Some people say that becoming a new mom is scary. I mean, you now have a tiny human you need care for. Making sure they are eating enough, sleeping enough but not too much, and when to start baby food. There is a lot to think about when you are starting out your mom journey.
From my personal experience, I didn’t think it was that scary. I was more excited about meeting my baby than scared of the actual parenting side of things. But, I completely understand the worry that can be there when this is your first time. Most first times for anything can be scary.
I too have been a new mom, and I have some helpful tips for new moms out there that are looking for some ideas and support. This is an exciting journey you are starting and you should be able to enjoy all the moments you spend with your little one.
You might have heard about all these things you need for your baby like a changing table, swings, and bouncy seats. While these things can come in handy, they are not that necessary. If you don’t have a lot of space in your home, then you don’t have to worry about buying everything you think you might need.
Use the top of the dresser for a changing table. There are changing pads you can buy that fit perfectly on top of dressers. This will eliminate an extra piece of furniture you don’t really need. You also don’t have to buy everything right now. Your baby won’t be crawling for a while so I would eliminate the walkers and other toys the baby won’t be using for months.
I recommend getting a bassinet in addition to the crib. Yes, this is an extra piece, but you will be happy you did. Bassinets are portable, making it easier for you to get to your baby for midnight feedings. I kept the bassinet right beside my bed. When you are feeding more often in the early weeks and months, it’s really nice to have your baby in the same room as you.
As far as the big items, I would say all you need in addition to setting up your baby’s room, is blankets for tummy time when that time comes, a small swing or bouncy seat (but you really only need one) and small things to entertain your little one while he or she is awake.
Feeding Your Baby
Typically, you will be feeding your baby about every 3 hours. Whether you are breastfeeding or bottle feeding, it’s nice to have a comfy chair to sit in. When you are up at 3 am feeding, you will want to be comfortable. A lot of people will offer you advice (sometimes they’re more like demands) on how you should do things and the right way of doing it.
It is more important for you to listen to your baby to figure out what he or she needs. Sometimes the advice we are given is good advice and really works. Sometimes it’s better for you to do what feels right for you. This is your baby and your family. You will know what feels right, and it’s okay to not take peoples advice.
It really helps to have an area for feeding setup and ready for each feeding ahead of time. So when you are waking up in the middle of the night, or just coming home from somewhere, you already have the space ready without running around collecting everything.
Things you should prepare for each feeding beforehand.
- Burp cloths
- Bottled water and snacks for mom
- Nursing pillow if you are breastfeeding or for more comfort
- Bottles and formula if you are using them
- Blanket and sometimes soft music is nice so it’s not completely quiet
The main goal here is to prepare ahead of time so when it is time to feed your baby everything is ready and you can both relax and be happy and comfortable.
Changing Diapers and Cleaning Messes
Trust me when I say, you will need a lot of diapers. At this point, you might have different brands of diapers and a lot of them from people buying things you might need ahead of time. However, all diapers are not made for all babies. You might have to try a couple different brands before you find the one that will work with your baby without causing any rashes.
I recommend starting with the smallest pack of whichever brand you choose first to be sure your baby won’t have a reaction before buying a lot of the same kind. Diaper rash cream is a great thing to have on hand and plenty of it. It really does help and it might seem like something you will barely use, but sometimes it can be something you use a lot.
In addition to the changing station in the baby’s room, it is also nice to have a portable mat to use throughout the house. It’s nice to think of having the perfect space to use, but having portable items and not having to go to that designated spot will make things easier sometimes.
If you spend a lot of your time in your living room, a decorative box or storage container can be useful to keep burp cloths, diapers, wipes, rash cream, and extra clothes in.
Bonding With Your Baby
Bonding is the most fun with your baby. It is never too early to read to your baby. I mean, isn’t a bookshelf one of the most popular items for your baby’s room? Your baby will like hearing your voice and this can help when they start making sounds and forming words.
Babies cry for many reasons. They could be hungry, have a dirty diaper, too hot, tired, or maybe they just want some attention. They cry because it is their way of communicating with us until they can talk or show us what they need. Follow your baby’s cues and you will soon figure out what they need or want.
Sometimes just feeling you near and/or hearing your voice is all they need at the moment. At one point when my son was about 2 months old, I would hold him in my arms in front of me with his head in my hands as I swayed him from side to side. This was the most comfortable thing for him. You will find creative things to help soothe your baby too.
You got This
When it really comes down to it, you will know what you need to do and what your baby needs. You can listen to advice and use what you choose to. You can decorate and buy anything you want for your baby. You will know as you bond with your baby, what works and what doesn’t.
Everybody is different, and every baby is different. It’s the time that you spend with them and the attention you pay that will tell you what you need to do. you will learn what your baby likes and how your baby likes to be held. In the moments you don’t know what to do. Think about what your baby might need. They are fed and changed, maybe they need to sleep or maybe they just want to move.
Enjoy your time with your baby. Listen to your instincts, and watch your baby as they want and need. You will figure it out. You got this.