What are the challenges faced by first-time moms?
When something goes wrong with your baby, you Google it. The thought of becoming a mother seems too much for you, and you wonder: Am I really ready for this? Is this that I have signed up for?
A MUMS FIGURES IT OUT ALONG THE WAY
Months before the birth of your baby, you prepared for this event. However, your preparations didn't seem sufficient for you to be fully prepared.
Don't punish yourself too much. Other mothers figured it out as they went along (with some early preparation, of course). Despite their hardships, they managed to survive the first six months and beyond. They question themselves every day if what they did was the right thing and if they can handle this new responsibility.
Despite their full-time work or running businesses, many of these mums have been able to raise their newborns. Ultimately, this too shall pass, as everything else in life does. The same is true for mums all over the world, so it will be the same for you as well.
WHAT WILL THE NEXT WEEKS AND MONTHS BRING?
Let's stop talking about motivation and mindset. It's time to talk tactics. How can you prepare for what lies ahead for the next weeks and months? What is the best way to manage being an overworked and sleep-deprived mother?
You should first start to consider your job or business if you want more sleep and a bit less work. Find out if your employer offers parental leave so you can spend more time with your baby. It might be wise to slow down or delegate some task to someone else if you run a business. It's very likely that you'll still have a job or business to run.
You're not just taking a short break to spend more time with your baby. Moreover, the goal is to make the transition as smooth and easy for your mind and body as possible. In the beginning, you feel overwhelmed and things seem to be happening too fast. Because you're already doing so much, you don't have time to catch your breath.
As mothers, we're great at multitasking. However, our brains need time to process everything.
As humans, we need time (and rituals) to prepare. That's why most rites and ceremonies (weddings, baby showers, anniversaries) have religious overtones. In addition to announcing the change, these events and ceremonies prepare the people for their new lives.
A NOTE ON SLEEP
Even if your job or business slows down, don't expect everything to suddenly become easier. Especially in the first two months, being a new mother is never easy because of the sleepless nights. Even though your baby has just begun to establish a routine after nine months of darkness, he/she still has a tiny stomach that needs to be fed from time to time. One reason your baby wakes up frequently is that he/she gets hungry frequently.
Things become easier or more predictable after two or three months. You and your baby will finally be getting more sleep. Slowly, a routine will develop, allowing you to focus on your job, business, and other responsibilities. And yet, the challenges continue.
You always rush to know what's wrong if your child cries. Fortunately, it usually falls under one of these categories: your baby is hungry, her diaper is dirty, she is too hot or too cold (uncomfortable) or she is sick. Crying is the baby's way of letting you know that something is wrong since he/she cannot talk yet. However, what if your baby doesn't stop, and you aren't able to figure out why? If your baby starts crying this time, pat his/her back gently, swaddle him/her, or even sing to calm him/her. Some mothers experiment with what soothes their babies most effectively. After some time, you'll learn what is the one trick that will work best for your newborn (and finally get your baby to sleep again).
LET'S NOT FORGET: A NEWBORN IS A JOY
Being a first-time mother and having a newborn usually means sleepless nights, multitasking, and lots of responsibility and challenges. Those words alone are exhausting.
However, let's not forget that it's all temporary, so we should make the most of this period. Before we know it, they're already running around as toddlers. Six months go by so fast. We should enjoy the days and nights with our babies because no matter what we do, time will pass anyway.