Wednesday, May 11, 2011

During Jamie & Celia's maternity leave we asked a few of our favorite moms from around the internet if they would help fill the space with their wisdom. We asked for their thoughts on being a new mom, motherhood in general, or maybe something that really surprised them (no one told me that!). Please welcome Shayna!

I've been wracking my brain for the past few weeks trying to come up with some miraculously witty and sage advice or thoughts about what surprised me most as a new mom. And after all of this wracking and thinking? Nothing much brilliant but a random quick and dirty list of thoughts I've gathered over the past 4.5 months about this whole childbirth and baby business:

+ birth plan? eh, why bother? good tool for discussion (or mega-fights in our household) but I think my scribbled plan stayed crumpled up at the bottom of my bag. The nurses are your best friends; use their experience.

+ birth is miraculous no matter the circumstance; natural, medicated or cesarean it's all pretty damn amazing and in the end the result is the have a baby!

+ hospitals are not relaxing. ask a nurse if you can put a "do not disturb" sign on the door for a few hours. we finally did (mom's brilliant idea) and it was the first time we slept in 4 days.

+ coming home with a new baby is HARD. when friends and family offer help, take it.

+ don't judge parents who use the pacifier, the bouncy chair, formula, etc. getting through the beginning as a relatively sane person is a lot better for both you and babe than being a crazy person who is dogmatic about their pre-baby ideals. not saying you have to abandon your child-rearing philosophy, but stay open and flexible.

+ not all babies sleep all of the time.

+ don't even try to do dishes, laundry, cook, etc for a while. that's not your job right now.

+ nursing gets easier with time and your nipples won't hurt forever.

+ the surge in hormones is insane. you will cry like a teenage girl and smell like a teenage boy for several weeks post-birth.

+ don't stress about what you "need" to be ready for the arrival of the wee one. diapers and a blanket are really the only necessary items. in the end, you're going to have a baby no matter how much stuff you accumulate and the baby won't notice what's missing.

+ you will mourn for your old life. don't be ashamed. it doesn't mean you don't love your baby or your new life.

+ you may not feel like you love your baby immediately and it doesn't make you a bad mother. this is an entirely new person that you need time to get to know.

+ on that note: one day without even noticing that it's happened, you'll find yourself head-over-heels hardcore in-love with your tiny babe and you'll realize that everything was so worth it.


  1. Thanks so much for this post. This is exactly how I feel right now and this post mde me feel a little more normal.

  2. There is a a lot of truth in this.

  3. MEGA-fights in our household. SO glad that whole part of it is over.

  4. This is a brilliant post - thanks Shayna; put the organisation junky in me on hold for a few days (okay, maybe hours).

  5. So much wisdom in these bullet points.

    (And how cute is your daughter, Shayna?)

  6. Thanks so much for this post (and this series.) I appreciate every letter of ever word, especially the part about mourning for your old life.

  7. i loved's been years for me, but so dead-on with these little bits of inspiration.

    well done, you! I MISS YOU! loved seeing your cute face and that cute little one you made...