Ahhhhh the bliss of a beautiful new squish (that’s what we babywearing mummas call newborns). You could find yourself sitting for hours studying their tiny features, or, you may find yourself asleep every time they do. Whatever you do in the first weeks or even months of your new baby’s life, let it be simple and restful for you;
‘ Your main job is to look after your baby (and of course yourself), anything else you get done in addition to that is a bonus’.
As a pregnant mother, many of you spent countless hours preparing for the birth, organizing tiny clothing into a beautifully decorated space and figuring out what to put in your hospital bag, all of which are very important things to prepare……. I do wonder how many of you thought about what life might be like once your baby was born.
Did you, like me, have the idea that your baby would just fit in to your current life, sleeping when they needed to in any number of environments, sleeping through the night from 6 weeks and feeding them every 3 hours? Did you have the idea that you would also sleep when they did during the day or clean the house and cook when they napped and that you’d still be able to shower and get ready for the day uninterrupted? When your baby was born did you discover that many of those ideals weren’t a reality for a newborn or the mother of a newborn?! Me too!! I wished that I’d have known how truly exhausting it might be, or that feeding consistently round the clock every half an hour was normal, and how I could better manage my seemingly endless list of things I needed/wanted to get done around the house everyday, and how not to feel completely overwhelmed and helpless when my exhausted baby wasn’t following the rules of the newborn sleepy baby.
Here is a list of things I want you all to know are biologically normal things you can expect from your newborn (and if none of these apply to you, you’ve got what some of my friends and I call a unicorn baby);
- Newborns have tummy’s the size of a marble when they are born, it is normal for them to feed every half an hour for the first few days and every 45-60 mins for the first 2 weeks – this is both because their tummy’s are so small and because they are helping you to establish a healthy milk supply –it rarely means you don’t have any/enough milk
- Sleeping through the night for a newborn (up to 6 months even) means 5 hrs of continuous sleep, it does not mean 8 or even 12 straight hours
- Young babies may wake up every 40 minutes all night and day
- Some babies will only want to sleep on or with their mothers… they’ve been inside you, feeling your every movement for the past 9 months, it’s a strange concept for them to be placed somewhere away from you so take heart it will get better at some point
So you see, the ideals are just that. Each and every one of you mother-baby combos have your own norms and that’s good. I did just want to let you know that in our society we are often trying to meet the expectation of others rather than the biological norms of our babies. This can make us feel as though our baby’s aren’t doing the right things or that we must be doing something wrong if they aren’t sleeping through or are feeding so frequently; but its just not so.
I did my HypnoMothering training a couple of years ago now, something I absolutely wished I’d have been able to utilize in my early sleep-deprived parenting journey. If you are finding life with a young baby or child exhausting, overwhelming or downright challenging or you just want to boost confidence in your own parenting ways; or even if you have a unicorn baby but would love to learn some relaxation techniques to help you get some much needed ‘me time’, why not join a HypnoMothering session? Click here for class details.
At the very very least you’ll get 2.5 hours of ‘mummy me time’ where the focus is on you as well as meeting some other lovely mummas.