If you are a first time parent awaiting your baby's arrival, there are some things about the first year of parenthood that nothing can truly prepare you for. Parenting is one of those things that despite how much you prepare yourself ahead of time, you truly don't know just how it will feel until you are in the thick of it. While you may have a general idea, based on time spent with the little ones of family members and friends, there is just something about being solely responsible for a new little life that may change your days in ways that you least expected. Here are the good, the hard and the beautiful things we think you may want to know as you get ready to embark on this journey!
You made it through a long pregnancy. You got through the birth. Now your baby is here! As you spend this upcoming year adjusting to sleepless nights, teething troubles, keeping up with appointments and daily life all while taking on this brand new identity as a parent, know that this whole experience will likely rock your whole entire world. Having a little one that is dependent on you for every single thing has a way of showing you a new side of life that may feel really hard at times. Every single task, from making a phone call to taking a shower to eating a meal revolves around your baby, and learning to live life around their needs can be a big adjustment. Know that this is a normal feeling and it may come and go. Take heart however that hard does not equal bad. In fact, the hard parts are what will likely grow you as a person and as a parent. More on this in the next point!
Learning to prioritize a tiny person's needs ahead of your own is not a bad thing! As you adjust, you will learn things about yourself and you will feel your personal limits stretch and grow as a result. Sure, planning phone calls around your baby's nap schedule or learning to multitask so you can keep up with your own to-do list will pose a challenge, but keep in mind that bringing your baby along for the ride will be worth it. You may even feel empowered! You will likely even come to expect the interruptions and with some intentionality, you can recognize them as reminders of this great gift you have been given in a tiny little baby!
Packing up and getting out of the house is so good for new parents and new babies alike. However, packing a diaper bag and preparing for outings can feel challenging at first. Trust however that if you are consistent, it will get easier! Additionally, as your baby falls into a more predictable routine and nap schedule, timing outings just right might feel like work, too. You will also become much more efficient at managing this over time. Consider keeping a stocked diaper bag in your car so that as occasions arise for you to leave the house, the step of preparing items to go is already completed for you. Keeping diapering supplies, spare clothes for baby, spare clothes for you in case of spit up and any other necessities all in one bag in the car can eliminate a whole lot of prep work each time you leave.
If you have given very little thought up until this point as to parenting methods, food ingredients, daily schedules and the like, be prepared to have a whole lot of opinions coming your way from well meaning people, every day! Whether at the grocery store, visiting with relatives, gathering with friends or simply scrolling through social media, it seems just about everyone has an opinion on the "best" way to parent and make related decisions...whether you ask for it or not. While this can feel really overwhelming as you are trying to find your way in this new role, keep in mind that you can simply take the advice you want and leave the rest behind! There is no pressure to make the same decisions as family or friends or strangers if they don't feel right for you and your family. On the flip side, if you are actively seeking out advice for something specific, know that there are many people in your life who would probably love to share their own parenting experience.
If you have family or friends who are able to lend a hand when you are in need, then reach out! If not, focus on and use whatever resources that are available to you. That may be a grocery delivery service or a house cleaner. It could be a babysitter or it could mean having formula delivered right to your door. Confidently pursue whatever kind of help and support you need and never feel guilty for needing a little extra assistance!
When it comes to feeding, keep in mind that OrganicBabyFood.Shop offers free shipping on all orders over $50 and plenty of organic, European baby formulas to choose from. This way, you can rest easy knowing that the very best nutrition for your baby can easily be delivered right to your front door and it is one less step you need to worry about.
As you navigate this new role as a parent, there are times that you may not be able to recognize yourself. Maybe before your baby arrived, you loved to travel or go out whenever you wanted. Perhaps you enjoyed certain hobbies or claimed that you would never be the type of parent to...well, insert those assumptions here! If you find that your interests, ideas of fun and opinions on parenting topics change over time, know that this too is normal! You won't feel like the same person you once were after you become a parent and that is totally normal. If you embrace it, you may find new things you enjoy. Even better, you may find ways to merge the old you with the new you and pass your love for certain passions on as you raise your child!
Is the baby getting enough to eat? Are they warm enough? Are they sleeping enough? What happens if they get sick? There are so many scenarios that will run through your mind, many of which can cause you to lose sleep at night because they will feel like very big issues. This too, is normal! Try to remind yourself that your child's care provider will help you to know if there are any major concerns as your baby grows. Do your best not to compare your child to others or even your parenting to others. Also trust that your parenting instincts will kick in and you should trust that your own judgement is valid!
Looking for insight on specific topics? Check out these blog posts below for common struggles & scenarios that you might face:
From the first smile to the first coo to the first roll, every single milestone will feel worth celebrating! As hard as it may be in the business of the moment, try to remember to snap those photos and write down those new accomplishments. You might want to even make note of your own accomplishments, too! Did you successfully make it through a solo outing with your baby or manage to prepare a meal while keeping that little one held and happy? Celebrate those wins! Parenting is hard work and you deserve to recognize each milestone you reach, just as you recognize those special moments for your baby!
We are not just talking about sleep deprivation here. While losing out of sleep the first year will certainly cause physical sleepiness, you may feel exhausted emotionally as well. We have mentioned many ways that your days may change with a baby, but all of the care and responsibility and newfound love will leave you feeling tired in a way that one good night's sleep just might not cure. Do your best to eat well, get enough exercise, rest as much as you can and take extra obligations off of your plate as this is not the season of life to be tackling a whole bunch of extra responsibilities outside of your little family. Embrace the moment because the first year truly flies by so fast.
While we shared a whole lot of the common struggles and challenges you might experience in your new parenting journey, we would like to end this post with some of the best news! This is hands down going to be way more amazing than you imagined! The love you will feel for your baby, the new experiences you will get to embark on and all of the personal and family growth you are about to embark on are truly one of life's sweetest gifts!
Interested in reading more about the transition into parenthood!? Here are some posts that might interest you:
Have any questions or have you experienced something in your first year of parenthood that caught you by surprise? Please share those things with us below if so!
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One of the biggest adjustments surrounding becoming a new parent pertains to all things related to sleep! Today we are going to explore the importance of sleep for you and your new baby, as well as how to implement a schedule and habits that will encourage sleep for all, right from the start!