a robot and we all need a little time to ourselves to recoup and sleep (mostly sleep lol!). I used to feel so guilty about even leaving James for a few hours with my mum, it felt like I wasn't doing what I was suppose to and I was in some way failing by letting someone else care for him. Now I can look back that was most certainly not the case and by giving myself some me time I could be a better mum to my baby as I was more relaxed, had caught up on sleep and had managed some time being me rather than "mum".
- Try not to compare your babies milestones to everyone else's baby. Its so easy to get lured in to comparing your baby to others of similar age and then worrying if they are different. How much milk are they having, how many teeth, are they walking, sitting, crawling, do they sleep through the night are questions I am sure we all ask and so will many other mums. Whilst its great to compare stages and milestones for a bit of fun please don't worry if your baby is different, all babies develop and learn at different rates so unless you feel there is something seriously wrong try not to worry.
Most of enjoy your baby! They certainly don't stay little for long and before you know it they are heading of for school and you are left wondering where your little non sleeping milky monster went and how time went so fast!
Do you have any top tips to share for new mums?
Please do share below in the comments I would love to hear them.