Last week I went to see my very pregnant friend. She has just under a week until her due date and seeing her got me thinking, what advice would I give to a mum to be or a new mum? I wrote about how I was feeling about being a mum of two children back when I started the blog, and I think I could have been more prepared to be a new mum again if I had some tips. There is no way I would say I was any kind of expert, but here’s what I’ve learnt…
Late Pregnancy – Advice for a Mum to Be
- People tell you to get some rest, especially if you’ve been working and you start your maternity leave. You can’t, not really. You have this tummy housing a fully grown baby, no doubt most of your body will have swollen, and you’re very uncomfortable. People mean well when they say to rest, and do try (even if its just watching an episode of your favourite show with your feet up in the middle of the day).
- Don’t worry about how you look. Again, this is another tricky one, you will feel self conscious, but as soon as baby arrives it kind of doesn’t matter any more. You have a gorgeous little person to concentrate on, not your wobbly bits.
- The mood swings will stop, honestly. It might take a while, but your hormones will calm down.
- If you have a bit of energy I would definitely recommend preparing some meals and sticking them in the freezer. Even dicing some chicken (or something similar) will help when you have your hands full later!
A Brand New Baby! Advice for a New Mum
- You will hurt. Regardless of how you have given birth there will be some pain. There is nothing wrong in admitting it, and asking for painkillers or help from family or friends so you can rest.
- It’s hard. It doesn’t matter if you’re a first time mum or you have ten children already, adding a new member to the family comes with its challenges. These challenges are not always unpleasant, but adjusting your life, your schedule and your priorities can be difficult. Again, ask for help when you need it!
- You’ll be tired, more tired than you could ever think was possible, but you just get on with it. Your mum instinct will kick in and you just power through the tired times.
- If you, or baby, are overwhelmed by visitors tell people to come another time. Stagger visits so not only you won’t be tired out, but you’ll get some company over the coming weeks.
- Don’t over do it. When your guests do come don’t go mad and try to do too much, they just want to see your baby. They don’t care if your house needs a hoover or if there are no biscuits. Let them cuddle the baby and have a little rest!
- Nap. Naps are just the best. When you get the baby to nap sometimes just take the time for yourself and have a lie down too.
- Trust your instincts. Everyone has an opinion (or advice, just like me 😂), however ultimately this is your baby and more often than not you know best. There is no harm in asking friends, family or Google about a particular topic, and sometimes it can give you a new perspective, but trust your gut.
- No matter how bad it seems right now, it will pass. Think of the bigger picture.
- Similarly think of the future when you may be starting something which could become a habit, its sometimes easier not to start these things rather than trying to break the habit later on.
So there it is, my little bit of advice to all new mums out there. I wish I had remembered some of these things in the early weeks after Grace was born, but better late then never. I still try to enjoy naps when I can, 8 months in!
Mums! What advice would you give to mums to be and new mums for the early days? Let me know in the comments!
PS – I know these photos aren’t the best, but a true representation of a new mum!!