The first weeks/ months with a newborn are beautifully intense. You will never know what to expect until your in it. So try not to have expectations, be open to everything and anything. Be prepared to have your heart ripped out your chest by the intense love you will feel . Have a support system, remember to feed yourself if have someone to do that for you. Yes everyone says this but try to sleep when your baby sleeps. Even if its just one or two naps a day with them. Keep yourself hydrated and embrace it all, every time you find yourself frustrated , scared or just so tired you cant think straight remember this doesn’t last forever it does pass! You will sleep again, one day…. (; I try to just be as present as I can with Benji, taking in every grin, every gaze into each others eyes, watching him sleeping so sweetly, screaming at me with all the frustration he has. The cries, oh the cries! Guys babies cry, and sometimes theres not a lot you can do but hold them and love them. Go through the list of hunger, nappy. tired, tummy cramps, the list goes on….. and sometimes you just won’t know and your not a bad mama for it. I did find the carrier and walking helps settle Benji so much! Your there holding and loving them and thats all you can do. Remember the big adjustment these little babas are going through too, from the warm womb getting all their needs met immediately, now they have to wait , experience cold , hunger and nappy changes . The only way they can communicate is by crying. In the beginning myself and Bernd would just look at each other with fear in our eyes and we would both be sweating, just our bodies purely reacting from this intense sound. We laugh about it now. But we were pretty stinky the first few weeks from sweatiness and lack of showers (;
I feel like i had some naive idea that my baby wouldn’t cry that much, and I’m not sure why. I think every mother does have some kind of expectations going in. But I was rudely awakened. because ALL babies cry and we figured it out , breathed , worked as a team and came through it. And now when he cries which is a lot less, I feel sad for him but we handle it better , we stay calmer which helps him. I highly recommend researching the 4th trimester, this came naturally as I didn’t want to put Benji down , it didn’t feel right , he was and still is attached to one of us in the carrier or laying on the bed with us for a nap. This could also be because of our birth experience which I will share soon! Now as he gets older and more wanting to wriggle around there is more time for play. But do your research on baby wearing and give it a go. It gives you two free hands with a content baby snuggling close!
But.. it will be ok, this is such a magical time. The growth that takes place inside you as a human being if you let it, is incredible. These little beings strip you down to your last raw layer. Starting from the time you get that positive pregnancy test.
Some other helpful tips
Research Remedies- I found the Natura tissue salts so helpful especially the Mag Phos. Pegugsus remedies are great as well. Benji caught a cold at 6 weeks so was very congested so we used nasal spray, breast milk up the nose, a snot sucker and some remedies for congestion. We tried to keep it simple and not give benji too much to maintain the virgin gut, just breast milk until at least 6 months. You can also work with your homepath/ or care provider before baby comes so you have an understanding of remedies and what to use.
Breastfeeding help- Support support support! Friends and family that breastfed and lactation consultants. Read breastfeeding books before baby comes, go to a La Leche meeting.
Visitors – don’t feel like you have to say yes to everyone that wants to visit. This time is for your family bonding. Not everyone needs to hold your baby. There is time (: We just had immediate family come over two weeks so it wasn’t too much at once. Because all baby really wants is their mama.
Food- Make a list of things you can snack on while glued to the couch or bed. Send friends and family to the shops to get healthy treats for you.
Mine included- rice cakes, health bars like O’natural/naked bars, veg sushi, fresh and dried fruit, rice crackers and hummus.
Be easy on yourself mamas, you are doing the best you can, stick affirmations up the wall closest to you to remind you. I used my birth affirmations for breastfeeding as well. They really helped, those first few weeks were tough. Trust yourself and your instincts, you know your baby best! Ask for help , don’t be scared to reach out and remember all mamas have gone through what you are going through and 99% of the time are SO happy to help and support. It takes a village and we all need a tribe. Breath, take it slow close your eyes and focus on your breath, through the feeds at 2 am, the cries, and the dogs barking and waking your baby you just got to sleep ! Enjoy this moment its doesn’t last forever, I know right now it can feel impossible and so hard, but my friend you’ve got this, you were born to do this and you are SO strong, stronger than you know!