Breastfeeding is crazy hard: before you try it and people ask ‘Are you going to breastfeed’ my naive self thought ‘of course I will! Its cheap and BEST FOR MY BABY’ indignantly before thinking my second thought which was ‘dang, is that any of your business?’ No one talks about growth spurts, low production or heinous titty injuries. Really. Lets all talk about these over happy hour please.
Give your new one a minute to finish her business: don’t whisk that diaper out from under a new baby right away, that is, unless you love using 3 diapers per change. Everyone’s got a story about baby boy peeing in your mouth, but now I have fun stories about Baby M peeing a quart the second I pull a brand new diaper under her – or better yet – the downpour drifts right off the changing surface onto the collateral below.
Daytime TV is really the pits: Ellen and the lunchtime Sex and the City reruns are the highlights of the day. Get Netflix.
Don’t bring new parents a Casserole: or do, but please know we are probably sick of them by week 2. Fresh produce or milk is probably appreciated though, that’s likely gone bad.
Don’t take relentless crying personally: they look SO SAD and SO ANGRY, but rest assured its unfortunately a babies only form of communication, try not to let a jag rattle you too bad. Its also okay if you’re on the potty and it takes you three minutes to reach their already beet-red, enraged looking little bodies.
In the same vein…
Babies love to cry at the most inconvenient times: ahhh, babies been resting quietly for 15 minutes; time to call a friend and catch up or pour a hot cup of coffee. Oh no, stop right there – that is a surefire way to start the insane squalling.
You will doubt yourself more than you’ve ever doubted yourself before. It gets better, but slowly; way too slowly. Don’t let the perfect image of parenting from a neighbor, Facebook friend or god forbid, a baby blog, get you down. You’ll probably feel like a tired crazy sack of $%#@ much much longer than feels appropriate.
Try to leave the house fairly regularly: if you don’t life feels like one long day with intermittent naps. It’s unsettling as all get out. Short walks, drives, grocery runs or a cup of coffee count.
On the risk of sounding trite: enjoy the little things. Who cares if your newborn can’t smile for real and its only an instinct or gas? Smile back at her and enjoy it anyway! Don’t diet. Eat too much Brie cheese and grapes for lunch; pretend its a cocktail hour. Invite friends and family over even though your house (most likely) looks like trash, you get good conversation and two free hands while they hold the baby!
Keep good records – take pictures; time will fly by way too fast!