Jan 27, 2016

Managing your life when the baby comes

Every new parent has things he/she wished to know before about life with a newborn. Even though every day will be new and every day your baby will surprise you in a way you will need to find new solutions to old issues, you can try to prepare yourself physically, emotionally and financially for some experiences every parent goes through.

Be prepared for some baby crying

Even though crying is a normal behaviour for a baby, especially between the ages of two weeks and three months, it is one of the hardest things for parents to deal with. Some of the usual reasons why a baby cries: they are hungry and/or thirsty, they are tired, they are overstimulated (take him/her somewhere calm), they need emotional comfort in order to adjust to the outside world, they are too hot/cold, or they are in pain. If your baby still cries even though you ruled out all the reasons, crying may be caused by reflux. Soothe your baby by gently massaging his/her back, holding him/her in different positions, taking him/her outside, singing and humming to him/her.

Find ways to cope with sleep deprivation

Sleepless nights will be a common problem in your life until your baby establishes regular sleeping patterns. Generally speaking, babies will sleep a whole night by the time they are 3-6 month-old. In the morning, sit up as soon as the alarm goes off, drink a glass of water you will keep on your night table and jump into the shower. Try to stay alert and focused during a day by doing a few jumps, running around the garden, or dancing in order to get your blood flowing. If you are too tired when your baby falls asleep, you should sleep, too. Your baby will need you refreshed when s/he gets up. At night, a few drops of lavender oil on your pillow and a glass of warm milk can help you soothe yourself back to sleep.

If you need help, ask for it

New moms usually have a serious issue of the lack of time. Looking after your baby, having a job, cleaning up along with cooking is exhausting. If financially feasible, you can consider a healthy meal delivery service for the first months when the baby comes. On the other hand, you can hire a home cleaning service, as well. Finally, working at home moms can ask someone from the family to look after the baby for 3-4 hours, or they can consider a babysitter.

Make a list of essential baby clothes during pregnancy

First of all, you will need 4-6 short, or long-sleeved undershirts. Make sure you choose those which snap, or tie on the side since they are easier to put on the baby. Do not use onesies until the umbilical cord falls off. You will need 7-10 onesies, choose the ones which snap at the crotch. 3-4 infant gowns will make changing diapers easier. Sleepers and baby sleeping bags will make your baby comfortable. 3-4 pairs of socks will be enough. Finally, do not forget about hats, caps and bonnets.

Prepare your career for motherhood

Before the baby comes along, talk to your partner about staying at home, or working arrangements. If there are any disagreements, you do not want to wait for the baby to come to solve them. Research about child care costs. Is it more cost-effective to hire a child care service, or for one parent to stop working all together? Talk to your employer about maternity leave and postpartum work options, such as working at home for a certain period of time, working part time, job-shares with other working moms in the company, etc. You should also take a time to research about your rights as a working parent.

Your baby will be your life changer. As Susan Sarandon said "Children reinvent your world for you".

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