Hey, new parents! Congrats on your little one joining your family. It’s such an exciting time, welcoming a new baby. When I was a new parent 4 years ago, I remember being so obsessed with everything “baby.” Baby food, nursery, breastfeeding, etc. It’s hard to know which trends to follow, which tools are best, what advice to take, etc. What it boils down to is following your heart and doing your best along the way. There’s no perfect way to parent. Everyone does it a little differently and each person has their preferences.
I’m going to share 8 tips for new parents that helped me mother a baby boy that I think you might find helpful. These aren’t “live by” tips just friendly suggestions you might wanna try to see how you like for your family. Here we go:
8 Tips For New Parents
1.) Give Yourself a Break
This is #1 on the list. New parents overdo it, so much! You should make sure to practice self-care. One tip a coworker gave me before I gave birth was to let the nurses at the hospital help as much as possible, with feeding, diaper change, etc. so I can rest up because when I get home, I won’t have the same opportunity. I took her advice, well halfway, haha but after I got home from delivering my son, I totally got it! Self-care examples: taking some quiet time for yourself, go shopping, have grandparents babysit while you sleep in, etc.
2.) You don’t have to kill yourself preparing ALL the meals
A big deal for me was to handmake all my son’s food. This is a great idea but while balancing work, family, taking care of baby and life, it’s tough! I remember boiling fruits and veggies, blending them, freezing them, packing them, storing them, etc. It was a lot. Not saying to totally abandon this idea, as I really love the thought of making homemade food for baby but just try to be realistic with it. The organization helped me out a lot here, as well as doing some homemade, some un-homemade (yes I made that up, haha) food.
3.) Sometimes it’s ok to let baby cry it out
Tending to your crying child is important but sometimes you do have to let them cry it out. It will be hard but you can listen to them and look in (where they can’t see you) to make sure he or she is ok and let them cry. This one is a hot topic. It’s personal preference of course, as are all these tips but, you are not a bad parent if you let the baby cry it out.
4.) No blankets or anything in crib
You probably heard this. I have no horror stories to share on this for myself thankfully but my husband and one of his friends have tales. My husband almost suffocated himself as an infant because of a blanket in his crib. His dad tells me the story all the time. He went in to check on him and he saw baby struggling to get the blanket off himself. Once dad pulled off the blanket, baby took a huge breath, like he wasn’t able to breathe before. So scary! My husband’s friend actually had their child pass away from suffocating in a crib because of other objects. In life, you never think it’s gonna happen to you, but it very well can.
5.) Tummy time is important
My son cried his head off when it was time for tummy time. He hated it and I wanted to stop so many times. He would scream and scream but it helped him to crawl. If your child is crying during tummy time, if they are otherwise ok, keep at it. It will be hard, but well worth it in the end.
6.) Pump, pump, pump
If you choose to nurse, something important to think about is pumping your breastmilk. I hated pumping, as most women do but it’s necessary to keep your milk supply up and to keep a good storage frozen for times when you are away (at work, etc.). Pick a good quality pump and set up a pumping schedule. I hated pumping so much that I put off doing it and ended up getting mastitis (a breast infection that can be common for nursing moms). From that point, I got on the ball and put myself on a schedule.
7.) Get organized
This one can be tough and it’s an adjustment when there’s a new little one but organization is key. I used to wake up at 4:45 am to nurse, then get ready for work, work 10 hours, come home, nurse, cook dinner, work on my online business (sheesh!) and then pass out. It was a full schedule but it kept me somewhat sane. Although I was busy, I made time for the important things and never felt overwhelmed or rushed.
8.) Let others help
Is grandma offering to babysit or sis in law wants to spend time with baby? Let them! Take advantage of others’ offers for help so you can rest and take advantage of tip #1: self-care!
This is a lovely time and it can be much enjoyed with some advice and help from those around you that have gone through it. Do you have a special tip to share to help other new parents? Comment down below so we can hear your suggestions!