Well-meaning people give lots of unsolicited advice to pregnant moms. These are sometimes the same people that touch your stomach without permission (don’t you hate that?). Some of their tips are good, others not so much. Often advice is based on old superstitions and might sound silly. However, people often don’t give you the information that would be most helpful. Below is my top 8 list of important things new moms really do need to know!
1. You will become a performer
Even those of us who hate to sing and dance will provide entertainment daily for our little ones. Being a mom means memorizing all the lyrics to every kid song because you will sing to them during bath time, meal time and bed time. Dancing with little ones is a great way to help kids use up excess energy, and a stress release for you at the same time.
2. You will not be able to give your pet the same time and attention
Animals are part of the family in many households. As much as we love our pets, the reality is that with a new baby, your time and attention will be limited. Try to figure out in advance how you will continue to take care of your “first” baby before you get home from the hospital. You might want to enlist the help of a neighbor or friend to feed, walk or play with your pet.
3. A clean house may be a thing of the past
Of course you will sometimes have a clean house. But how long will it last? You will have new equipment and stuffed animals with which to contend, as well as legos, games and dress up clothes when the baby becomes a toddler. Kids have a way of leaving messes in their wake. The solution? Lower your standards. Happy children are more important than an always clean house.
4. You will want a minivan or SUV instead of your sporty car
You may have laughed at your friends when they traded in their hot car for a more sensible one, but you will understand after you start a family of your own!
5. Your definition of the word “vacation” will change
A new baby takes up a lot of your resources – time, energy and money – and makes travel more difficult. You will find that a spa day or a night out with your partner might take the place of a cancun vacation for now. However, a little me time after starting a family goes a long way toward feeling refreshed and energized.
6. Your relationship with your mother-in-law may change
You may find your in-laws enamored with their new grandchild, and with you by association. Anyone who loves your baby should be welcome in their lives, and your mother-in-law may surprise you by being helpful to you and appreciative of your parenting skills. Try to be open to developing a new and different relationship with her even if you did not get along well prior to the baby,
7. You will be less judgemental of other moms
Were you the woman who complained about the baby crying in the restaurant or the toddler running up and down the aisle on the plane? Motherhood is a tough job and you will appreciate support and understanding from others when the baby comes. Hopefully you will be supportive and understanding in return.
8. Friendships will change.
You may find that spending time with other parents who have children of similar ages is easier than with old friends without children. The friends without kids may not understand the time commitment and exhaustion that is inevitable with a new baby. The really good friends will try to be patient and you will be able to pick up where you left off when the baby gets older. Other friendships will go by the wayside as you will no longer have the energy to make them work. On the bright side, you will gain new mom friends who will provide much needed support during this exciting and wonderful phase of life.
Photo courtesy of cafemom.com