Bringing a new life into this world is a beginning like no other. You are likely to feel a whole gamut of emotions, ranging from sheer joy to exhaustion to nervousness. As a new parent, you can head into this exciting life journey by preparing yourself with advice from the experts prior to the arrival of the big day. Here are five of the best tips and tricks for first-time parents.
Get Your Sleep
It may sound like a tired cliche, but you really should sleep while the baby sleeps. Most new parents understandably want to run around and get everything done around when the baby is napping. You are better off using this time to catch up on your own sleep before worrying about all of the chores.
Sleep deprivation can bring even the best parent to tears. Do not let this happen to you. Remember that you are a better parent if you are rested. Lean on your partner or other loved ones and friends for support. Even if you just invite someone over to hold the baby for an hour or two while you catch a quick nap, you will feel so much better that you did. Do not be hesitant to accept all of the help that is offered to you during this time.
Document All of Those Precious Firsts
You will never get this precious time with your newborn again. Do not let this special season of life go by undocumented. While it may seem overwhelming at the time, you will appreciate having plenty of keepsakes and pictures to remember your baby when it was brand new to the world.
Before your baby is even born, be sure to set up a newborn photography session. This will ensure that your new love is captured in a professional way. You may also enjoy creating a scrapbook or memory book to commemorate all of those first milestones. All of these keepsakes will be treasured for years by your family, making it worth your time and effort.
Give Yourself Grace
It is easy to beat yourself up after every mistake that you make with a new baby. Do not fall into the trap of thinking that you have to be the perfect parent. It is important to give yourself grace as you are getting the hang of this new parenting gig.
Also under this same umbrella comes the tip of making time for self-care. You cannot expect to be a great parent if your own personal needs are not being met. Be sure to work time into each day that is just for you. Maybe that means time to curl up with a good book or to take a walk around the block and get some fresh air.
Understand the Best Necessities
Many first-time parents make the mistake of buying everything that baby products marketers insist that they need only to find that they just used a few items over and over. Other than a car seat and a safe place for your baby to sleep, there is not much else beyond basic clothing and diapers that you need during those first few months of the newborn stage.
Items that you will want to stock up on include loads of comfortable onesies. Be sure to buy pajamas that provide easy access to diapers in the middle of the night. You will also go through a ton of receiving blankets, using them for everything from swaddling to burping.
Do Not Compare Your Baby to Others
Every new parent worries that their baby is not developing properly and on schedule. This is a normal fear of first-time parents. However, it is important to resist the urge of comparing what your baby is doing to others. Remember that all babies develop on their own schedule and you need to be respectful of that. Comparing your child to others will only serve to exacerbate the normal anxiety of being a first-time parent.
Above all, be sure to lean into the joy of being a new parent. Cherish this special time and make the most of it, knowing that it will be over before you know it.