Now that Basil is almost 5 months old, I feel like we’ve gotten into a pretty good rhythm. He naps around the same time most days, he enjoys tummy time more, and he can entertain himself long enough for me to step away and do a chore or two! Now, I know the last few weeks of pregnancy can be especially nerve-wracking waiting for what’s to come, so I have 4 tips for getting through the first few months with a newborn a little more gracefully (if possible).
Let baby take the lead
When I was pregnant, I read everything I possibly could about preparing for motherhood – I guess the nervous, excited mama bear in me kind of took over. A lot of things I read said to put baby on a schedule ASAP so they have a predictable, comfortable day, but I found that once I stopped trying so hard to create a set schedule and let Basil take the lead that everything went so much smoother. He ended up making himself an eating schedule, a napping schedule, and a bedtime. Yes, they’re all very loose schedules, but within an hour to an hour and a half range of certain times of the day, I know Basil will be ready for a nap or to eat or to go to bed for the night, and I can kind of plan my day around that.
Make time for your hubby
I know it’s hard to focus on anything but baby the first few months, but you have to make time for your man! It will be good for both of you to take a break from baby talk and dirty diapers, even if you’re just sitting on the porch talking about your days. Michael is amazing and helps with Basil when he’s home, but most days he doesn’t get home til after Basil’s bedtime, which gives us a chance to relax and make dinner together or talk about something other than how many ounces the baby ate that day. Easier said than done, but try to balance it out and find a good equilibrium for your family.
Put less pressure on yourself
As a mom, I know how much pressure is put on us to be the “perfect mom”. Spoiler alert – no mom is “perfect”. There are so many different ways to parent a child that it’s completely ridiculous to think your way is better than anyone else’s. Something that works for you and your family may not work for another. Try not to stress the little things and look at the bigger picture. As long as your baby is fed, happy, and healthy you are doing your job and that’s all that matters. I really wish that moms could all be on the same team and just root for each other rather than rooting against one another. No one is perfect, why should moms have to be?
Take a break
It can be hard spending your days with someone that can’t even sit up by themselves, let alone hold a conversation consisting of words other than “ahhhh” and “eeee”. Simple solution? Take a break. Let go of all the expectations and just relax. Whether that means taking a day to snuggle your baby and watch Netflix or having someone watch the baby for an hour or two and getting your nails done or taking a trip to the grocery store alone, take a break.
Being a mom is tough, but it’s my favorite thing I’ve ever done. There’s nothing better than looking at Basil and seeing that big ol’ gummy smile, or hearing his little giggle! The first few months are scary and exciting, and fun, and I think these little tips really helped me get through them. I hope these can help some of you mamas out there in the first few months, and even in the future!
What helped you in the first few months of parenthood?
Thanks for reading!