Motherhood has been a blessing. Being able to be with my baby 24/7 has been a blessing. There’s just so much I am thankful for. I found myself reflecting on the past seven months—as a mother, partner, and who I am today—and wanted to share some what’s on my mind.
- Routine isn’t always key. Before I gave birth, I had all these visions in my head that baby would follow a strict around-the-clock eating and sleeping regimen. I remember seeing other moms post their feeding schedules at 6, 9, 12, 3, repeat schedule and I thought I’d be doing the same thing now. Well, it doesn’t help that baby absolutely refuses a bottle, which I’ve come to accept. I’ve been so fortunate to be able to work from home still and feed her on demand. I just follow her hunger and sleepy cues. Actually I try to anticipate them before they happen so that she is rarely fussy. Honestly, I think if I were following a strict schedule, I’d be way more stressed and the theme of motherhood is to LET GO sometimes. I am able to do things on the whim and travel with no added stress because of this.
- Another baby’s sleep schedule does not dictate your baby’s sleep schedule. In other words, every baby is different. If one baby is sleeping 12 hours at six weeks, that’s great but don’t compare!
- Give Yourself Grace. This is one thing I am constantly reminding myself, and that is to not be so hard on myself. It must be a perfectionist thing. I deal with so much mom guilt at the littlest things. My partner is great at reigning me in when I am spiraling. If you forget to pack an extra diaper or a change of clothes, you’re not a bad mom. There’s so much on your plate. Just take a deep breath and adapt. Easier said than done, I know.
- You can still live your life. I always told myself I wouldn’t change my life 180 with a baby. Of course things were different with COVID, but as things are returning to somewhat of a normalcy, I am looking forward to bringing baby along for the ride! If anything, you can still live your normal life just with a lot more planning involved!
- Set those boundaries. Let that mama bear out and don’t be afraid to tell strangers no kissing baby or holding her hands. Not only will you protect your mental sanity by setting boundaries, but also you’ll find yourself with much peace. If you don’t want visitors to swing by, let it be known. You do you, mama!
- Educate yourself but ultimately trust your instincts. As a first time mom who is learning everything realtime, I find myself immersed in mom groups to get feedback and see how other moms would handle a situation. I’ve received so much helpful advice but at the same time have realized that I am the best person for my baby. Don’t feel pressured to take advice or to worry about something. Follow your baby’s lead.