I’m thrilled to be starting this new post series!! I’ve reached out to the women in my life, at all completely different stages of motherhood, and invited them to share their experiences and opinions on various topics to do with kids and parenting. I’m calling this series, Mommy Panel Mondays! Today is our first post!!
This week we’re talking about newborn experiences, but I want to hear from you! What topics and/or questions would you like to ask the mommy panel? Leave a comment and let me know!!
A HUGE THANK YOU to the mommies who contributed to this panel. It’s not always easy talking about our struggles, but your candidness makes our community of mommies stronger! Thank you!!
When you were pregnant with your first baby, what did you think would be the most difficult part of caring for your newborn?
When I was pregnant with Adelaide, I was terrified that I wouldn’t know what my infant needed when she cried. This idea of “mommy instinct” that I would just KNOW what she needed, wasn’t good enough. HOW WILL I KNOW!? ALL CRYING SOUNDS THE SAME!? AHH! haha!
Hi there! It’s me! How could I not jump in on this awesome panel!? I may not post every week…maybe I will!? I just love talking about babies and newborn days and so yes, I’m pitching in on this topic this week 🙂 You can read more about me on my About page.
I would definitely say that I think the feeding process is going to be the most difficult part. I’m currently pregnant with my first and I’m anxious about it. In listening to new mom’s over the years breastfeeding has always come with warnings like “you’re going to cry and hate it but you have to do it, every 3 hours,” or “nipple infections are horrible,” or “you’ll be in so much pain but just keep doing it!” I know the nutritional value of breastfeeding and everyone says “you have to do it” but I’ll admit, even though formula doesn’t carry the antibodies or nutritional elements breast milk has, formula doesn’t seem like something out of a horror film. I know I‘ll be fine when my bundle of joy comes but I’ll be glad when my second little one comes along so I’ll know more of what to expect.
I am currently excited and pregnant with our first little one which is due February 25th. I own a creative studio with my husband Nick called Naissance and work as a Producer/Director in the San Francisco Bay Area. I am going to be a first time mommy so I will be in that great stage where everything is new, exciting and more often than not a little overwhelming!
I thought motherhood was going to be easy-peasy, maybe with just a little less sleep. I’d had a lot of past child care experience and somehow figure that being a live-in-nanny for 6 and 8 year olds would give me all the know-how I’d need for having my own child. It did not.
Age 32, going on 84. Currently living in Littleton, CO but I grew up in the south San Francisco Bay Area. My Husband and I have one daughter, Harper, who is four, and I’m just now starting to toy with the idea of trying for number two, if I can get my hubby on board. Currently teaching preschool, but before becoming a mom, I worked worked various jobs with kids or in retail—one of which was owning my own retail store in Steamboat Springs. Additional info: In the first grade, I was diagnosed with ADHD and dyslexia. I’ve known that Harper also has ADHD since she was two, though it’s taken longer for doctor’s to get on board with that diagnosis. It’s both a blessing and a curse to be the ADHD mom of an ADHD kid, and I’m still trying to figure out how to navigate through our day-to-day life.
I had had a ton of experience with babies and toddlers and preschoolers (I was a Gymboree teacher, nanny, babysitter, etc…) but newborns were completely foreign to me. I had absolutely no idea what caring for a newborn would be like! So the whole thing seemed difficult.
Age 30, living in San Jose, CA. One three-year-old boy, one boy due in November. I work part time as an office administrator of Dwell Christian Church…I get to pick my kiddo up from preschool and come home and take a mommy/son nap! I do have my own blog at: daily-christian.blogspot.com – my writings and interests are spiritual, healthful, funny and crafty.
As a first time mom, what did you find to actually be the most difficult part of caring for your newborn?
The hardest part was learning to ask for help, and realizing that it was okay if I couldn’t do it all on my own. I remember it was 2 am and my husband walked downstairs to find both my daughter and I hysterically crying, while I was hooked up to the breast pump, unable to get up to sooth my daughter, because it never occurred to my tired brain to just detach myself from the stupid pump. He told me to hand over the baby and go to bed. That’s when it hit me, “I don’t need to figure this out by myself”.
So, the mommy instinct thing turned out to be a non-issue. I really did know what was wrong 90% of the time, and when I didn’t know, it was a simple process of elimination to figure it out. What totally thew me for a loop, was the sleep deprivation. Holy moly…I had no idea the extent to which the human body is capable of functioning with such little sleep. I was pushed to a completely new set of limits that I didn’t know existed in my life. The worst part was not knowing when the sleepless nights were going to end. It felt like they were going to continue for the rest of my life! I didn’t have any hindsight to understand how truly short-lived those newborn days really are.
As a first time mama, the sleep thing was the craziest part. Thankfully after the first few weeks of breast-feeding, my kiddo had that down, so feeding was good. He usually didn’t cry for seemingly no reason, so that was another thing that was OK. But figuring out how and when and how long to sleep and trying to lengthen that and plan it all…it STILL is proving to be a crazy chess match that I’m constantly playing in my own head!
Looking back on those first few weeks with a brand new baby, what would you have told your brand-new-mom-self? Did you/would you do anything different during those newborn weeks with subsequent children?
IT WILL GET BETTER! IT WILL NOT BE THIS WAY FOREVER!! When Cadence came along, I had the wisdom of hindsight! I knew that the sleepless nights would only last 6-8 weeks, so I was ready. We had a plan in place, and I was so much more calm about the whole newborn phase. Even though I was again, super sleep deprived and a zombie, I had the advantage of being able to step back, remember that it WILL GET BETTER, and then smile at that tiny baby through my tired, blurry eyes. 🙂
Now I know that even if I didn’t have a significant other, I have support that I could call at all hours who would help without thinking twice. And I know that I’m never above asking for that help if needed.
Now that I’m going to give birth again (God-willing) in a couple months, I hope that I can chill out and go with the flow a little more. Yes to general schedules but NO to freaking out about them and too much comparing them to others’. If the kid is thriving and seems happy, I think I can be happy with that! LESS book-reading and MORE trusting my mama instincts and doing what is right for our family. 🙂
So what did you think!? Did you enjoy reading about other mama’s experiences? Now it’s your turn! Leave a comment below with a topic or question you’d like to ask the panel.
If you want to join the panel, send me a Facebook message and I’ll make sure you get added to the group!