1. Don’t wait until “baby is older”. At 7 weeks we took BellaRae hiking! She loved being in the carrier and Daddy helped us up and down rocks- it was a lot of fun and she slept most of the time.
Since then we have taken her pretty much everywhere with us instead of saying “We can’t do that/go there, we have a baby…”.
2. Your body will change so much. If you are fit before and during your pregnancy you have so much of a better chance of not keeping all those visible changes too long but if you are 96 lbs and end up at 145+ lbs, there will be changes. That’s been one of the hardest things for me. There has been lots of crying over the added weight that only stayed in the middle.
3. It’s ok to ask for help. In the first few weeks and months, having a little person who needs your constant attention and care often becomes overwhelming. I’m speaking as a first time mom with no other children but I imagine it can be just as overwhelming when you have a second child. When you need a break to take a shower or just want to go get groceries by yourself, just ask someone for help. Some moms don’t have people in their lives who are available to help them and to them I would say, “You can do this and you are my hero.”
4. Breastfeeding is not for everyone. Uh-oh. I said it. Why? Because I was so “encouraged” to breastfeed that I felt like a huge (HUGE) failure when it didn’t work out. BellaRae wasn’t gaining weight quickly enough and it surely wasn’t a bonding experience. I cried so much and felt like I was letting myself down as well as letting my daughter down. Don’t let situations like this define whether you are a good mom or not.
5. It’s ok not to listen to everyone’s advice. It’s also ok to listen and file the info away. Other Mom’s mean well and maybe their solution’s/instructions worked for them but it might not work for you. Side note: the pediatrician does not have the last word. Thank God, we have a great pediatrician but I take everything he says as a guideline and do what I think is best for my child. So far, we haven’t had much more than checkups so this would change a bit if she was sick. This is clearly a matter of personal opinion. Basically, use prayer and good judgement. Also- Google doesn’t know everything.
6. Being a mom is the most fun thing- EVER! I love everything about this new way of life for us. I absolutely love this life with our daughter. It has been so much fun to watch as she grows, tries new foods(as mom and dad video the funny faces), developed a personality and now she has a little vocabulary and will soon walk. I’ve spent hours encouraging her to say words and stand on her own. I think about her all day at work and can’t wait to pick her up and come home to play with her. She is so happy and it’s contagious!
7. I AM a good Mom. Before BellaRae was born, I worried so much about being good enough or wise enough to be her Mom. The more time goes by I realize more and more that I AM good at this. THIS is what I was meant to do. THIS is what God prepared me for, even in the wait and the loss of our other babies. THIS is my purpose- and I LOVE IT!
I’ve had a very blessed first Mother’s Day and hope you sweet Mom’s did too. I realize there are many who’s hearts ache for a child or maybe even grieve for a child that was taken too soon. I pray for God’s love and peace to wash over you and fill all the cracks of your broken heart. I’ve been there. I’ve also felt healing in my heart that only God gives. Many hugs to you!