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A list of awesome advice for the FTM or any mom really

Forum: 2013 Playroom


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  • 7 Post By navywifey2003
  • 2 Post By QueenCrafty

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May 25th, 2013, 02:33 PM
navywifey2003's Avatar Home Birth Mama
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Clovis, CA
Posts: 37,585
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So my friend Brie is in the September DDC and she wrote this amazing list of advice she wished she had listened too when she was a FTM, I thought it was fantastic so I stole it.

So here's a list of things I wish I had listened to when I was pregnant with Sawyer. Take it for what it is and don't let it stress you out. I'm not your mother and won't be offended if you don't think of it as your new Baby Bible.

1. Put away your pride, bite the bullet and watch a d*mn car seat installation video. I say this not because you're not a smart, wonderful mother. I say this because almost EVERYONE does it wrong at first. My IQ is astronomical and I still managed to strap my kid in incorrectly until one of my car seat Nazi friends pointed it out. I saw a picture on facebook last night of my dear friend April's new baby strapped into his car seat and I almost had a heart attack. Look, even if you're not doing it wrong, watch a video and pat yourself on the back for being so fantastic.

2. Play with your baby. No, I mean REALLY play with your baby. From birth to adulthood. And not YOUR games either. Their games. Get down on the ground and play with their annoying little singing computer. Read them the same book twenty times in a row. Make up songs about monkey butts. Whatever they want. Just sit there and be engaged with ONLY them. Turn off your phone, shut down your computer, stop thinking about anything else and just PLAY. I never got really into this with Sawyer and I regret it so much. There's nothing quite so rewarding as making your baby laugh. And it's addictive!

3. Hold your baby. A lot. First of all, scientifically, this is what you are biologically supposed to do. Especially if you're not breast feeding, this is super important. Baby is constantly releasing happy signals to YOUR brain. Even the way that babies smell is specifically designed by science to make you fall in love with them. So hold them close, take all of it in and watch the bond become completely unbreakable. There will be times when you're tired and need to put baby in a swing for a little while... and the second a baby falls asleep, I'm the kind of mom that puts him down and runs for my bed. But don't miss the opportunity to hold your baby while you can. They lose some of their desire for quiet snuggles as they get more active, so don't miss out on doing this when they're really little.

** You will encounter people who tell you not to hold your baby too much and that you are making him/her too dependent on you. Punch those people in the face. Baby is supposed to be dependent on you. That's just science.

4. Don't save your cutest baby outfits for a "special occasion." Because you know what? That occasion will FINALLY come and then the outfit won't fit. And when you put that beautiful little dress in a box in the attic with the tags still attached to it, you will cry. Probably a lot. Play dress up with your baby. Even if you're doing nothing that day. Take pictures and send them to Daddy and the grandmas. They will love it as much as you do. There has been at LEAST one outfit that got neglected with all four of my children and I was sad when I had to pack it up or give it away. It may seem like a silly thing, but it will matter to you later, I swear.

5. Don't get hung up on "milestones." Every baby is different and growing up isn't a competition. Don't make it that way. My nephew was born a few months before Sebastian. Both his parents work full time and I'm a stay at home mom. When Sebastian started talking, their baby wasn't even close to forming real words and they were visibly aggravated by this. What they failed to see is that Sebastian talking first didn't mean he was any smarter than their baby... it just means that I had nothing better to do all day than to sit there and say "MAMA" over and over and over again.

6. Don't expect baby to conform to your "schedule." Baby doesn't care that you have yoga at 8 am. Baby doesn't care that you're tired. Baby doesn't care that you're already 20 minutes late for a meeting. He will throw up on you at HIS convenience. Not yours. It's an easy concept to grasp... but much harder to accept when it's the real deal. And honestly, the best thing that you can do for at least the first few months is just... give up. Seriously. Recognize that you BELONG to this baby now. He needs you more than you need him and that's the job you signed up for when you created him. There are certainly things you can do to make all this easier and those things are different for every baby... but especially at first, there is no way to get baby to understand that you have a life outside of his world. So don't bother trying. You'll just end up fighting a battle with yourself and that's basically pointless.

7. If you think your baby needs to go to the doctor, take her to the doctor. If the doctor tells you that baby is fine and you don't agree, take that baby to another doctor. Mother's intuition is a powerful thing. Trust yourself.

8. Know when to ask for help (and when to push through and do it yourself). Being a new mom is HARD. I didn't take well to it for several months and was constantly asking my mom to hold/feed/change/bathe Sawyer. Until I moved back to my own house... and then it was just him and I... and I was absolutely terrified. But! I struggled through, made mistakes, cherished small victories and Sawyer and I figured things out together. That's a good thing. And everyone needs to be alone with their baby... especially their first... just to figure out how to swim rather than sink. However, if it's 3 in the morning, baby is screaming bloody murder, both of you are covered in spit up and tears and snot and god knows what else and your husband is laying face down in bed with a pillow over his head yelling "WHY WON'T SHE STOP CRYING???!!!! TRY SWADDLING HER AGAIN!!!"

I want you to stop.

I want you to curb your hysterical sobbing.

I want you to pick up the phone.

I want you to call your mother.

Grandma doesn't care if you call at 3 am with a baby screaming in the background. Grandma has been WAITING FOR THIS DAY. Grandma will give you a crap ton of advice that may or may not work. But even if it doesn't, you will be thankful that you called her because she will LISTEN and sympathize with you and reassure you that you are not the problem. You will feel better after this phone call (unless you have a crappy mom. In which case, don't call her. Call your MIL or your grandma or a friend that has 2 or more children. All those people will get it too. Hell, call me! I have a million kids and stay up late).

9. Get professional photos taken of your baby. I have only done this once and I wish I had done each of the kids separately when they were infants. I get SO jealous of people's infant pictures that it just pisses me off to look at them. Since this baby will be born right before my birthday, I have told EVERYONE that all I want is professional pictures of her. Babies only look brand new for a very short period of time. Don't let it pass you by without capturing it on film. You will totally regret it.

10. Don't be afraid of your baby. That may sound stupid, but I know so many people went through this with their first. Look, you are not going to break baby's neck the first time you put a onesie over his head. You are not going to drop baby the first time you carry her up some steps. You are not going to screw up baby forever if you don't hear him crying immediately. You are not going to hurt baby by changing her diaper. Baby is FINE. Baby is not a manifestation of all your insecurities. Baby is a little person created out of love and rainbows and awesomeness... nothing more. And you are going to be a GREAT mother. I promise.

I know you that you will constantly be checking to see if baby's breathing every time she's asleep. I know that every time you take him to the doctor, you will freak out if he's below the stupid weight chart. You will worry about everything to the point that it's almost paralyzing. But, don't be afraid of loving someone that much. It is nothing you have ever experienced and it's going to completely overwhelm you. There's nothing anyone can say to prepare you for it either. But just GO with it when it happens.
TeresaV, AKlobnak, Gen88 and 4 others like this.

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May 26th, 2013, 06:29 AM
QueenCrafty's Avatar Courtney
Join Date: May 2007
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 26,352
This is a fantastic list! I couldn't agree more. Especially about holding the baby "too much." I heard that so much with Abri. I was too afraid of Lily that I didn't take advantage of all the snuggles. And I was that mom who was afraid of breaking the baby with a onesie. At Lily's first check up the doctor had to put her clothes on her because I was so nervous about it.
Gen88 and MamaSkunk like this.

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May 26th, 2013, 11:47 AM
zkat's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Aug 2009
Posts: 3,743

I especially agree with hold baby as often as you can. Everyone told me that Bourne was going to too clingy, spoiled, whatever. I barely get a kiss and bye when I drop him off in the mornings and he never touched the floor the first 6 months of life.
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May 26th, 2013, 06:06 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 2,283
When I worked at a daycare, we had one parent tell us not to hold the baby. She was probably 6 weeks when she started. Really, don't hold her? We did.
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May 26th, 2013, 06:15 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 1,834
We had parents request that, too. But we had cameras in the room so they would call and complain if she was held too much. They wanted her to be independent. Thankfully (or sadly, perhaps) they left after a couple weeks.

'Scuse the bad typing, please. 'Breast is Best' but not when browsing the internet!

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May 26th, 2013, 08:30 PM
Super Mommy
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: St. Paul MN
Posts: 773
I adore this list, all of it is so true! Same for me with holding the babies. Gabe just wasn't a huge fan of being put down anywhere, and he slept, fitfully at best, in his swing. To this day he still likes to snuggle in bed with us a couple early mornings of the week and I still don't mind a bit. Also, so true about the love hormone thing, if I feel like crap all I want to do is be around my babies, they make me feel so much better, about everything.
Mommy to Isaac 8.1.07 Gabriel 7.2.09 and Samuel 6.15.13
Angel Babe 9-16-2012 5wks
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May 27th, 2013, 02:43 AM
mommyandwife08's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Florida
Posts: 1,886
I love this! Thank you for sharing.

DS #1 07/08
Miscarriage 01/28/09
DS #2 9/10
chemical pregnancy 06/12
DD #1 06/13
Due 02/29 with DD #2

"I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for Me?" ~Jeremiah 32:27~
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May 27th, 2013, 08:42 AM
navywifey2003's Avatar Home Birth Mama
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I'm really glad I stumbled across it. She really has an awesome way of putting things

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May 27th, 2013, 09:41 PM
ValyntineG's Avatar Based on a True Story
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Texas and stuff
Posts: 6,414
Originally Posted by navywifey2003 View Post
I'm really glad I stumbled across it. She really has an awesome way of putting things
By "stumbled" she means that she randomly decided to stalk me the other day

Glad you ladies enjoyed the post.

claire1979 is my siggy hero

Go there. Buy stuff.

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May 27th, 2013, 10:03 PM
navywifey2003's Avatar Home Birth Mama
Join Date: Dec 2007
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Psh don't flatter yourself

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May 28th, 2013, 10:17 AM
~*Kudzu*~'s Avatar ~praying for a miracle~
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Location: North Pole, AK
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LOVE it!! This list is amazing!!
Thank you *Kiliki* for my beautiful siggy!!

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