Don’t just survive, rock it!! I’ve done lots of babysitting in my past but mostly with toddlers so I was pretty nervous about having an infant. I mean what do you do? They can’t play… They just eat and sleep pretty much. Here is how my first week went and some tips for you, new mommy!! I’d have to say we were pretty blessed with how our first week went.
Personally I was soooo surprised about this part. I know that everyone says you never sleep (which is true) but I thought it was going to be so much worse then it was. I’m so cranky when I don’t get my sleep, too. I like to say I’m not a morning or a night owl, I’m a sleep person! I love my sleep! But I learned a few things after having my son.
- I slept sooooo much better. I had turned into an insomniac while pregnant. I couldn’t sleep and if I did I had horrible dreams. I learned that 2-3 hours of solid sleep is wayyyy better then 7 hours tossing and turning and having nightmares of being murdered.
- I also must have had hormones or something kick in because I literally could not sleep past 2-3 hours. So getting up for feedings was not as hard as I thought it would be!
- Spencer would get up with me. Trust me, before your husband goes back to work get them involved!! I literally did not change one diaper at the hospital, he did it all 🙂 He would also get up with me to keep me company and to go get a bottle if I needed him to. Just having someone to talk to makes it a LOT easier to stay awake!
- Really, really new newborns sleep a lot. This wears off quickly. 😉 But, my son slept a lot more then I was anticipating! They pretty much wake up just long enough to eat and then pass out again. So if you sleep when baby sleeps, you are golden! Trust me though, this stage wears off FAST. So enjoy it while it lasts!!
- Have a diaper changing station in all the rooms you use a lot! That way if you have stairs you don’t have to go up and down all the time. You aren’t supposed to anyways. 😉 It’s also super helpful to have one right next to your bed.
- My son cried so much every time we changed his diaper because he was cold. Try and change their diaper on a soft blanket or changing pad it helps keep them warm. Or you can use the PJ’s with the snaps so you can just unbutton the bottom without unzipping and letting all the cold air in!
Side note: My goal was to exclusively breastfeed my son and while he is still breastfed, we have had lots of issues and I’m still supplementing with formula. So I have some tips for both breastfeeding and formula feeding mommies!
- Stock up on your movies or start paying for Netflix, seriously!! It takes a long time to get it established even if they do great. My son literally wanted to eat every hour during the day. So get comfortable on the couch and watch your favorite seasons while he feeds! While I was really working with it on my son we watched all the seasons of Bewitched, I Love Lucy, Gilligan’s Island, Monk and a bunch of movies. That is sooo many episodes but when you get stuck on the couch for hours and hours feeding and holding him while they sleep… You’ll be thankful you hit “Play all!”
- Find your nearest weight clinic and take the baby to get weighed. Even if it’s going awesome it’s good to check and make sure they are gaining the weight properly. My hospital offers this for free and I got to go have a free lactation consult and then they weighed him to see that he was getting enough. Yes, I did this in addition to having the in home visit and the one week check with the Pediatrician. It’s worth it!! They can lose weight so quickly it’s insane! My son was born at 5lbs 10oz and dropped to 4lbs 11oz in two days. It’s also good to keep checking them on the same scale so you know you are getting accurate weight differences since scale to scale the numbers vary.
- Get a boppy or some kind of nursing pillow, they really help! They make it much more comfortable for you and baby.
- Do not sit in bed all day, mama! Use the bed at night but go somewhere else to work on nursing during the day. I would go down to my living room and prop up on the couch. It will make you feel soooo much better. Just a change in atmosphere makes it a little better. You can definently get cabin fever spending all day in your house!
- When we realized my son wasn’t getting enough breast milk, we were told immediately to start supplementing with formula. This was at his two day in home visit! So in the middle of the night I’d have to get out of my warm comfy bed and go down to the kitchen to mix up his formula. I learned to keep a cooler by my bed! It worked AWESOME! It wouldn’t last all night long, but made it so every other feeding I didn’t need to go get something. Just make sure you have enough ice packs to keep it cold however long you are going to leave it in there.
- If you are exclusively formula feeding, mix it up ahead of time and keep it in the fridge so it is ready to go!
- Have a safe place in your kitchen to put baby down. I put my Rock ‘N Play in the kitchen so I could mix up a bottle. It makes it so much faster to get a bottle ready when you have two hands!
Also if people want to bring you food or help out, go ahead and let them!! You really do need some good food and I’m sure your husband will appreciate a good meal. We had people come 2-3 times a week for two weeks to bring us meals and I feel like that was perfect. Some days you just don’t need visitors! My mom or my husband would hold the baby for me so I could nap by myself or grab a shower. Seriously don’t slack on the showers!! A good quick shower can improve your mood sooooo much when you are tired. Daddy can handle him for five minutes! 🙂 Don’t forget to drink lots of water and have some snacks, too! It’s easy to forget about your own needs but you can take better care of your baby when you are hydrated and comfortable.
If you are a coffee drinking kind of person, consider making cold press coffee ahead of time. It can last in your fridge up to two weeks and makes it easy to grab your coffee for the day. 🙂
Baby laundry can really be a challenge to stay on top of. Check out my other post here on some tips for keeping up with laundry! Click here to see some of my favorite newborn products, total lifesavers!!!
All of this information is what worked for my son and I. Don’t expect everything to be same! The best mind set is to expect the unexpected and roll with the punches. It will be hard and no matter how much you prepare, you just can’t plan for it all. Mommy hood is hard but so worth it!
Comment below any tips you might have or any questions. I’d love to hear from you!!!