The day my son David was born my life changed forever. I was now a mom and part of something bigger than me. Looking at my little baby for the first time, I felt a rush of emotions. Everything from love to complete fear I felt all at the same time! I was clueless and I had no idea how difficult being a first time mom would be.
Needless to say, mistakes were made, many many mistakes. To be honest, I screwed up a lot!
This week David turned 7 (I’m still super emotional about this and cry constantly) and I got to thinking about the mistakes I made when he was a baby. I know I’m not the only mom that thinks this way so I’m sharing 5 big slip-ups I made as a first time mom.
Hopefully, you’ll learn from my mistakes!
1. NOT ASKING FOR HELP
I wanted to prove I could do it all & do it all alone. I’m not sure who I thought I needed to prove this to but for some reason I made up in my mind, I felt this way and I very rarely asked for help. Other than my husband, I didn’t really let anyone get very hands-on. Boy, was I stupid! I somehow thought that if I didn’t bathe him, feed him, hold him or do every single thing myself, then David wouldn’t know I’m his mom and love me. Looking back I know some of these thoughts definitely had to do with my postpartum depression but they were still illogical. Also, I’m sure taking everything alone didn’t help my PPD.
If I could turn back time, I’d throw the baby at anyone & everyone and would’ve gotten more rest.
2. SUBSCRIBING TO “BABYCENTER”
Okay hear me out with this one. I don’t hate Babycenter and I think it’s a great website but as a first time mom, I took it a little too serious and was obsessed with milestones and eating habits. “It says here he’s supposed to be sitting up by 7 months!”, “He’s supposed to be sleeping 5 hours a night by now!” “He’s not supposed to eat that until 9 months!” How annoying! If I could go back, I’d stop myself before subscribing to that website and just be a little more relaxed. I realized the best resources were my friends, family and our pediatrician and just my own experience with the baby.
3. NOT RESTING ENOUGH
You’re probably rolling your eyes so hard at me right now but trust me on this. Once David became a toddler it was obvious he was just getting more active and I was going to have less time during the day to get things done. When he was a baby, I never rested during the day and was always tired at night. It was horrible! I wish I would’ve taken a little easier during the baby stage when he was less mobile and maybe taken a nap myself.
4. PLAYING THE COMPARE GAME
“But that mom got her baby to sleep 8 hours & makes her baby food from scratch!” I mean that’s awesome for that lady but it didn’t change how I was parenting one bit. I don’t know why we do this to ourselves as moms but we just compare ourselves to other moms like it matters. It doesn’t. I used to do this all the time and it brought me down so much. We’re all good moms, our kids are fine, this is not a competition!
5. OVER-STRESSING THE SCHEDULE
I was a scheduler when David was a baby. If we even veered a tiny bit from it, I’d turn into a major witch with a capital B and it was not pretty. I was so in my head about when he needed to eat and nap that I almost didn’t enjoy our time like I should have. Schedules are super important but I think it’s more conducive to have a steady routine than to stick to a strict time frame.
“There’s no way to be a perfect mother and a million ways to be a good one.” – Jill Churchill
Parenting is hard and being a first-time mom is even harder because you have no idea what you’re getting yourself into. I thought I knew but I was so wrong. I made tons of mistakes but it’s okay. We have to make mistakes to learn, it’s a part of life. David turned out okay and I tried not to make the same mistakes when his little brother came along.
Spoiler alert, I made other mistakes with him but that’s a story for another time.
So, if you’re a first time mom, breath, and take it easy. Remember, it will be fine because regardless of how much you think you’re messing up, you’re doing a great job!