Things I wish I could tell my first-time mum self
What advice would I give the first-time mum version of myself?
Since recently finding out that we are expecting baby number two, I’ve been thinking a lot about how I may do things differently this time around. What advice would I give the first-time mum version of myself?
Enjoy the newborn stage
Firstly, I think most first-time mums look back on their journeys with their firstborn and wish that they had taken the time to enjoy that newborn stage – I know I most certainly do! I was too busy feeling overwhelmed by new motherhood and the anxieties that come along with the challenges of being a new mum. All of those worries about whether I was doing things right and whether I would ever sleep again!
To relax and enjoy the journey
I wish I could go back and tell myself to just relax and enjoy this new journey into the world of motherhood. That making my own choices for my baby is nothing to be anxious about and that even though the advice given by family and friends comes from a good place, to take it with a pinch of salt and do what I am comfortable with instead of feeling overwhelmed and anxious about who I should be listening to.
Don’t get so many baby items
I’d tell myself that I really don’t need that many clothes, blankets and baby accessories for my new-born! This is something I have taken on board in preparation for baby number two. When you have your first baby, I think you get so excited and caught up in the pregnancy whirlwind that you just can’t help but to buy all of the amazing baby items you see – I probably only used a third of the things I bought for my first! And I most certainly have saved some money on just buying the essentials this time around!
Sleep when baby sleeps
I wish I had taken on board the notion of sleeping whilst baby sleeps; I am fully aware that with two under two – that this will not happen for me this time around. I should have taken that advice the first time!
Happy mum happy baby
I would tell myself that a happy mum is one of the first things to having a happy baby. I struggled with the new mum anxieties in the start and those anxieties are one of the main reasons why I exclusively express fed my non-latching baby for 11 months. I just couldn’t give myself a break and allow myself to just relax about things – I was so caught up in ‘this is best for baby’ that actually I didn’t realise that what is ‘best’ for baby may not have been best for my own mental health. There are so many ways to bring up a child in today’s world and the pressures of new motherhood can be overwhelming. I wish I could tell myself that I was doing a great job and to give myself a break!
I think having your first baby most certainly blows your previous pre-baby life out of the water (in the best way) and adjusting to this new life where you have a little person relying on you 24/7 is a huge adjustment for anyone! I would have loved the new mum version of me to relax a little. I wish I could tell myself that it will be ok, they will sleep eventually, to trust your mum gut because it’s rarely wrong and that it won’t feel this hard forever.
I definitely feel more prepared and chilled going into this second pregnancy – I guess you learn and grow from experience – but if you are a first-time mum or mum to be, you are honestly doing an amazing job. Try and allow yourself to feel that greatness – even if it’s just for a minute.
What advice would you give your first-time mum self?