This is one of those times when I’m asking for your invaluable words of wisdom. <3
Right before we had Liv, many of you shared the most awesome advice for the newborn days. (I loved re-reading this post! SO many awesome comments and tips.)
Some of my favorites from the list:
1) Sleep when the baby sleeps and accept that you’ll be tired. I had a hard time sleeping when Liv slept (because I was wrought with anxiety, and also that was the only time I would shower/fix food for myself/stare at a wall blankly haha), but I learned my lesson. This time, I’m really going to try and nap when and if I can, because I learned that sleep deprivation and I are not great friends. Also, I love the tip to just know and accept that you’ll be tired. Now that I’ve experienced it, I know what we’re getting into. It won’t make the lack of sleep easier, but it’s comforting that it doesn’t last forever.
2) Enjoy time just as your new family before visitors arrive. These are precious moments as your new family, and it’s beautiful to spend some time in a little cocoon together. For the first couple of days after Liv was born, night fused into day as we watched movies, followed her natural rhythm (sleep all day, party all night) and napped as often as we could.
3) Enjoy each stage for what it is. It’s really easy to get into the “I can’t wait until he/she walks/talks/eats solids, etc.” game. Instead of skipping ahead, focus on the right now. As my friend wisely said, “The present is the only moment that is real.”
4) You can’t spoil a baby. In other words, hold, love, snuggle that sweet beeb as much as you can. Having Liv sleep on my chest was one of the best things ever, and I still love when she’ll fall asleep on me. I’m really excited for those newborn cuddles, soft baby snores, and sweet smelling baby hair.
5) Set up a good sleep schedule/routine. This one helped us a LOT, and also eased Liv into a solid nap schedule and eventually sleeping through the night. We followed the routine in The Baby Whisperer, and plan to do something similar with baby #2. It will probably be more relaxed since we’ll be off to ballet, swim, soccer and preschool, but if we can still follow the eat, activity, sleep routine for the most part, I think it will be awesome.
6) Comparison is the thief of joy. Even though it’s tempting, don’t compare your baby’s milestones to other babies, or your life as a new mom (or mom of more than one kiddo) to others. I started reading mommy and fashion blogs again basically when we got home from the hospital, and it was depressing to see everyone put together while I had a unibrow, sweats, and unwashed hair. As far as baby comparison goes, I’ve learned that if one kid is early or late to develop a skill, most of them eventually balance out anyway. It’s not worth stressing over.
7) Motherhood is a great time to learn, not judge. Use each challenging moment or situation as an option to learn. I’ve found that since I became a mom, I also became more accepting and understanding of other moms. (It’s funny to think back of my college days when I was a parenting expect.. with no kids haha.)
8) Accept help. Don’t be afraid to accept help from family and friends, or outsource if you need to. Friends and family genuinely want to help you if they’re offering. At first it was really weird for me to accept help -I like to do everything myself- but you get to a point where you need it, and are so thankful.
9) If anything, go outside. Fresh air works wonders in many situations. I think last time I stayed indoors too long -it was winter, and there was a point where I hadn’t left the house at all in 3 days- and I think that even just sitting outside and getting fresh air (especially during the witching hours) helps so much.
10) Don’t overdo it. Don’t push yourself back into things too quickly, and use the newborn days as an opportunity to slow down. Everyone says to enjoy every moment, and it really goes by so quickly, even if it doesn’t seem like it at the time.
So tell me friends, what would your number one piece of advice be to a family welcoming baby #2?
Some of the things we’re planning on:
-Having a gift from baby waiting for Liv at the hospital (an awesome Ariel castle)
-Having the baby in a bassinet (not in our arms) the first time Liv meets her
-Planning special activities and dates just with Liv after the baby is here, so she still gets one on one time with each of us
-Extra TV/movie/book time during the early days, and we can all relax together
I would love to hear about your experience and any tips/advice as we get closer to Birth Day. 🙂