things i would tell a new mom | olive june

things i would tell a new mom

i remember vividly what it's like to have a wiggly, tiny new life in your arms. everything seems unknown and exhausting and new and hazy and wonderful. you'll be tired, you will probably go longer than normal without showering, your meals will often be cold, and there will be tears. (sometimes you won't even know why.) one of my biggest pieces of advice is to try and lean on people who bring you up and encourage you. supportive 'mom friends' and family members can make the biggest difference in the world. always remember that it's okay to delegate and it's okay to ask for help. they will both make you a better mom. today i thought i would share some of the things i would tell new mothers, in hope of encouraging and lifting up as many as possible. 

 one of the first things i would tell a new mom would be, 'bless you... if you're trying, you're doing a great job." and in many ways, it does get better. and to be honest, in some ways, it doesn't. (enter moving... running, exploring, teething.) but it's all worth it, each and every step. the hardest parts for me were definitely the recovery from my c-section (here is my postpartum survival guide for a c-section) and then my (many) struggles with nursing... more than the lack of sleep (i actually missed him throughout the night and almost got excited to see him when he did wake up.) i know not everyone probably feels the same but that's honestly how i felt. (and i also know that with a toddler, i will, more than likely, not feel this same way- at all- the next time around). and maybe it's because i always wanted to be a mom, but i discovered that i was much more confident (something i had always yearned for...) and yet much calmer than i had ever been before. i often think that it's because of the many things that have now become a simply joy. (or that my cares and worries for this world were changed) 

here are some things i believe + advice: 
1. i was told by a grandma + nurse practitioner once... 'babies can’t be loved too much. you can't spoil them. if all you do for the first two years is love them ... i think that is great!'
2. trust your gut and go with what works for your family 
3. work/life balance is not easy! just try your best and don't forget to kiss your partner 
4. parks has always been a fantastic sleeper. but my advice for sleep... again, do what works for your family. if co-sleeping works for you and you are passionate about it, do it. (we do on occasion and i secretly love it.) if your baby needs a strict schedule, do it. if you need to sleep train, do it. again, follow your motherly instinct and do what works best for your family and your baby.
5. so far year 1-2 is more exhausting than year 0-1
6. the baby stage is so, so short. enjoy every moment. and even if your baby is colicky and cries a lot, smile at your baby often (i read this once and it really stuck with me) sometimes i remind myself to show parks as many smiles a day as i can. 
7. don't be afraid to venture out with your baby and don't be afraid to travel... it isn't as scary as it seems and you can do it! 
8. the whole world will crack up once they can talk! 
9. try not to de-code everything... once you have the sleep, eating, activities, etc. figured out, your baby's needs will change. everything is just a phase. try to relax and take it all in. 
11. we all mess up... give yourself a break (often!) ... you will need it. you will feel like you want to 'get back to normal' ... but the truth is, you won't ever be back to that norm ... because your family is creating a new 'normal.' 
12. surround yourself early on with moms who will come and just be with you... who are supportive and will hang with you, not people who just tell you how they did it/push things on you. when people give you advice, smile, nod and stick the advice in your parenting toolbox. maybe you’ll use it, maybe you won’t. but be open and kind to other mommas and their specific ways ~ we are all trying our very best. 
13. shower, get dressed, and get out of the house daily, even if it's just a walk around the block.
14. i think it's important to remember that just like you are new at being a mother, the baby is also new and has no expectations of you. you are learning together. i also think it's important to tell yourself, 'he/she is is only a baby, he/she doesn't know what else to do," when the baby is crying/refusing to sleep/flailing, etc. 
15. motherhood is 'magical.' you will magically adapt to the things you never imagined you would be able to handle. you will find strength you never knew you had. love, love, love that sweet baby.
your baby is beautiful and you will feel like yourself again!
so much love to all of the new moms... hugs. xo
what advice would you add? 
ps: we are still visiting loved ones in my hometown and are enjoying the peacefulness of the country
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  1. I love this so much. Phoenix isn't the easiest baby and on the really hard days I always tell him, I know, it's really hard being a baby! :-)

    1. awe, i am so glad!! you are so cute and phoenix is so lucky to have you as his momma!! <3 thank you for the love. xo

    2. ps: i think we are scarily on the same page sometimes because right after i posted, i thought about the wonder weeks app. parks was never a fussy baby (our next one is probably going to give us a run for our money!!) but i loved seeing how he was developing physically, emotionally and mentally!!

  2. This made me teary! I completely agree with everything you said. xox

    1. awe, <3 you and hope you are all well. thank you