Before I get started, allow me to tell you a little about myself. I am a tattoo wearing, tea drinking, fashion loving, christian yoga practicing, wife to a wonderful man named Kyle, and mama to my favorite little girl, Lily.
Lily is almost 7 months old now, so I am fairly new to this whole "mama-hood" thing. But, at the same time, everything is still fresh in my mind on becoming a new mom. While I am still forever navigating the ropes on parenting, below are some things I wish some one had filled me in on when I first had Lily.
1.) Give yourself a break.
Having a baby is hands down one of the most MONUMENTAL experiences of your life. Yes, your body needs to heal and rest afterwards... but you need to rest emotionally as well. For goodness sakes, you just grew a human being for 9 months, and then in one big crescendo- you pushed that human being out of your body. Yeah, it is a little emotional to say the least.
The first few weeks (months, maybe?) after I had Lily I felt like my emotions and hormones were all out of whack. Goodness gracious, I cried over everything- including spilled milk (ESPECIALLY if the spilled milk was spilled breast milk). So, all this to be said... expect yourself to take time to recuperate after such a feat as being pregnant and giving birth! You have earned a good cry or two (or twenty-five.)
2.) Allow others to help you.
If someone wants to bring dinner, let them! Stay off your feet, cuddling that sweet baby of yours as much as possible.
3.) Take pictures of everything.
I cannot say this enough... The itsy bitsy stage of baby-hood FLIES by. Record it in every way you can, as much as possible.
4.) Thou shall not compare.
It is so hard, but PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE do not compare yourself to other mother's around you (or in the blogging world). If they appear like the "perfect" mother, they most likely are lying. Okay... that is a little harsh... But I promise you- every mother around you is learning as they go. You are the perfect mother to YOUR baby. No one else could do your job. Yeah, you will make mistakes- you can expect that. But, remember- there is only ONE you for your little bundle of cuteness.
5.) Be kind to your body.
I think all new mom's think this, and I am as guilty as any of them, but for some reason we all think once the baby has popped out- we will be right back in our skinny jeans. And... for a few of you that may be true, but the majority of us- it is going to take some time! I am very health conscious, and exercise motivated- but seven months after having a baby, my body is still hanging on to those last 11 pounds of baby weight. Having a very active little one, it is very complicated trying to find time to work out. But, once again, I am learning to give myself a break and be PROUD of my body for making and delivering a baby.
7.) Realize your heart will never be the same.
This may be the biggest point I can make. This may not happen the moment you pop that baby out, but be prepared for your heart to jump right out of your body, and never return. When Lily was born, everything in my heart and life turned upside down. I never realized I could love a little human as much as I love her. Becoming her mama has been the best and hardest thing I have ever done. Sometimes I think my heart will explode with joy when she grins at me... or when she falls asleep on my chest... or when she reaches for me to hold her. My heart will never be the same.
Congratulations again to Ali! Come by and say hello at www.shebreathesdeeply.com .