By: Kristina Cross
You will not sleep
At least not for the first three months (unless you’re super lucky and you have a super baby that likes to sleep. But no one wants to know that). Baby will likely wake up every 2-3 hours for a feeding which, in translation, leaves you with 45 minutes to an hour to sleep, eat, or do whatever else you have to do before the next feeding. It’s zombie living at its best, yo.
It’s normal to want to scream, cry, or simply want to disappear in the first couple weeks. First of all, the sleep deprivation is a shock to your system. Secondly, you all of a sudden have a little being to look after – one that depends on you for its very existence. Scream at the top of your lungs, cry until your tears run dry, or disappear (if even for a couple of minutes in the washroom) to regain your composure. Your partner will understand (just tell him it’s hormones and he’ll look the other way) and you’ll feel much better. Don’t be embarrassed or afraid if you feel like you’re having a mental breakdown – it’s completely normal.
Babies grow at record speed
All those cute newborn, 0 to 3 months, 3 to 6 months (and so on) clothes don’t exactly last even close to the months that they’re promised to. Newborn clothes last about two weeks, 0-3 months typically last up to two months and the same goes for the next size up until 18-24 months. My tip? Don’t go uber crazy on baby clothes, as cute as they may be. Save the shopping sprees for 2T and up.
Bonding with baby
You may not have an instant bond with your baby like in those diaper commercials and that is okay. I had an emergency c-section with my firstborn without going through any labour or contractions (I’m sure some of you are thinking I’m super lucky) and was so drugged up, I wasn’t able to find that instant connection with my son when he was placed into my arms. The first couple days were a blur and as much as I knew I loved this little baby, I felt like a failure for not feeling the love. It took a couple weeks, and a couple of breakdowns later, for me to start feeling that special bond with my son. I swear, the post-partum hormones are crazy and baby blues are completely normal.
You’re not Superwoman
As much as you’d like to think you are, you just aren’t Superwoman. You don’t have super powers and you sure don’t have super strength. I had a conversation with a group of moms today and was relieved to find out that I wasn’t the only one that used one of the beds in the house as a laundry dump. Like, literally, a place where you have to spend 15 minutes and dig through piles of laundry to find a matching pair of socks. Seriously, I feel so much better to know that these laundry piles do exist in other houses. And they exist because we can’t be in 20 places at one time doing 20 different things.
One last word of advice for all you super mamas: if you’re offered help, take it! Never refuse the help!
Kristina Cross, currently on maternity leave, is a mother of three and a lover of anything to do with shopping, spending money and hot summer weather. She writes about her family lifestyle on her blog, SwankMama, and provides her readers with an inside look into her life, as well as product reviews and giveaways suitable for her audience.
Photo Credit: Jan de Graaf