Saturday, May 24, 2014

10 Reminders to Myself About Life with a Newborn


I was reflecting over these past 4 weeks of motherhood, and I decided I needed to write myself some reminders for when we have baby #2 (which won't be for a long time)...and I'll probably repeat them to myself in the coming months as well ;)
In proper Holly fashion, these reminders about a new life with a newborn will be in list format...

1. Give yourself grace. You are not perfect and neither is he...and that's what makes it beautiful. Take deep breaths. You are not meant to have this/him figured out right away (although the solver in you wishes it were so). Don't feel guilty for feeling frustrated, overwhelmed, exhausted or scared. We already know you love this little baby more than words can express (duh, you blogged about it), so allow yourself to be real. Give yourself grace.

2. Pray, pray, pray. The Lord loves this little one ten million times more than you do. He made him, and He knows what's best. He is sovereign and His ways are so good. You can trust Him. Pray His power would be made perfect in your weakness as 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 proclaims. (Remember how He used those verses to grow you in college!)

3. Remember you have an incredible support system. You are insanely blessed with a supportive family and many friends nearby. Keep asking for help. Or text them constantly. Be in communication with others frequently so you do not feel alone. It's healthy to get out of the house sans baby at least once those first two weeks.

4. Thank those in item #3 either with words or acts. It doesn't have to be right away, but they need to know how much you needed them and were thankful for them. You need to show the same love to them that they provided for you.

5. As a friend recently told me, "the first month is just bananas." It sure is. It's wonderful, unpredictable, exciting, and trying beyond anything you could ever prepare for (sorry Miss Type A). It's just bananas. Really, bananas. Embrace all the feelings and accept those crazy hormones. Remember there are fun, proud and silly moments in there too!

6. Remember you are normal. The hormones hit every mother, not just you. No one else has it all figured out, nor should they/you. To feel out of control yet so deeply moved and in love is normal. No need to compare yourself with others, just remember you are becoming a better version of you through this.

7. It's not meant to be easy. But it will get better. The hormones and initial chaos dissipate and you're left with an incredible miracle. The sleep-deprived state of psychosis won't last, and you'll get used to 2-3 hour stretches of sleep. Hang in there because you will make it.

8. Take one day at a time. Feel free to make those sleep schedules and plans for the future. I know you will anyway. But when it's difficult just focus on today. Other hard things will inevitably come, but you only need to be in the present. 

9. Tell Corey how much you love him and continue to let/ask him to help. He is already a fantastic daddy and needs to be reminded of this on a consistent basis. Plan date nights (ice cream, walks, dinner, movie) together...even if the date lasts one hour, it's totally worth it.

10. Try to rest when possible in order to have enough energy to soak in every detail. 
The tiny, soft feet as they rub against your skin when he feeds. The alert eyes, strong neck muscles, and tight grasp. His scent when he gets a bath. The humming sounds he makes when he eats. His alarmingly loud toots and the faces that accompany them. His smiles when you tickle his belly. His sighs and snorts he makes while sleeping. His head full of that silky hair. That face he makes when he lifts his eyebrows real high and lifts his head back. How he has to have at least one hand on the bottle at all times. How he melts into your chest after a fit of crying. The way he stretches when you wake him from a nap. The smell of that formula that's landed all over everyone and everything.

He is amazing, and he is yours.

 This time is precious, Holly...and you will do a stellar job.



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