5 Tips For New Moms (Current Or Soon To Be)
New moms! Is it just my imagination running riot or does your brain too conjure alien like images on hearing the word ‘new moms’?
Maybe comparing them to aliens is stretching things too far, but they still are a different species altogether, aren’t they?
What Do New Moms Say?
Becoming a mom for the first time is definitely like a roller coaster ride. There is a good mix of anxiety, exhilaration, excitement, contentment, tears, nausea, fear and an intense desire to end it at the earliest. Ask anyone who is expecting a baby soon and they will tell you how they feel.
You can expect to hear words like scared, anxious, excited, bewildered etc. But the basic feeling is one of unawareness. They don’t know what to actually expect when they will finally hold the newborn in their hands.
Being a mom of twins, and having handled not one but two precious bundles of joy simultaneously, I sure am a great resource and the best person around to dispense tips for new moms. What? You don’t agree with me? Just read through these tips and you will thank me later.
Tip # 1- Your Baby Won’t Break!
“OMG! This is a very tiny little being; will I break it if I touch it?” Yeah, that is what most new moms tend to think when they first look at their newborn babies. Don’t worry; just ignore what your brain is telling you right now. It is probably just dazed from going through all that PAIN and a good shot of sedatives too.
Just so you know, when my twins were born, they were just 4 kg / 8.8 lbs-TOGETHER! Yep, my elder twin (elder by a mere 5 minutes) weighed just 2.2 kg / 4.85 lbs and the younger twin was 1.8 kg / 3.96 lbs.
Your baby will definitely be bigger than that at any rate. The normal weight for newborns in USA is 7.5 lbs. Newborn babies need careful handling, but you can still touch them, kiss them and caress them.
Tip #2- No Your Baby is Not An Alien!
Once you recover from the shock of beholding a tiny being, your eyes will now scan it from head to toe. And that is exactly when might get your next shock. Yeah, that twisted, shapeless, uneven structure on the top is your baby’s head.
Most babies have bizarre looking heads, but then you really cannot blame them. The journey from inside the womb to the outer world is quite rocky (to say the least) and the bizarrely shaped head is just a souvenir.
My younger twin’s head looked like it had been under a truck, but no one who looks at her now, will guess that about her past.
You can expect your baby’s head to look more normal as she grows and bones in her skull meet and fuse with each other. You can try massaging her head with very light pressure each day before you give her a bath, which will speeden up the normal shaping.
Tip # 3-You Won’t Starve Your Baby To Death
Another worry that new moms have is that they may underfeed their baby and starve it. Nope, that won’t happen. Your baby comes with a natural and inbuilt alarm for depleted nutrition levels. So, even if you try to skip feeding your baby, her ear piercing screams will definitely not let that happen.
You can look forward to at least 8 nursing episodes in 24 hours. Newborns also tend to cluster feed, which means they tend to feed at shorter intervals in between two episodes and then go without any milk for 5-7 hours at a stretch.
So do not worry if this is what your newborn is doing. All is well if your baby is gaining at least .75 to 1 lb of body weight per day.
Tip # 4- Breast Feeding Is Important But Not Ultimate
With a few exceptions, most of the new moms want to do their best for their newborns. They have read, heard and been advised about how important breast milk is to the baby. But sadly, not every new mom is actually able to breast feed her baby. There can be a variety of health and other issues that may hinder a new mom from suckling her baby.
Don’t worry too much if you are unable to breast feed. Your baby will still do great on infant formula. Many moms tend to think of themselves as utter failures if they cannot breast feed. That is utter nonsense! Breast feeding is just a tiny part of what you are and will be doing as a mom to take care of your child. Don’t let that tiny part overshadow a lifetime of greatness.
Some babies may need a mix of both breast milk and infant formula, like in my case. Usually twins or multiple births find their mom’s milk to be insufficient and it is okay to feed them formula.
Tip # 5-Your Baby’s Cry Is Actually a Complex Alarm
It is not unless you spend some days with your newborn that you suddenly realize that your baby’s cry is far from the simple nerve shattering, ear piercing sound that it seems to be. It actually is a complex alarm and your baby expects you, yes YOU, to decode the alarm and react accordingly.
Your baby will emit the same kind of sounds to let you know of different needs. For example she will cry if she is hungry, if she needs a fresh diaper, is sleepy, is unwell, wants to be held and so on.
The best way to decode her complex alarm system is to observe her closely and scrutinize all of her activities just preceding and accompanying her cry.
She will usually suck on her hands or fingers before or during crying if she is hungry. If she needs to sleep she will probably yawn, rub her eyes and build up on the decibels while crying.
Colic or earaches are often quite easy to spot because of the intensity of the cry and nothing you do seems to soothe her.
If she wants to be fussed over and held, she will throw her hands and legs in the air while crying.
Remember you will not be a new mom forever. I agree that this phase is a mix of tears and smiles, but down the years when your newborn has grown into a teen, you’ll certainly long to relive all those experiences all over again. So, enjoy it while it lasts and yeah, take lot of pictures 🙂